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Archive: 21 October 2005

Big Screen, Small Screen

The gadgets in my life have recently reached a new level of extreme disparity.

At the enormous end of the scale, there’s the new television we put into our newly-finished basement.  It’s a 50″ widescreen high-definition DLP set, and even though it integrates fairly nicely with the shelving and cabinetry we had built, it still looks stupidly big to me.  When watching a movie, it really gives you a movie-theater experience, simply by taking up so much of your field of view.  The surround sound, I think, gets cranked down a bit to compensate.

I look at this thing and I think to myself, “Why?”  And the answer is: “Because it was in the budget, and plasma screens are still a bit too expensive for the value received.”  So perhaps this is a form of buyer’s remorse, or maybe I’m just being neurotic.  Either way, it has a vaguely looming presence that I’m not entirely sure I like.

At the tiny end of the scale, I recently got a 4GB iPod nano.  This was the early-registration and speakers’ gift given out at UI10, and I gotta tell you, this thing is God’s gift to daddies.  Mine already has a sampling of the best Carolyn pictures taken to date.  I can show them off to other people, or just flip through them when I’m on the road and missing my family.  It’ll also play those pictures as a slide show, using whatever transition effect I like most.  Plus it plays music!

I’m sure it helps that I didn’t pay for it, but honestly, I almost love the little guy.  No scratches (yet), and the sound quality is pretty darned good even with the stock earbuds.  I’m not one of those audiophile types; if the sound is basically clear, I’m good, so the iPod buds work for me.  It’s a bit disappointing, though, that the nano’s dimensions are roughly 1:6:13.  I was really hoping for 1:4:9.

Anyway, propping the nano up against the TV feels like a textbook exercise in totally ludicrous contrasts.

The nano propped up against the TV.

October 2005
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