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Comment An important correction/update (Score 1) 663

This needs an update thanks in part to this comment, but also because upon further testing tonight it appears Windows 8 simply couldn't understand me saying "Power".

When using speech recognition in Windows 8 the fastest way to shut down your PC that I now know is this:

"Press, Hold Windows, I"
"Power" (Accessibility hooks are present and correct, but recognition required further training)
"Shut down"

This still leaves the issues of an incorrect, outdated and misleading tutorial; breakage of the "See and Say" model (due to the required hidden menus); and the need for mysterious undiscoverable keyboard shortcuts. This final sequence is however far shorter and more manageable than my earlier attempt, so I'll document it here...

Comment Re:microsoft looks to have fired to architect of w (Score 1) 663

Pressing Windows+I brings up the sidebar with the power button. Very easy...

This allows me to improve my method, but this new improved method still shows how broken the whole thing is.

The tutorial stresses that interactions are largely based around a "see and say" model. Hidden bars invoked with magic keyboard are not discoverable and don't fit that model.
Issuing combination key presses is covered, but the Windows+I combination is never mentioned, nor can it be expected that it should be innate knowledge (I'm a case in point, random Slashdot comments are really not the place to be learning something this essential).
The tutorial gives shut down instructions that don't, won't and can't work causing unnecessary confusion.
Even taking into account this new (to me) shortcut the speech interaction becomes:

"Press Windows and I" (Woo magic)
"Show Numbers, Five, OK" (Woo "See and Say" doesn't work. Also it might not even be "Five" any more - the actual number will probably vary by the number of pinned tiles visible, so any customisation of the start menu means your memorised instructions become wrong.)
"Turn off"

This is a great improvement granted, but vastly inferior to:

"Turn off"

So no, still not "Very easy".

Comment Re:microsoft looks to have fired to architect of w (Score 3, Interesting) 663

they should've added hearing, not touch.

Actually WIndows 8, like it's predecessor, includes speech recognition - and it's a perfect example of how half arsed the update is.

The first thing you'll notice when setting it up is the tutorial. It's entirely unchanged from the Windows 7 version, and includes diagrams showing the Windows 7 Start Orb and Start Menu that no longer exist. You're told how to turn off the PC by issuing the commands:

"Shut Down"
"Turn Off"

If you try this however you'll find that Metro has completely buggered this up. The actual sequence as near as I can tell is now this:

"Start" (Return to metro start screen)
"Press T" (To start a search)
"Settings" (To search settings)
"Delete All, Turn Off Your Device" (To search settings for the correct item - it's easier to just delete the original T)
"Show Numbers, Two, OK" (You can't select the search result any other way. Saying "Turn Off" etc just adds the text to the search again)

At this point you now finally have the settings side bar up with the "Power" button available. You might think saying "Power" will get you there. It won't - apparently the side bar doesn't have whatever accessibility hooks are needed by speech recognition, so it's back to:

"Show Numbers, Five, OK"
"Turn Off"

Comment Re:Nifty (Score 1) 104

I'm using Unity right now on my Samsung NC10. Not touch, but it's the same interface.

Hopefully we can configure the icon bar on the left to hide by default the same way you can hide the task bar on any desktop.

Right now you can't. It's a little annoying because it means I have to left-right scroll on some websites (1024x600 screen).

Speaking of the task bar, how is task switching accomplished on this thing?

Apps that are opened appear in the left hand dock (if they aren't there already because you've locked them as a launcher). If there are a lot of apps open some are "collapsed" at the base of the dock. You can scroll the dock up or down by click (touch) dragging up/down.

Open apps get a little triangle to the left of their icon in the dock. The foreground app gets a triangle on the right of it's icon. If you have more than one window of a particular app open, clicking it's icon gets you an exposé style animation that shows you all windows of that particular app. Using the workspace switcher icon in the dock shows you all workspaces and each app open on each workspace. The video seemed to show a way of viewing all the apps open on one workspace - I don't know how to do that - I just Alt-Tab to them.

My biggest concern, what happens when you want(yes, want) to use the terminal?

I added the terminal to the Unity dock launcher. I assume there's some sort of on screen keyboard available for touch devices.

Comment Re:So stop... (Score 4, Interesting) 305

The only problem then is the hassle of convincing the PRS that such a thing as "Royalty Free Music" exists.

From time to time when they telephone here I consider screwing with them... trying the royalty free line... but I always end up thinking better of it and just tell them (the truth!) that we don't play any music here.

Comment Re:Intel will license it (Score 5, Interesting) 476

Intel licensed x86 to AMD originally because Intel was unable to keep up with demand.

It wasn't so much that Intel couldn't keep up with demand, more that IBM's policy required that a second source be available just in case they couldn't.

AMD has now breached the license. Intel has no responsibility to keep AMD in business. Intel can get another foundry to make x86 CPUs. There's no law against being a monopoly.

No, there is no law against being a monopoly. There are laws against being an abusive monopoly however. Intel has been convicted of abusing it's monopoly status in Japan, has at least been accused of doing so in the EU. Maybe AMD could file a complaint in the USA also and have it successfully investigated. Once convicted of being an abusive monopoly the rules change.

Natural law is against being a failure like AMD.

In theory the UK monarch can veto any law parliament puts before him or her. In practice, vetoing rarely happens as it can lead to the removal of the monarchs head. Intel should be careful just how far they push this as states could just decide they are abusing their position and remove their right to x86 all together.

Comment Re:Misleading headline, and ActiveX (Score 1) 380

XPIs can contain native binaries, but by default XPI installation is only allowed from a few whitelisted addresses (both subdomains of

Trying to install an XPI from an an online source that isn't in the whitelist fails, but you are asked if you would like to add the source as an exception. It's also made pretty clear you should only do this if you have absolute trust in the source.

IIRC the main difference is that the only way to trigger an XPI install request is if you actually click on an XPI link. If a page requests an ActiveX control, the install request is triggered automatically.

The Gimp

Submission + - GIMP 2.4 released! (

MrDrBob writes: "Love it or hate it, version 2.4 of our Marmite-favoured graphics editor has been released, and includes quite a few big changes. The selection tools have been rewritten from scratch, including a new way of selecting things with round corners, as requested by web designers. Better zooming code means that whole lines of your image will no longer disappear when zoomed out, and new colour management code should be welcomed by digital photo artists. The GIMP also includes a new Tango-style icon set, which goes hand-in-hand with the redesigned website. Unfortunately, GEGL integration still isn't anywhere to be found, but perhaps it'll make it in a later release."

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