* Posts by Zola

238 posts • joined 13 Nov 2012


Linksys's über-hackable WRT wireless router REBORN with 802.11ac

Thumb Up

Bollox, I hate Belkin

And I have vowed never to buy any of their tat. But this I like, and I might have to make an exception (once the price comes down).

$299 really is steep, maybe too steep. I used to own a pair of WRT54GS and they were cheap as chips even when brand new (ended up running Tomato on them in the end). Now that Belkin/Linksys officially approve of third party firmware, is the high price some sort of open source premium (aka gouging)?

Would be nice if they included an ADSL2+ modem in this as well. And frankly, for the price they're charging, it should have it already.

LG to bring Palm's webOS BACK FROM THE DEAD in TVs next week – report


Qt 5 framework on a Smart TV

Now a Smart TV UI built with Qt 5? I'd like to see that.

But WebOS? No thanks, and that's speaking as someone who owned a firesale Touchpad.

Get lost, fanbois: Nokia pulls HERE Maps from Apple's App Store


Re: 10% market share

They're stopping making phones full stop.

And given the decline in feature phone sales as everyone migrates to cheap Android, that too is probably for the best. I imagine the downvotes are all from the Windows Phone fanbois - I reckon I've peaked at 3 unless they've got multiple accounts!


10% market share

Sounds good until you realise Nokia lose money on practically every sale (negative margin 3%, ASP in free-fall according to last results) but that 15% share that Apple have? It earns them hundreds of pounds from every device sale. Rather than continue to lose more money on increasing device sales Nokia would be financially better off with 0% market share (as long as they stopped making Windows Phone products, oh hang on, that's what they're doing isn't it?)

Cheap 64-bit Snapdragon hopes to blow Chinese middle class's SoCs off


64-bit, eh?

Wasn't that ex-Intel now Qualcomm mouthpiece Chandrasekhar dismissing 64-bit ARM as a gimmick just a few months ago when Apple launched the A7? No surprise to discover he was swiftly sidelined where nobody need pay him any further attention.

As for Qualcomm in China, interesting move but their market dominance is likely to prove a more formidable challenge to future growth in that region with the Chinese government already investigating the company under anti-monopoly laws. Frankly I'd rather see less Qualcomm and more choice in the West too.

Wintel must welcome Androitel and Chromtel into cosy menage – Intel


Wot, no Tizen?

See Title.

Nokia's phone division burned us so badly we HAD to flog it, says CEO


Re: Cameras?

I wonder if their camera people went with the phone people or not.

Sadly yes the camera people did go with the phone people to Microsoft.

US watchdog snaps on thick gloves to probe Tesla's FIREBALL e-cars


Worrying attitude towards safety

I am really not trying to mess up his business model. I am trying to do this to actually keep people safer

Isn't Musk building rockets to send people into space? With such a cavalier attitude towards safety I do hope there's someone like Strickland overseeing the space industry that is able to remind Musk where his responsibilities lie.

Intel: 'Y'know that GPU-accelerated computing craze? Fuggedaboutit'


Intel failed at making decent GPUs

So of course they're going to say GPU compute is just a phase.

When all you are able to design is a CPU...

That's not to say that whatever Intel create doesn't have a place, but rubbishing the alternatives because you tried and failed doesn't reflect well on Intel.

Jolla's Android-aping Sailfish OS smartphones to land in November


Re: Yandex? Chinese investors?

They've been very clear from the outset that for them, China is a major market - more so than North America and given the success of Xiaomi it makes an awful lot of sense. They signed up a major Chinese retailer early on so this really shouldn't come as a surprise. You also won't have to use Yandex, other app stores will be supported.

As for the split personality, that's exactly what MeeGo/Maemo set out to achieve (and with a fair degree of success - it proved it could be done).


Re: Interesting interview with Jolla Sailfish OS UI designer

Very obvious WP influence in the designs on that page. From the App store to the fonts.

The app store is from Yandex not Jolla, a third party Android app that has nothing to do with Sailfish UI design, nor should it given its purpose (installing Android apps, which also are unlikely to follow the Sailfish UI design guide too closely).

As for the fonts, they're very similar to what MeeGo uses/used. But then you can say that about pretty much any relatively modern sans serif font. I would accept that Sailfish appears to be rather more "text heavy" in much the same way WP is.


Interesting interview with Jolla Sailfish OS UI designer

Jakko Roppola

I've got my Jolla phone on pre-order as my N950 is in need of an upgrade, can't wait! :-)

While the BBC drools over Twitter, look what UK's up to: Hospital superbug breakthrough


Re: [snipped by mod]

mod edit - please at least try not to insult his appearance

OK fair does, apologies to all Welsh baldies, but the teeth-sucking does really grate.


[snipped by mod]

Rory Cellan-Jones makes me cringe with his fawning and general lack of insight which makes BBC tech coverage typically no better than that of T3 or The Gadget Show (both utter jokes). Hardly a surprise they should focus so heavily and unquestioningly on the Twitter IPO rather than the more important underlying issues.

mod edit - please at least try not to insult his appearance

Hands on: We play with the slippery Lumia 1520, Nokia's first phondleslab


The last ever 'proper' Nok?

Surely that was the N9, or maybe the 808.

Lumias have never had that feeling of being truly "Nokia" - maybe it was the fact they were made by Compal on behalf of Nokia, or ran a non-Nokia OS, but so little about them was Nokia apart from the branding and industrial design.

SUPERSIZE ME: Nokia unveils Surface rival and 2 plumped-up phablets


Re: All new Nokia tablet....=]

but for others RT puts Office in a cheap, 15 hour laptop.

It's not the full Office though, is it? It's the crippled version that doesn't support Macros, which makes it pretty useless in a corporate environment (or for those expecting to open "complex" documents). And if all you want is to knock out the occasional word processed document or spreadsheet, there are free "Office" products capable of that on just about every other platform.

Plus you need to factor in the price of the keyboard for it to be a "laptop" and it's not really a cheap laptop after all.

If Office on RT did all that the full-fat Office version did, I'd agree that RT would be a lot more compelling, but since it doesn't, it's not.

Windows Phone 8 INFLATED by Microsoft ... to satisfy lonely phablets


FFS, more Qualcomm?

Microsoft would do better by adding MediaTek support than yet more powerful and expensive Qualcomm SoCs, considering that Windows Phone is only really selling at the low end.

There are no problems with the high end Nokia Lumia hardware, it's lovely, the problem is that few in their right mind want a high end Windows Phone, but there do seem to be plenty of takers willing to shell out next to nothing on a budget model, which sees Nokia lose money on every sale thanks to the expensive insides.

Adding support for ever more expensive Qualcomm kit is akin to fiddling about while watching Rome burn.

No doubt MediaTek support will come in real soon after Nokia hand over the losses directly to Microsoft. It's a shame Microsoft never got it's act together sooner, supporting more reasonably priced SoCs, to help it's partners actually make money from Windows Phone - or maybe that was all part of the master plan...

PC sales continue meteoric death plunge through 3rd quarter, drop another 8.6 per cent


Maybe Leo was right

Selling off the HP PC hardware business probably was the right call. It's a business in terminal decline, and selling it two years ago would have netted a peak valuation. Unless HP can find an alternative product for the PC business to sell, where will it be in 5 years time? Another loss making division they don't need, and can't sell (as nobody will buy it, unless it's almost given away), that will have to be closed down at significant cost?

He was still wrong about Autonomy though... that deal will never come right in a million years!

Digia gives Android and iOS devs a chance to get Qt


Re: 150 pop a month

That is going to be wildly popular.....

Support, costs.

There is also the free Qt Project version, sans support.

If you want your hand held, hand over the $150/month. If not, download away and find your own solution if/when problems crop up. This has always been the Qt approach, two versions, one free, one not, nothing new here.

You could also compare this with the Xamarin Enterprise license which costs $1800/year, so it's in the right ball park if you're that category of developer.

Robot WildCat slips its leash and bounds around parking lot


I take it stealth wasn't one of the design parameters then...

You'll be able to hear it's position long before you see it lolloping across the battlefield.

Watch BLUBBERING BILLION-DOLLAR BALLMER: Microsoft goodbye love-gush leaks


Ballmer always lacked any hint of "class"

Watching him go full retard at the end, arms pumping, screaming "Yeah!" to himself, just goes to show that no matter how rich you are, you can't buy class.

Hope I never have to listen to that voice ever again - worse than fingernails down a blackboard. He's certainly no loss to the industry which will be better off - irrespective of what happens to Microsoft - with his forced retirement.

Samsung's new image sensor promises better snaps in smaller devices


Re: This article mocks higher megapixels

The pureview at 42mp is made to look a chump by about Xperia z1 with half the pixels, adj it's fair to say mp are meaningless marketing drivel

Can you zoom in (lossless) and reframe on your Z1? No, thought not.

Some of the tricks you can achieve with PureView are unachievable with any other sensor, including the Z1, because of the techniques employed by Nokia making the most of the 41mpx.


This article mocks higher megapixels

But the fact is that the Nokia PureView 41 megapixel sensor IS revolutionary because all those extra pixels and the large sensor are used in the right way that rely does benefit the end user. Extra megapixels just for the sake of it however is a complete waste. This point shouldn't be overlooked.

E-book him! Entire Judge Dredd back catalogue gets iDevice treatment



Reading this story on my Nexus 7 2013 and for the first (and hopefully last) time I have iPad envy!

Any chance of Rogue Trooper being similarly re-released?

Crazy not releasing this kind of material for Android - hopefully it's just a matter of time.

Windows Phone overtakes Apple's market share ... in India


Re: Facts fail...

Umm... No

Microsoft have said that they are looking at unified (i.e. Micorsoft) branding at some point for smartphones, but they are buying the rights to use the Nokia name on mobile phones for 10 years. No need to stop calling them Nokia Lumia's until they *want* to.

Umm... Yes.

Microsoft have a 10 year licence to use the Nokia brand on FEATURE phones, but NOT smart phones. Once the deal completes, the Lumia devices will have to be rebranded since Microsoft don't have the right to continue using the Nokia brand in relation to anything but feature phones. Are we clear on this now? Good.


That's a lot of 520's Nokia are selling (and losing money on)

Microsoft have already started airbrushing Nokia out of their marketing.

Probably not an advisable move considering buyers in countries such as India tend to buy the brand, not the operating system. Nokia is still a well respected brand in India - Microsoft and Windows, not so much. Watch sub-continent sales plummet once the Microsoft Lumia hits the market...

Jolla Sailfish OS to support Android hardware, apps


Alien Dalvik from Myriad

is providing the Android compatibility layer, and libhybris manages the hardware side of things.

Microsoft reissues September patches after user complaints


Yep, the Office 2003 update and two Office 2007 updates are continually downloading and trying to install even though they're already installed twice now.

Well done Microsoft! ;-)

Intel uncloaks micro-microchip assault with Quark SoCs


"Not Invented Here" syndrome

You can always count on Intel for that. ARM already have some very good low power and small (in terms of number of transistor) designs, Intel could easily licence any one of those but no, it has to design it's own incompatible architecture.

I do hope this fails mightily.

The REAL winner of Microsoft's Nokia buy: GOOGLE


Re: Why would anyone target Windows Phones?

If you want something free and easy

Or you could try downloading Qt Creator which is also free, and with a single code base create apps for the whole market (other than Windows Phone) - that's iOS, Android, BB10, Sailfish, Tizen, Windows, Linux and Mac OSX.


Re: Headline is wrong

Why would nokia go for android ?

There's only one reason Nokia sold their phone business to Microsoft - because they couldn't make money from it while running Windows Phone. If Nokia believed their Devices & Services business had a future with Windows Phone, they wouldn't have sold it - it's really that simple. Nokia stopped believing in Windows Phone, or realised they would run out of money before it was once again a viable business, and had to get out. Presumably their 2011 deal with Microsoft precludes them from launching an Android phone at this point in time.

What is now more interesting is that Nokia and Microsoft have completely different business goals until this deal completes in ~6 months time. Nokia are basically losing money on every device sale as Elop chased market share with deep volume discounts and low ASPs, but now that Nokia are about to offload the D&S business they must surely be looking to protect what cash they have in the bank, which should mean eliminating discounts, raising ASP, and NOT chasing market share - exactly what Microsoft will not want.

In fact, Microsoft will want Nokia to lose as much money as possible over the next 6 months. What will Nokia do? Unless Microsoft are willing to cover Nokia's losses, Nokia should now sell only the low volume high-end, high margin Lumia stuff.

What Surface RT flop? Nokia said to be readying WinRT slab for September


Elop to take over from Ballmer when Microsoft buy Nokia

This is all part of the long term plan. Nokia, Microsoft are one and the same now.

Nokia will launch their RT tablet and become a laughing stock when all the predictions come true, but nobody will remember or care when the entire company is borged into Microsoft in another 12 months time, with Elop running the whole show. One might even wonder if that has been the plan all along...


Thumb Down

What a shame

Now they might get someone who knows what they're doing.

Nokia's PHAB-ULOUS comeback attempt: Huge WinPho 8 mobe rumoured


Re: Same old nonsense from dismissive journos.

Rather than not selling, it's doing almost 10% in some EU countries

However in the markets you mention almost all Lumia sales are of the budget/low end ie. CHEAP variety, on which Nokia lose money for every sale. The high-end Lumia devices make up less than 25-30% of all Lumia sales - globally - with the vast majority of sales coming from the 520/620/720.

This is hardly the kind of healthy and affluent market needed for a 6" phablet unless it's sold at well below cost, although I wouldn't put that past Nokia in their insane, suicidal drive to build a credible market share for Microsoft, even if means their own demise.


Re: "strength continues to lie in its cheaper models"

Nokia need to get out of the budget smartphone market where they are losing money on every sale (negative 3% margin according to most recent financials, and likely to increase as the ASP sinks lower) unless they can start shipping MediaTek or Rockchip based hardware.

Relying on relatively expensive Qualcomm gear to stuff into your budget Lumias is commercial suicide. Of course this requires that Microsoft introduce platform diversity, and since this doesn't seem likely any time soon it leaves Nokia up a creek without a paddle.

Intel to put pedal to metal in 14nm Atom upgrade


Competition is a wonderful thing

Sounds like Intel are all out of ideas and now left only with process improvements to compete with ARM - that may work initially but ARM and their partners won't be hanging around so how much time does this buy Intel, a year of competitiveness? Maybe 18 months.

And then there is still the issue of unit price - Intel being way more expensive than ARM though the move to 14nm should help here - and lack of SoC customisability. So still a few hurdles before Intel can really compete with ARM, but I'm sure Intel will achieve some 14nm tablet/smartphone design wins by hook or by crook... they know they have to.

iPhone 5S: 64-bit A7, 128GB storage, flashy ƒ/2.0 camera, and...


@DougS: Re: @M Gale

The only real difference for 64 bit CPUs is the ability to address more than 4GB of RAM.

You do realise the ARMv7 architecture has support for 40-bit memory addressing, meaning 4GB has never been a limit (it's closer to 1TB).

Facebook's request to the flash industry: 'Make the worst flash possible'


@ Timmay: Re: @ Zola

If you've tried it, genuinely don't like it, then fine

Yes I tried it, recently in fact (earlier this year) as I recalled a lot of friends that were raving about it way back in 2010, so I looked up their entries and guess what - not one of them has posted a single update since about 2011/2012.

I looked up about two dozen people and there's just tumble weed rolling through their pages.

I'm sure Facebook has its uses, and appeals to certain groups, but like the guy from Facebook said - "The majority of that data will probably be written once and read never" - which chimes with my personal experience, nobody (I know) is using it any more. They've all moved on, Facebook for them was just a fad.

(Twitter, on the other hand, even I don't get...)

I actually find Twitter quite useful, following people (not necessarily friends) that have interesting opinions or commentary. Although anyone posting more than half a dozen tweets a day will usually get the chop in no short order.


"The majority of that data will probably be written once and read never – really, it's sad."

You can say that about pretty much all user generated content on the web - Facebook just happens to be storing by far the most of it this write-only shite.

I'd describe the whole of Facebook itself as "very sad", but then I never saw the point of it when it first appeared, and still don't today.

ZTE to flog Firefox OS mobe worldwide via eBay


Dalvik vs. ASM.js vs. Native

Surprising results.

And with the ZTE priced to compete with Landfill Android, it should at least be able to hold its own in terms of performance, and maybe even better. Now it just needs a few more apps - hopefully developers will see the value in developing for HTML5, it's incredibly easy to create and deploy, and should run on pretty much anything with a decent browser.


Re: Lackluster

It hardly get the loins pining and puts modesty in the shade

True, but for a weekend or "party phone" (one you won't mind too much losing/smashing/having stolen) it's probably ideal.

Also, not everyone is turned on by expensive high-end hardware, but may want more than a regular feature phone can offer (eg. email and web on the move) in which case the ZTE could be just the ticket.

What is welcome to see is ZTE going it alone when the operators/carriers turn their noses up. The operators are not the be-all and end-all - certainly not at this end of the market.

Ye Bug List


Re: comment section formatting bug

I too am seeing the weird indenting in Firefox (on Win7, FF v22 and now also v23).

I would vote for some form of indenting so that you can more easily see to which post a reply corresponds, but the current indenting seems excessive and even random - I replied to one post but my reply wasn't indented as expected. Other posts are indented more than other reply posts,but for no apparent reason.

For example this thread: when sorted by Thread, the first post ("Ground", by petur) has two replies. The first reply (from AC, "Do you really think cheap knock-off..." etc.) is indented much more than the second reply from Phil O'Sophical. I don't get it - they're both replies to the original post.

Qualcomm exec on eight-core mobile chips: They're 'dumb'


Re: Except that...

Yes, just like today's desktop and laptop computers all have at least 8 cores.

Oh, wait.

My Linux desktop has 8 cores (AMD FX-8350). It wasn't expensive to build either. And yes, I do use all 8 cores. Even just a couple of years ago 8 cores in a mainstream desktop CPU would have been pretty unthinkable - progress, eh?


Re: "Dumb" until Qualcomm are able to produce an 8 core chip

Uh, why?

My Core i7 desktop computer "only" has 4 cores and my laptop "only" has 2 cores, and both work great.

Not if it has hyper-threading and presents 8 cores to the OS....

But that's beside the point, your 4 (real) i7 cores are significantly more powerful than the ARM cores in mobile SoCs, so having more cores in the mobile SoCs isn't a bad thing.

Of course we'd all like mobile SoCs to have cores as powerful as i7 cores but that's just impractical given current technology. Therefore the best approach is increased parallelism, and more cores (some big, some little) which gives finer grained power control when such control is required (ie. while mobile and on battery power).


No. A low-performance CPU will use much less power than a high-performance CPU running at a lower clock speed.

And equally, a high-performance core may use less power than a lower performance core, simply because it can complete the task more quickly.

It's the race to idle, the more quickly you can finish a task (and switch off the core) the less power you use overall. So a task that runs for 2 minutes (potentially maxed out) on a low performance core but only 30 seconds on a higher performance core may actually use the same or even less power on that higher performance core.


Re: I agree. 8 core phones are pretty dumb.

So what are the 8 cores for? That one time when you want to revisit the 90s and draw a mandelbrot?

No, it's for when I drop my Smartphone into a mains powered dock and start running a full desktop OS. With all 8 cores going gangbusters on whatever tasks I'm performing on my full desktop OS.

Try not to think about the limited smartphones of today, which are running operating systems that massively lag the prodigious hardware they have available to them.

Some firms (eg. Ubuntu) have embraced the "hybrid" approach and it's quite compelling, while potentially disruptive for an already ailing PC hardware industry. It remains to be seen if the other mobile OS vendors with fingers in the PC/desktop OS pie, ie. Apple and Microsoft, will ever follow the lead of Ubuntu - due to conflicts of interest I find that incredibly unlikely, so it's just as well I have no interest in what they do.


According to the video on their site they are 8 equal cores and they have the ability to switch on or off as many as needed for the task at hand.

Assuming you are talking about the MediaTek True Octa-Core, the video, nor any of the documentation, fails to make it clear if it's using equal cores or not - MediaTek don't even mention the architecture (Cortex-A7, A12, A15 etc.) of the ARM cores in any of their documentation.

However the "Optimized ARM big.LITTLE" tab at the top of the MediaTek True Octa-Core page gives the game away - the MediaTek True Octa-Core is using big.LITTLE MP, which would only be the case if all 8 cores were NOT equal. Most likely there are 4xA7 and 4xA15 cores, but with big.LITTLE MP all of the 8 cores can be in use at any one time.

It's also funny how they absolutely cane their competitor (Samsung) by pointing out their ability to support only Cluster Migration and not CPU Migration (as we now know, thanks to the broken CCI -400 in the Exynos 5410). Perhaps MediaTek will need to revise their marketing material once the 5420 comes to market, assuming the CCI-400 is fixed of course...

And with a fully functional CCI-400, the Exynos 5420 should also be able to support big.LITTLE MP, just like the MediaTek True Octa-Core, as this is mostly a kernel/driver software thing with Linux support arriving only in the last few months. No doubt Android will gain big.LITTLE MP support in due course, although it's not going to be of much use to those poor international Galaxy S4/Exynos 5410 users.


Re: "Dumb" until Qualcomm are able to produce an 8 core chip

It isn't rocket surgery to create an 8 core chip.

The difficulty Qualcomm likely have is that they are using their own architecture for their multi-core SoCs, and not using standard ARM IP.

So stuff like big.LITTLE has to be re-invented by Qualcomm, stuff like the CCI has to be re-invented and updated to support more and even heterogeneous cores.

Yes, it's probably (relatively) easy to go from a dual-core to a quad-core and then an octa-core design when all the cores are 100% identical, but in the current 8-core SoCs not all the cores are identical (which would be very bad for power consumption) and it's this point which is most likely making life that bit more challenging for Qualcomm. They'll need to be considering how they solve the power problem as they ramp up the number of cores, and if they decide on using big and LITTLE cores they need to work out how they achieve it - design another new architecture for either the big or LITTLE cores? Not quick and not cheap.

This is all most certainly not rocket science, but because of the route Qualcomm has taken to market - ploughing their own furrow which has served them well up until this point - they now have a lot of work to do to catch up with the likes of Samsung and Media-Tek who are simply using off the shelf designs from ARM.

Quad core CPUs for phones is ridiculous overkill and completely unnecessary. Going to 8 core is ludicrous.

Generally, I'd agree - for todays smartphones.

But these 8-core SoCs aren't only going to be used in smartphones, they'll be absolutely fine in tablets with much bigger batteries, and I want an 8-core SoC in my "hybrid" smartphone of tomorrow which will run a full desktop OS when docked.

The big.LITTLE concept makes a lot of sense when thinking about "hybrid" products that sip small amounts of power while offering moderate processing capabilities when mobile, but are able to provide much more processing capability when docked and on mains power.

Octa-core processors may not be the most sensible option today with relatively dumb smartphone operating systems but in the future, with more capable operating systems and form factors, their benefits should be more obvious.

Qualcomm claiming 8-core SoCs are "dumb" is just deflecting attention away from their current ability to compete.


Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019