Tuesday, July 21, 2015

The Or Commercial

The Or Commercial

*** Correction ***

 OK, I heard it again a day or so ago. I had gotten the details wrong between the time I first heard it and the time I wrote.

The two "things" were towing capacity and hauling capacity if I am now recalling correctly.

The principle remains the same as first described though.

This great truck with these great abilities is being advertised!

*** However *** you can't actually buy a truck with the abilities being advertised. You can buy a truck and get some of the abilities or another truck and get some other abilities but no truck you can buy will give you all the advertised abilities...

Still looking for older examples of this game. (Surely they exist and I have missed them or are not remembering them at this time.)


Well, this is a new one for me.

So I was listening to AM radio out of South Florida just a short while ago when an ad came on for a major US auto maker's pick up trucks. (The name will be held back to protect the possibly not so innocent.)

I was not really paying attention as they went down a list of features / benefits to having the truck including touting the gas mileage and towing capacity, two things pick up truck ads seem to love to brag about.

OK, so the ad is pretty much over and slip in to the audio version of fine print. And that's when the pull the slick move. It turns out that the mileage they just touted applies when you get the truck with one available engine and the towing capacity is available when you get the truck with a *different* available engine.

So, let's get this straight, I can get a truck from them that has the advertised mileage (but presumably a lesser towing capacity) or I can get a truck from them that has the advertised towing capacity (but presumably worse gas mileage) ***BUT*** I *cannot* buy a truck from them with the advertised gas mileage *AND* towing capacity!

Go figure!

Has this game been going on for a while and I have simply missed it or is this a new trick?

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Thought On Voting Reform 001

Thought On Voting Reform 001

July 12/2015

Recorded July 12, thought of long before.

I am going to use the Bahamas as an example here. We have a Westminster system. There are X number of seats representing X number of constituencies in the country. People will run to be elected to the seat for a constituency and the one getting the most votes gets the seat. (pretty much - there may be some technicalities missing)

You win a seat and you are a member of the house. The party with the most seats forms the government.

What if instead, everyone who ran for a seat got into the house so long as they got more than Y% of the votes? (Let's say as a first cut that Y is 5 or 10 percent) Let's further say that the votes are cast in an instant runoff fashion so that any votes cast for a person getting less than Y% of the votes go to the voter's next choice and so on. (How many levels deep is reasonable?)

Let's say when you get in and you vote on an issue in the house, your vote counts not as a whole vote but as a part of a vote equal to the percentage of the votes you got. So, if you got 60% of the vote, your vote in the house counts as 6 tenths of a vote. If you got 10% of the votes in your constituency, your vote in the house counts as 1 tenth of a vote when you cast it.

What problems does this solve? What problems does it create? Is it,on the whole, a better system for the people of a country?

An Idea For facebook

An Idea For facebook

It happened to me again this morning. I went to log out and it asked me if I was sure I wanted to leave as some of my input was not yet posted and would be lost. I scanned through looking for the unposted material and count not find it. ***TWICE!***

I gave up and left the page anyway and lost whatever it was.

Here is a hint for facebook and all designers. (Windows, I am looking at you in particular! facebook are not the only ones to pull this sort of thing.)

Put a button on the alert that if I click it will ***take me to the unposted entry!*** Don't make me search for it. Take me there. The application knows exactly where it is already. Don't make me search for it. Don't waste my time.

I am looking at windows because I was plagued for years by a message along the lines that a file was missing or corrupt but it refused to name the missing or corrupt file for me when it knew very well which one was a problem for it but it thought it was a good idea to make me guess instead of telling me!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

An Idea For Gumroad

An Idea For Gumroad

X of Y limited edition stamping...

I am getting ready to send this idea to Gumroad as soon as I post this here at the zotz blog.

Andrew G. Roberts on Gumroad

"I see we can do PDF stamping to "customize" per customer.

I would find it useful to set a limit on a digital item and then as each is purchased, have it stamped (IN a location I can set) with 1/50, 2/50, ... 50/50.

It would be good for this to work on PDFs as now, any graphic file like jpg/png, etc. It might also be interesting to add this ability to stamp a video file."

We can choose to hope and work for positive change.

And here is what I was doing that prompted this idea:

Buy some Art Today!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Seth Made Me Think It

Seth Made Me Think It

I was reading Seth Godin's blog today:

Staffed by mimes

He speaks of things that come with no instructions or pictorial only instructions with no prose.

"After wasting hours trying to figure out the proseless instructions for a fancy lamp I purchased from an Italian company, I wrote a narrative for the company, in the vain hope that perhaps they'd save other people the trouble."

This bit is what made me think of this little idea.

Seth, you are not at their mercy. Post the narrative you wrote up on your own site for people to find even if the company chooses to ignore your offer. Your desire to help is not tied to their response.

Then I went further. Anyone can do this and we probably should.

At first I thought of a central site.

Then my mind ran on the Distripedia idea I had years back.

"First thought is to tag it something like this:


So, could we incorporate better manuals into a distripedia?


Or does this not belong in a distripedia?

Should it be simply:


Feedback please.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Bahamians with College Degrees (AKA Brain Drain)

A few thoughts on:

Ten reasons Bahamian college graduates don't want to come home

While I agree with the thrust of this and want to add a hearty “hear, hear” I am going to take a contrarian approach to some of the points where I feel it might be helpful to the overall discussion.

One: On getting a job. Some are available with the right attitude, work ethic, and connections. Obstacles all. And when you get one, it may not be a good fit.

So, don't get a job. Freelance or start a business. (We throw up a whole different of obstacles for people trying this so watch out.)

Many job applications are written with the applicant already in mind. This is a result of our work permit laws. We might be better off requiring a mentor/mentee hire requirement when giving out high level work permits. (Or require a hire at a matching pay with the Bahamian being sent to the company's head office country / country of origin of the hired expat for training.)

Two: Something I wrote on facebook today:

“In the Bahamas the saying "It's not what you know but who you know" is popular. Although this practice has some problems and is worse when it is happening in government as opposed to private enterprise, there are honest motivations for this as well as dishonest. It can often come down to the fact that "I feel like I can trust X because I know his family and how he was raised and, even though he has less paper qualifications than Y, I think I am going with him. Plus, if he causes me any problems, I can get his father to sort him out." Don't underestimate this factor. It is also my feeling that the more shady / unethical the situation is in a society, the greater the role this factor plays in such decisions. #cronyism

Three: Are they getting a college / university education to become a better person / citizen? To pursue their love even if it reduces their income potential? To increase their earning potential?

If the latter, does it not behoove them to see what pays in their country (if that is where they want to live and work) and see who is making the kind of money they hope to make before they choose what degree to go away and get? If they are looking for ROI, this needs to be considered. Right? What is the sense in me going off to study orbital mechanics and zero gravity manufacturing and then coming back to the Bahamas and saying there is no job waiting for me and my country let me down? I came back with a degree in Ocean Engineering in 1981 and have never worked a job in engineering. I could get an attitude about how that all worked out but I have chosen not to.

Re: Innovation. That is against the law here. I know from experience. You need a business license to go into business. If they don't have a preexisting category on the application form, they refuse to give you a license for that business. Innovators need not apply. They do not know how to put other at the bottom of that form the last time I applied.

Four: How do we know they are qualified? No one knows what you are actually qualified and fitted to do until you start doing it and make a track record for yourself.

Five: Probably, but you need to compare take home pay and the buying power it gives.


Eight: You got that right. Welcome to the struggle to improve our common home. It can seem hopeless, keep on hoping.

Nine: There is a beauty to a slow pace if it is done for the right reasons and in the right way. I agree we have it wrong in so many ways though. Just don't throw out the baby with the bath water and shoot for the trappings of a wealthy life rather than a quality life.

Ten: And somehow we seem to like it that way. Successive governments have not made a serious impact on changing this in my adult lifetime. Neither have we citizens.

Like I say, I greatly agree with the thrust of this article. I just think we need to consider some other points of view. The main thing I think is we need more Bahamians thinking of providing jobs for themselves and perhaps for others, rather than looking for jobs. It is high time we started dismantling the barriers we have in place that hinder Bahamians trying to start business and especially, in this day and age, online businesses catering to offshore customers.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

How do you speak HORN Bahamas?

OK, so I was on twitter the other day and saw a tweet:

that I could not help but respond to in a sort of whimsical way:

So there you have it Bahamas. Tell us how you speak Horn.

Don't forget to take a peek at the Naked Ghosts!