* Posts by Thagomizer

7 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Oct 2018

The Wight stuff: Marconi and the island, when working remotely on wireless comms meant something very different


Re: Old Railways

That shunter (“Nuclear Fred”) is now at the Isle of Wight steam railway.


Re: Hovercraft

Add a 30kt wind and you’ve got one of the world’s best fairground rides. I tend to only start worrying when my backside gets higher than the head of the people on the other side of the hover.

Browse mode: We're not goofing off on the Sidebar of Shame and online shopping sites, says UK's Ministry of Defence


Never confuse Incompatibility with Incompetence

As an ex-MoD mivvi, I feel the reason is simple: legacy enterprise-wide software meant retaining old versions of browsers and the DM website was the mainstream media site that worked best with legacy browsers

The Register will also be on the list somewhere - I spent many a lunchtime trying hard to get it up the MoD website of shame listings.

Cortana and Search to innovate separately in an amicable Windows 10 Insider split


All your data are belong to us

The problem wasn’t so much Cortana coupling with Search, the problem was that both required you to first identify yourself and then send all your searches and comments to heaven knows where for unknown purposes by unidentifiable people.

Allowing both to work locally, without a local account, would have been fine.

Microsoft polishes up Chromium as EdgeHTML peers into the abyss


Re: Take your browser and fuck off

I have a similar attitude. Given the Microsoft virus that forced people onto Win10, I was in no mood to accept the new ways MS was trying to use to turn me into a commodity. So local accounts only, no apps from the Windows store, all “we really want you to try this” crapware removed, automatic updates bypassed (WiFi only connnection) and all data gathering and advert presenting bloatware uninstalled or rendered inoperable, That included anything infected with Bing (a propaganda engine, not a search engine) such as Edge, Windows Search and Cortana. Of course, this means my Win 10 PC will not work the way MS want it to, and I’ve missed out on lots of security features (I’ve avoided all updates since installation) which makes my PC insecure. But I’m happy with that: I am aware it’s an insecure and possibly dirty device, so don’t use it for anything I don’t mind hackers seeing. I do anything sensitive on my iPad or Android phone.

Persuading world+dog to love Microsoft's AI assistant a step too far for Acompli founder


Re: Pretty obvious

Yep. To succeed, a voice assistant needs to be useful in real-life situations. Cortina is just a gimmick, and a creepy one at that. As someone whose employer has bought into Microsoft in a big way, I can’t help feel MS (and others) have invested in the wrong technology. The whole digital assistant approach is wrong as there are too many variables to work efficiently for the consumer. This means the assistants become a means to limit us to the products, information or behaviours MS (and others) want us to have. We don’t need learning algorithms that will fail to anticipate what we need, we need something that will obey specific instructions to do specific tasks in specific ways. Our needs are more IFTT and less “you like spices and you go to the loo. Here’s an advert for chilli infused toilet paper.”

Samsung: Swanky hardware alone won't save a phone maker


Would you like more bloat with your Samsung sir?

I’ve got an S7 edge, which is a great phone, I’m really happy with the device, and I got it at a great price. Will I buy another Samsung when the time comes to replace it? Hell no, and I’m actively avoiding other Samsung products when I need to buy tech. (A non-Samsung Blu-Ray was the latest.)

Samsung don’t believe in customer choice and forces customers to accept whatever additional “services” it decides on, whether the customer wants them or not. I have no interest in Smart Things, Pay, Gear, SVoice, Bigbie, Members, Pass, Print Service or yet another cloud account. Yet Samsung refuse to allow me to disable or remove these. And every update runs the risk of having more rubbish installed.

If the additional services were any good, people would choose to use them. If a service has to be forced onto a device, then the service is either no good and needs to be avoided, or the company ethos is wrong and the company should be avoided.

To me, Samsung is a tainted brand. Just like Apple.