* Posts by simonjon

18 posts • joined 11 Nov 2011

New UK network touts FREE* mobile broadband


Old news: Ovivo Mobile launched back in May!

...so this isn't a topical novelty.

Offers 1GB per month for nowt (well, £5 delivery, converted to credit for overspill at 6p/MB) with a few ads at login.

Google it!

Paris Hilton

Where you getting these 1GB / 2GB for £5 deals from Three, then?

Their website says 1GB for £10.50 per month on mobile broadband PAYG SIM.

Tripleton touts telephone for double-ohs

Big Brother


The Obamanator's "BlackBerry One" is more secure. It was pimped by the NSA. Cameron has something similar from GCHQ.

NSA, GCHQ, Putin's People et al can clearly crack anything going over a radio frequency.

So maybe useful for corporate security types on a budget, but not much else as satellite isn't all that much more expensive.

Either way, never underestimate the importance of stupid/greedy/spurned/ideological human in the breakdown of secrecy: Bin Laden wasn't fingered by his use of electronic comms...

Tree-hugging Chinese throttle rare earth production


"China is [forcing] manufacturers to locate their.. plants within its borders"


When was the last time that you bought electronics that DIDN'T carry the magic words "Made in China"?

Even the Japanese and the Taiwanese (HTC etc) make most of their kit in PRC, and - electronics aside for the mo - even the 'proudly-Australian' impractical footwear brand Ugg Boots are made there.

Interestingly, according to Brit scientist James Lovelock, the now-standard hazy-red sunsets being experienced in California are a direct result of the pollution particles being blown across the Pacific from Chinese factories.

Apple slaps mega-solar panel field on new ENORMO data centre


Re "Investing in small modular reactors now is going to be a smart move."

Mr Ahmadinejad might not support your idea in six months!

NHS Direct


Does it help treat iPad Hand?

Here's what it asks when you say your shoulders, neck and wrists are hurting again?

Q1) Hang on: didn't we suggest that you rein in that dirty little habit?

Q2) Does your life _really_ need Twitter and Facebook updates 24/7? Have you considered just _talking_ to your one friend, you iPhony?

Apple TV surfaces on Best Buy


Lack of revolution won't stop it selling

"Nothing in the Best Buy description could be hyped up as revolutionary." Correct, but that won't stop Apple from saying it's unlocked the 50% of the optic nerve that you never use (or similar cobblers).

"Skype?" sez Apple, "what's that?".

It will probably have a good rez screen, not that this will magically make iTunes video content decent quality anytime soon.

OFFICIAL: Smart meters won't be compulsory


Quote from a supplier's T&Cs

Here's a quote from Ovo Energy's T&Cs.

"13.8A When you decide to have a smart meter installed you agree to pay the extra monthly charge that we will add to your account."

"13.8L If you want to have your smart meter removed in the future, you can ask us to do this for you. You will have to pay a one-off administration fee."

So just hope that you don't move into a house with one fitted, or it's "Lead or Silver" for you.

And Ovo are one of the fair providers: I dread to think that what the Big Six will do.

So the industry energy saves a packet on Meter Readers and the customers pay. Trebles all around!!!

Of course, there is the downside for the Big Six: one of them I worked for had a Balance Sheet entry for how much it had in its bank due to estimated readings: it was ten of millions...

Saudi oil minister praises renewable energy


London, Middle East

Ironically he and his chums took us one step closer to Peak Oil* by having the "Middle East and North Africa Energy 2012 conference" in that well known MEA city: London. (* the point at which oil production starts declining, which some say could be as soon as 2015.)

Skull & Crossbones: de rigueur flag for vessels off East Africa

Kutcher invests in German start-up


So Kutcher put in $1000 then...

...no split out on the contributions. Maybe the trend will continue of minor-celebrities-in-law investing so that the firm gets _some_ headlines: they might even get paid to make endorsements. Well, if it's good enough for Hollywood actors and Japanese whiskey!

Lovefilm signs BBC streaming deal

Thumb Up

The Netflix app for PS3 arrived in the last firmware download. It loads fine: just won't accept logins just yet. The release can't be far off, then.

Good news for console owners, less so for MUBI and LoveFilm...

Ofcom's Local TV dream: No smut, an hour of news, endless ads


James Naughtie was right

Jeremy *unt clearly needs a vanity project to get some headlines, so that the populace (less the Prime Minister and Chancellor) briefly forget that he runs a bloated and pointless Third Division ministry, that only serves to piss tax payers money up a wall in ever differing patterns.

Jezza has clearly not been outside London (where BBC London and the national news are symbiotic, as most stabbings/other crime so beloved of the news happen there) as if he had seen the dross on regional shows like South Today - or read the local paper - he'd have killed this turkey at birth.

"I think the large amount of [local US channel] news contains mostly repeated information over and over, I know the national 24 hour news channels do."

No need to go to the USA for this - it's called Sky News channel!

Durban failed: Relax, everyone


"I don't expect balance from El Reg regarding climate change"

Well said.

Though, I also agree that the BBC also seems to be more one-sided than usual in this area.

There is the argument however, that professional groupings like The Royal Society, and their American counterpart, have both stuck their reputations - all that they have - on the line and said that they agree with the theory of man made climate change. They could have just happily just sat on the fence.

Anyhoo, I steer clear of the painful and thankless "who is right or wrong on global warming" gig, preferring instead the Greg Craven (Google him!) approach. That's to ignoring who might be right, and thinking 'what if the problem exists, yet we did nothing?'. The answer is, slowed economic growth and catalysed the growth of at least one amazingly efficient technologies.

Yes, some will need to fly to get some kind of agreement as body language is important, and what hotel/food they had is red herring heresay, so why not just limit these gigs to less than 1000 people?

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Nokia to sell off luxury phone brand


Concierge my ass

'Writing on the wall' from smartphone apps allowing you to book flights etc yourself?

C'mon people. More like the fact that people who are happy to spend £5k-£10k on a Daewoo-esque outmoded blower have their own minions - who they can physically throw stuff at - who take care of such minutia...

Steve Jobs' last design: New Apple HQ pics


Pentagon fact, and solar

Did you know that the Pentagon (the world's biggest office building!) has twice as many bogs and canteens than it needs, so that blacks and whites would be separated? True story, it was designed and built during the segregation period.

You can pin many design crimes on Jobs (iPod headphones leak like an old whore) but sealed windows feature in all new buildings of large scale. That's so heat/cool don't fight each other, which would be a really serious problem with Californian summers.

Likewise, the windows are likely not shaded because of solar power use (PV panels need to go higher up, at an angle, not overshadowed by trees) but to reflect solar radiation and make cooling more efficient and (like in windscreens) prevent solar glare. Oh, and to make it look groovy (c:

Whoa, that's good shit Sherlock!

Plans for wave-pay Tube tickets don't convince pols


The Japanese solved this aeons ago...

...by making their equivalent of Oyster (Suica and Pasmo) usable in vending machines and newsagents and convenience stores. Admittedly, debit/credit card usage is still quite rare in Japan, but people trust using their transit card for payments for up to about £20. Oh, and the two schemes (one from the rail operator and one the Tokyo subway) are compatible so you need only hold one.

And doesn't VISA have cards with contactless VISA and a separate Oyster chip? If TfL just stick to Oyster, then such single cards (which will cost banks a little more to make, natch) will use Oyster for transit, and VISA Wave (or the new HFC rivals) for micropayments elsewhere. Simple.

Why the bloomin hell did TfL sign the huge Oyster outsource deal, only to blow another £1m of taxpayers money because they forgot to demand the intellectual property of the brand name....and then want to slowly kill that brand by introducing a new rival? Classic myopic British penpusher mentality, I guess.

Of course, this has NOTHING to do with improving customers lives (oh, the STRESS of having two 1mm thick cards in my pocket!), or saving the public sector money and it's another huge IT project waiting to bleed the taxpayers dry. Until you can close every ticket office and the entire Oyster ticket machine fleet, this is waste of time.

But, being public sector droids, TfL need something to keep their staff busy until they go home at 16:59 every day. Nothing like bit IT projects to keep that final salary pension scheme topping up for another year...

HP earns Greenpeace eco-purity snog


It's about awareness

Well done to the Oil Rig Clingers for raising awareness of all this as the public carrot and stick is a good way to sharpen the manufacturers pencils. They really need to add HTC, though: who buys Phillips these days?!?

Yes, over packaging is still a serious and widely prevalent issue, but it's far from just HP who is guilty of this. Most things we buy have far too much packaging. We can all think of an example.

Reducing it comes very far down the agenda for many firms, though, as many firms environmental units focus more on reducing the biggest bogeyman - the CO2 emissions from electricity - as it's sexier and more easily/publicly measurable.

The better angle on reducing packaging is the cost incentive for a business. Cardboard and plastic is starting to getting exponentially more expensive because of the water, oil, electricity, gas and shipping fuel needed to make it. But it's quicker and easier to use less of it, than, say, electricity in your operations.

Let's face it, not many Westerners really get the green thing, so chase the monetary savings by using less of everything and the planet saving thang will be a nice bonus.

Beer, 'coz it's Friday.


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