* Posts by Jules 1

30 publicly visible posts • joined 2 Aug 2009

Intel R&D spending surges after years of neglect as Gelsinger pledges to make Chipzilla great again

Jules 1

“ Research and development pays dividends – figuratively – in the future and if Intel can convince investors it's money well spent, it doesn't become a drag on the stock," Moorhead said.”

It absolutely will drag the stock price down in the short term (the next 5 years). What he needs is full support of a board that understands what he’s doing and are prepared to ignore the bleating of shareholders incapable of thinking in terms longer than the next quarterly earnings call.

Brexit freezes 81,000 UK-registered .eu domains – and you've all got three months to get them back

Jules 1

@Doctor Syntax

Most people living in Northern Ireland are entitled to put “Ireland” down as their country of citizenship.

Labour: Free British broadband for country if we win general election

Jules 1

I think this is a mid-step by Labour. Nationalising openreach makes sense to ensure all retail offerings are on a level playing field and all areas, no matter how remote, get adequate service.

Nationalizing the retail offerings makes no sense to me. They’re already very competitive. Legislate to ban misleading deals if need be but I don’t see a problem with that needs solving by a nationalists retail offering.

Three UK goes TITSUP*: Down and out for 10 hours and counting

Jules 1

Re: Gah

Same here, went down around midnight last night. Phone still reported no service this morning.

Disabling and enabling airplane mode made no difference but switching the phone entirely off and on again did the trick! Identical experience with 2 different iPhones.

Wait a minute, we're supposed to haggle! ISPs want folk to bargain over broadband

Jules 1

Don’t haggle - switch!

Haggling might get you a small discount but the best deals are almost always for new customers only. I switch every year at the end of the 12 month contract. Thanks to new customer offers and Cashback via sites like topcashback or Quidco, I’ve paid £12-£16/month for 40mbps fttc broadband every year for the last 5 years.

It's not chicken feed: Million-dollar meal deal for livestock sabotaged by hackers... and, er, exchange rates

Jules 1

Re: The remaining £93,540.99...

Bank charges on foreign exchange are never “small” unless the fees have been specifically negotiated in advance. It’s one of the many ways they swindle naive customers. They weigh the exchange rate by up to 10% in their favour and in many cases also add a transaction charge.

Those in the know use currency brokers to get much better rates.

Apple iPhone X: Two weeks in the life of an anxious user

Jules 1

Re: "Like I say, there’s no user guide to tell you what all the icons means."

Was this card not included in the iPhone box?


It's in pretty small type but the first paragraph reads:

Phone User Guide

Review the user guide before using iPhone. Go to help.apple.com/iphone. To view the user guide on iPhone, use the Safari bookmark. Or download the user guide from the iBooks Store (where available).bRetain documentation for future reference.

Yes, your old iPhone is slowing down: iOS hits brakes on CPUs as batteries wear out

Jules 1

To all those saying this should be a configurable option, you've misunderstood the problem. Switching this feature of wouldn't simply result in less battery life, it would render the phone unusable.

It's the PEAK current capacity that's degraded. This means that if Apple don't slow down the processor the phone will randomly shut down/reboot during periods of heavy CPU load as the battery can't keep up.

I've experienced this on my android phone and it's not pretty, I couldn't trust the phone to do anything even though nominally the battery appeared to have lots of charge left.

Of course on my replaceable battery android phone I just bought a new official battery for a tenner, problem solved

UK.gov pushes ahead with legal right to 10Mbps

Jules 1

Just like SNCF or Deutsche Bahn run services vastly worse than our wonderful privatsed railways you mean? Public owned does not necessarily mean bad, you're an ideaologue.

You're also making an incorrect comparison - no one here is suggesting a return to state monopoly of telecommunications. However properly manged infrastructure can lead to more competiton and better, cheaper services for all. Whether that's done through regulation as with LLU or the government taking full control of the infrastructure doesn't really matter.

Jules 1

I think the biggest effect this will have is to motivate rural communities to install fibre themselves. Once they ask for it from BT and are told, certainly just pay us x (massive number) thousand pounds they'll understand there is no point waiting in hope for openreach to upgrade their connection.

The actual physical side is fairly simple - fibre cable isn't very expensive and digging trenches through fields is much easier than in cities where roads and pavements have to be relaid and there are dozens of other services to avoid. You just need community involvement to dig and give the easements for free. B4RN is installing 1Gbps FTTH in North Yorkshire and Lancashire with this approach to great success.

Brit ISP TalkTalk scraps line rental charges

Jules 1

I've had mobile operators call me with offers around renewal time but never a broadband ISP. I think their preferred tactic is to keep quiet and hope we forget about the end of the contract/introductory deal and subsequent price hike.

I tried to haggle with my last ISP, whom I was paying about £9 / month for standard adsl2+ broadband (including line rental) but they could not match the BT incentives of a £125 prepaid card, plus another £120 from topcashback which brought the VDSL price down to around £15 / month net.

Are you instead suggesting you get calls from other ISPs after just visiting their site whilst researching a new deal? That's never happened to me - I don't register my contact details with an ISP until I'm ready to sign up. I'd find it worrying if their traffic analysis managed to link my reseach browsing to my personal details via some third party so as to trigger a sales call.

Jules 1

Never just buy the deal offered on the website. I always check moneysavingexpert.com for the best current fibre deal and the cashback sites such as quidco and topcashback.

Via a combination of the two I pay about £15/month net (including line rental) on a 12 month contract for unlimited Infinity 1 from BT. After a year I'll haggle and switch if they won't match the best avalable deal.

The phone comapnies will always try to exploit apathy and bung up prices agter a year or 18 months. Unless the government acts to stop them doing it your best defence is to be organised and switch deals evry 12 months.

EE looks at its call charges, hikes a bunch, walks off giggling

Jules 1


This is outrageous, but as the article suggests - use an over the top service like internetcalls.com (or one of the many,many clones run by Dellmont, see http://backsla.sh/betamax) for international calls.

They have a handy app called MobileVOIP for iOS and Android.

They also have landline access numbers via which calls can be made using your phone plan free minutes instead of a flaky data connection.

What's Brexit? How Tech UK tore up its plans after June 23

Jules 1

Re: @ Jules 1

The UK is still a member. We won't be leaving any time soon even if article 50 is invoked a future government could withdraw the application to leave within 2 years. This would seriously piss off the other members but it would still be better than leaving.

Once the economic damage of brexit really starts to sink in they are going to delay it as much as possible. It's the reason we haven't invoked article 50 yet and it's the reason we won't be doing so any time soon. Teresa May campaigned for remain and whatever she says now to maintain party unity means little in terms of whether she will actually go ahead with brexit.

Assuming people vote the same way as the recent referendum, within 3-4 years the brexit majority will have disappeared due to demographic changes (around 450,000 people over 60 die every year and around 700,000 new voters turn 18) that's without factoring in the huge number of people who change their mind once they start to feel the coming economic carnage.

Frankly the county is far more likely to become ungovernable if we press ahead with brexit, those aged 18-25 are more apt to demonstrate and riot than the pensioners who put us in this sorry situation.

Jules 1

Re: This is the nub of it . .

There is no possiblity to "take two" of your options, either of points one and two exclude the possibility of three happening.

The single market is a single market of goods, services AND jobs. The rest of the EU have said very clearly that single market access means accepting freedom of movement and that it is non negotiable. It's not just Germany we'd be dealing with, any other EU member will be able to veto a prospective agreement if it's not acceptable to them. The eastern block countries (Poland especially) will never allow a deal where we retain market access without freedom of movement.

Countries which have access to the single market still contribute to the EU budget and we would pay about the same amount as we currently do as members.

In the single market as non members we'll have to accept EU directives but with no voice or role in defining the rules (no MEPs, no seat at the Council of Ministers, no EU commissioner, no rotating Presidency where we can set the agenda) it really will be the undemocratic (for us) "EU" dictating to us in a far more real sense than that which was put forward as a reason to vote for brexit..

The Brexiters never had any viable plan, there is no way forward for Britain outside of Europe that doesn't involve huge amounts of economic pain and the probable break up of the UK.

Trying to put on a brave face and make the best of it isn't the answer, democracy didn't stop with the brexit vote, the only reasonable response is to remain angry, keep demonstrating against this madness, keep talking about the issues and vote for a party that will keep us in Europe.

Ofcom should push for fibre – Ex BT CTO

Jules 1

The UK is falling far behind other countries. I was in France recently, most urban centres already have FTTH deployed with packages that are far better deals than anything available on the UK market (e.g Bouyges telecom "Miami" plan: 15 euro per month for 1 Gigabit fibre internet, HDTV feed and phone with unlimited calls to mobiles in France and unlimited calls to landlines *worldwide*)

Blocks of flats can choose from a number of different infrastructure providers who compete to install the connection to the building, the installing company then gets a revenue from selling their own services or providing access to other ISPs (they're prevented by law from locking you in to their own services) The installation is free.

Just goes to show what a bit of regulation can actually achieve and how prices are pushed down by the economies of scale inherent in a full national roll out.

What Brexit means for you as a motorist

Jules 1

Re: Passport, driving licence validity

Ireland's official language for EU purposes is gaelic. The UK is currently the only country with English as an offical EU language. It's not at all clear from the treaty text whether a country can have two official languages.

Brexit: More cash for mobile operators or consumers? Pick one

Jules 1

Re: Scaremongering


"Except they have just been granted millions of visas due to the Turkeys threats over migration, Cameron supports their joining (has already said he wont veto) and Turkey have already got Germany agreeing to fast track their acceptance. Unless something changes it is happening. I do accept this is under-reported but remain votes would be lost otherwise."

I suspect you well know that's not how Europe works. We have a veto, as do other states. Expansion doesn't happen just because one country wants it. Look up the conditions for accession. Turkey have gone backwards in terms of meeting those conditions recently. They're 20 to 30 years away from joining.

The migrant deal is an example of European negotiation working as it has helped reduce and manage the flow of migrants. It's far more likely that the UK border will be at Dover rather than Calais if we leave the EU which will vastly increase the number of refugees reaching Britain.

Three offers free US roaming, confirms stealth 4G rollout

Jules 1

Re: The interesting 4g...

The big benefit in urban areas will be relief of congestion for overloaded city centre cells. Everyone should see speeds improve even if their phone is 3G only thanks to the knock on effect of many users moving to lte.

Console accessories

Jules 1
Thumb Down

Fools and their money.

That Gaems G155 case, whilst nice, is ludicrously overpriced. A 15" LCD TV can be bought for around £70 retail, so you can be assured they only cost £30-40 per unit in bulk. Beyond the LCD all I see is an injection moulded plastic case and some nylon webbing/straps - probably £5 in materials, if that.

Sure you have to factor in the design/advertising budget and production costs (mold tooling, shipping from china etc) but even considering that a reasonable price point would be £80 - £120. There is no way I'd pay more than that for it.

Sony Reader PRS-350 Pocket Edition

Jules 1


I've not yet used the sony supplied software with my PRS-350. The open source calibre program (http://calibre-ebook.com/) had no difficulty putting drm-free pdf files on the unit, so whilst you may not be able to simply drag and drop pdf files there is a way to manage it without the obnoxious sony/adobe software.

It's also been on offer at £130 from Waterstones since it was released, only £21 more expensive than the cheapest kindle. I think that's well worth it for the better build quality and touch screen.

Three In-Car Wi-Fi

Jules 1

@andrew cooper

The mifi may not involve booting up a laptop to get wifi sharing of a 3g connection, but it definitely does involve an extra sim card and data contract. That's the main reason the mifi is a bad deal if you own a smartphone that can itself do wifi connection sharing.

Jules 1

Unnecessary if you have a nokia smartphone

I own a nokia E71 and get similar functionality with the Joikuspot app. It shares my 3G connection over wifi with any nearby devices. No need for a mifi or separate data plan.

There are also similar apps for android and iphones though they require root access or jailbreaking to work.

This might be useful to accompany a basic (non "smart") phone though.

Microsoft slams nails in Windows Vista, XP SP2, 2000

Jules 1

@Ammaross Danan

It may require a couple of work arounds to get it running smoothly but plenty of people on the civfanatics forum are playing cv4 on Windows 7. Check out this thread:


BBC Trust won't probe iPlayer open source gripes

Jules 1

There has been a change?

My preferred method of time shifting media from the iplayer, the "get_iplayer" script still appears to work fine (thought there was an automatic update on february 19th). I'm downloading a radio show right now.

So much for adobe market lock-in.....

Google gets all Minority Report with Street View

Jules 1

Altered reality

Small businesses very often have a phone number on the hoarding above the shop. I often use street view to find the number of a businesses when I've forgotten their name so can't easily look it up on with a web search.

I can now envision a future where google uses it's number plate blurring technology to erase all those phone numbers (maybe even the business name too) unless they pay a fee to "advertise" on street view....

Nationwide Freeview tune-up takes place today

Jules 1

Where have the good stbs gone?

We're on our 4th stb (each from different manufacturers) since digital became available in our area. None of the 3 we had to discard physically broke but each stopped working properly due to poor programming that failed as as the broadcast signal changed (resulting in missing EPG and now/next info, random crashes, refusal to come out of standby etc etc). We now use an tvonics mdr-250. It's the first unit we've had that works reliably and without any issues (apart from subtitles sometimes not appearing or going out of sync - but I think that may be a problem with the broadcast stream rather than the unit itself)

A free market, laissez faire approach has utterly failed for stbs. Rather than competition resulting in better boxes the manufacturers have engaged in a race to the bottom. Flaky, slow and difficult to navigate software is the norm, years after the digital launch.

STBs need to be tightly regulated and not allowed on the market if they don't *fully* comply with the digital TV standards (even the obscure bits not currently in use) that may mean a few of the £15 supermarket specials will disappear but at least I won't have to replace my stb each time a minor change is made to freeview.

Microsoft apes Google with chillerless* data center

Jules 1

that's a lot of excess heat...

"The 303,000-square-foot data center can generate up to 5.4 megawatts of critical power"

Hold on. If it's generating that much excess heat, rather than dump it directly into the atmosphere, why not run heat exchangers and offer the warm water water to neighbouring office blocks or residential areas as free heating?

Microsoft's Windows 7 price gamble - and why it's flawed

Jules 1

Nothing to to with apple

I seriously doubt that many apple users are going to be tempted to dump OSX and install WIndows 7 on their intel macs for a $10 price difference. Plus they need to already own an XP or Vista license to even qualify for that price that's a pretty small segment of the market.

Apple is only really a competitor in the new PC market since OSX can only be legally installed on Apple hardware. The $119 price point makes much more sense as an attempt to get all those millions of XP users who skipped Vista up finally upgrade.