marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

I just...*headdesks with laughter*

My phone's cheapest prepaid plan is $45 through GoPhone, aka AT&T PREPAID (the allcaps are theirs, not mine). I don't, to say the least, have $45 for anything, much less my stupid phone, but we're getting into storm season, I still fear the trees and I happened to drop my LG flip phone - which I kind of fucking adored in its 2G glory - in the toilet the other day and the 3G replacement is such a dud I plan to throw it off the next bridge I come across.

Besides my Windows phone and my bridge-bound dud, I have a tiny Android I haven't used in literally years, so I called Net10, who services it, to ask about plans. Their cheapest is $35, saving me $10 bucks, so I took it (data went from 6GB high speed with rollover to 2GB without rollover; other than that the plans are about the same) only to realize I had to migrate my Windows phone data to Android - mostly contacts, photos and emails (I could be upset about losing call logs and texts but I'm really not, so I haven't sought to restore either one of those).

As I write this Google Drive, aka Backup and Sync (the name change is theirs, not mine, sans the allcaps) is syncing 9,655 files between my laptop and their servers. I decided my folder selection was too aggressive when GUID diagrams for Firefox and my Dell printer began rolling in but whatever. To get this far I had to uninstall Google Drive after merely "upgrading" it to Backup and Sync, which failed miserably, not allowing me to sync the proper folders and basically fubaring everything.

While I was unfubaring the laptop installation, I rolled back Drive on Android to factory-installed settings and broke the sync connection from my laptop, which wiped out all the files on Android's Drive. There weren't many because the Gmail address I use for Android was not talking to the one I use on my laptop so I logged out of GMail on my laptop, logged back in using my Android Gmail address, then re-installed Drive (now Backup and Sync) on my laptop. This installation went flawlessly and is syncing away as I write this - and slowing my connection to Dreamwidth to a crawl.

When it's finished, I should be able to upgrade Drive to Backup and Sync on Android and pull in files from my laptop, which should bring over my Windows phone data, because I threw my OneDrive folder in there and it actually let me, which I cannot believe. Getting that done should pull in all the photos on my Windows phone, which are the only data still missing after the work I did last night to pull in everything else...

First I imported my main Outlook account to GMail, but the import was marked "has not started" with a "provide info" link that made me log in again in a small, separate window that barred add-ons like LastPass from running, then told me my credentials were incorrect although after triple-checking them against LastPass I could see everything was correct.

So I googled these problems and import will probably never finish based on others getting the same error messages since literally 2009, so I moved down the list to Send Mail As and Check mail from other accounts. Those tasks went as expected, so now my Outlook mail is forwarding to GMail on Android, so I'll never really need to check my Windows phone again. I also have a setting that shows what's coming in off Outlook - but according to the unlabelled emails I'm getting at the moment, it's at least partly malfunctioning, so I'll need to fiddle with that some more.

Once that was done, my Windows contacts synced with Android and GMail started receiving Outlook mail, so things were getting better, but I don't like stock Android, so I was in need of a more ideal solution when I stumbled across Arrow Launcher, which uses "pages" in place of launch icons or home screen widgets to let you see email as it arrives (you can use app icons or pages, but pages are amazing) so I set up an Outlook page as my second home screen (just swipe right) and now I don't even need an app to scan my email (though I still need an app to read the body text).

Unlike any Windows app ever, it doesn't crash (well, it crashed immediately after installing - um, it not only crashed, it removed all my custom settings, but after a phone restart and a redo of all the settings, it seems to work just fine).

To get around Android's ugly stock app I'm using Android Messages; I tried Allo but it's too resource-intensive, so I had to remove it after only a few minutes. That I can't update from Jellybean to the current version is irritating because I want the Ibotta app, which so far is the only app that isn't compatible, but I haven't really "done" apps in my rush to get Windows data onto Android, so I guess I'll see what else fails to play well with it eventually.

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

This article, to be precise.

The author pisses all over the laptop's parade for three, breathlessly delivered main reasons:

  • all laptops will become bombs, or be treated as such, so no more knee-warmer for you
  • only Apple makes laptops; Apple laptops absolutely blow
  • only young people exist; young people don't age anymore and only buy smartphones and don't ever decide they want something more sophisticated or powerful, so there

While there's much ado about how powerful and sophisticated smartphones are becoming (for instance, 4K screens) there's no mention of how Android is about as secure as a pile of gold ingots left in a busy parking lot in broad daylight with a sign on top with the words "STEAL ME" written in foot high letters, nor of how a small screen that doesn't hold itself up when you need to type with both hands will always be a small screen that doesn't hold itself up when you need to type with both hands, and will be until smartphone makers figure out how to make a phone that unfolds, revealing not just a full-size screen but a full-size keyboard.

If I wasn't quite so stunned at what passes for deductive reasoning here I'd laugh, because the above list - if say, the author was kidding, and this was April's Fool Day - might actually be kind of funny.

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

Being a true despiser of all things Google, I decided a few weeks back that the best thing to do was get a new smartphone that runs Android.

I'll let that fact roll around for a minute.

Do I actually need to go on?

The damn thing doesn't even work without GMail. And I hate GMail. With the burning passion of a thousand suns. Sure, without Gmail it'll still make a phone call or surf the web, but all you've got without GMail is a tiny little brick incapable of downloading a single app or storing any contact info.

So grudgingly, with much sighing and cursing, I got another GMail address (the first dozen usernames I tried were all taken - it was just like signing up for AOL). My new address resembles a tiny part of my real name (all variations of my real name were taken), so I'm now going by Nickname.Digits. On the upside, it's a fairly short name (just eight characters); on the downside, I can't even store the number for a taxi without it being tied to my GMail, which grates on my fucking nerves.

I got this phone because I wanted to try out at least one smart phone before I die, and seeing how fast my mom went, I figured that could be any day now. So I was looking at pay-as-you-go because it's what I've always done.

With Android I figured I'd get a real OS out of it, so I could have Firefox and run my userscripts. But the OS is so old (2.3, Gingerbread) that it won't run Firefox (it won't even run Chrome, which should run natively, for Christ's sake) so I'm stuck with the native browser (at least you can get a black and white Google on it, as opposed to the Christmas tree-looking crap I write scripts just to destroy) and Opera Mobile.

I'd use Opera Mini or Next but they chew up websites - literally destroy them. Then there's something called Dolphin which I uninstalled the moment I saw it because it looks like Avant for mobile, which almost makes me sick because it reminds me that people still use IE.

With my main reason for buying the phone (being able to use good browsers) down the drain with the age of the OS, I now own something with almost no battery life, a screen that's obnoxiously mule-headed about responding to even the most strenuously applied touch, that's too tiny to read comfortably even after ultra-enlarging the text, a soft keyboard that's nearly impossible to work unless you've got toothpicks for fingers - that ties my every contact, my every phone call, all of my Google searches, my every installed app, my exact location at any given moment, and god knows what else to my fucking Nickname.Digits GMail account. I can't even describe how much it annoys me.

On the plus side? After messing around extensively with my coworker's beautiful white Samsung/Windows 7 phone the other night, I'm pretty sure I'm getting one of those next, even if it does tie me down to a contract. While I doubt I'll root my current phone just to run Firefox and GoogleBar Redone (which are the only two reasons on Earth I'd normally root anything), I'd gladly root the hell out of it to run Windows 7 - but I don't know if that can be done.

But seriously, Windows 7 is a dream. The big, fat, colorful Metro tiles are so fast and responsive (also all that swoopy, glidy stuff they do right there on the home screen? It's like the phone you think everyone must have in Heaven) especially compared to Android's hard-to-see, hard-to-poke, hard-to-work tiny little app icons. And Android always feels like it has a problem getting stuff done. Windows 7 seems like it can get stuff done before you even try to do it yourself.