Life and Style

The Z1 Compact offers identical hardware to the S1, but shrinks the screen from 5 inches to 4.3 - David Phelan gives us the first full UK review

Stereo, video - notebooks are bulging

Multimedia portables are where the action is. Cliff Joseph reports

Letter: MMC ruling on gas pipelines

Sir: You state ("Let the MMC settle the gas pipeline battle", 10July) that, "as far as the regulator is concerned the point about depreciation is non-negotiable: either TransCo accepts this downgrading of the amount of depreciation it is allowed to take out of charges or the whole thing goes to the MMC". TransCo's position on allowing full CCA depreciation is that determined by the MMC in 1993 and that applied by Ofgas in setting the TransCo formula which applies between 1994 and 1997. It appears that Ofgas is certain it can persuade the MMC that the MMC's decision in 1993 not to apply what it called an "arcane adjustment" to depreciation is wrong.

Company calls off AIM flotation

A company that had been seeking a stock market listing on the Alternative Investment Market has pulled its flotation, blaming a "soft market".

Past, but not gone

In a museum in Manchester the exhibits are being brought to life by local artists. Michael Bracewell witnessed the transformation

MMC gives South West tighter code

The Monopolies and Mergers Commission has imposed tough price controls on South West Water after 10 months of investigation. The decision is a severe blow to South West, the only one of the 10 major water and sewage companies to go to the MMC rather than accept controls proposed by the regulator, Ofwat.

Scottish Hydro-Electricis a special case

With South Wales Electricity now into its second shares buy-back, the idea of a windfall tax to punish greedy utilities is rapidly becoming something of an irrelevance. Far from hoarding cash, boards are scorching the earth. Labour will find little of value to plunder to meet its promise of retribution for excessive profits.

Core business pays dividends

Investment Column

Pentium chip prices fall

Pentium chip prices fall

This is the PC that Dorothy built

Miracle of miracles, writing appears on the screen. It works!

Time for BT to shut up

There is really only one way of describing last night's capitulation by BT to all but one of the demands being made by the regulator, Oftel. BT is behaving like a wimp. After all the posturing and bluster of the last month or two, it has meekly caved in to everything Don Cruickshank was asking for bar paying for the costs of number portability. That issue will now go the Monopolies and Mergers Commission, but everything else has been accepted - this, despite BT's insistence that enough was enough and this time it was going to give the regulator a jolly good hiding.

Worth stating the obvious

THE view that "just because it is obvious does not mean it is not worth saying" has kept management consultants in business for years. Now one of their number has founded a new career on the same premise.

Science Update: Flexible friend

AN ELECTRONIC newspaper that can be rolled up and stuffed in a bag has been brought a step closer by a team of French scientists. They have developed a fully flexible transistor - the basis of the silicon chip - which uses plastic and graphite instead of the metal and silicon used in conventional chips. The breakthrough will allow silicon chip components to be etched on to a variety of flexible surfaces including smart credit cards and ultra-thin and light computer screens.

Jargon buster: 16-bit video

The processing of the data that makes up the computer screen display is done separately from the main processor either on a separate chip on the main processing motherboard or on a separate add-on board. The resolution and quality of the display depends on the power of the chip used. A basic 8-bit video processing chip will give only a limited range of colours and therefore a screen display of limited quality, 16-bit video gives a range of thousands of colours, while a 24-bit video card is needed to give the maxiumum 16.7 million colours.

Computers: Swapping new PCs for old: William Gallagher tears out his innards and enhances the performance of his system

YOU WAS robbed. When you paid pounds 3,000 for that state-of-the-art 386 PC- compatible system four years ago, you may well have got a good deal. Probably no one tried to con you. Perhaps you even got a good working life out of it. But try to run the latest version of Microsoft Word or Wordperfect on your 386 PC and it laughs.

Radstone raises 7m pounds

RADSTONE Technology, a manufacturer of computer sub-systems for defence and industrial uses, is raising pounds 7m net of expenses through a placing of 65 per cent of its shares, writes Diane Coyle. The placing price of 125p values the company, formed six years ago as a management buyout from Plessey, at pounds 19.2m.
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Nigel Farage celebrates with a pint after early local election results in the Hoy and Helmet pub in South Benfleet in Essex
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One father who couldn't get One Direction tickets for his daughters phoned in a fake bomb threat and served eight months in a federal prison
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The will of Helen Beatrix Heelis, better known as Beatrix Potter, was among those to be archived
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The Plaza Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia was one of the 300 US cinemas screening
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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that? The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that?

The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year
Hollande's vanity project is on a high-speed track to the middle of nowhere

Vanity project on a high-speed track to nowhere

France’s TGV network has become mired in controversy
Sports Quiz of the Year

Sports Quiz of the Year

So, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry, his love of 'Bargain Hunt', and life as a llama farmer

Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry and his love of 'Bargain Hunt'

From Armstrong and Miller to Pointless
Sanchez helps Gunners hold on after Giroud's moment of madness

Sanchez helps Gunners hold on

Olivier Giroud's moment of madness nearly costs them
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect