Sunday, March 20, 2005

It's so good. This has zero to do with computers, maybe a lot to do with high tech stuff. This product has to be a miracle of modern chemistry, it contains Dioctyl Sodium Sulfosuccinate. There I was in the Supermarket today, and I saw a new item. Sugar Free Hawaiian Punch "Fruit Juicy Red" drink mix, next to the zillion varieties of Kool Aid and Crystal Light. Add a pouch of the powder to 2 quarts of water, and (to me) it's 100% as good as the Hawaiian Punch of my teen age years.

Followup: Turns out it's not made by Hawaiian Punch, it's made by "Jel Sert", the folks who make Wylers drinks, which I always found inferior to other brands. Very Strange: Jel Sert makes this stuff for Mott's, which like Dr Pepper and Hawaiian Punch are all owned by Cadbury-Schweppes. Hawaiian Punch previously being owned by Del Monte and later, Proctor and Gamble.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

With computers it should be instantaneous : I keep being amazed at all the things that thanks to computers should be automatic and instantaneous, but are not: Shall I enumerate?:

1. Changing dsl providers. One has to apply to disconnect from first, sign up with second,
wait for installation. Can take over a week.
2. Changing Cellular Carriers. FCC said it should take 3 hours max. Often
it takes days.
3. Changing Registrars for an Internet Domain. Should be instantaneous, but at both ends
there are delays, then further delays for email forwarding and domain forwarding.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Hybrid Cars: With gasoline rushing past $2.00 a gallon it makes sense to have a car that is a miserly as possible with gasoline. That would be a Hybrid car! Each of my two sons owns and loves their Toyota Prius, the best selling hybrid car currently available.
I have been considering such a car, and also the long promised Ford Escape Hybrid. For three years it was six months off, then announced as available in August, 2004, but I never found a dealer that had received one. Can you say "vaporware"? This week, I finally got a phone call from the Ford dealer I had purchased a 2001 Escape at, and I stopped off at last September when the 2005 Ford Escape Hybrid was announced.

"We got one in" he said. "ONE ???", I responded quizically. "We're calling everyone who expressed interest" he said. "Trying to generate demand so you can charge over sticker" I asked. "It'll likely be $3 to $5000 over sticker. I haven't seen the paperwork, but it's likely to be a $30,000 sticker". "Naturally, Detroit sticks it to early adopters by selling gussied up pricey models", I responded. Then I reminded him that 4 years ago when we bought our Ford Escape, the same dealer was charging $3000 over sticker for Chrysler PT cruisers, essentially a Neon station wagon, which was the "in-demand" car at the time. "And they sell for what now?", I asked. "Probabally right at Invoice" was the answer. "I'll wait at least until you have 5 or 6 Hybrid Escapes on your lot, I prefer not to pay OVER MSRP" I finished with.
Tipping point for Blu-ray ? Two competing standards for the next generation of DVD have emerged. hd-dvd, and Blu-ray. With Dell and Apple now on board for Blu-ray, Blu-ray is starting to look like the winner before day one. The hd-dvd web site still says "...coming soon", as of March 11, 2005 anyway. And there is both a .org and a .com Blu-ray site, but no .org hd-dvd site.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Harvard redefines "Hacker": Harvard, caught with web software so poorly written that anyone can navigate to find things Harvard doesn't want one to find, redefines what here to fore would be known as web surfing as "hacking" in a failed attempt at CYA. All the details are here.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Better than Shredco: When Enron declared bankruptcy it was soon found out they they and their Accountants, the late Arthur Andersen had had many important documents illegally shredded by sending off to a commercial shredding service: Shredco. But don't just shred the documents, why not shred your shredder or your Xerox machine? Now that's possible.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

HAPPY BIRTHDAY YAHOO: I remember going to a Mactivity Meeting in 1995, and being told by the presenter about this great new thing: Yahoo. Yahoo is now celebrating it's 10th Birthday.