Yeah, not much of a blogger these days. The thing is, I now have actual *work* to do, which I find immensely satisfying and interesting. Plus, the couple times I’ve tried to upload something quick from work, there’s some weird thing in the Microsoft network that makes my entire post come up completely blank. At least I’m choosing to blame the network, it might be IE7, Vista, or, admittedly, PEBKAC. So far I haven’t been motivated to take the time to find out.
So what’s going on in VA land? Not much worth commenting on, I suppose. I have only a few real musings lately, but they are as such:
-I wish Google had website and email hosting like Yahoo does. I hate my Yahoo small business account and everything about their business practices, but it’s an easy interface that’s accessible from anywhere, so I haven’t ever bothered upgrading. But my small business account (which I access through a link in my regular Yahoo email account) has compatibility issues with Mobile Web 2.0, so I can’t check my email via my otherwise Internet-savvy Chocolate phone. (By the way, though, don’t go buying the Chocolate, this is NOT the only drawback). I’m sure Google would do a better job, for cheaper, with an even better interface and fewer tech glitches/”Server Temporarily Down” messages and whatnot. I can’t even upload files bigger than about 500k, I think, using Yahoo’s interface, so no MP3s, even though I’m paying for enough storage space to hold that sort of thing. Fucking Yahoo.
-I wish the LG Chocolate didn’t suck. In order to run it through my car stereo, I have to use a combo of THREE adapters – one to convert the Chocolate’s weird adapter port to a normal phone headset sized plugin, one to convert that to a normal headphone-size plugin, and a normal headphone-sized cord that runs from that into my car’s auxiliary device port. (Note: I could have paid some $300-$400 to have Scion install iPod compatibility directly with my car stereo, but since I have a Chocolate as my MP3 player and not an actual iPod, it didn’t seem worthwhile). So this multi-adapter thing wouldn’t be a big deal, except for a couple fatal problems. One: the Chocolate’s music interface is so sucky, hard to control, tiny-fonted, that I would nearly cause an accident every time I tried to adjust anything musically, were I to do so, but I don’t, so if I don’t like hearing an album straight through I’m pretty much screwed. Two: the volume, after all these adapterings, is paltry at best even with both devices turned all the way up, and then of course that leads to the sitcom-esque experience of forgetting that I’ve cranked it when I switch to playing a CD or the radio, and subsequently blasting out my eardrums when I first turn on the stereo. And the kicker, Three: It only plays out one side of my car’s speakers. I finally figured out that that issue is probably because the initial phone-handset adapter is designed to work with a one-ear handset device, so it’s not wired to accommodate two sets of speakers. MOTHERFUCKER. Of COURSE Verizon does not offer any such product to remedy this, and I don’t know enough about how to even describe the problem concisely to find a third-party vendor to sell me such a device, and pay double in shipping and handling what the device is actually worth, were it to work properly, all the while having no guarantee that that will be the ultimate outcome.
-Also, I wish the following existed: an adapter that would rig my stereo speakers (which use that typical red-black-bare-wires hookup) up to my laptop’s headphone port. Last night I was drunkenly bitching about this to a tech-savvy buddy who insisted that such a device does in fact exist. I believe him, as I think intuitively such a device would have been invented by now. But my beef: WHY CAN’T I FIND ONE? Not at Radio Shack, not at Circuit City, not at CompUSA, not at Best Buy. WHERE ELSE DO I HAVE TO GO? Or all the morons who work at those stores just incapable of understanding what I mean? Or incapable of memorizing, or unwilling to memorize, the entire store’s stock? Side rant: Why am I incapable of remembering the stylistic rule about which verb form to agree with – memorizing or memorize – so I have to rework the clause to include both? How did I possibly do so well on the GRE Verbal section? And back to my original rant: Or is it just that I’m not clear or articulate enough to accurately convey what I need? And if that’s the case, why don’t they just say so?
Goddammit. And I realized, I’m not even done ranting, because some more annoying things happened. COMPUSA = SUCK CITY. I heard from an ex-employee of theirs that they were closing something like 70% of their stores, so I decided to take my laptop in to get them to make good on the $200 extra service pack I foolishly purchased when I bought my laptop, since I had no good tech-savvy guide at the time. It seemed prudent. Turns out they a) pretty much guarantee that they’ll wipe my hard drive BY DEFAULT JUST IN CASE that’s where the problem is, even though I know enough to clearly point them to exactly where the ACTUAL problem is. Turns out they also will likely wipe the entire hard drive when doing a simple RAM install if I ask them to install it, because they figure things on the hard drive JUST MIGHT be the cause of why things are running slow, and not that I’m trying to run a program that requires at least 512 RAM using the factory 384 RAM in the machine. Even when I specifically pay for both the RAM and the install, they still say it’s “LIKELY” they will wipe the 60G hard drive JUST IN CASE. So, okay, I’ll install my own RAM, fuckers. But they could I please get the new battery promised in the plan? No, even though we battled shitty traffic on a busy Sunday with an accident to get down to Southcenter during some kind of hellish mall promo thing JUST TO GET THE LAPTOP TAKEN CARE OF, and it turns out ALL I WANT is a NEW BATTERY as STIPULATED IN MY PLAN THAT I PURCHASED FOR TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS, and even though there is one SITTING ON A SHELF BEHIND THOSE EMPLOYEES ONLY DOORS, their computer system was down so they couldn’t enter my INVOICE NUMBER to make such a transaction official. THEIR COMPUTER SYSTEM WAS DOWN. At COMP USA. Okay, I’m making my own head hurt. Fucking fuckity fuck fuck – oh, maybe that’s what I’ll do on my lunch break toa…. no, because I left my laptop at Grant’s place so he could help me install my own RAM later, since that’s the only way to NOT DELETE THE ENTIRE HARD DRIVE AS A PRECAUTIONARY MEASURE. Seriously, I think I know more about computers than these guys do, and I talk to my monitor when things are running slowly to reassure it. I mean SERIOUSLY.
So I guess the overarching theme of this blog post is, WHY DON’T THINGS JUST WORK BETTER? I mean, there are just so many reasons why they should, and yet…. not so much. It drives me crazy. All I can really do, I guess, is take one of the few good improvement ideas I have and run with it. And I am in fact planning on doing this, but for now, back to Catalan linguistics and technological frustration. Feel free to let me know if you know of any brilliant solutions to my whiny tech problems, or if you just want to weigh in. I feel like the most delinquent blogger in the world these days, but hey, I may be back soon, we’ll see. Once Grant and I move in to our new place, I’ll probably move from whining about crappy adapter cables to whining about crappy kitchen layouts and cabinet hardware and water pressure. Oh, but that reminds me – if anyone has a nice condo, etc. to rent out on Capitol Hill starting June/July, let me know!