Tumblr policy revision

It was brought to my attention, after yesterday’s blog post, that for those people who follow my Twitter yet are NOT fans of at least some of the media properties I enjoy, the Tumblr tweets are spam.

Well, I do try to accommodate reasonable requests.

I’ve created a new Twitter account, SigridsTumblr. If you want the media content — the gifs, the vids, the images of comic book characters and actresses — follow that Twitter account. My Tumblr will auto-tweet there.

If you are already ON Tumblr a lot, the Twitter account will be redundant. If you are on Tumblr and you follow so many people that things get lost, you may want to follow @SigridsTumblr to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Ymmv. People use tech in different ways. I love Tumblr for the ease with which I can find and post visual content. But not everyone wants the visual content. Or those who might want the media images might be Tumblr-averse.

So, this is an experiment!


January 10 2013

I haven’t done one of these in a while! Okay, here’s some random stuff:

1. My Tumblr updates a lot. This is because I have a queue set up to autopost between 5 a.m. and midnight. I also will manually post something from time to time. Right now I have Tumblr set to autotweet each queued post.

This is because … because I use Tumblr to bring things to people’s attention. Or to say hi to a friend. Or to let someone know I saw a thing and thought of them. Or that I think the thing I am re-posting on Tumblr is important and I want a wide audience to see it. More people follow me on Twitter than on Tumblr. Therefore, I tweet each Tumblr post. I want people — specific or in general — to see the thing in question.

However, since these are queued autoposts, I am not always paying attention when the tweet comes through. I may be driving, or at work, or asleep. So if you say something to me about it on Twitter I may not immediately reply because I am not actually there.

2. Circus resumed! K is very happy to be back at her classes. Also, they are all starting to discuss Spring Recital costumes, which always makes me O_o.

3. M is sick, the poor pook. Which means we are all likely going to get it.

In related news, The 2012-2013 flu season is apparently one of the worst in a decade, and there’s a new and more aggressive norovirus strain going around. So, good times.

4. We took the kids to the Minnesota History Center for school yesterday. Not only were the exhibits great, as per usual, but we had the museum almost entirely to ourselves. This meant that the docents and guides spent a certain amount of time enthusiastically talking to my kids about History.

My kids both proved that they really know their stuff. All kinds of stuff relating to Minnesota and U.S. history. I was really very pleased. We don’t quiz the kids, particularly. And at this point they both get a lot of their general knowledge from reading library books without close supervision. So it’s not immediately evident how much they are learning.

But, clearly, they are learning.

Both the kids are at the very edge of that point in the accumulation of facts, whereafter the accumulation of more facts is easier because you already have a mental system designed for the storage and use of facts. This is a good place to be.


New phone!

My household, we think a great deal about the purpose of technology. This comes about in large part due to the differing attitudes the three adults have towards technology and its newness.

N: NEW! It’s NEW it’s NEW it’s NEW! Look at it! It’s NEW!

Me: Huh, I think there are some things I could find to do with that. I bet it would be useful to me.

J: … But my old thing still works.

But this does mean that I, personally, find myself having to explicate my position regarding a new piece of technology. To sum up, I buy new tech when I want to do a thing I have heard of which my current tech does not do for me.

For example, I resisted buying a tablet for forever. Why would I? What would it do for me, that my laptop and smartphone would not do? But, then, the infrastructure and market, the, the ecosystem of ebooks and of digital comics finally developed to the point that both of those things are easier and more comfortable on a tablet than on my phone or computer. So I got a tablet.

Did I need a tablet? Of course not. Do I enjoy having one? Yes, yes I do.

My old phone was an HTC Evo. I had not wanted this phone. I had gone in to Sprint when my Nexus S4 broke, and asked for a replacement. Sprint gave me the Evo. I sulked. I disliked a huge number of things about the Evo. And, for a device that I hold in my hand about once every ninety seconds, I hated the way it felt. This was irritating.

After much consultation with N, we decided to jointly get Verizon plans and share the costs. So I went to Verizon last night intended to get the Samsung Galaxy III. I picked it up. I held it. It was fine. Then I went and picked up the Droid Razr Maxx HD. And this felt fantastic. It fit. The size and shape and feel of the phone was great. And, incidentally, it supposedly has the best battery life of any smartphone available today. So, cool!

Despite the name of the phone, I bought it. (Razr Maxx HD. Seriously. Who thinks that’s a good name for a phone? It’s just flat-out stating, “the person who came up with this name is very concerned about their ability to maintain an erection.” Someone at work has a truck in the parking lot with the name “Dodge Ram Extended Max Explorer” on the side of it. Every time I see it I snicker, because my head reads that as “I cannot pleasure women sexually.”) It’s a great phone. It does the things I want to do, and I enjoy using it.


Terrible customer service from Sprint

So, I went to the Sprint store yesterday.

Okay, no, wait, let me explain.

I really like my local Sprint store. The local store is why I’ve kept a Sprint account for, oh, a kajillion years. They don’t always have exactly what I want, but I find the process of going in and getting things fixed or replaced to be really easy.

Or, possibly that whole paragraph is now in the past tense.

The power jack on my phone is not working properly. I took my phone in to have it replaced under the warranty plan I am paying for. When I arrive, the woman at the desk takes my name. I spell it for her, since my name is Sigrid, and this is very difficult for some people to hear properly, pronounce, or spell.

I go wait.

I see on a wall screen the list of people waiting. I do not see my name. I see “Sucrig,” though. I go back to the front.

Excuse me, I say, I think that’s me, and my name is spelled wrong. The man at the desk asks how I spell it. I spell it for him, twice. He says yes, that’s me. I nod and say thank you. I go wait.

After a while I notice the sign flashing “Sucrig we are ready for you.”

I go to the desk.

I explain to the third person that I think that’s me. He says okay, and we go to tech support. I tell him that my power jack is broken, that no matter what it indicates 80% power, neither more nor less, and that the jack itself requires wiggling to get it just right.

The tech tries a few things, and tells me the power jack is broken. He then says that the phone is showing 80% power, so that’s good.

I tell him it always shows 80% power, as I said.

He says, so the indicator never gets to full power, only up to 80%?

No, I say, it never moves from 80%, either higher or lower, as I mentioned.

Well, it’s broken, he says.

Yes, I say, I would like to replace it under the plan I pay for.

Tech looks at the computer. We don’t have your phone.

Okay, can you order it?

The warehouse doesn’t have your phone. We can get you an EVO, or you can buy a different phone.

I don’t want an EVO, I say. I would like a Nexus. Can you order it from somewhere else?

No, the warehouse doesn’t have your phone.

I pause.

Okay, I say, does that mean, there’s no phone in the entire Twin Cities? Is there one in Chicago?

I don’t know, he says. There’s no phone in the warehouse.

I sigh. Okay, I tell him. Let me look at the EVO.

He brings out the EVO. I look it over, I shrug. I really want a new phone before I leave for Worldcon next week, so, sure, this will likely be okay. Yes, I tell him, I’ll take the EVO.

Okay, he says, typing. That will be here next week. Maybe this week.

Oh! I exclaim. You don’t have one here?

No, he says, we’re out. I have to order it from the warehouse.

I take a deep breath. Okay, I say, when can I expect it.

He checks a few things. Maybe tomorrow, maybe Friday. Don’t worry, we’ll call you.

I would prefer you email, actually, I say. I don’t answer the phone much.

Oh, he says, email isn’t in the system. The system will leave you a voicemail if you don’t pick up.

He stands up as I stand. By the way, he says, you will be called about our service. I need a five to pass. Anything less is a fail. He looks me in the eye. It’s about me, he says seriously, not whether or not we have your phone.

Dear Sir.

You are correct. It is about you. It is about the fact that not at any single point did you give a hoot whether you were helping me or not. At no point did you apologize. At no point did you express regret that you could not give me the service and products I desired. At no point did you or any other person at Sprint even spell my name correctly, or apologize for getting it wrong, despite having said name spelled for you repeatedly.

That is poor customer service.


New thoughts on Twitter use

I love Twitter.

I truly love this particular social media property. Twitter is the thing that lets me stay in contact, asynchronously, with my friends and communities. I work weekends and odd schedules, I’m busy, my friends live across the world — Twitter is how I keep in contact.

And yet, I’ve been avoiding Twitter for a few weeks now.

I think it’s clear that something has happened that I was not expecting. Something new to me. There are so many people on Twitter that I want to follow, want to stay in touch with, that I can’t keep up. I have to stop following so many folks.

I’m not particularly pleased with this. I like being up on the conversations that my intelligent friends have with their other intelligent friends, even if I am only slightly acquainted with the other party. I like getting to know people I only see once or twice a year at conventions, I like seeing the shape of their lives. And I like keeping up with local friends I never see. But as interesting as all y’all are, I can’t keep up.

So I’m trimming my follow list on Twitter.

This is kinda weird.


The uses of social media

I’ve been posting things to Google+, things too long for Twitter. The kinds of things, frankly, I post here in lists. Which is leading me to ponder what to use this blog for.

I think I’d like to use it for longer essays and more reflective pieces. But, frankly, those don’t come about that often. Maybe once a month, if I’m lucky. And blogs that don’t post very often don’t thrive, as it were. Not that I think I have a huge following or anything like that! But I know that SOME people read my blog. And, would they, if the post rate went down to once a month or less, but the kind of thing was longer and more thoughtful essays?

I have to say, I am enjoying posting the little blips of stuff to Google+. There are FAR more people reading that, it seems, and I get little replies from many, many more people. There must be something about the difficulty threshold of Google+ that is significantly lower than on this blog. I mean, if I post a little snippet here about a kid being sick, no-one says anything. I post something there, and three people say something. NOT that I am looking for the comments or feedback on whether M is ill! But it is interesting. Is it that following a blog is done via an rss-reader, and that increases the difficulty threshold of making comments? (You have to click on a link to go to the website.) Is there something psychological, wherein a blog is more “serious” and one doesn’t post minor comments? Is it that a blog feels like someone else’s territory, and Google+ feels like a common, shared space? I’m not sure.

In other news, I killed my Foursquare and LinkedIn accounts this week. I never use them.

One more day to get things done

1. In advance of the Memorial Day rush, we visited the Fort Snelling National Cemetery yesterday and put flowers on J’s father’s grave. I find all cemeteries solemn, but the national ones more so. All those who have served …

2. I got a new phone yesterday! The Nexus S 4G. It’s Google’s personal version of an Android phone, running on Gingerbread. So far I think it’s going to be a contest between how much it CAN do and how badly those capacities eat the battery. We’ll see.

I kept my Palm Pixi, though. If I don’t like the Nokia, I’ll go back to the Pixi. I love that little phone!

J asked me why I was getting a new phone, if I loved my old one. The thing is, I’m not an early adopter of tech, by any means. But I am in the closer second waves. There’s no one specific thing that makes me want the Adroid phone, it’s more an accretion of little bits of information about what the Android can do. After a while, I think, huh, there’s a lot out there I could use.

3. I finished Matterhorn! I won’t by any means finish all the books I wanted to before Wiscon. That’s okay, though. I still feel prepared.

4. I got NONE of the cleaning done yesterday that I wanted. NONE. Instead I ran errands and spent lots of high-quality time with my family. I’ll take that deal, yes please.