Inadvertantly seeking volume

No, I don’t want a bloody subtitle!

And yet, Medium gives me one. All I want is a header for the next section! A plague on developers trying to be helpful! Speaking of which…

Dumb Telly

So to celebrate my tax return this year, I decided to get a larger screen to watch stuff on. I had been using a 24 inch computer monitor attached to a monitor arm which had worked quite all right for several years.

When I got the Smart TV I realized that I didn’t need glasses anymore. The picture was so clear and pure it felt like I was looking into an alternate dimension. I could make out fine details.

The menu system on the other hand was an utter piece of crap. Why was I having to fight to remove things from the menu? Why was I being advertised at by Mcafee virus something or other for smart TVs? Why couldn’t I just have a Simple menu for Simple people?

Soon I worked out that I could get a flat menu with just what I wanted on it. But it was not simple to set up.

And this was merely the cake for the icing which is the volume control. Something so simple and yet Samsung in their wisdom managed to make it complicated.

It’s auto-set on startup to match the “ambient” environment or some such claptrap. Allegedly it’s like this to avoid advertising blasting you when there’s an ad-break, but since I don’t watch free-to-air it’s a useless feature. And even more useless since it’s nearly impossible to control.

So why not use the control on the remote then, I hear you ask.

Well that’s because the remote has one button for volume. And it turns it off (mute) or on (ambient whatever). The menu system and setup don’t give you the information on how to change it either. I’ve searched high and low for a solution before finally and accidentally finding how to do it.

In fact, TL;DR, here’s how to change volume on a Samsung Smart TV:

Press the power button on the bottom of the screen. The physical button I mean. If you do it *just right* you get a hidden menu. Keep tapping the button until it reaches the “Volume UP” icon, then press and hold. The volume will then increase. Do the same on the “Volume DOWN” icon if it’s too loud.

Whoever designed this needs to be locked in a room for a few years to study User Interface standards, because this is 2018’s crap medallist.


Another day, another edit

So chapter eight is slowly coming together. It’s suffered from the same thing six and seven encountered. There was something missing.

I grappled with this for a couple of weeks before a breakthrough thanks to Warren Ellis’ curated podcast playlist Spektrmodule. And a couple more changes and it’s halfway done.

My confident expectation this would be done by Christmas is now dashed though. Easter 2019 perhaps?

Wait 10 minutes

During Spring in Melbourne, it’s a truism to say that if you don’t like the weather, wait 10 minutes.

Take yesterday. After a top in the low thirties (this is Celsius by the way) the temperature dropped ten degrees in a matter of three minutes.

I was watching from my kitchen window when the cold front hit, quite literally, with torrential rain blown horizontally so it cascaded over rooftops. The whole world went white, and the drains were left flooded. Was quite a show from inside.

screencap from @wolfcat on #twitter

The ABC website has a good explainer on this. Basically it’s to do with a big difference between hot air from the north over land as compared with cold from over the ocean. And because Victoria doesn’t have any mountain ranges to block movement, we get cold fronts crossing the state uncontrollably.

So it’s a very good idea to keep an eye on the weather radar and the forecast. They’re not kidding when they say there’ll be a “change”.

Of Email and things

I really want to use Mozilla Thunderbird for email, contacts and calendar, except I find it so bloody hard to set up. It’s probably to do with Google being a pain in the arse.

I abandoned Windows 10’s mail app because it suddenly started advertising at me. I don’t do marketing under any circumstances; find it unimaginative at best (it’s basically fear or teenage tits) and unnecessary at worst. Hell, I’m considering abandoning Instagram because it’s gotten to a point where it’s 1/5 advertising, so every 4 images I get mugged by bullshit adverts for fashion, tools, shows I’ll never watch and gadgetry I don’t need.

I’ve been using Touchmail for about a year but am finding it doesn’t always load messages; perhaps again it’s something to do with gmail being narky, but that said, sitting staring at the app waiting for it to load isn’t a positive experience.

So I’ve loaded Mailbird again and will see if it’s improved since the last time I used it. With any luck I can use the lifetime subscription I bought this time last year on it.

If not, it’s possible tax-deductible.

Stick it to the Nazi Anarchists

I think I wrote about the All Cops Are Bastards posters that appeared around Northcote over the past six months. They’ve expanded into hating Democracy, voting, the Labour party, and anything you can poke a stick at.

That’s Anarchists for you. I’ve begun to think the local “Anarchists Club House” has had an injection of annoyed 18 year old uni students determined to ChangeTheWorldTM. Which is great, but who takes out the trash once all the repressive political systems have been demolished in a worker-led uprising? It’s all very well postering the surrounding area, but if you don’t propose an alternative, it’s all just shouting from a soapbox.

And add to that the racists have also started to sticker the area. The least offensive one I saw lately was “Deport Muslims” which I corrected to “Deport Racists”. It’s a losing battle though, a bit like pulling up weeds. You see one and pull it up, then you notice another nearby. Pretty soon all you’re doing is re-stickering offensive sloganeering. It’s bad enough being advertised at (see above), but this takes it to another level. The generalizations are breathtaking ,as are the obvious theft of overseas slogans and poster designs. How about creating something uniquely Melbourne for your Anarcho-syndicalist posturing?

#getarealjob #bloodymillennials #getoffmygrass #whatdidtheromanseverdoforus? #sarchasm

<MC Hammer>Right, cuppa time!</MC Hammer>