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Comment Re:Read Again (Score 1) 453

I've wasted way too much time faffing around with alternative map apps and so far they've all been shite. I just want something that works out of the box thanks. I don't get the fuss about Open Street Maps either.

Comment Re:Mandarin Chinese (Score 3, Informative) 514

It gives you a chance to re-iterate in the other person's language what you meant. Or you could just consider it useful for good will and generally smoothing your relationships. You can't go wrong improving your language skills.

Having lead off-shore Chinese developments teams since 2006, I wish I'd invested time in learning the language. The smattering of German I learnt at the Goethe Institut a few years ago really helps me with my German colleagues, even if it's an opportunity for them to laugh at me over a beer. It does give me a better sense of what is being discussed if they're talking to each other in German though.

Anyway, the story is about somebody in the US mid-West. That's a brutal time difference for working with Chinese colleagues. I did it for a number of years from Toronto (12-13 hours time difference). I'm much happier doing it from London now: I'd rather start work at 06:30 than have to come back to work at 21:30 after being out for dinner and not know when I'm going to escape so I can go to bed.

Comment Re:Smart phone killed the mail client star (Score 1) 464

The iPhone uses IMAP for services like Yahoo. Way better than a web interface on the phone. On the desktop, I really notice no problems with IMAP. It takes a few seconds to get most messages, then access to them instantaneous unlike via a web interface.

My offline access is mostly when I'm travelling, trains, planes, or overseas between paying for internet. Even commuting to work has a significant length of time underground on the Tube with no internet access, but that's where I do most of the emailing from my phone. Longer emails are typically to distant friends and family. More complex emails might just be sending a bulleted list to my wife (annoying to do on a mobile device), or even a copy and paste of a table from our online banking account which works better in a MUA than web interface. Sounds pretty Joe Average, although a lot of people these days don't seem to realise how shit the user experience is away from a MUA because that's what they've mostly experienced.

Comment Re:Smart phone killed the mail client star (Score 1) 464

How do you think cell phones access these webmail accounts? IMAP perhaps?

Yahoo never really got on the IMAP bandwagon. Now that I've figured out how to do that, I use a desktop mail tool for writing longer emails, more complex email with better formatting and for working offline. Way easier than working on my iPhone, and a way better experience than Yahoo's web UI.

Comment Re:Thunderbird (Score 1) 464

What exactly is it about TB that is not capable of handling your need?

As I said in another thread: the limit of two email addresses per contact and mbox format. The HTML editing is poor too compared with other modern MUAs. Glad it's working for you though. I will stick to just using it for my webmail when I'm offline. I started using it again for this six months ago after a break of four years, and it felt like a regression more like ten years. I can't believe I'm saying this, but even Outlook is a million times better these days.

Comment Re:Thunderbird works (Score 1) 464

It kind of works. Addressbook contacts can only have two email addresses, which took on a new level of irritating recently when my wife changed her name. More annoying is the use of mbox format instead of maildir, which results in whole mail folders being selected for backup every time, so for me that could be an unnecessary few hundred MB every hour with Time Machine.

Comment Re:VirtualBox or VM Workstation (Score 1) 361

It also runs on OS X, although VMWare Fusion isn't free. I use it most days. VMs are portable to other host OSes either.

I don't get this VirtualBox is easier than VMWare business. I haven't used VB, but the VMWare desktop products are so easy to use that I don't see there being much scope to make it easier.

Comment EE will never hit 12Mb/s (Score 1) 261

Having been on Orange at work, and then transferred to T-Mobile, I find it hard to believe the EE's service will provide anything like this kind of throughput. You'd be lucky to hit 500MB downloading non-stop for a month.

With Orange, the 3G data service was frequently utterly unusable. Imagine coming out at Oxford Circus in London and trying to use maps on an iPhone and giving up waiting for it to load and it being quicker to walk around Soho in circles to find your intended destination. Or taking the train to Edinburgh and data connections timing until shortly after leaving Newcastle when suddenly the connections starts flying (bandwidth shaping or over-subscribed?)

On T-Mobile, when my connection stalls, I find I have a T-Mobile Orange signal. Forcing it back to T-Mobile fixes the throughput. Recently a colleague was changed to EE and seems to be only getting Orange's data service.

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