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Comment: I did this last year with an EE PC 701 & Nokia (Score 1) 169

by Wonderkid (#28119861) Attached to: Using WiMAX To Replace a Phone?
And found Skype to be very reliable on my 3.6 yo 7.2Mbps Vodafone 3G connection on the EE PC. The only downsides were obvious: a) It's still a very bulky phone. b) You look a right dork talking to your computer in a coffee shop, unless you have a headset, and even then, it's fairly unsociable. I suppose the solution is to carry a Skype handset with you at all times too! c) Here in the UK you can buy from 3 (network) a mobile/cell phone with built in WiFi and use that. Now, this is where it gets interesting! The Nokia E71 plus Fring was excellent using the included free data allowance thought Vodafone. The call quality was BETTER across Fring and Vodafone's data than making a conventional voice call. The only downsides to all this was as someone else has mentioned, the battery life is massively reduced because your phone and data connection has to be 'on' all the time. However, with wearable solar panels, one day, this problem will be dealt with. We're just a few years away from making mobile always on VOiP a reality.

Using WiMAX To Replace a Phone? 169

Posted by timothy
from the secretly-replaced-with-folger's-crystals dept.
vigmeister writes "I've decided to explore the possibility of using a netbook/MID as a phone while eschewing the services of a cellphone provider. Now that Atlanta (where I live) has WiMAX from Clear, I ought to be connected to the Internet everywhere within the city (once I sign up). Theoretically, this should mean that I will be able to use my netbook as a cell phone. Of course, there are some very real issues to overcome and I am simply putting this experiment together to see if it is something that is realistically possible. This could possibly extend to uncapped 3G connections (if they exist any more) as well. Are there any obvious problems you would foresee? Is there anything I have missed or any other questions I should attempt to answer in this 'experiment' of mine? A major issue is, of course, the fact that my pseudo-netbook has to be carried everywhere and always left on."

Elderly To Get Satellite Navigation To Find Their Way Around Supermarkets 80

Posted by samzenpus
from the too-many-aisles dept.
Three government centers in the UK have been working on a way to use digital technology to help the elderly and the disabled. One of their ideas is a supermarket satellite navigation system to help elderly people who get confused by changing layouts in the aisles. Professor Paul Watson, of Newcastle University, said: "Many older people lack the confidence to maintain 'normal' walking habits. This is often due to worries about getting lost in unfamiliar, new or changing environments." A kitchen for Alzheimer's patients packed with hidden sensors and projectors is also in the works.

Comment: Sorry, 2Mbits is NOT enough! (Score 2, Interesting) 192

by Wonderkid (#27706019) Attached to: UK Government To Back Broadband-For-All
Having been on Virgin's fibre broadband at 20Mbits (yup, 20) for 6 months, while it is indeed very fast and so far, reliable, it is NOT fast enough. As soon as another occupant of the house beginds to watch an HD stream or download something, it slows down - sometimes even grinding to a halt altogether during busy evenings. Furthermore, with the advent of widespread cloud computing, considerable strain is going to be put on the Internet as a whole. Already, using Google Docs on anything but the fastest connection is impossible, with it timing out if the connection slows down too much. (Not Google's fault.) For the sake of the economy, like the autobahns, highways and motorways of the past, the governments of today (Singapore has already done this) needs to build a super/mega/ultra/wikkedly fast national network of at least 40Mbits (yes, 40) with a 5Mbit or more downlink to make uploading content and teleconferencing practical. The ideal way to achieve this without digging up half the planet to lay fibre to the home will be to use 4G LTE wireless technology. We MUST invest now!

Comment: When I arrive at our country home... (Score 1) 439

by Wonderkid (#26342085) Attached to: How the City Hurts Your Brain
...not only is the air obviously clear and sweet, but it is significantly easier to read and absorb information, not to mention, be creative. Yes, one misses the 'buz' of the city, but then that is animal nature. I think as the world currently stands on edge ("End of days"?), it may be time to rethink our way of living.

Old programmers never die, they just branch to a new address.