Versions

For those who aren’t on Facebook (or for those who didn’t check theirs yesterday), I posted this pic. Thought you’d enjoy it too.

Hope all the dads had a Happy Father’s Day!

An Apple a Day

Dear Apple,

First of all, congratulations on opening your new store in our local mall. We don’t go to our mall often, but found ourselves there on this lazy Sunday afternoon to do a bit of Christmas shopping.

My husband despises Christmas shopping, so when I noticed the newest addition to the Apple Retail Store family, I decided it’d be a great way to let him have a bit of a man break. A breather, if you will.

I’ll admit openly that I wanted to be there too. Since getting into photography and looking ahead to the home videos we will be making in the near future, I’ve been intrigued by your products, especially as my trusty PC begins to show its age. Plus they’re so gosh-darned pretty.

Since the two of us have intermittently discussed the vague possibility of getting a Mac, we entered your store and walked up to the first MacBook we found. I fumbled around with it for a minute, while my husband eyed the specs. Pretty impressive and kinda fun, we both agreed. It was then that we were approached by Jaison, our friendly sales associate.

Jaison asked if we had any questions. Usually we turn people away, but I think my husband decided that it was time to become educated in all things Apple. Before I knew it, we were comparing product specifications between this MacBook and that MacBook. Before I knew it, my husband was picking up the tags with product descriptions and physically walking them around the store to make comparisons. The basic specs listed on the tag weren’t enough for him after awhile, so he and the salesperson geeked it out over megahertzes and RAMs.

Eventually we made our way over to the iMacs and found these to be a better bang for our buck. I’m sure you planned the store layout that way. Well played. Here’s where I saw the glitter start to show in my husband’s eyes. The way he parroted back the words “Quad Core processor”, he might as well have said, “You had me at ‘Hello’.”

We asked so many questions that we completely tapped Jaison of all his knowledge. So many, in fact, that Jaison actually had to run back to the Apple Geniuses, not once, but two times for answers. Finally satisfied, we decided to poke around the store on our own before picking up a small Christmas gift for someone on our list.

It was at this point where we became completely blown away by your company. We were at the front of the store, holding our merchandise, and the two of us did a slow turn to look at the back of the store. The crazy, people-filled, insanity-inducing back of the store – where the cash registers were. It was at that moment when another sales associate approached us and said, “Are you ready to check out?” We nodded, and he took out his iPod Touch, swiped our credit card, looked back up at my husband and said, “Sir, may I email your receipt your your Yahoo account?” “Uhh, yeah” my husband responded. So, he handed us our item, and we left the store.

We walked half the length of the mall in a daze before we realized we were walking in the wrong direction. Little did you know that just yesterday, my husband had gone on a rant about how retailers should be able to issue electronic receipts by now. Here, you’ve already done it.

So, tonight, we have sat, discussed, researched and pondered what seems to be our imminent Apple purchase. Congratulations, Apple. I think you have two converts on your hands.

Sincerely,

Me

Browser Drama

Well, thank goodness we’re not paid to do this, or we would’ve fired ourselves a long time ago. (Okay, that didn’t make sense to me either.)

WEEKS we’ve been working on the site. It started with me playing around with my banner. You remember Fischy? That little fish that hung around in the fish bowl with legs, up in the upper left hand corner? That was a graphic I grabbed off of Microsoft’s open-source clipart page. Yeah. The fish was orange and the rest was green. I had photoshop at the time, so I knew how to ‘grab’ the exact orange and green color from Fischy and mimick that color scheme in the buttons, but I didn’t know how to change his existing colors. Now I do. Actually, you know I do, because the year after the site launched I started doing holiday-themed Fischys.

For years, sf.com’s colors were orange and bright green. ORANGE AND GREEN. My eyes hurt to look at it. I wrote it off as kind of off-kilter and quirky. Fun. Fresh. But in honesty, I never liked it.

So the banner came first. It’s not the first time I’ve worked on one, I’ve actually attempted a sf.com redesign several times, but it is the first time I’ve ever liked what I came up with. Everything cascaded from there.

Funny that I mention cascading, because it brings to light the fact that all the things that you DON’T see, namely the coding, is completely different on this site now. That’s Andy’s handiwork. He now writes in four different web languages. (I feel a correction coming on here.) This site used to be entirely html. It’s an oldie, but a goodie. Very clunky, but very predictable. Like an old tennis shoe. I loved html.

Andy introduced me to the exciting! new! world! of the other languages (PHP, CSS, JS, PS, SWAK, MYOB, J/K, TTYL, LMAO, BRB). Now I can blog from anywhere. My buttons change color when you move your mouse over them. I can sit at work and compulsively zoom my nephew’s cute face in and out. Big Gabe, Little Gabe, Big Gabe, Little Gabe. I have a problem.

We rewrote the entire site, reformatted ALL 2,000+ pictures I had on the site. Twice. I redesigned album covers, made buttons. Andy took my sketches and turned it into reality. Finally Tuesday, we were ready to launch. I’d gone through all the albums and made all the changes. Everything looked perfect. Andy wasn’t feeling so great that day, so he went to bed early. I decided to launch without him.

Site launched, I patted myself on the back and went to bed. Then Andy called me from work the next day, “The site looks different in every browser.” I designed the bugger in Internet Explorer 7.0. Andy downloaded the older version of IE (6.0) at work, and everything looked, um, awful. Then I opened Firefox at home that night, and everything looked, well, awful.

It was about this point that I lost Andy. He is sicker than I have seen him in quite some time. He spends most of his time asleep on the couch dreaming of opened sinuses. I fixed some of the most heinous and egregious things, but I don’t speak Andy’s web languages. Sometimes I go shake him awake and ask him things like, “Honey, sorry, where’s the header tag start?” and he looks at me like I’ve just asked him why the monkeys are making bouillabaise.

I’m in the ocean without a lifeboat here, folks. You can help me out a ton, though. If you use the email form in the “Conact” page and tell me if something on the new site looks “off” to you. Oh, and tell me what browser you use (and if you know, what version), that would be fantastic. Or you can just email me if you’re privy to my address. :)

Or even better yet, download IE 7.0.

Timestamp?!

Just to make you all feel better, something is obviously wrong with the timestamp. I’ll have to look into it. I haven’t become a recent insomniac, nor do I blog during work hours. I just realized it. I’ll put the IT guy on it after he recovers from his hangover after this coming weekend’s trip to Vegas.

Aaaaaand, False Alarm

Okay, so I jumped to the “ashes to ashes” allusion a little too soon. Go ahead and put away the Kleenex, my iPod is fine. Long story short: The battery was dead. But you know me, I can’t avoid the long story for long.

So here it is. Remember how Andy loaded his iPod up with my music library? Well, we were painting on Saturday and decided we needed some tunes to work by. He pulled his iPod out of my briefcase, and lo and behold – it wouldn’t boot up. A few expletives were uttered, and some stomping around ensued. 10 minutes later, Andy walked up to me and said, “Look.” I turned to see him holding my iPod, good as new, with my song lists all beautifully displayed on the screen.

Quite a leap yes? Well, Andy realized that when he diagnosed my iPod the other day, he forgot to check one thing. The USB cable we use to charge it. Here’s the weird thing – this cable is used for two purposes: to charge the iPod and to sync the iPod with the computer to load songs onto it. Andy used the “bad cable” to sync his iPod with my computer. Since the synchronization went off without a hitch, he just assumed that there was nothing wrong with the cable. :::deep breath::: But, if you know Cable 101 like my husband, you would also know that there are essentially two different components within the cable controlling the two different functions. And, if y’all are still awake at this point, that is the moral of the story. The USB cable lost its ability to charge, and maintained its ability to sync.

So there, both our iPods are alive and well. And on a separate but somehow related note, our foyer and the columns and bar area in our kitchen are painted a pleasant taupe color that is technically darker than the original off-white color. We feel, however, that the change is indistinguishable to the naked eye. Oh well. Still looks nice anyway!