* Posts by Iain Thomas

34 posts • joined 3 Jul 2007

Ah, the Raspberry Pi 3. So much love. So much power ... So turn it into a Windows thin client

Iain Thomas

Re: He missed a trick

USB dongle for the 2nd screen. Says on the website. The data sheet mentions this is an optional extra. Which requires an extra licence too.

And the article seems to have missed the connection licence; only 1 year comes with the device.

The tricks seem to be present and correct...

Parking ticket firm 'exposed private info' - ICO making enquiries

Iain Thomas

Re: You are not a number plate


Remember DPA rules; whether information is "personal" or not can depend on what other information is in your possession.

For most people, these photos are not "personal" data as one has no other data with which it can be related to identify any individual.

For the DVLA and the parking lot, they posses the additional data to relate to an individual.

So while this parking lot have arguably failed to store personal data with adequate security, it's also arguable that someone republishing the very same photos is not dealing with personal data.

Fun, no?

-- Iain.

LOHAN fans drawn to magnetic coupling

Iain Thomas

May be missing something here...


But where is it written that the heater supply connections have to be the same? If it's possible to arrange conductivity via either the launch bar or the rubber back-stop, that would seem half the solution...

Additionally, a common theme seems to be concern about shorting the lipo battery; some sort of over-current cutoff or post-launch cutoff would seem to address that concern.


Regards, Iain.

Paying a TV tax makes you happy - BBC

Iain Thomas

Re: Having a TV and TV Licence is not compulsory....


One wouldn't want a BBC subscription system as draconian as Sky+.

Stop paying for a channel pack, and not only do the live channels go, but so do any recordings you made from those channels in the past.

And if your system encounters a fault (dish moved/lnb fault/cabling fault/sufficiently heavy snow) that prevents live-tv, good luck watching any recordings from any channel.

Sky also charge on a per-receiver basis; if you want to watch another channel in another room, that's another tenner a month. Plus you are required to have a phone line, with all the boxes connected to that phone line.

It's also a requirement to use Sky-brand approved equipment to receive their service.

I dare say there may be scope for improvement, and the behaviour of TVL is arguably repugnant (even when it's their fault, the letters threatening court arrived before the letter advising that a technical error had occurred which stopped the debit card payment going through so they'd revoked the licence they posted earlier).


Regards, Iain.

Facebook: Your boss asks for your password, we'll sue him! Maybe

Iain Thomas

Re: Think about the company and the job before you respond....


Yup, not only Gmail, but also Checkout/Wallet. Get a G+ password, and y'cn start ordering stuff.

-- Iain.

Sony PSN class-action lawsuit ban prompts... lawsuit

Iain Thomas

So? Opt-out!

So opt out of their oh so kind arbitration offer. I don't see the problem.

2011's Best... HD TVs

Iain Thomas


But does the panasonic still plaster the freeview EPG with advertisements? Not a problem any of the others seem to have...

Ten... Freeview HD recorders

Iain Thomas


70% for the crash-prone LG? On paper it seems like a good, capable machine, but methinks manufacturers need to be penalised more, much more, for delivering such unreliable kit. Would point to DS/MIT, who appear to have taken a "ship something reliable, add extra features later once the software is tested stable" approach.

Iain Thomas


No mention of the digitalstream boxes? They're not much older than the Humax, and with current firmware, they'll do the media player from USB thing, and DD transcoding via HDMI and TOSLINK...

Laptop shoots spike into owner's hand

Iain Thomas

Rotational momentum...

At a guess, the spinning edge of the disc would be the only thing in the drive with enough kinetic energy to stab someone...

Countdown to Toshiba blaming a faulty/damaged disc?

Panasonic DMR-HW100 HDD DVR

Iain Thomas

Erm, http://www.reghardware.com/2011/07/02/review_panasonic_tx_p65vt30_3d_tv/page2.html, looks like space for EPG adverts on a 4.5k 65" plasma.

Think a 10% penalty is too light, to be honest.

Regards, Iain.

How gizmo maker's hack outflanked copyright trolls

Iain Thomas

AV Recievers...

My Onkyo amp can overlay a menu via HDMI, complete with translucency. Suggests there's a HDCP-sanctioned method of doing this, and I fear any judge would want an explanation of why NeTV apparently has devised this method for the purpose of avoiding the HDCP licensing fees/requirements...

Gamer claims complete console collection

Iain Thomas



No Zodiac 1/2?

Tut tut tut...


Aussie retailer accuses UK shops of HDMI 'scam'

Iain Thomas

Cheap cables better.


Someone try plugging one of them "monster quality" cables into, say, their V+ box, and comment on the quality. Into the side HDMI input of their telly.

Without using adaptors to get the connectors to fit. Or sawing the plastic down.

Remember, ensuring cables meet the HDMI specs is a condition of the licence to use the HDMI trademark. The chunky connectors, on the other hand...

Regards, Iain.

French search engine seeks multi-million euro damages from Google

Iain Thomas

Vertical junk?


Have any of these vertical search engines ever done anything worthwhile? Most of the time they just seem to present a variation of results that Google has already presented that just leads to user frustration and research going around in circles.

They seem to thrive on drawing traffic by claiming relevant content, only to present a page "no results for <whatever>".

Frankly, some of the time, I think some of their webmasters do not deserve oxygen.

Regards, Iain.

Waking to check mail? You're not alone

Iain Thomas

Of course...

... there are times that reading e-mails is fairly vital.

Case in point; this morning, e-mail from insurer "Oh, your cover lapsed at midnight". Had I not seen that, and driven to work, driving without insurance is a criminal offence...


-- Iain.

Nokia Digital Radio Headset DAB

Iain Thomas

Not quite...

Remember, the HTC Monet. Sold as the Virgin Lobster TV.

Ignore the "no channels found, would you like to retune" on launching the TV/Radio app, and hit Radio Guide.

Yes, the TV side was a bit of a massive flop, and it doesn't make a particularly great phone (200MHz TI processor w/ 64MB RAM is positively anorexic these days for a smartphone).

But mine was quite happily receiving 6Music on Monday, as I walked into work.

As long as I avoid the underpass...

Drug-addled scooter twock teen hit with bizarre crypto ban

Iain Thomas



Don't GSM phones use encryption? Might suspect that other mobiles in the states also use crypto. And most pay-TV/radio.

Long list of stuff he'll have to avoid...


Green light for spooks' net snoop plan

Iain Thomas


OK, so if the ISP is recording all communication over the Internet, how prey-tell, do they expect to tell who was sending any given communication? They planning on banning NAT or sommat? Mandatory webcams so they can see who was sat at the keyboard?

Same problem faced by them dubious copyright lawyers; no evidence as to who.

Perhaps they need to introduce something akin to S172 RTA... Can just see it now...

"On 1at April 2011, at 12:34:35.6789, a IP packet from to 666.666.666.666 was sent over an Internet connection, of which you appear to be the registered keeper...Please identify the individual who caused this packet to be sent else we'll prosecute and you'll get a huge fine..."...



Mozilla gives passive-aggressive missive to pre-Firefox 3.6 hold-outs

Iain Thomas

Minor updates only.


AFAICT, the auto update only offers minor updates, unless the current version has become unsupported. Guessing when 3.5 gets end of lifed, it'll start offering the next major version...

Feds open school spycam probe

Iain Thomas


One alternate possibility that perhaps this kid took the pic themselves, sent it to their schoolmates, and a couple forwards later, the school ended up with a copy.

Then someone claimed "automated monitoring" as everyone by now should know about how embarrassing pictures/videos tend to get forwarded around...

Just a thought... Maybe taking dodgy pics of himself, and e-mailing to his classmates is the "inappropriate behaviour" they're talking about!

Microsoft tests show no Win 7 battery flaw

Iain Thomas


Sounds like they're just accessing data that's available via ACPI. Linux tools (like cat /proc/acpi/battery/*/info) have been able to do this for a while now. It would seem a fair guess that a number of these issues are just the ACPI code returning bogus data. Because there's no point fixing it because windows doesn't use it... Well, it does now, and affected people might do well to check for BIOS updates for their machines, and see if any of the changes mention battery statistics...

Then again, they could be right; rechargeable batteries fail gradually, and humans seem to be quite excellent at not noticing gradual changes. This particular attribute does not bode well for battery powered electric cars which will, one day, have just not quite enough power left to get one all the way home...

It's the end of TV as we know it

Iain Thomas

Watch later?

Hmm. Doesn't the iPlayer desktop app include this download-and-watch later facility?


Conficker left Manchester unable to issue traffic tickets

Iain Thomas

Disabling USB ports?

I'm sure disabling the USB ports of any semi-recent computer will not go down well. USB keyboards and mice, y'see...

Can you talk and drive?

Iain Thomas

Idle question.

Just thinking, er, typing out loud...

To what extent does the brain having to work to understand GSM mangled audio as opposed to unmangled audio from a passenger, make a difference? If any?

Brits not sold on eco handsets

Iain Thomas


Aren't mobile phones covered by the WEEE regulations? So don't the mobile phone cos have to pay for recycling/treating old phones anyway?

Stallman warns open-sourcers on Javascript-browser trap

Iain Thomas



> The problem for Stallman is that while free browsers - Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, and Chrome

Why don't I think Stallman would describe IE or Opera as free?

> - warn the user about the presence of "non-trivial" Javascript code - such as a banner ad

Do they? Without plugins? Never noticed...

In the ditch with DAB radio

Iain Thomas

Lobster @Bristol AC

The TV stuff ran over DAB-IP on another frequency, but if you start the TV/Radio player, and hit "Radio Guide"... Have one myself, and it still picks up DAB radio just fine... Even Birdsong...

Iain Thomas

Mobile w/ DAB

Except there /was/ a mobile phone with a DAB radio. HTC Monet sold as the Virgin mobile Lobster 700 TV... Except that sank with that BT/Movio mobile TV thing...



Ofcom swoops on caller ID-faking firm with... request for information

Iain Thomas

Here's a good kneejerk...

Not sure about other networks, but the voicemail on virgin mobile can be setup to require a PIN, even when called from ones own phone.

2 for Mailbox features, 1 to set a pin, 9 to goto the pin prompt menu, and 2 to enable.

As always, RTFM...

A third of online shops undermine consumer rights

Iain Thomas

@Michelle/Hard Drives.


When doing the Seagate warranty thing, towards the end, they ask where you want to ship the drive. The default is them abroad (could well be the Netherlands). But in the list there's a remailer option (in Coventry I think).

Moral? Read the question carefully.


Regards, Iain.

Rebit: This is your grandmother's data backup

Iain Thomas


There's at least one OEM that at least sometimes supplies their disk partitioned. Got an Acer laptop, with C: called ACER, and D: called ACERDATA.

One wonders where a newbie would save stuff, given them labels...

BBC iPlayer launches, but with limited viewer reach

Iain Thomas


Except the BBC went FTA (i.e. unencrypted) on sat a couple years back IIRC. Only need a viewing card in a sky box if you want the correct BBC1 region on 101.

MEP plans EU build ban on cars faster than 100mph

Iain Thomas


Shame the Prius can do 105MPH. Presumably, that too would be banned...


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