From New To Old Or Skipping What’s In-Between

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1st Gen iPad Air, 2nd Gen Kindle Paperwhite, a fcuking real book!

Subtitle 1: E-Book reading. Looks like there’s no turning back (for worst-moi).

Subtitle 2: A pseudo-review of e-readers.

I first started e-reading on a Kindle 2. I loved the design of the Kindle 2, especially the analog page change buttons and the odd but fully functional keyboard that enabled the best note-taking (at the time) while reading electronic books. Luckily, including voice dictation, I think I’ve finally found a viable replacement for the only Kindle I’ve ever loved. More on that in a sec. Because the battery died on my Kindle 2 and Amazon offered no upgrade, I broke down and bought a Kindle Paperwhite while it was on sale. From day one I’ve hated the thing. Talk about technology going backwards! Ok. Ok. The “Paperwhite” screen is pretty good, especially during night reading. But to be honest, that really doesn’t matter until night lamps go the way of the Dodo. Also. What can one expect from a guy like Jeff Bezos, the greatest mooch and scavenger capitalist the world has ever seen? Or do you actually believe that hijacking already marginalised capitalism from the likes of Walmart and retail, physical book stores is really such an ingenious endeavour? Please. Amazon and Bezos suck bat balls on account he’s only found a way to lead in the race to the bottom. But before I get to far off subject.

I’ve pretty much given up on Kindle as my e-reading device (for now). Here a few reason:

  1. Eco-system. There’s basically three digital eco-systems that I would consider using. Amazon and Google have lost out to Apple (for now). But to be honest, if/when I have to change eco-systems, my next choice will be Google.
  2. 3G. When I needed it, it never worked. I remember once traveling through Asia and not being able to download a book for a research project. Not only that, when I finally connected to WIFI in an airport lounge, Amazon wouldn’t let me download the book that way either–something about copyright. Go figure!
  3. Performance and obsoletism. We’ve had three Kindles in our family so far. Sure, they are relatively cheap devices but now that Amazon has gone full expensive with their newest fancy-pants Kindle (as of 2016 or so), where’s this gonna go? Their colour screen tablets are a joke. They can’t make a phone. And that voice-AI speaker thing… No thanks!

Of all the Kindles we’ve had (I can’t remember exactly but it’s somewhere between three and four), they are all, after eighteen or so months, great door stops. The third gen Paperwhite in the pic above is also so incredibly slow that it’s no fun to use. Yeah, Jeff Bezos. Innovation ain’t just about bringing something to market but also making it better without breaking the bank.

Moving on.

I gave up using an iPad 4 three years ago. The main reason for giving it up was because 1) I’m a Mac guy and 2) I have an iPhone. Although I did learn to appreciate the iBooks interface and preferred it over the Kindle, the iPad 4 was just too heavy as a reading device. There are times when I read for more than two hours. But last year after my wife upgraded from her shattered iPad Air 2 to an iPad Pro, we also discovered in a drawer her shattered first gen iPad Air. We traded in the shattered iPad Air 2 and she got a pretty good deal on a new iPad Air Pro. But since Apple only lets you trade in one device for another device, we put the shattered first gen iPad Air back in the drawer. While visiting our local Apple store a few months later, I happened across a conversation with one of the dunces in the blue shirts. When I mentioned that I still had a shattered iPad Air he quickly checked inventory and told me that if I trade it in, he’ll sell me a brand new one for €250,-.

A brand new what, I asked.

Oh. Sorry, he said.

Even though Apple had just announced their new low-end iPad line which had a better processor and more storage, the hundred to hundred-fifty price difference wasn’t a factor. Reason? I don’t need an iPad. I especially don’t need a low-end iPad. I mean, let’s face it. As much as I fight it, it looks like Macs are doomed. Apple is going full iOS. I’ve since learned from my wife’s multiple iPad to iPad Pro experience, that I’m eventually gonna have to give in. Of course, it’ll take till iPads can drive a second monitor–as that’s the way I use both my 2016 MacBook and my 2015 MacBook Air–I’m putting off full iPad integration into my life. Again. All I really needed was a new e-reader on account of how much I hate the Kindle Paperwhite!

Long Apple-Store story short: I went home and got the shattered iPad Air. I traded it in and nervously paid €250,-. Gee, I thought, I just got the best e-book reader there is, didn’t I? And not only that. It really was a brand new first generation iPad Air with 32GB and cellular. It’s not even a refurbished one. Say what you will, dear worst-reader, about my lack of scruples when it comes to consuming tech $hit. I mean, I could have easily afforded the  new iPad. I just don’t need a new iPad for anything but watching the occasional video while it’s propped up in the kitchen and I’m cutting onions or I’m consuming lots and lots of research, reading, study, etc. Since the newest Kindle (that’s waaaay overpriced one) cost almost the same… Yeah, it was a no-brainer.

I think I lucked out. I’ve had the iPad Air (version A1475) as a news reader, the occasional Plex client, definitely a useful you-tube watcher and, when needed on account I’ve already purchased books there, it’s great with the Kindle app, for about six months now. And to be honest, I’m enjoying reading/using Apple’s iBooks more and more. Not only is the iPad Air much lighter than that iPad 4, but its also got a much better screen. The only negative with the iPad as an e-reader is the battery life. Yeah, Amazon does have the advantage with that one. Which means I have to charge the iPad every night… along with all the other krapp I have to charge. But then again, compared to the Kindle, it’s a fcuking computer beast.

As stated, I really like to interact with what I’m reading. I like to write short notes in the margins of pages (of real books) and also underscore text. The iPad does that huuuuuugely better than the Kindle. In fact, with the iPad I can highlight text and if I have a comment about the text, I then call up the note function and instead of using the cumbersome iPad keyboard, I just dictate my comment and voice recognition transcribes it. Also, if I need to write anything longer, I can immediately go to Apple’s Note app, which I’ve actually become more and more dependent upon even when using my Mac. So I’m really digging Apple’s eco-system right now. It works great when reading.

Who knows how long relations with Apple’s eco-system will last. Btw, I’m still not using iCloud for all my files. I prefer Dropbox for that. Also, as far as home media is concerned since we stopped watching TV ten years ago, I haven’t and don’t plan on upgrading my old AppleTV3 anytime soon. For one thing, as stated, we don’t consume TV anymore. When we do watch stuff, we do so through the internet or our Plex server which is on a 2010 headless MacPro in the basement. Replacing our living-room TV with a new bookshelf system where my wife and I are able to combine our entire (physical) book collection into a really, really cool private library, has been one of the best choices we’ve made yet when it comes to life and living at home.

Rant on.

T

Something Little More Than Site Maintenance Or How AWS Might Be Comparable To GM Of Yore

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Screenshot of moving fav domain.

Freeing myself of the juggernaut of scavenger capitalism that’s finally, utterly, taken over tech industry? Indeed. Dear worst-reader. I’ve been worst-saying it for years. Or at least been worst-saying it since that short stint in the advertisement industry–so many years ago–where I had to explain the #interwebnets to a whole host of numb-nut corporate college grads that couldn’t fight their way out of a wet paper bag. Oh what am I saying? I finally got around to moving my domain to a better place. Or at least I’ve moved it to a better place. At the least, I’m already relieved that I, in the near future, I’ll be cancelling my AWS account. Yeah, baby. Pretty scary stuff what Bezos & Co. have/can come up with while scraping the barrel.  Anywho. I’m sure Jeff Bezos & Co. are all a grand horde of nice people, once you get around their Dr. Evil, Data (as in Star Trek NG)–looks. It’s just that, well, I gave AWS a try but found it to be an astonishingly ugly tech environment that in its totality completely feeds off the creativity of others–in the purest form of exploitation I’ve seen yet. And to think that enterprises completely rely on Bezos for the their tech infrastructure! Scary. Scary. Scary. Yes. That’s where much of the tech world is today. Exploit. Exploit. Exploit. Forget creativity. Scary. Forget indeed. Or just check out Facebag & Co. In fact, I’d go so far as to worst-write that AWS might be comparable to what GM was when it consolidated the auto industry so so so many years ago. You know, Buick, Chevrolet, Pontiac used to be their own companies. Oldsmobile, too. (Anyone remember that one?) Yes, AWS is the GM of tech industry. Now remember that when the Government bails out AWS in the future. Let’s just worst-hope that there’s at least a Ford somewhere in tech industry that gives us another choice. (That’s right. When my mother had to buy a new car a few years back, I made sure it wasn’t anything from GM. Reason? GM was bailed out (by Barry-O) but Ford wasn’t.)

But I digress.

-Rant on

T

Things Are Moving Along Just Fine In The Land Of The Docile Free To Be Stupid

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Something to ease the minds of the dumb-downed as another useless evening presents itself in the wake of my beloved and missed #americant dealing with a grand new-fangled tax scam from president smart for the rich and stupid for the rest of you suckers. Also wondering who the college grads are that set up all this digital krapp that’s so blatantly in my way. (If I only knew my way.) And get this: You can actually buy a movie on #itunes for less than renting it. I’m worst-wondering how this relates to the day. Also wondering what did all those college grads actually learn in college that has gotten us here?

That’s right. They all majored in…

#edumacation, baby.

Rant on.

-T

How To Hug Your Abuser, Face Your Poison

drink your poison
Poison: the deserved drink of choice for most stupid, ugly, arrogant, mostly white power-monger idiots.

What’s the one thing that connects all of the recent sex abuse bullshit, dear worst-reader? Ok. Yea. It might be something about stupid white men. (But then there’s the few and far between non-white men that seem to do the same thing.) Then there’s the issue of power. Yea. That’s the ticket, ain’t it? Or maybe not. Indeed. Is there a single thing, a thread that weaves through all this krapp that is #americant and a bit too much daddy-do-good mixed with sexual repression? And so. Are you sitting down, dear worst-reader? Cause here comes some worst-writer galore. Yea, baby!

Pick. Your. Poison.

We are now deep into a world that is literally sustaining itself on

  1. the laurels of the past,
  2. the nothingness of the now and
  3. the meritlessness of the future.

Mixed together, baby, this is our poison. And. As you know. Poison doesn’t necessarily have to kill you. But there’s more.

Not only Matt Lauer but also Charlie Rose–and a whole bunch of other men-of-ill-repute–did not get where they are without sharing one very important thing. They were able to get ahead, to get their outrageous contractual paydays, all that money/power because they rode the backs of the willing. That’s right, baby. Thousands, tens of thousands, millions of people who could have done what these men do–to get their power–could also do their job. But instead they let their backs be ridden. Did you get that? Let me worst-re-write it again.

There is nothing these men do that millions of others couldn’t do. Just like most people/men who run corporations these days, don’t you know. In fact, it’s no different than war-mongers. Or perturbed patriarchs that claim to love their families. The only difference is that these nut jobs that are all over the mind bending airwaves are the cream of the crop of meritlessness run amok. Which begs the question: How the fuck do you get on someones back?

A little, bitter side story from worst-writer’s past:

I met with a marketing manager once from the corporate headquarters of Adidas in Germany. We were pushing some fancy new URL parsing software to them that would enable a new level of marketing and merchandising on the Internet (late 90s). At the time the software was perfect for manufacturers of consumer products. But here’s the thing. I was there for two days pitching our software and I had to meet with the vice president of corporate marketing. Whoopee, eh! But guess what? The guy turned my stomach. I mean, he was a perfect human specimen–if you’re life is a glossy magazine that appeals to a meritless consume-to-survive society. He was over six feet tall. He had perfect full hair that together with his full shaven beard was perfectly groomed every moment of the day. I mean, he had one of those full beards that grew while you were talking to him. In fact, I’m sure he had the most expensive Braun razor in his office where he could shave three or four times a day. His clothes were perfectly tailored, including his shoes. He looked as though he was in perfect health, too. Yet when he opened his mouth at certain moments while being pitched he was as stupid as a redneck stuck under a car named the general lee. The guy could barely formulate a sentence. Of course, he was German and the whole pitch was in English. But come on. A guy this high on the corporate ladder and he mumbled like a moron and he barely knew what the Internet was? How do these people get these jobs?

But before I get too far off subject.

My worst-point is this. Sex scandal here or there, it’s time for someone to grow up.  Between the abusers and the accusers–this is getting out of hand. Where will all this lead? The way all these men are dropping from their worlds has something more to say about the world than it does about male behaviour. And as far as all the women are concerned… It might be time to consider not turning your trauma into a farce. Charlie Rose and Matt Lauer earn the big bucks, right? Yet maybe it’s time to ask a simple question: how do these people get ahead while leaving so many others behind?

Now don’t get me wrong. I got no problem with big money earners. That is, as long as you earn the money on your own back. It’s when you earn it on the backs of others… That’s when I get ticked-off. And I’m starting to get the feeling that a lot of women out there are also going that extra greedy mile to get something off the back of someone else–just because they can. Matt Lauer and Charlie Rose and Harvey Weinstein all earn outrageous sums of money. And for what? Indeed. Who are the people that so gallantly (sarcasm off) enable these assholes?

Corporatism. Tribalism. Get your gun (or poison) Johnny!

Even if I’m way off base bringing together a war-mongering criminal like the asshole in the pic above and the likes of Matt Lauer, I’m gonna go with it. There is something that all of these people have in common. There is something out there the enables men and their abuse. Power? Money? Greed? Sex? Nationalism? Blah. Blah. Blah. The state-of-things means that it’s time for a lot more people to check their poison drawers. Humanity can only take so much meritlessness.

Rant on.

-T

Links that motivated this post:

Consume To Survive vs. Amazilla

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Get a load of that discount. 56%????

Update: May the heavens be blessed (if you believe in that sort of thing). To my worst-surprise, my consume-to-survive order that is supposed to help with cleaning my ageing teeth arrived today. Wow. If you can believe the original price posted (Euro299,99) then this was a pretty good deal. Yeah, baby.


Haven’t been posting much in July. Something about the Germania weather this time of year. Even though the weather (and everything else) sucks here, this time of year seems to be the worst. They call it Drucken. It’s as though you have to walk around in a thick, pressing atmosphere where the breath and stench of too many people crowded into too small a place doesn’t mix well with a grey sky that wants to annihilate you. But enough about the misery of too much health insurance and worst-moi.

Today dear worst reader it’s time to worst-blog about consumerism. You know, that thing we all have to do above and beyond surviving like our ancestors once did. Since I make no effort to hide my position in this world as a consumer–and what a lucky one at that–there are moments where even I get a bit perturbed with how The Man tries to control me and my consumption. For example. I decided recently to give in to the electric toothbrush craze. I’ve avoided it most of my adult life, even though my better-half has been using one most of her adult life. Since she needs to replaced her old one, because the battery doesn’t hold a charge anymore–and because it looks like it’s been used to clean things other than teeth–I broke down and started searching for a deal. And boy did I find one.

The deal of the day, dear worst-reader is encapsulated in the screenshot above. I found an offer on that internet shopping portal that I couldn’t refuse. Is it two for the price of one or is buy one get one free? To be honest, I’m not sure if I’ll ever find out. Ordered over a week ago, I still haven’t received my purchase. I did get an email the other day that said something about they were working on my order but I couldn’t make heads or tales out of whether or not they (or someone else) had just pulled the wool over my eyes. I mean, come on, more than half off the original price of a new-fangled tech-driven electric toothbrush?

As of the writing of this worst-post, I’ve not received my order. But then I did come across a tweet that opened up an eye or three. By-the-buy, this is the second time I’ve ordered something with such a large discount on Amazilla. The first time the order was cancelled for me. We’ll see how this one goes.

Rant on.

-T

Other links: