Dec 312006
 

I missed that there was a Super Villain quiz in addition to the Super Hero quiz.

I must like armor since I ended up as Iron Man and Dr. Doom. Wheaton took the quiz as well.

Your results:

You are Dr. Doom

Dr. Doom
66%
Poison Ivy
63%
Lex Luthor
60%
Apocalypse
59%
Magneto
56%
Catwoman
52%
Dark Phoenix
42%
Kingpin
42%
Mystique
41%
The Joker
40%
Venom
40%
Juggernaut
37%
Riddler
36%
Mr. Freeze
36%
Green Goblin
29%
Two-Face
13%
Blessed with smarts and power but burdened by vanity.

Click here to take the Super Villain Personality Test

[tags]supervillain, wwdn, quiz[/tags]

 Posted by on December 31, 2006 at 11:25 am
Dec 292006
 

Found this on Jason Calacanis’s blog today and for some reason enjoyed taking it. Probably because some of the questions were obviously pointing to particular heroes and others were hard to pick out.

Your results:

You are Iron Man

Iron Man
70%
Green Lantern
65%
Catwoman
55%
Supergirl
55%
Hulk
55%
Spider-Man
50%
Superman
50%
Wonder Woman
45%
The Flash
45%
Batman
40%
Robin
32%
Inventor. Businessman. Genius.

Click here to take the Superhero Personality Test
[tags]superheroquiz, jasoncalacanis, ironman[/tags]

 Posted by on December 29, 2006 at 4:28 pm
Sep 072006
 

I sent in a post to BoingBoing this morning about Google blocking my proxy searches. Apparently, I’m not the only one with the problem right now. I switched off FoxyProxy for the moment, but the CustomizeGoogle privacy settings should still be protecting me from tracking even if I’m coming from my own IP.

I’m guessing maybe if I quit Firefox and got a different proxy, I’d be able to get going again as opposed to disabling proxy use for Google? Cory mentions that he’s tried other proxies and is getting the same forbidden page. A friend is advocating a BitTorrent, P2P-style proxy network instead. That way, the IP->search link is so diluted that it’s essentially worthless. Anybody working on that? Thanks.

[tags]google, proxy, anonymous, privacy, spambot, boingboing, p2p[/tags]

 Posted by on September 7, 2006 at 10:45 am
Aug 242006
 

The Wall Street Journal has an article out today about a new trend in wedding entertainment (here’s an accessible version). Couples are foregoing DJs and either buying or renting an iPod to use during the reception. I did this at our wedding in 2001. I bought a Nomad Jukebox, the hot mp3 player at the time (iPods didn’t exist yet), and loaded it up with songs for both the ceremony and the reception. We played it through the hotel’s sound system. I still have the Nomad, although I haven’t used it much in the last several years. It’s roughly the size of a portable CD player. I figured the cost of the mp3 player was less than the DJ, I could pick the songs and I’d still have the mp3 player once it was all over. If only the skimping on the photographer had worked as well.

[tags]mp3, dj, ipod, nomad, wedding, wsj, wallstreetjournal[/tags]

 Posted by on August 24, 2006 at 5:17 pm
Jun 192006
 

I ran across three sites with either a photo or a social component today that I’ve flagged for further investigation:

  • Riya – appears to promise private advanced photo searching. I’ll need to see what I have to give up to use it.
  • Zooomr – a rival to flickr, plugged by Thomas Hawk, photographer rights activist and flickr power user, who apparently is now working for Zooomr
  • Mog – some sort of social networking/music site. Remains to be seen if there’s much there. Pandora was like crack for a while, but it ultimately bored me. It had some social aspects, but was more about the music player.
  • Vox – seems to be somewhere between LiveJournal and Moveable Type (owned by them as well, btw). It’s invite only at the moment.

[tags]mog, zooomr, pandora, vox, riya, web2.0, socialnetworking, photos, music[/tags]

 Posted by on June 19, 2006 at 5:11 pm
Apr 112006
 

I’ve been getting all kinds of strange [tag]errors[/tag] or no connection at all from Bloglines for the past hour or so. What gives? [tag]Web 2.0[/tag] seems to have the same problems as Web 1.0.

Update: It’s back and I’m not the only one who noticed its absence.

[tags]Bloglines[/tags]

 Posted by on April 11, 2006 at 11:00 am
Feb 282006
 

I spotted this over on Pharyngula. I was a little afraid I may have screwed up at least one of these, but happily, I can still pass 8th grade math with flying colors. How about you?


You Passed 8th Grade Math


Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!
 Posted by on February 28, 2006 at 5:48 pm
Feb 252006
 

For those friends and family that made it through the site move, I’m obviously behind in moving everything. I’m moving the “Picture of the Week” for the kids to Flickr. I’ll have a Flickr set for each kid. You’ll have to be a Flickr member and I’ll have to mark you as friend or family in order for you to see the set. The Boy’s is there now and I’ll have La’s up by Monday. It appears that the comments didn’t make it through the move either and I’ll have to do a custom import for those. I also still need to see if I can get a Rewrite Rule working so that the old posts in phpNuke will go to the new location in WordPress. Yeah.

 Posted by on February 25, 2006 at 12:01 am
Nov 222005
 

MC Host, my current web hosting company, has the worst customer service on the planet. I’ve had multiple problems with them over the past couple of years and my irritation with them has just about pushed me past the pain of moving 5-10 sites to another host. I’ve been having billing problems with them on and off for the past couple of years and the most recent problem has dragged on now for three months.

But don’t take my word for it, here’s the exchange I’ve been having with them for the last 6 months courtesy of their own “support” desk. I’d read it again, but I’ll start crying. The only edits are to remove transaction numbers, credit card numbers or other sensitive info. Enjoy.

Ticket Details
Billing Problems
ID: FQU-xxxxx-xxx
Status: customer-reply
Priority: unassigned
Opened: Mon Jun 6 2005 09:53AM
Last Msg: Mon Nov 21 2005 08:42PM
Due: Tue Nov 22 2005 08:43AM

Mon Jun 6 2005 09:52AM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
IP: 216.201.187.82

I’ve been billed 3 times since 4/2/2005. There should only be 1 charge
in that time period. My current credit card statement has three monthly
charges from MC Host.

Here’s the charges:

05/25/2005 05/26/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

05/11/2005 05/12/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

04/29/2005 05/01/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

Please credit back two of the charges. There should only be one charge
for May. Just for history, the two prior charges for April and March
are here and are correct.

04/02/2005 04/05/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

03/10/2005 03/11/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

This is the third time in the past two years that MC Host charged me an
extra monthly fee. Please respond and credit the charges this week. If
I do not hear back from you this week, I’ll dispute the charges.

===[ Support Category]===
Category: Billing Issues

Mon Jun 6 2005 12:23PM by support@mchost.com
Tim,

are all these charges on the same credit card? If yes, please let us
know the first four and last four digits and i’ll assign the issue to
our billing department for you who will refund the transaction for you.

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Mon Jun 6 2005 01:52PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
Yes, all of these are on the same credit card. The first four digits are xxxx and the last four digits are xxxx.

Tue Jun 7 2005 11:05AM by support@mchost.com
Assigning ticket to billing department for update.

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Fri Jun 10 2005 04:46AM by support@mchost.com
We’ve looked up the transactions for you and refunded the two charges below:

25/05/05 09:09AM
29/04/05 07:46AM

Our sincere apologies for the inconvenience caused, we’ll ensure that this doesn’t happen again.

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service

(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Thu Jun 23 2005 01:35PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
Thank you for refunding the extra charges, but it appears that I’m still being double-charged each month.

For June, there are now two charges:

06/05/2005 06/07/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

06/21/2005 06/22/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

So, not only do you need to credit back one of the charges for June,
you also need to fix whatever is going in your system that’s causing me
to be billed twice a month instead of once a month or I’ll be writing
this same e-mail again next month.

Whatever is going wrong appears to have started in April, happened
again in May and now again in June. It looks like March was the last
month where I was only charged once. You’ve got the whole history in
this support thread starting with my first request on June 6th.

Please let me know the status of the credit and that you’ve fixed it so that this will not happen again.

Thanks.

Fri Jun 24 2005 01:57AM by support@mchost.com
Just
to keep you updated, the ticket is assigned to our billing department
who will take care of this in the morning when they’re in. They will
then look up the transactions for you and refund any incorrect charges
to resolve the issue to your satisfaction. Our apologies for the
inconvenience caused and we appreciate your patience.

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Fri Jul 1 2005 10:34AM by support@mchost.com
We have refunded this for you, please see our merchant refund confirmation attached below for your bank:

Transaction Type: Refund
Result: Approved
Order ID: mvt1935477319
Reference Number: 660448550015430010

Response Code: 027 ISO Code: 01
Authorization Code: 000000
Message: APPROVED * =
Transaction Time: 10:33:16 Transaction Date: 2005-07-01
Amount: 35.00

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Fri Aug 26 2005 11:23AM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
Sigh.

Here we go again. It looks like we made it through July with only one
charge, but I’ve now been charged twice in August. This is now the
third time in the last six months that I’ve had to contact MC Host
about excessive monthly billing.

Here are the charges:

08/02/2005 08/03/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

08/22/2005 08/23/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

I don’t think it’s too much to ask to get you to fix this. I’d like and I think I deserve an explanation.

Do you not have any control over how your billing is conducted. Why
does this keep happening despite my complaints? Aren’t you getting
tired of correcting these? I know I’m getting tired of having to watch
for them and point them out.

I’ve got several sites hosted with you and have been a loyal customer
for many years. Moving those sites to another hosting provider would be
a major hassle for me that I’d like to avoid, but if you can’t stop the
extra billing I may be forced to look elsewhere.

Please credit my card back a single month and provide an explanation as
to why this keeps happening. I personal response from Marc would be
nice.

Thanks,

Tim

Sat Aug 27 2005 12:55PM by support@mchost.com
The
ticket is assigned to our billing department and they will get back to
you as soon as possible. Please be aware that billing is only open 9AM
to 5PM Monday through Friday.

Best Regards,

MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Tue Aug 30 2005 01:13PM by support@mchost.com
It
appears the incorrect transactions have been refunded by billing
already. We’ll leave the ticket open for a follow-up including refund
codes for your card institution.

Best Regards,

MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Mon Sep 5 2005 12:15PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
No, it has not been refunded.

My credit card still shows the two charges in August and I’ve already
got one for September. I’m willing to guess that I’ll have another one
in September in about two weeks.

Once again, I’ve been charged twice in August:

08/02/2005 08/03/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

08/22/2005 08/23/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

One of those should be refunded and it has not been refunded yet.

I’ve now already been charged for September according to my credit card statement:

09/01/2005 09/02/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

If you don’t fix this billing problem before Sept. 22nd, you’ll be refunding another service fee.

Also, the last response was unsatisfactory. I want an explanation as to
why this keeps happening and what will be done to ensure that it
doesn’t happen again.

Wed Sep 7 2005 01:29PM by support@mchost.com
It
does appear they were already refunded, however they make take up to
7-10 days to show up on your card statements. We’ll leave the ticket
open for our billing department.

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Tue Sep 13 2005 10:08AM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
Today,
Sept. 13, is 10 business days since the response on Aug. 30 that this
extra charge had been refunded and I still do not see anything on my
credit card account indicating a refund. It’s possible that the refund
will show up today, but I’m understandably skeptical. The last refund
posted to the account is the one mentioned in this thread by the
billing department on July 1.

I also still do not have any assurances from anyone at MC Host that I
will not be double-charged again in a week or so for September.

Mon Sep 19 2005 10:18PM by support@mchost.com
Tim,

we haven’t heard back from you regarding this, can you please confirm if the refund has posted already?

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Tue Sep 20 2005 03:17PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com

No. it hasn’t posted. I just checked. I’ve still got two charges for August.

So far, I’ve only got one for September, but I wouldn’t be shocked if another one appears before the end of the week.

You can be assured that you’ll hear from me if it does.

I’d also like to point out that, even though you’re responding, you’ve
still never explained why I continue to be double-charged.

Tue Sep 20 2005 07:52PM by support@mchost.com
The
ticket is assigned to our billing department and they will get back to
you as soon as possible. Please be aware that billing is only open 9AM
to 5PM Monday through Friday.

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Mon Sep 26 2005 11:20AM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
It’s
been almost a week now. I still don’t see a refund for that one extra
month, although thankfully I haven’t yet seen a second charge this
month.

What’s the status on this?

Mon Sep 26 2005 01:36PM by support@mchost.com
We
have just confirmed with our merchant bank, the refund has indeed been
sent out and deducted from our bank account and it should post to yours
within 7-10 business days of the above refund date.

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Fri Oct 14 2005 09:45AM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
Ok.
It’s now October 14th. Even if you meant 7-10 business days from your
last repy, September 26th, I should’ve seen this refund by now. It
should’ve appeared by Monday at the latest and it’s now Friday.

I still do not see it.

Sat Oct 15 2005 12:50PM by support@mchost.com
Tim,

regarding the refund that was previously refunded to you, how long did that take to post to your account?

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Sat Oct 15 2005 03:04PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
They
showed up on my account the day that they were posted here. So, the two
refunds on 6/10 that you mention in this support ticket show posted on
6/10. The single refund you mention on 7/1 was posted to my account on
7/1. I still do not see the refund for the last double-charge in August.

This is the only time you haven’t posted the transaction information
when you notified me of the refund. Note on the 7/1 refund that you
gave me reference numbers and dates. I’ve got nothing like that for
this last one and it still hasn’t appeared as of today.

Tue Oct 25 2005 06:25AM by support@mchost.com
Tim,

the refunds do indeed show as issued on our end and have been deducted
from our merchant account, as previously stated. Do you have a contact
number of your banking branch where we may contact them with the refund
numbers for them to try and capture them this way?

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Tue Oct 25 2005 08:10PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
Ok. Let’s be sure we’re all talking about the same thing here.

Here’s the history according to my bank records and the past history of this thread.

I was double-charged in April and May.

05/25/2005 05/26/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

05/11/2005 05/12/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

04/29/2005 05/01/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

04/02/2005 04/05/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

You credited back one charge each in April in May and responded on 6/10 that you had done so. Here they are on my statement:

06/10 MCHOST KELOWNA BC -35.00
06/10 MCHOST KELOWNA BC -35.00

At this point we’re ok. All has been refunded.

But then I was double-charged in June and notified you on 6/23.

06/05/2005 06/07/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

06/21/2005 06/22/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

You replied on 7/01 that the extra charge in June had been refunded and it appeared on my statement.

07/01 MCHOST KELOWNA BC -35.00

Now, at this point again, the account is in balance and we’re square.

I notified you on August 26th that I had yet again been double-charged in August.

08/02/2005 08/03/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

08/22/2005 08/23/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

Someone responded 4 days later saying that the charge appeared to
already have been refunded without my intervention. This seems odd,
since I’ve had to contact you first for every time in the past and
every time in the past you’ve posted information about the refund.
We’ve now had 5 exchanges, each with you assuring me that the charge in
August had been refunded and each time my assurance that I see
nothing of the sort.

Since the refunds have worked without too much trouble in the past, I’m left to believe that:

1) you’re confused and referring to the old refunds that occurred prior to August.

2) you’re looking at a refund sometime in August in your records, but your merchant account never refunded the money

All I know is that I do not have the money. I have no reason to
mistrust my credit card company and I have every reason to mistrust the
information that you’re giving me.

Do you have refunds dated other than 6/10 and 7/1 in the last 6 months?
If so, what are the dates and transactions? There should only be 1 and
I’d think it would have to be after 8/22.

If you’re looking at a refund from August or September, kindly send me
the date and any other transaction information. You’ve done it in the
past, simply look at this thread.

I really think I deserve some compensation after this ordeal. How about
a month free? I’d really like to avoid moving all of my sites to a new
hosting company, but this debacle and your past record are really
forcing me to consider it.

Thu Nov 3 2005 01:21PM by support@mchost.com
The
ticket is assigned to our billing department and they will get back to
you as soon as possible. Please be aware that billing is only open 9AM
to 5PM Monday through Friday.

Best Regards,

MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Mon Nov 14 2005 01:46PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
Three weeks now since the last correspondence from the billing department and I responded the same day. Nothing.

What horrible service. And the status of this ticket is marked as
resolved? It’s not resolved. I’ve responded in a timely manner and
clearly stated the problem and the solution with all supporting
information. You’ve known about this billing problem since Aug. 26th
when I first notified you and still I haven’t seen a refund. It’s been
nearly three months. Really, this is just ridiculous.

Tue Nov 15 2005 11:32AM by support@mchost.com
Tim,

our apologies, there are too many different responses/transaction dates
posted in this ticket to get a clear picture, which ones are the
refunds you’ve received and which ones not?

Best Regards,

MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Tue Nov 15 2005 08:49PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
*Smacks forehead in disbelief*

I’ll repost part of what I posted on Oct 25th:

I notified you on August 26th that I had been double-charged in August.

Here are the two charges according to my credit card company:

08/02/2005 08/03/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

08/22/2005 08/23/2005 Sale MCHOST (Services and Merchandise) $35.00

Someone responded 4 days later (Aug. 30th) saying that the charge
appeared to already have been refunded without my intervention. Odd,
since I’ve always had to contact MCHost first when there’s a
double-charge.

We’ve now had at least 5 exchanges, each with someone assuring me that
the charge in August had been refunded and each time my assurance that
I see nothing of the sort on my statement.

All I know is that I do not have the money. I have no reason to
mistrust my credit card company and I have every reason to mistrust the
information that I’ve gotten from MCHost.

Do you have refunds to my account dated other than 6/10 and 7/1 in the
last 6 months? If so, what are the dates and transactions? There should
only be 1 and I’d think it would have to be after 8/22. If not, then
you never refunded the double-charge in August and you need to do it
immediately.

Mon Nov 21 2005 10:27AM by support@mchost.com
We show a total of 4 refunds having been issued to your card, how many of these did you receive?

Best Regards,
MCHost Customer Service
(Note: To update this ticket, please log into your Account Manager).

Mon Nov 21 2005 08:42PM by xxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.rr.com
My reply on October 25th gave you the transaction information from my credit card. Here it is again.

I only show three credits over the last 6 months:

06/10 MCHOST KELOWNA BC -35.00
06/10 MCHOST KELOWNA BC -35.00
07/01 MCHOST KELOWNA BC -35.00

If the fourth refund you’re referring to is after August 22nd of this
year, then I never received that one for some reason and you need to
investigate why. I have just checked all statements for the past 6
months and current activity on the card and have still never received
the one month credit I began requesting on August 26th.

 Posted by on November 22, 2005 at 7:09 am
Oct 112005
 

I decided to sign up for the WM3 Announcement Mailing List yesterday afternoon while I was on their site looking for something else. I’d heard of Topica before and may have even been on a list hosted by them in the past. I don’t think I had an opinion on them one way or another, but I do now.

As part of registering for the list, I got one of those affilated offer pages with about 50 checkboxes and offers that you see with some free services (and even pay ones, I’m looking at you, GoDaddy). As is my habit with these sorts of things, I scrolled down to the bottom of the page to find the “No Thanks” button, scanning as I went to make sure that there weren’t any boxes checked by default. I clicked the button and expected to get some sort of completion message. Instead, I got another offer along with a Submit and a Skip button. Skip. And another. Skip. And another. Skip. And another. There must have been 8-10 individual offers in all requiring me to dismiss each one before I was declared complete. Sure, I could’ve just stopped, but it’s human nature to want to be sure that you’re not getting signed up for something you don’t want and they’re playing off of that, forcing you to click over and over again instead of presenting it all on one page (or not at all, but I understand I have to do something for my free service).

Now that I’ve googled Topica, it’s clear they’ve turned into some sort of Internet Marketing Evil Empire. Surely there’s got to be a better alternative for the WM3 people and those who don’t want to be affiliated with these sorts of tactics?

 Posted by on October 11, 2005 at 3:01 pm