* Posts by Shao

29 publicly visible posts • joined 20 Jul 2011

Foot-long £1 sausage roll arrives


I can think of the next American invention.....

....the footlong puff dog for a dollar!

Virgin Media cuts 250 jobs amid £3bn Project Lightning cockup fallout


Last time I heard, they charge £15 / month for Just Giving and £100 one off for VirginMoneyGiving. Depends on how long the funding goes on I suppose.

Dev boss: What will Microsoft do with Windows 10 Mobile? Surprise – it's for work!


No $hit

When Microsoft abandoned Windows Mobile 6.x it was because they didn't sell enough units to warrant it and needed to target the consumer market to carry it, hence the strategy with Windows Phone 7 which didn't support the needed business functions until WP8.x. Now they're going back? No doubt a year later they'll repeat the same cr*p about not selling enough in the business segment to justify their own phone again!

'Oracle, why are your sales f-' CLOUD CLOUD CLOUD, blasts Larry


Re: Customer voting

Yep. This is where they've fallen and won't budge. Because they bought out Sun and developed Unbreakable Linux, they came up with the daft idea that they could force the customer to buy their whole stack. This might work with the very largest of customers, but in today's more dynamic world it doesn't work with the vast majority of customers.

Existing small to medium-sized businesses will use VMWare and want to partition the server resources without using Oracle's hard partitioning and so they all move away.

Even larger organisations are experimenting with virtualisation servers on demand and this goes against Oracle Everything and so Mr Alpha Male's approach has seen 2 fingers from the vast majority of companies.

Why 2014 might just be the year of the Google Chromebook


Re: HUGE flaw in these stats that people keep missing

Good to hear. But it's not the same story in the U.K. Chromebooks are like the Linux wave into schools here. Yes, you can save money by buying them, but once you want to go beyond web surfing you have a problem. Computers in schools run Windows software for educational purposes. They can't go with anything but Windows to make use of this software. Furthermore, education does not pay much for a Windows licence anyway - £10 per machine if that. And there are site licence agreements for office (another £10 per machine if that). Whilst there are huge advantages in getting cheap Chromebooks in the developing world where they start from nothing, I'm not sure the cheapness of Chromebooks has outweighed the additional usefulness of a Windows laptop/desktop with full educational software.


Chromebooks are capturing a diminishing low end market. Whilst they are more efficient on low end machines for surfing the web, that market has moved over to tablets. It's not a market worth talking about anymore. Most people either want a tablet, or want a normal full blown laptop or desktop or more recently a small PC box to plug into the TV via HDMI and run wireless receivers for Xbox 360 controllers and use with wireless mouse and keyboard for surfing against the TV and playing MAME games. There is very little use for a Chromebook - taking 10% of something going towards nothing isn't worth Windows trying to challenge and regain market share there. The slightly better specced machines tend to have Chrome OS wiped and Windows put on to help a friend on a budget. That's the reality.

Women crap at parking: Official


"at any given moment, a woman is likely to be using her whole brain while a man is using half of his"

........that's bloody efficient if I do say so myself! :)

China challenged to take down all of AWS and Google


And I suppose...

......that China had to block the entire Apple AppStore to take down individual apps also right?

It's not difficult for China to issue an ultimatum to Amazon web services regardless of the rights or wrongs of it.

Obama to Merkel: No Americans are listening to you on this call


Obama to Merkel: No! Americans *are* listening to you on this call

Dear Apple: Want to stay in business? Make an iPhone people can afford


Very poor article.

The remainder of the market was always going to be from users of cheap feature phones anyway.

Furthermore, the report fails to take into consideration the upgrade cycle of phones and that the definition of rich is relative. Hitting the top 25% wealthiest of customers isn't going to change.

Murdoch hate sparks mass bitchin', rapid evacuation from O2, BE


Already going....

Most people went to O2 because they got a discount with their mobile phone and that O2 were on BE which was the first to provide ADSL2+. That group of people were already thinking about fleeing O2 as O2 wasn't going to move to fibre.

Then of course it doesn't help that Sky free broadband has been slated in the past by being slow and unreliable.

So Murdoch or no Murdoch, a large proportion were going to flee. Murdoch just reminded people that it was something on their tick list.

It is a good time to go....

Google's Glasses: The tech with specs appeal?


The specs will be refined over time and won't be so cumbersome.

There was some research at Harvard where a student demonstrated using a camera projected a screen from his head and his hands could be used to move content around the screen and do signals (in much the same way sign language has developed) to bring up things like camera and zoom.

What they finally realised was that even with the most powerful projector in the world you can't go up against sunlight and hence the technology was useless.

Google glasses seem like a gimmick at the moment and they are. As is Siri from Apple.

However, one future generation of the smart device involves being able to see things within your vision not limited by phone form factor and being able to speak to your phone sort of like what Siri does today albeit much more advanced.

In the future, combining all these devices will allow a smart device to be hands free, voice activated and vision not limited by current form factors. You won't be looking down on your phone when using your car as you can see everything as an overlay through your glasses. You'll be able to talk to them like Siri to activate voice calls.

The last generation of smart phones used styluses. The current ones have touch and Siri-like.

The future ones will change things further.

If there is anything to be learnt, its to keep applications written for mobile devices small - otherwise rewrites for the next generation will be an even bigger chore!

Oracle, Google limber up for round two in their Android Java bout


A shame

Oracle had every opportunity to corner the mobile market in much the same way it dominated the Linux market with Unbreakable Linux sold on the basis that Oracle supported it all the way down to the operating system.

All Oracle needed to do was port its Oracle Lite database to Android and over time release a version of Unbreakable Android and it would have a fair share of the market.

More importantly, it would assist in supporting making Android the viable business platform.

But it got greedy.

Everything Oracle is doing is about greed and SMEs are moving away in droves.

Why Oracle must kiss goodbye to its database past


Oracle are killing themselves by killing small to medium-sized customers. Microsoft undercut Oracle by offering site licences including office and Windows licensing. Oracle site licenses are shrinking by the day. The move to VMWare exists in over 60% of firms. All these firms are asking software suppliers for solutions that run on Microsoft because of Oracle's arrogance in licencing the underlying hardware rather than the hardwares used in each particular VM.

Ten 15in notebooks for under 400 quid


Watch out for resolution and numeric keypad

1366 x 768 widescreen laptops don't have enough down space. Makes it difficult for programs like Visual Studio or even web surfing where not enough results appear onscreen without the need to scroll downwards. Old non-widescreen laptops gave a resulution of 1280 x 1024. Note the down of 1024 as opposed to 768 - almost 1/4 more space.

Also, with the advent of a numeric pad, the main keyboard is shifted to the right.

Look out for the new ultrabooks which are more compact and hopefully remove these 2 problems.

At the moment, most laptops will all have numeric pads. However, you can overcome the resolution issue by buying a 17" or above laptop going into the more expensive range.

Ten... Androids for under 200 quid


Orange San Diego

Also consider the Orange San Diego....very good phone for £199 PAYG....big screen and FAST Intel processor....only downside is incompatibility with some games.


Nokia loses $1.7bn in Q1, sales chief falls overboard


Microsoft's fault as much as anyone's

Nokia should have been able to see that it spent most of its time pushing for the Tango release and hampering Windows Phone 7 development for multi-core as it wanted to corner the cheap end of the market which is driven by volume sales and low margin. Nokia found ultimately that it was difficult for it to compete there. This is not to say that going into the high end at this time is a great thing judging by how HTC is doing.

However, Microsoft not supporting native code pretty much introduced a pause in the mobile industry such that many players were and are hesitant to adopt Windows Phone 7 and the majority are waiting for Windows Phone 8.

Even if the companies came on board and rewrote everything in .NET, given that the majority of WP7 devices are aimed at the low end and .NET running slower than native code, would the BBC iPlayer really have been a success when it performs slow compared to other platforms.

Even Angry Birds needs a few tricks up its sleeves to give the impression that it runs fast.

Or maybe Microsoft just wants Nokia to do poorly and then be ripe for a takeover? Who knows.

Laptop computers are crap


Widescreen laptops

My gripe is the move to widescreen laptops.

They actually do give you the numeric keypad, but then the tradeoff is that EVEN MORE keys double up using the function key so a select down in Microsoft Word is FN-CTRL-SHIFT-DOWN etc. Not to mention that the main keyboard is shunted to the left to accommodate the numeric.

Second gripe is that wih fairly cheap (sub-£400) non-widescreen laptops, you can get a resolution of 1200x800. New widescreen laptops sub-£700 all have 1366x768. Most people register the 1366 which is great because its widescreen. However, its not until they use their laptop for a while that they notice the x768 downwards which is less than the x800. The problem with this effect is that although the number of pixel differences don't seem that much, you end up scrolling down a heck of a lot more in searches and also when trying to edit anything there is not enough vertical space.

I am not sure how the Ultrabooks are going to shape up, but let's hope its an improvement.

Baidu! boss! says! no! to! Yahoo! gobble!


Makes sense

Not really pointing the finger at Google. Baidu is large in China so it makes sense to use Baidu especially as the Great Firewall makes surfing non-China resident sites quite a bit slower. Just like Facebook and Twitter would default to the Chinese largest market share equivalents. It just makes sense in much the same that there is no point defaulting to Baidu in the UK or US.

Huawei banned from Australia’s NBN: reports


I can see where this guy is coming from......

......especially in light that PS2s are soooo powerful they can bring to reality a world only known to those that have seen the Terminator series. Same thinking really!

Rovio: Actually there will be Angry Birds Space on Windows Phone


Windows Phone 8 should resolve most things

At the moment games for multiple platforms are written in cross-platform tools that are essentially C++ with wrappers. However, Windows Phone 7 only allows C# .NET so its a rewrite to support Windows Phone 7. Furthermore, unless the game is one of those hidden objects low resource games, coding on higher levels like .NET, there can be performance problems.

Windows Phone 8 supposedly supports native code which will remove this barrier. Until then, I can't see many games companies writing cross platform games for Windows Phone.

Cyber snoopers target NATO commander in Facebook attack


Whilst this kind of thing is possible, China blocks all Facebook activity. Very odd that individuals in China with a good knowledge of hacking and the English language as well as familiarisation with Facebook which is generally not known in China would spend their time doing this. Still it can be argued that anything is possible!

Stinky alligator drama is App Store's 25 billionth download


Sounds like its a girl

....someone that could do a spinning bird kick anyway!

Apple iPhone 5 to debut at developer gig



I'd imagine that initial views would be that the iPhone 4S has plenty of steam yet to go especially with high demand from China. However, in reality, I'd imagine that Apple would have been the first to realise the 'up and coming third OS that is Microsoft and don't want to be sitting around.

Most likely they'll not say too much until close to launch as they don't want to put people off the 4S but they will launch and then discount older models as they've mentioned in the past to cover more segments of the market.

The constant lawsuits are suggesting that the mobile arena battle is heating up and it would be odd for Apple to go out of their way not to release a ready iPhone which would then become obsolete/superceded/lack awe by the time they do release it. The only reason for delays would be because it isn't ready.

Oracle hammered as hardware sales soften


Oracle is in decline in the SME arena and they are doing nothing about it.

In the past, Oracle was the latest greatest. To some extent, that is still true and their capitalization on hardware and its own flavour of Linux is an excellent strategy.

The problem they have is that for an SME that just uses Oracle as 'mainly a standard database' and doesn't use a great deal of the fancy higher end features, everything is moving more in the Microsoft SQL Server direction. In the past, councils etc would have site licences for Oracle - they now have site licences for Microsoft technology. In univesities, they teach Microsoft or OSS. In existing business deployments, SMEs can't extend into hosted services because Oracle's policy of not allowing Oracle applications to sit on VMWare without licensing all the CPUs in the physical box rather than just the CPUs used in the VMWare sectioned off for the application. As trading conditions become tough, SMEs want to extend into providing the entire hosted solution service, and with Oracle, this becomes problematic.

So overall, I would say that the above all contribute towards Oracle's failed bottom line and that trend will continue.

The Secret of Monkey Island

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Loved this game

I do agree that this is one of the top games for getting immersed in a different world. A close second would be Simon The Sorceror.

In terms of these types of puzzle games I think Day Of The Tentacle does it a bit better for me although the humour isn't quite as good. Doing things in the past to affect the future was really well implemented.

Now Windows 8 goes into the ring to face Apple's iOS



Everything sounds good and seems to incorporate the best of both worlds. However, I'd say the main challenge to overcome would be that you've got a full blown OS as well as a slimmed down mobile OS to boot up.

In practice, I'd like to see how that would use comparable resources to an iPad which simply has a glorified mobile OS.

Resource drain and bootup times will most likely be issues.

TomTom fights falling satnav sales with iPad app


TomTom's Customer Support is poor

TomTom killed the APIs from TomTom v6 to TomTom v7 and didn't value their business customer base. Customer service is the worst I've seen.

They new when they went for the consumer market that if they charged £80 when their competitors were free or around £20, that no-one buy their software.

They saw it coming and didn't care.

There are good reasons why integration is now with CoPilot or Google Maps.

Their standalone units are still okay though.

X-COM UFO: Enemy Unknown

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Best game ever.

Loved this game. Loved the eeriness feeling.

If you want this game, good to get it on Good Old Games (gog) or Steam.

They sort out the DosBox issues, bugs, performance etc.