You won’t see many posts from me that are very technical or talk in length about computer technology. The idea of doing a technical article on a regular basis has been brought up but I can never keep it going. Part of it is that I can’t think of anything interesting to write about and part of it is that I’m so passive about new stuff I would rather not force the subject onto people.
Part of my nature makes me a little less die-hard about new technology than some of my peers in the industry. I like to sit and wait a little while to make sure all of the kinks and misinformation has been ironed out before I jump onboard. Sometimes I’m a little too cautious but so far I haven’t been burned too much by playing it safe.
I have had some good learning experiences from not getting to the latest update or feature of a product and paid dearly for it. I’ve had my accounts hacked, my system filled with malware, and even had one system completely erased by a nasty little virus. But just because there are things out there that even I cannot prevent doesn’t mean that I will start beating a drum about all of the technical advancements that you should be doing to keep yourself safe. Most things are common sense and you should have that turned on.
A technophile will preach the word of Chrome or Firefox and denounce the evils of Internet Explorer all day and night. I still use IE for 90% of my internet usage and I am kind of fond of Windows despite all those that detest it’s existence. Even my phone runs a flavor of Windows so everything I do is connected. However, I do play it safe and that is what makes this Micro$oft technology work for me. Despite my need to be cautious and safe and to use software others might not favor, I do take some risks.
Tonight for example.
Microsoft came out with the Windows Phone a few years ago and I got my very first one with Windows Phone 6.5 on it from Verizon. The little bugger was great until the keyboard wouldn’t respond right (something about being under water accidently I guess) but the timing of the purchase was a little off. Within a year of my 2-year contract, they came out with the Windows Phone 7.5 and I had to sit and wait for the new tech because I could not afford to pay off mine and jump to the new one. When it did come time to get the 7.5, Microsoft was already talking about the next revision known as 8.0 but it had not come out yet.
So, as it happened, I got the 7.5 phone and shortly thereafter Microsoft released the 8.0 and again I was stuck in my contract. Interestingly enough Microsoft did offer one reprieve that I really wanted to get my hands on, the Windows Phone 7.8 update. This was a freebie from Microsoft and made your phone’s interface look like 8.0 and also gain some fixes to a couple bugs but when it came out, Verizon stayed quiet about it. For the last six months I have been trying to find out how to get the update or if it was even compatible with the phone I had. Contacted HTC and they said it was Verizon’s call to release it. Contacted Verizon and they said that they were in talks with Microsoft about it.
Windows Phone 8 has been out and 7.5 is no longer available so I figure nothing is going to happen with 7.8. After doing some research and reading some of the horror stories, I downloaded the hack method of updating the phone. Turns out that this method just circumvents the settings of the carrier but is completely legal with Microsoft and that is what convinced me to go ahead with it. After about twenty minutes of updating and rebooting, I had 7.8.
So far I love that I made the decision. It was the highlight of my night as the day was going slow anyway and with all of the secrecy and avoidance that Verizon gave for the update, it works great while really doing very little. It has more colors. It has better application layouts. But other than that, you could live without it.
See how boring that all is? This is why I don’t write articles about technology. It’s better to keep people twisted up on my emotional roller-coaster.