I’ve wanted a better record player for ages. I had one of those 3-in-one box things that were a CD player, radio and vinyl player at the same time. The problem was that it often didn’t work well for new records because the needle weight couldn’t be adjusted. I usually would mend the problem by putting dimes and nickels on the needle but I came to the realization that it would not be healthy for my records as my collection started to grow. I headed to Planet of Sound for some help.
They were super helpful and was able to find a perfect player for my needs and price range. They’re super honest about quality (price doesn’t always mean it’s better etc). I ended up choosing the TEAC TN 300 which has a built in pre-amp and also the ability to connect to the computer via USB if I wish. Not to mention it’s beautiful.
Planet of Sound helped me set my needle weight, as well as put the belt on properly at no extra charge. I was afraid I’d break it if I did it myself.
I also bought a Harmon Kardon Aura speaker. It has both Bluetooth and Airplay wireless capabilities. I can also plug it into my new record player. It is perfect for me because I don’t live in a big apartment so this is super simple and the sound fills the entire room.
I am now prepared for the best of both worlds, analog and digital. I can’t wait to annoy my neighbours blasting Carly Rae Jepsen or Arcade Fire. Investing in systems to play all my music is so worth it.
Today I read an article about people who were so addicted to the internet they needed to go to rehab for internet addiction. It was an extensive article and by the end of it I started to wonder if I have a type of internet addiction.
4 years ago, I wrote a post where I admitted that I wouldn’t give the internet up for $50 million. I still think that way. In fact, social media has become an increasingly big part of our lives. It’s hard to make any changes unless we decide collectively as a society. It’s now legitimately part of my paid full-time job and a tool that has helped me with opportunities, friends and adventures.
Despite this, I’ve made an effort in the past year to put the phone down whenever I’m with other people (except for the occasionally Instagram with food). I try to not to check feeds when I’m out and enjoy the company around me. I think working with social media as a profession has changed what I do personally in my off hours. I relish the time where I’m occupied with other things. At the same time, I do feel the urge and the obligation to be writing and publishing (at least this blog) every day.
What’s important though is that I know I don’t have a serious addiction and there are two main points that rule out if your internet browsing is problematic:
1) Is it affecting your school work or job?
2) Is the time you are spending on the internet affecting your relationships with people in a negative manner?
3) Does using it/not using it significantly affect your mood?
If you said yes to any or both of these things, you might want to evaluate and control how much time you are spending online.
My favourite new daily accessory is the Power Wallet from The Photojojo. It’s a super functional faux-leather wallet/clutch that has a built in battery for charging my phone.
Inside it came with instructions and an adapter for my iPhone 5S. The battery can be charged by plugging the USB end to your computer or Apple blocks. On full charge, the wallet can charge around 1 and a half iPhones to full.
The phone fits right in when you are charging it so you can use it as a mini clutch. There are also many slots and sections for coins, cash and cards. Now I’m ready for a night on the town without my phone dying on me!
Before I begin, I want to start up by informing you that I have no affiliation with Uber whatsoever. I am however enraged by the #ChooseTaxi campaign recently started by Co-Op Cabs, a taxi company.
Essentially, the campaign is fear mongering people away from UberX, Uber’s car-sharing service. The campaign is directed towards women (there are apparently going to be ads in public washrooms), telling them that it is much safer to ride licensed cabs.
I’ve become a frequent UberX rider (I’ve also ridden black cars in the past) and all of my rides have been pleasant. The drivers are always friendly, or silent if I’m not having a chatty day. As a 20-something-woman who frequently rides alone, I have never feared for my safety. Everything is tracked: the route you take, the licensed plate of the driver, the driver’s name. You can even choose not to hail certain drivers if their rating does not satisfy you. They can also choose not to accept you as a passenger if your rating (which you actually can’t view publicly) isn’t up to par.
The same can’t be said for regular cabs. We’ve left items once in them and had no idea how to trace cabs after the fact. A cab drive once threatened our safety by playing the tambourine driving. I pulled a bottle of vodka from under the passenger seat of the same driver. I’ve had cabs refuse to pick me up because I wasn’t going far enough (so I was stuck at Sound Academy) and drivers that risked friend’s safety so they could use an ATM in a very unsafe location because they do not want to take debit (when most cabs have the capabilities to).
The bottomline for regular cabs never seem to be the customer. They are always about the money first. When waiting for the bus, I am frequently honked at by cabs who think that honking at me would drive their business. The first few times were scary as fuck. It was the same kind of feeling I felt when strangers honk and whistle from their cars. It does not make a girl feel safe. Just because a cab is licensed does not mean they are safe.
I am writing this post because I want people to be informed. I want them to make choices based on their own experiences and not because propaganda tells them to sway a certain way. We only read about the few negative stories worldwide about Uber involving assaults, but you have to remember that Uber is a billion dollar worldwide brand. What we don’t realize is that there are probably a thousand times more of these incidents in regular taxis because they don’t have a big enough brand. Or their stories are never told.
I for one have made a choice and won’t #ChooseTaxi.
For the first time in 10 years, I bought a legitimate and updated copy of Adobe Photoshop. In the past, I’ve always had either versions that came with cameras or less than reliable versions I’ve downloaded from the internet. I decided to subscribe to the photography package that includes Adobe Photshop CC and Lightroom 5 for $10/month.
Even though people criticized Adobe’s move to the Cloud I found many advantages:
$10 month is affordable. In the past, each iteration of Photoshop would cost like $500. Even previous copies of Lightroom costed around $200 on it’s own. At $10 a month, this would only be $120 year. I feel that the only people who complain about this pricing are people who’ve probably never bought it in the past.
It will always be the most updated copy. For $120 year you can always have the most updated version instead of forking up more money to own a piece of software. People need to let go of the idea of ownership in software.
There are some awesome upgrades from CS6. Camera shake reduction, smart sharpen, perspective changing are some unique advantages to the Creative Cloud software.
The option to save things on the cloud. Each subscription comes with 20GB in Adobe’s Cloud so you can always have your projects on hand. There are also mobile apps that allow you to continue working on your devices.
It can be installed on two computers. When you buy a Creative Cloud license you can have it installed on two computers regardless of operating system, so you don’t need to worry about buying the right discs.
It’s convenient and safe. No more disabling updates or using dodgy practises to change a computer’s registry which can affect the longevity of a computer.
For the price of one less burger a month, I can have the best photo editing software out there in my arsenal.