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Comment: Re:It's a pity (Score 1) 161

by BeerCat (#46642791) Attached to: Canonical Shutting Down Ubuntu One File Services

Until they shut down or start holding your data for ransom...

This story is a perfect example of why I will never trust cloud storage.

True enough - I use it as a means for people to view stuff of mine, without having to send them a large email. But I retain the originals on my own machine.

(And currently migrating a number of club newsletters from UbuntuOne to Dropbox. If Dropbox dies, then I still have the originals)

Comment: Re:This. Exactly this. (Score 1) 237

by BeerCat (#46166875) Attached to: Update on the March of Progress: How Slashdot's New Look Is Shaping Up

And more this.

OK, so maybe displaying the UID "takes up too much space" - except that the large font (is there a way of changing it without changing it in your browser?) means there is already "too much space" - except this is wasted.

Not defaulting the parent posts's subject is an annoyance (but might encourage some "maybe my reply should have a different title" - except that breaks the thought flow when wanting a quick reply).

And all wasted space was in "beta-classic" view - the headlines only is too little info, while the tiles means even less information on screen.

How about looking at the BBC News website (and mobile version), to see how you can have a lot of information (on a non-mobile), and have a reasonable slew of clickable/movable icons for the mobile version. This comes across as the worst aspects of a desktop and a mobile site... The Windows 8 of blog sites, even

Comment: Re:I'm thought about trying to reply from the beta (Score 4, Interesting) 463

by BeerCat (#46166637) Attached to: Fire Destroys Iron Mountain Data Warehouse, Argentina's Bank Records Lost

I looked at the beta, and thought "I'll give it a go"

And then found the large default font, the lack of auto-copying the OP subject and the general "messiness" of it all too painful.

Just as well I had the classic in another tab...

Comment: Replacing? No. Supplanting? Yes (Score 1) 211

by BeerCat (#45824997) Attached to: Are Tablets Replacing Notebook Computers? (Video)

Many of the comments are of the "I need a real machine to do..." kind.

However, there are roughly 2,900,000 Slashdot IDs out there, and, even if 100% of them required the "heavy lifting" of a "real" machine (which they don't...), then the sales figures ( show that, in computing terms, Slashdotters are part of the 1%, and hence, despite the vociferous arguments, you (we) are a tiny minority.

Worldwide smartphone sales to end users reached 250.2 million units, up 45.8 percent from the third quarter of 2012

Nearly 90 times the /. list (which took years to build up) created in the last 3 months?

Face it, the PC is dying, not because it's not being used (in the areas that always used to use it), but because it's being overtaken by the "not a PC" uses

Comment: Re:On inappropriate expectations (Score 2) 113

It's not just tablets, organisations everywhere have for years been deploying new technology that brings with it the promise of improved productivity. In reality it often does not... You take old hardware and old software that works just fine, and spend a fortune replacing it with new faster hardware running new slower software.

(should be +5 insightful right there)
There have been many companies *cough* Microsoft *cough* whose stock answer since the early 1990s has been "throw more hardware at the problem" (because of the implicit "our new software soaks up so much more system resources than the old stuff, that you'll need it").
It's only in the last few years that the hardware has overtaken the software so much that people forget how bad the "new stuff isn't any faster than the old stuff" had got.

instead of the software supporting the business, the business has to adapt to the way the software works.

A previous boss of mine (company director) stated "the needs of the business dictate the IT required. Not the other way round" Unfortunately, there are so many instances of the IT tail wagging the business dog that it really isn't funny any more (as if it ever was). Sharepoint, I'm looking at you, here (amongst many others on the wall of shame)

Comment: Re:On inappropriate expectations (Score 1) 113

I'm noticing, and not just in the public service, that hardware like tablets, don't appear to be solving anything or improving productivity, it mostly appears like as if they're shoehorning them in because people want them or they want to appear like they're keeping up with the times.

Reminds me of when PCs were first being introduced in Government offices back in the early 1990s.

Back then, they "didn't appear to be solving anything, or improving productivity" for many offices. For some, though, there was someone who either could see the potential, or could make something out of it all.

So, it was a long term goal that (ultimately) paid off

Comment: Re:Turnip lanterns + US invades Scotland via Engla (Score 1) 273

by BeerCat (#45294317) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: What Are You Doing For Hallowe'en?

Cracking tales there!

I never thought of guising as being "tradition" - it was just something you did. And getting sparklers for Bonfire Night too!

When the sun rises about 8am, and sets around 4pm, then I suppose that makes for a lot of winter festivals to pass the time...

Comment: Re:Denial (Score 3, Insightful) 229

by BeerCat (#45051559) Attached to: US Forces Undertake Two African Raids, Capture Embassy Bombing Figure

Seems like a pretty drastic way to break the budget deadlock.

Since paying DoD civilian employees was given a big thumbs up, it shows that there can be some agreement. Provided it is in a few, well defined, areas.

The next thing looming is the debt ceiling on the 17th. What better way to get it raised than "we urgently need to spend some $ on a quick military action". Bingo. Support given wholeheartedly "to retain the US military superiority" or somesuch, the debt ceiling is also raised. Job done.

Comment: Bistromathics (Score 5, Informative) 196

by BeerCat (#45049817) Attached to: Google Wants Patent On Splitting Restaurant Bills

I think Douglas Adams worked this one out a while back:

The third and most mysterious piece of nonabsoluteness of all lies in the relationship between the number of items on the check, the cost of each item, the number of people at the table and what they are each prepared to pay for.

You'd have thought that Google, of all people, would have checked to see whether there was an app for that already...

Comment: Re:If Apple or Google came up with this... (Score 2) 139

by BeerCat (#44972989) Attached to: Microsoft Shows Off Its Vision For Gesture-Controlled PCs

Google already did but it was an April Fool's joke in 2011.

And Douglas Adams did it before Google even existed:

A loud clatter of gunk music flooded through the Heart of Gold cabin as Zaphod searched the sub-etha radio wave bands for news of himself. The machine was rather difficult to operate. For years radios had been operated by means of pressing buttons and turning dials; then as the technology became more sophisticated the controls were made touch-sensitive--you merely had to brush the panels with your fingers; now all you had to do was wave your hand in the general direction of the components and hope. It saved a lot of muscular expenditure, of course, but meant that you had to sit infuriatingly still if you wanted to keep listening to the same program.
Zaphod waved a hand and the channel switched again.

(grabbed from

Comment: Re:still wrong (Score 1) 381

by BeerCat (#44929291) Attached to: Microsoft Takes Another Stab At Tablets, Unveils Surface 2, Surface 2 Pro

The Surface touchscreen works very nicely, and the Pro's addition of a pressure-sensitive stylus opens it up to the art community in a way that is largely under-addressed (in my opinion, they should be advertising this feature a LOT more). ...
The high-end market are all in love with their hipsterish Apple devices and hate MS on principle that they're 'the man'. MS has to cut out their own groove, and it's not easy. It's a bad situation for MS.

The art community went for the "hipsterish" Apple years ago.

As IBM worked out, "IBM" is a "Business" brand, and non-business purchasers don't want that stigma. Lenovo was (IIRC) initially IBM owned, before it was sold off, and was beginning to attract the non-business users.

What MS need to do is juggle the "Microsoft" name for the Surface Pro (the "business" one) with a new name (in the same way that enough people forget that X-Box is a Microsoft brand) that will attract the "non-business". Of course, to do serious graphic work means the Surface Pro, so somehow there needs to be a "Microsoft Surface Pro" and a "Wizzygraphic tablet" (which is a Surface Pro in all but name) - which doesn't just confuse the market even more than the current Surface / Surface Pro - WinRT / Win mish-mash does.

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