All posts by Frank Pilone

This is my personal web site, and much of my information about me is here. Any questions, feel free to ask me.

Unlimited at a Cost

Yesterday as mentioned in a previous blog posting, I had acquired a new phone for my brother. It is from a carrier called Cricket Communications which has plans from $30 – $60, although any plan under $45 is simply not worth it. I personally dealt with them, and didn’t like the quality of service, but my brother is OK with it. One of the advantages (the very few) that Cricket offers is unlimited calling at even the $30 plan. In my brother’s case, he got unlimited calling, directory assistance, and text messaging.

The phone itself is junk though. The cheapest phone was about $75 – $80 and lacks features that most people would  take for granted such as Bluetooth, camera, and a web browser or even IM. The phone is the lowest quality, and probably similar models won’t be found on even the free models. The phone wouldn’t have even been worth it if it didn’t come with a free month. Of course, what would one expect from a phone called EZ. (probably pronounced EE-ZEE)

Continue reading Unlimited at a Cost

First Thoughts of the iPod Shuffle

Well, first – let’s address the regular iPod that I have. For the best way to explain it, it went to a better place. In the meantime, a replacement which would be an iPod Classic 120GB would cost about $250. This is for now out of my budget. However using my computer as a media player with the resource hog of iTunes 8, is simply not feasible. My option was to look into another media player, and one that would work with iTunes.

First, this iPod would be small, and most likely intended to be home. For the time being, my Blackberry is serving well enough for when I’m not home. The $150 iPod nano would not be a reasonable solution simply because at 4GB, this is too much. My solution would have been the Shuffle – at least until I can afford the Classic.

Continue reading First Thoughts of the iPod Shuffle

The Pain of 4.5

OK, those who know me knows of my desire for 4.5 for the Blackberry devices. Let’s face it, You Tube videos, better UMA, and SDHC support. Well, yesterday – T-Mobile finally offered it for their customers, and with my desire for the UMA, and SDHC support, I jumped on it.

Well, it was a trying experience. First, I backed up my data on my phone so it would be reinstalled on the upgrade. Well, somewhere during the end of the process, I had an App Error 523. This was disturbing as it would never boot and therefore, I could not use my phone.

Continue reading The Pain of 4.5

Still Around

I am still around, although not as active in regards to anything including the Internet. Right now, I am still trying to keep my ankle propped up, although not as easy now. When I am lying down, it is very hard to use the computer. Mostly because I would not want my notebook to rest on fabric as it can suffocate the PC.

I am currently resting my legs on a office chair I used when I wasn’t in the chair, and of course sitting in the wheelchair. My notebook is now sitting on my lap. This only helps a little bit, but there is still some swelling going on. Continue reading Still Around

How to Deal with Comcast’s cap

As I noted in a previous blog, Comcast (Concast)forces a cap on all of their customers of 250GB. Concast claims that this only affects about 1% of their customers, but I am sure the number is much larger, and this number would only increase as the demand for Internet resources increases.

If you do a lot of downloads, as I do. I on my own right do about 1.5GB, and would only increase as time goes on, than this could be a problem for a family of 4 (1.5GB x 4 people x 30 days = 180GB). This is just for computer downloads that are actively done. There is also streaming ( I watched 150 minutes last night alone), VOIP, OS updates, Anti-virus updates – all which consumes bandwidth. To make matters worst, Concast refuses to provide a meter showing how much bandwidth an account consumes.

Continue reading How to Deal with Comcast’s cap

I must Wait to Get Bigger

Recently, I purchased a 320GB hard drive to replace the 160GB hard drive I currently have. So, after fighting with a stripped screw on the mount for the 160GB hard drive, I placed the 320GB in the system. I tried to use a trial version of a cloning software, and found out I have to pay for the trial to allow it to do its job. So, I reinstalled Vista on the 320 to hopefully get it up and running, and would go on the Internet to get the needed drivers. However, most of the hardware including the network connections for the Aspire 5100 series requires drivers to work.

So, I turned off the PC, removed the 320GB hard drive, and installed the 160 again. I went on a mission to try to get my 160GB cloned to my 320GB. I tried Clonezilla with no success. I tried another that would not recognized the 320 that was sitting in a USB enclosure, and finally Norton Ghost Trial which would not do the reason why you would waste $70 on Norton Ghost.

Continue reading I must Wait to Get Bigger

Do You Have a Spare Printer?

A few days ago, I had went and bought a new network printer. This printer also serves as a basic photocopier, and network scanner. However, there is nothing wrong the old printer with the exception of a damaged output tray which does not hamper the printer.

To help my brother’s family, I would be taking the older printer to their house. Once it is set up, it would be able to allow either of the two computers to print, as well as my notebooks. This is because as with the new printer, the old printer is a wifi network printer. And since both are Lexmark, and my desire to unify, both also uses the same type of ink cartridges.This would allow me to buy in bulk, although my brother and his girlfriend would have to contribute to theirs, but it would allow me to acquire dual packs cheaper than if I just bought two with different code numbers. Continue reading Do You Have a Spare Printer?

Gangsta Comcast Gonna Bust a Cap in Your Data

According to CNET’s Buzz Out Loud on the 29th of August, 2009 – Comcast would be capping Internet usage to 250GB. I know, many would say this is a lot, and it is – however it may not serve some families, and it is what Comcast would do if you exceed your cap. This is because the United States Federal Government says that ISPs are legally not allowed to throttle the connections to their paying customers.

So, now Comcast would would act like a spoiled brat who is not getting their way. So, what would happen? First time, Comcast would give you a warning. Second time, Comcast would suspend you from service for 1 year. Again, Suspend you the PAYING customer for 1 year. What does this mean. If Comcast is your only high broadband service, you would be SOL. This is why I am glad I am an advocate against Comcast’s policy. Continue reading Gangsta Comcast Gonna Bust a Cap in Your Data

Nokia 6068

On the previous Friday, I went to a local T-Mobile store – the one I always deal with, and bought a Nokia 6068. The reason for this was to allow temporary usage of the phone to those that I feel would need it. For example, if I was watching my niece and nephew while Andie may have to go somewhere, I would let her use the phone so I could be assured to reach her. Therefore, the phone’s purpose was never to be really intense.

The phone does meet my minimum set of standards. It is a clam flip phone which helps protects the keys when not in use. Of course, it is bluetooth allowing connections with other bluetooth devices. The phone also is UMA compliant allowing me to use existing wifi networks I have access too.

Continue reading Nokia 6068