links for 2010-01-16

  • This looks sweet. $600 is a lot for a thermostat, but as a home automation controller it'd be awesome. I'd really like to do more home automation, especially temperature control on my hot water heater and HVAC. I'd love it if I could do better occupancy-sensing and be able to turn down the hot water heater automatically, for instance.
  • This is good news. I wish the music industry would realize that people like myself don't listen to the radio, and as such forgo the classic method of previewing music. I'll tell you the reason I miss OiNK, though: I have a ton of CDs that, through use, have scratches on them, and they don't import into iTunes without errors. OiNK had everything (seriously, everything, and, stunningly enough, often uploaded by the artists themselves), so I could grab a high-quality copy of my ancient, sometimes out of production, scratched-to-hell discs, which I already had a license for (yeah, I know it's debatable depending on who you ask), and I was happy. I generate intellectual property myself, via writing, photography, and art, so I understand the issues and do pay artists for the use of their work, just as I ask people to pay me for mine. I just don't like wasting $8-$12 when I could have spent $0.99 on the only song I like on a disc, or having to re-buy something I already own a license for.
  • Please, God, let people stop confusing loose and lose.