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X10 problems...

1. If you want to buy yourself long hours of techno frustration,
troubleshooting and 30 year old, increasingly obscelescent technology,
then you should consider buying X10 products.

2. One simple purchase or inquiry with X10.com will get you a ongoing
barrage of "email sale offers" that will clog your inbox, and prove
difficult to stop.

3. A common joke among insiders at the company is the frequent
malfunctioning of equipment during staff product familiarization

4. The so called "urgent sales" at X10.com are clearly constant
rehashes of the
same offers over and over again. In fact, there has been a trend in the
last few months to remove components and features from the kits they
offer while slowly increasing the price. Look carefully at the
advertising they do. Why do you think they stopped showing the
components that come with the kits a few months back? So you wouldn't
know you were getting less than ever for you money! If you must
purchase an X10 product, you would serve yourself much better just
waiting until they realize nobody is going to buy their product at such
prices and they are forced to adjust what they charge (in the meantime,
you can always pick up stuff on ebay at bargain rates from when they
were still selling at very low prices (during their "so called"

5. After being penalized for swindling two young inventors from
California out of their ideas, and being ordered by a Califormia court
to  pay for this behaviour, X10 appears to have quickly declared
bankruptcy to avoid
paying for what they had done.
(http://news.com.com/2100-1014-5095260.html)  Insiders tell me that, lo
and behold, now that they have successfully shirked the penalty (and
responsibility to all of their creditors) they have emerged from
bankruptcy and are miraculously turning a profit again. The sleaze
factor is high at this company. Do you really want to trade with these

6. what's the hurry? In spite of the frenzy of their online advertising
- the sales never go away. All of their stuff is always available.
Their advertising strategy is clearly of the "impulse buy" sort. But
the simple fact of the matter is: THERE IS NO URGENCY. Do you want to
be manipulated that easily? Stop and think about what you're getting
yourself into.

7. Read through the hype. What are you actually getting when you buy
from them? Cheap plastic cameras with crummy resolution.
"Motion-sensors" that are in fact "heat sensors", which means that
under extreme temperature  conditions (say, for instance, the dead of
winter, or the dog days of summer) the reliability of these vital
components is suspect, at best.

8. "Wireless" technology that needs to be plugged in (????) They call
their products "wireless" because the cameras are not
connected directly to the monitors. Signals are "transmitted" through a
buggy sytem of home electrical wiring and old timey remote control
Believe me, you'll be tangled up in just as many wires as with any
other electrical appliance you own.

9. Futuristic Home Automation? If you consider turning on a light
with a remote control "futuristic", then have at it! The "advanced"
features of their vaunted Home Automation Software (ActiveHome) amounts
to little more than turning on more than one light at a time via remote
control (or buggy motion sensor, or clunky macro). Whoopie.

10. Constant battery changing: Have fun traipsing from one motion
sensor to the next on a regular basis changing out the batteries!

Bonus item #11: Perverts beware! X10 first rose to web fame a few years
ago with ubiquitous pop-up ads that seemed to promise to capability of
spying on scantily clad women. Ummm. How's that? If you like looking at
girls on blurry monitors with a camera you've somehow managed to
into their rooms to plug in, then maybe that offer makes sense.
Otherwise, find some other way to get your kicks!

In all seriousness. Do yourself a favor and ask whether you really need
to buy yourself an expensive box of frustration. If you want a fun
project, buy yourself a Heath Kit instead.

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