Saturday, July 11, 2009

United Breaks Guitars, but makes good Mai Tai's

So United has driven me insane too many times to count. So you can imagine how nervous I was recently when I finally booked a real vacation and trusted them to get me from Denver to Maui without a major hassle.

United did an awesome job of getting us to Hawaii without any hassle. More shocking, it was pleasant. The flight staff were friendly, they decorated the cabin with Flower Leis and were friendly. They even served Mai Tai's (with little pineapple things).

So there, I said something nice about them. I was happy, they did good and I patted the puppy (I mean airline) on the head.

On the way home our flight was late, they forgot meals for half the cabin and somehow parked a screaming child on all 4 sides of me. Getting it right half the time is a good start. At least they picked the right half to screw up.

United Breaks Guitar's -- This is a must watch

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

iPhone 3.0 - My two favorite (new) features

I like to think I am an early adopter, a technical type who likes to play with the latest gadget and make it do funny and quirky things.

I decided to not be an early adopter when it came to my iPhone. I simply don't like the idea of my main communication device becoming something I had to think about. That's been my main issue with the iPhone all along - it requires thinking. Granted it's great for "engaging" users but seriously it's a should just do stuff like email and phone without a great deal of brain capacity.

So the two features I like ---

(1) Tethering: This is a must have cool feature. I travel a ton and there is nothing more annoying than trying to do email on my iPhone. I'll do it but I like it on my laptop.

I was at the Tier 1 Hosting Summit in London a few weeks ago and they managed to not have any Internet (Wi-Fi or Wired). Tethering would have saved me from the 2 hours of boredom I endured in the afternoon sessions.

(2) Find-my-iPhone: Last year during a trip to Europe (I won't name cities) I ended up in a cab with a taxi driver who was very interested in my iphone. When we pulled up to the destination I put my iphone on the seat while I stepped out and grabbed my wallet to pay. Before I knew it - the driver took off (without taking the cab fare) and with my iPhone.

I tried sending text messages offering a reward (I would have paid the retail price as a reward to get it back) but I then realized that the security features would prevent him from ever seeing my messages and thus it was wasted effort.

....I'm not so into the voice memo thing... I have an app that I use for my dictation. I am also not that impressed by alot of other stuff. I really just want my phone to be snappy and to do proper email and calendar stuff without me having to think.

wow - I sound so old mannish writing this blog


Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Monetization Scheme for Sun VirtualBox SUCKS

I left Windows almost a year and a half ago when I moved to Sun. I had been a Mac user for my last year at AMD but I kept it in the closet. There were dark days when I would "work from home" simply because doing a presentation or email was just easier on my Mac.

I got good - I installed VMWare Fusion and ran a version of Windows XP on my Mac setup with all the VPN and Exchange settings I needed to get into the network and do the stuff I needed. VMWare Fusion ran great, I loved it (for what it was) and all was good during the closet life. When I joined Sun I moved to Mac full time - thus making VMWare fusion an app I kept installed "just-in-case" I ever needed an archived file from my windows volume.


Today I went to go download Windows RC 1 with the goal of testing it out on my Mac. Contrary to popular belief - I am not a diehard. I use whatever feels best and gets the job done. Currently that's a Mac but I am open minded.

I don't have VMWare Fusion on my new Mac. I figured I would download Sun's VirtualBox to try it out. I did work there for over a year - maybe I should give it a chance beyond OpenSolaris.

When I got to the registration screen it asked me to register for some nonsense optimization marketing brochure. Now I know marketing when I see it and signing up for anything silly like a "Optimizing your desktop using VirtualBox"technical guide is basically asking for Sun to spam me and perhaps for a sales person to call me.

It's an interesting tactic because it offers that it's Optional and there is a button to "Continue to Download" - what isn't clear is whether it's actually downloading or not and frankly it felt sleazy to me. If they have an Open Source product - they shouldn't be trying to scam my info with a silly marketing guide that's basically an invitation for a sales group to call me. They should be offering me real value - like paying them a small fee and getting an auto-update/security fix notification. Or maybe offering me drivers and tools for making Windows 7 better work.

One of Sun's biggest strategic bets was the idea that OpenSource software would lead to revenue for either the support packages around software or would drive hardware sales (where they make real margins).

I suggested, when I worked there, the idea that they should charge $1.99 or heck .25 cents -- something trivial (and I mean trivial) to download the software from a CDN and get some kind of easy auto-update feature. If they were really creative they would call Apple and get it setup on iTunes.

For now - I went back to VMWare Fusion (and signed up for the beta). They are upfront about charging me money for software and I feel like it's a good deal. They make it, I buy it and we all go home happy. Open Source is great but starts to loose its appeal when you know the company behind is just blatantly using it to monetize an offering that I probably don't want or need anyway.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Yay for the Giants!

I am so glad to see the Giants win the game (mostly because they were underdogs) but also because it lets me exact just a little bit of personal revenge for the way the Red Sox racked up my Rockies ;-)

there ya go Boston... you can't win everything!

now - i think we can all agree that the SuperBowl ads were really the best part. Let's hope that this movement toward online advertising doesn't totally ruin that creativity ;-)

Here is the YouTube Link: SuperBowl 2008 Ad's

Sunday, January 27, 2008



Ok so this might be the coolest invention I have seen all year. Screw the iPhone and all the other cool technogadgets.

Let's all remember our inner college kid & our inner engineer....what gets cooler than this ;-)

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

SlingBox Rocks (day 1)

wow I am a total nerd. No, correct that - Gadget Geek.

I got the absolute coolest Christmas present ever - a Slingbox. If you haven't been paying attention to Sling Media, you should. This is a cool product.

Slingbox lets you 'shift' your home TV to wherever you are. Within 5 minutes of plugging in the Slingbox we were watching TV and it had detected and fixed all of its network settings on its own. While the backend technology enabling this is not new, it is now made elegant.

So from within my loft I can now watch TV anywhere... lets see how it does this weekend on vacation ;-)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

3 things to never discuss with those you love

Politics, religion and money!