* Posts by Stacy

421 publicly visible posts • joined 17 Jun 2009


Is your kid looking at GCSE in computer science? It's exam-only from 2022 – Ofqual


Re: You missed one...

Only if they can display no understanding of what it is they copied. But are sure of it's quality because they got it at Stack Overflow :)

Chrome, Firefox pull very unstylish Stylish invasive browser plugin


Re: You missed one...

Not sure about that... At least in my country... I've turned down better paying jobs to stay where I am because I believe in the company and it's ethics - these have been demonstrated repeatedly over the last 12 years that I have worked there.

On top of that, I feel that where I am I have the right to refuse to implement something that I feel goes against those ethics. It has happened, and generally results in a conversation about why I feel that strongly about it. In 12 years it's only happened a couple of times, and has always turned out well at the end.

I appreciate not all companies are like this, and that paying the bills is important. But, for my country at least, there are more jobs than developers if you find yourself being asked to do bad things you should either look at trying to change the culture of where you work, or look for employment that doesn't make you need to shower 10 times a day. If you have the options to look elsewhere and don't then it's definitely also the developer...

Dual-screen laptops debut at Asus' Computex chat


Re: WTF, why?

I see it as more of a luggable than portable solution.

Most of the time when I use my laptop I have the option to use an external keyboard. In that case dual portrait screens are useful - more useful than a keyboard in the machine itself.

When I occasionally use it on the sofa, or in-between destinations, having the ability to type on the second screen could be useful.

As a proof of concept I like it. Would it be useful in the real world? I don't know - but I like that someone is trying things to see how it actually works.

PC recycler gets 15 months in the clink for whipping up 28,000 bootleg Windows 7, XP recovery discs


Re: Heavy handed indeed

I'm not sure here. From what I understood in the article he could get the correct recovery discs. But would have to have paid 25 for each disc.

I wonder if he could have downloaded the image and restored it to the machines himself so as to not need the discs for the end users?

Or... Did he know that he could get the discs? Not that I imagine that defense would have helped on court...

But I'm still against copyright as a criminal offence. Surely these should be a civil case? And a prison sentence is OTT...

Facebook users pwnd by phone with account recovery vulnerability


I kept mine in Holland as much as possible (I only changed once in 17 years as the company took over my contract and then went bankrupt - the phone company would only let me keep my number - with them, converting it to a private account again - if I paid my employers debt to them), and in the UK always kept the same number.

But out of the people I know in both countries, I am in the minority. It seems (note: personal anecdotal evidence only :) ) many people think that it costs money or is somehow unsafe to keep the same number...

Virtual reality headsets even less popular than wearable devices


Re: You missed one...

Yup, I'm quite happy with my Sony PSVR.

Sure it's not as amazing as some of the others, but it was cheap enough to be something to do with a bonus as we had the PS4 already.

The problem for me is motion sickness - something that I hope they get sorted soon - I've heard that some games are worse than others, and to be fair the instructions say start with 15 minute sessions and gradually increase the amount of time you spend in the headset. My issue is that it isn't a gradual hit, but a fine one second and spend the next two hours recovering the next...

But, what is there is really impressive, and very immersive!

Let's praise Surface, not bury it


Re: The PC is not dying

I'd agree. If I look outside of professional use / gaming I see very little PC use these days.

I'm not sure that anyone in my family has a PC in weekly use at home any more. Tablets seem to do everything they need. Or the have an aging (because, yes, the year on year gains are not needed for most people) PC / laptop for those times when a tablet isn't enough.

But then what do a majority of non-geeks do with a 'computer' these days? Surd the net, facebook, twitter, book vacations and shop. Even email isn't used that much anymore - instant message on your platform of choice seems to be the first choice of many - though I'd much rather use email!

I have a laptop for coding and making VideoScribes. Most of my photo blog posts are written on my phone. Most shopping is done on my phone. It's always to hand and is simply easier (as long as the site is well designed and responsive...) This reply has been written on my phone. PCs are simply not as needed as previously.

New MacBook Pro beckons fanbois to become strip pokers


Re: "Touch" in the classroom

Ok, no fan of Macs in general and this refresh specifically.

But... You're not worried about kids picking their nose whilst typing, but a touch bar is an issue? :)

Zero-day hole can pwn millions of LastPass users, all that's needed is a malicious site


Re: And there I was...

I'm assuming that he managed to get around the master password issue - otherwise the pain is limited and not the 'its the end of the world' that this is reported as. It's still not good, obviously, but there are levels of 'We're screwed!' :)

I am hoping that those users who use two factor authentication (one of the first things I set up when joining the site - and one of the first things they recommend doing just in case something like this ever happens) are protected... And I am very happy that whilst I use this, I also use two factor authentication for all of my important accounts and don't just rely on the passwords...

I am wondering how long they will take to reply to the risk - one of the reasons I picked them is that I found good examples of them being open with issues in the past rather than trying to cover it up when I was researching a vault.

RIP Sir Terry Pratchett: Discworld author finally gets to meet DEATH


I know one shouldn't be, but I'm in total shock over the news. I always said I didn't cry when someone famous who I didn't know personally dies but my wife arrived home this afternoon with me in tears. I thought I was being daft, she commented on just how deeply his writing must have spoken to me.

So long sir Terry, I only managed to meet you once but you come across as a wonderful person and made the queue of fans feel like you were there for each individual.

You will be sorely missed by all whose lives you touched :(

Renault Captur: Nobody who knows about cars will buy this


Re: Someday soon all cars will be like this (or worse).

Cars may get more efficient, bit actually they are getting more powerful. My 2.0t produces 240 bhp and 320nm and yet has better fuel efficiency than bigger engined (but lower powered) cars from the 90s when I passed my test.

Hopefully my next car will have even more power, with even less fuel usage than this one! I want power - it doesn't need to be a petrol guzzler to do so.


Re: Built to appeal to its market, which is not you

Or.. A Maxi Cosi Pebble baby seat on a family fix base. Takes about as much legroom at the rear as a 6+ foot passenger in the back. And any Iso fix seat is very similar.

Reg man confesses: I took my wife out to choose a laptop for Xmas. NOOOO


Re: Just say it

I don't know, if someone wants to buy me a coffee machine for Christmas I'm all for it! Mind you for the price of a decent bean to cup full auto cappuccino making coffee machine you can get a more than half decent gaming laptop... Though the later does need to look good (which most don't), where as the coffee machine simply needs to make damn good coffee :p

Home Wi-Fi security's just as good as '90s PC security! Wait, what?


Re: HomeHub 5 is the most secure system in the WORLD

Seeing that BT insist on updating it OTA (which then kills the configuration) I wouldn't be surprised if they have done something. But it has never worked well since they got it. If I lived closer I would sort it for them (or replace it with a decent Adsl router - assuming that wouldn't kill their BT vision box). But only going once a year makes that hard to do.


Re: HomeHub 5 is the most secure system in the WORLD

My parents router does this often (meaning they cant use their Skype cam to see their grandchild - almost the only reason they have an Internet connection)

The only solution I found is to turn it off, wait then turn it back on. Wait for all the connection lights to come on. Then (no that doesn't fix it!) perform a soft reset and wait again.

Why off and on doesn't work, or why the soft reset on its own doesn't work, I have no idea (except that it's the worst router I've ever had the misfortune to use! WiFi performance is so poor that we don't bother trying any more when we visit - just use the ethernet cable and he off of the grid for most of the visit).

Called BT but they have no idea what a Dhcp server is, let alone how to fix I. One of their engineers (their to fix a broken BT vision box) even said the problem was caused by network cables being plugged into the router and that only the WiFi should be used (forgetting that the BT vision box *has* to be plugged in via cable and screwing up the Skype cam in the process).

Sonos rattles begging bowl, hopes for $130m cash stream


Ouch! For that money you can get a damn good wired system!


Re: They could try adding Hi-Fi to the mix

I totally agree. But as they were discontinued they were not an option. And any of the others that I have tried in the past (two Philips Streamium products) sucked (needing servers to deliver the music, having very limited codec functionality - I wanted to replace the CD player in the living room so FLAC was a must) and as I have a rather good DAC in my sound processor I needed digital out to take advantage of it.

And all workable from an app on the phone (I would have accepted a smart remote as well).

There simply wasn't anything else available that fitted the bill (I looked into a PI with a HiBerry DIGI+, but to be honest I wanted a done and dusted system and not a play with it for a week to get it working system and then start playing with Apps to find which actually works).

For the time being I have limited mobility and this was a solution to getting all of music into the bedroom for during the time. Expensive, but for the purpose worth it.


Re: They could try adding Hi-Fi to the mix

Having looked for a cheap adapter there just isn't anything there that is consumer friendly, except for Sonos (which isn't cheap...). Whilst not a fan of their speakers I do like their Connect boxes for streaming to existing Hi-Fi systems.

Sound is great (via the digital out and playing FLAC over a wired connection) and acceptable (via the line out over a WiFi connection) to my two systems and control is very easy. Setting up each connect took about 5 minutes from plugging in the box to playing music.

I could have done it cheaper, but could I have done it as hassle free?

One year on, Windows 8.1 hits milestone, nudges past XP


Re: Love 8.1

Yes. Hitting restart still gives a 2 second startup as I said. (it has a Sony bespoke raid 0 ssd in it - 1000MBps read and write according to the ssd benchmark application)

Fast boot is off as I wanted a off to be off - Sony doesn't have the best support For Windows 8 for my laptop and so I want clean memory when I start the machine.


Re: Love 8.1

No, that would selecting the hybrid sleep option. Which IIRC I have disabled, as I want off being off. It shuts down. All programs close, all unsaved documents are gone for ever and the machine powers off totally.

Speed from restart(after the shut down): 2 seconds still... (admittedly the laptop has a kick ass Ssd in it, but is it still a quarter of the time for windows 7)

The logo appears but unless updates are installing you don't even see the swirly dots, it goes straight to the login screen.


Re: Love 8.1

No, it shuts down. As in off. No power being used. Bios screen showing in start up. You know, off....


Love 8.1

I have a laptop that boots in about 2 seconds after upgrading from 7 - it was about 8 before - so sleep never gets used anymore, runs very, very smoothly and is hassle free.

What's not to like? Seeing as a rarely used the start menu I don't miss it (start button and type name of application and it's there, just the same as windows 7). On top of that all of my most used applications are pinned to the task bar anyway.

I wonder how many people who claim how poor windows 8 is have used it longer than to go 'start screen is crap' and turning it off?

The gender imbalance in IT is real, ongoing and ridiculous


Re: As usual...

Where? I read it more as needing to make the industry more attractive (and keeping those interested at an early age), not make hiring practices discriminatory towards those who are there (which is a terrible idea!)


Re: I can't get excited about gender imbalance on this occasion

@grifter: I've learnt not to expect better...

What really made me shake my head was a comment that amounted to "give girls positive encouragement" and it was down voted nearly as much as up-voted.

The fact that people ignore my experiences and proclaim that they don't happen, or that I should just have to put up with it are par for the course unfortunately.


Re: I can't get excited about gender imbalance on this occasion

Did you read my comment about about the comments I get in my job? Yes, the workplace also needs attention. Notice I said also.

I wear dresses to the office (except on those days when I know I'm going to be crawling under a desk - then it's jeans!). Wearing dresses does not reduce my intelligence. It reduces the respect that i get though - but I'll be dammed if I'm going to let narrow minded idiots determine what I wear or do.

And I don't see why girl can't have the doll and the computer (my niece does), and she plays ruff and tumble. And with cars. And with what ever else she feels like playing with.

Why do you think they should be mutually exclusive?


Re: Not just IT

To be fair I think a through c are all probable. I knows spoilt little rich girls who just expect people to do everything for them because they are pretty little rich girls. That doesn't help...

I've also had guys trying to be knights in shining armour taking over to help me when all I wanted was a second take on a problem (though I have also been guilty of doing that to guys too :-P)

And I have had a lot of guys who rather than help me just took over as they thought that I was incapable (which annoyed the hell out of me).


Re: I can't get excited about gender imbalance on this occasion

It isn't about discriminatory hiring practices to get more women into a team - that is just never going to work well, you should hire the best person for the job. It's about making the industry more attractive so that more women decide to educate themselves to be able to work in it and be that best person.

Read the article again. Up until a certain point girls outnumber boys. After that something happens and they get turned off. Why? Could it be the comments about girls / women knowing nothing about IT (I am a development team lead for the largest online insurance comparison site in my country and I still get these 'jokes' said about me. I also get shocked reactions from sales people when they meet me and have been asked to prove I'm technical by one moron who lost the sale with that question). A woman in IT needs a thick skin, much thicker than a man needs in the same industry.

It has nothing to do with parents telling their daughters they are pretty. It is about telling them that they can do whatever they want if they try hard enough. You can do both as a parent. One does not rule out the other.

It is about encouragement and positive role models. It's about fanning a spark of interest that someone shows, rather than trying to put it out (I had that at school too - being told that I was aiming to high). Its about changing attitudes about women full stop (my grandmother cannot believe that I ride a motorbike - after all that is what men do!)

And yes it works both ways, should a boy want to be a nurse then they should get the same encouragement.

How to run a big web music biz (Spotify): Grab more cash from fans, sink deeper into the red


Re: Stakeholders delight - not

I hope not, for all involved.

I pay 120 euros a year for spotify. I used to pay about 40 a year for Cd's that I wanted. (and still do that's well). That means the music companies are getting triple from me than they were.

And yet they still complain that I am not paying them enough? Would they rather that I reduce my expenditure and only buy the one or two albums a year again?

And for me all music on tap that I like enough to listen to via a subscription service but that I would not consider buying in itself.

Seems win win except for those with exceptional greed. Shame that describes the music industry really!

Mastercard and Visa to ERADICATE password authentication


Re: Start with the basics

We use internet banking with two Dutch banks. One has the calculator thing and the other has phone text two factor authentication. Both work fine, though the phone is just so much easier that it gets used far more often. Both are so much superior to the stupid MasterCard site where I just reset my password everytime I buy something online with it!

Behold the Lumia 535 NOTkia: Microsoft wipes Nokia brand from mobes


Re: Meh

I loved my Windows Phone (Lumia 820). It was easy to use, even though the screen resulution sucked (my choice, I could have got a better one but did not want to spend the money on the day) the software used it in such a way that you really did not notice that much and it was reliable.

The only reason I got rid of it was that we replaced our boiler and the new one came with a smart thermostat. Which needs an app. Which was not in the store. Normally I would say that there are no apps that are deal breakers, but in this case...

Hopefully Bosch will release one for WP and I can go back to it with my next phone!

Apple patents autographs. Checkmate, eBay


Re: @Stacy

Ok, I'm jealous! We have about 7m of book cases about 2.5m heigh and a few book shelves in other rooms for those that don't fit. Always on the look out for new books :-)

Just browsing, reading a few passages from a few books before picking one is so much better than swiping through lists on an ereader...


On top of him still being alive (and releasing books) I was referring to the time when I did this for my edition of Jingo


So... I can go to Waterstones, speak to Terrry Pratchett and then have a personalised signature in my book.

Or, I can download a predefined signature that is meaningless. This does not make an ebook closer to a paper book. It makes the differences stick out even more!

(Disclaimer, I love ebooks for travelling, but for reading at home it doesn't come close to going to the library of books, browsing and selecting one.)

The late 2014 Apple Mac Mini: The best (and worst) of both worlds



If your concern is disk failure wiping you out then why not do off site backup rather than multiple disks?

That way you can have a single backup disk at home, and off site back up for if everything should die.

I used to have lots of back-up disks for the same reason, until I realised that if anything happened to the house I would still lose everything... (Obviously not the biggest problem at the time of it happenning, but would not be great once you are on your feet again).

Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD TO DIE, and this is WHY


Re: D'oh!



Re: D'oh!


Sounds like a great idea - any instructions? I have an 80GB classic lying around (actually, I also have ZIF SSD lying around, but can't remember the capcity...) and would love to give this a try!

Snapper's decisions: Whatever happened to real photography?


I would suggest a good second hand body and a good second hand lens (sigma ex dg lenses are great and a fraction of the cost of a professional grade brand lenses). My Canon 5d was about 600 pounds and my sigma 24-70 1.8f lens was 150. Great combination, and cheaper than a cheap DSLR costs brand new

FYI: OS X Yosemite's Spotlight tells Apple EVERYTHING you're looking for


Re: Huh?

Yes, when I go to Google search on my Android I expect my search query to be sent to Google.

Using a Bing powered Spotlight search bar I expect my query to be sent to Bing.

Why should Apple also need a copy of the search request? And why should turning off sending the data to Apple stop Spotlight showing suggestions from an organisation so completely inrelated to them? If you turn off the 'Help improve search' option then that is what it should do, not just throw it's toys out of a pram and disable the functionality completely.

I opt out of the 'Help improve SQL 2014' and yet SQL server still has full functionality...

Want a more fuel efficient car? Then redesign it – here's how


Re: Replace anything with "Lucas" written on it

The motorway between Antwerp and Gent gets a bit bumpy in places, but we can still have conversations unlike the M20 when we get off of the train or the M6 between Stoke and Carlisle (i can't comment on the M1 or M25 as in the last 10 years I don't think I've seen them without major roadworks between Dartford and Leicester :p)


Re: Depends on assumptions

You mean Volvo are still in the minority of making (front) bulbs easier? I pull a tent peg looking thing out of my headlight cluster and it pops out so you can change the bulbs. Makes it easy to swing the beam when I come to the UK as well.

Mind you. There isn't even access to the rear cluster! Not without removing the interior lining and soundproofing anyway!


Re: Replace anything with "Lucas" written on it

No, I'm comparing the motorways from Amsterdam, around Antwerp, round Gent and Brugge and across Normandy to Calais (all toll free). I know the motorways around Paris are shocking, but UK motorways are the next worst that I have driven on in my travels around Europe (Germany, Austria, Italy and Switzerland next the countries mentioned - I'll give you that Italy having toll motorways though)


Re: Replace anything with "Lucas" written on it

No, you are being too kind to UK roads there.

I live in Holland and drive back to the UK every now and then to see family. Driving through Holland, Belgium and France you can have a conversation in the car with ease. Then you get in the chunnel, get out and hit the M20 and any thought of a conversation goes out of the window as road noise increases by an unreal amount. The first time I did it I actually stopped to check there was nothing wrong with the car. If you drive something less sophiticated it can be even worse.

When my Spitfire, with very uprated and hardend suspension, went back to the UK to await restoration (12 years and counting :( ) my dad was driving it with my mum. On the continent it drove brilliantly, he was amazed at how well it went. On the UK roads it continually pulled as the pits and tram lines in the roads pulled it left and right. Again he stopped to make sure something hadn't broken. It was only when he hit a small patch of fresh tarmac and suddenly everything was right again that he realised what it was.

As for that wiring loom - aside from the concerns here about fire, I want! Spitfires have terrible wiring and anything that could make everything work as it is supposed to would be good! (And of course something to stop the switches on the dash melting when the power going through them gets too much! This was a wiring fault with the rear fogs!). Making everything low power with just a single bus delivering power to where it is needed sounds great.

iPad AIR 2 and iPad MINI 3, 5K iMac: World feels different today – and it IS


Re: So where are the "new" Products?

I agree - whilst the hardware in it sucks that resolution is amazing. If what someone else has posted on here is true (that Dell has the same res monitor for the same price) then even with the hardware it isn't a bad deal (as long as you can use it ass a second display!).

I detest the screen on 2011 13" Mac, but the retina displays do look great.

Watersports-friendly e-reader: Kobo's Aura H2O is literary when wet


Re: Reading in the bath

This is exactly what I was thinking about when I read the headline. I read in the bath, but with a limited set of titles as I doon't want to ruin all of my paper books.

However, dropping the Sony reader in a sealable sandwich bag may save me 180 euros!

Is living with Dolby Atmos worth the faff?


Re: Pure H2O versus Flavoured drinks

This is just what I was thinking. When I started building my AV system I had a base point of music has to sound stunning, films should be good as well.

As a result I have a 4.0 system (I only use the front speakers for music though) that keeps up with any 5.1 system that I have heard (to be fair, for the money it should). When it rains I look outside (deduct a point ;p), when Star Destroyers come into picture the glass above the doors rattles (on the low notes of Taccota and Fugue in D minor as well) and most importantly when playing Air on a G String I can close my eyes and almost be in the same room as the violinist.

I wonder just what extra dimension this adds, and considering the price of the amp for everything it does, what it takes away with quality short cuts.

Jaguar Sportbrake: The chicken tikka masala of van-sized posh cars


Not the cache

But I'd still rather my V70 than this for lugging loads about.

Any estate that has a sports back, lifestyle rear end is not serious about load lugging. According to the specs I can find the V70 can carry more, tow almost as miuch, go almost as fast (in T5 form) and not use a huge amount more fuel even though it's a petrol engine. It has more toys as standard is an amount cheaper.

And I think it's a far prettier car.

But yes, as Mitoo points out, you can't say 'It's a Jaaaaaaaaaaaag' when telling people about it :)

Our Vultures peck at new Doctor Who: Exterminate or, er ... carrion?


Re: Story arcs and episodes

The problem is thay Moffet's son has a short attention span and can't cope with a story that spans more than one episode (he has said this in an interview, OK I may be paraphrasing - but he said he son didn't like multi week stories) and so he decided that he couldn't upset his him. Ergo, he is writing for his son, rather than for the fans.

I would love more multi-episode stories where they can really get stuck into the story, leave a cliff hanger or two and leave out the current rushing to a conclusion.


Re: Boo Who

Amy, in the first series was a great doctors companion, as was Rory. The problem was that after the first great series the scripts went a bit downhill.

As for favorite doctor, that for me is a tough one. As with Jennifer, I had a bit of a girl crush on David Tennant (to be fair, I still do...) and so it's a tough comparison for any other. But! I think that Matt did a great job (again, with slowly worsening scripts to work with - his send off was a huge anti-climax when you compare it David's!).

So far I am loving Peter, there have been dud eposides, but as others have said there have also been great ones - Listen was hairs on the back of the neck terrifying (I'll admit at this point that I never watch horror, this is as creepy as I go) and I'd also list it as second only to Blink.

Clara depserately needs some personality padding. And she needs to be happy and smile less when situations are seriously bad. But, yes, I would love most of Clara's outfits. (Actually, I have red handbag now as I thought it looked so good on the show :S )

How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?


Yes you can, but probaby not on a Sonos speaker

When I had an OK stereo I had to re-rip all of my 196kbps to 320kbps as the OK stereo made the differences stand out like a sore thumb.

Then when I upgraded to a Cyrus set and B&W speakers I had to re-rip it all to FLAC becuase after searching for a problem in my new set-up for a couple of hours as the sound from my iPod classic sucked I eventually did a comparison with the CD and it was night and day different.

The old stereo was relegated to the bedroom to use as an alarm clock, and MP3s still sound fine on that system, you can't tell them from the CDs they came on.

I now have a Sonos connect connected to the preamp with a coax digital cable and it plays the FLACs from a network share. It sounds way better than I expected it to, to the point where the CDs were taken out of the living room the same day.

But after listening to Sonos speakers at friends and in shops I wouldn't expect you to see the difference from the 196 to FLAC, let alone the 320...

(Oh, and to answer the question about cables from someone earlier: I use the mains cables that came with the units, and cheap, but very thick, speaker cable as reccomended by the shop I got the speakers from - they commented that the expensive cable is for showing off, not for the music)

SHINY NEW GADGETS! No, we're not joking, here's a load of them


More than that

Induction stoves don't heat up at all (except for the small amount of heat that radiates from the pan to the glass). The pans themselves heat up - that is the reason they are so energy efficient compared to other forms of cooking.

I see what Panasonic have done though - it's a very nice extension of the Flexi Zone idea that our Siemens induction cooker has. Each cooking zone has multiple induction coils. So, rather than supply power to the whole cooking area of a burner, only the zone that senses a pan actually has power supplied to it. The Panasonic one just looks like it has much smaller individual zones than the Siemens one has.

I wonder how hard it is to control though - as it looks like it is one giant burner as opposed to 5 individual ones.