Archives for: December 2004

Wed, 29 December 2004

Permalink 09:28:52 am

Intelligent Finance Problems

I ran into an unbelievable problem with Intelligent Finance today - enough of a problem for me to start moving my current account back to NatWest.

I needed to withdraw £800 cash from my current account by the next day, so rang them up to ask them what the daily withdrawal limit was on my cash card - £300 was the reply. I asked if this can be temporarily raised to allow me to withdraw the money over two days. 'It can't be raised above £300, it's a business decision'.

Next I enquired about getting a banker's draft - 'sorry we don't do banker's drafts, but you can arrange a CHAPS transfer', which will cost me £12. So basically, there is no way to withdraw your own money from your account without having to pay for it.

If you're considering an Intelligent Finance current account, I seriously suggest you think again. The interest rates on the account may look attractive, but you soon realise there's more to an account than that.

Tue, 28 December 2004

Permalink 02:30:53 pm

BBC News Forgets Who Funds It

Is there a reason why the UK edition of a UK news website paid for by UK residents has currency conversions to US $ rather than GB £? For example, this story about the Asian earthquake gives the economic cost to Thailand as 20bn baht, and then helpfully gives the conversion to US$. Helpful if you live in the US that is.

This isn't part of an argument against the licence fee, as I am all for an independent BBC (and I used to display an 'I Believe In The BBC' button on here until Manic changed it to an FBI one), but it would be nice if they at least give a nod to who's paying for it.
Permalink 01:58:19 am

DAB Digital Radio PCI Card Wanted

After having a brief introduction to DAB digital radio over the Christmas holidays, I realised that if I could get it on my PC it would mean I could effectively time-shift radio programs at a half-decent quality, rather than having to rely on the BBC's piss-poor 'Listen Again' service. A bit of Googling led me to DAB Bar, a piece of software that would do exactly what I wanted. And then I hit a brick wall.

There seems to be three DAB hardware devices designed for receiving DAB on your computer - the Modular Technology PCI card, the Psion Wavefinder USB device and the Aria A-6000, none of which are now available. I was particularly interested in the PCI Card to save having wires and boxes cluttering up my desk. There aren't any on ebay and I couldn't find any retailers with one available, so if you happen to have one lying around that you don't use and want to sell, please let me know.

Mon, 20 December 2004

Permalink 12:06:22 am

You Know You're A Geek...

...when you use your friends' domain whois information to get their address for Christmas cards.

Sat, 11 December 2004

Permalink 07:45:13 am

Free Ringtones

I recently got a new mobile phone (a Siemens S65 in case anyone's interested), so went through the annual ritual of finding a ringtone that is distinctive, but not cheesy. Since I last did this, there seems to have been a massive increase in the number of sites that offer ringtones for sale - you text a premium rate number costing up to £3, and they send you back an SMS containing the ringtone.

Is it me, or is this the biggest scam around? The message they send you contains a midi file, of which there are thousands available for free on the internet, and the cost to them of sending the message can't be any more than around 10p. The worst part is that the people most likely to use these ringtone sites are people who can least afford it - teenagers who don't know any better. If you're looking for ringtones compatible with most Nokia, Samsung, Siemens & Sony Ericsson phones, and can connect your phone to your PC, you could do worse than visit this site or just Google for 'midi files'.

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