* Posts by wintergirl

22 publicly visible posts • joined 18 Feb 2021

Soon the most popular 'real' desktop will be the Linux desktop


Re: functionality

In these cases, the university should provide the necessary software. I've just completed a degree and an Office 365 account was provided by the university for the duration of the course, as was access to the other required specialist software (in my case, the Esri GIS stuff), plus the Adobe suite (Photoshop etc). I've never heard of a case of a university requiring students to go out and purchase essential software needed to complete their course.

1 in 4 Brits are playing with generative AI, and some take its word as gospel


Job applications

I'm waiting for the moment when I can leave ChatGPT writing and submitting job applications for me, the AI HR at the employer can read and score them, and we humans can all just go out into the sunshine and do something fun. (Coat, because I'm off out to play.)

UK government scraps smart motorway plans, cites high costs and low public confidence


If you can't see past the lorry, and you can't react in time if the lorry brakes suddenly, you're too close to the lorry. Hang back.


Lane 1 has a line of HGVs doing 56mph, lane 2 has a single bloke in an HGV doing 56.0001mph because he wants to get to Lutterworth a millisecond faster and lane 3 has all the Teslas and BMWs


Working from home

They can't be seen to support working from home, because all the retired people sitting at home reading the Daily Mail's columns complaining about "shirking from home" (also written from home) would kick off


I was on a "smart" section of the M1 with no hard shoulder the other day and there was some poor sod sitting stationary in the left-most lane in a defunct Land Rover. It was quite some distance to the next lay-by and there was no lane closure X displayed, no warning. Luckily, it wasn't especially busy, I saw the vehicle in plenty of time, changed lane and passed without drama. But it only takes one idiot fiddling with the phone, the radio, arguing with their kids/passenger/whatever (and we all see them every time we go on the motorway) and it would very easily be a different story.

I keep my car serviced and maintained so I'm not generally leaving the house assuming I'm going to break down, and I'm still terrified of driving on this type of motorway - if something did go wrong with my car on the road, there's a very much non-zero chance of being ploughed into from behind by white van man faffing with his phone, and then it's goodnight.

WANdisco suspends shares pending fraud investigation


The Yorkshire Post has just created a new role of Science and Technology Editor, funded largely by, er, WANdisco: https://www.holdthefrontpage.co.uk/2023/news/new-job-created-as-daily-invests-in-science-and-technology-coverage/

I wonder if this reporter will be covering this story with rigour and impartiality...

Vivaldi email client released 7 years after first announcement


Re: I loved the Opera mail client

There were also at least two years where the mail client was in private beta for selected users, so the Vivaldi forums had the occasional "I get to see it and you don't, nerny ner, don't ask about it again" type posts.


Re: Shame it's in the browser

For me, the problem was speed, especially UI speed. I use new windows a lot to organise my browsing, rather than one window with a zillion tabs. Every new window opened, showed a Vivaldi logo for 2-3 seconds and then loaded the UI so I could get on with my work.

I asked about it once on their forum, and one of those baffling people who doesn't work for the company but sits on company forums all day providing free "support" to users told me it wasn't a problem and that I shouldn't have asked. Their support channels are littered with "I've got problem X" / "that's part of Chromium and we can't change it" exchanges. I went back to Firefox, who for all their faults actually make their own browser rather than putting a wig on someone else's.

Tim Hortons collected location data constantly, without consent, report finds


Re: Also..

I guess these places have saturated their home markets and their (presumably) private equity owners are desperate for more "growth", so here they come. They don't seem to have a USP beyond "it's a famous brand, you've seen it on the telly or internet, now try our famous Timbits/Cinnabon/tacos/Dunkin' coffee/whatever the hell it is that Wendy's sells".

20 years ago, there might have been a local market where I live for "famous" US/Canadian food brands because the offerings were limited to McDonald's or a terrible local pizza/burger/kebab dump, but not now. The local food scene is light years ahead of where it was, even at the low end that these brands inhabit, and these places can't compete on quality or on price.


Re: Also..

The ones from the Krispy Kreme shop here are fresh as you can see them actually being made in the store. They're okay, but there are better local places.

The ones in the glass cases in supermarkets 40 miles from the nearest Krispy Kreme store? I've never even been close to being tempted. Goodness knows how long they've spent in the back of a van, and then in the glass case.


Re: What about Radar?

Notable that a company whose business is collecting and storing personal data on presumably millions of people speaks through an unnamed "spokesperson" in the press.


Re: Also..

There's one near me, on one of those "retail parks" with the big sheds full of sofas. It opened with a minor fanfare in the local paper - the usual "hey, this brand you've seen on the internet is now available around here!" stuff.

Within weeks, there were staff standing on the road outside holding arrow signs pointing in, with "MEALS £2.99" emblazoned on them. Not the sign of a business that's doing a roaring trade.

I suspect it'll be here today, gone tomorrow. We've reached market saturation with these "famous" junk food/coffee brands - they all seem to be arriving at once, with Tim Horton's, Krispy Kreme, Dunkin' Donuts, Taco Bell, and even Cinnabon and Wendy's in town now. There just aren't the numbers to support them all.

Logitech's MX Mechanical keyboard, Master 3S mouse


Good quality products not just for "gamers"!

I have the previous model of MX Master mouse (the 2S) and love it. It's weighty and high quality, and the wheel is different in a good way from any other I've used. I'll definitely be getting the updated model at some point when my current mouse wears out - although that may not be for some time given its quality.

It's good to see a move towards high quality peripherals for office users rather than gamers. We spend just as long at our machines, but too often we're expected to use cheap mushy keyboards and naff plasticky mice. Meanwhile, the higher quality stuff all too often looks like it was designed by a committee of 13-year-old boys with their curtains drawn.

An awful lot of keyboards nowadays don't have the number pad (which I can't live without) so this one will definitely be an option for me in the near future.

CityFibre scores extra £1bn+ of funding to plumb in up to 8 million British homes by 2025


Re: Vapourware

Very similar story here. FibreNation dug up the street in early 2020 - residents received mail from FibreNation and then TalkTalk saying "hey, gigabit fibre broadband is available, sign up now". Signed up, paid, nobody turned up, got refunded. That was the last anyone heard of it, other than the fibre sitting under the street.

Fast forward through an uneventful year to September 2021 and some more postal bumf has arrived, this time from CityFibre, saying - and I quote - "you may want to think twice about signing a long-term broadband contract until you can get Full Fibre". I don't think I'll bother when it is available. This company's endless announcements of expansion when its already built-out areas don't go live make me feel squicky about the whole operation, almost as if it's designed mainly to raise capital on the markets than to provide services.

Firefox 91 introduces cookie clearing, clutter-free printing, Microsoft single sign-on... so where are all the users?


Re: Bold move

Vivaldi already does this, to an extent - it asks the user on first run whether they wish to "Block Trackers and Ads". It's not quite the same as an on-by-default, but it's pretty close.

Feeling brave? GNOME 40 is here and you can have a poke around in the Fedora 34 beta


Re: Gnome default desktop for SUSE ?

Insofar as there is a default desktop for SUSE, it's KDE. It appears at the top of the list during installation, anyway.

Richard Stallman says he has returned to the Free Software Foundation board of directors and won't be resigning again


Re: I'm Back...

"Woke SJWs"? I think you want the Daily Mail website.

University of the Highlands and Islands shuts down campuses as it deals with 'ongoing cyber incident'


Re: The He Brides

I think SMO provides microwave internet links to some of the outlying islands as well - Eigg and Rum are visible from the top of the accommodation tower there and they supply internet access to island residents that way.

Want your broadband fixed? Best write to your MP, UK's Zen Internet tells customer


Re: Cabinet Replacment

Zen's idea of "telling it like it is" is to put a message on their website saying their service is so good that people are flocking in and overwhelming their poor overworked support staff:

> COVID-19 has sparked a flight to quality and increased importance on reliable connectivity which is keeping us busy here at Zen. We are experiencing significantly increased call and email volumes.



Re: We may never know

Zen have been rubbish for a while now. I had a couple of issues with them a year or so ago (just before lockdown) and while they always answered the phone quickly, I was never able to get any sense out of them. Lots of "oh, the person who was dealing with you is out of the office" and having to explain the issue over and over, it was as if they had no ticket system for dealing with ongoing issues.

They've now joined the legion of companies still using Covid-19 as an excuse to provide slow responses and not answer the phone. This sort of excuse always looks a little thin when the company is literally in the comms business. They are going to find themselves having retention issues if they charge AAISP money for TalkTalk service.