Hey guys. Just an update to let you know I am alive. Here’s some news about me and the world.

Project Catarl
I’ve been really busy lately with the new hardware project. Things are coming along nicely with it, and we should have some good pictures and video of the final stages of it being put together (assuming of course the shareholders approve public dessemination of its innards), as well as some alpha prototypes.

That’s right, I said alpha prototypes. That means I’m taking applications from you, my loyal rizzn-ites, to see who wants to be first in line to get the new devices. At the moment, I’m not sure if there will be a charge to be in the Alpha program, we haven’t formed all the rules, so when you RSVP for the Alpha program, make sure to include whether or not you’d be willing to pay a charge to be included in the program.

What is it exactly that you’ll be testing? Well, leaving out the gritty details of the device, it’s a dockable handheld that you can use either out in the wilds of wherever you go every day, or you can dock it at your workstation. It should be around 20×20 CM or a little larger than half a foot squared. It’ll have all the power of a desktop system, and it’ll be in the palm of your hand. You can use it for a mobile phone, you can use it for an MP3 player, you can use it for a workstation, or even a PDA. The killer part of the system is that the retail price is going to be exceptionally low, but due to mountains of NDAs I’ve had to sign, I can’t tell you exactly how low (here’s a hint -about the price of a standard PDA or MP3 player).

So who’s game? Email me here.

We’re Being Punked!
My good buddy Kelly said the other day:

OMFG I am so obsessed.

WHAT IF:

Kevin and Britney are PUNKING us.

As in, he releases a few more crappy singles, puts out some lame videos with Brit Brit and baby Tater Tot in it and then at the end of this year there is some big show and it’s like we were PUNKED.

Does anybody know Ashton Kucher??? We should confirm.

I’m still waiting on confirmation from Ashton’s people. I’ll let you know.

Bad Day at the Office
I tend to not forward funny emails (mostly because I’ve seen them all about ten million times), but this one was particularly good and new to me, so I’m forwarding it on to you guys.

Rob is a commercial saturation diver for Global Divers in Louisiana. He performs underwater repairs on offshore drilling rigs. Below is an E-mail he sent to his sister. She then sent it to a radio station in Ft. Wayne, Indiana, who was sponsoring a worst job experience contest. Needless to say, she won.

Hi Sue,
Just another note from your bottom-dwelling brother. Last week I had a bad day at the office. I know you’ve been feeling down lately at work, so I thought I would share my dilemma with you to make you realize it’s not so bad after all.

Before I can tell you what happened to me, I first must bore you with a few technicalities of my job. As you know, my office lies at the bottom of the sea I wear a suit to the office – it’s a wetsuit. This time of year the water is quite cool. So what we do to keep warm is this:

We have a diesel powered industrial’ water heater’; This $20,000 piece of equipment sucks water out of the sea. It heats it to a delightful temperature. It then pumps it down to the diver through a hose, which is taped to the air hose.

Now this sounds like a darn good plan, and I’ve used it several times with no complaints. What I do, when I get to the bottom and start working, is take the hose and stuff it down the back of my wetsuit. This floods my whole suit with warm water. It’s like working in a Jacuzzi. Everything was going well until all of a sudden, my ass started to itch.

So, of course, I scratched it. This only made things worse. Within a few seconds my ass started to burn. I pulled the hose out from my back, but the damage was done. In agony I realized what had happened. The machine had sucked up a jellyfish and pumped it into my suit.

Now, since I don’t have any hair on my back, the jellyfish couldn’t stick to it. However, the crack of my ass was not as fortunate. When I scratched what I thought was an itch, I was actually grinding the jellyfish into the crack of my ass.

I informed the dive supervisor of my dilemma over the communicator. His instructions were unclear due to the fact that he, along with five other divers, were all laughing hysterically. Needless to say I aborted the dive. I was instructed to make three agonizing in-water decompression stops totaling thirty-five minutes before I could reach the surface to begin my chamber dry decompression.

When I arrived at the surface, I was wearing nothing but my brass helmet. As I climbed out of the water, the medic, with tears of laughter running down his face, handed me a tube of cream and told me to rub it on my ass as soon as I got in the chamber. The cream put the fire out, but I couldn’t poop for two days because my ass was swollen shut. So, next time you’re having a bad day at work, think about how much worse it would be if you had a jellyfish shoved up your butt.

Now repeat to yourself, “I love my job, I love my job, I love my job”.

Love, Sam

Questions We’d Like to ask the MSM
As I was watching President Bush’s latest news conference, I was again struck by the thought of how different the news climate and public mood would be if the mainstream media (MSM) were truly as unbiased as they pretend to be. If the MSM were indeed objective and animated by an investigative impulse and a nonpartisan, government-watchdog instinct, they might thoroughly cover and inquire into the following:

  • Why Joe Wilson appears to have lied when he denied that his wife, Valerie Plame, recommended him to the CIA to investigate the claim that Saddam Hussein sought uranium yellowcake from Niger, manifestly unqualified though he was. They might also examine Wilson’s bragging about debunking certain f

    orged documents on his trip that were not even discovered until eight months later.

  • Why one of its own standard bearers, the vaunted New York Times, sat on the surveillance “scandal” story until the week Congress was debating reauthorization of the Patriot Act.
  • Where Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid gets off demanding an independent investigation about this NSA surveillance — a practice that essentially began under President Clinton and about which Reid and his colleagues were privy to a dozen briefings.
  • Why only a handful of Democrat senators availed themselves of their access to certain detailed reports on Iraqi WMD.
  • The Democrats’ conspicuous inability or unwillingness to offer a single alternative plan for Iraq, though they ceaselessly condemn President Bush’s policies on it.
  • How Democrat Senators can complain about the government’s failure to connect the dots concerning the terrorists’ 9/11 plot and at the same time take action that will virtually guaranty our inability to connect future dots.
  • On what basis Sen. Harry Reid charges that the present Congress is “the most corrupt in history.”
  • The remarkable progress in Iraq of the training of Iraqi security forces and the rebuilding of the Iraqi infrastructure.
  • The positive morale of the American troops in Iraq despite the endless distortions of the MSM and Democratic politicians.
  • The robustness and resilience of the American economy under President Bush.

The MSM has been largely silent or slanted on these stories, along with many others that don’t support their preferred template. Yet, in the face of this evidence, the MSM mostly deny their bias. What’s scary is that many of them actually believe they aren’t biased, which is as much a result of self-deception as deception of others. This is because they operate in the type of stifling bubble they believe envelops President Bush. They surround themselves only with people who share their decidedly leftist, secular worldview. They harbor a myopic arrogance that regards contrary opinion as aberrant, perverse and evil. They oppose at all costs anything that advances that worldview, including the dissemination of the truth.

Thus, their professed allegiance to the truth must yield to their jaded perception of the higher good. Their pretense toward objectivity must be subordinated to their desired political ends. This explains their concerted suppression of the undeniable historic significance of the Iraqi elections in favor of their timed release of the story on the surveillance scandal. It explains CBS’s John Roberts’ obliviousness to how he embarrassed himself in asking President Bush — on the heels of this remarkable news about the burgeoning Iraqi government — to confess his worst mistake in office.

Vonage Don’t Know Nuthin’
In further proof that Vonage doesn’t know how to run a business, instead of making money legitimately, Vonage has received $250 million in convertible debt funding, bringing the provider’s total funding to $658 million. Bain Capital led the round. Also participating in the funding were existing investors New Enterprise Associates, Meritech Capital Partners and Vonage senior management, with a total of 16 new investors. Vonage says it plans to use the proceeds to further build its U.S. network and deploy E911 services. Citigroup, UBS, and Deutsche Bank acted as financial advisors to the deal, while Shearman & Sterling provided legal advice.

It’s great an all that everyone believes in Vonage, but we’re going into what, our third year of Vonage, and still no profit? VoIP has a long way to go to become profitable, but it’s not because the product is bad or particularly low margin. How hard is it to do a cost/benefit analysis on your marketing plan? NOT AT ALL! Heck, I’d do one for free for Vonage, as long as they gave me a piece of the pie. I could get that company profitable in five minutes.

It’s called stop buying TV ad time and advertise online, you ignorant cows marketing plan. Pay per click, or any other marketing scheme in which you actually have a decent ROI instead of these name-recognition schemes. Sure, everyone knows who Vonage is now. Is it making you any money? No.

/rizzn