* Posts by Ian Yates

869 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Jun 2007


Windows 10 is due in one month: Will it be ready?

Ian Yates

Re: Think of the budget level of ordinary home users

I would imagine ~1% of failures would be considered a success, albeit one with a fair amount of noise.

If you think of the user-base numbers involved, ~1% is damnably good. I would expect closer to 5%. Although, enough safeguards in the installer should reduce "borked" installs to just "failed" (no effect), which will probably make that figure even higher.

Hollywood vs hackers: Vulture cracks Tinseltown keyboard cornballs

Ian Yates

Re: Swordfish - The real reason ...

I quite enjoy Swordfish. I always wished programming was actually like it was in the film... boxes coming and going based on the "success" of the code... awesome.

Remember when Google+ outed everyone by their real names? Now Google's sorry

Ian Yates

Re: Meh!

It's more like their version of Twitter and Flickr/Instagram with a smattering of "Facebook" features (quotes because Facebook didn't invent any of them).

Can't answer your final question, though. It has a few well-implemented features that I like, but I've never tried to convert anyone to it.

Girl gamers sexism row: Top e-sports federation finds reverse gear

Ian Yates

Re: All of the above comments on equality

Wait, so I can't have a view on equality because I was born in to a particular position? Hmm...

Ian Yates

I thought similar: 3 competitions.

One all-male, with "World Male Champion" title; one all-female, with "World Female Champion"; and then an extra tournament of the top 8 (w/e) from each to title the "World Mixed Champion"...

Ian Yates

Re: esport trying to be real sport

@Charles Manning: Defending your point slightly, given the downvotes, this is exactly what the IeSF said to justify the gender-specific competitions: it makes them seem like a more legitimate sporting federation.

It's an interesting point, but a terrible defence; they're essentially saying "well, the others discriminate (rightly or wrongly), so we should too", without looking at whether they need to.

The reality is, though, why do they have different games for different genders? That would be like men competing in 100m sprint, while women get hopscotch.

Arguably, they could run a year where women can compete separately on the same games to "prove" (in my hypothesis) that there's no innate reason that a combined games won't work - ignoring their hypothesis that women are more likely to compete if they know they'll compete against other women.

I'm guessing that their view is that once they have a few world female champions, it may encourage other women to try their luck...

You 'posted' a 'letter' with Outlook... No, NO, that's the MONITOR

Ian Yates

While it doesn't solve every issue, this is why I recommend the latest Kindle tablets to non-techies. The Mayday feature is a rediculously good time-saver (for me)

Lindsay Lohan sues Grand Theft Auto V makers for 'using her image'

Ian Yates

Re: Looks more like...

Yeah... I didn't think of Lohan when I first saw the image... Maybe she needs a new revenue stream?

Speed of light slower than we thought? Probably not

Ian Yates

That's an interesting point: while I agree that a metre is defined as the distance light travels in a vacuum in 1/299,792,458th of a second, arguably a metre as it exists at this point in time is more important than the accuracy of that calculation, in terms of the impact to society as a whole. i.e., if we (hypothetically) did discover that the speed of light is slightly different (as John suggested), wouldn't it make more sense to change that formula to keep the metre the same, rather than having to adjust all of our measurements?

Too early?

Microsoft to shutter security email feed on July 1

Ian Yates

Re: I'm tempted to enter the draw.

Depends. Might be red.

Android to drop Dalvik VM for high-performance ART in next version

Ian Yates

Re: Strange...

Definitely the next best thing ever for portability, but no one's yet released an HTML5 "interpreter" with near the performance of compiled (or semi-compiled) code.

As always, it's more about your needs and resources than one-size-fits-all.

9 Dark Social Truths That Will Totally Blow Your Bowels!

Ian Yates

Re: Proving that 95% of all statistics are made up on the spot?

I'd heard it was 80%

VIDEO SELFIE DRONE: 'AirDog' UAV follows you everywhere you go

Ian Yates

Prior Art

Immediately reminded me of this superb April Fool's joke from Razer:


Quantum teleportation gets reliable at Delft

Ian Yates

Re: Now listen here sonny...

Also, people who think that a scientist (even one as important as Einstein) can't be "wrong" and have theories disproved don't understand the scientific process.

Einstein wouldn't be upset by this, he'd be curious.

Oculus boss: True virtual reality is 'a decade or two' away

Ian Yates

Re: "True virtual reality is 'a decade or two' away"

Rubbish. The "best" minds aren't interested in such trivial things

Ian Yates

Re: "True virtual reality is 'a decade or two' away"

I don't see this as an either-or situation; those working on ad-slinging are not the same people working on useful technology.

Also, most of the tech you mentioned is an important part of future VR solutions - curved TVs are a by-product of breakthroughs in thinner, flexible displays, 8k is purely a push for higher ppi in a cheaper manufacturing process, and (active) 3D is just a higher framerate.

EBAY... You keep using that word 'ENCRYPTION' – it does not mean what you think it means

Ian Yates

Proprietary means "we think we're more clever than the uncounted number of people that have reviewed the open source implementations for years". So they're probably relying on the obscurity of their implementation... which is ridiculous.

Dixons and Carphone Warehouse confirm £3.7bn merger

Ian Yates

Re: Boring Name

Or Window Shopper Where you check out things you want to buy online

Microsoft throws Kinect under a bus, slashes Xbox One to $399

Ian Yates

Re: Not Surprised - The console is dead.

"PS4/XBone, put the power in, connect it to TV, power up, pray it isn't bricked, activate online, wait for mandatory updates, pray it isn't bricked, insert game disc, wait for game to install, wait for mandatory game updates, play game."

Fixed it for you.

Ian Yates

Re: between 50 and 75 per cent off the cost of new titles

"a high percentage of steam games are never played, because buyers see a bargain that is too good to turn down"

I resemble that remark!

Google: Mmm. Tab-free Gmail desktop client? We won't DENY it

Ian Yates

Re: "Desktop client"

That got me as well.

Also, aren't we beyond Web "2.0" by now? People have been saying it for so long, we must be on 3.0 at least

Samsung will ... sigh ... appeal $119m Apple patent verdict

Ian Yates

Re: Sounds smart to me

Well, you know, it's us consumers who'll win out in the end... possibly... that's the purpose of enforcing patents, right?

I wonder what the court costs are raking up to by now, and who'll have to pay them; or are they included in the awarded damages?

No Notch niche: Minecraft man in rift with Oculus after Facebook gobble

Ian Yates

Re: ..a multimillionaire already ..... can afford to walk away

"If you want to see his "moral compass" at work, try raising some money on Kickstarter to make a Minecraft Movie. He won't even sue you. He just calls some Silicon Valley buddies, and you just disappear from the Internet."

Maybe not an unbiased report, but Notch's explanation is that his lawyers (interestingly, without his input, apparently) said they could carry on if they removed the word "Minecraft", but they voluntarily shut themselves down.

He seems a pretty genuine/open person, from the interactions I've seen.

Virtual-reality Dev Kit 2 game goggles by Oculus – now with less vomit!

Ian Yates

Re: Crystal cove @ Ian Yates

With a new lens system, this might work, but with the Rift you're essentially looking through a microscope at a screen*, so you only get a limited area of focus. How limited, I haven't checked, but I don't think that full 160o(?) vision is possible with the current design.

I tried the Glyph recently. Their approach to the "screen" was to use a micro-mirror array to project the image on to your retina. It worked really well (crystal clear HD image), but the actual view array was much smaller (well under half the Rift) and looked like it was being seen through a very long tunnel.

I think that this tech, projecting from more than just straight in front, is a good contender for full viewing angle.

* Not trying to be scientifically accurate

Ian Yates

Re: Crystal cove

Over 1080p is a must, which they hinted at on the forums some time ago.

I think (as do a lot of Rift users) consumer release 1 will be 1440p and a future version at 4k (2160p).

The current 1280x800 version works fine, but really isn't good at anything at a distance (racing games, HL2, etc.).

There's a good approximation of what the resolutions means in terms of screendoor effect here: http://vr.mkeblx.net/oculus-sim/

For me, the next biggest leap will be adding peripheral vision. I love playing on the Rift, but it does feel a bit like viewing a world through a pair of binoculars. The most immersive games are those where the character is intended to be wearing some kind of head-gear (space walks, HL2, etc.), as you feel a part of what they're experiencing.

Reality check: Java 8 finally catches a multi-core break

Ian Yates

Re: Wait, what?

Ugh! Java "generics"! What a waste of time.

When are they going to reimplement them to be true generics (rather than pre-compiler syntax sugar), with the ability to reflect on the underlying type?

SACRILEGE! Hitchhiker's Guide game's back ... and it TWEETS at you

Ian Yates

Or iPlayer for 5 more days. Enjoying it right now :)

Two in five Brits cough up for CryptoLocker ransomware's demands

Ian Yates

Re: Bad Headline Writer! Bad! Down boy!

"Around two in five from a sample of 48 people who fell victim to CryptoLocker"


Unless, of course, only 48 people have fallen victim to it.

Sandisk breaks 128GB barrier with new $199 MICROSD card

Ian Yates

Re: compatibility

My experience is that the limits they state are because the larger cards didn't exist to test at the time of release, so they don't want to be held accountable for mis-sold features if the newer cards fail.

Seems reasonable (legally), but definitely causes consumer confusion.

Wish my G2 had card expansion... Definitely becoming harder to find on high-end phones.

Silk Road admins: Sorry for the hack, we're sorting out refunds

Ian Yates

Re: Ponzi scheme tactics

Isn't Bitcoin itself just a rather elaborate Ponzi scheme?

Google slurps sound-powered security upstart SlickLogin

Ian Yates

Re: See the video for more information.

Except that it requires your computer to (a) have speakers and (b) have them turned on. Can't watch the video, so I can't tell if the app is then authenticating over the 'net or responding with a sound; hopefully the former or you'd need a microphone on the computer.

It's an interesting tech, but I don't see how it's better (meaning more secure rather than cooler) than using a QR Code and holding the phone up to the screen.

Minecraft developer kills Kickstarted Minecraft movie

Ian Yates

Re: Rendering on PC:s

My first thought was Babylon 5, though they did have a special piece of hardware (Video Toaster). I'm sure there are plenty of other examples, though.

Sounds like a lot of hyperbole to me.

HARD ONES: Three new PC games that are BLOODY DIFFICULT

Ian Yates

Kerbal Space Program

That's the new definition of a difficult game; I had to learn about orbital mechanics and gravity assists, calculate delta-V, as well as design and test my own spacecraft.

It's the game I've spent the most single-player total time in. Quickly becomes a hobby.

Facebook app now reads your smartphone's text messages? THE TRUTH

Ian Yates

Re: So is anyone wrting an App Control App?

LBE Privacy Guard (amongst others), although 4.3 breaks it :-/

A BBC-by-subscription 'would be richer', MPs told

Ian Yates

Re: Richer?

"Move the price to double and you get current revenue - 40% who are willing to pay this price and 10% who would pay even more. 50% * 2 = 100%"

I read it as the 10% who would pay triple were included in the 40% who would pay double, otherwise the statistic makes even less sense than it does. Who would say they'd pay triple but not double?

So 40% * 2 = still 80%.

Not that it matters; these are hypothetical figures with little basis in reality.

Ian Yates

Re: Follow what money?

As in insider to Britan, I'm puzzled by this: "enrichifying"

To answer your question: I don't believe Ministers are benefiting from the licence fee directly, they just don't have to fork any public cash out because it exists.

Microsoft to RIP THE SHEETS off Windows 9 aka 'Threshold' in April

Ian Yates

Re: If...

"I'd be interested to hear exactly where you get the "most companies" statistic from"

Poor wording on my part. I meant more that most companies still on XP are that way because they see no reason to upgrade.

That said, I have personally worked at 4 large companies over the last year, all of which are completely or mostly on XP with varying plans of migration (and all of those to 7). The only reason behind the upgrade plans at these is support; they're not interested in any of new features (maybe some of the admin tools).

Ian Yates

Re: If...

Isn't the biggest issue that they keep making changes that no one wants? Most companies still have XP because it does what they want and little extra.

Who is the target audience for Vista / 7 / 8 - they all feel far more consumer focused than business. As a gamer, I actually rate 8 quite highly, but I can't see much in it worth recommending to clients.

Ian Yates

Most of the City businesses I know are only now starting the XP to 7 migration, having spent all this time proving hardware and software compatibility.

That second point is the most important: software. Most companies will only upgrade due to security necessity, and even then binary compatibility is priority #1. If they could run their obscure/bespoke 32-bit (because most still are) Windows applications on any other operating system, most would consider it.

Pre-Xmas phone numbers: Apple slips, Windows Phone grabs 1 in 10 new sales

Ian Yates

Re: So this is a waste of time

I read that as meaning that although iOS was available for the whole quarter, the 5S and 5C were released October/November, so were only on sale for party of it.

As always, though, phone sale figures (like anything) are an odd statistic that don't tell that much of a story (what about returns, price point, etc.).

Pervy TOILET CAMERA disguised as 'flash drive' sparks BOMB SCARE on Boeing 767

Ian Yates

Re: Haven't you seen Fringe ?

"Yeh, but don't the major airports already sniff and scan for such explosives? I know that I've been through puffer/sniffer machines, the kind that search for airborne evidence of the minutest giveaway sizing."

I can't say I've ever looked in to it, but I've always kind of assumed that these things are a bit of a hoax; designed more as a scary deterrence than actually as functional as they claim. Similar to how sniffer dogs actually have a very poor success rate (very high false-positive rate) but are still used in most airports.

Just who is Apple's most frustrated fanboi? Surprise – it's GOOGLE

Ian Yates

Can't speak for NA universities, but during my CS course in the UK we were specifically encouraged to come up with more interesting names, especially for version releases. It's a bit of fun in an otherwise cold environment.

I still encourage interesting names (especially backronyms) in my professional life, and it does add a small amount of humour to planning meetings that the team can enjoy together. Just the other day we were discussing when "the new OWL will be ready", rather than "version 2 of Monitoring Tool".

True, it might be more appropriate as an internal thing, but it's hard to argue that names such as Yahoo, Flickr, Google, Git, Ubuntu, etc., are descriptive of their services and unrecognisable by the general masses.

@ David Cantrell

Just wanted to add that I agree with you on version naming. I normally espouse a more Ubuntu/Android-esque style of each major version starting with the next letter in the alphabet. No one can be confused if Mozart or Picasso is more recent.

SCRUBBED: Technical oopsies halt SpaceX's bid for the Money Ring

Ian Yates

Re: Kerbal Space Program

Tell me you have an antidote?! Don't even want to think about the hours I've sunk in to reaching imaginary planets only to screw something up in the staging and dig a new crater...

Ian Yates

Re: Geostationary - bloody tough

Tell me about it! Not only do you have to get to the correct altitude, you need to do it in the correct position.

I can sympathise with SpaceX, as my attempts to do this in KSP have been highly stressful ;)

'MacGyver' geezer makes 'SHOTGUN, GRENADE' from airport shop tat

Ian Yates

I thought it was 101ml of liquid not held in a little plastic bag?

Most of Dread Pirate Roberts' treasure still buried, say researchers

Ian Yates

Re: The guy is loaded, load-ed!!

"Because a value in Bitcoins means nothing to most of us"

But, given the volatility of the cyptocurrency, it's almost certainly wrong by the time of publishing. Not to mention that you're almost certainly never going to be able to convert that many Bitcoin in to real cash.

It's a pretty useless comparison, really.

'Best known female architect' angrily defends gigantic vagina

Ian Yates

Re: Slightly off topic...

It's currently got a large sheet covering the offending (albeit not like the Qatari stadium) side.

Amusingly, the developers' defended themselves with (not verbatim): "this is a temporary problem as the sun will soon be at an angle that doesn't cause this problem"... somehow forgetting what seasons are...

But, as the other poster said, apparently they're going to coat the glass in something less reflective.

Microsoft, Cisco: RC4 encryption considered harmful, avoid at all costs

Ian Yates

To be honest, I've never really understood what they mean by "import" and "export" in these things, apart from physical crypto gear. Digital "property" has blurred the lines of when something is entering or leaving your borders.

Plus, you can't control concepts, no matter how egotisitcal a government is. Cryptographic tech is just the implementation of a mathematical concept, which is easily distributable.

LG’s G2: The phondleslab that wants you to TOUCH ITS BEHIND

Ian Yates

Re: Not expensive at all for what you get!

I've had it for two weeks now, and *could* be happier.

It's the best (of 5) Android handset I've owner, and I even like what LG have done in terms of overlay, having been a Cyanogenmod user before, but they've made one massive fail: The cheapness of the screen lens.

Mine accidentally slid face down across a wooden floor, and immediately had scratches along two edges of the screen; something I haven't seen since Gorilla Glass become standard in other phones. I immediately bought the "smart" case, which is excellent.

Then, a few days ago, I dropped it from my hand (~1m) and the glass shattered, damaging the digitizer.

I've sent it off for repair, but I really feel that they've skimped on the lens in order to make it that little bit thinner.

Ding-dong! Bye bye Sunday lie-in, your Amazon package is HERE

Ian Yates

Re: It ain't gonna work in the UK...

I know. They can't.

I'm currently awaiting a parcel to be delivered *for the third time*.

Courier 1 "tried" twice, without leaving a card, so the first I knew that they had failed was when Amazon emailed me to say that the parcel had been returned; full refund.

Courier 2 did deliver the parcel. Unfortunately, they delivered it 2.5 miles away to a completely different address. But it was signed for, so that's okay. They couldn't even tell me why it was delivered somewhere else, or even the full address of where it was delivered, just the signatory name and postcode. They expected me to figure out where it was, deciding that the driver had done it for the best of reasons.

On the plus side, Amazon's customer service is excellent, so they sent out a replacement without fuss and I'm now waiting for that to arrive, via Courier 3.

Unfortunately for some, none of this can be blamed on the Royal Mail float.