Monday, November 16, 2009


Good friend and fellow iPhone user Nicole send me a load of questions! As mentioned before, I'll hit a minimum of two questions a week when possible. So let's tackle the first two for this week.

1) Why get an iPhone (if you haven't featured it yet).
Knowing how cellphone conscious and text savvy most Filipinos are, I will start answering this question with the following admissions: I am not cellphone savvy. I cannot identify a cellphone model by looking at it. I do not know the names and brands and kinds of cellphone out there. All I do know is what I need from a cellphone if I were to use one, so don't take my views as gospel (though they may prove to be revelatory.) I also am absolutely against text speak. I despise texting or receiving messages that look like they were typed by someone stuck on phonetics and not phone-ethics. I know and understand text speak was developed as a means to maximize limited message space as well as reduce time in typing messages. I understand some people find it harmless to use in sending messages to each other. But personally, I don't like it. I prefer clear English or Filipino in my messages, and at the most a shortened ok or gnite but that's it. None of that "Me na hir" nonsense.

Now that those things are clear...

The iPhone is a phone I would highly recommend to people who do not mind having their cellphones tied to a legal legitimate transaction requiring industry. Many get iphones then start complaining having problems after they jailbreak it. I won't even comment on that.

If you want to have an cellphone that has a whole selection of apps available online, the compatibility with key products of the same company (iTunes, Quicktime) and the flexibility of being more than JUST a phone (surfing the net, recording audio, watching movies, reading pdfs, etc) then I would PROBABLY recommend the iPhone.

Surprised the word PROBABLY is still there?

That's cause the very moment you tell me you want to be able to text easily, I will immediately tell you, "Don't get an iPhone then." The iPhone is NOT text savvy. The touchscreen keypad is not friendly to texting blind (texting without looking), can be frustrating for those who prefer text speak (because it has a smart built in dictionary), and still needs further updates to be comparable to other phones already out there that have imitated the other aspects of the iPhone (group texting requires you to individually enter contacts, no option to make group contacts yet, cut and pasting fun but takes time. Forwarding isn't simple at all.)

The iPhone, when it comes to texting and calls, adequately hits but does not beat competition at all.

When it comes to being a fun thing to have, however, the iPhone excels big time. Everything from the game apps, educational and functional apps, the web applications, wifi connection and use, it is almost as if the idea of it being used as a cellular phone was the SECOND thing they thought of doing (which makes sense considering Apple is better known to make computers and not cellular phones). With my iPhone, I can entertain friends even if they can't hear me, I can tell the DJ what songs to play from across the room with a banner app, I can read the latest Dan Brown novel (bathroom reading easy kasi) no matter where I am, I can load up television episodes I want to catch up on, and with certain apps like the Facebook app I can do some web things even faster than I normally do on my laptop.

And lastly, it is really darn pretty to look at. The sleek design, simplicity and functionality of it, just makes me smile. Most cellular phones out there, in my most sincere opinion, try to hard to be as elegantly beautiful and functional as the iPhone.

So would I recommend one to get it?

Only if you share my opinions above. Kinda makes sense, no?
I wish I owned an iPhone 3GS though. That damned it can shoot video, automatically upload to the net, AND has voice command fun too added to everything else my iPhone 3G already can do.

And mind you, I use a PC.

2) Why is it when one aspect of your life goes up, another aspect fabulously goes down?

While I can go all metaphysical or karmic and talk about balance and all that jazz, the truth is far simpler. It is just the way things are. There are good days, there are bad days. There are days you want to find that lying sleazy money-hungry user you used to call a friend and show them how much a better person they can be, but there are days when you realize you were being a negative stuck up bastard who did not cheer with the rest of the country when Pacquaio won because you're still too pissed at how the Comelec is pathetically close-minded (thanks for the link, Rocky). There are days you cheer at the break you got at work, the raise you so rightfully earned, the dream apartment you can call home after actually working your own ass off to pay for it, and discover on that same day your beloved pet passed on, or your parents are having health concerns, or the girl who spread false rumors about you having STDs is now sleeping with your best friend.

Life is just like that.

There are good days. There are bad days. And there are times a day is both good and bad.

It is easy to believe in balance. That somewhere out there, behind the silver lining and the half-empty sky, there is someone who holds a scale before your image and allocates "just the right amount" of happy and sad to hit you each day. It is nice to believe in such things as real. Just as it is nice to believe prayer will make all the bad go away. Or that imagining good things will bring nothing BUT good things your way.

Alas, no amount of prayer, visualization, kulam, chaos theory or Scarlet Witch Hex powers will make a day perfectly clear of all negativity and day downers. But it doesn't mean we shouldn't strive to make the most of each day. Nor does it mean it is pointless to take action to make each day better than the last.

While wearing rose-tinted glasses can be good, ignorance-founded optimism will do no one any real good. Such false joy only inspires acts like partying with wine while the rest of the country worries over fellow country men who were affected by the flood. True optimism is needed, and trust me, is a daily challenge to maintain.

Awareness. Belief. Action.

Those three are key in seeing true optimism, regardless of how rickety a day's happiness meter can get. With such in place, even the act of overly focusing on one aspect and neglecting others becomes something you avoid. Awareness of your tasks, responsibilities, and debts. Awareness of your goals, your dreams and your sacrifices. Awareness of others and of their own goals, dreams, sacrifices.

Then Belief in doing what is best. In seeing this belief with the right awareness. Of seeing it in all sides.

Finally leading to action. The action, if done with true optimism feels right. And is right. Because others will let you know it is right even without your prompting.

Ultimately, the shakey ups and downs of life become tolerable and somewhat controllable. The ups become achievements. The downs become momentary sacrifices, or acts of fate/God/chance/the force... but ultimately part of the whole human experience.

So relish it.
At least it ain't boring, right?

Got a question you wanna ask the Garapata?
Feel free to email them to tobito_abad AT yahoo DOT com

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