Falsehoods Programmers Believe About Families


I've written before about Solipsist design - those services which have been designed to work only for a very specific type of family. I was taking a look at Google's "Family" proposition - which allows users to share their purchases with other family members. What I found didn't impress me. File under "Falsehoods Programmers Believe […] Read More

Traditional Book Publishers Don't Own The Future


One of the "perks" of running a moderately popular blog is that sometimes people send you stuff. I've been sent wine, phones, apps, and all sorts to review - usually by PR people who realise that engagement with bloggers is a little different that their regular way of doing business. Yesterday, I received this delightful […] Read More

A Stock Exchange For Digital Media


The Internet is "the world's most efficient copying machine" -- Cory Doctorow. This is a long and rambling blog post which asks two questions: Given that we can only read one book at a time - can we set up a "Kindle Stock Exchange" for our unused media? If so, what effect would this have […] Read More

If The Kindle is Sold at Break-Even, Why Doesn't Amazon Sell ePub?


Amazon claims that it makes no money from the sale of Kindle eReader hardware. Looking at the prices of eink devices at wholesalers, this looks broadly accurate. They do seem to be selling at around wholesale cost - customers also get Amazon's fabulous support, free software updates, and high quality manufacturing. Yet there is a […] Read More

Command Line Backup for DVDs


This is a quick tutorial to show you how to rip DVDs on a headless server. That is; one which only has command line access. The documentation for MakeMKV is available. It's a bit sparse. It also doesn't have many of the features of the GUI. For example, the GUI allows you to select which […] Read More

eBook Libraries and DRM


I was pleasantly surprised to see this poster at my local train station. Looks like Surrey Library is moving to the digital age. "Bet the site doesn't work on my phone," I thought. I was wrong! Overall, this is a brilliant new service. A great initiative to get people reading more books and improving library […] Read More

You Never Call, You Never Write...


As Shakespeare said... "[Blog posts are] a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." Today Ofcom published the responses it had for its consultation on plans for the BBC to encrypt its HD broadcasts. The blogosphere went nuts! DRM? Not on our watch.  Boing Boing mobilised its army of commentators, […] Read More