This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Posts here are rare these days. For current stuff, follow me on Mastodon



March 2005

Treo Number Five

Just as a reminder to everybody, on November 10th of last year, I posted this:

Treo Number Four

So today at lunch I went with Brandy and exchanged my Treo 600 for a new one under warrentee. Right now it just finished resyncing with my laptop to restore all my contacts and programs and such. This is now my FOURTH Treo 600!!!

#1) Ordered right after the things first came out. Got it all set up. Loved it. Used it a lot. One day, the screen just was blank. Backlight on, nothing there. It was a decent flashlight, but no longer a phone. I paniced and was all upset, ready to buy a new one. Brandy made me go to the Sprint store though. They said “looks like you killed it” and then went into the back and got me a brand new one in the box. This was while we were still in PA.

#2) While I was going back and forth between FL and PA (March through June) I was doing conference calls a lot, so I bought a headset for the phone. I proceeded one day to wrap the headset around the phone, stick it in my pocket, and then sit on it. The headset had a remote control volume and microphone thingy that would normally hand down and you talk near it. Well, it is a kind of bulky thing, and when I sat on it, it pressed into the screen, because the way I had wrapped it, the bulky part was on the screen side this time, and not on the hard back of the Treo. The screen was smashed to smithereens. This time the Sprint store told me that this was NOT covered under warentee, cause, well, I had smashed it. I had to buy a brand new one full price. Bastards.

#3) When I get calls on my cell at work… or when I have to make a call, I go outside. Two reasons: One, reception in this building sucks because it is basically a metal box. Two, my office has tall walls and a door, but the walls do not go all the way to the ceiling, and are pretty thin anyway. There is no privacy. So I go talk on the phone in the parking lot. Well… in the summer in Florida when you go stand in a parking lot it is HOT. And when it is hot I, well, um, tend to sweat just a tad. After a 15 minute phone call, my face is soaking wet. And, since I am holding the phone next to my head, so is the phone. And I have discovered that Treos don’t like being soaking wet. The phone would start to flip out and do all sorts of random things. The keyboard would become unresponsive. The screen would sometimes work and sometimes not. After a few hours it would all dry out and work OK again. Well… the first few times anyway. Eventually some of the buttons stopped working completely. Namely the “Alt” button that lets you type symbols like @ when you are doing email. And the shift key, that lets you do capitals. And the space bar, which, well, does spaces. Finally the zero key started to be erratic. And while I used the touch screen to actually dial phone numbers, you have to use the zero on the keyboard when you go through those menus and stuff for customer service. I kind of needed the zero. Anyway, I’m not really sure if it was the sweat or not, but this time Sprint gave me a warentee replacement. (And even if they hadn’t, after #2 I signed up for the $4 per month phone insurance to replace the phone for a small deductible if I destroy it.)

#4) The one I picked up today. This time instead of a brand new one in the box with all the accessories I got a “factory refurbished” one. Oh well. I was hoping for a new one again, but given the situation I won’t complain too much. This one looks like new anyway. I also bought a new case for it that completely encases the Treo, with a clear plastic front that you can actually use the touch screen and all the buttons through. So I never have to take it out of the case. Ever. So I should be able to sweat on it if I have to. And I got a new headset, but one big enough and oddly shaped enough I will not be tempted to put it in my pocket. It stays in the car use for hands free driving only, not for normal use when I’m not driving. So hopefully this one will be OK. And if I do destroy it by mistake, I have that insurance now.

Of course, now there is a Treo 650. I of course want one. Next time I kill the 600, maybe I’ll be able to upgrade. But as usual, there are a BUNCH of things on the “to buy” list ahead of that…

So for now, I’ll see how long I can make Treo #4 last. They seem to be averaging about 3 to 4 months each.

So, the answer is, Treo #4 lasted 136 days. That’s about four and a half months.

Just days after I got Treo #4 I noticed a couple of stray orange pixels. Several more orange pixels joined every few days, evolving from a couple orange dots, to a couple of big orange blotches on the screen with a little string of orange in between. For the most part I could see, but every one in awhile something I needed to see was under the orange spot. And a couple weeks ago, a part of the screen started to lose contrast. So there were two big orange spots and another dim spot. So, finally took it to the Sprint store. Yup, warentee issue. They ordered me another one. (Refurb again I think.)

And so, here I am, Treo #5.

I told the guy at the Sprint Store that this was my 5th one. He was like “Hmm, if this happens again, maybe we can move you to something else.” I told him I’d only be interested int he 650. If they offer to replace this one when it dies with a 650, I would not object at all.

So, Judging by the average lifetime of these, I expect this one to last until July or August.

We shall see!

Whither the Doctor

I’ve been meaning to talk about this for awhile, but didn’t get around to it, but it seems like today needs to be the day.

Just a couple of hours ago, Doctor Who returned to the small screen with new episdodes. Initial reviews are good. It is airing in the UK and Canada and New Zealand. But the US (and Australia) are for the moment going without. There were rumors that the SciFi network would pick it up, but that didn’t happen. And so far there is no home for the new show in the US.

Which is pissing me off, because I want to watch. The first episode was of course leaked to the P2P networks a few weeks ago. I would happily watch it in whatever way it was made available to me other than P2P, including buying the DVDs. But at the moment, those options are not open. So the other may be the way it has to be. Damn them! But one way or another, I’ll be watching! Hopefully some US network will pick it up within a few months if it does well in the UK. Otherwise, I’m sure DVDs will be available later this year. I just don’t want to wait!

Welcome Back, Doctor Who

Today, March 26, 2005, Doctor Who returns as a weekly series to television for the first time since 1989. For fifteen years, Doctor Who fans have carried the torch through good times and bad, false starts and endless possibilities. Now, fifteen years later, Outpost Gallifrey joins our fellow fans in welcoming back the Doctor to the screen in his newest incarnation, Christopher Eccleston, and his latest companion, Rose Tyler, played by Billie Piper, brought to the screen by a production team led by the man responsible for its return: Russell T Davies. While many fans won’t yet be able to see it (Canada gets it in one week, New Zealand soon thereafter, and hopefully Australia and America sometime soon down the road), today’s a day we all join together to celebrate the return of our favorite series to TV. He’s back… and it’s about time!