* Posts by Antony Shepherd

55 posts • joined 6 Feb 2008


Running DOS on 64-bit Windows and Linux: Just because you can

Antony Shepherd

Re: if you just want to run some DOS productivity app

I still reckon after the response to the ending of the TV series he's just decided people are going to whinge about the book's ending no matter what it is, so rather than have the drama he's just shelved it.

Logitech Pop: Stylish, portable, but far from the best typing experience

Antony Shepherd

Re: Number Pads

If you're doing something that involves a lot of entering numbers, then a number pad is an essential thing.

If you're not entering lots of numbers a lot of the time, then dispensing with the number pad saves a lot of space on your desk.

That said, while I don't enter a lot of numbers these days I still miss a number pad on my crappy wireless Mac keyboard. I also miss proper keyboards with proper keys - which this logitech ain't.

The problem with this particular keyboard seems to me that the keys aren't concave and there's no rake to the keyboard.

*sigh* - I still think the absolute pinnacle of keyboard design was the IBM Model M keyboard. I had one of those at work once and it was a pleasure to type on.

Clustered Pi Picos made to run original Transputer code

Antony Shepherd

My sole experience of Occam was writing an program in it for an assignment at the University of Essex back in t'day. The whole concept of defining program structure by the number of spaces at the start of a line struck me as THE MOST obsessive nonsense ever.

This is probably why I've never got on with Python.

An open-source COBOL contender emerges

Antony Shepherd

Anything's better than IZAL!

Half of bosses out of touch with reality, study shows

Antony Shepherd

Re: Employees hold all the cards, it’s too late…

Incidentally, has anyone noticed that the loudest voices for return to office work are coming from Subway and Pret?

Also from the people who own lots of office space and are terrified their property portfolios will drop in value when businesses don't need large offices any more.

ASUS recalls motherboards that flame out thanks to backwards capacitors

Antony Shepherd

Re: But, but …

You only reverse the polarity of the neutron flow!

You've stolen the antiglare shield on that monitor you've fixed – they say the screen is completely unreadable now

Antony Shepherd

Re: Pretty routine back then...

Had a former colleague who's keyboard was full of snot, presumably their own.

I think we just threw it in the bin.

Think that spreadsheet in your company's accounts dept is old? 70 years ago, LEO ran the first business app

Antony Shepherd

Good to see someone else mentioning that book, it's a good read and I'd recommend it to anyone. There's a great bit about how at one time they bought a load of cheap American calculating machines, so they'd convert all their figures to decimal, run the figures through the calculating machines, and convert the results back to the original non-decimal units, and that was still quicker and more accurate than doing all the calculations by hand.

From there LEO was just the next step.

UK's ARIA innovation body 'hasn't even begun to happen' says former research lead

Antony Shepherd

Wasn't this one of Cummings' ideas? If so no wonder it's been left to rot.

WEB@30: The Register pokes around historical hardware of the WWW

Antony Shepherd

Re: Dot matrix? Luxury!

Electrical discharge? You don't know you're born.

I had a small printer/plotter which used a roll of paper slightly narrower than a bog roll and four small ballpoint pens, so when you printed out a program listing it had to write every individual character!

To be honest, it was kind of fascinating to watch it writing stuff out. For a while, at least. Less so if I was printing a long listing!

It was badged as ORIC but I believe it was made by Sharp.

SpaceX Starship struts its stack to show it has the right stuff

Antony Shepherd

"Mine is bigger than yours"

The most important question is has anyone dubbed the video of them stacking the big rocket with the "Thunderbirds" music? Even the stills look like something out of Derek Meddings' wildest dreams!

Happy 60th, Sinclair Radionics: We'll remember you for your revolutionary calculators and crap watches

Antony Shepherd

I had a Black Watch. Actually, I had several.

It'd work fine for a few months, and then one day you push the button and it shows you the time is something like "47:89".

Send it back to Sinclair, then a few weeks later another one arrives. It works fine, then one day... and so on.

Think I got through three or four before i gave up and bought a Casio.

Post-lunch snooze plans dashed as the UK tests its Emergency Alerts... again

Antony Shepherd

Well, I guess this may come in handy once that Quidshop Churchill Wannabe starts a war all Grand Fenwick style.

Don’t panic, but five jet drones just used their AI to chat and collaborate while in flight

Antony Shepherd

Re: Black hawk leader to A flight, turn to port and steer 230

Silence... IN BINARY!

Paying a TV tax makes you happy - BBC

Antony Shepherd

Well, I'd rather pay the BBC a small sum each month than pay a lot more to either beardy Branson or billionaire tyrant Murdoch.

Meet قلب, the programming language that uses Arabic script

Antony Shepherd

Every program has to have a bug, because only Allah is perfect.

Red supergiant Betelgeuse heads for SMACKDOWN with 'dust bar'

Antony Shepherd

I'm still kind of hoping that Betelgeuse went supernova around six hundred and thirty odd years ago so I'll get to see the result in the night sky.

Although it'll be a lot worse than the Great Collapsing Hrung Disaster, that's for sure.

(does not know what a Hrung is, nor why it should collapse on Betelgeuse seven)

Sinclair ZX Spectrum FAILS latest radio noise rules SHOCK

Antony Shepherd

I remember a program on my old Microtan 65 that produced 'sound' (well, a slightly less random noise) when you tuned in your radio to 750Khz (the clock frequency).

Pretty much any old computer churned out loads of interference.

NASA: THE TRUTH about the END OF THE WORLD on 21 Dec

Antony Shepherd

At times like this I point to the wise words of Brian Cox: http://youtu.be/vw9K0tI9mxc

Ten badass brainy computers from science fiction

Antony Shepherd

Re: Orac

There's a brilliant line in a B7 episode where Avon has tricked someone by giving them a radio-controlled fake Orac.

"You fool!" says Servalan, "That's not Orac, it's just a box of flashing lights!"

Well duh!

Watchdog halts Toyota Grand Theft Auto-esque advert

Antony Shepherd

I thought it was quite a nifty advert., myself,.

So how many people have to complain before they ban ads for PPI, ambulance chasers, wonga, etc?

That I could support.

Antony Shepherd

Re: Optional

That didn't work for Pan Am, though.

Sinclair BASIC comes to Raspberry Pi

Antony Shepherd

Seriously, what the hell is the point.

Bird of Prey: 1980s IT on on the small screen

Antony Shepherd

I seem to recall the second season suffered greatly from the same degree of product placement that saw a BBC Micro embedded in the TARDIS console.

I mean, I'm not even sure the bog standard Acorn Electron COULD connect to an acoustic coupler.

The Dragon 32 is 30

Antony Shepherd

As well as SEX the 6809 had BRA (BRanch Always)...

Never owned a Dragon but I did love the 6809 as it was the best of the 8 bit processors.

I liked it more than the 6502 and loathed the 8080 or Z80.

Hams: We're good in a disaster – UK Radio Society boss

Antony Shepherd

Is it raining in Tokyo?

BBC boss confirms iTunes alternative in store

Antony Shepherd

Brilliant idea

What I would like to see from this is stuff from the archive which probably wouldn't sell well enough to merit a DVD release, but could be put on this site as a cheap download instead.

I loved the More Death and Horror sound effects record, but I swear I was hearing the sound effects from it in EVERYTHING for years!

Russians drill into buried 20 million-year-old Antarctic lake

Antony Shepherd

The last contact from the Russian base just consisted of TEKELI-LI ... TEKELI-LI ...over and over again.

Paul Allen proposes new space launcher

Antony Shepherd

What about Alan Shepard?

Alan Shepard was the first American in space, for a hop, John Glenn was only the first American to do an orbit. If you're going to invoke history, you could at least get it right!

At least Burt Rutan knows what he's doing...

Kinect 2 said to read lips, sense mood

Antony Shepherd

So, a computer that can lip-read and detect mood. Did we learn nothing from 2001?

Boffins build electric car from a single molecule

Antony Shepherd

Some say he's just a sub-atomic particle with no mass.

All we know is that he's called the nanoStig

Pampernaut love-rat space shuttle pilot prangs plane

Antony Shepherd

Stalling is easily curable and not fatal in many cases!

Max Sang is talking complete nonsense.

I've stalled an aircraft deliberately on many occasions as part of PPL training!

Throttle back, keep pulling back on the controls to maintain altitude as speed drops. Ten knots above the stall, the alarm goes off, and if you keep pulling you'll enter a stall, where the airflow diverts from the top of the wings and you lose lift drastically...

Nose forward, throttle up, and away you go. No harm done.

This is only a problem if you do it at low altitude and don't have time to recover!

Now, some T-tailed aircraft had a problem with airflow over the elevator being obstructed, but the Cessna 206 is not that kind of aircraft.

Virtual cloud monkeys go bananas writing Shakespeare

Antony Shepherd

How improbable is that?

"Ford, there's an infinite number of monkeys out here. They want to talk to us about this script for Hamlet they've just worked out."

Prototype iPhone 5 lost in bar, right on schedule

Antony Shepherd

Accidentally on purpose?

Yeah, they 'just happened' to leave it in a bar. Because leaking details of the new phone isn't going to be great publicity, right? It worked the last time, right?

NASA to work on approved sci-fi books

Antony Shepherd

Voyage? Titan? Moonseed?

So long as they don't get Stephen Baxter to write them.

Those tend not to end well!

BMW intros revamped Mini as sporty MG-alike

Antony Shepherd
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Transversely, of course...

That whirring noise you hear is Sir Alec Issigonis spinning in his grave...

Porn found in Osama bin Laden compound

Antony Shepherd
Big Brother

Not the worst thing they could have found

No no no, if they REALLY wanted to damage Al Qaeda morale they'd have shown Osama's secret bacon stash.

This page has been left intentionally blank

Antony Shepherd

What a boob!

"My son was off school sick today and he was disgusted"

What, is he more a fan of what they call the "delicious flat chest"?

No new strings for Guitar Hero

Antony Shepherd

Click click clickety click

So farewell Guitar Hero.

You were like 'Simon', but with a better soundtrack.

Rescue mission begins for Hitchhiker's Real Guide

Antony Shepherd
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About time

Personally I think the BBC should never have acquired H2G2 in the first place, and I was surprised it took them this long to get rid of it.

UK.gov scraps stop'n'search terror power

Antony Shepherd

Does this change anything?

Surely all plod has to say is "I thought he was a terrorist, guv!" the next time they decide to stop someone for the heinous crime of photography.

Ricoh GR Digital III compact camera

Antony Shepherd
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Nice upgrade

The great thing about the GR Digital range is that Ricoh give you a hell of a lot of control over the picture taking process, more than most compact cameras do. Sure, it's a small sensor so you get noise at higher ISOs, and it's a wide angle lens so you need to get closer to your subject, but within its minor limitations it's a fine picture-taking machine for the reasonably serious photographer.

It's compact and pocketable, more pocketable than any micro four thirds camera (I can just about fit an Olympus Pen E-P1 with 17mm pancake lens in my pocket, but it's not comfortable), feels sturdy and well made.

As far as Alan Firminger's remarks, I think most of the delay with compact cameras comes from autofocus. The GRD can be focused manually - also they have a fixed focus modes, where you can set infinity focus or 'snap shot' focus (a few yards away) reducing shutter lag to practically nothing.

The only problem I've ever had with my original GRD is the long time it takes to write RAW files. Ricoh have completely fixed that, it seems. If my old GRD gave up the ghost, I'd seriously upgrade.

Apple squeezes video camera into iPod nano

Antony Shepherd
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Close but no cigar

Not impressed. My 60GB iPod is close to full with music alone, and I would have quite happily replaced it with an iPod Touch, except they've only increased them to 64GB, which I'd probably fill within six months of purchase.

So I still won' t be buying the iPod Touch any time soon.

London desperately seeking Strategy Boutique

Antony Shepherd

Bill Hicks got it right..

"If anyone here is in marketing or advertising, kill yourself"

Deal inked in US Navy 'R2-D2' raygun robo-turret plan

Antony Shepherd

R2D2 my arse

Cover them in half-domes and have a voice synthesiser shout out "EXTERMINATE" every time they fire!

RIP Personal Computer World

Antony Shepherd

Monkeys on the cover

I've still got a stash of 80's era PCWs up in my Dad's house, next time I'm up there I must dig through a few, if only for the comedic value of the old adverts.

Admittedly I did stop reading it a long time ago after it had become just another PC of the month magazine.

Yes MrJOD, I do remember the Microtan 65, that was my first computer too.

Zaphod Beeblebrox home sun 'shrinking', may have blown up

Antony Shepherd
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Has this got anything to do with the Great Collapsing Hrung disaster of Betelgeuse VII?

Acer flaunts first Ion-based nettop

Antony Shepherd
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It's a Mac Mini killer!

Seriously - While I have an iMac for my desktop, I want a small box to plug in to my TV and watch video files on - and I don't want to pay Mac prices for that. This looks like it'll be just the thing I'm looking for!

'Faith-based' investment firm fingers holiday's most sinful games

Antony Shepherd
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Christian investment firm?

OK, so it's a long time since I read a bible, so correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Jesus kick the moneychangers out of the temple, and tell a rich man to give up all his worldly goods?

Somehow don't think he'd be too keen on an investment company operating in his name.

Dawkins' atheist ad campaign hits fundraising target

Antony Shepherd


Probably? That's being a bit wishy-washy, isn't it?

A bit soft?

Should have gone for "THERE IS NO GOD. NOW GET OVER IT."



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