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technology

Before the high-tech world became more prominent these days, in terms of reading an article or story,one goes to a newspaper,magazine or a book(soft or hardcover or paperback).

With the  onset of iPads,tablets,smartphones and e-readers like Kindle or Kobo, reading anything has taken on  a whole new meaning now. You hardly stain your fingers with printer’s ink nor touch a paper page with these fancy hi- tech gadgets for sure.

But some purists especially the bibliophiles still love the feel of the paper pages as they leaf through the length of the article that they’re reading. They love as well the  look,smell and design of the book,newspaper and magazine that they hold to.

Of course, the e-reader is environmentally friendly since no trees were killed to produce paper but even a book/magazine nowadays can be produced with a certain % of recycled paper too.

One’s fingers does the turning of the paper pages with a book/magazine/newspaper while on an e-reader, one’s fingers keep on clicking to go electronically from 1 page to another  via a touch-tone screen.

Whichever way one prefers, reading has become more versatile nowadays. Still the purpose of disseminating information and taking our minds and imagination to faraway places through reading remains the same.

Josie

A 94 year old lady who lives on  my floor  had lamented the lost art of letter writing nowadays. She said that because everything now is so high-tech and advanced that the need to get things done quicker is so expected.

Case in point she said is the way people communicate on paper. She noticed that not a lot of folks nowadays send friendly  letters through the mail except for official business.

Nowadays, she said that people with their computers and cellphones either e-mail,text,fax or tweet messages at lightning speed. Seems she says that people have no more patience and are lazy to wait for other people’s responses through the mail. She’s concerned that many young folks in particular don’t know anymore the fine art of letter-writing and might not be astute in spelling either, what will all those shortcuts that texting does.( I doubt that  she ever heard of spellcheck or dictionary.com either)

She loves the sight and smell of a fresh piece of stationery being removed from an envelope that she gets from her mailbox. She loves the thrill of mailing and receiving one.

I told her gently that in this digital era,one’s way of communicating has advanced as well and is the sign of the times. Faster communication isn’t a bad thing . In a way, it gets a lot of things done. I told her that if she ever learned to use a computer or a smartphone,it’ll broaden her horizons and  on her perception of this world even further. But knowing her, she had already told me long ago that she’s not interested in learning how to use these 2 high-tech devices because she’s too old to keep up with them. She couldn’t even keep up with her offsprings,grand- and great grandkids being so high-tech as well.

I did agree with her that letter-writing is slowly dying but not totally dead in my opinion.

There are certain life situations that would require letter writing or even writing on specific cards with one’s penmanship like messages of thanks,congratulations,sympathy,good wishes and at times,even bad news like the death of someone for example. Nothing beats the personal touch.

For those letters that can do with typewritten text would definitely be of formal correspondecnce and other business matters.Sometimes,one’s penmanship could be hard to read if used in these cases.

It was a good discussion with her and which made me think it over about the letter’s significance in this current digital/hi-tech world.

Yes! That’s progress for you!

But I extremely doubt that the post office will no longer exist in due time. That’s cutting it too far, in my own humble opinion,mon ami.

Bonjour!

Josie

With the recent release of the iphone5 and in this ever expanding high-tech world of ours as well as increasing mobility of the citizenry, I can’t help but think of the somewhat diminishing relevancy of the landline phone..

Gone are the days that the only way a phone can be mobile is through a walkie-talkie. Calling a phone through a phone booth is second best but even now, phone booths are slowly becoming few and far between. To prove my point, go through any airport in the world and observe that long lines at the phone booth are quite rare now and almost every passenger you see around is either talking to a cell phone or holding such a devise at least. To get to an airport phone booth, I have to walk a good distance to be near one!

A landline phone just stays put in your domain. It only moves around when you take off the plug and move it to another part of your house,office,etc. where it gets replugged in its new location. It can’t take pictures like a cellphone camera and will only take messages through an answering machine which is slowly I think, becoming  an endangered specie too. The iphone has a big upgrade..even has a gal Friday named Siri who even acts almost as a female Albert Einstein.

Current cellphones or smartphones as they’re called now,even have computer features so you can even Google or watch an online show at the palm of your hand. Phones are now getting smaller and flatter than a pancake for easier handling and transport. They don’t look like car batteries anymore. Ah, the signs of progress! Let your fingers do the walking as they say and I don’t mean just the phonebook,mind you!

I still believe that were it not for the landline phone’s existence, improvisations of it in terms of function and appearance, the gradual emergence of the high-tech phones wouldn’t have been possible. Learning from the landline phone’s strengths and weaknesses had made it possible for inventive minds to explore new frontiers.

A landline phone for me still means that I’m constantly  connected at one place and ever reachable and that it constantly stays around like a faithful dog, ever ready to take in a call from anybody wanting to chat with me about anything under the sun. On a practical basis, in case of a power outage, you can still use a landline phone to call out unlike a cordless phone that will not work under such circumstance. Also there’s no battery or charger to worry about here. With a cellphone, you have to make sure it’s fully charged all the time in case you need to use it during  the power outage or any emergency whatsoever.

If the phone’s inventor Alexander Graham Bell was still alive, I wonder what he would have thought about his invention’s ever constant evolution? He probably would have been amazed especially with the now existing phone apps.

The world is getting smaller,mon ami and we’re all practically just a call away from one another.

Bonjour!

Josie

As the summer season continues to wind down, the heat wave is starting now to gradually dissipate. Before that, I had to buy a fan at my local Walmart and was faced with a lot of choices as to what kind of fan I should buy. It comes in all shapes and sizes but one thing’s obvious. I have to choose between a tower fan vs. a propeller fan.

We are all familiar with propeller fans since childhood.The plastic or metallic mesh cage that holds the body of the fan in place( with the propeller blades spreading out from that body like the petals of a flower) assumes either a circular,square or rectangular shape. If it’s the 2 latter shapes, it’s called a box fan. With 2 cages together side by side, it becomes known as a dual fan. If there’s a plastic or metallic clip below the base of the fan, it becomes known as a clip fan. A small-sized fan is loosely called a desk fan since it can just stand by itself on any desk’s or flat surface.

With all the  aforementioned fans, at some point of use, one has to remove the cage and manually remove the lint that accumulates among the propeller blades.Also depending on the size and shape of the fan, it would determine how much space it’ll take up in any part of your home.

Taking all of these into consideration as well as pricing(depending on the brand) , simplicity of use and less upkeep, I decided to buy a tower fan for the first time.

I got one at a very good price but I decided to try one at a small size(10 inches) which was a good portable size to carry around. Very simple to use by adjusting the fan strength from low to high by just sliding the power lever. Less upkeep needed since there’s no need to clean out any lint. The propellers are arranged in such a way face up and there’s no removable cage  to be seen. My guess is that the tower fan is structured this way so that less cleanup is involved. The tower fan is cylindrical in shape and can stand vertically by itself which results in taking up less room space, considering that it’s slim-looking too.

Fan strength is impressive and acts almost like an air conditioner in a way.

All these types of fans come with an electric cord and socket which is why of course, they’re called electric fans in the first place.

What can more can I say?

Keep cool literally, mon ami!

As I had always said, the heat is still on but slowly starting to wane as time goes on.

Josie

When I heard the news of the death of  Neil Armstrong, the US astronaut who first walked on the moon’s surface on July 20,1969, I felt that another era has passed before all of us. He was the original moonwalker. (My apologies to Michael Jackson).

Mr. Armstrong had just celebrated his 82nd birthday on August 5th this year and 2 days later, had undergone coronary-bypass surgery for blocked coronary arteries. Accdg. to a released family statement, he died from complications of that surgery. He died  on  August 25th.

He was very passionate about the continuance of the space missions to the moon and would be a public advocate of it from time to time. He was known to be a very humble and private man accdg. to those close to him  inspite of his world-wide fame. This was proven when he spoke those famous words: “That’s a small step for [a] man, one giant  leap for mankind”.

His trip to the moon was in a way, a watershed moment for all of us. Even though we’re now following up on Curiosity giving us live video feeds on the planet Mars’ surface, the moon voyage was still a big catalyst for all other space endeavors to come. His spacecraft called Apollo 11 will be forever linked  with that voyage.

It made us all believe that anything’s possible and attainable . Even the late US President John F. Kennedy had high hopes that the US can send a man to the moon someday. Sadly for him, he didn’t live long enough to see his dream come true but I have this hunch,mon ami, that he knew that it did happen after all, once he was already stationed in the afterlife.

To Mr. Neil Armstrong, R.I.P.Godspeed!

As you go to meet your Maker and to the heavenly skies,stars and galaxies above, I’ll be playing this Frank Sinatra classic just for you, Sir,….its title is “.Fly Me To The Moon”.

Au revoir!

Josie

As the high tech era continues to expand everyday, there are certain equipment that’s probably becoming more obsolete and  possibly, extinct by now.

Take first  the telegram. In the olden days, you had to send one with as less words as possible because it’s expensive.It also takes up to 3 days, I believe, to receive a telegram message. With the fax machine, email and text  messaging now at our disposal, I doubt very much that the telegram’s around anymore at all, considering the aforementioned modern gadgets are less expensive and less time-consuming to send messages.

The typewriter on the other hand, I believe has dwindled in number since we all can type on our computer keyboard. But I believe that there are still some purists who still are in possession of one and is willing to make copies of their typewritten reports by using  (gasp!)carbon paper. Is even carbon paper still around too? If there’s any typing mistakes, one usually uses either a typewriter eraser strip or Wite-Out(white correction liquid) to remove such mistakes. The Wite-Out nowadays is used for other non-typing purposes.  On a computer keyboard, we just rearrange the words and  “erase”  a mistake by punching the DELETE button before printing the manuscript out clean as a whistle. Less messy too! No white paste or liquid on either keyboard nor one’s fingers to be seen for that matter.

Yup. Things that were considered fancy and advanced before are now considered obsolete.

Credit that reality to the everchanging technology landscape which surely will still be around after we’re all long gone from this world.

As the saying goes,some things will remain consistent in its existence: death and taxes. I would like to add this word to the mix: change.

Food for thought,mon ami.

Au revoir!

Josie