* Posts by Social Ambulator

31 publicly visible posts • joined 5 Nov 2018

CES Worst in Show slams gummi gouging, money-wasting mugs, and other dubious kit

Social Ambulator

Pretty Feeble

Apart from the gumibear nonsense, it seems to me like the usual suspects raking over the same old coals. “Worst in Show”,says it all. If you’ve nothing to say, don’t say it.

If Apple's environmental rhetoric is meaningful, Macs and iPads should converge

Social Ambulator


The Mac runs Unix and allows me to code Java and run Java apps. Thank you for ignoring me.

Former Microsoft UX boss doesn't like the Windows 11 Start menu either

Social Ambulator


I remember the first time I was obliged to use Windows and I wanted to shut the awful thing down. I was told to use the “start” menu. I couldn’t believe it. Still can’t, but there is and always was an alternative to being subjected to such idiocy. Hint. It begins with M.

'Can you identify your assailants?' Yes, they were pixelated! I'd know them anywhere!

Social Ambulator


I was in a French hospital recently for a CT scan following an encounter with an imperfection on one of their ski slopes. Didn’t give me a CD, but a link to an online portal where you can view it every which way. Offered the link to my GP when I got home, but she confessed she wouldn’t be able to make head nor tail of it. Seems a waste — perhaps I should sell tickets.

When everyone else is on vacation, it's time to whip out the tiny screwdrivers

Social Ambulator

Been there, but I loose the damn screws

This is a boring “me too” answer to annoy the El Reg readers who hate Macs because they put them out of a job.

I too had a battery problem with a ten-year old MBP which admittedly was in semi-retirement as I had eventually decided to buy a new one. Most spectacular as the battery started swelling and was threatening to distort the housing. I managed to release the pressure by removing screws but, of course, managed to lose one. When my replacement battery finally arrived I had found a YouTube video of how to install it (come on Dabsy, you did too) but the “free” screwdrivers that came with the battery were so pathetic that I had to shell out for a decent one to remove the old battery. Finally put it back together minus a screw, but it’s not quite flush any more and will scratch the table top if I’m not careful.

Perl's Community Affairs Team chair quits as org put on ice by code language's foundation

Social Ambulator

What a Pearl!

Only in America! Is it Tom Sawyer? Does anyone other than the author have any idea what this is all about? I suppose that’s what happens when a scripting language becomes a religion. I guess it has all been precipitated because many of the acolytes have converted to Python. Snakes alive!

Ad tech ruined the web – and PDF files are here to save it, allegedly

Social Ambulator

Yes, the problem is advertising…

…but pdf is not the answer.

You have to change the mindset — yours at least, if you can’t educate the sheep. Publishing on the web costs money, just like running a symphony orchestra. Who pays? There are three models: 1. You subscribe to a site (The Financial Times, Jansis Robinson’s Wine site etc.) for regular content that you value. 2. You take advantage of “patrons” who make a gift of their resources — the BBC (patrons the British taxpayer), Genbank (patron the US Taxpayer), Wikipedia (individual donations) hobby sites from organizations that wish to attract members, or individuals such as myself and my wife who are happy to do it their selves. 3. You take your chance in a sea of advertising excrement.

But if you prate on about “the web must be free” because you are too mean to pay its price or too stupid to realize it has a price, you end up believing that the solution to the mess is technical specifications.

With a straight face, Putin agrees to do something about ransomware coming out of Russia, apparently

Social Ambulator

And on the iPhone?

I, for one, am enraged that Apple’s walled-garden App Store stopped me losing money on fake bitcoin mining apps. Don’t they realize that there is a fundamental human right to be ripped off by criminals?

Calling all fanbois: If you can't wait to glimpse iOS 15, Apple is running a public beta now

Social Ambulator

Definitely beta

Your article, that is. “brigns” indeed!

Germany's competition watchdog to investigate whether Apple's ecosystem damages other businesses

Social Ambulator

Re: The temperature seems to be rising for Apple

Bullshit? You wouldn’t be thinking of Wirecard by any chance? That caused billions of Euros of real damage. They would have done better to focus on real problems instead of investigating whether those dreamt up by Advertising lowlife actually exist.

Social Ambulator

Penis Envy

The German Government’s expertise in information technology consists of prosecuting Financial Times journalists who expose their National Technology Champions as frauds. (Wirecard in case you didn’t know.)

Apple ditches support for pre-2015 MacBook Air, Pro laptops with macOS Monterey

Social Ambulator

Who cares?

If you have a pre-2013 Mac (and I have several) you probably run it to run old software that more recent Macs don’t support (Adobe CS6 anyone?). You wouldn’t dream of upgrading beyond High Sierra. If you are an app developer, you need a machine that will run the latest version of X-code Apple will accept. True, you can’t synch your iPhone to these older Mac OSs. That’s what bugs me, but I assume there are technical reasons as well as the obvious.

Seagate finds sets of two heads are cheaper than one in its new and very fast MACH.2 dual-actuator hard disks

Social Ambulator

I seem to have missed something…

…Excuse me for asking, but are drives of this sort still in existence? I thought everything was solid state now.

Google to venture where Apple soared and Microsoft crashed – physical retail

Social Ambulator


That’s really exciting. Uh, as exciting as a Microsoft Store. Or something.

Microsoft reveals what a growth mindset does to the letter ‘A’

Social Ambulator


But we all know “A is for Apple”.

So what if I pay peanuts for my home broadband? I demand you fix it NOW!

Social Ambulator

Blue Nun?

I don’t believe you. Not seen it in years, and never in France. Unless it’s a recent porn movie you’ve acquired.

How to ensure your tech predictions catch on in a flash? Do the mash

Social Ambulator

Thus spake Zarathustra

No need for lower class popular music to do the future, although mashing up the two Strauses was perhaps a bunch too much. (Nicht wahr, Hal?)

Yep, you're totally unique: That one very special user and their very special problem

Social Ambulator

Humans are smart, hardware is dumb

Only PC support drones would call the Apple Fanboi dumb, because they are used to supporting an operating system that consistently failed/fails all the tests of human computer interface design and requires users to master all sorts of unintuitive and arcane procedures to operate. Further these same human failures can only derive satisfaction in life by belittling those with better things to do than memorize this arcane nonsense. It was Apple who made that one mistake in supplying a keyboard with brightness turned right down. Why should anyone think of that? Apple clearly learned from that mistake as it has never happened to me in the last 20 years. And thank God I have never had to ask for support from people who talk about power cycling instead of turning the damn thing off and back on again. The user wasn’t stupid, only the machine. Until you learn that, you’ll never write useable software.

Apple begins rejecting apps that use advertising SDKs for fingerprinting users

Social Ambulator

Good Apple

I’m a fanboi!

Staff and students at Victoria University of Wellington learn the most important lesson of all: Keep your files backed up

Social Ambulator

Just say no

The moral is never ever let the Uni handle your stuff. Use a Mac, which they don’t support, and backup manually to a 120Gb pen drive each night.

Apple to halve commission for developers turning over up to $1m in sales via App Store

Social Ambulator

We don’t want the likes of you pissing on our fliers, thank you.

Apple braces for antitrust woes by letting users select and install third-party apps during setup of iOS 14.3

Social Ambulator

There was a time.…

…when Mac users had to rely on Microsoft or Firefox for a web browser, and, surprise, surprise, it always lagged behind the Windows version, and often (yes, you Firefox) didn’t conform to the Mac interface guidelines. But the s***s in Brussels didn’t care. So that’ when Apple liberated us from that with Safari, and installed on the mobile platform they invented and took steps to prevent the security nightmare that was/is Windows, we Apple fanboys all cheered. I think Brexit was crazy, but more and more frequently Brussels makes me wonder. Perhaps Apple should have built a serial port into the iPhone. After all we (actually the 1984 Windows droids) all have one of those.

Ho hum: If you're so artificially intelligent, name this song while my videos go viral

Social Ambulator

Name that accent

Rather posher accent than I expected Dabsy. I would have got some passing pleb to do your recording. Lowers the street cred rather.

Amazon Lex can now speak British English... or simply 'English' if you're British

Social Ambulator
Thumb Down


Except that -ize is the standard English spelling, and the myth that it’s American is a conspiracy fuelled by Microsoft Word’s spelling dictionary. Check the OED if you don’t believe me. The pocket Oxford dictionary I had at school in the 1950s (sic) doesn’t even have “organise”. And at least some technical book publishers in Britain still explicitly specify “-ize”, just as they did thirty years ago.

NASA to stop using names like 'Eskimo Nebula' and 're-examine' what it calls cosmic objects

Social Ambulator

Re: A 'Nell' by any other name?

Je ne sais quoi.

Social Ambulator

Death Nell

Now did I spell that right?

In solidarity with its broken email hosting, 123-Reg's '24/7' support lines also fall over

Social Ambulator

Three Musketeers

“The entirety of”: three words, six syllables. There is a single one-syllable word that might serve instead. But who am I to criticise — I’m not a journalist.

Shocker: UK smart meter rollout is crap, late and £500m over budget

Social Ambulator

I'm loath to say this but I'm sure you are loathed for your bad language.

Nikola Tesla's greatest challenge: He could measure electricity but not stupidity

Social Ambulator

From the desk of the former Waitrose Food Editor

Country and Western singers — surely you don't encounter many of them in the metropolis! Are you not aware it is international vegan week?

Slabs, huh, what are they are good for? Er, not quite absolutely nothing

Social Ambulator

What would El Reg readers know about iPad users?

I am in academic tech, have numerous desktops, laptops, servers, iPhone. See no real need for an iPad. My wife just went out and bought one when they were first released. She has her own specific uses for it, which reflect her demographic and particular situation (middle-aged, female, travels a lot, needs to store her own teaching documents as pdfs, reads on flights, watches Dr Who). The only reason why she upgraded a few years back was for speed, but her current model still runs the latest iOS and is quite adequate. She like others in her demographic will run their iPads as long as they can. She hasn't fallen out of love with it — quite the reverse. It's just that the phone analogy does not apply. Tough for Apple, but it's similar with their laptops. I'm typing this on a late 2010 MacBook Pro, which I'm only just about to replace.

Which scientist should be on the new £50 note? El Reg weighs in – and you should vote, too

Social Ambulator

Re: Rosalind Franklin

Except she didn't discover DNA — it was discovered 50 or more years earlier. She didn't even discover the structure of DNA — She produced x-ray photos of DNA fibres but did not determine the structure of DNA from this. Crick (the Brit who should be considered for the £50 note) and Watson used her information to test (although not prove) their model of DNA, which had huge significance in explaining how genetic info is passed on when cells divide. It was her boss — Wilkins — who screwed her in relation to the Nobel prize, but neither he nor she was party to the intellectual brilliance of the double-helix, and it can be argued that neither deserved the Nobel. Feminist tokenism is in nobody's interest.