Here's how a typical discussion unrolls:
Bank: "To do X or Y, we require you to visit us in person or provide a written statement".
Me: "Here's my statement with a digital signature, attached as a PDF."
Bank (ignoring the PDF): "To do X or Y, we require you to visit us in person or provide a written statement".
Me: "The law says (specific citation goes here) that I have just provided a written and signed statement. Here it is again."
By the way, I had this kind of stupid back-and-forth with mBank, which tries to position itself as a "modern and innovative" bank.
The only next step is to sue, but who would bother.
When I was sworn in as an attorney, they had us sign a book in the courthouse as part of the ceremony. They said that sometimes people used a fancy signature since it was a special occasion, and explicitly told us not to do that since they would sometimes be asked to compare a purported signature to one in the book.
A letter from the UK to Australia costs £1.35, or £1.20 for "economy".
For every card, your handwriting is generated from scratch so it's unique every time and not a font like other services. And if you don't like how your writing looks, you can always use one from our selection.
We've got a Zapier integration which has been a game changer for us and clients as well.
Why is this not just
10 cards = $30
20 cards = $50
50 cards = $100
Shady business tactics.
I was about to mention that about a year ago I had this as an idea, but not something I was going to execute on - but it seemed like it would be a fun home project to attempt using a cheap plotter.
At the time, I googled to see if anyone had done this, and I had found an old art project that, iirc, used human writers to transcribe the letters, and they processed thousands over the course of a very limited run for the project.
So it seemed like a potential business idea that could have legs.
I hope it works out for you!
Would love it if there was an API integration, so that I could automate the delivery of handwritten cards. Do you have anything like in the works?
It's a dumb exception, but you guys might find it mildly amusing.
It lets you send letters, postcards, checks and faxes
Wound up having a decent number of users at some point, but then people started abusing the check sending features. We took it down and built some anti-fraud stuff, but never did anything to acquire users again. It does continue to work perfectly well though.
It's interesting that so many products like these exist in spaces that will probably never be huge and so there's no major VC funded player that may kill them all.
>All included at one low price - printing, postage and shipping. Only pay for what you send. Higher discounts at higher volume. As low as $1.50 per mail.
Feel free to drop us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have thoughts :)
Bill Atkinson, the storied early Apple engineer, has an app for this as well, but I have not used it and can't vouch for it. But it's worth noting that when Bill himself went to have his own photography book printed by a publisher, he made modifications to the printing equipment before he was satisfied with the quality. http://www.billatkinson.com/aboutPhotoCard.html
Most of our big customers were real estate agencies where it felt pretty spammy but the selling point was that people were more likely to open a personalised letter compared to an email. Some of our marketing focused on poking fun at people using franking machines!
I remember a more interesting customer that sent out parking violations to individuals. Along with the basic mail merge, the letters would include images of their vehicles parked where they shouldn't be.
The biggest problem we had was with consistent print quality. We sent batch files to be printed out by different printing companies but there would often be problems with things like alignment and image quality. Even though we had test letters sent to our office every day we'd always be stressed out when a new customer was coming on board and testing the service - they'd often receive a couple of dodgy letters!
In the end the company was absorbed by a larger IT business - I think they just wanted the developers. They wanted me to come work full time for them but I went back to University to finish off my degree and did some part-time remote work for them. Can't find any trace of the company online now.
The biggest annoyance is the horrible UX for entering recipient's address. I'd like to type the two lines on the envelope. Instead, I need to go through this form adding them as a contact, with fields for e.g. city and state. Most of my letters are one-offs, and it's a bunch of cut-and-paste work. Still beats doing my own mailing, though.
I usually get parcels delivered to amazon lockers or my office since I'm out all day.
This one is recommended usually. https://travelingmailbox.com/
You'd have to live in a decently sized city to get an address in your town though. You can definitely get one in your state. UPS also has mail services. They don't scan, but if you're wanting to protect your address, it's a good option. They run about 200 a year in LA so maybe 130 or so somewhere smaller?
Uh huh, and i bet the money in said "money bank" is not refundable, so really it is $5 minimum
I'm spitballing here, but ordering a single $1.54 letter would cost $0.30 + $0.03 in fees, $0.55 for the stamp, $0.03 for the envelope and maybe $0.25 for the labor, paper, ink, machine maintenance, overhead, etc. And that's before advertising and other costs.
So it seems pretty reasonable that they want to reduce that $0.30 fee, especially if a large number of people only order one card.
And in all honesty, if you're willing to avoid their service over worries of losing $3.46 in credit, you're probably not their ideal customer.
If you mail letters infrequently and/or don't own a printer, you're saving yourself the trouble of buying envelopes, buying postage, printing at Staples, etc.
But I bet the site could greatly improve its marketability by investing in a refresh of the site design.
A site that looks like it's designed in the 90s is probably highly attractive for many users. This "Mail A Letter Online" site, if compared to a 2019-looking snazzy SPA "smail.io" Bootstrap site and mobile app, probably wouldn't do as well for some audiences. But if their target demographic likes this style better, then this site is what they should be using.
Also, nothing prevents them from also starting up Photoshop and designing a snazzier sister site that's fulfilled through the same physical service.
That would personally be horrifying to me. Imagine, someone can make it look like you said _anything_.
She commented once that it took almost no time for the letter to get from the US to her. That's because, of course, I just uploaded the PDF for printing in the UK.
Cost to print a text file, attach a stamp, and put it in a box outside to await the first company's arrival: starting at $0.97, and $0.47 for each additional page.
Thanks! Mailaletter.com is great, and we (Mailform) are a competitor. There's a few others you could check out:
sendovernightmail.com (also owned by us btw)
They're all pretty different along cost, features, delivery speed, etc. Cheapest probably depends how you define it (mailaletter is one of the cheapest if you're sending a single letter, click2mail is probably the cheapest if you're sending multiple, etc)
here to help, email@example.com :)
I have the sudden urge to send a telegram and have it delivered by bicycle messenger.
I am very clearly not the intended customer and appreciate that they're willing to take my business anyway.
I also used them for holiday cards two years back, which was
* Fantastic -- super straightforward to write up a small script to call their API and send 1 card to each person on our holiday-card list
* A little weird -- sending 70 holiday cards involved instructing their API to download an identical .pdf holiday card template from a remote server where I hosted that one file 70 times
* Cheap -- they printed and mailed glossy postcards at a very affordable price
* Ever so slightly disappointing -- we got to see maybe 10 of the actual mailed postcards from this run (on family's fridges, in the test copy we sent ourselves, and in the 3 or 4 postcards that we thought were addressed correctly but which were returned to us with an invalid address) and every single one of them had the same printing defect, what looked like a big scuff across a photo. Not sure what the deal was or why it was so consistent on every image. We didn't write in to support because I am pretty sure we are not the target audience.
Great service, A+, huge time saver vs. manually writing so many addresses, still a big fan.
The scuff marks that you saw in your mail are most likely due to belt rollers in the USPS sorting facilities. We've tried a lot of different combinations of paper, ink and protective coatings to minimize the chance of mail pieces being damaged but we haven't found a combination that 100% removes the chance of damage during the USPS sorting process.
Throughout the mailing lifecycle a piece of mail will go through several sorting facilities. Each facility has similar sorting machines but they might be in different conditions. There's a chance that a certain sorting facility has machines with more worn out rollers that cause higher damage rates than others. This would manifest in mail pieces going to a certain zip code experiencing higher damage rates. For mail that is returned to the sender it has to go through even more sorting facilities (both when being delivered and back) that causes an even higher damage rate.
Here's a video showing you the type of sorting machines each mail piece goes through: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gB7QOK1bd3U
It runs on Lob, pretty much at cost (I don't really make money off of it, but it also doesn't cost me much money either).
That's a major concern. It's 2019, (almost) everything needs to be https.
Also there is https on the more sensitive parts of the site (login etc).
This is one of the silliest arguments that comes up every time "SSL All The Things!" is discussed. The "you" in your story has to be both a Bad Guy and your ISP, and needs to come up with a way to sabotage a site that shows you cat pictures in such a way that it shows malicious cat pictures that somehow do anybody any harm.
So yeah, please MITM this site for us real quick so we can see all the Bad Stuff you're talking about.
The attitude of "it's cool, only use SSL for the sensitive parts" hasn't been true for a decade.
I don't disagree that it is possible to mess with http traffic in flight if it's not encrypted. I do disagree that a) there are bad guys between me and the http://catpictures.com right now and b) They have targeted me with malicious cat pictures that will cause damage somehow.
My sites that allow logins are all https only. My "cat picture" site is not. Because it doesn't need https.
And yes, the point of MITM is that there has to be a malicious actor in the middle. This is mainly a threat when using public WiFi, like at an airport or a coffee shop. It's absolutely trivial for some bored individual to run SSLstrip for funsies and distribute malware through any HTTP connections.
To those wondering how they might protect themselves from these sorts of attacks when using non-SSL sites on public WiFi, this is where a VPN comes in handy. All of your connections will be encrypted and no longer vulnerable to MITM attacks.
True, an attacker needs to find some other link between the terminus of your VPN and the target site to MITM, and true, those links are orders of magnitude harder to compromise usually.
But a VPN is not magic pixie dust that you sprinkle on your laptop and now you don't have to worry about security anymore.
Sure, it's technically possible for someone to pull off a MITM attack on someone using a VPN; perhaps there's an attack vector before they establish their VPN connection, or they've compromised the server running the VPN service, etc.
But that's probably only a threat to government agents and Snowden, whom have real fears of targeted attacks like that. For the layman, VPN pretty much is a magic pixie dust that will let you browse unencrypted websites with confidence that the pages won't be modified, and your form submissions won't be sniffable on your public network.
Of course, it won't protect you from sites that already have malware on them.
I don't know how one can disagree with something that can't be known one way or the other.
Security features/processes are there to account for the small possibility that an attack is attempted. They don't become useless simply because attacks aren't happening 100% of the time. For example: your door lock (deadbolt) is locked even when there isn't someone actively trying to break into your house.
In your particular example, sitting between A and B doesn't always mean sniffing packets you send from A to B as a "passive listener". It could simply be that the attacker has fed you his/her rogue IP via DNS and you are connecting to his server that is pretending to be B.
At that point yes the attacker is sitting between A and B, but it's not like s/he is sitting on a router sniffing your packets. S/he does not have to be a malicious player near the target server, or part of the infrastructure that you use to get to B. S/he can be somewhere completely remote.
The message we need to send is that Internet traffic is private and encrypted by default. You don't "turn on" encryption only when you're doing something which needs to be hidden any more than you only use envelopes when you're mailing something which needs to be hidden.
Your letters to grandma are in envelopes, not because your correspondence with her is "interesting" in any real sense, but because letters in envelopes are the default. It's a social expectation, in other words, and we need to import that expectation to the Internet to the greatest extent possible, because the Internet is the new mail system, information hub, and everything else.
Plus, I really don't want to give my ISP any foothold to insert advertising.
If you really don’t believe this stuff happens, I’d suggest connecting to one of the many public wifi offerings in las vegas during Defcon.