Note: This column represents the opinions
of the writer and as such, is not represented as fact|
If I were a suspicious type I might be wondering if Telecom and Telstra
weren't perhaps getting into bed in the area of broadband offerings.
the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook
are revealed for all to see!
Well, what are the chances that the DSL usage meter of both telcos would
fail simultaneously this weekend?
from IDG, Telecom's DSL usage meter was out about the same time as Telstra's
was spitting the dummy according to this story
from ZDNet Australia.
Coincidence? Of course -- but it does leave you wondering whether Telstra's
entry into the NZ marketplace might be seen as giving a green light to reduced
levels of service.
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Perhaps Telecom's spokeswoman ought to have the final word on the company's
commitment to customer service when she told IDG (probably with a sigh of
relief) that the glitch wouldn't affect the ability to bill customers.
I bet that makes those who were flying-blind over the weekend (and paying by
the megabyte for the privilege) feel a whole lot better eh?
What Happens When It Rains?
So Ginger has been revealed -- and it is, as so many speculated, just a
fancy scooter for the rich and famous.
If it were on the market for a couple of hundred dollars it would sell
like hotcakes and totally eclipse all previous fads such as superballs,
chatter-rings, Rubiks cubes, hoola hoops, yo-yos, and even pet rocks.
Unfortunately, it's going to cost almost NZ$8,000. Quite frankly, I don't
see many of us laying down the price of a second-hand car for something that
has little advantage over a Honda 50.
The media has gone crazy extolling the virtues of this new invention -- citing
its efficiency, it's "intelligence," its safety, etc. They claim it will
be a great alternative to cars for urban commuting, etc.
But what happens when it rains?
What happens when you need to bring home three bags of groceries?
What happens to levels of public fitness when even walking down to the corner
shop for a paper becomes a fully automated experience?
Then there's the security issue...
The "consumer" version weighs in at just 29Kg so it's pretty easy to pick up
and carry off. Its light-weight, combined with that hefty price-tag, means
that you're not going to want to leave it sitting outside a shop when you go
in to make a purchase. And, given that few stores allow people to enter
wearing roller-blades, I can't see people being encouraged to ride their
scooters indoors either.
Of course I won't even speculate what could happen if the microcomputers onboard
"IT" get a virus -- but it would make some spectacular news footage wouldn't it?
Then there's that issue of "range." They're claiming it will travel 15 miles
(24 Km) on a single charge. Quite frankly I find it difficult to believe that
they will get this kind of distance from existing battery technology unless
travelling on an absolutely flat surface (which rules out our local hilly
and bumpy footpaths).
Of course Gates and Jobs were delighted with the thing and sung its praises.
They just forgot that not everyone is worth billions of dollars and can afford
to plonk down NZ$8,000 on such a device.
What do you think -- would you spend that much money on a fancy scooter?
Have your say.
Save The Aardvark Fund
Yes, I have had several donations to the Aardvark fund and I thank those
who put their money where their mouse is :-)
If guilt is gnawing away inside you then there's still time to donate.
Just drop by and
hand over your loot.
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