• Greg Baker

An iPhone for Every Soul

(Reprinted from the Metro Spirit, October 20, 2011)

Last week we bid farewell to Steve Jobs.  Another titan of the Internet also passed away last week, but he’s likely someone of which you never heard.  Dennis Ritchie was one of the original developers of the Unix operating system and the creator of the C programming language.  Originally written to make operating systems and programs run on different hardware, virtually all modern languages can trace a relationship to the original C and Unix baselines.  Linux, Android, Mac OS, iOS, JavaScript and C++ are some of the many descendants.  Personally, I spent about 15 years developing applications in C that ranged from text processing to RF signal analysis to models of the Earth’s gravity field.  Only a true geek (like me) can understand the grace, elegance, power and simplicity of C.  The reality that Dennis Ritchie’s creation evolved to power the internet is no surprise at all.

A quick heads-up to all of the Occupy Augusta participants (if there are any left by the time this issue hits the street)…check out the Android market for a new app called I’m Getting Arrested.  You pre-load a custom message and texting recipients in the event that your peaceful demonstration goes awry.  If it looks like one of Augusta’s finest is going to haul you off, kick off the app and long press the bulls-eye.  No phone call needed.  Technological efficiency at its awesomeness.

(BTW – Isn’t the Occupy Augusta movement an oxymoron?  Honestly, “Occupy Augusta” sounds more like a marketing pitch for the DDA.)

This week, CTIA-The Wireless Association announced that the United States has more subscribers to wireless services than people.  Think about that for a minute…327.6 million wireless service subscribers compared to 315.5 million people.  I’m no brain surgeon, but it seems to indicate that every man, woman and child in the U.S. is using a cell phone of some kind.  My wife and I had decided not to get our girls a phone until they were at least in high school.  (How many e-Trade babies are there really?)  Is it being too old fashioned to cheat our girls out of their fair share of wireless service through elementary school?  Let’s face it, our society has moved from a chicken in every pot to an iPhone for every soul.  Does anyone have some good thoughts on the subject?

Jenny, have you gotten a smartphone for the Boy and the Girl yet?  (Just curious…)

So does anyone want to talk about the Blackberry outages?  From what I’ve seen, Blackberry users are still too ticked to discuss it.  Everyone else is wondering why they are still using a Blackberry.

Finally, technology recycling is a growing industry in the local area.  Several recycling centers exist in the area and rumors of others pop up from time-to-time.  However, based on what was recently reported in Japan, Augusta entrepreneurs have absolutely missed the mark on a recyclable that is plentiful (bountiful, actually) in the local area.  Lingerie makers Triumph International and Wacoal are recycling used brassieres into a solid fuel called RFP (Refuse Paper and Plastic Fuel).  Since 2009, 380,000 bras have been converted into approximately 32 tons of a fuel that has combustion efficiency comparable to coal but one-third the cost.

So, if you are a non-profit looking for a fund raising idea…

Until next time, I’ll see you on the internet…tweet me @gregory_a_baker.  L8R.

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