Jun 252009

Actually‚ my headline is only tangentially related to what I’m going to write about.  But if you’ve read the tripe from the AP about how money influences the organ transplant game‚ you’re already familiar with the practice.  In three easy steps‚ the game of rigging news works thusly:

  1. Game a headline to suggest something unseemly that would make the blood of the average reader boil.  In this case: “Jobs’ liver transplant shows power of wealth”
  2. Use your opening paragraphs to pull a 180 away from your seedy‚ eye-catching headline (wouldn’t want the power of wealth’s attorneys knockin’ would we?) and state clearly that no one can “officially” game the system‚ setting up the reader for the dirty little secret about the relationship between money and undue influence you promised in said headline.
  3. Drop your payload.  “Here’s where money comes in.”  If you’re rich‚ you can buy a home anywhere in the country‚ so when the hospital makes that life-saving call to you‚ you can be on the operating table within hours.

Fucking. Awesome. Journalism.

You could also rent a home‚ or an apartment.  Or stay with a friend or relative.  But that wouldn’t be seedy and poor people might also be able to do that.  That might drive people to other sources for their sensationalistic news fix‚ a category that the Associated Press is apparently now happy to populate.

Jun 252009

Microsoft has finally announced shipping and pricing information for its highly-anticipated Vista SP3 Windows 7 options. Because this is Microsoft‚ you not only have feature-based options‚ you also have a “limited time only” discount if you pre-order before…whenever it is the offer expires. More on that later. Here are the basics:

Buying a PC now (actually starting tomorrow)‚ your upgrade to Win 7 is free when it’s released on October 22. What you get depends on what version of Vista your OEM stuck you with:

Vista Home Premium -> Windows 7 Home Premium
Vista Business -> Win 7 Professional
Vista Ultimate -> Win 7 Ultimate
Vista Home Basic -> Suck It

Buying any boxed version of Vista not tied to a PC?

See “Vista Home Basic”‚ above.

But Redmond has some further incentive for you to act now! For a limited time‚ if you order Windows 7‚ you can get “Special Offer” pre-order pricing:

Windows 7 Home Premium – $50,
Windows 7 Professional – $100
Windows 7 Ultimate – Suck It

So how do we know when the “Special Offer” ends? From Gizmodo:

“What’s this about a limited time? Mike Ybarra, general manager of Windows Product Management, told me that the pre-order deal will go away when a certain undisclosed number of licenses is sold. ‘We have enough quantity,’ he said, adding that the magic number was ‘equivalent to a year of Vista sales volume at retail.'”

Nice. Another asshole marketing trick from the masters of insulting the customer’s intelligence. Problems with Vista? Nah! Stick your head in this “Mojave Experiment” booth for 10 minutes and we’ll prove it’s you‚ dumbass customer‚ who are too ignorant to appreciate Vista’s greatness! People who design these sleight of hand offers should have their balls tazered.

Speaking of extreme disrespect to genitalia‚ European Union countries won’t have the option to upgrade to Win 7. Sure‚ they’ll have the same pricing and even the same “Special Offer”‚ but because the EU went and made M$ chop their web browser from the install‚ you’ll have to do a clean install of the operating system in order to use Win 7. “What about my apps?” you might hear a poor French person exclaim. “Va te faire foutre” would be the response to that one. See what happens when you fuck with Microsoft‚ EU? YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!

Update: apparently M$ is going to stick EU customers for the full price of the software‚ behind the reasoning that a clean install requires the full version. Pricing until the end of the year £80 ($112) for Home Premium‚ £190 ($267) for Professional and £200 ($280) for Ultimate; after that £150‚ £220 and £230‚ respectively. Yet another reason for Euros to hate America.

In closing‚ I’d like to remind readers about Mac OS X Snow Leopard pricing tiers once it is released in September:

Snow Leopard Premium – $29
Snow Leopard Business -$29
Snow Leopard Ultimate -$29
Snow Leopard Basic – $29

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