* Posts by James Minney

16 publicly visible posts • joined 4 Apr 2007

Lightning strikes USB bosses: Next-gen jacks will be REVERSIBLE

James Minney

NSS Re: Flip and try again

Until USB, it was pretty easy to work out which way round to try plugging it in, so you didn't have to keep flipping it and retrying.

"Reversible USB" is creating a workaround for the problem as is, instead of fixing the problem. Make the plug feel asymmetric in the hand, and make the socket look more visually asymmetric. Why, back in the day we used to connect our computers using a chisel to carve out lettering on stone, worked alright for generations, don't see why everyone suddenly wants to change it! (wait, er, . . . )

WWII HERO PIGEON crypto message STUMPS GCHQ boffins

James Minney

Surely some mishtake - Ed

" . . . we can put it in the pot"?? Surely a bit gamey by now?

Putting the internet into neutral, or neutering the net?

James Minney

Charging Google to get its packets to the customer on time

is just like EuroDisney working with tour companies to subsidise travel/accommodation, to get people to go spend high-margin money in their theme park. But importantly, the consumer is still making a decision about the travel/accommodation bundle, whereas if charging Google directly is seen as the way the market should go, then consumers will have not idea what's going down, as you say.

Sage Pay upgrade glitch forced poor password picks

James Minney

Seriously inconvenienced by this upgrade

As a merchant: since the weekend upgrade, our customer service staff have been unable to get any transactions through ever on the first attempt (most often it logs them out mid-transaction) and consequently unable to get any transactions through while the customer is still on the phone, they can't search by postcode because it only allows one "word" as a search term, response is far from "half a second faster", it's seriously slow, and as the poster before me notes, there's no totals in the reports, very little of the screen real estate is available such that you can hardly see the information you need, etc. This is presumably designed primarily for API use not for people to use directly. Looking forward most of all to speedy resolution of the slow-speed and random log-you-out problems on the "Terminal".

Asus waves farewell to (laptop) fans

James Minney

Vents / air-moving?

If they want to get the air to move, shouldn't they make the back of the screen into a chimney-effect environment? Suck hot air up from the bottom by convection?

Taliban man loves his iPhone

James Minney

So that's one iPhone in Afghanistan?

Given what a limited high-security circle some people move in, it's not unreasonable to suppose that Mr NATO spotted one and the same gent whipping out his iPhone with such panache.

Orangutans concoct plant-based soothing balm

James Minney

@ prior art

In US patent law, prior art outside the US is expressly not counted - thank Vandana Shiva for noticing that. And then they expect WIPO to help make US patents automatically enforceable into other countries.

EC jacks up Microsoft fine by €899m

James Minney

The ideal remedy

Nothing happenned in the US because they couldn't decide on what remedy to ask for. I always thought the ideal remedy would be to require Microsoft to write in big print at the top of every contract (including corporate and government procurement contracts) and prominently on every consumer package "Notice: Microsoft, the publisher of this software, is a convicted monopolist."

Could Linux become the dominant OS?

James Minney

Enterprise management on Linux?

"Linux will really kick off once it has those elements [directory, group policies, stuff for the enterprise] built-in"

That was Novell's plan: since they are way ahead of MS in all those areas, then delivering it all onto Linux (known as SLES and/or OES) should have been a winning combination. It's still fairly new, so too early to tell whether it will prove Steven right or not. I can't see why it wouldn't, but life doesn't always go that way.

Yahoo! Messenger! users! face! attack! by! video!

James Minney

would that be "pro"fessing?

Would that be "professing" rather than "confessing"?

Travelocity accidentally books 1,458 trips between US and Cuba

James Minney

@ jason - that's asking too much

Visiting a foreign website is adventurous enough - asking the correspondent to try a foreign _carrier_ is pushing it a bit don't you think?

Google and Sun tag team MS Office

James Minney

Re: why don't the open source people do something original

They've been doing original stuff for ages, and people didn't come to the party because it was too different. Now they finally get traction because they've bowed to popular demand and got closer to MS, the world starts to talk about doing something different. Whether the world would actually bother to try out some of the more original approaches, of course, remains to be seen. It was ever thus.

Boffins build bendy paper battery

James Minney

Sudden bursts of energy?

"but is also capable of producing sudden bursts of energy" - - Is that a nice way of saying what Michael Sheils is talking about?

Fujitsu fetes world's slimmest waterproof mobile

James Minney

"apparently" japanese often drop their phones in water

That should read "Claiming that the phone has been in contact with water is the commonest way that Japanese phone manufacturers cry off fixing it under warranty". They have a piece of coloured material inside which they say changes colour if it has been in contact with water. Given the humidity in the country in summer, the phones don't stand a chance.

New Laws of Robotics proposed for US kill-bots

James Minney

And who do we get to sue?

Since there's no point in hauling a robot before the court, the law needs to specify whose neck is on the line when it transgresses. The owner? The programmer? The manufacturer? The country that pays the private-sector contractor that deploys them? If you can't make someone responsible then it's a waste of time finessing around with what they are allowed and not allowed to do.

Windows Vista marketing 'deceived' consumers

James Minney

If the publicity makes them think a bit . . . .

If the publicity makes them think twice about dodgy advertising, it will have achieved something