(Diarist is a metaweblog app for Windows Phone, developed by Kev Daly).
With time and the help of an entire community, in special our volunteer moderators, Geekzone managed to capture a good audience in New Zealand and overseas. Numbers continue to go up, and discussions in our forums continue to attract hundreds of thousands of visitors every month. Those visitors come mainly from New Zealand, but also from U.S., Canada, Australia, the UK and smaller numbers from other countries.
I managed to make new friendships that span the globe. People who I've met over the years in our pizza evenings, coffee meetings and conferences everywhere.
When I saw we were approaching 500,000 replies in our forums, I contacted some of the local telco/tech companies and passed the hat around, asking for some prizes to distribute. The response was really good as you can see below
I intentionally did not announce there would be prizes, because we wanted some genuine post to win. Also we decided to give some "consolation" prizes to people who got close to 500,000 but not quite. So here are the winners and prize list!
- sultanoswing (500,00th - 1) will receive a Nokia 6700c from TelstraClear
- vinnieg (500,00th + 1) will receive a HTC Wildfire S from Telecom New Zealand
- lokhor (500,000th) will receive the following:
- HP Envy 100 printer/scanner courtesy of HP New Zealand
- MSDN Premium subscription courtesy of Microsoft New Zealand
- N300 Wireless Dual Band ADSL2+ Modem Router courtesy of NETGEAR
- WN2000RPT Universal WiFi Range Extender with 4 Ports courtesy of NETGEAR
- HTC Sensation courtesy of Telecom New Zealand
- Apple iPad courtesy of TelstraClear
A few weeks ago I received a suggestion to award one of our Geekzone users for his contributions. It was a great suggestion and after talking to our moderator team we agreed Stephen Abbot (cyril7 on Geekzone) has been of great help to our entire community and deserved some recognition. On his own words:
"I am deeply honoured and to be honest, quite humbled to be offered such a gift. As you probably are well aware my contribution is provided without hooks and in an effort to demystify stuff for the average person that they normally would not have easy access to."
Stephen lurks around Geekzone and helps people on lots of different subjects, from broadband performance to Freeview and Sky configurations.
I reached out to Dell AU/NZ and they offered a ST2320L full HD monitor - 23" widescreen HD (1920 by 1080) monitor, for use with desktops, laptops, gaming consoles, media centres, digital video recorders. It's here with me now and we will arrange for Stephen to get it this coming week.
After thinking about the suggestion for a little bit we also agreed to give a prize to the user who created the most epic discussion this year. This honour goes to Adam Jobbins (ajobbins on Geekzone, @ajobbins on Twitter) who created the topic "iPhone 4 NZ Launch Date".
This topic got really hot during the days - and nights - preceding the iPhone 4 release in New Zealand, and all the problems around the lack of external communications from both Apple and Vodafone New Zealand during that period. The discussion gathered so much momentum that on the launch night it got more than 70 pages of replies. In total there are 160 pages with 2,399 replies, making it the most epic discussion of the year (just a few replies ahead of another huge discussion, the Samsung Galaxy S I9000 by lokhor).
Adam will receive an Amazon Kindle (which I bought specially for this award).
Congratulations to both Stephen and Adam.
I am thinking we will establish a more formal award for 2011, with additional categories to be announced during the year.
There are more than 60 mobile operators in over 30 countries worldwide committed to bringing Windows Phones to market.
“We have a beautiful lineup in this first wave of Windows Phone 7 handsets,” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “Microsoft and its partners are delivering a different kind of mobile phone and experience — one that makes everyday tasks faster by getting more done in fewer steps and providing timely information in a ‘glance and go’ format.”
Windows Phone 7 will be available in a variety of form factors from device-makers such as Dell, HTC Corp., LG and Samsung, and from mobile operators including América Móvil, AT&T, Deutsche Telekom AG, Movistar, O2, Orange, SFR, SingTel, Telstra, TELUS, T-Mobile USA and Vodafone.
All Windows Phone 7 phones will include the high-performance Snapdragon processor from Qualcomm. A broad selection of phones will begin shipping in holiday 2010 with more arriving in 2011, including phones from Sprint and Verizon Wireless. In addition, select models will be available at Microsoft Store locations and from Amazon.
Here's a video of Steve Ballmer talking about Windows Phone 7:
One of the best geek jokes I've seen...
The most important thing to note this time is that we want to make sure Geekzone users have access to the event, so we decided to do the following:
- Sometime in January 2010 we will open registrations.
- People who replied in the forum discussion (or watched that topic) will be contacted via email and allowed to register first.
- After 48 hours we will open registrations to all other users who registered on Geekzone before 1st January 2010 and had at least two posts.
- After 72 hours we will open registrations to all other users who registered on Geekzone after 1st January 2010 (up to a maximum of 15 tickets).
I will keep updating the forum discussion with all sponsors - there are some very good ones coming on board this year.
I am not allowing comments in this blog post otherwise people will comment here instead of replying in the forums (yes, I know you wouldn't but someone else might).
CFF Director, Bronwyn Holloway-Smith, said today that "Minister Power's redrafting process has made a lot of sense so far and we have been encouraged to see that the government seems intent on avoiding going back to s92A's draconian predecessor."
"Internet termination is a major issue that is yet to be resolved. We don't terminate a family's postal service if one person uses it to break the law.
We don't terminate a family's electricity if one person plays music too loudly. The internet is part of modern participation in society, and termination will unfairly affect peoples' ability to pay bills, to do business, to read news, email friends, and participate in democracy. Simply put, internet termination is an inventive and ridiculous punishment that will harm many people for the actions of one." she further stated.
"Copyright infringement is wrong but we won't win the hearts and minds of New Zealanders with a draconian punishment like termination. We need fair, targeted penalties like fines, supported by good education about copyright."
"It has been said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, and with that in mind NZFACT are calling for New Zealanders to be presumed guilty until proven innocent yet again. NZFACT flew an Hollywood lobbyist over to argue that New Zealanders shouldn't have the same rights that are afforded to United States
"Here and abroad studies have shown that 30-37% of accusations of copyright infringement are false, with 57% of cases being businesses targeting competitors. These facts are backed by experts and independent studies, whereas industry claims of lost sales due to illegal downloads have been exposed as unscientific. The Australian government have labeled piracy statistics as "self-serving hyperbole" in a draft government report to their Attorney General."
"NZFACT claim that millions of dollars are lost to online infringement despite not actually selling box office movies online, which raises the obvious question of whether millions are lost due to illegal downloads, or unsatisfied customers."
"They seek have to extraordinary powers to terminate people's internet accounts, but thankfully the redrafting process shows no signs of relying on hearsay and speculation."
New Zealanders are encouraged to learn more at http://CreativeFreedom.org.nz to send respectful emails to Minister Simon Power on email@example.com about the value of due process and their thoughts on internet termination.
"FACTS AND FIGURES"
Former head of New Zealand's Copyright Tribunal, Judge Harvey, has said that 30% of New Zealand copyright litigation fails due to a failure to prove ownership, or due to the copyright not being governed by New Zealand law.
According to a UCLA study (2008), 37% of US claims of online copyright infringement are invalid, and 57% of claims are businesses against competitors.
The Australian government have labeled piracy statistics as "self-serving hyperbole" in a draft government report. A confidential briefing for the Attorney-General's Department, prepared by the Australian Institute of Criminology, lashes the music and software sectors. The draft of the institute's intellectual property crime report, sighted by The Australian shows that copyright owners "failed to explain" how they reached financial loss statistics used in lobbying activities and court cases.
The Creative Freedom Foundation is a not-for-profit trust representing 20,000 New Zealanders, including 10,000 artists (musicians, film makers, visual artists, designers, writers, & performers). The trust founded in 2008 in response to changes in copyright law and the effect these changes are having on creativity, the economy, and public rights. Through education and advocacy, the CFF seek to encourage, and promote New Zealand artist's views on issues that have the potential to influence their collective creativity.
Here is another super discount, thanks to HP: you can buy any custom HP dv4t configuration with a US$180 discount and get some bonus too: free 3GB RAM and 320GBHD upgrades, free HP CalcPad 200 and free shipping.
To get this discount just quote the coupon code NLB1562 at checkout when selecting both systems. This is valid until the 22th August only.
The fineprint: Valid for HP Home & Home Office (hpshopping.com) internet and call center purchases only. Coupon valid on first 100 redemptions, or while supplies last. Any unused portion will be forfeited. Each coupon code is limited to one usage per customer; one coupon code per checkout. Offer void where prohibited, taxed or restricted by law. Non-transferable. Not valid retroactively on previously purchased items. Not valid for any resale activity as defined by HP Home & Home Office Store. Coupons may not be used to purchase gift cards. Not valid on clearance sales. May not be permitted with certain bundle offers. Not valid on: Academic and Employee purchase programs, HP Employee purchase program, Refurbished products, Extended Service Plans. For complete coupon conditions, see "Coupon Information" in the "Customer Service" section at hpshopping.com.
And remember to visit Back To School: Better Together giveaways for a lot more information on this back to school giveaways. make sure to bookmark that site so you know exactly when to enter each competition.