Saturday, July 21, 2007

Weekend Randomness

I now own a camera phone. I never intended to, but when replacing our daughter's lost phone, I agreed to give her my old phone and I would take advantage of the free upgrade to whatever phone that might be (the one who loses her phone gets the old crappy phone...that's how the family plan works, right?). I was surprised to learn that the free upgrade was a RAZR camera phone (which our daughter thought was quite cool and tried unsuccessfully begging for it...she even had to show me how to use it). So, armed with a new camera phone and a new set of nails, I took my first snapshot (ahem...blame Eric).

Without a flash, the camera phone is mostly useless, but I'm sure it will come in handy for capturing special blogging fodder. Also, while the phone was completely free, the only way to transfer the photos to my PC was to pay $30 for a special USB cable and driver software. But that seemed more palatable than paying monthly internet access fees for the cell phone. I still haven't bought into all the functionalities offered by the new generation of combination cell phones/MP3s/PDAs.

And in other technology news, I just returned from a trip to the Geek Squad at Best Buy to inquire about the lack of sound (again) on my year-old computer. Last time I lost sound, it turned out to be a faulty mother board. I fully expected to learn that the mother board needed replacing again and that I would be without my computer for a couple weeks. I prepared myself by backing up the entire hard drive and toted my computer off to the Geeks. After a good thorough search of the computer's settings, the Geek felt around the outside of the computer and laid his hands on, what was that? A volume control dial? You mean, like in the old days?!? *cough* *mutter-mumble* Oh, that. Yes, I see. So if I just roll it under my finger like this, the sound goes up and down? Okay, thank you very much. I'm sure glad I paid for the 3 year "service" plan. What a dork. 8-}

And in entertainment news, we once again went to Knuckleheads last night, this time to see the great double-necked-guitarist Junior Brown. The top part of the guitar is a normal 6-string guitar; the lower half is a steel slide guitar, normally played on one's lap. You might recognize his voice as the narrator in the Dukes of Hazzard film, or the soundtrack of Me, Myself & Irene or Spongebob Squarepants. I hadn't heard much about him but the show was sold out and we enjoyed the show. He has a great voice and I can't say I've ever seen anything quite like the "guit-steel." I tried to use my new phone's video capabilities to capture a moment to share, but this is all I got. The sound bites on iTunes or Amazon are much better.

And last but not least, I still don't own any of the Harry Potter books. But I'll be eager to learn whether Harry dies or not. Just because...

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At 8:40 AM, July 22, 2007, Blogger beth said...

Look at those nails, lady! No wonder you're having trouble typing...but they do set off the ring quite nicely. Yet another sacrifice for beauty. ;)

I desperately wanted a phone w/o a camera this go round. Turns out, that's like asking for a brontosaurus these days. Oh well.

We in "the biz" (that's the computer biz) refer to problems like yours as an ID-10-T error. (Take out the dashes if it helps.) Either that or a PICNIC (problem in chair, not in computer). But that said, I think we all make them.

Finally, when you said "double necked" I thought you were being awfully unkind to point out one weight related characteristic of the man. Yeah, what was I saying about ID-10-Ts? :)

At 11:25 AM, July 22, 2007, Blogger Foo said...

You can download pictures off your phone without using air time? That's so cool! When Turtle and I replaced our phones a couple years ago, we also got camera phones (difficult not to, these days). Unfortunately, there's no way to get the photos off without paying $15/mo. for expanded service. What a rip.

Junior Brown's a hoot. Sounds like a fun show.

At 2:21 AM, July 23, 2007, Blogger Mark said...

Hey congrats on ur new phone. I like the pic uve posted on this page :D
Make sure you backup you mobile phone content somewhere for times when you need to transfer your contact information, calendar, SMS, etc.
I use a free service called

At 6:13 PM, July 23, 2007, Blogger Eric said...

Blame me?! OK, I'll cop to asking for photos, but NOT while you're speeding down the freeway! ;-)

I'm still trying to figure out what kind of screwy plan you have to be on in order to download photos from your cellphone. I just connect to my computer via BlueTooth and copy them (either direction, in fact).

At 6:16 PM, July 23, 2007, Blogger Eric said...

OK, let me expand on that Bluetooth remark. Your RAZR should have Bluetooth capabilities, and if your laptop doesn't, you can buy a USB-powered Bluetooth dongle for not much more than a USB cable. Then you can make wireless connection twixt camera and computer. Tres cool.

At 9:50 PM, July 23, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

Beth, I will remember that when they start talking code "double-necked-guitarist" reference was very crude wasn't it? It was unintended and not at all meant to imply anything about Jr. Brown's neck size, which appeared rather skinny actually. ;-)

Foo, "hoot" is exactly the word I would use to describe the show. Hoot! And like Eric points out, you should be able to transfer pictures with something along the lines of a USB computer wouldn't recognize the device until I installed a special driver but the Geek Squad told me that most phones work without having to buy anything but the USB cable that fits your phone. The "kit" I bought had the driver software and about 6 different USB cable adapters to fit various phone models (it's called Pik & Tunes or something similar).

Eric, "Bluetooth?" Oh, now you're really pushing me over the technology ledge. I mean, I've heard the term. I know it means wireless something or other. My phone IS equipped with the capability, whatever that means. Not sure about my computer but it might's "only" a year old. So are you telling me I could have saved $30 and used Bluetooth instead? Or would I still need to buy a dongle?

But no, I'm not paying for any special plan to download pictures (AT&T does offer a plan that allows you to send emails, have internet access, send pictures to your email address, etc., but I'm not buying that), only the driver software, a one-time charge of $30.

Oh, and at least I wasn't text messaging while taking that picture. ;-)

At 4:00 AM, July 24, 2007, Blogger Rach said...

If you want to save some money and know the ending of the HP books - let me know - I finished early Mon morn!

At 8:50 AM, July 24, 2007, Blogger Eric said...

Gwynne, it could well be that your computer came with Bluetooth capabilities, in which case you could have saved the cost of the USB cable and done everything wirelessly. You'll just have to check out the specs on your computer to see.

At 12:48 PM, July 25, 2007, Blogger Janie said...

suhweet ring, Gwynne!

At 9:11 PM, July 25, 2007, Blogger Emma Sometimes said...

I like the flowers, do you drive a bug? Bugs have flower holders...

Motorola Phone tools rock, really. I have a RAZR too. Your phone only has to take one dive to appreciate the back up pics, ringtones, and addybook . Plus you can make your own ringtones.

I like your ring, too. It looks like a cabochon cut sapphire. Very unusual (and pretty) setting....

At 1:30 AM, July 26, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

Eric, um, where would I find "the specs" for Bluetooth? Just pretend you are talking to a caveman if you will (which also means I use Windows, not a Mac). ;-)

Thanks, Janie. I love it! :-)

Emma, yes, I do drive a Bug and that is the "fill it with flowers at your own risk" flower holder (the owner's manual cautions against driving with anything actually IN the flower holder because, you know, you could poke your eye out).

I'm going to experiment with making my own ring tones some day...for now, I'm happy with the "siren" ringtone (the one that sounds just like our local tornado sirens going makes people run for cover whenever my phone rings...very cool!)...okay, not really. I'm using a classic "rrrrring" for now.

I think the sapphire is what they call "cushion cut"'s not smooth on top like a cabochon would be. I like the's over the top for me (I normally wear just my gold wedding band, no diamonds or anything), but it's kind of art deco which I love and I've enjoyed playing dress up for a couple weeks. ;-)

At 5:51 PM, July 28, 2007, Blogger Eric said...

Gwynne, you'd have to check your computer's owner's manual to see if it's equipped with Bluetooth.

(Sorry I'm so late with this.)


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