Home > September 2009

September 2009

Be Free Of Apple....Choice Is Coming....

Tuesday, September 29, 2009 0

For those who don't know who DoubleTwist are check out their site here.

For those that want the background on what you are about to see, TechCrunch does a pretty good write up here.

For those who just want "Choice", watch and be amazed.....

Where In The World?

Sunday, September 27, 2009 0

I’ve recently had a need to purchase a laptop computer for work,something I could carry around the office with me and plug in where ever I’m working.  The machines we have on our desks aren’t capable of the types of things that I do day-to-day.  For example, pings and network traces as well as software testing – and these are just three of the examples from the past week.


The answer was pretty clear, the machine wouldn’t be my primary computer at work – it would only be used out and about – so portability and simplicity were the answers.  A netbook was the obvious choice – cheap enough to initially purchase, small enough to carry around all day, and something I can shove in my desk drawer and lock away.


Now, having done the research on netbooks a while ago, the Samsung N10 was the one back then – my mom bought it and she’s loved it ever since.  After a quick Bing search, my initial research from back then still stood up today – only this time the Samsung N110 seemed to be the logical choice.  Checking around all of the usual retail websites, the cost was fixed everywhere at £299.99.  However, I still wanted to take a look at the actual models available to make sure the keys/keyboard was right and the hardware seemed solid enough…so off I went to my local “PC World”, with the intention of looking briefly and then purchasing.


With today being a Sunday, it was also worthwhile buying from a retail store rather than online as I’d be able to install it up ready for Monday morning rather than waiting on delivery.  After checking on last time on the PC World website and noting the Sunday opening time of 11am, off I went, arriving in store exactly at 11am.


Heading, like a man possessed, directly to the section of the store I needed to be, I began probing and prodding the models on offer.  Briefly hovering over a Dell Mini something-or-other in a rather stunning Ferrari red, I was pounced upon by a sales rep who asked if he could help me.  The obvious answer was ‘no’, yet I decided to tell him what I was looking for – he keenly pointed out the Samsung N110 to me – as well as the price tag – £329.99.  Mentioning that the price was cheaper online I got the usual story of the web price often being different to the in-store price – can anyone explain that one to me? 


So, about to walk away, after being attempted to change my decision by the sales rep, I mentioned that I was about to walk away given that the price wasn’t right.  Next thing I knew, I was waiting whilst he went off to check the website and then confirm with the store manager that he could sell me the laptop for the same price as advertised online.  Something that baffled me as quite clearly on the PC World website is a big “Reserve in-store and collect” button – surely if I’d clicked that button, they would’ve had to sell me the netbook for the online price anyway?


Anyway, the price was confirmed and I said I’d take it.  They then tried to sell me software.  I told him that I wasn’t planning on running any of the software that came with the netbook and that I was going to run corporate software packages and I didn’t have to worry about the licensing as that was all covered, he proceeded to try to sell me Anti-Virus software – this was already turning into a nightmare and I felt myself getting more and more frustrated.  Eventually he got the message and whisked me over to the ‘sales area’.


It then took two of them to fiddle around with their computer whilst they adjusted the price to ring it through the till.  Meanwhile I sat in the chair looking around me, in complete boredom – a customer that was being ignored and no attempt at apologising for the delays or explain what they were trying to do. 


Skipping forward, I left the store at 11:35am, which meant I must have spend at least 25 minutes sat at this desk, being ignored, being a frustrated customer and not making any attempt at hiding said frustration.  Once they finally got the PC sorted and the price confirmed, the sale rep then went on to tell me that they offered a free one month technical service thing I could call and get help from……do I really look like the sort who needs IT help from PC World?  So, I said I wasn’t interested and I didn’t want it added to my purchase…..to which I was told that I couldn’t remove this from my purchase initially and I had to take out the agreement and then cancel the direct debit – where upon a DD contract for me to sign was thrust under my nose!


For a moment I considered not signing it – thereby not setting up the ongoing monthly cost that would be added to my purchase if I don’t cancel the service within the month, but by then my frustrations and my lack of willing to argue with someone who wasn’t listening to their customer.


I swear, I’ve bought cars in less time and with less hassle than it took for me to purchase a £300 netbook PC.  I’ve bought little bits and pieces from PC World before when I’ve been too desperate to bother waiting for delivery, but I’ve never bought a PC/laptop from them before – put it this way, I’ll never do it again.  They seriously need to get their sales processes polished up and look after their customers – even listening to them would be a start and offering the flexibility for them not to have to purchase or take on additional service options they don’t want or need; I’ve now got to cancel the service before they charge me – and I can assure you that since I purchased the laptop this morning to now, it is now running a completely different operating system and software that the “PC World/TechGuys” won’t be familiar with helping me with.  


Where in the world will I be making my next computer purchase?  I know where it won’t be!

Back To It…

Tuesday, September 8, 2009 0

This week has been “Back To Work” week.  And I have to admit it, I’ve loved it – getting up on a morning with purpose and knowing I have things to achieve and strive for.


However, I will also admit that after 22 months at my last job and three weeks off between jobs – I’ve found that I’ve become so out of touch with how a real IT team operates, behaves and gets things done.  Now, don’t get me wrong, its not all perfect and nor did I leave behind something really all that terrible in comparison with some IT departments who dare to call themselves IT departments. 


Two days in though, I can see that there is lots to be done and it’s just a matter of time right now before I can get myself back into the swing of things and tackle things in just the right way and the right order. 


This evening I’ve brought home a laptop belonging to the lady who sits next to me – her wireless wasn’t working – it turns out that the wireless card is broken, but its been an absolutely age since I’ve been able to do any sort of troubleshooting; and today I got my chance!  My boss today told me in no uncertain terms that my troubleshooting skills are second to none, but there is more to come….


……I say bring it on, lets make things happen – just give me time to remember! 

#24Days: The Last Day….

Sunday, September 6, 2009 Category : 0

Well, today is the last day of my “#24Days” holiday.


24 days of being off work, blogging has been rather easy – especially when some of those days I’ve only posted a couple of YouTube videos with a bit of a caption – no one said I couldn’t do that!


Alas it has come to an end, and just about the right time too, this last week has started to become a little bit boring, a little bit slow, dragging – especially because I knew what was coming.  Next week, I return to work and to a company I left two years ago.  This time there’s a whole new challenge and new obstacles to content with – but I can assure you of one thing; its going to be a lot of fun.


…..and that’s all there is, there is no more.  Of course I’m going to continue blogging here, but the “'#24Days” tag will now be dropped and the posts will become a little less frequent, but blog I will.


New challenges, new era…..starting tomorrow. Bring it on!

#24Days: Arthur Spooner - A Dedication....

Saturday, September 5, 2009 Category : 0

Today, because I can't actually remember what I was going to write about, I'm going to do a shout out to Arthur Spooner, the popular character and just about the best thing about comedy sitcom "King Of Queens".

The classic Jerry Stiller, father of movie icon Ben Stiller, in all his glory in the following video: Enjoy!

#24Days: Trip Or Fall….

Friday, September 4, 2009 0

The last time I was off work, my TV seemed to be actively encouraging me to have an accident, a trip or a fall anywhere and that a team of highly select lawyers were on hand to give me all the compensation I thus deserved as a result of said trip or fall.


This time my TV has been requesting me to hunt around my home for old mobile phones and gold that I can send in a secure envelope for them to analyse and send me a cash amount I’d be truly happy with – if not all of my belongings will be returned to me free of charge. 


So, having a bit of time on my hands this week, I’ve been walking around trying my very best to have a trip or a fall and having only achieved a few laughs in the street as I walked with oversized shoes or high heels, it turns out I’ve failed to trip or fall (who knew?).  My plan had to be adjusted accordingly to make myself some extra cash.


Today, inspired by the cash for gold themed adverts that have been repeated non-stop on my television, I’ve stopped trying to fall over and instead been on a scavenger hunt around the house today looking for gold I can cash in.


Here’s what I found:

  • gold plated door handles (with screws – took me all day to take them out)
  • A plastic pen with gold ink which I used last year for writing Christmas cards with
  • Half a pot of gold coloured paint
  • and not one but 2 (UK sterling) pound coins

I’m hoping to make at least £120, I reckon I’ll need at least £50 to replace the door handles – its been pretty brutal walking around the place trying to open doors without them being there – and of course £2 to replace the pound coins I’ve “borrowed” from the mantelpiece and no one notices they’ve gone missing.


The rest is just pure profit…….and I guess if I’m not happy with their valuation, I can always get them sent back to me. I just hope I don’t send all this gold off to the company expecting my old Nokia 3330.

#24Days: X File Or Pure Hoax....

Thursday, September 3, 2009 Category : 0

Someone call Mulder and Scully, this needs to be looked into further.....

Of course, it could just be a hoax. But if it isn't then just what else could it be? An alien or some unknown new species that hasn't been seen before? I have no idea, but the video footage is fairly convincing to me.

The full story - reported here - gets stranger, with the farmer who found it dying under unusual circumstances. The plot thickens, but the mystery remains.

#24Days: Guess....

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I have just found this on my Flip Video from my last trip to London and I laughed so much I had to share it with you on here!

See if you can try to guess what the 'object' is that the camera follows before it appears (you'll have to be quick mind, the camera pans fast!), then prepare to be put in a state of awe followed by complete histerics.....

Yep,....that's right, it's the "London Eye", very early on a morning before it had made even a single turn that day. And rest assured the guy (ok, its Mr G), at the end of the video has since been given his medication and is well on the way to recovery......though if you do see him on the street, its probably wise not to approach him directly - extreme caution should be taken at all times.

#24Days: 7 Secrets of Social Media.....

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Yes, I promised original content yesterday; will I deliver that original content? There's still time yet, but first of all I want to share with you this video I just found on YouTube. It's from a guy called Perry Belcher and he's basically a social media guy - and most importantly he seems to talk a lot of sense.

So much so in fact that I had to share the video I just watched from him about the 7 Secrets of Social Media. I agree with just about everything he says, apart from the fact that no one uses Twitter to sell or buy things, I for one have used Twitter to actively look for links and information to buy something - he's right that I would never buy directly from Twitter (yet!), but it is a good place to showcase your wares - just look at O2 - an account set up on there purely for interfacing with the customer and that, it turns out, is a indirect selling point that works. But I digress.

Check out the video....

#24Days: The Perculator.....

Wednesday, September 2, 2009 Category : 0

I will actually write something myself here soon, but I've just found this guy on YouTube who is rather funny - especially the f*t guy, makes me giggle - AND just what is "The Perculator"? Find out below....

Promise I'll write something original and meaningful later (ok, maybe not meaningful, but it'll be original).

#24Days: Email Us Now....

Tuesday, September 1, 2009 Category : 0

Email us now with your thoughts....

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