* Posts by Christopher Reeve's Horse

264 posts • joined 17 Jan 2008


Run Windows on a Chromebook: All the details. Not so fast, home user...

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The madness comes full circle

The browser became an operating system, and now an operating system becomes the browser.

Excel Hell: It's not just blame for pandemic pandemonium being spread between the sheets

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Re: Relax...

Technically incompetent at every level?

Yes, your argument is very good, but typically the user of excel has an entirely different area of technical competence. You clearly have a technical competence for Bash scripts, and that's great, but the problem is the overlap of responsibilities and the management of resources, and probably not the technical competence of the original user.

Now Nvidia's monster GeForce RTX 3090 cards snaffled up by bots, scalpers – if only there had been a warning

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Re: Hefty price

Oh not another one... "tHE hUmAn EyE caN oNLy seE 30 fPs"

Although I suppose maybe some people don't notice the difference, but I suffer from noticing motion judder on almost every camera pan, especially is there's moving text.

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Re: About Time

I'd completely agree with that. And to add, even if you can get a 3080 right now you'd obviously get extra performance over a 1080ti, but you also consume significantly more wattage. TDP is up from 250W to >320W.

Unless you're using a 4K display, using high end VR, or you specifically need the RT or Tensor capabilities beyond gaming, I recommend sticking with the trusty Pascal cards for a while longer yet.

Ever found yourself praying to whatever deity runs Microsoft Teams? You're not alone

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Typical Microsoft

They already use DAX as an acronym for the Data Analysis Expressions in Power BI, and now there's a new DAX with a completely different meaning.

I'll admit that you're not likely to get them confused, but come on, it's a bit of a lack of imagination isn't it?

I AM ERROR: Tired of chewing up your RAM? Razer tells gamers where to stick its special gum for the RGB crowd

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I think I'd rather eat their hardware.

The Honor MagicBook Pro looks nice, runs like a dream, and isn't too expensive either. What more could you want?

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And the software?

Clutter free Windows 10 installation, or buckets of inexplicable (or possibly untrustworthy) Beijing bloat?

Digital pregnancy testing sticks turn out to have very analogue internals when it comes to getting results

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I'm sure I saw something about this pregnancy tester being modified to run Doom. Now that, is taking the piss!

You're stuck inside, gaming's getting you through, and you've $1,500 to burn. Check out Nvidia's latest GPUs

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Yep, a little competition is great - even though we don't know how good that competition is going to be yet.

One thing that's a little disappointing is the relatively small memory on the 3080. There's a lot of people with 10 series cards (because they were so dominant for so long) that didn't upgrade to 20 series (because prices were too high), it would be slightly bitter to go from a 1080ti with 11GB to a 3080 with 10GB. Even if the silicon performance is markedly better, the limited VRAM might come back to haunt you sooner that you'd like - and it's an awfully big step up to the 24GB 3090. Lets hope that a more sensible 3080ti comes along some time, possibly along with a decent 3060 at a lower price point?

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's a 56-year-old satellite burning up in the sky spotted by sharp school kids

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Re: Image source

Clips like that are a powerful reminder of just how mind boggling fast these things are really going, it never fails to amaze me. Footage from orbit always gives a very serene impression that belies the devastating 17,000+ mph speed.

Apparently the kinetic energy of the ISS is approx 20% of the energy released by the Hiroshima bomb.


As promised, Apple will now entertain suggestions from the hoi polloi on how it should run its App Store

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Re: A larger share ?

I stand corrected, but the general gist remains.

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Re: hoi polloi

I believe it's called a double tautology.

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Re: A larger share ?

I don't have a major problem with the 30% rate in the app store, as the justification is that it enables the store to offer free content for users, and zero fees for developers. Developers can choose their own app prices, so the 30% can be factored in if they want.

I think the bigger issue is around in-app purchases, and the distinction of what these are. So if some poor mug wants to buy an upgrade within a game, they also pay the 30% for in-game purchases? I'm not sure whether this is good or bad, especially if the game is offered for free. Fundamentally, how is this different from the Amazon app, which is free, and allows you to buy things without paying an extra apple tax on everything? I'm sure there's a whole load of legal differentiation and technicalities here, and I'm not sure I want to spend any of my time having to understand it all - not unless someone's going to give ME an extra 30% to do so.

Facebook apologizes to users, businesses for Apple’s monstrous efforts to protect its customers' privacy

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Re: Personalised ads actually make less money

1. I did intend to mean social networks in a broader sense.

2. Neo-liberalism; 7 minutes of Noam Chomsky can explain it better, but to quote "undermining mechanisms of social solidarity, mutual support, and popular engagement."


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Re: Personalised ads actually make less money

And that kind of proves a slightly tangential point. You're here, posting comments on an El Reg article - you're already likely to be part of a demographic that's responsive to things that are geeky and interesting.

There's no need for someone who wants to advertise things to you to have to engage with a company that whores so much user data, the answer was already obvious. Companies that want to buy advertising are drinking the cool-aid, and missing the point that targeting was already quite achievable.

Meanwhile Facebook are happy to sell false promises to advertisers and then double down on bulk selling user data; data which is unfortunately being used to actively corrupt democracy and advance neo-liberal agendas. Ironic really, given how social networks are generally supposed to empower individuals.

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Re: Let's be clear here. It's *not* Facebooks data.

I guess in the early days you could perhaps argue that you did get something in return i.e. access to a load of banter and updates from people you know or knew. These days it's just a toxic and manipulated stream of adverts, desperate MLM spam, and biopics of narcissistic personal breakdowns. I do everything I reasonably can to avoid having anything to do with it, including feeding it any data.

The truth is, honest people need willpower to cheat, while cheaters need it to be honest

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If it were possible to trust certain politicians even less...

then this kind of analysis shows it can always be worse than you think.

I'm sure everyone can think of a few example politicians who frequently 'strain plausibility'. I honestly believe that some of them have so little cognitive control that they don't have any realistic chance of stating truths or facts.

Um, almost the entire Scots Wikipedia was written by someone with no idea of the language – 10,000s of articles

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Re: Wee radge bastard

I feel a staiheid rammy coming on about this

So... just 'Good' then? KFC pulls Finger Lickin' slogan while pandemic rumbles on

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Re: You missed

or Knuckles, Feathers and Claws

Uncle Sam to blow millions on getting fusion power finally working – with the help of AI

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I've not looked in huge detail at the F1 analysis, but I think it's based on qualifying 'raw' speed, the main comparison being against teammates. I have my doubts about the accuracy and usefulness of the outcome.

Not all teammates are equal, but even if this is taken into account there will still be large areas of bias. Not all teams treat their drivers equally, not all cars are produced or specified equally (in the same team), some teams technical development direction will be specifically to suit their number 1 driver, and some drivers (those experienced and talented enough) will sacrifice their qualifying setup for better race pace. The list goes on I'm sure. It's as much a talking point generator than a meaningful analysis.

And even after all that, raw qualifying speed is only one part of being the best 'complete package' F1 driver. I've watched it for a long time, and I would put Hamilton right at the top of this list. It's a privilege to witness the levels of performance he has reached.

If Fairphone can support a 5-year-old handset, the other vendors could too. Right?

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Re: oneplus is great

I always assumed battery damage was caused, or accelerated, by repeatedly drawing it down to low levels? Every day is a learning day I suppose.

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Consumers aren’t being served by Android

The improvements are small increments, nothing revolutionary has really benefited general consumers for years. The vendors have happily set a market expectation for frequent replacement, most apps and games are stifled by in app purchase mechanics. Milked for hardware, and then milked for the software.

Sure, cameras have improved and processors are faster, but if consumer interests were genuinely being served we’d still have flagships with replaceable batteries and headphone jacks, and no forced Bixby buttons! If the most convincing reason for an upgrade is increasingly becoming ‘I’m no longer getting updates’ then something is terribly wrong with the entire market.

Smartwatches win the consumer tech sector for Q1 2020 as locked-down folk take up fight against corona-carbs

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Working from home has definitely changed things, big time. It’s now trivially easy to pop out at lunchtime for a run or ride, whereas I wouldn’t have done before. I probably see more runners and cyclists than cars these days.

Machine learning helps geoboffins spot huge beds of hot rocks 1,000km across deep below Earth's surface

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Re: My guess is..

Your right, it's dominated by gravity and the sheer mass. Momentum isn't the right expression.


3.00E+19 kg of oceanic crust travelling at 3.17E-10 m/s has a momentum of 9,512,940,000 kg m/s

100,000 kg of jumbo travelling at 500mph (223.52 m/s) has a momentum of only 22,352,000 kg m/s

If you'd have said 425 jumbo jets travelling at speed, I may have believed you.

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My guess is..

It's something to do with remnants of subducted oceanic crust. Once subduction begins, oceanic slabs become very dense, stripped of lighter material through partial melting. They also have a surprisingly large amount of momentum, and may sink all the way to the mantle/core boundary.

This site http://www.atlas-of-the-underworld.org/ has details of lots of named and identified slab remnants around the world, and the Hades Underworld Explorer even lets you produce a cross section of the mantle from tomography data, simply by drawing a line on the surface map. http://www.atlas-of-the-underworld.org/hades-underworld-explorer/.

Google and Parallels bring Windows apps to Chromebooks, in parallel with VMware and Citrix

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'On the way to the cloud'

Presumably a cloudy future where literally everything everyone does is owned, controlled, processed and analysed by Google, by any chance? Gee thanks. Or you could interoperate this as a way to make Chromebooks marginally more useful and saleable, particularly to businesses that don't want to (or can't) drop dependence on MS Office and 'other legacy apps'.

There could potentially be some longer term performance benefits however... MS and Google has been pushing more and more use of browser based office applications, but as far as I'm aware they still process data (slowly and inefficiently) on the local client. You just can't open a stonkingly massive and complex Excel model in the online application. But if the file is already in the cloud (via Drive, One-Drive or SharePoint etc.) and the software interface is already in the browser, why not use much more massive cloud processing power behind the scenes, to deliver something more capable than the local hardware or native application? That seems to be the missing link, unless I'm misunderstanding something?

Tens of millions of Internet-of-Things, network-connected gizmos at risk of remote hijacking? Computer, engage shocked mode

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But it likely won't get junked until the primary purpose fails, because how would 'your average user' know anything about the security holes? Even if their security had been compromised, they still wouldn't be aware how.

Meatspace meetup Web Summit reckons you'll be ready to revisit the world in November

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It'll be alright

I'm pretty sure web developers are ardently subjected to social distance much of the time, they've got a fairly low baseline transmission risk...

Meet the dog that's all byte and no bark: Boston Dynamics touts robo-pooch Spot with $75k-a-pop price tag

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Re: A less friendly-looking version of Spot was featured ...

Anton Chigurh* was so ahead of his time.

*Javier Bardem in No Country from Old Men, with his captive bolt gun

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Re: So.....

Depends whose perimeter you want to patrol?

Now you've done it: Cyber attack targeted Australian brewery 'n' dairy biz Lion

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Also deals in milk as well as alcohol

Was it those pesky white russian hackers again?

Huawei's latest smartphone for the UK market costs £1,299. And yes, that's without Google apps

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Nearly spat my tea out

No-wei this Huawei’s going my-wai, okaei!

That’s a lot of dosh for something that will be practically worthless in about 2 years, even if you can stomach the epic inconvenience of a hobbled ecosystem. I wouldn’t even be tempted at half that price.

An Internet of Trouble lies ahead as root certificates begin to expire en masse, warns security researcher

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Re: Of course if they weren't so greedy ....

There is an important difference in steaming media, in that the choice of media explicitly defines a datum of customer behaviour and preference.

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Re: hopefully a response from the industry to start fixing stuff

Yeah, likely to be way I suspect, but hopefully some good may come of it in the shape of consumer awareness and pressure?

From a 'dumb' consumer perspective, the lack of software updates to things like Android phones and tablets is typically blind - the increased risk to un-patched vulnerabilities does not manifest itself in an meaningful way to most users. However, when services just stop working despite the hardware being perfectly ok, this is likely to cause anger and resentment. Enough anger to change manufacturer's behaviour?

What this could represent is a longer term shift in how consumers think about warranties. Traditionally, once a warranty expires, the lifespan of the product comes down to a mix of how well you look after it and pure luck. Is there a future where products themselves purposely stop working once the warranty expires? Will price differentiation carry Apple indefinitely as their estate of supported models continues to increase? How long do we have until updates as a paid for subscription service become the norm?

The UK's favourite lockdown cheese is Big and Red but doesn't require a stinking great audit after consumption

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Re: Stewart Lee agrees.

Unfortunately I can only upvote this once

Choose your own adventure: HP's new Omen 15 gaming laptop offers choice between AMD and Intel processors

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Or probably very hot, being a gaming laptop!

Also, being a gaming laptop, will it look like an 8 year old’s drawing of a Lamborghini engine cover that’s been festooned in cheap Christmas lights? I hope not.

Contact-tracer spoofing is already happening – and it's dangerously simple to do

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I think it’s not the people you happen to have casually passed, but the people you’ve had a more meaningful and longer interaction with?

Ever felt down after staring at your phone late in bed? It's not just you – mice do too

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So it’s the blue light all along

Not the terrifying list of atrocious things that are happening in the world right now. I guess that’s a relief!

UK.gov dangles £400k over makers of IoT Things: Go on, let's see how you'd make a security cert scheme

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Re: What about our networks?

Yes, that’s what I’m trying to suggest. It should be two things: device security and protected networks. But until your standard ISP supplied router is designed to operate simply in such a way, no one is going to stand a chance.

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What about our networks?

Given the proliferation of IOT tat, its going to be nearly impossible to ensure they’re all constantly updated. On the other hand, why is it nearly impossible for a layman to set up a locked down separate home network where devices can be isolated from each other and or the rest of the network/internet?

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Re: Oh dear!

If I had to bin something due to forced early borkage that entire brand would get blacklisted.

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Re: Educate consumers

And which university do you teach at?

Another attempt at a Big Brand Killer: Oppo daddy BBK hits global smartphone market with Vivo X50 series

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Another well-specced Android flagship

Another jumble of random software with short-term update support, if any?

Home Office waves a cool £1bn to outsource handling of British visa, citizenship applications

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Re: A failed State?

I agree, it’s going to be another shift show. Cue future headlines about racist and discriminatory processes ‘accidentally’ effecting people, which will inevitably be blamed on poorly trained contractors. Or something similar...

After all the excitement of Windows 10 2004, Insider builds go back to square one

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Re: It wasn't Blankety Blank that was 3 x 3...

Even Blankety Blank did baked in obsolescence, as all the winners of the famous Blankety Blank cheque book and pen will confirm.

SpaceX Crew Dragon docks at International Space Station

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They blew up the other rocket just to threaten this one into behaving. Seems to have worked!

HP's hoping it'll be second time lucky with launch of Reverb G2 nerd goggles

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This looks really interesting

...and would be perfect for driving sims. FOV is really important for getting the look, feel and immersion of driving right, and often getting a good FOV setting on a single monitor means compromising on lateral spatial awareness from the driving position. Just being able to look around at will, and without having the additional faff of base stations setup sounds great. I've never been much tempted by Occulus because it still feels very much like a first generation product that's been stagnant for quite some time now.

Surprise! That £339 world's first 'anti-5G' protection device is just a £5 USB drive with a nice sticker on it

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If it weren't for the fact

it has a easy to use USB port I'd have guessed it was from Apple.

Man responsible for least popular iteration of Windows UI uses iPad Pro as a desktop*

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Could make a good meme

Man responsible for least popular iteration of Windows UI uses [insert here] as a desktop

Some starters for 10: Underside of desk. Pulped yams. Actual rolling green grass hill and blue sky. The baby eating Bishop of Bath and Wells. Alan Yentob. The hopes and dreams of children. etc.

SD cards hop on the PCIe 4.0 bus to hit 4GB/s with version 8.0 of storage spec

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These speeds and capacities are the capability of the interface, not the actual flash storage on the card. How far behind the curve is the existing tech, even if this interface is used?

At the moment a 1TB Sandisk SD card with a 170 Mb/s interface is more than £460. Scaling linearly for storage alone (I know it's a bad example) your 128TB card is going to cost nearly £60,000. But if this ever does become affordable then paying for Cloud storage becomes a bit pointless, you could be feasibly be running a 0.5PB portable NAS server from your phone over 7G.



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