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Comment: Re:Sucks to be him (Score 3, Informative) 298

by pauls2272 (#42593743) Attached to: Bug Sends Lost-Phone Seekers To Same Wrong Address

Certified mail to PO boxes is worthless and a waste of money. You can spend the money to do it, but the form is just deposited in the PO Box and they won't go to the window to actually get the certified mail.

None of the collection agencies that called me ever gave me a real address. Most hung up when I asked for one, others insisted that the PO box was all that was required by the FTC.

Comment: Re:Sucks to be him (Score 4, Interesting) 298

by pauls2272 (#42593483) Attached to: Bug Sends Lost-Phone Seekers To Same Wrong Address

No. Your wrong. The max you can get is controlled by the FTC. The max is quite small - like $500. Then Good Luck ever collecting that even after you "win".

This is assuming you can get them to 1. Identify themselves, 2. Give you a real address (not a PO box) so you can spend $50+ on a server to serve them after you file suit in small claims court. Most would hang up once I asked for them to identify themselves and give me a real address.

Then there are the larger companies that not only spoof the caller id but use a record-a-call wanting you to call back and give a incident number to. When you do that, the debt collector will claim they are no longer bound by the FDCPA ( Fair Debt Collection Practices Act) because THEY didn't call you, you called THEM.

I had the exact situation the OP had. I moved, got a new number and was then inundated with phone calls from collectors. Even telling them that this was my new number didn't really help. Debt Collection was a "growth industry" in the 90s. There are lists of deadbeats that are produced monthly that you can buy and start calling in your own "startup collection" business. So I was constantly getting new collection agencies calling me about the deadbeat.

The only way I got them to stop, was when I switch phone providers (I went from Cox to AT&T), I LISTED my number. Now my number was published and no longer appearing as the deadbeats number in the newest Deadbeat lists. The number of collection calls I received dramatically dropped. From getting 2-3 per week, I've got maybe 2 all last year.

Oh, I also filed a large number of complaints with the FTC - I'm sure this did nothing as I never heard 1 thing from the FTC about any of my complaints.

Comment: Re:LOve the game, hate the real money bullshit (Score 1) 157

by pauls2272 (#42331217) Attached to: Game Review: <em>Planetside 2</em> (video)

The most effective way of getting certs is to follow the huge zerg and cap empty bases. This gives lots of experience and certs. Very boring however.

But the most fun I've had in PS2, involved things like defending the Citadel. Lots of fun but little experience defending and few certs.

Comment: Re:Crashes (Score 1) 158

by pauls2272 (#38027082) Attached to: <em>The Elder Scrolls</em> Return With <em>Skyrim</em>

Crash to desktop, choppy framerate on extreme hardware, game freezes, sound issues... the list goes on.

I played it for a hour or two last night - got to the 1st town. Seemed very Fallout 3ish... only you have to hit R instead of A to Take All - what is up with That?

Had no graphic issues but it crashed to desktop when I opened a chest. Figured it was time to go to bed anyway...

Comment: Re:Is this something the market forces are demandi (Score 2) 148

by pauls2272 (#37988126) Attached to: Windows OS Coming To the Mainframe

The ZBX is designed to replace Racks of X86 servers. The shops that want this either already have a big backend Mainframe - for DB2/ADABAS/IMS with midrange Window/Unix servers or they process everything on the mainframe and FTP down to Windows/Unix boxes (last place I worked FTPed Terrabytes every night down from the mainframe to servers).

The ZBX has a high speed bus connection between the Mainframe (Z196/Z114). This speeds up the network lag for large MQSeries systems, FTPs, etc. Also the ZBX is managed/upgraded by IBM Customer Engineers so the firmware will be IBM supported. They also integrate the ZBX into the Hardware Management Console to have a single point of control. I believe the ZBX can also take advantage of Server Time Protocol so the mainframe can be used as a time source for all the ZBX blade servers.

Shops that currently do not have a mainframe probably won't be interested in the ZBX and the ability to run Windows on it. The ZBX has been out for a year or so but was Linux only until this announcement.

Comment: COMPLETELY WRONG (Score 1) 619

by pauls2272 (#37558276) Attached to: Congress May Permit Robot Calls To Cell Phones

I have experience with this. The "BIG FINE" is a $250 dollar fine and you have to SUE THEM in small claims court to collect. This means hiring an off duty police officer (around $50 bucks) to serve the summons - assuming you can get their address to begin with then paying the court costs to file.

You want a BIG FINE, have them change it to a $25000 dollar fine but $250 bucks isn't worth the hassle.

When I moved I got a new phone number and a got a ton of calls for Mr X who had the number prior to me. As usual, I didn't list my number in the phone book. I explained that Mr X is not here and most of the calls died down. YEARS PASS and I am still getting calls for Mr X - although it is maybe 4-6 a month (some months I'd get a lot more - I think this was when a new collection debt list was published). I become very familiar with the FTC rules regarding collection agencies.

My experience was:
1. Most collection agency people calling you have NO CLUE what the FTC laws and regulations are.
2. Most will not really identify themselves and not give out their address - REQUIRED BY FTC but ignored.
3. Most will tell you their "supervisor" is not available - in some cases they refused to identify the supervisor (FTC violation - they MUST identify themselves, the business, their supervisor and address of business)
4. Many are working off lists they bought and are calling you from their house. These lists are what caused me to get
a lot of calls. Mr X was on them with my number and every time they published and sold a new list to people, I would get
calls. Debt collection is a growing home business...
5. You tell them you aren't this person and NEVER CALL AGAIN and they ignore this (FTC VIOLATION). I got called so
often by some collection agencies, I recognized their voices.

I filed a lot of complaints with the FTC but never heard anything back from them.

Your recourse is to Sue them but as above it isn't worth the time and effort. I was only able to end 95% of the calls by listing my number - this caused the lists to be updated. I still get calls for Mr X but only about 1-2 every few months now not every week or day.

Comment: Re:Why are Libs so enamored with taxes? (Score 1) 623

by pauls2272 (#36626708) Attached to: Amazon Drops California Associates to Avoid Sales Tax

It's not that hard.

These days, we use computers to aid in our transactions.

The data's not "a ridiculous amount" - it's a few KB of data sent from each state each year.

iggest market. I can understand why they don't want to pay taxes.

Yeah, the data is available but not from the states. There are companies whose business is to collect all the sales tax data (from state, city, county and local levels) and they will sell you the info. A number of years ago, when I worked for a major car manufacturer, they had to start buying this data. The data was reloaded/changed monthly. These days, it might be a "cloud" service somewhere.

But they're not going to just throw away the entire market to avoid paying it.

They can sell to CA residents all they want and aren't affected. They are dropping the Affiliate program. My brother runs an internet used bookstore. He is/was an affiliate of Amazon - they would list his books so if you were looking for a used book - it would show up on the Amazon store. Since he is based in CA, I think he is now dropped.

There are a lot of small CA business that were Amazon affiliates.

Image

Woman Sues Google Over Street View Shots of Her Underwear 417

Posted by samzenpus
from the airing-your-clean-laundry dept.
Kittenman writes "The Telegraph (and several US locals) are covering a story about a Japanese woman who had her underwear on the line while the Google car went past. She is now suing Google: 'I was overwhelmed with anxiety that I might be the target of a sex crime,' the woman told a district court. 'It caused me to lose my job and I had to change my residence.'"
Image

Swiss Bank Has 43-Page Dress Code 212

Posted by samzenpus
from the dress-for-a-specific-success dept.
Tasha26 writes "The HR of Swiss bank UBS AG came up with an innovative 43-page document (French) to establish fashion 'dos' and 'don'ts' in their retail branches. Among the rules are such things as: 'neither sex should allow their underwear to appear,' perhaps Dilbert was a bit ahead of them on that. The document also mentions smells and 'avoid garlic and onion-based dishes.'"
Australia

Australian Stats Agency Goes Open Source 51

Posted by timothy
from the as-it-should-be dept.
jimboh2k writes "The Australian Bureau of Statistics will use the 2011 Census of Population and Housing as a dry run for XML-based open source standards DDI and SDMX in a bid to make for easier machine-to-machine data, allowing users to better search for and access census datasets. The census will become the first time the open standards are used by an Australian Federal Government agency."
Transportation

Denver Airport Overrun by Car-Eating Rabbits 278

Posted by samzenpus
from the night-of-the-lepus dept.
It turns out the soy-based wire covering on cars built after 2002 is irresistible to rodents. Nobody knows this better than those unlucky enough to park at DIA's Pikes Peak lot. The rabbits surrounding the area have been using the lot as an all-you-can-eat wiring buffet. Looks like it's time to break out The Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch.
United Kingdom

Oxford Expands Library With 153 Miles of Shelves 130

Posted by samzenpus
from the card-catalog-of-the-gods dept.
Oxford University's Bodleian Library has purchased a huge £26m warehouse to give a proper home to over 6 million books and 1.2 million maps. The Library has been housing the collection in a salt mine, and plans on transferring the manuscripts over the next year. "The BSF will prove a long-awaited solution to the space problem that has long challenged the Bodleian," said its head librarian Dr Sarah Thomas. "We have been running out of space since the 1970s and the situation has become increasingly desperate in the last few years." The 153 miles of new shelf space will only be enough for the next 20 years however because of the library's historic entitlement to a copy of every volume published in the UK.

Comment: Re:Peter jackson... (Score 1) 222

by pauls2272 (#33787530) Attached to: MGM and Warner Near On Deal For <em>Hobbit</em> Films

It wasn't what was cut so much as what was changed:

Exactly.

Before he did it, I would have said that the Fellowship of the Ring was un-Filmable.

I have a few nitpicks with it but it captures the flavor of the book without too many major character changes. Yes, Merry and Pippen were made comic relief along with the dwarf.
But instead of changing things whole cloth and adding stuff to make the scene "dramatically interesting", in the FOTR, he had to just cut cut cut. There was too much material there to try to film everything and condensing things like Arwen and Glorfindel made sense.

In the other movies, he started adding nonsense that wasn't in the books. This is where he went wrong. All he had to do was stick with the story and characters and CUT where needed...

Comment: Re:Peter jackson... (Score 2, Interesting) 222

by pauls2272 (#33787342) Attached to: MGM and Warner Near On Deal For <em>Hobbit</em> Films

So would they have the same kind of Hobbit One Ring-resistance?

No. Even the lesser rings they had did corrupt them and brought Evil to the Dwarves. Sauron could not control them, the way he could Men so his plot "failed'. But research what happened to each of the 7 Ring Bearers of the Dwarves...

In Letters, JRRT says there are only a few beings in Arda that can control and use the 1 ring - pretty much Gandalf, Elrond and Galadriel.
You had to have Great Power yourself to master the One Ring. No mortal could do it and dwarves are technically mortals.

Every one else attempting to use the Ring would eventually fail and Sauron would eventually prevail. The Ring is part of Sauron after all...

Simplicity does not precede complexity, but follows it.

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