AOL Should Be More Like Apple

Filed under: — menk @ 4:03 pm

Having worked at AOL, I can say that there is a lot of truth in this editorial. If AOL were more innovative they would be growing versus shedding members at an alarming pace.

Wired News: AOL Should Be More Like Apple


Gaming exercise?

Filed under: — menk @ 9:08 am

Kilowatt Home version

Over a year ago, I read about this exercise game controller in Wired Magazine. It was called the Kilowatt and used isometrics to provide exercise value and preserve the speed and reaction time required for gaming. It seemed kind of expensive to me with the price exceeding $1000. But combining Playstation and exercise seemed potentially promising to me.

Turns out that the company PowerGrid Fitness is based in Laurel, MD (pretty close to my home) and is running promotions at the local mall as they test the market for these type of devices for home use. I ran across one of these promotions one evening this week and tried out the device. It seemed kind of fun and the side benefit of exercise worth investigating. An interesting and thorough review of the product from a gamers perspective gave me some insight into how the product would work. I wouldn’t use the Kilowatt as my primary source of exercise but it would allow me to play some PS2 games with the kids and get some exercise at the same time.

After some thought, I decided that for the promotion price of $199 plus shipping it was worth taking the plunge and getting one to try at home. (To get one at this price you need to move quickly as it ends on July 31st. e-Mail me for details) The Kilowatt controller/exercise machine is compatible with all major gaming platforms (Cube, PS2, XBox, PC, etc.) so it works with what you have.

After I get the Kilowatt Home and use it a little I will try to get a post done with some of my perspective on the product.


iTune Phones by Christmas!

Filed under: — menk @ 10:14 am

It’s about time this deal resurfaced. Is is a phone or an ipod? At first blush I suspect it will be an ipod shuffle with a screen embedded in a phone. Integration should be interesting but initially I believe all they need to do is essentially share the same case and pause playing when a call comes in to be successful.

iTune Phones: Finally, Some Noise


I have 303 Cats but 86 are dead :-(

Filed under: — menk @ 10:54 am

How could someone cohabitate with so many animals they didn’t even notice 86 were dead? Ruth Knueven (82) her husband and her daughter all were cooped up with 303 cats. Their home was condemned Monday because it was overflowing with feline feces and urine.

But after official’s left the premises in Mount Vernon VA on Monday afternoon the Knueven family returned to grab some 30 additional cats they had stashed in the home.


Cingular - Are You Still There?

Filed under: — menk @ 12:08 pm

Cingular appropriate logo

Having been a Verizon customer for almost fifteen years now I was accustomed to great connectivity and coverage. My switch to Cingular last month mandated by the Opsware corporate agreement has been a nightmare. I now can count on numerous dead zones on my daily commutes. These ‘dead zones’ were not problem areas in the Verizon network but appear to be consistent and frequent in the Cingular network. These holes in connectvity have often prompted me in my anger to consider alternate taglines that Cingular (if they were honest) would use to describe their service. The one that comes to mind most often is “Are You Still There?” since I find myself saying that to my disconnected phone often since my call was lost and I have been speaking to no-one for an indeterminate period of time.

This morning after my arrival at the office I noticed I had a voice mail message. Upon triggering a call to voice mail the phone beeped in my ear frantically for 15-20 seconds than disconnected. This was repeated at every attempt to connect. I spoke to one of my collegues about it and he indicated that his phone was unable to make or receive calls either. This persisted for over 6 hours before the more typical Cingular lame service was restored.

I called Cingular support and they told me that in the DC area there were 66 cells that had failed and “Technicians were working on it now”. No offer of renumeration or assistance just the info that there is a problem calmly reported as if it happens every day. How helpful.

Are you still there?


Deep Impact: fireworks in space

Filed under: — menk @ 7:40 am

smashed comet

At roughly 2am EDT on July 4th a copper slug weighing over 800 lbs slammed into Comet Tempel 1. This was the result of years of effort on behalf of NASA’s Deep Impact Team at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, California.

The full result of the project will not be known for years as scientists must evaluate and compile massive anounts of data resulting from the project. It is certain the information gleened from this project will have considerable impact on our understanding of the origins of the universe.

Quicktime Movie of images from the impactor on the way to collision

You can view pictures and read in detail about the mission at http://deepimpact.jpl.nasa.gov/mission/index.html


Happy Independence Day 2005!

Filed under: — menk @ 11:10 am

For over twenty years I have been working for technology companies and working with Government IT personnel. The majority of my experience has been in DoD marketplace and during that time I have had the privilege of working with many individuals in the Armed Services. In my experience the ‘men and women in uniform’ are intelligent, hardworking and dedicated to improving this country and our standing in the world community.

I would like to take this opportunity to offer my thanks to all the men and women of the armed services for their sacrifice and dedication. Special thanks to all the folks deployed in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere across the globe. Although you are far from home you remain near to our thoughts and prayers.

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