Saturday, 14 November 2009

Electronic Expectancy

Sometimes, I have a hard time understanding others' bad luck with electronics and gadgets.

The idea for this particular post stems from something I did about ten minutes ago when I dropped my iPod into a full glass of Coca-Cola. This iPod is a first-generation, 4GB Nano that I got for Christmas in 2005. It holds exactly 14.64% of my music library and has a battery life of about 90 minutes (maximum). Since I inadvertantly submerged it, there have been no problems. The only weird thing is that now, it says it's "charging" all the time.

This iPod has been to several beaches, a swamp, and China. I've dropped it way too much by anyone's standards, and the screen is only readable with the backlight. Yet it's the only one I've ever had, and it still works just fine.

So, I'll share details of my other gadgets etc:

My first and only cell phone (an LG VX5200) came free with my parents' new wireless plan in late summer 2006. Since then, it's been everywhere my iPod has; it's also been in sand and mud and has a strip of duct tape on the back and I don't remember why. The original battery broke because I dropped the phone too much (I replaced it with my mom's when she got an iPhone). My phone has outlasted both said iPhone and the Bluetooth system in my dad's car. Its battery lasts about 20 hours.

My Canon PowerShot A550 (gift, 2008) has been to China as well, where I got a bit too careless and nearly dropped it off HuangShan (to join my sunglasses). It's been to South Carolina as well, where it was mauled by a wave as I was recording a movie and/or shooting the neat storm clouds offshore. The lens cover will not open all the way and needs to be helped with a fingernail. It has no problems that impact performance. I use it daily.

My second-gen MacBook (Christmas present, 2006) has not been to China, but has been just about everywhere else. At this point, I don't think there's much original to it, as I've replaced the RAM chips and had a new hard drive installed when the old one suddenly committed suicide. The Apple people also replaced the outer casing and (I'm fairly sure) the screen. The only issue with the computer is the audio-out stereo mini jack, which is very temperamental and will not be fixed by me because I think the machine is still under warranty. I have paid $0 on repairs for the computer in the nearly-three years I have had it.

I have had the same electric guitar since 6th grade and have replaced only strings. It's a basic Dean stratocaster; I also have and use the same Kustom Solo 16DFX amp I got with it back in 2003.

My first-ever electric guitar, a red Fender Squier, was run over by my mom's Suburban in 2003. It is still playable.

The headphones I currently use have been bent and squished in many ways since I started using them in early 2007. They work fine.

I have an old 3.2MP Canon PowerShot A75 that I acquired in October. According to the person who gave it to me, "the shutter is broken." I have taken a bunch of pictures with it with few problems.

The 2.0MP PowerShot A60 I gave my brother has been dropped onto concrete multiple times to the point where the lens casing is severely cracked and the cover is long gone; it went to Vermont with him and spent five weeks on a farm. It eats AA batteries but takes perfectly fine (albeit very small) pictures.

My father's first computer is the clear winner, though. Although it has not sustained any kind of severe damage, it has seen the upbringing of all four of his children and has been a feature in his office since it was introduced to the market in 1993 at a cost of well over $1,000. It's an Apple Centris 660 AV, and has no operating defects whatsoever, running Mac OS 7.5.3 flawlessly; it features such classics as Castle Wolfenstien, Word Munchers, and Space Invaders. It's outlasted every electronic thingy in the house except our 22-year-old RCA TV.

So, the next time someone goes on complaining about how they need a(nother) new phone/iPod/computer because theirs broke/got broken, think about this...

Am I just different? I'm sitting in front of my Frankenstein-Macbook, listening to a Coked iPod through abused headphones and editing pictures taken with a camera that's been in(to) the ocean...and I can't help but feel as though I've got something on these people who seem to get a new something-or-other every month. :)

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