Keep calm and buy old tech

In my mind, I’ve always been an early adopter. In my mind, I’m also Bruce Wayne’s wealthier uncle, Gustav, who thinks Batman’s a punk for refusing to use micronukes for crowd control. In my mind, I have many issues.

But I’ve always wanted the latest gear. Willing to put up with the headaches of paying to be a beta-tester just to have something new, shiny and, undoubtedly, the answer to life, the universe and everything. Or at least able to knock 2.8 seconds off a Photoshop Gaussian blur. In this respect, I am not much different than many of you, I suspect. I’ll pause momentarily so you may retch.

The problem is, I’ve never been flush with cash. I’ve never bought a used car only to find 20 kilos of Acapulco Gold sewn into the rear seat upholstery. And sadly, spending lives at the gas company and at a grain silo manufacturer left my grandfathers unable to bestow an adequate trust fund upon me.

Also, I work in advertising.

So, over the years, I’ve made do with used cars, used computers, and refurbs of all shapes and sizes. Which was generally fine. It’s hard to complain about driving around in a year-old BMW M3 that you nicked for two-thirds of the MSRP. If only I could pull off a similar feat today. My tech has almost always been one generation behind when I bought it and four when I sold it. Or recycled it. Or turned it into a parcel shelf for 20 kilos of junk mail. I did manage to get an iPhone 3GS the week it was released, and a (at the time) current-generation MacBook Air. Which, of course, was used. Hmmm.

But through careful upgrades and a willingness to eat another Pop Tart while Final Cut rendered some ill-chosen color correction, I’ve managed to shuffle along fairly well down the halls of technological progress, even if I linger a few steps behind.

Frankly, I’m tired of it. I want a new iPad. Not a new-to-me iPad. Or a refurbed iPad 2. I want the newest-of-the-new, ready-for-iOS 6 iPad and a robot pony to go with it. As you may recall, I was none too impressed with the original iPad. I, like many others, considered it little more than giant iPod Touch. Which I still think it was. Nonetheless, many millions of people had apparently been longing for a supersized Touch and gobbled them up. The iPad 2 was much improved, and I was tempted to get one. But, with a generally working Hackintosh, iPhone and (at the time) employer-provided MacBook Pro at my disposal, dropping serious coin on another iDevice didn’t make much sense.

The new iPad, however, is different. Mainly because of the Retina display. I can use LogMeIn on it to work on my Hackintosh while leeching Wi-Fi from the food court. Mmm, Instagramming corn dogs. Or, I can open docs from Dropbox and use a Bluetooth keyboard and Magic Mouse (thank you, Cydia!) to bang out whatever bit of ad flotsam I’m currently tasked with. Why not just use my Air for that? Well, I do. And that’s about all I use it for. So I’ve got this nice, shiny machine that’s barely being tasked. Or, I could sell it and buy two iPads. Not both for me. My wife’s been using a late-2006-era MacBook Pro Core 2 Duo that weighs almost as much as a modern Dell (it’s a joke, move along) and can’t spit “The Monster at the End of This Book” onto the Apple TV like an iPad can.

Yes, I’m rationalizing. Now shut up and click the Buy It Now button. I’ve already got Leatherelle™ cases and Bluetooth keyboards (refurbs, of course) ready to go. And if you haven’t figured it out by now, the title is not a bit of self-reflection.

Later,

Fox

Comments closed
    • dashbarron
    • 7 years ago

    This is blown grossly out of proportion.

    Fox used to buy nice stuff.
    Fox gained wife, kids, responsibility.
    Fox is much more economical now (re-read his old posts).
    Fox has to buy old stuff (of whatever he WANTS).
    Fox wants to buy new stuff again.

    We all do it, we all want to splurge on something nice and shiny, especially if we haven’t done so ever or in a long time.

    Chill.

    • holophrastic
    • 7 years ago

    Wow, I feel bad for you. Not because you’ve got old gear, and not even because you never have new gear. Instead I feel bad for you because you’ve fallen for so much marketing ploy.

    Here’s what I do, and it’s way simpler in almost every respect. Say I need something. After deciding what I need, and exploring what exists to suit my needs, and investigating what exists that’s one level better than that, I buy the very best, usually the very newest of that thing. It’s usually a commercial-grade version, and I usually wind up spending a good 30% more than one otherwise would.

    Then I keep it. Often for up to five times longer than anyone else would. It wasn’t just new when I got it. It was very new, and commercial. So it’s ahead of the curve, and it lasts reliably.

    The net effect is that each device that I buy starts ahead of the curve, and then trails behind the curve. So I kind of bounce. For example, when your wife would have bought a core 2 duo in 2006, I bought the core 2 quad, but as the xeon 3350 the day it came out. And I didn’t buy one hard drive. I bought four: OS, work data, work data backup, replaceable games/programs/files. I’m still using it today, and while it doesn’t pop as quickly as a second gen core i5 even, it remains a no-compromises solution even for today.

    So I had a very new computer then, and now I have an old computer that’s still perfectly fast.

    Did the same with the car, and the same with the house, and the same with the monitors. No my monitors aren’t displayport. But they are 30″, there are three of them, they’re medical-grade displays, and after four years they show no signs of stopping.

    So save your pennies, plan to get the best tablet computer the day that you’ve got the money to do so. Don’t let the latest consumer marketing sway your decision. Find the best tablet that you can afford outright. Then have it for a long long time. And enjoy it every day.

    Retina displays look really awesome. And it’s a feat of manufacturing. And it’s totally and completely useless. There’s absolutely no benefit to it over a normal screen for any of your uses. So aside from the marketing, and competing with your friends for who has the larger pixel count, it’s a total waste of your attention. Oh yeah, and battery life drops, and data plans skyrocket, and it’s heavier, and and and.

    So if you want to compete with your friends, do what mine do. We try to get bigger pepper-mills. It’s funny, it’s hilarious, and huge pepper-mills are hard to find, and can be almost as expensive as an ipad.

    But being able to grind pepper for your friend sitting two tables away is way cooler than any pixel count.

    Oh, and pepper-mills are also way more phallic than pads. I’m just saying. Let your wife compete with her friends for the best pad. You should compete for the best phallus.

    I’m just saying.

      • cynan
      • 7 years ago

      [quote<]The net effect is that each device that I buy starts ahead of the curve, and then trails behind the curve. So I kind of bounce. For example, when your wife would have bought a core 2 duo in 2006, I bought the core 2 quad, but as the xeon 3350 the day it came out. And I didn't buy one hard drive. I bought four: OS, work data, work data backup, replaceable games/programs/files. I'm still using it today, and while it doesn't pop as quickly as a second gen core i5 even, it remains a no-compromises solution even for today/[/quote<]. Except that having close enough to high-end performance over a 5-year life span hasn't always been feasible. Imagine if you'd bought a brand new, state of the art Pentium 4 in mid 2002. Tell me that come 2006, with the release of those core 2 chips, you'd not be chomping at the bit to upgrade your relatively painfully slow system. If you say that you'd have been more than pleased with your P4 performance, I'd not be inclined to believe you. I recently upgraded from a core 2 quad to a Sandy Bridge. Depending on what you use your computer for, the difference can be quite noticeable. Furthermore, how is buying 4 hard disks in 2006 an exercise in financial responsibility, say, if you could have gotten away with 2 to begin with and picked up more over the following years when they'd have likely been cheaper? And speaking of hard drives, pretending that the performance of mechanical drives circa 2006 is in anyway comparable to current NAND devices is just outright denial. Do yourself a favor and spend at least $200 from the budget of your impending beast of a new system (are you waiting for Haswell?) on a 256GB SSD. You won't regret it. [quote<]Did the same with the car, and the same with the house, and the same with the monitors. No my monitors aren't displayport. But they are 30", there are three of them, they're medical-grade displays, and after four years they show no signs of stopping.[/quote<] Medical grade displays? (Are you being serious, I honestly can't tell). Should I be concerned that my 3-year old Dell 3007WFP is about to crap out sometime soon because I didn't pay the inflated prices charged to specialty businesses? (What exactly is a medical grade display anyway? I've heard of medical grade power supplies and other computer equipment designed to handle more abuse such as the Panasonic Tough Books, etc. I've heard of design-grade monitors that offer wider color gamuts, more color accuracy and better calibration out of the box. But a medical grade monitor? What exactly does that do for you other than having proprietary BNC style inputs to connect to specialized medical cameras or other equipment that is.. And how does that help you with everyday computing?) Yet at the core, your advice is sound and may translate well to products that exhibit more gradual functional evolution (cars, house, etc - though anyone will tell you that blowing a large chunk of savings on a car is never a smart move financially). Because of the declining rate of increasing computational requirements of computer operating systems, most software applications and even games, you may even get away with applying such a model to recent PC purchases (though this has not always been the case). But it just doesn't fit with tech gadgets - and let's face it, that's exactly what a tablet is for most people: A new/shiny toy where at least half (most?) of the desirability lies not in its functionality, but in its novelty. Therefore, much of the appeal is lost if you only upgrade such items very half-dozen years. More to the point, due to the rate such devices are evolving, even the most well specced "medical grade" tablet purchased today will likely not be fit to serve as children's toy in 5 or 6 years from now (yes, I'm looking at you, parents, who [url=http://healthland.time.com/2011/10/20/no-screen-time-for-2-year-olds-do-ipad-apps-count/<]buy Ipads for their 2-year[/url<] olds). The real issue is financial responsibility. If you manage to spend within your means by blowing a huge nostril-twinging, tear-inducing peppery wad every 6 years on computer and related items and then being miserly in between, then well and good. However, if you are all enamored with the latest Ipad or whatever - so much so that you wax ad-nauseum about it so as fill an entire blog entry [b<][i<]and can afford to buy it[/i<][/b<] then why not get it? As long as they do so responsibly and not beyond their means, why not let people spend their money how they see fit? For in the words of the poet George Herbert, "He who has the pepper may season as he lists."

    • Flatland_Spider
    • 7 years ago

    #whitewhine
    #firstworldproblems

    [quote<]So, over the years, I've made do with used cars, used computers, and refurbs of all shapes and sizes.[/quote<] So do I. Part of that is me being thrifty, and part of that is me wanting to be able to mod the stuff without conscience. The only reason I bought a new brand new laptop this year, which is my first new laptop, was because I'm expecting to replace it in five years, and It didn't make sense to buy something that was already a year out of date then try to squeeze the thing for more juice at year four. As for the M3, was this the E46 M3? Those things are sex on wheels and very tempting.

      • Jason_Fox
      • 7 years ago

      E36. I toy around with getting another some day, but then I read about everything you have to check for and probably replace to keep them going. If you can’t afford the maintenance, you can’t afford the car.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 7 years ago

        Well now that you have a book deal you’ll be ROLLING in the cash. That’s what authors do, amirite?

        …?

        *crickets*

    • barich
    • 7 years ago

    I don’t get tablets. I bought an HP TouchPad for $99 and never use it. I have Android ICS on it, so it can run pretty much anything I might want to run. I just have yet to find a scenario where I wouldn’t rather be using a different device. Reading? My Kindle Touch is vastly superior. Checking e-mail, Facebook, etc? My smartphone’s already in my pocket all the time. Music? Smartphone again. Movie? TV or laptop depending on where I am, or smartphone if I’m stuck without either of those. Actual productive work? Laptop. Adding a mouse and keyboard to a tablet (adding even more to the cost) just turns it into a very limited laptop. Why wouldn’t I use the real thing?

    Also, Jason, you’re implying that your choices are between a MacBook Air and an iPad. How about an Acer Aspire One 722, for $280? Weighs just a little more than the Air, and is thicker, of course, and inferior spec-wise, but for what you’re using the Air for, it would work just as well. And you could buy two of them for the cost of one iPad. Also, doesn’t AirPlay stream from iTunes on any Mac or PC?

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      Me and you = identical situations my 32 GB touchpad with ics doesn’t get used weekly.

        • Firestarter
        • 7 years ago

        Well apparently either ICS sucks or you guys aren’t trying hard enough to like it :p

          • barich
          • 7 years ago

          I love ICS on my Galaxy Nexus. I just can’t find any reasons to want it on a non-pocketable device. Anything I can’t do on my phone I can’t do on a tablet.

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            Pretty much the same, though I use a Samsung focus. I’d write more, but I’m camping in Cavendish on pei, and my focus is almost dead, and I can’t charge it!

            • End User
            • 7 years ago

            [url<]http://goo.gl/KvNCL[/url<]

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            that’s a great example of the windows/android advantage. can’t do that with your iphone! (and some android phones, or a nokia 800/900) shhhh about the last one….

        • End User
        • 7 years ago

        That’s what you get when you buy a piece of crap.

          • sweatshopking
          • 7 years ago

          It has nothing to do with the “piece of crap”. it’s the fact that the complete device is useless. it runs android 4.0 perfectly, so your argument is that ALL android 4.0 devices are pieces of crap? the touchpad uses the identical panel as the ipad 2, so…..

          tbh, you really have no position besides “APPLE IS BETTAR”. it’s typical for you. without x86 or a keyboard/mouse, a tablet is a toy for children and cats. some lizards enjoy bug eating games too. otherwise, mr. poop pants, it’s a toy. the “well millions of people disagree with you, so you smell like farts” argument is stupid. jim jones convinced 909 people to kill themselves. i’m not saying people are killing themselves, i’m saying people are stupid. selling a million anything to the morons around me isn’t that difficult. i know a lot of people that have ipads, and besides moving the icons around, and showing them to people when they come over, they’re either toys for children (wasteful amount of money for a toy) or they sit on the table ignored while they use their phones, or real computers. I’m sure you also have anecdotal evidence to back up your perceived miracle devices. You always do, probably because you huff paint. It doesn’t matter though. In this case, we can just agree [s<] to disagree [/s<] that you wear girls clothes.

    • Decelerate
    • 7 years ago

    Wow, didn’t expect so much whining from a [u<]blog[/u<] post about the [i<]need[/i<] for the latest and greatest (not the device itself, but in general. The specific device/item is a timing issue. It could've been a new M5). People are complaining about a post being [i<]a First-World problem[/i<]. Aren't tech devices, especially the kind this site covers and reviews (as in, latest and greatest), first-world items in the first place?

    • ryko
    • 7 years ago

    Everyone going on about it’s just a giant ipod is being ridiculous. I use my ipad2 for reading more than anything, and it blows everything out of the water as far as I can tell. Don’t all of you people read tons of tech news? The iPad has allowed me to read more and faster than any other computer I have…desktop with dual screens or laptop.

      • atryus28
      • 7 years ago

      You just like to fondle your shiny toy. There is no perceivable reason a smaller screen held in your hand would really help you read faster.

        • bthylafh
        • 7 years ago

        …says the guy who’s clearly never had an e-reader. I’ve got a Kindle 3.

        Maybe not “faster”, but lots more convenience – you get your books nigh instantly and the device can hold thousands of them, /and/ you have the wonder of full-text search and a decent built-in dictionary. Newer Kindles extend the dictionary idea into having reduced Wikipedia articles on the device, e.g. on the Thirty Years’ War.

      • cynan
      • 7 years ago

      [quote<]I use my ipad2 for reading more than anything, and it blows everything out of the water as far as I can tell.[/quote<] Yeah, you know, except of course for a $100 and change e-reader.

        • ryko
        • 7 years ago

        I should have been more clear…for reading websites, not books. No $100 ereader is going to be as responsive in that regard.

        And the reason it is faster for me is just the general control being at your fingertips. Very intuitive to push the page around to read more as you are going along. Almost like a very slow continuous scroll that is easier to achieve with your fingers than it is using a scroll wheel or scroll bars and mouse pointer.

          • sweatshopking
          • 7 years ago

          yeah, i know i find mouse wheels to be exhausting.

            • ludi
            • 7 years ago

            In that case I suggest a weight lifting regimen, starting with paperclips and working your way up from there. Also, you’re probably at critical risk for osteoporosis. Seek medical attention at once.

      • rrr
      • 7 years ago

      You must have some really crappy computers then.

      • trackerben
      • 7 years ago

      That’s my experience too. Not to mention I get to read more stuff when on the go between places. Back in the day I read Drake’s entire Belisarius series off my Treo 270, at 160×160. Anything which eases the operating burden on eyesight and limbs is a necessity. Maybe I think this way because one of my old friends is an opthalmologist while another is a reconstructive surgeon.

    • Ifalna
    • 7 years ago

    idevices are sooo overrated. I’d save the money and put it towards something that’s actually useful.

      • Srsly_Bro
      • 7 years ago

      like bags of rocks.

        • yogibbear
        • 7 years ago

        Well at least carrying them everywhere will give you some muscles 🙂

          • ULYXX
          • 7 years ago

          Or a bag of apples. Strength, food…..and weapon.

          [url<]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZlXWFFVegY[/url<]

    • moresmarterthanspock
    • 7 years ago

    It sometimes pays to buy old stuff, especially with cars, or trucks in my case. My old 1993 GMC Sierra fill-sized is built like a tank. It’s not new, but it’s durable. I hit a deer the other night at 3 in the morning going between 65 and 70 miles per hour. The only damage to the truck was the plastic grill was broken a bit, but the bumper and the rest of the pickup was just fine. The deer, however, did not fare so well. After pressure washing the blood off of my pickup and picking chunks of meat out of the license plate and under the hood, I went back and what I saw reminded me of that old game Doom, where there is nothing left but blood, a barely recognizable deer-carcass that resembled more of a burst water balloon, and chunks of meat and birds having a feast. If I had been driving a new truck with all of the plastic instead of metal, I probably would have been stranded with a busted radiator and extensive damage to the front end.

      • cynan
      • 7 years ago

      Spent much of my (licensed) teenage years (late 1990s) driving around in my Dad’s base model Chevy Silverado half tonne (had the bench seat with no head rests – I can’t believe that passed safety standards..). He bought it 3-4 years old (it was a 1988 or 1989) to use as a second vehicle after we moved to the boonies and kept if for like 6 years. That thing just kept going. As I recall, it wasn’t even maintained that well and lucky if it got an oil change once a year. That old V8 (I can’t remember if it was the 305 or 350) just took all sorts of abuse (compared to the other cars I’ve had experience with). When he traded it in, I think he said that (even with the poorer mileage) it was one of the cheaper vehicles to own and run he could remember owning.

      • dpaus
      • 7 years ago

      Considering the remarkable similarilty between the biology of a deer and human, now I understand why ‘they just don’t make ’em like they used ta’

    • ColeLT1
    • 7 years ago

    My take on the iPad so far:

    My company bought me an iPad 2 3g 32gb to use while on call, so I can go out at night, or out of town and be able to logmein to my work PC. It works for the simple things, I really am not complaining, but I find it pretty useless. Its use time is maybe 1hr over the past 2 months, and I only use it when I have to.

    I think they make good media devices, but I don’t travel via airline like I did with my previous job, so it essentially collects dust until every 7th week when I am on call. I really get the feeling of giant iphone when I use it, and if the on-call task is really simple, I will just use my iphone instead, and if complicated, I will get on a pc. The things I cannot do on my iPhone, I also cannot do on the iPad, the iPad just has a larger screen, so less scrolling. Also, we have a IBM iseries mainframe, with logmein alt+f-key (like alt-f4 = f16) does not work, and this is our “clear all messages except unanswered” key, and if there is some form or a record lock, f16 makes it easy to find. I did create macros for important keys, but still… giant iphone :/

      • Bensam123
      • 7 years ago

      Ah, someone who comes back to reality and actually observes what they have even though it’s shiny.

      It would probably get more use if you put it on your coffee table for all your friends to gawk at while you look trendy passing youtube around the couch while laughing instead of watching them on your 50″ hidef tv.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 7 years ago

      I’m kinda in teh same boat. My employer bought an iPad for me to test our web application on, and they’ve also started iOS-specific apps that I test. It’s “mine” as much as my work laptop and I use it as such. Or used, rather. A 10″ tablet is too big – big enough that the limitations are unacceptable. A 7″ tablet, I can deal with the limitations. I love the Kindle Fire, as a result.

    • End User
    • 7 years ago

    Do you still have the M3? Year and transmission?

      • aurnob
      • 7 years ago

      my man

    • MadManOriginal
    • 7 years ago

    One word in your post summarizes the issue: ‘want’

      • Ringofett
      • 7 years ago

      Your summary wins for being short, but “First World Problems” also works :p

    • Firestarter
    • 7 years ago

    Driving a M3 series but bummed about not having the latest gadgets? It seems that for a tech journalist, your priorities are decidedly non-tech journalist like. If buying a year-old M3 is your definition of ‘making do’, you must think that people driving around in econoboxes from the 90’s are dirt poor.

      • Damage
      • 7 years ago

      Jason drove a used M3 years ago, before he got married and had kids. It was just an example of being able to have decent things by going the used route.

      Also, he’s not a tech journalist. He’s an ad copywriter who moonlights by blogging about Macs and such for us.

        • Firestarter
        • 7 years ago

        Well don’t I look silly now.. Anyhow, I just wanted to say that (basically) complaining about not being able to afford the newest gadgets, while in the same writing also saying that you bought a barely used M3 is offensive to many people. Being able to afford last generation’s gadgets is a privilege. Being able to afford current generation gadgets means you are [b<]rich[/b<]. This whole post read like "Boohoo I'm not rich, just privileged, and I'm sick of it." I'm not rich in the Hollywood kind of sense, but I can easily afford a decent apartment and a new computer off of my cushy office job, and I haven't worried for one second that I might not have health insurance. That is a privileged position, one that I'm glad [s<]many[/s<] some of us here enjoy. The only reason I do not own a tablet or smartphone is because I chose to spend my on something else, like how Jason bought himself an M3 before, and supports his family now. To hear him lament the fact that he has to pick and choose what he spends his money on sounds to me like he does not realize (sufficiently) how well off he actually is. And if I from my position can feel offended by that sentiment, I dare guess that laymen in the rest of the world where the standard of living is decidedly lower would feel outright jealousy and hate, if they'd actually read the article.

          • PainIs4ThaWeak1
          • 7 years ago

          You married by chance? If not, and in that case, all his expendable income isn’t quite “all his expendable income”.

          Not being a prick. Just being fair. I hate Fox’s jungle fever for Apple just as much as the next guy XD

            • derFunkenstein
            • 7 years ago

            True dat!

          • Irascible
          • 7 years ago

          In the context of this site’s primary audience, owning nice stuff is not a [url=http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/privilege<]privilege[/url<]. I started at 16 with a fast food job making $3.10 an hour. I then paid for technical training and worked hard for a couple decades. The result is I can buy a car like Jason's, a new iPad, whatever. Just about anyone living in western culture could have done what I've done. They *choose* not to. The real privilege is having opportunity, which those outside of western culture don't have in near abundance. Is Jason supposed to write for and from every possible point of view the world over? That would be absurd. You write for your particular audience. Or you write for your own amusement. I find him both amusing and bemusing. 🙂

            • Firestarter
            • 7 years ago

            Even from our western, 1st world, privileged perspective, I find it rather shortsighted to post about having to make do with older gadgets while making it obvious that the real priorities were somewhere else. If any of us who hasn’t already earned a fortune (or wasn’t born into it) wants to have the shiny new stuff, that means spending less on something else. Car, vacation, house, even family. If you want your little Jimmy to have the latest gaming console, that might have to come out of your new iPad budget, or vice versa. This whole blog post seems to bemoan that fact, and basically says “I wish I was just rich so I could buy the new iPad AND a new M5”.

            As for audiences, I’d say that Tech Report caters to people with all kinds of budgets. You need look no further than the system guides to see that. Publishing a blog post that reads like an insult to those who’d buy the Econobox for themselves doesn’t befit Tech Report, in my opinion.

            • novv
            • 7 years ago

            I definitely agree 100% with you Firestarter. Many people do not realize that just living in the USA is a privilege. I’m living and working in Romania but my father is in USA and believe me I do know very well the meaning of the word privileged. This article is nothing more than a short story telling how bored someone is buying stuff worth $$ when he really wants to be in the $$$ league. Of course there’s nothing wrong with that, but the article is very poorly written showing the limit Jason is having.

            • MrJP
            • 7 years ago

            You’re entitled to your opinion, but I think you’re over-reacting a fair amount.

            His post was exactly about how he usually has to make the cost trade-offs, but in this particular case he’s ignoring his better judgement and splurging simply because he thinks it’s a nice thing to have. We might well disagree with the choice of object of his affections (and when it comes to Apple most here would), but surely any tech enthusiast can sympathise with the feeling of illogical craving for the latest thing outweighting your best intentions and then coming up with somewhat lame pre- or post-purchase rationalisations?

            Your major bone of contention seems to be that his usual level of cost trade-off is at a higher level than yours. You then seem to somehow equate this with privilege, whereas the key word you used here is probably “earned”. The fact he bought a nearly new BMW really seems to have fired you up, and I’m afraid that’s just coming over as petty jealousy.

            • Firestarter
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<]Your major bone of contention seems to be that his usual level of cost trade-off is at a higher level than yours.[/quote<] Well yes, and no. I agree with the first part of your post, which is also the part of Jason's post with which I can sympathize. And yes, being able to afford a fairly new M3 (even it was years ago) is something that I'm jealous of. However, his mentioning of "making do" and not being "flush with cash" just shows me that he does not realize that he was and is making trade-offs at a level that many can only dream of, and I guess that sounds just as entitled to me as my posts sound jealous to you. Plus, can you imagine going on an BMW forum right now and posting about how you are not able to afford the latest M3 because you bought one iPad too many? They'd laugh at you all the way to the admin panel ban button.

          • Malphas
          • 7 years ago

          [quote<]This whole post read like "Boohoo I'm not rich, just privileged, and I'm sick of it."[/quote<] Yes, this pretty much sums it up. Guy with very large disposable income complaining he doesn't have quite enough of it to justify throwing caution to the wind and lapping up quite as many gadgets and he'd like. Not sure I get the point of the article other than that,

        • mcnabney
        • 7 years ago

        Decent things? One of my best friends bought an M3 NEW and the thing is the most unreliable POS I have ever encountered. A month hasn’t gone by without some part of the car breaking. It is like a Yugo, except there are a lot more parts to break.

          • trackerben
          • 7 years ago

          Old-timers knew “B-M-W” as “B-M-Trouble-you”.

    • sweatshopking
    • 7 years ago

    a man that drives a bmw shouldn’t be complaining about cash, even if it’s used. a man who owns almost every computing device from the most expensive manufacturer should not be complaining about cash. it seems to me, jason, my love, that your bank account is either flush, or your heading the direction of canadians with 152% debt to income levels. either way, this story is crazy. you can pretend you’ll use logmein, but it’ll suck (as it does on the ipad) and you’ll wish you had your air back.

    the giant ipod is STILL a giant ipod, it just has a prettier screen.

    “I know I’ll think it’s cool and hep and rad and gnarly and all, but I’ll still need a compelling reason to lay down some serious cash that I don’t currently have for a device a don’t think I currently need.”

    what need do you have now?

    Edit: I don’t mind the article, and I do love you Jason. I don’t mind apple, it just thought his post was strange.

      • End User
      • 7 years ago

      Wow! Jealous much?

        • cynan
        • 7 years ago

        Oh, I don’t know, I think SSK has at least somewhat of a point. 2/3 the MSRP of an M3 is still 50k (at least it is in Canada, though probably a good 10-15% less in the US – and you pay less taxes too! – but that’s another can of worms). 50k is a lot more than most can afford to spend on a car. And someone that can afford that sounds a bit silly agonizing over a $500 toy.

        Plus, very few people can rationalize an Ipad as a “need”, especially if they already own something like a Macbook Air and a smart phone. Attempting to do so as the subject of a blog – while entertaining (nice entry as usual Mr. Fox) – can’t really be expected to be taken all that seriously.

          • Chrispy_
          • 7 years ago

          [quote<]50k is a lot more than most can afford to spend on a car and someone that can afford that sounds a bit silly agonizing over a $500 toy. [/quote<] Indeed. 99% of the cars on the road are worth less than 50K. Being in the top one percent of car owners means there's enough disposable income going around to completely trivialise an iPad purchase, yet he's hesitating. I too would hesitate - paying $500 for something that is worth substantially less is just a bad buy. Apple products are praised by their wealthy or indoctrinated owners, but they're cheaply-made products with 'trend-buckingly' massive profit margins. There's a definite whiff of "the emperor's new clothes" about them.

            • PainIs4ThaWeak1
            • 7 years ago

            Just an example of another legitimate situation that could cause the “I’ve bought an expensive car, but cringe at the thought of spending $500 on iCrap.”

            Government contractors working in the mid-east.

            Earn their 250k+, go home, buy a great car, save some, spend some more, rely on stateside income from then on…

            Though, personally, if I made millions in a year’s time, I still wouldn’t purchase an Apple product. But that’s just me.

            • Firestarter
            • 7 years ago

            If you buy a $50k car, you’re not done spending money yet. How much gas is that car going to consume? How expensive are the tires that you’ll burn up? Will having the valve clearance checked cost you an arm and a leg? Or what if you ding your rims on a sidewalk, or some asshole leaves you a nice dent in the parking lot?

            What I see there is a lot of iPads’ worth of cash that you’ll spend extra over what you would spend if you had bought a more economical car. And that’s before even considering insurance.

          • End User
          • 7 years ago

          I can’t afford a 50k car yet I’m not blasting the author about my lack of funds or his good fortune. SSK should stop whining about it.

          Hey SSK,

          a) not everyone is in debt
          b) logmein f*cking rocks on an iPad.

        • sweatshopking
        • 7 years ago

        Ha! Another – post for you, with no – from me! I’m on a winning streak with you!

          • cynan
          • 7 years ago

          Tsk tsk, SSK. Didn’t anyone ever tell you to “quit while you’re ahead”? 😛

          But seriously. If you’re going to gloat, shouldn’t it at least be something intelligible?

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            Lol, fair enough!

      • l33t-g4m3r
      • 7 years ago

      This blog is a giant ad, masquerading as a hipster advice column. Only problem is that the shilling to buy products is too blatant and shamelessly obvious. Perhaps that’s part of the charm for suckering apple buyers, I dunno, but to someone who sensibly spends their money and wants value for their dollar, this appeal to trendiness is laughable. What a tool. If you can’t make do with what you can afford, then you’ll never be satisfied. Some people use linux on the cheap and get more productivity than from apple, and have way more street cred for doing so, much like mechanics custom tune cheap cars to be faster than fancy expensive sports cars. Apple is a joke, and the appeal is only to people with more money than brains. I would never consider buying a product from Apple. Never.

        • mcnabney
        • 7 years ago

        The phrase you are looking for is “Conspicuous Consumption”. Pretty much every Apple product falls into that category.

        • Corrado
        • 7 years ago

        Isn’t that what this whole website is? A big giant ad masquerading as a hardware/software site? The purpose of this site is to tell us what to buy. The articles are ALL coming with a recommendation on whether or not we should buy something.

      • clone
      • 7 years ago

      a little offtopic but worth mentioning regardless.

      Cdn’s hitting 152% debt to income isn’t necessarily a bad thing, if someone buys a house of course their debt to income level will be skewered, it all depends on what the debt is.

        • sweatshopking
        • 7 years ago

        you’re right, except it makes them much less stable in the case of a housing decline or interest rate increase. both of which are somewhat likely.

      • Corrado
      • 7 years ago

      Logmein doesn’t suck on the iPad. I use it all the time and have absolutely zero complaints about it.

    • dpaus
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]I've never bought a used car only to find 20 kilos of Acapulco Gold sewn into the rear seat upholstery[/quote<] Hunh. If you had, that'd explain why you keep buying Apple products.

    • trackerben
    • 7 years ago

    About a year in. That’s the amount of familiarity it takes to see ipads as more than just some “new tech fad”, or repurposed ipod.

    Jason, just do it. Then let it do you.

      • Noigel
      • 7 years ago

      uh…. do him?

      Agree with trackerben’s statement though… after so long you wonder what you did without it.

      (Here’s my guess for what I did: Pay closer attention to the TV.)

    • jcw122
    • 7 years ago

    I did not understand this article.

      • 5150
      • 7 years ago

      A conversation with himself. Very Pilkington-esque.

        • cynan
        • 7 years ago

        Yeah, but maybe a tad more intelligent sounding?

      • csroc
      • 7 years ago

      Me neither, and I’m not sure why an iPad 3 makes more sense for the work he wants to do than a cheap laptop, maybe even a used one. I guess the Apple TV thing makes a difference, he’s using Apple’s goofy ecosystem to justify more of Apple’s goofy ecosystem.

      • Bensam123
      • 7 years ago

      [url<]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monologue[/url<]

        • LiamC
        • 7 years ago

        Lucius: [Bob and Lucius are sitting in a parked car, reminiscing] So now I’m in deep trouble. I mean, one more jolt of this death ray and I’m an epitaph. Somehow I manage to find cover and what does Baron von Ruthless do?
        Bob: [laughing] He starts monologuing.
        Lucius: He starts monologuing! He starts like, this prepared speech about how *feeble* I am compared to him, how *inevitable* my defeat is, how *the world* *will soon* *be his*, yadda yadda yadda.
        Bob: Yammering.
        Lucius: Yammering! I mean, the guy has me on a platter and he won’t shut up!

        I <3 The Incredibles

          • LiamC
          • 7 years ago

          Fixed version 🙂

          Lucius: [Bob and Lucius are sitting in a parked car, reminiscing] So now I’m in deep trouble. I mean, one more jolt of this RDF ray and I’m an vegetable. Somehow I manage to find Sanctuary and what does Jason von Fox do?
          Bob: [laughing] He starts monologuing.
          Lucius: He starts monologuing! He starts like, this prepared speech about how *feeble* Android is compared to Apple, how *inevitable* it’s defeat is, how *the world* *will soon* *be Apple’s* (or Steve’s, or maybe not), yadda yadda yadda.
          Bob: Yammering.
          Lucius: Yammering! I mean, the guy has us on his blog and he won’t shut up!

          All in good fun Mr. Fox, all in good fun.

    • aurnob
    • 7 years ago

    impressed at the choice in car

      • Johnny5
      • 7 years ago

      I’d say a base 3-series would be enough to satisfy day-to-day performance needs (a ridiculously easy task for any decent car), instill that feeling of having a great machine even if it’s not actually being used, just that feeling, and if I ever did use it for track day/racing school/etc. it would be enough for some good fun/fear (the enjoyment you can get on public roads even with a moderately high disregard for safety and law is just a shadow of real fun) . But that’s just me, I guess.

      • aurnob
      • 7 years ago

      yeah true enough. yeah a m3 is just a monster of a car, especially a newer ones. most base models 3 series are competent, bar the 318’s which are just the POV packs

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