* Posts by Andrew Smith

29 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Feb 2007

Half of Apple fanbois would bank with the iPad titan

Andrew Smith

If Apple jumped off a cliff...?

Sick of Ubuntu's bad breath? Suck on a Linux Mint instead

Andrew Smith

Not really, Mint majors on the 'traditional' Windows 95 style navigation and bases that on the new libraries for Gnome3. If you like the old netbook launcher found in 10.04, Unity is pretty much coming from the same direction, use the 2D version if resources are short.

Best-selling games of 2011 revealed

Andrew Smith

It's what the public want, there are plenty of other games available but this is what the public buy.

Google OUTBID on g.co.uk at auction

Andrew Smith

I'm not sure Google can claim any rights over the letter 'g'. The letter 'g' has believe it or not was used in words and products unrelated to Google long before Google couldn't think of a creative name for it's email product. To give an example a 'Giraffe' is not believe it or not a Google Iraffe and 'Golf' is not the game Olf popularised by Google.

But then again Yahoo! managed to persuade some admin assistant that they own the letter y so I guess anything is possible.

Spotify adds 'temporary' private listening mode after Facebook backlash

Andrew Smith

I'm confused

What a pointless feature you can already tick and untick the post to facebook button as and when. The issue I have is that the tracking effectively spams the hell out of your facebook feed, I don't mind my musical taste being shared hell my last.fm is there for everyone to see but I don't want to thrust it in other people's face. This feature crossed the line from social to anti-social just like all the junk you get from Farmville etc.


No pain, some gain: Ubuntu Oneiric Ocelot examined

Andrew Smith

Evolution is still available

You just have to install it from repositories.

Fantasy Premier League falls over

Andrew Smith

Happened last year too

Fairly sure this has a tough time every Premier League Saturday, didn't really surprise me that it happened again.

Enterprise fanbois yawn at death of Apple Xserve

Andrew Smith

Why don't they resell?

I'm sure Dell or someone would be quite willing to rebrand a few 1U x86 servers with a custom frontplate. They can use the same tpm controls that are used on their desktops for Windows activation to prevent OSX server being installed on anything else.

US woman @theashes gives in to Twitter, flies to Sydney

Andrew Smith


There are more cricket clubs per head in Scotland than England & Wales. It's just the weather is rubbish so you don't get to play that much, just imagine if the weather was good you could be as good as New Zealand!

Bummed-out users give anti-virus bloatware the boot

Andrew Smith
Thumb Up

Avira ain't too shabby

Another thumbs up for Avira, it's a default install on my own machines if they dropped the nagging about the full version I'd be installing it everywhere but MSE is just too easy. And I'll be Avira recommending it next time I'm involved with a corporate purchasing policy.

Vote Lib Dem, doom humanity to extinction

Andrew Smith

there won't be an election over nuclear!

Since we're talking coalition government here, technocratic (i.e. big and bloody complicated) matters such as this were the partners disagree will be put to official review and a compromise deal reached. Any party that forces an election over subjects such as this will feel the full fury of the public who would be rather that the new series of Apprentice was not delayed again. With both the other parties broadly agreeing on these matters the Lib Dems would be obliterated if they tried to take it to the electorate.

The Lib Dem base might grumble and mutter into their beards when their policies are brushed under the carpet but they'll have PR, a fairer tax system and a hand in many other policies.

Ubuntu's Lucid Lynx turns back on Yahoo! search switcheroo

Andrew Smith

All change

My thought was that with all the stats they got back from the Beta; most people had switched it to google. Why fight what you can't control?

Too fat to fly: Kevin Smith and OpenOffice

Andrew Smith

Abi Word?

I don't care much for Open Office but an offline word processor or ms word file reader is essential, Abi Word is lightweight, usable and makes a good work of most formats. Shame that it hasn't been included, I'd recommend it to anyone with an ubuntu netbook edition.

Wireless widget gadget comes to Blighty's bedsides

Andrew Smith

Chumby One

The souped up version can be had for $120 (plus delivery and tax) on the US website, https://store.chumby.com/pages.php?pID=14

The old version has been on Veda for sometime, I'm waiting for the new one come across.

Gov claims 'password protection' OK for sensitive docs

Andrew Smith


"would the Tories or the LibDems actually be any more computer savvy?"

Perhaps not, but neither of these parties is actively seeking to increase the amount of data the government holds. A sensible policy line after all these leaks would be something along the lines of:

"We know you value you your privacy and you don't want your data to find it's way into criminal hands, so we will now launch a review into the all government computer systems. On a case by case decide whether they are required or if the data the each system holds can be reduced."

No government will ever do that though, it'd be sensible.

MySpace Music leaves creators cold

Andrew Smith


If I recall the same thing has happened on last.fm, it thrives on traffic from people interested in independent music but yet has only signed royalty schemes with the majors. But all these services are missing a trick, the second most popular online music store is emusic and they're independent only, really there must be something else to it.

There is a pattern of exclusion emerging if there isn't competition and anti trust investigations in the next 5 years I'll be surprised and disappointed in the EU especially.

Mozilla opens the doors on Messaging subsidiary

Andrew Smith

Exchange CALs

There's very little point in developing for Exchange, for every Exchange licensed user (or indeed device) you can install Outlook so unless there are legions of strange companies with Linux clients running Exchange mail servers, Thunderbirds will not be go. They should be concentrating on working with the Exchange alternatives and preferable they should pick one and fund it with their Google referrer money.

Government wants every English child on 'secure' database

Andrew Smith
Gates Halo


Hate to be a wet blanket, but so long as they don't experience mission creep there's very little wrong with this as an idea. Educational establishments are often asked to provide proof that a candidate got what he/she says they got, clearly most of this is done as decentralised chaos with lots of overlapping systems and duplicated functions and they probably waste lots of money.

So long as they keep it simple it'll be fine, but since when did government IT projects keep it simple?

Legal, major label DRM-free MP3s hit UK (at last)

Andrew Smith


Until the prices come in line with emusic (I pay 20p per track), the majors are still playing catch up. Even at £6.99 for an album you're better off waiting for the cds to be discounted, most major release will be at about £6.99 after a month or too and you get the physical product thrown in to.

Will Microsoft parachute Windows 7 in early?

Andrew Smith
Gates Horns

NT 6.1

I'm waiting for Microsoft to prove me wrong but unless Microsoft have been developing Windows 7 for a number of years previous to the release of Vista we're going to be getting NT 6.1 which will attempt to XP to Vista's 2000. It'll round off all the rough edges and make everything that little bit more bearable.

The Windows 7 moniker is horrible marketing double speak and actually means nothing. Bring back Microsoft codenames based on their vacation locations at least they were desperately pointless instead of pointlessly desperate.

Intel walks out of OLPC project

Andrew Smith

All kids are not straving

".02 cents - these kids are starving. Fix that first."

The countries (and the kids in them) that are targetted by OLPC are not straving rather they are economically disadvantaged or developing. Remember OLPC are actually selling these machines to the governments of the countries in most cases they aren't giving them away, no government however incompetent is going to waste money on laptops that could go on helping people survive.

Dell's laptop customisation options not very customisable

Andrew Smith
Dead Vulture

Business support

"The moral being, you cant trust Dells remote Sales or Tech support for anything, the guy that comes through the door usually knows what they doing in my experience but no one on the phone."

The consumer support may well be poor but the the business support is excellent, once you get through (this can be tedious however if you get the direct lines to the various support sections it's much easier) to a specialist they're pleasant, scottish and know what they're talking about. The visiting techs are a local company (not Dell unless it's a knackered server) but they're generally excellent and the speed at which they change a motherboard is genuinely impressive.

Sales leaves a lot to be desired; they have very little product knowledge, often send the wrong kit and seem genuinely offended that they might have to do a little bit of work to get a sale.

Only Sky can save digital TV

Andrew Smith

Sky has no committment to freeview

If Sky wanted to dominate freeview now they could. They have enough content (The Simpsons, Lost) they have the sports rights (Premier League, International cricket), hell they even have a already established news bureau. But they refuse to offer most of this free to air and in the very near future will be pulling the plug on their free to air channels completely and replacing them with a paid option. It's a leapt of faith suggest that they would do anything other than co-opt any newly aquired freeview space to be either subscription or a prolonged advert for their pay offerings.

Dell trips up over laptop components

Andrew Smith

Dell are an utter shambles at the moment

I ordered 7 laptops in July. Not only do they turn up towards the end of september but they are the wrong spec, come with the wrong monitors, and they send me keyboards instead of mice.

If had any sway over vendor choice we'd have cancelled all orders in August.

Cadbury bows to 'bring back Wispa' net campaign

Andrew Smith

RE:All British chocolate is crap

Lies, sure the cocoa solids % in Cadburys, Mars, and Nestle products are low but Green & Blacks (now sadly part of Cadburys) and a few other brands have the requisite cocoa solid content and the shelf space provided to such brands is expanding.

For my pence worth I like both, the cheaper chocolate with lower % cocoa solids do seem to be more imaginative with their chocolate bar recipes, hence the Wispa and other novelty brands. And remember they're marketed for children no matter how many fat geeks you see wolfing one down, as once they've got you they've got you for life.

Google adds PowerPoint viewer to Gmail

Andrew Smith


If anything this is good for Microsoft, more people will be able to view presentations from Powerpoint on cross platform locked down machines.

Wake me up when Google produce a decent presentation editor, preferably with flash output.

So what's in a URL? The Reg URL?

Andrew Smith

joining the chorus

stick to your roots and keep the .co.uk, have confidence in what got you here in the first place and stick with it.

And besides us.theregister.co.uk would be very British and boffin and exactly what makes this site stand out from the rest.

Gates predicts death of the office phone

Andrew Smith

It'll never happen

Unless your business is based primarily on your phones, a business just doesn't see the phone system as something that needs to be feature rich, it just needs to work.

Want to cross the road? Don't ask Google Maps

Andrew Smith

maps on foot

Google maps, multimap etc etc have never been very good for doing journeys on foot; they make you go around roundabouts to cross the road, and transverse one way systems in city centre. The best I've found is transportdirect.info which is a uk site for public transport and naturally on occasion includes directions for walking between different bus stops and trains.