Dognapping from pensioners – What Next?

30 07 2004

Some poor old fellow lost his dog, and put up “Lost Dog” posters.  Later that day, someone called and said they had his dog and wanted $10000.  This old guy’s only companion since his wife died 4 years ago was his dog, so he scraped up everything he had, about 5K, and went to meet the dognapper.  Some guy met him, took the money, and ran.  No dog.  He goes back home, and hears the door slam, and finds his dog in his backyard.

What kind of vermin extorts an elderly person?  I suppose it’s the same kind that robs purses from 90 yr old women for the 20 bucks.  Creeps!

Here’s the news story.  If you live in Valley Springs California and know anything about this, please call the police at 9-1-1 immediately.  This moron needs jail time with “Bubba”





PocketPC Tools has chased down the "Official" Word on why HP isn’t offering WM2003SE

30 07 2004

Over at PocketPC Tools, someone has tracked down a FAQ pointing to why HP is saying Ptttttthhhth to IPAQ owners.

I can’t say I’m impressed…Bad HP.  Bad.





Today is System Administrators Appreciation Day

30 07 2004

That’s right, the last Friday in July is System Administrators Appreciation Day. There are suggestions for what to do for your SysAdmin on the page.  I personally would put my vote for the 42” Plasma TV. 

Frighteningly there’s a list of things to do to occupy your System Administrator, and even MORE frightening, is the fact that I’ve seen almost ALL of them 😦

Here’s an excerpt from list as of today (it’s dynamic):

  • Play with all the wires you can find. If you can’t find enough, open something up to expose them. After you have finished, and nothing works anymore, put it all back together and call Ted. Deny that you touched anything and that it was working perfectly only five minutes ago. Ted just loves a good mystery. For added effect you can keep looking over his shoulder and ask what each wire is for.
  • Never write down error messages. Just click OK, or restart your computer. Ted likes to guess what the error message was.

Apperently users are the same the world over – Doh!





Do you own an IPaq PocketPC? Did you know that HP has left you in the dust?

27 07 2004

HP has announced that they do not plan to make the upgrade to WM2003SE available for existing IPAQ’s

“HP is pleased to announce that it will support MS Windows Mobile 2003 SE on new products. After extensive assessments of MS Windows Mobile 2003 SE support on current products, HP has decided not to offer this upgrade on existing product platforms. However, HP will provide users with a more secure experience through the use of WiFi Protected Access Support (WPA) on selected models.” – HP Public Relations Manager HP iPAQ Pocket PC

The only way to acquire it will be to buy the complete OS as retail, or to buy a brand new IPAQ from HP.  Thanks!  Man, it seems like today is “Bad Customer Service Day” here at the blog.

Anyway – please take time and sign this petition to let HP know we’re tired of being simply used to siphon money.





Fido (Microcell) is charging for Instant Messages you receive

27 07 2004

The good folks at Fido charge you for IM messages sent to your phone.  Understandable.  They want money.  Here’s how my recent conversation with customer service went:

Me: Please stop charging me, I have a text messaging package.

Them:  Sorry, they’re not regular text messages, and don’t fall under your plan.

Me:  They ARE regular text messages.  They are messages with text only…pretty much the definition of a “text message isn’t it?.

Them: No, they’re “different“.

Me: (doubtingly)…OK, then make them stop.

Them: Can’t

Me: Why not?

Them: Because we’d have to block ALL text messages, since we can’t differentiate for blocking

Me: If you can differentiate for billing, you can sure as Hell differentiate for blocking – No?

Them: Hmmm…No.

Me: What kind of idiots are writing your code?

Them: Ummmmm…..

Me: What happens if someone with a vengance sends me 1000 IM’s via ICQ and I get charged $150?

Them: Then you’d have to pay – Of course!

Me: Arrrgh.  Tell me at least that SOMEBODY out there is going to hear that this is a problem, and that SOMEBODY might just write the 2 lines of extra code to be able to block these messages.

Them: I’ll try sir, but I don’t know when, or if it might be acted on.

Me:  I guess that’s all I can do.  Can you let me know soon, if this will be fixed, or whether I have to change carriers?

Them:  Silence.

Me: Thanks. 

Them: Thank you for calling Fido, have a nice day!

==================

<evil master plan>
So,  here’s what I want.  Does anyone have code to send SMS via ICQ to an arbitrary phone number?  I’m quite sure they’d wake up over at Microcell if a few thousand people all called and complained that they were getting billed for IM text messages that they don’t want.
</evil master plan>





The fun of Google and Blogs

27 07 2004

Back on June 30, Dave Winer was looking for attribution for a qoute, and I found the sourceThe post that Dave made, referring to it, had the text for that link as “Thanks to Brian Hampson”  It appears that Google gives Dave a high “credibility factor”, or something, and as such, a google search for Brian Hampson now returns the quote and attribution on classroomtools.com as the #1 hit.  On that page there is NO reference to my name, nor is there anything to have the reader understand why they are visiting that page when they searched for Brian Hampson.  Google, you’ve been had.

Update 2004-01-06: It FINALLY has let that one go.  Only about 6 months afterwards.





Concerned about lending your car to your Teen? Know what they do when you’re not there!

26 07 2004

Apparently “in-car sensor systems” are becoming more and more popular.  Some are for tracking stolen vehicles, and others can monitor cornering, acceleration, seatbelt use, and location data for downloading later.

So, when little Jimmy says “I don’t know how that scratch got in the passenger door” you can check the logs and see that he took that corner at 120, and probably grazed the rocks.  Busted.  Will this kind of “paranoia” make teens drive more safely.  Maybe.  What do you think?

Thanks Engadget.








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