* Posts by Mike Tester

3 posts • joined 30 Aug 2006

ATI driver flaw exposes Vista kernel

Mike Tester

This would be funny if it wasn't so serious

Ballmer famously claimed that "Vista is the most secure operating system ever." When I finished laughing, I took a look at the Microsoft vision of "security".

"Vista" is actually just a skinned version of XP with a bit of (very nasty) DRM thrown into the mix. The "security" model really just consists of nagging the hell out of the user with a series of irritating "nag" dialogues. The second time this happens, Joe user will switch off the "security" features. There are actually NO improvements to fundamental security as promised.

In fact, "Vista" is more open to abuse than XP.

On some hardware platforms, "Vista" is hideously unstable - it was rushed to market without even the most rudimentary set of drivers - so OEMs are ditching it and returning to XP (or Ubuntu!).

As ever, MS have entirely failed to deliver a working product. This adds to their long string of failures. In fact, if you think about it, MS have NEVER released ANYTHING that works properly!

Game Over, Microsoft!

Fatman iTube amplifier

Mike Tester

Deliberate distortion

Speaking as an electronic engineer, and as an audiophile, valves add EVEN harmonic distortion.

This distortion is great in a guitar amplifier - it adds the colouration that guitarists want. It can also be pleasant in a microphone preamplifier in a recording studio - it can enhance vocal sounds.

However, it's NOT appropriate for high quality audio reproduction. Do you really want distortion added to the entire content of the material? I don't think so!

There is NO valve amplifier at ANY price that can compete with a simple, cheap semiconductor design. My semiconductor-based amplifier will win on noise, hum, transient response, power output, price, reliability, frequency response, distortion, and any other parameter you want to throw at it except weight!

The only remaining use for valves is in high power TV transmitters - they are largely redundant for all other functions!

Orange SPV M3100 3G handset

Mike Tester

Orange SPV Phones

I have tried and returned EVERY Orange SPV phone they've released. They are all utterly useless:

They "run" Windows, which perpetually crashes and is really slow, they have VERY poor receive sensitivity, low transmit power, poor bluetooth (both range and quality are awful), and poor battery life. In short, they're USELESS.

I'm now happily using a Treo without problems.


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