* Posts by andy

23 publicly visible posts • joined 25 Jul 2008

Carphone Warehouse buys Tiscali UK



I got a broadband connection from Pipex several years ago which I still have.

Everything (letters, emails) come through marked Pipex but apparently they were taken over by Tiscali some time ago? If you go to Pipex's website, you can be classified as an existing Pipex customer from a company called Pipex, but you can't create a new account because the company has been taken over.

What's the deal with this - does anyone know? I'm not joking, I seriously don't know.

When I phoned their customer support (to get my "free" upgrade from 2Gb/month to a whole 10Gb?!) their customer support didn't seem to be able to shed much light on it.

Dell launches well 'ard laptop


@sooty, Tom Cook and others

You've totally missed the point, in the same way so many other Reg readers do (ooh it's expensive, so it's no good).

This is specialist equipment. Just because you can buy one online doesn't mean it's aimed at the average home user or university student! The argument about having multiple machines is ridiculous - these machines are designed for situations where you don't have time to fanny around with duplicating disks and setting up other machines with the same settings. As al has said, it's for use in areas where there is a high likelihood of damage which a "standard" machine wouldn't tolerate.

It's a bit disapponting at how people on this site only look at the price of something before commenting.

Metallica's Lars Ulrich illegally downloads own album

Paris Hilton

what "right"?

"if there is anybody that has a right to download ‘Death Magnetic’ for free, it’s me.”

Nope, I'm afraid not. This is a classic representation of why people like Lars shouldn't be able to make court cases out of this kind of thing. He doesn't understand that:

1. His "stealing music" argument goes out of the window, because he is still "stealing" it from his other bandmates, production team, and anyone else who was owed money as a result of purchasing it in a shop.

2. If he is downloading it via P2P, he is also (probably) sharing it and allowing other people to get it.

Reminds me of when the Red Hot Chili Peppers released their last album and Flea got all arsey about it, but later admitted he would have downloaded it too if only he "knew how". Sad.

Paris - because this is as dumb as... well you know the rest.

ITV to sell Friends Reunited, axe 600 jobs

Gates Horns

Friends Reunited?

One of the most redundant sites on the entire Interweb since Facebook et al came along.

They only realised charging people to get in touch with people they hadn't bothered to keep in touch with from school didn't work... not that long ago.

Jobs market bleak for grads as banking weakens


nowhere near as bad as the media are making out

I was made redundant from a decent programming position recently. I had about 8 calls from Monster after they found my CV and within 3 weeks had a new, excellent job (better than my last). From what I've seen, if you're prepared to look around and adapt your skills you can get on quite easily.

@Lionel: Although I did go to uni, I totally agree with you that things are NO WAY near as bad as some people (i.e. the media) are making out.

Hacking the Apple TV


So many reasons why it'll always be just a hobby

If you didn't have to bother with the patchstick, this thing could have sold as well as an ipod. There are just too many better alternatives to the Apple TV, especially given it's price!

You can buy a netbook which will play any format under the sun - with VLC for instance - and it'll sit comfortably next to your TV.

I've never met a single person (in the UK) who owns one of these and I can see why. If it were about half the price I'd have already bought one. I'm certainly no Apple hater, but if you're going to charge this much for stuff, at least make sure it plays popular file formats out of the box. But then of course that wouldn't tie people to quicktime/itunes, so that's never going to happen. A bit frustrating to say the least!

Doner kebabs: Death wrapped in pitta bread

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mmm kebab

I recently bought a donner after a heavy night, had a few bites and then left it festering in my kitchen until the morning. When I looked at it in the morning I thought to myself, WHY OH WHY WOULD I WANT TO EAT THAT?!

What the article doesn't mention is that people who regularly buy them after a night on the piss do so because of dehydration which is mistaken for hunger. Maybe better with a glass of water, but where's the fun in that? :)

US woman shot by cast iron stove


Death penalty for stove?

If she hadn't survived would the stove have been given the death penalty?

Apple to detail latest laptops on 14 October

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Who made up those prices?!

I will be amazed if they start at £474.

A quick look at the Apple UK store:

£699 for the "old" Macbook up to £2,168.99 for a top-end Macbook Pro, £199 a set top box which doesn't really do as much as it should, £399 for a 20" monitor.

Having said that in these times they may have to reduce their prices a little. I will certainly be buying one as I'm due a new laptop and if they really do start at the suggested price then I might add a few extras!

Google takes aim at drunken messaging


Default settings

The default setting of it stopping working at 4am will need changing for most people in the UK, as this is about the time I normally come home on a Saturday/Sunday morning. I'd say it needs to work until at least lunchtime the following day.

Great idea though. Would certainly stop a few people getting into trouble.

Windows Update to trumpet Vista Capable debacle?


Difference between capable and ready

There is a big difference between "capable" and "ready".

Here's an analogy: my TV has a "HD Ready" sticker on the front of it, but it's never shown anything in HD. Of course I knew it wouldn't when I bought it because I don't have any HD sources to connect to it. However, if I were to connect a _totally separate_ HD device to it then it should in theory show a HD picture without having to do anything to the TV itself.

In my mind anything which says "Vista ready" means it is ready to run Vista as-is, without making any modifications at all to the hardware. OTOH "Vista capable" means it is _capable_ of running Vista (i.e. it can boot Vista and it can be used) but not necessarily _ready_ to run it with all the extra features (e.g. Aero) or with any great level of performance.

Ballmer backs away from 'Vista Capable' legal row


get your chair out

"I was not involved..."

And yet you're now the highest up in the company. Funny how that works.

I'm sure if someone comes to question him directly he'll advise them to "take a chair".

Secret Service camera bought on eBay


Honesty is the way forward!

Well this is a great example of how NOT to get the public to report suspicious findings!

I'm struggling to begin to find anything right about this story:

- Selling secret service equipment on ebay?

- Not checking said equipment for data before selling it?

- Innocent man gets ridiculed, treated like a criminal and has his equipment "seized", for the terrible "crime" of trying to be helpful.

He should get some compensation, but won't.

Get ready for the coming data centre crunch


Why do you need SO much power??

Perhaps this issue is because so many people run servers that have capacity far beyond what they need. Add in the "it must run in minus temperatures or it will overheat omg!" mentality and that's the power consumption already going through the roof.

I once read about a company that were converting small, lower power equipment - which included an AppleTV - into web servers, because of their reduced power consumption and low heat output. But if you try and persuade people to run their website on a set top box, I bet most of them would tell you where to go.

UK faces long wait for faster number porting


It would be nice if...

... it was possible to do a similar thing with domain names and hosting. You buy a domain name (phone number) from a registrar, and it's yours for as long as you renew it. You can map the domain (number) to any hosting (network provider) of your choosing.

But there are loads of reasons why I guess that's not practical.

Microsoft dumps hilarious comedy duo


part of a bigger plan?

I don't know if they were serious with this ad or not, but it's certainly got people talking. Not just here, the story's also heavily commented on several other sites.

If you make an ad which is one extreme (really great or really crap) then it gets people talking about THE COMPANY behind it. It doesn't matter what product they're trying to promote. MS have openly admitted that Vista didn't turn out the way they expected, I guess this might be to try and keep the focus on them... "we're still here and there's more to come". The way they dumped this ad will keep them in focus if people keep going to Youtube (or wherever) to see "that" MS advert. I might be completely wrong though!

Google releases open source browser


Yes please

It all sounds good and hopefully it will be. Shows Google's typical thinking outside the box - let's not just release something out there with a few new features, let's start from scratch based around people's needs NOW as opposed to what might have been acceptable a few years ago.

The comic strip is a bit long but the idea of running tabs as separate processes sounds like a bloody good idea and something that should have been done a long time ago. (Although I read elsewhere that IE8 might do this aswell? Does anybody know?)

UK.gov to spend hundreds of millions on snooping silo


NINE figure cost??

I'm sorry but how can anyone justify spending a NINE FIGURE sum on this kind of system?

Even if we ignore where that money is going to come from, shouldn't this be of some huge benefit to society if so many resources are being thrown at it? I can think of several areas where theres a greater need for investment.

Apple tops customer satisfaction poll as rivals' ratings slide


Apple customer support

This doesn't surprise me. I'm a die hard Windows user and have been for over 15 years. The only Apple product I own is an iPod Nano, but recently I had some issues with it so I emailed Apple tech support (UK). One email later (which arrived the same day!) and everything was sorted out. A far cry from numerous other companies I've dealt with who've taken weeks (sometimes over a month) with emails going back and forward to resolve anything.

I'm sure there are people who have had different experiences, but when you have a good experience of customer service you remember it, and it's been enough for me to consider buying a computer from them since, despite being a long time Windows user.

Road Pricing 2.0 is two years away



No need to worry - this is a British Government I.T. project, so they'll probably never complete it on time, within the budget or have anything remotely capable of doing whatever it was they were originally thinking of.

U2 tracks disappear from YouTube

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Bet they were good quality

"... blasting from a window .... recorded them on a mobile phone and later put them online.

Distance + phone + compression: Oh, the quality!

Did anyone actually hear these? Could be another one of Bono's "let's all have a go at something" campaigns.

NetBeans 6.5 beta promises PHP simplicity

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keeping ahead of the times?!

"PHP users now get syntax highlighting, code completion, code generators, debugging and database wizards"

In other words, features which have been available in many other editors for a good number of years now! I recently started using Activestate Komodo for PHP development and have had no reason to switch back to anything I was using previously (e.g. Code View in Dreamweaver... no thanks!).

Microsoft crowbars Live Search into Facebook


Will they ever learn?

When will MS wake up and realise that they don't know the first thing about making a decent search system?

Even Bill Gates commented on how crap the search system on their own website was: http://www.boingboing.net/2008/06/25/bill-gates-2003-flam.html

Ok this was a while ago, but nothing's really improved from them. Tip: if you can't make a search engine that works for a single domain, what hope do you have in making one that works for the entire web?