Re: [backstage] iPad

2010-01-28 Thread Alun Rowe
 
What else would you call it?  An operating system it is.  Whether you like
it or not is a different matter.

It does have an input device which you would fall into the term defined as
Keyboard IMO.

FWIW I¹m a mac fanboy but the lack of decent interop with other devices,
lack of a camera (which would have meant you could buy one for your
grandparents to use for video calls to the grandchildren) and the closed
nature of the app store submission process means I¹m not even slightly
interested.

Alun


On 28/01/2010 09:56, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv wrote:

 Sorry, I didn't realise we were back in the 1970s where the software that runs
 on the iPhone can be called an operating system.
 
 And it clearly doesn't have a keyboard.
 
 2010/1/28 Mo McRoberts m...@nevali.net
 On Thu, Jan 28, 2010 at 08:32, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv
 wrote:
  It does, both, what?
 
 it runs an operating system.
 
 it has a keyboard.
 
 
  2010/1/28 Mo McRoberts m...@nevali.net
 
  On Thu, Jan 28, 2010 at 08:03, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv
  wrote:
   Underwhelming.  It's a big iPhone. It's named after the Star Trek
 PADD.
   Might be good it if ran an operating system and had a keyboard.
 
  It does, both.
 
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Re: [backstage] BBC News - Googlejuice vs Usability

2009-11-20 Thread Alun Rowe
 
If people took everything Jakob said as gospel the web would be a far duller
place.  He's the devils advocate of web development, by offering and extreme
view he just gets you to evaluate the decisions you have made.

I think it's an improvement.  I think the SEO thing is a bit of a red
herring and the real benefit is the readability of articles etc.


On 20/11/2009 12:18, John O'Donovan john.odono...@bbc.co.uk wrote:

 Thanks Mo, Hi Brian.
 
 We thought long and hard about this, but basically we think it's an
 improvement.
 
 For example, this headline may be short, but what is the article really
 about?
 
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/7390109.stm
 Great tits cope well with warming
 
 
 As an example, I think for this story:
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/8369764.stm
 
 Procter  Gamble recalls 120,000 Vicks nasal sprays
 
 ...is much clearer than...
 
 Thousands of Vicks spray recalled
 
 Especially if you don't know what Vicks is.
 
  
 John O'Donovan
 Chief Technical Architect
 
 BBC Future Media  Technology (Journalism)
 BC3 C1, Broadcast Centre, 201 Wood Lane, London
 
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport/
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/weather/
 
 
 

Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
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 From: owner-backst...@lists.bbc.co.uk
 [mailto:owner-backst...@lists.bbc.co.uk] On Behalf Of Mo McRoberts
 Sent: 20 November 2009 11:57
 To: backstage@lists.bbc.co.uk
 Subject: Re: [backstage] BBC News - Googlejuice vs Usability
 
 
 On 20-Nov-2009, at 11:45, Brian Butterworth wrote:
 
 Here's a nice little dillemma.
 
 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/theeditors/2009/11/changing_headlines.html
 
 BBC News headlines go from 33 characters (because of Ceefax) to 66
 
 One the one hand, king of usability Jacob Neilson has said the BBC
 News headlines are the world's best
 
 http://www.useit.com/alertbox/headlines-bbc.html
 
 On the other, Google likes lots of relevant keywords, the higher the
 reading score the better in fact.
 
 It's not like BBC News comes bottom of any Google search, is it?
 
 My question - which is more important, SEO or usability?
 
 Given the context: short headlines on the linking pages, longer
 headlines on the pages themselves, I'd suggest it strikes a good
 balance.
 
 However, I can't stand the short headlines. Everything's phrased as
 though it's a lie. Yes, I know the reasons, it still reads terribly, no
 matter what Neilson reckons. So in fact, I'd actually prefer to see the
 longer headlines all of the time (which does SEO no harm at all).
 
 BBC headlines 'lengthened'.
 
 M.
 
 --
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 http://nevali.net
 iChat: mo.mcrobe...@me.com  Jabber/GTalk: m...@ilaven.net  Twitter:
 @nevali
 
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Re: [backstage] License to Kill Innovation: the Broadcast Flag for UK Digital TV?

2009-09-17 Thread Alun Rowe


Will we ever see HD freeview though?  The bandwidth requirement would  
be enormous.


On 17 Sep 2009, at 16:53, Frankie Roberto  
fran...@frankieroberto.com wrote:




2009/9/17 Christopher Woods chris...@infinitus.co.uk

Moreover, you just *know* that within months of any broadcast flag  
implementation, the more creative technological tinkerers will have  
subverted the flag entirely using commonplace/free equipment and  
software. Like region coding, broadcast flags really are an exercise  
in stupidity and corporate backslapping.


By the sounds of it, the main 'enforcement' mechanism of the  
metadata compression/encryption isn't so much technological, as the  
fact that you won't be able to use the Freeview HD logo, or be  
listed on the Freeview website, without signing for a free licence  
(which requires you to implement some as-yet-unspecified  
restrictions). Which won't really stop free software from existing -  
but may stop it from being a commercial success.


That said, I wonder how many people will really bother to upgrade  
from Freeview to Freeview HD anyway - standard definition Freeview  
seems good enough for most people (especially those with non- 
enormous tellies). So the migration to Freeview HD will happen  
slowly, as people upgrade their televisions as part of their natural  
lifecycle. (Assuming that the signal doesn't get switched off).


Frankie

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http://www.rattlecentral.com



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Re: [backstage] License to Kill Innovation: the Broadcast Flag for UK Digital TV?

2009-09-17 Thread Alun Rowe


I meant in terms of the HD element if they are changing the spec?  If  
there is a decryption requirement I doubt the Topfield will have it?


On 17 Sep 2009, at 17:52, Ant Miller ant.mil...@gmail.com wrote:


You'll need to retune, but the services you currently get on Freeview
should still be available.  Think of Freeview + as an optional
upgrade.

a

On Thu, Sep 17, 2009 at 5:36 PM, Alun Rowe  
alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk wrote:
I assume my topfield HD will be out of date with these proposed  
changes?






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[backstage] Get me off this list!

2009-09-10 Thread Alun Rowe
Visiting this: http://backstage.bbc.co.uk/archives/2005/01/mailing_list.html

Then putting in my details and pressing GO sends me to

http://www.bbc.co.uk/cgi-bin/cgiemail/creativearchive/backstage/discuss.txt

Which says:

Error
No email was sent due to an error.

   500 Could not open template - No such file or directory

  /home/system/www/creativearchive/backstage/discuss.txt
cgiemail 1.6 


Help!



Re: [backstage] Fwd: [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?

2009-08-04 Thread Alun Rowe


The problem with a 'free digital society'  is that people need salaries.

Ask the music/film industry what they think.

I love the idea of utopia but we all know that unicorns don't exist,  
right?


On 3 Aug 2009, at 20:14, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com wrote:


Hi,

What about the case for a free digital society?

Regards, Dave

On 3 Aug 2009, 6:36 PM, Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk wrote:



No doubt some palms will be crossed with silver (or equity).

The business case for open standards has to be thought through  
ingreat depth before embracing it.


Also Skypes network has been around for a longtime!
On 3 Aug 2009, at 17:10, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com wrote:

 Proprietary software and centtalised network services strike  
again...   Regards, Dave   ...




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Re: [backstage] Fwd: [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?

2009-08-04 Thread Alun Rowe
 
Yes I have but it is fairly unique.

How would you obtain funding for an idea which had no IP of it own?

³Do you own the patent on this?² - er no it¹s open source.
³Can anyone arrive in the marketplace tomorrow and replicate what you do?² -
er yes.

Like I say I love the utopian model but I can¹t see it happening for a long
long time.  Companies NEED to be able to maintain their own technology
without simply passing it to their competitors on a plate.

Anyway it¹s no surprise people pay Red Hat for support.  Mere users don¹t
stand a chance with anything Linux based.  It¹s far too geeky to use still.

Alun


On 04/08/2009 08:13, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com wrote:

 Have you heard of Red Hat?
 
 On 4 Aug 2009, 7:02 AM, Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk wrote:
 
  
 The problem with a 'free digital society'  is that people need salaries.
 
 Ask the music/film industry what they think.
 
 I love the idea of utopia but we all know that unicorns don't exist, right?
 On 3 Aug 2009, at 20:14, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com wrote:  Hi,  
 What about the case fo...
 
 Alun Rowe Pentangle Internet Limited 2 Buttermarket Thame Oxfordshire OX9 3EW
 Tel: +44 8700 33...
   
 
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Re: [backstage] Fwd: [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?

2009-08-04 Thread Alun Rowe
 
No it¹s not confusion.  Unfortunately one leads to the other.  Open
standards whilst highly beneficial in some fields eg Web Standards can also
be highly uncompetitive in others eg Telephony.

Telephony is all about the quality of the service you receive so the
standard IS the product.
Websites are about content so the standard is merely a conduit for the
product.

Preaching open standards is fine AS LONG as you understand the deep economic
issues behind them


On 04/08/2009 08:03, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv wrote:

 2009/8/4 Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk
   
 The problem with a 'free digital society'  is that people need salaries.
 
 
 ah, the old confusion of gratis and libre.  
  
 
 Ask the music/film industry what they think.
 
 I love the idea of utopia but we all know that unicorns don't exist, right?
 
 On 3 Aug 2009, at 20:14, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com wrote:
 
 Hi, What about the case for a free digital society? Regards, Dave
 On 3 Aug 2009, 6:36 PM, Alun Rowe  mailto:alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk
 alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk wrote:
 
   
 No doubt some palms will be crossed with silver (or equity).
 
 The business case for open standards has to be thought through ingreat
 depth before embracing it.
 
 Also Skypes network has been around for a longtime! On 3 Aug 2009, at
 17:10, Dave Crossland  mailto:d...@lab6.com d...@lab6.com wrote:
  Proprietary software and centtalised network services strike again... 
  Regards, Dave   ...
 
 Alun Rowe
 Pentangle Internet Limited 2 Buttermarket Thame Oxfordshire OX9 3EW Tel:
 +44 8700 339905 Fax: +44 8700 339906
 Please direct all support requests to it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk
 mailto:it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk  
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Discuss mailing list 
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Alun Rowe
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Re: [backstage] Fwd: [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?

2009-08-04 Thread Alun Rowe
 
Ask a genuine user to install some software on it.  I know it¹s a LOT better
than it used to be but my dad still couldn¹t do it.

Alun


On 04/08/2009 11:31, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv wrote:

 
 
 2009/8/4 Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk
 ...
  Mere users don¹t stand a chance with anything Linux based.  It¹s far too
 geeky to use still.
 
 Your final pronouncement is interesting.  How can you justify it?
 
  
 
 
 Alun
 
 
 
 On 04/08/2009 08:13, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com http://d...@lab6.com
  wrote:
 
 Have you heard of Red Hat?
 
 On 4 Aug 2009, 7:02 AM, Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk
 http://alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk  wrote:
 
  
 The problem with a 'free digital society'  is that people need salaries.
 
 Ask the music/film industry what they think.
 
 I love the idea of utopia but we all know that unicorns don't exist,
 right?
 On 3 Aug 2009, at 20:14, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com
 http://d...@lab6.com  wrote:  Hi,   What about the case fo...
 
 Alun Rowe Pentangle Internet Limited 2 Buttermarket Thame Oxfordshire OX9
 3EW Tel: +44 8700 33...
   
 
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 Please direct all support requests to it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk
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 Staughton, Cambridgeshire PE19 5DP
 
 



Alun Rowe
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Re: [backstage] Fwd: [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?

2009-08-04 Thread Alun Rowe
 
Or they provide clear instruction on how to do it WITHOUT having to resort
to Google...

A large number of issues come from the wide breadth of software and authors,
all doing things in their own ways...

The Œopenness¹ here is what causes the problem as there don¹t appear to be
any accepted design patterns to follow etc.  Don¹t get me wrong I¹m a geek
and Œmostly¹ can do what I need to on Ubuntu but honestly at the moment I
wouldn¹t put Linux on a Œusers¹ desktop.

Also, it¹d be nice if the software was seen my a UI designer before launch.
Most UI¹s on Linux software are very sucky at the moment!


On 04/08/2009 12:46, Andrew Bowden andrew.bow...@bbc.co.uk wrote:

 Out of interest, did you get him to try using a tar.gz file or a deb/rpm?
  
 I ask as tar.gz is a pain in the backside.  This cannot be denied.   But then
 I use Linux on all my home PCs and almost never use them for software
 installation.  
  
 For my mind, using DEBs or RPMs from central repositories is a FAR FAR FAR
 superior way of managing your software than the Windows method of downloading
 random files from random sites, each of which use a random installation
 routine!  This is especially true with upgrades.  I can upgrade my entire
 Ubuntu box with complete ease.
  
 However it requires a user to be told this is what you do with software.
  
 But lets be honest - this is not a Linux thing.  When I first tried to
 installed software on OS-X, I got completely thrown and that's probably the
 easiest installation method going!  It wasn't that it was hard - just that no
 one told me what to do.
  
 So software companies either do everything like Windows because everyone
 knows what to do, or they do something which may be better but which people
 have to learn something new.
  
  
 
  
  
 
  From: owner-backst...@lists.bbc.co.uk
 [mailto:owner-backst...@lists.bbc.co.uk] On Behalf Of Alun  Rowe
 Sent: 04 August 2009 12:36
 To:  backstage@lists.bbc.co.uk
 Subject: Re: [backstage] Fwd:  [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?
 
  

 
   Ask a genuine user to install some software on  it.  I know it¹s a LOT
 better than it used to be but my dad still  couldn¹t do it.
 
 Alun
 
 
 On 04/08/2009 11:31, Brian  Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv  wrote:
 
  
 
 
 2009/8/4 Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk
  
 ...
  Mere users  don¹t stand a chance with anything Linux based.  It¹s far too
 geeky to use still.
 
 Your  final pronouncement is interesting.  How can you  justify it?
 
  
  
 
 
 Alun
 
 
 
 On 04/08/2009 08:13,  Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com
 http://d...@lab6.com   wrote:
 
  
 Have you heard of  Red Hat?
 
  
 On 4 Aug 2009,  7:02 AM, Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk
 http://alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk   wrote:
 
 
 The problem with a 'free digital  society'  is that people need
 salaries.
 
 Ask the  music/film industry what they think.
 
 I love the idea of  utopia but we all know that unicorns don't exist,
 right?
 On 3 Aug 2009, at  20:14, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com
 http://d...@lab6.com   wrote:  Hi,   What about the case  fo...
 
 Alun Rowe Pentangle  Internet Limited 2 Buttermarket Thame Oxfordshire
 OX9 3EW Tel:  +44 8700 33...
  
 
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 Alun  Rowe
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   Alun Rowe
   Pentangle Internet Limited 2 Buttermarket Thame Oxfordshire OX9 3EW Tel:
 +44 8700 339905 Fax: +44 8700 339906
  Please direct all  support requests to it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk
 mailto:it

Re: [backstage] Fwd: [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?

2009-08-03 Thread Alun Rowe


No doubt some palms will be crossed with silver (or equity).

The business case for open standards has to be thought through ingreat  
depth before embracing it.


Also Skypes network has been around for a longtime!

On 3 Aug 2009, at 17:10, Dave Crossland d...@lab6.com wrote:


Proprietary software and centtalised network services strike again...

Regards, Dave

-- Forwarded message --
From: Nathan Willis nwil...@glyphography.com
Date: 3 Aug 2009, 4:05 PM
Subject: [Autonomo.us] Skype, out?
To: autonomo.us discussion mailing list disc...@lists.autonomo.us

Seems like this would be a good opportunity to discuss the free  
alternatives: http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/if-skype-goes-who-would-fill-gap-106880


Executive summary: eBay is in an acrimonius patent lawsuit with a  
company called Joltid that owns a patent on something used by Skype;  
Joltid is claiming that eBay violated their license and has  
terminated it, a situation that if upheld by the court would force  
them to deactivate Skype.  Highly doubtful that that will come to  
pass, but I suppose you never know.


Nate
--
nathan.p.willis
nwil...@glyphography.com
aim/ym/gtalk:n8willis
flickr.com/photos/willis




Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
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Thame
Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
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Discuss mailing list
disc...@lists.autonomo.us
http://lists.autonomo.us/mailman/listinfo/discuss



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Re: [backstage] Mobile sites - how wide

2009-07-21 Thread Alun Rowe
 
On another mailing list I just received this.  I hope you find it useful...

(Plug time)

We've got quite a lot of info on my site about Mobile web dev:

http://dev.opera.com/articles/mobile/

Generally the advice is to try to build your web sites so they will
work across mobile and desktop where possible, but think about
optimizing for mobile (various ways, eg CSS 3 media queries, tailoring
content on the server using feature detection, etc). And do lots of
testing on different browsers - iPhone, Opera Mini/Mobile, NetFront
and S60, Pocket IE, crappy default browsers on some phones as well.

You should be able to get quite far just by using web standards.

Best articles to start with are

http://dev.opera.com/articles/view/introduction-to-the-mobile-web/
http://dev.opera.com/articles/view/designing-and-developing-mobile-web-site/
http://dev.opera.com/articles/view/opera-mobile-9-7-features-standards/

Chris Mills
Opera


On 20/07/2009 21:29, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv wrote:

 The phrase mobile usability is pretty much an oxymoron.
 
 Before the study, we had expected to get better results in London because the
 UK has a stronger tradition for mobile services than the US. However, the
 actual sessions didn't bear this out: the British sites were just as bad as
 the American sites, and users struggled about as much to get things done.
 
 http://www.useit.com/alertbox/mobile-usability.html
 
  http://www.useit.com/alertbox/mobile-usability.html
 
 2009/7/20 Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv
 Another good mobile site is wikipedia's...
 
 http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/It_Felt_Like_A_Kiss
  http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/It_Felt_Like_A_Kiss
 2009/7/20 Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk
 
   
 People aren't looking for beauty in design on mobile.  They usually are
 looking for specific data to accomplish a set task.  Setting a page header
 using a background tile and an overlayed logo would be suitable in a mobile
 app IMO
 
 OK.  Yeah, tiled and overlaid logo.  What size is the overlay logo?  
  
 You might not need beauty, but graphics that don't fit the layout are just
 plain bad.  Too small to see, or so big they take up the whole screen,  is
 poor usability.  
 
 
 Also what about the people who are using the m.domain on the laptops, pc's
 etc as they want optimised data.  Will they see an ugly version?
 
 You get to choose the one you want, don't you?  Or have I missed something?
 
  
 
 Alun 
 
 
 On 20 Jul 2009, at 18:48, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv
 wrote:
 
 Iain,
 
 Your points are all good.
 
 My general idea was to do something like these single tall colum mobile
 sites.  Certain search engines like to have the m. as a prefix to denote
 a mobile site.
  http://m.guardian.co.uk/ http://m.guardian.co.uk/
 
  http://m.guardian.co.uk/ or 
 
  http://www.bbc.co.uk/mobile/index.html
 http://www.bbc.co.uk/mobile/index.html
 
 or 
 
  http://m.twitter.com http://m.twitter.com
 
  http://www.bbc.co.uk/mobile/index.html I just want to know the maximum
 image dimensions so that the very few that I am going to use are not too
 big for this kind of layout.I just find it very displeasing to get
 images that are out of scale to the device.
 
 Given the data for the first list of phones that have come in give the X,Y
 (max image size) as:
 
 224,300; 315,460; 168,180; 120,92; 120,92; 300,300; 320,480; 360,640;
 120,128; 120,92; 168,180; 235,240; 120,92; 300,300; 224,280; 232,300;
 120,92; 228,228; 300,240; 224,340; 300,200; 120,92; 120,92; 236,136;
 228,280; 300,448; 440,700; 224,280; 360,640; 234,300; 229,210; 120,92;
 
 IMHO there is considerable scope for improvement with a few simple tweeks
 to get the image the right size and format.
 
 Anything that scales an image on the page usually looks very poor, and
 even on this small sample the max x goes from 120 to 440, and the max
 y from 92 to 700.
 
 Another issue, of course, is that some browsers (my G1 does this) use a
 server to degrade the quality (and file size) of JPG images, which is
 probably OK for photos, but not for a page-header logo.
 
 
 
 2009/7/20 Iain Wallace  mailto:ikwall...@gmail.com ikwall...@gmail.com
 If this is specifically designed for mobile, e.g.
 http://m.facebook.com m.facebook.com http://m.facebook.com  or
  http://x.facebook.com x.facebook.com http://x.facebook.com  and
 you've already determined if the user is on a
 mobile device or not, there's not much more on the server you can
 reliably do to determine the screen size. For more recent smart phones
 running something Webkit based (Android, iPhone) or Opera mobile you
 should be able to get away with interrogating the window property in
 JS to determine a maximum width, which you can then use to either
 resize images on the fly that are already there (which is what google
 reader does) or to write image tags with a size of your choice in the
 actual image request, e.g.:
 
http://strawp.net/img/daynight/mariosnow/100x100.png
 http

Re: [backstage] Mobile sites - how wide

2009-07-20 Thread Alun Rowe
 
I agree with the first paragraph and then you lose me beyond that.

M.whatever.com serving mobile optimised pages using good CSS 'should' work
on any platform.

If you want to optimise per platform then go ahead but the return is low
value IMO.

The only platform I'd bother with is iPhone if I was customising as the
usage is significant enough for me to actually see it on our stats.

Alun


On 20/07/2009 11:58, Iain Wallace ikwall...@gmail.com wrote:

 Trying to match the style/layout of a site to the expected resolution
 of the device that you think is displaying it is going about it the
 wrong way - this is why CSS has percentage widths for doing layouts.
 
 Or is the question more about what you can send back to the server in
 order to choose an image size?
 
 If you want an example of something that does this quite well, visit
 the iPhone/Android optimised interface for Google Reader using a user
 agent switcher. This will load up images in atom feeds and then
 instantly resize them in javascript to fit the page width.
 
 On Tue, Jul 14, 2009 at 3:09 PM, Brian Butterworthbriant...@freeview.tv
 wrote:
 Hi,
 I've been looking at adapting some sites to work better on mobile devices.
 I can do the stripping down everything to text and minimal graphics and so
 on, that's the easy bit.
 Does anyone know of anything reliable that can tell me the width in pixels
 of the device?
 I was hoping that Glow would cover this, but it does't.
 --
 
 Brian Butterworth
 
 follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/briantist
 web: http://www.ukfree.tv - independent digital television and switchover
 advice, since 2002
 
 -
 Sent via the backstage.bbc.co.uk discussion group.  To unsubscribe, please
 visit http://backstage.bbc.co.uk/archives/2005/01/mailing_list.html.
 Unofficial list archive:
 http://www.mail-archive.com/backstage@lists.bbc.co.uk/
 
   
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Pentangle Internet Limited
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Oxfordshire
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Fax: +44 8700 339906
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Re: [backstage] Mobile sites - how wide

2009-07-20 Thread Alun Rowe


We support phones usually through m.domain where the customer pays us  
to write a specific version otherwise we'd consider graceful  
degredation to be enough to support the majority of Phones.


Writing a mobile version is usually about delivering a significantly  
stripped and optimised version rather than a different stylesheet.   
This is always our preffered option.


A well thought out mobile design WILL work across the majority of  
phones.  Browser sniffing, res sniffing etc are all things that I  
hoped had died a long time ago.  In the case of mobile versions the  
simplification of the site 'should' lead to an easy to adapt/degrade  
'design' which will work in most browsers.


Yes I do own an iPhone but the key word was 'significant'.  My feeling  
is that if the facebooks etc of the world are doing an iPhone specific  
version then it's likely that platform offers a worthwhile ROI.  The  
user base 'might' be different in your app but If it is then  doubt  
there is any one platform/browser combination that significantly  
appears head and shoulders above the others.


It's also important to note that the iPhone offers a higher level of  
navigational control than it's competitors (excluding the latest  
android phones which I haven't had a chance to test yet) therefore it  
is possible to treat it as an interesting middle ground between  
traditional desktop and traditional mobile experience.


Alun


On 20 Jul 2009, at 15:57, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv  
wrote:





2009/7/20 Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk

I agree with the first paragraph and then you lose me beyond that.

M.whatever.com serving mobile optimised pages using good CSS  
'should' work

on any platform.

If you want to optimise per platform then go ahead but the return is  
low

value IMO.

The only platform I'd bother with is iPhone if I was customising as  
the

usage is significant enough for me to actually see it on our stats.

Given there are 11,233 types of phone listed in the WURFL, just  
developing for the phone you have (that is my assumption) is a bit  
short-sighted, surely?


A good argument could be made that you don't get the hits, because  
you don't support the phones.


So far the people who have hit the test are using:

apple_generic
apple_iphone_ver3
blackberry7730_ver1_sub400midp
danger_hiptop_ver1
goodaccess_ver1_submsiepalmos
google_wireless_transcoder_ver1_subua
htc_magic_ver1
htc_p3700_ver1_subopera950
htc_touch_dual_ver1_subminimo
lg_kp500_ver1
mot_q9h_ver1_subie711
nokia_5800d_ver1_sub210025
nokia_e71_ver1_sub1776
opera_mini_ver3_sub19903
opera_mini_ver4_sub213221
opera_mini_ver4_sub213221
opera_mini_ver4_sub213918
samsung_sgh_i900_ver1_subopera95_subua
sonyericsson_k800i_ver1_subr1kg
sonyericsson_x1i_ver1_subr1aa_o2
stupid_novarra_proxy
tmobile_mda_varioiii_ver1
tmobile_sda_ver1_sub10
tmobile_sda_ver1_sub10
upg1_ver1_subblazer40
upg1_ver_1_subblazer43do50448
usha_lexus_888b_ver1




Alun


On 20/07/2009 11:58, Iain Wallace ikwall...@gmail.com wrote:

 Trying to match the style/layout of a site to the expected  
resolution

 of the device that you think is displaying it is going about it the
 wrong way - this is why CSS has percentage widths for doing layouts.

 Or is the question more about what you can send back to the server  
in

 order to choose an image size?

 If you want an example of something that does this quite well, visit
 the iPhone/Android optimised interface for Google Reader using a  
user

 agent switcher. This will load up images in atom feeds and then
 instantly resize them in javascript to fit the page width.

 On Tue, Jul 14, 2009 at 3:09 PM, Brian Butterworthbriant...@freeview.tv 


 wrote:
 Hi,
 I've been looking at adapting some sites to work better on mobile  
devices.
 I can do the stripping down everything to text and minimal  
graphics and so

 on, that's the easy bit.
 Does anyone know of anything reliable that can tell me the width  
in pixels

 of the device?
 I was hoping that Glow would cover this, but it does't.
 --

 Brian Butterworth

 follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/briantist
 web: http://www.ukfree.tv - independent digital television and  
switchover

 advice, since 2002

 -
 Sent via the backstage.bbc.co.uk discussion group.  To  
unsubscribe, please

 visit http://backstage.bbc.co.uk/archives/2005/01/mailing_list.html.
 Unofficial list archive:
 http://www.mail-archive.com/backstage@lists.bbc.co.uk/


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 message, is strictly prohibited. If you have received this message  
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Re: [backstage] Mobile sites - how wide

2009-07-20 Thread Alun Rowe
 that can tell me the  
width in

  pixels
  of the device?
  I was hoping that Glow would cover this, but it does't.
  --
 
  Brian Butterworth
 
  follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/briantist
  web: http://www.ukfree.tv - independent digital television and
  switchover
  advice, since 2002
 
 -
 Sent via the backstage.bbc.co.uk discussion group.  To  
unsubscribe, please
 visit http://backstage.bbc.co.uk/archives/2005/01/ 
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 --

 Brian Butterworth

 follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/briantist
 web: http://www.ukfree.tv - independent digital television and  
switchover

 advice, since 2002


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web: http://www.ukfree.tv - independent digital television and  
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Internet communications cannot be guaranteed to be secure or error- 
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we do not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions that are  
present in this message, or any attachment, that have arisen as a  
result of e-mail transmission. If verification is required, please  
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solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of  
the company.



Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
2 Buttermarket
Thame
Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
Tel: +44 8700 339905
Fax: +44 8700 339906
Please direct all support requests to mailto:it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk 
Pentangle Internet Limited is a limited company registered in England and Wales. Registered number: 3960918. Registered office: 1 Lauras Close, Great Staughton, Cambridgeshire PE19 5DP


Re: [backstage] Mobile sites - how wide

2009-07-14 Thread Alun Rowe
 
http://blueflavor.com/blog/2006/jul/21/designing-for-mobile/ + seaqrch for
Brian Fling + Mobile for lots of extra info.

Also SimpleBit¹s Dan Cederholm has done a bunch of googlable mobile stuff.


On 14/07/2009 15:09, Brian Butterworth briant...@freeview.tv wrote:

 Hi,
 
 I've been looking at adapting some sites to work better on mobile devices.
 
 I can do the stripping down everything to text and minimal graphics and so on,
 that's the easy bit.
 
 Does anyone know of anything reliable that can tell me the width in pixels of
 the device?
 
 I was hoping that Glow would cover this, but it does't.
 
 --
 
 Brian Butterworth
 
 follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/briantist
 web: http://www.ukfree.tv - independent digital television and switchover
 advice, since 2002
 
   
 
 This message (and any associated files) is intended only for the use of the
 individual or entity to which it is addressed and may contain information that
 is confidential, subject to copyright or constitutes a trade secret. If you
 are not the intended recipient you are hereby notified that any dissemination,
 copying or distribution of this message, or files associated with this
 message, is strictly prohibited. If you have received this message in error,
 please notify us immediately by replying to the message and deleting it from
 your computer. Messages sent to and from us may be monitored.
 
  
 
 Internet communications cannot be guaranteed to be secure or error-free as
 information could be intercepted, corrupted, lost, destroyed, arrive late or
 incomplete, or contain viruses. Therefore, we do not accept responsibility for
 any errors or omissions that are present in this message, or any attachment,
 that have arisen as a result of e-mail transmission. If verification is
 required, please request a hard-copy version. Any views or opinions presented
 are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the
 company.
 



Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
2 Buttermarket
Thame
Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
Tel: +44 8700 339905
Fax: +44 8700 339906
Please direct all support requests to mailto:it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk 
Pentangle Internet Limited is a limited company registered in England and 
Wales. Registered number: 3960918. Registered office: 1 Lauras Close, Great 
Staughton, Cambridgeshire PE19 5DP


Re: [backstage] Make the primary OS used in state schools FOSS

2009-02-10 Thread Alun Rowe



On 09/02/2009 23:15, Christopher Woods chris...@infinitus.co.uk wrote:
 unless some incredibly
 well-designed thin client solutions were brought to my attention (and then
 you're talking equivalent prices for thin clients as you would for regular
 MiniATX desktops).

I'm not sure that a thin client can, as you suggest, handle the requirements
of a school's media department, in this instance you would place a
desktop/tower instead.

We run a mixed client setup for a number of housing associations in the UK
where the majority of users (admin/management etc), who do not require huge
graphics capability, run with a Wyse terminal and the planning department
(for example) will have a well specced Dell machine.

As you suggest a decent thin client will cost you as much as a MiniATX
machine BUT it has much lower power consumption and have a potential life of
8 years or more.  Typically a PC if having to run Windows will be lifed at 3
years.  So after 3 years where a typical Windows environment will be
replaced in toto we are simply adding more power to our VMWare server pool.

 I'm still personally very sceptical of thin client solutions, I don't think
 their capabilities ar sufficient to satisfy all the potential uses for
 educational machines. And I wouldn't like to have all that total reliance on
 just a handful of extremely powerful servers; it's bad enough when the
 Internet proxy server goes down or the network drive can't be accessed
 because the Active Directory is having a fit, but to have a classful of
 children sitting in front of dumb terminals when the primary host server for
 that classroom's client machines goes down? Wuh oh.

You can run multiple head servers and backend pool for a TS environment.
 
 Maybe my mistrust is misplaced, and thin clients are actually really quite
 good at most things now... Perhaps my perception of them, like many other
 peoples', is part of the problem which needs to be addressed. There must be
 some reason other than bloody-mindedness that makes schools keep on going
 for full-PC solutions time after time though...

Really?  In my experience school IT staff are generally beholden to RM or
similar and do as they are told.  RM would see a MASSIVE drop in hardware
sales if they pushed people onto thin client do to the reasons I list above.
So I can't see them doing it anytime soon...

I do aim to do more work in
 the educational sector as my own business gets going in the next few years,
 and I want to offer all kinds of viable solutions as long as they work well
 for everybody. Do you really think that setups like the LTSP are as
 competitive as regular networks of fairly powerful x86 machines and central
 file/print/etc servers for secondary school environments? (not being sarkies
 here, genuinely interested to know your thoughts and prepared to do a lot of
 reading if you have suggested starting points).

I've unfortunately not had enough experience of a pure FOSS network and
would definintely like to see more.  My IT company are always looking to
improve things!  The couple of Ubuntu servers we run for Web Services/SVN
etc are wonderfully reliable.  But...

//personal rant coming up...

For any open source software (Linux for example) to really work on the
network en mass we need to about user experience.  Currently I've yet to see
an attractive/user friendly piece of FOSS.  Whilst the software (once you've
worked out how to use it) is extremely effective IMO user experience is a
big part of the software which usually gets overlooked in FOSS scenarios. I
think FOSS can have a huge future but the community need to think about user
experience then it will be taken more seriously.



Re: [backstage] Make the primary operating system used in state schools free and open source

2009-02-10 Thread Alun Rowe
 
³Microsoft offers the OS and Office at extremely competitive prices to
schools.  I have heard it quoted as being around £5 per license for Office.²

It is cheaper but not that cheap...

For example:

MS Office single license = £43 + £25 Software assurance
Windows Server Standard (Single License) = £85 + £42 software assurance


³Parents have an expectation that MS Office will be taught in the classroom
as it is what they know and use in their work place.²

Most parents I know are not that worried about what is used but they are
concerned about compatibility with their home machine etc.

³The majority of schools have limited IT resources and might have limited
experience of using and securing Linux and other open source software.  They
could be substantial costs in retraining staff.²

Yes they would have limited experience but nothing a bit of training
wouldn¹t cover IMO.

³I totally agree that opensource has a great to offer schools with
applications like Moodle, Audacity and many others, but currently I don't
think many schools are ready for Linux/Ubuntu and OpenOffice.²

I don¹t think most users would care if you ran Ubuntu/OpenOffice.  Beyond
that we come back to my argument regarding the user interface where,
unfortunately, most of the open source software loses out big time!


Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
2 Buttermarket
Thame
Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
Tel: +44 8700 339905
Fax: +44 8700 339906
Please direct all support requests to mailto:it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk 
Pentangle Internet Limited is a limited company registered in England and 
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Staughton, Cambridgeshire PE19 5DP

  
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Re: [backstage] Make the primary operating system used in state schools free and open source

2009-02-10 Thread Alun Rowe
 
I was basing it on purchasing a single copy.  Purchasing a site wide license
for say 500 desktops would see significant savings.

The Home/Student edition is cheaper but that's not for schools to use, it's
for the students to have on their own laptops which they aren't allowed to
connect to the school wifi...


On 10/02/2009 09:44, Fearghas McKay fm-li...@st-kilda.org wrote:

 
 On 10 Feb 2009, at 09:23, Alun Rowe wrote:
 
 
 ³Microsoft offers the OS and Office at extremely competitive prices
 to schools.  I have heard it quoted as being around £5 per license
 for Office.²
 
 It is cheaper but not that cheap...
 
 At Glasgow University it used to be nearly that cheap - because there
 was a site wide licence students could get a set of discs for ~£10.
 Which probably only just about covered the costs of the admin and the
 floppies.
 
 The current retail price for a 3 user Home/School use only copy is
 £99, inc VAT, so £33 a user.
 
 f
   
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Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
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Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
Tel: +44 8700 339905
Fax: +44 8700 339906
Please direct all support requests to mailto:it-supp...@pentangle.co.uk 
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Re: [backstage] Make the primary OS used in state schools FOSS

2009-02-10 Thread Alun Rowe
On 10/02/2009 09:36, Rob Myers r...@robmyers.org wrote:

 On Tue, Feb 10, 2009 at 9:13 AM, Alun Rowe alun.r...@pentangle.co.uk wrote:
 
 //personal rant coming up...
 
 For any open source software (Linux for example) to really work on the
 network en mass we need to about user experience.  Currently I've yet to see
 an attractive/user friendly piece of FOSS.
 
 Anecdotally, I find that Inkscape is much better usability wise than
 Illustrator, and that Firefox is much less awful than IE's menu bar
 idiocy.

There are obviously exceptions to prove the rule :)
 
 Be careful what you wish for: the current KDE 4 train wreck came from
 the developers focussing on user experience. It's an interface so
 godawful that everyone I have seen use it has been personally offended
 by it. ;-)

The problem with usability is that everyone has their own way of doing
things!  
 
 The desktop user experience with Free Software is getting much better.
 For me personally it's become a non issue over the last two years
 (before then I might have agreed with you more).

It is getting better but it's still not 'Dad' proof (My dad has an extremely
short fuse when it comes to computers having programmed them since he left
school (with punch cards!) through to RPG based Advanced 36's).  Once my dad
is happy using them then the revolution may begin!
 
 But for many people, usability equals familiarity; making it work as
 badly as Windows. ;-)

Firstly, not everything about Windows is bad, but I grant you lots of it is!
Secondly I'm not sure that people want it to be just like Windows.  Lots of
people try Macs and complain for about 30 minutes about it then when you try
to take the machine away at the end of the day they threaten you with
violence...  People WILL move but it has to be BETTER rather than different.



Re: [backstage] Make the primary operating system used in state schools free and open source

2009-02-10 Thread Alun Rowe



On 10/02/2009 10:24, Fearghas McKay fm-li...@st-kilda.org wrote:
 I was basing it on purchasing a single copy.  Purchasing a site wide
 license
 for say 500 desktops would see significant savings.
 
 
 Which was Adam's point.

Indeed, the figures I included on the first email were just an example
 
 The Home/Student edition is cheaper but that's not for schools to
 use, it's
 for the students to have on their own laptops which they aren't
 allowed to
 connect to the school wifi...
 
 ??
 
 Well I had better remove the copies off my son's desktop and tell him
 not to connect to his school network with the laptop...
 
 Really ? Do you have a citation for that? My reading of the licence
 didn't not include those restrictions on the Mac version, albeit a
 couple of years ago when we purchased the software.

The copy on your son's computer is fine, he is a student after all.  It is a
Home/Student Edition.  When I say not for School + mean a school could not
use it as a base install throughout their class rooms as it would be being
licensed to a business (the school) not an individual user.

As for connecting his laptop to WiFi I was being slightly tongue in cheek as
most schools won't let kids on the network with their own machine due to
security restrictions.



Re: [backstage] Backstage logo design competition is live!

2008-11-07 Thread Alun Rowe


I have a design I'm working on...

On 7 Nov 2008, at 19:17, Rain [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:



--- On Fri, 11/7/08, Mark Griffin [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:


Most definitely!

Should it include the .co.UK bit?


Hi Mark

Yay!

..it's up to you, but it might be nice to get backstage.bbc.co.uk in  
there somewhere :-D


Looking forward to seeing what you come up with!

Rain


Rain Ashford | Technologist | http://backstage.bbc.co.uk/



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Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
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Thame
Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
Tel: +44 8700 339905
Fax: +44 8700 339906
Please direct all support requests to mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] 
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Re: [backstage] ping.fm

2008-10-28 Thread Alun Rowe


To me updating so many services at once feels a bit spammy.  I often  
finding myself cursing when pownce, facebook, Twitter etc all tell me  
the same thing by the same person at the same time...


On 28 Oct 2008, at 06:36, Dave Cross [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:


Ian Forrester wrote:

Yeah this is the thing I'm really worried about happening. Ping.fm
currently is my preferred way to do microblogging. Without it, geez
it would be bad news. Surprised no ones created a ping.fm type thing
for the desktop.

Interesting piece about ping.fm -
http://mashable.com/2008/09/02/pingfm-solving-the-problem-or-exacerbating-it/


The thing that bothers me about ping.fm (and the reason that I won't  
use
it) is that it encourages you to give your username and password for  
all

of the supported services to a third party.

I'll only start using it once the services that I'm interested in are
all suing OAuth.

Dave...
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result of e-mail transmission. If verification is required, please  
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solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of  
the company.



Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
2 Buttermarket
Thame
Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
Tel: +44 8700 339905
Fax: +44 8700 339906
Please direct all support requests to mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] 
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Re: [backstage] ping.fm

2008-10-28 Thread Alun Rowe
 
Groups on Twitter/Pownce/Ping etc would be the killer feature for me!


On 28/10/2008 12:17, Chris Sizemore [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

 so it seems to me that Ping.fm is a pretty useful thing, but just needs a fair
 bit more subtlety? i.e. different distribution lists? or is that already
 available?
 
 
 --cs
 
 
 
 
 

Alun Rowe
Pentangle Internet Limited
2 Buttermarket
Thame
Oxfordshire
OX9 3EW
Tel: +44 8700 339905
Fax: +44 8700 339906
Please direct all support requests to mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] 
Pentangle Internet Limited is a limited company registered in England and 
Wales. Registered number: 3960918. Registered office: 1 Lauras Close, Great 
Staughton, Cambridgeshire PE19 5DP

 From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] on behalf of Sam Mbale
 Sent: Tue 10/28/2008 10:50 AM
 To: backstage@lists.bbc.co.uk
 Subject: Re: [backstage] ping.fm
 
 Alun has a good point, anyone here remembers the good ole days of the free
 for all links ? (see
 http://mpelembe.blogware.com/blog/_archives/2005/12/19/3925166.html )
  In my experience, different social networks attract different types of
 people. My friends on hi5 are totally different to those on Myspace and
 Facebook. My followers on twitter do not share my interests on Digg. For
 this reason I make an effort to address friends in the appropriate context
 rather than blast off the same post to everyone.
 
 On Tue, Oct 28, 2008 at 8:13 AM, Alun Rowe [EMAIL PROTECTED]wrote:
 
 
  To me updating so many services at once feels a bit spammy.  I often
  finding myself cursing when pownce, facebook, Twitter etc all tell me the
  same thing by the same person at the same time...
 
 
  On 28 Oct 2008, at 06:36, Dave Cross [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 
   Ian Forrester wrote:
 
  Yeah this is the thing I'm really worried about happening. Ping.fm
  currently is my preferred way to do microblogging. Without it, geez
  it would be bad news. Surprised no ones created a ping.fm type thing
  for the desktop.
 
  Interesting piece about ping.fm -
 
  
 
http://mashable.com/2008/09/02/pingfm-solving-the-problem-or-exacerbating-it/
 
 
  The thing that bothers me about ping.fm (and the reason that I won't use
  it) is that it encourages you to give your username and password for all
  of the supported services to a third party.
 
  I'll only start using it once the services that I'm interested in are
  all suing OAuth.
 
  Dave...
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  please visit
  http://backstage.bbc.co.uk/archives/2005/01/mailing_list.html.
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  This message (and any associated files) is intended only for the use of
  the individual or entity to which it is addressed and may contain
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  trade secret. If you are not the intended recipient you are hereby
 notified
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 received
  this message in error, please notify us immediately by replying to the
  message and deleting it from your computer. Messages sent to and from us
 may
  be monitored.
 
  Internet communications cannot be guaranteed to be secure or error-free
as
  information could be intercepted, corrupted, lost, destroyed, arrive late
or
  incomplete, or contain viruses. Therefore, we do not accept
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  for any errors or omissions that are present in this message, or any
  attachment, that have arisen as a result of e-mail transmission. If
  verification is required, please request a hard-copy version. Any views
or
  opinions presented are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
  represent those of the company.
 
 
 
  Alun Rowe
  Pentangle Internet Limited
  2 Buttermarket
  Thame
  Oxfordshire
  OX9 3EW
  Tel: +44 8700 339905
  Fax: +44 8700 339906
  Please direct all support requests to
 mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
  Internet Limited is a limited company registered in England and Wales.
  Registered number: 3960918. Registered office: 1 Lauras Close, Great
  Staughton, Cambridgeshire PE19 5DP
 
 
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  visit http://backstage.bbc.co.uk/archives/2005/01/mailing_list.html.
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 --
 Sam Mbale
 Mpelembe Network
 http://www.mpelembe.net
 
 Follow me on http://twitter.com/mpelembe