Friday, May 13, 2005

Triple M streaming for Mac

This morning I got to work much earlier than normal, meaning I missed the radio show that I normally catch on the drive in. So checked out the radio stations website in Safari (v1.3) and noticed that click the "Listen Now" link did nothing. So I tried the same thing in Firefox; also nothing. So on viewing source I noticed some dodge JavaScript, but quickly found the page it was trying to open - some big "wait and watch" Flash advertisement - which never ended. On viewing the source of this page these I was able to get the next redirect URL from the JavaScript soup. This lead to a "player" which also failed on my Mac. On viewing the source again I finally got to the Windows Media Player file: For those readers not in Sydney I grabed the playlist URLs for the other states: For a bit of fun listen to the same station in other states (it interesting listening to the different ads and promos around the same show).

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Progressing to VoIP

About 6 months ago I decided that paying thirty-something dollars a month to have a land-line at home was becoming a joke - especially since we often made less that $7 worth of calls on it a month. So I rang my provider (Optus) and asked to be disconnected. After 2 transfers I was asked why I wanted to leave [too expensive], I was then offered my monthly line rental for only $10 a month for the next 6 months. So I took it. Half a year later I read that the reoccurring charges would be increased by an extra $2. The next bill showed that I had been reverted to the full monthly charge. After a quick phone call I disconnected my line. For the next 2 weeks I received mail from Optus addressed to the "New Resident" offering discounts if I bundled products with them for 12 months. Nice try. After a few months of solely using our mobiles my mum calls and basically says "this will need to be a quick call as I'm paying long-distance". Well she's probably paying more than if it was long distance, but I got the hint. Around the same time (early April) my APC magazine came in the mail with an article on Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP). I have been interested in this for awhile but wary as none of the major carriers where offering it (but why would they - it would add more salt to the land-line wound). So now I'm taking it seriously and on the verge of going ahead. Some of my requirements are:
  • minimal to no monthly fee
  • inbound number
  • ability to use existing analogue phone
Nice to have are:
  • web management
  • caller ID
  • voicemail
  • voicemail to email
  • call forwarding
  • soft-phone (for OSX)
I have started a simple comparison of what I used to pay (Landline) and what I currently pay (mobile) to what the various VOIP providers offer.


Correct for most of April 2005

  • * calls per minute (else untimed)
  • () Flagfall
Provider Monthly To mobile To Local To National
Optus Landline $29.95 37¢* (37¢) 15¢ 24¢* (37¢)
Optus Mobile $0 36¢* (25¢) - 74¢* (25¢)
Engin $9.95 30¢* 10¢ 10¢*
Freshtel $9.95 30¢* 7¢* 7¢*
myfone $15 29¢* 10¢ 10¢*