> chat > Sat 2003-01-25

Chat for Sat 2003-01-25 15:01:33

rich-c: test
moved to room Meeting Place
changed username to George
rich-c: hello George
rich-c: thought it was likely to be you
George: HEY! the aol server is back up
rich-c: oh, was it down for a while?
George: quite a while
rich-c: like, how long is that?
George: 18 hours or more
rich-c: oh wow, I have never had my IS go down for anything like that length of time
rich-c: did lose him once for a couple of hours when a lightning strike knocked out power in his area
George: this bug really got them
rich-c: he ran out of backup long before they got the power up again
rich-c: oh goody! did some hacker manage to bring them down? neat!
George: i'm on dialup
rich-c: so what? so am I all the time - really doesnt hurt a bit
rich-c: like, how fast can I type and send anyway?
George: compared to what i had it is quite a loss
George: it's not just typing with me
rich-c: yeah, I keep forgetting you do all sorts of downloading to the point whre speed matters
rich-c: me, I did a great deal of downloading over the last couple of days
rich-c: went back and did a review of and found they have all sorts of new and updated really neat programs
George: yeah, 250mb. on dialup doesn't cut it
rich-c: so I just downloaded each program I wanted in the background while I browsed for the next one
rich-c: well, the stuff I wanted was usually max 5 megs and mostly a fraction of one
rich-c: among other things, got a couple of neat fractals programs for Frances
George: that's ok once you get over 10mb. you are in trouble
rich-c: well, let's just say you're online for a while and may want to use a download manager
rich-c: I doubt I would have got the updated copy of Easy Office if I'd had to download it myself instead of borrowing a computer at the Amiga meeting
George: besides everything was supposed to be fiber optic by now
rich-c: well, effectively, everything is but for the "last mile"
rich-c: that is, the distance from the district office to your home
rich-c: maybe they figure with twisted pairs adequate for DSL and cable also on every pole, fire is too hard a sell
rich-c: fibre
George: yes still drain our dwindling copper resources even further than expected
rich-c: don't think copper is getting too close to the critical level yet
rich-c: besides when it starts getting scarce it's easy to recycle and the price makes it attractive to do so
George: they were crying over it back in the early 80's
rich-c: the market is cyclic, so supply always swings from excessive to shortage
George: like oil
rich-c: the economy goes up, so does demand, just after they fired all the workers and closed the mines due to recession
rich-c: well actually, with oil the swings are much more gentle - demand is pretty inelastic
George: oh, boy are they crying here
rich-c: who is crying about what?
George: they are crying and fighting mad over the price of gas and oil here in the states
rich-c: gas here is about 80 cents/litre - that's $3.06 per US gallon -
rich-c: maybe you-all should quit yer bitchin'!
rich-c: anyway, the price of gas is mostly tax - if you dont like it elect less greedy politicians
George: tell the people here that. I don't want to be aroud you when you do
rich-c: I've noticed folks don't like it much when you hold a mirror up to them
rich-c: anyway, what is the weather up to down your way?
George: i don't look in mirrors they always seem to smash
rich-c: there are folks who claim I can't be seen in them at all, but I'm sure they are not serious
George: lets see
rich-c: well, if you look hard enough, there are pictures on the 'net of someone claimed to be me
George: can't tell from numbers
rich-c: anyway, how re your weather numbers?
George: 28F now
George: some sun
rich-c: we're near that - reading about 24 though we were supposed to top out at 16
rich-c: we were promised a peek of sun but it hasnt shown up yet
rich-c: still, we have eleven days to go here to the absolute depth of winter
George: we were supposed get above freezing for the first time in 2 weeks
rich-c: think you may be disappointed in that over the next 24 hours but then there seems to be a slight warming trend coming
rich-c: still I can remember one January here when we never saw a temperature of freezing or above through all of January
George: it should cold now. i can remember when it used to be -5F
rich-c: let's say I know from personal experience that our porch light wont light when it is -25C
rich-c: it's a fluourescent but does have a heavy-duty outdoor lamp
George: tee hee
rich-c: it has a photocell switch so when it got dark it would just sit there and flicker but never light
George: instant icecubes
rich-c: just about - got our dinner wine up from the cellar tonight and you could have used it to freeze peas
George: i can remember when i flooded the yard and it turned into an instant ice rink
rich-c: I imagine you realize that in Toronto the personal backyard ice rink is a long tradition
George: no zambonies required
rich-c: but lately with warmer winters and the urban island effect as the city has grown, they have become difficult
rich-c: right, in fact the folks we bought the house from had one in the back yard for their kids
George: i'm pissed off at aol
rich-c: judging by their Consumer Reports rating, so is everyone else that uses them
rich-c: I guess once people learn how to use computers they realize how they're being shafted and get mad
George: they sent me dsl modems that didn't work. i sent them back 2 years ago. today they told me they never recieved them.
rich-c: so they're incompetent - this is NOT a secret
rich-c: they get too uppity, file a formal complaint with the FTC
rich-c: if they try pushing you, go squawk to your state attorney-general's office
George: i'm giong to the postal inspector and the postmaster general.
rich-c: in the classic pseudo-Latin phrase - Illegitimati non corborundum
rich-c: translation: don't let the bastards grind you down
rich-c: communications companies are regulated by the FCC, trade practices come under FTC and the states
rich-c: not sure the post office is the right place to complain on that one
George: butthey made a mistake doing commerce though the postal service
rich-c: you bought off an offer mailed to you?
George: no they shipped through the postal service
rich-c: not sure that would be enough to qualify, especially as they did ship in good faith
rich-c: now if you had your receipt for the postage from when you returned the modems, that would be a different matter
George: they say it's good enough as long as they use the postal service. at least that's what my postmaster said.
rich-c: yes but with the receipt you could then demand the post office prove they delivered or make good on the claim
George: i did get reciepts. the trouble is i didn't keep them over 2 years. and they never notified me they were missing
rich-c: moral: always keep the paperwork
rich-c: we do (it's Frances' habit) - you'd be amazed how many obstinate merchants we've backed down over the years
rich-c: their word against yours they'll assume they're right; their word against your paper - OOPS!
George: there is a time limit for keeping records. and making claims
rich-c: yes; here on income tax for instance it's seven years
rich-c: and yes, we have made the income tax department back down too!
George: nobody gets as long as the IRS
rich-c: true, just make sure your documents are smarter than their bureaucrats - that isnt hard
George: i bet they won't even show if i take them to court
George: the bums
rich-c: since you're going a criminal route, you cant take them to court; the government will be the plaintiff
George: great the'll really hide then
rich-c: but they can take you to civil court and win
rich-c: because they can prove they sent you the modems and you cant prove you sent them back
rich-c: when you sent the modems back, where did you mail them?
George: that depends i've seen postal officials come up with proof that items were returned ie. official copies the kept filed
rich-c: again - where did you mail them?
George: the post office
rich-c: did you have to have them weighted and buy postage?
George: yes that's how they charge you
rich-c: did you ask for them to be insured?
George: yes
rich-c: then it is a very good bet that the post office has a record of the shipment
George: i asked that too
rich-c: becuase they do record the benificiary on any insurance - which means paper they keep a copy of
rich-c: if you can tell the post office the day and place the parcel was mailed, they should have a record
George: i don't trust these companies
rich-c: and since it was insured there would be a tracking number which would record its delivery
rich-c: I dont trust the post office either but if they are willing to dig it out they likely have the paper you need
George: thats why i'm giong to the postal inspector
rich-c: as long as you know the right question to ask - that is, does he have the paper you need
rich-c: if you can get any proof of shipment from the post office you dont even need proof of delivery
rich-c: though once you have it you can put in an insurance claim which should get you proof of delivery
rich-c: and with that in hand you can tell AOL if they don't stop harassing you you will sue them
George: i know i caught columbia house that way
rich-c: shame on you - if you had previous expereience and still didnt keep the record
George: like i said there are time limits
rich-c: 24 months isnt much - you have to do better than that especially with rental items
George: you don't have keep things forever
rich-c: didnt say you did -some notes you can toss the same day
rich-c: but other things it is best to keep the proof for, say, the classic seven years
rich-c: after all, with much stuff, three years and it's still in warranty, so make sure you have the paper to prove it
George: IRS gets the longest and they try to stretch it but are 10% sucessful
rich-c: the IRS can stretch it if they can convince a judge there is a high likelihood of criminal activity involved
George: western digital cut back their warranty to only 1 year on their new harddrives
rich-c: really? I wonder what was behind that
George: i don't know i was shocked
rich-c: wonder if they had a situation like Fujitsu who had so many failures they got out of the regular HD business
rich-c: apparently Fujitus put out a bad batch and got a huge flood of warranty claims
George: and they don't include mounting brackets anymore too.
rich-c: so they just decided they would only make hard drives for laptops from now on
rich-c: are you talking sealed manufacturer package or supplied by a local shop like BestBuy?
George: yes, i got mine from sam's club factory sealed
rich-c: I just got an 8.1 gig IBM hard disc with PCMCIA interface for the laptop - it is neat
rich-c: what size hard disc?
George: wish i didn't get 80gb. though
rich-c: is that what you bought? an 80?
George: yes
George: too big for most systems
rich-c: I havent a clue what to do with most of my 40 - I actually use about 3 gig on it
rich-c: oh, around here, the $1000 computers usually have 60 or 80 gig HDs now
George: oh, i use 20-25 gig already
rich-c: I wouldn't doubt it; that's par for you download demons
George: years ago that would be the entire internet
rich-c: wonder if Sams cut a deal for stripped drives at a real friendly price
George: actually with their discount rates it was kind of high
rich-c: if you look at places like Sams you often find that what they sell has a different part or model number from what say Sears offers
rich-c: the advertised specification will look pretty much the same but the incorporated goodies will be different or missing
rich-c: like warranty length or useful parts like mounting brackets
rich-c: the first Sams wont open here till this fall but we do have Price Club
George: sears usually has the different numbers here. sam's matched western digital exactly on this model
rich-c: just for kicks I'd check the SKEW on the barcode on the drive itself
rich-c: sorry, SKU
George: i did and called western digital
rich-c: and what did they say about the reduction of the warranty to one year?
George: it's their new standard and they tried to sell me an extended warranty
rich-c: interesting - it would be fun knowing the figures that decision was based on
rich-c: wonder how their MTBF numbers are doing lately?
rich-c: by the way, the IBM drive I bought (factory sealed, apparently) had software on it from Maxtor
George: they probably have a contractor to deal with it rather than deal with theirself
rich-c: no, I would expect the drive makers to handle their warranty work in-house, for many good reasons
George: maxtor actually advises you to use their overlay software
rich-c: don't know about overlay software - this is a backup program called "KharmaPi"
George: oh, they get kickbacks for doing it that way
rich-c: anyway looks pretty snazzy - have to find a way to transfer it to my desktop
rich-c: not sure what make of hard disc I have in the desktop
George: and these warranty contractors make it very attractive if fact a deal they can't pass up
rich-c: oh, I know the principal, just like Honeywell did the warranty work for Adam
George: and they were local for me
rich-c: yes, Honeywell had depots all over - actually in Canada there was another contractor
George: in fact i walked to the factory
rich-c: ours was out in Scarboroguh so I had to drive - that's another part of Toronto
rich-c: anyway time is getting on and I am going to have to go
rich-c: I trust you will be on chat Wednesday?
George: if aol is still working
rich-c: OK, see you then - bye now
George: bye now
rich-c: colour me gone
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changed username to rich-c > chat > Sat 2003-01-25
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