Quantity Over Quality

March 16, 2013

I don't understand all the coverage Samsung's been getting lately. It doesn't make better products than its competitors, it just makes a lot of them. The design and build quality of Samsung's flagship smartphone (the Galaxy S) is inferior to Apple's iPhone, HTC's One X, and LG/Google's Nexus 4 to name a few. It doesn't execute its marketing strategy better than its competitors, it just seems to spend a lot more. Are Samsung's commercials particularly good? They aren't very original or well-made or even memorable, really.

A Consumer's Guide to Useless Product Reviews

December 04, 2012

While shopping and reading user product reviews on Amazon, I decided to come up with my own guide detailing how to write a proper review. You're welcome.

Forget performance. The last thing a person wants to see when perusing consumer product reviews is whether or not a product works. Whether the item does what the manufacturer claims, or fails spectacularly, if you're going to mention that information, be sure to bring it up last. Better yet, put it in a lengthy footnote. Really, you don't have to mention performance at all. It's a well-documented fact that long, vague, repetitive reviews rate higher than those that are insightful and succinct.*

Be effusive. Whether or not you like the product, say so as frequently as possible. Verbal abuse and vacuous praise are both signs of a thoughtful, stable person. For bonus points fit in a tired cliche or two (double points for the phrases "works like a charm" and "piece of s#@t").

State the obvious. Remember, the whole point of reading other people's reviews is to find out things about a product that you could easily learn without owning it. If you think an item is overpriced, say so. If you're reviewing electronics, write an in-depth explanation of the underlying technology. If you don't have a good grasp of how the thing works, all the better, the reader is certainly as ignorant as you are. Besides, credibility is overrated. By the same token, there's no need to include relevant information in your review. People like surprises.

One last thing: Whether or not a product is labeled for a particular use is irrelevant. The customer is ALWAYS right. Products should do whatever you want them to. It is perfectly reasonable for the manufacturer, the retailer, and state and local governments to be able to read your mind, and make sure your every need and comfort are met. The reader realizes this, and cares deeply about your needs, so don't be shy about venting your frustrations.

So, go ahead, write your review. We couldn't possibly care more.

*Not a well-documented fact.

That Wasn't So Bad

September 21, 2012

I just got off the roof after cleaning the gutters. Why is it that, as a kid, you do something scary, and afterwards you think, "That wasn't so bad," and from then on it gets easier every time you do it? Yet, as an adult, you do something scary, and afterwards you think, "Thank God that's over! That was a terrible idea! Never again. Never."

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Two Dot Oh

September 10, 2012

Well, I went ahead and flipped the switch on my site's redesign. It's actually been waiting, 90% complete, for some time. The one thing that was holding it up was the logo. Up until today there was none. Finally, I hunkered down and determined to get it done. Now, only nine hours later, there it is. So, there may still be a few glitches here and there as I continue to tinker with the site, but I think I have it just about the way I want it now.

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Basketball Decisions

May 04, 2012

Mike Woodson's steadfast refusal to play Harrelson just because he's a rookie is idiotic. Especially since the kid had more points and rebounds in five minutes than Steve Novak had in 22. Especially with Jared Jeffries limited by injury.

Content Builders of All Stripes

April 02, 2012

Over on Stuntbox David Sleight has another smart post on content consumption and delivery. As he says, "...the future of media tends towards a user wherever they are with the content they want...." It's a discussion you can't get away from, whether you're talking about Flash and HTML5 or HBO and "Game of Thrones".

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March 09, 2012

Happened to have synced instances of Chrome open on two separate computers sitting next to each other, and was a little surprised to see that toggling the bookmarks bar happens in real time in both windows.