* Posts by Alex

22 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Feb 2008

12 of the best... mice

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Logitech MX518

That's the one you want. Works well even in the left hand and is surperbly responsive.

Clickfree Traveler SSD

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a cheaper way...

back up 16GB onto 4 DVDs = 80p, leaving you 79.20 to spend on something worthwhile... like beer.

Even if you have to buy youself an external optical drive for your nobbook you'd still be quids in (or drunk).

EZY Technologies MyXerver MX3600



...chuck a big drive into an old PC and install FreeNAS. Works a treat. I've got three P2 433Mhz machines set-up. Once you've installed the software just shove it in a cupboard somewhere. Dot a few homeplugs around the place and you've got a wired connection where ever you need it (for when the neighbour fires up the baby monitor taking down your wireless nw).

Not pretty (sorry macTards) but it is cheaper than this and works at least as well, plus you get extra brownie points for the hardware re-use.

Nikon Coolpix P90 bridge camera

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Pointless waste of money.

Nobody with any experience of taking good quality photos would ever specify a camera like this. It is riddled with compromises - the sensor is too small and the zoom range is too big.

I have a 300mm (450mm equivalent) zoom on my APS-C SLR camera and have a job getting steady shots with that. You have to have a tripod. At 624mm you would need to cement it into the foundations to get a steady shot.

With this camera you end up paying twice for each "feature". You pay extra to have a 12MP sensor but it's so small you have to pay extra for the all the noise reduction tech that blurs out much of the detail that is "captured" by the high resolution sensor.

I defy anyone to get a decent shot at the maximum zoom without spending more on the tripod than the camera itself cost.

This is a camera designed by a marketing department not a photographer.

I pity anyone who wastes their money on this device.

Microsoft conjures imaginary 'Apple Tax'

Gates Halo

Hardware is a non-sequitur

The key component of any computer is the Operating System and everyone knows that that is where Windows wins out. Just look at the market share:


Windows has 88% of the market with OS X trailing far behind at less than 9%.

The key point is that for any job you might want to do there are 100s of options on Windows and just a few, if any, for the OS X. Any software available on OS X is available for Windows whilst the opposite is simply not true.

These are simple facts not fanbois hyperbole.

Windows wins.

Supercar maker pitches 'leccy sportster with stunning spec


Do me a favour


I am getting heartily sick of all this pie-in-the-sky leccy car hype.

So this one produces over 500bhp and has a range of over 300miles... bollocks does it. You can't even do that with a petrol motor after 120yrs worth of dev let alone battery tech that only been around for.... ah wait - they haven't even built the bleeding battery, sorry FAECES device, yet.

And you can charge it in 20minutes can you? From where exactly - the local sub-station, with a cable a foot wide?

I propose a motion that from now on The Reg should only report leccy cars once they are actually in production and available for purchase rather than just a shiny photoshop lash-up.


The world's best tech bike?



That saddle doesn't look particularly ergonomic to me.

Emtec Movie Cube S800 DVR



If the 500GB one costs 250 quid then why on earth does the 1TB model cost 500 quid? That simply does not make any sense. In fact it is an obscene ripoff.

Hold on a minute, how much is the 250GB one??? 125 quid by my reckoning - a bargain....

Pirate Bay prosecutors get jiggy with charge sheet - again


I can't help but feel the IFPI are missing the point

Even if the TPB chaps get convicted and even if they get sent down and even if all the TPB servers are shut-down the key point is that it won't make a blind bit of difference to the availability of illegal downloads. Shutting down TPB won't remove the actual files. They will still be available.

So, why bother?

Spotify: We kick the tyres


Very good

Spotify seems like a winner to me. There's plenty of good music and the interface is very clean and simple.

Chances of me upgrading to the paid for service = 0% (although I might be tempted if they did a Windows mobile client for use at work).

PS. Definitely no invite needed for the free service as of 200802140830.

Yes! It's the wristband battery!


Yeah but...

... why not just put a watch on it eh?? Talk about missed opportunities.

Kodak unwraps CES cameras

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Regarding the Z980

So, if it's 26mm (35mm equiv) at the wide end and it's got a 24x optical zoom then it'll have a focal length of 624mm (35mm equiv) at the long end. Given the probable size of the unit that must mean the sensor is tiny... and it's got 12 million pixels crammed onto it!

That doesn't sound like a recipe for good quality photos to me. The Kodak noise-reduction engineers must have been working overtime on that one!

2008's top three PMPs


Don't forget the...


I use it on a daily basis to watch films on the bus to work. I put an 8GB card in it which is enough for 5-6 full length films (top tip: use micro sd cards and a converter). Video playback is superb, as is audio and, of course, you can play great games on it too. Battery life is good for over 6hrs of video and if you need more spares are dirt cheap.

The latest firmware lets you connect to the Playstation store to download an ever increasing range of PSP and PS1 games directly.

Yes, it is a bit fussy about video codecs but using something like DVD Fab Platinum produces great content from DVDs.

And in the year and half I've had it it hasn't crashed once.

Brits allowed in to OLPC's 'give one, get one' scheme


Why so anti Microsoft?

I don't get it: 95% of all computers run Microsoft OSs yet you seem to want to lumber kids in poor countries with OSs that hardly anyone uses. You might not like the fact that Microsoft has such a large installed base but it does and that is a fact you can't deny.

A Microsoft OS is exactly the OS that should be installed on these machines because that is where the marketable skills are.

I've used Linux (and Unix) on a number of machines but I'm the only person I know who has and I work in a large IT department. I have 2 freeNAS servers running headless in a cupboard and I think it's an absolutely fantastic OS so I do have plenty of experience of other OSs.

Linux is all very well for having a tinker with but it just doesn't have the market penetration to make it a viable alternative.

Tesla Model S spied?


Why don't they...

just stick in a V8 and have done with it? If they did that they might actually stand a chance of selling some cars.

Pentax K200D digital SLR



Strictly speaking a pixel should have 3 components: one each for red, green and blue colours.

What gets quoted as a pixel in a digital camera is in fact just one of the colour components. It boils down to the fact that CMOS/CCD sensors only record luminence rather than colour. To record colour the sensor is overlayed with a matrix of red, green blue filters.

Thus each of the 10 megapixels only record one colour. Clever software "guesses" at the missing 2 colours for each pixel based on the values of the surrounding pixels. So technically speaking you should require 30million photosites to create a 10megapixel image but the clever processing reduces the photosite count by one third.

The sensor used in the Fuji SLRs (called something like "Fineveon" or something) works slightly differently in that it has fewer photosites but each photosite captures all three colours. However, even Fuji have bowed to the marketing man's pressure to tot up all the photosites and quote that figure instead.

Net shoppers bullied into being Verified by Visa


Too stupid

Perhaps it's some sort of test - if you're too stupid to remember an 8 char password you're too stupid to have a credit card. I have a system for passwords - the password for each site is different but I immediately know what the correct code is even if I haven't used that site for more than a day, or sometimes even 2 days!!!

I mean what, exactly, is the problem? This system is trying to prevent fraud and most people seem to be saying, "NO! STOP! It's too hard - please allow criminals to rip me off cus I'm too stupid to remember a password."

I've used both VbyV and SecureCode and it really isn't that hard.

Fujifilm quietly unveils an HD DSLR


Maybe, maybe not

There is nothing specific in this article to suggest one way or the other whether this camera is an SLR or not. Please remember that SLR means "Single Lens Reflex" not "it must have interchangeable lenses".

All the moniker SLR describes is the view you see in the viewfinder - if that view comes straight through the main lens, bounced off a mirror into the viewfinder then it is an SLR. If on the other hand the viewfinder uses a secondary lens or, as I suspect may be the case in this instance, an electronic viewfinder then it shouldn't be described as an SLR.

Whether or not the camera allows interchangeable lenses or not has nothing, NOTHING, to do with its SLRness.

You are *probably* correct in saying this camera isn't an SLR but you basing that decision on unsound assumptions.

Vote now for your fave sci-fi movie quote


Seen it too many times man...

Technically, attributing the "I say we take off and nuke the site from ortbit..." to Ripley is incorrect. Whilst she does say it she is, in turn, quoting Corporal Hicks.

After the inital ass-kicking Hicks says "I say we take off and nuke the site from orbit...".

Burke points out that Hicks is just a damn grunt, no offence (none taken). And only then does Ripley quote Hicks.

My favourite sci-fi quote is "X.... it varies". I use it whenever a bit of code disappears up it's own ass.

Elonex £99 Eee PC rival to arrive in June

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I prefer the brunette.

I might even buy one of the machines.

Rebit: This is your grandmother's data backup


Wow, flametastic!

Yes, you're quite right: I'm not in the target market as I have a FreeNAS server in the cupboard for onsite backup and some drives in caddies for offsite backups.

However, could you give me a good reason why Rebit only backup secondary partitions on the initial install? I racked my brains and couldn't come up with one.

And, more importantly who exactly is in the target market? People who can't be bothered to backup their data?!?!? That'll be a big market then.



"This is also the only time Rebit will back up any other partitions on the disk."

So because I, quite sensibly, keep my OS and my data on different partitions this bit of kit is pretty much usless then?