Bye bye birdie!

Last night i decided to do a digital reset of sorts. Ok, well maybe it was thrust upon me because silly me forgot to do a backup before i flashed a new custom rom on my phone. ALWAYS DO A FULL BACKUP FIRST!!!!

I usually do a backup. But i’d flashed this particular rom on several previous occasions and it had always worked flawlessly. Enter Murphy and his annoying law. This was at about 11pm. You know that sinking feeling you get when something really REALLY bad has happened and you’re not sure you can fix it? Ya, that’s what i felt when i was looking at my blank screen. Welcome to “you’ve been bricked”.

After several hours of frustration (at 2am i finally gave up, resigned to having to get a new phone soon – wasn’t that going to be a fun conversation to have with the wife. $$$). But wait, the story has a happy ending. Bear with me. I crashed, and woke up early (it’s impossible to sleep in with young school aged kids in the house). And within about 30 minutes my phone was humming along nicely. Moral of the story? Well. 1st moral: ALWAYS BACKUP before you do something potentially dangerous. 2nd moral: Never try to solve complicated tech problems at 2am.

Sadly, since i hadn’t backed up recently, the best i could do was restore an older backup from 2 months ago. Which might not seem all that bad. But … 2 months of angry birds 3 star levels lost? Seriously. That’s what i was most worried about. Everything else i could either get back through “the cloud” or my other backups. But my angry birds data was irretrievably lost :(

But as the day went on and i starting bringing things back online one by one, i realized something. Probably 90% of the “stuff” i had on my phone was digital clutter that i didn’t really care about. I hightly doubt i’ll miss it (including the angry birds, angry birds rio, angry birds seasons, angry birds space, and bad piggies games that sucked so much of my time). I’m curious to see what i do end up putting back on. Liberation!

Why my bluetooth headset doesn’t like that i’m a lefty

For our anniversary last week, Luann and I decided to go out and each get a set of nice bluetooth stereo headsets for our phones.  We each had different uses in mind. She wanted some light-weight behind the ears/neck that would be good for exercising.  I wanted a nice set that would give excellent sound quality for music / sitting in a cube type setting.  After some searching, we both found what we were looking for.

After a short honeymoon with my new headphones, i started to notice a glitch.  The sound would occasionally cut out briefly.  It was intermittent and sometimes just happened once, sometimes repeatedly.  I couldn’t figure it out.  Did i get a buggy headset?  Was my phone not compatible?  I’d done my research.  These were highly recommended headphones and my phone supported all the right bluetooth specs.

I wasn’t about to give up so easily though.  I loved these things, when they worked.  So last Friday (the same day as the coke incident), i had them on and was just cleaning the kitchen (again, refer to the coke incident) when i noticed the occasional cut-out.  But it only happened when i was facing a certain way.  I didn’t even have my phone in my pocket or anything.  It was sitting on a counter a few feet away from me.  Well within the bluetooth range.

Suddenly it hit me!  My bluetooth headphones didn’t like the fact that i was left-handed.  I kid you not!  No, seriously.  Stop laughing.  It’s absolutely true, and i’ll tell you why.  Whenever my phone was on my right, it worked flawlessly.  Whenever my phone was on my left they would occasionally cut-out.  Why?  Simple.  The headphones receiver is on the right.  Yep.  A simple obstruction like my head or my body or occasionally even my hands/arms would be enough to block the signal for just a second.

This isn’t a big deal for voice when you’re on the phone, but if you’re listening to music at high bitrates, the little pops and cutouts are really annoying.

Solution: Put my phone in my RIGHT pocket rather than my left pocket.  Also, keep it on the right side of my desk at work instead of the left.