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Some grateful acknowledgments.
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alexandraerin

Over the course of my birthday, I posted links to my Amazon wishlist. Generous folks out there in internet land provided me with some of my medically necessary dietary supplements, a few new wigs I’ve had my eye on, and… a new smart watch.

As I mentioned last week, I took a gamble on getting a bargain basement smart watch to go with my new smart phone, and it was a huge mistake. My reasoning was “Maybe it won’t do much for that price, but I really just need it to tell time and give me notifications without having to dig my phone out.” What I got for the price was a phone that tries to do everything you might want a smart watch to do (including take pictures, place and answer calls, etc.) but fails at most of them. It can barely make or hold a connection to a phone. The interface is terrible, the touchscreen is non-responsive, and most of the functions are not accessible without a third party application that will not install on my phone and/or a SIM card or memory card inserted into a watch that has no aperture for receiving such.

The watch worked just enough to make me see the value of a good one. I asked Twitter for recommendations. Weird thing: if I say anywhere on the internet that I’m thinking about getting an X or that I’m having Y problems with Z, I’ll have people falling over themselves to give me advice that is often unneeded or inapplicable, being based only on the iceberg-tip view of what’s going on that my blog provides. But when I threw out a request for information, I got exactly one response.

Now this might be a side effect of the fact that I have been kind of vocal about the unsolicited advice thing lately, in which case it’s a matter of people learning the wrong lesson… which I was pretty sure was going to happen. But, oh well.

The one recommendation I got was for the Pebble. After looking into it, I listed a couple of  models on my wishlist (one a bit older), with the intention of saving up for one. From my quick research, it seemed like the Pebble was pretty much the epitome of what I was looking for: rugged, with a long-battery life, capable of both telling time and delivering me messages from my phone, and not a lot of extra bells and whistles like trying to be a phone itself or having a tiny, awkward camera.

The pills and accessories did not surprise me, but I was floored when I opened a box today and found a Pebble Steel in it. It’s the older of the two I had listed, but it is, indeed, exactly what I was looking for. Solid and sturdy seeming. Simple. No touchscreen or even color display, just an old-fashioned LCD. But it paired quickly and easily, and hasn’t dropped its connection anywhere I go in the house relative to the phone. So far I’ve read text messages and emails on it. It has limited ability to respond to them (pre-sets only, basically), but at the point where I know I need to respond to an alert, I am perfectly willing to get my phone.

It does do more than my bare minimum, but not by enough to be a distraction. It has a timer function, which is great, as I use timers in my writing, but the web-based timer I’d previously used no longer works reliably with my browser, and having to dig out my phone to set a timer kind of throws me off my game. I also find I like the gentle pulsing buzz on my wrist (this device does not appear to have any speakers) much more than I do any alarm sound.

The neatest thing about this watch, though, is something I never knew how much I wanted until I had it: a virtual watch face that tells you the time in words, as in “SIX eleven”. I can read an analog clock, and in fact, I was pretty sure I would be using a virtual one when I saw that the face could be customized. But there is something so adorable and charming about a watch that just says “SIX twelve” (now) in so many words. Welcome to the future.

Anyway, this is just to say thank you to everyone who sent me something—even a message or well-wishes—for my 36th birthday. The start of my awesome year of awesome is officially underway. Stick around… you’re really going to see something.

Originally published at Blue Author Is About To Write.

This entry automatically cross-posted from http://alexandraerin.dreamwidth.org/735565.html. Comment hither or thither. Void where yon.

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