Thursday, September 2, 2010

Picture: Montreal la ronde fireworks 2009

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Monday, August 30, 2010

Picture: Duck close up

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Picture: Frozen stream

Friday, August 27, 2010

Picture: rusty dirty fence

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Picture: Fireworks

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Picture: Duck close up

Monday, August 23, 2010

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Friday, August 20, 2010

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Picture: Small bird

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

So I’m calling Sony tech support again, I’m currently on hold. I actually had to Google their number for Canada again. I put their number here below, just in case someone else needs it from Canada:


Also, I couldn’t resist – don’t you find their support site looks nice?


I just spoke to a service person, according to the information that I’m hearing looks like I’m going to get a “factory certified” unit instead. Go me for buying my son a new unit yesterday it seems. But what can you do?

Apparently I have to ship the defective unit back in and will be getting my “new” (replacement) unit back. Another 12$ of shipping - we will see what happens next.


Sunday, July 25, 2010

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

Guess what device got the same problem again?

My poor 9 yo son came to me today with a problem I know too well. His PSP from Sony started acting up again. With only 2 days back from the service technician that it seems fixed an electrical problem with it.

I lost it, I went literally on a mental rampage dreaming about storming the Sony office much like in a bad version of the terminator. I actually went out and bought my son a new unit. Poor kid doesn't deserve this, of course this isn't the way I should do this because now Sony gets yet another sale. But as a parent, what can I do?

What can you do, as a consumer, when the support office that you call doesn't even have the damn basic courtesy of including their phone number on the damn emails they send you?

I am calling the tech support line again tomorrow, we shall see what comes of this. I want a refund of this nightmare of a unit, I paid for the new one, they can take his one back and use it as a paperweight.

It is at this point that I started blogging about this nightmare. People need to know how big companies treat their little clients (pun intended). Corporations like this should be put out of business.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, July 23, 2010

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

July 23rd, about 2pm or so

Got the unit back - powered it on, looks like it's working. Bearing in mind that the unit had issues that would progressively set in. From the work prodder there was an electrical issue which was fixed.

Makes sense, I'll bring it to junior tonight and hopefully this is it.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, July 17, 2010

iPad in school

I've been using an iPad for the better part of about a month now and I have very few negative things to report. Don't worry dear reader, this won't be yet another iPad review.

I have three kids in school, and every new school year is greeted with yet another list of books and supplies to purchase for their ongoing education.

This little meeting of topics then collided in my head. During the history of education Apple has always been very present in schools and education. This is not a question of who can be the company that produces better computers but rather who can be more strategic. When you learn on a Mac, you tend to stick to a Mac.

How about learning on an iPad? Why not start saving a few trees and deliver some school eBooks? Why not give more trees a break and use less pencils? Why not give the planet a rest and use less gas by not having all this paper and these books shipped around all the time?

Can you imagine a 600$ investment as a parent and then all you have to worry about is perhaps just purchasing the next educational eBook pack from iTunes this year? Does this not play perfectly with the whole iTunes U concept?

Why just colleges and universities? Why not high schools as well? Why stop there? Why not all students? I've heard this argument from teachers: kids won't know how to write!

Are you kidding me? Get with the program! Do you think kids KNOW how to write today? If you were that concerned with calligraphy there would be a class for that. But guess what, we did away with parchments a long time ago, and also got rid of quills as well. Maybe getting rid of the good old pencil and pen are the next step of evolution. The power that wish they could be have chanted the pros of the paperless office for the last 20 years. How can you teach a society to move on and kiss goodbye to paper when it is so present in the educational system? We are raising kids with paper and how to waste paper everyday.

Ecologists, pro environment groups, Greenpeace... They all use paper - why? Shouldn't they eat their own dog food? Do people realize how much gas is burned every year just to move this paper around? Hell if we stop using paper, forests would stop shrinking at the rate they are today.

I personally love my iPad, it bridges the gap between the need to naturally hold something in your hand and the desire to actually save paper.

Let's do two things to try and reduce paper use:
1. Educate our kids to do without it - technology exists so that we can stop using it
2. Let's get all these ad agencies to stop dropping all this crap in our mailboxes.

Personally, about number 2, I pay taxes to have my garbage taken away. Maybe the ad agencies could give forests and landfills both a break and find another way to send us their lies? How about spam? ISPs love spam because it keeps them charging for their bandwidth, well, now they could enjoy more traffic on their networks with more crap sent by email. With the exception of having to take the bag to the curb, I takes me about as much time for me to toss flyers as it takes me to nuke its electronic counterpart.

Please, someone wake up out there. We now have these great devices that can now love up to the promises that technology have been making for years, how about we accept evolution and move on?

Go tech, and god bless Apple for showing the power of tablets and how to really make them. And especially for doing so with the use of a damn stylus.

Go iPad

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

July 17 2010

Guess who I called again this morning?

I called Sony support again for my son's PSP. I was again greeted by a very nice and polite tech support person. I explained the entire PSP saga to this person and in return I received multiple "I'm sorry" responses.

What can you do? Screaming at them isn't going to change anything, they have no administrative power at all. The only thing they can do is take down the complaint hoping that when someone that is probably playing Golf at the moment eventually reads it - if at all - and hopefully does something about it (when hell freezes over? Sounds like a good timeline).

This person starting typing, found the old request which at this point was expired. And then started typing again after correctly confirming all my information. I guess after all these calls it would only be fair that they finally get my email right. She checked it and it was right as well.

Out of boredom I switched over to my gmail account, and what do I see? And email from Sony support. I think that I actually had an urge to kiss this person on the other end of the phone. I thanked this person and informed them that I got the email only to be informed that the case wasn't submitted yet. Whatever email I received wasn't the right one.

I gave the ghost emails case number to my current contact and upon checking was told that this was the email from the previous call. Over 30 days ago. The support system actually sent me the much needed 30 day limited email with information I needed over 30 days after my call which essentially made it useless.

Go Sony...

My tech support contact was patient and finished the case, they also took the precaution (given our track record) of verbally giving me all the information so I could take it down, should yet another email disappear in the great email void.

But, before we hung up the email did come. Two emails from Sony in one day. This was a record!

I hung up, armed with all the information that I needed, ran to the post office, paid the 12$ of shipping which included buying a box and a padded envelope and waived the unit goodbye. It was finally on it's way to be fixed.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, July 16, 2010

Too many graphics in a web application

This is such a frequent mistake, you will see folks gather around the designer as they all propose graphic after graphic filling up the screen and then the actual purpose of the application is wedged on the sides losing focus. The graphics are pretty but serve no purpose once the wow effect passes. The heavy graphics will then begin to work against you as they are loaded over and over again especially in an https/ssl setting where caching will NOT be performed. Encrypted sites, and their content, are not cached for security reasons. A basic well designed site should be under 50kb per page. Add 5 graphics at 20kb each and you are up to 150kb per click. Want to know how efficient and network friendly your application will be? How many times do you click in a web application in a day? How many users does it have? Simple math will give you the most scary answer that you would only see in a nightmare. Now multiply this by the actual cost of moving data back and forth.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

I am yet again, unsure when this exactly happened but it was either late late May or early June.

Guess who I called yet again today? I gave the very polite tech support person some very polite hell. I gave them the full history of the case and I am sure to this day that if she could have given me her firstborn as an apology she probably would have.

I actually had her read the email twice to me, guess what, there was yet another typo! After reading it twice back to me without any error I got actually confident that this highly elusive email would actually find it's way to me.

I should take about an hour for the email to make it over.

Only problem, my other son has a church event today and I'm also flying to Italy. I better have that email in my inbox to take care of shipping that unit upon my return.

Guess what, I am actually on my mobile several hours later checking my email... No email... Surprised? No... At this point I am starting to wonder if Sony can actually send emails to Canada. Well, they could not send me a cardboard box - maybe they also can't send emails...

I will have to call them, again...


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

Don't ask me what my wife did but apparently after fully charging that Sony PSP it finally started working again. She now tells me that I don't have to chase Sony support anymore because it works and my son can now enjoy his gaming device.

I just can't help wondering if it is really fixed.

Of course not, it starts going through the same patterns of dying soon enough.

Guess who I have to call again?


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

It is unclear to me when exactly I placed this call but I am quite certain that it was around end of February or beginning or March 2010. 3 months after the purchase, 75% into the warranty period.

The box never came!

I call back Sony support only to be told that they don't ship that box to Canada! I have to now take care of shipping the unit myself to a Canadian facility.

The technician on the phone, always very polite, tells me that I have to get my own box and packing, and send it over at my own expense (and insurance) for repairs. Sony, ever so organized, does handle the fees of repair and return of the device however.

I give my phone number to find my record and they find not only me but also the typo in my email address. I am told that the shipping address and process instructions will be sent to me by email.

Ok, fine, I am the told that I should get the email within the hour.

Would you believe me if I told you that the email never came again?


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The horror story of hardware support for a Sony PSP - a client's tale

The exact time and date of my first call to Sony's tech support service escapes me. I have to admit that I may have some mental issues since it actually took me 25 minutes to Google and find their phone support number.

I will say this, all tech support folks are very polite. I am informed that I am within the 1 year warranty service time and therefore any device malfunction, unless it was misused, mishandled or modded, is covered.

I am informed that the RMA process is very simple and Sony will be sending a box to me and all I have to do is send the device in the box for servicing. Everything is covered.

I give my address, in Canada (I am talking to someone in California) and my email. I am told that within one hour I should be getting an email confirmation and within a week or so I should be getting the shipping box. Of course I am in Canada so it could also take longer. But the technician assures me that it is going to be quite simple.

I hang up confident that everything will be fine.

It does seem odd that the email never comes, perhaps the fat that I used phonetic military alphabet to spell out my gmail address was not clear enough (it is clear enough when you call bombing coordinates as a ground soldier under enemy fire however to some in a jet cockpit) but I decide that I will give 2 or 3 weeks for the box to come in. With a postal code and a street number, you really can't go wrong.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad