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Showing posts from March, 2008

DRM is worthless

At least that's what Random House has concluded after doing a study on it's audiobooks sold with and without DRM. Here's an exerp from the AnythingButIpod article : "The really interesting part of this story is the experiment that Random House conducted on piracy. They sold DRM free books online and water marked them to track them on P2P networks, but what they discovered was the pirated copies on these networks were from ripped audiobook CDS and cracked from DRMed audiobooks. Legitimately, purchased DRM free audio books did not show up on P2P networks. Random House concluded, “Our feeling is that D.R.M. is not actually doing anything to prevent piracy.”" Wow. Sell people what they want, the way they want it, and for a fair price, and they won't pirate your stuff. Amazing concept. (Can you sense my sarcasm?) The entire NYTimes article is here .

Oh, the joys of virtualization...

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I'm sure the question on everyone's lips these days is, "Hey Akshun J, how do you linux users get around in the internet world without Windows?" Yep, I know you were thinking it. Well, as I said in a previous post, the last two years have been really good for linux users. We've got a SMOKIN web browser (Firefox), with a suite of cool plugins including Java and Flash. Instant messaging (Yahoo, Google, MSN, etc) is handled by either Pidgin or Kopete, either of which are darn good and handle all the major protocols. Music streaming is particularly robust with either Amarok or my current favorite Exaile. I can grab podcasts, stream radio, or listen to my music library all with the same program! All of this stuff gets me to the dance, and the steady stream of online browser-based apps like Facebook and Last.fm get me to the after-party. Did I mention that I paid exactly ZERO for all of these programs??? Paying for software is for suckas. It's all about th

Oooo, I gots traffic!

I don't know where you guys are coming from , but I'm getting some serious hits on this blog. Well, serious for me is over a dozen a day. Over the last couple days, I've gotten about 100. Nice. Was it something I said?

Smoothbeats.com is KILLIN it!

Live DJ Dr. Madness over at Smoothbeats.com is tearing the HELL out of some turntables right now. Or virtual turntables. Or whatever he's using. Who the hell cares, anyway! The point is that he is doing some next-level work over at Smoothbeats, and every hip-hop fan needs to hear it. It is NOT Top-40 crunk crap. It *is* a genre mash-up. I think he's on every Saturday evening, so please listen to him. Remember that old disco line, "Last night a DJ saved my life." Yep, after the day I just had, it was kind of like that...

I am officially an Amazon groupie!

I'm a pretty cheap date. Nachos and merlot, or some slick internet services that support linux, and I'm yours. Google kicked things off a couple of years ago with stuff like Google Earth and Picasa, all of which are cross-platform and run precisely as intended on my linux PC's. Google's online offerings like GMail, Google Chat, Google Docs, and YouTube are also deliciously O/S agnostic. In the span of about a year, linux users like me went from the back to the internet bus to the comfy "old people" seats up front! Just when we thought it couldn't get any better, Amazon drops in out of nowhere with a linux-supported MP3 store . And even better, it's DRM-free! Crazy, right? Now I can cozy right up next to iPod-owners so they can truly savor my cheaper, higher-quality, DRM-free MP3's from Amazon, on my cheaper, higher-quality no-name MP3 player . And the Amazon just keeps on giving! Although I'm late to this party (hey, if it's new to

Keeping up on the social networks is TIRING!

Between Facebook, Last.fm, various web forums, and my blog, keeping up with my social networks has become a full-time job. I wish somebody would pay me for it! Did you know you can even get the Facebook on your cell phone? Non-stop, man.

Comcast is playing a new game with some old tactics

I think I've got it pretty good here in the frigid north/central part of the US, from an internet connectivity perspective. I've got good speed (up and down), short latency, and pretty cheap prices. And I'm with a cable company that doesn't seem to mind that I use their fiber optics to download all of my entertainment from sources all over the world, mostly via bittorrent. Well, at least they've never officially notified me that they have any issues. Um, knock on wood. But apparently, some folks aren't so lucky. It seems that Comcast has broken the Net Neutrality de facto armistice and has turned the guns on it's customers. Reports from users, including some noted experts in the field, show that Comcast is blocking bittorrent traffic and shaping/throttling other "heavy" download traffic. And they are denying everything. That's some sneaky sh*t, Batman! Users are paying for bandwidth, but simply not getting it. It would be different

Amazon rocks!

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So, $0.99 per track is still pricey, but Amazon's MP3 store is still pretty frickin slick. And they will discount full albums, sometimes by 40%. Linux support is complete and easy. I just grabbed a Murs album that I could not find on EMusic. My name is Akshun J and I endorse this service.

Linux is taking OVER

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My favorite little Eee PC is on-sale on Bestbuy.com in 3 DIFFERENT FLAVORS!!! Well, only two of them are manly. I openly reject and oppose the pink. Even though I am color-blind. If Best Buy is selling it... Dude. That's gotta mean something. Too cool, man. Too cool...

I'm loving some Amazon

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Remember those chicks who wore armor, kicked ass, and burnt off their right breast so that it would not interfere with their ability to draw a bow and fire an arrow? Not that I am even remotely in favor of breast mutilation, but THAT is what I call commitment! However, it is a different Amazon that I am loving today. Amazon.com to be precise, and although the book-selling e-company could not be further from historical Amazons if it tried, it has certainly displayed a level of commitment worthy of its warrior namesake. First, it muscled all of the major record labels into providing DRM-free music through their catalog. And then today, it has released download clients supporting most desktop computing platforms including Windows, Mac AND Linux. In the span of 6 months, Amazon.com has jumped to the top of my music download list, although $0.99 per track is still a little rich for my underpaid blood. Has anyone tried their service? If you have, what do you think? I will report on