Friday, February 20, 2009

Just Say No

Why can't people just say no? It's fine, sometimes the answer is "no", I understand, sometimes it's not possible, or it really is more than your job's worth, but please don't waste 15 minutes of my precious time trying to placate me. Just say no!

Case 1, Novotel Cardiff: When I complained that the internet charge was not clearly displayed on the website and requested a refund the slimy manager came out to see me, asked me if I'd like a drink and asked me to sit with him. He spent 15 minutes telling me in various ways that he would not waive the charge, nor refund me. The receptionist could have told me that!

Daily DoseCase 2, Medical Centre London: Having been prescribed 5 x 5mg tablets on the previous occasion, despite requesting 25mg tablets, I now requested a bottle of 100 5mg tablets (rather than the annoying individually sealed packs of 14). Unfortunately I was given a prescription for 25mg tablets, despite being on a daily dose of 20mg. Now the receptionist could have said "Sorry, only the doctor can alter your prescription." But no, not when she can waste 15 minutes of my time!

Case 3, Chemist's London: I took the prescription to the chemist anyway, hoping they might be out of 25mg tablets. Unfortunately not. Yet again I was treated to a 15 minute ear bashing and ended up leaving the shop while the woman was still talking at me.

Monday, February 16, 2009

I Don't Know Much About Theatre...

I wish that I could write an exciting, witty and accurate review of Shun-kin, but as they say, having a blog does not make you a journalist. Suffice it to say that it's excellent. It's on for another week at the Barican, tickets are available. Go and see it. Your only excuse not to would be a phobia of sub-titles, which at times take your eyes away for too long from this beautiful production, I wished that they could have slowed it down a little, though it's already two hours long. We sat in seats CC13 and 14, which at £16 seemed very good value for money, and the only way in which we found our view "restricted" was that occasionally we missed the image projected onto the back of the stage.

Maybe it's the Japanese culture, or maybe it's my ignorant stereotypes, but there was none of that lovie back-patting that I always imagine synonymous with theatre, the sort of thing you get when Christian Slater stars in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest.

If you do go note that the Barbican seems to have strict policy on not allowing late comers into the theatre.

Monday, February 09, 2009

More On 4

I promise this is not going to turn into some Radio 4 fan boy site, but Start The Week on censorship this morning was really interesting, and also touched on the Rushdi fatwa.

What I Heard Tonight

Radio 4's Classic Serial this and last week was the Arab Chronicles of the First Crusade. Well worth a listen, though I think you may have to see if you can find it by foul means, rather than fair as since it was played over two weeks you will only be able to listen to the second part* on Listen Again.

Before the Saturday edition was Archive on 4, which by coincidence I believe was this week about the fatwa issued against Salmon Rushdi, also worth a listen.

* Tell a lie, they're both here for at least the next six days.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Spam Cycle

Got this today:


Clicked on the "Change who can send you invitations and requests" link. Was asked to sign in. Unfortunately I don't have an account (with this email address, I even tried the "I forgot my password" link, to no avail). So how the fuck am I suppose to unsubscribe Microsoft Windows Live?

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Old News

As instructed by the iPhone Dev Team, I held off updating to 2.2 for some considerable time. Having now been given the go ahead I can report what many people must have known for quite some time:
  • The battery life is much improved. I usually have to charge every two days, recently after four days the battery was still reporting about 50%!
  • Responsiveness is somewhat improved. After the upgrade I was very impressed with speed of loading SMS and Maps for example, however it seems to be slowing down again :-/
  • FStream works properly! Meaning that I can actually (and practically) stream BBC radio over 3G, yay!
Having said all that, after spending an hour on a train trying to use FStream I found that 3G reception is frustratingly flaky and the battery life wasn't *that* much improved, when you actually use your phone.

Of course if I had a mobile with an FM radio none of this would be an issue. So that was the excuse I used to buy an HTC Touch HD.

Having now had a chance to do the same train journey again (in double the time, thanks to the snow) I have now discovered that FM reception is as flaky as 3G coverage, and even ends up being more frustrating, because at least the stream just stops, whereas with FM you drift into intermittent static.

HTC Touch HDThe Touch HD was a bit of a disappointment, mainly because it just wasn't that different to the iPhone. The touch screen is also nowhere near as sensitive* (different technologies I believe) and is not even consistent, the edges need more pressure, which means that often the 'a' key does not register my weak strokes. I really like the predictive text feature, although it's a shame that it doesn't try to correct typos like the iPhone. (I've been told that the iPhone has a predictive text feature, but I can't find it.) Windows Mobile is pretty horrid and the Opera browser is a bit slow and has a nasty habit of continually auto-scrolling to the point which you were on on the previous page while a page is loading and you're trying to scroll. One thing that is definitely better is finding and using contacts, you can always start typing a name and the most recently used will popup. Also the camera seems pretty damn good.

* When I first got the iPhone I actually found this annoying.