363 posts • joined Saturday 30th January 2010 09:00 GMT
News just in...
...A study which had funding and support from a large cloud vendor says that cloud services can save electricity (And hence save users money and cute polar bear cubs)
Later: Announcement expected about the Pope's religion.
Thus the security forces need a dedicated network, and dedicated spectrum, to keep them organised
The UK networks are able to prioritise emergency services (and other "important") mobile users. The British can't be the only ones able to do that, can they ?
Building and running your own mobile nationwide infrastructure (Whether it's in the UK or USA) is not a cheap or trivial job. Wouldn't it be cheaper and easier to just pay carriers for what you want ? Even if they can't do it now, a nice big fat government contract will surely persuade them?
The key to teaching is the teacher
The most important thing, IMHO, in teaching is the teacher. Someone who understands their subject, can explain the subject clearly, impart passion into their teaching, inspire the pupil to learn on their own, and have the patience of a saint in dealing with pupils who have various levels of interest in the subject.
I don't think any computer or software could be said to be able to do any of those things.
From usatoday30.usatoday.com/life/people/2006-06-15-hawking_x.htm back in 2006
The wheelchair-bound Hawking, who suffers from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, communicates with an electronic speech synthesizer. Hawking was asked why his computerized voice has an American accent.
"The voice I use is a very old hardware speech synthesizer made in 1986," he said. "I keep it because I have not heard a voice I like better and because I have identified with it."
He said he once considered using a machine that gave him a French accent, but he did not because his wife would divorce him.
Smells like a large government IT contract to me. Gazing into my crystal ball, I predict a failure to meet functionality targets and budgetary deadlines. Oh - and blame firmly placed on the last government for the failure.
Re: Just give us voice quality
As for voice quality: In the last two companies I worked for, the phones themselves were perfectly capable of supporting HD voice, but the option hadn't been activated at the switchboard / server level. Why manufacturers don't enable it by default is beyond me.
The simple answer is perception. People expect phone calls to sound a particular way. If it doesn't, it's wrong. How do I know ? I switched on HD audio on a phone system I manage. The number of complaints we had from people saying the phones sounded "wrong" was amazing. It was almost enough for me to switch it off.
The other issue, though, is transcoding. If your internal phones use the same CODEC as your PSTN provider (G.711) then there is never any transcoding to do, and your audio can just flow easily everywhere. If you have some devices supporting G.728 (or some other HD CODEC) and some only G.711, then either endpoints have to be capable of changing codec mid-call (e.g. if you perform a transfer) or some box in the middle somewhere transcoding between G.728 and G.711. Yes, I know, in theory it should work. But it doesn't. Trust me. Been there. Done that. Got the scars.
In the pre-VoIP days, PABX manufacturers made their money from the line cards on their systems. (2K upwards for a card which was just a 32-channel 8KHz ADC ? WTF !) And if you wanted a phone which had a basic menu display (so you didn't have to remember cryptic codes to activate features) the digital line card cost even more. Then there was the price of the digital handsets themselves.
Now, in the era of SIP VoIP, manufacturers realise that this revenue stream is under threat. You don't need specialist hardware to run a phone system, except maybe to interface to traditional telephoney (ISDN, POTS) All they're selling you is software (Especially the management side of it). So they need to lock you in to their ecossystem. "Of course you can use a third party SIP phone: But the license to configure it onto our system will cost twice the license for one of our phones (Which cost twice the price of your cheap SIP phone). Oh, you want us to talk real SIP, not our special version that only our products support...?"
Telephoney manufacturers are in real danger of shooting themselves in the foot. A Windows/Android/iPhone smartphone (OK, not the most expensive ones) can be had for less then the higher end corporate VoIP handsets, does a darn sight more and gives the user the street cred of having a fancy smart phone rather than a bland corporate phone. Mobile companies are also offering quite interesting tariff deals now (free line rental and free calls between mobiles on your corporate contract) OK, so coverage can be a problem, I agree. But with a mobile, *you* have no infrastructure to support. (Unless you buy some pico/femto cells to boast coverage - and they just plug into your IP LAN, so just another dumb endpoint)
But the bigger problem for PABX manufacturers is utilisation. People just don't seem to be using phones any more. Email, IM, Facebook/web & Skype are what a lot of people are using to communicate nowadays. If you're the Finance Director, and you walk around your building and see phones just gathering dust and not being used, you have to ask the tough question: Do we *need* an internal phone system ? It'll be a brave Finance Director who says "Let's not have a phone system" but I can see it happening in the future.
I've worked with phone systems for 20+ years, on systems in size from 20 to 20K end points. I can see the writting on the wall for my profession.
Re: The scum fleecing the dumb
As for those viewing pirated porn or any other copyright protected works, they too will be held accountable
First off, I don't think Prenda actually prosectuted anyone for copyright infringement, so none of its targets have been found guilty in a court of law. I believe that once a defendant started to put up a defence, they backed off. (Sorry, can't find the source for this right now)
Second, the Ars Technica has an interesting excerpt from the Judge's order:
"[Prenda] offer to settle—for a sum calculated to be just below the cost of a bare-bones defense."
Prenda's aim does not appear to have been to prosecute people for copyright violations: It was just a scheme to make money. Hence the Judge's suggestion that:
"[Prenda] boldly probe the outskirts of law, the only enterprise they resemble is RICO."
No mater what you think of the current copyright rules and the MPAA/RIAA, copyright violation is a crime. But so is blackmailing people.
Funny - I don't recall such vitriolic comments when Apple's network service went titsup multiple times a few weeks ago
The issue with RIM/Blackberry devices, is that all messages have to go through their servers. With Apple (& Windows & Android) the phones talk direct to your mail provider/servers.
Hope he has more than one camera pointing at it. I can see Murphy's law rubbing his dirty little hands in anticipation of fucking up the camera or connection in some way just before it drops
From the El Reg article:
"...professor John Mainstone, set up a Webcam to capture the last drop to fall in 2000, but it broke down....this time, professor Mainstone has more than one camera helping keep watch..."
Blowing things up in Earth orbit is a bad thing to do due to all the shrapnel it would create. Lowering the items orbit and getting it to burn up in the Earth's atmosphere is the most sure-fire way (no pun intended) to dispose of space junk.
...the police apparently failing to act on the information he provided them with.
What do you expect the Police to do ? Solve a crime ? Why would they do that when they can earn more money by taking back handers from the rich & famous to ignore crimes ?
I manage mobile phones in a commercial environment. I often get staff asking me why handsets cost so much under our commercial contract (which has no up-front phone subsidy/interest free load) when they can go to the high street and get phones for free or a low ammount (e.g. £50).
Once I show them the maths of their consumer contract and compare it to our business tariff, they realise that their consumer tariff costs more than our business tariff over the same time for the same handset.
Re: Lies, damn lies and statistics?
Listening to the "More or less" podcast is also a good place to learn about the dubious use of statistics.
We can make those photons go faster
The only way you can do that is to change the medium they go through. And then there's this trivial limit called "c" - known to many as the speed of light in a vacuum.
OFCOM. What are they good for ?
..Absolutely nothing !
I phoned them up the other week asking a question about telecoms regulations. Their answer: "Go ask a lawyer. We're not qualified to answer that".
WTF ? OFCOM make the rules, so how can they not be qualified to answer questions on their own rules ?
So India's going to be outsourcing to China for programming work ? Not the first to do it...
Re: CISC vs. RISC
The line between RISC and CISC chips has been bluring for years.
The original ideal of RISC, was that your CPU would have a much reduced set of instructions. This would allow the CPU to be leaner and to be pushed faster. You'd make up for the lack of complex instructions by executing simple instructions very quickly. I believe the VAX CPU was the epitomy of the old CISC design.
But modern RISC processors have instructions for more complex tasks. This wikipedia article, although possibly a bit out of date, highlights that SPARC, ARM & PowerPC CPUs have AES encryption instructions.
It's not a one-way movement of ideas though. CISC CPUs added some of the architectual ideas originally introduced by the RISC families.
As with all Amazon launches, this technology is designed [...] to lock customers further into AWS.
That's a rather negative view, isn't it ? As you say in the next sentence:
Not only does the feature not exist on other clouds...
Amazon are offering a service that no-one else provides ! You could turn the whole negativitey around and say that Amazon are developing extra services to attract new customers and to help keep existing customers by differentiating themselves from the comptetion.
Sure, someone might come along and do it differently (Better or cheaper), but Isn't this how competition works ?
One option may be for them to have some kind of membership/loyalty club. If you're not a member, all you get to do is buy, and ask no questions. If you are a member, you get to ask questions, and over the year, the cost of your membership is refunded against the cost of your purchases.
My local running shop has a policy that if they give you advise on shoes & you try shoes on, but don't buy from, they charge you a tenner or so. If you do buy from them, there's no extra charge for the advice.
I can totally understand why the shop does it. At times, I've spent nearly an hour trying shoes and discussing my needs. That time costs them money. I've never bothered to see how much cheaper my shoes are online as I value the help & advice they give. I'm happy to pay extra for the service they give me.
But charging just for looking ? Hmmm, not sure.
Apples & Oranges ?
The thing that concerns me about the benchmarks, is that the drives weren't all configured the same.
Some where RAID 0, some JBODs, and others were one drive partitioned up.
Surely a better comparision would have been to have all the drives configured the same?
Mix 'n' Match
As a child, I managed to persuade my parents to let me spend my savings on an Interface 1 & MicroDrive for our Speccy. For the first six months or so, the Interface 1, MicroDrive & Spectrum spent much time to-ing and fro-ing to Sinclair.
It seems there was a magic combination of MicroDrive, Interface 1 & Spectrum that worked. It took me & my parents months to get a working combination.
Ah, the memories.....
Interface 1 & ROM compatability.
The article mentions that the Interface 1 had fixes for bugs in the Spectrum ROM. I seem to remember this caused problems with some programs. I definitely remember seeing code samples in Speccy mags about detecting if an Interface 1 was present so you could take account of the ROM changes.
Well done to everyone involved.
You must be new around these parts....
Feels like the 80s
With all these different groups working on competing smart phone operating systems, it feels a bit like the 8-bit home micro market in the 80s. The barrier to entry has dropped to a level where anyone can have a go - and lots are.
I'm going to get my popcorn, sit back, and watch the show, because I think it's going to be a cracker.
Re: Overpricing => falling sales
To be fair to Dell, quotes usually have a limited time of validatity - usually 30 days.
Dell honouring a two month old quote is quite good (even if it did take some persuasion) I had one company recently refuse to honour a one week old quote !
Re: There Is Still Hope
Perhaps future successors of the Xeon E7 could include a small amount of extra logic on the chip to alternatively decode Itanium instructions instead of x86 instructions. [...] they could flexibly switch between both in the same box with the same chip.
They did the reverse with the original Itanics: Give it the hardware to decode x86 instructions natively and make the transition from x86 to Itanic easier. Then they found that it sucked in hardware and software emulation worked better.
Please Cisco, Juniper, et al, can we have some lower-end 10Gb/s switches ?
I'd pay, if...
I use YouTube a lot to watch music videos, clips from shows, etc. I'd tolerate a small monthly fee if (and it's a big if) there's no advertising and there's no big brother tracking.
Not the first to suggest...
That Michael Dell wind up the company and return the money to its shareholders...
NSN would be issuing the bonds this spring and would use the money raised to pay off some debts
So they're borrowing money to pay off other debts. What could possibly go wrong ?
Re: Can someone please enlighten me
Are drugs still rife in cycling? I assume they are, but I genuinely don't know.
It's hard to judge, but an article at the BBC seems to indicate that performance has dropped as drug use has diminished.
The problem with tendering for any custom software is evaluating the bids. It's not just a case of choosing the lowest price. You also have to make sure the bidders actually stand a chance of delivering on their promise(s). Oh, and saying "But don't pay them/sue them if they fail to deliver" isn't the solution. As a buyer, your aim is to get your requirements met first time, on time. If you end up calling in lawyers, all you do is delay the work even more and spend lots of money on lawyers.
I have no magic solution to this problem. This is something suppliers, government & lawyers need to work together on.
Re: Tell me something
Why did it take 8 years from Kennedy's announcement that the US were commited to "landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth" to fruition but this seems to be going on forever?
Money. (And politics)
A quick google indicates that, in todays money, the Apollo program cost over $100 Billion.
Because of the political situation at the time, there was the will to spend this large sum on money on the project. Today, there isn't.
Looking at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Budget_of_NASA you can see that during the Apollo program, NASA's budget was between 2% & 4% of federal GDP. Yet today's NASA budget is barely 0.5% of GDP (and it's falling)
It would help if my caller id showed the international number calling me instead of just showing as "INTERNATIONAL" on my Panasonic phones.
It depends on how the call gets from your girlfriend to your house phone (i.e. what carriers)
At my office, I have both a BT and a Virgin Media number. I got a contact in America to call me on both numbers. BT gave me the american CLI, Virgin gave me nothing.
It'll never catch on
From the article, all the ammendments sound quite sensible to me (unless I've missed something) In which case, it'll never get passed :-(
Re: Oh dear
I'm self employed have only one employee and have over 500 customers, now I will have to employ a data protection officer?
No, you just have to assign the duty to someone in your company: That'll be either you or your employee.
One number to rule them all
A good start would be one body for people to complain to about nuisance calls. http://consumers.ofcom.org.uk/tell-us/telecoms/privacy/ shows differening bodies for differening crimes.
Next, OFCOM (Or whoever) actaully needs to get off their butt and do some investigation. Just claiming "There's no CLI so we can't trace the call" is rubbish. For all UK calls (and UK callers do hide their CLI) the phone companies know exactly where the call came from.
Finally, OFCOM (Or whoever) need to start dishing out some serious punishments to these outfits. A stern letter isn't going to do it. Hefty fines and/or cutting off their phone lines are a good start.
Re: PHP? Really?
Holy crap - they are using PHP
You can write bad, insecure programs in practically any language.
Vodafone SureSignal Portal
Someone at Vodafone told me that the SureSignal registration portal will only accept mobile numbers which are on consumer contracts. If you have any kind of business contract, the SureSignal portal will fail to recognise you, and hence require you to phone up customer disservice.
- HP sacks English employees to bag Scots gov jobs cash
- SCO vs. IBM battle resumes over ownership of Unix
- Microsoft lures buy-curious vixens, corduroys with a cheap fondle
- Google Chromebooks now in over 6,600 stores
- McAfee Channel Summit Bone up on fresh EU privacy law - or end up in the clink, IT biz warned