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Comment: Apple still *might* support Theora (Score 1) 133

by ianmacfarlane (#28971039) Attached to: Google Acquiring VP3 Developer On2 Technologies
Actually, Apple might well implement Theora, but they are worried about the patent issues. Amongst other things, that the patent agreement from On2 for VP3 might not be watertight. See this post by Apple employee on the Xiph mailing list - it really shows Apple's stance and worries on this issue.

Comment: Re:Interesting to see what the UK carriers will do (Score 1) 106

by ianmacfarlane (#28714115) Attached to: Google Voice Apps Arrive For Android and Blackberry

Google voice doesn't take the place of your phone service, it uses it. What you do is call the number Google gives you, then it places the call. So as far as your phone company is concerned, you spend the entire call connected to Google.

My phone tariff (I've got an HTC Magic) provides unlimited landline calls - so does that mean if I can call a "landline" Google Voice number, essentially (tariff aside) all calls will be free?

Comment: Re:EU legals (Score 2, Informative) 30

by ianmacfarlane (#28701389) Attached to: Launch of First International FOSS Law Review

On the subject of the GPLv3 and internationalisation, it's worth reminding people that one of the key objectives of it was to be more legally sound in jurisdictions other than the US. There are several ways it does this - replaces references to US laws with international references (e.g. WIPO), the patent license (GPLv2/BSD/etc in the US have an implied patent license, some other countries do not), and watching the wording in general.

-

Whatever the 'downsides' attributed to the GPLv3 by some people (mostly about the "tivoisation" clause), there are many benefits. For those outside of the US, this aspect alone of the GPLv3 is very important.

Comment: Theora IS to get hardware decoding (Score 1) 361

by ianmacfarlane (#28336637) Attached to: YouTube, HTML5, and Comparing H.264 With Theora
Mike Shaver (Mozilla) says in the discussion that one of the things they are funding is hardware decoding for DSPS - see http://lists.whatwg.org/htdig.cgi/whatwg-whatwg.org/2009-June/020381.html

"Separate from the Wikimedia grant we also just started funding work to port Theora to some DSPs, so that we will be able to do off-CPU decode/yuv2rbg/scale on some devices."

Comment: Re:A Suggestion (Score 4, Insightful) 152

by ianmacfarlane (#28138637) Attached to: 18 Android Phones, In 3 Flavors, By Year's End
A non-smart Android phone seems a bit like an oxymoron. I think that for people who don't want a smartphone and just want to make phone calls, Android isn't the right solution. That said, for people like you who want Android but don't want a phone, the future looks fairly bright, with Android being ported to netbooks and probably all sorts of other devices (I'd expect an iPod-touch competitor at some point).

Comment: If updates are free, why buy new phones? (Score 4, Interesting) 152

by ianmacfarlane (#28138573) Attached to: 18 Android Phones, In 3 Flavors, By Year's End
Given the fact that Android updates (well, the one update) thus far have been free (the G1 update to Cupcake), how are the carriers going to encourage people to buy new handsets every 18 months? Obviously there can be things like improve cameras, sexier designs, bigger screens, faster processors etc, but I can see a lot of people sticking with what they've got for longer if the experience when using the phone is exactly the same. Obviously the carriers could also try rather artificial things like tying new services with new contracts etc, but I don't see that being so successful.

Comment: Re:Android should scare mainstream phone makers (Score 1) 152

by ianmacfarlane (#28138511) Attached to: 18 Android Phones, In 3 Flavors, By Year's End
Wonder how updates would be delivered to these phones - G1 owners got the 1.5 "Cupcake" update delivered "over the air" automatically, and I think both G1 and G2 (HTC Magic) owners are expected to get the 2.0 "Donut" update delivered in the same way. Presumably, so long as you've got a data contract which does not discriminate against services, this could work fine. Hmm, yet another reason we need Net Neutrality!

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