Letters to the editor

Re: The making of a mad scientist (Jan. 17)

Hilarious article, but one of your “”inventions”” (replace broken mice with stir sticks from local coffee shop) is not new:

Back in

1980, while at then-Digital Equipment Corp. (now owned by Compaq) in a specification for a human/computer interface, the principal design engineer (who should remain nameless, but was not me, honest) used the same concept with pencils. I’m sure that if I dig around my virtually cluttered datastore (a series of file cabinets) I could find a copy of the specification. In fact he extended the design to be ‘hands free’ by having the pencil taped to the user’s forehead (think thought activated here).

By way of explanation, the design engineer included this outrageous design specification as a joke to determine how many people actually read the design document in full (sad to say, not many did!).

Paul Senechal

<PRe: Captain Canada logs off (Jan. 15)

Dear Sir,

I take some exception to the line in your editorial about Tobin that “”he was the staunch advocate we needed, our Captain Connected.””

In my view, Tobin, for all his laudable objectives, comes from the old spend, spend, spend liberal mentality, clearly evidenced by his disappointment in “”only”” $110 million dollars for broadband development for rural Canada.

What can be done with $110 million boggles the mind when it is spent well. Tobin is an opportunist without an opportunity. He cares about broadband about as much as he cares about fish.

If you were given a budget of $110 million dollars to advance broadband in this country, Shane, what would you do with it? Give up because it’s not enough?

Consider also that, in most rural communities, you still have to pay in the thousands to get power strung to your house when you build in a new location. I have relatives who are still paying this. They don’t own a computer, and have no desire to. Why should taxpayers fund a rush to wire their rural home, at a cost only vaguely speculated at, when they don’t even want it?

In my view, what the movement needs is satellite Internet. This is where the $110 million should be spent.

Lest we forget, rural Canadians still get newspapers, television, catalogues, mail, and they still drive to “”the city”” to do their shopping. They might think of many other ways to spend $110 million that will benefit them infinitely more than high-speed Internet. Maybe someone should actually ask them.

Joe Seigo
Century Services Inc.

Re: A beautiful nine (Jan. 14)


I enjoy many of your editorials. I hadn’t heard of the demise of the open reel tapes. But I think the nine-track was introduced in 1964, with the advent of the IBM 360. Seven-track may have come out in 1954, but I don’t know. (Ed. Note: According to Magnetic Media Information Services, IBMbrought out the nine-track in 1954.)

Peter Macnaughton

Re: The trouble with tubes (Jan. 11)

I agree that it is premature to declare the tube dead. I believe, however, there are two reasons that will slow up flat panel penetration that people are not talking about. As a VAR, my clients are telling me that they want that clean flat screen, but only at a 30 per cent premium. More than that they will not pay. The other reason is pixel policy. Pixel policy has yet to gain any attention, as there are not enough units out there for it to become a high profile problem. I won’t sell the flat screens under the current rules; I don’t want to tell a client I can’t take back an imperfect product.

I know the song from the manufactures, that the difficulty in producing these panels will lead to some failed sub pixels, etc. If the product can’t be produced to a level where it can be properly warranted, then maybe it isn’t ready for public sale yet. If the industry pushes this technology on people at this level of quality, we will be deservedly vilified by a public already suspicious of our motives.

Richard Daniels
Clean Machine

Re: There’s no place like e-home (Jan. 10)

You hit the nail on the head. I hooked up our new satellite dish using the s-video to a new 32-inch TV and then added the surround sound. My wife says, to my utter shock, “”I liked it better the old way,”” not because the picture was better or the sound – because you only had to use one remote to watch cable.

Forget about trying to have my parents over to use it when we’re on vacation. I need to write out a page of instructions and then reset everything when I get back.

My grandfather’s, who is 86, new year’s resolution: get the VCR to tape movies from his satellite dish. With my help of course.

Keep up the good work.

Todd Frawley

Re: What did Cogeco know that Rogers didn’t? (Jan. 9)

It is no wonder that those of us who live in Western Canada think that Eastern Canada neither knows nor cares about us.

Your story contains no mention of Shaw. Funny, since Shaw has more high speed cable modem customers than Cogeco and Rogers combined. (Ed. Note: Shaw did not respond to repeated requests for interviews.)

This isn’t the first article that fails to mention cable companies in the west. In the article analyst Ian Angus says the SOHO market is not well served by Rogers. Bell is another example in the same issue of Communications & Networking. Ever hear of Telus, Shaw?

Lyle Green
Beehive Network Communications Inc.

Letters to the editor must include the writer’s name and company name along with an e-mail address or other contact information. All letters become the property of ITBusiness.ca. Editors reserve the right to edit submissions for length and content.

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