* Posts by James Hughes 1

2559 posts • joined 12 Jun 2009

UK space firms forced to adjust their models of how the universe works as they lose out on Copernicus contracts

James Hughes 1

Re: EU - Do what we say or you will pay.


James Hughes 1

Re: Answer is simple

Have you ANY Idea how expensive our own constellation would be? Any idea at all?

About £15B minimum to get it up there, and a couple of million a DAY to run it.

All that money just to replicate something that ALREADY exists.

Might be cheaper if using a LEO constellation like Starlink, but LEO is getting crowded.

Here's a headline we'll run this century, mark our words: Alien invaders' AI found on Mars searching for signs of life

James Hughes 1

Or perhaps a shit in a KFC box.

Can't get your Pi fix online? The Cambridge shop's back open for business, Brits

James Hughes 1

Re: An idea for allowing hands on action...

Unfortunately, gloves prices have gone up by a factors of about 2-3 in the current crisis - what used to be 50 pairs for 4.99 is now 20 pairs for 5.99 (YMMV). So supplying gloves is an expensive business. But then so is masks I suppose. Just have to put prices up to cover the costs.

80-characters-per-line limits should be terminal, says Linux kernel chief Linus Torvalds

James Hughes 1

Re: Fixing the wrong problem

Odd, I find longer lines much easier to read and comprehend than split lines. Especially when that split has been forced by a specified line length and may not be particularly logical.

James Hughes 1

Re: Excessive complexity

Whilst EXCESSIVELY long lines can be a pain to follow, the 80 character limit makes code harder to follow because you were forced to split it when it really didn't want to be logically split. 100 seems sensible, I can comprehend lines of that length.

How generous of GitHub to slash prices and make all its core features free. So what gives? Oh right, GitLab

James Hughes 1

I use both

I prefer Github's UI, Gitlab seems quite clunky in places in comparison. But there are pros and cons for both. I'm absolutely not bothered by who owns either of them, or who monetises either of them. They are just tools to get the work done.

The show Musk go on: Tesla defies Silicon Valley coronavirus lockdown order, keeps Fremont factory open

James Hughes 1

Re: Yeah, voluntary

Ah yes, YouTube, that bastian of accurate reporting and fact checking.

Nothing wrong with electric cars that isn't worse with internal combustion - you heard it here first.

Blimey, the Musk haters are out in force today. Bunch of twats. He's just a bloke who runs a few companies. If you don't like the way he runs them, don't work for them. If you don't like his products, don't buy them. But in all other respects, haters and deniers, please just fuck off and self isolate, and that includes the internet.

After 1.5 million days of computer time, SETI@home heads home to probe potential signs of alien civilizations

James Hughes 1

Re: Sorry, too late...

Sorry, it's really isn't hard for 'us' to know that the signal could be from long dead civilizations. And astronomers are all entirely cognisant of the fact. The concept of the speed of light really isn't that difficult to understand.

Death and taxis: Windows has had enough of clinging to a cab rooftop in the London rain

James Hughes 1

We sell shitloads of Pi's in to the signage market.

Get in the C: Raspberry Pi 4 can handle a wider range of USB adapters thanks to revised design's silent arrival

James Hughes 1

Re: Forget the 'Osborne Effect':focus on the "Upton Effect".

Of course people buy them for 'other things'. And that is entirely the plan. All the profits from selling Pi;s go to the Foundation. So selling to as many people of possible is the right choice to make. And for example, making a cheaper desktop, increases the market hugely. As for hurrying out of the door, no, not really. Some issues with over heating that we eventually figured out, although all they do is throttle when hot (just like phones), the USB mistake has been fixed. Spectre? Not seen that exploited yet, I expect the dangers are somewhat overblown.

I reckon just three flaws on launch, 2 quite minor, isn't too bad.

Come to Five Guys, where the software is as fresh as the burgers... or maybe not

James Hughes 1

Re: upstart?

Really? Five Guys burgers really are good in my experience. Not cheap, but very good. Family agrees.

This AI is full of holes: Brit council fixes thousands of road cracks spotted by algorithm using sat snaps

James Hughes 1

Re: A man a plan

Because that results in a shit repair.

WannaCry ransomware attack on NHS could have triggered NATO reaction, says German cybergeneral

James Hughes 1

Re: NATO response


Good authority that 'thinning out' was used in this case - the fact there were some survivors is lucky for them.

15 years on, Euroboffins finally work out what it took to send the Huygens Titan probe into such a spin

James Hughes 1

Re: seems sloppy

I always look forward to the comments from people who know better than the people who actually designed and built a probe that spend 7 years in space then landed on a moon of another planet.

I guess climate science is also anathema to them, all those know it all scientists, giving it large.

World's richest bloke battles Oz catastro-fire with incredible AU$1m donation (aka load of cheap greenwashing)

James Hughes 1

Much jealousness here

At least, that what I assume this is. Whilst Bezos is strikingly rich (and deserves it; his company, he started from a garage), he has, at least, donated some money. Surely the percentage is irrelevant?

Linux in 2020: 27.8 million lines of code in the kernel, 1.3 million in systemd

James Hughes 1

And that's a problem why? You get a cheaper product because of it.

James Hughes 1

Re: Systemd = Marmite

Says AC. Weaksauce defined.

I use Debian (well, Raspbian), I presume that uses systemd, no issues.

That's not to say there not issues, there probably are, but for me, no problems. Why does that seem to rile anti-systemd people?

James Hughes 1

Re: "It solves a problem that people have."

You can plan for known and unknown circumstances. It's the unknown unknowns that get you.

Which is why I will always believe that software will have bugs in it, not matter how much time you spend on it. Even some of the most robust software ever written, used on, for example, space probes, occasionally reboots itself because something somewhere got in a state that was entirely unpredictable.

So never expect software written to a schedule to be bug or crash free. Because that schedule means you can never take care of everything.

$13m+ Swiss Army Knife of blenders biz collapses to fury of 20,000 unfulfilled punters

James Hughes 1

Re: Stop backing gadget products, you twits

Majority of Raspberry Pi manufacture is Wales, although we do have quite a bit of stuff made in China. But we do have people over there a lot, and have a Chinese/Hong Kong guy there permanently looking after stuff. And we still have problems....

Kickstarter people NEVER realise how much work is involved in taking a product from concept to full scale production. We get quite a bit of stick because of how long it takes us to get stuff out. But it's really because we do it properly and try not to release stuff before its ready and because doing it right takes HUGE amount of time and money. We do have occasional glitches before anyone brings them up!

High-resolution display output or Wi-Fi: It seems you can only choose one on Raspberry Pi 4

James Hughes 1

Re: I didn't bother buying a pi4 to complete the set

Not entirely sure what you are trying to say.

James Hughes 1

No, that's not the only fix.

And I doubt we will move back to full size HDMI.

James Hughes 1

Re: An RPi as a desktop computer ?

Specious argument. In three years time, when desktop PC specs are so much better than your desktop is now, does it suddenly stop becoming a desktop? Of course not.

I've just taken a few old tower system down to the tip. They were desktop PC's. None of them as fast as the Pi4.

James Hughes 1

Re: Bah

That sounds entirely unrelated to the issue at hand, which we have got a fairly good grasp on now. I use Pi4 at 1080p, connected to 5Ghz with no problems at all. Something else is amiss. Try asking on the forums.

James Hughes 1

Re: I didn't bother buying a pi4 to complete the set

On the other hand, obviously agreed with by the millions who have bought them. The phrase cut off nose to spite face comes to mind. Although would be interesting to know what compromises.

James Hughes 1

Re: and this is why

If you look inside those professional digital signage players, guess what you will find....

Aw, bad day at your air-conditioned, somewhat clean desk? Try shifting a 40-tonne fatberg

James Hughes 1

Re: From experience ...

I also had to clear out a mini-berg from our system (on path to septic tank), only about 45cm long, pipe shaped with a hole down the middle (like pipe lagging). Interestingly, I did find one wet wipe under the manhole with the berg.

Having to do it does give a greater appreciation for the guys who deal with the big ones.

ps. Wear gloves, and careful with the jet wash. You don't want splash back.

Linux kernel is getting more reliable, says Linus Torvalds. Plus: What do you need to do to be him?

James Hughes 1

Body shaming on El Reg, who would have thought it.

Tut – you wait a lifetime for an interstellar object then two come at once

James Hughes 1


Don't these things comes in three's?

Bus pass or bus ass? Hackers peeved about public transport claim to have reverse engineered ticket app for free rides

James Hughes 1

Re: Why isn't public transport free?

Our Parish Council of a very rural village looked in to this. Would cost about £5000 year to put on a bus service to take villagers in to the nearest town, once a week. Given the PC's total income is £8000/year, it's simply not cost effective for the 10 people who would use it. The money would need to come from taxation at a countrywide level, not precept at a local level.

Rebel Galaxy Outlaw: Well, lookie here! For once a space game that doesn't promise the universe

James Hughes 1

Clearly unacceptable

The original Elite was pretty groundbreaking. How DB got the line drawings fast enough for the original BBC micro is a miracle. I did talk to him about it a couple of year ago (at the Houses of Parliament, of all places). Lots of micro optimisations, and also some deft use of video mode changes part way through frames to get a combination of B&W and 4 colours graphics. And I believe all the spaceships were convex hulls, to make the back face culling simpler (could be wrong). It was a spectacularly good bit of work and kept me glued to the screen for a long time.

Take the bus... to get some new cables: Raspberry Pi 4s are a bit picky about USB-Cs

James Hughes 1

Re: Official Raspberry charger dangerous?

No. Doesn't work like that.

James Hughes 1


So, this was, basically a simple mistake, a misunderstanding when trying to reduce component count AIUI - important when you sell a lot of kit, and especially on Pi's where the profit margins are slim anyway. So, it'll be fixed in a board revision in the next few months. It is indeed odd, as the boss said, that this didn't come up in testing. We had an internal test program, and lots of alpha/beta tester, and no-one reported it. We did use a number of different power supplies prior to building our own, they all worked!

In the meantime, not really a big deal. Use a cheaper cable, use an adapter, use the very reasonably priced official power supply, use someone else's reasonably priced power supply. Some of the reports 'out there' seem to be promoting alternative devices - and by some coincidence, the links they provide to these (not so good) products seem to be amazon associate or similar links, so they make money on the sales....how odd.

My own opinion - if you buy a dedicated power supply, you can use your Macbook charger for charging your Macbook without turning the Pi off....

Finally in the UK: Apollo 11 lands... in a cinema near you

James Hughes 1

Do they have girls in your mum's basement?

Pull up your SoCs, it's rubber-glove time: European Commission to probe Broadcom over microchip supply deals

James Hughes 1

Re: If you want to buy enough of them

Actually, he still is an employee of Brcm.

And of course, nowadays, the income stream to Brcm from RP is quite healthy. Brcm do not subsidise RP in any way, so it was good decision in hindsight!

James Hughes 1

It's a little more complicated than that! For example, Raspberry Pi have written lots of the firmware blob which is used in the Brcm chip in the Raspberry Pi. Which means that third parties cannot use it without Raspberry Pi permission (unlikely to get that for obvious reasons!). So even if someone can buy the chips (they can), they would not be able to use the latest firmware. So third parties making Pi clones using the same chip isn't going to happen.

And that's just one reason.

Go fourth and multi-Pi: Raspberry Pi 4 lands today with quad 1.5GHz Arm Cortex-A72 CPU cores, up to 4GB RAM...

James Hughes 1

Re: DSI display @4K ?

HDMI only. The DSI is as before.

James Hughes 1

Re: Still a PoE hat?

Yup, that's basically the story of Raspberry Pi, doesn't matter what we do, someone always wants something else, AND ITS OUR FAULT.

James Hughes 1

Re: Good stuff

USB3-ethernet adapter should do the trick. Putting two on the board would be expensive, and a cost passed on to all users despite it being a tiny use use. Probably isn't even room.)

James Hughes 1

Re: Still no damn onboard flash

SD cards are still the best way for the 'desktop' Pi, cheap and easy to use. And yes, we are entirely aware of lifetime issues, which you can mitigate hugely by avoiding writing to them unless you really need to (ie logs to tmpfs etc). Some people have had Pi's running for multiple years with no SD card issues.

The cost of adding EMMC would be a real problem - margins on devices like this are small - we don't want to make them even smaller.

If you want industrial, use the compute module, which has EMMC. (No Pi4 version yet).

That said, there is some flash on the Pi4! Not a huge amount, but it contains the bootloader. In the long time, it MIGHT be possible to leverage that, but that is subject to change.

Cannot comment on the Google stuff, we are not Google.

James Hughes 1

Re: Worst product launch ever!

I can weld you up a stand in the garage, proper metal etc. £999. It'll be massively overpriced though. I could even put a magnet in it for keeping paperclips safe.

James Hughes 1

Re: victims of own success

Your point is obscure - what are you talking about?

James Hughes 1

Re: Upton reckons that the 2GB version will be the most popular

In our testing, for general desktop use, the 2GB was fine. Big compiles (kernel etc) would benefit from 4GB.

James Hughes 1

Re: Ethernet

Er, bollocks. Forced to eat own dog food. The ethernet is a native interface on the SoC, it's the USB3 stuff that is on PCIe. Note to self, think before posting.

That said, the GiGE is GigE, and not via USB2.

James Hughes 1

Re: Pi-top

PiTOP were in the office Friday, so they are aware of the change, and presumably have things in hand.

James Hughes 1

As above, read the specs. Yes, it will make quite a good NAS, the networking is full GigE, and the USB3 means attached drives are very fast.

James Hughes 1

Re: Ethernet

No, which had you actually read the specs, would have been obvious. Its on a PCIe bus, and gets very close to theoretical max (1Gbs) in testing.

James Hughes 1

Re: B****r!

I think if you go in to the shop in Cambridge, you could exchange that....

James Hughes 1

Re: Sata

USB and PXE boot is on the list of stuff to do. Won't be long. WIth the new EEPROM based bootloader, this sort of thing is much easier to implement.

James Hughes 1

Re: Gone is the full-sized HDMI type A connector,

There simply isn't room on the PI4 for two full size connectors, so it had to be done.

I think the Zero is mini-hdmi....


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