Coffeehouse Thread

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Brilliant idea

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  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    I was installing Office on a new laptop today and while I was typing the product key I noticed something:

    - Product key card contains a 2D barcode (all product key stickers from Microsoft contain some type of barcode)

    - Webcam on the laptop

     

    Barcode + webcam is no more typing lame product keys. MS has already the technology with their tag reader, so why not add this technology in Windows and Office?

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Too much effort for a one-off task. Typing 25-characters isn't that much of a pain compared to installing and warming up a webcam (my Microsoft LifeCam 7000 takes 5 seconds to activate) then running through all the steps to read in the code.

     

    ...unless you mean that the activation software should have a "capture from webcam" option and does it all in-process? Hmm, that might work.

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    When I worked in an OEM factory we entered product keys into the machines at the "setup" stage with a barcode scanner.

     

    (Setup itself was fairly automated, but the machine had to know what it was so it could set up the right configuration, who made it in case it broke down and of course the product key - all these were entered via barcode scanners.)

  • User profile image
    sushovande

    W3bbo said:

    Too much effort for a one-off task. Typing 25-characters isn't that much of a pain compared to installing and warming up a webcam (my Microsoft LifeCam 7000 takes 5 seconds to activate) then running through all the steps to read in the code.

     

    ...unless you mean that the activation software should have a "capture from webcam" option and does it all in-process? Hmm, that might work.

    the activation software should have a "capture from webcam" option and does it all in-process?

    Vote +1

  • User profile image
    JoshRoss

    sushovande said:
    W3bbo said:
    *snip*
    the activation software should have a "capture from webcam" option and does it all in-process?

    Vote +1

    I like the simplicity of this plus one statement.

     

    voteCounter++

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    JoshRoss said:
    sushovande said:
    *snip*

    I like the simplicity of this plus one statement.

     

    voteCounter++

    You should know better than to modify a global variable in a concurrent application like this.

     

    lock( this.CurrentForumThread.GetVoteLock() ) {


        this.CurrentForumThread.VoteCounter++;

    }

     

    ftfy Smiley

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    W3bbo said:
    JoshRoss said:
    *snip*

    You should know better than to modify a global variable in a concurrent application like this.

     

    lock( this.CurrentForumThread.GetVoteLock() ) {


        this.CurrentForumThread.VoteCounter++;

    }

     

    ftfy Smiley

    You should know better than to use a lock to protect a simple increment. It's way overkill.

     

    System.Threading.Interlocked.Increment(ref voteCounter);

  • User profile image
    elmer

    Could be interesting when the key is a sticker on the bottom of the laptop.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    elmer said:

    Could be interesting when the key is a sticker on the bottom of the laptop.

    With Windows Phone 7, Microsoft seems to finally "get" good design. So maybe soon we'll see them end the mandate that the COA stickers be placed prominently on the underside of laptops, just waiting to get accidentally scrubbed off.

     

    It isn't a solution to the problem posited by elmer, but mandating that COA stickers (no, in fact, all stickers) be placed somewhere hidden, like in the battery compartment or under the RAM-slot's cover would go a long way to making Windows laptops look less cheap.

     

    Remember when the iMac launched and Apple remarked that "the back of our computer looks better than the front of anyone else's"? Let's do something about that.

  • User profile image
    kettch

    W3bbo said:
    elmer said:
    *snip*

    With Windows Phone 7, Microsoft seems to finally "get" good design. So maybe soon we'll see them end the mandate that the COA stickers be placed prominently on the underside of laptops, just waiting to get accidentally scrubbed off.

     

    It isn't a solution to the problem posited by elmer, but mandating that COA stickers (no, in fact, all stickers) be placed somewhere hidden, like in the battery compartment or under the RAM-slot's cover would go a long way to making Windows laptops look less cheap.

     

    Remember when the iMac launched and Apple remarked that "the back of our computer looks better than the front of anyone else's"? Let's do something about that.

    The worst thing is the ridiculous promotional stickers all over. I see people all the time with desktops and laptops that they have had for years, and they still look like a race car. Part of that is that people are too oblivious to peel them off, but there is no reason for them to be on there anyway.

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    kettch said:
    W3bbo said:
    *snip*

    The worst thing is the ridiculous promotional stickers all over. I see people all the time with desktops and laptops that they have had for years, and they still look like a race car. Part of that is that people are too oblivious to peel them off, but there is no reason for them to be on there anyway.

    My laptop had only two promotional stickers on it: Intel Centrino and Windows Vista. It still has them, because I couldn't be arsed to remove them. Tongue Out

     

    Then there are six stickers on the bottom. One is the certificate of authenticity. Four are various stickers from Dell that need to be on there for warranty purposes. And one is the laptop registration sticker that the university made me put on there (because they bought the laptop for me).

  • User profile image
    elmer

    Sven Groot said:
    kettch said:
    *snip*

    My laptop had only two promotional stickers on it: Intel Centrino and Windows Vista. It still has them, because I couldn't be arsed to remove them. Tongue Out

     

    Then there are six stickers on the bottom. One is the certificate of authenticity. Four are various stickers from Dell that need to be on there for warranty purposes. And one is the laptop registration sticker that the university made me put on there (because they bought the laptop for me).

    My favourite stickers were on the box of some no-name notebooks we used to import from China.

     

    DO NOT OPEN IF CONTENTS IS DAMAGED

     

     

  • User profile image
    kettch

    Sven Groot said:
    kettch said:
    *snip*

    My laptop had only two promotional stickers on it: Intel Centrino and Windows Vista. It still has them, because I couldn't be arsed to remove them. Tongue Out

     

    Then there are six stickers on the bottom. One is the certificate of authenticity. Four are various stickers from Dell that need to be on there for warranty purposes. And one is the laptop registration sticker that the university made me put on there (because they bought the laptop for me).

    That's good that it was so clean.

     

    I'm sure that your asset tag isn't nearly as bad as the ones we used to put on at the hospital I worked at.

     

    http://www.stoptheft.com

     

    They are cool, but ugly. The security plate, and the big red sticker that said "hey look, there's a security label!" were both very prominent on the lid. That was just the security, we still had our internal asset tag to slap on their pretty new laptop. We would never have bought one, but I always thought it would be so cool to be able to violate somebody's MacBook with one of those. Devil

  • User profile image
    Bass

    elmer said:
    Sven Groot said:
    *snip*

    My favourite stickers were on the box of some no-name notebooks we used to import from China.

     

    DO NOT OPEN IF CONTENTS IS DAMAGED

     

     

    At least they were being honest.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Sven Groot said:
    kettch said:
    *snip*

    My laptop had only two promotional stickers on it: Intel Centrino and Windows Vista. It still has them, because I couldn't be arsed to remove them. Tongue Out

     

    Then there are six stickers on the bottom. One is the certificate of authenticity. Four are various stickers from Dell that need to be on there for warranty purposes. And one is the laptop registration sticker that the university made me put on there (because they bought the laptop for me).

    My (now deceased, RIP) Tecra M4 had a COA, a Chinese WiFi license sticker, a Bluetooth cert sticker, a Wifi cert sticker, a model/serial sticker (recessed, as though it's the only sticker that's meant to be there), and two thin MAC address stickers that could very easily peel off in a sticky mess of soggy paper strips and dodgy adhesive.

     

    One of my batteries also had a "do not put in rubbish bin" sticker on, but I peeled that one off.

     

    Only the model/seril and COA stickers needed to be there. Everything else could have been put in the manual or read via software programs that can read MAC addresses, for example.

     

    Those "Designed for Windows 95" and "Intel Pentium Inside" stickers aren't entirely meant to be removed, but those big stickers you get on the palm-rests are. I'm with everyone else asking why no-one ever thinks of removing them, especially as they actually have "peel me" tabs on them.

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