Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Good morning the day before Valentine’s Day.

In my quest to make my Valentine’s card for my wonderful Wife I always must do some research – isn’t that what the techie people do? Or the deep thinkers? Hmmm….

Anyway, I started off with Copilot, my new favorite digital assistant (next to Alexa) and asked Copilot the following question on the very sunny Tuesday at 11:30A.M.

Q: What does “Be my Valentine” mean

And my answer was (with links to follow up on).

“Be my Valentine” is a phrase that people use to ask someone to be their romantic partner for Valentine’s Day, which is a holiday celebrated on February 14th. It usually implies that the person wants to express their love or affection for the other person, and maybe give them some gifts, such as flowers, chocolates, or cards. The phrase comes from the tradition of sending valentines, which are love notes or tokens, to someone you admire or care for. The origin of the phrase is not very clear, but it may be related to the legend of Saint Valentine, who was a Christian martyr in ancient Rome. Some stories say that he healed the daughter of his jailer and wrote her a letter signed “your Valentine” before he was executed12

1: Why We Ask Someone To Be Our “Valentine” | Dictionary.com 2: ‘Be My Valentine?’ What Does That Even Mean These Days - 101 Sex+Relationships The Notebook

Now the links were to; 1) Dictionary.com and 2) 101 Magazine and I checked out those links. The reading was fun and interesting.

I hoping this helps me in my endeavor to product the card of wonder and Love.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Friday, January 19, 2024

The Beginning of The Internet For Us - So Much Fun.

Not sure the exact date (1993?) but this is the disk that took me further down the road to the Internet. A conversation with a good friend in Cincinnatian, off to a store, and listened to a demo on Prodigy took the disc home.

This was ultimately followed by downloading Netscape at midnight - or sometime there after due to the crush. 

From there to building webpages for Netscape using the famous "Hot Dog Web Editor". What do you mean you have never heard of "Hot Dog"? "Hot Dog" was created by "Sausage Software" I think from Australia. 

I was led to "Hot Dog" by a disc in a book by "Que", "Creating Your Own Netscape Web Pages". Pages created all in code and so much fun. 

I wasn't the first, but we were right there. Many, many stories to tell 

I was laughed at for buying the computer in the early 80's and no one wil ever use the Internet, what a waste. :) I LOVE IT! How far we have come since these days. 

I remember the first night we downloaded a picture of a map from a library in France. Working with a 300 baud modem it took quite some time, but with each line we became more fascinated with the World Wide Web. 

And today I am still impressed with what we can do. 

I know, I need to take a better picture. 

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

UX of Buying Online and Its Problems.

 We recently purchased a product from Costco online and it was a big UXUser Experience.

We were looking at a specific trash can for our kitchen. We found one at Costco, which we thought looked good and would function for our needs. We debated and finally made the decision and the Warehouse we go to did not have anymore. It must have been a good seller as they had a bunch the week before, so, we went online at Costco.

Online, at Costco, we discovered a $20 increase in price, so we did a little search and found the same price at Amazon, where we normally shop, but being the customer’s we are, we bought from Costco. Product arrived and just what we wanted.

We were back at the Costco Warehouse not long after and what to my wandering eyes should appear, the Step can is back in stock but at $20 less – priced same as before.

I was going to write Costco, however, like many online businesses it is difficult to write and explain the issue, Customer Service has options, but this kind of feedback is not one of them. In their Warehouses there is someone to talk to but not online. 

I could have asked for a Price Adjustment, however, all I wanted to say was “Love your store but I just won’t buy from you online anymore.” I felt lucky this lesson only cost $20, much less than the one I learned from the Plumbing and Heating organization we recently used.

We shop at the Big Box Store, Costco, because it’s fun to go out and walk, look at all the ‘stuff’ and it is interesting and informational. Not sure how many times we have gone there and bought something we did not plan on buying because we saw it, became intrigued, and eventually purchased it. 

Not so sure with their online business.

Thursday, October 5, 2023

First the Kiosk, then...?


Created with DALL-E3
In the past I would always go to McDonald's in the morning for breakfast and do some reading, some writing, and start my day this way. With the advent of COVID I stopped doing this. Now my routine (if there is one) is to fill up my thermos and head for the library - of which there are two great ones in my area and so I have choices. 

Yesterday I broke with my new pattern and went to McDonald's. As I walked in there was a gentleman (I think he was gentle) filling out his order at the Kiosk - interesting, however, there was a person, standing behind a cash register, who was just staring straight off in the distance 

I walked up to the cash register where the employee was standing and they said, "Can I help you?" - no smile, no outward appearance of excitement, joy, or intrigue. I ordered a cup of Senior Coffee and the individual said, "99 cents", still no sign of recognition. I gave them a dollar bill and they said, "Do you want the penny back?", to which I replied "No". At this point, the individual gave me a receipt and said nothing else, and no eye contact. 

Was I talking to a real person? Are the employees being trained to imitate robotic communication so we will not be aware when they change over? Kiosk to Robot (the penny helps pay for the robot). 

I have done retail sales training (years ago), but it would appear the rule book has changed. The rules now appear to be:

  • Don't smile
  • No superfluous communication
  • Keep the penny
The coffee was good, the place was clean, and I did some reading. 

I will be going back to the library; the coffee is cheaper (.40¢ a pod), it is quieter, no superfluous communication, water is free as well, and I keep the penny. 

Monday, July 17, 2023

A Look at Microsoft's New Office Font

 Microsoft is moving to standardize Aptos Font for the office, and I thought I would look at it. I am very much in favor of the change, was not crazy about Calibri for the reasons at the bottom of this post. I might note that for the reasons at the bottom I tend to use Times New Roman because of the Serif. When fonts get small there is a problem with sans serif fonts. Also, as I get older, I need all the help I can get reading small print. I think sometimes advertisers, and others, try to get too much into a small space. Perhaps they are being paid by the word. I have heard here are those who would say I could excel at that.

 It is possible I just might use Aptos more than I did Calibri. 

Friday, July 14, 2023

Friday Morning Lost at the Library.

All morning I have been concerned with how we gain our Lifelong patterns of communication, and then we change it up as we go. In the middle of this, as often happens, I get myself distracted. It all starts very simply, I think something, which distracts me, then I go down a different road, find some obscure fascinating thought and I'm gone and who knows s for how long.  

Someone once told me (or I read it somewhere?) You begin to learn Truth, or Wisdom, at some point in the same way - parental guidance. “You go out into the street, and I’m going to kill you.” You go out into the street; they drag you back, but they don’t kill you. OK, I’m learning. 

And then I think WOW all this and it’s only 11:16 am and I am at the library. 


When you see “am” after the time what does that mean? Then I use it in the following text. When I read it back it didn't look right; "11:16 am and I am..." - whoa. I'm off. 

The first "am" means “ante meridiem”? What? Then pm means "post meridiem". Now I find "am" is also an acronym for “amplitude modulation”, something we should all be aware of (particularly if you wear hearing aids). 

What was difficult was finding a definition for the way we use "am". Have you looked for a definition of “am” lately? Yet we use it all the time. What does it mean? What do you think it means? 

The search begins. 

The first reference I found was in the UK “am” is "1 form of be :” (Cambridge Free English Dictionary and Thesaurus). I 'assume' that is the same as "one form of be :" and their example: “Do you know how old I am?”, I reflected could be said “Do you know how old I be?” (works for me.) 

I did fine one definition of “am” in a search that stated, “verb - first person singular present of be” – not sure what dictionary provided the answer; however, an Oxford English Dictionaries link was connected to the definition and when clicking on the link I could have subscribed to the Oxford English Dictionary for $39/year. I am sitting in a library, and I think I will be happy to use their dictionary. Anyway, the answer was available online via Bing using Edge - and that is where I be. 

And then I'm off again. 

Now there is an advertising line for you; “Binging on the Edge”. This is not Lady Gaga’s “The Edge of Glory” where one line is “I’m on the Edge with you”, although, Microsoft should use Lady Gaga’s song in their ad’s. 

Hmm.... "I'm Binging on the Edge with you".  It has a certain ring to it. Anyway, it was fun for a Friday Morning. 

I be on my way. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

The Local Library Is a Great Resource for Research and with New Features

 I really should say the features are NEW to me.

My local library is the Lane Library, in Fairfield, Ohio. This has become my writing, reading, and thinking spot. It’s quiet, easy to get to, warm, and the people are friendly.

Features I did not know were available.

Recently I wanted to read the book; “Silent Messages” by Albert Mehrabian valuable information on research into non-verbal communication, and I was told the ultimate study. This publication was copyrighted in 1971 and to purchase the book would be costly so I went to my Lane library.

They did not have it physically but on checking I could, through the library, borrow it from the Ohio State University library – wow. Through a program called “SearchOhio”, a consortium of public libraries throughout the state, I would have greater resources.

I put in my request and 2 days later had an email to pick it up at my local library. I not only kept it for the allowed 21 days but was able to renew it without going through the compete process for another 21 days.

This is a service.

And it gets better.

I went back to the library looking for a copy of “The Art of Living” by Epictetus and now I find I can get it digitally through the library. Well, I am a great eBook reader, and this is available for download, via my Kindle app.

The people at the library gave me the instruction on downloading the “Libby” app from the Google Play store for my Android phone and not only was I able to borrow the book to read on the Kindle app, I also was able to capture an audible version of a Thich Nat Han book on “The Miracle of Mindfulness” which I can listen to in the car or on my headphones.

All on the 21-day borrowing policy with the ability to renew.

All for the cost of a Library Card.

As Jim Rohn would say: “And what is the cost of the library card? It’s FREE, its FREE!”

I do wish they had a coffee shop but then I own a thermos, so I bring my coffee with me.