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* Posts by Dave 126

8654 posts • joined 21 Jul 2010

Roughly 30 years after its birth at UK's Acorn Computers, RISC OS 5 is going open source

Dave 126
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Re: I see butt plug, i upvote...

The proper name for a bell end, glans, comes from the Latin for acorn.

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So, about that Google tax on Android makers in the EU – report pegs it at up to $40 per phone

Dave 126
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Re: "the savvy user always had to fuss with anti-malware"

Another naughty thing is how many apps on Google's Play Store have been found to contain malware. If Google were to properly scrutinise each app submitted for entry to the Store, it would a little way to justify their 30% cut.

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Apple to dump Intel CPUs from Macs for Arm – yup, the rumor that just won't die is back

Dave 126
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Re: Basis??

How does AMDs performance per Watt consistent to Intel's these days? Or, more to the point, how will it compare in a couple of years time? Or, back to the topic:

https://www.anandtech.com/show/13392/the-iphone-xs-xs-max-review-unveiling-the-silicon-secrets/4

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Dave 126
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Re: Rosetta-a-like is absolutely necessary

> how much of the total energy budget for a Mac goes to just the CPU ?

How long is a piece of string? : ) A lot of the time the CPU is just ticking over but on occasion (rendering an image, compiling some code, running a simulation) the CPU might be operating up to its thermal limit. of course some of these tasks can be done by a GPU (on board, connected by Thunderbolt, over the network to a render farm, or on some rented cloud) but not all. And of course some tasks can be done on on both CPUs and GPUs and the software will fully utilise any computing resources it can find.

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Dave 126
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Re: Same trick, new pony

The Reg reporting of this story has perhaps more emphasis on Apple ditching Intel than other reports which don't rule out Intel being retained for some models.

Professionals with legacy software and/or greater power demands will pay for 'Pro' models with Intel and maybe AMD, consumers will be content with ARM and Apple GPU.

Feature complete Photoshop is coming to iOS in 2019, so there'll be a couple of years to demonstrate ARM productivity applications can work well.

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Dave 126
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Just make sure you have the right hardware, I guess. Lots of games are hardly worth playing without a discreet GPU, so why not games that won't run unless the machine has an x86 CPU?

In any case, different games place different demands on CPUs and GPUs, with many not requiring that much CPU power - so possibly more tolerant of x86 emulation on ARM. Possibly of note is that many MacOS Steam games are built with Metal, the same graphics API used in iOS on Apple's own silicon, includibg the usual big names:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metal_(API)

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The new Huawei is going upmarket, but the old Huawei still threatens

Dave 126
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Re: Not possible

I try to keep my phone cool for the sake of the battery. My main concern is the case it sits in, which can't help heat dissipation. On a hot day with the GPS and maps running, I night splash it with water.

Still, I reckon an official Samsung battery replacement when the time comes will be cheaper than an official screen replacement should I drop the naked phone.

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Dave 126
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Re: M-Pen?

> Or just keep it unnamed. The stylus. Bad idea?

Only because calling it a stylus doesn't differentiate from the dumb stylii that work with every capacitive-screened phone.

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Dave 126
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Re: The real challenge for Huawei

Yep, the lack of glass in the tea-drinking Middle Kingdom appears to have been an impediment in chemistry and optics. The wine drinking Europeans wanted transparent vessels.

In many other areas of technology China has been way ahead over much of the last few thousand years.

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Chinese biz baron wants to shove his artificial moon where the sun doesn't shine – literally

Dave 126
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Re: Or .... improve solar power ?

Clarke's geostationary satellites are a half baked idea?

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Decoding the Google Titan, Titan, and Titan M – that last one is the Pixel 3's security chip

Dave 126
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Re: LG Display

LG's OLED televisions are excellent, but their OLED phone panels have had issues. Samsung's phone panels are excellent, but they're a bit naughty for badging their quantum dot LED televisions 'QLED'.

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Dave 126
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Re: No lineage?

Yeah, I meant the Samsung phones. Each new phone released recently with a Samsung panel, be it Samsung, Apple or Pixel phone, has a slightly better screen - according to DisplayMate - than the last. One would expect the next Samsung flagship to regain the crown and the cycle repeat.

However, the differences aren't that big, and one may be a tad brighter and one may have ever so slightly better colour accuracy.

Apple use their own 10bit colour display adapter on the iPhobe XS that consumes enough power that even when displaying a black image the OLED panel's efficiency advantage over LED is lost.

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Dave 126
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Re: No lineage?

Why bother? I'm not sure the Pixel hardware appeals to the Lineage OS crowd. Pixels main selling points are the camera software and co-processor to accelerate it, plus some extra Googley launcher. No SD card, no headphone socket. The screen is on Pixel 3 is superb*, but practically no better than the latest Samsungs - which are a more common target for alternative Android versions.

*In lab tests, the Note 9 had the best display crown, then the latest iPhone XS, now the latest Pixel. All panels made by Samsung (though Apple use their own display driver silicon)

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Huawei Mate 20 series: China's best phone, but a pricey proposition

Dave 126
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Re: Cable free screen mirroring and casting over WiFi, no cable or dock needed!?

Suggests, maybe, but the 'no cable or dock required' statement was the latter half of a sentence about 'Continuum Mode' for business users.

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Dave 126
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Re: Pricey?

Since they're all in the same price ballpark, 'pricey' will do.

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Dave 126
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Re: Third party launchers blocked

I've had a Huawei phone where i just couldn't get a third party launcher to stick... Huawei's own launcher kept overriding it. Still, it was a far cheaper model from a couple of years back.

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Dave 126
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Re: Mono sensors....

A mono sensor without RGB filters above it would deliver a sharper image. Each pixel can record the total intensity of light hitting it, compared to an RGB sensor where the pixels alternate. In multi camera setups, the mono sensor is usually used in conjunction with RGB sensors to allow some post processing - sharpness from the mono sensor and colour from the RGB sensor are combined into the output image.

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Dave 126
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Re: Cable free screen mirroring and casting over WiFi, no cable or dock needed!?

This is more than Miracast because Huaweii have a PC node akin to Samsung's Dex - apps optimised for mouse, keyboard and big screen.

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Dave 126
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Regards articles marked 'Review' are reviews, and have sample photos. 'Hands on reviews' are an impression based on a quick play with the device, often at a presentation or trade show.

This article was merely an overview of Huawei's new range, and was described as such.

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Huawei's Watch GT snubs Google for homegrown OS

Dave 126
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https://software.intel.com/en-us/articles/embedded-development-qnx-or-linux

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Dave 126
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Pareto analysis suggests that 20% of apps are those used 80% of the time. Therefore, if this thing does notifications and fitness stuff well, it might not need that many extra 3rd party apps. Having few apps available has killed phone platforms in the past, but this dynamic might not apply to this generation of smart watches - especially if they piggy back off phones.

I've noted here before that Linux, good though it is, isn't the best starting place for all OSs. I made said remarks on a thread about QNX - which, like Huawei's LiteOS, is a Real Time micro Kernal OS. Unlike LiteOS, QNX is both battle tested (used in industrial control since the 1980s) and proprietary (bought by BlackBerry a few years back).

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Pixel 3 XL reveals innards festooned with glue and... Samsung?

Dave 126
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The iFixit tinkerers broke it because they didn't have an iFixit guide to follow.

Walking across a minefield is pretty easy... provided you're following someone else.

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Dave 126
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Re: Recycling

Glue makes it much easier to dismantle end-of-life products en masse than screws. It also avoids stress risers in the frame of the product.

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Finally. The palm-sized Palm phone is back. And it will, er, save you from your real smartphone

Dave 126
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Because it would have a different number, making it harder for people to contact you.

This concept doesn't require a specialist phone though; some network operators offer a second SIM for the same number*, but none in the UK do, save for the Apple Watch's eSIM.

*A fellow commentard has noted that a German telco has offered second SIMs, usually for use in car phones.

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Dave 126
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Re: Wha?

The use case is that you can just grab one of two handsets as you leave the house, and still be contactable on the same number - without faffing around swapping your SIM. Say you use a 5.5" pricey phone during the day, but just want to carry a small cheap phone on a night out or muddy bike ride for calls, texts and WhatsApp.

However, this particular handset is just too pricey for this use case.

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Dave 126
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Re: WTAF?

It's not that it does things that your main phone doesn't, it is that this concept could allow you to take a compact cheap phone on a night out on the piss, or on a muddy mountain bike ride, whilst leaving your bulky and pricey do-it-all phone safely at home, yet still be contactable on the same number.

The concept is sound, but the asking price for this handset (and possibly the tariff for the eSIM) is far too high.

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Dave 126
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Re: Nothing like trashing a product

The advantage is that you can just grab one of two handsets as you leave the house, and still be contactable on the same number - without faffing around swapping your SIM. Say you use a 5.5" pricey phone during the day, but just want a small cheap phone on a night out for calls, texts and WhatsApp.

The concept is sound. Where this falls down is that many people would want their second handset to be far cheaper than the £300 being asked for here - especially as basic Android phones can be had for around £30.

Give it time. Offering a second SIM for a single number might be a way for network operators to distinguish themselves in the market. Phones are becoming both more expensive and cheaper than ever before, so why not use a different handset for different situations?

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Dave 126
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There are lots of suitable handsets around. The issue is that as far as we know, no UK network operator makes it easy to have two devices on the same number (Apple Watch LTE eSIM aside).

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Dave 126
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Re: Bizarre

I suggest your ire might be better directed at Google or the ASOP foundation than at Sony and Samsung.

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Dave 126
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Re: WTAF?

At this price, not many people judging by responses here and on Arstechnica.

However, if it were at a 'don't really care if I lose or break it price' ( £15 - £30) the concept of having a second phone on the same number has wide appeal.

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Dave 126
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Re: Yo dawg I herd you like phones

Actually, a lot of the mini "card" phones sold from China do have a Bluetooth 'page my main phone' feature, akin to Tile keyrings or many a connected watch.

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Dave 126
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Re: Neutered

It can have full functionality, it's just that it's currently only being sold on a Number Sharing eSIM service. You don't need to have your main mobile phone in the same room, or even turned on, in order to use this as an Android mobile phone.

Still, the sticking point appears to be price. That's the common view on other tech site threads.

This was the topic of a Reg discussion the other week - technically it's possible for UK networks to issue multiple SIMs for the same number (and a Reg reader confirmed a German network does just that - commonly used for a mobile and a car phone). Such a service would open up a whole menagerie of range of cheap and cheerful phones for use as secondary 'pub handsets'.

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Dave 126
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Re: Bizarre

Seems it'll upset you to learn that Nokia phones now run Android and are no longer made by Nokia, and Blackberry phones run Android and aren't made by Blackberry.

In other news, Macs are now Intel,

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Dave 126
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Overdue idea, price too high

I was using a 3.5 inch Android phone a couple of years back - £35 from Sainsbury's - as a stop gap. It did calls and WhatsApp just fine, and I was never worried if I dropped it.

The other small phone the Reg has featured recently, the Punkt, is also priced too highly when Banggood.com have a 3G clone for about £30.

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Samsung’s flexible phone: Expect an expensive, half-bendy clamshell

Dave 126
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Re: Clamshell?

The problem you describe has been solved, though either imperfectly in your S5 or, as you suspect, the case was to blame. I suspect your phone's case was blocking a second microphone.

The technique involves several microphones placed apart and some digital signal processing. This allows the phone to distinguish sound coming from your mouth (which is at a distance only a few multiples of the distance between the microphones) and background noise (which is many many multiples - of the inter-mic distance away.

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Dave 126
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Re: Can't imagine this will last long

> Folding parts wear. It's basic mechanics

Not necessarily. It depends upon the material and the minimum radius of the bend. Nor are pivots and hinges doomed to fail before other parts of a product.

True, caution, careful engineering and testing would be required to make it durable, but it's not impossible as you imply.

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Dave 126
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Re: Typical Samsung

Oops! Yep, I was confusing the Note 4 with the Note 7, maybe cos the Note 7 with edge display was around the same time as the Galaxy 7.

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Dave 126
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Can you name a MK 1 tech product that hasn't followed that pattern?

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Dave 126
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Re: I still think a bifold device will be a market failure

Sony prices are usually a fair bit cheaper than their list prices, and I haven't seen many of them in real life since the Z3 era. In terms of market share compared to Samsung and Apple, they sadly don't score highly. It'd be more accurate for you to have just said: "The other high volume, high priced phone vendor who actually turns besides Apple hasn't bothered with notches".

The reason being, Galaxy S devices have too many front-facing sensors, cameras and emitters to make a notch worth while.

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Dave 126
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Screen resistance to scratches isn't such an issue in a clamshell form factor. Even if some sand gets in there, there isn't any force pressing it agaivsts the screen. This is why so many laptops have soft screens and survive being slung in rucksacks.

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Dave 126
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Re: Typical Samsung

The Note 4 failed on a single component - the battery - partly supplied by third parties and Samsung's rush leading to trying to squeeze it into too small a space. The number of Note 4 owners who were loath to return them for a refund -, forcing Samsung to remotely disable the handsets' access to cellular networks - suggests the rest of phone was good.

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Dave 126
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Re: I still think a bifold device will be a market failure

Hard to tell. I have a notch-less 2:1 phone, when watching video I have it zoomed in slightly - though being OLED 'black bars' aren't an issue. The most profitable tablets, iPads, are squarer than video's 16:9. Movies are commonly streamed at a wider aspect ratio than 16:9. I've been told a lot of people shoot and watch video in portrait orientation on Twitter.

The issue with an unfolded tablet might prove to be holding it in one hand.

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Samsung: Swanky hardware alone won't save a phone maker

Dave 126
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Re: Ok Mr Samsung...

1, more of a Google services thing. Samsung handsets are well supported by modded AOSP-based ROMs - though do read up on if that's easier on Exonys or Snapdragon varients. However, for an easy privacy concious life you're better off avoiding Android (where many apps are built around proprietary Google APIs) and staying with Apple's privacy and data collection (differential privacy) policies.

2. Most apps can be disabled. If they can't be removed them you're only losing roughly 1% of your storage space

3. Few Android vendors offer guarantees on this, though some appear to be listening to users and making the right noises. Project Treble should now make it easier for vendors to roll out updates. Again, Apple have a consistent track record for updates.

4 TouchWiz ain't what it used to be, and I say that coming from a Nexus to an S8. Other launchers are available. The Google Pixel launcher can be side-loaded, but you sound like you want less Google slurp.

5. Turning off data doesn't make any apps squeal. Android has changed a lot since Gingerbread, including the addition of Stamina mode that will turn off data polling when the screen is off - akin to Sony's excellent implementation of old.

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Dave 126
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Re: Would you like more bloat with your Samsung sir?

Well, if we define the range as say £200 to £900 (Galaxy Note, iPhone Xn), then £550 *is* mid range. That remains true even if you can buy a very competent phone for less.

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Does Google make hardware just so nobody buys it?

Dave 126
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Re: Another theory

Apple doesn't have enough market share in most of its sectors to be considered anti competitive. They might enjoy around 15% share in phones and maybe laptops, but they don't care - they've got the lucrative 15% of the market.

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Dave 126
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Re: Why does ChromeOS still exist? It should have just been replaced with android.

There are few tablet-optimised Android apps. Also, there were inherent issues with Android that dated back to its rushed deployment - not least updates. Chrome OS was developed after a few lessons had been learnt.

And then there's Google's Fuschia OS on the distant horizon.

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Samsung Galaxy A9: Mid-range bruiser that takes the fight to Huawei

Dave 126
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Re: Abandonware

The Galaxy S9 shipped with Oreo, which mean it's built on Project Treble. This should mean issuing updates requires far less work from Samsung and its suppliers. But we'll see.

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Dave 126
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> It's the proliferation of Samsung services of dubious value, and which the phone constantly nags about, set up an account, log-in rah rah rah. It was a constant source of annoyance,

Yeah, there are some annoyances, but they can be fixed. For sure it's annoying to have to create an account before being able to disable the Bixby button, and go into the Galaxy Store to disable some notifications and nags, but all in all these things don't take that long.

Once done you're left with some very good hardware. Stick a good case and a glass screen protector on its slim frame and it's resilient too, happy to shrug off a drop into concrete just as it is a drop into a puddle.

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With sorry Soyuz stuffed, who's going to run NASA's space station taxi service now?

Dave 126
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> So, what's going on with the SLS?

The 'scathing report [pdf]' link in the article. The report is summarised here:

https://arstechnica.com/science/2018/10/theres-a-new-report-on-sls-rocket-management-and-its-pretty-brutal/

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Happy with your Surface Pro 3's battery? Well, here's a setting that will cut the charge by half

Dave 126
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Just no

It's not uncommon for people to use a laptop as they would a desktop, plugged in on their home desk for most of the week. That shouldn't preclude them from having a working battery for the odd occasion they want to use their laptop away from a power socket for a few hours.

Oh, and by the way, the Deep Cycling you describe (run til flat, charge to full, repeat) does NOT 'condition' Li Ion batteries - it actually degrades them, and quickly. Li Ion likes being cycled between roughly 40 and 80% charge, and doesn't mind short periods of topping up. The cycling you describe is for Nickel Cadmium batteries, but these are rarely used these days (possibly in cheaper electric toothbrushes).

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