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Hauts-de-Seine, Le 10/10/2017 à 07:32
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They developed a teaser campaign to promote the strategy, with posters positioned wherever people are likely to be queuing or waiting: the bus stop, the post office, traffic black spots. It reads: "Queue Britain - the longer you queue, the better Britain gets!"Visitors to a website address given on the poster and advertised in the media are invited to register for a Queue Britain card, which is then sent to them by post. Like a Tesco Clubcard, this is individual to the queue frequenter and allows them to earn Queue Minutes. And indeed it doesn't have to be a card - it could be anything that can hold a barcode. In addition to the card proposal, IDEO also produced a prototype key ring.These Queue Minutes, the team posits, could be earned from any of the partners in a Queue Britain alliance. The member company, such as the Post Office, will then pledge to award Queue Minutes to all participating people who have had to queue in their stores. Reach the front of a queue, and the shop assistant will add some Minutes to your account. This might vary - you might perhaps get Minutes from the moment you enter the line, or only after a certain annoyance threshold has been reached; but either way, the longer you endure this inconvenience, the more Minutes you accrue. This is a good thing.
Minutes can also be earned in virtual queues, too; members of the Queue Britain alliance can advise their call-centre staff when it's appropriate to award Queue Minutes to those who have been kept on hold for a long time, or whenever the website has been down. But whichever way you earn the points, the clever aspect of the proposal happens here: once a cardholder has accrued more than a set number of Queue Minutes - and they can check their balance via the website - they can donate those Minutes to the charity of their choice.So if you find that you've spent 15 hours in line in Tesco over the past few months - not an unlikely number - and if Tesco is a participating member of the Queue Britain alliance, then you can donate those Minutes to charity, and Tesco will fulfil those 15 hours either by making its staff available for community work, or by creating paid opportunities for public volunteers to help out. And now a few hours of your time spent standing in a queue is worth, say, a few hours of Tesco staff helping out at a soup kitchen.The time you spend queuing, therefore, isn't wasted time any longer. The more you queue, the more opportunities you have to donate other people's time to your favourite cause. Keeping this in mind as you stand annoyed in the post office, the team believes, will go a long way towards reducing ambient levels of rage in the city.
Furthermore, this system makes the really annoying transgressions - queue-jumping - into something even more socially unacceptable. Jumping the queue, of course, means you are not earning Queue Minutes, and you are therefore actively choosing not to do good. Being a little rude is one matter, but actively choosing not to do good is quite another.The side effects on the companies involved in such an alliance are also interesting. The corporate-social responsibility movement is ever-more powerful - and the larger companies with queue-forming habits are exactly the same companies that would most benefit from being seen to be doing something positive and beneficial within the so-called "third sector".
Of course, a company might decide to pay out Queue Minutes as a cheaper option than reducing its queues through employing more staff. But would anyone seriously mind if Tesco were to do nothing about the length of time that you had to wait in its lines, if you knew that the missing till operator was instead out doing something charitable?This final product design from IDEO is not a device, nor a business, nor even a service. It's not really even a product as such. As an amalgam of an advertising campaign, a technological system, and a concept based around the psychologies of the individual, society at large and big companies, Queue Britain is an idea that exemplifies the "design thinking" that IDEO is helping to introduce into the mainstream. Designers are looking at solving the problems on an ever wider scale - from personal products, right up to focusing on changing wider society, and then the world.

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Toshiba's first attempt to break into the fast-growing Windows 8 hybrid market is a slightly weird beast, with a love-it-or-hate-it transformation mechanism, that marks it as distinctive, but won't be practical enough for everyone.Windows 8, with its emphasis on touchscreens seems tailor-made for hybrid designs, which can flip from lightweight tablet to full laptop configuration with little hassle. At least, that's the idea.The trick is to create a design that isn't too bulky in its tablet form, but offers the sturdiness and heft of a laptop when you need to get down to some serious keyboard tapping.Looks-wise, it's a solidly built workhorse -- black, grey and functional are the watchwords -- it's the slider than really does the talking.Toshiba has opted for an unusual sliding system that will certainly turn heads when you use it. With the tablet in landscape configuration in front of you, you push the top half back as far as it will go, then bend it upwards on a pair of hinges until you reach the angle you want. It's different, but it's not necessarily easier to use than a standard laptop with a hinge on the back. It requires a bit of space to open up so if you're in a cramped area like a train or plane seat it can be a bit awkward.
It is however potentially more robust than the other type of hybrid that allows you to twist the screen on a central hinge so that it faces outwards for tablet use, and inward for laptop behaviour. The 3.5cm of the keyboard side that sit behind the screen when it's in laptop mode help to keep it balanced too, cutting down on the need for extra weight beneath the keyboard.Still, at 1.5kg it's still too heavy to hold for any length of time. Compared to the likes of Microsoft's Surface with its optional Touch Cover keyboard, it feels unnacceptably chunky when it's not sitting on a tabletop.The LED backlit screen is okay, but nothing to shout about really. At 12.5 inches it's a little bigger than the average tablet screen but offers a less than full HD resolution of 1,366x768 pixels. Still, while it's not quite up there with the best 1080p best it looks reasonably sharp, though its lack of brightness becomes apparent in direct sunlight which can make it a bit difficult to see than we'd expect. It's got a pretty tight viewing angle too meaning this isn't the best screen to share a movie on.
Windows 8 brings up the onscreen keyboard when you need it in tablet configuration and the screen is generally sensitive and easy enough to use -- though it's a bit more prone to fingerprints than the likes of the iPad.
The physical keyboard tiles are reasonably responsive and well spread out across the entire width of the device, which is always nice to see, so there's plenty of room for your digits to get busy.The multitouch trackpad is responsive too and has clearly marked left and right buttons.The tile-based interface and touchscreen optimisation are a considerable jump from old-school Windows and there's a definite learning curve, likely to include some pining for the Start menu, which no longer exists. After a short while though the touch interface becomes second nature and finding your way around is generally pretty intuitive, once you've got the hang of the Charm Bar menu that you access by swiping to the left, revealing your Settings, Start screen, Search, Share and Devices shortcuts.Good to see that Toshiba has gone for the full-fat 64-bit version of Windows 8 too, rather than the RT variety that appears on ARM-based tablets. So you can install any Windows-friendly software you like, rather than having to rely on the Windows Store.

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To be generous, the Store is clearly a work in progress, but it's got a long way to go to match the numbers enjoyed by the Apple and Google stores. And surely much of the appeal of Windows has always been its versatility and ubiquity -- when you're used to being able to install whatever you want for a desktop or laptop, it quickly gets frustrating when that freedom's taken away from you.PerformanceOur test model sits in the middle of the U920T configurations with a 1.5GHz Intel Core i35-3317U, 4GB RAM and a 128GB solid state drive. In benchmark tests it delivered a PC Mark of 3,754 which puts it well behind the likes of the Sony Vaio Duo 11 Frame rates when playing Portal were around the 150fps mark, which isn't great, and led to a few sticky moments -- this isn't a powerhouse gaming machine by any means, though you'll be fine for less sophisticated entertainments.There's a brace of high-speed USB 3.0 connections around the sides and back, along with an HDMI port and a hybrid mic/headphone jack and multicard reader that's hidden behind a flimsy plastic flap. There are also cameras on front and back, which seems like a bit of a wasted resource -- yes to the one-megapixel front-facing camera for video calls (via Wi-Fi -- there's no 3G option) but do we really need a so-so three megapixel rear-facing camera that can only be used when you slide the keyboard out?
The U920T carries a pretty good spec and performs reasonably well for its price. It also features a distinctively different way of transforming between tablet and laptop configurations, but whether this is actually better than other methods will come down to personal taste. It's really too heavy to use it comfortably as a tablet for long though, and while the touch screen is okay, it suffers in comparison with some of its full HD rivals.The top dog in Toshiba's P845 series offers a 14-inch touchscreen, DVD drive, silvery good looks and the latest Windows 8 operating system -- but is that enough?It's a slick-looking device with its aluminium casing and textured finish, and not too heavy either at 1.96kg (it can't compete with lightweight ultrabooks, but then it does have a DVD drive) and measuring 29mm at the hinge, though it tapers to 24mm at the front.It has a decent range of ports including three high-speed USB 3.0s, Ethernet, VGA for hooking up to an external monitor and an HDMI output.The keyboard is standard tile style and with well-spaced keys it feels okay, though the travel feels just a wee bit shallow when you press.The 14-inch LED backlit touch screen offers a 1,366x768-pixel resolution but looks a little dull and not quite as vibrant as we'd like.There are two Harmon Kardon speakers mounted just above the keyboard and they manage impressively loud volumes without distorting, making this a good device for watching movies when you're on the move. It has built-in SRS surround sound processing with three settings -- Music, Movie and 3D -- each of which is a bit on the crude side. Music tends to boost the vocals, Movie pumps everything up more or less evenly and 3D separates the signal and spreads the soundstage out a little.
The webcam on the front can capture stills and video at a resolution of 1,280x800 pixels, which gives not bad Skype results in daylight, though it struggles with accurate colour reproduction in artificial light.
It uses a touchscreen because the P845 is running Windows 8, optimised for touch screens on tablets, laptops and desktops.Switching between touch screen and mouse pad feels a little schizophrenic at first, but it doesn't take long to get used to it.And for the most part, Windows 8 works fine and intuitively, with those big tiles and the "charms" you can bring on by dragging from the right -- search, start, share, devices and settings.
Problems start when you want to go a little off-piste, and it's not always clear how to dig deeper into the menus -- many people will miss the traditional Start button. Dragging from the left offers additional views and dragging from the top allows you to move around within programmes, showing additional web pages for instance. There's a learning curve involved, but mostly it's quick and seamless, even if the interface looks a bit Lego Toytown for everyone's tastes.
It's powered by a 1.8GHz 3rd generation Intel Core i3-3217U processor backed by 6GB RAM. That's not bad on paper, but it feels a little tardy in general use, often stopping to have a think while it opens programs or streams video.The battery held up for a good six hours in our test though, which is pretty good going for solid use.Conclusion The Toshiba Satellite P845 is a solid enough workhorse and a decent introduction to Windows 8 but it's on the chunky side and doesn't really do enough to distinguish itself at this price.This article was taken from the February 2014 issue of Wired magazine. Be the first to read Wired's articles in print before they're posted online, and get your hands on loads of additional content by subscribing online.Two-wheeled classic: the Caterham Carbon E-Bike -- due for launch later this year, the first bikes from sports-car specialist Caterham include an SUV-style petrol beast and two electric models.
The Carbon E-Bike is part speedway dragster, part bionic arm, and packs a Panasonic 36V 12AH lithium battery, 250W brushless motor and an eight-speed Shimano Nexus gear hub.

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