Tech & Gaming
Computer Shopper

Computer Shopper January 2019

Computer Shopper is the essential monthly magazine that allows you to stay abreast of the latest news and releases in the world of technology. With more reviews, hands-on guides and features than any other tech monthly, you’ll be better informed by reading Computer Shopper.

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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12 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
welcome page

As editor of Shopper, I get to read all the articles in the magazine as part of my job. While I can attest to the high quality of each article that appears (I would say that, wouldn’t I?), I have to admit I don’t carry out every project or buy every recommended product – with 140 pages each month, that would be a pretty time-consuming and costly enterprise. But most months, there are one or two articles that I put on my to-do list, to come back to once the madness of press week is out the way. This issue is one of those rare occasions where I found myself carrying out the project during the editing stage. I’m sure I’m not alone in worrying about the myriad security threats out there –…

2 min.
star letter

Education matters @ I find it hard to understand why you think that schools put upgrading computers top of the list (‘Rants & Raves’, Shopper 370). This letter is being written on Windows 7, which has worked perfectly for years except when the memory failed. Primary schools do not need the latest gizmos. My mantra is never upgrade (anything). It always leads to trouble. For Windows 7, you just turn off automatic updates until you are ready. The old black boxes you write about will not run Windows 10. I read in the i newspaper that many of our schools are falling apart; money is shared out among many fields. Also, I have just read in your magazine about Windows 10: you can’t turn off automatic updates so they interrupt your work; there are…

4 min.

letters@computershopper.co.uk Whine seller @ I am looking to change my LG G4 SIM-only phone and bought your magazine as the cover indicated a smartphone review (Shopper 369). I was interested in the Samsung Galaxy S8 as a friend had also recommended it, and I looked on Amazon as suggested by your review as the best place to buy. However, I was concerned by some of the one-star reviews saying this price was a scam, as buyers had been sent phones with European plugs, and others had said the phones were faulty and couldn’t get a refund as it was from a third-party seller. Do you check all this before recommending a company? I note that Carphone Warehouse has it at £499; possibly the phone is more genuine? I am now unsure what to do. Kev…

4 min.
you can call me al

Tech pioneer and all-round good egg letters@computershopper.co.uk Nearly every aspect of maths and computing has its origin in Middle Eastern culture I HAVE BEEN thinking about algorithms, and whenever I think about algorithms I think of young Al. Young Al is, or was, a lovely bloke. I hope he is still alive, but he seems to have gone missing and I am getting to be a bit worried about him. He is, or he was, probably the smartest computer programmer I have ever known. I last saw him in the Coffee Cup Café just around the corner from his flat in Shiraz, the modern Iranian and ancient Persian city of poetry and wine, where Muslims, Jews and Christians live side by side in mutual respect. Iran has many excellent computer programmers, who are all…

4 min.
is your computer spying on you?

The technology to create very small computers exists, and it’s technically possible to build one that takes information at the hardware level and sends it back to a central server IT COULD HAVE been the plot of a James Bond film: tiny spy chips embedded in our electronic devices, delivering secrets back to the Chinese government. Yet far from being fiction, this was a serious report delivered by Bloomberg, claiming that the Chinese government had embedded chips no bigger than a grain of sand into motherboards used by US companies including Apple and Amazon. According to the report, the chips were implanted on motherboards manufactured by the Taiwanese-American firm Supermicro, before being assembled into computers and used by some of the biggest tech companies in the world. In many ways the story is…

4 min.
rants & raves

David Ludlow RANTS COMPUTERS AND SMARTPHONES are making us ruder. I don’t mean that in a heads-down-ignoring-all-human-contact kind of way, I mean in a deliberate, plotted and calculated way, and it’s all thanks to AI. Google, Apple, Microsoft and the like are all trying to be clever and save us time by suggesting automatic replies to our text messages, emails and instant messages. By scanning the content, the companies attempt to pull meaning out of the messages and then give canned responses to save us having to craft a reply. It sounds great in theory, but it’s fair to say that no algorithm has quite mastered the art of being nice. It started with the Apple Watch, which had a bunch of dumb, pre-programmed replies you could use for text messages. Sending ‘OK’…