Archive for the ‘reviews’ Category.

Christmas No. 1

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Microsoft wins 2009 “Most God-awful Cringeworthy Vomit-inspiring Video” Award

Words just can’t do justice to the nauseating, cloying, fake cameraderie in this series of “Windows 7 Party Tips” videos.

Yes, Microsoft are quite seriously expecting you to throw “Windows 7 Launch Parties” with your real friends in your real home, and have even released a set of videos to show you how.  Now I must bend and puke under my desk  before going drinking heavily to get the taste out of my mouth.

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Welcome to the BBC (Burnt Burger Country)

luigi_malones_temple_bar_dublin.jpgYou can’t beat a good burger can you…?

Well, careful now, that burger could be worst for you than you think…

I had the pleasure (?) of having lunch with some colleagues in Luigi Malone’s in Temple Bar, Dublin recently and ordered a burger for lunch:

Can I have that medium, please?

Certainly Sir!

Now you can’t beat a properly done burger and, with a slight edge on me from a surfeit of Guinness the previous evening, I waited with gleeful anticipation for my cure.

Well Holy Mother of God when the item arrived the smile disappeared from my face pretty quickly. What had started out as a good looking burger was incinerated beyond belief and had only a fleeting relationship with ‘medium’ at some time in its distant past.

I spoke with a very polite manager who explained that it was the policy of Luigi Malone’s to server burgers well done. When I asked him why that was the response I got was:

It’s a health and safety matter. I’m sure you would appreciate that as a chef.

porterhouse_parliament_street_dublin.jpgThank God for that – saved by a quick thinking restaurateur. I didn’t get the exact health and safety reason for the policy (although I did press the manager) but I can’t help drawing the conclusion that either:

  • The meat is so shite that to serve it less that incinerated would poison people;
  • The chef can’t do anything other than well done (perhaps he’s an Irish BBQ expert);
  • The waiting staff, bless them, couldn’t handle the increased workload (3 burgers x 5 degrees of ‘doneness’ = 15 things to remember… Ahhhhhhhhh!)

Personally I thing that the burnt yoke that landed in front of me could have chipped my teeth. And, if a waiter dropped the order, could crack tiles or fracture bones should it land on an unsuspecting customer.

Not to be outdone, the Porterhouse pub in Temple Bar has joined the BBC club. At least they offer you a fine choice of beer to get pissed with, saving you the pain of trying to eat the damn thing.

18/02/2009:

A new contender: Fitzers of Temple Bar. (Today the Fitzers homepage shows “Account suspended”, so perhaps they need to revisit their shite burger pricing structure…). I feel that they need a special mention – at €15.95 (courtesy of menupages.ie) they are obviously going for the “more money than sense” market. Make your choice:

1 Fitzers Burger or 16 McDonals Euro saver burgers!

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Cable guy

I finally decided to hookup my Mac Mini to the TV for use as a media centre. The tv, a Samsung has plenty of HDMI ports, so my thoughts were – grand, get a cable and the two will talk. Off to the local Powercity to grab one from the bargain bin. Usual cheap suited salesman soon as I arrived at the TV section.

“Can I help you sir”

“Yes please, I’m looking for a HDMI cable.”

“We have a full selection of Monster HDMI cables”

“Fair enough, what’s the cheapest one”

“€100 euro but we recommend this one” (pointing at €165 cable).

….. cue gasp of disbelief.

“don’t you have anything cheaper? I mean you ARE selling DVD players that have HDMI ports that cost less then €100″

“Ah yes, we only sell Monster cables for quality. It’s not like Scart where there was not much of a difference in quality between grades. You have to get a high end HDMI to get a good image, we would be “

So there you go. A 1 metre length of copper cable is being sold for €100…. worse still some guy is trying to convince me digital signal is more susceptible to quality degradation then analogue signal. Cue me telling him to goaskmebollix. In fairness he did not protest too much – it seems obvious that the retailers put 1000% markup on copper cables so they can look competitive on the TV knowing full well they can make it up in overpriced (required) accessories. These are such patent lies I cannot believe they can get away it. Then again if people buy premium phone leads (for faster downloads) and premium power cables for better treble from their amps…

BTW the cheapest cable for €9.99 I could find after a short search is here: http://www.satellite.ie/acatalog/HDMI_cable_2m.html

It’s even (unneccesarily) gold plated!

On a lighter note Denon have significantly reduced the price (by $200!!) of their Denon link cable, a one metre CAT6 cable to a mere $305….  http://www.amazon.com/Denon-AKDL1-Dedicated-Link-Cable/dp/B000I1X6PM/ref=cm_cr_pr_pb_t

Read the customer reviews for best effect. FAO Denon, after seeing this I will be buying an Onkyo.

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