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In between Trips - cellophane
the story of an invisible girl
renniekins
renniekins
In between Trips
I'm home again, and really tired. I should be in bed -- I think I'll go do that in a minute. The weekend in Madison was much fun. I got to see several old friends, including juliebata (I hope you feel better!), and I even met a new friend, egon010. Coolness.

Too much driving in not much time though. Our trip there took about 10 hours, due to a light rain which shouldn't have caused any problems but it did because sometimes people are idiots. (Well, and we stopped for a meal because we were going crazy in the terrible traffic.) Our return trip was more normal: 7.5 hours. Much more acceptable! I think next time I'm going to convince people to take either the new ferry or an airplane.

Switching subjects, mind the transition -- I feel left out, because everybody has wireless except me. Well, my phone surfs the net, but it's tiny and doesn't have WiFi. I don't need an actual laptop -- my desktop still works fine -- but I'd like WiFi device for 'net use on trips and maybe occasionally in my bed (if/when I switch my hub to wireless). Something small and simple, 'cause really all I'd do is browse, write, and store pictures. So I'm thinking of buying this 3-pound mini laptop.

Actually to be more accurate, I've already bid on it. But I bid a pretty low number, and I'm debating how high to go. I emailed the seller, and mentioned how I was bummed they didn't offer a Buy It Now option, because I'm going on a trip saturday. They said they could offer me a Buy It Now price of $315 and have it to me by wednesday.

Tempting! I'd really been thinking of something under $200, given that this is not a new computer. But it comes with a WiFi card, and it could get here quickly. It looks really small and portable! It'd be a fun toy, and it's fairly affordable.... So I dunno. I did buy myself a toy (my lovely Treo) just a few months ago. But it'd be nice to have a little laptop next week in Colorado!

Oh, and speaking of Colorado: I think we should change the name of the conference to Colorado Software Beach and have it in Hawii. I think that mountain is going to be cold, and I'm not ready for winter yet. It was snowing there today. Brrrr.
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Comments
encorecrazay From: encorecrazay Date: October 19th, 2004 12:56 am (UTC) (Link)
I told you it was going to be cold.
jeffreyab From: jeffreyab Date: October 19th, 2004 07:21 am (UTC) (Link)

I do believe in ferries!

You guys could have taken a ferry and you chose to go throught Chicago on a Friday instead?

What were you all thinking?

I mean you could nap or watch seagulls during the middle of the trip.

renniekins From: renniekins Date: October 19th, 2004 01:41 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: I do believe in ferries!

Well, the ferry would have required more advance planning. The timing was later than preferred, and it was sold out of "car spaces" so we would have needed a ride on the other side.... Next time.
jeffreyab From: jeffreyab Date: October 19th, 2004 09:24 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: I do believe in ferries!

Sounds like the basis for plans for next time.

Crossing a Great Lake is a rather unique experience these days.
pi3832 From: pi3832 Date: October 20th, 2004 07:07 am (UTC) (Link)

Luddites Unite!

I feel left out, because everybody has wireless except me.

If it makes you feel any better, I don't even have a cell phone. I am completely and utterly wired.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: October 20th, 2004 08:23 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Luddites Unite!

No cell phone? Wow, you really are in the dark ages. Now that I don't think I could do without...I'm not home often enough.
pi3832 From: pi3832 Date: October 20th, 2004 10:46 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Luddites Unite!

I'm curious: what's so important that you have to find out about it right now?
renniekins From: renniekins Date: October 20th, 2004 11:48 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Luddites Unite!

I often get together with friends after work, or at random times, so it's good for coordinating things like that. It's also great for when I get lost trying to find something, which is not infrequent... Plus since I'm rarely home at a decent hour for calling people, it's a nice means of catching up with friends/family while driving (carefully!).
pi3832 From: pi3832 Date: October 21st, 2004 07:00 am (UTC) (Link)

Please don't kill the motorcyclist

Ahem: A Comparison of the Cell Phone Driver and the Drunk Driver

Abstract:
We used a high-fidelity driving simulator to compare the performance of cell-phone drivers with drivers who were legally intoxicated from ethanol. When drivers were conversing on either a hand-held or hands-free cell-phone, their braking reactions were delayed and they were involved in more traffic accidents than when they were not conversing on the cell phone. By contrast, when drivers were legally intoxicated they exhibited a more aggressive driving style, following closer to the vehicle immediately in front of them and applying more force while braking. When controlling for driving conditions and time on task, cell-phone drivers exhibited greater impairment than intoxicated drivers. The results have implications for legislation addressing driver distraction caused by cell phone conversations.

(Emphasis added.)
renniekins From: renniekins Date: October 21st, 2004 07:24 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Please don't kill the motorcyclist

They should have included a third group of drivers for it to be a valid study: those having an animated conversation with a person in the car while driving. Because there is no difference, especially if you're using a hands-free device, between talking to somebody next to/behind you, and talking to somebody on the phone.

In fact, when I talk to somebody next to me I drive normally, and when I talk on my cell I am extra cautious because I'm aware of the phone -- I don't like to switch lanes, for example, and I generally drive more slowly.

Actually there are a zillion hazardous things that people do every day in their car that weren't included in the study. How about a category of people changing CD's while driving. How about shaving or putting on makeup. How about lighting a cigarette, or eating dinner. How about grabbing something from the backseat, or arguing with fighting children. How about simply fuming or crying over a terrible incident or fight you're driving away from? How about reading a billboard with too much writing on it? How about staring at a cool car/attractive person/accident/whatever on the side of the road?
pi3832 From: pi3832 Date: October 21st, 2004 10:43 am (UTC) (Link)

One more for the road

So, basically, you're saying that we should make drunk driving legal.

I mean, if we shouldn't worry about cell phone use while driving since there's "a zillion hazardous things" you can do in your car, why pick on the hazards of drunk driving?

Or are you just saying on a more presonal level that you're a hazardous driver and it doesn't matter in which manner you're hazardous?

###

I don't know why I'm picking on you about this. People try to kill me lots of ways on the road. I think cell-phone usage strikes me as a particularly annoying one because it seems so pointless to me. Of all the cell phone conversations I've heard the vast majority are either astoundingly banal (I heard a guy explaining what he was going to order for himself at Arby's to the person on the other end), or something that could have easily waited until the person wasn't wielding a two-ton deadly weapon.

At least you aren't driving a Ford Excursion while you're trying to kill me.

You aren't, are you?
renniekins From: renniekins Date: October 21st, 2004 11:16 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: One more for the road

I'm saying that roads are hazardous, and a few laws aren't going to change that. They are dangerous for cars AND motorcycles. And for bicycles, which I frequently ride on the road as well. People should remember that and always drive carefully and responsibly -- treating their vehicle (car OR motorcycle) as the dangerous tool it is. But because we drive so frequently, we become jaded and we lose that alertness needed.

I've seen plenty of motorcyclists drive in an incredibly irresponsible manner, zipping through traffic way above the speed limit. It infuriates me, especially because I try to be extra careful when I see a motorcycle on the road. I've seen plenty of idiots driving all sizes of cars in stupid and dangerous ways, some on phones, some not.

I drive the smallest Chevy they make. I seem to remember you posting about sometimes driving a car as well...have you ever done any of the things I listed as hazardous above?

I try to be careful when I drive. I don't always succeed, because I'm human, I get distracted, whatever. I am try to be extra careful when on the phone, but I'm not perfect.

The most dangerous thing I've done in my car recently was thoughtlessly trying to bat a mosquito out of the open window while on an exit ramp. Let's make that against the law.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: October 21st, 2004 11:25 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: One more for the road

ps - oh, and with the mosquito thing, I realized what I was doing and stopped before I went off the ramp or something equally stupid.
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