Kingston’s Got 16GB SD

How big is your SD card? I have a couple 2 GB cards (one for my camera, one for my PDA), and my dad has a 4 GB microSD for his new phone. Kingston has now introduced a 16 GB SD card, which will hold somewhere in the area of 6,000 photos from my 7 megapixel camera (extrapolating from the values I was given). For a paltry (ha!) $231, you, too, can have the biggest SD card on the planet. Given that the 2 GB cards I use now are about $30-$40, let’s do some math here. It takes eight…

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Customer Experience: Failed Equipment Etiquette

This topic is a bit of a stretch for me, but as my dad won’t write a guest post, I have to do this myself. The subject is an automated parking garage. This happened to us last night. The problem? The exit gate refuses to read the exit card. No big deal, right, just flip it over and try again. Sure. The thing just won’t take the ticket. Everything’s all pre-paid, so the only thing it has to do is eat a paper ticket and open the gate. But it won’t. So my dad hits the call button, right? He…

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UK Schools Advised Not to “Upgrade” to Vista, Office 2007

The British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (BECTA) has issued a report advising UK schools not to upgrade to either Windows Vista or Office 2007. Neither new release offers any must-have features over the previous release, and the $350 million deployment cost (only about 30% of that would go to Microsoft) just wouldn’t be justified by any significant gains. We already know that , being the worst operating system to come out of Redmond since Windows ME, but I haven’t written much about Office 2007 yet (I plan to rectify that in the next couple days). Needless to say, my…

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XKCD Feature: Bass

Ever get driven up the wall by annoying cars driving around that play their stereos at top volume with the bass turned all the way up? I know I do. The xkcd webcomic released a great strip the other day that I’ve been keeping at the top of my starred items in Google Reader (or at least trying to). I finally decided to blog about it. So, without further ado, here is Randall Munroe’s “Bass”: I really wish I could do that to some of the cars I encounter. Maybe he’ll lend me that machine now that it’s done being…

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Optimus Maximus: My Dream Keyboard

Yes, you’re reading that title right. I saw the Optimus Maximus in a Chris Pirillo blog post earlier today (more on that in a moment), went to the site, and now I want one. Thanks, Chris; something else to spend money on. Kidding! Problem is, I don’t have $500 $1,500* to spend on a keyboard. Actually, there are a few problems. The second one is the fact that I don’t really have occasion to use a separate keyboard; I have a laptop, and don’t usually use a proper table. Third, and finally, Chris Pirillo’s experience says I would probably not…

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Hitachi Gears Up for Huge Laptop Hard Drives

Hitachi has announced (PC World article) a 500 GB notebook hard drive, designed to fit the 2.5 inch form factor. Asus has pledged to be the first computer manufacturer to come out with a 1 TB notebook. I’m reeling. The computer I’m using now is a Gateway with a 40 GB hard disk. 500 GB of storage is 1,250% of what I have currently. One terabyte would be a whopping 2,500%. The mind boggles at the amount of storage we can make these days, and it’s not stopping. Despite the shock, I’m looking forward to the day when I’ll own…

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TSA Restricting Lithium Batteries Starting Tomorrow

I think someone at the Transportation Security Administration has been reading my posts about lithium-ion batteries. The Associated Press and C|NET reported a couple days ago that, starting January 1, 2008, travelers will no longer be allowed to transport lithium batteries (whether rechargeable or not) in checked baggage. There will also be restrictions on the number of spare batteries travelers can bring. The limit is determined by “equivalent lithium content” (ELC) measurements, which applies to both spare and installed batteries. Batteries up to eight grams ELC are permissible, as well as up to two spare batteries with up to 25…

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Software Don’ts (Short)

In the midst of all that , I came across a link to a great series on software don’ts, written by Joel Spolsky of Joel on Software. Despite the fact that they were written in 2000, I think they still apply. I’ll just post a link to the first part, and let you all follow or not at your leisure. The articles (what I’ve read so far) are great, and I myself have experienced a lot of what he talks about. Especially the “my code is messy” part. And the fact that it’s harder to read code than write it.…

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Whole Foods Makes Amazing Decision

Well, it wasn’t the whole chain, just one store, but it really makes one wonder what the world would be like if all companies (hey, just start with the airlines) had the same attitude. West Hartford, CT: A Whole Foods Market store’s computers go down during a systems upgrade. Rather than make customers wait until they’re fixed, everyone going through the checkout lines gets their groceries for free. An estimated $4,000 worth of merchandise was given away before the glitch was repaired. You can read more of the story at Courant.com (though it does have a small, completely-unrelated section at…

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Yuck! Proprietary USB Cables

Chris Pirillo makes a good point in this video. Before I say anything further, you should watch it: There, now that you’ve seen his ire, you can read my reasoning. Plenty of us know that proprietary anything is usually bad for the consumer. Proprietary data formats force us to use the same program (switching would be a pain — manual re-entry — because the software company didn’t make a converter or export function). Proprietary procedures mean patents, trademarks, copyrights, or whatever, and mean no two companies will necessarily do things the same way. And proprietary connectors lock in an accessory…

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