Friday, July 29, 2016

AT&T Junk Mail - Attempt to Get on the Do Not Mail List

I do not like junk mail so I try to unsubscribe from as much as possible to limit the amount that shows up each day. Lately I have been getting a lot of advertisements from AT&T. I guess it is expected since I have AT&T internet so they want me to sign up for more services. I am never interested so I looked into how to get off the AT&T mailing list.

After a lot of searching I found this which states you must call their number to request to be added to the Do Not Mail list. This is already very inconvenient as they should have an online form to submit your information to be removed from the list. Nevertheless, I call the number to try to get off the list.

It is the standard voice recognition system that does not work very well. I get connected with a representative and explain that I would like to unsubscribe from the mailings. He seemed to be very clueless and at one point I pretty much had to explain to him the concept of what mail is.

While he was trying to figure out how to do this, I was continually pitched upsells which is a pet peeve of mine at this point. I am calling to get off the mailing list, not to sign up for a new tv service. Companies need to stop this practice. No one is going to sign up for a new service spontaneously like that.

After about 10 minutes I could tell it was not going anywhere and after being on hold of an extended period of time, I just had to hang up. It should not be that difficult to get off a simple mailing list.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Pokeman Go Review - Overview of the Newest Hit Mobile Game

Pokeman Go is the latest mobile game sweeping the world. It has only been available for a short time but already it is the most downloaded and used app right now and it seems to be just about everywhere. I overheard someone talking about it last week and while I am not much of a gamer or an apps person, it sounded pretty interesting so I figured I would try it out.

The game is a free app developed by Niantic in partnership with Nintendo and is available for iPhone and Android phones. It uses real world map and GPS so the setting takes place wherever you are. The goal of the game is to capture Pokeman creatures by throwing a ball at them. The concept is similar to Geocaching in that you go around in the real world to find different items. There are many different Pokemon to collect and they are found in different locations.

While you are looking for Pokemon, there are also special stations that are located at public gathering spots and interesting landmarks where you can interact with them and get useful items. The game goes into more detail and there is quite a bit to learn that I have not gotten into yet but so far it has been pretty easy to get started.

After trying it out for about a week, I have been pretty impressed with the game. I like how it is integrated into the real world with the landmarks on the map. It will help you find interesting things in your neighborhood you may not have even known were there.

I was wondering how they developed this game with such detail on a local level. Apparently the company is in association with Google which helps with the mapping part. Also they have a previous game called Ingress which had a similar use of real world GPS so this infrastructure was integrated into the Pokeman game.

The game has had a positive effect on the community as it is a topic that is bringing people together. People are now more inspired to get out and explore while using the game and since there are so many other people participating, it is easy to find others who are playing and talk with them about it.

Right now the game has a huge following and it looks like it will only get bigger as it expands to more countries. It will be interesting to see if the interest continues over time or if people will start to get bored of it after a while. I think if they continue to update it, it will maintain popularity for some time.

So far, game play has been smooth and I have only had the app freeze up once. It is pretty easy to navigate and understand, but documentation could be better. To really have a detailed understanding of the game, you really have to seek out instructions and tips on other websites and forums.

For improvement, I would like to see the option to be able to customize your character at any time. It has some customizing options when you first start, but once you get in, there is no way to change it. I would also like to see more options to interact with other players.

Overall I definitely recommend checking out Pokemon Go if anything just to see what everyone is talking about. It is pretty fun and easy to play and has lots of potential if you really want to get involved with it. Pokemon Go is available now for download on iPhone and Android phones.

Update 7-19-16:
I noticed the game has been freezing up more lately which is understandable considering how many people are trying to play it at the same time. Also I noticed it uses up phone battery very quickly. I don't like my battery to run down fast so I may not be using it as much if it keeps using up the battery so quickly. 

Update 7-28-16: 
I noticed when walking around while the game is on, even when it is on battery save mode, the phone tends to get hot. I have read reports of others having this same issue. This may be a problem for certain features of the game that require you to walk around a lot.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Funniest Stories On Reddit

One of my favorite sites to visit each day is Reddit because there are always new and interesting posts and you never know what you are going to find. Over the years I have saved a few of my favorites so I figured I would share them here for everyone to enjoy. Here are 3 of the funniest stories on Reddit:

Guy enrages parents of girlfriend by pretending not to know what a potato is - In this story a guy explains what happened the first time he met his girlfriend's parents. He has the bright idea to try and be funny by pretending not to know what a potato is, but things do not turn out how he expected. The word structure and vocabulary used in this story make it particularly funny.

Guy farts on a misbehaving kid at a store - In response to a question: "What is your silent, unseen act of personal defiance?" redditor RubyRhod goes into detail about a time he farted on a a kid at Target who was misbehaving and being rude to his mother. The writing and details are great on this one as he paints the picture of what happened.

Guy tries to get out of eating a bad steak by throwing it out the window - A guy attends a dinner hosted by his wife's boss. Turns out he does not like the steak and tries a creative way to get out of having to eat it. Things do not go quite as planned.

What are your favorite stories or posts on Reddit? Feel free to share them comments below.