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Colour Palette Generator

Thursday, July 25, 2013

I just finished building the Colour Palette Generator. It generates complementary colours, as well as opacity and saturation palettes.

Scrabble anagram word finder tool (and Words with Friends)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

I just finished building the Scrabble anagram word finder tool (and Words with Friends), check it out if you need help cheating at Scrabble.

More pain

Monday, July 19, 2010

I will be migrating soon to www.59times.com just as soon as I figure out how to migrate over WordPress.

Transport in London: Episode 5457

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

I’m on the tube, approaching Tottenham Court Road. It’s around 3:45pm, I skivved off work, so it is nice to be commuting with the touristas instead of the rat racers.  I manage to overhear this conversation above the mettalic rumbling that is the Northern Line.

A young American man with a Texan accent drawls  “So where’s all the good stuff, ya know, Buck-en-ham Palace, Big Ben?”

His female companion replies, smug as kittens,  “Oh yeah, that’s in Picadilly Square”.

Transport in London: Episode 4753

Thursday, March 5, 2009

9:33 am, Eastbound Northern Line, at Tottenham Court Road.

As we are disembarking(sic) the train, 55ish well-to-do lady, dressed in Jaeger, who boarded at Holland Park, fights to get off the train. She squeezes past a big fat uhmm man, who is clearly blocking the exit to the train. She pushes past him, and looks backwards at him, smiling her apology.

He says.

“Cunt”

Has the world changed or has Google changed the world?!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008
tags:

Those funny guys at Google  have opened up an early version (circa 2001) of their index to celebrate their 10th birthday.

Imagine a world where ipod is best known for being the “Image Proof of Deposit Document Processing System”.

In this alternate universe “Barrack Obama” yielded 671 hits compared to about 65,000,000 today!

Lots of fun to be had that’s for sure.

dear ebay, i might be lazy, but i ain’t stupid. how ebay’s less than transparent fee system is designed to hide the true cost of using their service

Monday, September 29, 2008
tags:

ebay. oh ebay. once one of the mightiest dotcoms of them all. now, just a stupid company trying to fleece the punters.

ebay shafted everyone back in January with their new fee structure 1,2,3. But that’s old news.

Like it or not, ebay are providing a service which you are under no obligation to use and they are free to charge what the hell they like, if you want to use it.

That said, here’s my beef.

Fees = L(x) + S(y) + P(y+z)

I recently sold an item on ebay for £35. Yippee.

However, here is the bill:

Listing fees        0.88
Selling fees        2.88
PayPal fees         1.58
                   --------
                    5.34
                   --------

£5.34 commission on a sale of £35, that’s pretty steep at around 15%. But, I don’t really have a problem with that per se.

The problem is really the way that is it done.

The total fee of £5.34 is charged quite sneakily:

  • firstly, it is split into three small fees, so psychologically it doesn’t seem that bad
    total fees = listing fees + selling fees + paypal fees* .        

    *ebay OWN paypal

     

  • The final fee is NEVER mentioned in any correspondence. After you have sold an item you get an email saying “You’ve sold your item on eBay”, but there is no mention of the fees that you now owe them
     
  • Even within the newly redesigned “my ebay” they are not AT ALL upfront about selling fees and how much you have paid to them. This information – should you decide you want to know what you have paid them – is hidden away deep inside your account details (“my account -> my fees -> view recent fees”).

Transparent? No. Do they really think that no one notices these things?

Just be up-front

In the “selling totals widget” of your “my ebay” page, clearly intended to show you how much money you have made, you see:

but really, this should include how much you are paying in fees, the “final selling value” figure itself is systematically inaccurate, with a error margin of upto around 25%. It is an inflated value, which makes you think that you are making more money that you are. (hmmm, i wonder if that’s important to ebay?)

Take a minute and compare that with what happens before you sell something on amazon:

practise what you preach

But the thing that really made me laugh was this.

Firstly ebay don’t (cannot?) charge you fees on postage and packaging, i.e., if you sell an item for £10 and charge £20 P&P they only charge you fees on the £10 selling fee. ebay don’t want to allow this because anyone with half a brain would charge 1p for the item and put the true price in P&P thus saving themselves paying ebay commission fees (and costing ebay most of their revenue).

So, ebay has a policy against charging excessive shipping fees. The thing that made me laugh was this section, encouraging titled “Why does eBay have this policy?” which is obviously a lie and is really about them protecting their revenue stream (which is ok, but why the lie?).

This policy reduces the potential for confusion among bidders about the full cost of an item. Listings that include excessive P&P fees lead to a poor buying experience and unlevel the playing field by putting sellers who charge reasonable P&P charges at a disadvantage. These listings undermine the trust and legitimacy of eBay’s marketplace.

oh really.

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