Saturday, June 27, 2009

Wine for the Confused

After work last night I fired up Hulu and watched one of the videos in my queue. I got home at 11:45pm, so I didn't want to watch a full 2-hour movie, and I'm caught up on all my shows, so I found the shortest video in my queue. Wine for the Confused narrated by comedian John Cleese.

I don't consider myself a completely unaware about wine, as I've been wine tasting a number of times throughout California and even in Washington, but I'm by no means at the top of my game. The two things that have been the most helpful in enjoy wine are the wine tasting class I took at Fresno State University, and the numerous wine tasting trips I've taken where you can just chat with the people at the winery/tasting room and sometimes even the wine makers. I do enjoy wine and I am ever increasingly learning about wine and finding out what I enjoy and what goes well with what.

When I saw this show/film on Hulu I thought I might enjoy it because it is about wine and is narrated by a great comedian.

I was not disappointed. If you have about 43 minutes, I strongly recommend watching it. Cleese goes through such topics as wine tasting basics (flavors, smells, etc.), 3 red grapes/wines, 3 white grapes/wines, choosing a wine, price of a wine, and serving wine.

Branding Fresno Business

The Fresno Convention & Visitors Bureau recently released a PDF booklet defining Fresno's brand platform. It doesn't create specific logos or taglines (which would make all Fresno businesses look the same) but rather gives a number of broad categories and descriptors. These phrases and concepts can help organizations develop a brand strategy that will help the overall Fresno brand become more cohesive, as well as focus the efforts of an organization so it is less likely to portray something that will conflict with other Fresno branding attempts.

The booklet includes definition of branding, the Fresno brand platform, a workbook section, and a case study.

The concept I think can be very useful, and hopefully will have the desired effects on branding in Fresno and branding of Fresno. I guess only time will tell if organizations will actually employ this smartly.

Via Creative Fresno (PDF booklet linked at bottom of that page)

Monday, June 22, 2009

My New Phone

If you've been following this blog for a while, you will know that I've been interested in the new phones that HTC has been coming out with. I finally took the plunge and bought one, putting my total lifetime cellphone ownership at 4 (2 Nokia and 2 HTC).

My new phone is the HTC Touch Diamond2.

So far my experience with the phone has been exceptional. The biggest change with this phone from my previous phone (HTC Touch) is the severe lack of Windows Mobile interface. HTC has done a good job at masking a lot of the non-finger friendly Windows Mobile features. My stylus is almost completely unnecessary now (although I do sometimes still like to use it). The new TouchFlo 3D is slick looking and quite user friendly. The other very noticeable feature of this phone is the WVGA screen. At a respectable 3.2" the screen packs a whopping 384 000 pixels (480 x 800). The resolution is so good that I almost can't make out any pixelation at all. It really is a sight to behold.

Some of the other notable things is the G-Sensor (accelerometer), ambient light sensor, zoom bar at the bottom of the screen, GPS, 5MP camera on back and VGA camera on front, FM Radio, & WiFi 802.11 b/g.

It's definitely a big step up from my old phone and it has a lot of fancy new features. I haven't even tried them all out yet, but so far I'm really happy with my purchase.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Good News to Report

As you may have noticed (hopefully) I haven't posted in a while. I recently moved, and due to the move I transferred over my DSL to my new place. Unfortunately AT&T is on a slightly different schedule than I am, and 3 weeks after moving my Internet is finally working today!

I guess its not that they maliciously wanted me to be without Internet access for 3 weeks, none of the two phone jacks in my new apartment were even getting a dial tone. They sent out a few technicians and got the problem resolved. It's just I haven't been 3 weeks without Internet access in years. I know, I'm spoiled, but I use the Internet quite a bit.

I did want to blog about my experience with AT&T tech support.

A majority of the people I talked with on the phone at AT&T were friendly. I think my biggest complaint is the hold times. I spent at least 2.5 hours on hold throughout all my calls, and was switched literally back and forth and back to different departments a number of times. As well, its unfortunate that I was unable to have a technician come out while I wasn't home, and that meant a little longer wait to get a time that would work for both myself and a technician.

Overall, I think I will stay with AT&T, and might even upgrade to their fiber-optic/U-Verse package in the future. One of the good things that came out of this ordeal is I now have the direct toll-free phone number for DSL-line connectivity/strength issues.