1Mbit BroadBand Internet Access a Legal Right in Finland

Signs of a culture moving forward, or just frivolous waste of government money? Finland has announced that by next July, 1mbit broandband internet access, which is roughly 20 times quicker than dial up (assuming a generous 50kbps assumption for dial-up) is now a legal human right. While it’s certainly a step towards the future, Finland still plans to blast us away by promising 100mbit internet connections by 2015. With this announcement, Finland joins the ranks of Estonia, France, and Greece where internet access is considered a human right.

[Source: cnet news]

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ERAU Nukes My E-Mail Account, Says “Too Bad”

4 years, over 100 grand, and endless repetition “you must use your e-mail account”, then after graduating and 6 months later, they delete it. I was too busy in the midst of relocating my life halfway across the country, never mind accepting a new job the education helped to provide, and now my account was nuked.

I called up their tech support line, hoping to get it reactivated for just a week or two, so I can move services that were associated with that account over to a new email account, but it’s a no-can-do. They’ve killed it for good and were unwilling to re-activate it. I even offered to pay, since working at the school I also know that the services their email servers provide aren’t free. Come on guys, I just need it turned on for a week.

Honestly I was hoping they would treat their alumni better, but they still don’t mind calling every now and then to ask for money. To make it worse, I can’t sign up on their alumni website either.

What a bunch of jerks. FYI any recent graduates, your account expires in 180 days.

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SERO 500 + Palm Pre, part II

In my previous post, I discussed somehow squirreling a Palm Pre onto my excellent SERO 500 plan.

As promised, I went to a local Sprint store and asked one of their sales agents if I could activate a non-contractual Palm Pre (purchased at the full retail price) on the SERO 500 plan. The agent was very understanding, and agreed that they were all instructed to NOT activate any Palm Pre’s unless the plan has the word “Everything” in it. He also said that while Sprint stores would be well stocked, Best Buy locations would be getting around a max of 5 per store. He then told me that if I did want to get a Palm Pre activated on SERO I should buy one at Best Buy at the non-contract price and attempt to activate it online.  

Apparently he doesn’t know if there are any specific checks in their system to disallow activating the Palm Pre yourself, but it would most likely not work and ask you to call customer service. What he said next suprised me: apparently there are around 35000 customer service reps in call centers – he suggested that not all of them know the policy or care about the policy and I would have a very good chance of getting it activated that way.

To add some relief – he then told me that the Palm Pre should be available for employee-referral type plans after 60 days from launch, much like the Instinct was. Happy Pre-hunting!

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SERO 500 + Palm Pre

The Palm Pre – supossed real competition for the iPhone with true multitasking and oodles of other cool features – isn’t going to be available for SERO users. For those that don’t know, SERO is an older employee referral plan that has:

  • Unlimited data
  • Unlimited text messaging
  • Unlimited picture and MMS messaging
  • between 500-unlimited voice calling
  • Unlimited roaming
  • 7PM Nights and Weekends
  • Unlimited nights and weekends

The most basic plan of $30 (around $35 after taxes) is for 500 minutes, which is plenty for me.  Most of my calls are nights and weekends anyways, and I have never exceeded 100 minutes of peak usage. 

The downside is that Sprint says with the upcoming Palm Pre, you must upgrade to a plan with “Everything” in it such as “Simply Everything” or “Everything Plus” – this is assuming that you want the $200 in rebates and the $150 in instant discount for extending your contract to get the Palm Pre at a decent price of $200 in contract. So…what if I don’t want to extend my contract? What if I pay full price for the phone and activate it, will it work?

So I started a chat session with an online Sprint CSR to see if I could purchase a Palm Pre out of contract at full price ($549) to activate on my (awesome) SERO 500 plan. After explaining that no, I wasn’t interested in extending my contract, I got this response back:

…no guarantee that this will allow you to work with this plan due to the plan being out of before the device came out.

At this point I gave up and decided I’ll go to a Sprint store and ask in person. Results soon!

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Fears of swine flu worse than swine flu itself

Why is everyone absolutely going nuts. Each day, 2700 people die of malaria, but it doesn’t make national news. To date, less than 30 people have died of swine flu, oh, sorry, H1N1, and out of that 30  or so, only one has died in the US, and it wasn’t a US citizen to begin with. It was an infant that came from Mexico.

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Conficker Toolage

For those of you paranoid about the talk of the Conficker work poking around the interwebnets, you can scan computers for signs of it very easily now with a beta version of nmap – details here. The best thing about nmap? You can script it so it automatically scans every node on the subnet. Easy!

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Government to Recoup 90% of Bailout Money

With all the ruckus about the absurd bonuses that employees and executives of recieved, a bill was passed to raise the tax rate of executives that have been paid with bailout money to…90%, ouch! Read more about it here.

In the face of public outrage at the fact that AIG paid $165 million in bonuses after receiving $180 billion in government aid, the House voted 328-93 to approve a 90 percent tax on bonuses for certain executives at companies that are getting taxpayer-financed help.

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You’re Gonna Love My Nuts

Who is this guy? Any where does he get all his energy from? I get the impression that he only has this kind of energy when he’s filming; he probably spends the rest of the day laying in a drunken stupor on the floor of the bar throwing bottles at people. But wait, no he isn’t; he’s actually one of the good guys – a victim of Scientology. No, I’m not making this up – I read the story of how Scientology ruined his life here after a friend suggested it in #hardocp. Read it – and get to brush up on Vince Offer, his real name, and how Scientology ruined his life. No. I’m not kidding. Link here.

Turns out, Headset Vince is actually one of the good guys, a hero. We need to stop mocking him and start celebrating him. And we need to buy his towels and nut choppers and his DVDs.

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Uncle Sam cries “Feed Me!”

Just finished filing my taxes with the free version of TurboTax. This was after a gentle prodding by my dad, and seeing the ad on the TV (which by the way, was impeccible timing). However, in all seriousness, it took me less than half an hour to file my taxes, which included signing up for the free account. It actually was fast, simple, and easy. Highly recommended! On another note, I’m finishing a review on the Sprint Airave. However, it has a butteload of content and pictures so it might take some refining before it’s ready. Horray Sprint!

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