Sunday, September 14, 2008

Pick pockets, take note ...

You remember that iPhone test where the guy put his phone into a plastic bag with keys and other junk and then shook it around to test how easily the screen would scratch? No? Well I do. And that's because it pained me almost as bad as that Olympic weight lifter that broke his arm (note: I can't even bare to link directly to that footage. Find it yourself if you want to squirm). The iPhone test had me squirming because after a nice shake of the bag don't scratch the screen, he took the keys and ... well, keyed his iPhone! Good gravy, man! Anyway I bring all this up to say ... Who the hell keeps their phone in the same pocket as their keys?

I don't know about you but my personal pocket real estate was zoned out long long ago. Here it is (copy this next part down, pick pockets) ...

Pocket rules

  • Left front pocket: phone ... and only phone ... with the screen facing towards my thigh ... you know just in case I walk directly into a running power drill sitting on a counter.
  • Right front pocket: wallet (and sometimes keys when the back pocket won't work).
  • Back right pocket: keys preferably.
  • Back left pocket: wild card! Oh the excitement! Could be a concert ticket stub. Could be a candy wrapper. Maybe even a cell phone. Ah ha! Got you, didn't I? It can't be a cell phone. That's the whole point of this pointless blog entry: the application and execution of pocket rules! But seriously ... this pocket is usually empty and/or paper that can go straight to the trash when possible.
Please tell me I'm not the only one who has a pocket mapping like this. Can I really be expected to just reach into a random pocket with no idea of what I'll find? We need rules, people. We need order. And if we can't find it in our pockets, then where can we?


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

iTunes 8 - Build Genius Into Your Smart Playlist

As you may know, I've put a lot of time into making "the ultimate iTunes playlist" in an effort to get the most out of my massive iTunes library.

Today, Apple released iTunes 8 and their new "Genius" feature. The Genius playlists by themselves are pretty good, but I found it was pulling 1-star songs and, according to the rules of my library, I have no need for such songs.

So, thanks to some help from Berg, here's the best use of the Genius feature that I've found so far: a Genius smart playlist.

iTunes 8 - Genius Smart Playlist

You set the playlist to "Genius" and then you can adjust everything else ...
  • Date added in the last year
  • Rating of a certain level
  • Last skipped or last played in a given range
  • Size of playlist
  • Selected according to most often played, least often played, least recently played, etc.
Have fun, kids.


Monday, September 8, 2008

Flight Attendant + Imagination = Fun

So I was on a flight where the flight attendant took a really long period to explain how to turn on the light for your seat. I then began imagining how she possibly could have given her instructions using more words. Here's what I came up with ...

"The main cabin lights will be turned off soon. If you are reading or knitting or have plans of staring intently at the back of the seat in front of you, you're going to want to turn on your own personal light. To do so, push the light bulb above you. Well, don't push the bulb itself. Push the button that looks like a light bulb. Actually, if I could be perfectly accurate, push the button that looks like a picture of a light bulb. Come to think of it, it's not a picture of a light bulb. It's a drawing of a light bulb. It is a drawing of sorts that looks like a wavy cylinder that leads into a semi circle. Outside of the semi circle are horizontal lines jutting outward. These lines are meant to represent the light that the light bulb will provide you.


SO. If you would like to counter-act the dark that will soon fill the cabin with your own personal illumination for your seat that you can use to do ... well, any number of things that require light, reach up above you and push the button that looks like a drawing of a light bulb and the light it provides. This will provide your eyes with what they need to do what you might want to do. Assuming you want to do something like that.


Oh yeah. And push it up. That button I mentioned before ... you'll need to push it up ... because it's on the ceiling, you really can't push it down. Push the light bulb button up. But again don't even look at the actual bulb itself cuz that'll get you nowhere. Got all that?


Let me sum up. For light -- button that looks like a drawing of a light bulb ... uppey town. Not down. Light bulb itself -- no touchy.


Okay, just to make sure we're all on the same page once and for all ... Push the light bulb button to turn on the light bulb. Okie dokes? Okay then.


Or you know, don't do that ... If like you want to sleep ... In the dark. And avoid the light.


Wow. I am so sorry for all this. I am out of hand. I mean who the hell hasn't been on a plane before? Or moreover who the hell has never turned on a light before?

I'm an idiot.

Just push the button for light. Okay bye."

(for the sake of reference, she really did mention pushing the button up, not pushing the light bulb itself and pushing the button that looks like a picture of a light bulb. Holy crap, right? Shut up already. I'm trying to sleep.)