Category Archives: Life 2pt0

Google Buzz: G Buzz? Buzzy G? GB? GBH?

When I first herd about Google Buzz, Google’s latest offering (at the time of writing), I was v. excited to take it for a spin.  The first thing that popped into my head went something like this:

Finally!  Now I can access my Twitter and Facebook feeds at work without those meddling filters harshing my social media buzz!

But just a couple of days on, stuck at home the whole time due to the Snopocalypse (I just can’t get behind ‘Snomageddon’), well…, now I’m not so sure.  This rather middle-of-the-road reaction could be because it’s new and I just haven’t put in enough time to understand and appreciate what it can and cannot do.  The same can be said of Google Wave, but I’m still excited about that and fully recognize I have a lot to learn to really take advantage of it.

One notion that jumps to the fore comparing Wave and Buzz is the notion of privacy.  Buzz just showed up in Gmail, a very ‘private’ screen on one’s laptop, pulling in information on friends and raising my concerns about how much of my dull private life is all of a sudden being broadcast into the ether.  Do I really want the guys who’ll raze me mercilessly to know that I did a Google search for Nancy McKeon at 6:17 am because she was in my dream?  No, I don’t.  Luckily, none of them read this blog.  Wave, in contrast, occupies its own screen, in the manner of Google Calendar or Google Docs.  Sure, they’re all connected, but they don’t share the same screen real-estate unless you make it happen.

As a result, I’m debating whether or not to click the “turn off buzz” link at the bottom of my Gmail page, but if I do that, how will I learn what it can and cannot do, what it will and will not do?  I suppose I can read about other users’ experiences.  I guess what I’m trying to say is that my initial excitement about Buzz has turned to uncertainty and privacy concerns.

OK, true, that latter concern is rich considering how many Google products I already use!  Ha ha!  Privacy!  I’m funny…

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“Ok, ‘Jesus Phone’? Yeah, bit excessive, but the iPhone is…”

This morning I woke up about an hour and half before the alarms set on my iPhone were schedule to go off (at 06h45 and 07h00, as if you were wondering, which you probably weren’t, but anyway there it is). I expected to wake up before they went off, since I had climbed between the flannel  panels much earlier than usual, but, really, who cares? This is supposed to be about the iPhone, not the Curve’s nocturnal habits, so let’s move on, shall we? Aaaannnnd we’re walking…

As I was saying before some unctuously uncouth creature cut me off, I arose ‘ere the dawn’, and reached for (wait for it…, wait for it…) my iPhone *insert here MP3 of angelic aria or something by Lamb* It was still dark, but I knew I was up for the day, so I started it by finding out what the world had got up to whilst I lay ‘gently slumberin’. Having fired up the TUAW app because I wasn’t yet prepared to read the the hard news, I read through a few articles, including one by Chris Rawson I’d spotted yesterday: Buyer’s Guide: 33 things you don’t need if you have an iPhone.  What really caught my attention was a reminder that I had meant to download Stanza, like, forever ago.  Totally forgot.  Long story s., I clicked on the App Store icon, searched for and found the targeted app, installed it, fired it up, and grabbed some literary goodies from Project Gutenberg, which I was into BiP (‘Before the iPhone’).  Included in my morning’s cache were two books by my favorite author, P.G. Wodehouse.  Yes, I actually own the physical books, but this way I can have them with me at, basically, all times.  Wonderful.

This was all done laying in bed, surrounding by a darkened room, engulfed in the feeling of infinite time to kill.  That’s to say, peacefully.  Having done all this, my mind began to wander, pondering what I had just accomplished, and how during the BiP period, when a lesser smartphone was my trusted companion, I never  had the patience to do more than see what e-mails had arrived.  This started me thinking about the validity of Chris’ suggesting that the iPhone was, under certain circs., the appropriate replacement for not only one’s laptop, but also for the (over) exalted netbook.

Though I complain about the battery life in my 2G iPhone, among other things associated with it, I must say that it’s my own damn fault!  I use this device far more frequently for a much broader range of application than I have any other mobile device I’ve owned.  That includes my Dell Axiom and the Blackberry Pearl, both out of which I feel I got my money’s worth, mind you.  But the iPhone?  Oh ho ho! This is the device made real that I wanted the others to be. It’s my phone, my mobile source of news and information.  I wear it on my arm when I run, using it as my primary iPod now that it has usurped my 5G iPod, which now, like a technological spinster, rarely gets out of the house these days.  I play games on it, I follow the world’s comings and goings through a variety of apps (sorry Mr. Softie, you’re wrong about that too), and I use it to stay connected to my family and friends, to help me when I’m lost in the wilds of VA, to keep me on schedule, to be able to talk about the weather.  It makes life easier, or at least more convenient.  It’s proven to be a disruptive technology in the handset market, and could further disrupt the telecom industry, if done properly. I hope…

Plus, it’s got this super cool new music feature!

iPhone, T-Mobile and Sprint: A Telecommunication Ménage à Trois Waiting to Happen?

Step out of the box

Step out of the box

We all know someone, or “someone who knows someone” that wants an iPhone, but refuses to willingly get in bed with the telecom company currently enjoying a monogamous US relationship with said object of desire.  (Apparently this thing is shaking it down with someone new in every town.)

The upshot thus far has been successful attempts to get the iPhone to stray from its domestic partner, to “explore” unknown pleasures with “others”, if you will.  The Pwnage that has led to this telecommunication cuckoldry has not fully sated the desires of those who lust after the iPhone’s many 3G charms.  Instead, this wicked jealousy has given rise to plots and schemes that would spirit the iPhone from its cramped, loveless quarters with promises of adventure and full-on sexy times.

With that in mind, I came across a quote, but I cannot remember the source at this moment, and I’m too lazy to look it up, that suggested T-Mobile lease some of Sprint’s 3G 1900/2100 MHz spectrum to make the iPhone fully functional on its network.  If Sprint actually has 3G spectrum in that bandwidth, and this scheme could actually work, that would be absolutely wonderful! (I like T-Mobile.) This would enable Apple and T-Mobile to gain some important intelligence on the viability of officially running the iPhone on T-Mob’s network.  They could gauge the iPhone’s use on its network with full 3G capabilities enabled through an on-going examination of their own parameters, as well as “listening” to the blogsphere and the mainstream media (which would eventually get round to writing articles based on select blog posts).

Judging by the backlash against That Other Telecom Co. through searches on Google and Twitter, there is substantial dissatisfaction and pent-up demand in the U.S. for the world’s greatest daily-use electronic device.  And judging by the number of unlocked iPhones all ready in use on T-Mob’s network (and no, I don’t have any verifiable data, just a hunch), there are a lot of people in this country with telecommunication itches that are just not being scratched.

The time has come for the iPhone to find a new partner, maybe try an open relationship or just go balls-deep in a 3G telecommunications orgy and let every able-bodied carrier have a go…

Gmail adds Tasks AND SMS in Chat!!!!

Guilty!

“Yer h0nor, the jury has reached a verdict:  We the jury find Gmail Tasks Guilty of being like buttah!  We ask, if it please the court, that Gmail be punished with excessive use given its flagrant act of deliciousness by enabling SMS in GTalk during the same week it drops the long-awaited and much-anticipated incorpration of a ToDo list in its supa-fwine email client.”

Gmail: “I Can Haz Task? Yes!!!”

Done

Hipster PDA

Just a real quick, short note about a monumental discovery I made last night: Gmail now has an integrated Tasks list! Oh sweet joy!

The Obama Inauguration – Hottest Ticket In Town

No Tickets AvailableThis screen shot from Congresswoman Elanor Holmes Norton’s webpage tells the tale about the hottest ticket in DC – Inauguration Tickets.  Just a day after it was announced that the best way for schmucks to get Inauguration Tickets was to contact the Inauguration Committee or your congress person, and politely request to have your name added to the list of potential recipients, Congresswoman Norton’s office was absolutely swamped with requests.

The demand for the hottest ticket in town (which hasn’t even been released yet!) was so great that this is what I found when I pulled up Congresswoman Norton’s site:  “Inauguration Tickets Not Available.  Please do not call or email.”

DC is going to be filled to the brim for this Inauguration.  I’ve been here for a few events, including Clinton’s first inauguration and the Million Man March.  The whispered word going around town points to Obama’s first inauguration drawing a very large crowd indeed.  Judging by the listings on Craigslist for housing during Inauguration week, like this $10,000/week condo in Kalorama this should be some party!  With my house near U Street, maybe I should consider engaging in a little opportunisitc capitalism myself.  Things that make you go “Hmmm” indeed!

Bjork: Come to Me

Bjork’s Come to Me.  Yeah, I totes <3 her: