Android + Flash = ?

Posted in Tech on April 12, 2010 by Charles Arrasmith

I just spoke to a nice gent who has been testing the software for Adobe Flash on Android and here is what I learned.

We will have it by the end of June and it is fucking sweet. Full flash movies looking amazing on our Android phones. Apple says, “Fuck Adobe”. Google says, “Adobe, with our powers combined…fuck apple…like the little bitches they are!”

HTC EVO with 4G

Posted in Tech on April 12, 2010 by Charles Arrasmith

This is not a review. It’s just an update. By now you should already know how incredible this phone is. If you actually don’t know, you were either trapped in a medieval tower or simply wouldn’t care even if I told you.

New line: $199

Available: June 21st

Bonus: No additional charge for the 4g service at this time.

Obviosuly this info is unconfirmed and may even change before it’s released.

The scam that never ends…

Posted in Humor on April 11, 2010 by Charles Arrasmith

I recently decided to sell my extra phone via craigslist.org. This allowed many people to waste my time. One of which did make me laugh. I figured I would share the event with you. Here is the correspondence. I also apologize for all the poor grammar and sentence structure. This was sent via my phone and I was being quick. I make no apologies for his errors.

Random Dude: Hi, do you still have this item available?

Vulgar Thought Puddle: I do. Interested?

Random Dude: Thanks for the mail, my name is Micheal Smith. I should have come for the pickup of the item but am presently out of state. Am sending the item to my wife that is managing our store. Do you accept paypal? Because I have money in my paypal account. Kindly get back to me with your paypal email so I can transfer the money from my paypal account to yours. I will be adding $100 for the shipping cost of directly from you to her. And I will give you $300 for the item. Total amount including shipping cost will be $400

Vulgar Thought Puddle: As soon as the money is available in my paypal account I can send it out. Probably today or tomorrow. I would need the address.

Micheal Smith: I will make the paypal payment. Kindly get the ite shipped out as soon as you see the paypal payment notification.

Vulgar Thought Puddle: Sure.

Here is an excerpt from the paypal email.

Martin Oluwaseye

No 38 Ajitadidun House Fatimo Odo-Ona

City:Ibadan

State:Oyo State

Country:Nigeria

Zip Code:23402

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE FUNDS HAD BEEN DEDUCTED BUT THIS PAYMENT OF $400.00USD WILL NOT APPEAR IN THE “PENDING” TAB IN YOUR ACCOUNT UNTIL YOU SEND THE SHIPPING REFERENCE NUMBER TO US. This is due to new policies at PayPal to protect both the buyer and the seller in the face of the growing number of fraudulent activities perpetrated via the internet. Your payment is intact. You are encouraged to complete this transaction as soon as possible.

Please ship the item and get back with the tracking numbers to customershipment@officeemail.net and your account will be credited after verification of the details

At this point I strongly suspected a scam. I received emails from service@paypal.com which looked authentic but it gave me a bad vibe. He spelled Michael wrong. He used “Micheal”. His name is Micheal Smith which seems like on obviously simple name. The shipping name is Martin Oluwaseye not Micheal Smith or a Mrs. Smith. He offered an extra $100 + $100 for shipping. The email from paypal instructed the tracking numbers should be sent too customershipment@officeemail.net which is obviously not a paypal email address.

I contacted paypal and they informed me it was a scam as I suspected. I reported the user on craigslist as well as paypal and I went back to hanging out with the co-author for the Vulgar Thought Puddle. Then I received this email…

Micheal Smith: I just contacted Paypal for the payment of your item Mytouch 3g with Unlock Code and the sum of $400 usd has been deducted from my account ready to be credited into your Paypal account. all you have to do now is just to get the item shipped to the address giving to you by Paypal so that your account can be upgraded. Paypal are doing this to make sure both the buyers and the sellers are save and secure. kindly check your email address link with paypal for the payment notification.

Please make sure the package is sent Via USPS EMS and make sure the shipping tracking number been giving to you start from E.. either EG, EB, EM, EH e.t.c

Thanks and happy to do business with you

God Bless you and your family

I made the choice to fuck with him and see how far he would go.

Vulgar Thought Puddle: I called paypal and I was told there isn’t any paypal payment pending.

Scammer Douche Bag: Thanks for the mail…but i want you to know that i have already made the payment for your item. and it will not be there in their database not until you get back to them with the shipping tracking number for verification. your monies has already been deducted from my account. I hope you got a notification from them?

get back to me asap

Wow…what bull shit. It won’t be in their database? But I should still receive a notification from them? I couldn’t stop here. Let’s see what other verbal diarrhea he can write….

Vulgar Thought Puddle: Paypal told me there aren’t any payments pending. I haven’t received any notification from paypal. (I received his fake notification but I left that out) If I see a completed paypal payment in my account I will ship the phone otherwise this transaction is over.

Scammer Douche Bag: kindly check your email linked with paypal very well cuz i have made the shipment and your money has been deducted from my account

Translation: I hope you are a fucking idiot and that you are stupid enough to log into your paypal through my link so I can steal your account info.

Let me think about that…haha…no.

Vulgar Thought Puddle: Sorry, paypal instructed to me to never try and access paypal through an email. I always use a separate browser and go straight to paypal.com. If I can’t see the transaction pending in my account then I am not sending the phone.

Scammer Douche Bag: payment has been made already

I was seriously hoping he wouldn’t give up so easily but maybe he realizes he is wasting his time.

Vulgar Thought Puddle: Look man. My paypal account has no completed or pending payments. Contact paypal to resolve this. I am not sending the product unless my account shows the payment.

I got some gmail chat messages from him that were accusing me of ripping him off and he would report me if I didn’t send the product. I was pretty bored of this by then and I didn’t bother to copy or save them.

Nigerian Scammer Douche Bag: 0

Vulgar Thought Puddle: 1

Engage the geekness…

Posted in Tech on March 29, 2010 by Charles Arrasmith
I am going to start this out by saying that my Star Wars Geekness is a hundred times larger than my Star Trek Geekness but this still made me wet. You may be thinking to yourself, what could have possibly made this nerd suddenly damp? Did he spill his Mountain Dew? The answer to that troubling questions is very simple…
 
A: The Tricorder Application for Android phones.
 
When I first stumbled on this application I expected it to be the Star Trek equivalent to the Star Wars Lightsaber App. It makes sounds and amuses you for a minute or two each day. But that moment passed very quickly as I read the word “functional”. I can imagine you are very confused at this point just as I was. So let me explain what “functions” it actually has.
 

It displays the current stardate based on the conventions in the 2009 movie.

It monitors the local gravitational field and acceleration.

It can display current solar activity data.

It monitors the local magnetic field.

It displays an acoustic analysis; waveform, frequency and sound level analysis of the ambient sound.

It can scan the electromagnetic spectrum for radio signals.

 

image

What I find to be the most useful aspect of the Tricorder is the EMS scan. It provides me with the signal strength of my 3g network and wifi. Hopefully when the HTC EVO is released the app will be able to provide information on the signal strength of the 4g network.
 
Go to the Android market and search for “tricorder”. The first option should be tricorder by Moonblink which is what you want. Try it out.
 
 

 

Mac OSX – Usability Review and Apple Thoughts

Posted in Tech on March 29, 2010 by dmacmichael

As I enjoy Apple’s designs in general (not all of them, mind you), I figured I’d do one of their products for my Heuristic comparison.  Yet I didn’t want to do the iPhone or iPod, since those have been analyzed to death, so I instead decided to focus on Mac OSX.  This is one of their products which is most often overlooked, but is just as important as the aforementioned iThings.  I am both a PC user (cost and compatibility) and a Mac user, but in the end I’ll always prefer Mac OSX.  Here is its Heuristic evaluation:

1)  Visibility of System Status. When using Mac OSX, the system status is always readily apparent.  Open applications have a blue dot below them to stand out, the active window is dark while the others are faded, and the always-visible Menu Bar at the top will change to reflect in what program you are.  If it’s a MacBook, battery life is displayed in the upper-right.  In both Macbooks and desktop Macs, other indicators are also displayed in the upper-right, such as the time, wireless Airport status, and Bluetooth status.  If the Mac ever gets overloaded and freezes up, the user definitely knows because the dreaded Spinning Ball of Doom replaces the mouse cursor.  Knowing what is going on with your Mac is never a problem.

2)  Match Between the System and the Real World.  Since this is an operating system, it doesn’t exactly resemble anything in the real world physically, but elements within do correlate to real-world equivalents.  One example of this includes the ubiquitous office naming system – i.e. files, desktop, and some Mac-unique concepts like Stacks (multiple-file organization on the dock) and Spaces (multiple desktop workspaces).  There is also the dock, which houses the most-used applications and resembles a boat dock.  Icons in Mac OSX also look very much like their real-life equivalents, right down to the Mac Hard Drive icon.

3)  User Control and Freedom.  Users are  free to do as they please and has complete control over all shortcuts in Mac OSX.  They can open any number of applications and/or windows that they please, customize keyboard shortcuts for features like Expose, and adjust just about anything in System Preferences.  If they want to close a window but keep the application running for easy future use, they can simply close the window and Mac OSX keeps it running until they actually “quit” out of it.  Desktop and screen savers can be customized heavily as well, including not only the desktop image itself, but the organization of files on there (this may seem like a no-brainer, but it is important).  Hard drive contents are easily searchable with Spotlight.  Workspaces can be changed with the Spaces feature.  And let’s not forget Time Machine, an automatic backup system built into 10.5 and later.  With this feature, not only can users back up when they want to, but he can “time travel” to recover a file from any point in the past, like if they changed something, saved, and decides they want the earlier version instead the next week.

4)  Consistency and Standards.  Starting with Mac OSX 10.5 Leopard, all windows and Apple-built applications in the OS have the same uniform look and feel to them.  The Menu Bar at the top is always there, only changing contents to reflect each program.  Icons for all programs have the same look and feel to them, no matter by whom they were developed.  In all the Apple-supplied programs, graphics are similar, like with iTunes’ Coverflow and iPhoto’s photo-viewing options.  Everything has the same polish and clean design.

5)  Error Prevention.  This is HUGE on Mac OSX, and one of the reasons why I like it so much.  It has error prevention built into the core.  There are virtually no viruses, despite the rising number of Mac users, and not nearly as much spyware can glom onto your system like on Windows.  De-fragmentation is basically unneeded except in the direst of cases, since the OS does it in the background for you.  And the OS is stable.  Programs may crash sometimes, and the computer may get overloaded like any computer, but the vast majority of the time Mac OSX will not crash.  There are no Blue Screens of Death.  If a program is acting unruly, the user can right-click on the program’s icon in the dock and Force Quit it, no Ctrl+Alt+Delete needed.  Simple as that.

6)  Recognition Rather than Recall. This is something Apple had in mind from the very beginning when they designed the Mac OS.  Unlike Windows, which was developed by and for engineers originally, Mac OS was developed to be easy to use for the average person.  Once one goes through the basics of how to navigate files and programs, it is stupidly easy to do it again.  And yet, for one used to Windows, Recall may be much more strained when making the switch.  The Menu Bar is at the top instead of the bottom, system options have to be accessed through the Apple icon, the close button for windows is in the upper-left instead of the upper-right, and the OS is application-based, not window-based like Windows.  This last point can be particularly disorienting for someone who is used to the fact that the program is closed when the window is closed, for it is not so on Mac OSX.  But all these problems are not really that big of a deal after a little getting used to.

7)  Flexibility and Efficiency of Use.  Here we have two conflicting points.  While the OS itself is flexible (see above’s customizable examples), the actual development is not.  Most people, myself included, do not see this as a problem since we’re not programmers, but to the development community Apple’s tightly-controlled, closed-source platform is stifling (Windows is also closed-source, as an aside).  This means no one can do anything to change it except Apple, so technically this is very inflexible.  I suppose that’s why Linux is around.  But Mac OSX is very efficient, especially 10.6 Snow Leopard, which has a very tiny footprint on the hard drive and is easy on resources.  Using the OS is also efficient, since there is no bloatware installed and there is no slow-down (with the obvious exception of running highly-intensive programs).  Searching is a breeze with Spotlight.

8)  Aesthetic and Minimalist Design.  This is Apple’s mantra.  Avoid excess.  Everything in the OS is highly polished, clean, and aesthetically pleasing to the eye.  Soft gradients are used extensively in windows and buttons, and, unless the user FUBARs the desktop or dock, everything there is also neat and tidy.  It’s so well done that the latest Windows iterations have been imitating it in terms of shiny design and smoothly-flowing animations.

9)  Help Users Recognize, Diagnose, and Recover From Errors. In the event a problem occurs, Mac OSX is very helpful in providing the user with information.  If a program crashes, a dialog box pops up and tells the user their options (send error report, re-start program, etc.).  If your Mac is frozen, you’re definitely told so by the lovely little spinning beach ball.  Also, if there are connectivity problems or something of the like, the OS will guide the user through what to do, such as if the computer can’t connect to the internet and the Network Manager automatically kicks in.

10)  Help and Documentation.  With every Mac comes both documentation and the OSX backup discs, so if something REALLY messed up happens, all is never lost.  There is also the Help option in the Menu Bar at all times, no matter what program.  And if you really can’t figure it out, Apple’s website is chock full of help documents and forums for solving the problem, not to mention Apple Stores and their Geniuses.  OSX is well-supported.

So, after evaluating Mac OSX with the Ten Heuristics, I’d have to say it scored pretty highly.  Aesthetically pleasing, easy and efficient to use, powerful and stable, and well-supported, once one gets used to Mac OSX it is hard to think any other system is better.  Of course, this depends on preferences of the user as well.  I, for instance, view Apple as a whole to be quite good at what they do, which is why I like their designs.  I don’t really care if it costs more or is more closed off, since it being closed off doesn’t affect my day-to-day activities.  As long as it’s designed more intelligently in my book, I like it.  This heuristic test just goes to prove that point all the more.

The same cannot be said by all people, though.  My co-blogger, Charles, for instance, can’t stand anything made by Apple because he reacts to the false, pretentious fashionable bullshit which is the reason why many people buy Apple products.  I concede this point.  However,  since I don’t really give a shit about why other people buy things, since most of them are stupid anyway, it doesn’t really bother me that much.  I just like what is better made.  (I’m going to come right out and say it, though.  The headphones Apple includes with iPods and iPhones are complete shite.  They hurt my ears, leak tons of sound, can’t pump much bass, and distort at high volumes.  Goddamn, I wish I could purge the earth of those things.)

Mac OSX Snow Leopard screenshot
Beautiful and elegant, or evil, depending on if your name is Charles Arrasmith or not.

Internet Explorer Crashing?

Posted in Tech on March 28, 2010 by Charles Arrasmith

I am going to make this very simple. Do you have problems with Internet Explorer crashing? If the answer is “Yes”, then keep reading.

I was getting pretty annoyed with IE 8 because it was crashing on me all the time. This wasn’t concerning me that much but just enough for me to mention it when I was talking to a friend that works on IE. He gave me an amazing piece of advice.

Go to “Tool” then “Manage Add-ons” and then disable any Add-on related to skype.

I didn’t think it would be very helpful and then I remembered I installed skype for a single conversation and then I uninstalled it. After I realized I had used skype on my laptop I became rather eager to check. Sure enough I had three skype add-ons and after disabling them my IE works great again.

I strongly suggest taking a look at your add-ons. It’s an easy fix.

All of the stuff I just wrote seems very polite. You need to fucking disable those skype add-ons you stupid shit-burger. Ahh…that’s better.

Enercell vs Duracell

Posted in Humor on March 25, 2010 by Charles Arrasmith

They are alkaline batteries. What’s the difference between one alkaline and another? Marketing.

You are a moron if pay more because you saw the name on television.

If you want something that lasts longer buy a fucking lithium battery.  The difference between one alkaline battery and another is negligible.

This was brought to you by the people of Bellevue seeking to entertain Sebrina. Thank You