Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Alien Camel anyone?

If you're sick of spam, viruses and phishing by email, give Alien Camel (anagram of Clean Email) a try. I've been using it for about a year now, and it works well. It scans all your inbound and outbound email with two virus checkers, and gives you POP3, IMAP and SMTP interfaces. Nice.

Commuters take Wi-Fi access into their own hands

The LUAS in Dublin had better watch out!
A commuter in Seattle is providing Wi-Fi Internet Access from his own Laptop via his cellphone to other commuters on the Sounder Commuter Train.
If you happen to be in Seattle soon, you can check out Casey Halverson's open wireless node which can be found in the first car of the last morning train and in Car 403 on the 5:10pm return trip, using SSID "FreeInternetAccess" or "seattlewireless".

Although, with GPRS/3G prices in Ireland, I don't think we may see this phenomenon anytime soon. [ link via Wi-Fi Net News ]

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Today's Ireland AM sites

Today we covered sites to help you buy, sell or rent property.
A collaboration between several of Ireland's big estate agents; this site has loads of houses in one place. They also have really good maps, with satellite pictures too!
Great site for direct rentals and sales. Buy, sell or rent and cut out the middleman.

Search for property in sunnier climes. This site also has good buyers' guides for each country, which tell you how to go about navigating the complexities of purchasing abroad.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Nice Sony headphones

I got a great pair of headphones recently: the Sony MDR-EX71SLW Fontopias. They're a fantastic pair of in-ear sealed headphones. As far as I can tell from reading reviews, they're probably the best pair of sub-€200 headphones you can buy -- and they're only around €35. Quite bassy, but I like that.

My only regret is that I didn't get them in white to match my iPod mini.

Ireland AM websites

Last Tues on Ireland AM we covered some websites with good personal finance info for Irish users. These were:

An Irish discussion board where you can ask anything about personal finance (Where has the cheapest mortgage? What should I do about my PRSA?) and get lots of answers for free. Great "best buys" section for choosing a mortgage or credit card
Handy tool to graphically calculate how much of your mortgage goes on interest, how much you save by repaying it early etc. Draws pretty pictures :-)
Independent advice on budgeting and dealing with debts. They are a service funded by the Dept of Community & Social Affairs and also have a nice loan calculator and online budget calculator.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

The Onion on what Wi-Fi is good for

The Onion gives you the lowdown on why Wi-Fi is so popular. We at Weirdweb and Bitbuzz are glad that they have cleared this up for us ;-)

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

CTIA Wireless in New Orleans

Blogging direct from CTIA Wireless in New Orleans. The Wi-Fi is excellent here. The complete show has free Wi-Fi everywhere and I have never seen so many Wi-Fi users on laptops. It is kind of ironic that at a big incumbent Wireless Telecoms show that everyone is using Wi-Fi. Also, another thing of note is the amount of people here who are sitting at their laptops with VOIP headsets talking away - I wonder will this become the norm in hotspots around the world? More later......steve

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Sony et al launch Web Over Powerline System

Yahoo has a story about Sony, Mitsubishi and Panasonic launching a new powerline product for distributing a home network through the power cabling. It does look nice on paper, but so did its predecessor, HomePlug, which I've tested. It's horrible. And much of the "horribleness" is due to the fundamental ways that power cabling is done in a home or office.

Unless the new product has some magic bullet for overcoming these issues, I suspect it will only ever work in small homes with simple wiring -- although that may be all it indends to do. I'll be interested to get my hands on some of the kit to try it...

LBT releases Wi-Fi headphones

Engaget has a story about LBT's new Wi-Fi headphones. These will allow you to stream music direct to your headphones from a PC. Cool.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

ComReg proposes new guidelines for minimum Internet Access levels by eircom

For the first time, ComReg has proposed adding a requirement to provide "reasonable" levels of Internet access to the Universal Service Obligations (these govern the services the eircom must provide, on request, to everyone). Until now, eircom only had to provide lines capable of voice communication and 9600kbps fax transmission. Under the new proposals, eircom would be required to provide 28.8kbps connections.

At this point, this is just a consultation paper, with comments welcome for 4 weeks. Given the huge impact these guildlines would have in making internet access available to all, any net advocate in Ireland should respond!

The consultation paper is available here What's New - Commission for Communications Regulation.