Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Drugstore.com: Buy one get one free event through August 31st

Drugstore.com is having a buy one, get one free event from now until August 31st. Check it out!

If you haven't tried ordering these sorts of products online before, you should. The selection is almost always better, you can order from your living room, and it's a huge relief (that you didn't have to fight through traffic, kids, and shopping carts) when the box shows up.

Don't forget, its free shipping. There are also free samples and gifts.

drugstore.com, inc.

Many parents now get domain names for kids too young to type

I found an article this morning that brings me back to a topic that I've been discussing for a while: the way in which our increased comfort level with sharing information on the Internet will shape future generations.

This goes back to the idea of publishing photos of a child's ultrasound, their birth, their first steps, first day of school, first haircut-- all the way up to the day they pack up and move off to college. I can't image what the world would be like if today, I could pull up an entire archived history of all of my friends online. But at some point that will be the case because, that's the direction that we're going in.

Here's a link to one of my previous posts on the same topic.

Below is part of the article that I found today on CNN.com. Apparently, some parents are selecting the names for their children according to whether or not the domain name is available. Since there are roughly 300 people in the US with my exact same name, I own all of the (most important-- .com, .net, .org) domain names that have my name in them. Clearly, the other 299 Angela's are out of luck.

At any rate, this is an interesting trend for two reasons: First, have we moved to the point of awareness of technology as a society that checking for a domain name is right up there with purchasing a baby car seat for the ride home from the hospital? Second, think of the creative names that will exist in the next ten years. As businesses have attempted to always own their domain names, new businesses have had to be more and more creative. No longer can you just be the only ABC Cleaner in town; now you want to be the only one-- period. If parents are buying domain names for their unborn children, it's only a matter of time before the same thing is happening with children's names.

To get your very own baby domain name, click here to go to GoDaddy.com.

Anyhow, here's the article:

NEW YORK (AP) -- Besides leaving the hospital with a birth certificate and a clean bill of health, baby Mila Belle Howells got something she won't likely use herself for several years: her very own Internet domain name.

Likewise newborn Bennett Pankow joined his four older siblings in getting his own Internet moniker. In fact, before naming his child, Mark Pankow checked to make sure "BennettPankow.com" hadn't already been claimed.

"One of the criteria was, if we liked the name, the domain had to be available," Pankow said. It was, and Pankow quickly grabbed Bennett's online identity.

A small but growing number of parents are getting domain names for their young kids, long before they can do more than peck aimlessly at a keyboard.
It's not known exactly how many, but the practice is no longer limited to parents in Web design or information technology.

They worry that the name of choice might not be available by the time their babies become teens or adults, just as someone claimed the ".com" for Britney Spears' 11-month-old son before she could.

The trend hints at the potential importance of domain names in establishing one's future digital identity.

Think of how much a typical teen's online life now revolves around Facebook or News Corp.'s MySpace. Imagine if one day the domain could take you directly to those social-networking profiles, blogs, photo albums and more.
"It is the starting point for your online identity," said Warren Adelman, president of registration company GoDaddy.com Inc., which sells basic domain name packages for about $9 a year. "We do believe the domain name is the foundation upon which all the other Internet services are based."
Hundreds of companies sell domain names with suffixes like ".com," ".org" and ".info," which individuals can then link to personal Web sites and e-mail accounts. Parents simply visit one of those companies' Web sites, search for the name they want and, if no one else has claimed it yet, buy it on the spot with a credit card.

There's no guarantee, though, that domain names will have as central a role in online identity. After all, with search engines getting smarter, Internet users can simply type the name of a person into Google.

"Given the pace of change on the Internet, it strikes me as a pretty impressive leap of faith that we're going to use exactly the same system and the same tools ... 15 to 20 years from today," said Peter Grunwald, whose Grunwald Associates firm specializes in researching kids and technology.
Still, even if the effort is for naught, $9 a year is cheap compared with the cost of diapers and college tuition.

Besides providing an easy-to-remember Web address, the domain name makes possible e-mail addresses without awkward numbers -- as in "JohnSmith24", because 23 other John Smiths had beaten your child to Google Inc.'s Gmail service.

Parents not ready to commit or knowledgeable enough on how to buy a domain, though, are at least trying their luck with Microsoft Corp.'s Hotmail or Gmail.

Melissa Coleman of Springfield, Massachusetts, grabbed Hotmail addresses for her two kids. She said the kids' grandparents occasionally send e-greeting cards to those accounts, and she sends thank you notes for gifts in her child's voice.

"I think it's great that it's so loud and that it came with an actual WORKING MICROPHONE ... and I'm not sure what `annoying' means, but I'm sure it means that Mommy loves it too!!!!," read one message to Grandpa.

She said she logs in at least once every month to keep the accounts active and plans to save all messages for when her children get older.

Tony Howells, a business consultant in Salt Lake City, Utah, got a Gmail address along with the domain name for his daughter, believing people would enjoy seeing "an e-mail address pop up for an 8-month-old who is obviously not equipped to use it."

Although some parents have yet to use the domain names they've bought, others are sending visitors to baby photos, blogs and other personal sites. Domain name owners have a variety of options to have their personal sites hosted, typically for free or less than $10 a month. They include baby-geared services like TotSites.com and BabyHomePages.net.

Theresa Pinder initially received a domain name as a Christmas gift from her son's godparents and gives it out to friends and family who want updates.

"People are like, `Wow. He already has his own Web site,"' said Pinder, a physician assistant in Phoenix.

There are downsides to all this, though: An easy-to-remember domain also makes a child easier for strangers to find. Chances are one only needs to know a child's name and add ".com."

Pankow, a database administrator in Phoenix, said that was one concern keeping him from using the domains he bought for his five children, including a 9-year-old daughter.

"I'd want to research and try to figure out how easy it is to find out what school she goes to and where she lives" based on the Web site and domain name, Pankow said.

GoDaddy and many other registration companies offer proxy services that let domain name buyers register anonymously. Otherwise, the person's name, address and other contact information are publicly searchable.

Notwithstanding the privacy concerns, Adelman said domain names for kids have become more and more popular as parents start to get domains for their business or family and realize how difficult it is to find ".com" names not yet claimed.

But the numbers are still relatively low. Our Baby Homepage, which lets parents set up personal baby pages with photos and greetings, says only 10 percent of its customers have bought their own domains. A similar service, Baby's First Site, considered selling domains for parents but didn't get much interest.

Brian Vannoy, founder of TotSites, said parents might need more lessons on safety measures such as how to password-protect sites. But he believes the hurdles can be overcome once parents who are less-savvy about technology see the benefits.

"It's easy to remember," Vannoy said. "Everybody knows the new baby's name."

Friday, August 24, 2007

Two Thumbs Up for George Hotz and CNN.com

CNN.com has listed me at the very top of their blogroll for stories relating the George Hotz and his iPhone conversion!

Two thumbs up to CNN.com for their *excellent* reporting!!

Check it out here: http://www.cnn.com/2007/TECH/ptech/08/24/iphone.unlocked.ap/index.html?eref=rss_tech

Scroll down under "From the Blogs" and look for "Angie's Adventures."

Yah George Hotz! Can't wait for my iPhone.

Yah! Teen Gives It to the Man Behind iPhone

I just love technology. What I love even more though is how much information and hard work can put the little guy on the same playing field as the big hitter. That's what's great about the Internet.

Check out the article below to learn about how George Hotz untethered his iPhone from AT&T. It can now be used on T-Mobile and out of the country.

He's also posted instructions on his blog for how you can convert your iPhone. Check it out here: http://iphonejtag.blogspot.com/.

Congrats George! This is quite impressive. Do your best to roll this into a college scholarship and high paying jobs!

Original article from http://www.cnn.com/2007/TECH/ptech/08/24/iphone.unlocked.ap/index.html:

NEW YORK (AP) -- A teenager in New Jersey has broken the lock that ties Apple's iPhone to AT&T's wireless network, freeing the most hyped cell phone ever for use on the networks of other carriers, including overseas ones.

George Hotz, 17, confirmed Friday that he had unlocked an iPhone and was using it on T-Mobile's network, the only major U.S. carrier apart from San Antonio-based AT&T that is compatible with the iPhone's cellular technology.

While the possibility of switching from AT&T to T-Mobile may not be a major development for U.S. consumers, it opens up the iPhone for use on the networks of overseas carriers.

"That's the big thing," said Hotz, in a phone interview from his home in Glen Rock.

The phone, which combines an innovative touch-screen interface with the media-playing abilities of the iPod, is sold only in the U.S.

AT&T Inc. spokesman Mark Siegel said the company had no comment, and referred questions to Apple. A call to Apple was not immediately returned. Hotz said the companies had not been in touch with him.

The hack, which Hotz posted Thursday to his blog, is complicated and requires skill with both soldering and software. It takes about two hours to perform. Since the details are public, it seems likely that a small industry may spring up to buy U.S. iPhones, unlock them and send them overseas.

"That's exactly, like, what I don't want," Hotz said. "I don't want people making money off this."
He said he wished he could make the instructions simpler, so users could modify the phones themselves.

"But that's the simplest I could make them," Hotz said.

The modification leaves the iPhone's many functions, including a built-in camera and the ability to access Wi-Fi networks, intact. The only thing that won't work is the "visual voicemail" feature, which shows voice messages as if they were incoming e-mail.

Hotz collaborated online with four other people, two of them in Russia, to develop the unlocking process.

"Then there are two guys who I think are somewhere U.S.-side," Hotz said. He knows them only by their online handles.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

OH MY! Corky's BBQ on QVC

Ummmm....... first off, let's be clear: I do not watch QVC. :~)

Okay, now that that's out of the way: I was channel surfing this evening and saw a "cooking show" on TV. When I stopped, I quickly recognized the guy cooking as the Corky's BBQ guy.

Then, a few seconds later, I realized I was watching QVC. At first, I thought maybe the item for sale was some kind of barbecue grill or something.

Then I realized that nope, it's actually just barbecue! 5 lbs of ribs for around $50.

Here's a link to the barbecue on the QVC site. They even carry BBQ meatballs. Does Corky's normally make meatballs??

If you're like me, you'll likely be going directly to Corky's site when you want to send ribs to your friends and family: http://www.corkysbbq.com/.


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

AIM Fight

Really quick-- Check out this new AIM feature, AIM Fight. It allows you to compare the number of connections you have compared to others.