* Posts by ijustwantaneasylife

36 posts • joined 23 Oct 2009

IBM declares it's the 'backbone of the world's economy'


Where will it end?

I might be overstating/extrapolating this a little, but if these companies get really good at relocating their operations - to get to successive new outsourcing/low-cost labour pools - might we then see a global economic improvement over a relatively short period of time - say 20-40 years ball park?

A lot of upheaval and uncertainty, but possibly good for the global economy over time.

Just my 2c ...

Ballmer once yelled: Developers, developers! Today it would be: Docs! Support! Certificates!



"Its findings, published on Monday, indicate that developers are more interested in learning new skills and keeping existing skills current than in making money through a given developer ecosystem.

The surprising thing that came out across the board was that learning was the number one choice..."

That should read "...developers are having to learn new skills and keeping existing skills current, in order to get the next job..."

If we could use our current skills and earn a reasonable living, why would we seek the pain of constantly upgrading our skill sets?

Next; tech; meltdown..? Mandatory; semicolons; in; JavaScript; mulled;



How about something like...

"use strict2";

... to force the requirement?

Transport pundit Christian Wolmar on why the driverless car is on a 'road to nowhere'


Re: It's too Black and White

Sorry, have to disagree with that. I find the worst part of motorway driving - and the most potentially lethal - is getting bored driving long straight roads with little or no interest to stop you from nodding off. Driving around town, though perhaps a little more stressful, is more interesting and thus more likely to keep you alert and focussed. You can also fairly easily pull off the road for a rest - something you can only do on motorways every 10-15 miles (ball park).

Now if you could get the car to do the boring bit, that would be really useful, even if you don't have the option to drink (who really cares?) or fall asleep (at least you could relax).

The Register Lectures: Deception, Spitfires and the end of the road….


Re: Bah

Surely in this wonderful 21st century, a tech-friendly world like El Reg can conjure up a way for us non-Londoners (i.e. most of the country) to see either a stream or a YouTube special of these events - especially the Spitfire one?

Pretty please!

Rolls-Royce, Airbus, Siemens tease electric flight engine project


And don't forget...

If you have electricity on tap, it will probably be straightforward to put electric motors in the undercarriage. This means all ground based movement is much more economical and would significantly reduce airport pollution.

Just a thought...

IT worker used access privs to steal £1m from Scottish city council


Re: Scotsman steals a million pounds?


UK will build new nuclear bomb subs, says Defence Secretary


ADA is used all over the place...


ROBO-PLOD! 'Droid snatches scumbag's shotgun in standoff


Well I never...

I've lived on this planet a long time and I've never heard of a 'Berm'.

You learn something new every day, obviously.

For anyone else that's never heard of it either...

"Berm" (noun)

a flat strip of land, raised bank, or terrace bordering a river or canal.

a path or grass strip beside a road.

an artificial ridge or embankment, such as one built as a defence against tanks.

The Internet of Things isn't just for Bluetooth toothbrushes, y'know


"It's 'a couple researchers and me' or ' I and a couple researchers coined...'"

Since when do you drop the 'of' ? If you do then you're probably a US citizen - or someone that uses this approach because you read more than your fair share of American-inclined text (like in IT journals like El Reg!) and think it must be correct.

There's actually nothing wrong with this (according to the OED you can use both), but why berate someone about their grammar and then foister an unnecessary change on them.

IMO, this is how you do it, but that's just my opinion...



Space station to get shiny new ringpiece for automatic penetration


$100 million - really?

I mean really? Someone please explain how anything like that can cost so much? Oh, and "it's rocket science" doesn't wash, with all the competition now out there. If you had said $10 million, I might have let it pass - possibly.

Google swallows your Docs bill from Microsoft, pitches for user familiarity

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Hear, hear

Agree entirely - most well thought-out docs in business are black on white and use a limited number of fonts and font sizes. Colour should be used sparingly - or pasted in as a picture (PNG or JPG). Who needs Word to do that?

One problem with delivering through web is getting page breaks right, though this can often be mitigated by looking at print preview.

Of course the other option is to use a web based editor to produce PDF files, which I believe are coded using a free/open standard.

Time to move away from Windows 7 ... whoa, whoa, who said anything about Windows 8?



Are we ignoring the elephant in the room? Android?

Take an Android tablet, add a keyboard/mouse via USB or Bluetooth, a stand for the screen and sign up to Microsoft Office Mobile (Office 365 effectively).

Admittedly, line-of-business apps would need some sort of remote desktop facilities for the foreseeable future, but for an awful lot of people Office + web-accessible systems or bespoke apps would do the trick.

Just saying...

Labour vows: We'll pause one-dole-to-rule-them-all for drastic fix-up if elected in 2015


Re: Nice idea..

Sorry to burst your bubble, but this is why so many systems - not just Government ones - fail to get implemented sensibly or stay within timescales/budget. You're trying to do too much!

This is not HAL - it doesn't need to be perfect (OK, HAL wasn't perfect either). All you do in this situation is pass the benefit application to a fleshy computer - you know, the ones with arms and legs and a brain! - and get them to work it out manually.

This is a ridiculous use case to try and accommodate. If you get a swarm of these things then possibly it could be worth while - otherwise, don't waste your time.

Silent, spacious and... well, insipid: Citroën's electric C-Zero car

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Re: Nope

Or even better than a reciprocating petrol/diesel engine - why not something that is designed for constant speed efficiency and only uses a simple rotary motion (no, not a Mazda/Wankel). I'm referring to a gas turbine of course. Those aircraft guys know a thing or two about efficiency.

Microsoft asks pals to help KILL UK gov's Open Document Format dream


Re: Cant we just bring back EDI?

1. Take a so - called EDI standard

2. Change some details, according to the requirements of the sender and receiver

3. Hey presto - new EDI 'standard' !

I have walked through the valley of death that is EDI. Please God, never again !

Standards, my ar*e !

Microsoft now using next-gen Roslyn C#, Visual Basic compilers in house


Re: About as stupid as ...

Upvoted your first two paragraphs, but 'classes' have no place in the language? Really?

Internet pioneer Vint Cerf predicts the future, fears Word-DOCALYPSE


Re: Office formats were always more like memory dumps than archival formats

I'm quite surprised that nobody mentions HTML? I'm pretty sure I can open every one of these files/pages since the creation of the web. OK the formatting might not be that pretty, but the content will be there and will be structured in some manner that makes sense (P, H1-H5, etc.).

New Zealand to bar software patents, again

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NZ thinking

I can't comment as to whether they're smarter or not, but in the two years I lived there I noticed that the politicians did seem to mostly listen to the populous as a whole. Might have something to do with the fact that they're re-elected every three years instead of every five like the UK?

Private clouds creep into the enterprise


Re: Ermmm....

Private Cloud == Local Network Server Farm!

Skyfall makers 3D printed Bond's DB5


Naff 'of'

OK, I'll bite too!

Why do people still insist on removing 'of' from phrases? As in...

"The makers of James Bond's latest outing, Skyfall, cut a couple corners in production..."

Surely that should be "... cut a couple OF corners..."

Or are you just cutting corners?

Mars rover harangues empty landscape with loudhailer


Just wondering...

... to use that age old question - if nobody's there to hear it, would it make any sound at all?

Visual Studio infected with HTML5 by 'rogue faction'


Two points...

In my experience (software developer contractor for more than 15 years) VB.NET and C# are pretty much used the same, though VB.NET is slightly less - I'd say 40% v 60% for C#. Although in the early days it had some disadvantages compared with C#, these have largely evaporated.

Secondly, .NET will be around for years - predominantly on the server, where it works most effectively. This model is well established and liked by a huge number of corporates. Where HTML5+Javascript may take off is on the mobile platform, where it makes sense - but it will still be hooking up to web services, quite a lot of which will be .NET generated.

Just my 2c.

Oracle seeks 'billions' with Google Android suit



So say Oracle win against Google and stitch up the whole Android market. Surely - assuming Apple retain their market share - that will possibly get mobile/pad developers and suppliers thing about other unconstrained (by patents) platforms - say WP7 and WebOS?

This could have the rather amusing result that Oracle would boost HP's offering at the same time that they're trying to stitch them up with the Itanium debacle. Sweet.

Apple backs down (a bit) on iOS subscription rules

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Title required...

Sorry - I'm still not really clear about what benefit HTML5 (<sarcasm>whatever that is</sarcasm>) would have on a news service delivered via a web site.

Regardless of the technology, though, it still points to the simple truth that everything will become web based in due course, because it makes more sense - like the FT have stated - and there's very little that 'non-power users' (i.e. 99% of us mere mortals) need to do that requires going outside the browser.

Apple iCloud: Same old cage, new height

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Fair comment

I had this exact conversation just the other day. The fact is that until cloud environments/services offer truly homogenous facilities - i.e. not tied to any manufacturer, supplier or technology - then we cannot get the competetive market that we would need for these things to be trully useful. We need to be able to do things like have Amazon, say, provide our main system and HP or IBM or Google provide our backup - with the same data and services.

Desktop virtualisation: Yes, it's cheaper



" ...who just needs word processing, email and web" should read " ...who just needs email and web". In my experience the vast bulk of things that people do on a word processor can be just as effectively handled via email. The only real exception to this would be letters to clients/customers and these should really be handled in a decent CRM system. Also, as there are many perfectly good webmail solutions, there really is no need for much more than a browser for most users (NB: CRM systems usually operate through a browser).

Multinationals out themselves as big Aaas fans


Two points...

Firstly, this cloud stuff is going to make it much, much easier for customers to 'tweak' their licensing costs. If you're operating MS Office, say 50 workstations and then find you can get away with Google Docs for half of them, you just tell your cloud supplier you don't want them any more. Yes, I know you'll all be quoting back to me that cloud suppliers will try to stop that with tricks like annual licensing, 'standard' packages and higher costs for lower volumes, but you're ignoring the marketplace effect if you do that. This market will become much easier to enter in the future.

Secondly, and this is really good, many organisations will not want to move their data off-shore (I even think this is a legal requirement for accounting, but IANAL). This means a huge amount of general 'off-shoreing' may revert to home territory again, with a consequent rise in employment - for call centres and cloud infrastructure.

Think PCs will drop in price? Think again, warns Intel


Definitely a touch of the IBM's here...

Synopsis: "We're completely untouchable, so we can hike the prices as we please"

Market response:

- Computer/Pad manufacturers move more to ARM + OSX or Linux (as they are)

- Domestic users discover (finally - it's taken enough time!) that they don't actually need MS Office as 99%of what they do is via email/web and a phone/pad/existing PC is fine for that.

- Corporate users already moving to cloud/web based delivery of systems find even less reasons to give their users anything other that Linux + browser or OSX + browser (for the executives!)

- Cloud suppliers find they can scale these apps better with Linux or their own custom OS (off-topic - sad for me, as I really like .NET and MS Design Tools - much better than open source software - sorry, it just is - C# is fab)

At this point I would assume MS will have a little word in Intel's ear about encouraging their user base to ditch Windows + Office and suggest they read up on the 'Gerald Ratner moment' - i.e. don't tell the world you're screwing them over - they may already know it, but the sure as hell don't like you to rub their nose in it!

Kiwis dump telco 'regulatory holiday'

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You're not a Kiwi are you?

This sort of straight talking and a willingness to listen to reasoned argument is pretty common over in NZ. Public opinion, even on a local level, quite often causes changes in political decisions. Try doing that in the UK!

Computer glitch opens un-staffed supermarket to happy Kiwis

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Not unusual...

That sort of language is used by everyone over here - including politicians, police, councillors and the rest of the population. NZ is a straight talking, nice normal place to live, with very little downsides. (bias - ex UK citizen).

The mainframe comes of age ... again?




This is the 4th or 5th article on the Reg in the last couple of weeks* on the lines of "Hey, don't forget about the mainframe - it's really cool!". As Richard Hammond would say on Brainiac - "Don't do this at home. NO REALLY - DON'T!".

Is someone giving out brown envelopes to get this tripe published?

The mainframe is a relic of the past and like all good relics should be put in a museum where it belongs (next to IE6!), so the rest of us can get on with the job of making modern systems that work properly, with a gradually reducing ongoing maintenance profile (yes, "gradually" - we still have a long way to go).


Government should extend agile development for IT


Already stated in so many words, but...

Agile - and other development methods for that matter - work best with small teams doing small projects or 'atomic' project elements (e.g. an ORM or model layer). Large scale projects do not have to be large scale developments - they can be collections of small projects with pre-defined, fixed message/interface boundaries agreed in advance.

The biggest issue is then one of overall governance (as always), but the 'governors' in this case should not get involved with the innards of each system - just with the tested/warranteed deliverables (you know, like 'real' customers).

Tainted apps worm into official Android store


Audit trails?

I'm not saying this is the right answer, as I'm not (yet) an App developer, just an ordinary PC developer, but why can we not just implement some sort of simple API level audit trail.

I think one of the other posters alluded to something similar - we just persuade Google to vet all calls to the API and do some basic analysis regarding the nature of the App and what it is actually doing to the phone/pad. If you're selling a game App that access the phone/text functions, that would surely signal a problem?

Cabinet Office pushes suppliers on open source


Define the interfaces and other standards

I think you're all missing the big picture here. The important part of this is the phrase "...including open standards and interoperability as key components in IT systems...".

When you develop software, it's always easier if you have pre-defined interfaces and message standards to work with, and this is where most public-facing (and private for that matter) systems go wrong. This despite the fact that UK Govt does actually have message standards available (just Google - there's loads of them).

In other words if you want, say, a system that allows you to exchange patient records between a public health body and a GP surgery then just define the messages that pass between them.

In that situation, it doesn't matter if one system is open source and one is proprietary so it's then easier to introduce open source OR proprietary (if it's a better platform) in stages until a 'best of breed' solution is arrived at.

It also stops ridiculous attempts to build 'national systems' where the only companies that can implement them are the usual 'over budget/over time' suspects.

WTF is this country called America?


You are joking of course?

Sorry, perhaps you're being ironic or something - or perhaps its some sort of Friday thing.

Whatever it is, let's just state the basic geography here.

The statement 'America is that really big piece of land south of him' is wrong - period. That place is called the United States of America. On the other hand, 'America' is a continent, consisting of 'North America' - containing Canada, the USA, Mexico and and a bunch of small states down to Panama - and 'South America' - containing Columbia, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and half a dozen smaller countries.

There - fixed that for you.


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