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November 6th, 2004

Free Not Free II

“As we celebrate mediocrity all the boys upstairs want to see/ How much you?ll pay for what you used to get for free…”

That lyric comes from an atypically insightful song by Tom Petty called “The Last DJ.” In it he thoroughly bashes the music industry for shifting away from personality-based radio over to robotic, highly-programmed stuff – paying in general for things that used to be free.

Take, for instance, satellite radio. I have listened to it and do think it’s pretty cool (although with an iPod, I feel it’s redundant for me.) But I also have a hard time imagining coughing up a monthly fee and bucks for a receiver. I have a radio now, it functions, end of story. And while there isn’t as much appeal in seeking out local stations as there used to be (allegedly,) one can still try to seek them out on road trips. But there ain’t much in the middle of Nebraska.

The other “pay for free” item is… a web browser. Ryan’s a big supporter of Opera, which is a fine program but not my cup of tea. I primarily use Safari although it has its flaws which bug me. The biggest one was due to a software update, causing silly connection “errors” left and right. So I figured I’d try out OmniWeb, which is a $30 piece of software. I’m in day four of a 30-day trial and, I’ve got to admit, I like it a lot. But there’s still a part of me that has a hard time thinking of paying that for software which duplicates what Safari and Firefox do for zilch. OmniWeb does seem worth it, so far.

And don’t get me started on bottled water.

Am I the only one who has problems with this?

Posted in Everyday Life

FROM: Chris [E-Mail]
DATE: Saturday November 6, 2004 -- 1:14:23 pm
I happily pay a license fee to use Barca / Pocomail as my email client, even though there are plenty of free options. Why? It's all about safety. Barca is immune to all the scripting attacks that target Outlook users. Thunderbird probably is fine too, but Thunderbird didn't exist 3 years when I found Poco, and now I'm not willing to change my habits over what averages to about $20 a year.

FROM: Paul
DATE: Saturday January 22, 2005 -- 8:15:25 am
So I thought I'd actually follow up on this Ping a bit. I've been using OmniWeb for a number of months as my main browser and, overall, I'm really pleased with it. It feels a little more comfy than Safari and the tabs are quite nifty.

But overall, personal site preferences are worth it. Omni's going to be getting my cash.

FROM: Paul
DATE: Friday March 18, 2005 -- 9:38:27 am
So what about another update? I mean, if no one else reads this Ping at least I'm being true to myself.

I have pretty much given up on OmniWeb now (which I ultimately did not buy, contrary to my last post.) I like it a lot, and it does a great deal of things I haven't seen in other browsers. But it's a touch slower than the already-kinda-slow Safari, and chokes a bit on long pages.

I went back to Safari for a week and found I dislike it, too.

So now I'm trying Firefox out on OS X (although I use it at work.) I had somehow thought in my mind that Firefox on OS X was crap. While it's not perfect, it is damn fast - much speedier than Safari to me - and the extensions I've installed give it some features I missed from OmniWeb. So far so good... me likey.

What is this then?

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