Hello Android: LG Optimus V Review

I’ve been using NET10 as my cellular carrier for nearly two years. I got their most basic phone (the LG 300G) at a Wal-Mart in Colorado Springs, CO, in June 2009 and have been paying $15/month ever since for 150–200 minutes (10¢ each, or 5¢ per text message). I got tired of that phone’s slowness and tiny keypad rather quickly, as I tired of NET10’s baseline service. I got a number and access to the network, but that was all. They also gave me a number that was prone to receiving calls from collection agencies and spam text messages. (Finding…

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Polishing Minneapolis’ Wireless Civic Garden

I’ve done some playing around with the citywide Wi-Fi here in Minneapolis, and I must say that the range of information accessible through the Civic Garden feature (which allows even non-subscribers access to City-related sites) is impressive. However, while I understand that the whitelist of “free” domains is limited to noncommercial properties, there are a few exceptions that should be made. Or at least, some resources should be hosted by the City or proxied for Civic Garden users. Metro Transit’s site Visiting MetroTransit.org when online via the Civic Garden is a little weird. The home page is a lot longer…

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Credit to St. Kate’s Computing Services

A while back, I about an annoyance in update scheduling on the computers at St. Catherine University. While my experience was disrupted for that one night, I don’t think I made it clear enough that overall, the St. Kate’s IT department runs things very well. Because of when that incident occurred—during —I wasn’t in the best of moods, and I think my writing the following day reflected that. Compared to other institutions at which I’ve had the privilege of computing, St. Kate’s actually leads the pack in most areas. Augsburg College provides an especially good contrast to St. Kate’s: Operating…

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tr.im: An Exercise in How Not to Run a Service

It recently came to my attention that tr.im has decided to stop accepting new URLs shortened through the website and asked developers to remove tr.im functionality from their applications, and plans to shut down the redirection service in a year or two. I went there to shorten an address on Tuesday but came upon this page instead: Ever since discovering the service about two years ago, I have shortened almost every URL I post to Twitter, Facebook, and several other such sites through tr.im. That will have to stop, apparently, because those addresses will no longer work in the not-too-distant…

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On Morning Matinées

Image by Micah Taylor via Flickr This morning, I had the dubious pleasure of waking myself at 08:00 to work a morning matinee of Jack and Rochelle. Not falling asleep until around 04:00 didn’t help things, but even getting just four hours of sleep would have been worth it if everything had gone as planned. But as it happened, this morning’s show was canceled for insufficient audience. OK, so Friday morning at 10:00 is kind of a strange time to have a show. The target audience is school groups, since most people are at either work or school; the only…

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“No Evil”: My NET10 Wireless Experiences

Update (2012-02-26): Apparently NET10 now sells SIMs for use with AT&T, T-Mobile, and unlocked GSM phones, if you’re willing to pay for the $50/month Unlimited Talk/Text/Data plan. Thanks to Anna for her comment. Last summer I began using a prepaid cell phone (an LG 300G, the cheapest, most basic model available at my purchase location) from NET10 Wireless, supposedly the “high-usage division” of TracFone. NET10’s rates are flat: 10¢ per minute (even if it’s actually one second, like any other per-minute charge) and 5¢ per text message in or out. The phone’s been very handy for some important calls and…

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“Guys and Dolls” Retrospective

This was meant to be published last Wednesday, but WordPress missed the scheduled post. I’m looking into how to solve that problem in the future. I told myself I’d blog about anything significant before I started it. That didn’t happen, so I’m doing my normal post-project wrap-up. Combining the first time I’ve ever assistant-directed a show with the first time I’ve ever played in a pit orchestra (despite plenty of “regular” orchestra experience) was a job. Here are the highlights—or at least the important bits—and my usual summary of tech week. Becoming Involved I got involved in my two different…

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reMAP: IMAP reConceptualized

Gabor Cselle, the founder of reMail, recently posted an idea for replacing the IMAP email protocol with something with which working would be easier. The proposed name? reMAP, short for reimagined Mail Access Protocol. He calls for a RESTful design that among other things would globalize message identifiers (rather than changing them the instant a message is moved to a new folder), replace folders with labels (a la Gmail), require the server to handle email search indexes, and make conversations the basic unit of email (instead of individual messages). reMAP would also make handling MIME messages unnecessary; the client could…

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A Thought About Efficient IT Administration

I’m kind of calling out St. Kate’s Enterprise Computing Services department in a way, because I want to know why they would schedule a restart-required software deployment an hour before the computer lab is to close. Can anyone with experience in Information Technology and management of company/school computer networks tell me why the times chosen to deploy new software are chosen? My experience last night of a new software deploy completely disrupting my very limited time on the computer happened at Saint Catherine University, which has a generally great library (unlike Concordia University in Saint Paul, though Concordia used to…

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“Houdini” plugin for WordPress is no magician

I’ve seen some pretty absurd WordPress plugins show up in the Plugins dashboard widget on this site, but the recently-released “Houdini” takes the cake so far. It claims to prevent spammers from copying the contents of any post or page upon which the [houdini] shortcode is placed. The fact is the internet is open can lead to theft especially to content stealing and plagiarism. Until now, there was very little to discourage and deter this serious crime. Yes content theft and plagarism is a crime in some jurisdictions. You cannot rely on others or the authorities to continue to police…

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