Windows Live Messenger – The End

Are you a Windows Live Messenger (WLM – previously known as ‘MSN’) user? Or have you moved on to better things – like Skype for example? As of March 2013, WLM will be switched off worldwide (with the exception of China) for good. At the beginning of 2012, WLM’s existence was still looking bright and promising. However, over recent months they had fallen to just 8.3 million unique users. This may still sound like a lot but it is in fact a 48% drop year-on-year. However, Skype’s user-base continues to grow.

MSN (the original name of WLM) was launched in 1999 and has made great history for Microsoft. The only real contender for most of the last 13 years was Yahoo! Instant Messenger. However, since the dawn of Skype, there just seems to be no place for WLM anymore.

Microsoft do not seem bitter of their seemingly choice-less decision and are offering a tool to migrate contacts from WLM to Skype to ease the changeover.

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Questions of the Universe – Answered?

I read a great news story today claiming Chile are preparing the opening of the world most sophisticated telescope. Costing a staggering $1.3 billion and due to opened next year, they are intending to use this new-found equipment for deep-space probing to collect more information to answer our ever-growing list of questions about the universe.

I wonder, could this be the end to the Big Bang Theory V.S. Religion argument?

Automated “Helpers”

You know those automated services you see on them poorly created websites you too often stumble across? Why do they exist? What is the point of a robot answering your questions? They very rarely understand the problem you are having or the question you are asking. When they do understand, they often just give you the office times so you can call up and talk to a human being. What is the point of these robots? I for one instantly close them when they appear and I would be hugely surprised if anybody actually sits there and attempts to converse with them.

These robots are just a waste of resources. If you are producing or managing a website – do not waste your time installing an automated response robot!

ZooStorm 7″ SL8 Mini Tablet

As I mentioned in another post, recently I’ve been looking at tablets and considering buying one. I want one just for general use. I think I’d be a lot more comfortable sitting there reading blogs on a 7 to 8 inch touchscreen device than I would on my hefty-in-comparison laptop. I also mentioned in my previous post about the prices and how I wasn’t too happy and this has put me off getting one anytime soon.

I started looking deeper into it and thought – why pay so much? If I wanted a phone, there is nothing to say I have to buy an expensive one. Cheaper options are available. So I started looking at the cheaper tablets and what they don’t have that the more expensive ones do. As you can imagine, some of them are complete s**t and are just glorified e-readers for a huge price. I didn’t want this. I want a cheap alternative that does everything the expensive tablets do, but I have no need for it to be so powerful. Why have a dual-core processor if I’m not going to make any use of it? My phone and laptop both only have single-core processors. Why would I need a tablet with a better processor than my laptop? My tablet would only be for ease-of-use when I’m browsing the net, reading blogs and watching films.

So, after looking around a bit on eBay, Amazon and other similar sites I found a few cheaper alternatives. The one that really caught my eye was the ‘ZooStorm 7″ SL8 Mini Tablet’. Running an Android OS, the specs are:

• Processor: Amlogic AML8726-M3 (Cortex A9, 1.0 Ghz)
• Operating System: Android OS, v4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
• Storage: 8GB Nand Flash
• Wireless: WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
• Memory: 1GB DDR 1066MHz RAM (Onboard)
• Display: 7” Multi Touch LED Panel (1024 x 600 pixels, 16:9, 3.5mm)
• Graphics : VGA Controller, Integrated Mali-400 GPU, 1080p support
• Memory Slot: Up to 32GB Micro SD
• User Interface: Battery LED Blue and Amber Indicator
• Dimensions: 190x120x11.6mm
• Camera: 0.3 Mega-pixel front
• Weight: 390grams
• Warranty: 1 Year Return To Base parts and labour

Internal Expansion
• 2 x 1Watt Stereo Speakers
• 1 x Jack (3.5mm), MIC-in/Line-out function
• 1 Cell >3300mAh Polymer Battery

Interfaces
• 1 x Mini-HDMI port
• 1 x micro USB 2.0 port
• 1x DC-IN port

… Okay, maybe it’s not as great as the iPad or the Samsung Galaxy Tab. But for a cheap alternative, it seems to me that it is possibly all I need. For just £80.00 compared to the pricey £330.00 iPad 2, this is a huge difference. I’m almost certain I’ll be purchasing one in the near future so be sure to check back and find out what it’s like!

ZooStorm Tablet

Tablets

Tablets… They’re everywhere! Apple, Blackberry, Samsung, so many companies are jumping on the bandwagon. I first heard about the idea of a tablet in 2010 not long after the original iPad was released. It seemed like a good idea but I never thought they would become as huge as they have. I was interested in them, but just saw them as over-sized mobile phones. Isn’t that all they are? Maybe a ‘super-powered’ mobile phone could come in handy sometimes though.

I was looking into getting one recently and currently, the iPad 2 (16gb, black) is retailing at around £330.00. This is very expensive for a device that does exactly the same thing as my laptop. So not only have I paid for my laptop, but I’d be paying an extra £330.00 for a small touchscreen version? I’m not so sure about that.

I’ve always kept up-to-date with phones, so I know that if you want the latest, you have to pay the price. But I’d have thought the price of the iPad 2 would have dropped by now. The iPad Mini has been released now though so who knows? Maybe the iPad 2 will be a more considerable price soon!

Blogging

What brought me to blogging? Well, honestly? It was boredom. I’ve been looking for something to do online. I’ve been reading a lot of forums and blogs lately so I’ve decided to start writing my own. Maybe someone will be interested and read it. Maybe not. Either way, it will be here for you if you want it.

Now… Time to get myself a nice theme and get my page looking fresh…