Monday, February 6, 2012

my wildfire just got extinguished

I’ll confess right at the start that I have never been one to fearlessly embrace the cutting edge of technology; I am more often than not gingerly clutching the wooden, riveted handle.

By the time I bought my first smart phone, the android revolution had long stopped being a revolution. But inside my cosy cocoon of elderly gadgets and appliances, my little HTC Wildfire (bought, unknowingly, weeks before the model was declared obsolete by the manufacturer) was all set to start its own revolution.

I learnt the hard way that bragging about my new acquisition was out. I mean it can be a bit tiring to intercept amused smiles and sniggers when you enthusiastically ooh over mailing pictures to people without once touching your laptop (I use the term laptop fondly for a machine that’s only slightly older and heavier than my 4 year old daughter).

But it's amazing how my own smartness quotient has been boosted by my phone.

I know now that what’sapp isn’t a greeting with two spelling mistakes. That android market isn’t a shop that sells toy robots. And that the best things in life are still free, especially if you like to be quoted. I have this tom cat who reminds me of a colleague in meetings with his boss. And this personal echo came to me at no cost from the above mentioned android market.

Then there have been fringe benefits like learning to make detailed schedules of how I should spend my days. Even the fact that I don’t follow any of the events can’t dampen the thrill of seeing my plans transfer themselves to Outlook via Bluetooth on my …um… computer. And Outlook, that was another first for me, to figure out that the word is not just a part of a dismissive statement to be used when you’re losing an argument, as in ‘Oh (said coldly). Is that your outlook…”

But all these things are the stuff you sometimes find stuck to eggs, compared to what I discovered this evening.
Apparently, while immersion and deep dives are good things for human brains, they are not, for android intelligence. So if you sink your impossibly muddied gardening pants in a bucket of water, as I did a few hours ago, you have to make sure your phone isn’t in one of the pockets.

As I write this, my dismantled phone is resting in an airtight plastic container full of rice. I am informed that rice is a desiccant, by lots of people on the net who have written about how it worked to restore their phones. They have also written about their phones being in water for anything from a couple of seconds to a few minutes. (Mine had been soaking for an hour and a half, and I had blamed the long silence on my unpopularity).

I’ll know by tomorrow, if the tip works. But either way, I’ve got a lot to look forward to.
If the phone stays dead, I’ll have to get another one. It will be my second phone in 6 months, just like those early adopter types. Fancy that.
And if the phone pings back to life, I’ll be able to figure out the exact temperature in Taipei, and cloud status in Tokyo. And if I scroll up, I’ll even know what the weather is like in my own city. If that’s not smart, what is?

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