Monday, January 04, 2010

Sing Me A Song I'm The Gadget Man


I have always been a bit of a gadget man. I can read of an electronic gadget about to be launched and the salivation process starts. I will research it, track it down, look at it, think about it, and then, eventually - as sure as pods are i-pods - I will buy it. I had a Psion when Psions were red-hot. I had a Palm when most people thought they were a kind of topical tree. My first digital camera was so rare that there was only one shop in England selling them. I have a collection of decommissioned MP3 players which, if laid end to end, would be almost as long as the groove on an old 78 rpm record. (Because I am the kind of person who will no doubt get distracted on my way to my own funeral and because Wikipedia did not seem to know what the total length of the groove of a 78 rpm record would be, I have just calculated and it works out, on average, at a needle short of 500 feet!).

I must confess I have been rather late in the day at jumping on the i-touch bandwagon. Like all good gadget people, I tend to get upset if I am not amongst the first wave to acquire a particular gadget. I think of reasons why I did not launch the bandwagon and stick to my principles with a concrete-like rigidity. When my Spanish relatives Jamie and Bev got i-touches a couple of years ago, I wrote them off as nothing more than toys (the i-touches, not J and B I hasten to add). When my Chess Buddy Martin got one I quickly concluded that it was the kind of thing a bishop-sliding, shoot-em-up chess player would own. When The Lad got one for his birthday I have to confess that I had a little prod and poke under the guise of "setting it up". By the time my Cruise Buddy Harry got one  and my Blog Buddy John told me about his I had reached a state of nervous collapse. With all the pent-up eagerness of a reformed teetotaler crossing the threshold of the Horse and Jockey for the first time, I begged the GLW to intercede with Santa Claus and see if one could be acquired for Christmas.

Santa was - as ever - kind. He pretended never to have heard my denunciation of the shiny-backed, over-priced toy calculator. He turned a snow filled ear to my oft-proclaimed declaration never to give house-room to anything made by Apple-Mac. And he delivered a wonderful, new, clever, imaginative, well-designed ipod-touch on Christmas morning. And I have to confess that I am very impressed with it. When a new gadget is actually acquired I tend to lose interest in it after a few days, but my enthusiasm for the i-touch and its family of little apps goes from strength to strength. I have apps which allow me to access newspapers throughout the world, apps that tell me what is worth watching on television and apps that tell me where to find a decent pint of real ale.

The only two shortcomings I have discovered so far are that it loses its potency when it is out of wi-fi range and it prevents me from being able to hear my mobile phone ring because I am listening to my record collection all the time. Now, of course, both these problems would disappear if I were to upgrade to an i-phone. A shiny new, technologically advanced, sleek and sumptuous i-phone. Sorry, I will have to end the post now - I need to look something up on Google.

28 comments:

  1. And while you're looking Alan, you can visit here. Of course, this is the English/American link...happy hunting ;)

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  2. I am so not a techie kinda girl.

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  3. My husband has the i-phone, the 32 gig one. He thinks it's the most wonderful thing since nothing, because it's the best thing ever. Does that help?!

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  4. > Thanks for the link Subby, I will follow up on it.
    > Not a Techie Girl Willow! Nonsense. I always imagined you timing your pasties with a digital kitchen timer, finding the right word for your fabulous poems with a digital dictionary. Are all my illusions destined to be shattered?
    > Yes it does help Tina (and thanks for the advice you gave me over at Writers Talk.

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  5. Oh dear, I don't even know the difference between an ipod touch and an iphone! But I do know that I love my iMac - have you got one of those yet?

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  6. I think Santa must have got our addressed mixed up because I ended up with a couple of old MP3 players in my stocking...

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  7. Might want to wait a couple months... the Droid phones seem to be giving Apple a run for its money. ;)

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  8. Before I get a new gadget, Alan, I will be sure to consult you about all its faults and good points.

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  9. Alan, glad the Christmas stocking came through on the day. I have to admit I have been slower on the techie curve with gadgets; my Palm Tungsten is still in use, even though I have the iTouch; I religiously keep a paper diary "just in case", and I was very slow into digital cameras. However, like you I love the iTouch. Just been listening to some lectures from Stanford on Colonial America downloaded from iTunes U.

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  10. Enjoy it! I can sense the i-phone looming on the horizon.

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  11. My husband is with you. He loves techie gadgets. Me? I'm good if I can stand near a computer and it not go on the blitz. Funny, considering I answer phones for a tech support company. Then again, there are many reasons why I only answer the phones...

    Happy Monday!
    Jen

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  12. Did anyone ever call 'apps' 'applications' or did we go straight to the abbreviation? Did I miss a transition from one to the other? These things happen so quickly these days (or perhaps I am just old ...) Enjoy your new toy. Sounds great.

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  13. I am holding out because I am not around one. If you had said much more, I would have had to drive south to the mall and look them over. I am the same way with flat screen tv right now. I will cave all at once as soon as they quit being a fad. Of course they are a part of the future, and I am just fooling myself. Have fun. I suppose you will be blogging less, or more, depending on how much new things that you have learned from your new, beautifully colored device. Beam me up Scottie be for I have to buy one.

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  14. I used to be much more of a gadget man than I am today. Sometimes I still get to the point where I'm reading reviews and twisting this way and that over whether to buy or not to buy. The i-touch is tempting, but Scrooge has the better of me now and I tend to run my disintegrating gadgets until the buttons fall off.

    Have fun!

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  15. Alan! Wash your mouth out. I am an Apple Mac advocate! I love my iMac and MacPro and iPod but haven't felt the need for an iTouch since the iPhone. It appears to do everything but make a cup of tea in the morning. I just wish they'd make an iPod with a radio . . .

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  16. You're doing better with yours than I am with mine. Did you notice the lack of instructions?

    Haven't figured out how to get online except for email.

    I'm waiting for a teenager to come over and set me up...

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  17. OH, I'm so glad you got that instead of a lump of coal! LOL!

    The Mister is still loving his Kindle, so you can start the salivating all over again...after you get that I-phone. :) (which my Taylor has and loves, btw!)

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  18. Alan - you appear to be the answer to a marketing man's prayers. Ever tried going off-grid?

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  19. You're just a big kid at heart.

    Saying that, so am I. Although I couldn't afford it on my meagre old age pension, this year I have bought an "all-singing-all-dancing state of the art" pocket transceiver for the amateur radio bands of 144mhz and 432mhz complete with a scanner receiver for the aircraft band, broadcast band, shipping band and so on.

    I bought it last July and haven't got around to seriously playing with it yet because I also bought a Sony eBook reader and put about 100 books into it and I'm wading my way through them at the moment. Pffft!

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  20. > jennyfreckles : no I haven't and don't tell me about it because my techie queue is already overflowing.
    > mo.stoneskin : your loss my friend, your loss (could you order a Kindle Reader next please)
    > Jeffscape : Wise advice which I will reluctantly take.
    > Angel : Fell free (if any gadget manufacturers are reading this, just think : I could test and publicise your gadgets for you).

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  21. > John : It was your recommendation that tipped the scale - you are to blame.
    > John H : As usual, your senses are right.
    > JenC : I sometimes wonder what techie freaks like your husband and I did before technology was able to deliver sich a constant supply of new toys.
    Fran : Not sure on the apps / application thing - it happened during the period I was sulking and refusing to acknowledge i-touches.

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  22. > Larry B : It would have to be a very compulsive gadget in order to interfere with the blogging. No danger.
    > Martin H : I sometimes wish that I could run gadgets into the ground but usually, I have moved on to the next gadget before the surface paint is scratched.
    > Baino : I am sorry. I recant. I will never insult Macs again.
    > Stephanie : I do agree - I can only get mine working because I was shown how to do it by others who had them. For the on-line stuff, try Safari (on the bottom row of apps)

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  23. > Betsy : There is Kindle fir itouch (which I have downloaded) but the problem is that there is so little text per screen that you have an awful lot of page turning to undertake.
    > Chairman B : Actually I don't exist. I am the invention of a marketing firm experimenting with new approaches to product placement (why don't you enjoy a Cadbury's Twirl whilst you read this comment)
    > Keith : I expect a user report on that Sony eBook as it is on my techie queue. And you are right, I'm just a big kid.

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  24. Glad you were a good boy and got your new toy.

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  25. Oh I am so happy for you. Hubby just bought me an MP3 player and I cannot figure out how to put music on it. Granddaughter put a few songs on it for me and so I am listening to the same 10 songs. Oh well I guess that is better than none.

    I love the gadgets but do not know how to use half of them. But I mostly love kitchen gadgets. My Kitchen Aid Mixer rocks!!!

    God bless.

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  26. Alan, I live just down the road from R.I.M. (makers of the Blackberry). I don't own a Blackberry, mind you.

    I tend to deny interest until I get the technology in my hand. Then I get obsessed. (It's best not to get it in my hand.)

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  28. who'd of thunk you'd be jumping on that apple cart! not I! only apples in our house are the kind one eats. of course if santa ever gave any of the other kind to either f or I they would be gobbled up!

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