Most People are honest... and Bright too!

If you read my previous story, you know I stupidly left my netbook and a bunch of valuable stuff into someone else's carry on. I knew whoever had it wanted to return it, but I thought they had it pretty tough. Even if they found my name they may not think they got it, my last name is a common first name in spanish. Well, I am writing this to report that, even in Venezuela, most people are not only honest, but pretty bright too.

The person who had my netbook asked his assistant for help in trying to figure out how to return it. He decided, wisely, to bring the machine back to Venezuela instead of leaving it in charge of American Airlines or some Airport's bureaucracy. She, his assistant, was at a loss. She had a couple of pen drives, but the most significant just had pictures and music (64 GB worth of it! ). The Dell mini 9 had no battery left and came without any charger. She tried and succeeded in finding someone capable of charging the mini and cracking into Windows... Alas! my Dell mini 9 is a hackintosh with Mac OS X... No luck there. Before getting the mini back from the guy, in which she could, at least, have seen my name, she decided to browse through the immense amount of pictures in my pen drive and found the bill from my motorcycle with my name, address and phone number. She called got a hold of my son and my computer is back in my hands, with everything intact.

So, a story of ingenuity, honesty, and faith. Right here in Venezuela. The best is what happens. Thanks to the nice guys who returned my belongings. Namaste to all!

The iPad, Cory Doctorow, Sneers, Lost Netbook, and Technology

Last week I did something very stupid. While getting out of the plane in Miami I noticed my Carry on was in the wrong place, I thought someone had change it during the flight, thought no more of it, put my Waterfield bag with my Hackintoshed Dell mini 9, my 64GB Flash drive, my anarchy keyring with an SD card reader, my bank and paypal tokens, and my 3G USB dongle and went on my way. While on line for immigration I noticed that the forms I had carefully filled during flight weren't where they should, then I realized with a cold chill that it wasn't my Carry on! I ran to the counter on the back, ask them to announce that the people in row 19 had taken my bag and frantically ran back and forth trying to find them in one of the lines. Finally, I found the guy, we exchanged bags and pleasantries and went on our respective ways. Hours later while unpacking I realized I had left my Waterfield bag with all my stuff on the wrong Carry on. I don't know if the guy has or will make an attempt to return it to me, but I tried everything I could think of to make it easier for him, but I don't think it is very easy.

So, without my traveling netbook I needed an answer. Should I keep the MacBook Air I've been trying to sell? No, it is a shitty machine, that's why it doesn't sell. Should I buy a computer? Alienware Mx11 or M15? A MacBook Pro? Should I just "rough it" with only my trusty Dell XPS m1330 (the best machine I've ever own)? Or should I just get an iPad?

I thought I would get one at some point, unless I never sell the Air. But I also thought I would get an iPod touch at some point and I haven't. After using a friend's iPhone 3GS for a week, I decided to get the Nexus One, because I realized how much speed changes an experience. With the Nexus One I've gotten the idea of not getting an iPod touch at least until my iPod Classic gives up the ghost, if then... So, I am reading about the iPad and trying to decide. Yesterday, I was convinced I would get one, after Walt Mossberg said it is, almost, a laptop replacement. I could pack my bluetooth keyboard, hear podcasts on the Nexus One (it's what I am doing anyway), and travel without a laptop for the first time since 1991. I may even leave the Kindle if reading on the iPad suits me.

Then I read Cory's piece and I agree with his points. I don't think he is sneering at anyone, only a fanboy could think that way. I also don't feel like the Old Guard fearing a loss. So what is it? How do I feel about computers becoming appliances? Molly Wood in a Buzz Out Loud episode said that she wanted technology just to work. Of course, that's what we all want, right? Wrong! I don't want technology that works, that's not fun. I want technology that almost works, that allows you to do wonderful things, but by thinking in weird ways. Technology that anybody can use to do anything, is simply boring. And I am not afraid it will make me useless, people ask me a lot of questions about the stupid iPhone, for FSM sakes! What I think is that I won't enjoy technology like that. I want technology to be fun, interesting, and weird. I want gadgets that almost do what you want, with quirks, and incomplete features, unfortunately, I don't know where the iPad falls in this. Even if it is closed (Cory's point) it can be opened like Geohot did with the iPhone, and probably will do with the iPad. And then it may become quirky and wonderful. Oh well, I have a month to decide, because if I get an iPad, it will be a 3G one, and I will only get it if I can pick it up on a store in person. You see? I'm quirky like that...

Crossing Light: New York Style


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