* Posts by N1AK

148 publicly visible posts • joined 10 Apr 2007


Microsoft conjures imaginary 'Apple Tax'


Why Pander

"Anything which puts stupid people off buying a Mac gets the thumbs up from me. The last thing the Mac platform needs is to have to pander to stupid."

Why would they pander? Job's has already gotten so good at getting the stupid to want what he tells them to.

BBC Click paid cybercrooks to buy botnet


Before anyone uses "The real hustle defence"

In earlier discussions, a lot of uninformed people have spoken about how tricks used in shows like "The Real Hustle" work the same way and are useful for informing the public. What they ignore is:

"The participants featured in The Real Hustle have either been set up by their family and friends or believe that they are participating in another television programme. After they have been hustled for real any monies or property taken during the hustle are returned to them and their consent for the item to be broadcast is obtained so that viewers can avoid being ripped off by the same scam."

There are numerous issues with the behavior of the BBC in how it handled this issue, relating to Vigilantism and funding crime and I covered these on my own site: http://john-graham.me.uk/?p=61

Concerted Linux-netbook effort needed to beat Microsoft



"But people want XP anyway, so they are getting it."

You are right, but they are getting it at a massively discounted price which at least to me seems like Linux is providing a big benefit by competing. Netbooks aside from being truely portable PCs also lowered bottom end of the laptop price range. In the UK I can pick up a functional netbook for £100 refurbished and a perfectly adequate machine for under £200, at this price range Microsoft has to price Windows and Office incredibly low to compete.

Microsoft is a massive company, entrenched as the dominant player in a market that is adverse to change. There isn't going to be a sudden shift from Windows, but if Microsoft doesn't improve massively it will see its margins slashed over the next couple of years and without that steady income it will become harder for it to maintain its position by subsidizing.

Royal Mail disses runaway post van man


Sod him

"However, when Moore subsequently wrote to Royal Mail to see if he was "entitled to a reward or compensation", the company replied to his solicitors"

Where exactly did they find out who his Solicitors were? Oh wait, let me guess... He wouldn't perchance have enlisted a solicitor to write this letter for him? If a company receives a letter from someone's legal representatives requesting payment from them what do you expect them to do? If they admit guilt they are basically setting themselves up to write a blank cheque for treatment. The guy wasn't looking for a thank you letter, he wanted cash and the Royal Mail didn't want to give it to him.

Facebook nemesis sues Google (and wins)


@Tony Paulazzo

"or not being able to watch BBC online because you're not in the UK"

As the BBC is paid for entirely by the British government and license payers, I'm sure we'd be happy to offer the US free access when we can freely make use their aircraft carrier fleets... Oh wait, you mean we should treat things that use the internet completely differently than everything else? Yeah, I can see that working.

Bill Gates bans progeny from iPhone Nation


Xbox RRoD

My 360 is 2 years old and works fine, I know over a dozen who haven't returned 360s because of RRoD. I know two people who have, one broke it themselves then intentionally made it RRoD to get it replaced and the other used the thing on a nice deep carpet. Now anecdotal evidence doesn't prove a whole hell of a lot but I really don't think failure rates are near what some people say they are.

IT admin stole students' nude Facebook pics, cops say


@David Harper

"They were posted on Facebook, for pity's sake. Only a halfwit would think that something posted on Facebook was in any way private."

Only a halfwit would equate privacy with complete security. Putting something on Facebook with the correct privacy control to limit access could (and should) be seen as private, at the same time putting something on Facebook that you don't really want to be seen is naive.

The definition of Private has to be put somewhere, and if people abusing their job to access your Facebook doesn't infringe privacy, the same would be true of them doing it to email and argueably true if they illicitly gained access to your computer.

Teen sacked for 'boring' job Facebook comment


keep mouth shut

She's been taught a valuable lesson in privacy at the beginning of her working life rather than part way through.

Is there really anyone here who thinks posting negative comments about your job online, in a place where work colleagues you evidently can't trust will see them is not a bad idea?

On first glance it does look like an excessive reaction, especially if the company actually thought she was a good employee but like many things in life there are almost certainly other factors in play.

Facial-recognition tech now used to greet hotel guests


@John Macintyre

"the door loudly saying 'welcome back mr jones' would get annoying after a while surely?"

Indeed it would, but fortunately the designers as anyone who read the article are aware, did not suggest this, instead proposing that the front desk staff might be made aware who was approaching.

Copyright cops launch MS-happy software compliance tool


@Paolo Marini

Nowhere did it say that those examples only meant MS licenses, and as the Reg article makes clear they were over paying by maintaining licenses they no longer required, number of current users is of no relevance to this. Add onto this that your calculation is about how much was unlicensed when the article was talking about them having too many licenses and your nonsense is just about complete.

Congratulations on managing to produce some FUD that even Microsoft couldn't match for sheer inaccuracy.

Microsoft's IE 8 beta adds 'special' list


Why not outsource

Microsoft could of saved themselves no end of hassle by offering someone like Opera 10% of homepage advertising revenue in return for making Opera the default windows browser. I really can't understand why Microsoft thinks making a web browser is remotely worth the effort.

Rapists should be raped, declares Jordan



If she's willing to get hit by a speeding vehicle as fair punishment for her penchant for speeding then I'll consider her views on the matter slightly more seriously, until then I'll just consider her a hypocrite who is either stupid or smart enough to act convincingly stupid.

Google AdWords: 11 herbs and spices revealed


Here we go again

Do we really have to go through the cycle of someone pointing out Googles adWords system isn't transparent, waiting a month and then doing it again forever?

I don't care if Googles adWords system is transparent, as a website owner I want to get as many interested visitors as possible for my money, as a browser I want adverts to be relevant and helpful.

If Google is showing one ad more than another they are doing it because it paid beter and/or the click through rate is better. The fact that advertisers don't understand adWords is their problem, if they can't understand it or afford the expense of understaninding don't use the service.

Google kills iPhone-optimized iGoogle


Why should they?

The question isn't why Google stopped supporting it, instead ask why they should of continued to.

With so many high-res touchscreen phones around now there is no need to design a web-ui for individual models. Adding different versions, and with them more complexity to your product just because you have in the past is poor business logic.

Retired army generals: Spend Trident money on the army


Well said JonB

"Good, even if we have the response I wouldn't want them to use it, if the missiles are inbound then it's already failed."

You exactly summed up the issue with the linked article. The first scenario is the only one that makes any sense at all. We could easily base our missiles on land, and make it part of the deal that allows America to keep Nuclear weapons in the UK that we also are allowed to do the same in the US.

I believe we should have a Nuclear arsenal and accept that any such arsenal will be in some way reliant on the US for full functionality (hell our warning system will be their NMD system). I don't however think we need to maintain a fleet of submarines for this, when we could use a cheaper land system and spend the money saved on say some aircraft carriers that will be of use in the non-nuclear wars we actually intend to fight.

Child porn in the age of teenage 'sexting'


Author's Hypocrisy

The authors makes the same kind of ignorant over-simplification as the court system in grouping actions together where they might not need to be.

As far as the author is concerned the fact that a 14 year old voluntarily sends a sexual image of themselves to a 16 year old should lead to no crime being commited. However if that 16 year old forwards it to his 18 year old friend who does not delete them image then that 18 year old friend deserves to be branded as a sex offender and put in prison for 20 years to life.

The author may contest that the above is not his true position, but it is exactly the view he expressed in his article (while also branding the 18 year old in this example as a 'monster'). Having an faked image, having an real image, taking an image of someone who permits, having an image of someone being abused and actually abusing someone should not be banded together as the same 'monsterous' offence, in the same way the example of the children in the article shouldn't be either.

As long as people choose to ignore the fact that sex offending, including that involving children is not simply a result of people being born evil they will get a justice system that achieves no justice.

Mom stole daughter's ID to shake pom-poms


@Sarah Bee

I think the point was exactly that it wouldn't matter whether he had sexual motives or not. That a male pretending to be 15 and using false ID to get into a position where he 'might' be able to do something would be enough for a lot of people to get into a frenzy.

You are right that a lot of threads are going down the 'us poor men' road at the moment though, I tend to agree with the underlying logic but don't think it has to dominate every thread with a tenious link.

US teen clocks up 14,528 text messages



"How quaint. The point of it being what exactly? Some tosser sends me an unsolicited message and I pay for the privilege? That's f***ed."

To explain the point I will use the UK's alternative system to show the flaw in the alternative.

In the UK you might have an "Orange" phone. When you send a text message to an "o2" phone, Orange have to do two things. First they must get the message to o2, second they must pay o2 to deliver the message to the recipient.

The price Orange must pay o2 is decided by o2, and even though it only costs them part of a penny they actually charge noticeably more than that. Because of this, providers need to charge customers more than they are being charged to avoid losing money, and they can't force the price down because refusing to pay the charge would mean that your Orange phone didn't work for sending messages to o2 (which looks like a flaw with your phone to customers).

The US system works much more transparently. When I choose a provider they are completely in control of how much they charge me for connecting calls and carrying messages. This means that I as a consumer am able to give my trade to the most competitive supplier. This is why in the US unlimited phone call and text packages are so cheap and much closer to 'genuinely unlimited' than the UK equivalents.

When you buy an unlimited text package from Orange they have to pay a couple of pennies every time you send to another network, so you can bet the 'unlimited' figure is probably doesn't let you cost them more than they pay.

- - -

All of the above said I would prefer the American system with one change, Suppliers should give people the ability to maintain a whitelist of numbers. If someone who is not on this whitelist texts them they should be able to charge a fee (perhaps as little as $0.002) to receive the message.

Done correctly this charge would make SMS spam extremely expensive.

Apple prices MacBook Pro battery surgery



The AC above makes a very good point regarding the battery. A easily removeable battery would still need to be replaced, the 'cost' of this integration is the cost beyond buying the battery.

Given the batteries life I don't think this is the issue people want to make it out to be. At least the complaints about not being able to carry a spare battery make some sense.

McKinnon lawyers push for UK trial



The same $MuslimNation(s) that the US sends people to when they haven't got the answer they want using methods they are allowed to within US custody. Yes, I'm sure he should feel blessed that it is the rootin' tootin' US that wants his blood.

The McKinnon case is another example of bad laws being used on bad people. He did do something extremely stupid, and illegal and he has no decent excuse for it. However the extradition treaty we have with America is the issue:

1/ If McKinnon had been an American and hacked into the UK MoDs sentence he could not be extradited.

2/ If McKinnon is extradited there is very little control over what America can do with him (they have to give assurance he will not be executed).

3/ As has been shown with issues such as Guantanamo and wiretapping what the US goverment is legally allowed to do means very little in stopping them doing the illegal.

4/ Sufficient evidence exists of mistreatment of prisoners and 'detainees' within US custody that we cannot be sure he will be treated humanely.

5/ The crime he has commited, although serious, does not appear to be anywhere near as big as the US goverment has made out. It is highly likely they intend to use him as a scapegoat for poor security and as an example, something they can get away with without much political backlash as he is not a US citizen.

Sending ANYONE to the US without checking evidence, having more information on what they will do with him and frankly without massive improvements in Americas behaviour regarding prisoner and detainee treatment is something we should not do.

Speeding Oz teen may face 'gorillas in the mist'


Not the judges fault

The judge didn't threaten him with something illegal, the judge gave him a lengthy lecture on why his current behaviour if continued would have negative consequences and in the process tried to make clear just how bad prison can be. It seemed pretty clear the judge doesn't want this boy to end up in prison, maybe his method was dubious but his intent was honourable.

Yes this kind of thing happening in jails is a massive failure of the system, and yes it should be stopped but this judge can't do it. Should the judge refuse to sentence anyone to prison time until such a time as it is 'safe' to do so?

Most people don't give a shit about prison inmates and what happens to them, they can ignore the fact that prisoners are humans and see no issue with them being treated as badly as possible. Again this is a massive problem.

BBC: Top Gear Tesla didn't run out of juice


Pretty weak excuse

Falsely implying something negative, and then trying to dodge critiscism by saying you were showing what 'might happen'. It's not like they film themselves pouring petrol in the tank at the side of the road for every normal car they test...

Bittorrent declares war on VoIP, gamers


@Martin Gregorie

Firstly JonB was indeed right, it would be great if someone could create specs for different qualities of broadband, and providers then make consumers aware of this rather than dumping 20 mostly unintelligible metrics on users.

However the email idea is dumb as hell, at 1p per email a spammer could bankrupt someone in a matter of a few minutes. Besides which it does nothing about spam email sent by an internet service which is a very large proportion of spam, and the other 90% of spam will be sent from outside of the UK and immune to the cost anyway.


@AC Piddle

"the BBC throw their crap at everyone without paying for distribution "

So you are saying BBC haven't paid for an internet connection, and are instead distrobuting there content over someone elses unprotected wifi? Or are you stupid enough to think that BT should have to pay to upload the material, and pay the people I am already paying for internet access to allow me to download it?

I want my £0.001 pence for reading your crap, if the BBC should have to pay for both ends so should idiots like you.


Why should torrents get throttled

Why should my neighbours torrents be throttled to give priority to my VoIP? We both payed for the line, surely what we choose to do with it is our own business.

ISPs in the UK and evidently in America love to give them impression they are offering blistering fast unlimited internet connections when they are providing high contention very much limited. If Broadband providers want to limit internet use, they should be upfront about it.

Juror dismissed over Facebook poll



"The unnamed woman involved can consider herself fortunate not to be held in contempt of court "

And anyone who likes the idea of Juries taking the duty seriously in future should consider this bad news. Did they check whether she spoke with the other Jurors about what her friends said? Even if she didn't she gave the defence a very real chance at having the trial collapse.

What is just as incredible is that she "didn't know which way to go", surely you either "know" someone is guilty beyond the point of reasonable doubt or you don't.

Main BBC channels to be broadcast live via web



That's pretty much what I did, we have a TV but it is only used for Games Consoles and DVDs. We have a computer but don't use it to stream TV. We even use iPlayer but that does not require a TV license.

After around 2 years of telling the Licensing company that we don't need a license someone came round to our house, I was expecting him to ask to come in (which I would of refused to as even though we have nothing to hide it doesn't give them a right to enter) but he simply asked us a few reasonable questions including whether we needed a license.

After this we have heard nothing from Licensing and have happily gone on not watching live TV.

Obviously it might be that the person who visited us was less forceful in nature than normal, but you've got absolutely nothing to fear if you aren't breaking the law, even if you refuse them entry.

Lord Ahmed faces dangerous driving charge


Need more details.

Regardless of the text message, I find it hard to imagine a set of circumstances where someone driving in a manner that could be defined as safe manages to hit a stationary vehicle at sufficient speed to kill someone.

Now it may be that it was dark with no lights, or bad conditions with no lights and this partialy explains the accident but come on, does anyone really think he was not either going dangerously fast (and I say this as someone who speeds) or paying far far too little attention.

- - -

As to saying his mother / wife sent the message. I'm not so sure, their is a risk that a decent prosecution could show the language used matches the Lord's but not that of the other passengers. Or that the content makes it obvious it was from him.

If they falsely use that defence it will not stop the Lord being prosecuted for dangerous driving (it will just decrease severity) and if they get caught someone else will get prison time as well as the Lord (who will also have lied in court under oath).

BNP membership list leaks online


@AC "Job Requirements"

It's very different to the anti-communism movement in America, certain jobs in the UK ban membership of ANY political party, that would be the equivalent of banning membership of the Communist, Democrat, Republican, Libertarian and all other parties in the US.

Personally I'm not sure it's a good idea or not but it's not even remotely close to the witch hunts.

Gov to Manchester: No new trams without road pricing


Labour Foot Shooting

These plans won't come into effect until well after the next election, if the 'no' campaign wins and Labour drops all the public transport plans for Manchester they are setting the Converservatives up with an easy vote winner in the elections.

One-eyed woman wants techno-vision


Dumbass specs

I actually think the idea of a Camera in a artificial eye is a very good one, but what she is asking for is completely pointless.

If it has an optical zoom etc then it is implausible to believe she intends for it to be controlled by anything other than a seperate device, and if she wants to be able to see what she is focusing on and where she is zooming then she will need view a screen showing the image with her good eye.

If the system was kept simple and basically just a mobile phone quality camera, possibly using the autofocus tech to 'try' and get the right things in focus then it might be of some practical use in situations where a proper digital camera would be more use.

Finally, I'm not normally one for caring about the radiation from electric devices, but does putting a wireless device inside your head (closer to brain and without the dense bone of the skull) seem that wise?

Judge says tech-addled jurors undermine justice


Worrying ignorance

The number of people who have posted here suggesting 'better alternatives' when they evidently haven't got a clue is quite worrying. When did this become 'Have Your Say' for the slightly less stupid?

@AC who posted Time for Change "All irrelevant data (and time wasting, and comments that should be stricken from the record) can be edited out".

One of the more impressively dumb ideas, who exactly decides what is relevant? It should be readily apparent to anyone in this day and age that editing can completely change the context of remarks, add in the ability to remove entire segments "Good luck with that..."

@Jaap Stoel "I'm not from a country that uses a jury system. But I wonder myself: How well can a layman judge any case?"

It is a fair and well asked question, but not the right one. The point of the jury system isn't that they are the best people to decide a case, but that it protects against decisions being 'fixed' by Goverment or some other power controlling those who decide.

@Paul Charters "DNA and other FACTUAL evidence need to be given to the jury as fact and not allowed to be discussed verbally."

You buy a can of coke, throw it in a bin and two days later someone is murdered near that spot. "The Jury is given the 'fact' that your fingerprints were found at the scene of the crime, and that you must of been there within 48 hours of the murder (bins emptied)" I bet you want the ability to discuss those facts now.

@Pete "we look things up on the 'net. The result is that patients are far better informed than earlier and can frequently tell when the doctors are talking bollocks"

Hypochondria has increased massively, especially among those who research online. The majority of Doctors in the US have admitted that they will often give patients medication which is effectively a placebo, and with a number of conditions the rate of success for the Placebo can be as high as 40%.

Using that as an example of an improvement to our Justice system is particularily strange.

- - -

@Steve "If it's simple factual information about the case - such as the height of a fence - they should be able to get that easily from the court."

I think this is a good point, certainly I think more Jury interaction within the trial may be of benefit. The risk is that they start thinking they are the investigators, when it is the job of the prosecution to come up with a case.

Webcast quango: One-third of UK teachers are creationists


What about Science Teachers specifically

I'm not to worried if a bunch of bible bashers who took timeout from a busy schedule of arts and crafts or sociology (let alone RE!) think religion should be taught in Science class.

The important questions would be:

1/ How many Science teachers do?

2/ How many Head Teachers do?

Cops collar Craigslist Thomas Crown


Better effort than most

To be fair to this guy his plan was about a hundred times smarter than most robbers could manage. Getting caught because of a vigilant (or nosey) citizen spotting something slightly related a couple of weeks earlier and bothering to tell the police was plain bad luck.

note: He, like most criminals deserves to be caught and punished, my point is merely that he applied more thought than most.

Study clears cannabis of schizophrenia rap



Why is it people defending the goverments position have to post as AC, do they realise their arguement is weak and not want to be attached to it?

"However, smoking pot doesn't really make you any more free, and such wild hyperbole just makes you look a bit of a moron."

What are you on about, please explain how the above can be true without also defending the following statements:

> Being allowed outside of a goverment facility doesn't make you anymore free

> Choosing what food you eat doesn't make you anymore free

> Not having to wear a tagging device doesn't make you anymore free

> Being allowed to reproduce doesn't make you anymore free.

Everytime you are denied the freedom to do something you 'are' a little less free, sometimes this sacrifice is worthwhile (especially where that freedom would negatively affect others).

Sarah Palin gets righteously punk'd


Don't worry AC

"with the way it looks, we are going to have a complete wanker in the white house" I don't know what polls you are looking at but there is no way McCain is going to win this one ;)

Top aero boffin: Green planes will be noisy planes


What train network are you travelling on

"Compare train travel. Size and weight aren't so important for trains, so operators can afford to give everyone a lot more leg room. The environment inside a modern high-speed train is quiet and relaxing. You get fresh air. You can look out the window and actually *see* stuff. You can go buy something to eat from the buffet car. Train travel can be a rewarding experience in itself; it's certainly not unpleasant, in the majority of cases."

Came as a bit of a shock to me, when I think of trains my thoughts go roughly:

1/ Cancellations.

2/ Delays

3/ Crap tracks

4/ Over-priced food and drinks

5/ Incredibly over-priced unless you buy advanced tickets.

Police collar kid for Wi-Fi pinching



At least you were smart enough to post as AC, even though you weren't smart enough to notice how poor your analogy was.

An insurance company has a contract with you, the terms of which would almost certainly require you to take certain actions to be able to claim payment. This is in no way related to any criminal matter or proceedings.

If your car was left unlocked it would still be a crime if someone was to steal it.

Navman S30



It's a regular feature of El Reg reviews to mark cheap products down for not including "nice to haves".

To be fair to this review, the overall score seemed to fairly reflect the product quality vs price. The TT1 and Garmin devices are both better for the price.

'U-turn' West: MI5 watching 'great' terror plot right now



You should go into politics. You get called on not recognising a book reference, and swiftly dodge admitting it by saying most other people haven't even read the book anyway.

I can practically hear Gordon Brown at PMQs when asked questions about the Government's cockups, ignoring them and saying how the Tories would of eaten Children instead.

Android comes with a kill-switch



Way to bring Hitler into a conversation about mobile phones...

I can't say I like the idea of Google reserving this ability with Carte Blanche to apply for whatever reason they see fit, how ever they have openly announced it and are massively more open than Apple who won't let you install many things without them anyway.

Looking at this practically, chances are that Google is concerned people will try and sneak Malware through their marketplace. Many people might have a false belief that because it is found via the Google service that they have to be less careful about who they trust, and Google wants an easy way to protect its reputation in this event.

I seriously doubt Google intend to act like Apple who obviously use their control of the device to limit users to software that they choose, refusing to allow software that provides functionality they don't like to be added.

Noel Edmonds defies BBC's jackbooted enforcers



There is no IT angle to this story. What is it doing here? I am removing The Register from my bookmarks. Please cancel my subscription. I am also dissatisfied with today's weather. Please make the weather the way I like it. Goodbye.

Pub toilet todger tiff ends in bloodbath



1/ The shootings were in South Africa, so the British peoples ability to defend themselves is pretty irrelevant.

2/ Given that in the UK we have around 96% less deaths per capita caused by shootings than the US I don't think we are missing the ability to defend ourselves quite as much as you think. Of course it's perfectly possible that in fact having legal gun ownership would make us Britains safer, but that would mean that America's high rate of killings with gun was caused not by number of weapons, but by American citizens being 25 times more likely to kill each other, or 25 times more likely to make someone want to kill them... which come to think of it isn't that hard to believe.

Apple slapped for dodgy ads


Apple Story Overload

Of the top 18 articles on the site at the moment (by order on screen) 6 are Apple related. I know your a little less blinded by Apple's supposed wonder than most tech sites so at least they aren't all blind fanboyism, but I really don't have that much interest in Apple products.

I hope I'm not the only reader of this 'tech news' site who doesn't want to know every little happening within the 'Job's reality distortion field'.

Apple goes auntie over slasher comic



Although I feel a little sorry for the producers of Murderdrome it can't hurt to have regular reminders of why locking yourself into Apple means trusting them to make decisions for you.

(disclaimer: not that locking yourself into many companies is a risk, Apple just seems to be able to exercise more control than most other companies and somehow the buyers see it as a selling point...)

No wireless sex please, we're American


@Slice by slice

Beyond the issue of whether porn should actually be filtered or not there is the fact that any filtering is a step towards more filtering.

Many people accept that some filtering of what they seem as extreme material (child porn) is ok, and although I am not 100% convinced I atleast concede that it would be hard to say "we already filter child porn so filtering potentially unlicensed media is no different".

Once something is filtered for some illegal material (Child Porn) and some social unacceptable material (Porn/Violence/swearing) it is much easier to try and extend this to cover other material.

Apple pulls posted pulled iPhone modem app



"Apple has given iPhone owners the real internet, on an unlimited data contract in an unmatched package. That's what's on offer. It's not offered as a cellular modem contract."

You are of course correct that it isn't sold or intended for use as a Modem. Why you had to stick some rabid fanboyism on the front though I had no idea. The iPhone has plenty of strengths, making up new ones or pretending it is the second coming just makes you look like an ass.

Spammers, Cuil, and the rescue from planet Google


Anti-Trust how

What I would love to know is if Google become so dominant the goverment feels it has to become involved in limiting it, what exactly will they do.

In the case of Microsoft they limited their ability to combine products, and in some cases to force computer manufacturers to only sell windows by offering sizeable price discounts. They have also asked that they make information available to link other systems in with their own.

Exactly what do you do about Google? Googles practices, regardless of any other faults haven't been anti-competitive.

Google aren't offering people better page rank because they use Google Adware etc, they don't require you to use Google Desktop to use their search and they aren't forcing sites like Scroogle that are of no direct benefit to their bottom line to close.

My Google homepage shows my AIM email, my Facebook news and my Flikr photos. I also have it setup to show my Google Docs and Google Reader feeds. I can publish apps, and choose apps freely.

I'm not trying to say Google are perfect, or even nearly so, but short of intentionally nerfing Googles services for the sake of it, their is not much the goverment can do to stop people choosing it.

Apple confesses MobileMe vanishing contact bug


@AC Fanboy

You post in defence of Apple, and decided to AC for what reason? Because the best defence you could manage was pretty damn poor? or some other reason?

I'm looking at getting a new iPhone 3G (having never bought anything made by Apple). Because despite a couple of stupid flaws (No Voice Dialling!?) it does a lot of things very well and is enjoyable to use.

The same attention that is making the iPhones flaws news, is the attention that makes the iPhone news. Only an Apple fan boy would seriously suggest that 'fair' news coverage would be to talk about all the good things and ignore any flaws (and then talk about how fantastic Apples new features are when they add things that the fan boys have been saying aren't needed for years, mighty mouse anyone).

Hell, one of the biggest reasons why I haven't bought any Apple products, is exactly because of a desire not to appear similiar to the portion of Apple users who'd gulp down anything Steve decides to throw them as though it's the nectar of the gods.

Police told: Delete old criminal records


@Richard Harris

1/ Why should criminal records have a shelf life but DNA be kept forever, surely previous convictions for similiar crimes are a valueable tool in building up evidence beyond reasonable doubt?

(I agree with you on this but can't see why you want to treat DNA and records differently).

"If someone is pulled over for drink driving and it is subsequently found that this person is a mass rapist, then I'd call that a result. If a body is identified using the DNA database then that's also a result."

I disagree with long term storage of DNA, and what I can never understand is why people who aren't are happy for criminals DNA to be stored but not their own. Surely if we DNA sample everyone it'd catch more criminals.

Personally I find the mindset that criminals should be permanently relegated to a lower class of society quite sad, and doubt very much that permanent stigmatisation has a beneficial effect.

Even ignoring this issue DNA is not a cover all solution, if you have already have means and motive then DNA is a good deal clincher. Pulling in everyone whos DNA happens to be sufficiently similiar to a sample at a crime scene is not good policing or beneficial overall.