July 17, 2005

Harry Potter Pricing

Yuka and I were out shopping today. Chocky's for cheap stuff, MEC for another pelican case, and the like. As we walked past stores we noticed lots of copies of the new HP book on sale. Pages had it on sale for 20% off, based on a price of $38. Chapters had 20% off on a base price of $41. But the real winner was Shoppers Drugmart. It had it on sale for $24. No special display. Just a couple of dozen books sitting there.

No, we didn't buy a copy. Waiting for the bubblegum cards.

Posted by jason at 01:18 PM | Comments (0)

July 03, 2005

Pelican Case

Pelican Cases rule. I just got an 'emergency orange' 1200 CASE for my video camera. It is safe now... safe from my clumsiness.

Posted by jason at 06:55 PM | Comments (0)

June 15, 2005

Damn Good

Damn Good Beer!

Posted by jason at 09:57 AM | Comments (0)

June 06, 2005


I was given a wonderful tshirt at the conference I co-organized over the weekend... more news today on that. If you notice, the tshirt design looks just so similar to the University of Toronto logo. Sweet.

University of Transylvania Vampire Short Sleeve T-Shirt

Thanks to the folks at Vampireware

Posted by jason at 09:01 AM | Comments (1)

May 22, 2005

A day and night on the town...

Yesterday was a day that would have made paris hilton proud. Jason and his trusty side-kick Cedo, or the reverse, revved off into the morning yesterday, making it as far as Mangiacake, about 50m away, for two cappuccino, and a chat with Martin Mangia. After a while we sauntered up to Computer Systems Centre to vidi the 'puters, and purchase some accessories. Good sale on special paper for my inkjet printer... 100mm x 8m (Regular $25 on sale for $20).

You see, Cedo's on a mission to shop. Full bore WWF shopping. So, after we price things and he picked up a audio interface for his yet to be purchased puter, we went to the UofT Bookstore (Campus Computer Shop), where Harvey was ready for us with a 12" iBook. Though we have to wait a week for the gig ram chip. But harvey's prices are best. Then off to carbon computing for accessories. I won't tire you by listing them all. Then off to Henry's for a camera, back to the first place to return stuff, having found better at Carbon computing. And to buy more of the cheap paper, as Carbon Computing was selling it for $28 a roll.

Then we took everything back to my place to try all the bits and pieces out. We even chatted with Rochelle online via iChat for a bit. And there was much rejoicing.

Finally, Yuka came home and laughed at all the stuff,and we headded over to Cedo's house to feed and walk his pug Fritz. You can see where this is going, right? After Fritz had his fill of activities, and yuka was covered in dog fur, we were back in the car off for an interesting dinner. And we arrived at Southern Accent restaurant off bloor street on Markham. And the evening got strange. Someone Cedo knew was in the window doing psychic readings, and there was no place for us except at the bar. And the barman, and apparent owner, introduced himself as Sugar Bob, on account of his selling Maple Sugar from his family's own sugarbush. We learned that on Friday nights he's known as Miss Kitty and looks to me like a Canadian version of Dame Edna (i.e. clean and neat) despite the Restaurant's tag line: "Black as Night, Hot as Hell, Sweet as Sin".

Oysters, Cajun blackened liver, roast garlic, Jambalaya, and lots of Guigal. Cedo chatting up the women at the bar, me hearing stories about Bob's trip to France on a boat, and yuka wondering if Bob had a tail. We didn't look.

Can't wait to go back on a thursday to see Swamperella play.

Posted by jason at 10:36 AM | Comments (0)

April 24, 2005

GoogleAds on the Harrow.

I finally figured out how to add Google Ads to the footer of each page of The Harrow: Original Works of Fantasy and Horror.

Dru's been paying for all The Harrow's costs for 8 years, and this january we started being a paying journal, so I wanted to generate some revenue. And I'm very curious as to how polite and non-pushy ads that are contextual might work in online environments.

Oh, and our second anthology, MIDNIGHT LULLABIES is still accepting submissions for fiction and poetry...

Posted by jason at 09:29 AM | Comments (0)

April 04, 2005

Smitshonian Folkways music as 99c

Boing Boing: Smitshonian Folkways music as 99c no-DRM downloads

Henry sez, "the Smithsonian is making its Folkways collection (an incredible collection of American and world music, often collected by professional musicologists) available for download at 99c per song (more for some longer music). The nice bit is that the music is available in MP3, so that the buyer is free to transfer it to other devices etc as he/she wants. They seem to be making a big effort to get royalties back to the original artist too."

More at http://www.smithsonianglobalsound.org/geocache.asp

Posted by jason at 08:26 AM | Comments (0)

January 20, 2005

I Want One: StreetWriter

A friend who wishes to remain anonymous sent this to me today... and now I can't wait for my birthday.

Institute for Applied Autonomy

The StreetWriter project expands on the research gained from the successes of the Robotic GraffitiWriter project. The system consists of a custom built, computer controlled industrial spray painting unit that is built into an extended-body cargo van. The vehicle prints text messages onto the pavement in a manner much like a dot-matrix printer. The expanded width of StreetWriter allows for messages and simple graphics that are legible from tall buildings and low flying aircraft and is capable of rendering messages that are several hundred feet in length.

Posted by jason at 10:02 AM | Comments (0)

January 07, 2005

Best Coffee in my part of town...

Mangiacake makes the best coffee, and they sell their beans. I just thought I'd share that with you all.

Posted by jason at 09:13 AM | Comments (0)

December 28, 2004


With Kenny's help today, I bought this manfrotto tripod. Never heard of manfrotto before, but kenny speaks highly of them... I have a manfrotto monopod I bought last year, but not cause I knew any better. Just lucky.

Posted by jason at 11:25 PM | Comments (1)

December 04, 2004

iTunes cheapest in canada

Canada now has iTunes selling digital music... for $0.99 CDN. Some interesting facts from MacInTouch:

The anonymous reader's comments regarding which songs are available at the various international iTunes stores got me thinking. With four currencies now accepted at the iTunes stores (Pounds Sterling - , US$, Can$, and Euro - Ǩ), iTunes customers need to be currency traders. If I the same song I want to buy is at more than one iTunes store, do I have to buy from a higher priced store? A little checking using xe.com for currency rates shows that the new Canadian store is the least expensive. Here's the pricing data for a single song using each currency:

Can 99 = US $ .831145

US 99 = US $ .99

Ǩ .99 = US $ 1.31506

.79 = US $ 1.51881

Now, I went to look to see if they had any music that I would want to buy. The results are mixed. Here is a list of 30 odd bands and artists that I like. Many you don't know. Many are very famous and influential regardless of your musical ignorance. None of them have their full discography online, and most have just a passing nod. I feel that online music is a dangerous thing if it futher restricts choice and opportunity, for the sake of convenience. I'm not sure if I'd buy any music online like this...

stranglers, diamanda galas, ultravox, john foxx, magazine, wall of voodoo, bif naked (1), elastica 1, robert fripp & sylvian (2), sylvian (2), goran bregovic, gotan project, hawkwind, le tigre (1), killing joke (1), dead can dance, lounge lizards (1), japan (4), concrete blonde (3), eno (9), mediaval baebes (3), mick karn, ministry (5), negativland, peter murphy, pere ubu (1), portishead (2), stereolab (7), Zoobombs

Posted by jason at 07:49 AM | Comments (0)

October 29, 2004

Apple store for TO? Could it be true?

[Last march I posted Apple Store(s) for Toronto? on my blog, and it has been my most active post ever.]

Now... AppleInsider | Apple retail to expand into Canada in 2005

Sources tell AppleInsider that Apple Computer is close to inking a deal with realtors that would bring Canada is first Apple retail store, extending the company's retail presence to yet another country.

Posted by jason at 08:58 AM | Comments (0)

October 18, 2004

Never shop at Ikea Online...

IKEA online is evil. I tried to order some new beds, cause of my health problems, and it seemed as if these would help. I went to a store twice, but the products were unavailable, despite the fact that I was told that they were in stock. So I ordered them online, this was last August. I was told that I'd be called by the end of the month when they were avail. I got a bill this month for almost $1000. And no product. I don't even want it any more, but they bill me and don't send it. I call to complain. Thirty minutes on hold.

If it is not in the store, please don't buy it.

Posted by jason at 08:38 PM | Comments (0)

September 30, 2004

Lucy Maud Montgomery Album in Paperback

Yuka noticed that the softcover version is available at:
Amazon.com: Books: Lucy Maud Montgomery Album
. Yuka and I have various articles and photos in it.

Posted by jason at 10:12 AM | Comments (0)

September 26, 2004

Been looking for something like this...

Found this Joi Ito post about Flickr - Photo Sharing. He's investing in it, and using it. Lots of people ask me how they can share their photos, and this may be a solution.

Posted by jason at 08:59 AM | Comments (0)

September 23, 2004

The Revenant Amazon Order.

So, here's what happened. Last July I ordered a book. A reprint of Dudley Wright's 1914 Vampires and Vampirism from Amazon.ca. IT was shipped July 13. And it never arrived. When I checked the order on the web page it showed that it didn't even make it to Toronto, ending up in Mississauga, but was listed as delivered. If you don't know already, Amazon hides its complaints pages deep inside its site. If you want to talk to a human, it takes work.

I found this contact information and I emailed for help for my missing package. Amazon is very good about responding and sending out another package. It arrived in a week or so. But the first package was lost.

When I got to work yesterday there was a red letter on my desk with "FINAL NOTICE" written on it, saying that it was the last chance to pick up some package at the post office. Some post office pretty far from campus. And the package was being held until two days ago. So I called and it was still there.

Now is always a good time for some exercise, so I walk on up to this post office and get my package. No shock. They can't find it. The woman I talked to had only checked to see if the package was in her computer, when I'd called to find out if it was really there, she'd not checked the actual package. After about 10 minutes of looking and relooking, it was found, elsewhere. I got my package and left. I was considering refusing to accept the package, but I wasn't sure what it was, it had no indication on the package, and I had no idea what would happen to it if I tried to refuse it... something nasty.

Took it back to my office and sure enough it was the original book I'd ordered. It had taken just over 8 weeks for the package to arrive in Toronto from Amazon.ca's warehouse... in Mississauga. For the unwashed, Mississauga is the city next to Toronto, and their borders actually touch. You need to watch the signs very carefully to find the one that marks the boundary, on the bridge over the Credit River.

As you could imagine, I'm a good boy, so I email my Amazon address that I'd used to complain about the non-arrival of my package, so that I can complain about the arrival of my package. How convenient. You can imagine how fast and enthusiastically thankful the Customer Support person was. They would love to have the package back, if I would just click here and fill in this form. And I did, and was informed that I had no outstanding packages. So I emailed customer service again, to more apologies. And would I please just send the package to this address. I idly wonder if Amazon Customer support folks smoke crack. They want me to pay to return a package that they couldn't bother to send to me, or bother to track down and get returned on their own? After another email they assure me that they will reimburse me for the cost of shipping it, but not the time involved for me to do it. What the hell. I'll send it back by first class courier.

Posted by jason at 08:54 AM | Comments (0)