I more or less had the basics sorted out with the Android phone, so was it worth the angst, should I have just allowed everything to remain in their default configuration? No. Firstly, the whole idea of Android is that it is configurable (it’s not an iPhone), so why not use that ability to make it work like you want and not what someone imposed on you (sound familiar)? Secondly, as I pointed out, in its default form, Android simply allows apps far too much control and access to your life. Everything that you do and store on your phone is potentially open for any app to access and use for their own purposes, especially advertisers and marketing companies, and this is quite deliberate. You should be concerned and you should shut all of these entities out of your life, unless you deliberately invite them in. Thirdly, security is an ongoing issue that seems worse than was ever the case with the much maligned Windows operating system and anything to limit such issues is a must.
So the Android phone was now pretty much set up and it was time to put it to regular use. There were still things that I came across that I wasn’t happy with, but worked my way through as best as I could and I’ll write more about what I’ve found in Part 3 (it’s getting to be a long article), including the good and the bad. My initial impressions, despite the initial setup issues, is that the Android phone isn’t that bad and for anyone that doesn’t care about the things I wrote about in Part 1, they would happily use the phone right out of the box. Whether I hold a positive view in the long term is another thing. I have to admit that I’m not a prolific mobile phone user and my life doesn’t hang in the balance whether I have a mobile phone or not, as it’s more of a convenience thing and is why I don’t have a plan that gives me unlimited calls and data for however many dollars per month some people pay.
Do androids dream of electric sheep? I don’t know, but I’m sure Microsoft has Android nightmares. As anyone who is into mobile phone technology knows, Microsoft’s Windows phone has been on life support for some time and it looks like it’s getting closer to the time when the plug will be finally pulled. The Windows phone has seen many iterations since it was first conceived around 2002 as the Pocket PC 2002 Smartphone and followed by a number of not so successful versions until Windows Mobile 5 arrived in 2005 and finally Windows Mobile 6.5 in 2009. But it wasn’t until Windows Phone 7 arrived in 2010 (followed by versions 8, 8.1 and 10) that Microsoft had a platform that could potentially compete with the iPhone and the newly arrived Android phone. However, despite initially receiving a lot of praise for the operating system (OS) and user interface, it failed to capture more than a small part of the market and rapidly began to slide into obscurity.
Nearly every day I come across another story about some new contraption that will allow you to ‘connect’ to the digital world, thereby making your life easier and so much more fun and productive. Being ‘connected’ means that you can organise your life 24/7 and rely on your devices, usually managed through your mobile phone, to become part of a world where you and everyone else can also be ‘connected’. But is life actually better, easier, safer and more fun with all of this new ‘connected‘ technology? Now don’t don’t take this question as coming from a Luddite, as I love technology in all of its forms, even down to its base levels, but I often cast a questioning eye on developments and ponder the value of many, especially when older and reliable is replaced by supposedly newer and better.
This is another one of those irreverent posts and one that arose as a result of some old and somewhat worn out things lying around the house that kept niggling at the back of my mind to bring together as a story. I’ve said before that I often like to make irreverent posts (or is it heckling?) about life and all of its foibles and, sometimes, those irreverent posts may make some sense. It’s a pretty shaky world that we seem to be living in lately and it makes one ponder (well, it makes me and a few others ponder) about things that were, things that are and things that might be, or perhaps it’s just nostalgic romanticism. Was there ever such a thing as the ‘Good Old Days’?
Living in what is considered a fire prone area, though I don’t think it’s as bad as some make out, especially considering that just about every location in Victoria including suburbia is now regarded as being fire prone to one degree or the other, you need to be aware of what’s happening in your area during the fire season and be prepared. Ultimately, you can’t rely on others for your safety, but you do rely on others for information and support that allows you to make sound judgement calls, if or when a situation arises. This leads me to an issue about timely warning, appropriate information sources and how government views their role in providing these services in this modern mobile world.
Communications technology is a interesting thing and one that is viewed so differently by every generation and even by every individual within each generation. It’s an endless rush that leaves many confused and sometimes isolated because of the rapidity of change. For me, technology in all of its forms has always been fascinating and so many aspects of my life have involved understanding technology in its ever evolving way. As a kid, I was forever pulling things apart and putting them back together (sometimes not) and, to this day, I sometimes wonder how I’m still alive, considering the things that I did. One of the most significant communication events that I’ve ever experienced was Neil Armstrong stepping onto the moon in July 1969, when every high school kid was sent home to watch it on TV. However, it was Buzz Aldrin that featured most dramatically on the day when it came to images.
And I certainly am. I’ve always been a bit of a non-conformist, in that I don’t follow the crowd when it comes to just about anything, more so when it comes to technology. In the browser world, I use Internet Explorer, while the majority of the world derides it and uses Firefox or Chrome. In the tablet world, I use Windows 7, while the majority of the world uses Android or iPad. And in the mobile phone world I used a generic ZTE phone, but now a Windows Phone, while the majority of the world uses Android or iPhone. The same applies to many other things such as cameras, cars etc. Some may claim that’s to my detriment, but it’s not.