My 2007 Predictions

I’ve never done this before, but then I’ve never had something like offbe.at before either…well I guess I had dougworld.com, but that was much less fluid. Anyways, without further ado and in no particular order here are my 2007 predictions…

  1. Housing market will continue to decline with flat sales and declining values. In other words, we did not hit bottom in 2006.
  2. Foreclosures will be at record highs
  3. We will see a recession
  4. Oil will hit $80+ a barrel
  5. The stock market will tank early in the year
  6. The Fed will cut interest rates
  7. A major terrorist attack will occur in US
  8. Apple with release a true video iPod with underwhelming features, but it will be cool and sell well.
  9. The iPod will be truly challenged by other media players
  10. Microsoft will support PlaysForSure on the Zune
  11. Steve Jobs will be forced to step down (a terrible thing!)
  12. Britney Spears will release a new and successful CD and restart her career
  13. Podcasting will become mainstream.
  14. Subscription music services will take off. (As opposed to iTunes buy-songs model)
  15. Downloadable/on-demand TV shows and movies will be “normal” and expected by consumers
  16. DVD and CD sales will show weakness and the latter may decline
  17. Neither Blue Ray nor HD-DVD will gain traction
  18. FCC will be forced to delay NTSC expiration dates (again)
  19. Tube-based computer monitors and TVs will all but disappear at stores
  20. You Tube will flourish
  21. MySpace popularity will decline.
  22. Google will consolidate all of their tools (word processor, spreadsheet, calendar, search, rss reader, store, YouTube, etc.) into a mainstream-accessible interface.
  23. Internet sales tax legislation will not be passed (again)
  24. I will buy a new MP3 player
  25. PS3 will be a flop.
  26. XBOX 360 will flourish and a new version with built-in HD-DVD will be released
  27. Intel will continue to dominate x86 CPU market. AMD will not catch up.
  28. Windows Vista will meet with great initial resistance, but slowly gain momentum
  29. The Lakers will make it to the conference finals.
  30. I will get off my fat a$$ and start working out. (This won’t be very hard since I do nothing now ;-)
  31. My daughter’s grades will show improvement
  32. My wife’s career will blossom
  33. My hearing and eyesight will continue to decline (C’mon I gotta have at least one slamdunk!)

Spray-On Latex Bikini Loophole

This has got to be one of the stupidist things are so-called legal system has done. According the the WSJ, “Strippers in Alabama have brokered a deal with the
state to comply with one of the strictest anti-nudity laws in the U.S. Under a
settlement between 18 adult nightclubs and the Alabama attorney general’s
office, dancers statewide are spritzing their buttocks and breasts with
flesh-colored latex. The law says that any skin that would normally be covered
by a modest bikini must be swathed in an opaque covering. But the law doesn’t
specify the type of material, so, in the legal sense, a nylon swimsuit and
spray-on latex are one and the same. The state reluctantly went along with the
clubs’ virtually invisible latex bikinis rather than having a federal judge
follow through on his threat to throw out the entire statue as unconstitutional.
“The choice we were faced with was some covering or no covering,” said Keith
Miller, the chief deputy attorney general. “We decided it was better to have
these coverings than nothing at all.”

Subscription music services rock! (UPDATED)

I finally decided to try out a subscription music service after reading about them in PC Mag. The one they recommended was good ol Napster.com. They have a nice 7-day trial, but it only took me a few hours to pony up the paltry $15/mo for the service that also allows you to put songs on your MP3 player ($5 xtra).

The knock on the subscription model vs the buy-model (ala iTunes) is that you pay all this money, but own nothing. I look at it as owning EVERYTHING for only $15/mo. They have got pretty much everything and only a few are “buy only.” You can download UNLIMITED songs to 3 PCs and 3 MP3 players! Note that iPods are NOT SUPPORTED due to Apple’s strict rules, but there are many good players out there that work from Creative, iRiver, Samsung, Rio, and even Palm! No Zune support. Palm requires the Deluxe version of Pocket Tunes to work, but I already had it.

I have been maintaining a whole lot of MP3s on my server and this is like having someone else do it for $15/mo. PLUS I have a humongous library! I think I’ll probably no renew my XM radio subscription when it comes up for renewal. Between this and podcasts, I have no time!

CHECK IT OUT PPL. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! 

–UPDATE:

I still love it. One of the small gotchas is that a few songs/albums are not “rentable” yet and must be purchased, albeit for only 99cents. That’s ok. Still an amazing library of songs. I looked up some really old 70s and 80s bands and they have their full catalog! Crazy cool. It will be hard to change my music habits though. As I’m browsing thru songs, my initial instinct when I heard something good is to search half.com or amazon to see if I can get it cheap. I have to fight the that urge and be ok with this “renting music” deal. Once that goes away, I think I’ll like it even more.

I’m going to set up my wife on the service (Napster supports 3 PCs and 3 mp3 players!). Of course, she’ll need to swap her iPod Nano for another player. I got her a 4GB Creative Zen V for $129 on Amazon. Awesome deal. Arguably better than the Nano and cheaper.  

crapplications.com

On a recent c|net Buzz Out Load podcast, they were joking about some app and they used the phrase “crapplication.” Well, I thought it was funny and being the domain name packr.at I am (yes, that is my domain too ;-), I registered crapplications.com. Quite frankly, I am very surprised it was available. Basically, it’s a forum for people to post their rants about poorly designed applications. Check it out! http://crapplications.com.

Laker Centers Finally Getting Sum Love

USAToday has a nice article on Andrew Bynum and Kwame Brown. They are FINALLY getting some recognition. From the moment I saw Bynum play, I knew he had something special. I felt the same way about Kobe. Hopefully, I'll be 2 for 2. Drew just has a nice touch around the basket and never gives up. Kareem is doing a great job tutoring him.

Went to the debacle against the Bucks. Phil should have played Drew more in 2nd half. The Lakers defense w/o him was porous. Too many 3's. If they moved in just a few feet, their percentages would increase. The Bucks just packed it in with their zone, daring the Lakers to shoot. But geez guys! They don't have to be 3's!