* Posts by hitmouse

506 publicly visible posts • joined 15 Dec 2008


HP reveals bonkers $5k foldable tablet/laptop/desktop


As long as you can fondle it, it's a fondleslab.


The "A4" in the title is inaccurate. The device might be A4, but the wide bottom bezel reduces it to 13.3" screen, which is about a 15% reduction in area. When you're playing piano music with a lot of chords or annotations, that makes a difference!


I would like a lower-powered version just for the screen. That gives me one-two pages of music at a piano or on a music-stand.

Unfortunately most fondleslabs top out at less than 14.4" needed for an A4 page (or the aspect ratio is all wrong, optimised for movies). I blame reviewers who now all complain if a device is heavier than a Starbucks grande latte and forget 1990s laptops that weighed as much as a bicycle.

Lost voices, ignored words: Apple's speech recognition needs urgent reform


Microsoft's English recognition is pretty good, but it has made little effort outside of US vocal dialects and spelling. If you switch to British or Australian (for example) in Teams then you have a double issue with reco being poorer and ludicrous homophones being used in transcript e.g. someone thinks that "cheques" is uniformly used where "checks" is uttered. See also "draughts", "philtres" and a number of other default renderings even when grammatically incorrect.

Microsoft promises to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation for next decade. Sony believes it


These are not the days of yore with Ballmer's paranoia causing inertia in Microsoft's product lines Today's Microsoft is busy churning out apps and services for Linux, Android and Apple platforms. They're not going to miss an opportunity to make PS bucks as well.

Take Sony's reservations as projection. That is a company that will self-sabotage with whole new hardware platforms in order to retain control.

Microsoft to hike prices in Australia and New Zealand


It's a pity Microsoft doesn't provide parity of service or features with its US product in other countries despite charging price parity.

Australia to phase out checks by 2030


Re: Don't know what you've lost till it's gone.....

But many of these venues manually set the higher fee irrespective of whether you use a credit or debit card.


Run it through Microsoft Speech transcription

If you set your language to English(UK) or English(Asutralia) it transcribes every utterance of "check" as "cheque"

So even if you're just talking about "checks and balances", "check in on someone", "a pattern with checks", it all comes out as "cheques and balances", "cheque in on someone", "a pattern with cheques", ...

Google Photos AI still can't label gorillas after racist errors


I tried to enter words in a US newspaper word puzzle last month. "Cracker" was not permissible, but their lists of allowable words included "titty, titties, ..." That circles back to the issue of why male nipples in photos are permissible but female ones aren't.


Google Photos doesn't allow you to search for photos with words that (only Americans I guess) would find unseemly, even if the photos and albums are labelled with those words. I have photos from European towns that have been labelled automatically (via encoding) with words that have a different meaning in English, but Google slams its "one-size fits all languages and cultures" approach.

AFACIT OneDrive and Dropbox don't have this issue with the same files and words.

Microsoft can't stop injecting Copilot AI into every corner of its app empire


Re: Essentially

Or government departments relying on Chinese walls between them, but they're all in the same tenant.


Re: AI, AI, AI!

Still can't get either of them to consistently recognise that if I'm outside the US then my dates are not mm/dd/yyyy. They keep making inferences which are ABS(12-mm) months wrong.

Academics have 'no confidence' in Edinburgh University's response to its Oracle disaster


You expect a university to practice the skills it sells to students?

Can I interest in an Honorary LOL.D ?

Here's how Microsoft hopes to inject ChatGPT into all your apps and bots via Azure


Data residency

It will be interesting to see how Microsoft manages data residency at national and tenant levels with respect to the overall training set

Latest Windows 11 build shares desktop real estate with, er, Spotify


Re: Just say no

You'll know you've succeeded when your USB devices stop working.


Oh great, a widget that re-installs itself every time I want to use it.

Polish for Windows Spotlight and tabs for Notepad in latest Insiders build


Re: Polish for Windows Spotlight and ...

You're going to love the Vantabold text setting.

Microsoft fumbles zero trust upgrade for some Asian customers


Microsoft can't even handle non US dates for most of its services these days, so double-byte issues is just the tip of the technical-debtberg.

Elon Musk to step down as Twitter CEO: Help us pick his replacement


I vote for Iago, Jafar's offsider from Aladdin.

"Personality. Iago is very stingy and typically allies himself with whoever benefits him the most. He's characterized with a frequent useage of biting sarcasm as well as a sharp wit."

Having his tweets read in the voice of the late Gilbert Gottfried is a bonus.

The IT decision-maker that really matters? Your pet


Re: Why?

1. Add kitty collar with temperature sensor

2. The entire neighbourhood receives quotes for under-floor insulation.


"My dog goes absolutely mental when you say "Alexa" "

So does Jeff Bezos

France says non to Office 365 and Google Workspace in school


It's more the sheer antipathy of French office workers to the concept of productivity (which I've heard expressed quite emotionally in customer market research groups) and the clear desire to avoid any electronic paper trail of decisions or accountability.


"There is no reason to."

University staff and students literally squirrel inappropriate data into any IT storage system available to them. The only rhyme or reason given is "for backup".

Email is commonly used to route copies of sensitive data despite explicit instructions against it. Students learn this from the example of senior academics and Medics. Universities don't discipline this sort of behaviour.


This is notably a problem where university students involved in medical degrees may be given Google accounts which means that they can be illegally transmitting patient-related medical information to the US.

Microsoft leaves the Office, rebrands everything as 365


That was a penetrating observation.


Re: Survey missing option

You must spend a lot of time evaluating 20 years' worth of new features in a dozen applications!

When are we gonna stop calling it ransomware? It's just data kidnapping now


Re: Not Data KIdnapping but Datanapping.

That's going to pose problems when i explain my afternoon catnapping.

Brexit dividend? 'Newly independent' UK will be world's 'data hub', claims digital minister


Re: Is the UK Government still a thing?

New policy is to erode the cliff until the entirety of UK is at sea level.

There can be only one... Microsoft Excel Champion


Re: Excel is why we can't have a simple "quick'n'dirty" database app in Windows

User inability to conceptualise relational databases is the main reason, or their desire to treat every problem as the nail matching the hammer they've mastered. Hence the resourceful person who haunted user forums in the 90s with the relational database they built with Word tables and WordBASIC.

Users mostly want tables with some cleverness, hence so many focused tools for table management.

The sins of OneDrive as Microsoft's cloud storage service turns 15


OneDrive has to sync to multiple client OS, so path length, allowable characters etc are lowest common denominator for those and various web standards.

The number of files limits are well documented. There's a single page (easily locateable via web search) detailing limits.

"a customer couldn't restore a file because it said she had it open. She didn't. Then it wouldn't let me view files online because the option just disappeared from the right-click menu." Probably created files or folders past the path length limit. I've seen this behaviour.

Microsoft tests CD ripping for Media Player in Windows 11


Let me introduce you to the concept of a "driver"...


Lame MP3, FLAC and other add-ons for WMP have been around for free for many years. Anyone who can string two search terms together would have found them. It's the codec licensing issues (copyleft in one case) that have precluded shipping with Windows in the past


Re: Centred start

Microsoft had prerelease builds of Windows in the late 90s with a centred start button. It's not as if it's such a blindingly unobvious design choice as to require copying,

The movement from mouse-centred to pen/finger-centric selection in the intervening decades is more relevant as Fitt's law issues are weighed differently.


Microsoft did have a tool focussed on ripping LP and cassette in the late 90s. It had some UI for how gaps and tracks were mapped, and to deal with audio books.

First-ever James Webb Space Telescope image revealed


Re: Larger still

And then have a referendum to vote ourselves out of contact with them

UK Info Commissioner slams use of WhatsApp by health officials during pandemic


Re: Here's a clue bozos!

If you use Teams chat (as mandated in many regulated environments) it's rated for medical privacy and content is not cached locally.

However you can't tell a doctor that they've made a choice showing they aren't brilliant in technology understanding...as they just stare you down and say "people will die" .... mic drop.


They gave their data to everyone. If they used WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger then the transmitted images land in local phone storage where they are freely available to any backup provider plus random image app vendors

Netflix to crack down on account sharing, offer ad-laden cheaper options



I dont think that Netflix is worse than the networks are with respect to series cancellations. It does have at least oodles of detailed viewing data, as opposed to selective polling and advertiser apathy.

Google's plan to win the cloud war hinges on its security aspirations


" They sent a "your name has been mentioned in..." email when someone mentioned me in a office365 app"

That means that your name has been @mentioned just like on Twitter or other message platforms. So it is simply a message via lookup in your organisation's active directory. You may as well complain about receiving emails because someone looked up your email address.


If you're in a regulated environment outside the US then Google is simply not an option. Google's servers are in the US, so data residency laws mitigate against using it. Also Google's Ts & Cs are a big raspberry to IP and confidentiality so if you're doing research then you don't want to be sending your data to Google to train its AI.

Contrast Microsoft and Amazon who offer regional or in-country data centres.

Microsoft brings Cloud PCs and local desktops together in Windows 365


Re: What am I missing?

It's exactly what systems/data managers in regulated environments (eg healthcare) have needed for years. Relying on doctors and reception staff to honour patient privacy and record security is way too much to ask for.


Re: New, new, new!

It's very likely that they are just surfacing Teams/Yammer features in the OS just as with file favourites, tasks and other M365 features

Windows 11 growth at a standstill amid stringent hardware requirements


Re: Why move to Windows 11 ?

If you haven't noticed the substantial improvements across versions then you're in the wrong industry.


Inflation and supply chain issues are not making hardware updates a priority item for most.

Russia labels Meta an 'extremist' organization, bans Instagram


In other news, samovar calls chaynik black.

IT blamed after HR forgets to install sockets in new office


Re: I've seen many deparments terrified by HR

HR's response to unhappy staff: advertise for a "Happyness(*) Specialist" at a rate higher than all the underpaid and unhappy staff.

*yes that was the spelling

HR secret is to employ their own staff in inflated job levels to boost the levels of their managers

Saving a loved one from a document disaster


My late father would allow anyone to install anything on his work computer.... leading to me having to diagnose problem from faxed printouts of config.sys and autoexec.bat

Ah the days of malware only arriving on a floppy disc.

The end of free Google storage for education


Re: Until when?

Adobe abandoned the student-to-grave strategy a long time ago.

France says Google Analytics breaches GDPR when it sends data to US


Many countries have data residency requirements for specific uses such as research or medical data.

There is little clarity from the major cloud services providers (Google, AWS, Microsoft Azure) as to whether cedata processing e.g. for voice, is done locally, in "region" or in US. There's even less clarity over whether third-party plugins to their platform services obey any residency laws.

No more DRM-free downloads as Amazon's ComiXology app set to disappear inside Kindle


Amazon and Comixology have not figured out how to deal with customers who have Comixology content from USA (odiginal sole option), and Kindle book content from anothrr Amazon store e.g. Amazon.co.uk

Apparently they are unable to transfer content from one store to another.