Technology Sucks

post type iconSep 12, 2017 - 1500 Words -
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Technology today is flat-out amazing. When I was a kid, walking uphill through the snow to get to school, cordless phones were massive (and amplitude modulated near the broadcast band), and video recorders had wired remotes. If you could quantify it, I’d venture that today’s capabilities are 3 or 4 orders of magnitude above what we had 30 years ago. And at some point, almost without exception, I’ve hated every piece of technology I own.


post type iconAug 24, 2017 - 3900 Words -
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Scene: February, 1979. My fifth grade classroom. A large-for-the-time 17" or so black-and-white TV (the kind with a faint greenish tinge) sits on a cart. Everyone watching a total solar eclipse happening live in the Pacific Northwest. I don’t remember the mood in the room, but I suspect it was a mix of breathless, half-bored, and “meh.” I do remember, very clearly, learning that the next one was in 2017 and thinking how far away that seemed.

Why I hate voting.

post type iconNov 4, 2014 - 800 Words -
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I just voted, even though pundits and statisticians have proven fairly definitively that my particular vote won’t matter. My district has had a Republican congressman for 30 years and his hand-picked heir is likely to win, and I don’t live in one of the 6 states all the news organizations tell me will decide control of the Senate. I voted because it’s the right thing to do, and because if I don’t vote, I lose the moral right to complain about the idiots in power (and anyone who knows me knows I love to complain.

Memory Pressure, Capacity Limits, and Ubiquitous Computing

post type iconJun 2, 2014 - 900 Words -
One of the things I was most looking forward to with my new iPhone 5S was faster switching between applications. It seemed like my 4S always took 5-10 seconds to toggle between two programs, even simple apps. Jumping from Angry Birds to YouTube (to see what I’m doing wrong) and back again was agonizing. Unfortunately, though the 5S is significantly faster, switching has in some ways become worse. The slowest reloads are faster, but I feel like I need full reloads more frequently.

iOS Backups are Still Broken

post type iconMay 19, 2014 - 500 Words -
A quick take on some of the many issues backing up large, complicated iOS configurations to iCloud backup. Apple needs to make some hefty changes to iCloud. It needs to allow you to backup and take advantage of the full size of your iPad (128GB max) inexpensively. In my case, since most of my data is strung between four cloud services (OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, and iCloud), I didn’t need to back it all up.