* Posts by Chris Thorpe

33 publicly visible posts • joined 22 Jun 2007

11 Time Lords plan charity shindig

Chris Thorpe

An idea whose time will have come

Can't see the problem. Pop in the Tardis with a digicam and come back with pristine colour footage of not only all the past Doctors, but the future ones too. Though the future Doctors may not be interested, due to the special show having been repeated umpteen times before they actually get to act in it.

Opera Software reinvents complete irrelevance

Chris Thorpe

European envy of American recording industry

Of the major labels -

- EMI - British owned.

- Sony Music - Japanese owned.

- Universal Music - French owned.

So, that would leave Warner Music then? Seems to me most of the American music industry is European. Perhaps we can get Lewis Page to write something on the subject.

Israeli TV star ordered execs beaten up

Chris Thorpe

Possible new reality show format?

Dragons Den - Payback!

Fetish club forces ID scanner climbdown

Chris Thorpe

Clubbed to death

If licensed clubs are forced to install scanners, punters will choose to go to unlicensed shebeens, raves, warehouse parties, and gin-mills instead. Much more fun.

Mine's the day-glo parka with a smiley on the back

'Lunatic' Smith doubles ID card costs for Mancunians

Chris Thorpe
Dead Vulture

@Guy Herbert

After I'm dead? Sheesh! That means I can look forward to being interred, exhumed, and then interned.

I'll get my shroud.

Chris Thorpe
Paris Hilton

@peter Why would I bother?

It would be interesting to volunteer to get a card then, having found it unacceptable as actual ID anywhere, report the Home Office to the Manchester Trading Standards Office. 'I bought this from that Mrs Smith and she sold it to me as an ID card. All it's good for is making a clicky sound and cutting up lines of coke'.

I'm too apathetic to read up on it, but does anyone know if, while this is still in the 'voluntary' phase, you can opt back out again if unsatisfied?

Paris, coz she also makes a clicking sound if flicked with a fingernail

Hutton robs forces, pours MoD cash into UK arms biz

Chris Thorpe

The only aircraft carriers we need...

...are already built, from solid rock, and anchored in the North Atlantic. Face it - we have lost the Empire.

Microsoft squeezes out Oxite 'open source' blogger platform

Chris Thorpe

Licensing issues

Oxite includes the JQuery library, which may be licensed under MIT or GPL licenses. Anyone care to comment on whether either license permits inclusion in a package released under Microsoft's more restrictive terms?

Counter-terror police arrest Tory frontbencher

Chris Thorpe

Breaks law - gets arrested

Funny how politicians who campaign on Law and Order expect to be exempt from arrest. There's nothing that brings a smile to the face more than the sight of a pol being led away in handcuffs.

UK's 'secure' child protection database will be open to one million

Chris Thorpe

Access will be strictly limited to...

...those with access to the credentials, written on a post-it note and stuck on the monitor.

Starlust: love, hate and celebrity fantasies

Chris Thorpe

Clear boundaries

If a fan writes a morbid fantasy about a star, that's pathology. If a writer quotes the fan's morbid fantasy, that's journalism. If a novelist invents a fan, and puts fantasy words in the saddo's mouth, that's literature. And if a politician exploits the whole muddled scenario for votes, that's business as usual.

Halliburton seeks patent on patent trolling

Chris Thorpe

Prior art...

... everywhere.

Passport and ID card price hike laundered via private sector

Chris Thorpe

Open & competitive

I'm all for this, but I think it should work at the individual level. So, I'm throwing the issuing of my ID card open to competitive tender. Companies with the lowest cost will do well. Companies that offer to pay me will do even better. So if you'd like me to carry a large ID card on a stick, bearing your branding (eg 'This way to the golf sale'), queue up to bid now.

Study clears cannabis of schizophrenia rap

Chris Thorpe

Dumber, lazier and apathetic.

@Richard Jukes - 'So in short its not bad for your health, it just makes you dumber, lazier and apathetic.'

Shhh. If the government gets wind of that, they won't just legalise it.

They'll make it compulsory.

New no-advertising domain will deter some cybersquatters

Chris Thorpe

This will be very useful

Read the documentation. I need only quote a single, memorable, domain name to customers. That then returns a load of options and it's their choice how to contact me.

I can see this becoming a verb on a par with Google in a short space of time. I'd buy shares if I went in for that sort of thing.

Berlin bans handy iPhone metro app

Chris Thorpe

Just a thought...

Does giving wide access to timetables result in more or less use of trains? And does the train operator's revenue come from timetables, or from train tickets? I'm just askin'

EU bids to dominate future nebulous buzzword

Chris Thorpe

Web 3.0 definition

Web 1 & 2 we know.

Web 3 is the semantic web. Knows its 'nose' from its 'knows'.

That's old hat now. Web 4 is the coming thing. The haptic web - reaches out and tickles you remotely.

Caterpillar plans 600 tonne godzilla-lorry robots

Chris Thorpe

Gives new meaning to the phrase...

Drive-through MacDonalds!

ID scheme plans 50,000 cards by April

Chris Thorpe

Digital ID divide

Useful and effective! For example, on demanding your ID card, the police will be in a position to know whether or not you have an ID card.

If you don't have an ID card, you can't pretend to be someone who has one but you can pretend to be someone else who doesn't have one. If you do have an ID card, you can only pretend to be someone who doesn't have one, not someone else who has one.

It will be an offense to not show an ID card if you have one, but not if you don't. It will be an offense to show someone else's ID card, if you have it. It won't be an offense to show your own ID card if you don't have one - just difficult.

This neatly separates the the haves from the have-nots. For the deprived have-nots, perhaps they could consider issuing some form of card stating, 'ID applied for - it's in the post'.

Clearly the whole muddle is a plot to keep us docile by destroying our sanity. In reponse, I am changing my name by deed poll to:

Euro guidelines will allow Bluetooth spam

Chris Thorpe

Smartphone = Computer

So, pushing crap onto my computer is potentially a violation of the law against Computer Misuse. Extradition to Guantanamo seems like a reasonable penalty for Bluetooth spamming. Actually, extradition to Guantanamo just for having a career in marketing seems reasonable to me.

McCain: Keep Shuttle flying, don't trust Russia

Chris Thorpe

Don't let Russia annexe the ISS

It's only a matter of time before Russian tanks invade the Space Station. US must build it's own fleet of Space Tanks now!

Or, perhaps accept that the 'I' in ISS is for International?

Ballmer upset by Apple cart

Chris Thorpe

Comparing Apples with ???

'We outsell Apple 30 to 1...'.

With a little help from HP, Dell, Lenovo etc who make the hardware. And who will cheerfully load said hardware with Linux, licensed MacOS, etc as soon as the market will bear it.

Mini laptops from Asus, the Linux bios, etc, show the hardware vendors' desire to have a 2nd-source for operating systems. So, Steve, good luck in compelling those vendors to build to your PC reference platform, or however else you envisage enforcing tighter integration.

Still, should be a good excuse to add a few more stickers next to the laptop keyboard. 'Zune-approved', anyone?

RSA domain glitch derails UK online retailers

Chris Thorpe
Thumb Down

Pherified by Phisa

As Mr Coward says above, the real scam is Verified by Visa/MasterCard SecureCode. This brilliant piece of security theatre adds no real protection to the transaction. It does however force banks and retailers to interrupt transactions with either a pop-up or an iFrame (both security nightmares). The screen that appears lacks the full branding and looks amateurish. Customers are confused by it, so the retailer/bank loses sales, or has to deal with increased call-centre traffic. The long-term effect is that customers get used to random, bodged-looking pop-ups appearing during transactions. The phishers then won't even have to try to make their screens look real. Smacks of the kind of dumb idea thought up by a CEO, then half-assedly implemented by staff who know it's doomed to fail.

Microsoft chases satnav market

Chris Thorpe


On a laptop, SideShow tells you a bunch of Don't Need to Know info when the lid is closed. So presumably SideShow for Cars will slap an LCD on the outside of the door that can display messages like 'It looks like your car is being stolen...'.

Microsoft's Yahoo! takeover faces technical challenges

Chris Thorpe

Lessons learnt

Ray Ozzies experience...

Notes was a great product in need of a usability makeover and dynamic marketing. Having been bought by IBM, it got neither.

Groove was great technology with potential to own the groupware space. It outdid SharePoint but was easier and cheaper to setup and run.

Yahoo has a cost-effective and scalable web applications platform...

I think we can all see where this is headed.

Jason Bourne disses James Bond

Chris Thorpe

Minority of one

I know it's just me, but I'd like to see a retro, black and white, Bond movie, set in the period when the boooks were written. Like the Third Man, but with more girls and guns.

Ballmer: Microsoft to become ads and devices powerhouse

Chris Thorpe

Just a suspicion...

... but I suspect MS paid Digg a hefty wedge to ditch Google. Why do I think so? Just the general air of desperation in the Ballmer quotes. Glad I'm not a shareholder. When the rout starts, they'll need to move quickly if they don't want to be holding paper.

Astronauts chuck fridge off space station

Chris Thorpe

1 in 5000 chance?

Oh. That's alright then. Clearly an acceptable risk. No doubt they also did some risk assessment of where the potential impactees live, and who they vote for.

Jordan names sprog 'Princess Tiaamii'

Chris Thorpe

Fanboy status?

The only thing missing from this story is the lovely couple's fanboy status. Given the cheapskate move to combine two names into one, I'd say they were PC users. Oh, and, please drop all those tedious IT stories, as bizarro celebrity troll-bait is clearly of more relevance.

US cons attempt copyright-based prison break

Chris Thorpe

Look on the bright side

The RIAA will testify on their behalf at their next parole hearings

Burned by a MacBook

Chris Thorpe

Elementary advice

Given the number of Reg incendiary laptop stories, most readers (let alone a Reg writer) know better than to leave any laptop (even the rare non-explosive variety) charging overnight on a carpet, underneath a sofa. Laptops & chargers get warm. Airflow helps keep them cool. Common sense really.

Behind the Apple vs Universal breakup

Chris Thorpe

The flaw in that argument

What constitutes a copying device for digital music - an 'MP3' player? How about if I make a player that can only play OGG? So then we widen the definition to all digital audio players. Does that include a laptop with iTunes? Do all laptops incur the levy? It won't be an easy law to draft.

And why bother? The effect of the levy on digital audio tape recorders was to kill the market for DAT. If Universal wants to make money from digital formats, why don't they just open a successful online music store?

Apple has opened a channel. The record labels are free to participate in that channel or to compete. They just need to adjust their business models to allow them to make a profit. All it takes is brains, business sense and creativity...

Open sourcers rattle EU sabre at BBC on demand player

Chris Thorpe

driving innovation

The iPlayer should be an open initiative as -

- it's not just about Macs & PCs - how about PVRs, PS3, Wii, etc?

- the license fee should not be funnelled straight to Microsoft

- the BBC should not dictate the brand of receiver

More importantly, by creating its own open platform and licensing it -

- the platform would drive innovation in the UK

- it would create a revenue stream for the BBC

- it would have put the BBC at the forefront

Sadly, since selling its technical arm to Siemens, the BBC no longer has the brains to do this kind of work. The iPlayer is just one more example of this kind of short-term thinking.