E-tales: Manga Harry, says the mutant frog

Also in E-tales: The reinvention of the entire internet

Hyperbole rampant

We love it, love it — the hyperbole, the over-the-top claims that this industry is so prone to. Here’s a beaut: “Please find attached and below a press release for a very new and exciting information technology venture which promises to revolutionise the music industry and bring an end to illegal downloads not to mention reinvent the entire internet.”

You know, the simple impartation of information works best. It also has the added bonus of not blowing the sender’s credibility.

Oh, and what was the message really about? It seems a Kiwi company, Manabars Technologies, has developed a new music industry business model that “recognises and rewards the illegal downloader’s distribution skills”. It actually sounds quite interesting.

A crafty manoeuvre?

Blogger Bruce Simpson (www.aardvark.co.nz) got quite exercised last week over the possibility the government might be about to come up with funding for the new omnibus ICT industry body, ICT-NZ.

He quoted the new body’s head, Garth Biggs, saying, “It’s hard for ICT-NZ to attract members until it can deliver benefits to them, and difficult to deliver benefits until the industry body is properly funded.”

“Sorry,” Simpson said. “But I think that’s a crock of shirt [sic].”

Which left us wondering whether he had made an anger-induced typographical error or was it an intentional euphemism? Or was it a ploy to circumvent Aardvark’s, or its host’s, obscene-word screening facility?

Manga Harry

For those of you out there with offspring, it’s been Potter mania all week, with the release of the seventh and, allegedly, last book: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. This E-talers’ two offspring have been avid fans for years and are reading the book, which they had reserved, as fast as possible, amid tears and more tears (yes, they’re girls), while resolutely avoiding all the online spoilers.

Checking it all out online, E-tales came across a bunch of Asian copycats, mostly rubbish, but one Manga version caught our eye. You know what they say: imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. This is certainly the case here — and more so. A “Dojinshi” (amateur fan comic), the cover of said book, Harry Potter Fan Book — Midnight Children is featured here. Check it out at mutantfrog.com… aka Asia loves you.

And, as mutant frog says, all of you who can’t bear to say adieu to Harry, don’t worry, the Chinese copycat-mill will probably be churning sequels out for years to come.

Geek way to surf

What to do with that PC once you upgrade? This E-taler once tried putting one out on recycling day in the naïve hope a PC-needy person might delightedly come across it (hey, it works with furniture). But, instead, she was dismayed to observe a couple of dodgy blokes stripping said machine of its minute bits of precious metal and then leaving the mangled remains strewn around.

This is really a preamble for a cute idea of what to do with old keyboards E-tales came across on C4 TV — Weird World of Sports.

It seems that if you can’t afford a surfboard or water-skis two keyboards make a great substitute. Yeah right! Well, all I can say is that I observed the trailer for the aforementioned TV show, featuring a rather unathletic-looking geek with two keyboards strapped to his plates-of-meat. True, he was hanging onto the waiting speedboat’s tow-rope rather gingerly, but it still beats recycling rip-offs.

Keyboards also make great skateboards, too. Check out the 15-year-old showing you guys and gals how to make a keyboard skateboard at: obsoletepc.org.

Insolvent solution

Jargon is the bane of this business — but it’s not always tech jargon that’s the problem. One of our E-talers came across what he refers to as “other-worldly legalese” the other day.

“[A] Person includes an individual, a body corporate, an association of persons (whether corporate or not), a trust, or any authority, in each case whether or not having a separate legal personality,” said the document he was reading.

So far, so good, most people know that a company is, legally speaking, a person.

Our E-taler was examining a contract concerning a loan to a local IT company. The document then continued, worryingly: “The dissolution of a person includes the winding-up, liquidation, removal from the register or bankruptcy of that person or an equivalent or analogous procedure under the law of any relevant jurisdiction.”

What nonsense! You can bankrupt a person, but, short of being an acid-bath murderer, you can’t dissolve or liquidate a person. Our chemistry-knowledgeable E-taler says that if someone tried to dissolve him he might be forced to take strong action to retain his solidity.

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