* Posts by Steve Sutton

140 publicly visible posts • joined 5 Jun 2006


GNOME emits 'head up the arse' desktop update

Steve Sutton

If apple can design a decent UI, then why the hell do they continue to use their current crappy one?

Terror in the Outback: Attack of the Giant Space Balloon

Steve Sutton

Tech reuse?

Any applicable technology that can be used in PARIS?

Ubuntu's Lucid Lynx: A (free) Mactastic experience

Steve Sutton

Apple as a goal?!?!?!

What the hell is he talking about? ubuntu would "beat Apple's OS X on features and interface polish" if you replaced the GUI with a fullscreen bash shell!

I sincerely hope that ripping off MacOS isn't the goal, as that would be 73 steps backwards. Doing so was the reason ex windows fanb0is* like myself hate the GUI in Vista / 7.

* - something of an exageration, but the GUI was always the nicest, but otherwise I always thought linux as a whole was superior.

In anycase, if the people who control ubuntu are making brain-dead decisions like moving window control buttons from their proper place now, then lord knows what else their infinite-wisdom may impart on us in the future.

Maybe it's time to dump ubuntu, before the pain comes.

Irish civil rights group takes aim at iPad launch

Steve Sutton


My own stoopid fault for not putting dates of articles in my RSS reader - I thought I was still at March 31st!

Still, you're bastards for getting me!!!

El Reg insults 'millions of Irish Catholics'

Steve Sutton
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The IRA/protestants don't own the colours green and orange. There are literally *MILLIONS* of other uses.

What makes you think that your use of those colours is the only one that any other person could possibly ever use?


TomTom Go 550 Live

Steve Sutton

Drive on the right?

The instruction depicted is not to drive on the right, but to keep in the right hand lanes which go off to London. If you look at the instruction bar at the bottom, you'll see that the two left arrows are greyed (or rather blued) out, indicating they are not traffic flowing in the opposite direction, but rather just an alternate set of lanes heading to a different destination, which you do not want to be in..

Steve Sutton

@ Headley_Grange - have to agree

I have to agree with Headley_Grange here. I have a 540 (upon which el Reg says the 550 is based - no surprise really), and on paper it looks like a good bit of kit. However, I have had plenty of problems with it being unable to connect to the server, random reboots, failure to acquire a satellite lock from time to time. My favourite, is that, when I'm sitting in the carpark at work (the Sat Nav even shows me positioned in the road), It will usually tell me "no route found" to anywhere, until I drive off a few tens of yards, and try again.

IQ Routes does not appear all that it is cracked up to be to me. "Drive like a local" they say! Yeah, right. The planning appers to favour main roads, and I often find myself ignoring instructions and using a couple of local roads, which I'm pretty sure are quicker.

Also agree that TT customer service is utter, utter pants! Their standard advice to every problem seems to be to reset everything (by various means), which causes loss of carefully entered settings, favourites, and so on. The advice to set your favourites as POIs instead does appear to be the best way to do it, but I even lost those once! My first point of call for service and support is NOT TT customer services, it is a fairly well known independent GPS forum, and I find the advice I get from them to be considerably more convincing, reassuring, and successful than TT's own customer service department.

Having actually bought a 540, I'll stick with it (don't have much choice really, unless I want to fork out more money on something else, and the 540 does work well enough most of the time), but I'd think very carefully about buying a SatNav descended from the 540 in the future, and I'd probably try something else instead.

'Google' crowned word of the decade

Steve Sutton

Sums it up really

That "google" is itself a misspelt word (was meant to be "googol" as I'm sure most of us know), and has been chosen by the Americans as 'Word of the Decade' is a source of mild amusement to me.

Google touts real-time RSS transplant

Steve Sutton

...but how will this work?

perhaps like this?

To: majordomo@google.com

subscribe PubSubHubbub

subscribe other-great-ideas-brought-to-you-by-google

subscribe 80's-technology


Wow, I think google have just invented the mailing list.

Will Ferrell is Hollywood's most over-rated overpaid star

Steve Sutton


Nope, he's not funny, and this research is just another no-shit-sherlock moment

Ofcom's 116 discussions confirm El Reg advice

Steve Sutton

@Cynical Observer

Leicester police used to have "101" as a non-emergency number, but I think that's been closed down now.

Buy curious co-incidence, the dialling code for Leicester is 0-116

Satire website survives domain name challenge

Steve Sutton

Childish of me....very very childish

"... Sutherland Institute was founded in 1995 by Gaylord ...."

Bwahahahaha! hahahahahaha!

- http://sutherlandinstitute.org/sitePages/?section=aboutus&page=whoweare

Reg reader tickled by Acer's Easy Lai

Steve Sutton

The future

Reminds me of a lecturer from my days at Bradford Uni, who used to have us sniggering occasionally. Dr Lu Ming Lai, occasionally referred to as Dr Potential Shag.

BBC Click paid cybercrooks to buy botnet

Steve Sutton


"They've directly funded criminal activity WITH MY MONEY"

In other news, police pay licence holders to supply alcohol to under-age kids:-


Armed cops contain Wild West Leicestershire toy gun menace

Steve Sutton

@Roger Pearce

"... is to bombard them with obvious fakes until they get the message. ... Can anyone find out whether protesting this nonsense in this way is legal?"

I've not looked, but I believe that deliberately wasting police time is an offence

Nokia N85 smartphone

Steve Sutton
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Flash and media button (@ Joe K)

Absolutely agree with that one mate - It utterly baffles me that people put 5+ MP cameras in phones, and boast about some bloke who designed their lens (yeah, whatever - I don't care if Ronald McDonald designed the lens, as long as the pictures are ok!), and then some shitty flash which means photos taken in low light conditions are blurry and dark - often, indoor photos will have a very yellow tint too!

Dear Nokia - The Xenon flash was the killer app on the N82, without which I would not have upgraded. I read this article and was considering upgrading to the N85 (especially because of the FM transmitter, which I've been trying to buy separately for my N82), but the lack of xenon flash means I will not buy it. You fail!

Oh, and one more thing - please, for the love of god remove the sucky media/gallery/whatever it is called button - it makes me want to throw my phone at the wall/out the window/at the nearest Nokia designer/etc... on an almost daily basis, when it activates, despite my not intending it to!

(Thumbs down for the phone, not the article!)

Govt uses Obscenity Law to stuff up cartoon sex loophole

Steve Sutton


"there is concern that these images fuel the abuse of real children by reinforcing potential abusers’ inappropriate feelings towards children"

...so like much government policy, no actual proof then!

Why am I not surprised.

Satnav head-to-head: Navman S100 vs TomTom Go 540 Live

Steve Sutton

@ various

A couple of things on the review first of all (I have had a 540 for a few months now):-

The 540 does not have MP3 playback ability, that gem is reserved for the 940 unless I'm mistaken.

The map scrolling on the 540 sometimes suffers from the same problem of sometimes interpreting a press as a scroll, although it's true that the menu system doesn't suffer this.

Whilst the 540's traffic will direct you to smaller roads, the "HD" traffic coverage is much better on these roads than it's predecessor, which AFAICT only coverd motorways. It is far from perfect, and seems to have had some teething troubles, but is improving - just today, for example, it reported a queue on the A1081 into St. Albans from the north - TT's "plus" traffic would never have done that, I'm sure.


The 540 will also navigate to Latitute/Longitude, inbuilt (or downloaded or maually added) "Points of Interest" or even the location of your "Buddies" as long as you both use the "Buddies" service, as well as the usual recent destinations, favourites, home, or current location plus post code, address, and 'city centre'.


The 540 is TT's top-end *UK* edition (I guess the same applies to the NavMan). The others in the x40 range only include different maps# - at something like 50% more cost (the 940, IIRC) for little more than maps of a different continent, it's not really the sort of thing a 'typical' UK based user would go for.

# acutally, the 940 - europe, US/Canada maps - also includes MP3 playback, FM transmitter, and inertial navigation for use in tunnels &c, but otherwise, unless i've missed anything, they are essentially the same device

Story withdrawn

Steve Sutton

@ Iain Buchanan

The reason people people hate "2.0" is because it was invented by neolot^H^H^H^H^H^Hblaggers who were trying to be clever. I believe it is trying to suggest that the 'net has been re-invented in a second generation, which is total crap. The 'net has been evoloving steadily over more than 40 years, and there's been no single change that could suggest that it has been completely re-invented.

There are people who suggest that "2.0" refers to a web where content is "user generated" (and that *that* is the revolutionary change worthy of a new major revision number) which again, is total crap. Although prior to "2.0" and the popularity of 'blogs' and 'social networking' there was a period where the 'net was to some extent dominated by corporate content, before that, it was always generated by the people who use it

Even prior to the web, there was USENET, which was populated by "user generated content," which like todays so called "blogs" and forums was largely comprised of people talking shit, interspersed with the occasional gem of wisdom. The only two things that have changed on the 'net in the last 25 years are that there are more people using it, and that the UI has become easier to use - the latter largely accounts for the former - (okay, so maybe there's some more bandwidth too). The underlying use of the 'net hasn't really changed.

A much more accurate, although still nonsensical, term would be (I don't care if that number's wrong, I made it up)

There is nothing "Accurate" or "Properly used" about "2.0"

Steve Sutton

Wrong list

Of the other words on your list:-

Fail is not really a *net* neologism and can be used in a completely technology free context. It's just a harmless insult - fine.

Interweb is a form of mocking/parodying the less technically knowledgable, who originally misused the phrase accidentally rather than deliberately - fine.

pwn is, again, used to mock the original typo - fine.

Edutainment and Mashup are not really net related, but they are doubtless the result of idiots trying to be clever, so probably do deserve their place in the list.

LOL, ROFL, and OMFG are hardly neologisms - most of them have been in use for 20+ years - as long as they are used strictly for typing efficiency or where data fields are limited in size, they are completely out of place in this vote.

What I really have a problem with is people (mostly lesser educated hacks than your good selves, and marketing people) who make up words (or copy made-up words) that at least try to sound 'cool' or clever to try and impress people - i.e. blaggers. But the bottom line is that new words/phrases are useful, when meaningfully constructed; memory-stick (a stick with memory in it), electronic-mail (mail sent electronically), filesharing (sharing files), lap-top computer (a computer that sits on top of your lap*) are all words/phrases which bear some relation to the meaning. OTOH the word "podcast" bears no relation to its meaning "digital audio clip/stream" which is why it's creators should probably be made to suffer.^

* unlike notebook or netbook, neither of which, to the best of my knowledge, are books.

^ along with all the other neolotards (Sorry, I claim parody on that one! Readers: please never type/utter that word again - I mean it!).

Broadcasters and ISPs cosy up for iPlayer on Freeview

Steve Sutton

@Peter Gathercole

I don't know how far you are going back, but I would guess that it pre-dates VCRs, when the only practical use for a television would be to watch broadcasts, and such wording would be used so that people could be prosecuted for watching TV without having to prove a specific occasion when they actually did so (what reason/excuse do you have for owning a working TV if you claim you don't watch broadcasts).

The advent of VCRs meant that it was possible/plausible for people to own capable equipment without necessarily watching broadcasts, so the wording would have had to change, to penalise only those who actually watch broadcasts).

Steve Sutton

@John W and AC2 & 3

No, you only need a licence if you *actually receive* broadcasts. You absolutely do NOT need a licence to operate equipment which is merely capable of doing so.

For example, you do not need a TV licence to operate a VCR, or the TV it is attached to as a player only - e.g. for rented videos - even if both are capable receiving TV broadcasts.

Similarly, if you use a device which is capable of receiving broadcasts, but in fact is only used for downloading information from the internet (excluding simultaneous broadcasts), you won't need a licence

See here - http://www.bbc.co.uk/info/licencefee/

"You need a TV licence to use any television receiving equipment such as a TV set, set-top box, video or DVD recorder, computer or mobile phone to watch or record TV programmes as they are being shown on TV."

Notice the prase is "to watch or record" not "which is capable of watching or recording"

...unless/until they change the law

@AC1 - I'm not sure about the on demand stuff you're talking about, but any on demand stuff which works by using 10 different channels, all running the same programme, offset from each other by say 15 min, would probably still be considered broadcast - but then, they're not true on demand stuff.

Raids net police £1m in pirate game and movie discs

Steve Sutton

Street value

Let's see:- http://dictionary.reverso.net/english-cobuild/street%20value

street value

The street value of a drug is the price that is paid for it when it is sold illegally to drug users.

(Replace "drug" with "pirated disc" in the above definition. Note that it is the price that *is* paid, not *would be* paid)

Or maybe:- http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/street+value

Main Entry: street value

Part of Speech: n

Definition: the price of a commodity if sold illicitly, esp. drugs

If you haven't yet died of bordom, try some of these:-


Nappies OK'd by beaks in Nowak space loverat fracas

Steve Sutton

@Mike Smith

I'm more conderned that she was "evacuating in the face of Hurricane Rita" Does this simply involve going out into the wind, dropping her pants and letting it all go, or is some sort of contraption required to properly target the face?

And another thing, I know hurricanes have eyes but do they have entire faces?

Why the IWF was right to ban a Wikipedia page

Steve Sutton
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Defeating your own argument

Reporter is a fucking idiot!

As he/she/it states The Protection of Children Act 1978 bans indecent images of children. As we can all see with our own eyes (well, depending on our ISP), the blocked image can in no way be considered indecent (Reminder: nudity != porn - yes *even* children).

And frankly, this is the real problem here. If said image was actually and example of kiddie porn, I'd have no problem with it being blocked. The problem is that the IWF, as demonstrated by this incident, is apparently now a fully signed up member of the media fueled overreaction is more important than using our common sense brigade.

Ofcom rules on Clarkson strumpet gag

Steve Sutton

This title contains only question marks (i.e. "???")

Is it possible?

Has sanity, balance, and common sense returned to the world of broadcasting?

Nope, I see that JR hasn't yet been reinstated (no, not the one from the crap yank soap, the funny one who ranks *cough* highly)

(I know the title doesn't contain only question marks, but is should, however, owing to an apparent bug in el Reg's comment system, the string "???" was not apparently recognised as a title)

Archos 7 internet-enabled PMP

Steve Sutton

Can it..

..handle MPEG Transport Stream files? i.e. can I copy recordings off my digi HDR and play them on this?

Blockbuster OnDemand coming to a Blu-ray player near you

Steve Sutton

How much data?

Is anybody forgetting that most (all?) consumer Internet access have monthly download limits? And at 10 or 50 Gb depending on which of the above you believe, that's going to trip the limit at anything between less than one, and four or five downloads.

Company That Can't Be Named slams critics

Steve Sutton

What a...

....PH^?^?FORMidable article Mr Orlowski.

iPhone users to get get-out call

Steve Sutton
Jobs Horns

I was about to complain...

.... about this nonsense, when I actually read more of the article. Specifically "This capability, as is so often the case, has been available to users of other smartphones for years." You clearly know that this is not news.

Why are you wasting our time with this nonsense! In what way is this especially newsworthy? Why do I only get to select 1 icon for this comment, when at least 5 of them are applicable!

Why am I wasting my breath posting this comment? Is my work really so depressing that I have to resort to such displacement activities to get out of it? Why have I only just realised how stupid and irrelevant the phrase "wasting my breath" is? Where is the nearest suicide booth?

MobileMe disappears for another 7 hours

Steve Sutton

To be fair...

"Apple's cloud vanished for another seven hours over the weekend, depriving some MobileMe users of their email and services despite status reports indicating everything was operating fine."

To be fair, Demon's pop3 server also went down for some time last night, leaving punters unable to collect mail, and it was a while before their service status was updated too. I'm by no means an Apple fanboi (quite the opposite in fact), but they're not the only ones who can be guilty of this.

House key copied from photo

Steve Sutton
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Like this is news

Is this some sort of big surprise? I needed a spare key for my car, a good few years ago, and went down to my local Renault dealer.

In order to create the key, without taking it from me, they took a PHOTOCOPY of the key, and the serial number for the electronic / chip code.

TomTom ships Go x40 satnav series

Steve Sutton
Dead Vulture

@jake - I used to say the same thing

Jake, I used to say the same thing, but then I decided to take the plunge and buy one anyway. SatNavs are fantastic, and a worthwhile buy if you do a bit of travelling, to places you have never been to before, or visit infrequently.

It takes a bit of time to properly work out a route with a map, and remebering every last turn on your route and getting it right is difficult - you can't exactly read your map/directions while you're driving, and the added advantage of satnav being able to deal with missed turns, closed roads, and the real selling point of the x40 range traffic, is sooo much more convenienet that a satnav is one of those "why oh why did i struggle to do it the hard way when I could have bought this" kind of devices.

Agree with comments about about lack of perfection, they don't completely replace your brain, but like much modern technology, they do make things quite a lot easier.

"Bye bye Reg", because they aren't available anywhere that I can see yet, and because this so called "launched" item is still not shown on TomTom's own website - no press release there either!

Thrust SSC team to build 1000 mph 'Bloodhound' car

Steve Sutton

Let's just hope....

... that they don't get The Hamster to drive it

Thus passes to C&W

Steve Sutton

I've got an idea...

Right, I reckon that if I can get 500 of you, to pay me 25 quid a month (hey, inflation), I could set up a new ISP etc....

anyone with me?

Ten of the Best... Bluetooth Headsets

Steve Sutton

Best bluetooth headset ever...

... is the Motorola HS300.

Why? Because it operates not off a crappy internal rechargable battery which will have a useful life of about 2 minutes, 6 months after you buy it, but instead operates off a single AAA battery which lasts fookin ages.

Net shoppers bullied into being Verified by Visa

Steve Sutton
Thumb Up

@Steve Renouf

"Yes it was but, of course they soon discovered the fatal flaw in that - if someone has stolen your card, they can simply read the number off the back!! DUH!"

So, some sort of Personal Identification Number number is in order then?

Srsly though, you could make a webserver secure, by not connecting it to the internet, you could prevent people dying in car crashes by banning all cars, and you could prevent credit card fraud, by not issuing credit cards.

At the end of the day, if you prevent people from using such things, or make them inconvenient to use, you defeat the object of having them. You have to draw the line somewhere, and IMHO, this sort of thing is a step too far.

At the end of the day, there will always be the kind of scum about who think it's okay for them to take other people's property, and they're really to blame. Whilst what they do is not acceptable, we have to accept that those people exist. As much as it is important to make it difficult or impossible for them to commit their crimes, it is as important to catch the bastards and lock them up (I know, I know, it's not an ideal world and we all have to lock our doors, but like I said above, you have to draw the line somewhere)

Steve Sutton

There is another way

My bank also made this mandatory - i.e. when I tried to pay with my card, there was no "no thanks" button. This combined with the fact that they won't give me full access to my on-line banking (i.e. making money transfers) without a card reader led me to discover that their slogan was indeed correct (although between them, my new bank, and my credit card company, they have screwed up at least one of my direct debits during the transfer to my new bank).

Sumerians cracked world's oldest joke

Steve Sutton

What's brown and sticky?

A stick.

Steve Sutton

How do you hide an elephant in custard?

Paint its feet yellow and turn it updside down.

Steve Sutton

What's yellow and dangerous?

Shark infested custard

Trust on the slide, Chris Moyles on the up at BBC

Steve Sutton

@Evil Graham

"Well if you can't moan on El Reg's comments pages, where can you moan?"

Shit, you've got me bang to rights there! I actually allowed myself to forget that these comments were made on the 'Net.

"And the 7.7 million listeners "popular" argument doesn't really hold, because the other things you also said were shite (like reality TV) get an even bigger following."

No, I wasn't arguing that they aren't popular, my point was that I don't complain (or indeed care) about them, or point out how inferior or ill-educated their viewers are for watching, I simply don't watch myself - all I have tried to suggest all along is that people should stop moaning and just ignore what doesn't affect them (although with respect to the above, I think I'll just shut up now*).

* No need to cheer quite that heartily you bastards!

Steve Sutton


Somebody else said he doesn't take himself seriously, I just said that I happen to find him ok or better (I'm certainly not a fanboy - I personally only listen about once a week).

I'm not judging him and I'm not particularly trying to defend him either, my point is simply, if you don't like him, that's fine, that's your prerogative, but instead of moaning, and questioning what others find entertaining, if his show is not to your taste just switch off your radio or tune it to another channel. What are you and others trying to achieve by complaining about him, precisely? Is your smug sense of superiority over people who like listening to him enough to make you happy? (well done you, if it is)

As well as The Office, there's plenty of crap on TV, Radio, &c, that I could slag off (Ant & Dec anyone, and what about those ridiculous talent shows, oh, and don't get me started on ITV Sport), but I won't, because it's a pointless waste of time, and frankly if people like that sort of thing, then good luck to them. You won't catch me moaning about them unless you actually ask (or to illustrate a point such as this).

That 7.7 million people listen to him (a figure which is substantially more than his predecessor), suggests that by some standards at least (even if not yours), he is doing a reasonable job. Unlike ITV Sport (which really pisses me off, because they ruin the sport I want to watch, an there's no alternative coverage, so complaining about *that* really is justifiable on the grounds that we lose out because of them) it doesn't hurt you+ to simply not listen to Moyles.

+ Blah blah licence fee blah blah: 7.7 million people justify that.

Steve Sutton
Thumb Up

@Sarah Bee

No, I'm not gonna argue, there are clearly times when Chris Moyles can be a bit of a twat - (not often IMHO) but sometimes it's as much fun to laugh *at* him or just disagree with him. You don't believe that The Office+ is popular for David Brent's insight, intellectual wit, and gems of wisdom do you?

+ Actually, there's something which I really do fucking hate, but I don't go around bitching about it, I just don't watch it - easy!

Steve Sutton

Chris Moyles

Those of you who don't like Chris Moyles, can sod off and listen to Wogan or Vaughn, or something else or nothing. There are 7.7 million of us who think he's ok or better, and are fed up of pillocks like you who have nothing better to do than whinge about something you can easily avoid.

Nokia N78

Steve Sutton

It's still got...

...that ridiculous navi key that sticks out from the right soft key, and has been the bane of Nokia N series phones of late (Hint: It's virtually impossible to avoid pressing it accidentally from time to time, and if you have it in a protective case/belt clip jobbie, it *is* impossible to avoid pressing it!).

Phone watchdog plans text spam clampdown

Steve Sutton


Why don't Ofcom simply ban text messages which do not have a valid/real sender number? Do that, and the offenders can be traced, and stopped. Simple, methinks!

MySpace wins record $230m judgement against spammers

Steve Sutton

@Shannon Jacobs

Why the hell do you keep saying 'heck' ?

Steve Sutton

@Matt Bradley

Just out of interest, how much are Gitmo residents paid to crack rocks? Is it an hourly rate, or are they paid piecemeal?

UK Reaper drone wrecked in Afghanistan

Steve Sutton
Black Helicopters

At least it wasn't shot down