Cathartic rant about my disappointment with eNom.

I’ve been using to register domains for over 10 years, it’s always been easy to use and inexpensive.

On Wednesday I let a domain expire that I had registered on behalf of a friend. It was my mistake. I’ve owned thousands of domains and normally when this happens there’s a grace period where you can renew the domain for the normal price. In the most recent case my domain was a domain and the policy was different. When this domain reached its expiry it disappeared from my account immediately and was unrenewable, and would not be released to the domain pool for 90 days. It appears this is eNom’s policy, even though it’s understood as part of the .NZ policy that there should be a period where you can reactivate this domain name (point 14).

I went through eNom’s support and discovered the use a third-party Key-Systems to handle their .nz registrations and that there was nothing they could do. I contacted Key-Systems who contradicted eNom and said that the domain could be reactivated within their interface. When I put this to eNom they decided they could recover the domain for me at the cost of $250. I asked whether I could transfer the domain, an option that should’ve been open to me, as stated in the .NZ policy, “The domain name is also able to be transferred to a new registrar and be reinstated by the gaining registrar.” To do this I require what’s called a UDAI key (, which the policy says must be provided. eNom refuse to do this.

I realise .nz domains are probably not a significant part of eNom’s business, and they probably don’t allocate resources so that holder of .nz domains have a good experience with their company.

From my perspective this has soured my 10 years with them, and I will actively look to move my remaining domains. Just for catharsis I’ll probably file a formal complaint.

19. October 2012 by Richard
Categories: domains | 2 comments

Roboto is Helvetica, except it sucks.

I’ve become interested in typography in the last year, I’ve been trying to learn more about it, but I just-don’t-get-it, the typographic mess on this blog can convict me of this.

When Google released Ice Cream Sandwich they touted the design and the new system font Roboto. Google described the font as  “modern, yet approachable” and “emotional“.   My initial feeling was that it looked fairly solid, I was interested to see what others thought. The verdict came pretty quickly, “oh it’s a Helevtica rip-off” and they pointed to some  evidence that this is indeed the case. Helvetica is a widely loved font, so to be compared so closely surely must mean from an aesthetic perspective it’s a fairly solid font.

Then a day or so later, Roboto is hated on.  Really?  but it’s so much like Helvetica? help! I want to understand. I could imagine a font that’s homely, ungainly and unharmonious, but I don’t see them in Roboto.  I also don’t see what’s emotional or approachable about it. Helvetica is described as beautiful. The use of vague adjectives from Google and its critics seems to hide an inability to point to what’s really good or bad about a font. This makes the field quite inaccessible.  It all reads to me like a subjective projection of feeling about the phones themselves, rather than the actual font, especially if you’re judging Roboto before you’ve held a device it was designed for in your hands.



16. November 2011 by Richard
Categories: tech | 1 comment

Ivan Lendl versus John McEnroe, Paris 2010.

I’ve been playing tennis for a couple of years, but I’d never watched it live, so I was quite excited when I saw that John McEnroe would be playing Ivan Lendl in an exhibition match while I was in Paris. They had an amazing rivalry as professionals so it was cool to see them play, even if the heat had been turned down a little after all the years.

It did make me think about the way professional tennis is currently set up, which is a season that is dominated by tournaments and in particular the four major tournaments. It seems that once players hit 30, the toll on their body is too much, many retire, or play on and don’t win as many tournaments. I was thinking it’d be could be quite lucrative and worthwhile to the sport if they had a parallel “Undisputed World Champion of the World”. Say for example that Nadal is the champ, wouldn’t it be great if he had to play Federer (or whoever is number 2 at the time) to retain the title once a year, and could accept other challengers. It’s plausible that in a few years Nadal and more likely Federer might not want to endure a busy schedule of tournaments but would be willing to play in something like this. This could keep them in the game a few extra years.

13. October 2010 by Richard
Categories: tennis | Leave a comment

Paris Protest.

The French are legendary at their ability to turn out to protest. The occasion this time was Sarzoky’s proposal to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62 for many occupations. Now, to many people this would not seem like an unreasonable proposal given the severity of economic conditions, and the fact that 60 is relatively young retirement age compared to their European neighbours. However, in France this an affront to everything good and decent. To be fair I think the protest was about more than the headline reason, and is part of a general dissatisfaction about the workers being forced to sacrifice in response to the excesses of the fatcat bankers.

Anyway, who cares what it was really about. I just wanted to see it first hand, so I went and took a look. The chanting wasn’t too bad, although I didn’t understand it, I’ll give it a 7/10, and I liked the flare it gave a sense of danger, to what otherwise had an atmosphere of a street party. There were free sausages if you were socialist enough, which was a thoughtful touch. There were hundreds of police around but they were all busy hiding down side streets away from the main protest, mostly with their feet up in riot gear smoking.

13. October 2010 by Richard
Categories: politics | Leave a comment

Wolf Parade in Paris.

Wolf Parade have been one of my favourite bands over the last couple of years, and I was lucky to see them a couple weeks ago.   They play guitar heavy rock music, that feels like rock music of old, without sounding dated and boring because of it.   I saw them at Point Ephémère in Paris, which seemed basically like a bar venue with perhaps a crowd of ~150, which was much smaller than I expected, seeing as I think they can sellout 2000+ capacity venues in the U.S.

Anyway I fought off jetlag to go and see them, and was very happy I did. Here’s a clip I recorded of their song Kissing the Beehive, which was their final encore.

13. October 2010 by Richard
Categories: music | Leave a comment