Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Good Enough

Recent hardware failures have made me realize that [a] I/we rely on technology, [b] when bad things happen to tech that I/we are intimately knowledgeable with worse things happen [c] not even Apple can make things simple if you're on a technology budget and even then see [b].

In recent weeks I had a Chromebook Pixel failure. This is an awesome machine with an Intel i7 and 16GB of memory. But when I had my failure I knew I was going to have to solve my problems myself. Even with the online and phone support. In my case both hangouts and google play music failed to start when clicked. The problem is that there are no logs to view and no popups or diagnostics. Not even a BSOD. In the end it took a powerwash+revert and a conversion to dev channel and then back to stable to get the machine back into operating order. Subsequently I emailed Pixel support and they could not help me. (I would have expected someone to ask me for a log or two) I was directed to the individual application feedback form.

The premium I'm paying for a Pixel covers the 3yr for 1TB costs of which I'm only using 1% of and the premium hardware. The support is as non-existent as everyone else. I should have held out for the Dell 13".

In a related failure... my wife's iPhone has been exhibiting some problems recently. Her phone is the iphone 6 plus and it has started to get very warm; and warmer after upgrading to iOS 9. I think I found the problem in the number of apps that are actually running in the background (almost 15 apps). Then different apps started crashing. First it was safari, then it was the camera. We had initially planned to take the phone to a genius but as time passed I realized the first thing that they were going to recommend was that I/we reset the phone. So I/planned to reset the phone last night.

NOTE: iCloud backups has not run in a few months as sh ran out of storage.  That happens when you have a 128GB phone with 5GB backup storage.

As I had been thinking about the problem I decided that a reset and restore from iCloud was not an option because whatever software state was in the machine right now was going to be restored back onto the machine if the error was in the media that was backed up.

NOTE:  A "like new" reset will delete all of your cloud backups.

... getting to the conclusion...

I should have backed the phone up to iTunes in order to save 4 months of pictures that were not backed up anywhere else. I like my android phone because everything defaults to living in the cloud and so there is no partitioning of data as I once experienced when my MacBook ran out of storage for iPhoto. I can replace my android phone a hundred times and I'll have my data.. just like my Chromebook. That's the sweetspot that Google found that Apple did not.

And "good enough" means "the most expensive is not always the best". (probably never is)

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