Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Modern Warfare 2 HAX

Kudos to this guy for sacrificing his Xbox account to bring us this moment of hilarity.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Perhaps the best medical device idea ever.

If I were the chief of medicine, I'd definitely buy one of these:

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Friday, December 11, 2009

Need a Handjob? Then check this out.

Seriously debating getting one.

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Cat Is A Fan Of Peanut Butter

Nom nom nom!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Rabbit Shows Cat Who Is Boss

This was not what I thought the cat had coming.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Leaked Tiger Woods Mistress Sex Tape

It's hard to tell which mistress this might be (my guess is Rachel Uchitel), but this leaked tape won't help the Tiger Woods saga end any time soon.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Long Awaited Review: the Palm Pre

[caption id="attachment_1363" align="alignright" width="136" caption="Palm Pre"]Palm Pre[/caption]

Yes I did say at some point I'd have a review of the Palm Pre phone up on the site.  And I did say it was going to be a video review too... However I would have been restricted to having to use my webcam to record the video and doing so would've been problematic for me to edit due to the format the video records in.  So I had no choice to but to write out the review.

I consider myself an advanced phone user, and I also heavily rely on my Pre.  In this review, I will be making some comparisons of the Palm Pre from other phones I have used in the past.  Also keep in mind any negativity towards this phone are things that Palm can easily integrate/improve overtime through future software updates.

After owning the phone since the day it was released in the U.S. (June 6th 2009) I must say that this phone is definitely the best phone I have ever used.

You can read up on the Palm Pre technical specifications here.

The Palm Pre Design/Build

The phone itself is actually one of the most comfortable phones I've ever had.  Holding it in my hand is kind of like holding a light polished rounded stone.  There are no sharp edges on the phone when in the closed position.  However that isn't the case when you slide up the screen.  The bottom edge of the phone where the keyboard resides is rather sharp and can literally cut cheese.  You can see a video demonstration below:

My primary complaint when it comes to this phones design is the phone is kinda top heavy when the keyboard is exposed.  It's difficult to hold properly while laying down on my bed composing a message.  The phone is meant to be held up right vertically when using it.

[caption id="attachment_2360" align="alignright" width="250" caption="This is an extreme case of the "oreo" effect."]This is an extreme case of the "oreo" effect.[/caption]

There have been many people complaining online about the build quality of their Palm Pre phones.  A lot of people had to get replacements due to this "oreo" effect where vertical sliders would loosen causing the touchscreen to rotate (see picture).  In most "oreo" reported cases, the screen would have this wobble where it was loose but not so much like shown in that picture.

There were other cases where hairline cracks would form where the USB port is on the right of the touchscreen.  Overtime, it would spread over the screen.  Others reported cracking appearing from where the orb button is below the touchscreen.

[caption id="attachment_2364" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Palm started applying foam pads to their phones from reports of the phone restarting when sliding the screen over the keyboard."]Palm started applying foam pads to their phones from reports of the phone restarting when sliding the screen over the keyboard.[/caption]

I consider myself lucky as I haven't had any serious hardware issues with my phone.  The only issue I've had is when I'd slide my phone down, it would unexpectedly shut off.  This was due the battery being loose.  Nothing that a small piece of foam tape could not fix.

The Pre has a beautiful vibrant touchscreen measuring 1.72 inches across, and 2.58 inches vertically, the screen is smaller then the iPhone, but has the same 320x480 resolution.  The only differences between the Pre and iPhone is that the Pre touchscreen has a plastic overlay where the iPhone has glass.  With the Pre having a plastic screen overlay, it's almost certain that at some point it's going to scratch.  If you have a Pre, get a screen protector as soon as you can.

The phone's keyboard buttons have this awkward 'gummy' feel to it.  After using my Blackberry Curve for quite some time, using the Pre's keyboard has actually slowed down my typing speed.  The keyboard on my Blackberry would click when I pressed down on the keys confirming that the button was pressed, this isn't the case with the Pre.  Overall, I think Palm should have used RIM's design when they designed the Pre's keyboard.  Its taken me quite some time to get used to it.

Battery life on the Palm Pre isn't all that great, and to this day still sucks.  When I first had the phone, after fully charging it, I'd get roughly 4-5 hours of life from the battery.  Little did I know at that time there were a lot of things turned on that didn't need to be running all the time.  The GPS was always on trying to acquire a signal, as was Bluetooth.  Turning both of these off extended the battery life approximately 1-2 extra hours.  A few online retailers are selling higher capacity batteries for the Pre, however with some of the higher end batteries, you end up having to apply a thicker back plate which adds bulk to your phone.  You may want to consider investing in a some additional phone chargers if you're set on using the default battery (assuming you consider yourself a heavy phone user.)

Overall thoughts on the design: Other then the issues I mentioned in my review, the phone's design is pretty decent.  I will admit I'm a bit disappointed when it came to the build quality of the Pre phones.  Battery life isn't all that great but turning off the unnecessary features definitely helps.  Again, I recommend getting some sort of screen protection on the phone.  Best Skins Ever has a full body protective skin you can purchase for a cheap price of $7.99.

My experience with Web O/S

The operating system on the Palm Pre is the primary reason I bought this phone.  When Palm announced the Palm Pre back at 2009's CES, I was on the internet everyday learning as much about this phone as I could about the phone (thank you  I was really excited when watching their video demo because the phone had a lot of neat features.

Synergy was the focus of the Palm Pre, being able to wirelessly sync your data in the cloud (internet) without having to rely on a computer.  This for me was the ideal setup as I believe you shouldn't have to keep remembering to backup your phones data to a computer.  (Yes I'm lazy, but realistically there is no reason why this sort of thing shouldn't be automatic.)

[caption id="attachment_2483" align="alignleft" width="220" caption=" displayed on the Pre"] displayed on the Pre[/caption]

The other reason why I went for the Pre is that it uses webkit, a layout engine in the browser.  This means you don't get those crappy mobile versions of websites.  You get the true intended layout of that website, just like as if you were on your desktop/laptop.  The browsing experience is similar to the iPhone, double clicking on text will zoom in so that the text wrapping layout will fill the screen.  See my example on the left.  You can also hold your phone horizontally and the gyroscope will rotate the display for you.

Since I use Gmail as my primary email, the Palm Pre is a perfect phone (at least for me) as it automatically syncs my contacts with any changes made either from the phone or directly through Gmails interface.

It also works the same way with Microsoft Exchange, but I've never tested it as our company doesn't run an Exchange server.

[caption id="attachment_2371" align="alignright" width="200" caption="You can see that most contacts have a thumbnail image associated with their profile."]You can see that nearly every contact has a thumbnail image associated with their profile.[/caption]

In addition, you can link your Facebook account to the phone and it will extract your friends information (profile picture, emails & phone numbers) and merge the contacts together so that their information is consolidated.

I really dig that the Palm Pre pulls the Facebook profile picture and associates it with your contacts.  It's nice because when you go to contact these people, that picture essentially becomes their avatar.  So if/when you receive messages from them you'll see their avatar appear next to their message.

The only downside with the Facebook integration is you have no control of being able to manage your Facebook contacts once they're on your phone.  So if you have that one friend on Facebook that lives on the other side of the country whom you rarely talk to, you're stuck having him/her appearing as a contact on your phone.  That's the only downside to synergy.  I'm sure a future update to the phone will allow better control of this.

So like more other smartphones, the Pre can:

  • Email

  • Take Pictures

  • Text Message

  • GPS

  • Calendar

  • Browse the Internet

  • Play Music

I must say I was rather surprised to find that the Palm Pre lacked a lot of basic features that any other smartphone would have out of the box:

  • Lack of flexible options setting custom various notifications (Text, MMS & IM all share the same sound)

  • Cannot attach video/audio to MMS messages (only pictures)

  • Cannot capture short video clips

  • Cannot voice record memos

  • No voice dialing

It wasn't only until recently when Palm pushed out version 1.3.1 which FINALLY (after 5 months) allowed us to change the default notification tone.  Now there are ways to get some of these other missing features.  You can download software from called "Web O/S Quick Install".  Follow the instructions on their forums, and once you have Web O/S Quick Install setup, look for a program called "Preware."  Once Preware is installed, you can run it as an application on the phone and apply these patches which will enable a lot of these basic  features.  But take note, these patches are not official.  If you experience any problems with your phone, Palm is not responsible.  If you have any problems, you can ask the good folks at for help.  You can always doctor your phone back to when you first got it, if the issue seems irreversible.

[caption id="attachment_2381" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="In this picture, 3 applications are open, the browser, messenger & the calculator."]In this picture, 3 applications are open, the browser, messenger, & the calculator.[/caption]

Another unique thing about Web O/S is how it handles multiple applications.  Each application will display in its own card.  This method allows you to easily swap back & forth between applications.  Clicking on any of the cards will bring the application to full screen.  When you click the silver orb below the screen, you'll see the card view display.  Here you can easily pick and choose what applications you want to open or flick them away which closes the application.

Overall thoughts on Web O/S: The thing I have keep reminding myself is that Web O/S was built from scratch.  I don't know off the top of my head how long Palm has been working on Web O/S as it's still very new.  As I stated before, there are a lot of basic features that were overlooked and I'm sure down the road Palm will address the majority of user complaints.   If Palm had a full time online community manager to address the complaints and questions their community has, I think the majority of those people knowing their questions/concerns have been answered/heard would stop bitching.

Closing remarks

I knew what I was getting into when I decided to be an early adopter of a first generation device.  Palm only recently stopped supporting Palm O/S and put 100% of their focus into Web O/S.  This is a good thing as it means your phone won't feel out of date as long as Palm keep pushing out those updates.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Best Family Guy gag I've seen in a long time

You can find this segment in the Family Guy episode that aired Sunday, November 22nd.  I consider it  the highlight of the episode.

[flashvideo file= width=480 height=360 /]

Thursday, November 19, 2009

College students arrested for not tipping due to terrible service

No tips for you!Two college students are taking their fight to court after refusing to pay tip for lousy service.  Leslie Pope and John Wagner were hanging out at the Lehigh Pub in Bethelem last month with a half-dozen of their friends.

The service they received at the Lehigh Pub was so bad they had to find their own forks and napkins while their waitress went out for a cigarette break.  In addition, they had go out of their way and ask the bartender for refills, and wait over an hour for salad and some chicken wings.

"You can't give us terrible, terrible service and expect a tip," said Leslie Pope.

Despite the terrible service they received, it clearly states on the Lehigh Pub menus: "18% gratuity added to check of parties of 6 or more."

The tip they were asked to pay was $16.35.

Both parties are expected in court next month to resolve the dispute.

There was a poll on the website asking:
Does bad service give customers the right to withhold a mandatory tip?

  • 86.1% said YES (1557 votes)

  • 10.6% said NO (192 votes)

  • 3.3% said NOT SURE (59 votes)

Results as of November 19th, 2009 at 10AM (PST).

  • 88.9% said YES (14450 votes)

  • 8.9% said NO (1454 votes)

  • 2.1% said NOT SURE (349 votes)

Results as of November 19th, 2009 at 2:29PM (PST).

I think exceptions should be made in these rare circumstances.  If a business cannot provide reasonable service, I see no reason why the customer should be forced to pay any tip especially considering how both these students had to pull teeth to get any.

I hope these college students win.


  • - College students arrested for not paying tip

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Who would actually eat this?

Ok seriously... I know people like raw fish, but why in gods name would you serve fish to someone when it's still alive?  Not only is that disturbing and fucked up, but now I lost my appetite.

[flashvideo file= /]


Thursday, November 12, 2009

A dog greeting its owner after he returns from Afghanistan

I like how the dog barked and stayed at the door thinking "WTF get the fuck off my lawn!" then ran out and realized who it was and thought "Holy shit I know this guy!"

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Source: ltschmidt02 on YouTube

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

FOX News Network is full of shit, John Stewart points out the obvious

There really should to be a law forbidding or fining News networks that intentionally mislead people in the manner that FOX news does. This isn't journalism, this is manipulation... Fair and balanced MY ASS.

[flashvideo file= /]

Source: - Stewart mocks Hannity for inflating Bachmann rally attendance, trying to pass 9-12 rally footage off as Bachmann rally footage

Call of Duty - Modern Warfare 2 FAIL

So yeah, CoD Modern Warfare 2 isn't even out for 12 hours and there's already programs available to download that allow you to cheat...  It's actually pretty entertaining to watch, but man I'd hate to be in a match against this guy:

[flashvideo file= height=400 width=600 /]

Monday, November 9, 2009

Tarzan Fail

Where can I get one of these? My friends wife would greatly appreciate one.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Epic Cat FAIL

No matter how many times I watch this, I can't stop laughing:


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Japanese game shows are going a bit too far...

Everybody knows how wacky the Japanese culture is.  They are  especially wacky when it comes to their TV shows.  But this show in particular went WAY too far with this stunt.

I'm surprised the poor guy didn't have a heart attack right there on the spot.   It's fucked up.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Possibility of Megan Fox being killed off in Transformers 3

megan-foxEverybody loves Megan Fox, I mean that is unless you're gay right?  Well no, not everybody does, and you certainly don't have to be gay to hate her either.  I for one personally cannot stand her (anymore).  Mainly because she seems like such a bitch in real life.

Before Megan Fox became famous, she was nervous because she was going to be interviewed by Jimmy KimmelSeth Rogen had just finished his interview with Jimmy, and backstage Megan asks Seth if he can stay on stage with her while Jimmy interviews her.   Seth agrees and goes back on stage with Jimmy.  When the time came for Jimmy to introduce Megan... Well, we can let Seth Rogen explain what happens...  Just watch the video:

[flashvideo file= /]

In any event,  you clearly can see the sort of person she is when somebody does her a favor.  Hell, she even bitched about the director Michael Bay (whom made her a star) saying working with him is like working with Hitler.

Here are some exerts of a letter that three anonymous crewman from Transformers wrote about working with Megan Fox (source):
We know this quite intimately because we’ve had the tedious experience of working with the dumb-as-a-rock Megan Fox on both Transformers movies. We’ve spent a total of 12 months on set making these two movies.

When facing the press, Megan is the queen of talking trailer trash and posing like a porn star. And yes we’ve had the unbearable time of watching her try to act on set, and yes, it’s very cringe-able. So maybe, being a porn star in the future might be a good career option. But make-up beware, she has a paragraph tattooed to her backside (probably due her rotten childhood) easily another 45 minutes in the chair!

She compared working with Michael, to 'working with Hitler'. We actually don’t think she knows who Hitler is by the way. But we wondered how she doesn’t realize what a disgusting, fully uneducated comment this was? Well, here let’s get some facts straight.

Say what you want about Michael ‘ yes at times he can be hard, but he’s also fun, and he challenges everyone for a reason ‘ he simply wants people to bring their ‘A’ game. He comes very prepared, knows exactly what he wants, involves the crew and expects everyone to follow through with his or her best, and that includes the actors. He’s one of the hardest working directors out there.

And who is the real Megan Fox? She is very different than the academy nominee and winning actors we’ve all worked around. She’s as about ungracious a person as you can ever fathom. She shows little interest in the crew members around her. We work to make her look good in every way, but she’s absolutely never appreciative of anyone’s hard work. Never a thank you. All the crewmembers have stopped saying hi to Ms. Princess because she never says hello back. It gets tiring. Many think she just really hates the process of being an actress.

InTouch Magazine reported that Michael Bay is taking into consideration of possibly killing her off in Transformers 3 and looking for a replacement.  Rumor going around is that Fox's character in the movie may end up dead in the beginning of the movie.
Michael's pretty much discovered Megan and now he's very quietly looking for her replacement," said the insider. "He hasn't decided if he's going to kill her off in the next movie, but he just wants to be prepared."

One can only hope.  If she treats people as bad as everybody around her claims, then she definitely has it coming.


Friday, October 9, 2009

Marge Simpson to be in Playboy Magazine

[caption id="attachment_2322" align="alignright" width="293" caption="Marge Simpson to be featured in the November issue of Playboy magazine..."]Marge Simpson to be featured in the November issue of Playboy magazine...[/caption]

I'm assuming this story is meant to be taken as a joke, but apparently Hugh Hefner recently twittered about a surprise appearance of Marge Simpson in the upcoming November issue of Playboy Magazine.

If looking at nude cartoons is your thing, well there are plenty of  cartoon/hentai websites around that pretty much already have this sort of thing already.  Supposedly the reasoning behind it is to celebrate The Simpsons 20th anniversary I really don't get the point of featuring a cartoon character nude except that it's some stupid marketing stunt from either FOX, or Playboy.

What do you think?  Is this genius marketing, or just another stupid/pointless stunt from FOX or Playboy?

My opinion: STUPID.

Just Google image search "Marge Simpson naked", you can probably find millions of pictures of her ugly ass.


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

NASA to bomb the Moon (seriously)

s-LCROSS-BOMB-MOON-largeNASA is making preparations to bomb the moon on the 9th of October for their LCROSS (Lunar CRater Observing and Sensing Satellite) mission by sending a missile that will travel twice the speed of a bullet to blast open a hole near the moon's south pole.

You may be asking yourself "Why the hell would NASA do this?"

Answer: It's to search for water in space.

Scientists intend to examine the debris created by the impact/explosion of the missile to see if there will be any tracers of ice, or water vapor.  NASA has made attempts in the past using Radars to track this sort of thing and have not had much luck.

If NASA has any success with the LCROSS mission, this could expedite lunar exploration.

There is a video simulation that can be watched at NASA's LCROSS website.

You can also watch the LCROSS launch live which will be happening 3:15AM PDT on October 9th 2009.



Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Words cannot describe what the hell is going on in this video

It's amazing some of the stuff you can come across surfing the internet...  I really don't know what to say about this video.  The sheer randomness of it was enough for me to actually take the time to link it here.

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Source: AlexKovas on YouTube

Monday, September 21, 2009

Surprise, surprise, California CRV tax rate going up and applying to more packaging

[caption id="attachment_2292" align="alignright" width="164" caption="CA is most likely to raise the CRV tax because of the legislation pulling money out of the account to spend elsewhere."]CA is most likely to raise the CRV tax because of the legislation pulling money out of the account to spend elsewhere.[/caption]

The John & Ken Show on KFI AM 640 revealed  September 15th about the California Redemption Value going up.  Chuck DeVore, an assemblyman in Orange County came on the show to clarify what changes are going into effect.

Basically the bill is going to be increasing the CRV deposit on all sodas, and now the bill will also apply to Juice containers, among other similar containers. The bill is expected to rake in another $2 billion dollars next year.

  • Expands CA's version of the bottle deposit

  • Bill has been expanded to Vegetable, Fruit, Rice, Soy and Milk containers

  • Increased the fee to the manufacturers that produce these products from 4 to 5 cents for the smaller containers, and from 9 to 10 cents for the larger (20-24oz sized) containers...Which of course the manufacturers aren't going to eat the costs, so that's passed on to us.

  • Due to the complexity of this bill, a lot of CA republican legislators were divided when it came to the passing of this bill

  • The reasoning behind the rate going up is because for the past few years, the CA legislators decided that pulling half a billion dollars from the California Redemption Rate using this money for other things including stuff having to do with greenhouse gas reductions, 22 million to the local conservation core, as well as the general fund.

  • The money for the CRV account was originally supposed to go to the system recycle those products.

  • Due to the deficit of the CRV account, CA legislators feel that they need to up the CRV cost of consumers to get back money lost from the outside spending.

As a resident of California, this sort of shit pisses me off.  For starters, we're paying extra money towards a program with the idea that this CRV money is actually being used to run the system to recycle those products.  Apparently not.  Secondly, John & Ken did bring up a valid point: by increasing the value you get back from the cans, it provides you (the customer) more incentive to spend the time to turn in those cans to a recycling center to get your money back;  however they don't want you to do that because they don't get the money when you yourself take the time recycle your cans.  They want you to throw them out in the recycled trash that gets picked up every week... That's how they make their money.

The program is flawed.


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Never has a game like Uncharted: Drake's Fortune pissed me off so much in my life.

Well, after spending literally 4 hours on the last chapter of Uncharted: Drake's Fortune "Showdown" where you have a stand off on the cargo ship, apparently the last boss isn't killable... No matter what I try... Bullets didn't seem to have any effect, nor trying to physically hit him.  I just wanted to beat the god damn game... But after 4 frustrating hours of this bullshit I was fed up; I could not rip that game out of my PS3 fast enough to fling that god damn Bluray disc.

I must say after destroying that game, it was very satisfying.  It's too bad I didn't capture the moment on video.

Ironically, after I destroyed it, my friend Marc told me that there was a bug with the latest version of the PS3 firmware involving this game... That explains everything.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Sprint now offering customers unlimited mobile calls regardless of what network you may be calling


Yesterday Sprint sent out an email to all their premiere customers (anybody whom pay more then $60 per month) saying tomorrow's announcement is going to be BIG.  Yesterday I was reading around on the PreCentral forums, and the rumors were that Sprint was going be offering exactly what they announced today: Unlimited mobile-to-mobile.  Meaning regardless of whose cell phone you call, your minutes won't be counted against you.

This is a pretty bold move on Sprint's part.  I'd be curious to see how the other cell providers react and if they make any changes on their end to counter this.  It's hard to argue that Sprint's plans suck, as they've always offered the most they can, at the lowest price.  Despite Sprint having the best plans, you can't argue that their coverage is the best.  Verizon definitely takes the trophy in having the best coverage, but that's not really an issue for Sprint customers as we can roam through the Verizon network at no additional cost (depending on what plan you have).

Regardless, the announcement from my carrier comes as good news to me as 99.9% of calls I make are to my friends cell phones.

Thank you Sprint.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The cool way to drink water

Mr. Kitty here is apparently having difficulty drinking water from a faucet.

[flashvideo file= /]

YouTube video courtesy from: HolaKenty

Sunday, September 6, 2009

News stories when there is no other news to talk about

I can't imagine this being being the highlight of anybody's career reporting on a story such as this:

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What you didn't see on the Blizzcon Pay Per View or Online Stream

Felicia Day was asked "Does the carpet match the curtain?" and doesn't know what it means. The panelist to the right explains it to her and she goes into shock. Panelists add more confusion as Felicia attempts to reorganize her thoughts resulting in more hilarity.

This footage wasn't shown on the official stream (nor the panel itself).

[flashvideo file= /]

Video recorded by ebonite45 on YouTube.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Blizzcon 2009

Finally managed to get up these damn photos... The joy of bulk resizing.

[nggallery id=13]

Friday, August 14, 2009

Apple Inc. are a bunch of anti-competitive hypocrits.

AT&T, Apple don't want the competition from Google

There has been a lot of controversy lately with Apple, Google and AT&T.  Here's what went down a few weeks ago:

Google had submitted an application to the iTunes store for their 'Google Voice' service, which essentially allows you to better manage the way people communicate with you.  Basically what it does for you is it acts as a centralized service that forwards calls depending on who the person is that's calling you.  Say for instance you have a land line, cell phone, and a work phone; you can assign groups within Google Voice to screen these people, and forward the calls to one or all of your lines.

Example #1: Say your co-worker calls your Google phone number, you can tell Google to forward that call ONLY to your work phone.

Example #2: If your friend calls you, you can have Google Voice ring both your home phone, and your cell phone at the same time.

The idea is really neat.  On top of being a call forwarding service, it allows you to send out SMS messages at no cost, as well as listen to your voicemail online.  The other cool feature of Google Voice is it can automatically transcribe out voicemails left for you and email/text you the message.  The speech to text conversion isn't perfect, but it works well enough for you to tell what the message is.

If you'd like more information about Google Voice check out their 'About' page.

In any event, Apple claimed the Google Voice application was denied because it duplicates what the iPhone can already do.  The application rejection has caused major backlash against Apple because of the application process.  Not only was the official Google Voice application revoked, but every other 3rd party application using Google voice was pulled as well.

AT&T made a statement claiming they had nothing to do with the rejection of the Google Voice application.  I personally find this hard to believe because AT&T in the past has forced Apple and developers of certain applications not to allow access through the AT&T network.  Skype is a perfect example.  Skype only works via wifi.  SlingPlayer is another application that AT&T demanded not to work over their network; like Skype, SlingPlayer is restricted to use via wifi only.

This isn't the first time legitimate applications have been rejected.  Nobody but Apple understands the application approval process.  Earlier this year, Google had another application, Google Latitude rejected as well.  This application essentially allowed you to share your current location with your friends using the phones GPS.  This also enabled your friends to do the same, even if they had a different phone.  Nobody quite understands Apple's reasoning for denying this application, but the approval process has reached a point where it's becoming blatantly anti-competitive.

Now here's why Apple is hypocritical:

Apple's CEO Steve Jobs pleaded with the major music labels and the RIAA to abolish DRM that's included with their music.  He argued that ultimately that the music industry needed to be more "open" (DRM free).  And now just a year and a half later, Apple is doing the opposite themselves.  They're controlling every aspect of iTunes. They restrict direct syncing with other devices other then Apple products, forcing other companies to have to develop plug-ins that allow their devices to sync with Apple's software.

Why have a restriction like this?  Why not open iTunes up so that any device can sync through it?  I would expect if anything, that it would increase revenues for Apple.  As the process of purchasing music is so simple, I would think  people would be inclined to purchase music through the iTunes store.  Apple currently has the largest selection of music to offer for sale.  I can't imagine it would impact the sales of iPods that much.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Things that Piss Me Off

Coming soon is a video series that I've been planning to put up on the site regarding things that I point out that would make our lives better if we didn’t have to deal with them.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Gold Farming now illegal in China

[caption id="attachment_2173" align="alignright" width="200" caption="China's Government has deemed Gold Farming Illegal"]China's Government has deemed Gold Farming Illegal[/caption]

The Chinese government has put out a ban on gold farming, now making it illegal to trade virtual currency for real money.

It's estimated that 80-85% of gold farmers are located within China, which would majorly impact the gold farming industry.  In 2008, the virtual currency in China exceeded several billion yuan last year, which grew at a rate of 20% annually.

The government claimed the ban was justified because it's there to stop gambling and other illegal online activities.  China's Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Commerce said "The virtual currency, which is converted into real money at a certain exchange rate, will only be allowed to trade in virtual goods and services provided by its issuer, not real goods and service."

It's not like it's incredibly hard now to earn gold in World of Warcraft...


The Pirate Bay ship sprung a leak, the hole cannot be patched, the ships going down...

[caption id="attachment_2156" align="alignright" width="250" caption="The Pirate Bay will be changing soon... And probably not for the good."]The Pirate Bay is transitioning...[/caption]

I'm sad to say, that the Pirate Bay will be changing very soon.  And probably not for the good.

The Pirate Bay (TPB), launched on November 21, 2003, and has been the pinnacle website to go to for your needs.  Nearly everything you could ever want has always been available to download.  Music, Porn, TV Shows, Movies, cracked programs, console games, PC/Mac (lol Mac) games.

The Pirate Bay has had its fair share of legal threats, none of which they took seriously.  They've received threats from Microsoft, Apple, SEGA, EA, Dreamworks, Warner Bros, the MPAA, and the RIAA.  Their responses to these companies has always been something like this:
Actually, being in different countries (even on different continents) means that we don't have the same laws here.  You know, in Sweden, it's still legal to do a lot of things. Elks can have sex with each other without being prosecuted for instance. And people are allowed to copy.  It's quite natural, both of them, don't you think?

They announced in late November 2008 that they had reached over 25 million unique peers, and approximately 3.6 million registered users.

On April 17, 2009, the founders were sued by the MPAA and IFPI in the Swedish courts, and were forced to pay 3.6 million in damages.  They tried to appeal the case mainly due to the fact that the judge hearing the case, Tomas Norström had connections to national and international pro-copyright lobby groups but the courts deemed him unbiased and therefore there would be no retrial.

On June 30, 2009, they announced on their blog that there is a good chance they will be bought out for 7.8 million dollars by a Swedish advertising company called the "Global Gaming Factory X AB."  They also said:
If the new owners  screw around with the site, nobody will use it.  That's the biggest insurance one can have the site will be run in the way we all want to.

That comment doesn't bode well for their future.  I have seen this type of situation before, and frankly these buyouts never end up for the good of the users.  A company putting up that kind of cash will definitely be driven by pure profit, and will most definitely change the idea & concept of the Pirate Bay into something different then what it is now.  Remember Napster?  ...Yeeeaah.

Farewell The Pirate Bay, it was fun being on-board while the waters were calm, but it looks like I'll be jumping ship elsewhere.


Monday, June 29, 2009

Accuser of Michael Jackson molesting him admits he wasn't molested

[caption id="attachment_2145" align="alignright" width="171" caption="Evan Chandler, (a current picture) claimed Michael Jackson molested him."]Evan Chandler, testified claiming he was molested by Michael Jackson[/caption]

Seeing as nearly every news site, blog, MySpace, and Facebook page on the internet had the death of the Michael Jackson story plastered all over it I didn't feel like I needed to repeat the news here.

The story I feel that everybody should realize is the fact that Michael Jackson wasn't as crazy as some portrayed him to be...

We've all heard about the molestation charges against Jackson and how he liked little boys.  Well turns out, Jackson didn't like them that much... Well, in a sick type of way.

After Jackson's death, one particular kid whom testified against him for molestation finally comes out and tells the truth...

I don't want to put all the hate towards just Evan, his father also played a significant role in this molestation case.  In fact, this father is most likely the main culprit here.

His father Jordan Chandler, had Evan tell a psychiatrist and police that Jackson had engaged in numerous sexual acts, including oral.  In addition, he also gave a detailed description of what Jackson's genitals looked like.  Evan Chandler was 13 at the time when testifying  in 1993.

Eventually the case was settled.  Jackson paid $22 million leaving his reputation forever tarnished.

That accusation caused major strain for Jackson driving Jackson to taking painkillers which led to his addiction.
I never meant to lie and destroy Michael Jackson but my father made me to tell only lies.  Now I can't tell Michael how much I'm sorry and if he will for give me."

Well buddy if you had some fucking backbone to stand up against your dad, you could have just told the truth and avoided this whole fiasco from the start.  Instead you let greed take you over.

The least you could do now is donate the remainder of that settlement money (assuming you haven't spent it all) to his "Heal the World Foundation" charity.


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Apparently PETA has a problem with Obama swapping flies

[caption id="attachment_2130" align="alignright" width="275" caption="A photoshopped picture I did of President Obama holding the 'Peta approved' Katcha Bug product."]A photoshopped picture of Obama holding the 'Peta approved' catcher[/caption]

If you're one that spends like 80 hours a day (despite that not being physically possible) watching videos online, you might have seen the infamous Obama fly swat video.

Despite Obama having awesome ninja skills taking care of that fly, apparently now PETA has a problem with him swatting them.  Vice President of PETA, Bruce Friedrich said "We support giving insects the benefit of the doubt.  We'd prefer brushing flies away rather then killing them."

Yesterday afternoon (June 17th 2009) PETA sent Obama over a Katcha Bug, a device that traps insects and allows your free them.  They hope that Obama will use this catcher should the occasion arise again.

All I can say is that this organization is fucking INSANE to ask for such oddball requests.  These guys must literally sit on their asses all day and think (to a point beyond rationality) about what can we do to infuriate people.  I mean seriously... They're fucking FLIES... They spread around bacteria and disease.  Who the fuck cares the flies well-being?  What stupid shit.  I think somebody ought to release a swarm of flies inside the PETA offices and see what their true reaction would be.

What dumb fucks...

If you haven't you didn't see the video it's here you go:

[flashvideo file= /]


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Palm Pre Video review coming soon!

[caption id="attachment_2118" align="aligncenter" width="428" caption="A happy Palm Pre user"]A happy Palm Pre user[/caption]

Yes indeed I bought the Palm Pre phone... And I must say it's exactly as I expected it to be... For me it's a significant upgrade from my Blackberry Curve 8330.  The main reason for the switch was that I wanted something I can keep with me at all times, and be able to view websites as they should be viewed, and not some "mobile version" of the website.  I'll have a video review of the phone up with the specifics on the site hopefully within the week.

Stay tuned...

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Matrix Online to officially shut down July 31 '09

A developer (according to his forum rank) for the Matrix Online that goes by the name 'Warlus' on the Sony Online Forums made an announcement about The Matrix Online officially shutting down.

On the forums he had this to say:

In May 2004, I embarked upon a journey. I decided to take the red pill in a big way—I became the online community lead for The Matrix Online. Later that year, many of you joined me as you jacked in for the first time. It was a brand new world—a vision of online games that didn’t involve elves, spaceships, or dragons. We became part of the Matrix storyline; living our own adventures in the world painted by the movies.

It seems not so long ago I was jumping into Mara Central and going toe-to-toe with other devs at E3 2004. I had no idea this journey would take me to a whole different company, managing a major revision of the game, and my first producing gig. “Long, strange trip” doesn’t describe the half of it.

Now we’ve seen how far the rabbit hole goes and it’s time to wake up from that dream (or go back to sleep, depending how you look at it). On July 31, 2009, we will be jacking out for the last time. It’s a bittersweet moment for everyone involved with the game; as a player or as a developer.

It has been a good run. Where many games have fizzled out before or shortly after launch, by August we will have lived on in our home at SOE for more than 4 years. To this day, I have never worked with a community as dedicated as The Matrix Online community.

I’ll be at Fan Faire this year showing The Agency and hanging out with any redpills making the trip. The past couple years have been a blast, so I hope to see some of you there again..

The team will also be whipping up an end-of-the-world event. It won’t be quite the same as having over 100 developers in the game as Agents like when we ended beta, but we have 4 years of tricks up our sleeve. It’ll be a chance to revisit all the things that make MxO the memorable experience it is. And how could we pull the plug without crushing everyone’s RSI just one more time?

I have a lot of fond memories from my years working on MxO. We’ve had a good time in the Machines’ little playground and will be sad to see it end. I hope everyone enjoys the last few months of playing The Matrix Online.

See you on the other side.

Daniel “Walrus” Myers

The Matrix Online officially launched in North America on March 22nd 2005.  The game was originally developed by Monolith Productions, which six months later was bought by Sony Online Entertainment (SOE).  The idea for The Matrix Online was to have in-game events where the employees would play Agents online.  After Sony bought the rights to the game, they ceased all in-game events and all that remained of the MMO left was a generic bland and boring MMO.

According to one former beta tester of the game, he said:
"It felt like a half-assed Anarchy Online set in The Matrix universe.   The mission system was identical for the most part, the abilities were less interesting and there wasn't much diversity in the environments.  It did have a wonderful (but small) community, something I can really appreciate.  I wasn't a fan of the game, but I feel kinda bad for the people who DO enjoy it."

I can't personally give any opinion about The Matrix Online as I never played it, because it was rare to read anything positive about the game.  The only related Matrix game I've played was "The Path of Neo" which I thought was god awful.

It's always sad news when you hear about any online game shutting down.  Another MMO that died recently was Shadowbane, which finally shut down May 1st.

[caption id="attachment_2098" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="In-game screenshot of The Matrix Online"]matrix-online[/caption]


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Apologies for the lack of updates

[caption id="attachment_2076" align="alignright" width="230" caption="My Draenei Mage: Mirgy.  This is actually my character with the equipped gear."]My Draenei Mage: Mirgy[/caption]

I wanted apologize for the lack of updates on the site.  The reason for my absence is I've been so sidetracked with WoW.  I got fed up with playing a Death Knight because everybody in the guild I'm in has a DK or a DK alt.  The only reason why I rolled a DK to begin with was to avoid having to level from 1-80, as DK's get a headstart at level 55.

I kinda knew when I first leveled my Death Knight that there was going to be alot of competition because lets face it — DKs are the flavor of the year class.  With everybody being a DK, it made getting into groups (PVE & PVP) somewhat difficult.

As a result, I stopped playing WoW for some time as I was bored with my DK.  As somebody whom has played a DK since the launch of the Lich King expansion, I can say with confidence that DKs to this day are STILL very overpowered.  I found the play style of PVPing with a DK is boring because there is little to no strategy involved, you can pretty much faceroll any class 1 vs 1.

At some point I nearly gave up leveling my mage.  Despite Blizzard making leveling up easier, it still SUCKS major ass leveling in classic WoW (levels 1-58).  Once I reached the expansion areas, I was able to blast through levels 58-80 in a matter of a week and a half.

I always had a thing for mages, my very first character in WoW was an undead mage named Mirgy.  I've always enjoyed the strategy involved PVPing with Frost talents.  Blizzard has done a very good job with the frost talent tree - especially since they changed the Blizzard spell where it now can crit.  Every time I cast that spell and see numbers spamming my screen, I squeal like a little girl does at a Jonas Brothers concert.

The sad thing is the mage I leveled already outgears (at least in PVE) my DK in gear.  That's what happens when you don't have to compete against 30 other people with the same class as you.

I kinda regret using my name Mitalis for the DK, as that character is no longer my main.  I used to use the name Mirgy alot in the past, in fact, the first character I created in WoW was an Undead Mage named Mirgy.  I wish there was I way I could easily swap the names and name my mage Mitalis, but you can't always get your way.

In any event, now you know where all my spare time has been.  Leveling a character from scratch to 1-80 is no quick task.  But now it's been done I'll have more free time to post again.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Palm Pre release date & price finally announced

[caption id="attachment_2061" align="alignright" width="180" caption="All I can say is It's about time!"]All I can say is It's about time![/caption]

All I have to say about this is: "ABOUT FUCKING TIME!"

Palm & Sprint both released their own Press Releases announcing the pricing of the phone as well as the release date which is expected to be available June 6th.

New customers (those that are not with Sprint) will be able to obtain the phone for $199 with a 2 year contract.  Suggested retail price of the phone will be $549.99.

For those who are curious as to how the breakdown works see below:

  • You got $150 taken off that price with a 2 year contract

  • An instant rebate of $100

  • A mail-in rebate of $100

Making the price of the phone $199 when all is said and done.

Those with Sprint already (like myself) will have to wait at least 1 year through their contract before they can see any rebates or discounts.  In my case, I'd have to wait until August 1st 2009 if I were to get the Pre ad a discounted price.  This of course would also mean that I would have to extend my contract for another 2 years.

I'm kinda torn here.  Right now I'm currently paying roughly $80/month for my current plan, which is the lowest plan you can get with the Palm Pre.

My plan consists of the following:

  • 450 Anytime Minutes

  • Unlimited data including text, pics, etc..

  • Free nights/weekends

  • Other common included features, (voicemail, caller ID, etc)

That is $69.99 for the plan alone.  I also have phone insurance which adds an additional $7/month seeing as smartphones (like the one I have now) are pretty expensive.  You throw in federal & state taxes on top of that and the total comes out to about $80/month.

I didn't realize how much money I'm spending for my phone. I ran the numbers $80/month x 24 (months) which gave me 1,920.  This shocked me as I thought that the total number was going to be lower so I ran the numbers again to double check and apparently that's what I'm paying for 2 years of phone service.  That's alot of money.

The thing that kinda tears me is I really don't want to extend my contract a second time as I just renewed it again last August when I got my Blackberry.  As much as I like my Blackberry, there's a few things about it that prevent me from using the phone as much as I would like to use it (namely the shitty browser), which is why I want to get the Pre ASAP.

I think in the long run it'd be cheaper to just pay full price for the Palm Pre and let my contract run its course.  The way I see it, it's $80/month x 12 which comes out to $960 + $549 (for the Palm Pre) = $1509.  That why Sprint won't have me by the balls for another 2 years.

Initially I had contemplated just paying the ETF (Early Termination Fee) and just signing up as a new customer, but that would put my existing phone number into a 6 month hold where it couldn't be migrated or used (even by me on a new account) and I really don't want to deal with that mess.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Mexican Car Crash

...How is this even possible?

[flashvideo file= width=480 height=320 /]

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What's been happening with the Palm Pre?

[caption id="attachment_2027" align="alignright" width="200" caption="We're 4 out of 6 months before the end of the 1st half of this year, and we STILL don't know of the price of the product or an actual release date."]We're 4 out of 6 months before the end of the 1st half of this year, and we STILL don't know of the price of the product or an actual release date.[/caption]

Not much news has surfaced since I first mentioned my interest in the Palm Pre back on February 20th.  Here we are 4 months later with 2 months to go, and we STILL don't have a price or a set release date on it.

This fact alone is not only frustrating, but completely ridiculous.  What is the hold up?  When is it coming out?  Do you guys know of an expected price yet?  Both sides (Palm & Sprint) are playing dumb with "We don't have a price or know when it's coming out." This is starting to piss off a lot of people (like me) who have been following this phone since its announcement at CES.  Apple at least had the courtesy of providing a release date when they announced their iPhone.

We expected Palm or Sprint to make an announcement at CTIA with some worthy news about the Pre.  All that was announced at CTIA were the plans you need to use the phone.  Basically an Everything Data phone or a Simply Everything plan.

There have been several rumor dates floating around.  A while back people predicted that the phone would be out my March 1st since Sprint traditionally releases their phones on a Sunday.  Then April 15th (tax day) for whatever reason, then April 30th. thinks the release date will be May 17th, but now are having second thoughts about that.  As days wane on towards June 30th, I'm thinking we're going to see it released the last week of June.

I can't help but think at this point that maybe they're laughing or mocking us?  I've been reading some of Palm's posts on their official blog and on their official Twitter profile and some of their responses to the community have been kinda dumb.

Just recently Palm showed the Pre to Molly McAleer, some chick who does her own show called The Molls Show.  I'm guess that Palm showed her the phone to get her to advertise it?  Despite Molly looking kinda cute, ultimately the video she did was pointless... I'll do you a favor and save you 2 minutes of your life: She reveals to the world in an emo sort of way that she "secretly" has a crush on the Pre.

The only thing that's worthy of  news since February 20th is that the Palm Pre will support emulation for the old Palm O/S applications.  If I were to make an educated guess, it's to at least let those that still use the old Palm devices the ability to use them while uring the developers of those old applications to port their software over to Web O/S.

As I'm writing this, has confirmed with their sources that UPS is shipping back the finalized phones from China to the U.S.  Apparently these phones have the final ROM flash loaded on so they're ready to be sold at launch.  The question is WHEN?  And how much?

It's hard to say if Sprint and Palm are trying to keep the hype with the Pre going.  Sprint launched an ad campaign on the phone, ads have been found on Facebook, the homepage of and other popular websites, but the ads don't reveal anything about the price or a release date.  How can you advertise something without including a price?   Just showing pictures of a phone with stupid slogans like "The new Palm Pre Only from Sprint.  And only on the Now Network" doesn't tell any of us anything we'd like to know.

Update: officially killed of May 17th, they're guessing the release date will be June 7th.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Tracking the Swine Flu

With the recent outbreak of this Swine Flu it'd be a good idea to see a visual of where the Swine Flu is spreading. So far at least 20 people in Mexico have died from the H1N1 Swine Flu.  In the U.S. there are confirmed cases of people that are infected with it, but nobody has yet died from it.

Here's a marker legend for the map below:

  • Pink markers are suspect

  • Purple markers are confirmed

  • Those markers with a dot represent the individual(s) are still alive

  • Yellow markers are negative

This map automatically updates to reflect upon any new cases of the Swine Flu.  Keep in mind - the pink markers are suspect, meaning the flu these people have is still being determined.  The purple markers without dots are those that have actually died from the H1N1 Swine Flu... THOSE markers are cause for concern.

Update: It looks like the death toll in Mexico has now surpassed 150 deaths.

Friday, April 24, 2009

You think you hate Time Warner? Lets throw some fuel in that fire...

[caption id="attachment_2005" align="alignright" width="200" caption="Brian Bowman, the Director of Public Affairs for the city of Wilson, N.C., which runs the service, is fighting to keep state government from killing the competition in the area."]Brian Bowman, the Director of Public Affairs for the city of Wilson, N.C., which runs the service, is fighting to keep state government from killing the competition in the area.[/caption]

Lets say you lived in a city where they directly offered you a service where you could purchase 10/10Mbps internet, 81 TV channel and phone service.  Then you'd have a competitor like Time Warner offer a similar package but with fewer channels (not including Cartoon Network, Disney, The Science Channel, ESPNU, ESPN, or ESPN classic) and a lower upload speed for your internet.

The city offers their package (called Greenlight) for $99/month, and Time Warner offers theirs for $137.95/month.

Obviously any rational person is going to flock towards the $99 package the city offers.  Well Time Warner instead of trying to release a more competitive package against the city, has decided to lobby to get the state government to pass legislation to try and destroy its competition.  The sad thing is Time Warner may just get their wish.

North Carolina's State Senate proposed Senate bill 1004 & House Bill 1252 that would prevent local services from getting funding under the broadband portion of the national stimulus bill, but attempt to cripple or ban the local service all together.

In the city of Wilson, Brian Bowman is the Director of Public Affairs.  He recently launched a blog and said:
I have a 10Mbps up/down connection at my house.  Can't get half that from the cable company.  I buy it directly from the city of Wilson.  After less then a year of residential service, almost 3,000 Wilson citizens are subscribing to Wilson's fiber optic network.  Local businesses in town can get speeds up to 1Gbps.

If the cable & phone companies really want a level playing field, they'd open their books like like we do in the spirit of open meetings and open records law.  They don't want a level playing field, they just want to be the only team on the field.

Bottom line - these companies are using your state lawmakers to protect monopolies.  It was wrong in 2007 when a similar bill died in the house and it's wrong today.

According to a local newspaper, the City of Wilson initially approached Time Warner with a request for faster internet service for their residents, and the company refused, as it would cut into their profits.  So the city took it upon themselves to build their own network and sell the service to its citizens at a fraction of the cost.

I have to wonder how lawmakers can legally get away with trying to pass bills like these when they clearly seem anti-competitive.  The only way to prevent this type of thing from happening is to recall these corrupt people as clearly they don't hold any interest for their people.  The two senators sponsoring Senate bill 1004 are David W. Hoyle & Debbie A. Clary.  Their contact information can be found by simply clicking on their names.  For the house version of this bill, there are far too many people sponsoring this bill, just click on the House Bill 1252 link and look at the sponsors.

Seriously this type crap makes me sick...  If you're a resident of North Carolina, contact your House & Senate members and voice your disapproval.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pirate Bay Admins found guilty, but the website remains online

[caption id="attachment_1998" align="alignright" width="325" caption="Looks like The Pirate Bay will remain online. For now..."]Looks like The Pirate Bay will remain online. For now...[/caption]

So as you've probably read everywhere on the internet about The Pirate Bay crew, all four of the defendants were found guilty...  Yet The Pirate Bay remains online.

Why you ask?  Because there was no injunction in that trial specifically said "Shut down the website."  The trial was directed at the TPB (The Pirate Bay) crew finding them guilty of the copyright infringement − not the website.

If the MPAA & IFPI want the website shut down, they'll need to file another trial for exactly that.  John Kennedy, head of the IFPI said that's what they plan to do.

Lets be realistic here: if you manage to successfully shut down The Pirate Bay, what makes you think that's going to stop piracy?  All it's going to cause people to retaliate against them by creating another 100 websites like the Pirate Bay.  Essentially what the MPAA & IFPI are doing is putting their hands into a bees hive, shaking it, and not realizing that they're going to create a swarm.

It's exactly the same issue that the U.S. Government has been dealing with when it comes to the "War on Drugs." Pot may be technically illegal, but you can't stop everybody from using it.  You really can't win this battle.

I'm personally keeping a close eye on this story as new details unfold.  Stay tuned.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Disneyland 2009

A visit to Disneyland - April 18th, 2009. Went with friends: Pio, John, Jobe, Kristin & Miranda.  Pio's company rented out a bunch of rooms at the Disney Grand Hotel, so we took advantage of that and spent our Saturday at Disneyland and California Disney.

[nggallery id=10]

Friday, April 17, 2009

Swedish Courts - The Pirate Bay: "Guilty"

[caption id="attachment_1986" align="alignright" width="223" caption="With the four defendents of The Pirate Bay found guilty? Does this mean the end of it? ...Probably not."]With the four defendents of The Pirate Bay found guilty?  Does this mean the end of it?  ...Probably not.[/caption]

Honestly this verdict didn't come as a surprise to me.  The IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) as well as every association across the globe that has their copyrighted materials illegally distributed went up against the Pirate Bay crew.

The verdict announced April 17th claims that four defendants:

  • Peter Sunde (alias: brokep)

  • Fredrik Neij (alias: TiAMO)

  • Gottfrid Svartholm (alias Anakata)

  • Carl Lundström

All guilty, and each of them must pay must pay $905,000 in damages.  ($3,620,000 total) What's interesting is the Swedish court did not believe the music and motion industry suffered that much in damages, yet they ordering the four defendants to pay it regardless.

The judge claimed that the four defendants were aware of the copyrighted material being shared on their websites, and worked as a team to help distribute it.   This logic is what the court chose to take and based their verdict on that.

Peter Sunde said that he did not expect any jail time, and claimed that the verdict was 'unreal.'  When he was asked about the fines he said: "We can't pay and we wouldn't pay if we could.  If I would have money I would rather burn everything I owned."

Does this verdict mean the end of the line for them?  Nope...  There will be appeals which will stagnate the final outcome.  Both sides have until May 9th 2009 to file their appeal to Sweden's higher court.

Peter Sunde went on saying that this verdict does not mean the end of The Pirate Bay.  The defendants were on trial − not the site.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Palm Pre have a confirmed release date, but we're still in the dark

[caption id="attachment_1972" align="alignright" width="279" caption="Natali De Conte, part of CBS & CNET's Buzz Out Loud knows when the Palm Pre's launch date is"]Natali De Conte, part of CBS & CNET's Buzz Out Loud knows when the Palm Pre's launch date is[/caption]

Ever since Palm showed off their prototype Pre phone at CES, I've been anxiously waiting for this phone to come out.  While Palm did say expect to it be out before the "first half of this year" apparently Sprint & Palm have a confirmed date to launch the phone.

What pisses me off is if this launch date has already set in stone, then why all the secrecy?

On CNET's podcast: Buzz Out Loud, (episode 951) Natali De Conte confirmed she knew when the release date was, but had to sign a NDA (Non Disclosure Agreement) with Palm.  Natali aside from being one of the hosts of Buzz Out Loud is a frequent correspondent for the CBS Early Show.  Palm wanted to feature the Pre on the Early Show, but like with any major network, daily shows require planning in advance...

So if a date for the Palm Pre has been set, then why are we still in the dark about it?  From all the online video demos I've seen, the device looked pretty polished (complete).  The Pre phone has an emulator for Palm old O/S, it already has 3rd party software available, (Sprint TV, Pandora, Google Maps, etc...) and have started inviting developers to create new applications for the device.

Just tell us the release date already... And the F***ing price while you're at it!


Update: Palm responded to Natali claiming the release date she was given is no longer valid.  So now she doesn't know either... Wonderful.

Time Warner customers: REJOICE! The company is backing down on metered-billing

[caption id="attachment_1980" align="alignright" width="180" caption="Finally! Time Warner is backing out of putting internet caps on their customers."]Finally! Time Warner is backing out of putting internet caps on their customers.[/caption]

You know, since I started this website, there have been at least 3 stories in the last year that I've posted on my site which became pointless the day I posted them.  Why you ask?  Because apparently I have the worst timing in the world when it comes to these things...

I just posted an article earlier today about the backlash Time Warner has been getting over their attempt to put a cap on their customers.  Their attempts to meter their customers in Texas were postponed becuase they couldn't get any volunteers to test it out.

Any news story you'd read online about it ridiculed Time Warner.  Hell even a senator was pretty disgusted about this.  Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY).

The opposition has been astounding.  There were several websites like, Facebook groups (requires a Facebook account to view), and several different forums where people were voicing their opinions.

Well it appears that Time Warner is going to back down... For now, though they don't seem very happy about it.


Time Warner stalls capped internet caps in Texas over public rejection

[caption id="attachment_1961" align="alignright" width="180" caption="Time Warner's plans for metered bandwidth in Texas have been shattered... For now."]Time Warner's plans for metered bandwidth have been shattered... For now.[/caption]

It looks like Time Warner has been forced to stall their internet cap usage testing in the Texas cities Austin and San Antonio for the time being.  Surprisingly they have had trouble finding customers. </sarcasm>  The company had plans to start these tests on the 13th of April, but due to the underwhelming response they have postponed the metered-testing until October.

This was the pricing structure Time Warner would've made available for those volunteering for the metered-bandwidth testing:

  • $15/month for 1GB ($2 extra for any overage)

  • $75/month for 100GB ($1 extra for any overage)

As I reiterated in my prior posting, Time Warner wants to start tiered pricing to prevent their customers from using the net to stream video because it poses a threat to their cable TV business.  Yet their excuse (which they're still sticking to) is that they need help in raising money to fix their infrastructure, because the internet demand is rising at a rate that would supposedly outpace it.  So putting cap their users fixes their infrastructure?

While the metered-testing may have been delayed in Texas, apparently it has started in Rochester, NY and Greensboro, NC.  Frontier Communications, a competitor to Time Warner had plans to do the same thing with capping their customers; but due to public outrage they abandoned the idea.  Because of that decision, former Time Warner customers have started jumping ship to Frontier.  Ann Burr, a PR representative for Frontier in Rochester, NY told the Associated Press they have received hundreds of calls from Time Warner customers wanting to switch over. "I guess it has been a public relations crisis for Time Warner."


Saturday, April 11, 2009

Even more interesting news regarding Sprint, Blackberries and MMS

A user on the Crackberry Forums recently posted about how his Blackberry Curve phone was getting embedded pictures when receiving MMS.  For awhile a lot of people thought this user was trolling as other users were claiming this without providing us any evidence.

Well user asdf002 wasn't lying.  In fact he/she posted pictures as well as a YouTube video showing the embedded picture in the message.

Comes out user asdf002 has the Blackberry Curve 8330m.  You might be asking yourself what's new or different with this model vs the regular 8330 model?  Not much really.  The main differentiation is that the 8330m models use MEID (Mobile Equipment Identifier) instead of ESN (Electronic Serial Number).

With this 8330m, it enabled Sprint to easily identify the newer model blackberries and push out the service books that enabled incoming MMS.  Now granted this isn't "true MMS" as the pictures are still running through Sprint's picture mail servers.  User jverity on the BuzzAboutWireless forums said:
It is not True MMS.  It just gets delivered to the phone directly.  It is still going through a Pic Mail server.  This is provable by the fact that even those people who are getting direct delivery can still go to the pic mail site and see the message they just received.  The complaints I have gathered from all these threads are as follows, in what I think is the order of importance:

  1. Delivery method - Having to go to the website to pick up the MMS.

  2. Outages - When the pic mail servers are down (which happens way more often than other carrier's MMS outages) you still do not get your message.

  3. Delivery delay - Going through the pic mail servers delays reception between 30 seconds to 5 minutes when compared to any other carrier.

  4. Certain message types do not come through properly because of the way the pic mail server handles them.

  5. Certain images have their quality downgraded by the pic mail server, supposedly because it is trying to save storage space.

  6. Your media is stored indefinitely on a server that has been hacked before and there are still instructions out there on the internet on how to break in to other peoples accounts.

Regardless of the fact that it's not true MMS, it might as well be the same thing.  For me the important thing was actually receiving the pictures directly to your phone − without having to jump through hoops.

I posted on the BuzzAboutWireless forums asking if it were possible for us early adopters to have our phones SKU manually reactivated or refreshed on their network so that the network would see our phones the same way the 8330m phones but it doesn't seem possible .  Sprint employee halcyoncmdr replied to my question bascially saying "No that won't work" and gave his reason why:
No, the SKU itself on the new devices is different. The 8330m is entered into the system separately than the regular 8330. If you have an original 8330 then you will have what all the other 8330 users have. If you happen to have an 8330m then you get the newer experience receiving the picture directly because that is how the network sees it, separately from the original 8330s.

Despite people claiming that corporate customers won't be affected, the fact is they will be. If they are used to a specific system, changing that system will adversely affect them, even if you believe the Picture Mail system is inferior. Changing the system when they are used to it will change the way things work.

Lets be realistic here, if a corporation using Microsoft Windows discovers that their systems are vulnerable to some exploit, they wouldn't ignore it, they'd upgrade or patch their systems to avoid it.  The same rule should apply with the MMS changes here.  These changes most certainly would benefit the corporate customers in the long run; but I think what it comes down to is that Sprint doesn't want to devote anymore money or manpower then necessary dealing with the situation, seeing as they're hemorrhaging at this time.

With the backlash and endless threats Sprint has received from their Blackberry community regarding their shitty Picture Mail service, you can only pray they won't make the same mistake again.  The highly anticipated Palm Pre phone which is expected sometime before the 2nd quarter of this year claims it will have MMS capabilities but I have to wonder if that will actually be "true MMS" or not.  Seeing as Sprint has a reputation for leaving their customers high and dry, it doesn't look promising for the Pre community as well.

We shall see.