Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Skipping the voicemail instructions

You've all heard been here before. First, you wait ring after ring to get a hold of the person you are calling. Then, you hear the person's personalized voicemail telling you to leave a message. On a sidenote, as technology is, this voicemail message is pointless to me. You know the person unavailable--that's why they didn't pick up. So what is the point of the voicemail unless it is detailed enough to give you information that you didn't already have about the person. As Google is getting more and more integrated with cell phone features, I wouldn't be surprised if a feature for Google status updates allows for you to sync the updates to your voicemail. So you can say on your status update that you are in Beliz, and if someone tries to get ahold of you, that information can be communicated to the caller. Anyway, back to my voicemail rant. Finally, as if it wasn't enough waiting, you proceed to hear an automated woman's voice tell you instructions on how to leave the message. A nice way to bypass all this hoopla is by simply pressing #. It sends you straight to voicemail. However, some phones (I don't know if this is a network issue or phone-specific) are not in tune with this nice feature. Instead, it prompts you to enter a passcode, not allowing you to enter a voicemail that call. This needs to stop Verizon (or particular phones). Get with the program.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

All set?

"Are you all set?" It was a question I started liking towards the beginning of this year. I liked how simple and direct the wording was and how the person asking the question doesn't have to provide any details of what he is asking because the context makes it relatively straightforward. However, like most cool things, I have seen this question's enchantment decline through overuse. Just the other day when standing in a bakery, A+ and I were looking at the menu. The employee looked at us after a while and ventured, "All set?" What did that question even mean? The most obvious interpretation was that she was wondering if we were ready, but since we were still glancing at the menu, the context did not make her intent obvious. A more effective question would have been, "Do you have any questions?" or "Are you ready to order?" That would have been nice.

Take home true principle: use cool phrases selectively and in moderation.