Would Like To Talk Some About Quality

This Has Reared It’s Ugly Head A Few Times In The Last Few Weeks

Normally on this blog, I try to touch mostly on a fictional mistress that seems to either improve or mess up my life or both. However taking a break from the Mistress (I will surely pay for this later TRUST ME!) I would like to discuss something that can be relevant to not only technology but other things as well.

That thing is quality!

I look at things being a bargain if a few criteria and I also look at how something was created as well. However from what I’ve been experiencing here lately, quality has gone the way of the dinosaurs and Dodo!

By What Criteria Do You Evaluate A Bargain Or Quality?

Well let’s get a disclaimer done here. Some people judge a bargain mainly by price alone. If it’s cheap enough, the mentality is when it’s used up or broke, we will just get a new one. For the most part, that is what this nation has resorted to. Look at the way we look at things like computers, TV’s, cameras and the sort. Once we get a certain use out of them, we discard them and get new ones.

This might work for some that have very good to do income streams however since this household runs on a budget, we have to consider a few other things as well. Granted nothing last forever however I would like a item to last longer than some items have that was purchased within the last 6 months or so.

What I do is evaluate by a few things:

  • How long am I planning on using said item
  • Cost of the item
  • Reputation of the manufacturing company of said item
  • Construction of said item
  • Previous experience with company or product of said item (if plausable)

I will give a example in just a second on something that did happen with me and what started me to write this post in the first place!

Example That I Will Give

The example is a JBL Everest 700 headset that I assisted to get for my wife. Using the above criteria, I answered the questons as such:

  • Was planning on keeping the item for at least 2yrs or more
  • The cost was hefty $299
  • JBL for the most part in my research seemed to keep their quality high and most of the reviews were positive on this item
  • The construction of the headphones were good. Better than some that we looked at while in the clutches of the Yellow Tag Store
  • JBL in my own experience had a EXCELLENT reputation in the audio products that I’ve previously used

Eventhough the cost was high, I encouraged the purchase of this item because I had previous experience with their speakers and the quality of construction and their sound quality.

After letting the wife listen to several different brands, we settled on the JBL ones.

At First Things Were Good

We got the headset home and unboxed them. Got them paired with her devices and added the app that added more control to the headset. So far, so good. We tried the phone call ability on the headset as well. Again all was well. The headset has active noise cancellation as well as a way to control how much noise cancelling the headset did. So being bluetooth, great sound with noise cancellation and the ability for the user to answer phone calls we thought we made a great choice!

WE WERE WRONG!

Bought these in late November 2015 and now they are having some major issues! For starters, my wife reported that the headset wasn’t answering calls correctly and every now and then while watching something on her tablet, the headset would cut off!!

Then a while later, the cutting off of the headset got worse! She would have to restart the headset a few times a night.

Well that seemed to settle down and now the most ugly problem has reared it’s ugly head.

The active noise cancellation circuit is having some major problems! When the headset starts up, all is well but then shortly after, the left speaker starts to crackle really badly!

Turn off the noise cancelling and the speakers are dead quiet! Turn the noise cancelling back on and the crackling resumes. Even changing the level of the noise cancelling doesn’t help. I’ve even updated firmware and reset the device to no avail!

With the headset not taking calls properly and the noise cancelling circuit on the fritz, I have a theory on what happened. I believe that the microphone in the left earcup is defective in some way.

I came to this conclusion by powering up the headset and listening to them. When they first power up, it is dead quiet and then all of a sudden you hear a faint noise in the left one that fades and then the crackling starts.

So for our money, these things were not worth the cash paid! We only got about 4 months out of them!

Was This A One Time Deal?

Sadly no. Another issue that I had to address was the controller for our PS3. It was a fairly new controller that wasn’t abused at all! Used often yes but thrown or other abuse no. All of a sudden the left stick on the controller started sticking and causing my movement to be stuck going left.My solution was to tear apart the pad and fix the issue by cleaning the left control switch and the surrounding area. The original pad that came with the PS3 is still going well. However the new ones, not so much.

Vehicles and parts are another! I’ve been going to Jeep Hell with our car. Seems like everytime I fix something, something else goes wrong. When we got the vehicle (which was purchased used) the belt would make a noise especially on a cold morning. Found out it was one of the belt tensioners. Well the assembly when bought aftermarket from AutoZone was cheaper than getting one from the dealer. Was this smart? Not really because not even a year later, the noise is back on their Duralast part! Quality my backside!!!

There are other issues that I’m dealing with like notifications on a iPhone and some other problems however IMHO, they could be prevented with better QUALITY CONTROL!

In Closing

Again I know things don’t last forever and sometimes the cheapest way out isn’t the best way but sometimes you win, sometimes you loose.

Seems like I’ve been loosing too much lately.

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Does Technology Create or Hinder Stupidity?

That is a heck of a good question right?

Well I at least think so! Don’t get me wrong, I love technology for the most part which is why I actually like my Mistress however there are some things that just need to have technology take a few steps back and allow for some of the old school ways to still be taught and used.

Why? Please give an example of this especially if you are saying technology is possibly making people stupid?

Just one example? I can and will give you a fairly good example.

Online/Offline mapping and or GPS routing.

Yes I DO use these tools and yes I do not like when they aren’t accurate however some of the old school maps aren’t accurate either! Common sense here is the best answer however some folks are very short of it because the above technology is so overused in our technology right now that it is causing people to not learn the old ways which may come back and bite them on the ass!

Many moons ago when I was first learning how to drive a semi-tractor trailer, I learned how to get from point A to point B with a map and some knowledge. Most of it is very basic and fairly easy to understand however the folks of today will have a rough time if all of the GPS satellites in the sky malfunctioned as well as the Internet.

I’ve personally seen posts on some social media networks on how stupid some folks have become because of technology especially navigation. One posted a question on how folks got around before GPS. The correct answer was maps (as in the old paper/laminated kind) however some individual(s) were saying something like Google Maps.

Oh dear Lord! Has our society got so hooked on technology that they have become this stupid? Has our dependency on this technology totally changed our thinking to the point of utter stupidity?

Taking the time to learn how the old school maps work and knowing how to use them is a skill that still needs to be taught because even with our wonderful advances in technology broght on by my Mistress, there will be places where it WON’T WORK such as in some valleys or mountain ranges!

Think you made your point on the stupid arguement. How has technology made us maybe smarter or hinder our stupidity?

Technology has helped us develop new ideas and inventions that have not only made our lives somewhat better but also have helped our education and thought processes.

Search engines have been a subject of debate on this main question for a while however if used as intended, you can find a wealth of information on a subject or subjects within seconds! All this from different sources however be careful here because some sources can contain wrong information that can lead you astray.

Then again that’s the beauty of the search engine is that you can select what sources are garbage and weed down the results to what you need!

However even with all the knowledge of the world at your fingertips won’t cure the lack of common sense which technology does actually hinder. However if you use some applied knowledge, then technology won’t hinder you one bit and can actually assist you in solving issues and learning something new.

So your saying that technology is a mixed bag?

EXACTLY! The world still needs the Mistress (technology) to evolve and it will continue to do so however we shouldn’t dismiss the old school tech quite yet as it does help to build I would even go as far as to say this is a survival skill, common sense!

Maybe in some way, I can still teach some of the old school ways using the new tech and help with this.

Maybe..

The Merging of Old and New in my Life?

Huh? What does that mean exactly?

I guess I should explain the post title shouldn’t I? I mean the mixture of the older technologies and the newer ones in my personal life to try and make my life maybe a little better and happier!

As I stated on another post talking about cooking technologies, I’ve gone back mostly to using cast iron cookware. For my particular situation, it fits my needs the best. Since I like to camp, cook at home and be prepared for emergencies brought on by bad weather, I chose cast iron to be my cookware.

I also chose it for another reason. A reason that seems now more like a pipe dream than something obtainable but I guess we should all dream some right?

What is this dream exactly?

The dream as it stands right now is to obtain a RV. A reasonable Class C would work beautifully and for us (me, my wife and boxer dog) to travel this country and hopefully get to see places before my health gets to the point in which I cannot drive or do much.

Let’s get the above statement cleared up. NO, this is not a plead for a handout or anything of the sort!!! It is a statement of fact! The many years of having diabetes and the other health issues that I’ve seemed to inherit from my mother are starting to plague me now.

I’m in a study concerning the diabetes and hoping to have some of the other things looked at however the other issues that are occurring right now cannot really be helped. They can be slowed down but not stopped or reversed.

Hence the wanting to get out there and explore while I can. I used to drive semi-tractor trailer for a living and saw quite a bit of this nation through the windshield however I couldn’t really stop and enjoy it for two reasons. One is I usually had a appointment to either pick up a load or drop one off. Two was that vehicle wasn’t welcomed in a lot of places where I wanted to go see. Hence I want to take my wife on a adventure around this nation to see things that she may only get to see on the internet or if we can get this off the ground, through us actually doing it!

OK We now know your dream. How does this tie into technology (your Mistress)?

Well fine reader, I’m getting ready to tell you. Thanks for letting me dream some and now I will correlate the two together.

The RV will have technology on it when we obtain it. My first priority besides to ensure that the vehicle will be safe for travel is to look over the equipment on the RV and see what we will need to replace or fix to make our journeys comfortable and pleasant.

Most RV’s use a old technology to heat, keep your food cold and cook. They use propane gas. I need to make sure that this works correctly and has no leaks. This technology using gas being more specific has been around a while and as far as cooking goes, it is a good way to start learning how to cook on a flame.

Depending on age, the RV may have some pieces of equipment that are out of date and inefficient! For example the old “boob tube” TV’s that actually had a tube in them. These things draw more power than a more modern LED or LCD set. The entertainment systems in there might not meed our wants or needs so that might be swapped out for better and more efficient ones.

Computers will be a issue and one that I’m still debating over. I still wish to go to some sort of Apple computer but the one that I will choose will depend on the RV size and what I and my wife are doing. I’m thinking maybe of a nice iMac or maybe two MacBook pros?

Still trying to nail this down. We have been trying to keep only things in our home that can be multi purposed. This to us are more useful and we will tend to keep these items longer.

Powering up your technology is always a concern. So checking the house batteries (the batteries that are usually separate from the main starting system of the RV) that powers up the living area of the RV are in good shape and I’m looking into another technology to help keep them powered up. Solar.

Solar? Why?

Yes it isn’t perfect and yes it can be expensive at first. However when you are constantly putting fuel (whether it is diesel or gas) into your fuel tank because of running the generator or doing your maintenance sooner again because of the amount your running the generator, the solar system can quickly help save up some cash.

No I’m not going to be one of these preppers or doomsday people however I will maybe once all the traveling is done, maybe get a piece of land and homestead on it.

Even on the road or in a quaint environment, I will still have that Mistress around. It cannot be helped. The RV will most likely have a computer running the engine and other functions required for operation, if I go solar I will have that technology to deal with, the built in systems in the living area of the RV will have their technology that I will have to deal with as well as our personal technology that we bring along with us!

So even simplifying my life down I cannot escape technology especially me being a technology geek! I still love a lot of the simpler technologies but some of the modern ones do make our lives better and more entertaining.

My life just isn’t simple is it?

I think I can see the correlation. I never really thought about it this way.

Yes even though the RV may be looked at as a high tech piece of equipment, some of the technology that is used have their roots coming from the old school but with some new school thrown in. I may even merge the technologies to make the experience more comfortable and more efficient. Efficiency here is the key! The more efficient, the better!

So I think that I rambled on enough for one post I think. I wished that it was not raining today so I can get outside and see if I can nail down this issue with the Jeep! A better diagnostic tool would help but the ol’ purse strings are tight at the moment so I have to deal with this the best way I can by employing some old school methods!

So maybe us dinosaurs have a place in modern times?

Who knows. Maybe.