* Posts by Portent

61 posts • joined 5 Jan 2009

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BoJo looks to jumpstart UK economy with £6k taxpayer-funded incentive for Brits to buy electric cars – report

Portent

I have an old diesel car, used for local journeys, which I would normally be interested in swapping for an EV. But with the world economy in ruins there is no way I'm swapping for something that means I have to spend more. No new cars for me until the world recovers.

India allows half of IT services workers back to the office next week

Portent

Re: Look forward to daily chats

Do you want free ringdings with your internet service providings?

Open-source, cross-platform and people seem to like it: PowerShell 7 has landed

Portent

Re: What's the point of it on *nix?

I'm not sure I agree, One of the main Unix ethos is to "do one thing and do it well". The use of multiple small utilities, each feeding data to the next, is a deliberate design choice so that each utility is small, concise, reliable and works with each other. Personally I think I like that design choice.

EA boots Linux gamers out of multiplayer Battlefield V, Penguinistas respond by demanding crippling boycott

Portent

Well judging by the Ubuntu subsystem for Windows I think they already noticed Linux is massively popular among some users.

Having trouble finding a job in your 40s? Study shows some bosses like job applicants... up until they see dates of birth

Portent

Re: I gave up 10 years ago at 38!

I'm 50 now and worked in IT since I left school. I didn't go to university and have luckily never found it held me back (it was a different world back then). Like you I learned on home computers in the 1980's and 1990's (VIC 20, C64, Amiga). The difference with people who learned during that era was that we did it because we LOVED it and not because of the money (the money definitely came later and was definitely good). I'm probably in the minority nowadays but when interviewing people I don't care about their level of education. I look for that genuine passion for the subject. I look for the person who is self taught because they want to be in IT. Sadly most people nowadays seem to get into IT because it's a well paid job. But I look for the real enthusiast who still teaches themselves new stuff as a hobby.

Hell hath GNOME fury: Linux desktop org swings ax at patent troll's infringement claim

Portent

Re: I'll have to donate

Same. Not a gnome user but will be donating. Strength in numbers. Supporting FOSS.

Apple will wring out $18bn by upselling NAND to fanbois – analyst

Portent

Re: think sports stadiums, train stations

I'm surprised such venues haven't yet started upselling WiFi or localised 4G/5G hotspots, with surge pricing pushing it through the roof.

Grav-wave eggheads come closer to nailing down Hubble's Constant – the universe's speedy rate of expansion

Portent
Holmes

What if the universe expands at different rates over time?

What if the universe is indeed inside a black hole? As matter falls into that parent black hole the amount of matter inside it increases. As matter inside increases then it causes expansion of our universe. If this is the case then the rate of expansion will vary depending how much matter is falling into it. Clues that this is happening would be a very rapid rate of expansion at the start of our universe and then a difficulty over time to precisely measure the rate of expansion.

Metropolitan Police's facial recognition tech not only crap, but also of dubious legality – report

Portent

Re: It's in its infancy, but it will improve

Yes you do have a tracking device in your pocket. Google has previously been found to track you based on mapping all the wifi routers in your area. Based on the strength of each signal it is able to position you surprisingly accurately. That's why, whenever you turn on GPS on an Android phone, it asks if it can track wifi to make it 'more accurate'.

Bill G on Microsoft's biggest blunder... Was it Bing, Internet Explorer, Vista, the antitrust row?

Portent

Microsoft is an interesting company but not one that sees the future very often. It did predict the massive adoption of DOS, BASIC and Windows (all of which were licensed from other companies or the idea copied). But since the early days they seem to have failed to predict the next big trend.

Internet - Spent years trying to catch up

Games - Had to buy DirectX to compete with other API's such as Glide (3Dfx) and PowrerVR. Then had to throw money at XBox to make it successful.

Languages - Had to copy Java to create C# (after losing a battle for Visual J++)

Smart phones and tablets - Too little, too late

Irish data cops are shoving a probe right into Google's ads

Portent
IT Angle

Option 1: Buy it directly from the credit card company.

Option 2: Buy it from the shop directly. If the shop has an online presence which you have previously used, then it can easily link your shop and online sales (and therefore your identity) if you use the same card for both.

Simples.

Nvidia keeping mum on outlook for year as data centre slows, channel chokes on crypto crap

Portent

Re: Gaming revenue dived

Same here. I went with a Vega 64 last year and have no need to upgrade any time soon. But if I did then I'd stick with AMD because of their support for open architectures (freesync, although I know NV now support that too) and open source drivers in the Linux kernel.

Wanted: Big iron geeks to help restore IBM 360 mainframe rescued from defunct German factory by other big iron geeks

Portent

I bet Gordon Clark could put that back together...

How much open source is too much when it's in Microsoft's clutches? Eclipse Foundation boss sounds note of alarm

Portent

Re: "if you followed the path of evolution you saw the market choices shrink"

My bank (or at least the one I work in) has started to use MariaDB for a few smaller projects.

The Year Of Linux On The Desktop – at last! Windows Subsystem for Linux 2 brings the Linux kernel into Windows

Portent

Re: It has to be said

Two major factors in this are:

1) MS has a lot of money it can throw at the problem. The WINE project is primarily a volunteer effort with some corporate support such as, more recently, Valve.

2) MS can look at open documentation and even look at the source code for Linux. But WINE developers have to blindly guess and try to reverse engineer Windows API's (which MS can and do change over time).

TalkTalk kept my email account active for 8 years after I left – now it's spamming my mates

Portent

I once had fun with Talk Talk...

A number of years ago my broadband provider was taken over by Talk Talk. I received a nice letter from them welcoming me. They then managed to completely forget I was a customer. I wasn't billed for two years but I was stuck on a really slow connection. I couldn't upgrade it to a faster line because Talk Talk said I wasn't their customer. I couldn't leave Talk Talk because whenever I tried the new ISP said there was a Talk Talk marker on my line and I would need the leaving code. Talk Talk wouldn't give me a leaving code because they said I wasn't their customer. I was stuck on 2mbit for years. While many would say it was great not being billed I needed the line for work and it would stop working randomly several times a week. Of course Talk Talk ignored me when I reported the problem because they said I wasn't a customer.

I only managed to get it sorted when I raised a complaint with OFCOM.

Lenovo kicks down door of MWC, dumps a stack of sexy new ThinkPads

Portent

The chiclet style keyboard also had several keys removed and rearranged, as well as different key caps.

The TP25 wasn't available for non-US keyboard layouts.

Portent
Thumb Up

Re: Gained?

The T480 has the bridge battery system; an internal battery and a hot swappable external.

How do you like them Apples? Tim Cook's iPhones sitting in the tree, feeling unloved by the Chinese

Portent

It's not just phones either. Take a look around next time you're in Starbucks and you'll notice that the sea of Macbooks has diminished to a small puddle. The number of Windows laptops is increasing.

Congrats, Satya Nadella. In just five years, you've turned Microsoft from Neutral Evil to, er, merely True Neutral

Portent

Re: "GPL is cancer"

No way to make money selling software on Linux? Well I pay around £200 a year for a personal Jetbrains All Products license to run on Linux. That's more than I spent on Windows wmsoftware when I did run Windows.

Sorry, Samsung. Seems nobody is immune to peak smartphone

Portent

Re: "All I really need now is a lot better battery life."

Phones are "good enough" now. The problem is that batteries degrade. So last year I bought one of the last premium phones with a battery (and headphone jack!) - an LG V20. I even bought that used so it was very cheap, and bought a couple of new batteries for it. I now don't plan to change my phone for two or three years unless I break it, it fails or 5G becomes available, cheap and desirable. I'm now out of the new phone market for a while and I suspect many people are.

Oz cops investigating screams of 'why don't you die?' find bloke in battle with spider

Portent
Joke

This story has legs...

Ding dong merrily on high. In Berkeley, the bots are singeing: Self-driving college cooler droid goes up in flames

Portent
Flame

I have a bad feeling about this Chewey

These are not the droids you are cooking for...

Who's watching you from an unmarked van while you shop in London? Cops with facial recog tech

Portent
Trollface

Business opportunity

I'm gonna make a fortune selling balaclavas :)

Windows 10 can carry on slurping even when you're sure you yelled STOP!

Portent

No trust

2018 was the year I finally lost trust in Windows and moved to Linux full time for everything except a few small Windows only games (and frankly I haven't used those in months). I'd dabbled in Linux for years but earlier this year I'd just had enough of not feeling like my PC was actually mine. I'm now happily running Kubuntu with Firefox and am looking to reduce my footprint on anything Google too. The only area I don't think I can replace Google from is youtube.

Supernovae may explain mass extinctions of marine animals 2.6 million years ago

Portent
Mushroom

Douglas Adams knew all about it

So long and thanks for all the fish.

Open the pod bay doors: Voice of HAL 9000 Douglas Rain dies at 90

Portent

RIP

Sad times :(

Macs to Linux fans: Stop right there, Penguinista scum, that's not macOS. Go on, git outta here

Portent

Think Different. ThinkPad.

'nuff said.

Microsoft points to a golden future where you can make Windows 10 your own

Portent

Re: What about the stuff that we really don't want...

That's exactly what I did. Also running Kubuntu and also not looking back. I genuinely now prefer it to Windows for everything except games (and many of those now run under Steam's Proton).

The last phablet? 6.4in Samsung Galaxy Note 9 leaves you $1k lighter, needs 'water cooling'

Portent

I'm out

Top end smartphones are just too expensive nowadays. I just buy a sim only deal and either a mid range phone (Lenovo P2 was my previous one for £199 with 5000mah battery) or a used previous generation top end phone (LG V20 for £160). The V20 is an interesting prospect. I can swap batteries for use days away from a charger, the DAC is amazing on headphones, a huge screen and it still has infra red for controlling my TV. Yet is was cheap enough that if it fails tomorrow, or if I drop it, lose it on a night out, or whatever, that I can just go and buy something else without worrying too much about it.

When I compare that to a £1000 iphone X or £1250 S9 it's just obvious to me that buying a new top end phone is for poor people. It even sends the message that you care what people think of your phone rather than how you can use money to improve your life. It's nuts.

Also no notch :)

ZX Spectrum Vega+ blows a FUSE: It runs open-source emulator

Portent

Better build quality than the original ZX81.

HTC U12+: You said we should wait and review the retail product. Hate to break it to you, but...

Portent

I'm the same... I strongly prefer a phone without a removable battery. My last phone as a Lenovo P2 which has a fantastic battery. But I just grabbed a used LG V20 and a few new batteries instead. That should last me a few years until battery technology improves enough.

Happy birthday, you lumbering MS-DOS-based mess: Windows 98 turns 20 today

Portent

At least it was better than...

Windows ME

Microsoft says Windows 10 April update is fit for business rollout

Portent

Hahahahaha. The Win 10 April update was what finally pushed me over the edge to move to Linux full time. There are loads of issues with it.

Microsoft wants serious, non-gaming developers to make more money

Portent

If you're a a non-gaming application developer you seem to have choices:

1) Self host it. Charge what you like. Keep 100% but spend a little on advertising it.

3) Put it on the Windows Store. Pay MS a percentage. you'll still need to advertise it.

What's the advantage of having it in the Windows Store? What do you get for handing over a percentage, however small or large, to MS?

Folks are shocked – shocked – that CIA-backed Amazon is selling face-recog tech to US snoops, cops

Portent

Zero Wrong

All your face are belong to us...

There will be blood: BT to axe 13,000 employees

Portent

No people skills whatsovever

' Speaking of the latest job-shedding, chief exec Gavin Patterson, said: “I am really excited to be delivering the next stage of BT’s transformation and have put in place the team that will support me in achieving these objectives.” '

--- This shows a complete lack of people skills and empathy at the affect his decision will have on thousands of lives. It's a completely inappropriate comment. What a ******.

HP Ink to compensate punters for bricking third-party ink cartridges

Portent

My HP printer rejected a third party cartridge. When it dies I won't be buying from them again. I'll probably get Epsom.

Shock poll finds £999 X too expensive for happy iPhone owners

Portent

I used to be an early adopter of technology. Nowadays most budget phones are good enough. I last upgrades when my phone finally died. I bought a £200 Lenovo P2 SIM free. It's never going to beat an S8/S9 or iPhone 8/X for most features. But it has a two to three day battery and is 80% as good for everything compared to them. I just don't see the point spending £800 to £1000 on a phone.

Wait, what? The Linux Kernel Mailing List archives lived on ONE PC? One BROKEN PC?

Portent

Re: £120 for 4MB

Similar here; The work IT building was broken into and the RAM taken but the machines left on the desk.

Black & Blue: IBM hires Bain to cut costs, up productivity

Portent
Flame

Down, down, deeper and down...

IBM now firmly in a death spiral...

Intel, Microsoft confess: Meltdown, Spectre may slow your servers

Portent

Re: There you have it: security or performance or switch to AMD

Not on Linux. A second patch was applied to the Linux kernel to exclude the Meltdown workaround if the processor was not Intel. So AMD chips will not be impacted by Meltdown or the slow workaround.

IBM opens emergency escape hatch to TSS volunteers

Portent
Pirate

Re: Import duties

And the UK government wonder why we can't entice enough people to get into IT. What's in it for those people if they will just get laid off a few years down the line.

Wi-Fi sex toy with built-in camera fails penetration test

Portent

Plugins and Exits?

Does it support plugins and user exits?

Windows 10 Anniversary Update draws nearer with Inky preview

Portent

I think I've finally given up

I loved XP. I liked W7 a lot. I was prepared to live with W8 once I added the start button back to make it like W7. Unfortunately my son accidentally allowed the PC to upgrade to W10 when he was using the PC. I just can't get on with it anymore. I hate the start menu and it's covered in spyware by many accounts. Everything seems so dumbed down that I prefer using my tablet. Even if I re-install W8 it will nag me to death to upgrade.

The risky thing for MS is that many of us no longer play games on the PC. I've been an on-and-off Linux user for many years but couldn't move away from Windows because of the need for games. But I don't play them anymore; it's been years. With such a choice of Linux distro's I've found several that give me just what I'm looking for. I'll live with W10 so my son can play the occasional game himself. But I think I'm just going to dual boot into Linux as my main desktop now. Windows feels too cumbersome and feels like it gets in the way. All I want is a simple desktop.

You'll NEVER guess who has bought I Taught Taylor Swift How To Give Head dot-com

Portent
Thumb Up

Re: My Lovely .Horse

Down with this sort of thing.

The Tomorrow People jaunt back to the airwaves

Portent
Happy

I wish they would remake...

I have great memories of watching the Tomorrow People. I wish someone would remake Sapphire and Steel too.

Why next iPhone screen could be made of SAPPHIRE - and a steal...

Portent
Thumb Up

Where's Silver?

I'm loving the Sapphire and Steel reference :)

The year GNOMES, Ubuntu sufferers forked off to Mint Linux

Portent

Mint with a dash of Cinnamon for me

I was a long standing Ubuntu user who had previously come from RH and later Suse (which I voluntarily paid for). But Unity killed Ubuntu for me. I tried to like it. I really did. But eventually I gave up and moved to Mint Cinnamon which I am very happy with. As it matures I'll probably go with the Debian version of it.

Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet creator Gerry Anderson dies at 83

Portent

5-4-3-2-1 Thunderbirds are gone!

I have so many happy memories of Joe 90, Stingray, Captain Scarlet, Thunderbirds and Space 1999 from my childhood on Saturday mornings.

5-4-3-2-1 Thunderbirds are gone! :(

RIP

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