New iPad Review

I’m just mentioning the new iPad so that I can double my hits overnight. I have no content, and nothing to contribute. But I expect my ad revenue will be through the roof by the end of the day. Well, maybe not. But I’ll be able to see a blip.  I’ll also add that the new Apple iPad will feature a high-definition screen and an improved processor. Furthermore, any subsequent mention of the new iPad in this article—as well as any mention of the fact that preorders for the device start today—is resulting in increased reader traffic and, thus, increased revenues for your company’s ad-based business model.

New Apple iPad review and technical specs

New Apple iPad

Three, no longer the magic number

Moving out of town has had it’s disadvantages, not in the least of which has been phone coverage. I’ve been with Three since they started in 2003, and my phone/data usage has meant that my average spend per month has been under $8. This includes a 100MB per month data pack at $5. Data coverage on Three has been spotty at best in the CBD, and non-exiting in Mandurah where I’m always “roaming”. Even though it’s annoying I’ve lived with it because, hey, I’m a patient man.

But since moving office last week I encountered the straw that broke the camel’s back. I don’t any coverage in our new building on St Georges Terrace in the CBD.

So I’ve changed to Amaysim which is basically an Optus reseller. My monthly spend is going to be higher, but at least I’ll be able to use my phone on a more reliable high speed network. And with 4GB of data, I’m seriously thinking of dropping our Home Internet plan and tethering off the handset. If I put a minimum of effort in, I know I can keep my data under 4GB per month.

So if you’re looking for a good deal on Mobile voice and data, try out Amaysim and tell them I sent you. Your first month will be discounted and I’ll get a kickback for referring you!

Disaster averted

It took all in my power, but I managed to stop Suzanne from being drawn to the Dumb Side. She’s had it in her mind to buy an iPhone for a few weeks, dropping hints that became less and less subtle as time wore gone on. I told her that if she can manage to fit it into our budget, then by all means she can get whatever phone she wants but please reconsider and choose Android. Hell, I’d even accept it if she went Windows Mobile, anything but Apple.

iPhone is stupid

I mean if running multiple apps at the same time, configurable home screens, a better app market, more useful notifications, a choice of hardware, custom ROMs, and smoother social integration aren’t reason enough then you are a hopeless fanboi waste of oxygen.

So after a fair amount of reasoning, begging and pleading as well as some threats and intimidation I managed to convince Suzanne to settle on an HTC Incredible S, a far better and cheaper option than the Apple iPhone. I think she will enjoy it much more than the iPhone.


I have new hardware

We’re all getting new computers at work. Finally, no more 386 with Windows NT! We’ve gone with 8GB laptops, with 256 GB SSDs and dual 1200 x 1920 displays running 64-bit Windows 7 Enterprise.

The only decision now is what to name it. For the last couple years I’ve gone with GAGARIN but I want something new and sexy. I was hoping to get everyone to stick to a theme like the Seven Deadly Sins, but we’d probably end up fighting over WRATH.

We could go with

  • Alecto
  • Magaera
  • Tisiphone

who where otherwise known as The Furies from Greek Mythology, but three isn’t really enough to go around. Seven or more would be ideal. I don’t want something obvious like the Seven Dwarfs. The surnames of The Magnificent Seven might be cool.

Or perhaps the Enterprise Captains:

  • April
  • Pike
  • Kirk
  • Spock
  • Picard
  • Archer
  • Janeway

I was thinking of the names of The Fellowship from The Lord of the Rings, but out of the few hundred hosts on the network they’re pretty much already covered. I’d get shouted down for suggesting Sith Lords from Star Wars or Replicants from Blade Runner so we need something else.

Movies and mythology are fine, but how about something historical? Like the Mercury Astronauts:

  • Shepard
  • Grissom
  • Glenn
  • Carpenter
  • Shirra
  • Cooper
  • Slayton

Seven Emperors?

  • Julius
  • Augustus
  • Galba
  • Hadrian
  • Nerva
  • Sallust
  • Vespasian

In all probability we aren’t going to stick to a theme, so I’ll have to end up choosing something just for myself. I’m partial to Battlestar Galactica characters, or even names of Sci-Fi corporations like Weyland-Yutani, Tyrell, Cyberdine or Greystone.

Leave a comment, give me some suggestions.

Goodbye, Angus

The fallout of Borders bookstores falling into financial ruin in the States seems to be the downfall of a beloved bookstore from my childhood. Angus and Robertson were operating in Murray Street back before it became a pedestrian mall. In my early adventures travelling into the city to catch movies and explore, I’d more often than not end the day at Angus and Robertson flicking through reference books or the Sci-Fi section. I actually won a door prize for being the 100th person to pick up some particular book on display at the front of the store. Some guy with a microphone jumped out from behind a door and scared the shit out of me, yelling at me. I didn’t understand anything he said besides “The book is yours to keep!”. So I grabbed that book and ran as fast as I could out of there as if he was one of these “strangers” I’d been hearing so much about. After I ran a couple blocks I was able to process what he was saying. I’d won a book! It was called Danny Dunn and the Voice from Space and was the start of a small collection in that series.

Well, I can’t say times have changed much since then. Through my teens and into adulthood I’d often find myself at Angus and Robertson flicking through reference books and Science Fiction novels. The only thing that changed was the location. Angus was now across the street from their original location next to Old Mr Mitchum and his Corner Shop into a new flash multilevel premises.

But a couple weeks ago I saw they’d shut their doors and a little bit of me died inside. Salt was rubbed into the wound upon seeing the notice hung in their door:

The Spud Shed: An exercise in degeneracy

We needed some supplies for a Sunday morning Father’s Day breakfast at my in-laws house, so on Saturday we stopped by The Spud Shed, Barragup. It’s not far from our home, and is half way between Mandurah and Pinjarra on Pinjarra Road. Yes, in Australia we celebrate Father’s Day in September.

I’m not solely responsible for grocery shopping in our house. I’m not remotely responsible. Really, I’m not responsible at all. It’s for this reason that I hardly venture inside grocery stores. On the odd occasion, I’ll be tasked by my wife to buy something on the way home from work or a meeting, usually milk or bread and the usual day to day essentials, or perhaps a treat to be consumed by hungry, ravenous children. Usually, I’ll pick these supplies up from the gas station which is conveniently on the way. Sure it means a couple extra dollars, but it’s convenient to not have to stop twice. I can get fuel and food at the same time. That’s the limit of my experience in doing the household shopping, and that’s the way it should be.

But on Saturday we needed more than what we’d find at the local gas station, which has never, to my knowledge, sold fresh mushrooms, tomatoes, bacon, eggs, chipolatas, orange juice and Hash Browns we were planning to have for the breakfast. We needed a proper grocery store.

Now, I’ve never classed The Spud Shed as ‘proper’ in any sense of the word. Driving past it, you can see it’s a dark, dingy looking place. I’ve always associated it with bruised, damaged, second rate food and bruised, damaged, second rate clientèle. The few times I have been in there, I’ve been confronted with living nightmares. Shabbily dressed people of questionable genetics groping around in the freezers, grunting derelicts with dirty hands pawing the fruit and vegetables. A morbidly obese woman in tights with her naked belly hanging over and being supported by the handlebar of her shopping trolley filling it up with as many 50c sausage rolls as she can fit while her two screaming butter-ball children cling to her ankles is an image that makes me weep for the future of the human race. Young but tired, soulless, uncaring girls behind the checkouts shoveling what passes for food into shopping bags. I usually follow along behind my wife, who in comparison to these people appears as glamourous and elegant as Paris Hilton or Scarlett Johansson, in silence trying not to make eye contact.

Don’t get me wrong. Not all of their food is the kind that you’d find in a Woolies dumpster. Their fresh fruit-n-veg is actually passable for human consumption and is quite plentiful and cheap, grown locally. Too bad most of the shoppers instead go for the kind of processed “brown” food that would make Jamie Oliver cry with disappointment and rage.

I’ve remarked to my wife more than once that the only thing missing from this house of horrors is Con the Fruiterer. Con is an old character from an 80′s Australian “comedy” show called “The Comedy Company“, a quasi-racist caricature of a Greek green-grocer with stereotypical catchphrases and mannerisms. He was pretty popular in the day, with the then Prime Minister appearing on his show saying that he was going to fix the economy in “a coupla days”.

And my goodness, who should we bump into hawking “Bewdiful” goods inside The Spud Shed at Baragup but the man himself.


At least we got out of there without anybody trying to eat my children.