A1 Great! Part lies, part heart, part truth, part garbage.

some freebies

It is in the interest of the public good that I pass on three free things I noticed today, two of which I am taking advantage of myself.

  • Coldplay recorded nine songs during their last tour and bundled ’em as a digital EP of sorts. Download it here, no charge.
  • The National Post is offering sixty days of free delivery in exchange for your not at all bogus or made up answers to their survey. Nothing fixes a bankruptcy problem like giving away your product in exchange for dubious market research results!
  • And lastly (and mostly), the Demonoid torrent tracker is offering open registrations. This is usually a somewhat semi-public site that does not offer full functionality without being a member, and membership is usually invite-only, so this is A Good Thing™. Another free TV source for me, thank you very much.

All are probably available for a limited time only, subject to terms and conditions, please see back of package for more details, your mileage may vary, IANAL, tl;dr, please and thank you.

uh oh

With New Client, ICQ (Finally) Enters The Realtime Era. Remember ICQ? Probably not!

Of course, in my role as internet geezer, I am obligated to say that I remember ICQ, the first instant messaging service I ever registered with. I was an IRC loser at the time, chatting away for hours in the glory days of online ‘rooms’ where like-minded computer users gathered to talk about stuff (in my case, HTML! What a nerd).

ICQ removed the ‘room’ from this scenario and allowed direct, one-to-one chat via a little program that sat there in your taskbar, letting your similiarly-equipped friends know that you were online, or offline, or ‘away’, or whatever. Believe it or not, kids, ICQ was popular before Yahoo Messenger, and before MSN, and definitely before AIM and Google Talk and all the rest. And the pithy status updates now found on your Facebook and Twitter pages have been a long time coming, well-worn and practiced hard in these chat programs.

(I am particularly fond of my latest ‘away’ message, ‘extended lunch break remix’. Nerd again! Are you on Google Talk too? Leave me a message in the comments, I’ll add you.)

Anyway, ICQ itself started to look old pretty quickly, as flashy alternatives took its place, with their sensible registration processes that allowed users to identify themselves with their e-mail addresses or usernames that they chose, instead of ICQ’s numbered handles. Another thing internet geezers like me take pride in is having been there first, and my seven-digit ICQ number signals that I was a pretty early adopter – they give out eleven- and twelve-digit numbers now, I think. (Other prideful early website registrant: Metafilter, user 594 of today’s 65,000+. The t-shirt still wasn’t free.)

No one I know is still hanging out on ICQ – it’s been considered a dead network for forever, eight or nine years at a minimum. But I’m always looking for an excuse to try new online services, which is why I’ve set up at IMO, a web-based catch-all chat software that allows me to log into all of my old, dead instant messenger accounts, in the vain hope that someone I used to know will appear online for five seconds, only to have no recollection of who the hell I am and delete me from their user list.

I’m signed into ICQ from IMO, so should this latest update to their chat software stir some nostalgia for any of my fellow internet geezers who read the mighty A1 Great, look for me – I’m 2789931. Catchy handle, amirite? I’ll be looking for you, first favorite web designer Michelle, first co-op student ever Dave Ashford, domain derelict and world traveller Jody, brothers phildo and Reklaw, guy I never really knew who the hell you were ‘the Ombudsman’, new boss Uncle Jaeson, and yes, even Kyle, who you all met last week.

Am I the only one who remembers Sissyfight, too? I am so fucking OLD.

saddle: back in it

Been using my fingers here at home, keeping myself warm at the ol’ Comfort Curve keyboard, as a change in vocational plans have meant that I’m not riding the #1 to and from the office any longer. Freelancing! Contracted services! Dicking around with WordPress templates!

Yes, I am perhaps best described as semi-employed going into the year 2010. Though I wish my work as an Unregistered Nurse was going to lead to big bucks, all it really does is keep the people at Jack Daniels in coin (to mention nothing of the local pharmacy). Speaking of Jack, I signed up as a ‘friend’ on the website today. Check this questionnaire – those people really want to know me well, I guess:


Maybe I am too honest.

Anyway, given that I’ll be working on my computer instead of everyone else’s for the time being, I thought it best to crank up the ol’ A1 Great and give myself an outlet for a few sentences every now and again. Of course, like everyone else, Twitter is where I’m at these days, but I have helpfully fed my five most recent dashes of small-budget brilliance into the top of this page. Not sure if that’s where it’ll stay – my peers on the internets seem to prefer the sidebar, which I’ll admit might make more sense – I guess we’ll see.

2009-06-01: today’s twat(s) for you

  • RT @sensfoundation: Register today for the Walk, Roll & Run for Rogers event! Only 20 days until the walk day. #
  • Dog people are weird. #

from where we started

The fine people of C’Mon have one of their songs up for grabs for free at Puretracks right now. (Hit the “free track of the week” link.) You have to register with the site to get it, but that’s a small price to pay, it says here.