About

I'm Mike Pope. I live in the Seattle area. I've been a technical writer and editor for over 30 years. I'm interested in software, language, music, movies, books, motorcycles, travel, and ... well, lots of stuff.

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I don't need time. What I need is a deadline.

— Duke Ellington



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Blog Statistics

Dates
First entry - 6/27/2003
Most recent entry - 6/6/2021

Totals
Posts - 2636
Comments - 2645
Hits - 2,392,338

Averages
Entries/day - 0.40
Comments/entry - 1.00
Hits/day - 362

Updated every 30 minutes. Last: 9:49 PM Pacific


  11:16 PM

Netflix announced last week it was raising its price to $21.99/month for three movies out at once. Still seems like a bargain to me.

When you use Netflix, you add movies to your queue in the order you'd like to see them. When you send a movie back to the company, they send you the top movie in the queue, assuming it's available. This feature can lead to an interesting new source of disagreement when couples have a joint Netflix account -- namely, dueling queues. If the queue were left entirely in my hands, we would see a long series of crime movies and foreign movies. But Erica has access to the queue as well, and I can see that various chickflix have managed to get themselves onto the queue. Why ... have some of those choices actually gone ahead of some of my choices!? Well, I can fix that, just watch.

A minor disappointment of using Netflix is that you don't get the DVD cover. The movie comes in a slim mailer, with less packaging than even an AOL disk. So you don't get any pictures or any of those one-phrase reviews that distribution companies use to decorate the box, like Hilarious!! -- South Hoople Post Dispatch or Four stars! **** -- Truckers Weekly.

But I noticed that you do still get the blurb, stuck as a label onto the kevlar DVD sleeve. Over time, we've developed the Inverse-Exclamation-Point Rule for rental movies -- the more exclamation points in the description, the crappier the movie. So we're still able to get a quick preview of a Netflix movie by reading the DVD sleeve. Alas, by then it is, of course, too late, and if you've got a multi-exclamation-point description on your hands, you might as well just go ahead and watch the movie. And the rule can sometimes be wrong. Not that I can remember an instance when it was.

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