it’s not a cash grab, it’s an investment

from Bell’s site, for reals. I’m betting someone put it in as a joke, and it stayed in the final copy.

in Canada, mobile carriers (and other comm services companies) charge a "system access fee", which is generally $6.95 a month. it’s on top of any plan charges, and is purportedly to improve the network. it’s basically a cash grab that adds $80/yr in revenue per subscriber.

I have never seen it explained quite so nicely. “just one more reason to choose Bell” indeed.

"System Access Fees are charged by all wireless companies to help pay for the network and the ongoing software, technology and other upgrades to that network. Generally, the higher the fee, the greater the opportunity to invest in network quality to enhance your experience. Just one more reason to choose Bell."

seven things

ah, internet memes. they’re fun, actually, and the current one running its course on planet has reached pyramid-scheme proportions. I’ve been tagged by both robcee and shaver, and am happy to play the game. so, here goes.

The Rules

  • Link to your original tagger(s) and list these rules in your post. (see above)
  • Share seven facts about yourself in the post. (see below)
  • Tag seven people at the end of your post by leaving their names and the links to their blogs. (see below)
  • Let them know they’ve been tagged.

The Things

  • I have been lucky enough to have visited every provincial capital in my country. I have every intention of visiting the two – of three -territory capitals I haven’t been to yet. every Canadian should do it. (I haven’t visited many state capitals, but I have visited more than two-thirds of the states in the US)
  • the first time I met shaver, he ate half my dinner. a friend was trying to convince me to come work for her company, and brought shaver along as an example of the amazing people who were getting into this whole internet thing. I was doing more talking than eating, and he was still hungry. how could I say no? that was in 1994, and I’m happy I accepted the offer, and even more happy that shaver and I are still friends. he claims I’m a responsible adult, but I remain unconvinced.
  • my dream job is owning and running a real neighbourhood local. quality beers, wines, a menu that is both made on-premise and highlights local product, and a ridiculous whiskey selection in a comfortable environment would be the offering. it’d be an insane amount of work, but holy crap it’d be fun.
  • I have been an avid gamer since I was old enough to put a dime (and, later, quarters) in the slot. my first gaming system was a Lloyd’s TV Sports console (think pong with a light gun). my favorite gaming system is still the Sega Genesis, in large part because I played NHL ‘9x for cash against my roommates and never had to pay for my beer in university. I suck at most of the current gen console games, but love to play anyways. my true gaming love is pinball, however, and I have two machines at home (ST:TNG and The Getaway). I’ll happily play you those for cash, too.
  • despite bouncing for close to seven years, I have been in exactly one fist fight in my life. it was in grade seven (1979, for the historical archive), and it was against Chris Coghill. I have no idea why we fought, but we just kind of looked at each other funny, and next thing we knew we were clocking each other. I had got my braces on that morning, and the inside of my mouth was a disaster afterwords. important life lesson: talking works a hell of a lot better than fists, although submission holds are very, very useful.
  • I’ve moved twenty-two times so far. there are two places I swore I’d never move to: New York City and California. I kind of failed on NYC, but am glad I did. I loved it, and occasionally wish I had never left. California’s nice, but I’m still holding out on that one 🙂
  • I like shooting things; people and kids when they’re not expecting it, in particular. I don’t spend nearly enough time on it, but am generally pleased with the results. it’s something I could see myself getting a little more serious about someday.

The Seven People I Am Tagging

  • Von, because he probably won’t do this, but occasionally surprises
  • Mr. Forbz, because he needs something to do besides snowboarding (bastard!)
  • Jen, because she needs more reasons to dislike me, and also needs to post more
  • Rachel, because she hasn’t posted in far too long
  • jhawke, because I’m curious to see what she’d post
  • Moggy, because she’ll do this.
  • j, because then there will be three people whose name starts with j that I’ve tagged


I like toys, and this one surprised me. I got a Ford Escape Hybrid, which is the first Ford product I’ve ever had to drive that I didn’t loathe. I wouldn’t buy one, mind you, but it’s the first Ford I’ve driven that didn’t feel like a Ford, and had an interior that was even decent.

the part I do want is the stereo. specifically Microsoft’s Sync product. I plugged my iPod Touch into the USB port, which is hooked up to the stereo. Sync detected the iPod, indexed all the content (about 20GB worth), and "prepared the voice commands" (whatever that means; most likely indexing the metadata it indexed for vr) in about three minutes. that was it for setup, no displays required, and the voice prompts were more than enough to take me through the process.

the voice recognition was pretty much flawless, and the only time it didn’t interpret my voice command properly was when I stuttered or paused because I couldn’t remember the name of the track. it works whether you’re standing still (like here; safety first, kids!), or driving 85 on the 101 (I tested both). if I spoke the name of the artist, track, genre, whatever properly, it got it right every time.

you can use the metadata of the tracks to play by genre, artist, album, or track, as well as play similar music (not sure if it uses genius info or not, but it was cool). there’s also drill down capabilities and query refining, all done by voice command. there are also abbreviated prompts (double-tap the voice command button) so you don’t have to wait for it to finish talking before giving it a command.

it’s some pretty sweet tech. simple. useful. want.

p.s. – apologies for cricking your neck with the portrait video. I’ll get it right the next time.

about:rights in Firefox 3.0.5

Just a reminder that with the release today of Firefox 3.0.5, we’re no longer displaying a EULA on install, and the Mac DMG files will not display the EULA on mounting. (yay!) Instead, we’ll be displaying an infobar that makes people aware of the about:rights text, which outlines how Firefox is licensed, the first time Firefox 3.0.5 (and later) is run.

Please note that public distributions of Firefox are still governed by the Mozilla Trademark Policy, which is referenced in the about:rights text. If you’re looking to distribute customized versions of Firefox, you should contact us at for more information.

If you’re currently repacking distributions, please ensure you do not incorporate the EULA with Firefox 3.0.5 (and greater) installers or DMG files moving forward.

Additional information on these changes can be found at the URLs below:

The original licensing proposal, as outlined by Harvey Anderson, following feedback from his postings on September 15th, and Mitchell’s postings on September 15th and 16th.

Bug 456439 for adding the about:rights text and a “Know Your Rights” infobar on firstrun

Bug 462254 for removing the EULA from the installer and DMG files

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me, and I’ll do my best to answer them.

updated: added links to additional posts from Harvey and Mitchell to provide more information

major updates for partner builds underway

just a quick note to say that we’ve started offering updates to 3.0.4 to users who are currently running Firefox 2 distributions that have been customized for partners. there’s around 25 distributions with approximately 2M ADUs, and we’ll be staging the update offers for the various distributions over the next two weeks. the intent is to have all the update offers out by mid-december (before is released). tomcat is lead on the QA effort, and Nick is the lead on Release Engineering. if there are any questions on the update process, please feel free to drop me a line via email, or on (I’m “kev”, and can usually be found in #qa).

ho-lee crap.

it’s been 2.5 months since I last posted?

it’s been 2.5 months since I was in Nevis?

it’s November?


effecting repairs, more sooner rather than later because, well, jeebus. (especially since right before I went to Nevis I said I’d post more. FAIL.)

a few (quick) thoughts on nevis

  • the green on blue on blue is gorgeous
  • it’s a lot more humid than I thought it’d be
  • lots of people give their vehicles a name, and advertise it in large vinyl letters
  • groceries are hella expensive
  • I like Carib beer
  • the free-range goats and donkeys make me giggle some
  • sitting on the porch reading a book and watching planes land and take off is an excellent way to spend the day
  • a run tonight is required, because I’ve been slacking
  • not feeling like I have to do anything is a new experience, and one I like an awful lot
  • if you like diet dr. pepper, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find it here
  • an imac works well as a tv for watching football and movies
  • a walkabout might be required today. maybe. if I feel like it. we’ll see.
  • the company (and my host) is awesome

having a wonderful time. can’t believe it’s saturday already.

cleaning out some cobwebs

it’s been a long time since I posted anything meaningful here, and it’s a habit I’m trying to break. I’ve spent most of my posting effort over on flickr, but it’s been really lacking. I have a lot to say, I’ve just had a really hard time saying it. more to the point, I’ve had a really hard time focusing long enough to say it.

I’ll be trying to break out of that again, and will be posting as little more regularly about life, along with mixing in a bunch of work crap. there’s a lot of changes coming with what we do with working with other organizations in spreading Firefox, and I think it’ll be really important to explain why. I also want to start writing bits up which help folks understand how to customize Firefox to make it truly theirs, and to navigate the fun that is a first time experience with AMO. high time I get on that.

the site will undergo a few more tweaks in the next week or so. I really like the depo theme, but think it could use some rearranging here and there to make it a little more legible. it could also use a couple more bits of data from other corners of the weeb I lurk in, so I’ll be trying to integrate those without hosing the general look and feel.

currently, I’m sitting in Nevis, of St. Kitts and Nevis, so won’t be writing a tonne until next week. I just had an opportunity to sit this morning and upgrade WP and think a little about what I wanted to do with it. today will be spent looking at an old sugar plantation, walking a beach or two, sweating off five pounds or so, and hanging out with `jen. that’s a pretty darn good way to spend the day. I think.

more later, happy friday!