A response to Jason Calacanis

Just a few days ago, Jason Calacanis wrote an article called The Case Against Apple-in Five Parts, in which he laid out his reasons for disliking Apple. Now, I don’t begrudge anyone hating any company just because, but when you start making up bull-shit to support your feelings, I get a little perturbed. However, many other have responded already, so he has written another missive, Apple’s Master Plan (and why even fanboys should be scared) which raises the bar on bullshit.

First, I want to say from the bottom of my heart, Fuck You Jason Calacanis! I am not saying this because of your bullshit reasons, but for your god damned use of non-black for your text color. And not only that, but hexadecimal 999, which is somewhere around middle gray. Oh fuck you! Thank damn Opera lets me turn off Author-mode style sheets.
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A beautiful confidentiality notice

I just received an ad, and this was the included Confidentiality Notice. While it contains the usual violations of common sense and legal theory, I really love the last line. Go ahead and read it.

Confidentiality Notice: The information contained in this e-mail transmission is intended only for use of the individual or entity named above. This e-mail transmission, and any documents, files, previous e-mail transmissions or other information attached to it, may contain confidential information that is legally privileged. If you are not the intended recipient of this e-mail transmission, or the employee or agent responsible for delivering it to the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any disclosure, dissemination, distribution, copying or other use of this transmission or any of the information contained in or attached to it is strictly prohibited. If you have received this e-mail transmission in error, or you do not wish to receive any further communications from us, please immediately notify us by return e-mail transmission or by telephone at the number above or at the address above, and destroy the original e-mail transmission and its attachments without reading or saving it in any manner.

So, if I do not wish to receive any further communications from them, then I can reply to the email and request to be left alone, or I can call their phone number (which was not included in the email, contrary to the notice), and all is good. But wait! I also have to destroy the email, without reading it. Huh? How the hell am I expected to get this far in the email and follow the instructions, without reading it?

I just love this stuff sometimes.

Most. Disgusting. Keyboard. Ever.

Folks, this is disgusting. I had to replace this keyboard just the other day, and I really felt like I needed a hazmat cleaning afterward. The reason it was replaced was because the letters on the keycaps were fading. I know this means it was in use for a long time, but please, this is not necessary.


click to open full image in a new window

Did someone say snow cones?

Wow, I came across an interview with Brad Brooks, VP for Windows Consumer Product Marketing, over at CNET. This is the usual interview in which a Microsoft VP tries to regurgitate marketing material as responses to an interview. However, this interview has 2 things going for it:

  1. The interviewer, Ina Fried, keeps asking real questions, and not letting Brad get away with just marketing speak.
  2. Brad referred the idea of Apple lowering it’s laptop prices as “taking shavings off the iceberg to create a snow cone.”

What? Wait… let me catch… my breath… hold on… ow, my side hurts from laughing so much!
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The new Microsoft ad campaign

Huh? Wait, no really, huh?

I finally saw what I believe is “the” Seinfeld-Microsoft ad on youtube. First, I thought I had the wrong video, and this had to be something else, but then again, I can’t believe there are that many videos of Bill Gates and Jerry Seinfeld out there.
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The 13 year old LCD monitor. What?

Well, the other day I contacted a nameless company that sells lots of computers to get an LCD monitor replaced. Seems this monitor decided that it didn’t really want to work anymore. OK, it didn’t want to work from the VGA port anymore. It would power up, show an image, then quickly go to a split white/black screen, then go to a full white screen. Using the DVI port, it worked fine.

So, I contacted their support to get it replaced. They asked for the serial number of the machine it is supposed to be attached to, and I said truthfully, “I have no idea.” See, like many large places, monitors have been moved on an as-needed basis. Heck, it is possible that this monitor was bought as part of a large order, for an existing system when we upgraded to 2 monitors per desk some years ago. After going around about this for about 15 minutes, they decided that I should give them the Serial Number for the monitor itself, and go with that.

So, I give them the serial number from the monitor, in which they reply that the monitor is out of warranty, since it was made in 1995. I was sure that this model didn’t exist in 1995; a 19″ LCD, with DVI input… yeah, didn’t exist in 1995, I’m sure of it. I mentioned this to them and they said that according to that serial number, it was made in 1995. I had them verify that serial number with me. They checked, and held to their position that the monitor was 13 years old and, therefore, out of warranty. I didn’t make a big fuss, I was pretty sure this monitor was a replacement for a different 19″ monitor which had died, and was now past the 3 year warranty period.

But still, kinda funny. I am included some pictures of the monitor, just for fun. Oh yeah, since the DVI input works fine, I have it on my desk right now.

The unnamed company\'s 13 year old monitor.

The unnamed company\'s 13 year old monitor.

CNet UK’s top ten obsolete ports

Those guys over at CNET.co.uk are smoking crack, or something! They have to be, or if they aren’t, they should be. With their latest trip down brain damaged lane is their top ten obsolete ports. Whey they reminisce about those long dead ports like SCART, SCSI, PS/2… and Firewire?
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Linux is going all schizo on us!

This post is way out of date, but what the hell, I think it is still valid.

ZDNet has provided some wonderful troll fodder in the form of the article “Linux and its identity crisis“.

So, it seems that Don Reisinger ran off and read some pissing and moaning between the various scheduler viewpoints, and tried to make a mountain out of a molehill.

Here is my review of the article:
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Packaging ideas gone wrong

Well, the other day I got a package in from ExaGrid Systems, for their disk-based backup solution. Normally, you can get crap-loads of this stuff every day. Usually, you get the standard window envelope addressed to the systems or network administrator. This will include a short white paper talking about how great their product is, and then a little ad letter or reply card with a URL to go to for more information. Just the standard stuff.

Now, the package I got from ExaGrid promised so much more. How? Not because the packaging actually promised anything, but the package it came it screamed schwag!

Note: I have come to use the term schwag to refer to promotional items given away by companies, usually at conferences or other gatherings, where Wiki defines schwag as referring to low-grade marijuana while promotional items are swag. I have linked to their swag definition, but I will still call it schwag.

Now, this box said a flash-based thumb-drive, cool pens, or at least a lanyard, something… anything with the company’s name and logo. Here, look at the box and tell me that it doesn’t screen iPod Nano!

Back of the box

So, I grab this thing, run back to the office, close the door, and prepare to receive my ill-gotten goods. But there was one small problem, the thing felt too lightweight. Maybe it wasn’t and iPod, but just a 1GB flash drive, thats still good. So, I flip the box over, and make sure it was addressed to me ( I don’t want someone tracking down some software or hardware they ordered ) and yes, it was for me. There was an interesting thing about this box, here look at it…

Front of the box

Did you see it? Yes, they are environmentally “thoughtful” that they included a little notice that the packing was recyclable. That was nice, at least they didn’t ship whatever it is in a plastic box or something not as recyclable as cardboard.

Special Note

So, I break the seal, open the box and find…

What was in the box

Yeah, that was it. Just a product info card. Hell, not even that. It’s a one-sided card that mentions their software, the online presentation and white paper. Beneath that, was an Amazon logo on a business card that said to register for the web demo at the URL on the “enclosed insert card.” Oh, the insert card did say you could register to win a $100 gift certificate from Amazon.com.

So, I am just wondering, but couldn’t ExaGrid done a better job for the environment by just sending a post-card, or an envelope with the info card inside?

Thanks ExaGrid, but I think you missed the point.