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Comment: Re:Some good data... (Score 1) 342

by johnlcallaway (#49628749) Attached to: Google Can't Ignore the Android Update Problem Any Longer

Thank you! Only the techies care about the latest IOS update, I agree that most people are happy as long as the device they are using continues to perform in the manner they are accustomed to. Having used Android for years, I can't recall one 'must have' feature of any upgrade. It was nice to have multiple users on the tablet, but now my wife and I each have our own so who cares. It was nice to have better flipping of screens, but my phone doesn't re-orient the menu when turned sideways, and I don't really care. With each new device came a new OS, and while I liked the new features, I continued to use older devices without any problem. My son and son-in-law were both perfectly happy to get our hand-me-downs, and often used them for a couple more years until they became just too broken to use any longer. If anything, the larger issue is how these newer devices physically don't last more than 3-4 years. My Samsung5 phone is suffering from a common problem with an loose internal connector after two years, and will probably not be usable within the next 6 months. Time for an upgrade. With so many people upgrading phones and tablets every couple of years anyway, the lack of a consistent IOS upgrade path isn't an issue.

This is simply a 'made-up' crisis from people who have Apple devices. One of the people that sit next to me at work has an Apple phone, and he is always touting how the latest upgrades just happen. I have a company-issued Apple phone that I never use because the interface is so bad, and have yet to see any IOS update that provided anything of value or made me say 'Hey .. I have to get me one of these'. Hey Apple ... it's time to offer multiple windows and users on your tablets now that Android has had it for a couple of years. You finally caught up with a serviceable watch.

I have been very pleased with my Samsung Pro tablet update capabilities. And when I switched from one tablet to another because my old one got stolen, all my stuff came along for the ride. It appears that individual vendors are paying attention and offering features, there is no need for Google to do it.

Comment: Re:Not so fast (Score 1) 50

the point of the article that this "newly unlicensed whitespace spectrum will be deployed across San Francisco and Seattle supplying high speed network access at no cost whatsoever to end users." etc mesh mesh stuff has been touted over and over again now for 15 years. OVER FIFTEEN YEARS.

Comment: Re:Some good data... (Score 1) 342

by mrchaotica (#49625895) Attached to: Google Can't Ignore the Android Update Problem Any Longer

This is not an issue of incapable hardware. That's proven both by the fact that there's no reason why Google couldn't have kept the minimum system requirements the same from 2.2 to 5, and the fact that plenty of manufacturers were already abandoning their 2.2 shit before 2.3 came out, let alone anything actually more advanced!

Comment: People have been talking about this for years. (Score 3, Interesting) 342

by hey! (#49625637) Attached to: Google Can't Ignore the Android Update Problem Any Longer

The Android fragmentation boogeyman.

What nobody's ever explained to my satisfaction is why I should give a flying f*ck. As far as I can see "fragmentation" is simply the result of users and developers not all being forced to upgrade to the latest and greatest when the platform vendor demands it. This is actually a *good* thing.

It means I can find a $40 Android tablet running KitKat, which is perfectly fine for things I want to use a $40 tablet for. I'm out of the developer business now, but I still dabble to keep up with developments, and far as I can see the Google tools do a really nice job of allowing developers to target a range of platforms and still look up to date on the latest and greatest. So I don't have to shut out people who bought a smartphone last year if I want to use Material Design (which is cartoony for my taste but does a nice job setting out consistent UI guidelines).

If this is fragmentation hell, all I can say is come on in, the the lava is fine. Sure it would be *nice* if the adoption rate for the latest and greatest was higher, but as a long time user and developer I have to say that not being pushed over the upgrade cliff on the platform vendor's orders is nice too.

Comment: Re:I cut my teeth on the ARPANET. (Score 1) 537

by hey! (#49624827) Attached to: Recruiters Use 'Digital Native' As Code For 'No Old Folks'

Go really retro and have token ring and round robin instead of ethernet....

No, that's for after I've sold them all ThickNet. Then I'll have them bying STP-A cable by the spool to run to the MAO. Maybe I'll package a whole concentrator rack inside a vintage Frigidaire unit so that anytime anyone wants a Pabst they'll see you're more retro than thou.

Comment: Re:No suprise. Comcast TV is poor value for money (Score 1) 129

by mrchaotica (#49624315) Attached to: Internet Customers Surpass Cable Subscribers At Comcast

Alright, here are some of my experiences with Comcast's evilness (not including the "normal" and endemic DNS hijacking, Bittorrent and Netflix throttling, and secret data cap issues that Slashdot has reported on, of course):

1. I called up Comcast to negotiate my rate, and the customer service rep offered me $19.99/month (for I think 20Mbps internet). When I got my first bill, it was for $60+. I called to complain, and (after escalating to a manager) was basically told that they did not offer such a rate, that I was a liar for claiming to have been offered such a rate, and that they refuse to go listen to their own recording of the phone call (which would have proven that I was correct). Once I filed the BBB complaint, I was contacted by somebody higher up in Comcast (some kind of VP... it was over a year ago and I'm going by memory) who said they'd reviewed the recording of the call and would honor the rate for one year. Then, after 6 months, they jacked up the rate again, so I filed a second BBB complaint to get them to finish honoring their original agreement.

2. After that previous rate had ended, I changed my plan to a $39.99 plan that included Internet + basic cable TV (because Comcast is so desperate to inflate their TV subscriber numbers that they often offer that plan cheaper than Internet by itself). I refused to let them give me a cable box, opting instead to use my digital-cable ready TV's built-in QAM tuner instead. Then my PERFECTLY-GOOD built-in tuner stopped working, because Comcast decided to start encrypting the signal (which is nothing more or less than a blatant power and money grab, to force people to use set-top boxes and drive business for 'on demand'). Of course, Comcast will tell you the government forced them to do it -- trying to conflate it with the over-the-air digital transition -- but that's a big fat fucking lie. Long story short, I ended up filing the following FCC complaint:

Per FCC 12-126, Comcast is required to provide free set-top-boxes (STBs) OR CABLECARDS (CCs) to those affected by basic-tier encryption. However, Comcast appears to have a systematic corporate policy of making it as difficult as possible to obtain a CC, including lying to customers.

1. Comcast began encrypting WGTV weeks BEFORE sending the notice required by Title 47 SS. 76.630 (a)(1)(vi)

2. Service call technician would not admit that encryption caused the WGTV outage but only told me to use a STB

3. I called to request equipment compatible with my HTPC (without specifically asking for a CC). The rep insisted that Comcast did not support non-TV equipment, and that the only thing available was a STB

4. Comcast mailed me an unsolicited and unwanted STB

5. I called to request a CC (and return the STB). Several reps and supervisors insisted variously that a) unlike STBs, CCs could not be mailed (CC users are 2nd-class), or b) there would be a monthly fee (variously $5 or $10) for using a CC

Once I eventually obtained a CableCard -- which required physically going to a Comcast office, and was such a painful experience that I started yelling at the service rep and almost got arrested by the county sheriff's deputy that Comcast apparently employs to keep the peace because their customer service is apparently THAT BAD! -- I found out that having the CableCard actually entitled me to a discount vs. having the "free" set-top box. In other words, 1. the "free" set-top box isn't actually free, and 2. Comcast overcharged me for the several months between signing up for the plan and getting the CableCard registered on my account.

Money is the root of all wealth.