Sunday, June 23, 2013

Plug and Play

I am now fully plugged in at my new apartment, and have been for a couple of weeks. I didn't bring any of our big voltage converters from Egypt, and the only thing I've really missed is a microwave, although I'm sure my landlady would have got me one had I asked. Here is a list of all of the electronics that came with me:

  • Dell Netbook pc
  • Iphone
  • Ipad
  • Ipod shuffle
  • USB backup hard drive
  • Bose Speakerbox
  • Airport device

As luck would have it, all of these things are dual voltage (or charge over usb), and I bought a powerstrip on Amazon before I left that connects to a European outlet, but accepts either type of plug. I actually moved the pc into my office yesterday, but I had no problem buying an adapter in the Green Market.

I've been using Skype to connect with Worldwide in PNG, and I made two purchases yesterday--Lloyd's new album and Consider the Fork, which I'm reading on the Ipad. I can stream music wirelessly from my pc to the speakerbox, which is connected to the Airport device by an audio cable. I also use the remote app on my phone to control the music on my pc, which is backed up on the external drive. It works pretty well, though not perfectly. Even though I helped finance the album, and have a deluxe edition waiting for me at home, I couldn't wait to hear it. I'll listen to it again on my way to the gym this afternoon, although I'll switch to Wefunk once I get there.

Imessage allows for free family texting over wifi, and I have some skype credit, so I can still call Grandma Ruth fairly cheaply. I read the digital editions of the Economist and Entertainment Weekly yesterday, and I enjoyed my boy Tyler Cowen's column in this morning's New York Times, as well as Malcolm Gladwell's article in the current New Yorker. The digital edition for all four publications comes free for subscribers, and we are certainly taking full advantage of that feature.

I inherited my predecessor's wireless router and internet service, and it all works well, although I don't know yet how much it's costing me. The same company provides tv service, and I was able to watch the fourth quarters of the last two games of the NBA finals, as well as two of the movies you would only see if you lived here or your name was Young Jeezy--Sly in Shade as a slick card player named Dean making one last score, and Nicolas Cage in Lord of War as a NY gun dealer in Africa snorting a diabolical mixture of cocaine and gunpowder called "brown-brown", among other misadventures. Sometimes you just can't flip away.

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