I’ve had my iPhone 6 for over two weeks now, and I have to say I’m impressed. It’s bigger, yes, and slipperier–the first thing I did was buy a Skech case for it, which I like–but having touch recognition is frickin’ magic. iOS 8 is much peppier on upgraded hardware, obviously. It’s amazing how much difference three years’ technology makes. The screen is huge compared to the 4s–the difference in pixel density alone is tremendous. I took some time to consolidate five screens worth of icons down to two, which meant I ditched some stuff along the way, but I haven’t bought anything new to add.
I took in the Superbowl last night at my neighbors’, in front of three widescreens. I was the only one rooting for the Seahawks, mostly because I don’t like the Patriots all that much. It turned out to be a fantastic game, and I thought the Patriots had sealed things up in the last three minutes. When the Seahawks drove down the field, I was thinking we were going to see a miraculous comeback. As it turned out, I was wrong–and I still can’t believe the play they called.
The yeast in my session IPA kicked in with a vengeance on Monday night, which brings me a sigh of relief. There’s at least 2″ of krauzen at the top of the carboy and it hasn’t slowed down since it started.
Jen tells me my new iPhone is sitting in a box on my desk–just in time. I think my 4S knows its time is up, because battery life has plunged off a cliff in the last week or so. However, the case I ordered (and fancy touchscreen gloves) won’t be here until tomorrow.
Not much else happening on the home front. It’s been too cold to do anything on the house, and schedules just haven’t worked out to get anything done on the weekend. I’m getting itchy…
After Jalopyrama yesterday, we followed the Morrises into the crowded center of Annapolis to grab a bite to eat. As we bit into our dinner, my left kidney began to throb, and within about 15 minutes I was up in the men’s bathroom splashing water on my face, trying not to throw up. Jen and Finn bundled me up in the car and hauled ass all the way to the Howard County hospital, the folks who took such good care of Finn before she was airlifted to Hopkins. (The Morrises texted me in the car on our way home: “Best dine N dash ever! LOL”)
After an X-ray, a CAT scan, and some urinalysis, it turned out I was dealing with a kidney stone working its way down to my bladder. Jen found a bed for Finn at the neighbors’ and came back to pick me up when I was discharged. For most of the overnight I was OK, but at about 6AM I had to bust into the pain meds to get back to sleep.
Nothing has come out yet as far as I can tell, and the afternoon has been pretty mild compared to dinner yesterday. Hopefully I’ll see some progress tomorrow, because I’m staying home from work until I’ve got an idea of what’s happening.
Renie mentioned she’d upgraded her 4S to iOS 8.1 and it’s been much better for her, so I’m looking at a progress bar on my phone this evening. Hopefully I won’t have to try and roll it back. As it turns out, I can’t use Instant Hotspot with my phone, as it requires a 5 or higher. Most of the Continuity features require a 5 actually, so I’ll probably stick with my upgrade plan.
I did some minor housekeeping here at IK central while I was on the couch, mainly moving the sidebar and utility links from the bottom of the page over to the sidebar. Given the average length of the posts here, it was getting to be a drag to scroll all the way down to find the search and links and other functions.
Hooray! We’re going to Jalopyrama #11 on Saturday. Nothing but 1962 and earlier American hot rods, customs, and race cars. I will be bringing a good camera and a big memory card. We’re also meeting the Morrises there to hand off their iMac and maybe see the sights in Annapolis.
My home laptop is now running Yosemite, and seems to be pretty happy. I like a lot of the new features they’ve baked into things, although I won’t be able to take advantage of a lot of the phone -> computer functionality until I upgrade my iPhone (dialing and making calls on my laptop, Continuity with my files, or tethering). Most likely I’ll wait until 2015 for a new phone, as the holidays and some home renovation projects demand my extra cash. Or maybe they’ll have a good update to iOS 8.1 that makes my old 4s happy.
Also, I used a feature of Mail.app I never knew existed until last week: Preferences -> Junk Mail ->Reset. I’ve been getting more and more spam mail over the last two years, to the point where 95% of my inbox was junk (at a rate of about 150 messages a day). Each evening I’d waste 5 minutes of my life weeding through spam mail and moving it to the junk folder. Having reset the filter I’m seeing 3-5 junk messages make it through and another 2-3 valid ones get marked as spam, but that’s a much better average than before.
I loaded Yosemite onto my work laptop yesterday morning, figuring it would make a great test case for the rest of the machines I run (my home laptop, Jen’s laptop, a workstation under my desk, client machines, etc.) and overall it’s pretty nice. My work laptop is a Retina 13″ with an SSD, so installation took about 10 minutes and everything looks wonderful. It seems to be fast, there’s no performance hit with anything I can see, and all my apps seem to be running just fine (Adobe Creative Cloud, CS6, Office 2011, and a handful of utility apps I depend upon). The real test will be the aforementioned laptops–my home machine is an early 2010 model MacBook Pro which might not like as many of the visual improvements in Yosemite.
Amazon delivered my copy of Information is Beautiful this morning, and I can testify, it is, indeed, beautiful. An entire book of charts, graphs, and visuals well-designed and displayed, about a huge range of subjects. Go to the site, absorb some of the work, and buy the book. It’s well worth the money.
Monday night I went out to the garage and started running wire to the ceiling for overhead lighting. Currently it’s a mishmash of plugin fluorescent fixtures scrounged from my old job run off extension cords, and I’ve dreamed of simply having a switch next to the door to light the space since we moved in. I ran wire from the panel to a new switchbox near the door and then started fishing wire up to the ceiling, then stopped because I wanted to make sure I was running the wire correctly. It’s looking like I’m on the right track based on this diagram, so I’ll continue getting things in place in preparation for buying the fixtures and a new breaker.
Apple announced new iPhones and a watch yesterday. The phones are nice; I’ll probably upgrade my 4s to a 6 when they’re released, because my 4s is beginning to get a little flaky on battery life, and I like the idea of Apple Pay. Having printed out a full-size comparison of the 6 and 6 Plus, the Plus is HUGE. Like, Mini iPad huge. The watch? Meh. I could care less, although it probably does some cool stuff. As I’ve said before, I’d rather spend that cash on something classic instead.
There hasn’t been much else going on, other than on the weekends; work is busy but exhausting. I have been playing around with digital sound recording and syncing with video for the past two weeks, and I think I’ve got both of our digital recorders figured out when connected to wireless lav mics. I shot some interviews earlier in the summer and while the video looks beautiful, the audio settings I was using were too low. I’ve run a bunch of tests on syncing up digital video with audio through the mic/recorder system, and I’ve now got it dialed in. There’s talk of recording an interview here at work in the next couple of weeks, which I think I’m ready for.
The Mac Pro I got a few weeks ago was having some reliability issues. I was getting about 18 hours of uptime before it would decide to crash and reboot itself, so I dug around the Console and found that the memory was throwing errors constantly. I put some new memory in this evening and we’ll see how well it performs now. I also dug out a second 2TB drive and filled the last drive slot with it, so there’s a total of 5.5 TB of space on board. Let’s see how fast that 2 fills up.
Update: Uptime is 22 hours and counting, and the scheduled sleep/wake cycle is working.
While I was fooling around with that, I wiped the drive on an old iBook I had and set it up with a clean install of OS 9.2.2 so that I can run legacy software if need be; it was a challenge to dust off the cobwebs in my brain to remember how OS X worked with Classic, and it took some research. At some point maybe I’ll dust off the old hardware and do another laptop lineup.
Sadly, all of the laptops in that picture are gone; the Powerbook 100 and the 520 died years ago, the Pismo died after about 10 years of frontline service, and the iBook was sold to help fund a 17″ MacBook Pro.