* Posts by Mark Greenwood

44 posts • joined 19 Sep 2008

Android respawn horror: Hacker says hackers' phones hacked

Mark Greenwood


All the things you describe happening are normal behaviour on my Android handset since new. I've never had a less reliable phone in my life.

Steven Moffat fumes over Doctor Who plot leak

Mark Greenwood

The first two episodes had a plot?

Must've missed that.

Ubuntu cloud chief beats CTO to exit door

Mark Greenwood

They're looking for a new COO?

I'll do it. By the looks of the current release the job description is "sit around and pick your nose". For that kind of salary I'll eat my own bogies. So long as I can work from home.

Natty Narwahl: Ubuntu marine mammal not fully evolved

Mark Greenwood

Not just Ubuntu

As the author says, the whole thing is horribly reminiscent of the KDE4 debacle. But to be fair it wasn't just (K)ubuntu that made that mistake. I was a Mandriva user at the time and their initial KDE4 offering was, if anything, worse than Canonical's. It made me switch temporarily to Ubuntu before finally switching to Kubuntu about a year later when KDE4 started to work. A bit. It's also probably worth pointing out that a great many of the KDE developers were very unhappy about what they saw as unfinished software being put into a mainstream release. This last point would not seem to apply to Unity.

The whole thing is startingly reminiscent of my entire career of 4 jobs at various software companies for whom releasing the thing on the date they said they'd release it was much more important than actually making the thing work. All those companies have since ceased trading. Makes you appreciate the Debian approach. Or, for that matter, the Microsoft approach.

Penguin in the picture: top video editors for Linux fans

Mark Greenwood

Got to agree there

I'm a "linux fan" and I have to agree with that. Some years ago I managed to make Adobe Premiere (on Windows) do everything I needed without recourse to the manual or online training. I still haven't managed to even get Cinelerra to open my source material. The UI doesn't just *look* horrible, it also doesn't work in any kind of intuitive manner. "Lots of features" does not equate to "Powerful" if the average guy can't figure out how any of it works.

Apple antenna guru 'warned Steve Jobs' over Judas Phone

Mark Greenwood

I'm a rightie...

..and I always hold the phone in my left hand. The reason being that I need my right hand to operate the buttons on the phone. Dialling with my left hand just doesn't work for me. So once the phone's in my left hand, that's where it stays.

I'm actually surprised to discover that right-handed people would hold the phone in their right hand. I was looking for an analogy, and I failed to find one but I did think of public phone boxes (remember them?) which seem to be designed so that it's more obvious to hold the receiver in your left hand and dial with the right. So holding the phone in your left hand would appear, historically speaking, to be the norm. I think Jobs has a problem with normality.

Pictures of Ubuntu: Linux's best photo shots at Windows and Mac

Mark Greenwood

It's not about principles

For the record, I agree with your principle of using GPL wherever possible. It's something I try to adhere to myself. But the creative process involved in this kind of photo editing requires small adjustments, made incrementally - at least for me it does - adjust,look,adjust,look, repeat until happy. If every adjustment takes 60 seconds or more I lose the flow. I need the preview to keep up with my slider adjustments - that way I can see what it's doing and more importantly judge exactly when it's done enough. It's not that I think Lightroom is "the only way to go", it's just that I find the GPL alternatives simply don't allow me to do the job I need to do.

All that said, following this article I looked at RawTherapee last night. The new version looks very good, very good indeed. And it's blisteringly fast. I think I'll start using that.

Mark Greenwood


DIgikam is light years ahead of everything else on Linux, but it's still light years behind Lightroom in terms of useability. Lightroom opens my RAW images and gets the colours more or less spot on. Changes to settings are reflected in the image in a flash. Digikam opens my RAW images in about 2 minutes per image, gets the colours completely wrong, and then many settings have to be applied using a 'Try' button which takes a very long time. And that's without enabling colour management, which slows everything down even more. And where's the non-destructive editing?

That's not to say I'd rather use any of the other apps on Linux. In terms of speed Picasa is way out in front, but that laughs at my RAW files. I like Digikam - it's certainly the best photo manager for Linux. But to regard it as an alternative to Lightroom is to demonstrate that you prefer sitting in front of a computer watching progress bars to actually taking photos.

First MeeGo Linux needs love and scrub up

Mark Greenwood

The title is required

Complete lack of support for anything but Nokia 3G modems is its biggest failing. And seeing as the current Linux kernel happily supports a huge range of 3G modems, someone (at Nokia..) must have made a decision to actively remove support. Ho-Hum. Back to Ubuntu for me.

Jobs tells iPhone users to get a grip

Mark Greenwood
Jobs Horns

Judging from that

It's not just left-handers wo'll be affected. I'm right handed which means I always hold the phone in my left hand (just like you do in the video) because I use my right hand to dial numbers with. I don't then transfer it to my right hand just to have a conversation. Am I just wierd? Glad I didn't buy one of these things anyway, it's hard enough getting a signal where I live as it is...

Amazon Kindle flunked by college students

Mark Greenwood

Reference books

Have none of you people heard of Google?

Canonical explains Ubuntu unfree video choice

Mark Greenwood

Am I missing something?

I've been encoding movies to H.264 on Linux for years. Mind you I think they call it X.264 but it still plays fine in Quicktime, which sees it as H.264. What do Ubuntu users gain from this?

Lucid Lynx fights 'major' X-Server memory leak

Mark Greenwood

"but why stay logged in for all that time?"

For the real geeks, logging out is a sin. Rebooting is heresy. Repeat after me: "It Is Linux And It Does Not Ever Need Restarting.."

Google Chrome OS to route print jobs around planet

Mark Greenwood


Anybody remember the days when Spammers used to use Fax machines? Now they can use your printer and spam you in Full Colour! I do not welcome our new 1200dpi Overlords.

Opera alerts EU to hidden Windows browser-ballot

Mark Greenwood

Conspiracy Theorists Everywhere

"Microsoft can claim "Golly gee, we didn't notice" but COME ON -- this is what happens on a fresh install, I'm sure somebody there tested this."

Yes I'm sure somebody did. But I'm also sure it was some bored tech guy in a lab, listening to Korn on his Zune, who knew exactly what he was doing and didn't think the configuration screens for IE were confusing, because he sees them 10 times a week and can click through them in 20 seconds. He wouldn't have seen it as any kind of a problem.

The people making the statements about "Golly gee, we didn't notice" are not the same people who actually use the stuff. It's therefore very hard to say that the obfuscation is intentional. Stupid and typically Microsoft yes, but you give them too much credit if you think they are actually clever enough to be so devious.

Dadaist user manuals - a call for submissions

Mark Greenwood

Top of the Whops

Has nobody there ever whopped a USB cable in to the socket? Or whopped a cd in the drive? Or even whopped a curry into the microwave? Where I come from (Hertfordshire) that's just normal slang. I reckon the guy who wrote the manual has spent some time working with, or being educated alongside, UK techno-geeks. Until today though, I wasn't sure of the spelling.

Software engineer rated best job of 2010 (almost)

Mark Greenwood

Save us from numpties like these

"what truly helped the position of software engineer stand was the outlook on hiring"

The worst jobs are always the easiest to get.

"and for some people the worst thing they can imagine is being sat at a desk in a Dilbert like "pod""


The best job is the one that makes you want to get up in the morning, not the one that seems cushy based on some half-arsed badly thought out subjective nonsense-o-meter but which destroys your sense of self-worth until all you can do is sit helplessly behind a desk wondering where your life went to.

I really hope school leavers don't read this type of shite. I did. Look what it did to me.

Samsung shows off e-book readers you can doodle on

Mark Greenwood

One born every minute

So the cheap one costs the same as about 50 books*. And I have to pay to download the books. And I can't read it if if there's bright sunshine on the screen. And it has batteries which will go flat. And I can't buy a new book if I'm somewhere with no internet connection. In what way is this useful?

*or 500 books bought from a charity shop

Asus said to be making gadget inspired by gadget Apple is said to be making

Mark Greenwood

That's such a great headline

Non existent thing based on other non-existent thing might turn out to be similar.

2009's Top Set-top Media Players

Mark Greenwood

PS3 - Pah

All those using their PS3s, have you checked your electricity bill recently? I was using mine for a while but it sucks about 400W and makes a hell of a noise into the bargain. When I'm swimming up the high street in 10 years time, it'll be you who I blame :P

Mozilla lights fire under Thunderbird

Mark Greenwood


Also in Thunderbird 3 is the ability, borrowed from Apple, to aggregate special folders across accounts so you can have one inbox that sees all your other email inboxes.

Erm, hang on. I have 3 mailboxes with my ISP. Therefore 3 inboxes. When I download my mail to my computer, all the mails appear in the same local inbox. With Thunderbird 2. And KMail, come to that. What is new about 'aggregate' thing then?

Fanbois howl over data-munching Snow Leopard bug

Mark Greenwood

For gawd's sake.

I knew the fanbois/antifanbois would have "fun" with this one.

Granted, I'd be cheesed off if I did an upgrade and it wiped my data but blimey, it happens. Sometimes it happens even without an upgrade. Even my Granny knows not to attempt upgrades without backing up first.

80 quid for a 1 TB external drive. Fire up TimeMachine, which is backup done so properly that even my Dad can use it (and he does literally struggle to send text messages), and you need never suffer lost data again. It doesn't take any time, it just happens in the background. It's bloody marvellous. Apple give them the tools to help them recover if stuff like this does happen, and then they complain anyway. Windows users have an excuse, they have to pay for backup software or do it manually. Apple users cannot be excused such foolishness.

Not a fanboi by the way, just someone with common sense.

Ubuntu man finds metalove in Debian attacks

Mark Greenwood
Gates Horns


"trying to establish commonalty that will lead to better collaboration and co-ordination and strengthen the overall meta cadence."

If it sounds like Microsoft, it probably is Microsoft. He's been in too many conversations with Barmy Ballmer and the bullshit has leaked in and infected his brain.

I used to think Shuttleworth had something, but anybody who talks like that is a twat.

Euro project to arrest us for what they think we will do

Mark Greenwood
Big Brother

Holy Minority Report, Batman

"...recognition of abnormal behaviour..."

Abnormal by what definition, exactly?

Screw this, I'm off to live in a cave and eat moss. Oh wait, that's a bit abnormal isn't it... I'm scared now.

Orange prices up LG 3G watchphone for UK

Mark Greenwood

Battery charging

"I remember reading somewhere that the battery life is around 3.5 hours"

All they need to do is incorporate one of those devices that allow you to charge the battery by shaking your wrist up and down. It would then be ideal for the type of people that would own one...

Exploding iPhone injures French teen

Mark Greenwood


"similar things happen if you dent them bad enough to perforate the container"

Nonsense. I've spent hours shooting LiPo batteries with air rifles, poking them with knives, throwing them around etc just to see if they'd burn (I was worried about my house insurance, see*). I've never managed to get any smoke out of one yet. I have however, managed to blow a hole in a concrete floor by messing around with an old Ni-Cd battery (you know, the ones that LiPos replaced that everyone said were completely safe).

You're right about the overcharging though. Also overdischarging can do this too. The iPod/Phone software will be responsible for monitoring this and preventing it from happening.

But I wonder how many of these exploding devices have been charged up using dodgy bits of wire they found in a cupboard?

*and I'm a pyromaniac

To the Moon - with extreme engineering

Mark Greenwood

Idiot conspiracy theorists

"Can Hubble's cameras focus on anything that close"

No, but Patrick Moore's telescope in his garden can. He's got pictures somewhere.... bloody conspiracy idiots.

Anyway... Amen to article. If the Apollo program had been run by the numpties who manage me it'd never have got off the ground (pun intended). Overloaded with management theories and not permitted to do *anything* without a "business case", our ability to invent and innovate is stifled to the point of non-existence. All this textbook management crap is really good at is ensuring a nice consistent level of mediocrity that bean counters can analyze. Anything innovative actually scares them... we're going backwards.. Douglas Adams had it right with his spaceship load of telephone sanitisers.

Mobile Broadband just not fast enough

Mark Greenwood

Chris 211

"were as WiFi, any kind of radio network connection today is half duplex because its a shared medium"

Mobile data has been full duplex since GPRS.

iPhone v Pre - the celebrity smartphone deathmatch

Mark Greenwood


Surely the keyboard thing trumps everything? I've tried the Pre; seeing as you have to do most things using the keyboard, and using the keyboard is akin to hammering pinheads with a sledgehammer, I really don't care what it can do because making it do them is excruciating.

The iPhone on the other hand, as someone has already commented, may have a nice useable keyboard but you can't see what you're typing when you're using it.

They're both shite.

I'll stick with my ancient LG with its keys so big an arthritic elephant could dial numbers. That's what I call a useable UI.

Bloke uses nail clippers to go roundhead

Mark Greenwood


"This bloke is clearly either barking mad or on a serious cocktail of reality altering pharmaceuticals."

He's from Stevenage.

(Works better if you say it in a Sybill Fawlty voice).

Apple MacBook Pro 15in June 2009 release

Mark Greenwood

How Much ?!?!

I mean, come on, HOW MUCH?

Girls Aloud net obscenity case falls at first hurdle

Mark Greenwood



Do you write for the Daily Mail? I take it you haven't read the story, so I'm confused as to why you're so upset about it. Do you know the author personally? Are you so sure of what his motives were that you feel qualified to judge him? I read novels on a weekly basis and some of them contain scenes of rape, torture, murder, prostitution, and other things which you no doubt would regard as prurient filth of the highest order. I just regard it as fiction. Look the word up, you might learn something.

This particular story, based on the description given here, bears more than a passing resemblance to a plotline in a novel I recently finished, in which a girl group is kidnapped, tortured, and murdered in quite foul ways. It was pretty horrifying, but then, that was the idea. Fiction, you see... F-I-C-T-I-O-N. I won't tell you which novel or who it was by because I rather like the guy and I don't want to set a bunch of twats like you on his case.

Transformers helmsman demolishes English language

Mark Greenwood

It doesn't need grammae correction..

It needs translation from Whiny Spolied Egomanic into English.


"I'm sure the Yahoo downloads of the trailer are far lower than last movie--I would of got something saying how we broke download records like last time."

My last movie was SO GOOD we broke RECORDS! YEAH! YEAH! I didn't get an email this time, so it's YOUR FAULT, since I am obviously a genius. Sort it out or my Dad will beat you up.


"I still run into so many people even this weekend with kids that ask 'is that movie coming out this year?'"

The PEOPLE want my movies and your are DENYING the people you fuckers. They LOVE ME, they LOVE MY MOVIES. YEAH! I AM A GENIUS! please love my movies, I'm so unhappy....

People just not that into Blu-ray

Mark Greenwood

HD is better?

"Indeed, how many are watching SD but think they're watching HD because the TV is an HDTV?"

According to quick, unscientific, straw poll in my office, about 75% of them.

I had HDTV via Freesat for a day, as I got free installation with my HD TV (which I bought because my old one broke). After an hour or two I realised that being able to see the individual hairs on Bruce Forsyth's chin was not an improvement and certainly didn't merit having a carbuncle mounted on my garage. I took it down again.

The popularity of YouTube and downloads should have made it abundantly clear that the vast majority of the world give not one hoot for picture quality. What they want is stuff that's convenient and cheap. Blu-Ray is neither of these things. Even those people (myself included) who do regard it as important don't generally find HD pictures worth the effort.

iPod saves lightning-strike teen

Mark Greenwood


Erm, the fact that if she hadn't been wearing a 2 foot length of conductive wire in a thunderstorm she probably wouldn't have been struck at all seems to have escaped everybody but me. Am I missing something?

Microsoft's Windows 7 price gamble opens door to Linux

Mark Greenwood

@Anonymous Coward

"The more "locked down" UI would be acceptable to users of a netbook as, well, it's just a netbook and not a full PC. "

No, when it's running XP it's a full PC. When it's running some mickey-mouse cut-down Linux with a "My First Computer" interface, it's a doorstop. That's what the Linux guys don't get... people buy them as small, cheap laptops and they expect them to work as such.

Mine runs Linux with a full KDE desktop. It's a full PC. That's why I bought it.

Larry Ellison relives reveals network computer netbook dream

Mark Greenwood
Dead Vulture

Takes me back

I used one of the very first JavaStations. The company I worked for bought one to see if it was worth investigating partnering to make some hardware addons for it. We went and had lunch while it booted up, and when we got back we looked at it and decided it was shite and doomed to fail. And there it sat, gathering dust until several months later when the power supply burned out and set the alarms off.

Network client computing is a fabulous idea, but the whole point of it is that it needs to be a lightweight client. The only thing lightweight about Java is the useability. What's wrong with X?

Gov 'smart meter' plans: Sky box in charge of your house

Mark Greenwood
Thumb Down

They're not listening

I've just tried the link at the end. It timed out. This bunch of self-serving cretinous control-freaks will do whatever they want anyway, so I'm not surprised they don't care to hear our views.

Profs: Facebook, Twitter users are lazy, thick, amoral

Mark Greenwood


"Though I will admit that Facebook is a high cause of procrastination, I also believe I would have gone insane from overwork should a suitable procrastination mean not be available."

What? You mean if it wasn't for Facebook you might actually have to study? Surely not. Perhaps, for forms of procrastination, you could have gone OUT and SPOKEN to people in PERSON instead of just reading about them and trying to imagine what it might be like to actually meet one.

Wallet-stretching li-ion G-Wiz e-car goes on sale

Mark Greenwood


My freind Jim is 75 years old and, because he's kept himself fit and active his whole life, thinks very little of cycling 75 miles. So, for 15 grand you get a "car" that can wheeze its way along a journey that a pensioner can do on a bike. Hmmmm. Just let me get my calculator out....

Tata launches 'public' Cisco video conferencing

Mark Greenwood

They'll never get it

Senior managers, and indeed most junior managers, will always have to travle for business meetings. After all it's important to make an impression by meeting in person and, er, er, the technology isn't reliable enough yet and, er, frequent flyer miles! Oh sorry, no, that's not a business reason, er, beer on expenses! No, wait, er, hang on, er, yes - techies! They can use the videoconference-thingy. What? $299 an hour to talk about bots and boytes or whatever it is they do? Surely they can use that electronic mail thing, or MNS Messenger, isn't it great how Marks and Spencer are getting in on the act these days? What? 11:30 already? Time for my massage I think.

US consumers flock to Mac laptops

Mark Greenwood

It's not just Apple that's benefitting from Vista

When I wondered into my local, independent PC shop looking for a new laptop, and politely asked if I could put my Mandriva Live Linux CD in it to see if it would boot - not only was I told 'yes of course' but 'you're the third person this week who's wanted to try that'. Seems that many people want new laptops but only a proportion of them want Vista. Vista's the reason I went Linux ion the first place and it would seem I'm not the only one.

To the guy above whose Dell is truly terrible - try putting Linux on it, it'll probably run at 3 times the speed and won't annoy you all time time. Some of the time yes, but at least you'll be using it...

Apple 2G iPod Touch

Mark Greenwood

Sound quality

Moaning about the sound quality of a portable music player is like buying The Sun and moaning about the lack of proper journalism. It's a *portable* music player. It holds a day's worth of music. What more do you want? A coffee machine? I agree about the nasty sound of AAC, so just use 320KB MP3 and buy some decent headphones. I'm a Hi-Fi nerd who has in the past used a green pen on my CDs (just as an experiment, you understand, I didn't inhale) and the iPod does everythingI expect of it in sound quality terms - which isn't much but it's enough.

Did the width move for you, darling?

Mark Greenwood

Mental ad block....

I hadn't even noticed the ads on the right hand side. My mind is now attuned to filter out any graphics on a news site, unless they look like photos. So this means (a) you can put up as many adverts as you like and it won't bother me and (b) you can put up as many adverts as you like, but I won't click on them. I like them being in one column as it makes them even easier to ignore, so well done :)

As for fixed width - have you tried reading it on a mobile browser, eg iPhone? No, nor have I. I wonder what it looks like?


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