Dear Amazon,

[this late-night blog post brought to you by a blown transformer that took out power to my neighborhood for three hours tonight…]

There’s one thing you could add to your web site that would vastly increase my shopping satisfaction: a checkbox to exclude randomly-named Chinese knockoff products with obviously phony 5-star reviews.

Here are the “brands” of the top-rated (“4 Stars & Up”, with Prime!) handheld vacuum cleaners. In order:

  4. Onshowy
  5. Holife
  6. Homasy
  8. Kimitech
  9. Kimitech
  10. GOOVI
  11. Dibea
  12. NOVETE
  13. Cofuture
  14. PHYSEN
  15. MECO
  16. ONSON
  17. VacLife
  18. LOZAYI
  19. Hikeren
  20. Dibea
  21. Holife
  22. NOVETE
  23. AUELEK
  24. Aiskki
  25. Kimitech
  26. zswell
  28. TopWolf
  29. Bissell
  30. Shark
  31. Shark
  32. (16”x13” Emoticon Drawstring Backpack 12-Pack)
  33. Janker
  34. Silipower
  35. VacLife
  36. DataVac
  37. NOVETE
  38. Shark
  39. Nayamo

Seriously, the first actual recognizable brand you might find in a store other than Walmart was #29! Sure, they’re pretty much all made in the same three Chinese factories with different labels and quality-control standards, but I can’t even pronounce “EMHFLYFN”, much less get support or service from them.

To add insult to injury, take a good look at “Amazon’s Choice” box for the actual most-popular, best-selling product in this category:

Got Yahoo?

Hopefully not, since their DNS servers all seem to be offline right now, taking out every site that uses them, including things like Engadget (which is the one I noticed).

Wordpress buys Tumblr

This couldn’t possibly go wrong.

Time to sell?

Just got mail from someone offering $4K for one of my old .com domains. Tempting, since we haven’t updated any content on it in fifteen years, and I just put in 301 redirects to point anyone still using it to a sub-directory on this site.

My first question is, if a random person is really offering $4K, and it’s not just a scam or spam (the use of “cash” in the email sent up a red flag…), should I list it on a site like Sedo instead, to see if it’s worth more?

Second, how does one do this? I acquired it for free when the previous owner no longer wanted the hassle of keeping it up.

Third, “Hey, Bryce, want a piece of this? You did give it to me for free back in the day…”

Keep your Javascript off my back button!

Infinite-scrolling web sites are garbage. The increasingly common model where new content is loaded as you scroll down is actively user-hostile, because content is never unloaded, guaranteeing that eventually your browser will decide it’s had enough and force-reload the page. From the top.

Adding insult to injury, however, is the trick where it also inserts artificial navigation commands into your browser history, changing the URL to reflect your offset into the infinite scroll. As much as I like the content over at Mad Genius Club, I hate the fact that I have to hit the back button multiple times to leave. Just now, without having scrolled down very far at all, I had to hit the back button four times, because each time it decided I was still far enough into the scroll to need my history re-fucked-with.

About the only Google service up right now...

…is Google+.

Probably because no one goes there any more.

Variations on a theme...

If I hadn’t already deleted my Twitter account, I’d go courting bans












Hmmmm, would you get banned from Twitter if you remade this song as “learn to code”?

First time, last time...

I was vaguely curious about the shopping experience in the Alibaba empire. After all, they’re doing so well that they’re kicking us out of our building. What’s the first thing I see on AliExpress?

First suggested category is bondage, which makes me a bit nervous about the one labeled “ring men”…

“Need a clue, take a clue,
 got a clue, leave a clue”