* Posts by Stu

561 posts • joined 24 Apr 2007


Before the iPad, there was the Newton

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HP 320LX rival!?

Great article, I never even held a Newton myself. Can't really say I ever pined for one either.

Sorry for bringing up an equivalent much criticised (the OS at least) rival, but the Hewlett Packard 320LX was a very early Windows Mobile device that I owned around the same time as the Newton was around. Extremely well built, clamshell design, very small, I would say smaller than the Newton but I can't be sure based on the photos - it looks chunkier!

I always recall that the Newtons were most certainly devices aimed at the serious business PDAer, confirmed because of how expensive they were! My HP320LX was a lot cheaper I seem to recall.

Oddly enough the same thread of OS is still in operation today, in WM6.5!! Although they were split between professional and standard versions, and between horizontal keyboard equipped devices and vertical 'pocket PC' devices. I think it had Windows CE v1.0 in it, but I did order the OS upgrade ROM kit to v2 (or something) but it didn't change anything significantly!

At their heart from the very early days, right the way thru to 6.5 is an OS that simply takes most or all of the same visual elements as the full-fat Windows and plonks them uninteligently into a mobile device, wholely unsuited for it! 6.5 devices today only look different because they are substituted with UI elements added by the third party device manufacturer, HTC TouchFlo for instance.

It had a 640x240 display, which made it look really high-res for a mobile device.

I stuck with CE devices for years after owning that, mainly because of the amount of freebie software appearing (dotted around because of the lack of an AppStore equivalent) for the OS. At one point owning the rival 'i' device, the Compaq iPaq, then stuck with the same OS and form factor when HTC started building them into mobile phones, specifically the earlier HTC PDA brick like devices. PDAs and mob phones mixed really well I thought, the merging was a no-brainer.

Oh the early days of half arsed designed mobile computing, what memories!

Extraterrestrials strafe Bosnian with meteorites

Black Helicopters


Call Mulder and Scully. Sh'yeah right.

It's one of his neighbours going outside and chucking a lump of red hot coal onto his roof. I mean, how easily wound-up can some people get!? Far too easy a target for international humiliation.

Underground tunnel complexes FOUND ON MOON


Here's a wild idea.

Why not send up some Spirit / Opportunity style roving robots, maybe ten of them, up to the moon, then charge premium rate RC moon buggy action to the semi-rich or major moon afficionados to drive the things around the moonian surface with live video feed for an hour or so?

According to the intarnets, there will likely be a 2.6 second (or so) delay lag before you see the results of your controls over the robots, as opposed to the hours for the martian rovers. Not too shabby.

...might raise enuff fundage for a man-moon trip without Obamas lack of vision being a factor, whilst at the same time raising interest in the place. Could even arrange excursions to overhang and observe these weird lava pits too.

US Army trials Iron Man super-trooper exoskeleton



HULC smash!

Researchers expose privacy flaws in Chatroulette

Paris Hilton


Phishing clearly isn't the only type of exposure people are liable to face when using ChatRoulette. I mean, seriously, who the hell non-public-wankers, women looking for free dong, or gay guys in the world have used it over 15 seconds? 14 seconds of which is the web page loading?


Ten Essential... iOS Travel Apps


Alternative to TomTom

..is Sygic mobile maps.

Its half the price, yet apparently uses the same mapping companies maps, TeleAtlas or something.

Sure the navigation isn't as good as TomTom, but satnav should never be relied on 100% anyway, you should always treat it as one interpretation of a journey and fill in the gaps yourself as you come across a particular issue, such as roadworks, car crashes, blocked lanes, etc.

Sygic has all the main features of TomTom without all the gumph nobody actually uses and finds themselves paying extra subscription fees for!

Apple TV revamp rumours resurface


Careful now everybody!

It'll be fraught with reception issues and it'll put yellow blotches all over your videos.

Apple will just say you sited it wrong because it will be enclosed in your video cabinet, interfered with by your TV, Satellite receiver and co. Oh and the yellow blotches will disappear in 1 to 5 years.

But its okay, it worked fine in the lab so it must just be a software fault.

Beware of cold call scammers pushing rogue antivirus


Would I be right in suspecting...

...people who frivolously post their telephone numbers online are most affected by this? If so, it kind of serves people right imo, even those who allow their phone numbers to be published on online directories or corporate websites, you're kind of asking for it!

Kinda reminds me of those morons who post their full address details on Facebook because their parents are out of town and they're having a house party, then wonder why their house is trashed, along with fights and street riots ... does this actually happen or am I reading too much of the Daily Fail? :-)

Suffice it to say its not happned to me or anybody I know. I will gladly eat my words though if it does happen! ;-) But I think I'd probably just have a bit of fun with them and ensure they're kept on the line for as long as is possible too!

iPhone 4 Sim shrink sorrow solved


I don't suppose...

...anybody saw the BBC reporter and blogger Rory Cellan Jones attempt this by hand shortly after the iPad debuted in Britain - as part of a large media organisation Apple may very well have put a word in his ear telling him not to publish a working hack, either that or he's rubbish at doing it (most likely), because his attempt failed.

As a direct result of his own posting on the BBC website I am sure now that people think it can't be done, which is pretty bad.

I wouldn't shell out for a dedicated device to do this, but it might be useful for those mobile phone market stalls for an extra service.

I've done it myself with a £2 Three SIM and it worked - saved me from the iPad plans odd Ts&Cs. Took a little bit of fine sanding down after chopping it down, but it works every time its put in and taken out. One thing I noticed, is that the metal contact pad of a normal SIM is actually of a different size than the MicroSIM, but not sufficiently different to matter - but you do have to snip off plastic from three different sides to centre the pad perfectly in the slot.

One note of warning - some networks send you texts to properly activate a payg sim or receive forgotten account passwords. The iPad doesn't receive texts!

Nasa returns to the moon... in 3D game


@James Cullingham

Nice find! A class olde game. Only trouble is they most certainly nicked the name from the base in 'Space: 1999' with Martin Landau and a whole bunch of AMAZING seventies haircuts, funky intro music and laughable SFX.

NASA must certainly have paid homage to the old series with this new title, its just a shame that we're now 11 years over that prediction and a VG is again about as close as any of us would get to the moon.


Romford coppers try to stopper young snapper


payouts = taxpayers money.

Lets not forget that it is our taxpayers money that pays their wages, its the public that actually face the bills for these incompetents. So instead dock the wages of the actual officers responsible a little every month until the *whole* bill is paid off by them personally, as it does boil down to professional incompetency.

On and on it goes, the police continually violating our rights as people. I'm an amateur photographer in self-training, and this downright worries me that its still going on.

I get the distinct impression that these memos getting circulated are just being pinned up on noticeboards and passed by every day by officers without the slightest interest, so why do the senior officers not just sit every officer down in a seminar and shove the law down their throats?

Apple: we've sold a lot of iPhone 4s


Available to buy now...

...albeit with a 3 week lead time according to the Apple UK website.

Others reckon it'll be a month depending upon where you go.

Windows Phone 7 compass mandatory but broken


Totally, except its dot net nowadays

...so its even more verbose and pointless-

using System.Configuration.Compass;





Direction x = new Compass(const PrimaryCompass);

x.Initialize(hOwner, lpCmpss, cmpassStructSize, flags, reserved1, reserved2, SecurityContext);


x.Dispose(hOwner, lpCmpss, cmpassStructSize, flags, reserved1, reserved2, SecurityContext);


...or something.

HP and Yahoo! team up to print ads in your home



So I suppose we just wait for the inevitable hack of the firmware to block all incoming adverts, yet still provide email printing, for what its worth as a feature.

I agree, adverts are essentially a scourge of modern society - it isn't even proven that they actually work at all.

HP aren't going to gain any supporters over this, in fact the ads will be extremely costly to us unless they radically reduce the price of the toner / inks : wont happen. The trouble is that your average consumer wont realise the economies of scale advantages that newspaper print has over the exorbitant ink and toner levies, people in general might consider it not that bad a deal and historically companies have gotten away with scams like this.

Free open source satnav comes to UK iPhones


Great little freebie

Pretty sweet app, although I did notice that if my 3G connection dropped off, or it lost the connection to their servers via whatever way, then you're essentially booted out of the application with a 'you must have an active internet connection to use this software' message, and it didn't let me use the app until I got a connection back.

This is no good if you're out and about and lose your connection! Mind you I was browsing the manual at the time, lets hope it doesn't do it whilst navigating.

Sure you'll need a connection to download the local area roadmap, but you'd expect it to cache it for whole journeys. In fact its chucking me out pretty often on 3G.

It doesn't behave anything like your traditional satnav software either, its a bit backwards in that it doesn't just present you with a browsable map until you enter a destination and you have a locked GPS, which is a bit odd.

Still, can't complain, its free, I would imagine the paid-for version doesn't moan as much??

Ten Essential... iPad Accessories


cam connection kit

The camera connection kit is nowhere near worth the £30 they're asking for when you consider that the iPad reduces the size of all photos above around 6MP as you import them, I was really looking forward to using the iPad's IPS screen as an image review tool for out and about photography. Whilst its okay, I can't do a 1:1 pixel analysis of the shots from my 12MP DSLR.

Hopefuly a third party app will come to the rescue as the built in photo facility is definitely aimed squarely at the 'casual' end of photo viewing.

Apple releases moving pictures of Steve Jobs keynote



It was downright creepy to me.

I would have wondered quite why the place was full of sycophantic Jobs testicle lickers laughing and clapping even when Steve wasn't trying to be funny. But it turned out it seemed the whole of the front of the audience were Apple employees - see near the end of the Keynote speech where they receive a rather embarassing *prompted* standing ovation from the crowd for their efforts.

There were plenty of 'hold for appause' moments, but also some moments where steve would rather not have had people stopping him to laugh and clap like retarded seals.

I would have loved just one lesser-sycophantic Journo to pipe up during the FaceTime demos and tell everybody in Apple that videochat has *actually* been around for over five years now, its just nobody really wants to (pay the extortionate fees to...) use it .

A Gizmodo journo would have!

Painting for Emos

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Tee hee

Thats Emo-tastic!

My favourite (given I only looked at the site for about 10 seconds) is the one beginning "My mom says I need a therapist". Its a classic!

They use Amazon Web Services to host it all, now theres an innovative dark take on Cloud Computing!

V-22 Osprey downblast scatters spectators like skittles


Tee Hee

Watch the vid then wind it back to see a before-and-after look at two tallish trees just to the left of the house. The Osprey tore the top of the trees to shreds! That is some serious downforce. They might as well have brought in a harrier jump jet!!

I hope the military got a telling off from the emergency services for that stunt. Not that they'd care. Its conceivable he could have stayed twice, or three times as high as he was (the show off!) then only descended right over the field, that would have minimised damage to the trees and perhaps not have rustled up so much dust and debris around the area.

Such is forethought I suppose.

iPeds, iRobots, and the Chinese iPad clone machine


Indeed, no innovation

Engadget keep reporting on these so called 'KIRF's' although I'm not one to perpetuate stupid acronyms.

They mostly turn out to be hideously underpowered to do anything worthwhile on.

And the issue of Flash support because it's Android, well doesn't the new mobile Flash system only run on the latest Android v2.2 devices?

All of these are ancient Android versions down at 1.5.

Apple iPad



I find it amazing that people are slating the wide bezel of the device. Well just how the hell is anybody meant to use it without a bezel? - as you hold it you'll be registering screen presses! Its there for a reason.

The lack of Flash, for me, is no biggy either. Lets face it. 99.999% of flash content out there now are badly coded adverts. Some sites cobble together literally tens of the things on one page, and it slows down my 5 year old Intel tablet laptop (HP TC4200) to an utter crawl on any browser. Just imagine what even a well optimised Flash applet would do to browsing on the ARM based iPad?

The iPad brings a fun, functional interface, multitasking is on its way in autumn, and frankly what people are lambasting about its functionality (and did so probably for the iPhone too) will be mostly fixed up by third party apps (and was for the iPhone! And so already IS for the iPad, with limitations).

As for Apple lock in, well a lot of content, incl BBC iPlayer are recognising the popularity and are going to be specifically recognising and providing for the iPad. YT is already there, hopefuly somebody will do something about Vimeo, MetaCafe etc eventually. Music online purchases may be locked into iTunes, but lets not forget that Spotify with a premium account still works, not to mention Pandora. And have people already forgotten that DRM free purchased MP3s or whatever, can be transferred to it from ANY online music store!?

So stop moaning people! I'm no Apple fanboi by any stretch of the imagination, you wont catch me standing outside the Apple store cheering people on the way out the shop with theirs, thats just sad. But It sounds like the h8rz can't see the wood for the trees and see the iPad for what it truly is without the surrounding media negativity - theres a definite case of overblowing all the negative aspects out of all proportion.

I would even go so far as to say that with the keyboard addon used where appropriate, it IS a decent creative tool for any document writing, possibly also website design right on the iPad, and lets not forget Photo editing using the (albeit expensive) camera connectivity kit. Or drawing/painting with that Brushes program. What is missing now amongst the above, will most certainly be catered for by third party apps in due course. The sky is most certainly the limit, especially when u consider this is only the first iteration of the device!

Video editing on it!? 3D graphics scene creation (with obvious limits) and rendering? Music creation? Document writing? All doable.

So a huge thumbs up from me!!

Unified communications in context?


around 27mins down.

Thanks for this video, it has been very informative - we're still in the process of rolling out and publicising the MS OCS solution ourselves.

One point I'd like to reinforce - It is agreed about the Skype, Yahoo IM being treatable as mostly virus like, something to be pulled out, but the full reason why these shouldn't be used in the organisation is because of the security and privacy issues related to these essentially public comms networks.

OCS for instance keeps all your IM, voice and video chat inside the organisation without so much as a single conversation packet leaving your network (unless you want it to with inter-organisation federation).


Furthermore with our OCS solution, we have experienced no drop outs with our OCS implementation, and we're not using any QoS networking for it (yet). Video, audio and IM is all equally fast, we have invested in a fast, highly connected, Cisco LAN between all our sites.

Thanks guys!


Point taken about getting our users properly informed and bought into the idea. I think this is actually one of the biggest challenges over the technical ones!



Atlantis spacewalkers snapped through shuttle windows


I dunno 'bout the rest of u...

...but I'd be a darned sight annoyed at two workmen gawping thru the window at me every few seconds. "Oy! make us a cuppa tea mate". I dread to think what their hourly rate is!

Nice to know that Nasa are pointing out such slackers. Such cowboy builders need naming and shaming. I mean their work is only good for another decade or so probably too, you'll 'ave to get the buggers back in again in time.

Jodrell Bank gets swanky visitor centre, infuriating maze


I laffed

I thought that photo was some El-Reg comedy knock up, a laff, until I read the blurb!

Just who the hell is going to want to drink their cappucino with a bloody great ugly lump of iron girders imposing over them!?

Sure it is of important astronomical distinction, but I wouldn't want to spend any time looking at the rusting monstrosity.

Freeview HD Set-top Boxes: Best Buys




I didn't know about the HE-AAC thing that the Freeview group have settled on. Jeez its bad enough that they chose the DVB-T2 system over those HD formats in Europe that doesn't require new hardware, now it seems they've gone and pandered to industry again by choosing a wholely unsupported audio system, and relying on built in transcoding - at cost to the consumer. How convenient for them.

I have recently been exposed to the wonderous delights of 5.1 surround via my new AV Receiver. Its not perfect by any stretch of the imagination but my ears can't tell any real significant difference. Suffice it to say, the immersive experience, as I'm sure you know, is very much more enhanced by it when watching Blu-Rays.

So why then did you only recommend and award those boxes which didn't have Dolby Digital transcoding!? Do they still support AV Receiver 5.1 support via some other means?

Reg reader applauds World's Crappiest phish


"Allow me to be the first...

...to offer 'benno209@gmail.com' my most sincere, contrafibularities. I am anaspeptic, frasmotic, even compunctuous to have caused him such pericombobulation.".

From Black Adder the Third. Of all the people to invent words to confuse and possibly overwhealm peoples sense of authority, I would not have thought that far off foreign scammers would!

Truly benno209@gmail.com is an idiot of unrivalled compunctuous idiocy.

Google heats up native code for Chrome OS



I take your points, but I dont know of a single internet service (or any system) that is bullet proofed, let alone one thats bulletproofed from day one, and saying its simple so it must be easier to secure is indeed quite a feasible concept, but ultimately untrue.

Just take pretty much every major web service, the simple fact that they are popular is enough for hackers to invest a lot of time into breaking into them just because cracking 1000 email addresses might bag them one credit card number, or full person profile for info theft - no system is perfect, even GMail accounts have been broken into.

Take for instance a pretty resistant (to hacking) system like the PS3, it has been compromised despite the copious Cell chip code signing and all the other protective measures taken. Google have a way better track record than Sony, MS, Apple etc, but its not spotless.


I'd give it six months tops, from Chromium OS proper release to a black market posting online somewhere on how to create spam-zombie-bots using Chromium OS systems.



This is just one stones throw from ActiveX, even if it is essentially virtualised and has a smidgeon of security tied to it.

How long before somebody writes an LLVM virus, as I'm sure Native Client will be bullet proof on day of arrival! ;-)

Lets not forget how JavaScript opened up the floodgates to script kiddie viruses and phishing attacks, no matter if its virtualised or interpreted, it still presents opportunities, and the opportunities seem huge if you've got direct native API access!

Then again I may be wrong - prove your worth Google.

Physicist unmasks 99-year-old mistake in English dictionaries



It seems we have a bit of a connundrum here, nobody on these hallowed sci expert forums ;-) seems to be able to come to a concensus whether gravity is really involved or not.

I call for a scientific experiment as part of El-Reg's PARIS project, entitled "Water siphoning experiment 1A in a microgravity environment - is air pressure or gravity the main culprit?"

Just what is the cargo limit onboard the paper aeroplane experiment anyway? ;-)

Cheeky voters oust Lembit Opik


El-Reg = heat magazine?

<Quote>The last couple of years have not been kind to Lembit. In July 2008, fiancée and Cheeky Girl singer Gabriela Irimia announced she would be “taking a break” from her relationship with the Lib Dem MP - although her mother denied that the couple were splitting up.</Quote>

Oh give it a rest airhead.

Your typical (I'd hope) readers of El-Reg are NOT housewife dole queuers with 8 kids, are 14 stone and are addicted to daytime TV. Ok maybe one or two of the above, not NOT all! :-) But we're IT Professionals, okay some of us are IT professionals, but guys primarily.

So don't worry, we have our own negative stereotypical image.

A while back a mates GF was once quite surprised at me not knowing that Gail Porter had lost all her hair to that weird condition - saw her on the gadget show. I asked her why I'd give a flying f**k about something like that. All I cared about was that I knew her from the unforgetful FHM photo shoot quite a few years back now. Oh yes.

And NO, FHM isn't a celeb goss magazine, its got pretty ladies in ;-) and I (really) haven't bought it in years.

So less celebrity gossip please!? Oh sorry, I'll word it how u might understand it better - "LSS CLBRTY GOSS PLS".

50 million user Scribd scraps Flash for HTML5


Hahahahah DIE!

@AC - Friday 7th May 2010 03:46 GMT

Wholeheartedly agreed! Flash deserves to be consigned to the scrap heap - god knows it resembles real scrap.

Keep up the good effort Scribd. Let us sincerely hope that a huge flow of hi profile sites will do the same. Its a shame it wont end the same abrupt way the Blu-Ray + HD-DVD kerfuffle did a couple of years ago.

I fear just one more case of having to restart my locked up browser will make my head explode. And its only a 5 year old laptop, 4Gb of RAM with a fresh install of Windows on it!

It doesn't help that a lot of flash + gfx heavy sites rely too on screens over 1024x768 pixels, no good. I sincerely help that little trend ceases.

Iomega StorCenter ix2-200 4TB Nas box


Yep, and...

...his setup will be a helluva lot more noisy and cost a lot more in electricity usage.

I specifically bought a now ancient WD MyBookWorld, hacked open for full linux access on it and an unrestricted Samba install, for these very reasons.

Its been spinning now for about two years without issue, and its claiming, oh, about 10 or so watts when spinning. About 2 watts when in sleep mode.


Not that I'm a greenie, its just saving me cash!

Ten Essential... iPhone Games



El Reg is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

Worms iPhone

A great list, but...

C'mon, the olde favourite that started life on the 16bit systems, updated time and time again. A childhood wonder of a game, spent countless hours in front of, alongside similar titles like lemmings.

Now available in your pocket.

Sure the iPhone version got bad reviews, but I think they've corrected a lot of them since the reviews.

Plus some of the control anomalies are easily remedied provided you actually follow the instructions and directly tap on the worm to make him jump forward.

Hopefuly we'll see a new version for the iPad, due to the iPhones small screen making zooming in and out a regular necessity. The iPad should completely alleviate this.

The single player campaigns are pretty long too, I'm still going from level 33 with no end in sight!

3Gs specific enhancements too mean it can't be beat.

Ten Essential... Netbook Accessories


GPS tip

If anybodys looking at adding GPS, have a think back about whether you bought a bluetooth GPS receiver for a ye-olde smartphone prior to GPS being built in. I have one of the Holux GPSlim models.

If ever I want to add GPS to a PC, provided it has Bluetooth, I just pair that up, and it should show up as an RS232 style serial link, as COM#, probably COM4 or nearabouts. To see whether it works, connect into it with HyperTerminal (I know its gone now in Windows 7) and you should see a stream of incoming NMEA strings.

Any GPS software, including some freebies (Google Earth I think?) should work with it.

No need for a USB GPS dongle, it saves the need to drape a USB cable over to the receiver on your dash. You might even be able to pick up a secondhand BT GPS receiver cheap off Ebay, cheaper than a USB model.

Lufthansa offers iPhone 4G loser free beer

Paris Hilton

'Nicola' eh!?

Sounds more like he's just pulled!

<<--Paris would offer more than just a beer.

Dell Inspiron One 19 Touch touchscreen all-in-one

IT Angle

Is it multi-touch capable?

'scuse me if I missed it when reading thru the article, not sure if it was mentioned.


^^^^^^^^ I needed an icon with a question mark! Can you add one please? ;-)

Phone me the way to go home


SatNav software

Call me progressive, but I've never owned a SatNav device that hasn't been in / for a mobile phone. Was always on a Windows Mobile, using either built in GPS hardware, or a separate BlueTooth GPS receiver, way back yonder.

Now I've shifted to Sygic Mobile Maps UK on the iPhone - its half the price of TomTom on iPhone and uses the same maps! Navigation has only on occasion thrown me down an odd route, but its no showstopper by any stretch.

Wouldn't touch A-GPS as far as I can throw it, as its pointlessly inaccurate for the last 200 or so metres to your destination, which can be quite a bugger for certain journeys, especially those sites where they're not correctly positioned on Google Maps or something - there are plenty.

New ISS machine makes water from waste CO2



"...and cooling some electronic equipment."

This seems, um, poorly considered! Is the ISS not actually up in space right now then?

I know they use IBM (Lenovo?) laptops as seen in some of those tour vids, but surely something can be done by putting computing power outside the life supported areas. Might even be able to manage some serious overclocking on those CPUs as a result!

Bromsgrove lass slapped with Boozbo


Thats odd

I kind of pictured a woman in far worse physical condition than that photo on the Sun website.

The sun probably gave her a few hours 'rehabilitation', probably shelled out for a full pamper, to help her look a little more respectable.

So how does the local Tescos stop her from walking out with ten bottles of JD under her arms? Are they supposed to recognise her? Is her photo up in every offey and supermarket from Lands End to Carlisle? I haven't checked where she's from but it wouldn't surprise me if its a short hop over the 'border' into scotland for some fags n booze!

So what if it shows up AFTER the drinking offense!? Damage was likely already done, police time wasted, court time wasted, government money wasted.


Let me see, I'd wager she worked in Morrisons for two weeks, turned up maybe once, and never worked a full day in her miserable life. Her drinking probably funded by HM Govt on behalf of the people of Great Britain in benefits, maybe her bf. Liver problems to follow, also to be funded by the people of GB. Her various offences handling and court proceeds also funded by us in Council tax - police, is it?

Brilliant, makes me proud to be a tax payer, and she has the wonderful gall to feature with all smiles inside the Sun newspaper, clearly proud of her lifetime achievements.

Commodore 64 may come back as Warren Beatty


Ahh Mr Tramiel

I remember him, he later became head honcho at Atari, who then oddly went up in direct competition with the Commodore Amiga with his Atari ST system.

...I had an Atari ST when I was a teen...

...I always wished I'd bought an Amiga...

It could display more colours at a time (the ST could only, without special software trickery, manage 16 colours on the screen at one time!), and all the games were better looking for it on the Amiga. Oh how I envied HAM mode!

Year after year the Atari ST magazine press always made out the ST was better simply because it was, apparently, clocked 1Mhz faster than the Amiga and had a couple of built in Midi ports - which apparently meant it had better audio - It didn't by a country mile.

Bloke threatens BT with giant plywood cheque

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Very good!

Stick it to the 'man'!

Now I'm remembering why I rightly haven't been with BT (and not paid them a penny in line rental) in about five years!


I'd have been a little more reasonable to correct the huge cardboard cheque administrative error, and offered them a genuine normal sized bank printed cheque for the outstanding amount, however the Admin fee for providing them such a cheque will have cost them the outstanding debt amount, plus one penny, and I would have ensured this was provided up front.


If they'd have accepted the offer, it would be boring and spoilsportey, so I might have gone a little further, and instead sent them a cheque engraved in a twenty kilo lump of rock, or something, then charge them another admin fee for correcting my error.


Its not like I'd be making them jump thru any more hoops some companies have made me jump thru. The next earliest opportunity, I'm doing it! I don't even own a cheque book!

Administrator access: Right or privilege?


Oh how easily...

...everybody forgets the other angles of approach to this sort of problem.

Whats wrong, for instance, with the human angle, or at least the HR angle. Sod all these scripts, and processes, when you simply inform your staff that disciplinary action may be taken against them if regularly found to be carrying out stupid, non work related, or downright totally NSFW actions. At the very least they can be reported to their line manager.

Thats the first thing that sprang to mind about the story at the top of the article, so why was a solely technical or operational procedural solution employed when you could simply approach them about it (talk about matching the 'IT crowd' stereotypes!). Are theses people who look after data not expected to be responsible, adult individuals, after all??





@Everyone - If ur up 4 a little easter weekend humour, its definitely worth checking out all of Cyriak's website, its pretty fugging hilarious, the animation he made entitled 'Cycles' had me literally in stitches with its relentless imagery doing unexpected absurd things again and again!

Oh and thanks for the 3 ticks (or more), but treat the ticks as if they're for Cyriak himself, he's the man, and he's from Brighton - one of the first places in Britain to be sucked into the relentless black hole of the LHC.


No, its all true everybody!

I have the video evidence right here -


Pink Floyd remastered for Nintendo Entertainment System



It combines my love of all things 8bit and all things Floyd'ey! I'd personally associate it with the ZX Spectrum, but the Spectrum couldn't do audio as well as this.

Ce' Fantastiche.

BT fibre upgrades hit full speed


Highly populated areas for higher ROI?

Not so IMO, looking at that list they are doing what seems to be all of Leamington Spa, Rugby and Stratford on Avon PRIOR to doing any of Coventry or Birmingham, the major metropolitan areas in the West Mids.

It seems they actually mean they're targeting areas which are more likely to have the *money* to shell out - Leamington is a richer, nicer town, you see!

Christ they're even doing Evesham, Polesworth and Lichfield quicker!


Did I miss an earlier list where Cov and Brum are already mentioned?

Trustpilot prunes florid iFlorist tributes


Re: One down, countless to go.

Indeed, it is kind of like whacking moles in that game.

However I'd say its closer to whack-a-mole where you only get an inflatable novelty hammer.

You see, TrustPilot, I'm sure, isn't the only site hosting criminally fake reviews.

Others would probably do the standard Google thing and find other sites such as ReviewCentre.com, GiveMeAReview.com, TrustedReviews.com or even those terrible NexTag, or Ciao sites. I haven't checked these for iFlorist but I'm sure iFlorist are filling some of these with fake positives too!

In fact I too never heard of TrustPilot prior to reading this story either.


If it weren't for the saving grace that El-Reg turns up as the third real result down in Google for iFlorist with Lesters exposé, very few would have actually bothered to check the reviews on TrustPilot!


On the other hand, however, this is the summary text from the El-Reg Google Result - "To recap, iFlorist was rated by many reviewers as pretty much the greatest website ever to grace the internet, which led us to question the ..."

I'm sure plenty of unexperienced Intarnet goers would look at the first few segments and conclude that iFlorists were perfect!

Sony Ericsson Vivaz


Holy s**t!

What the hell happened to that bus!? It looks like the driver lost control and perhaps ploughed through some pedestrians! Fill us in Dave! ;-)

I'm loving your gutsy filming of those ladies doing the exercises, i'd feel like a perv! You then subtly turn to film an old man who clearly objected to being filmed but was too British to speak up about you following him round, I'm not sure I'd be so gutsy! Old folk like that probably wont be as gentlemanly as to not give you a thump for it!


About the camera, kinda washed out imagery (video only?) all round. Perhaps it prefers sunny days. I think my iPhone 3Gs video would look better in the same daylight scenarios, albeit not capable of 720p or being any good after dark.

Apple uncloaks deep details of its 11 iPad apps


I can see a point...

...I can personally see how photographers like me could take advantage of the 9.7inch display. Its an IPS LED backlit, very high quality, and although its only 1024x768, it must still be a damned nice way of reviewing DSLR photos using the SD Card dongle (wasn't it announced at $29.99, must be 30 quid in the UK then!). You can (hopefuly) zoom right to 1:1 pixel ratio into a 12megapixel photograph, discern the fine detail and general suitability of photographs right after taking them.

I know the iPhone knocks the resolution down of photos - if you copy over a 12mp photo to an iPhone you can't zoom in to see the whole 12mp. If the iPad has the same limitations then I'd be a bit disappointed and won't be as well inclined to go for it.

But so far nobody has mentioned this aspect of the iPad photo viewer app! I suppose we'll see some time after Saturday.

Honestly, guys, this whole 50-50 swing of Apple fanbois and Apple haters is getting quite tiresome.

Samsung WB5000


High Zoom? Shoot the moon

A great test of a high zoom/telephoto is to take a shot or two of the moon.

I do this a lot on my Nikon D90, manual mode, ISO Lo1, Shutter around 1/160, Aperture F/11 with my crappy 300mm tamiya lens. Of course these will change with different camera bodies/lenses but its a good base to work with. A good tripod is a necessity.

Because its only 300mm, I have to crop the photo down from 12mp to around 1024x768, then its framed nicely.

But I didn't catch whether this camera had a manual settings mode or not.

The test is whether the camera can discern the craters sharply on a well crescented or gibbous moon. Its a good test of the sharpness achievable in the middle of the shot and so is the peak sharpness obtainable. I found it also shows up badly compressed JPGs more than a daytime scenery shot.

Perhaps in future (or in an addendum) you could publish shots of the moon on high-zoom review cameras?



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