All I Want Is A Normal Life

Musings from a girl named Normal.

Archive for the ‘gadgets’ Category

My New Royal

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My New Royal

David got me the most awesome present for Christmas: A 1930 Royal typewriter. I looked up the serial number on the Typewriter Serial Number Database (possibly the coolest thing in the whole world).

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Written by normalslife

December 28, 2008 at 3:56 pm

“Change your TV, change your life”

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While watching the news this morning, this phrase made me jump up and literally run for my computer so I could blog.

Side note: that makes me sound really into blogging, which I’m not actually. I only started this blog a few days ago and I’m always looking out for things to blog about, which is sometimes hard for me, since I have relatively little personal drama and I don’t get out all that often. And I think I would bore myself to tears if I blogged about work… which brings up an important point: I don’t think anyone’s actually reading this blog and I have no illusions about the noise-to-signal ratio of the blogosphere, so I don’t think anyone actually ever will. I don’t mean this in a self-depreciating way, but I’m just not interesting enough and I keep going on these long tangents… so back to the entry

Sharp now promises that their new LCD screen television will change your life! When I think about the potential impact of this “life-changing box” (their campaign, not mine), I think of re-arranging furniture in the living room, decreased money in my bank account, and, of course, the required re-prioritization of my life to focus on the holy television, not on things like getting in shape for the Wilderness Travel Course (eyes on the prize, Violet). I mean, I’d have to commit to spending 42 hours in front of the television to make the cost of the television worthwhile (based on my hourly pay before taxes)… most people, even more! Now, looking at that, I think “ok, that’s only 10 hours less than one hour per week, which is probably what I spend there now,” but we’re talking about re-prioritizing those hours away from other activities intentionally. Bleh!

On the other hand, through the power of a high-definition LCD Sharp television, I could watch the Travel channel and virtually visit hundreds (if not thousands) of places I’ll realistically never go, to get to know millions of people I’ll never meet in person. I could learn new recipes from the Food network (and hang out with my TV crush, Anthony Bourdain) and watch things get exploded on the Discovery Channel. I don’t watch TV as candy, I watch it intentionally (omg, thank you, Tivo!). So I’d experience a richer television experience from watching on this mammoth, gorgeously rendered television. None of these things are really like doing the real thing myself (taking cooking classes, visiting South America, and, most excitingly –and most likely to happen near, around, or on me– making gigantic explosions), but who has time to fit all that into life and work a 50 hour work week? So, in those ways, I guess it would enrich my life. *

I couldn’t believe that the blogosphere wouldn’t be up in arms about this, so I decided to do some quick searches to see what other people are saying about the television that will most definitely change your life (see above for ways it would change life). First, I found that the Sharp website is crashed. I found but was unable to access the press release about the box, so we’ll have to count on my shoddy memory to include Sharp’s announcement here. But second, not that many people blogged about the slogan, which is kind of Suckville. Are people so apathetic about their marketing?

Anyways, here are some highlights:
Change your tv, change your life: “Research shows that television viewing is below average in enjoyment for the optional activities available to us.” (Dave Shearon) Dave seems to have a pretty cool blog (bookmarking it!) about goals, culture, and leadership. But his post on the Sharp campaign kind of leaves me feeling like there’s more there… Dave, how would owning a Sharp television change your life? What would you gain or sacrifice?

Sharp will change your life?
“The marketing strategy revolves around a very large claim… their technology changes your life, I assume for the better although they don’t say.” (Mediamentalism) This post talks about how the slogan, paired with their other campaign about how green their products are, is really misleading. The LCD technology is a cesspool of toxins and Sharp is just jumping on the green-is-the-new-black bandwagon.

… and that’s about it. Sweet Jesus, that’s depressing. Are people really so complacent that a slogan like this doesn’t even cause a blip of outrage in most people’s critical landscape? I mean, if there’s something to blog about, a million people are out there blogging about it, but essentially two critical articles?! Eh, personal rant aside, I thought more people would write about it.

And I guess today, my television did change my life in some small way. It led me to write this blog entry and look at other blogs to research it. It led me to think about things in a more critical way. It led me to be late to walk my dog, who is currently reminding me by growling sullenly on the carpet.

I’d better go back to the default world and get my pup some exercise.

* I started out by writing this post as a rant against the campaign, but as I wrote, I realized that there are both costs and benefits to this television, as implied by their campaign. It’s the old genie-in-the-bottle situation… you get what you wish for, but it may or may not be what you really wish for.

Written by normalslife

September 10, 2008 at 2:15 pm

Though actually, this is pretty damn cool

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It’s TechCrunch50, and, though I loathe TechCrunch and their stupid internet Silicon Valley culture, I had to stop and go “want!” when I saw FitBit. It’s itty bitty tiny weeny.

From what I can tell, you wear it everywhere and it logs everything you do: sleeping, working out, watching TV, making sweet love to your very attractive partner… kind of like a fitness Big Brother. And then it logs all this stuff on their website where you can see it and where your mom can log in and remind you to take calcium as long as you’re not getting enough milk.

I kind of was excited about something of a similar idea, the Nike Plus back when it came out, but it requires me to have an iPod, which I keep losing (yes, three iPods down… I’ve just stopped buying anything but the Shuffle), so I have this useless piece of plastic that only fits in Nike shoes (which I wore out) and only fits on a gadget I no longer own. Totally useless.

So anyways, I signed up for their mailing list and I can’t wait to see it when it comes out… and it’s only $100, so it’s not as expensive as buying a new iPod and Nike shoes. Bonus!

Written by normalslife

September 10, 2008 at 1:21 am