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Early Adopters Experiencing More Bugs? 129

As the pressure to push out new technology product continues, early adopters are continuing to experience trouble. A reader wrote to mention a USA Today article about some recent new product problems. From the article: "Philips Electronics revealed Friday that it is recalling 11,800 plasma television sets. The Ambilight TVs were sold in the USA from June 2005 to January 2006 for $3,000 to $5,000. Faulty capacitors inside the sets can spark. Nine incidents have been reported, but retardant material inside the TVs has prevented any fires, spokeswoman Katrina Blauvelt says. The problem is not expected to affect other brands, because it is a part related to Philips' unique Ambilight feature, which casts a colored glow on the wall behind the TV."
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Early Adopters Experiencing More Bugs?

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  • Ambilight! (Score:5, Funny)

    by eldavojohn ( 898314 ) * <eldavojohn AT gmail DOT com> on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:42AM (#14956191) Journal
    Faulty capacitors inside the sets can spark. Nine incidents have been reported, but retardant material inside the TVs has prevented any fires, spokeswoman Katrina Blauvelt says. The problem is not expected to affect other brands, because it is a part related to Philips' unique Ambilight feature, which casts a colored glow on the wall behind the TV.
    I never thought I'd be paying for a multi-thousand dollar TV, but when I picked up the new Philips Ambilight TV and popped in my favorite DVD of Backdraft, I wasn't even aware of the sheer awesomeness that was about to transpire.

    This Ambilight technology is off the hook! Look at that red glow and flame effect it has on my wall! Technology is amazing! Now movies look completely real and vivid. This is the full theatre experience--I'm glad I paid $3k-$5k for this. I don't know how Philips does it but only Ambilight TVs give you the authentic feel like you really are trapped inside a burning building. And look, the flame even gives me third degree burns like a real fire ...
    • Re:Ambilight! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by camt ( 162536 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @10:43AM (#14956522) Homepage
      Despite the humor of your post, Ambilight is a very cool technology -- ambient back-lighting significantly reduces eye strain. I was very hopeful that other companies would come out with equivalent alternatives or start licensing it from Philips -- it deserves to be on every TV set sold, wall-mounted or not.
      • I get the same effect from my plasma TV, it is in the corner of the room surrounded by white walls, the reflected light truly does match the average color of whats on the edges of the TV, with no fire or software on a much cheaper TV.
        I see now their adding a white frame behind those TV's for those with dark walls to get better ambilight reflection, I hope it's removeable, it does look nice, sort of framed, if it otherwise matches your interior decor.
      • I just put a lamp on a dimmer behind my TV. It doesn't adjust the color dynamically, but it at least reduces eye strain and decreases the eye's recovery time after quick changes in light and dark on screen.

        No fire yet.
    • Couple years ago my previous TV exploded while I was watching some movie from TV. First I thought that whoa this movie has awesome effects and sounds. Pretty soon I realized that sparks and awful smelling mushroom cloud emerging from behind TV-set was not part of movie. :) Luckily it only sparked and smoked but didn't catch fire.
  • by Wubby ( 56755 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:43AM (#14956197) Homepage Journal
    Water is believed by scientists to be wet... Film at eleven!
    • by bunratty ( 545641 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:50AM (#14956250)
      And yet in the previous story, users are seemingly rushing off to upgrade to Firefox 2.0 alpha. Sometimes you really do need to state the obvious.

      At least wait for the .0 versions if you don't want problems, folks. You might want to wait for the .1 or .2 versions. This applies to appliances, cars, software, and even books (I try to wait for the first corrected printing for O'Reilly books).

      • Especially for big ticket items like cars. I knew someone who rushed out and got a first-year car, and, while it was a decent car, it just had several little things that obviously would be re-designed for the next year. A floor vent didn't blow quite right, some electrical stuff, etc. While complex technological items like cars and software do get quite a bit of testing, there are just things that 100,000 users will find that a few dozen engineers won't. Oh, errata in books is especially annoying--one b
      • And yet in the previous story, users are seemingly rushing off to upgrade to Firefox 2.0 alpha. Sometimes you really do need to state the obvious.

        I think there is a difference between a program which at worst might destroy your OS, but realistically is just going to crash more often, and a physical device costing thousands which at worst could burn your house down. With you, your family and any other residents inside it.

    • The questionmark in this headline intrigues me though. It's more like "Coming up next: Is water really wet? Scientist confirm: yes, yes it is." I must say I've never seen /. summed in four words better than the tagging of this article: "dupe, obvious, duh, tech"
    • Test pilots have more accidents than airline pilots!
    • []

      As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man --
      There are only four things certain since Social Progress began --
      That the Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mice,
      And the burnt Fool's bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire --
      And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins
      When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins
      As surely as Water will wet us, as surely as Fire will burn
      The Gods of the
  • No Way (Score:4, Funny)

    by dsginter ( 104154 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:43AM (#14956198)
    I'm running the latest and greatest kernel and it is sta$#&*(


  • in other news: (Score:1, Insightful)

    by nietsch ( 112711 )
    "Rain is wet! details at eleven!"

    Some journalist really think they need to state the obvious...
    • The point isn't to inform you that early adopters experience more bugs than people who buy stable technology, it's to question whether or not faster turn-a-around times are increasing the bug incidences of modern adopters over adopters from 10 or 20 years ago.

      Maybe they do need to state the obvious, since you couldn't pick it up on your own...
      • You wrongly assumed I would read such an article. If you already have made your mind up you don't want to read something that contradicts that, do you?
        • This is slashdot. The article usually has nothing to do with the title. In fact, on Slashdot, you might as well not read the title, much less come to any conclusions based on it, because 90% of the time it's sensationlist garbage that's merely attempting to get click-throughs to the comments so OSTG can churn out more ad placement.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:44AM (#14956205)
    Are they seriously suggesting that the people who are first to experience a new product or service may be statistically more likely to experience unintended side effects or consequences of a system which has only had limited & focused testing prior to it's release? Say it ain't so!

    Here I was thinking that everything that has ever been done is tested, 100%, with every single possible scenario covered. Even ones the testers didn't think of. You've shattered my perfect world view!
  • If I were watching the wall behind my TV, I'm sure I'd like there to be something colorful and attractive there.


    You're risking starting a fire so that there's an attractive and colorful pattern on the wall BEHIND the TV???

    Beam me up! I yield back the remainder of my post to click knobs and rabbit ears.
    • Obviously, the plan wasn't to set fire to the TV as part of the lighting run. But when this works properly, it's rather good. The idea is that the light in your peripheral vision both helps reduce eyestrain, and it subjectively enhances image quality by helping to compensate for the contrast limitations of some displays. As such it's of rather more use on LCD than Plasma however.
    • You're risking starting a fire so that there's an attractive and colorful pattern on the wall BEHIND the TV???

      No, it case of a fire, there will be a VERY insteresting thing to watch. Fire looks cool, no? Just think of it catching fire as winning the lottery then... in that case, it enhances your entertainment experience.
    • If I were watching the wall behind my TV, I'm sure I'd like there to be something colorful and attractive there. BUT I'M USUALLY WATCHING THE TV SCREEN!

      Most people will utilize their peripheral vision. Just because you're staring at the center of the TV doesn't mean you won't see things out of the corner of your vision. And your eyes move around a lot on their own to scan images, so it's really not all that ridiculous to assume that you will catch the edge of the screen in your vision while watching.

    • You're risking starting a fire so that there's an attractive and colorful pattern on the wall BEHIND the TV???

      Score:1, Flamebait - nicely done, moderator!

      I'm on fire.

  • Ambilight? (Score:4, Funny)

    by NoseBag ( 243097 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:45AM (#14956207)
    The problem is not expected to affect other brands, because it is a part related to Philips' unique Ambilight feature, which casts a colored glow on the wall behind the TV.

    Is that colored glow before or after the capacitors blow?

    "It's not a flaw - its a feature!"
  • This right after firefox 2.0 alpha is released. Some sort of joke?
    • In related news...Tech junkies agree that paying more for earlier, more unstable versions of hardware makes them cooler, except when the tech overheats, then they're HOT HOT HOT!
  • by iainl ( 136759 )
    Of this story [], to be precise. To repeat what was said there, this has nothing to do with the actual plasma TV tech, and is purely a problem with the multicoloured lights they have round the back of the TV. Which can be turned off until you get a chance to send it off for the fix.
  • The problem (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Moby Cock ( 771358 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:46AM (#14956219) Homepage
    It seems to me that early adopters will continue to have problems as long as consumers keep their memories short. There is undeniable pressure to get new products to market fast. This leads to shoddy engineering. Thing is, generally companies do not feel many repercussions when they screw up, because consumers do not avaoid other products from that company. Phillips will take a hit in this recall, but six months from now, it will be forgotten by the world at large and Phillips will maintain the status quo: get new shinies in the store as fast as possible.

    Remember that the XBox 360 had a duff power supply? That has hardly hurt the sales of that product and you can bet nobody will associate that debacle with the upcoming release of Vista.
    • The duff power supply thing was never really pegged down. There are apparently two different types of power supply, but Microsoft never really went around replacing power supplies, more the whole console. I believe one cause of the issue was that people were shoving the 360s in cabinets with little ventilation when in fact the console, essentially a squished down PC, generates a lot of heat and needs open air ventilation. I know some 360s had reported problems, but you don't hear from people who've had no p
      • Less headaches (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Shawn Parr ( 712602 )

        As for Ambilight - just what is the point of that feature? It makes your wall glow? I've seen the adverts for it and it just screams gimmick.

        IIR, the whole point of this is that there have been studies which show that when one lights the wall behind a projection screen or TV, especially in a darkened room, it is supposed to lead to less eyestrain and headaches.

        Of course you are correct that just setting a light behind the TV is not terribly difficult, however some people do like to have nice clean roo

      • One of the Xbox power supply problems was a faulty power cord that didn't fit quite right. This caused arcing and degradation of the terminals on the cord and console, eventually leading to overheating and potentially fire (in one case it caused a small fire).

        In true MS form, they issued a half-assed fix. They recalled only the power cords, leaving thousands of users with potentially damaged console-side connectors (caused by the original bad cord) to risk it.

        I believe this particular problem was only in

      • 'If a new car built by my company leaves Chicago traveling west at 60 miles per hour, and the rear differential locks up, and the car crashes and burns with everyone trapped inside, does my company initiate a recall?
        You take the population of vehicles in the field (A) and multiply it by the probable rate of failure (B), then multiply the result by the average cost of an out-of-court settlement (C).
        A times B times C equals X. This is what it will cost if we don't initiate a recall.
        If X is greater than the co
    • Re:The problem (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Hao Wu ( 652581 )
      That's why I'm scared to buy the next Dodge Challenger or Chevy Camaro in a couple years.

      Not to mention that automakers intentionally dumb-down first-year models just to have something better to sell the following years...

  • Maybe not *this* problem, but more and more software, hardware and services seem to be a lot of rubbish, as proper testing gets neglected in the rush to market. (Not that testing was ever that big a deal, especially in the software industry, which deosn't have quite the same problems with fire/electrical shock hazards as hardware).

  • by a_nonamiss ( 743253 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:47AM (#14956229)
    It seems that we just accept these things now as inevitable. When products were produced, even as little as 10-20 years ago, I think they went through a much more thorough testing cycle before they were released to the public. With the advent of the Internet, expecially with software products, this idea of "release broken, patch later" just became the normal way of doing things. Since everyone running a business uses computers, this idea started creeping into products that couldn't be patched over the Internet. Of course, when companies start getting hit with the massive bills for these kinds of failures, I think we'll see the pendulum swing the other way. It's not even about massive consumer backlash anymore. (Which used to be the only motovating factor) It's simply that if Phillips has to pay a technician $30 - $50 (or more) to go onsite and replace a cheap defective part for 12,000 TV sets, they will start paying more attention to testing.
  • by hal2814 ( 725639 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:48AM (#14956234)
    Anyone who buys a complex product that's not in very wide circulation runs the risk of getting more bugs in the system. Take kitchen appliances for example. That $6000 refridgerator that's even been in production for a few years is a lot more likely to have bugs in its operation than the $1200 one that's been around for the same amount of time. Why? Because hundreds of thousands of people buy the $1200 compared to the few thousand who bought the $6000 one. That $1200 unit has been in a lot more homes so the company has had time to better refine the product. Granted if you buy the top shelf item I imagine the manufacturer will jump through as many hoops as possible to keep your business since they did make a tidy profit off of you and want to keep you around as a future sucker... I mean customer.
    • Consumer Reports agrees with you. The very expensive trendy brands of appliances are typically the least reliable, the loudest, the least convenient, etc. But they look good and are very expensive for people who think that is important. The same is true for many luxury cars, too.
  • Bad Caps Abound (Score:4, Informative)

    by No Salvation ( 914727 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:49AM (#14956240) Homepage Journal
    Yeah, Philips is known for having products with bad caps. I've had a couple Philips DVD players stop working for this very reason. There are whole forums devoted to the issue, you think they would have found a new supplier of low ESR caps by now. In any case no more Philips for me.
    • Every company runs the risk of bad source components and/or bad design. I used to work at my parents electronics shop and I remember replacing caps in many GE and Zenith equipment as well.
      In the last few years, there was an issue with bad caps in a variety of motherboards and power supplies.
      Bad or improper design should be more of a worry then faulty components for early adopters. A faulty product can be introduced at any point in a products run as suppliers change, a design failure issue will always be t
    • Guys, as bad as this seems, I give credit to Philips. When I received the recall notice, I was pissed. I assumed that I would just have to live with not using the Ambilight feature, as there was no way I was going to take the TV down (it would take 3 people) and bring it in to a repair center. When I called and they told me they would send somone out to fix it, they made me whole in my book.

      They could have taken the bring it in and fix it approach, they didn't, this is going to cost them quite a bit of mone
  • This has been known for a long time now. Apple afficionado's call it the "Revision A Syndrome" where nobody who knows their stuff will buy a revision A. Look at the first iMacs and their hard drive and processor problems, the first iMac flat panels and their arms collapsing or the first imac G5 and their capacitors and overheating and fan noise problems. The first eMacs and their analog board problems making for half a display or the revision A G5 with their PCI and fan noise problems. Revision A 15" powerb
  • Hum, im wondering what fact we have discovered here?

    I'm thinking someone brought one of these and is now pissed off because its got to go back. Sounds about right really as if you do buy something where the technology is so new and untested then yes, it WILL Have bugs.

    My dad always used to wait awhile before buying a new vcr/hifi/dvd player, so that they could fix bugs.

    Anyone want to think about all those gen1 ipods which expanded/blewup/died/lostbatterycharge/got robbed.... ?
  • Read AVS Forum [], and hear about some of the problems people are having with their TVs. There are tons of issues out there. Plasma TVs degrade over time (years), for example. Another serious problem (in my opinion) seems to be the rear projection tv's (RPTV's) that have bulb issues (such as dlp tv). $250-$400 per bulb, and some consumers are getting blown bulbs after less than $1000 hours of use (the manufacturer specifically says something ridiculous like 6k+ hours). I want a new TV, but I'm not going t
  • by ursabear ( 818651 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:52AM (#14956259) Homepage Journal
    FTA: The problems don't necessarily mean tech firms are suddenly designing shoddy products, NPD's Baker says. But they are outsourcing more to save money..

    I'm not an overly-critical person, but I think the article is FULL of juicy, one-sentence generalizations like the above.

    I'd be more interested in knowing the frequency of this type of issues, the actual brand to which these things have happened (beyond Phillips' issue), and the nature of the issues.

    By the way, getting service on a TV, VCR, CD, or DVD machine is interesting. Contrary to the article's statment, you'd be surprised at how many brands are actually in the food chain of a very few companies.
    • I'm not an overly-critical person, but I think the article is FULL of juicy, one-sentence generalizations like the above.

      You must not be a USA Today subscriber. This "newspaper" was specifically designed to dumb it down. It should thought of as news for kids who want to prentend they are reading a paper just like dad.

  • I remember my uncle once told me to never buy revision 1 versions of motherboards because they may often have issues. With the complexity other devices are taking now, it appears that this word of advice may go beyond typical computer hardware.
    • Not 1st revision (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Ambilight was in many products before, this probably just was a fluke.
      If you would see the original request (check DUPE), you would see the problem only relates to a limited set of production dates (uptil week 34 '05).
  • Then find bugs, that get fixed in later revisions of product - that later purchasers buy. So Use product first, find first bugs... what a suprise.
  • Um, duh (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MikeyTheK ( 873329 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @10:02AM (#14956306)
    OK, first, of course this is the case. That's why many of you recommend that nobody adopt any .0 release, but instead wait until AT LEAST six months until after a .2 release is out. You also experience the same thing with TV shows if you watch every new series from the first episode instead of catching the first season on DVD and coming in at season 2 - you tend to only watch shows that are hits then, but you are a bit behind for a season.

    However, as we all know, early adopters get a huge head start on everybody else in terms of being able to use a new technology months or years in advance. As an example, I'm an alpha tester on a new development tool that I'm convinced is going to be a smash hit. It won't even be available for a public BETA for another month, and by that time I'll have been using it for six months, banging my head against the wall on some things, but learning a lot in the process.

    The other thing that EARLY adopters get out of the deal is...input, and access to the designers. The customers who adopted the new Phillips units will have much more say in future product innovation than people who come later, because the cutsomer base is smaller at the beginning, and the team is more willing to listen to the people who give them the first feedback.

    RAZR and SLVR users have the coolest phones (if a bit wide), and will be the ones who experience the early product problems. SO? They're still the coolest phones.
  • Has early adoption gotten out of control? (Was it ever more controlled / less risky?) I don't know. I realize the article is particular to hardware, but I'm seeing the early adopter phenomenon taking on even larger scale in the form of companies like Google who release software and services in a public beta that may last for years. The eagerness of the consumer to latch on to the new and shiny is allowing the manufacturer to become lax in its R&D and internal testing. We're so ready to try out anything
  • Um... naturally... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by borgheron ( 172546 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @10:12AM (#14956343) Homepage Journal
    It stands to reason that a new product hasn't quite gotten all of the kinks out yet. With years of experience as an engineer this comes as no suprise.

  • Ambilight is a stupid gimick. We're seeing more buggy stupid gimicks. Core products actually seem more reliable.
  • That's what early adopters are there for. Since actual miners' canaries in rusty cages aren't all that common nowadays, we use the world's growing supply of indiscriminate purchasers of new tech to get hit with all the fires, explosions, and genetic mutations they haven't quite worked out in the product testing labs.
  • ...see how things turn out, that way you won't be the sucker that bought the faulty product.
  • ...end users will always find a new and exciting way of breaking your product or using it in a way that is wasn't designed for so these issues have to be engineered out. Now if only it would be possible to do over the air upgrades of capacitors etc :)
  • You should NEVER be an early adopter of anything... technology has shown that enough over the years. Look at the first TV's, there were two standards and eventually the BBC stopped showing the standard which used hundereds of lenses, so people who went for that lost out... now the same thing is happening again with the HD-DVD/blu ray thing ... and even if you do get past that then you have to deal with bugs which haven't been worked out yet. So never adopt early, but convince others to do because early ad
  • Maybe it's just me, but new technology seems to be released with more bugs, than it used to. I bought a DVD player/HDD recorder back when they were just out, and it was something of a pest; the clock randomly reset itself, it decided to come out of standby at random moments, that sort of thing. My XBox 360 sounds like a vacuum cleaner, while more recent models apparently have a quieter drive. More to the point, the only device I've been an early adopter for, and didn't have problems, was my DS.... but it di
  • by wiredog ( 43288 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @10:27AM (#14956427) Journal
    Right? So this is not a new problem.
  • ...and am now considering buying an XBOX

    an original one

    not a 360

    and playing Halo
  • I'm still debating whether to go for a car with an internal combustion engine. However, now that they've almost ironed all the bugs out do you think I should wait for electric cars 1.10?
  • This is all about rush-to-market. Companies don't want to be best, they want to be first. "We need to get it on the market NOW. Who cares about a few bugs? Besides, consumers are used to buying crap, they won't care."

    The last part of that statement is true. Most consumers would rather buy a piece of crap for $39.99 than something of high quality for $59.99. Consumers think that a "good" item is one that is cheap and will break in 6 months or a year.

    Until people start expecting quality, crap will be the norm
    • That's what I don't get, though. How many more examples do we need of companies that innovated something being ground into dust by the Johnny-Come-Latelys? Do they even teach anything in business school anymore, or do the teachers and students just sit around rubbing their hands together in greedy anticipation?
  • Early adopters are always unpaid and unsupported beta testers. Any car geek knows that the best time to buy is just before the "new model", as the old one finally has most problems fixed. Electronics are no different. Wait until the new HD/BLU players come out, and a "bug" causes random "player revocation" hahahahahahahahaha!
  • You need bugs? Just look at any new OS release.

    I won't touch Vista until the first service pack has been released.
  • WTF? Early adopters see more bugs. I'm stunned. You mean if you buy the very first run of a new product it may not be as good as say, once they've had a few thousand of them on the street and gotten service calls? Really?

    Hello? What part of "Bleeding Edge" are they not getting here?
  • I beta test software and hardware for a few companies, I am continually stunned at the point many manfucaturers say their product is good enough for release. Especially in the realm of PC hardware, sound and video cards for example, often have serious issues..."we'll fix it in driver revisions later"...and in the process piss off loads of customers while they are waiting for it.

    it's all about meeting a deadline, very little about product quality. The PM doesn't want a project of his/hers behind schedule, th
    • Companies are only fond of statistics that involve dollar amounts. So a dollar amount should be put on first-revision failures.

      Whats that? Your product tends to catch fire? There's millions lost in lawsuits, replacement, etc. Something that COULD have been fixed with a few more weeks or days of testing..

      Car has a tendency to floor the accelerator, multiple times per day on its own? Billions. SOmething that COULD have been fixed with a few more weeks or days of testing..

      A good example is the Sound Blas
      • That's not surprising really. One thing you failed to mention though is the difficulties involved in supporting an audio product.

        I worked CLI support for 4ish years way back when. I saw a lot of things come and go, and a lot of problems crop up and get resolved over time. The problem with Audio support is that it's very subjective. Yes I saw plenty of hardware issues with CLI's products that eventually got revised or phased out. I also saw a lot of problems that were indeed caused by environment an
  • by wayward_son ( 146338 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @11:19AM (#14956790)
    The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
  • How much is marketing to blame? Now days with the big hype around new releases (be it hardware or software), the cost of missing a delivery date can be immense. In the Philips case, I know there were both print and TV ads around the launch of the Ambilight technology; ads which were in development months in advance, and specific media buys that had to tie in...

    One solution, obviously more easily accomplished in software, is release it broken then have a patch that can live update. In a non-software sense, t
  • by Pedrito ( 94783 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @11:50AM (#14957040)
    I used to dabble in electronics and from time to time, companies would simply produce a bad batch of capacitors. Unfortunately, you can't really tell if they're bad (unless they simply don't work at all or have the wrong value) until they fail. I don't know that this is the problem, but this can happen in mid-production, just getting a new batch of capacitors that just happen to be bad. It wouldn't matter if it were an early version or late version in that case.

    Again, I don't know that that's the case here, and to be sure, bad batches of capacitors, at least in my experience, aren't terribly common...
  • I still have my first DVD player. It was from SOny's first line of players. THere was one for $700 that had a Dolby digital decoder built-in, and a $500 one that just had the digital out with out a built-in decoder to separate the channels.

    Anyway, this DVD player plays perfectly still, almost 10 years later. In fact, it will play more scratched disks than any other player I have had. My only complaint is it is a little bulky. I have seen many later models come and go (out to the trash can) since I bough
  • . We are all suckers for junk.
  • Personally, I'm waiting a few more years before they work the bugs out of these new-fangled capac-i-tors...
  • they've fixed this problem.... just build your tv from cvs
  • The use of the phrase "early adopters" seems to be an attempt to shift the blame/responsibility for faulty products onto the consumer.

    These are products already released to the general market as fully working, not private betas sold under appropriate terms.

    As such there should be laws in place to ensure manufacturers are legally obliged to step-up and deal with the problems to the satisfaction of the consumer.
  • I think I may have figured out what the problem really is that the article was trying to get at. The problem is that the high end and early adopter markets have merged. And that's probably not a good thing for a lot of people who want high-end stuff, but not necessarily cutting edge. I'd say that this is mainly a result of the emphasis of features more than quality.
  • Bart: Dad, why did you buy the first hover car ever made? Didn't you know it'd take time to work out the kinks.
    Homer: I know, it's a hover car!
  • Early adopters experience more bugs.

    Leading swiss researchers have also come to the dramatic conclusion that electronics break down all the freaking time. In other breaking news (*rimshot*), young people are believed to have less experience than old farts.

    This shouldn't be surprising that new gadgets break down and/or kill their owners. Part of it has to do with the mad dash to release the newest gadget and beat your competitors to market. Part of it has to do with staffing practices, hiring young dumb c
  • I tried to burn one of the 'wooden' particle board cabinets while burning a brush pile and what ever the chemicals used in it they'd put the fire out. It took diesel fuel to make it burn. This was a Zenith from the 80s or so.

    I've seen several brands over the years do insane things. One very old philips actually managed to burn through the bottom cabinet but what ever was in that particle board smothered the flame. This was a 70s cabinet I think. It still had the steel chassis but was 100 percent solid state

The absent ones are always at fault.