Crackdown Advocate

Post by Mark

In reply to the previous post titled “Crackdown in Wonderland“, a regular reader Fadibou commented saying the following:

Hi Mark and all of you. I work in a software company here in Kuwait and its frustrating to see people supporting Piracy. Piracy is a nice word for stealing. Copying software and selling it without permission and without giving money back to its creator is pure theft. As for the crack down, it will increase and hopefully soon there will be no place to buy pirated(stolen) games and software. As for your remarks that a lot of games are not worth buying, well try getting evaluation copies or demos. They should cover your investment before you buy. As for Rihab, Can you please tell me which shop did help you get Doom 3?

Doom 3? I don’t know what you are talking about.. (starts whistling casually)..


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Adobe, Freehand and Previous Acquisitions

Post by Mark

Yesterday Adobe announced a merger with Macromedia. The largest issue I saw with the merger was that Freehand would be killed off. That didn’t matter to me since I prefer Adobe Illustrator but I know there are many designers who prefer Freehand. So I decided to do some research and this is what I found out.

It turns out that this is not the first time Adobe buys a company that owns competing products. Back in 1994, Adobe purchased the company Aldus which back then was releasing Freehand which it marketed under license from Altsys Corporation. Adobe also picked up Aldus’s PhotoStyler which was a competing product for Photoshop and Hitchcock which competed against Adobe Premier.

After the merger, Adobe killed both PhotoStyler and Hitchcock in-favor of its own stronger products Photoshop and Premier. Freehand was the biggest issue back then though. The merger between Aldus and Adobe came close to collapsing many times because Altsys Corporation who had licensed out FreeHand to Aldus claimed that it would be unfairly hampered by Adobe’s competing product Illustrator. To resolve this issue once the merger took place FreeHand was sold off to Macromedia. Now after yesterdays Adobe and Macromedia merger, Freehand is back with Adobe.

The biggest gain of the Adobe and Aldus merger was the software Pagemaker. Pagemaker was released in 1985 and is generally credited with creating the desktop publishing field.

The issue with Adobe’s GoLive webdesign software conflicting with the newly acquired Macromedia Dreamweaver software was also dealt with before. In 1999, Adobe acquired GoLives CyberStudio software and renamed it to Adobe GoLive. With that acquisition, Adobe killed its own webdesign software PageMill due to the superiority GoLive had.

In conclusion, although the merger between Adobe and Macromedia is a big thing, its also not the first time something like this has happened. Out of the previous mergers Adobe was able to improve its suite and benefit us all. But, monopolies never are a good thing either and if Adobe decides to slack off then we will all be in trouble. Many people are now expecting Adobe to purchase its major desktop publishing competitor Quark. But I believe that might not happen since all Adobe would gain is to kill off a competitor its already slowly but surely beating. So we will now have to wait and see what Adobe will do next.

Resources:
Aldus and Altys settle dispute over FreeHand
The Aldus Adobe Merger
Adobe kills Aldus PhotoStyler, Hitchcock
Aldus on Wiki
Adobe acquires Aldus
About Adobe, Premiere, and All That


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DS vs PSP Sales Figures

Post by Mark

The PSP sold 620,000 handheld units and 1.1 million software units in March while the Nintendo DS has sales of only 420,000 to date since the begining of the year. The PSP launched on March 24th that means that Sony sold nearly one PSP per second in the first 8 days of the handheld’s launch. [via]


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More on the BKME Logo

Post by Mark

If you remember last month I posted about the new terrible BKME logo. Well since then I heard that the logo was done by an international agency (hard to believe) and I heard another story that it was designed by Horizon here in Kuwait (more believable). Yesterday I also got an email from someone called Jeeb, this is what he had to say about BKME and the logo:

The sphere isn’t only about a pearl, a BKME personnel indicated to me that two pepole reaching each other are actualy represented inside! I said who in the world would know or see that? By the way when copied, the “pearl” or “human reaching each other” logo goes white! Vanishes..

It also took me 2 days to open an account! Still confused, I received 6 e-mails with 6 user numbers bkmeonline/e-trading, which one to use? Why the guy kept telling “use another username this one is giving an error”? Now, ofcourse, i can’t use any of them, each had a password which i don’t remember now!! Bmke didn’t reply, i have to waite till sunday. Talking about making “life simple” for us!!!

I drew with a red line what “might” be 2 guys, one seems very fat. Also I can understand about the terrible service, when I tried calling them to ask about the logo 2 weeks ago it took me all morning to get a hold of someone..


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United Cable Company

Post by Mark

Yesterday while chatting with Tivo Guy over lunch about my DSL options, he mentioned UCC. I was like UCC? Never heard of them. Turns out UCC is Gulfnet which is Kuwait.net. I thought they had died a few years but turns out they are still alive. So later on in the evening I got to Shownet to cancel my account (finally got it over with) and the guy there was tells me that they have a new DSL only service in collaboration with.. UCC. Interesting how when you hear about something for the first time and then suddenly hear it again. Turns out Shownet is an official GulfNet DSL distributer and they are packaging showtime packages with Gulfnets DSL offerings. I ofcourse refused to have anything to do with Shownet anymore and said no thank you. So UCC is United Cable Company which is GulfNet which is Kuwait.net.


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If not Aramex then what?

Post by Mark

Tivo Guy asked if there was another service other then Aramex’s Shop & Ship. The answer is yes, there is, MyUS.com. I haven’t personally used it but my old boss did. The prices are more expensive then Aramex but the packages are delivered by DHL, and you have more control over your mailbox. For example, you can tell them to ship your magazines once a month but packages as they come. You can also for example ship the packages on your command. That means you can fill up your box and when you think you have all your stuff you give the order to ship. You also have the option to insure your packages, a good option when ordering items like laptops and expensive gear. Again, this all comes at a price.

4lb’s of weight with Aramex would cost you KD7, while with MyUS would cost you KD12. Aramex also has a one time setup fee of KD10, and then its free annually. MyUS has a setup fee of KD10 but it has an annual fee of KD40 for 12 months, or KD5 monthly.

If you are totally fed up with Aramex, there is another option, but are you willing to pay the price?

[Link]


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Wifi at Souk Sharq

Post by Mark

There is free wifi at Häagen Dazs at Souk Sharq according to a recent post by nibaq. Further investigation has revealed that this is just temporary. By next week the connection there will NOT be free. So take advantage and to those of you attending todays blog meetup, have fun.


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Play multi-player PSP games with 1 disc

Post by Mark

There’s a fairly simple way to achieve multi-player gaming on two PSPs using a single UMD disc, by starting the game on one console, starting an Ad Hoc Multiplayer game, then hot swapping the disc to the other device. It’s apparently working for Tony Hawk, Twisted Metal, and Ridge Racer with perhaps a few protocol tweaks here and there. More complete instructions here.


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The New James Bond

Post by Mark

Daniel Craig is set to be the new James Bond, The Sun can reveal.

Daniel, 37, has been offered a three-film deal by 007 producer Barbara Broccoli. [Link]

So who is this guy again??


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Valet Parking Available at TSC Salmiya

Post by Mark

Facing a problem parking your car when you shop at TSC Salmiya? Now you can leave the parking to us! Just drive up to the valet parking kiosk in front of the store, collect your ticket, and begin your shopping. When you’re finished, visit the valet service desk inside the store to arrange for your car pickup. Then pay for your purchases along with just 1 KD for the valet service. Your car will be waiting for you when you exit the store.

Hours of operation: 10 a.m – 11 p.m daily.

How to use TSC’s Valet Parking Service
– Drive your car to the TSC Valet Parking Kiosk
– Collect your ticket from the valet
– Perform your shopping
– Before paying, visit the Valet Service Desk inside the store to arrange for car pickup by showing your ticket number
– Pay for your purchases along with 1 KD for the valet service
– Cashier will stamp your valet ticket
– Keep your TSC invoice and stamped valet ticket
– Your car will be brought to you just in front of the exit door, where your purchases will be placed in the car
– Show your invoice and your stamped valet ticket to the valet
– Take your car and have a nice and easy day

Policies and Procedures
– Please keep the valet ticket, as it is the only proof of your ownership of the car.
– In case this ticket has been lost, please inform the company as soon as possible in order to take action at once, or else the company will not be responsible for any car lost.
– In case of ticket loss, kindly provide the company with all your legal papers to prove ownership.
– The company is not responsible for any mechanical problems that occur to the customer’s car during the receiving, parking, and delivery of the vehicle.
– The company is not responsible for any item lost from the car during the valet service.
– All cars are insured against accidents when they are under our custody and by company’s drivers.
– All cars should be picked up by 12:00 midnight

[Link]


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