I Really Dislike This Branding Thing

This is a canned post, written before I left for Chicago two days ago. I get back tomorrow night, worry not! All right, it’s time for another rant. This time, it’s about brand labels. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but it seems that sometimes the label on a piece of clothing (or accessory; pretty much anything falls under this umbrella, actually — including electronics) is more important than the thing itself. It drives me crazy. Oftentimes I’ve noticed that “no-name” brands have better quality than the label does, at a lower cost. What’s up with that? I have never…

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Useless Apologies

This is a canned post, written before I left for Chicago yesterday. Apologies have their uses. When one makes a mistake, messes someone else up, causes harm to another person or someone else’s property, etc., it’s nice to be able to say you’re sorry. But apologies don’t extend, as far as I’m concerned, to events beyond the speaker’s control. Example When I was the other day, we first went to the wrong store (Best Buy has a lot of locations here in Minneapolis, the site of their corporate headquarters). I said it was the wrong store, but my mom (my…

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Researching Digital Voice Recorders

I’ve been having so much fun lately. Not really. Researching products, whether on the Internet (as I’ve been doing for the last few days) or in real life (which I’ve done in the past), is a pain. Specs for one company’s product are formatted completely differently from another’s, similar devices turn out to be completely different on close examination, etc. Bah! The backstory here is that I’ve been researching digital voice recorders. I have been thinking about getting one for a few months now, as a way of preserving all the stories my parents and grandparents tell (but only when…

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The Sins of the Few Cause the Punishment of the Many

Finally, I’ve decided to blog about this issue. It starts in elementary school, and continues on a larger and larger scale as we go through life. I’ll start off with an anecdote. The setting is a third-grade classroom (no, this is not a reference to Blue Eyes, Brown Eyes). The class is small, only about ten students. One of them is acting up. The teacher, in an effort to get him to behave, threatens to revoke the entire class’s recess period if he doesn’t settle down. What’s wrong with this? The actions of one student could result in the punishment…

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Profile Duplication Equals Time Wasted

With the explosion of social sites, Internet users can be asked to fill out, and keep updated, dozens of profiles all over the Web. For light surfers, who use maybe three sites (say, Digg, Twitter, and Facebook), keeping things up-to-date is simple. There are only three forms sites (Facebook has a bunch of different pages for its profiles) to visit when something changes. People like me, however, end up amassing a whole bunch of pages to update. Right now I think I’m somewhere between 25 and 50 profiles, plus countless sites and profiles-that-aren’t-for-sites that I am no doubt forgetting. That’s…

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Portable Computing

I really have no right to talk about this subject, as I have never actually done it. I thought it might make for a good hypothetical post, though, especially since I don’t have any other good ideas right now. What can I say, it’s on my mind. That’s because of where I was when I wrote this. I’m thinking about portable computing right now because I keep everything on my hard drive. Well, stuff that isn’t email or associated with a Web service. Applications and stuff all live on my computer. When I go somewhere else, I can’t get at…

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Microsoft Word’s Grammar Checker

Just in case you haven’t noticed, I generally like to hold my writing up to high standards. Perfect spellingg, Ccapitalization, punctuation, etc. are all things I aspire to. (Ending sentences with prepositions is fine by me, though. 😉 From all those feeds I subscribe to in Google Reader, one of them brought me an amusing screenshot that shows Microsoft Word’s grammar checker mid-mistake. I shared that item and it showed up in my FriendFeed, where my mother (who just started using the site) saw and commented on it. Incidentally, I just started sharing things in Google Reader in addition to…

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First Look: Alert Thingy for FriendFeed

It’s been a couple weeks since I last blogged about FriendFeed. Today is the perfect day to write about it again. This morning, an Adobe AIR client for FriendFeed was launched. I already use twhirl for my Twitter account, and have for weeks now. I don’t want to go back to the website; twhirl is that much better. The new FriendFeed client is refreshing, and a wonderful sidekick to twhirl. I do have a couple things to say about it in the aim of making it better. Alert Thingy, developed by howard/baines, is locked in a semi-transparent display mode. There…

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Email Not Reliable on One Server

Classmates, you can go direct to the webmail reload script if you’re interested. 🙂 Oh noes, I’z opening the of ! I got the idea for this post from the frequent outages I experienced from my school’s mail server in the past month or so. There hasn’t been one in the last few days, which is good, but doesn’t guarantee against more downing. So anyway, coming back to the computer after a meal break to find the email page’s tab headed with “Problem Loading Page…” started to become routine. “School email server’s down again? Oh well, check again in the…

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Microsoft, Lay Off Yahoo!

This is not a business analysis. I am not using any fancy tools or statistical programs to calculate what might happen if Microsoft acquires Yahoo!. All I’m writing is straight opinion, with some links to other posts I’ve read on the subject. First, I’ll cut to the chase: I do not want Yahoo! bought by Microsoft. Ever. End of story. Obviously not really, or else I would have just tweeted about this. 😉 I used to use only Microsoft products several years ago, back when the Internet was a new thing to me. At twelve, I didn’t really care what…

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