Tuesday, October 19, 2021

A Modern Relic

Our first HD (32") TV, bought for the Red Sox in 2004 World Series, now sits quietly in the library with an HDMI switch and various spare media equipement — a DVD player, an older (unsupported) Roku, Chromecast, and a stereo. It cannot pick up live TV because it lacks a digital tuner.

(If it died tomorrow, I could stuff a spare 30" Dell monitor in the TV's place with the monitor's line jack out feeding the stereo, with zero loss of functionality.)

We barely watch the newer, smarter, bigger, networked HD TV on the living room mantel. That TV has surround sound and newer versions of all the toys in the library and more. The library TV gets used even less than the living room. Being chubby and dumb, the library TV sort of annoys me. But given the lack of use, we do not need a library TV which …

  • accepts multiple HDMI inputs.
  • has a digital tuner (and an antenna).
  • has modern Roku model as a source.
  • is thinner.
  • is smart.
  • is networked.
Nope. Nope. Nope.

I feel better now. 😀

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

End of an Transportation Era

PURR MORE the Green as envisioned by the MINI web site

I became a member of Zipcar (the hourly car rental company) on July 23rd, 2005.  As I recall, I mostly signed up in order to rent a MINI Cooper for an extended test drive of the brand. We liked it, and we purchased what became our 2006 MINI Cooper S, PURR MORE the Green. 

That car took us round-trip coast-to-coast and set our record for length of vehicle ownership, so clearly we choose well.

I know the date because (for the first time in years) today I logged in, and I glanced at my account as I cancelled my membership.

Zipcar has been free for me for years as a (former) Google employee, but that's getting to be a long time ago — now they are moving my account to their $70 standard annual plan and retiring my previous membership plan.  (Which makes me wonder if current Googlers are being moved as well, but not enough to ask.) 

It was occasionally useful me when it was free, but it wasn't worth paying for. Likewise, it could be useful for Katherine when she still traveled extensively for work and took day trips down into the Silicon Valley.  Even before the pandemic, her travel dropped off over the years to where she didn't even go to the last SEMICON West before the pandemic. (That broke a streak of ~25 years.)

Ah well, Zipcar taught us MINI Coopers are fun.