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Microsoft sets a new record

That record, unfortunately, is creating what looks like the largest worldwide consumer electronic device failure in history.

Around 2:30 on December 31st, owners of 30 GB Zune players around the world found their devices useless. Microsoft took nearly a day just to identify the cause of the problem, and their solution was classic Microsoft: Wait.

The issue was apparently tied to the fact that 2008 was a leap year, and according to Zune players, December 31st (the 366th day of the year) didn't exist. Nice to see we learned some lessons about computer calendars after Y2K. I'm beginning to think that the Red Rings and Blue Screens of Death are not flaws, but design features!



iPhone Users List - End of Year Edition

As we are on the verge of a new year, there will be lots of technological innovations to look forward to in 2009. This week's iPhone tips come courtesy of iPhone Buzz and Mashable.

One of the things that could use some improving on most mobile phones is the camera. While the iPhone takes pretty good pictures (for a phone) some additional features, like zoom and flash, would be nice. USB Fever is now selling a variety of magnetic zoom lenses for the iPhone. For $16.99 each, I'd say they are definitely worth checking out.

To have a more productive 2009, Mashable reviews their list of the top 30 productivity apps for 2009.

That's all for now. Happy New Year!


Another Reason Why I like Physical Media

A few weeks ago, I mentioned how I love physical media and didn't think I would buy into digital media. Part of my fear is that someday the service will shut down and I won't be able to play/watch/listen to whatever I bought. This sort of thing happens already.

EA's download service* (through a company called Digital River) charges you an extra $6.99 for the privilege to download your game for up to two years. Two years!? Firstly, I feel it should be for a lifetime considering the amount of money companies save by not printing a manual, box, or discs. It's true they need bandwidth and storage space, but both of those are getting cheaper (especially storage). Generally these companies have a pretty beefy connection that they pay monthly for, regardless of bandwidth used anyway. Secondly, it's depressing to see them charging an extra $7 for only two years! I could almost understand if it was $7 for a lifetime, but still...

I can't tell you how many times I've dug up an old game to play for a bit, especially after two years. Plus, many people will upgrade their computer in the next two years - do you want to have to buy a game or movie again in two years just because you have a new computer? Heck no!

*Not all of EA's games are on Digital River, some are through Steam which does allow you to download your games for an indefinite amount of time. I think this is a must for digital content!