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Great forum participation: Orcon and WorldxChange

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 5-Jun-2008 15:20

This is one example of great forum participation: Orcon giving more information on why people are noticing performance problems on their broadband plans and what's being done to solve this.

We have seen this kind of participation on Geekzone from WorldxChange, Vodafone, New Zealand Communications and more on the quiet side Telecom New Zealand as well.

Well done Orcon!

Apple itunes movies in France, Canada and the UK - death of Media Center?

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 5-Jun-2008 08:02

Apple has announced their on-line movie offerings in France, Canada and the UK through its iTunes store.

There you go. How long before they do the same in Australia and New Zealand?

I currently use a Mac mini in the lounge, running Windows Vista Ultimate for its Media Center. But this can be quicky changed by simply setting a Bootcamp option and instantly revert to Mac OS. Or changing the OS may not be needed at all - but all the Mac OS eye candy...

Apple TV works with Windows Vista through the iTunes applications, so people don't even need to buy a lot of new hardware - a small box is all it takes to bring movies to your lounge. Forget about Windows Vista Media Center. There's a set top box that does it nicely - music, photos, video. Apple TV may be something interesting after all.

It is very tempting to avoid trips to a video rental store and download movies directly to your home theatre, over the Internet. Bring on fuel savings!

Microsoft is too U.S. centric and all their media offerings is always only available in the U.S. Add to this the lack of interest from content providers on Windows Media Center and it is a platform that may have its days counted now.

I wrote here before. In addition to having TVNZ on demand service as a browser application the developers should have worked with Microsoft to develop a Media Center add-in allowing people to watch those videos from their Media Center interface. But no, instead we are sucked into a browser - even though Media Center PCs have no keyboards and a beautiful user interface (and experience) that is not designed for that kind of interaction.

Microsoft is currently testing "Fiji", the next interaction of its Media Center software including a more robust support for DVB-T and HDTV. New Zealand, with Norway, is one of the very few countries using the H.264 standard for HDTV broadcast.

But is "Fiji" being tested here? No, if you are based in New Zealand the "Fiji" option is not available in the Microsoft's Beta web site.

Microsoft is really leaving consumer behind. Better rethink what you are doing - and think global...

Geekzone Pizza evening in Hawkes Bay

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 3-Jun-2008 08:17

Well it had to happen. With sucha success events as the Geekzone Pizza evenings in Wellington and Auckland, and a fully booked (yet to happen) one in Christchurch, we are planning a Geekzone Pizza evening in Hawkes Bay on 19th July.

It is likely to be held in Hastings.

We are currently workling with booking the venue but we have limited the event to 30 people this time.

As usual sponsors for the pizza, drinks and prizes pool are welcome - contact me for more details.

Please RSVP in the thread.

AMD at Computex 2008

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 2-Jun-2008 15:31

I have some information about AMD's participation at the Computex 2008 in Taiwan and I am listing this here if you want to follow their announcements:

- A live broadcast 4th June 12:30am ET (check your timezone). The broadcast will be archived on the same page if you want to watch it later. Or you can watch it here (javascipt required):
- Pat Moorhead's blog.

- AMD Unprocessed Twitter feed.

- AMD Unprocessed Facebook page.

- AMD Unprocessed Flickr page.

- Short video clips with AMD and partner-related technoologies.

Apple Store bans teenagers for life (or not)

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 1-Jun-2008 08:22

There are some reports of teenargers being removed from an Apple Store in Palo Alto and banned (or not depending on who you ask) from entering Apple Stores. They were caught trying to "jailbreak" the iPhone demo models.

The best story is Fake Steve Job's report on how those two "frigtards" were removed from the store - "frigtard" being a word Fake Steve Job uses a lot, instead of the heavier - sometimes more deserved - and not safe for work version.

From th Mercury News: "Earlier this week, the four teenagers said they were depressed about not being able to visit their favorite store again."

This reminds me of the local Telecom New Zealand store. Other day I was there waiting in line to get something done with my account (oh yes, porting out of Vodafone New Zealand to Telecom New Zealand) and noticed a PC available for customers to use.

Customers? Next thing I noticed is a bunch of schoolgirls getting up from a table in the food court nearby  - after getting their tummies full of delicious McDonald's burgers and fries and milkshakes and apple pies and soda - and just because they have nothing better to do they walk in droves to the store and start using the PC to check their Bebo pages, MySpace and whatever else they use these days.

And not a single one of them could even bother to say thank you to the people in store after they moved again, like a cloud, to the next stop.

"Please" and "Thank you" were dearly missed.

Ilium Software: eleven years

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 30-May-2008 11:30

I started using handheld devices when US Robotics created the Pilot organiser - the one that later turned into Palm Pilot, and so on.

The first software I ever bought for my handheld was Ilium eWallet - it stores information cards in a secure file, synchronises with a desktop, and more. And even after I moved to Windows Mobile years later, this is still the first software I install on any new handheld I get - Pocket PC or Smartphone.

Ilium is now celebrating its 11th anniversary with a week of promotions with prizes including Amazon gift cards, software and more. So check the Ilium Software blog from Monday (2nd June) through Friday (6th June) to find out how to enter.

They are also running a software sale during this period with 55% discount over their regular price. The link will be live on Monday as well.

Enjoy - I have enjoyed for over ten years!

It is here: our Dragon competition

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 29-May-2008 20:02

So it starts: for seven days we will be accepting entries to our competition, part of the 31 Days of the Dragon.

If you don't know yet HP has partnered with 31 websites to give 31 HP HDX notebooks loaded with the ultimate hardware and software. Each site will give one of those beasts away - one a day during 31 days.

Enter our competition now, then follow to the 31 Days of the Dragon website to find out where to go next.

CSI New York: I will create a GUI interface...

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 29-May-2008 16:03

"I will create a GUI interface (sic) using Visual Basic... See if I can track an IP address"...

Vodafone New Zealand no longer locking handsets

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 28-May-2008 10:09

Just about one month after Vodafone New Zealand started a new policy of locking their handsets, news are in that the company is reverting the decision.

I have just contacted Vodafone and confirmed this is a done deal, which means they will be providing unlocked handsets.

I am sure this will make the consumer in general and some of our users who discussed this on Geekzone in particular a bit happier today.

A great decision Vodafone!

Cisco Mobility webcast

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 28-May-2008 08:46

IF you are interested in mobility strategy for businesses, check the Cisco Mobility webcast. I just received the press release for this event.

The Cisco Mobility webcast will be on-line from 28th May 1:30pm PDT (click the link for other timezones).

freitasm's profile

Mauricio Freitas
New Zealand

I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

I'm the Geekzone admin. On Geekzone we publish news, reviews and articles on technology topics. The site also has some busy forums. Also worth visiting is TravelTalk NZ, a community for travelers!

Subscribe now to my blog RSS feed or the Geekzone RSS feed.

If you want to contact me, please use this page or email me Note this email is not for technical support. I don't give technical support. You can use our Geekzone Forums for community discussions on technical issues.

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