Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Phones I've owned

Sprint

LG LX1200 (08/2002)


Samsung VGA 1000 (01/2004)

Sanyo PM8200 (08/2004)

Sony Ericsson T608 (06/2005)

Nokia 6225 (12/2005)


Sprint PPC 6700 (01/2006)


Cingular

Sony Ericsson z520a (02/2006)


Sony Ericsson W600 (03/2006)

Sony Ericsson K750i (04/2006)


Verizon Palm Treo 700p (04/2006)


Verizon Motorola Q (11/2006)

Motorola RAZR V3x (11/2006)

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Quote of the day :)

"I do use the computer and learn something new about it every day, and probably forget something about it every day."


- probably the eldest YouTube user ( geriatric1927 ).

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

You have been pre-approved for identity theft!

Talking all about saving paper and things like that, I noticed my mailbox gets totally spammed with credit card offers and such, which I have never ever used. Besides the annoyance that you have to shred those "offers" so that nobody misuses them, they also fill up the mailbox and make a big mess.

Most of those companies get the details from credit reporting agencies. There is now a number you can call that will stop the credit agencies from giving out this information:

888-567-8688

It seems to be like the do-not-call list for phone, but this one is for mail.

I just got mine removed, time shall tell how well it works.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Car Value and Deprecation

I ran some numbers to find out what is the optimal time to sell a car. This is what came out of that.

As most people know, a car deprecates the maximum in first year, and then when its around 5 years old. After that, the deprecation becomes lower.



Numbers for Toyota Camry Solara SE Coupe. Original Cost $ 18,500. Source: edmunds.com

Saturday, October 14, 2006

My view on DRM

People complain about DRM a lot:
  • DRM sucks, its too restrictive.
  • I can't play a song on all the devices I own because of DRM, even though I have paid the full price.
  • My car stereo can't play the songs bought from iTunes unless I burn them in a CD.
  • My linux machine can't play the songs.
I totally agree with the fact that DRM is killing the experience, and its actually quite cumbersome and annoying to use for the end users. But, looking at what people have been doing, if there is no DRM, and if movies and songs get available to download easily, people will definitely copy them, either knowingly or un-knowingly.

DRM does give us some benefits, like:
  • Having been able to provide a eat-all subscription based service.
  • Providing movie rentals based on download.
  • Having been able to download files you have bought again, if u loose them.
  • Studios being able to monetize on individual downloads, and hence (probably), passing on the profits to content creators.
  • Stopping people from unauthorized copying the media.
What we really need to not "Kill" the DRM, but to "Fix" it. Right now, there are multiple providers of DRM: Apple, Microsoft, Real, etc. They do not work with each other, to the extent of hardware level. Creating a good DRM system takes a considerable amount of effort, and has a big business advantage for "lock-in". A person who owns 500 songs from iTunes will not switch away from Apple, just because it will all be lost. To have DRM do a little better, we need to:
  • Have just one DRM format, which is open, and controlled by a non-profit organization.
  • Make this format available for everyone royalty free, so people can get wild and implement it everywhere possible.
  • Have this format implemented in all the hardware devices, car stereos, phones, etc. and be able to authorize any device.
This will provide a better user experience, as people will be able to play their purchased media everywhere, and not locked in to a single provider. It will also be beneficial to the studios, who can focus on better content rather than fighting with the DRM companies to support more devices. People and Studios will be happy, the middle-man (iTunes, FairPlay, etc) will become redundant.

A typical use case for this will be:
  • Listening to a song on XM radio, you like it and immediately buy it in your JVC car stereo.
  • Now you copy this song to your iPod, and carry it around with you.
  • Once you reach home, you get this on your windows computer, and the linux based XBMC media center in living room so you can listen to it everywhere.
  • You can also put this song on your Symbian phone and set it as ring tone.
  • You can even buy a song from the gas station, and listen it on any of your device without worrying about compatibility issues.
There is nothing inherently wrong with DRM, its just wrong with one company controlling it.