iPhone thoughts

Vicki made an off-hand comment to me the other day to say that according to AT&T I’ve fullfilled the contract I signed when I got my Treo and I’m eligible to get another phone if I sign up for another 2 year contract. Of course, my first thought was “iPhone!” My second thought was that this was a rather cruel thing to tell me when we’re officially in the blackout period when I’m not allowed to buy anything for myself for fear that I’ve made Vicki’s Christmas shopping harder.

I guess the question for today is “Would I want an iPhone even if I could buy one?” And I’m not 100% sure the answer is yes. Buying the Treo was a no-brainer: it could do absolutely everything my existing phone could do, and everything my existing Palm Tungsten E could do, which meant I could reduce my gadget load. It also tempted me to add data to my cell phone plan and so now I use it for email and for mild web browsing (ostensibly for checking weather while away from base, but used more often for checking my friend’s page while in boring meetings). If I could do everything I do with an iPhone that I do with my Treo and my iPod, again it would be a no-brainer. But that’s where it gets difficult. So let’s look at it piece by piece.
Continue reading iPhone thoughts

I just don’t understand how people’s minds work

I got an email this morning to my waypoint generator email address asking where the person could get “waypoints for eastern Canada”. I asked if there was some specific problem with the waypoints that my generator provided? He responded that he couldn’t seem to get them to work with this list of three or four programs that he’d tried. I had never heard of them, so I looked up the ones I could find, and none of them said anything about supporting any data format that I provide in my waypoint generator (although one was listed as supporting GPX on the page that lists programs known to support GPX). I got the name of the data file that he’d produced from him and looked it up in the logs, and it appears that he’d generated a CoPilot file, a GPX file, and an AeroCalc file.

So it appears he was just trying random combinations of file formats and programs to see if he could magically find a combination that went together. I asked if that was what he was doing, and suggested he find a program that does what he wants and find what sort of data files it takes, he said that he was a pilot and a photographer, not a database expert.

I tried to explain that was like trying to open an Excel file in Photoshop, but I don’t think it’s getting through.

I guess I’ll never understand how people’s minds work. And I’m not entirely unhappy about that.

I need sleep

Last night I managed to lie down a bit between 1:30 and 2:30, and then from about 3:45 to 9:30, and I probably slept most of both those times. The rest of the time I was pacing around, sitting on the toilet, or doubled over in pain. I just could not get comfortable. The pain was low in my guts. I don’t think I over-ate or anything, so I don’t know what the problem is. But I can feel it coming back.

Some Of My Favourite (Steampunk) Things

Brian Scearce wrote this on a mailing list I’m on. It’s too good not to share.

To the tune of “My Favourite Things” from “The Sound Of Music”:

Steam-run computers with shiny brass fittings
Read-only memory: Jacquard-type pittings
Ethernet using just tin cans and string
These are a few of my favorite things!

LCDs lit up with shuttered white candles
Objects with actual ivory handles
Striking a bell for the part that goes “ping”
These are a few of my favorite things!

Is this a scam, or is Make Magazine a bunch of scumbags?

Today I got three identical notices saying that my “recent order/payment” for Make Magazine couldn’t be “completed because the credit card you supplied was not accepted by the credit card company”. Only one problem with that – I decided some time ago not to renew because I never read it. Well, if their business practice is to fraudulently charge credit cards, I’m pretty glad I didn’t renew. Fuckers.

Maybe it isn’t them. The customer support email is customerservice@espcomp.com, which is not an address that I immediately associate with the magazine. On the other hand, they did have a the credit card number of an old card, the one I probably did use for that subscription.

I wonder if the Attorney General’s Office is interested in fraudulent credit card charges?