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Comment They're using a consumer 3D printer (Score 1) 113

They're using a printer you can buy on Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Draper-57567-Square-Mouth-Shovel-Fibreglass/dp/B0002GUMDW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1359722298&sr=8-1

Why the hell would you build anything for 4 people? Surely they can live in a big hole with a lid, can't they? This seems more like a job for a mining machine than a 3D printer. Then again, I'm not a rocket scientist, so I don't know what I'm talking about.

Comment Elite (Score 1) 704

Elite, for me, made me wonder and guess how the heck they did it. To this day I don't really know (although have since given up really trying to find out). It also was what would later be called "virtual reality" long before anyone though of such a thing.

Later, I remember Ultimate Software coming out with Speech for the BBC Micro. That didn't get much traction, but it's pretty damn clever. Beyond that, Mosaic was pretty cool. So was Wii Sports. The Apple Newton was too, although I never really got a good play with one.

Comment Re:Turn off wifi (Score 1) 323

Alternatives include: Wifi@Home and Smart Wifi (I've been using the latter, and it seems to work very well - I've also used Wifi@home, but for some reason it stopped updating my location so thought I was always at work. Whilst that fallacy might be useful around my annual appraisal, it wasn't so useful for switching the Wifi back on when I got home. All that said, Llama seems to be able to do a lot more than just Wifi...

Comment Re:Start small and do it in stages. (Score 2) 366

(5) Longer time-scales (at least for a time)

If you're being hot-housed, you get something that ostensibly works out the door, and "to hell with the unit tests". I someone told me "I need X in a week", I'd just hash together any old crap that essentially meets the requirements. If they told me "do it as quickly as you can, let me know when it's done", then I'd probably spend a bit more time planning it out so that I could make a better job of it, and be reporting my progress along the way.

Comment Grand Designs (Score 1) 74

There was an episode of Grand Designs here in the UK where two guys built a house predominantly out of machine cut plywood that they formed into boxes. They stuck the the boxes together and pretty soon had a house. Whilst not 3d printed per-se, it's the first machine-made house I've ever seen.

I do wonder if it would be possible to make a wall building bot. You put bricks in a hopper, cement powder in another hopper and connect it all to the water supply. Out comes your new garden wall. It's not too much of a stretch to have it skip out sections to put windows in, and then you're 80% towards the main structure of your house.

Comment Re:Deletion of duplicate files (Score 1) 314

Could it just be that if you upload the same file twice that it deletes the second one?

As others have said, it would seem impossible to do this across users, although I suspect you might be able to do it at the block level. It's possible the TOS wording was lawyer-speak for "we'll use block level dedupe", or it could be included to insulate Kim Dotcom from future legal issues about deleting illegal content.

Comment Re:Who cares? (Score 1) 437

Dare I be all MBA for a moment?

Yes, hardware is cheap to buy, but it's expensive to run. Hence, less of it = less operating costs.

My point is, if you could save 10% of your servers, you could be in line to make serious amounts of operating savings. The fact that those savings aren't in your cost centre mean that they seldom happen - but in enlightened companies where they join all the dots, they do. In those companies, you go back and fix up your code because it's a net cost saving to the company (not just a cost because of the "lost" developer time, as most companies seem to think). That said, if your company runs its entire operation on a half dozen servers, then you're unlikely to be able to decom anything, even if you make giant efficiency gains, so this only really holds true if the application in question runs on a few dozen servers.

Comment Re:Try it, you'll like it (Score 1) 398

...and it might take a couple of goes at it to get the interface right.

FWIW, I don't think Windows 8 in its present form is the "ultimate" solution to the problem. I'd say that Apple pretty much have nailed the interface on a tablet that can't do much besides show videos and play angry birds. None of these interfaces is the "first try" at their genre either - they're both built on previous attempts which have had some refinements along the way (although granted, Apple seem to do most of their experimenting in private, whereas Microsoft have always had their customers do their testing for them).

Windows 9 (or thereabouts) will probably be the first "pretty decent" stab at the mixed mode PC experience touchscreen laptops give us. Even then, it might take a service pack or two to iron out the wrinkles.

I'm actually looking forward to it - I'd like a device as good as my (linux) laptop and as good as an iPad, but for now, I don't want them at the same time, so I'll be hanging out for Version 2.0 before I'm really in the market for this sort of caper.

Comment Re:Google should start supporting web search again (Score 1) 329

That's not what this is about at all.

Google can do whatever they want on their search results. However, they're *not* allowed to (say) push Maps at the expense of Bing and others, solely because of their dominant position in search.

Someone like, duckduckgo can push duckMaps all they want (if there was such a thing) - hell, they completely remove bing.com from their results, whilst pushing duckMaps on every single search result if they want. That's okay because they're not dominant in search.

Whilst this case isn't without its controversy, the regulators are actually a lot clever than you seem to give them credit. Their aim here is not to kill off successful products, but instead to ensure that the end users always get left with a choice. The Microsoft case gives a good example - it didn't stop Windows being sold in any way, but it did give users a choice of which browser they were going to get (how effective that really was is up for debate, I'll grant you).

Comment Re:You don't (Score 1) 683

Great story.

Whilst the coworker may need a different job, it's also possible the submitter does too. It's possible the company is in "startup mode", and so is (by design) just throwing things together to get code out of the door. Proposing everyone slows down to make it look pretty probably won't be welcome.

I'm not a programmer, but I do dev-ops. Even here it's important to know if you are a startup or a mature outfit - and it has nothing to do with the company around you, but more to do with the project, the department, the culture etc. If you get latitude to retrospectively fix things up, then throwing things in is okay. If not, then you're probably better off doing it "right" because that's the way it'll be forever and a day.

Comment Meteorite Dealer? (Score 1) 71

> Purchased from a Moroccan meteorite dealer in 2011

How do I get a job like that? Does anyone know someone that needs a house clearance or some such that may pop up a couple of meteorites I could stick on Ebay?

(I'll name all my meteorites after music acts: NWA 7034, The Rolling Stones 2309, The meteorite formerly known as Prince 3476...)

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