Archive for April, 2010
Okay, I ignored the first email of a contest by CoffeeCup software at coffeecup.com regarding their latest promotion – an Easter Egg hunt. Well, I guess I should have looked at it, because it turned out that CoffeeCup was giving away the whole enchilada of software in a Super Pack Egg. Thankfully, I own most of what they offer so it wasn’t that big of a mistake to not go hunting earlier.
When they sent a second email, I decided to take a look at what was going on, and am glad I did. They really are/were giving away free packages of their software and graphics - a total of 160 Super Pack Eggs, E-commerce Eggs, and Graphics Pack Eggs. They do also have a $1,000 Golden Egg that hasn’t yet been found, but they did have a dozen or so each of the E-commerce and the Graphics Pack Easter Eggs still left to be found; they started with 100 Graphics Pack Eggs, and I don’t know how many E-commerce or Super Pack Eggs they started with.
But I am the proud owner of one of the 161 Easter Eggs they ‘hid’ on coffeecup.com! The E-commerce Egg gave the finder the E-Commerce Pack which includes the Shopping Cart Creator, the Shopping Cart Designer, the Website Color Schemer, five pre-selected Shopping Cart Themes, and the Basic Resource Pack of 105 graphics.
It is an interesting use of technology, as the eggs aren’t all there – they show up either randomly or, more likely, in a controlled fashion with some of them being inserted via scheduling. CoffeeCup is offering clues on their Facebook and Twitter accounts, though they are cryptic. Additionally, CoffeeCup tracks the searcher through the site. At least two Eggs must be found by traveling a specific path through the site; the Golden Egg is definitely this type of find. Further, according to one of the company’s executives, using the website’s SEARCH feature is supposed to find one or more Eggs. My feeling on this is that there is one or more type of Egg that isn’t public knowledge! And may remain that way if they are not found.
My method to winning the E-commerce Egg wasn’t as random as most people’s searches however – I learned quickly the nature of the pseudo-random and timed placement of the eggs. I also had another trick up my sleeve: I used the Opera 10.51 browser which has a sidebar “Links” panel, or module, which displays all the links in the page, and which has a filter feature which allows you to filter for a specific term in the URL or linking text. After finding a few expired eggs – claimed already, they were – I noticed the URL for each of those eggs included a uniquely identifiable word (which I won’t divulge). I merely set the filter for that word in the Links module and went on a clicking spree. After about an hour and a half, and a few more expired eggs, I lucked up on an unclaimed egg. And my fortune was fantastic… I got a coveted E-commerce Egg instead of a Graphics Pack Egg! At this point there were about 14 Graphics Pack Eggs and a Baker’s Dozen of E-commerce Eggs… my discovery dropped that figure down to a proper dozen eggs left for the E-commerce package.
[UPDATE] – On Saturday at Noon in Atlanta (CoffeeCup’s HQ), another 100 Eggs were released into the wilds of coffeecup.com. These are the Suprise Eggs – they contain one of ten different softwares offered by CoffeeCup, and there are ten eggs for each title. Also, at this time, there are five each of the Graphics Pack Eggs and the E-commerce Eggs.
The Census Bureau and the media played an April Fool’s joke on us. The news stories kept circulating about how April 1st was the “deadline” for the Census. They further claim that we are required by law to fill it out and return it.
BULLSH!T. First, there is NO deadline listed ANYWHERE on the form. Second, the ONLY requirement we have is to fill out the very first question regarding the number of people in the household. See the image. Notice that the first question is only how many people were living in the household on April 1st? See that it is inside the bordered box where we are instructed to start? Notice that it is a darker blue background than any other section? These are clues that this is the only question we need to answer. We do NOT have to answer any more questions than the first.
Look it up in the U.S. Constitution – there is nothing in the Constitution giving the government the ability or the right to force us to answer any questions other than the number of people in the household. Nevertheless, the Census Bureau believes they have a Constitutional right to ask these questions. I don’t disagree they can ask extra questions, but they don’t have a right to extract an answer from the citizen, nor do they have the right to imply you are required by law to answer them.
(Question 1 on 2010 Census form)
There is a problem that arises when we only answer the first question: an Enumerator, or Census-Taker, will be dispatched to the residence to attempt to complete the racial and biographical data that they desired on the form. Note that when the Census people come knocking on the door, understand that they are trained to ascertain certain answers, such as race, gender, and approximate age of the person(s) answering the door. The Enumerator(s) may attempt to watch the household to observe other household members with the purpose of providing additional details on them – without consent, of course. FYI, we do not have to answer the door when they come knocking. ;c)Technorati Tags: 2010, Census, U.S. Constitution, rights, law, legal, privacy