PDA-247

I have no idea why PDA-247 is still live because I am not paying for any hosting, but it looks as though someone is sitting on the domain name and using my content.

Still, it’s interesting to look back to articles discussing mobile stuff in a time when there was still a lot to be fixed.

Happy Christmas

Have a good Christmas everyone. I realise that for many of us, most of us in fact, it will be difficult o have a normal Christmas, but if you get to spend time with those you love it is still Christmas.

I can’t say much about 2020 anymore and just want to forget that it happened, but I need to thank Tom Munch for the music he created for the McGST podcast and the fact that he made many different versions until picky old me was happy. He has also appeared on two episodes and his knowledge of music is way above the majority of us, and very interesting as well. Tom has been a great friend for many years and I look forward to the day when we can all travel again and just maybe I will get to see him play live in the flesh.

Kirk and Sami also appeared on an episode each, both of which were excellent, and they have posted many useful links and comments on the WhatsApp group that have found their way to the main site. Kirk in particular is a machine when it comes to continually thinking about how the world works and how we live our lives!

Bob continually offers insightful and measured views on the world through his site comments and WhatsApp statements which show what kind of person he is. Every group needs a Canadian to bring it back to a normal footing from time to time:)

And Peter, Andrew and Vincent also deserve thanks for keeping the conversations going and adding so many useful insights that keep us all amused and interested. It needs all of us to keep things light in the darkest of days.

So, thanks for visiting this year. It has been horrible in so many ways, but at least it gave me more time for the site and the numbers have increased every month which is a bonus. What is it they say? Build it and they will come.

Anyway, lets all look forward to next year and I really do hope that at Christmas 2021 I barely have time to do much online stuff. I just want to be enjoying life again as I am sure many of you do too.

Shaun

The McGST 2020 Reader Survey Results

Is Die Hard a Christmas movie? Yes 84.6% / No 15.4%

This result alone makes me happy.

What mobile platform do you primarily use? iOS 61.5% / Android 38.5% / Everything else 0%

I am not surprised by the fact that there is nothing besides iOS and Android, and I guess that my perception is that some Android users will not like that when I talk tech it is mostly about Apple. People tend to go where the content fits what they use so perhaps 38.5% is higher than I expected, but you are ALL welcome.

What desktop platform do you primarily use? macOS 53.8% / Windows 38.5% / Chrome 7.7%

This was a surprising result to me. I didn’t think that Apple dominated the readership quite so much as this.

Who made your phone? Apple 61.5% / Other 23.1% / LG 7.9% / Samsung 7.5%

I messed up with this question and left the same choices as last year which involved omitting some of the bigger Android manufacturers of today. I was still surprised that Samsung is so low, but then again that highlights the rise of what used to be lesser known brands.

Do you own a smartwatch? No 38.5% / Apple Watch 38.3% / Other 15.6% / Hybrid 7.7% / Android Wear 0%

There still seems to be scope for growth here and I expected the Apple Watch to be the most owned. Android Wear got 0%?

How often do you visit McGST? Once a day 53.8% / Once a week 30.8% / 2-3 times a week 7.9% / More than once a day 7.5%

Once a day and once a week dominated here. Hard to work that one out.

What content do you most enjoy on McGST? Tech and Mobile Stuff 61.7% / Random videos and long-form articles 15.4% / The humour 15.2% / Politics 7.7%

Tech still wins here and by a big margin.

How would you rate the content on McGST? Excellent 69.2% / Good 30.8%

Thank you.

Do you listen to the McGST Podcast? Yes, occasionally 46.2% / No 30.8% / Yes, every episode 23.1%

I need to spend a lot more time working on the audio quality, the content and finding the time to invite more guests on to the podcast. It is much more time consuming than I expected it to be.

How would you rate the McGST Podcast? Good 76% Excellent 24%

I would rate it as average at best currently. As I said above I need to improve, but I appreciate your politeness;)

Comments

Been following since the Clie World days! Thx for keeping it up!

The WhatsApp group is the best.

Don’t stop being you! I trust your reviews above most others.

How the hell did you end up with Joanne?!?


Thanks everyone for your responses. It is always useful to know who is visiting and what you want to read. I don’t believe this will ever be a big website, but I will continue while I can. Thanks again.

Buy Me A Coffee(?)

You see that little orange button? It’s just there in case you wish to buy me a coffee if you visit and enjoy the content every day.

Those of you who comment and contribute in other ways owe me nothing!:)

Outspoken

Grown up views on the world around us. This blog will tackle some sensitive subjects in a thoughtful way- if you can’t handle it, don’t visit… More here.

I found an old blog of mine the other day, most articles are from 2007, and I thought I would link to it for old time’s sake. Some of the writing is terrible and some of the subjects are questionable, but it’s interesting to look back and to see how my views have changed. Worth a read if you like bad writing and deluded viewpoints.

McGST

No one cares much about blogs anymore. That is a fact in a time when YouTube, TikTok and Instagram gain all of the attention. Blogs, in particular ones run by individuals are mere curiosities in an online world dominated by the tech giants.

There are of course some very popular blogs which generate a decent income, but for everyone else it is merely a hobby and a chance to get some thoughts out.

It makes no sense for me to run Lost In Mobile and Snowflakes & Shields as separate entities because the hosting costs double and the work involved also increases so I am not going to post to Snowflakes & Shields anymore (I will still post watch content on the new site). All of the content has been moved to Lost In Mobile and the site renamed to McGST.

The new name means nothing to anyone, it is merely part of my name and initials, and it is deliberately non-specific. The mobile tech side is not something I have been overly interested in for some time and the watch side is so niche as to not warrant a site on its own.

The new site will cover everything that nobody is interested in and is merely a tool for me to fill in some time while so much time is available to me.

Thanks, Shaun

Let’s talk

So, I posted the below video on LIM and below that is an example of the kind of discussion you get on the LIM WhatsApp group. You can find out how to join by clicking the link above the main logo.

[14:57, 13/11/2019] : So I listened to the last 5 minutes. For those who didn’t listen, and Shaun please correct me if I’m wrong, my main take away is that many of today’s products tell you what to do and therefore absolve you of your responsibility to do things on your own. He likened it to being governed and controlled as in Orwell’s 1984 combined with HAL 9000 in 2001: A Space Odyssey.
[14:59, 13/11/2019] : In a way he’s correct, but I could argue the same thing about almost any technological advance. A car absolves you from having to get about by horse and buggy which in turn absolves you from having to walk a long distance. Are we better or worse off. As often is the case, some of both.
[15:02, 13/11/2019] : I admit that I didn’t listen to the whole thing, but he did go on about the design needing a help app, i.e. the manual, when it should have been obvious. Again, one could say that about almost anything. Even things we take for granted, like driving a car, needs either a manual or some form of training. It’s all very nice when usage is obvious, but that’s not as common as we might hope. And even those things or actions that we think are obvious, are usually taught in some way.
[15:51, 13/11/2019] : Fun topic! I too only caught the last 5 minutes. First tangent: he bookends his main complaint with a smaller one of how he’d prefer a watch to just be a watch – none of this extra functionality with its implication of obsolescence as new functions show up. But that reminds me of that old comment about smartphones – that we had essentially reinvented the pocket watch! So the mere act of telling you what the time is is not as crucial as it was…
[15:53, 13/11/2019] : I remember in college (in the 90s) sort of consciously deciding NOT to wear a watch, in part because I wanted to avoid the regimentation IDGuy talks about. Most classrooms had clocks, or I could ask someone, and just have a more human and organic sense of time (which is why I still think about making clock faces that put the time into fuzzy words not precise numbers)…
[15:55, 13/11/2019] : I think that my avoidance of watches mirrors his avoidance of smartwatches, that watches are kind of more proactive — to use some jargon it’s more of a “push” technology that proactively alerts or commands the user than a “polling” technology that has the user decide to check the device. And that issues of healthy moving and eating are better left to people making their own habits.
[15:56, 13/11/2019] : I’m not sure how many people take the step counting and the diet advice (is that what they do?) and “stand up now” THAT seriously? Like is it mostly aspirational for most people, like a usually short lived regimentation that hopefully modifies their internalized habits?
[15:58, 13/11/2019] : Also the whole thing reminds me a bit of anti-GPS arguments, that we’re all more dependent on devices and less capable with maps. And it will not be good if kids grow up helpless without GPSes, just the way it’s kind of sad many kids don’t read time off of traditional clockface… but on the other hand, I was terrible at navigating w/ my car for the decade of driving before I got my early GPS… I didn’t magically gain capabilities, I just puttered along, and was often stressed.
[15:59, 13/11/2019] : But like with teaching math to kids, the sweet spot is getting people to use technoloiges that augment rather than replace cognition – never skimp on the steps of teaching estimation, even as you still let them use calculator more often
[16:13, 13/11/2019] : I suppose much of it depends on whether you consider technology reminding you versus telling you. For example, there’s an argument that keeping a to do list, whether on paper or in an app, means not depending on your memory and therefore weakens your memory. There’s also whether you consider a notification a kind reminder or a nag. Besides, one can always turn the notifications off.
[16:13, 13/11/2019] : Yeah, like when Greek philosophers sort of railed against writing stuff down, as it weakened the memory- and also you can’t ask a book questions.
[16:15, 13/11/2019] : But the answer isn’t at the other extreme- you shouldn’t forget that “push”-y notifications are not value neutral. A 90s wristwatch would encourage me to be more aware of the time. And of course, with notifications – when I day dreamed about “maybe I can be one of those people who lived with notifications off” I realized that would be rather rude to my girlfriend… or even if I did one of those “white lists” of people who get through– casual folks tend to have an expectation of real time processing
[16:18, 13/11/2019] : As for having a watch just be a watch, then buy a watch, not a smartwatch. Likewise, buy a dumb phone, not a smartphone. And so on. The nice thing is having the choice. Lots of people find using the fitness aspects of smartwatches very useful but that doesn’t mean you’re forced to use them. I think the comparison with 1984 is over the top. We do have a choice. If we choose not to make the choice, another choice, then we only have ourselves to blame. If I don’t like the Apple Watch, for whatever reason, there are lots of other options, including not wearing a watch at all.
[16:20, 13/11/2019] : Well, that’s the choice he made for himself… I missed the comparison in the video, but he’s not clamoring for a ban.
[16:21, 13/11/2019] : Very soon, if not already, you will be able to ask a book questions, at least an ebook. I can already look up words. Depending on the book, I might be able to get more information from other sources. It’s not a big stretch to have some AI built in such that I’d be able to ask a question and the AI would analyze the question and the contents of the book and give you an answer. Handy for when you forget a plot point.
[16:22, 13/11/2019] : Also, people are free to do what they want, but when you think about the one stance of “I’m happier having my actions nudged/initiated by an external program, even if I’m the one who put the nudging into place”, combined with smart speakers and other ways our enviorment might talk to us/command us… it does get a little dystopian feeling 😀

Lost In Mobile 2019 Survey Results

iOS dominates which is expected considering the content on LIM. Besides Android no other mobile OS survives…

Again, this is kind of expected given the content although I am surprised that macOS gets almost 50%.

Fairly certain that if I had asked the question last year the blue bit would be bigger, possibly much bigger.

Android tablets do seem to struggle in areas where people are prepared to pay a little more for a perceived much better experience.

I expected the Apple Watch to be high, but am surprised that mechanical watches get exactly the same number of respondents with quartz lagging somewhat. Not a single Android Wear on the wrist? Really?

This could be a case of simply not liking the future, but I suspect there is more to the negativity here. Maybe the majority see it as manufacturers clamouring for the next big thing, whatever it is.

The question should maybe not have been asked because it doesn’t offer much in the answers. It does, however highlight how few really big social networks there are.

Wow. Just wow. The mainstream consumer camera is dying.

Thank you…

I guess my, at times, haphazard posting schedule does not help here.

Thanks to all of you who took the time to answer the questions.