Internet Brands, vBulletin: The Annual Maintenance Crap

My apologies – the title of this post is “Annual Maintenance Pack.” As many of you may know, I run the legal advice forum at which, since 2001, has used vBulletin software. Last year I wrote a column here in my blog, not being thrilled with a forced vBulletin version 4 upgrade fee after the option to buy updates to my version 3 software was suddenly “discontinued.” Just when I thought the situation at Internet Brands couldn’t become more preposterous, the marketing comedy returns.

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Palm Pre = Pre-mature For Safe Usage?

I was intrigued by Verizon’s release of the Palm Pre Plus, having been a long time Palm Treo user. Using it for my own web site and law office management purposes, it seemed that the hardware keyboard and other capabilities would be a major boon. After peeking at the WebOS, I was very impressed but had several basic questions about how synchronization and backup processes function amongst several others. After performing research, I’m wondering whether Verizon Wireless appears hesitant to promote the exclusive Palm Pre Plus, perhaps what may still be the premature release of a new smart phone for business operation. [Read more…]

Review of Windows 7 & IE 8 – Greatness & Mediocrity

Windows 7 is truly a great, smooth, enjoyable operating system to use. It looks like Microsoft finally got it right… well… almost. There are two items that I find positively irritating and fortunately there are alternatives. Here is a very quick review of Windows 7 and my “off the cuff” impressions after working with Windows 7 Ultimate Edition, 64-bit, for the past several months. [Read more…]

Facebook Used to Prove Cure for Depression

A 29 year old Quebec woman claims to have lost her health benefits due to photos posted on Facebook showing her having fun frolicking on the beach, enjoying a birthday party, and having a good time at Chippendales. After being diagnosed with depression approximately a year and a half ago, the Manulife insurance company reportedly sent an ex-IBM employee monthly payments for an extended sick leave to help her cope with her illness. Am I the only one who thinks that using Facebook to question an “illness” is  hardly the issue? [Read more…]

vBulletin 4 Forum – The Controversial Upgrade Offer

For almost a decade, Jelsoft’s vBulletin software dominated the software market for online discussion forums. It was the quintessential example of how an enthusiastic customer base can extend a product and grow the base business exponentially. In 2007, Jelsoft and its potential was sold to Internet Brands, a public company, for an undisclosed sum and moved forward with few changes and little fanfare. In October 2009, everything changed in just two short weeks. The recent customer revolt against the new management team (the founders and most of the original team are gone) – ostensibly renamed as vBulletin Solutions (“vBS”) – is an interesting, ongoing case study that companies changing their software licensing models may want to follow. In the interest of full disclosure, I am a current owner of vBulletin software, managing a long running legal advice & assistance forum since the earliest versions appeared in 2001. My comments below represent my good faith understanding of the confusing events of the past two weeks and subject to correction. [Read more…]

Why the iPhone 3GS has Bad Battery Life

After performing some detailed testing and replacing the iPhone 3GS with a new unit, it seems conclusive – Apple’s “weak” battery is sufficient for most tasks but the 3.0.1 operating system is the cause of serious battery drain. Yes, the battery size is a minute change from its predecessor, a poor choice of style over substance. But the real problem is the iPhone OS, version 3.0. I’ll elaborate as to why a day does not go by where I return home with my phone’s battery above the 40-50% mark. [Read more…]

Jobless Woman Sues College for Tuition Refund

This past week a Bronx, New York woman filed a $72,000 lawsuit against Monroe college claiming that the office of career placement is not making sure that their “recruiting clients” are calling recent graduates are getting interviews for job placement. The complaint filed is online and it’s getting a great deal of press. [Read more…]

Apple iPhone 3GS Review: Bad for Business?

If you’re considering buying the Apple iPhone 3GS or any iPod or related product – especially for business purposes – you’ll definitely want to read this essential article. I was one of the fortunate people to receive a brand new 32GB iPhone 3GS at a discount price. It arrived within a week from placing my order via overnight mail from AT&T. I was excited at the proposition of perusing the 60,000+ state of the art iPhone applications! After getting beyond the glamorous surface and still enjoying a great user experience, I’ve found several surprises that might affect your understanding of the iPhone. [Read more…]

Football Star Gets 30 Days Jail for DUI Manslaughter

It was reported on June 16 by major media outlets that National Football League star wide receiver, Donte Stallworth, received just 30 days in jail for killing a man as a result of his driving under the influence of alcohol. It was reported yesterday that Stallworth also reached a financial settlement with the 59 year old victim’s family and begin serving his sentence. It shocks the conscience that any person – star or other – could kill another human being as a result of being intoxicated and spend just 30 days to reflect on their misdeeds. What message does this to drunk drivers – if you have money to settle civilly and the victim’s family needs the cash, there are different laws for you? [Read more…]

Technorati Moving Closer To Irrelevance?

Having trouble claiming your blog at Technorati? Getting a “Sorry, we can’t find that blog” error message? It’s difficult to say what’s happening at Technorati these days – their discussion forums have apparently been closed for almost two months and even their own blogs are barren. Precious little information has been released regarding the disastrous results from a decision to consolidate the server farm and reduce the “footprint.” [Read more…]