Category Archives: Contests

Week Seven of Free Stuff at Futurelooks!

When it comes to contests, the only thing that is worth anything at the end of the day is a product you can hold in your hand and tell people about. For Eight Crazy Weeks, I've been helping to give away some pretty darn cool products.  Some of them, like the computer cases, are too large to hold in your hands which is OK because everyone loves getting a huge honking box in the mail.  Well, let the giving continue!

Futurelooks has just launched Week Seven of Eight Crazy Weeks of Giveaways.  This week up for grabs is an LG DVD Player, X-Arcade Retro Gaming Trackball Controller, and a copy of Lord of the Rings Trilogy Special Edition on DVD. Any one of these prizes would be perfect for regifting to someone you love...not that you would do that.  Don't forget to enter the BONUS DRAW as well too.  For more information on how to win this week, you can check out the Official Week Seven Contest Page.

Stephen Fung DOT NET Update - US Turkey Day Edition

First off, happy turkey day to all our Yankee brothers and sisters across the border. I know that some of you are probably already camping out in front of your favourite stores to snag some of those "Black Friday" deals. If you're wondering if what you're camping out for is worth it, head on over to Shopping Price Engine and punch up a few of your chosen deals to see if they camping out in the freezing cold overnight. Canadian shoppers do the same thing every December 26th. We call it Boxing Day.

Being Bribed By AMD...

Last week, AMD flew myself and some other media outlets down to Lake Tahoe to check out the launch of their new "SPIDER" platform. I'd never been to Lake Tahoe before so I was really looking forward to checking it out. Although it was sunshine for the two days that we were there, it was too cold for Bikinis and not cold enough for Snow Bunnies. Instead, the crowd was more "geriatric" in nature and there was extreme danger of "Cougar" maulings. It looked to be the perfect spot for Las Vegas Casino retirees to end up at.

Lake Tahoe

Despite the lack of a party crowd, the view was certainly to die for. I have never seen such a view that was so breathtaking that it looked almost unreal. It was like my little Canon SD850is could do no wrong. Besides the view and the limo pick up from the airport, we also got treated to a full dockside BBQ complete with steaks and this peach cobbler that made me go back for seconds, thirds and fourths. It made me do it, damn it! 😆

Hardware? Oh right! They'll be shipping out my "Spider Platform" in a week or so which will include a couple of their new 3800 series GPU's, a 790 series board, and a Phenom processor. The event did allow us some hands on testing of their hardware platform, but I would prefer to install my own "un-optimized" OS and do some comparisions on home turf before passing judgement. However, as you've probably heard from the reviews of the Phenom processor, it hasn't been the "Phenomenom" that a lot of AMD fans were hoping it to be. However, there were some really great features of this new platform that should give it some mass market appeal. I think it was smart to play the platform card to smooth over the bumps with the CPU side of the launch.

All Set For CES 2008!

CES 2008 is on!

This week, I got my "International" press badge for the 2008 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Just FYI, the only thing that makes it "International" is the little red ribbon. Yay! I've actually been ready since I got back from COMPUTEX this past summer. I had my room and flight booked before they jacked the prices up. It's hard to believe that they can charge $250 US a night for even the Imperial Projects just because CES is in town. What a rip!

CES 2008 will also mark the return of the "Night Before CES" party. Last year was Futurelooks' first time sponsoring the event and I'm really looking forward to sponsoring it again. The event will take place on January 6th, 2008 at the Absolut Vodka Suite inside the Caesar's Palace Hotel and Casino. If you're going to be in the neighbourhood, contact me and I'll put you on the list.

More Free Stuff at Futurelooks!

 

This week marks Week Six of Eight Crazy Weeks of Giveaways over at Futurelooks! Up for grabs is a Thermaltake Water Cooling System and a VGA Cooler. Don't forget to sign up for the Newsletter for the bonus draw sponsored by Saitek.  Last week we gave away one of these. Beats silly eBooks any day of the week 😉

Is Anyone Interested in a Free iPod nano?

Week Four of Eight Crazy Weeks of Free Stuff

Futurelooks has just kicked off Week Four of Eight Crazy Weeks of Giveaways. Although we're halfway through this huge giveaway spree, it doesn't mean that the prizes will start getting crappy. In fact, the best prizes are yet to come! There's still a 20 inch Samsung LCD Monitor in there somewhere!

This week, up for grabs is a 2 GB Apple iPod nano as well as an M-Audio Studiophile AV 20 Portable Desktop Speaker System plus a pair of Zalman ZM-DS4F Dual Stereo Headphones. If you want to win this stuff, head on over to to the Official Week Four Contest Page to find out how to win it. Goodluck!

A Stephen Fung DOT NET Week in Review

Sorry for the lack of updates, but I've been busy working and playing and eating.  Grab your coffee, beer, or whatever.  This is going to be a bit of a long one!

Hanging out in Microsoft Land

Last weekend, I took at trip down to Redmond to bask in the glory of Microsoft.  But before I got there, I stopped off at the Seattle Premium Outlets and loaded up on NIKE stuff at the Factory Outlet Store.  As my luck would have it, they had an ADDITIONAL 20% off their sale prices.  On some stuff, I was saving over 80%.  Add to that, the worth of the US PESO, and that was an extra 5% off.  What a deal!  I got so much stuff for the $205 US I spent, that it didn't seem right.  That feeling didn't last long.

Unfortunately, by the time we got to Redmond, the MS visitor center had already closed and they aren't open for tours on the weekend, so I couldn't do the grand tour.  Determined to have a souvenir,  I did manage to take a shot before MS Campus Security chased me away.

 Hey Microsoft! I’m here!

While in Redmond, I stayed at the Silver Cloud Inn which is basically two blocks away from the MS Campus.  The place had free WiFi, clean, and surprisingly cheap ($100 a night). They offered a help yourself breakfast which featured waffles that you make yourself on your own waffle iron.  I'd definitely stay at this place again.

Because of the diverse ethnicity of the Microsoft staff, the area's eateries also reflected that.  A block from the Hotel, you had your choice between, Malaysian, Chinese, Korean, East Indian, Mexican etc.  You definitely won't go hungry in this town. Speaking of food, While fooding around, I came across a really cool place called the Coho Cafe Restaurant and Bar. The Coho Cafe seemed to be more like a high end family restaurant than a restaurant/bar. Kids were running around everywhere and the staff were well armed with crayons and colouring books to calm them down.

 Coho Cafe in Redmond

The first dish that I tried out was the MIXED PEPPER CALAMARI.  It was dusted in a blend of cayenne, white & black pepper & garlic and flash fried. It was served with a roasted garlic lemon aïoli that had a nice kick to it. The only problem with the dish was that the calamari was sliced so thinly that it ended up drying out in the fryer.  If the slices were a bit larger, it would have been perfect.

 Coho Cafe in Redmond

The most interesting dish was the one above that looked like a real crab California Roll, flipped inside out and stacked upwards.  They call it the CRAB & AVOCADO TOWER.  It features Dungeness Crab & Bay Shrimp, wasabi aioli, avocado on a furikake crusted sushi rice cake.  This was really good and I'll definitely order it again.

 Coho Cafe in Redmond

Finally, we finished off with the GINGER CHICKEN LETTUCE WRAPS.  The dish features Wok seared ginger chicken, braised shiitake mushrooms & water chestnuts served with tender butter lettuce. This dish had a bit of a kick to it but very enjoyable nonetheless.

Overall, the meal was really enjoyable, and the presentation was very good.  It's like a high end family restaurant.  The service was also really good. After dealing with all those tables with screaming kids, I'm sure we were a vacation to them.  It was also a really good value as most dishes were WELL UNDER twenty dollars which should please a lot of family budgets and more value conscious diners. Definitely Stephen Fung DOT NET approved!

The ASUS Eee PC Lands in Canada

 

This past Thursday, ASUS launched their Eee PC in Canada.  I had a chance to check it out and it seems like it will be a very promising little toy.  They've kept it simple and the battery life and speed are very good for such a seemingly low powered machine.  Parked beside my ALREADY tiny ASUS U1F, you can see just how small it is.  You can check out my impressions of this cool little machine right here.

Contest Action at Futurelooks

 

Today marks the last day of our Week Three Giveaway sponsored by Thermaltake. This week we are giving away a MicroATX LanBox Case and a 650 Watt Modular Power Supply.  Don't forget to stop by on Monday when Futurelooks will be announcing another giveaway in our Eight Crazy Weeks of Giveaways.

Other Futurelooks Happenings... 

Things are getting pretty hectic with the contest and the product reviews and articles going up over at Futurelooks.  Q4 is our biggest time of the year so busting ass is the only thing on my mind.  I hope my next update is a little sooner than this one.

Like most of the other sites out there, we've been smacked by Google, but not as severely as some.  I've gone from a PR 5 to PR 4 on my sites (with the exception of Futurelooks, which went from 5 to 3, which I'll explain in a sec).  Allegedly, this has something to do with Google not liking sites selling paid links.  In fact, if you look in their webmaster tools, they even have a form that you can use to report sites that sell links.  Now, I do sell links using Text Link Ads on all my sites so I'm totally guilty, but what business does Google have telling me who to link to? I wonder what would happen if I reported myself.  Hmm...

Since Futurelooks is my largest property, the drop from 5 to 3 probably had less to do with me selling link ads, than it did with a problem that I had with my HTACCESS file.  The file essentially controls where people go when they type in one of your linked URL's out on the web.  For example, if you changed your stock URL structure from a numbered structure (example.com/id=100) to a more descriptive structure (example.com/this_article_is_cool.html), it would send people to the right article.  It also helps with redirecting old pages to the new pages when you've changed domain names, or have renamed pages.

For about a week after I changed over to my new design and backend, my HTACCESS file stopped working.  All of my old links from both of my old backends totally died, and as a result, my 60,000 or so indexed pages dropped to around 35,000 pages indexed.  All my High PR ranked pages disappeared and all this happened during the great "Google Smack Down".  The good news is that thanks to Tyler Ingram, who helped me correct the errors on the file, I'm now at 38,500 and climbing. Traffic is also surging ahead.

Well, that's it for now!  Hopefully, I'll be able to blog a bit more moving forward.  It's been really hard to fit it in, especially since I tend to enjoy my time away from the computer.

More Free Stuff To Be Given Away!

Futurelooks is on a roll, giving away Free Stuff every week for 8 weeks.  The contest for the Week Two Goodies was just announced this morning, and it's kinda weird to see people camping out at your site to get one of the first chances to win it. This week, the contest is sponsored by ANTEC and we'll be giving away a couple of power supplies and one of their awesome actively cooled MX-1 hard drive enclosures. There's even a bonus draw for those that sign up for the Futurelooks Newsletter.

As with last week's contest sponsored by NZXT, this week's contest will feature multiple ways to enter and win. This week, we're even giving our Facebook Group Members a chance to win.  Don't be one of the people that says "Damn, I wish I entered" or "Someday I'll do it".  Just do it! Do it now!