* Posts by Stephen

53 publicly visible posts • joined 17 Oct 2007


Sharp creates true-hue five-colours-per-pixel LCD


@Colour theory is incredibly difficult.

Just one slight correction; human tetrachromancy is not an established fact, only a possible hypothesis - lots more work to be done there.

Aussies get gov-backed uber-broadband



The fibre is not the speed limit on the network, that's the switching. That gets cheaper and faster every year and fibre infrastructure just requires the switches to be upgraded to increase the speed. Fibre is the way to go.

Many here is Australia are saying that wireless would be a better choice but they're really just demonstrating a lack of understanding of physics. Oh, in a former life/occupation I was a Network Engineer designer specialising in achitecting wireless networks, which funnily enough always use fibre as the backbone...

Now they just have to not screw the implemenation up.

Asus pulps Apple in hardware reliability survey


How about also remembering

That ASUS is one of the major systems builders for Apple. Apple doesn't actually build any machines any more, it just specs a system, designs a case and farms the work out. It doesn't surprise me when this leads to variable results for them as they swap suppliers with model updates.

Aussie firewall blocks Wikileaks


@Banned Site List Leaked

Sadly though we here in Australia can't read this list as wikkileaks is, of course, banned. It really needs to be posted on a huge number of pages/blogs, hypothetically speaking of course...

Reverse engineering Apple's OS X



Don't forget the Reg is a UK site, the rest of the world doesn't have to abide by the DMCA. (Sound of RIAA/MPAA going 'curses!' in the background)...

Apple Mac-sprucing bores fanbois



The older keyboard with the numeric pad is a no cost option. And still standard on the Mac Pro. BTW check the Australian pricing if you want to see an exercise in gouging, they've been adjusted up by currency fluctuation but they never adjusted down when our dollar inmproved against the US. And their RAM prices have become even more ludicous again...

'Like pedos in a playground' - the media and Web 2.0


@Stephen Jones

I'd say it's the fault of people who look for easy/simple answers to complex questions and read way too much into the title of a book rather than its content. But given your history of posting the narrowness of your response is not a surprise... BTW Doctor of what exactly?


And why the mention of Dawkins?

Seeing as his only mentions of neo-Darwinian are the relative usefulness of this term in lecturing the public on current thinking on the transfer of genes and their role in evolution and nothing to do with sociology or IT...

Norway mobilizes against IE 6


Well done Norway

Here in Australia most Government Departments and corporates are still stuck on IE6 as we cross-browser compatibility was considered a needless expense for web apps and there's still no impetus to upgrade - even though it breaks all their security models. But cognitive dissonance is something senior ITC management excel in...

Logitech Harmony 1100 universal remote control


@Iain & the myth of standby power

Strangely my 40" LCD TV and Home theatre set-up use less than 0.2 of a Watt/hour combined on stand-by according to the specs (actually the amp list 0.03W/hr). Read the specs on your gear, you're probably using a damn sight more power keeping a mobile phone on all the time...

F1 chiefs ready post-prang battery safety scheme


@AC and weight (again)

F1 cars are usually 80+ kilos under mass and use ballast to reach the minimum - 20kgs of KERS won't be any issue.

Gov aims to extend dead artists' royalty denial


Only problem with comparing it to Music is

That it's copies of the music being sold - not a one off original. I'm sure if I sold a CD I'd already bought for a million dollars the artist wouldn't get a cent, copyright or no.

This is not a copyright issue, it's a new form of IP (hateful, nonsensical phrase that it is) that really shouldn't exist unless art traders are ripping off artists.

The Mac OS 10.5.6 update saga continues


Except the story is wrong

I updated to 10.5.6 and it hosed my system (though thankfully only my laptop, not the Mac Pro that's my main production system, that would have been very expensive for me in time and thus money). Not a huge deal, I did an Install and Archive, then ran the 10.5.6 Combo update and was back in business in a couple of hours - except for Mail, which would crash on any email with an attachment.

Mail was standard - NO plug-ins, but the updater was skipping it and it was showing Version 3.0 rather than the correct Version 3.5 (Build 390/30) that it was meant to.

Apple have now released another update that fixed it, for me at least. Annoying - yes, inconvenient - also yes. I hope they lift their game a fair bit on the next releases.

BTW - am I the only one who finds the Apple ad about Windows having cryptic error messages deeply ironic? Apple's error messages are hopeless and almost completely useless compared with Windows from XP onwards...

European Court OKs rich Finns text list



It's only a problem if the people of Finnland think it is, they've decided as a society that the information should be available. I agree with them and it appears you don't.

Mozilla hastily shoves Firefox updates out door



That'd be the same Firefox 3 I'm running on 4 Macs with no memory leaks, about 3% CPU usage with sessions usually running all week... I'd have a look at the extensions you're running.

And isn't No-script a No-brainer?

Nintendo in profit on each Wii sold


As usual

You're all quoting the US stats as if they were indicitive for the entire world...

They're not.

ASA slaps beer-punting ladyboy



"what else is exported from Thailand?" - AC

Advanced electronics (check some of your white-goods, stereos etc), Honda Accords and other models, car parts, processed foods and beverages. To quote the CIA World Fact Book: "Industries: tourism, textiles and garments, agricultural processing, beverages, tobacco, cement, light manufacturing such as jewelry and electric appliances, computers and parts, integrated circuits, furniture, plastics, automobiles and automotive parts; world's second-largest tungsten producer and third-largest tin producer"

Thailand is not a third-world country.

Also they do a big trade in excellent cosmetic surgery, I know several models who had undetectable work done there. The lady-boys give the surgeons plenty of practice...

Sons of Macintosh - shaking the Apple family tree


@XHD3000? Apples and Oranges

It's an S-PVA panel in the Gateway, not a TN and it measures up pretty much on par with the S-IPS in the Apple 30" (which I'm using as I write this). The Dell 30" uses the same S-IPS as the Apple and is also A$1000 cheaper and all the other brands include an HDMI in which is extremely handy on a monitor this large.

And I really like my Mac Pro (8 core 3.0GHz 9gig of RAM, though only one bought from Apple) at work and my Macbook Pro (15.4 last with the matt screen) but I feel no need to claim Steve as my personal saviour. In my long experience with them there are plenty of times when Macs just don't work...

And I'd be happier if the machines had a name plate reading Amiga

Formula One kinetic energy recovery rigs debut


Those mentioning excess mass

All current F1 cars carry significant amounts of ballast weight to meet the class minimum (605kg including driver and all fluids except fuel) - they're usually 100-150kg under this without the ballast. So adding another 30kg to the car will only have a minimal effect as they do use the ballast location to tune the handling of the car.

And current fuel regs (from memory admittedly) require the fuel to be about 99% compliant with a standard unleaded which is homologated at the start of the season, some minimal additives allowed for safer high RPM running.

Oz sex trade to spank parliamentary prudes


The issue is less the politicians...

than the media that continually espouses Victorian standards. At least when we find out a pollie is having an affair over here (in Australia) we all pretty much ignore it. The media (predominantly run by that great American Murdoch) are the ones calling for the banning of everything - possibly because they're losing market share hand over fist and a good beat-up is easier/cheaper to write when you've sacked all the actual journalists.

Hitachi UT32MH70 32in LCD TV



In pure bandwidth terms you'd still be wrong, unless it were an old style analog signal based on line numbers. BUT 1080i and 1080p both share a 1920 pixel horizontal resolution so they have figues of 1Mpixels/frame and 2Mpixels/frame respectively. 720p (1280x720) only runs at 0.9Mpixels/frame.

Also as the horizontal resoulution of this TV is 1366 it must scale down the image of 1080i (1920x540pixels per frame refresh).

Sorry to ruin you argument with facts.

Mandelson's dept mulls UK internet power grab


The way I see it...

You have three choices:

1. Nominet as is - run badly by vested interests in the commercial world to their own agenda

2. Government takes over directly - run badly by vested interests in the government to their own agenda

3. Create a body like the BBC - government but divorced from obvious government influence with independent guarenteed funding - run badly by vested interests in both the government and commercial sectors.

Fun! Isn't it?

Apple MacBook Pro 15in


Re: Re: Screen res

Richard, the 1920x1200 res is a(n overpriced, ta Apple) cost option on the 17", the standard res is 1680x1050.

Oz pub slammed over 'No Undie Sundie'



The $50 for drinks will buy you about 7-9 drinks in a Melbourne pub, unless you go for cocktails which will get you about 4. That's plenty to get an 18-25 year old waif-like lass well and truly liquored up.

And this is a bad thing how?

(I'm going to hell...)

Epilepsy tests delay PS3 videogame launch


Agreed, Why?!

Photo-sensitive epilepsy is one of the rarest forms, something like 1 in 5000 (and that's the extreme high end of probability) *may* be triggered by this. These people probably already know to avoid video games...

Royal Society says goodbye to creationism row vicar


Ignorance - displaying yours @Yirrell

Your answers:

1. Why a single point? There can have been many events and many replicating structures formed - we're talking hundreds of millions of years here. Still bugger all to do with evolution though.

2. Nope, evolution is that genetic traits are selected by having a competitive advantage in the niche the organism occupied - never gets more complicated than that.

3. There's an enormous amount - do some real reading and research, stop parroting a US backed religious lobby.

4. A remarkably stupid comment and the opposite of the facts as we know them. Again do some research based on scientific studies.

5. Creationist also believe in a magical sky creature...

6. Fossils are usually dated by the geological strata they appear in. This is in sedimentary rock as igneous or metamorphic would destroy the fossil.

Are you making this up off the top of your head?

Berners-Lee backs web truthiness labelling scheme


@Ken Hagen

So what all these comments are about is actually Chris Williams' misinterpretation of what TBL stated. The standards on The Reg have appeared to be slipping fast over the past year, who is the editor nowadays?

French firm intros remix-friendly music format


@Mike - flogging a dead meme

Actually Beta and BetaSP are dead - it's all digital nowadays. And of course BetaMax was a totally different and completely inferior tape standard compared with its professional big-brothers, just because they shared part of the name don't think they were the same thing (different number of raster lines, different sized tape, different playback speed, different physical tape cassete, colour model, etc.).

VHS won for a number of reasons and was frankly pretty comparable quality wise with BetaMax with the added advantage longer playback times.

UK's top boffin: Renewables targets were 'a mistake'


@Robin Bradshaw

>"We don't have to pay for wind power - it just comes to us naturally,"


>Well that's some startlingly stupid thinking, what are they planning on doing to >harness this free energy? Plant windmill seeds?

Robin, that's genius, now all I need is a VC to fund my new start-up gene-engineering company specialisng in hybriding trees with wind-turbines.

<cheap shot alert> I'm sure the green movement will fully support that...

Solar-curtain "soft house" plan proposed by MIT prof


Checking my power bills

And I find I peaked at 16kWh a day, in mid winter with electric heating and water. More usually they're around 10kWh. Are you really suggesting that Brit and Yank households are that energy inefficient on average? I'm not exactly pushing myself to conserve energy either.

Mars suitable for growing asparagus


@Edward Hull

I think he's suggesting a smaller scale version of an orbital as described by Ian M Banks, not Niven's ringworld. A much more feasible engineering project. (Halo featured an orbital). Though of course still mind-bogglingly huge.

The point though is that once you're in space there's no pressing reason to start heading back down into gravity wells.

Heavyweight physics prof weighs into climate/energy scrap


TV Stand-by Power Usage

"The 2 W standby figure is what I believe is a pretty common value."

And wrong - modern, large LCD TVs use less than .5 W on stand-by often between .05 and .2W which puts your figures out by an order of magnitude and the original assumption back on the money.

European manned spaceship design unveiled in Berlin



Britain participates in the EU space programme with the exception of manned space missions. So there's no need for cameras or ASBOs in space as yet...

For truth about Europe, read The Reg



The 'merry' was always intended ironically. My feeling is that anyone with any gumption got up and left England - all that are left seem to be spineless oiks who spend their time whining about how crap everything is and how they'll treat everyone else the same way while they complain about the demise of civil society and how awful the weather is.

At least the yanks can fake politeness.

Of course I'm an Australian (though sadly no convict heritage) so you can just ignore me until I buy all your newspapers/tv stations/governments.

Can't decide how to vote? Publicwhip.org will tell you


Interesting from an outsiders perspective

What I find especially interesting is that none of the issues there seemed to have anything to do with the old left/right ideological splits. All the issues that Labour voted strongly for seemed authoritarian, what I'd have traditionally associated with the Tories in the 80s.

It makes our (slightly) Labor governement here in Oz seem rabidly left wing in comparison, though we do have the various State governments to carry the can on that sort of thing (also all nominally Labor).

Samsung to demo next-gen, 240Hz LCD TV tech



Have you seen a BD (or HD-DVD while it lasted) movie on a decent Hi-Def screen at 1080p24?

It certainly doesn't ruin film and it locks the refresh to 24 fps, same as the source material. Motion looks just as intended. This is only for DVDs and Broadcast feeds as all the decent screens handle the settings appropriately. It's one of the things I've really enjoyed with BDs. 2001 looks spectacular.

Sony: world PS3 sales pass 12.8m consoles


@So at this rate

Ignoring iSuppli's made up numbers for console costs I'd wager that the PS3 hit profitability pretty fast. What your assessment is missing is an important number to corporations: Revenue.

Even with the Wii taking the gross sales numbers, at its much lower price it will not be making the same sorts of revenue and therefore limits it longer term profitability compared with the PS3 - a 5% efficiency gain in manufacturing on the Sony box is worth considerably more profit than it is on the Nintendo one.

Microsoft slams OEMs over XP SP3 install cock-up

Gates Horns

bye bye Windows - I've just ordered a Macbook Pro

And I don't even like apple that much, but so far at work OSX 10.5 has been a better tool than windows...

Pity the machines spec makes me feel ripped off (A$2700 for a machine with no BD/DVD drive and only 200GB of HDD? - outrageous)

Oz driver sticks seatbelt on slab of beer


An Australian writes

Yes some of us can even spell - sorta

1. 30 cans maketh a block, a slab is 24.

2. New Zealanders (and the Welsh as per El Reg) shag sheep, Ozzies shag shielas except for Tasmanians who shag their sister-mother.

3. We export XXXX, we sure as hell don't drink it - it's crap.

4. We've got a higher GDP per head of population than the UK and inestimably better weather - so bugger off you whingers :-)

Local mag claims Aussie Eee PC buyers will pay extra for Linux


Here's another idea...

If the Windows version is the one going to the larger chain stores and the linux version to the computer stores it might just be a price difference to reflect how they sell. The computer stores will bargain and cut prices but the chain stores tend to sell at or near to RRP.

So the effective price will be similar, most likely still less for the linux version.

Real world pricing rarely matches those announced...

I want a baby, coos broody Paris Hilton


@Neil Greatorex

or 'Ho' for short...

oddly appropriate?!

Friday here - Taxi!

Vodafone sews up iPhone distribution



While I agree with your assessment that Australia qualifies as a secondary market I'd bet that as far as 3G goes we do quite well on a world scale - possibly more 3G subscribers than the US due to their wildly varying technologies. We have over 100% market penetration (more than 1 active phone per person) of mobile phones and now the majority are 3G.

Oh and Voda have HSDPA in all the major cities and regional sites, I've been using it since xmas for my home net connection. (A$40 a month for 5 gigs download which is sadly not too bad by Oz standards).

BSI faces High Court challenge over OOXML U-turn


@Anonymous Shill

You must be using some quite special maths, 38% does not make a controlling interest in a committee.

And to suggest that MS resolved the questions rather than simply strong armed the process, which should never have been applied, is patently laughable.

PS3 to get movie downloads this summer?


Australian Bandwidth worse

Though here our ISPs will be rubbing their hands together with glee - they charge ridiculous sums for extra capacity and usually cap DSL accounts at 20GB a month.

We've got a high adoption rate of next gen consoles crap and expensive infrastructure support.

Sony pooh-poohs Amazon PS3 PlayTV pre-order posting



The most recent reports I read said the opposite, it seems that final verification that you CAN play while recording TV is what is holding the delivery of the system up.

Also, I'm curious, do you have no free to air digital HD TV in the UK as yet?

Even here in luddite Aus we've had that for years.

Story withdrawn



Just a slight clarification, humans are primates.

Al Gore's green job bonanza - can we afford it?


@Tim Worstal

""The only way to "create" wealth is through the exploitation of natural resources"

Umm, no. It's by adding value to resources."

Tim, 'adding value' is how you exploit natural resources. You're just restating his point, not as you imply, refuting it. The language of economics has become another form of jargon that seeks to obscure and obfuscate.

Try writing your articles in clear, concise English so we can follow the logic. This would allow both us and you to critique it and perhaps improve your ideas in the long run.

Which is surely the idea of putting something like this out?

Ban using mobiles while crossing street, says US legislator

Paris Hilton

Think of it...

"Think of it as evolution in action" is actually a quote from "Oath of fealty" by Niven and Pournelle, not RAH.

Paris, because in my perfect world she would already know this...

Veggies a 'perversion of nature': Official


@ MahatmaCoat

Einstein was only a vegetarian for the last year of his life. Look how quickly it killed him...

MoD asks UK Forces personnel to submit DNA samples


& Matt and the AC

Hair is useless for DNA and blood samples not much better. Do what everyone else does and take a swab from the inside of your mouth.