* Posts by Dimitri

45 publicly visible posts • joined 22 Oct 2007

Honey, can you shrink the plugin? Mozilla allows desktop extensions on Firefox for Android


How about basic tablet funcionality?

Firefox android lacks a tab bar making completely unusable on tablets, unlike just about every other browser eg. Vivaldi, brave, samsung internet, chrome,Edge...

To add insult to injury it supports a atb bar on iOS.

Locked out of Horizon Europe, UK commits half a billion to post-Brexit research


Re: "the UK remains open to association"

The amount of detailed credible analysis provided to support staying in the EU was almost as staggering as your claim that no one said it. I guess you must have missed it while touring on that red bus with the lie on it.

What next for the F-35 after Turkey's threats to turn its back on NATO?


Re: The Man Who fell To Earth

Umm, WTF?

Greece has never, ever shot down a Turkish fighter plane. Why on earth would they, when the Turkish army is slightly larger than the population of Greece?

In fact the Turkish Air Force violates Greek airspace between 5-10 per DAY, something which is acknowledged by NATO. There are regular requests by NATO to Turkey to stop this practice to which Turkey replies...nothing. Greece makes a point of chasing out the turkish jets without causing any incident, since the situation would escalate immediately to a potentially armed exchange if any planes were actually shot down.

Your comments indicate you lack any grasp of such issues whatsoever. Are you just pulling stuff out of your ar*e, or can you cite some reliable sources for this nonsense?

Google is the EU Remain campaign's secret weapon


Re: Hopefully Brexit...

"Its best for Britain, especially if the UK overtakes Germany to become #1 economy (economic reason)"

Umm, that cannot and will not happen. Ever. Anyone who has a strong knowledge of economics and state finances will tell you that.

For the simple fact that Germany's manufacturing capacity outstrips the UK's by a factor of 10. The amount of capital investment required would be enormous, and it is simply not going to be available for the most expensive country in the western world.

The best chance the UK has outside the EU is to become an offshore banking center, but sadly even that is not likely to have much of an effect since (a) no matter how big the banking sector, it cannot provide enough GDP for 57 million people and (b) offshore banking centers are going the way of the dodo as states put the screws on them to stop tax avoidance.

Focus more on facts than wishful thinking - the world runs on them.

Want a Brexit? Promise you'll sort out UK universities' £1bn research cash loss


Re: The answer is...

Or, you could, you know, leave your estate to your children.

Creating wealth is hard work. I'll wager you don;t get out of bed in the morning and go the extra mile to save and invest in order to finance research one day (kudos to you if you do, but I doubt it).

People who write this type of nonsense, usually have very little experience in creating wealth.

Greeks best in the world – at, er, breaking their mobile phones


When good data is used by idiot marketeers...

There's no mobile phone insurance in Greece, just some extended warranties which include screen replacement and have zero take-up. People in Greece can't afford health or car insurance, let alone phone insurance. So there's no relevant data set they could possibly be using.

So there's two possibilities:

1) they're looking at sales of replacement parts. These will certainly be very high in Greece because people hold on to their phones for a long time before upgrading (the iPhone 4/4s is still the dominant handset). Most phones were acquired via carrier subsidies, which all but disappeared in the last few years.

2) The source of the data set is their collective posterior.

Either way the don't care about accurate analysis, they just their puff piece published to get some publicity for Square Trade.


Re: Any surprise - given the corrupt nature of the 'workers' in those countries?

Thanks for that. No you're not a racist. Not at all. Twit.

What data recovery software would you suggest?


I've busted my head for ages to work out which are the most reliable trouble free solutions for this on windows. Depending on your needs I recommend:

For backups: Cobian Backup Free - does full and incremental backups and is fully configurable despite being a free solution.

For drive imaging: clonezilla: it has a learning curve but does everything you could possibly need and has an infinite number of options

For data recovery e.g from a crashing disk, destroyed partition table or just accidentally deleted:

Zero Assumption Recovery ( ZAR): does everything and has a remarkable success rate due to utilizing multiple methods to recover data, under any scenario. Remarkably reliable and inexpensive.

UN to debate killer drone ethics


"Could robotics be used in conflicts? If so, what ethical questions does this raise?"

Hey, as long as it's robots on boths sides, with no civilians caught in the middle, it's fine with me.

Metro breakdown! Windows 8 UI is little gain for lots of pain


I want to like Windows 8, I really do. I'm a big windows fan, and would love to run the same OS on all my devices, PC's, laptops and especially tablets (but with a different UI obviously). But right now I agree with the people who say Win 7 will be the new XP and Win 8 the new Vista.

For me, the problem is not just the new UI, but the half baked overall product strategy.

We have an x86 version which uses the touch interface as default, despite the fact there is hardly any touch hardware in the market with the x86 architecture. So the "desktop version" is using the tablet UI which doesn't add much value (maybe it takes a bit away - full screen apps are useless on high res monitors). But at least we have the Legacy Desktop and the vast windows software ecosystem.

So basically this is traditional windows with some (perhaps needless) complexity on top. Limited incentive to upgrade.

Then there's windows on ARM which will run on the hardware that supports the Touch UI and let it shine, but it will not support any of the legacy applications, even recompiled - they must be rewritten as Metro apps, with all that entails. I think it's safe to say less than 5% of windows programs will be rewritten (of course new apps will come out).

So this is the new Tablet Windows but without the ecosystem it needs (heck without any ecosystem yet) to compete with iOS and Android. Hardly any incentive to buy!

Basically there's just one dream scenario for windows 8 which is: "Transformer type" x86 laptops with detachable touch screens that can run metro in tablet mode and desktop in "dock mode" (mouse & keyboard). Let's not forget these also need to have the performance of a core i5 with 4GB RAM (to make running windows apps productive) BUT combined with decent weight and amazing battery life by x86 standards.

You can expect these machines to hit the shelves in 2014. Maybe.

Until then, This is not the "single OS for every platform" that MS said they were aiming for.

It's two OS's that have an innovative UI but in practical terms offer the worst value for every platform they run on.

Seriously, the product strategy guy should be fired. Now.

OCZ Vertex bashes users with Blue Screen of Death


It has nothing to do with the drivers

If the firmware plays a part it is unlikely that the SATA drivers are the issue - the firmware must be at fault.

Moreover SATA drivers are not written in the main by motherboard mfrs but by chipset designers in the majority of cases Intel or AMD, and they are not likely to produce cr*p drivers.

OCZ drives based on Sandforce controllers have had compatibility issues with certain newer versions of Intel storage drivers for some time (even the previous generations).

Most likely this relates to Sandforce's so called "secret sauce" which enables their controllers to get such extraordinarily high IO/sec results despite using similar components to everyone else.

They apply a type of compression algorithm to the data written to the drive to reduce the time to read/write and theoretically increase lifetime (conversely writing large quantities of incompressible data e.g. JPEGs will kill one of these drives in zero time - they are only good for OS/software).

I note that Corsair which also sells the same Sandforce drive branded as the "Force" series (essentially all these manufacturers offer the same product re-branded and with tiny firmware variations), has issued a recall of this model due to a fault which affects a small number of drives.

I have had an OCZ Sandforce Vertex 2 drive for a year, which so far performs well with no issues, but I was aware of the problems as well as the slightly "weird" technology used so I didn't update my Intel SATA drivers to the latest version (v10) and stopped myself from buying the new drive version despite very impressive performance, opting for something "safer" i.e. more mainstream instead.

Dropbox security fubar infuriates customers

Paris Hilton


Unacceptable, but typical... Cloud providers who offer free services or even cheap budget services statistically WILL screw up at some point.

The important thing is for users to be aware of this and not treat the cloud as secure storage for sensitive data. Honestly anyone who trusts dropbox, mobileme, box.net or any other such service who their sensitive data is a fool...

On the other hand if people managed to access some photos that I wanted to share with my mum, or an mp3 that I wanted to sync to my phone, no big deal. And that's the kind of thing these services are only good for really.

Paris, because only she would trust her private data to the cloud e.g. her sex tapes ;-)

Apple iCloud: Steve Jobs' own private internet


Consumers are stupid only up to a point

...because they're (thankfully) limted by their pockets.

It is wrong to assume that " the end user is stupid enough to overpay for applications, hardware and give all their data and info to Apple" - end users get fooled sometimes, but never all of them and never forever.

Ultimately what Apple sells will need to offer value for money to succeed. Right now some Apple products do (iPhones, iPads) and are runnaway successes, some don't (Macs) and are succesful as niche products only, if at all (ATV?), and their services' success is also in line with the value they offer.

There's a reason dropbox is so succesful while mobileme is a middling niche product. The value it offers is just that limited.

We have to wait and see what iCloud really looks like and does but I wouldn't assume that consumers will be bamboozled by shiny toys into something monumentally stupid.


Definitely right

Applies to me too. I love my iPad 2 and IP4 but I'm looking forward to Windows 8 tablets with real file systems, integrated SMB etc. For the phone it could go either way, stick with Apple or switch to whatever looks nice with WP7 or Android.

I don't think we're quite at the point where mobile/computing convergence is really a fact yet.

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Nice one but...

...I think you just described the Google business model here than apple - I doubt apple gets this anywhere near enough the level you describe;-)

HP exec: WebOS tablet will trounce iPad


Walk the walk and then we'll talk.

Statements from HP executives are a dime a dozen. Same as HP executives.

Getting my coat to protect myself from the upcoming torrential downpour of crap from marketing execs pushing "iPad-killers".

Behind Apple's record sales are signs of desperation


Excellent analysis

Fascinating article with well balanced analysis and great insights into the current state of the mobile market.

I particularly appreciated the discussion on the importance of patents vs. IPR.

More of this please!

To add my two bits, I tend to think that patents become more important when markets mature, simply because there's less innovation happening so most players focus on locking down the value of the prevailing ideas.

I think we have a huge way to go in how mobile technology is deployed but I believe this will increasingly be in the application rather than hardware space, making the patents for wireless technology understandably valuable.

On the other hand, Apple is well positioned to take on the application space but their strategy after iTunes, has been geared more towards refining and locking down the user experience than innovating (the article's last paragraph sums this up well). Pity since iTunes proved they could change the world.

I have a hard time seeing Samsung challenge them in applications, and even Google is not that strong (they seem too unfocused, just throwing services out hoping something catches on).

But companies like Amazon excel at customer interaction and service design, and I suspect Infinite Loop is taking their challenge very seriously.

AMD backs USB 3.0 on desktop and laptop chipsets


true - this could make a lot of marginal technologies obsolete

In addition, to the above, eSata and firewire connections for storage devices are also likely to be swept away.

ie1394 may live on for a while in devices like video capture cards and camcorders, though it may eventually be replaced by thunderbolt, which is also headed for a similar niche position to what firewire had all these years. Granted its a lot faster but right now that just makes it faster than what anyone can use...

Natty Narwhal with Unity: Worst Ubuntu beta ever

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And there's other debian derivatives too

Don't forget that there's a new version of Mint that's based on Debian rather than ubuntu...

I think its possible the mint folks are hedging their bets in case Ubuntu jumps the shark... in any case the point is, there's other Debian derivatives with nice user friendly UIs out there.

Nokia deal to 'rocket Windows Phone 7 past iPhone'


IDC are OK actually

IDC's work to date has been pretty good compared to the majority of analysts. They don't always get it right but they do more often than not.

Amazon jumps the gun on free clouds


Actually Amazon has the edge here

"The service will be a challenge to Apple's grip on the music business. The company is already rumoured to be working on something similar and has the advantage of an awful lot of customers to sell it to"

I don't quite see the advantage - considering Amazon's offering is accessible on any device while Apple's will only work on their devices, I believe Amazon has a much larger number of customers to sell their service to, as well as a significantly larger addressable market.

Simple math.

The only advantage Apple has is the iTunes market share in online music, but I don't believe most music customers care what store they buy their music from as long as its non-DRM'd and the price is right.

And as great as iTunes is, Amazon has greater online experience still. This one is theirs to win or lose.

Why Nokia failed: 'Wasted 2,000 man years' on UIs that didn't work


True, but..

As much as I think a "losers' alliance" like this makes little sense, I have to say Nokia's user experience has been pretty weak for a long time.

I remember people talking up the Nokia UX (though not with those terms;-) ) back in the 90's. By 2005 blackberry was the dominant smartphone and UX had a lot to do with it. Then of course RIM too lost out as the iPhone pushed expectations to a higher level still.

By now, they are so far behind the curve, that there may be little value lost in sacrificing their ability to customize the UI. I also doubt the other phone manufacturers will persist with their custom UI's over Android, now that Google has hired an interface design team.

What Nokia really lost was their in-house development strenghts which could have been directed toward producing apps for their phones, had they chosen Android (which given their linux skills, they might have been better positioned to support).

iPad 2? Let's be kind and call it iPad 1.5


Thanks - you must be right!

Dear nichomach,

So your point is I'm a tool because your user is using a poxy little app that doesn't sync over iTunes?

Thanks ever so much for the kind words. I actually took a minute to check the link you posted. I can see why you're confused. Its because of two reasons:

1) These documents do say that "Apple does not make USB synchronization available to third party applications".

2) You're a fool. You've read all this and not managed to understand that you *can* sync over USB and you *can* sync multiple files and folders, you just can't do it *without* iTunes.

All apps downloaded from the apple store can sync via USB. VLC syncs movies, Stanza syncs ebooks, I have at least three apps that sort and sync folders (e.g. Filer), even my web browsers sync their downloaded files and bookmarks.

The difference which you could have picked up on if you had learned to read in whatever 3rd rate school you attended, is they *only* sync via iTunes. You can can even export directories from the iTunes sync store to elsewhere on disk.

The developers of the apps you are using don't support this because they want to sync filesystems, not just files which is a different thing altogether.

Check http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1386 which tells you all about syncing straight from the source - you could have googled it, if you didn't have the IQ of a lima bean.

Now I do agree that its horribly stupid that iDevices don't give you access to their filesystems unless jailbroken.

But not as stupid as you for going apeshit, just because your little app doesn't play the way you want. Your guy could have figured out a way to get his documents into his PC using iTunes, he could installed another office suite, or hell just jailbreak the damn thing and do whatever you want with the filesystem.

Since you don't want to do this and you DO want to make your users' life easier, how about YOU STFU and stop wasting our time with your b*tching?

I dislike defending apple but aggressive twits like you just need to be put down.

Talk about people who shouldn't breed - that clearly applies to your parents but sadly it's too late for that now.


Except that you don't have to...

...because the device isn't stupidly constrained this way! It is stupidly constrained in that as of iOS 4.2.1 you CANNOT use WiFi for synching, you can only use USB.

Which you would know if you had actually understood my comment i.e. read it properly...

As for proper network maintenance being a "non-trivial amount of work" I suggest you go back to the BOFH cartoons you came from...

Paris Hilton

What a bunch of Fanbois...

OK to answer all the smart alecs who think I can't tell the difference between multi-tasking and task switching...

1) My iPad is running iOS 4.2.1, which contrary to your statements only does "proper" as you call it multi-tasking for some (mainly Apple) apps.

2) Correct, I'm not using iTunes to download the podcast. I thought I made it clear when I said that only Apple apps enjoy full multi-tasking support.

3) That was just one example - this is not specific to the podcast app I was using. I have a number of other apps that experience similar limitations:

- The app that streams music from my NAS server stops playing when minimized.

- The web browsers I use that can download files from the web (perfect browser, Atomic and iCab) also have their downloads frozen when minimized. Anyone who thinks differently and owns an iDevice is welcome to try. Safari can't download anything so it won't tell you.

- The various file browsing apps I have from the app store also do the same (AirSharing, Filer etc)

- The book reader I use when downloading books from my PC.

4) I did manage to get real multitasking after I jailbroke the iPad. That allowed me to install Backgrounder which allows you to set different multi-tasking profiles for any app you want, so that you can have some things (e.g. mobile terminal and Cydia shut down fully, others to use native multitasking, and the ones that need it to use Backgrounder which runs them as if they were in foreground even if minimized.

5) @Anonymous Coward: You're a twit. I've been using apple (and non-apple) hardware for years. My opinion is based on actual technical knowledge and understanding, something you seem to lack and think you can make up for by being a smart a*se.

Paris because you share an IQ with her - all two digits of it.


No, you are...

Really its just a hardware upgrade, like a this year's new ford focus - an evolution over last year's model.

And yes many of us do think it's a minor upgrade:

- Dual Core CPU is nice but not game changing (not like it'll run flash any faster)

- Faster graphics is nice but watching 1080p on a 1024x768 9.7" screen is lamer than lame

- 2 Cameras - OK, those are nice. Wish the iPad1 had it.

- A bit thinner, cool

- A tiny bit lighter - not enough to make a difference

- Gyroscope - did I need one? What for?

- iOS 4.3 - my iPad1 has 4.2.1 - what's the big deal? It's a point release...

...and so is the iPad2, hence the 1.5 monicker.

Or to put it another way, I was thinking of upgrading my iPad but now I'm struggling to convince myself.


Chill out Andy...

...perhaps you should re-read my post which was rather clearly tongue in cheek. And incidentally my PC is a massive full tower (but then I do like monster hardware, otherwise I'd get a mini).

I agree that they could have added things like USB or MicroSD ports, that would have been nice but not a game-changer.

But battery life was already fine. I get a solid 9+ hours out of mine and recharge nightly with heavy 3G use and usually less.

The weight however is a real problem. if you use the device for reading your hand does fall off after a while and I for one would complain they didn't make it thiner and especially lighter still.

Smiley face because let's make peace, OK?


It's beacause there's this thing...

...called portability! It makes no difference to your tower PC (which incidentally, unless if it has really monster hardware, really could be shrunk down to the size of a book ala the mac or dell minis), but it does matter to portable devices that people CARRY and HOLD.

Then they can do cool things, like take them to the park and work from there, or take them on vacation, or just use them in bed. Granted not the most fun you could have in bed, but I digress.

Anyway for these types of uses, it helps if things are slimmer and lighter. That's because bigger and heavier things are harder to CARRY and HOLD. Get it?

Next time you're in town, walk into a computer shop and ask them to show you a "Lap-top" or a "notebook PC" or even a "net-book". I think you'll be amazed at what miniaturization has done in the last 20 years :-)

Terminator icon, because future tech is coming to get you!

Paris Hilton

And I'd like one...

...Paris that is. Oh and an iPad 2. Or better Paris with an iPad2. Or even an iPad 2 to check out Paris on youtube ;-)


You sound like an IT guy...

Are you really one? then get a clue. One of the biggest complaints against apple is that they can't do wifi sync, only via USB and the horrid iTunes.

Syncing over WiFi until now at least requires jaiblreaking the device or using a messy solution based on some pathetic file sharing apps from the apple store where amateur developers have written their own lame implementation of SAMBA or WebDAV.

The iPad only needs WiFi for internet connectivity/email etc. Do your homework next time.

Having said that, I do feel sorry for your users if your attitude to setting up a WiFi network is that it's SO bothersome. Obviously easing their work and increasing their productivity means nothing to you.

I've met admins like you and always had to fight off an intense desire to kick them.

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Yes it does!

Just barely that it!


Multitasking is about what the user wants to do

What you say is sophism. Of course iOS has the ability to Multi-task, but it doesn't let me do it unless if its an apple app and still it does it the way apple wants.

E.g. when downloading a podcast to my iPad, if I leave the application (e.g. because I wanted to start the iPod player, or check the sports scores), the download stops because although it can multi-task, it won't let me. The fact that I can resume when I return to the app is little help since I have better things to do, than look at a downloading progress bar.

If I want to enable real multi-tasking I have to Jailbreak the machine with all the headaches that entails because Holy Cupertino, doesn't want me to be able to choose what I want to do.

So yes you're right but actually you're totally wrong.

I’m not a Trojan horse: Nokia’s Elop hits back at neigh sayers


Giving up, is so very hard to do...

This "strategy" (if you can call it such) clearly shows that they don't actually understand their business. In the press conference Elop said they decided against Android, because it would be tough to differentiate themselves on it and "it felt like giving up". Pathetic.

Its clear they don't understand they are a phone manufacturer and are in the business of shifting hardware. The software enables ths hardware sale but it's not their core - as pointed out above they have many competitors and none of them are MS or Google.

As to why they think WP7 is a better platform to differentiate on than Android I have no clue. Perhaps because as a less mature platform, it will need more work to customize? Because its' closed-source nature will ensure a slower sharing process between MS and Nokia (despite any agreements)? Never mind...

The phrase that "going with Android, felt like giving up" says it all. This was an emotional decision. Nokia lost and now needs a major brand relationship to put a sheen over this failure so they don't have to give up a 100%. Never mind that this would be the smart strategy that would allow them to focus on their hardware offering, where they actually make money. At least they sold out to a wealthy (if fading) suitor...

Microsoft ARMs Windows for iPad assault (allegedly)


Really, how hard can it be?

M$ actually were the first major OS vendor to develop an alternative UI with windows XP media center - which actually works fine on a tablet, since it is designed to work with remotes and a simple up-down-left-right-OK logic (kind of like a DVD player).

As far as developing a tablet UI goes, some brainpower is needed, but honestly its not rocket science.

The iOS interface is no great shakes anyway, so the bar's set pretty low. It's functional by not doing much, which is not that hard to match. It actually reminds me of windows 3.1.

iOS depends on apps to do most of the tasks, which means that while it will require M$ to drive the porting of some of the windows ecosystem to tablet, the level of functionality required to achieve parity is limited. On top of which the dev's behind the 250K iOS apps have already worked out pretty much all the possible permutations a fart app's UI can take. How hard is it to copy the best one?

Apple says no to Android-oriented iPad mag

Jobs Horns

Intelligent people outraged. Apple fans blissfuly happy in their walled Garden of Eden.

Er... Don't really *want* to comment - just feel like I have to.

Despite how outrageous this is, what's even more outrageous is that some apple fans will defend it! Some comments above already point to this. The rest will pretend they don't know.

The extent to which these people will bend over backwards to deny the truth that their beloved apple is bad is just amazing.

I have an iPad which I will sell in the next few weeks, prompted by similar such problems I have with Apple's attitude.

What's more, in future I will find it really tough to own any apple product, for fear of being bundled in with this, most idiotic segment of the population. Honestly, I don't think I could take the idea I'm part of a species so blind it gives the dodo a run for its money.

Sorry to be mean fanbois. But you deserve it for being evil. Like evil Steve above:-)

Opera feted for playing chicken with Steve Jobs


Overblown as usual by the fanbois

So I thought, this is controversial, isn't it? Lets test it and see what the fuss is about.

So I installed Opera mini on my iPad and my gf's iphone and tested it. Guess what? Its fine.

On wifi its slower than my preferred iOS browser (iCab mobile - safari's for clueless losers).

On 3G it's the actually quite a bit faster - pages took a few seconds then suddenly popped into view fully formed.

Images looked fine (for the geniuses who didn't figure this out - there's a settings control where you can set image quality on "high").

I was hoping to actually post from it but I got a response "your browser sent a request that this server did not understand" :-) Clearly Opera's proxy system did not get along with El Reg's webserver.

Still this simply points out the veracity of the "right tool for the job" comment above. Clearly its not intended as a permanent safari replacement, but when you're roaming or on a capped or slow 3G connection, its just the thing to check out a few news articles. Clearly, you wouldn't waste your bandwidth arguing with fanboi's on these forums;-)

On my iPad it worked fine with FullForce, the Jailbreak app that enables iPhone apps to work full screen.

Roswell alien because that's what I feel like when surrounded by Cupertino's worshipers...

DWP CTO predicts the end of Windows


Wow, another genius discovers the cloud

So he discovered google docs on his iPad and thinks he's solved all the puzzle's of IT strategy.

This post is such a typical opinion for people who make very senior level IT decisions that they have forgotten the fundamental reality, that IT is plumbing and plumbing depends on the technical details they have forgotten - systems, software architectures, services buitl into the software stack, availability of infrastructure...

OK, so: (1) it's been true for almost a decade that few workloads require that much of a desktop experience. The trouble is that the little they do require still IS a full desktop experience. That's why all thin client models are at best marginal. Will it change in 10 years? Maybe. But I still think for real work, locally installed software with local processing hardware will still be he reliable sensible choice.

(2) The ubiquitous WiFi stuff is nice, except it will never be 100% ubiquitous. While travelling, I find thousands of places where neither WiFi nor 3G reach. In 10 years these places will be fewer, but they will still exist, which means anyone depending solely on the cloud will SOL.

(3) We're finding ways to make wireless networks more secure all the time, but so do criminals find ways of hacking them. Let's not count them out, until they are out.

(4) Doing work is about more than having relevant information on hand. I can see a massive role for tablets, as information access devices, replacing mountains of paper (assuming that info can be digitized). I can't see tablets (I mean non-computing tablets) being much use to someone who needs to process the information. Quite a lot of people do that you know.

(5) As for MS and the value of the OS, let anyone who thinks it doesn't matter, try to do real work on a cloud based device without all the heavy OS integrated services. Try working on an iPad only to discover things like built-in network and file sharing protocol support matters, messaging stacks matter, file systems matter. And without them you are left with a fragmented nightmare of workarounds (what apple calls "apps"). Then suddenly Microsoft is your hero;-)

Fail because the guy forgot the fundamentals of what pays his salary.

Apple shrinks Mac Mini price


A fantasitc opportunity!

Wow, 50 quid off! Now I can use my savings to buy a mac mini and invest in a condo in Bali - at the same time!

Seriously its a great machine but the price is about double the value. I was thinking of getting one as an HTPC, then realized for half that much I can get an SFF PC and run XBMC on it, with the same results. Essentially you're paying for the cool case... It's nice but very hard to justify, when a decent quad core PC goes for the same price.

WTF? because I don't understand why they bothered...

iPhones, MacBooks sicken Chinese women


Did you really think this through?

No, not really.

1) Apple gear is NOT similarly priced to similar non-apple gear. It is about 2ble.

Cost of a Mac Book Air? $ 999+. Cost of equivalent netbook (that's what it is): $500+

Mac Mini: $700+ for 3 year old C2D, 2GB RAM, nvidia 320M and 5400rpm 320GB drive in a stylish mini box (some kind of mini ITX mobo). Equivalent non apple cost? $60 for the CPU, $50 for RAM, $60 for disk, $100 for box, $60 for GPU, $60 for mobo. Total = $400. Windows 7 licence ~$100-150 depending on type. Linux for free. That's retail prices, not wholesale by the way.

2) As for the other tech companies, they are not innocent, and no-one claims they are.

HP factories in Mexico immediately fire women who get pregnant to avoid maternity leaves.

Some IBM factories are the same. Still there's been no allegations that their employees are being poisoned...yet.

Even if it turns out they're as bad as Apple (which I doubt because they're much more aware of the PR risks) it doesn't mean we should accept this behavior from any of them.

Hey, people are enslaved at gunpoint in some parts of the world. Shall we do the same to you, since you seem to think that whatever others practice is acceptable?

Get a conscience and get over your apple-worship, so you can re-join the human race.

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I don't know what's worse: apple or its customers!

This is Nike all over again!

Only a truly vacuous and hypocritical society would continue buying these products, after all the reports of the appalling conditions of workers that make them, just because they're "cool".

Are we really so shallow that having the sexiest product is worth supporting a company with such a disgraceful record of human rights violations?

Yes these are human rights violations - making your products in a dictatorial country, using what amounts to slave labor, is not just a problem for employee rights but for basic human ones!

Apple's position is exceptionally shameful: not only do they charge massive premiums for their products, they find it necessary to profit from the other side of their value chain as well, by exploiting the misery of the workers.

And NO, the fact that these are employees of their suppliers, does not in the least excuse them. As a western company with a strong position in our markets and society, as well as a so called moral stance (the "no porn" nonsense), they have a responsibility to police their supply chain and ensure that such conditions do not exist anywhere in it.

I guess you can claim to be a good person standing on the corpses of your victims, as long as you're anti-porn.

We should boycott apple products just like we (some of us) boycotted Nike and Gap in the 90's, forcing them to address the issue.

Steve Jobs talks Flash, 'lying S.O.B' devs, sex, and Gizmodocrime


From Trucks to iPads? Not sure it's that simple!

"Jobs waxed metaphorically about how the rise of the iPad heralds the end of the PC era. "When we were an agrarian nation, all cars were trucks. But as people moved more towards urban centers, people started to get into cars. I think PCs are going to be like trucks. Less people will need them. And this is going to make some people uneasy.""

All cars were trucks? Sure tell that to Henry Ford. And even if many people mostly in rural communities in the US went from trucks to cars, they then decided they missed trucks and all got into SUV's ;-)

What's that mean?

Maybe the future is a super powerful PC that has a tablet form factor? Maybe the tablet is just a mobile UI screen with all the heavy duty processing done by a PC in the basement or in the cloud? I'm not sure but I'm distinctly unconvinced that the future is Apple's iPad vision.

Oh and hey, there's this other thing called the planet Earth where the other 96% of the human population lives. They also went from agrarian to urban societies but the trends about trucks and cars were not repeated.

What's THAT mean?

Means Steve talks a mean game of bullcr*p!

iSuppli: Moore's Law to take a breather


Time for new materials

It was bound to happen sooner or later - we stretched the engineering limits of silicon as far as we could go. And parallism is clearly reaching a limit on the current codebases. Recent tests (I think by THG) showed that you get a massive benefit when you add one core, another smaller but still decent benefit when you add two and only tiny benefits when you go to 4 cores.

One thing that sounds promising and probably easier than quantum computing or re-writing all software with a new approach, is using something other than silicon, which would allow you to run more current at higher frequencies through it. If the material could take it without liquefying you could take an existing quad core architecture and run it at 10 or 20 GHz.

For years, small "out-there" startups have been looking at manufacturing artifical diamonds in custom configurations with chips being the main hopeful application. No idea if this will ever pan out, but certainly new materials might be the way to go.

In the meantime, programmers could go a long way by killing the bloat and writing decent code! How come windows 7 beta, which is essentially an incremental version of Vista, run up to 40% faster than that hog?

Let's not get into the speed of linux - even the latest popular "bloated" distro's beat most of the junk code out there for performance. This might be good for us after all!

Creative threatens developer over home-brewed Vista drivers

Dead Vulture

170,000 usrs can't wrong!

The enraged thread on creative's forum numbered 160 pages this morning and clocked over 170,000 page views! And that was just over the weekend, before it was picked up by the news sites.

Calling this a PR disaster is puttting it mildly, but to those of us who have suffered at the hands of Creative's senseless disregards for its customers, it's nothing new...

I personally returned the last creative product I bought when the vista drivers proved flaky since last time I checked I was not getting paid to be their beta tester...

A third of online shops undermine consumer rights


IT retailers are the worst

The majority of IT retailers are especially bad with restocking charges, even if they sell you a product which does not work as advertised.

The issue is partly that technology products are often badly or misleadingly described even in their packaging and sometimes fail to perform as promised. IT retailers don't want to deal with the volume of such cases so they offload it to the customer via illegal "re-stocking" charges.

One shining exception I noticed a couple of years ago was Misco who when I tried to return something, actually offered to *pick it up*!

ISP blows the whistle on router chip 'fault'

Thumb Down

Zyxel routers suffer from this - tested in 3 countries

My two zyxels (dumb purchase I know) both exhibit this problem and do so in the UK, Greece and Germany. At least they're consistent:(