* Posts by Frances Banana

22 publicly visible posts • joined 29 Apr 2013

Microsoft takes InfoPath behind the shed, says successor will be better

Frances Banana

Fruitcake of bozons

I have never ever heard before about InfoPath. IMHO the original idea was probobably to make yet another vendor lock-in in big businesses and collect license dividends for years to come. From screenshots and Spoogle I could see that it looks very much like a poor beta of FileMaker - yet another "database for folks" product.

I am pretty sure they will come up with some web based Kraken-coded Sharepoint Spin-off tool. And as it was said... simplicity of Dropbox makes it LOVED by users.

PS And one more thing. Expect more product deaths. Google started it. This can lead to innovation-through-extortion. I mean - it's cool that new ideas get implemented... but in the end it all boils down to # of licenses and cash streeeaaaaaaaaaam.

PS2 This comment has been written under an influence of a müsli bar.

FLIGHTMARE! Inflight cell calling debuts, dealing heavy blow to quality of life

Frances Banana

Flying in Europe

As it was already mentioned - Norwegian has free WiFi onboard. Great for WhatsApp to synchronize with my beloved ones that pick me up from the airport. Other than that it's pretty useful, because I often schedule some work to be done on the airplane - with the help of my little laptop and a nice cup of coffee.

Being in an airplane is very much different from say train travels - or not to mention regular commuting with trains, buses etc. The space available on the plane is VERY WELL defined, you are practically pinned to your seat. And today people lack self-control and culture. They are also often very selfish, loud and it seems like majority of them graduated in EXTREME ANNOYANCE. Over ;)

'Burning platform' Elop: I'd SLASH and BURN stuff at Microsoft, TOO

Frances Banana
Thumb Down

Hey Mr. Elop...

...how about getting yourself to Finland, standing in the main square and telling all the people that your CEO bonus was for the great work of bringing Nokia's value down to the toilet level?

(explanation: if after that you become a CEO of Microsoft - then I am sorry - for me it looks like a "reward". A scenario like this is very common - bring value down, buy cheap, suddenly it makes PORFITZ!)

Oracle's nemesis MariaDB releases sleekest seal yet to beta

Frances Banana
Thumb Up

"You do nothing - you never make mistakes"

Recently there's been a lot of hype around MariaDB - and that's nice to see. Unfortunately it happens that every now and then they release something that for example has memory leaks - but hey - only those that do nothing have empty "error registers".

I am very much looking forward to getting my hands on MariaDB 10 release - with all the replication goodies this will be a killer product.

I am just afraid of one thing... what will be Oracle's answer?

Netgear router admin hole is WIDE OPEN, but DON'T you dare go in, warns infosec bod

Frances Banana
Thumb Down


That's a pretty nice "deadline" they set for such a failure ;) As it was mentioned before - NetGear isn't really a quality/design master. All ADSL routers & modems I had from them were overheating. Their ReadyNASes are hanging up. After 3 failures in a row I decided to put them on a no-shopping list. That was a good choice back then ;)

Please, PLEASE, Skype... Don't kill our apps and headsets, plead devs

Frances Banana

Nobody is surprised

We use Skype for conferencing between devs that are scattered around Europe. I also use it for family business: it breaks, it craps, it goes down. Aaaaand the Android Skype App was designed and programmed by monkeys that escaped from meth lab and got hooked on psylocybin shrooms. I am sorry, but after the "big upgrade" I could not - and still cannot - find my way in that MESS (and it's a lot more difficult to switch this garbage off!).

Microsoft does not care about shooting millions of dependency-customers. Why? Do not ask me, I cannot explain that. I have a smelling they are slowly executing the "death by 1000 cuts" scheme - but of course in their situation it's a suicidal behavior.

If there is anything else I could dump on the rotten cake of Skype under MIcrosoft's control: I have been to Finland last week. If ELOP is ever going to visit that country again - well, pure IMPUDENCE. Finland used to live Nokia. ELOP showed them how to sh%^ on Nokia and get big $ for that. I really hope this is going to end in court. Baaadly for Elop & Microsoft.

Look out, world! HP's found a use for Autonomy - rescuing Win XP bods

Frances Banana

Re: I wonder...

I think it's time to schedule popcorn deliveries as well as start collecting some survival kits for the big chaos to come :)

US court: Dell can't hound debtor with robocalls to her mobile

Frances Banana

As usual it's hard to judge... BUT!

For me Dell is a weird company - they basically "make you a favor when they sell you something" - so I would expect some circus-style debt collection from them - no doubt ;)

Since I don't like this kind of approach (I like to be treated as a customer and not beg to be allowed to buy ;) - especially when I pay cash upon order - I don't do business with Dell, period.

On the other hand I must admit, that it's $%^&* annoying when you have companies that DO NOT PAY. And I am saying that since this week we received a letter from lawyers saying, that the company that owed us 7500 GBP is declared bankrupt (and we did hire debt collection bla bla bla). It's just a big PITA to be on both sides of the equation: whether you owe or are f%^ in between your cheeks. Always hurts.


Frances Banana

Ballmer outsmarted them ALL

There are different ways to leave the battlefield - in glory, in shame, through the neutral door or by doing a Nero trick and burning everything.

Stevo knew that glory isn't for him - and shame wasn't an option and neutrality has been closed by what we all know Win8 etc.

There it is: Nero trick! ;) Reorganize the corporation, shuffle everything so that it takes at least 2 years for bean counters to provide any reliable and reasonable metrics. Leave just after.

Pretty much: "look how nice it's burning"...

FBI spooks use MALWARE to spy on suspects' Android mobes - report

Frances Banana

"Guilty until proven innocent"

Plenty of people were laughing at "Minority Report", everyone is talking about "1984 not being an instruction manual" - but what happens? The exact opposite.

Technology that was supposed to make our life better is simply turning against us. It is almost like the technological progress is a large regression in the law & gov departments.

Bootnote: this comment was sponsored by greed and letters F, B and I. Next episode will be sponsored by N, S and A. Hehe, provided you are still innocent my horse! :D

Serious bootnote: we are building a medical research software suite that's supposed to be used by people - also on smartphones. I wonder when we are going to get a visit from "interesting people" with an offer "we can't refuse"...

Win XP alive and kicking despite 2014 kill switch (Don't ask about Win 8)

Frances Banana

Many of our customers are so desperate that they hamster XP licenses through buying used machines :) They are absolutely uninterested in making a forced move to 7 - their current stack works and it's not trivial to make the move. It will also cost money they would love to spend on something else - like marketing.

Even funnier - I was fixing some telephony in a city hall a few days ago - haven't seen a machine w/o XP there ;)

For us it's not much of a concern - our company is all about open source and hardcore stuff - but I can see this being a strangle here and there that can also affect the amount of orders flowing into our pocket.

Microsoft to Google: Please remove us from internet

Frances Banana
Paris Hilton

Tech & law: shake, don't stirr

What is really worrying me - out here we are a bunch of tech-oriented people that can see the second bottom of broken laws like DMCA etc., because we can also see that people are greedy, nasty bastards.

When we look at all voters - the game is pretty much lost. "DMCA is good because it protects you from TERRORISTS!" - yes, it sounds horrible, but that's an overdriven analogy of passing all-crap law these days (there's a few more "bridge topics").

Quality & human touch when it comes to sensitive cases today is gone. Corporations maximize their profits beyond recognition using all cold-blooded methods available. That's a highway to abuse.

And yeah, we can see it... but Paris can't! As long as people cannot see DMCA taking money from their wallets - they are fine with that - and pretty much everything else. They cannot see, that the B-side of the problem is cutting their liberties... one by one... cut, cut, cut.

It's sad but true. I have personally tried to enlighten a lot of people about the implications of bad law, spying, liberty-cutting etc. - but as I wrote - "man, $ in the wallet - I couldn't care less!".

Apple, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, world+dog urge NSA transparency

Frances Banana
IT Angle

Maybe it's a big chance?

If you think rationally for a moment - any documents published by NSA or companies working closely with them can be worth as much as the bunch of socks rotting away in the corner of my apartment (yeah, laundry day). In such situation the game is rather simple: "liar until proven truthful".

On the other hand this is a fantastic opportunity to us, IT people living and working in Europe. Facebookers and bread eaters posting pictures of cat could not care less, but the percentage of CEOs actually understanding the implications of being under "a constant threat of spying" is growing - and they want similar products, but HERE, so that it's pretty clear which GOV is maintaining the data.

In many countries there's also the law which says: "you can process this and that citizen data, but servers must be ON OUR LAND".

All hands to keyboards! We have a truckload of good stuff to create & sell. 1984 was not supposed to be an instruction manual.

Microsoft biz heads slash makes Ballmer look like dead STEVE JOBS

Frances Banana

Re: makes Ballmer look like dead STEVE JOBS


I have a smelling there is a lot of truth in what you wrote. One thing is the outside/fiscal performance and statistics - other is the inside metrics, that are of course much more detailed. And as in case of the fiscal performance the ability to compare numbers is crucial.

I am not sure what is happening in that company - you cannot really see on Ballmer's face that he's worried etc. You cannot say that he's worried or ambushed by judging his actions, because he is known to be a rather unpredictable person/chair thrower.

Personally I must say, that during Gates' years it was like "ok, windows tax to be paid - but it is usable in a way". Now it's "wtf windows 8?! What am I suppose to do with that?!"...

Ubuntu 13.10 to ship with Mir instead of X

Frances Banana

Pulse Audio of the X is coming :D :D :D :D :D

(time to download Linux Mint :>)

Why I'm sick of the new 'digital divide' between SMEs and the big boys

Frances Banana
Thumb Up

Good article

Being an owner of a SME that lives off making custom solutions for customers - I must admit - this article is sooo true! Bigger players and marketing zombies work from a "white paper to a white paper" - and it resembles pretty much a crusade when somebody in the group has the guts to say "amm, but maybe we don't need a canon to shoot this fly?".

The last "white paper attack" happened to me last week - I was called "old fashioned" and "not up to the 21st century" simply because I had the balls to question a bunch of "CIO/CEO/whatever" architects from a much bigger player (that thing called "common sense" and "let us do some testing").

Small companies cannot afford downtime - and small companies delivering service to other small companies cannot afford to deliver crap service - because then it's a quick decision and you lose a customer.

Dell explores wearable computing as PC base crumbles

Frances Banana

Re: General crapification

@Paul Crawford

Ad. 1) Should it happen they throw in a bit of aluminum to hold the whole thing together - suddenly something else "suffers". I bought a 17" laptop for 800GBP ex. VAT and the keyboard is such a trashness I use it in the office connected to a USB keyboard only.

Ad. 2) There is hope though. People notice this and get slightly pissed off and some of them in fact start taking facts like "can I replace the battery myself?" as a serious point during shopping.

Ad. 3) I cannot understand that, either. In fact I am driving now with two extra things in my car: coffee machine + LED monitor.

Quality is one problem - avoidance of Windows 8 is another (or Windows in general). We are a primarily open source shop - we have a bunch of win licenses, but that's a few machines and later on we don't really need "yet another sticker" collecting dust. For PCs it's easy - we assemble all ourselves - but laptops... I do hope my little old lenovo won't break any time soon (2008).

Microsoft's cloud leaves manual transmission behind

Frances Banana

Re: Too many clouds


You are so right with the amazing fragmentation of all services. Taking into account also recent spying buzz it indeed becomes a bit unbearable. The problem is, that many IT managers in larger companies absolutely don't see this as a problem. But it's also the SMB guys that somehow don't get the whole point - they want the cloud because they don't want to have a single humming server in their office (and also to spare some IT guy looking at it). But they so much don't see the problem of them NOT OWNING THE DATA, neither the service.

Cloud is great for some applications - but when we have a fragmentation like you described - it's pure maniure stuffed in a banana having a sticker "mashed one, tasty one!"...

Microsoft: Half of all organizations will use 'Facebook-like' tools

Frances Banana

Masters of Fragmentation Essentials with Web Live Broadcast Smart Cube Pro 2013

I wonder how they are able to keep their sales etc. if they kind of work against classical marketing rules: gazillion of products with long names probably even their sales team won't remember, stuff that "integrates well" only during sales, unclear licensing schemes... bla bla bla :)

Besides - what do you use to communicate in the softie-realm? Skype? Lync? YbadooYammerHammerBahamer? Share Point? Messenger is killed, right?

I would think that corpos are too much dependent on the MS infrastructure, therefore they will just buy everything they produce. Besides - they have $$$ for sales and marketing - and that can do miracles. Maybe it's not really wrong to say, that corpos are to MS like corpo-workers to dusty products Made in Colombia? ;)

Microsoft exposes green users' privates in web quiz snafu

Frances Banana

Two fails

Fail - the agency probably hired some cheap students or other code monkeys, charged good mana from MS, paid nothing for the workforce internally. PROFIT!

Fail2 - microsofties did not even bother to check if they got what they paid for... and I am sorry, but such classics are in every "let me code a web page" book.

Microsoft melds SkyDrive Pro and SharePoint

Frances Banana
IT Angle



Sadly, the alternatives seem to be just working. I do not want to blindly diss MS products, but often it looks like a few bean counters just got into the FIAT factory mode and said: "oh yeah, this cloud - connect sharepoint, and then the mail thing - yes! Put there and a cloud is ready - no need to spend $ on dev! :D". But hellyeah, I am biased.

I am working with one researcher at a research institution - out there they are all MS and DropBox is banned due to some law issues. Guess what they are silently using for storing data in the cloud?

If you spend THIS much on cloud, perhaps you need a rethink

Frances Banana

So many options, so few brains

As it was stated before - finally a bit of "hold your horses" in the cloud department. Recently I was talking to a prospective customer - and I told them, that basically clouds are cool as long as they work. He said their mail & backup clouds never fail - and they want MOAR CLOUD! I gently brought up some spectacular amazon & azure failures. He repeated himself. TWICE. I ended the discussion, because it had no sense.

For a company whose liquidity and core business come from the fact, that they can communicate - mostly via e-mail - and run some shitty apps - betting all on the cloud is IMHO bad.

The important question still remains - where's the balance? Where to go? How to do smart scaling while keeping your pocket happy? (and free of vendor-rapists) I can tell ya - whether it's a web shop or 3k emps mini-corp - none of them can survive without their data and money making services.