1 day down, another 4 days to go

Well, another day has come and gone but on the good side I’ve been told I’ve only got one more week travelling out to Porirua for work then I’m back to my old store and to be honest I prefer to be in an environment where things are predictable. I enjoy the crew where I work and the customers are great – not having to deal with customers who complain because they like the sound of their own voice and then come in only to treat those behind the counter like the person serving them is beneath them in some sort of hierarchy they have sitting in the back of their mind. Side note, before saying anything I suggest that a good number of people out there need to hear the sound of their own voice and then ask whether that voice really represents who you are as a person.

I’m going to purchase a 3 moth rego rather than a 12 month because it gives me enough breathing room for the next three months to finish off my ‘pay down the debt’ drive then in January when that expires then I’ll just purchase one for 12 months because by that time I’ll have the spare cash left over to make it possible.

Just having a look through on Apple’s online store and pricing things up – the iMac 5K with 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, upgrade the CPU to an i7 4.0Ghz along with a MD Radeon R9 M295X then I priced up a MacBook Pro with 16GB RAM and 3.0Ghz i7 CPU.  As for my old computer, I’ll probably sell the laptop but I might just give my old desktop to my sister since she’ll appreciate it a lot more than if I just went out and sold it to some person on the net then get stung with a massive trademe fee.

I’ve been putting my 802.11ac router through its paces along with my HTC One M8 which is 802.11ac compatible and although there isn’t a massive sped improvement I do find that the signal is a lot stronger given that my network is sitting on the 5Ghz frequency. The big question now is what I do once Vodafone has completed its upgrades by the end of November and whether I make the move to Vodafone – hopefully by then Apple will have more iPhone 6 plus in stock by that time.

Just been watching a series called Helix and Strain – both of them science fiction apocalyptic series – great way to just chill out after a long day ant work, vegetate in front of the laptop watching some episodes direct from the US. Goes back to my original thinking whether it is even worth having Sky – maybe I’m better off having an Apple TV and using that to watch television from overseas – hopefully Netflix will finally get its act together and come to NZ after creating a laundry list of excuses as to why they can’t come to NZ and the issue surrounding data caps and bandwidth being very much a non-issue.

Almost there…

Almost there to my goal of having all the debt paid off by the end of November then freedom! well, more freedom than I have these days. Here is the current screenshot of my computer:


I’m wanting to put a ‘Radmir Floral Ornament’ inspired background on my desktop but alas all the sources so far want to charge me $49 for 5 downloads – I guess if I do get really desperate and want to make my computer pretty I can always go ahead and do that then re-use the pattern downloads for a print out for a feature wall or tiles or something for my house in the future. There is something I do like that Apple provides but I find it not dark enough – I prefer to have a dark background and when it comes to reading through a website I prefer a grey/off white because it is less of a strain on the eyes especially when you consider the new transparency ‘thing’ that Apple has going on with it’s latest operating system.

Just reading through Arstechnica about the new iMac 5K and the early reports in so far that the speed and responsiveness is very good so that puts to rest my concern that the GPU didn’t have enough grunt to run the screen. Now, the big game is holding off till I pay off my debt, purchase the iPhone (hopefully in a month there will be more supply) along with the eventual upgrade of my MacBook Pro then moving to Vodafone for that 200Mbps flat rate internet connection once I’ve closed off my sky account (which will save me $60 per month).

On a good side my parents will arrive home after going to the UK for 6 weeks so I’ll head over to have dinner with them on Monday (my day off, unfortunately it is a split weekend). As much as I dislike having go to go back to work after a nice two days off I also realise that another day at work is another day to paying off my debt.

Side note though, I’m looking at re-uploading my HTC One video to Vimeo and in the long run I’m looking at deleting off my Gmail account. Oh, funny thing, checked my power account and my power bill for the month that has just gone is $89 – not too bad lol.

iMac and iPad refresh

Well the keynote has come and gone – I was expecting a ‘Retina display’ on the iMac for the masses but found that it is very much a niche product that I’m sure enthusiasts will find useful but for me when I put my rational purchasing decision hat on found that I’m actually better off getting a high end standard 27inch iMac, then doing a custom build with a 512GB SSD, 16GB RAM, up the GPU to a 780M then swap the wireless keyboard to a full wired one and go for the touchpad rather than having a mouse. When it comes to the laptop – I’ll go for the MacBook Air, 512GB SSD, 8GB memory, up the CPU and thus have something with minimal moving parts that’ll last years to come.

Yosemite and updates to the iWorks suite was announced and released today – checking through the comments section it appears that Apple is releasing it in ‘waves’ rather than releasing it to ‘one and all’ only to result in all hell breaking loose. I’m hoping that by the time I wake up today at 7pm (before heading off to work) it will be ready for download for me along with the updates for iWorks. I’ll upload a video review of Yosemite in around a week or two time when I’ve had more experience with it – looking forward to the integration with iPhone 6 Plus once I finally get one in two months.

Another day, four days to go

I’ve just realised, looking at the date for today here in NZ, by the time I get back tonight on Thursday I’ll have to stay up until 9am (got work at 10pm on Friday) which means I’ll be able to stay up for the keynote (yay!) maybe some investment in popcorn might be in order. I’m looking forward to two things coming out – MacBook Air refresh with maybe a Retina display and an iMac 27Inch with a Retina display – both of those would be great to hear and given that it’ll be three months before I jump onboard and purchase it I will have plenty of time to put some money aside for it but I’m going to get an iPhone 6 Plus, move to Vodafone and get an Airport Extreme base station before I make that big move. I’m all excited that by the end of November I’ll be debt free and able to move on with my life in a better direction – more money left over each week knowing I’m not servicing a massive burden of debt and feeling a whole lot better for it.

My boss wanted to know whether I was interested in moving to Porirua because he wants someone there who has strong analytical skills when it comes to understanding sales and stock data but to be completely honest I certain do not want to be travelling out from Avalon to Porirua each day – it is an hour there and hour back – something I don’t want to make a habit of especially given that I most likely won’t receive a pay rise or anything to compensate me for the extra travel. In the end I’m happy over at Johnsonville so I’ll stay there for the long term – or until the dream job comes along and I can cash up that 2-3 months worth of holidays I’ve been saving up lol.

Scooter is going well and I’ll be looking at taking it in for a service at the end of November but before then I’ll have to get my rego sorted out so if I have some spare cash I’ll probably get the yearly one but if things are tight next pay day I’d sooner buy some time (say three months) then once my debt is paid off I’ll buy up a yearly rego for my scooter. Funny enough though my back tire has a puncher leak but because I put some of that foamy stuff in the tyre itself the leak was plugged up and things are going well – I’ll wait till November and when they do the servicing I’ll get them to go for gold and replace the back tyre at the same time so I can hit two birds with one stone. A nice new back tyre and I’ll tell the guys at the shop to do a top to bottom servicing where I’ll drop it off on Monday and then pick it up on Tuesday. I’ve been using the Castrol Activ 2T which has been pretty good so far and the engine seems to be purring a long nicely. I used to go into Wellington to grab the oil from the store I bought the scooter from but the Castrol is good enough for what I need and it is a good brand as well with a good reputation.

Just having a look through Vimeo – US$59.95 for a subscription and I’ll probably upgrade my WordPress subscription to ‘Wordpress Premium’ which works out to be US$79.95 per year. Both of those will be great upgrades but I’ll keep with my iCloud service – the keychain, bookmark and other synchronisation facilities I’ve become so dependent upon I really can’t give them up. I need those niceties. I’ve just checked out the cost of the iCloud storage options – the US$4.99 per month looks tempting. Maybe when I get the flat rate internet I’ll find many creative ways of filling up that iCloud Drive – back up my music collection? given that Vodafone is upgrading their HFC network to 200Mps it leaves a lot of possibilities to take advantage of.

Going well, going well indeedy

Everything is going great so far with the latest Public Beta of OS X Yosemite having been released before the weekend (Public Beta 6) which was a 55MB download which seemed to touch all the frameworks place the kernel and a few extensions – the final touches on OS X Yosemite before the rumoured announcement on 16 October for its public final availability. During this time I was hoping to be able to avoid having to use Flash but in the end I found that for all the benefits of HTML5 video it wasn’t able to elegantly handle a dodgy connection – especially given that a server is located on the other side of the world and I’m down here in NZ where it isn’t possible to get a consistent streaming connection where as with Flash (which is Yosemite compatible) I’ve been able to watch my favourite television shows without stuttering etc.

Debt paying is going great with the goal of getting it all paid off by the end of November – once all sorted out I’ll be looking at moving back to ASB Bank (including my Kiwisaver) then purchase an iPhone 6 Plus once it has been made available – I’ll pass along my HTC One M8 to my brother as either a Christmas present or a late one to replace his Samsung Galaxy S3. In the long run I’m looking at replacing my iMac and MacBook Pro with hopefully a Retina MacBook Pro and Retina iMac along with moving over to Vodafone once their 200mbps cable network comes online. Then some time down the track I’ll look at purchasing a 150cc scooter to replace my 50cc one which I’ll use in conjunction with getting a learners motorcycle licence which will provide me with greater mobility in the long term especially when it comes to travelling long distances at a reasonable speed (anything above 60kmph and I’d be a happy chap).

Looking forward to moving back to my iPhone but I’ve already moved back to iCloud then once I move back to an iPhone plus I’m going to delete my Gmail account then jump to using Vimeo for my video hosting of which I’ll do the occasional video but it won’t be on a weekly basis because to dedicate an amount of time to making videos takes quite a chunk out of the day especially when one considers getting the material ready, practicing, re-doing the video when there are mistakes etc. which all take time. Vimeo does some good video hosting and it avoids the trolls plus the videos keep their original quality a lot better than when I upload to YouTube. Hopefully once I get flat rate internet with unlimited downloads then it’ll become a greater possibility of being able to do move videos and other bandwidth heavy stuff for my blog in the future.

Anyway, got a closing shift tomorrow then back to the usual store for three days then back on Sunday to do an end of week at another store – feeling a bit like a ball in a pin ball machine being bounced around between different stores. Oh well, each pay packet gets me closer to paying off my debt and being debt free by the time Christmas rolls around – about to splurge on some presents without any guilt associated with spending up without accumulating any debt.

Another week, another step closer to victory against my war against debt

Another week has come and gone with my pay coming through tomorrow and I’ll be on track to pay off the last bit of debt which will tidy things up before Christmas rolls along this year. With this move towards financial bliss I’ve been looking into the future – although I love my HTC One M8 I’m going to end up giving it to my brother has a present and then purchase an iPhone 6 Plus when it becomes more readily available. I’ve continued to use iCloud because the problems I was experiencing had nothing to do with iCloud but actually with the mobile provider I am with – constant data connection issues being something that has plagued Spark (previously Telecom NZ) for years and only made worse by the fact that they’ve got a frankenstein of a system which is a mixture of Huawei, Ericsson, Alcatel-Lucent where it is a miracle that these systems actually talk to each other let alone function in some reasonable way. Where as Vodafone can easily manage their network based on having it all supplied from the same vendor there is Spark trying to keep what they have going – maybe they would have been better off choosing Huawei and replacing their Alcatel-Lucent 3G setup with a pure Huawei SingleRAN 3G and 4G equipment and use Ericsson software for all the ‘behind the scenes’ heavy lifting required thus avoiding what they have today.

December rolls around and I’ll be outside of the Sky and Spark contract which will make it easier to move providers – I’ll need to keep an eye on what is on offer so that I can take advantage of any possible deals but the one thing I am not going for is pay television again. Right now I’m paying around $60 per month for something that I might watch 12-15 hours worth each week and mainly as a radio playing in the background whilst I’m on the internet in much the same way that you leave the radio on for the dog so that it feels as though there are humans are around. It is a whole lot better value for me to throw Sky out the door and go for a flat rate internet option and grab the $69 mobile plan from Vodafone (Red+ Essentials) on an open plan then combine it with a Vodafone cable option 100Mbps it is looking like a good option. Regarding the iPhone 6 Plus, I’ll buy it direct from Apple on the 12 months interest free offer through GEM Visa that avoids the lock ins with carriers. I’ve got a spare sim card here from Vodafone and tried it with my HTC One M8 – very good signal, fast and reliable connection – a great experience all around.

16th October there is going to be a small presentation and the rumour has it that it will be an event for the launch of a refreshed iPad line up as well as the possibility of an iMac refresh – rumour has it that Apple have chosen AMD to be the GPU supplier and that they’re going to bring Retina display to the iMac line up. How much credence to I give such a rumour? it’s a 50/50 split but given out persistent the rumours have been regarding an Retina iMac being launched I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a refresh in time for Christmas to take advantage of those sales. I’m watching out and next year after getting and paying off the iPhone I’ll start the refresh where I’ll probably go for an iMac first with 256GB SSD given that the bulk of the storage I need will sit in my Drobo device which has 10TB of storage hooked up to my Thunderbolt port. Throw 16GB into the machine, up the GPU with a BTO option along with a faster CPU and it’ll give many years of service without having to worry about a rotating storage device going bad. The big question next is do I go for a MacBook Pro or a MacBook Air given that I really don’t need the heavy lifting but at the same time if I get something a little more grunty from the outset then I’ll be covered for a good few years before I have to worry about replacing it in the future. Right now the limit of the MacBook Air is 8GB where as at least in the case of the MacBook Pro I can max it out at 16GB which will be more than enough for at least close to a decade given that even 8GB RAM 3 years after it became the standard is still more than adequate for the vast, vast majority of end users. Oh well, off to sleep to start off another week of fun and excitement at work.