I spent several hours today tearing apart my desk setup and rebuilding it. This is the first time I’ve done this in almost a year, and it’s startling to see just how much stuff I’ve accumulated in my computer setup. In fact, here’s a diagram of the information-carrying wires on, underneath, and beside my desk…
I was at my local Apple Store this afternoon, and I happened to notice a pair of Cellebrite devices sitting on the Personal Setup table. My only exposure to these devices was through reports that law enforcement agencies would use these devices to download the data from your phone during traffic stops. In fact, it was those reports that caused me to change my iPhone settings to require a passcode immediately upon sleep; the Cellebrite device is unable to access any data from a locked iOS device and the only way to lock your device is to set it to automatically lock when the power button is pressed.
In any case, the devices work with more than just iOS devices, and presumably are present in the Apple Store so that people upgrading from a different phone can copy over vital information to their new iPhones. Still, the devices stick out like a sore thumb compared to the iPods, iPhones, iPads, and Macs on the adjacent tables (it’s one ugly device).
Now that iCloud is out, I’m looking into switching over to it from Google’s services. I’ll definitely continue to use my GMail address and I’ll probably continue to use the GMail web interface, but as Google Contacts and Calendar don’t play as well with my setup, especially my Mac, I’m going to try to switch those over to iCloud.
In preparation for doing so, I decided to take the moment to clean out my contacts list. Lots of duplicate entries, and lots of people that I will never see or contact again. As I got to the ‘L’s , I got to someone I haven’t seen or heard from in over ten years (which, if you’re 24, is a long time). I went to elementary and middle school with them, but they ended up going to a different high school and I never saw the person again. And yet, ten years later, here is their contact info safely ensconced in my Google Contacts.
How this came to be is a little remarkable. It was for my 13th birthday, 11 years ago, that I was able to save up enough money for a Palm m100. I’d been lusting after the devices for quite some time at that point, and getting the device was a very significant moment in my life up to that point. I could regale at length my fond memories of the device, but suffice to say I indended to use every function of the device to its absolute fullest. This included me being an enormous pain and hounding schoolmates and relatives for their contact information, including this one person I mentioned earlier.
I describe why I think that the iPhone 4S is disappointing in my latest Ask Different blog post. And the lack of a case change is only part of the reason.