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Comment Re:Iceweasel for Windows? (Score 1) 199

Palemoon has (or had, I never used it) a Bookmark and Settings Sync service very similar to the one present in Firefox. It was a first-party tool maintained by the people who are responsible for Palemoon.

IIRC, both Chrome and Firefox for Windows are also packaged as web installers rather than .MSIs or the like. This is not unprecedented behavior.

Comment Re:For what? (Score 1) 309

Windows memory requirements haven't changed since Vista. Windows 10 actually runs surprisingly well on 1GB RAM and for most everyday purposes there's very little subjective need to have more than 4GB on any version of Windows right now.

Comment Re:On Streamability (Score 1) 74

There are games I know I'm never going to be good at. The Binding of Isaac games are an example of this for me. I suspect that a lot of people would rather watch top-level teams in LoL compete than try spend months learning the quirks of 40 or 50 different competitive characters in the current metagame.

There are games for which I won't personally tolerate the DRM or user agreement but still want to know what happens. Many PC games are Steam or Origin only at this point. In my case, Dragon Age Inquisition is a specific example.

There are games with a multiplayer component that I'd like to see, but don't care to join. When I played an MMO, I'd often be on at odd times where I couldn't do some of the big group content. At least with videos, I still got to see it.

Finally, there are games you watch 'cause you don't have the right hardware. I don't have that particular problem, but not everyone has an expensive gaming GPU or the latest console.

Comment Re: M.2 is awesome (Score 3, Informative) 36

Windows 7 support is iffy, but I've gotten it to work on X99 boards with some drives (Plextor in my case). I couldn't get either Samsung or Plextor drives to boot Windows 7 in a ThinkPad T450 though.

Yes, they're fast. They're also REALLY warm. They're downright uncomfortable to touch with a finger after they're been on for a while. Keep that in mind if you are thinking about sticking in your laptop.

Comment Re:Too costly (Score 2) 152

I have customers using them for point of sale in their restaurants. The Surfaces were cheaper than the POS terminals the vendor was pushing, the ordering system is web based and didn't require anything special and all of the printing and card swipe stuff they already owned just worked.

Original Surfaces (the RT version) also shipped with a full copy of MS Office and never had any sort of Malware issues (or games), so they are/were decent choices for actual productivity with a minimal management requirement. The philosophy behind the Surface is substantially different from the way most people see tablets. They were never meant to be media consumption devices and in fact that's something they're oddly bad at being.

Comment Re:There is a cost with all that (Score 3, Informative) 51

The first time I played an MP3, my 486 sputtered and couldn't manage an unbroken audio stream. The first time I played a DVD, I needed a dedicated daughterboard to handle decoding.

Right now, HEVC needs decent hardware and encoding takes a good long while. But it does play back fine on everything I have sitting around, going back to 3rd generation Core i CPUs, even with just Intel graphics. The i3 NUC in my living room doesn't have any problem with it at all. My STBs can't do it, but I can hand transcoding off to Plex and then they're fine as well. Given another year and everybody well catch or surpass Amazon's FireTV and have support for it as well. At that point, just like MP3s, MPEG2 and x.264, we'll be back to taking hardware support for granted.

Comment Re:I wish they had some reference power testing (Score 2) 119

That old i7 is in benchmark terms competitive with current i3 CPUs. I don't think of current i3s as slow and I don't think of five year old i7s as slow either. I upgraded to a 5960k last December because I actually do enough video encoding to keep it fed, but if I'm not stealing Blu-Rays there's no subjective difference from that monster to a the i7-980 it replaced.

Comment Re:So embarrasing for Microsoft (Score 2) 90

Businesses will buy expensive phones if they do the things they need and support integration and management with the systems they already use. You really need third party tools to manage iOS and Android's all rely on Google Apps and have weird holes in their capabilities (e.g. device backup is a PITA). If the argument is for getting phones for middle managers who aren't important enough to demand an iphone and exemption from IT policies, having policy-based management that's already built into your enterprise directory system is probably a decent argument. I'm thinking this is more of a push to eat what's left of RIM's market.

Microsoft's Surface devices may to a certain extent be a "showing of the flag" rather than a highly competitive design. I support Surfaces in my organization and I think they're pretty great, but I say that with the understanding that they're as much a nudge to wider portable PC hardware manufacturers and to engage Apple in a certain amount of one-upmanship as they are compelling devices. It's a radical sort of product that can be made to serve in a wide variety of situations and putting them out in the world may be providing the impetus for improvements in other portable hardware.

Comment Re: hey, CBS doesn't promote Fox, either (Score 2) 223

Point of order: You can actually install Amazon App store apps through the Amazon (Store) app that IS available via Google Play. And yes I know that is a horrible sentence to parse. I think you do still have to have "third party sources" turned on for your Android device, but the Amazon App store is not 100% required.

Apple doesn't offer access to its content for non-Apple set top boxes and it doesn't offer even an option of non-Apple hardware for much of anything, but people still eat Apple's shit with a smile on their face.

I own most of the major STB devices aside from Apple's, but in my opinion the larger, not-Stick FireTV is the best of breed option. It works with services I'd actually want to use. It's responsive in its UI and can be used for light gaming. It's open enough to support non-Amazon apps if you're willing to sideload them. If Amazon wants to push its position in that market,I think I'm OK with that.

If Google really wants to push the issue, killing Amazon's API key for Youtube access on FireTV devices would probably be a strong bargaining chip, but having used both Chromecast and Nexus Player as well as Google TV hardware, I think STB devices are still an afterthought and besides, there are still plenty of places to buy them.

Neckties strangle clear thinking. -- Lin Yutang