* Posts by John Rose

48 posts • joined 11 Mar 2008

SAP vows to unravel user snarl-up over software licensing

John Rose
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There never seems to be any reporting of the extent of end user dissatisfaction with SAP. By end user, I mean the people who actually use it day to day as opposed to the IT directors & managers who make purchasing decisions. As someone who's worked with the end users in various organisations, I have yet to meet an end user who actually likes using SAP.



PS I can rarely get these 'thumb' icons to appear underneath my posts.

Apple pays up for stealing design from Swiss Railways

John Rose

Interesting about "Hitler, enraged by the Swiss air force shooting down Luftwaffe planes that strayed across the border, ordered invasion plans drawn up, but they were never acted upon.". When USAF planes were involved in large scale bombing raids over Germany, some were shot down by Swiss anti-aircraft fire when they strayed into Switzerland usually after being 'injured' over Germany. The USA threatened to declare war against Switzerland if it continued. The Swiss immediately stopped their 'target practice'.

Xbox Live gamers blown offline by 'Virgin Media routing balls-up'

John Rose


I'm not able to access certain websites since yesterday afternoon. I'm on a BT Business line. It could alternatively have something to do with my local BT exchange going fibre. Anybody know if it is a BT fault?

Neil Gaiman’s saucy pop wife agrees to pay her musicians in money

John Rose
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This is just a reflection of businesses/organizations hiring Interns who sometimes do not even receive travelling expenses let alone a salary/wage.

Casio to enter tablet market with twin-cam scanner

John Rose

Re: interesting

It looks to me like it will not include a true OCR app. Thus, each page will be stored as a jpg/tiff/png.

Windows Phone 8 stands a chance as Apple, Android dither

John Rose
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I have a ZTE Blade which was subject to all the faults you mention. It used Orange's flavour of Android 2.1. I suspect that many of the Mobile operators' Android versions are similarly low quality. Since I installed Cyanogen Mod 7.1 (using Android 2.3), all these problems have gone away except for the operating system going kaput when the battery runs down: I get round this by occasionally backing up the system using ROM Manager & (after installing App Backup & Restore) set it to automatically backup (to my sdcard) any new/modified apps. However, I suspect that very few users will install another ROM let alone do backups.

Online dole queue tech 'not grounded in reality', say councils

John Rose
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Re: On time, on budget? On yer bike...

They usually manage 'on budget' by increasing the budget as the project progresses.

John Rose
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Re: Staff

There are plenty of IT staff in my Local City Council. I tried to persuade the Councillor responsible for IT to consider replacing their Microsoft PC/laptop systems (e.g. Windows & Office) with Linux distros as the council is trying to save millions. Even though I showed him magazine articles about Munich City, & the French Gendarmerie saving millions per year and the fact that the council made a disastrous decision (which cost approx £20 million) in previously trying to implement a SAP based set of applications, he wasn't interested. It's just like the old IBM mainframe days when no-one got sacked for buying IBM when there were much cheaper & effective solutions available.

Android dev smacked with £50k fine over premium rate SMS scam

John Rose

Re: Thumbs up & thumbs down buttons

Thanks for the tip. Looking at my last message, it works if I click once on each required icon.

John Rose
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Thumbs up & thumbs down buttons

@Phil O'Sophical

I have clicked the buttons once for this message. But has put them in this message?

PS I do not want to use NoScript as I have found it a constant nuisance giving exceptions / white list to it.

John Rose

Re: How to put 'thumbs' icons after message

I don't use NoScript.

John Rose

How to put 'thumbs' icons after message

Somebody, please, tell me how to put the thumbs up & thumbs down icons after a message. I've tried clicking on them and also dragging them into the message. Is it something to do with using Firefox rather than Internet Explorer?

John Rose

Fine paid?

But will the miscreant(s) pay the fine.http://www.theregister.co.uk/Design/graphics/icons/comment/thumb_up_32.pnghttp://www.theregister.co.uk/Design/graphics/icons/comment/thumb_down_32.png

IT departments are BRATTY TEENAGERS

John Rose

Analysts & Managers

I'm going to be provocative. My view is that there are too many project managers who are too obsessed with Prince and other paper generators. Analysts should be the project managers as they are the people who best know what the users want and should be cost & benefit focussed. I also see no use for full time testers as they have no idea what features are vital in a system and what features are of little importance. Again their jobs should be done by analysts.



NHS's chances of getting world's best IT: 80% ... maybe*

John Rose

US Veterans System

The solution to the primary admin & clinical system has been around for years, namely the US Veterans System.

Nokia shares fall as it drops first quarter forecast

John Rose

Can anybody tell me how to 'sell Nokia shares short'?

'Don't break the internet': How an idiot's slogan stole your privacy...

John Rose
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This ‘Breaking the internet’ statement just seems like another load of hokum put about by a commercial ‘internet’ company and taken up by ignorant politicians who love soundbites. A current idea in Britain is that all email should be available & be inspectable by government agencies without a court ‘warrant’ (apologies for this word which I used as I’m not a lawyer). This seems to be unjustifiable on a t least 2 counts:

1. Government agencies need a court ‘warrant’ to inspect standard mail & phone conversation. email should have the same constraints for inspection as mail.

2. It would not enable decrypting of 128 bit encrypted email. Surely, any intelligent criminal would be doing this. Thus the government inspection would not even work effectively. Web site monitoring can also be sidestepped.

550,000-strong army of Mac zombies spreads across world

John Rose

Can this Trojan 'infect' Linux distros (e.g. Ubuntu)? If so, what software (e.g. Firefox add on) can prevent it happening?

Oracle - love or hate?

John Rose


At least Oracle provide products with some semblance of user friendliness. Whereas, when I first saw SAP (approx 5 years ago), I thought that I was in a 70's time warp.

Banks toss $8bn into Facebook's lap ahead of IPO

John Rose


I'm baffled as to where Facebook make their money. I've never even noticed any ads on Facebook's site though I use it very little: perhaps that is because I use the CustomizeGoogle extension with Firefox? Though I have noticed that a number of online newspapers cause Facebook's site to be 'contacted'. Is that their source of revenue?

UK.gov: We really are going to start buying open-source from SMEs

John Rose

I'll believe it when I see it

As an example the government has 'sub-contracted' advertising of contracts to the National SME Engagement Programme (supplycontracts.co.uk). This seems to be avenue for advertising IT contracts that have already been awarded! Also, it's a mechanism for a commercial company to get free marketing for their money making seminars.

UK Treasury flogs Northern Rock to flirty Virgin

John Rose

Rapayment of bail out money

Does anyone know how this money is/has been repaid?

UK gov publishes IT action plan to back up previous IT plan

John Rose

Contracts for SMEs

The government policy on OSS contracts is completely inoperative. In fact, the government policy on allowing SMEs to bid for contracts is also inactive. I've signed up for biddiing for contracts but there are never any advertised in the Midlands region. Does anyone know how to find out about contracts for SMEs?

Three questions that could put out Amazon's Fire

John Rose

Fire looks like a great value tablet. Therefore, it's worth buying it and immediately replacing Amazon's no-doubt-rubbish-and-advert-infested Android with another e.g. Cyanogen.



PS I'm a Firefox user who has yet to figure out how to get the thumb-down & thumb-up icons into my message. I've tried dragging them with the result that it shows their filenames as text. I've tried clicking on them. Please advise me how to do it.

Survey: '4 million' Brits stung by ID theft

John Rose
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Plastic cards

My debit card has a chip & mag stripe. Why are banks still issuing cards with mag stripes (i.e. easily readable and still work in ATMs) on them when all retail outlets use chip & pin readers? I think this is because many of their ATMs still want the mag stripe to be there. You ask how do I know this? I know because when I demagnetised the mag stripe on my debit card then it wouldn't work any longer on some ATMs.

Ubuntu's Oneiric Ocelot: Nice, but necessary?

John Rose
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Why leave 10.04?

I'm really at a loss to understand why people left 10.04. It was obvious that bringing in Unity was a huge change and therefore extremely risky for users. Please tell me what the non-esoteric advantages of Unity based Ubuntu is over 10.04.

John Rose

The paragraph about support for 11.04 is interesting. It misses out the point that support for 10.04 (a long term release aka LTS) is for 3 years (i.e. until April 2004). Please see the URL below for a discussion on STS versus LTS:


RIM: 'Faulty switch took out faulty-switch-proof network'

John Rose

Could you explain how RIM make profits?

Microsoft takes the Android profit, the Wonkas take the pain

John Rose

I wonder if the main reason for Google to initiate Android was to make life difficult for Apple and to a lesser extent for Microsoft. Google makes so much profit that they can afford to cast a bunch of dollars down the gutter in order to achieve this.

Oracle accuses Autonomy chief of telling 'whopper'

John Rose

I've never understood what Autonomy actually does. Their web site is a touch opaque. The first presentation of theirs that Oracle made to them seems to have the same characteristic. Canb anybody enlighten me as as to how they add value to companies?

Mathematicians slam UK.gov plans to fund statistics only

John Rose

This coalition are often short-termist and/or blinkered in their approach to many important matters. This can be seen in for example: their tripling of tuition fees, probable delay of ring fencing / disengagement of retail & investment banking, attempts to sell off nationally owned forests.

Green energy and jobs will cripple the UK economy

John Rose

Nuclear Energy

In the article there is no comparison of costs between different method of energy generation. For instance, nuclear energy production is currently much more expensive than energy generation from gas or hydro. And that's without taking into account the as yet unknown costs of fissile material disposal. I suggest therefore that the whole of the article is completely flawed.

Pre-paid Chinese users still anonymous despite new law

John Rose

I like the idea of anonymity

As the article said, operators want the details (particularly where you live) so that they can sell us stuff. Why shouldn't we have the right to buy phones & sim cards anonymously, just as we can buy computers anonymously which we can then use for anonymous communication?

Windows 8 ribbon entangles Microsoft

John Rose

Re Open Office

I've always suspected that MS's real reason for the Ribbon's introduction into Office was to dissuade newbie users of MS Office from switching to Open Office which uses a similar menu structure to the old MS Office. Obviously, this gives a good chance of maintaining their future revenue from MS Office.

Small biz would pay more for simpler tax

John Rose

Channel Islands

Let's be provocative. I do not understand why the Channel Islands are allowed to have zero/exempt from VAT for businesses domiciled there. Surely, either the Channel Islands are part of Great Britain or they're not. If they are part of Great Britain then they should have the same tax system as the other components of Great Britain. If they're not, then they should be regarded as non-EU countries.

Stealing credit card details via NFC is easy/pointless

John Rose

ATMs using magstripe on chip & pin cards

Is it possible to obtain a list of ATMs which allow using magstripe on chip & pin cards? BTW I have found that approximately half the ATMS in central Wolverhampton will not accept my Chip and Pin card after I 'cleared' the magstripe using a Neodymium (i.e. strong) magnet.

John Rose


So if a fraudster used a skimming device to read the PIN as it's keyed and its also took a copy of the magstripe's contents, then your account may be pillaged at ATMs. Why have consumer organizations not requested the banks to issue 2 cards: one with a chip & no magstripe and one (if wanted by the customer) with a magstripe?

John Rose


Reading the Passthrough message made me wonder about existing chip & pin debit/credit cards (i.e. the standard ones used at ATMs etc). Am I correct in thinking that the magnetic stripe holds the PIN (as well as the bank account number) in a standard position on the tracks? Thus, a fraudster can work out the PIN? And that the card can therefore have its magnetic stripe contents copied onto a new card's magnetic stripe with the result that an ATM will accept the bogus card and give out money to the fraudster? If this is so, why do the banks still put a magnetic stripe on chip & pin cards?

John Rose

Further to questions about passthrough

I've just read about Skimming (on Wikipedia). And, as I understand it now, a skimming device attached to an ATM allows the card owner's PIN to be read as it is keyed by the owner and the card's magnetic stripe contents to also be read. Thus a fraudster would duplicate a card's magnetic stripe onto a a 'blank' card and the be able to extract cash from an ATM using the read PIN. I do not understand why banks still put magnetic stripes onto chip & pin cards, since the chip is very difficult to copy onto a 'blank' card. Can anybody explain why?

Jumpin' Meerkats! Ubuntu moving to daily downloads?

John Rose


In my view this is a risky step. Each time there is a release, major bugs appear on previously working apps and I have had to scurry round trying to 'fix' them. I don't upgrade to a LTS until at least a month after the release. I never use a STS as the support time is just not long enough. In summary, I wish that Canonical would go to yearly releases and use the effort currently used for STS instead for fixing bugs.

Save us from our users

John Rose


Can someone please explain to me why are password changes are needed?

Shuttleworth spears Natty Narwhal for Ubuntu 11.04

John Rose

Improving the user experience

I really don't understand Mark Shuttleworth when it is stated that he says that Canonical is concentrating on improving the user's experience. Canonical should realise that their prime market are Windows end users. Otherwise, how could someone in Canonical have thought up the idea of left hand side positioned window minimise/maximise/close buttons with the changed icons for minimise & maximise.

When bugs are reported on Launchpad, there is often no proper response (often there is isn't one at all except for agreeing that it's a valid bug) : there should be an indication of when the bug will be fixed & released into the standard repositories as opposed to some developer gobbledygook. It seems to me that Launchpad (for Ubuntu) is trying to do 2 conflicting jobs: reporting bugs (mainly from end users) and intra-developer communication.

Ubuntu is acquiring a bad reputation for ignoring users: is it trying to compete with MS for the title of being the most user unfriendly software provider? I suggest that Ubuntu should publicise (on their web site) the bug fixes incorporated into the standard repository for the latest LTS release. It might also be a good idea to scrap STS releases and concentrate resources on bug fixing.

SAP Q2 sales up 12% despite gloomy Euro market

John Rose

SAP is for saps

The basic reason why SAP sells so well is that the people who buy it never use it. It's user unfriendly and is a relic of 20+ years ago systems: my previous employer used to send users on 20+ day courses in order to learn how to use it.

Whatever happened to the email app?

John Rose


This is not a plug. However, I think that the article should have mentioned Evolution, both for & against.

Which is the best Linux for laptops?

John Rose

gos Rocket

Have you tried gos?

BTW what wireless card/dongle are you using? I believe that you get different power consumption with Linux driver rather than ndiswrapper using Windows wrapper.

I don't find Ubuntu awash with useless software. In fact I've downloaded lots of extra software e.g. Google Earth, ms fonts, codecs drivers, Scribus, gPaint, Rosegarden.



BT slams bandwidth brakes on all subscribers

John Rose

BT & TalkTalk

At home we have a BT business connection and a TalkTalk home connection. Both are often equally slow, usually after 4pm, for email & web browsing. We do not use bit torrent and never download films/dvds/music. Can anyone tell me why we this is? BT's status phone service never shows problems in our area. Additionally, there are occasional problems with sending/receiving mail due to BT's pop3 & smtp servers.

Wal-Mart stores drop cheap-as-chips Linux PC

John Rose

Some points

I wholeheartedly agree with Morely Dotes points.

I don't expect my wife to install an OS. I install Ubuntu Linux only because it has been difficult to buy a PC pre-installed with a Linux distro. I wouldn't expect my wife to install any variant of Windows. However, when I've previously bought PCs with Windows pre-installed, I've always had to clear the HD & install again, due to the bloatware & poor configuration done by the PC 'manufacturer'. I don't know if the same applies to Dells pre-installed with Ubuntu.

I don't run servers. My wife uses a desktop with Ubuntu Gutsy and there have been very few problems with it. She also has a laptop with Windows XP (because I haven't got round to putting Ubuntu on it) and there are frequent problems with it. The latest was that it suddenly refused to print to a networked printer. I ended up 'removing' the printer & installing it. The Microsft knowledgebase was of no help.

Often, people make valid criticisms of the documentation in Linux distributions. However, the distribution companies need to make money. As the software is normally free, the usual way to do this is via selling training & manuals. However, people are often unwilling to buy these.

Users often say that a particular Windows application (e.g. Photoshop) is not available in Linux. However, they seem to be unwilling to learn a free of charge application (e.g. GIMP) or criticise it as not having some of the facilities of the Windows application.

Both the above characteristics really stem from many people wanting to have something for nothing without being willing to put in some extra effort themselves. I suspect that this is one of the main reasons why Linux distros will never wrest the mass market from Microsoft.

John Rose

To Anonymous Coward

You have an apt name. Your message gives the impression that you're part of the Microsoft publicity machine.

Your method of installing a printer is way out of date. On the distributions I currently use it's done by GUI (rather than the command line) and it's as easy as Microsoft's. I'm not going to go into the many superiorities of Linux over Windows.

I use Linux at home and have very few problems with it. I use Windows at work and am frequently suffering with it. Anyone with an open mind soon realises the superiority of a modern Linux distribution over Windows + Office etc.


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