Wednesday, April 14, 2010

I cracked the Apple system

You can tell by the colours that this is a cat from Tuscany.

It is still raining and I have had enough. It is supposed to be Spring with birds and buds and warm weather and stuff. I checked the Ducks yesterday and they are not happy. I haven’t been on my bike ride for weeks. I want sunshine – NOW!

I love iTunes and my iPods and iPhone but the one thing that drives me crazy about Apple is that they practice price and product discrimination in various countries. Tunes are more expensive in Australia and Austria than they are in the USA and there are many tunes and other products available in the USA that are not available in Austria.

Another significant problem for me is that in Austria the site is (of course) in German and I have access only to books in German – and all the App descriptions and comments are in German. I can translate these but it is tedious beyond belief and I have other fish to fry.

You cannot overcome this problem from Austria or Australia by opening an account with the US iTunes store because to do so you need a US address and a US Credit Card – or so I thought until Tuesday.

I was ferreting about in the Austrian iTunes store and got totally pissed off by it. I thought to myself ‘there has to be a way to do this – I know – I will search the Internet’. Ta Dah!

The solution was provided by Marc Forrest

It was a little harder than I thought it would be as I could not get a confirmatory email sent to me with the first account I opened so had another go. This did not arrive either so I thought I would need a Proxy Server to disguise my IP Address (those Apple people are cunning devils) so I signed up for a trial period with Identity Cloaker – but just as I had done this my confirmation arrived - and I now have a US iTunes Account.

It is not in my name of course but it gives me access to all the US products – at US prices – and I can use this with gift vouchers I can buy online. I imagine to download stuff I will have to use the Proxy Server as otherwise I will get sprung - but this is not very expensive.

The Proxy Server solution is the same one that most people will use to circumvent Internet censorship in Australia when they start to extend it to cover all those quite legitimate things that the government would prefer its citizens not to see – like euthanasia and atheism and YouTube (shudder).

I have used my brother-in-law’s US address so that at least if there is a problem the FBI will have someone to arrest and incarcerate. This always makes them feel better and will give Steve Jobs a warm glow.

This morning Rozalin telephoned me to tell me that the people in the apartment underneath ours had complained to the building people that there was water leaking into their apartment from above them – and we were the most likely suspects. I could not see any signs of this so the building people sent a man - who appeared in the afternoon.

He knew exactly where to look but could not find anything so he asked me if he could cut a hole in the wall. I said sure – why not – so he did.

This confirmed that there was no leak and after we had extracted Sissi from inside the wall he was able to put it back together again – after a fashion – with Gaffer Tape (what else). He said it must be in another apartment so is scouring the building cutting holes in walls.

The patched hole will remain the way it is for some time – probably years – so I will put a frame around it and say that it is modern art. It doesn't matter to someone who has had cardboard in their air conditioners for more than a year.


  1. I salute you for a) posting cat pictures without having your sexuality called into question, and b) actually paying for downloads. True retro, maan.

  2. The hole in the wall story is very entertaining. Congrats re apple satisfaction, and yes, that is one fancy cat. I wish I could wax a little more lyrical but we are in mourning here tonight. Shorty the turtle is dead, all very sad xo

  3. Matthew, my dear, cats are pure sex, regardless of gender. Dogs are...just dogs.