* Posts by joed

709 posts • joined 13 Jun 2013

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Your parents love you, Cortana. That's why we bought you an upgrade

joed
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Re: Disabling Cortana

It is not disabled. And it's pita to disable websearch from the search box and all he nagging/"suggestions" that show in there even on enterprise sku can only be explained by MS' greed, stupidity, malice or all of the above.

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Surface Hub 2: Microsoft's pricey whiteboard gets a sequel

joed
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Re: hefty, hefty indeed

And unfortunately end customers pay for this extravagance. And it's not like it really saved on travel money (while clogging pipes with tons of pointless video feed). And paper hand outs are still a thing. Paperless office is always just few years away.

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How many ways can a PDF mess up your PC? 47 in this Adobe update alone

joed
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Software as a service requires steady supply of fresh bugs. And Adobe delivers.

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Britain to slash F-35 orders? Erm, no, scoffs Lockheed UK boss

joed
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>3100? 3100+ ultra expensive planes? This is not WWII to crank up such numbers (especially considering the pricetag). It'll be great if 310 is made (and still too much for the taxpayer).

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Let's kick the tyres on Google's Android P... It's not an overheating wreck, but UX is tappy

joed
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Re: Nuff said

Very much like Windows then. The reality of "service", questionable "design" and "experience". Customer last (when all is said and done) and money in the pocket of whoever owns the "platform". BTW, sometimes not getting updates is better than getting served.

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Google Pay heads for the desktop... and, we fear, an inevitable flop

joed
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Re: Chrome malware

Technically this can be done securely - make a purchase from any computer (that you find convenient to browse/do research) while signed in with Google account but approve the payment from a "secure" mobile device linked to the same account. Apple has the advantage of providing now both iOS and macOS devices that have all the necessary hardware built in, but technically this increases the risk of fraudulent transaction (more devices with your payment information) no matter how secure the base system was. BTW, Google had the desktop version for years (Google Wallet?) or was it just PayPal alternative? I recall using it like once (way back) and didn't bother to update any of my info (or worse yet, link it my disposable Google account linked to just as disposable - and by now expired - gifted prepaid CC). I do use Apple Pay but I have no particular urge to have all my web activity and purchases tracked by Google or MS (sure as hell the'd like me to sign in to Windows with their account, use Edge and their crap Store).

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Microsoft's latest Windows 10 update downs Chrome, Cortana

joed
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Telemetry is here to piss off privacy minded people and not to help with debugging - "this will teach them" philosophy of sorts.

At least Cortana can now be turned off, courtesy of MS. Enjoy while it lasts.

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Press F to pay respects to the Windows 10 April Update casualties

joed
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Re: Most of the 'casualties' are Ballmer era stuff

not really if Windows is your primary environment. Then MS can see everything. Google can only dream of this.

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Microsoft Lean's in: Slimmed-down Windows 10 OS option spotted

joed
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Re: Why would they sell the OS users really want?

The closer one looks the closer the model resembled cable TV. Basic service that ain't worth s... and expensive premium packages that bring little of value to the overall experience (besides vendor lock-in benefiting MS'). Market disruption - sure (if temporary). Innovation - not so much. Windows and Office environments are ripe for cord cutters.

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It's US Tax Day, so of course the IRS's servers have taken a swan dive

joed
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Re: I'm sure they got encryption

Same here. BTW, "agency's e-file system" is an oxymoron unless it refers to online option open to "free-market" providers. While doing taxes old school is pita, it's the only way to stick it to the middleman that lobbied hard to prevent direct file option. Screw them.

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Europe turns nose up at new smartphones: Beancounters predict 7% sales drop

joed
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Re: really? 5G as the big draw?

I'd add price to drawbacks - expensive to start with, limited coverage and will make data caps much more obvious (where service is available). I can only guess that the same consumers that wised up to longer phone upgrade cycle and switched to SIM only plans (often payg) are just as willing to burn their cash on high speed Internet at home and on the go (easily 2k$ over the year period). Basics like email/messaging, maps etc do not require anything over reliable 3G.

Though if it can be written off as business expense, why not (just pity the customer).

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'Uncarrier' T-Mobile US to un-carry $40m for bumpkin blower bunkum

joed
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Re: Cost Benefit Ratio

I bet that average motorist can't predict the outcome of being pulled over the way big corp's legal and finance departments can guesstimate liability of non-compliance and its impact on profit. What's surprising here is that T has not avoided fines - after all Walker's state is pro "free market" and the great leader and his FCC pawn seem to share the same sentiment.

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Google accidentally reveals new swipe-happy Android UI

joed
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Re: Please no

It's not just "discoverability". What matters just as much is repeatability (without frustrating average user, e.g. force touch and forwarding an sms on iPhone). Opera was a browser that brought mouse gestures to desktop browser, gestures only few mastered so it never proved to be of particular value and - having not much more to offer - the browser never gained much traction. Nobody's going to read the manual or spend time watching youtube just to perform basic tasks.

Now, give me real home button, audio jack and (u)SD card slot.

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It's April 2018, and we've had to sit on this Windows 10 Spring Creators Update headline for days

joed
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Re: GDPR rights vs MS

"Microsoft Privacy Dashboard. There's a few things there you can delete your data that Microsoft has already collected." - the problem is that this requires one to create and login with MS account thus making it even easier for them to collect more personally identifiable information. Pointless if you've asked me. Once data is collected it's out of your reach, MS' word can be believed, or not.

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joed
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Re: "we've had to sit on this Windows 10 Spring Creators Update headline for days"

If any of this can be trusted, one can turn off some of the slurp in newer build. At the same time it's becoming more difficult to dispatch Cortana that creeps her way into tasks that never required connected search. I'm not particularly convinced by MS' intentions.

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Lenovo sends EMEA exec into metaphorical burning building

joed
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Re: They could have it so easy

No repair manual but - allegedly - you'll now have to certify your team (unlikely for free) to make any in house repairs or upgrades (if any possible). And with the whole BS of "supply" constraints it's no wonder their sales slide when equipment is not delivered on time (or at all).

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For some reason, you lot love 'em. So here are the many ThinkPads of 2018

joed
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Re: Yoga

I know of some that requested it just cause it was more expensive than t470. Can't get what you really want? Get what make you seem more important.

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joed
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Re: Rant

You forgot to mention the crappy touchpad of t450/60/70 series. Keyboard is acceptable. Build quality - well, what can one expect from cheapo plastic. Fragile as heck and replacement screen cost a fortune.

BTW, none of new mainstream machines will allow for RAM upgrade (at all) or even SSD swap (without voiding warranty). Built in battery, no Ethernet jack and the "greatest" OS yet as the only option. Obviously more expensive.

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Six months on, and let's check in on those 'stuttering' Windows 10 PCs. Yep, still stuttering

joed
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You may be onto something. Even with "normal" settings set to limit Cortana, when the network glitched out (net security), an attempt to look up anything brought the whole system to crawl until explorer restarted itself. I'm not surprised with any sort of issues affecting this nosy system that's trying to be as helpful as it is creepy.

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What a hang up: US big box biz Best Buy kicks Huawei to the curb

joed
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Re: Relocation needed.

This has not cut it for Kasperky. Switzerland may do it though.

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Now that's a bad trip: 880k credit cards 'likely' stolen by Orbitz hackers

joed
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Re: Cardholder verification codes

Also, why would Orbitz also ask for date of birth and other stuff that had nothing to with travel payment? Or is it that foolish customers volunteered this data (at their own peril)?

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Mozilla's opt-out Firefox DNS privacy test sparks, er, privacy outcry

joed
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Re: Off the top of my head

I would not be so coy about Cisco - aren't they behind development of China firewall? Besides this, Cisco likely aggregates enough data about you at work, and there' really no reason to help them link your home browsing history (and maybe sell to HR/network team as value added of the security subscription they peddled).

Also, while I can see reason why some nightly build users may feel unhappy, it's not like cloudflare didn't serve most of the content they consumed (for this reason alone they may be the best entity to run this kind of test). I'm not sure if possible or in scope of the project, but it'd be nice if "revolving" part of the DNS thing included option for multiple trusted provided queried at random (so none had full insight into traffic patterns) or research if such setup had any merit.

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Horn star Sudan, last male northern white rhino, dies aged 45

joed
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It's really surprising that nation that developed one of oldest/greatest civilizations can be so backwards in so many ways. Seems that the great leap was not enough to overcome even greater superstition. And then came new money (rarely in line with modesty and good taste).

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Fun fact of the day: Voice recognition tech is naturally sexist

joed
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sex sells

I'd guess that the choice of Alexa, Cortana and Siri was also dictated by the sexism. I've kept my microphones disabled (equal opportunity for voice recog systems;). Now, I'll be glad if I could also completely disable these irritating voices (agent C in particular). I'll do this in the name of equal rights.

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Intel ponders Broadcom buy as Qualcomm's exec chair steps away

joed
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Re: Intel will consider buying Broadcom

I can see little benefit here but for Broadcom shareholders. I'd not surprised if all this Qualcomm drama was a setup to trick bigger player to buy them (and their debts) out.

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A smartphone recession is coming and animated poo emojis can't stop it

joed
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Re: Who knew...

But while "Johnston poured water on the idea that retail orders for Samsung's Galaxy S9 will be 10 to 15 per cent higher than last year – he estimated them falling some 50 per cent on 2017's Galaxy S8.", the manufacturers have now built in physical fragility in addition to the old trick of planned obsolescence. Not only the fancy S8 (or any recent premium device) loses "shiny" and battery life over time, but the design makes it almost certain that few will survive exposure to everyday use. I've seen brand new ones with cracked screen (sure it may still work, but next impact will do it for good). I bet they'll also reinstate headphone jack and include SD card slot to get people buying again.

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Microsoft floats feelers for fake worlds

joed
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can't wait

"The industry is confident that the revenue is coming as hardware costs fall, awareness rises, and expectations become more realistic." - this sounds exciting. Lets also get ready for riding schoolbuses if the same logic applied to autonomous vehicles.

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Microsoft builds Uncle Sam custom versions of 365 and Azure Stack

joed
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payback time?

You've made all attempts to avoid paying for Windows license but now you'll pay MS tax. This is how they get you. Military industrial complex at its finest. And it's hard to tell who had whom in the pocket.

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You can Ring my bell: Amazon pays ONE BEEEEELLION+ dollars for smart home upstart

joed
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all in

Soon to be your landlord and the company store.

All the while you keep paying for tax breaks your dumb-witted local government promised them to setup a sweatshops and some office space in your region.

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Time to pay, Paypal pal Venmo! Oh no, haha, put away that wallet – just promise to be nice

joed
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Re: "Venmo did not live up to the promises it made to users about the availability of their money"

Real PayPal story regarding funds availability. Purchased some software, 9.99$ total - dirt cheap, paid with PP - just in case and because what could go wrong (it's usually the seller who's on the hook, right). Well, to my surprise I had to contact PP's collection department to take care of negative balance on my account as their system would not even process my CC that had been on the account before I was forced to link bank account (transfer was just a fraction of linked account, the bank had no record of denied transfer). More hassle and wasted time that it's really worth. My only explanation is that PP discloses details of transactions to all parties (instead of just acting as a proper proxy) and the bank flagged the transfer as going to fraud rife region (Russian vendor, software absolutely legit though and not linked to any IP circumvention etc). Anyway, neither my bank nor PP explanations make much sense (PP customer support being definitely lacking knowledge of their product beyond script, past experience was better). This put the whole idea of using PP in question. I use it mostly for fraud protection but since the concept of cash like transactions failed since the forced switch to linked bank accounts - banks do not see it the "cash in the pocket way" and will charge you in case of insufficient funds instead of just rejecting transactions and keeping one safe from scammers etc trying to clean up the account - I may as well just switch to using Internet purchases dedicated credit card or Apple Pay.

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Why isn't digital fixing the productivity puzzle?

joed
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Re: It doesn't take a flashy report with pretty graphs...

I'm surprised by US' productivity loss of .2% and curious how much worse would it really be once the extra (unpaid) time spent by workers (to achieve this disappointing results) was really accounted for.

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Microsoft Australia changes App Store T&Cs to pay GST

joed
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Re: One good reason why...

"...I have a US credit card, billed in US dollars, to a US address!" - still not a good reason to shop at Windows store

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Teensy plastic shields are the big new thing in 2018's laptop crop

joed
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"HP's new toy is "Sure View", a software-driven privacy shield that dithers a laptop's display to narrow the angles from which it can be seen." - not really needed with the quality of their laptop screens. I bet it will also screw users' eyesight.

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HP starts slinging Apple hardware, tech support vending machines

joed
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Re: so?

These vending machines will be a perfect fit in prison. Captive customer and no competition in sight. If only they also had money.

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US docs show Daimler may have done a Dieselgate – German press claims

joed
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Re: "...any visible smoke..."

"I looked up the pollution standard for heavy diesel vehicles.

That was a UK specific issue."

Are you sure about this? "Free market" lobbyists in US established the practice of standards exempt glider trucks where old, emission systems unencumbered engine is mounted into the new truck frame. Just don't try doing the same to your personal vehicle where any modification may render it off-road only (cops turning blind eye are entirely different story). With or without the emission systems, I'd argue that no commercial diesel vehicle should be permitted unless equipped with vertical exhaust pipe, 10+ feet off the ground (including f.. school buses).

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Microsoft's Windows 10 Workstation adds killer feature: No Candy Crush

joed
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Re: Consumer refers to who's paying

I've been running my "Creators" without any nags other that once per boot whining from "Defender" (its days are numbered anyway as CPU cycles are too few to waste on this underpowered PC). Simply remove all crap from the base image (before it's applied), don't use MS login for everyday account and set all network interfaces to metered (and don't use MS browsers to maintain acceptable level of security and privacy). Still the endgame will likely be switch to Linux or whatever can run FireFox (bitcoin miners have cured me of my gaming inclinations).

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joed
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Re: Consumer refers to who's paying

I've not heard of a free copy of Windows 10 (outside of not fully legit ones). And 100$ for a "privilege" of running MS' billboard in one's room is particularly bad deal.

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joed
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that start menu is still full of s... MS, go back to polishing the turd

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Waddawewant? Free video codecs! When do we... oh, look, the last MPEG-2 patent expired!

joed
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Re: Still widely used

Not just DVDs. ATSC uses mpeg2 and with good results. Also, mpeg2 patent fees were additional reason why MS killed WMC in Windows 8+ (and rendered playback of any local media virtually impossible without 3rd party software). Which sucks as deinterlacing algorithm in the free codecs looks inferior to what Windows 7 offered out of the box.

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FCC commish gobbles Verizon's phone-locking BS, says it tastes great

joed
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Re: I like the European model...

Well, one can do the same in US. Just make sure to avoid Verizon's (or other telco stores). Also, unlocked phone does not necessarily mean phone carrier crap free (as I've learned myself). Do your research before the purchase. EU market is just better suited for open devices - common cellular system and many providers that do not have near monopoly position and thus are able to force this BS onto the market.

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From Amazon to Ama-gone: Bezos swings the axe on hundreds at HQ

joed
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trickle down economy at its finest

Got to save the money for that new HQ (as if tax breaks by foolish cities bidding against each others were not enough).

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EE unveils shoebox-sized router to boost Brit bumpkin broadband

joed
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Re: 200GB for £60/month

don't forget the "introductory package" part. It only goes up from there.

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From July, Chrome will name and shame insecure HTTP websites

joed
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Re: Good Strategy?

Instead they could just show http(s) prefix and make inspecting certificates easy, but this is so yesterday.

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Arlo, can you go? NETGEAR spins out its security cameras biz

joed
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continuous cloud and mobile app based engagement

1st rule of of any of my technology purchases - no strings attached, no subscriptions. It's foolish to trade privacy for mostly false sense of security. Maybe some SMB will bite - though these tend to be just as cheap and with MS forcing it's cloud integrated security features there's little of value to justify extra expense. Other manufacturers have already tried this with parental control subscriptions and I'd like to see uptake levels (of paying consumers).

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CableLabs signs off MAC spec for DOCSIS full duplex

joed
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Re: What difference does it make what wifi router you put on it?

I'm not sure about the need for more and more bandwidth, especially that progress is not reflected in falling prices of low tier data packages (at least not in the "free market" scheme of US). While 3.1 could deliver all Internet one wanted (but not necessarily needed), few would be willing to pay for the privilege. And the 4k streams are as needed as 3D - most consumers will never have viewing environment nor eyesight to see past 1080p (assuming monitor with decent contrast, color and refresh rate). 80Mbps stream per device - what cloud provider's koolaid is fed through this pipe. Should I even mention data caps?

I've only recently been forced by Comcast to upgrade to docsis 3.0, to no benefit on my end (the seller of the refurb modem didn't mind my 50$ for sure). While I can understand the benefits to network provider monopolies, the technology is nearly meaningless outside rich gated communities with households willing to spend 200$+ a month for a service bundle.

I'm just hoping that my 3.0 modem will last as long as 2.0 did (especially that my service speed does not meet FCC's revised definition of broadband and 3.1 won't help this).

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Skype for Biz users: Go watch nature vids. Microsoft wants you to get good at migration

joed
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Re: Does Microsoft have ADHD or something?

Delve - the tool that discloses information about documents your management is working on (but they lacked imagination to make private).

Sway - PowerPoint slops.

O365 offers growing number of equally useful apps being created solely to justify costs of subscription (and price increases over time).

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joed
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Re: Does Microsoft have ADHD or something?

It's not just ADHD. It's also jealousy, of Slack. Hence another copycat service.

The bad thing is that now everyone in corp environment will have to get used to this kitchen and sink of communicators. I was hoping that stumbling into it once was the only time I had a "pleasure" to use it.

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Don't worry, it'll be all Reich! Googler saves Grammarly nazis from hacker invasion

joed
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Re: They called me crazy...

OTOH, I would not be surprised if any of MSO and Windows native spellchecks have been integrated with MS cloud (including Bing/Cortana). Even their on screen and touch keyboard has key logger capability (to facilitate text text prediction/correction) and trying to clear the history - sure as hell it would try to help with opening password manager's database - is not particularly trivial, who knows what happens when user logged on with MS account. I only accept local and dumb dictionary tools not affiliated with any cloud provider.

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In America, tech support conmen get a mild slap. In Blighty, scammers get the book thrown at them

joed
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Re: Too mild in both cases

I'd say that US case at least resulted in a fine (while the UK defendant will wear a bracelet and wear relaxed fit jeans to cover it for 9 months). BTW, looks like US court system will be sole beneficiary - if they set the fine right, the scammer may consider the price of conducting business. Win, win (but for scammed saps).

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Can't login to Skype? You're not alone. Chat app's been a bit crap for five days now

joed
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Re: "the problem is limited to a small number of customers"

Not just this. The 3 million users may be all active Skype users left and remaining 297 will never complain (I just opened iOS app for the 1t time in a month or more, without much problem, all I've done - disabled some new "features" and exited the app).

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