Monday, December 29, 2003

A few people that I know have been introduced to wireless or internet so fluently that they have no clue how they got on without it. I currently have very few experiences. I live in an apartment complex that, while being fairly inexpensive and in a good neighborhood at the same time, it affords me little in the way of internet possibilities. I do not have cable and cannot afford the monthly fees for it, so I subsist on an inexpensive and yet extremely slow connection (think 28.8kb/s slow). My particular apartment complex does not have laundry facilities on-site (another way to keep the costs down I suppose) so I have to walk a little bit to get to the laundromat (not very far, but it feels far when you are carting a week’s worth of laundry).

On most days I only cart a book or two, but the last time two times I was there, I brought my laptop computer instead. As I do not have a portable CD player (I have bad karma with CD players, more on that another day) I usually bring my laptop with me to the laundromat so that I can listen to my CDs while I’m waiting for my laundry to finish. Earlier today when I had my computer on listening to one of my Christmas gifts from my sister (“Harem” by Sarah Brightman) I wonder what it would be like to have wireless access wherever you go. Think about it, you would be able to boot up your computer and be able to browse the internet while you are waiting for your laundry to dry at the laundromat, be able to do research from your lunch table in Subway.

I know that a few places already are offering these options. Nearly all St. Louis Bread Companies have wireless access. If there was a St. Louis Bread extremely close to me, I would be there regularly (that is, after I bought a wireless card) and cancel my dial-up access. I was at Borders almost a month ago and they have wireless access, but it cost. I suspect that places like that will have to wake up and smell the coffee, if they want people to use it and make it worthwhile, they will need to either get rid of the cost or make the cost worth the access in order to attract people as places like St. Louis Bread do not charge for their access.

Some companies have already tried this here and there. I remember an article that I read one time which was bemoaning the lack of access and tried to address it. McDonalds had tried a foray into wireless access by doing test stores. There is one big reason that it fell-McDonalds are known as a kid’s restaurant. Business people rarely go there because it is considered not an image they want to portray for business meetings. They would prefer to go to a coffee; bread, bagel, and luncheon place over a loud cartoonish rarely customer-friendly restaurant because it promotes a professional, customer positive atmosphere. McDonalds has been trying to stop a slump that is has been having due to over saturation of their market and that of their own doing (they over franchised their brand) by closing franchises that under-perform and by trying to create unique atmospheres to entice more people to go and “hang-out” hoping that those same people will buy more food and drink while there. One of these particular tests was adding what are called “hotspots” (areas where wireless access are available to some of those restaurants. Main problem is there has not been much demand in the United States and thereby there has not been much in the way of additional hotspots.

Hopefully the day will come that I can sit at my local laundromat and browse the internet while getting my laundry done. I can only hope.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

I guess you could call me a big outdoor-type. On Monday we had the warmest day since the end of the Indian Summer back just before Thanksgiving. Being as it was so nice outside and to top it all off, I had the day off. I decided that I wouldn't sit indoors and waste away my day off like I normally do. I pulled out my bicycle, layered up and headed out. It later turned out that I didn't need as many layers as I had on so off came one sweater jacket that was keeping the heat in. I got some of my shopping done and learned another bus route in case I ever wanted to get back out to REI, Whole Foods or the Galleria Mall.

On my way back I was contacted by John (my current interest, more on him later) asking how I was doing and what I was up to. Originally he asked if I wanted a ride, but I nixed it as I knew that we couldn't have gotten my bike into the back of his car even if he had wanted to, so instead he said that he would meet me at my place (I had hoped that I would beat him there, but it didn't happen). From there we just had a nice evening at home (his home that is). ;)

Sunday, December 14, 2003

Just yesterday we had our first substantial snowfall for the year. As less than thirty days ago we were still having an Indian summer, I suspect that this coming winter is going to be a long one. I remember hearing once that you generally enjoy weather closest to your b-day. Well, I don't. I was born on February 28th (I'm a pisces for anyone that really tries to count that sort of stuff) and I absolutely despise winter. I remember on my thirteenth birthday I asked for a swim party for my birthday. the party ended up being a suprise birthday, but that's another story for another day.

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Friday, December 12, 2003

Hey all, I don't think anyone besides friends or family will be reading this, but I will try to keep this updated-and Smackie, I'll try not to make a Woman with a Problem blog.