Random Thoughts from my Trip

Those that follow me on Twitter may already be aware that I spent the labor day weekend in Las Vegas. It was a short trip, but in my opinion one can only stay a few days in Vegas before they are either completely burned out, or broke.

During the trip there were quite a few ideas that popped into my head that I wanted to suss out, but never got the chance to, instead the point of this post it to share some half baked thoughts that came from my trip.

  • Vegas hotels are always busy, and always making money – so why the hell did my hotel only offer Internet access via Ethernet? (totally unusable with the iPad). While the hotel my father stayed at had a complete connection kit and iPad dock setup. I feel ripped off.
  • Now my hotel was a bargain price and old (Luxor), but even still wireless should not have been an unreasonable expectation. I really expect this to change over the next few years and more and more small computers omit Ethernet ports.

  • AT&T had about 4 bars in most all places, however those 4 bars were meaningless and completely useless. I have seen this in a few spots around Seattle before, but never to this degree. You could be standing in one spot, full reception, and still not be able to place a call, send a text, or use the data. Blew my mind. Then ten minutes later AT&T’s network would be working faster than I have ever seen it work in my life.
  • Now this was not just in the Casinos, I saw this when we were on the roads, highways, freeways, street, airport, malls. My guess is that the network was simply over loaded, but even still how odd. I have rarely seen the network become useable and unusable in such short times, without moving around. ( I of course checked to make sure I was holding the phone correctly).

  • The MiFi was a life saver, because it was on Verizon. I cannot tell you how much I used the MiFi with my iPad this weekend, it was invaluable and really snappy. This was in stark contrast to the lovely craptastic AT&T network.

  • Gowalla, and Foursquare have some serious work to do on their implementations if they want people to check in while in Vegas. I only tried a couple of times and was overwhelmed trying to find exactly where I was (on top of the network troubles), eventually I gave up (which brought much happiness to my Wife). When you go to check in, every place inside the casino appears and then they often appear a couple of times leading to tons of confusion.

  • My new Bose In-Ear Headphones rocked and I love carrying them over my old Bose QuietComfort 2 Headphones. Even though they didn’t block as much noise the sound was loud enough to by enjoyed all flight.

  • I introduced my wife to Angry Birds, now she too is addicted.

  • Reading articles in Instapaper while on the plane is bliss.

  • I only brought the iPhone 4 as my camera, which was a mistake. It is a great camera for a phone, but there are some really weird white balance issues that I ran into. HDR will solve the rest of the backlighting problems that I had though.

  • I checked my bag and only carried on my iPad bag. Holy cow was that a small carry on, I loved it.

  • They sell iPods in vending machines at the Airport, which is not all that uncommon. What struck me though is what you would do with that iPod. I mean if you forget your iPod and buy one before you hop on a flight how are you supposed to get your music on it to listen to it? Made no sense to me.

  • It had been quite a while since I last flew Southwest Airlines, and the boarding system has been revamped, which is rally stupid. Instead of being a free for all for everyone as the groups are called (A, B, and C depending on how early you checked in), you now get a group and a number in that group. Everyone then must line up by group and number. This is way to confusing for most people, I think they are better off assigning seats at this point.

  • I charged the iPad Thursday night and only once for 10 minutes before I left Vegas to Seattle. Last night when I put the iPad on the charger it had 19% battery remaining – which is astounding.

Originally posted for members on: September 7, 2010
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