Sunday, April 13, 2008

Microsoft Successful

Microsoft Windows is the operating system that everyone loves to hate. I recently bought a new computer. Before I bought it, I had to decide whether to stick with the old and familiar, or to go with something new. There are two common alternatives to Windows. One is to buy a Mac. The other is to install Linux. In the process of researching my decision, and in the aftermath of the purchase, I was exposed to the attitudes of Mac users, and having freed up my old computer for experimentation, I decided to try to see how for I could get with Linux.

The predominating attitude of Mac users suggests that I'm not nearly condescending enough to own one [1]. Meanwhile, my attempt with Linux was one of many in my personal history with computers, and like every attempt in the past, I quickly realized that I need to have an advanced to degree in computer science with about a week of nothing to do but tweaking my system before I can read my email, and another week before I can send.

In the end, I realized that my only option was go back to the old and familiar. My experiences since then have inspired me not only to accept Windows, but to defend it against the other commonly available options. In the first of what may or may not be a series of posts on this theme, I would like to declare that, on at least one of their design goals, Microsoft has been incredibly successful.

[1] This is not to say that all Mac owners are condescending. Two out of three of the friends I have who bought Mac computers are quite the opposite, whatever that is. But that third friend just ruins it for the first two. Mac users who have inherited their computers from their supervisors are excluded from this statistic.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

I don't think it's your AQ that's F

From the FAQs at the NeoCitran website:

"Q: I’m going to be drinking alcohol. Is it OK to take NeoCitran?

A: If you consume 3 or more alcoholic drinks every day, ask your doctor whether you should take the NeoCitran products that contain acetaminophen or other pain relievers/ fever reducers. Acetaminophen may cause liver damage."

Now I suppose that NeoCitran is only responsible for responding to any concerns that users might have in relation to their product, but I up until I read the FAQ, I would have thought that any phrase that starts with "If you consume 3 or more alcoholic drinks every day" should probably end with something like "you might want to take a good hard look at your lifestyle" or "your friends and family might be trying to stage an intervention." Acetaminophen may cause liver damage. Oh yes. I'm sure it's acetaminophen that's the culprit when the person who consumes 3 drinks every day and then takes one of NeoCitran's acetaminophen containing products gets liver damage.

NeoCitran's motto is "Good to be Back." Back off the the wagon, it seems.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Out for the Penny, Out by Pounds [Updated]

Further to this post, NDP MP Pat Martin has finally introduced his private member's bill on the elimination of the Canadian 1 cent coin. The man himself appears not to have caught wind of his introduction of the bill in parliament. As of the writing of this post, there is not a mention of it on his website.

Despite my best efforts to spend my pennies, the number in my possession still seems to be increasing. At the very least, they're not decreasing nearly as fast as I would like them to. So get on it folks. Call your local MP and urge them to vote with Mr. Martin, before I can no longer manage my accumulating pounds of pennies.

[Update:03/04/08 11:24am] According to his website, Pat Martin has learned of the bill he has introduced. Good for Pat. Also, the poll of the day at (look at the right, near the top, just below the banner) is on whether or not the penny should be scrapped. As of 11:26, 56% say yes. The rest say no.


hat tip David Koyzis