* Posts by Trygve

261 publicly visible posts • joined 28 Jun 2007


Nokia 5310: Retro feature phone shamelessly panders to nostalgia, but is charming enough to be forgiven



Don't really miss the 6310, but my 8210 was ace. Now a modern version of that would be really handy as a second phone.

Can you download it to me – in an envelope with a stamp?


Re: I'm french and

To be fair, I lived in London for 20 years and had Royal Mail do every single thing you've listed apart from the banque postale thing, but additionally in my last house they would leave me the post for a similar numbered house in a nearby street so often that I would regularly pop round to them and swap post.

Plus for some reason Royal Mail postmen generally look like tramps.

Apple's launch confirms one thing: It's determined to kill off the laptop for iPads


Re: No, Apple is simply feeding the cash cow

Yeah the whole article reads like clickbait with a side order of troll to get all the usual suspects shrieking and foaming about how they are "content creators" and can never ever ever manage without their dual-disk 17" 16-core 'laptop' that needs a pickup truck to move more than 18 yards.

The more probably explanation is that Apple refuse to involve themselves in the cutthroat world of 'landfill laptops' where a good profit margin is 47c on a $300 dollar item, and are trying to pitch high-end and presumably high-margin ipads as a viable alternative to that segment. Fair enough, can't fault them for trying. Whether that is a practical alternative is up to the shopper to decide.

Forgotten that Chinese spy chip story? We haven't – it's still wrong, Super Micro tells SEC


Re: Not confirmed?

You are getting downvoted because its obvious that you are either desperately seeking confirmation of your own biases or just a bloody idiot

"kan ha vært kompromittert" - that's confirmation of absolutely nothing.

Would you be happy sending someone to prison because they "kan ha vært skyldig"? If your doctor told you that your tumour "kan ha vært kurert" would you happily cancel all your future visits and stop taking the medication?

The Great Bulgarian Streaming Scam may well have been scummy, but Spotify got paid


Re: Did it attract other listeners?

"Apparently the two fake playlists appeared in Spotify's album chart at No.11 and No.22 if I correctly remember from the story...

- so logically some other people were intrigued enough to play at least some of the tracks."

Or alternatively, 72 Million plays from some fake accounts is enough to get you a fair way up in the charts....

What we all really need is an SD card for our cars. Thanks, SanDisk


Re: New sticky labels bought - need to find use for them

"I've had a set of USB keys in the car for over 6 years - loaded with music and never an issue with them."

So you'd be A-OK with having a few million of them floating around out there with a 5-year warranty date on them and your personal phone number embossed next to "please call 24/7 in case of failure"? Because that's what the likes of Ford and Toyota are committing to.

Paying a few cents extra for the cards is no-brainer cheap when it probably costs $10 just to log and process a phone call, never mind actually having to do a warranty repair and placate customers who've had their satnav or entertainment system conk out in the middle of BFE at 6pm on a sunday with three screaming kids in the back seat.

Streetmap's lawyer: Google High Court win will have 'chilling effect’ on UK digital biz


You're all forgetting the money...

Lots of focus on how Streetmap got left behind in the features race, but no suggestions as to how they would be able to keep up. They are trying to build a profitable mapping business while Google is happy to piss away enormous amounts of money to keep eyeballs on its adverts.

So another business annihilated by a loss-leader product. Hoooray!

Blood-crazy climate mosquitoes set to ground Santa's reindeer


you clearly have no experience of these critters

Each year I get my first mosquito bite while there is still a decent amount of snow on the ground. If it's warm enough for grazing stuff to grow, it's plenty warm enough for the Biting Bastards to breed by the billion and chow down. You cannot flee, you can only endure.

Brief summary:

Knott/Midge/Blackfly/No-see-um. Death by a billion cuts. Small enough to crawl through a jumper or netting. Ridiculously disproportionate pain/size ratio.Love to gnaw on ear passages, nostrils, edges of eyelids. To small to swat on a practical basis. Found by the millions. Not really bothered much by DEET or other repellents in my experience.

Mygg/Mosquito. Death by exsanguination. Simply poke their proboscis through normal clothing and netting to feast on contents. Fragile, but swat the first thousand, the next lot will thank you for clearing the way. Found by the hundred thousands. Can be repelled, thank god.

Broms/Kleg/Cleg/Deerfly. You'll wish for death as a reprieve from the terror induced by the perpetual droning followed by stabbing pain. Elegantly simple feeding method - biting loose a chunk of meat so they can drink blood from the crater. Can bite through the hide of moose or cow, also through jeans+human skin. Swatting generally only stuns them for a second unless you use extreme force i.e. punching yourself in self-defense. Normally only found by the hundred. Probably drink shots of DEET while relaxing at the end of a hard day.

3D printer blueprints for TSA luggage-unlocking master keys leak online


I never bother locking my luggage anyway...

On the basis that anyone who wants to get into it would be able to get past the locks in seconds anyhow. The person most likely to be inconvenced is me, too jetlagged to remember combinations or find keys.

I am also honestly surprised that these TSA Master Keys weren't $5 per set commodity items even before this print-your-own thing, because all the lock factories (mostly in china) must have the masterkey specs to make the locks they fit into. Presumably .gov must have leaned on ebay to strip out listings?

Spotify climbs down on new terms and conditions


"They tried to 'go for gold' in one huge grab, generating several huge headlines along the way. They should have learned from Facebook ("They trust me. Dumb fucks.") and only made small grabs to eventually reach their goal."

They tried to 'go for break-even' more like. Last year revenue grew by 45% to €1BN and net (not operating) losses grew by 190% to €162MM. Their total subscription revenue doesn't even cover royalty and distribution costs. Just how long do you think they will be around to make 'small grabs' when they lose 16 cents on every euro they earn and every added listener puts them in a worse position?

It amazes me the number of people who think Spotify is some amazing business innovation that will be the next Apple, Google or Facebook when it's actually shaping up to be the next Boo.com

'Unexpected item in baggage area' assigned to rubbish area


Re: The latest stupid in these tills.

"I find that strategy far more efficient. Their till operators scan it through so damned fast you rarely have time to bag the stuff up so taking the trolly to bagging shelf means you can take as long as you want to pack the bags properly so nothing gets crushed and the bags don't fall over in the car. "

Exactly. Maximum throughput from a single till and competent operator, because while the people running Lidl may be evil bastards, they are actually competent.

UK supermarkets are all run by incompetent tossers who think it's a great idea to dedicate a huge chunk of floorspace to accommodate a dozen checkouts costing thousands each, then leave half of them idle, staff the rest with incompetents, and then have the incompetents twiddle their thumbs for half their time while the customers use the checkout as a grocery rearranging area.Then since that turns out not to work well they use another chunk of floorspace to accommodate a bunch of expensive self-checkout machines and close three of the tills in use to free up PFYs to run round investigating bagging areas.

Britain being Britain, do customers moan about having to pay for the costs of all that wasted space, unnecessary machinery and wasting time waiting for access to one of the amazingly low-throughput checkouts? No, they complain about having to 'rush' through the tills, and how they never have enough time or money.

Exploding Power Bars: EE couldn't even get the CE safety mark right


Has anyone ever bought german-market electricals?

They always seem to include a little piece of paper stating that the product meets/has passed all relevant regulatory requirements of <list of german regulatory agencies>, undersigned by a named member of the senior management team of whichever company has their name on the packaging.

The idea presumably being that in circumstances such as these you could just phone up the relevant individual and ask them exactly what went on, and haul them into court if necessary.

I've always thought it a neat idea since I first encountered it (on a cheap Lidl-branded power screwdriver), but in the Anglo-Saxon world taking responsibility for the quality of the products you sell is regarded as a quaint notion holding back dynamic and innovative business ideas.

UK TV is getting worse as younglings shun the BBC et al, says Ofcom


Re: As a 20 something

"In your "15 years time" future when you have a choice of watching 47 different versions of Britain's Got the X-Factor Coming Strictly Through a Hole in the Wall on Ice, maybe you'll realise then what you've lost."

To be fair, that's not so different from what it was like a couple of years ago when I last tried finding something to watch on TV...

Euro broadcast industry still in a fug over that 4K-ing UHD telly


Re: It's not just resolution, it's compression

Indeed. 4K telly receiving an allegedly 1080p mega-compressed signal of upsampled SD content. Imagine the huge step forward when we can have 8K tellies receiving an over-compressed 4K signal of upscaled 1080 content!

Big Data, empty bellies: How supermarkets tweak prices just for the sake of YOUR LOVE


Re: Just give us proper prices

Exactly. It's all bollocks, as you would expect since the article is full of puff from the people who want to charge hundreds of thousands for noodling about with data driven pricing 'strategies'.

The disease that has infected the British supermarket sector is the idea that if only they spend enough money they can come up with 'magic prices' that will con customers into thinking they are getting stuff cheaply while still keeping a fat mark-up.

For the customer that means masses of cupons and complicated ever-changing offers as the retailers try to work out the tightest possible intersection of what you can be persuaded you want to buy with what they are willing to sell at reduced margin, while avoiding giving away single penny of 'unnecessary' discount. Forget your wad of vouchers or your 'loyalty' card and suddenly the cost rockets.

That's one of the reasons Lidl and Aldi are doing so well. Low prices to everyone - no loyalty card, no vouchers, no expensive pricing consultancies, nothing. Pick it off the shelf and pay for it, done.

Your gran and her cronies are 'embracing online banking' – study


Bugger all choice, that's why.

All the bank branches near my mum have either closed, or turned into a miserable cattle markets where 'customers' are herded towards ranks of broken ATMs by pimply twits with their name badges on upside down.

Hardly surprising many choose to wrestle with banking systems while sitting in their own homes rather than while standing around in a grimy building after making a journey for the purpose.

HMRC fails to plan for £10.4bn contract exit... because it's 'too risky'



"Holy crap and people in the US complain about ours and its "only" 2600 pages long and our population and GDP is more than 5 times greater."

He's probably talking about something like Tolley's Yellow Tax Handbook, i.e. the entire UK tax legislation (not just personal tax but corporate, VAT, etc.) plus commentary plus history.

I think the US equivalent is something like the CCH Standard Federal Tax Reporter - which is 70,000 pages.

Car-crash IT: HUGE write-off for Universal Credit - PAC


So they've saved £2 billion by putting 18,000 people on the system?

Does the saving come from a reduction in admin costs of £111K per person, or from just not paying the rest of the two million people who were meant to be on the system?

Govt spaffs £170k to develop the INTERNET OF SHEEP


Re: Who pays?

Indeed, they make so little per sheep that they can't afford the time and diesel to go and check that the sheep are still in the fields where they were left. Hence the plaintive notices in local papers that 50 sheep went missing from a specific field 'between May 15 and June 23" or whatever. On top of that there is (or is supposed to be) a huge amount of admin around moving cattle (following the foot & mouth debacles) and it's not as if the legally-mandated electronic eartags+register are cheap either.

Check this out for an example of what your straw-chewing yokel is working with these days - http://www.fearing.co.uk/cattle-sheep-eid-electronic-tags-reader-bundle-deal-4

So if the boffins can somehow deliver networked beast-tracking to the pasture (and ideally through to the abbatoir) it would indeed be a damn sight more useful than the network fridge. Although conceptually if the abbatoirs, meat processors and supermarkets upped their game it might then be possible to track a piece of beef from calving all the way through until you took your chilled lasagna out of it's RFID-tagged packaging - making even the network fridge useful....

DoJ's extra-territorial data demands: now Ireland is baulking


Why would the DOJ care?

MS chose to put their operations in Ireland rather than keeping them in the good old US, so any issues the Irish or EU have are MS's problem.

DOJ don't care whatsoever about events or opinions outside the US unless it involves people failing to obey the DOJ, and if that costs US companies billions their response is a resounding 'meh'.

Must diarise: UK.gov Verify ID system will 'definitely' work by 2016


It's not just IT, it's the default UK Gov approach to everything...

Phase 1 - UK urgently needs replacement for obsolescent thingy/process. Foreigners have something in place that works OK, and are thinking about Generation 2 replacement. "Oh, but that foreign solution is flawed in XYZ ways! We will develop something far superior with better value-for-money and develop British industry in the process!"

Phase 2: UK still using by now very obsolete thingy/process. Squillions spent on development. Foreigners are starting to implement Gen2, thinking about Gen3. "Once our new all-british solution is in place in another couple of years, those silly foreigners will rue their foolishness, it's well worth the wait!"

Phase 3: UK solution has pretty much finished falling apart. Accumulated multi-squillions of development are written off and an emergency budget of more squillions is signed off to buy and rush-implement the foreign 1st-Generation solution as an 'Off the shelf interim solution". Foreigners implementing Gen3, thinking about Gen4. UK funds research project to "Leapfrog several generations of technology and establish British industry as a leader in this important area."

Goto Phase 1

How HAPPY am I on a scale of 1 to 10? Where do I click PISSED OFF?


Re: Although a fairly accurate and amusing portrayal of LHR security...

"a theatre of security that adds very little actual protection buy degrades every traveller (with every native tongue, with many infrequent flyers) with ever-variable and inconsistent rules? "

Too effin' right. Most frequent travellers have a fair grasp of the current security zeitgeist, especially at their core airports, but the poor chumps who only fly once or twice a year have no clue or real chance of getting one. The surly incompetents who man the miles of tattered queue-barriers have interest whatever in providing information and the airport websites seem to make a deliberate point of providing inaccurate information (presumably to foil The Evils). The only reliable rule is to travel with nothing, lower your expectations, and wear clean underpants. Also assume that LHR and JFK will consistently exceed your worst expectations, appalling shitholes that they are.

Wikipedia won't stop BEGGING for cash - despite sitting on $60m


Re: Let's bitch, bitch, bitch!

"leave the dissemination of information to Internet mega-corporations with more-or-less opaque management practices, billions in the bank, and an interest in optimising the content and style for their own financial gain"

Sums up Mr Wales' approach nicely. Apart from currently only having millions rather than billions in the bank, a problem he is working hard to solve. Wiki management practices are more opaque than any mega-corporation.

It's a Doddle: Amazon inks train station parcel deal with Network Rail


Re: "If I could pick up my packages from the station when almost home that would be excellent."

On weekdays my postie rarely shows up before about 10AM, and delivers using some sort of gaussian algorithm. If I go to the office I leave at around 0730 or before, I then come back to either a damp rained-on parcel, or a parcel which is missing.

If it is missing I then get to try to figure out if it's been left on someone elses doorstep, left with my neigbours rather than on my doorstep, or left on my doorstep and subsequently stolen. Delightful.

Mind you, I'm not sure dealing with Railtrack would be any better, based on how craptastic their management of my local station is.

Get ready for Europe's robo-butlers: Billions of €€€s pledged to electro-slave dream


No you can't....

Not unless you want to import millions of third-worlders to slave away for minimum wage - which is the Anglo-American 'solution' to the problem of rising wage expectations and an ever-rising dependency ratio

Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?


Re: What? Dates and times still a problem?

Phoenix, Arizona is always on Mountain Standard Time, i.e.UTC-7. This may overlap with some other adjacent timezones now and again, but Phoenix doesn't change its clocks at all.

The complications are solely due to everyone else gyrating back and forth between daylight saving, and the idiotic decision to move the US out of sync with the DST transition in the rest of the world

Vodafone to spend £100m on 150 new Brit phone shops


I used to think 02 was shit....

but then our company switched to Vodafone. Fuck!

Barnes & Noble bungs Raspberry Pi-priced Nook on shelves


"the closest thing we have to a universal DRM system: Adobe’s copy-protection software."

I've seen Adobe Desktop Editions or whatever it's called discussed in many articles - this may be the only time anyone's ever referred to it positively.

In my experience it's a rancid bag of scrofulous spanners which is just as restrictive as anything amazon do, but minus the 'seamless and asy-to-use' aspects. It's possibly the biggest single negative to the whole Nook propostiion.

Fortunately Calibre does a great job of scrubbing away the Adobe grime, judging by how easily it lets me get Adobe books on my Sony or Kindle, or kindle books on my Sony.

British bookworms deem Amazon 'evil'


Re: It's not even locked in really

"Amazon content is locked in"

Unless you have calibre with the plug-in that strips all the DRM off Amazon conent (and any content locked with Adobe DRM) and converts it into any format you like - all automagically like.

I think Kobo's DRM works off Adobe, meaning it's a giant bucket of shit - I never got the two free ADE books I received with my Sony to work on my kindle until Calibre unlocked them.

If Kovid ever pulls the plug on calibre it truly will be a dark day...

Raise a beer: Titans of tech fill out 'Worst CEOs' list


Re: I like wearing suits, although the opportunity rarely presents itself.

"I find it saves a great deal of time. Time that I would otherwise have to spend establishing my credibility."

I also find it saves a great deal of time. Time that I would otherwise have to spend choosing what to wear.

Grab random suit. Grab random shirt. Pants+socks. Appropriately dressed for office in 1 minute without having to engage a single braincell. Plenty of pockets for wallets, traintickets, bberry, phone, etc.Surprisingly comfortable (if you get ones which fit you properly).

If you can't get away with wearing the same stuff to the office that you wear when rebuilding the barn, you can do worse than choose a suit.

E-reader demand slumps, slapped down by slates


Kindle+ziplock bag = perfect for beach or bath reading

10p worth of freezer/sandwich bag lets you drop a couple of thousand books in your bath repeatedly with absolutely zero water damage. No marks on pages from wet fingers, no crinkling due to humidity.

Compared to a paper book, it's a bathtime reading solution so superior it's laughable to compare them, on the same level as wondering whether you should write your shopping list with a biro or a sharpened dog-turd.

And yet assorted morons STILL keep trotting out out the bath-reading scenario as a reason to buy paper. I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

LG claims UK Ultra HD TV first


Re: Harrods

What, its reputation as a garish shit-hole pandering mainly to to Russians, Arabs and Chinese spending corrupt money on bling, with a sideline in supplying idiot tourists and saddo footballer/WAG wannabees with tacky souvenirs?

Boffins: Jurassic avians were more like Angry birds than modern ones


"On top of that, we don't really have any indication of "crudeness." "

Has it ever occurred to you what would happen to any set of organisms that started to reproduce 'crude' features in an environment where they are surrounded by organisms which have had their features honed by thousands of generations of evolution? How do you think your eight-legged ants v0.6.2a are going to manage when they bump into the neighboring colony colony of six-legged ants v14.39.18d?

The only 'crude' features that will show up for more than one or two generations are ones which help survive drastic challenges such as man. On which topic, if you think all evolutionary activity has stayed firmly in pre-history, you should contact the NHS and offer to help them with all the umpteen bacteria which have evolved resistance to everything modern chemistry can throw at them.

London gets huge Defecator Enthroned statue for World Toilet Week


Meanwhile, on the other side of the river...

There is a tiny little memorial no-one knows about, to a man called Joseph Bazalgette who led the construction of London's sewer system, the very first modern one, saving countless lives by eliminating cholera and other diseases.while turning the Thames back into a river only brown from mud rather than human faeces.

But it would never do to promote the achievements of a white male engineer when there's FACEBOOK available.

Amazon Kindle Fire HD 7in Android tablet review


A 7" tablet that needs two hands to use...

Is, in my opinion, about as much use as a 10" tablet that needs two hands and a foot to use. It's so bloody inconvenient that you may as well not bother when there are better alternatives at the same price.

Nvidia heralds Steam for Linux debut with 'double-speed' drivers



to be fair to the fruit loop, last time I tried upgrading a PC which had been state-of-the-art four years previously, I was forced to replace the memory, cpu, motherboard, graphics card and power supply for compatibility reasons. The hard disk was so slow and old it got repurposed as a dump drive tertiary to the new SSD and new terabyte drive, and I got a new monitor to make the most of the better graphics capability. Then I got a new nicer case to put it all in since it was only another £40.

All in all I managed to re-use my power cord, network cable, DVD-RW, mouse and keyboard, plus get some more mileage out of a hard drive.

In the loop: how Halo defined a new decade of first-person shooters


"those huge open environments"

Presumably you mean the huge open environments in the Mac/PC version which Bungie originally demoed, rather than the manky constrained walled off environments that MS launched after they had spent a year crippling the game to fit on a manky little console with a clumsy controller?

The pre-xbox Halo was one of the most ambitious and groundbreaking games ever - if they had managed to pull it off it would have been something like Battlefield2 but five years earlier and with a lot more style.

O2 roaming rates to rise by up to 140%


Re: O2 suck

Don't worry, you're not missing anything. Over the last few months their data speed and coverage in central london have become ever more dreadful....

Even US generals have realised BlackBerries are uncool


well, YMM obviously vary...

But my particular corporate blackberry is unable to deliver voice call quality better than a childs toy walkie-talkie and dismally fails to display internet content in a half-reliable fashion. So it's crap at anything other than email, and even at email the rubbish keyboard makes it less productive than my old black&white one with the side wheel.

Other than the battery life I think any modern android with a physical keyboard would be huge improvement.


So - pick the analogy

Blackberry - the new Palm


Blackberry - the new Netware

neither offers much cause for optimism.....

Kick your computer... before it kicks you


twang my ruler...

hehehe. Good work.

I remember reading some interview with Charlie Sheen where he mentioned losing his temper with an iPad and hurling it across the room to end half-buried in the sheetrock like a ninja star. So perhaps gadget abuse is just the prerogative of people with slightly looser grasp on what constitutes normal behaviour.

Ancient 16m-yr-old beastie caught riding on much bigger flying mount


You are confusing symbiosis with commensalism

One party benefits - commensalism

one benefits at exense of other - parasitism

both benefit - mutualism

symbiosis generally is used to mean long-term extensive co-dependent mutualism although as always there are lots of obsessives arguing about usage/defintions

Cash in the asset: Nokia may flog global headquarters in Espoo


"Nokia House. Credit: Google Street View"

<golf clap> Well played </golf clap>

Top admen beg Microsoft to switch off 'Do Not Track' in IE 10


"define the consumer online experience"

That experience being very similar to walking through a third world streetmarket with hundreds of hawkers, pimps and pickpockets jostling you, shouting at you, pushing their wares in your face, and trying to physically drag you off to their back-street establishment.

Thanks oh so much, ANA.

New study: 'Fraud behind two-thirds of pulled medical papers'


well, duh, naturally the tail starts to wag the dog...

... once you base all your dog management on tail measurement.

Scientists fake published studies, because a while ago universities started to rate all their faculty according to number of publications, on the basis that good scientists had lots of publications. Once you basically got paid by the number of articles you got in the journals, no-one cared about whether it was a meaningful article any longer.

Similarly, a few years back someone commented that many successful companies had lots of patents First every company focused on churning out bullshit patents so they would look successful, then they looked at all the millions they had spent doing the paperwork and wondered how to recoup the cost, and now look where we are.

Guardian's Robin Hood plan: Steal from everyone to give to us


Dumbest idea in the world....

Tax everyone in the country and direct the resulting torrent of cash into the pockets of the people who own the Daily Mail/Express/Sun/Mirror so they can buy even more influence. The amount directed towards actual journalism would be a fraction of a rounding error, since what actually determines readership is the amount of gossip, bigot-bait and celebrity skin.

Peeved bumpkins demand legally binding broadband promise from UK.gov


Dunno what you're all moaning about

My house is beside a lake in the forest about nine miles outside a town of less than 4000 people, and I get 6-7mb. VOIP and VPN work just fine for a bit of telecommuting.

It's also not in the UK, mind you.

Made for each other: liquid nitrogen and 1,500 ping-pong balls


Re: Nice But It Cost

"considerable environment deterioration or resouce dissipation" - are you kidding? Celluloid ping-pong balls and a few hundred millilitres of liquid condensed out of the air? Wouldn't surprise me if the balls were salvage from the sports centre, and liquid N2 is pennies per litre if you buy in significant quantities. The total environmental impact is probably equivalent to a couple of Big Mac Meals.

I remember going to an evening event that revolved around a big flask of liquid nitrogent - think it was organised by the local science teachers or something. A hundred or so pimply of us tweenagers fascinated for several hours by a beardy loon doing all the usual cryogenic tricks including turning whisky into syrup. I think it cost us about 50p each for use the school minibus to get us there.

Bonking payment by NFC doubled by Olympics splash


whoop de frigging doo....

So a million contactless a month after a couple of years of heavy pushing? Out of 805 million 'normal' transactions a month, that's not exactly impressive.

I don't think I have ever seen someone buy anything with NFC.

A couple of months ago I saw someone trying to pay for her coffee in Pret with her barclaycard, and it didn't work for some reason. When trying to figure out why, it emerged that she had never used NFC before, none of the staff had ever seen anyone use it, none of us other customers had ever seen anyone use it. So she paid with chip&pin. This in a high-footfall location next to London Victoria station which has had a contactless terminal by every till for a couple of years at least.

All you need to know about nano SIMs - before they are EXTERMINATED


Well, it sorta nearly works for landlines...

You can pick and choose who handles the broadband and/or voice down your landline without needing to faff about with any hardware changes. You can even use Carrier Pre-Select to dump your voice calls to a secondary provider if they are cheaper.

Telecoms engineers are smart people, I'm sure they could sort out all the obstacles to delivering a sim-free, number-portable, customer-friendly telephony future. However that would require full and complete cooperation between all the carriers (currently all in fear of bankruptcy due to the voice->data switch) and all the phone manufacturers (currently al suing the arse off each other).

So I really don't see it happening anytime soon other than in the most limited way. Unless either the US or EU take it into their heads to force the necessary standards compliance through - which is sort of how the current situation of swappable sim cards and portable numbers came about in the first place, no?