Monday, November 29, 2004

The Absolute Cheapest Way To Get An iPod This Christmas!

This seems like a lot of work, but once you are a part of all of these rewards programs you can use them for other apple purchases too and end up saving about 6% off of retail.

With this deal on the ipod as I have discussed in this story you are getting approximately 16% off of a retail iPod - even more if you consider tax and shipping charges that may be applied elsewhere or locally.

None of the items linked or discussed are gimmicks - I use all of these methods with just about every purchase I make.

Warnings:

DO NOT BUY AN IPOD ON EBAY! It's just too risky ... it is the #1 scam auction at the moment

When you particpate in offers make sure to check or uncheck that you do not want affilate emails sent to you.

Set up a special inbox with the rules "Gold Points" and "MyPoints" and all of these emails should direct in to a nice organized place for you. make sure that emails from your rewards are not going to your Junk email.

Save all your online email receipts in case your rewards program doesn't properly credit you.

I am rather upset that many of my favorite Apple News websites find it ok to whore the advertisements of the free iPod scams on their sites.

From a reader comment:

"What I did to buy my iPod was take advantage of the Audible offer.
They offer a $100 certificate toward the purchase of an iPod at major retailers including Amazon.com.

They do require a commitment to a ~$15 or ~$20 per month service for 1 year, but having that $100 up front gave me the ability to buy a 40 gig iPod instead of a 20. And I would have continued to use Audible anyway.
It's like getting my Audible subscription for less than half price ($6.62/month) for a year, and paying off part of my iPod over time, interest free.

You might like sdrawer.com - it's a directory of stores and how much various point, bonus, or rebate programs give back to the user for shopping there.

And of course, if you ever shop Amazon, be sure to do a few searches at a9.com beforehand - then Amazon will give you a 3.14/2 discount, literally a "piece of the PI"."


Note: while there are other discount services, points programs, and rebates -- the only two that I have found that respect your privacy, are easy to understand, and get rewards from quickly are; the MyPOINTS & GOLD Points programs.

Another slightly tricky thing you can do is BUY IT FROM YOURSELF - that's right, if you sign up to be a linkshare affiliate you could make an extra 3% - 10% just by buying from your own affilate program.

Monday, November 22, 2004

What's In Store For Apple . . .

I think many analysts are discreditting Apple's cleanliness and organization and the fact that Apple Stores are destinations as a reason the Apple Stores are doing well.

I perceive that the iPod and iMac are helping sales, but more and more people are being exposed to The Apple Store as they become more prevalent.

Do you own an Apple Computer related business? How do you draw customers?

Here are the REAL reasons Apple is gaining marketshare:

These are a few of the REAL reasons:

- Stores
- Clean stores
- More stores
- No handwritten signs, no gimmicky sales
- People are honestly seeking alternatives to Microsoft
- Linuxheads are finding that the MacOS is just as powerful
- Community/Grassroots support
- Artist bandwagoning / idol worship

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Tracking down a spammer Part II

An interesting article on Slashdot sparked a few new comments that I thought I would add to the BLOG, as this story seems to be getting the most attention [besides The MacMIce Story] than any other story I have posted on FixYourThinking.

I have fielded close to 100 emails about Subscriberbase, Consumer Research Corporation, and Product Test Panel.

I hope that the suggestions and comments here have helped and I hope that my efforts are able to bust this fraudulent company.

Here is what I posted at Slashdot

"The interesting thing is; Slashdot seems to be the #1 place (that I have seen) that readers regularly bash SPAM, but that also participate in one of the MOST MASSIVE email campaigns I have ever seen - the FREE iPOD DEALS.

Look in just about any thread here on Slashdot - you'll see a dozen signatures with people linking to THEIR free iPod link so they can get their required 5 people to join.

What happens is your email is INSTANTLY sold to OptInRealBig when you sign up for this "free deal". OptInRealBIg in turn - is also a harvester - but they can legitimately prove they buy email addresses. So, if quetioned by novice understanding authorities - they can prove they are legit.

Point is - the very people that complain about it [slashdotters] - as far as I can see - are the main contributors to it.

People also fall for these emails from websites like Wotch.com that have little funny flash cartoons. People forward these sites to dozens of their friends - which in turn - each of those emails are harvested.

It kinda is like the election scenario - the people that complained the most; either didn't vote or couldn't vote!



Here is a link to another FixYourThinking article:

Tracking Down A Spammer Pt I

Thursday, November 18, 2004

One man's trash is another man at the landfill's treasure

As reported by MacMinute:

MacFair attendees dispose of over five tons of waste

November 18 2004  - At the Southern California MacFair at Cerritos College this past weekend, over 800 attendees took part in 43 Mac seminars and 25 intensive Mac workshops. In addition, this year the Southern California MacFair 2004 made arrangements to provide attendees free disposal of their old computer equipment including monitors, CPUs, fax machines, printers, servers, phone systems and virtually any office electronics product. In two days, attendees disposed of over 11,280 pounds of electronic waste.


Let's do a little math; shall we?

(These weights are pulled from an average of boxes in my possession)

Average computer tower weight = 20 pounds

Average printer weight = 7 pounds

Average Monitor weight = 25 pounds

Average fax machine = 20 pounds

The printer average assumes no Apple LaserWriter II's - which weighed 45 pounds!


Now consider the math of what metals, both precious and hazardous, are found in computers - CLICK HERE

This was a big waste of time, effort, and energy. Hope the guys at the landfill got something good to put on eBay.

11,280 pounds I would say comes out to about 300 computer systems

I recycle this amount of computing equipment on eBay every quarter - where it doesn't get taken to the landfill!

Now 100,000 lbs would have been something to report!!

Friday, November 12, 2004

TechTV officially axed in January???

I was really upset to see on Kevin Rose's website/BLOG that TechTV content will officially be axed in January.

Here is a list of management emails to express your disgust.

MANAGEMENT


Charles Hirschhorn
Founder & Chief Executive Officer
CHirschhorn@g4media.com


Debra Green
Chief Operating Officer
DGreen@g4media.com


Dale Hopkins
Senior Vice President, Affiliate & Advertising Sales
DHopkins@g4media.com


Peter M. Green
Senior Vice President, Programming and Production
PGreen@g4media.com


Julie Fields
Vice President, Creative
JFields@g4media.com


Tina Kowalewski
Vice President, Games Editorial
TKowaleeski@g4media.com


Tom Russo
Director, Program Development
TRusso@g4media.com


ADVERTISING
Jason Liebowitz
jliebowitz@g4media.com

[UPDATE] Kevin Rose went on from host of TechTV shows to found DIGG.COM

Audion Is Now Audioff

I want to reiterate the respect I hold for Panic and the excellent piece they wrote concerning "the history of Audion".

I do have to say that I rarely find writers that can sell anything beyond words. It is also just as rare to find a salesman that can write.

Oddly enough, you would think it to be just the opposite. Why can't the author vocalize the sales pitch for their book to be published? Why can't the salesman use his mastery of the art of the sale to write a book that would sell?

I'm not a great writer, but everyone that knows me, knows I am a pretty good salesman.

The people at Panic are talented authors ... my critique was more of their ability to creatively sell.

Monday, November 08, 2004

What A Kon Man!

This was one of the first FixYourThinking stories to be posted after the new design in June of 2004.

I received a lot of praise through email for the contents of this editorial, but I also received some serious hate mail and I believe stalking on Slashdot by Arlo Rose himself.

Arlo is a very talented programmer, but he just doesn't get how a capitalistic society works.

I'm glad he's releasing Konfabulator on Windows - that is a solution, but the question has popped up on many Mac Websites - is he going to continue development on the Mac version or is he going to leave the 100's who bought this software in the dust?

As a potential windows customer who may buy Konfabulator - would you buy something that the programmer may decide to just drop support within a year's time?

The most important aspect of this story was the fact that Arlo was claiming sole right to the concept of Konfabulator - it is quite clear that Apple had something like this in System 6.