* Posts by Mage

9162 publicly visible posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

HP exec says quiet part out loud when it comes to locking in print customers

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Re: mostly paperless these days

I use an 8" and 10" Kobo eInk ereaders and free LO Writer and calibre ebook management. Photos are viewed on HD or 4K TVs and monitors. A cheap HD DVB-T modulator with HDMI loop through allows photos, music and video on any HD TV in the house.

The laser printer now only used for crochet & knitting patterns.


Re: Honestly....

Test gear. Now Agilent.

I last had an HP computer I wanted in 1998.

Laser Jet 4 maybe last decent printer.

I use Brother duplex colour laser / Scanner now.

Steam client drops support on macOS, but adds it on Linux


Re: You will see it a little with the introduction of Wayland

But will Wayland ever reach Beta?

I can't understand why people who are not developing & testing Wayland would use it at all.

Will Wayland be like IPv6?

US nuke reactor lab hit by 'gay furry hackers' demanding cat-human mutants


Re: Cordwainer Smith

That was one of the very early Instrumentality stories.


Re: Beware the law of unintended consequences

ST-TOS had a cat-brain based medical computer. Episode with a planet where all older people die due to some illness. Seemed like a silly idea even then.

Then there was the Ballad of C'Mell.

How to give Windows Hello the finger and login as someone on their stolen laptop


above named devices vulnerable to unlocking

But blunders in implementing this system have left at least the above named devices vulnerable to unlocking – provided one can nab the gear long enough to connect some electronics.

Anyone would be mad to use it to unlock anyway. What if your finger(s) are injured?

Ubuntu Budgie switches its approach to Wayland


There is general consensus now …

"There is general consensus now that the future of graphical desktops on Linux lies in Wayland rather than X11,"

Says who?

Will anybody save Linux on Itanium? Absolutely not


for well over ten years

Well over 15, nearly 20.

WIKIPED1A (I remember 1 and it was 1st 64 bit since prototype NT4.0 64bit for alpha)

Two versions of Windows XP 64-Bit [Itanium] Edition were released:

Windows XP 64-Bit Edition for Itanium systems, Version 2002 – Based on Windows XP codebase, was released simultaneously alongside the 32-bit (IA-32) version of Windows XP on October 25, 2001.[37]

Windows XP 64-Bit Edition, Version 2003 – Based on Windows Server 2003 codebase (which added support for the Itanium 2 processor), was released on March 28, 2003.[38]

This edition was discontinued in January 2005, after Hewlett-Packard, the last distributor of Itanium-based workstations, stopped selling Itanium systems marketed as 'workstations'

Windows XP Professional x64 Edition (for AMD type x86-64 cpus) was 2005.

Obviously Itanium was "dead man walking" by 2004 and essentially dead in 2005. The only other totally pointless Windows versions was maybe ME & Win 8. Win7 was essentially a Service Pack for Vista.

Excel Hell II: If the sickness can't be fixed, it must be contained


Re: Deja vu?

I walked away from a lucrative manufacturing database/computerisation project because no-one in the factory seemed to know how the place worked. Somehow they turned PVC into doors, but it might as well have been elves and magic.


Re: I don't why she swallowed a fly

Yes, Excel has bugs and the major issue is people misusing it.

The biological bit is irrelevant, so the article could have been one paragraph, or not published.

GNOME developer proposes removing the X11 session


Re: The sheer f**king arrogance is breathtaking

And Wayland still doesn't work properly.

Doom developer John Carmack thinks artificial general intelligence is doable by 2030


Re: door with a slightly different shape of handle

Or a different chair, sausage, filled roll. Easy for a two year old. Then there is "lateral thinking" where the child uses a box as a seat or uses scissors to cut a pizza when they previously only encountered precut ones.

Yet computers can do things we thought needed AI, without AI (Chess) and other things we never imagined. In the 1960s they called it the AI paradox. Now since 1980s expert systems, later Google's "rosetta stone" approach to translation (feed computer all the EU docs and translated books) and today's giant data hoovering matching / prediction engines (LLMs) the real AI research and language research is nearly dead. Whatever about Chomsky's Politics, ask him about language.


Re: Bard says...

LLMs only regurgitate. Examination of program coding tasks given show no evidence of any of those.

LLMs only acquire data from "browsing the internet" or humans feeding files. It's not knowledge or skill as the systems can't tell fact from fiction.

An AI "taught" to play chess or Go won't play poker. And no-one likes to play card counters, they get banned from casinos.

An LLM or an AI does none of these in the sense a human or even a rook does:

Reasoning: The ability to think logically and draw conclusions from information.

Problem-solving: The ability to identify and solve problems.

Learning: The ability to acquire new knowledge and skills.

Adaptation: The ability to change one's behavior to meet new demands.

It may sometimes seem like it does. An LLM doesn't hallucinate. It fails. All AI is spectacularly fragile.


Re: net positive fusion

Much more likely. We know it's possible as we see it during the day when it's not raining.

It might need a very big "reactor".

We have no idea how AGI might work, because we've never seen it. Biological intelligence is baffling as is fact many anaimals and birds have vocabulary and intelligence (not related to brain size, cf: rook, chimp, dolphin, horse, whale) but so far not evidence of language.

The LLM don't have language either, just an illusion of it, yet zero intelligence.


Re: Asimov did not show the rise of AI

He didn't. The 3 laws were mostly a maguffin to write SF themed detective mysteries. The daftest thing was 30 or 40 years after Foundation to combine the two storyverses. Foundation was inspired by Gibbon's Rise & Fall of the Roman Empire.

The Robot stories were never originally about the development of AI. Set up the 3 laws, have a "robot" then apparently break one/them and solve the mystery.


Turing Test

The Turing Test was a sort of idea by someone who knew little about how intelligence works. The Turing Machine was good work, but it was mathematics. The Turing Test idea was purely speculative.

At best it's a test of human naivety. See reaction to Eliza, Parry, Racter, ALICE and ChatGPT. A rook can't pass the Turing test, yet they are very intelligent.

It's often plausible junk.

Europe wants easy default browser selection screens. Mozilla is already sounding the alarm on dirty tricks


Re: don't do a bad job blocking ads.

I don't care about ads (as long as static and small and not disguised as content). I do object to 3rd party scripts and 3rd party cookies. That's what I block. Some stupid companies have web sites that are entirely blocked claiming you are blocking their ads and depriving them of revenue when you do that. They are idiots. Even CNN and BBC has had adverts serving malware. Which 3rd party advert sellers / script providers are honest and trustworthy?


Re: There's no point.

Yes that needs to be illegal. Along with dark grey text on black or light grey text on white. Or forcing a mobile version of the site on a big hi-res screen because OS is iOS or Android.

Or designing desktop applications or websites as if everyone has a 6″ screen with only touch.


Chrome on Linux?

There are loads of better choices including slightly less spyweared Chromium for Linux.

Sadly most now put tabs on top and ignore GUI theme like a bad version of Winamp (which at least made some sense for it to look like a gadget).


Re: Up to a point, but calling programs

Apple is stupid having Safari, Books and Pages.

MS having Word, Excel, Explorer, Windows and Edge as names is crazy.

How do you search internet?

There is good reason to have made up names like Kleenex and Sellotape.

The GIMP is a stupid name for the image editor.

OpenAI's DALL·E 3 teams up with ChatGPT to turn brainfarts into art


Re: Apropos Dall-E

Because no AI understands. The "I" is a marketing lie.

And where does the original content come from? These "tools" are parasites and bad for the environment.

Authors Guild sues OpenAI for using Game of Thrones and other novels to train ChatGPT


Re: "one or more very large sources of pirated ebooks"

Except Gutenberg is free in bulk



Though the content is intended for humans.

Actually it may be IP / copyright violation to scrape most websites for AI as the content is intended for direct human consumption and bots at worst to index for search. There is also robots.txt Does OpenAI or Alphabet/Google care?

So what if China has 7nm chips now, there's no Huawei it can make them 'at scale'


Re: What ?

There are eventually physical limits to everything. Not just for chips but big things too.

Starlink speeds ahead in the satellite race but rivals aren't starstruck just yet



Anywhere that has mains water or mains gas, or mains sewerage, or mains electricity or wired phone can have fibre cheaply.

But mobile / cell marketing was hurting fibre investment even 15 years ago.

Meet Honda's latest electric vehicle: A rideable suitcase


Re: Dignity isn't the only thing at risk

Plywood, not aluminium, unless the aluminium made somewhere using no fossil fuels. You need a lot of electricity.



Why did they decide the limit between Moped and Motorbike was engine cc (less than 50 cc) rather than top speed on flat (say 40 mph = 64 km/h) and maybe power?

Also shouldn't anything on two wheels not being a motorbike be a moped if any kind of engine able to exceed 5mph (8km/h) on the flat?


Remember the Honda 50?

Though it went about twice as fast as Raleigh Wisp.

The Wisp was unreliable rubbish, whereas the Honda 50 was reliable, if somewhat slow. But could be driven on a car licence. A Honda 90 needed a motorcycle licence.

These things do need better regulation. Saw an escooter at 11.15pm in dark and rain on main road with no lights this week.

Lightning struck: Apple switches to USB-C for iPhone 15 lineup


ancient Android phone to mouse, keyboard,

Sony Ericsson Xperia running Android 4.0.x does this, though I didn't connect RTL SDR (have done on an Android 8 tablet). It's older than an iPhone 4s. Still goes and still installs many Playstore Apps. Battery clips in. SD card. Even an HDMI socket. Wireless screen casting seems rubbish on every new gadget/TV.

The iPhone 4S has been a paperweight for years.

These days you can teach old tech a bunch of new tricks


Re: 21 inch, high res

I doubt it's valuable. I sent 3 off 19" 4:3 CRTs that were 1600 x 1200 and could do 1920x1080 with reduced scan height for correct 16:9 aspect.

No-one wanted them.

We have some lovely Benq QHD screens with VGA, DVI & HDMI. They work well at any game resolution on a VGA 3D card. Under €200.

Currently I use a 23.5" UHD with DP and HDMI. Under €300.

The HD and 4K TV sets with HDMI work well with cheap adaptors off Amazon and eBay.

All HDMI out:

1) Composite in. NTSC or PAL

2) Component in needing progressive. Some DVD players.

3) Component and Y/C in that works with S-VHS Y/C or DVD Component.

4) VGA in and HD HDMI with a 3.5mm jack audio in for sound on HDMI.

CGA can easily be adapted to composite or Y/C as it's basically an RGB version of NTSC using an old console RGB to composite adaptor.

EGA can be adapted to a VGA connector. So actually can CGA, MDA and Hercules, but few VGA inputs will take those signals.

CGA, MDA, Hercules or EGA can be adapted to component. A decent component to HDMI can take interlace or progressive.

Some HD & 4K TVs that have no analogue inputs still have an analogue tuner for RF, though those are usually PAL or NTSC, never both unlike composite & Y/C inputs.

It's only in last few years that the picture quality on decent LCDs has surpassed the top of range CRTs. My Samsung & LG 4K screens are as relaxing as eink to read. flicker free and can be calibrated for photoediting.


Direct 3D

Virtual box took away Direct 3D oprion on XP. Some very modest games like Scrabble used it.Going back to the earlier Vbox on Linux seems nearly impossible due to the older libraries the last Virtual Box with XP 3D. Of course these stupidly coded old games don't work on Windows 7 or Windows 10, either real HW or VM.

Microsoft to kill off third-party printer drivers in Windows


Re: Printer Features

Decent booklet / brochure / paperback book printing?

How does the old Alps model with opaque "inks" including white work?

Punching / binding / stapling?

Vinyl cutting?

PCBs (either direct milling or UV head)


Tiling giant image to 100s of pages?

Some of these have been done by applications and some by printer / plotter driver in the past. Plotter drivers often were installed as "printer" drivers, though "printing" from other than vector based app was crazy. Then there were plotters that really were inkjet printers. They rasterised the vectors.

Mills and 3D printers have tended to use custom applications and communication.

I can't imagine really, and MS is even less likely to. Any alliance with Xerox or HP or Lexmark is bad for customers.



WIA was terrible compared to TWAIN

Morpira UWP sounds bad, because UWP is stupid for a desktop OS.

But it all went wrong at NT 3.1. Print drivers needing to use the GDI? I understood the logic, but it was faulty logic.

Then when GDI was moved into Kernel with NT4.0 a bad print driver could blue-screen NT.

India's Chandrayaan-3 Moon mission hibernates to see out a long lunar night



I'm not fond of USA spelling, much of which was invented by Webster and not representative at the time. Very anti-French -our -re etc, also ruled against doubling 'L".

OED is reflective of use, not prescriptive like USA.

"its rover has detected sulfur as well as aluminum,"

At least no greengrocer's apostrophe.

Brilliant achievement by India.

Russia had to build a new spaceport because the USSR main one is now outside Russia. Not surprise me if Russia breaks up further.

Right to repair advocates have a new opponent: Scientologists


Re: Just another variation on the useless "lie detector"


The efficacy and legitimacy of Scientology's use of the E-meter has been subject to extensive litigation[4][5][6] and in accordance with a federal court order, the Church of Scientology publishes disclaimers declaring that the E-meter "by itself does nothing", is incapable of improving health, and is used specifically for spiritual purposes.[7]

Such devices have been used as research tools in many human studies, and as one of several components of the Leonarde Keeler's polygraph (lie detector) system, which has been widely criticized as ineffective and pseudoscientific by legal experts and psychologists.[8][9]


I'd like to say what I think of Scientology, but that could be disadvantageous.

We all scream for ice cream – so why are McDonald's machines always broken?


Re: No sh!t Sherlock

My friends got a big USA style fridge with a water chiller / dispenser. After discussion they only use it as an extra storage shelf. Not cold enough to stop growths. Algae and mould are as risky as bacteria.


Re: No sh!t Sherlock

Here in Ireland, the Ice-cream machines have cleaning instructions. Food places are inspected too. However having worked on designing an Ice-cream making machine and considering items in freezers above the red loading lines, I'm not sure inspections are frequent enough. Though even big name supermarkets have been fined and premises closed.



Very good.

Arm wrestles assembly language guru's domains away citing trademark issues


Rule 1

Don't use a dictionary single word or a persons name as a Trademark. Arrogant and stupid.


action to prevent a trademark from becoming a generic term

But Arm is generic. Only applies if called Advanced Risc Machines, or Armac or such. See Sellotape, Kleenex, Tampax, Duracell. Made up words.



MS C# was based on MS version of Java, J++. Sun objected, so it was developed differently and called C#


C++ is compiled and Strustupp was unhappy it had to have C compatibility. The C# is also the real replacement for vb6 (vb.net is pointless) and runs on a VM.

It's not the Same as Apple (who should not have dropped Computer, or shouldn't have been Apple mimicking Beatles' Apple Corp), or Arm who should have stayed as Advanced (or Acorn) Risc Machine, or something else. Arm is too generic. That's why Kleenex was picked.



When are big companies like Vogue, Apple, Hollywood studios, McDonald's etc going realise this arrogant bullying (because they have the well funded lawyers), is hurting their reputation and if they want well protected tradenames, don't use ordinary words or common names (and Apple copied the Beatles Apple Corp) Apple Books, Apple Watch are unsearchable as are many other "protected" names like Arm.

Stop attacking people for using arm in the name and go back to being called "Advanced RISC Machines". Type arm into wikipedia search.

Also how was Musk able to take X as a name and have x.com? Crazy. The mix of sheer arrogance, egotism and stupidity of some people and companies is amazing. I remember Intel once wanted the letter "i".

LibreOffice 7.6 arrives: Open source stalwart is showing its maturity


There is an outline view on LO

Also Exchange my be corporate must have, but it and Sharepoint are horrible.

Google's Web mail.

Why all this space on Wordperfect, MS, Google on an LO article?

Also there comes a time when new feature are stupid and getting rid of bugs is more important. Compared to 6.x the 7.4 floating / undocked tool windows don't work, but outlining works better as your position is tracked in the Tool Window. You can even right-click and export Outline to Clipboard.

The idea that Online will replace a local Wordprocessor is bonkers. One is your own computer with your own backups and doesn't need the Internet. Online/cloud is someone else's server. Only makes sense for real time collaboration, Social Media, online ordering, forums, websites etc. Not content creation ever. That's 1960s terminals on rented server time.

This article tells me very little about LO 7.6. Which presumably runs on Mac, Windows, Linux. But which cpus? What bugs are fixed. We don't care about new features.

30 years on, Debian is at the heart of the world's most successful Linux distros


Re: If only it had ditched the systemd cancer...

MX Linux seems to work, but my everyday workstation & laptops are Linux Mint version of Debian/Ubuntu with Mate Desktop.


Re: We should distinguish between server and desktop

It's only because of a few applications (and QT?) that 32 bit old machines are now a problem.

So much for CAPTCHA then – bots can complete them quicker than humans


Amazon uses them frequently AFTER log in.


Re: had one today

They are very USA culturally biased and abusive.


And why is Google's reCaptcha free?

Why are we getting them not just on creation of a new account but after login. Both text and image picking.

Why do they popup very much less often if using Chromium?

Ebay even denied they were serving them. I send them screen shots and they stopped communicating. I've stopped using ebay.

Ebay after login.

Amazon after login.

Kobo after login

Are the Google recaptcha's even legal in EU?

And what is the real purpose?


Bank of Ireland outage sees customers queue for 'free' cash – or maybe any cash


Re: It's a bank, of course it's not free money

If it's a very large sum of money you may be arrested and asked to explain how you got it?

Oracle, SUSE and others caught up in RHEL drama hit back with OpenELA


"No subscriptions. No passwords. No barriers. Freeloaders welcome."

And Oracle backs it!

Mint 21.2 is desktop Linux without the faff


Re: The best

I bought my last Lenovo with no OS. It was even cheaper like that,