* Posts by Steve Adams

44 publicly visible posts • joined 2 Dec 2008

Mozilla: 'Internet Explorer 9 is not a modern browser'

Steve Adams

It's as though MS think their customers/users are ignorant...

... and don't understand or care about open standards, vendor lock-in vs choice, history/past-performance...

oh... yes that explains it really.

I think we're supposed to call it "leadership" and "real world standard setting".

What's wrong with just sticking to IE 6 anyway?

HTC takes a flyer on tablets

Steve Adams
Thumb Up

Stylus + Graffiti

I miss Graffiti text input (from the glory days of Palm).

There's a version available for Android:


which I am using (a bit) - but it's tricky to do well with a finger... ( "finger-painting vs nice sharp pencil")

intrigued t know how well a stylus will work.

A ten inch one of these things... could well be really useful - and novel :-)


Twitter wants mobile industry followers

Steve Adams

I disagree with this article's premise about twitter

I think twitter represents, is part of, a significant evolution of computing and Internet use as it shifts/embraces mobile devices and access.

As such it is perfectly valid for a keynote session at the conference.

The reasons the article cites against this are in my opinion shallow and lack insight.

I'd be interested to understand if this is a result of a lack of understanding of the evolution of the web/Internet... or a deliberate (contrary) editorial position from El Reg.

Cheers, Steve.

Samsung N350 dual-core netbook

Steve Adams


yes please - that would be much appreciated.

Both Netbook and desktop please :-)

Steve Adams


Why have the netbook manufacturers deserted SSDs?

I would love something like this (better battery though) and would prefer just 20GB SSD than 250GB disk.

I don't want to carry around all that info/data/entertainment on a netbook - I have no need for it (it's just more to manage/lose)

I appreciate others might want more capacity, that's OK I've no problem with that :-)

Why are there no new(ish) netbooks which come without Windows and with an SSD?

Anyone know?

Not enough demand for such?

Think i'll wait for an android tablet instead :-(

Samsung specs up 7in Android tablet

Steve Adams

re: do you know of anyone who has ??

yeah me - a few times via skype/video.

It's funny I did a search through time and found a similar comment made just before the launch of mainstream mobile phones:

"Hands up who has ever and I mean EVER made a phone call whilst out of their house or office?? do you know of anyone who has ?? why even bother with a roaming phone, no one wants to spend their time walking around away from their desk or house while they are talking to someone."

And this - just before TV was launched:

"Hands up who has ever and I mean EVER watched a radio show with pictures?? do you know of anyone who has ?? why even bother with a radio with pictures, no one wants to be confused by moving pictures whilst listening to their favourite radio program"

So - it appears people (like you) had similar confusion about why things hadn't been done *BEFORE* the mass availability and mainstream adoption of the enabling technology.


Once it becomes simple and cheap of course lots of people will want to make (some) use of video calls. Probably not al the time... and very likely never with you if you intend to hold your device at just the right angle to display contents of your nostrils (eeeewwww - why would you choose to do that?).

iPhone users get more sex than Android fans

Steve Adams

iPhone users are easy....?

.... due to their non-discrimination and low standards.... clearly they are willing to accept parners despite fundamental and critical flaws.

They think they have a deep and meaningful relationship with a truly commited partner... yet the painful truth is that they have formed an unhealthy attachment to an abusive & manipulative dominator.. who undermines their freedom whilst creating a dependence in order to provide a false sense of self worth.

Whereas.... my Android phone really does love me unconditionally.... as do Google..... only got my best interests at heart.

Google, Verizon offer net neutrality proposal

Steve Adams
Thumb Down

Why should we trust these corps to act in our interest?

I get that it can make sense to differentiate traffic/packets/services as they travel over the internet.. and that we may be able to make better/optimised used of the infrastructure by using such prioritisation methods.

However, anyone proposing a set of rules to govern this needs to be very clear in what they say (i.e. no ambiguity) and assume that we (everyone else!) inherently distrusts them and will need a *LOT* of convincing that they are not our to negotiate something to their own advantage (their competitors disadvantage).

Inserting a clause saying anything like:

"Prioritization of internet traffic would be presumed inconsistent with the non-discrimination standard, but the presumption could be rebutted."

Is exactly the *opposite* of what they need to do if they wish to be respected and trusted by us (everyone else) as appropriate people to be suggesting rules.

Anyone feel like they should trust these guys on this - based on this proposal as reported here?

Dixons aims high, medium and low with own-brand blizzard

Steve Adams
Thumb Up

Re: Exciting stuff


is Drewc an El Reg employee/writer?

I can't see a link to a profile - apologies for any F'wited-ness on my part?

If so.. well done for taking the time to back up your editorial policy and explain yourself - this is often missing in Reg forums where commentards dis the editorial decisions.

If not... how (and why) do you get to speak for the Reg here?


Apple as a religion: How the iPhone became divine

Steve Adams

Doc Searls on Jobs in 1997 - still relevant

Different context and time... yet this blog post at Dave Winer's Scripting news from Doc Searls back in 1997 is prescient and informative - and relevant to this discussion:


"... his message to everybody was no different than it was at Day One: all I want from the rest of you is your money and your appreciation for my Art."

Sure it's an oversimplification... yet if you view Jobs/Apple through this lens it helps.

If you have the (extra) cash to spend (on the nice if overpriced devices) and you like the art/aesthetics ... then so long as you can put up with or don't care about (or don't understand the issues about) the limits to your *freedom* then Apple's proposition is great, works well and provides value for (your) money.


Linux & Android currently - generic mp3 player (Samsung thingy... supports ogg!)


Reg hack gives forth in Wikipedia doco

Steve Adams

AC Again?

Is that the same person posting.. or someone else posing as the same AC guy?

How can you be credible being anonymous?

I respect your right to privacy... but how does anyone know you're not just a troll... with no real insight, experience or evidence which supports your view.

I sympathise if you feel your company wouldn't be proud of and back up your views (if expressed openly) - however why should anyone take your allegations seriously?

Best you can hope for I guess is "benefit of the doubt" - which you'll likely get from the people who support the view you seek to promote.. and likely won't get from those who disagree with you.

An overall neutral impact... so what's the point in posting it?

Note: Not a personal attack - meant as a legitimate question. Again - you have my sympathy for not feeling confident/able to express yourself properly (here). :-)

Steve Adams
Thumb Up

Completely Agree

Well said.

People who are overly critical of Wikipedia seem to take this line:

I believe Wikipedia should be *this* (whatever standard they personally expect/require/imagine)

however it is below this standard (which I myself imagined)

therefore it has zero value and should be endlessly criticised

That's just plain stupid.

If it's useful - use it.

If you need a proven authoritative source - then find and pay for one.

I've found for an introduction/overview of an important topic/subject it's useful - and tends to point to more authoritative/trustworthy/recognised sources of information if you want to go beyond this.

For modern popular culture it appears unrivalled as a general source.. and again typically links to more specialist (sad!) sources as required.

Taken for what it is.. it's great.

Looking to the future the potential is even greater (quality, breadth, depth of information).

Why the hate from El Reg?

Feeling threatened?

Ideologically opposed?

Just want to be "different"?

I don't understand it!

Steve Adams
Thumb Down

Why AC - and where's your links to demonstrate your point?

You sound angry.

Why not link to your article edit-history so we can judge for ourselves?

Why post anonymously if you have been a Wikipedia user... show us your work.

Oh - and using "Wankopedia" isn't clever, funny or grown-up. It makes you sound silly and unhappy.

So.. come on - fix this and show us the links :-)

Apple antenna guru 'warned Steve Jobs' over Judas Phone

Steve Adams
Jobs Halo

You need FAITH to be a fanboi


This whole issue is clearly a TEST by hisjobsness to allow those with true FAITH to express it.

Let those without the trust and FAITH required fall away and the TRUE BELIEVERS stand up and proclaim.

So - he may lose some followers over this - but the those who remain will believe even more.. and be bonded to the cult even more strongly.

Then... with whatever comes next (iPhone 4.1)... or a miracle solution to this problem... HE can make the world right again - ease pain and suffering and bring blessed relief.

HE moves in mysterious ways - don't try to understand or explain. KEEP THE FAITH!

Note: Having never been a believer I have sympathy for those still caught in the cult.

Hup Holland, viva España

Steve Adams

Shhhhh don't tell Andrew...

... Orlowski because he doesn't believe in computer modelling ;-)

Nice to see someone at El Reg isn't so dismissive and appears to understand that modelling *can* be a useful tool in helping to understand probabilities of certain outcomes - as opposed to writing it off as a method because it's not able to output total accuracy and truth.

Hoping for a decent match - may the best team win :-)

The long and the short-term of it: Apple's future

Steve Adams

Market Schmarket

This article reminded me of this Cringely article from 10 years ago re: Palm and 3Com insane valuations.


Here's a relevant paragraph:


"Here is 3Com's apparent problem. Palm Inc. went public on March 2, priced at $38 per share. Following the recent trend of hot IPOs with relatively small numbers of available shares, Palm stock soared on speculative fever and day trading before dropping back below the offering price by April 4 on bad earnings news. Even then, Palm's market capitalization was $21.1 billion to 3Com's $15.8 billion. These numbers make no sense at all, given the fact that 3Com owns more than 95 percent of Palm. Ninety-five point nine percent of $21.1 billion is just over $20 billion, suggesting the perfectly efficient market believes the non-Palm parts of 3Com representing $5.5 billion in sales and hundreds of millions in profit were worth a negative $4.245 billion. That's an implied Price-to-Earnings ratio of about minus 9."



I'm sure that an economist can explain it away with some of their magical-thinking... ahem - sorry "science"

It's almost as though the market/prices were set by by irrational/non-logical beings who often made odd (stupid?) decisions and exhibited "follow the herd" behaviour.

Story gone

Steve Adams

Why "considering expanding our movie coverage" ?

Re: "Now we are considering expanding our movie coverage"


Some possible reasons plus questions which arise:

- It's something we perceive our current audience is demanding - based upon what?

Based on what?

Who are you going to get to cover movies for you?

Do you feel this is an area not adequately covered by hundreds of existing media/publications/websites/podcasts?

- We are trying to grow our readership base and diversify into entertainment coverage so we can sell more/better/different adds about.... er... movies (and stuff)!

Oh Dear - won't that dilute the excellent IT++ coverage (e.g. rather like the odd and unbalanced "Climate Change Septic" coverage does) and detract value from our lovely traditional IT focused and unique El Reg?

- Some of our journos reckon they can get free press passes into movies and pick up free movie tat (and stuff) if we put up a decent enough charade of movie coverage

OK - that's more like it... had me worried there for a while

Seriously though El Reg... Why?

Apple's iOS 4 beams into unprepared world

Steve Adams

How to disable multi-tasking?

I like multi-tasking and have it working on my Android Hero.

in discussions/forums etc. with iPhone users over the last year or so many of them stated clearly that Apple was right to disallow/disable multi-tasking to 3rd party apps.

There appeared to be 2 camps:

i) techy-aware:

These people stated that disabling MT was good for various reasons, most importantly apparently for battery conservation and consistency-of/control-over the UIU/User experience.

ii) less techy-aware:

these seemed happy to go along with the "Apple/Steve-knows-best" approach (fair enough - same approach I have with my car's engine... manufacturer knows best - I'm rubbish at car engines).


Now that multi-tasking is enabled i'm sure many (techy aware) iPhone owners will wish to disable it as they never wanted it and actually valued the lack of multi-tasking as superior.

The less techy-aware will no doubt be well served by the following the Apple/Steve-knows-best" approach.

Techy iPhone users... will you embrace MT or do you want it disabled?

Europe exposes new data share deal with US

Steve Adams

e Reciprocal Agreement?

Hi Anon John,

Do you mean that the US shares the equivalent data with the EU?


Steve Adams
Black Helicopters

Reciprocal Agreement?

Is this a Reciprocal Agreement?

i.e. do we (EU) get the equivalent supplied by the US?

Forgive my ignorance and laziness... hoping someone here is paying more attention than me and already knows :-)

Windows 3.0 turns 20

Steve Adams

But it cant beat (the) Windows-Windows-w-w-w-w-Windows 386 (video)

Any excuse to (re)propagate this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0gJ1FUHkN8

HP agrees to buy Palm for $1.2bn

Steve Adams

T3... mmmmmm

I loved my T3.

When it gave up (battery died) I went for a TX (which had better specs and built in wifi) but wasn't as nice as the T3 with the lovely slidey-case-thing. :-)

I finally (after a long wait and keeping of the faith) gave up on Palm and went Android (Hero) last Autumn. It seems Palm gave up on me (& other Palm customers/loyal supporters) when it kept making devices with silly little keyboards.

Now.. An updated T3 in 2008 with


Graffiti (I know the issue/problem of capacitive vs resistive screens)

a phone built in

backward compatibility to PalmOS

that would have been great.

Shame tho. I don't see the HP bail-out achieving much.

Why don't they adopt Android instead?

What's Palm got that they want to spend a billions $s on?


Chocolate Factory eats crow on Googlephone

Steve Adams


Thanks T-Unit,

I'm sure that they officially take care of things... I'm mostly interested to know if Google have a useful and responsive customer service operation (here in the UK).


Steve Adams

(Lack of) Support!?

I am (would be) a great prospect for buying a phone directly from Google... however I don't believe they have a credible customer service operation (would love to have my assumptions reset more positively!).

The article states:

"Mountain View is woefully unprepared to deal with support after the phone is sold"

Whilst my experience of dealing with various (UK) mobile carriers is limited and not entirely wonderful... they do offer customer support and do fix problems - send out replacement phones.

Question: What happens if I buy a phone from Google and it stops working?

Do they offer a customer support service which will help me?

Anyone have any experience of this?


Global warming dirt-carbon peril models are wrong, say boffins

Steve Adams
Thumb Up

Good Point :-)

Agreed Jolyon.

Also - I was under the impression that the Reg (or some of it's journos) thought that *all* these computer models were not trustworthy or meaningful and require plenty of FUD layered onto them.

e.g. The recent article on the Volcanic Ash and the Met office.

This new model/research is apparently trustworthy AND meaningful.

It seems to me as though it matters which way the evidence points round here as to which science stories get positive or negative commentary.

In order to get more balance and seem less partisan, I'd like to see the Reg use a respected and authoritative source/journalist/scientist to help them them with some real expertise on their coverage of climate related stories.

What do others think?


Broadband boss: 'The end of freeloading is nigh'

Steve Adams
Thumb Up

Completely Agree

I was about to post something similar... but you already said it well enough :-)

Virgin signals start of telegraph pole broadband test

Steve Adams

if only we had a nationwide company....

....that already owned all the poles and ........was already mandated to provide telephone services to all households in the UK at "reasonable" prices (with a watchdog org tracking and reviewing its performance)..

...we could just get them to run some new super-dooopa-electric-string (fibre) and make a universal super-fast broadband service for all..... better still - it could be a nationalised company with no competing commercial interests and just concentrate on providing basic (yet essential) infrastructure and services for all..... at a low cost and with no profits to hand over to investors... it could use surplus revenues to re-invest in its network/infrastructure/services and/or reduce costs

It could all be classed as "TELECOM" and be offered across the whole of Britain (i.e. to all "BRITISH" residences and businesses).

Now... we would need a good name for a company like that.... hmmmm....

Telecom Britania

British Telecommunications


can't think up a good one.... any suggestions?

Microsoft shows Bottom to Young Ones

Steve Adams
Thumb Down

Doesn't like "Chrome" apparently

(trying to) watch on ubuntu on Chrome and the site says....:

"To experience the best MSN Video has to offer, we recommend a more recent browser such as Internet Explorer 8 or Firefox 3."

Nothing's playing yet - I think my version of flash is too old...

Computer Engineer Barbie coming soon to a toy store near you

Steve Adams
Paris Hilton

Photo here


looks like it matches the description in the Reg story :-)

Bishop Hill: Gonzo science and the Hockey Stick

Steve Adams
Thumb Down

If only these Hockey Stick claims could be looked into....

... by some kind of credible scientific panel which looked into all the evidence and then made a report...

oh... they did a few years ago..


"The panel said that a statistical method used in the 1999 study was not the best and that some uncertainties in the work "have been underestimated," and it particularly challenged the authors' conclusion that the decade of the 1990's was probably the warmest in a millennium.

But in a 155-page report, the 12-member panel convened by the National Academies said "an array of evidence" supported the main thrust of the paper. Disputes over details, it said, reflected the normal intellectual clash that takes place as science tests new approaches to old questions."

So - a reputable panel looked into it, took the evidence into consideration, criticised the original work yet "supported the main thrust of the paper".

But I'm supposed to disregard this because people with a specific agenda feel they can create a controversy around it?



nice to have comments on an AO climate article for a change... well done El Reg!

I think it would be much better for AO to start up his own blog or website for this odd climate change stuff so that our trusty El Reg is not brought into disrepute and ridicule.

The Reg's healthy cynacism on many tech (and related) topics is refreshing (versus much mainstream reporting)... but these odd AO climate posts bring the whole site into question.

Any one else think AO should take his odd climate stuff elsewhere?

I think it's fine he gets to publish it.. but it's daft to have it here spoiling The Reg.

Cheers, Steve.

The Borings get another whack at Street View

Steve Adams

If only somepne had a photo....

... or indeed a set of widescreen panoramic and detailed photos... of the property on the day of the alleged offense.... then we would know for sure whether there was indeed a "No Trespassing" sign up.

Brown launches 'Zip it, Block it, Flag it' net code for children

Steve Adams

Error: Zip is a reserved word

Why use the word "zip" which is already widely in use in the context (personal computing/Internet)?

Anyone else think this is daft and confusing?

Or am I being pedantic?

Apple gives Palm the boot - again

Steve Adams

Ouch - I got attacked - why?

Hi again,

2 posters here attacked me/my comments - but I'm not sure why.

Simon Banyard started with:

"You'd rather have a brick with limited functionality?"

What an odd thing to say!

i don't understand why *anybody* would want that - and I don't understand what makes you think I'd like that.

My main concern is not losing my freedom to use my content/data and my computers/devices. i don't want to be restricted by a big company (and their media/content partners) - that's all :-)

Then you say:

"Why do you geeks think that pretty = bad and easy to use and intuitive = crap?"

Was that aimed at me?

You missed my point - or maybe i didn't make it clear.

My point is that I "DON'T UNDERSTAND" how people (who do or *should* know better) seem so willing to trade "FREEDOM" (of choice, to use their equipment, tools, data/content) for "shinyness" (lovely gadgets, easy to use pretty software).

I understand that they do (friends, colleagues, relatives of mine are in that group) - and I absolutely RESPECT their right to make that choice... however I don't UNDERSTAND the choice.

So - at no point have I intended to make a (clearly daft) statement like:

"...think that pretty = bad and easy to use and intuitive = crap?"

OK Simon? - apologies if I misled you :-)

Somebody else - who likes to post as Anonymous Coward said (to me):

"Try actually reading my comment properly. I explained that Apple are NOT blocking access to the iTunes library and I explained why."

Which is odd... as I never contradicted that in either of my posts here... and I even sort of agreed as I previously said:

"Why promote iTunes at all - why not promote an alternative?

Leave the Apple lovers to their iTunes store and restrictive iTunes app - they seem to like it and appear to believe it's good value.

Why not partner with someone else (music stores/services) and offer something different (better in some ways)?

Why not adopt (and adapt/improve?) and promote an open source music app?"

So Mr AC - what is it that has upset you?

My response to your post was to say that for me... the issue (Apple/Palm not playing nice) is daft and the WRONG ISSUE. We should be asking why Palm isn't prepared to put some effort into an alternative:

Me via avoiding iTunes

You via utilising iTunes XML stuff

Actually - aren't we (sort of) in agreement?

Happy Days!

Steve Adams

Re: Apple are not blocking access to the iTunes library.. by yet another Anonymous Coward

You say:

"The problem is just that Palm are too lazy or crap to write their own interface software so they're trying to piggyback on iTunes instead. Why shouldn't Apple stop them from doing that?"

I say:

Why would anyone chose to use, support and endorse (by their use) a company (in this case Apple) and product (in this case iTunes app) which actively tries to restrict what YOU do with YOUR data/content on YOUR computer(s) and device(s)?


- they don't understand they have choices/don't know any better - fair enough - hard to educate everyone

- they don't value that freedom (of choice) so don't care - I find that hard to understand - but that's true for lots of the choices made by the people I share the planet with :-)

- they understand but think it's a good idea to actively or passively cede their freedoms to big corporations - OUCH! that's scary.

- mmmmmmmmm shiny nice lovely thing... can't think about anything beyond the shiny thing.. look at th UI.... mmmmmm love the shinyness.. and the ease of use.. it just plugs in.... where do i sign... just there.... and i can keep the shiny thing... it's so pretty.... other choices...? no i don't need other choices your shiny things are the best ones... why do i need to think about other choices... when i can have this shiny thing... it's sooooo lovely......

sighs again.

Steve Adams

@Dana W - Agree re Trolls + Thoughts on Apple/Palm

Completely agree - re trolls.

Just n case there's anyone here at El Reg who didn't learn this part of (what used to be called?) netiquette...:

When somebody behaves poorly (Trolls) in order to get attention - it's best not to reward that poor behaviour with the attention they seek - which surely only promotes more poor behaviour.

Regarding Apple's behaviour and Palm's response:

Apple's attitudes on DRM and lock-in are shocking.

So many punters appear to not notice or care (mainstream non-geeks mostly I expect) and I guess no know better - understandable.

That so many tech-savvy punters (who really should know better and should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves) are happy to sell out (their freedom to chose) for the lovely-shiney techy gadgets (they are lovely objects - if expensive) still surprises me.

Palm: I still use an old Palm every day - I'm awaiting an Android phone which is.. you know... "right" (e.g. a Hero fixed with enough RAM or something similar) but Palm lsot me a while ago with their new focus/attitude. I don't see the long-term benefits in trying to take some of the iPhone market away from apple when they could offer a real alternative.

Why promote iTunes at all - why not promote an alternative?

Leave the Apple lovers to their iTunes store and restrictive iTunes app - they seem to like it and appear to believe it's good value.

Why not partner with someone else (music stores/services) and offer something different (better in some ways)?

Why not adopt (and adapt/improve?) and promote an open source music app?

It's probably worth Palm continuing the iTunes-sych arms-race just to stay in the news I suppose.


Feds bust world's most prolific music piracy ring

Steve Adams

Did they [anyone] charge/make money from this?

It wasn't clear from Dan Goodin's article:

Did people exchange money for access to pirated music?

Note: I understand that people involved appear to have traded pirated content [which has a monetary value - somebody can decide what] but I am NOT asking about that :-)

- i.e. did the pirates generate income [other than access to pirated content] for themselves?

Cheers, Steve.

Mozilla: Web's future rests with millions outside IT

Steve Adams

onewebday.org pwned!

Did anyone notice that the onewebday.org site has been cracked/hacked and apparently defaced by an illiterate pro-Iranian who calls themselves "NobodyCoder" ?

What was that message about security/safety on teh interwebs?

Apple and Snow Leopard take-downs - just say no

Steve Adams
Thumb Up

I appreciate the stance of the Reg...

Your position in this case - along with the quality of most of your output and much of the user comment - makes El Reg a primary tech news source for me.

Maybe you will miss out on some page views through not having access to some PR tosh from certain vendors (often apparently regurgitated without edits by other "news" sites) - but I know that the substantive and important stories will be covered here.

Well done & keep it up.

Yorkshire boozer establishes 'smoking research centre'

Steve Adams

(Why don't we) License smoking as well as booze

I think we (should have) allowed pubs/clubs/bars/restaurants to apply for a smoking license much as (I understand) they do now for a booze license.

These booze licenses are granted by local authorities/magistrates (right?) so different areas/regions/towns/villages could apply their own policies - and create a mix of venues as appropriate for their own residents, visitors and businesses.

Venues which allow smoking should be clearly marked/identified (a big skull & X-bones on the door?) - and perhaps taxed more than non smoking venues (or maybe the non-smoking can be encouraged via rebates?) if we want to influence the behavior of people who haven't yet understood that smoking is stupid and dangerous.

Anyhow.. this would allow locals to fix their own rules via an accountable local process.

e.g. We could say up to 10% of venues get a smoking license. Must be renewed each year. Vote for changes if you don't like it.

NB. I no longer smoke or drink alcohol - and I would encourage others to stop too - you'll be happier and healthier :-)


Google's email goes titsup (again)

Steve Adams

Re SLA's cont. & @Nigel Kneale

Hi Nigel & thanks for joining in :-)

Yes. Understood and agreed.

Re: "With *no* SLA, assume the worst can happen and you wouldn't have a pot to piss in when it came to compensation."

Like I say - I use a pay for email (upgraded from a one-off charge account to an annual subscription) via fastmail.fm.

I seriously considered gmail - because of all the popularity & hype etc... but when I looked at the terms (like you pasted) I used my "intelligence and intuition" and went elsewhere.

My decision was also based on the features (e.g. IMAP) and costs/value-for-money too... but the terms and support service were/are important to me too.

Are there (proper) SLAs for google's pay for services anywhere???

I don't mean "T&Cs" - I mean proper SLA type docs which give targets for availability and explain how any downtime will be managed. And what about the customer service - do you get a useful and responsive phone or email service?

I think this lack of attention to the quality of service - both provision of the service (availability, reliability, responsiveness) and customer care/support - is due to:

i) An immature market - still working out how to provide such services

ii) A lack of demand for - or lack of appetite to pay for - a quality of service beyond "you take what you get"

I would love to see a movement whereby we users/customers demanded a higher level of service (provision & support) and ensured this market matures - even in the ad-funded stuff.

Also - where I believe I will receive service (help and attention when required) I will happily pay for services.


Cheers, Steve.

Steve Adams

@ Frank

Re: "You can't have a SLA for a free service."

Why not?

The provider is perfectly entitled to offer one and I am entitled to accept it.

There may very well be issues of enforcement - but I think reputation is what is really at stake and it is in the interests of large providers to deliver what they promise.

My point is there is value to us both (provider and customer) in having an SLA - so why not have one?

Re: "If you use a free service then you get what you are given and that is all you can expect."

In the absence of an SLA (or something like it) you are correct. However - if the provider set your expectations appropriately you would be able to live with an understanding of what to expect.

If you are not interested in the terms of the service - then don't read them carry on with your "happy accepting what you get" approach.

btw. I use a pay-for email service for my primary personal email (via fastmail.fm) simply because none of the free/ad-funded services provided the level of service and support I required - even apparently for the pay-for versions.


Steve Adams



Where do I find a copy of the SLA for that google email service?

i.e. a definition of what comprises a working service and the targets for it's provision (availability, response times, helpdesk/service provision details etc. etc.).

It appears that none of the free/ad-based services actually make proper SLAs available (please do point me to exceptions!!!) .

Consequently the users/customers have no idea what level of service they are signing up to.. and the providers either have no targets - or if they do they fail to publish them.

So... how many outages of what duration over what time-period is "within the agreement" for the free/ad-funded google email?

What's acceptable to me might not be to you.

As a user/customer I want my *expectations set* accurately as to what it is that the provider is.. .providing.

If I find the service offered to be of value I can chose to use it - and if I think it's not up to the level I require I can go elsewhere.

Without a proper SLA (or something like it) how can I and the service provider possibly work out if the service fits my needs - and how can the provider be sure that my expectations are not too high for what they are offering?

If the free/ad-funded service is not appropriate for me.. maybe they can up-sell me to a paid account - where i can see and value improved targets for availability and support. But if I have no clue what each is aiming to provide (free/ad-funded vs paid-for) - how can I judge which offers best value?

Where can we start the Campaign for SLAs for all our favourite/essential online services?



Humyo cloud disappears from afternoon sky

Steve Adams


Questions to Reg's Chris Mellor - or indeed any other informed source:

Does this vendor provide SLA agrements for their customers for the services(s) provided?

If so did this outage breach the required service level?

Secondly, does the vendor provide adequate support resources (staff, communications mechanisms) to handle the volume of interest and communication from their customers during a major outage?

What was the experience of users.. did they respond to emails and phone calls with timely, informative and reassuring messages during and after the outage?

I am constantly amazed at our (customers, potential customers) acceptance of very poor levels of service for "cloud services".

What happened to SLAs and decent support?

Why do service providers - from the "free" (ad-supported) through the low-cost and up to the expensive end - appear not to give a hoot about providing a decent level of customer service.

My experience has been that many of these orgs/companies just don't take customer support seriously.. and that many punters appear to accept the poor level of service as though it were "normal".

What do others think on this topic?

Ever tried emailing yahoo or google etc. and getting a human being to answer the question in a timely and useful way?


Apple tells Mac users: Get anti-virus

Steve Adams

Why not engineer the product (OSX) to be secure?


Why should a consumer need to buy (install, admin and manage) a 3rd party product to protect an operating system?

Why do we accept that it is OK for OS vendors to ship products which they are apparently aware are vulnerable to common threats during ordinary and standard usage (e.g. a home computer user)?

Sure.. nothing can be guaranteed to be 100% secure at any time.. but as a vulnerability is discovered it should be fixed.. and if there is a period before the fix is delivered then the OS vendor and their product needs to be able to cope by itself... not require the customer to buy an "extra product".

I do not understand why we accept this approach from the vendors... they can only continue this practice if we (consumers) keep falling for it.

I use Linux... and as we all know.. there have never been and there aren't ever going to be any viri/worms/malicious code anything for *nix systems.... ;-)