Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Weekly Update: GUM, Gooey YouTube & Google Trips

Weekly Update 2016-38: Yet another Australian psychedelic rock band, posting my first video to YouTube (and quite a popular one at that), and perusing the UX of the Google Trips app.

Music: GUM
Everyone knows one of my all-time favourite bands is Tame Impala. They're the only band I've travelled to another province to see (groupie life). It's pretty common for musicians that talented to have side projects, and this is no exception. Jay Watson, who drums in the band, has an excellent solo project called GUM. Lots more psychedelic stuff, but also mixed with a bit of catchy pop. Listen below:

Honestly, after failing my G test a few weeks ago, I needed a break from lessons. Driving in a car two hours straight sandwiched between three hours of transit to get to the lessons was starting to wear me down. So, my accomplishment of the week was booking another lesson for next week. The next step will actually be getting up to Richmond Hill to do the lesson.

I also teleported all the way to Bathurst and Wilson to check out the orientation class for doing my bat mitzvah. Turns out the class only meets in person once a month, but I also got roped into taking more Hebrew classes so I'll be up there every Thursday evening until December. Ah well, it's all for the best.

I'll be attending Hebrew class this week, so I'd like to take some time to brush up on my Hebrew (let's face it...probably on the subway before class. I'm also playing another drumming show, finally in Kensington Market for Pedestrian Sundays. Wonderful!

I'm also planning some excellent sights to see in Munich in October (read below for more).

Random Thought:
You may remember my first Youtube upload ever (Glass Animals playing Gooey at Wayhome this year – thanks, 4K video capable phone). Every so often I get an email in my inbox telling me that someone has commented on my video. There's not a lot of comments, but it is extremely pleasant because they are usually from fellow Wayhome attendees.

This made me think about when I first uploaded the video. Even though I had seen it through on my computer a few times, my finger kept itching to press the triangular play button in the browser. This would be slow to load and cost me internet bandwidth (which is anything but free), while I had the video stored locally on my computer to watch for free.

I realized that when I upload videos anywhere (including to my blog), I watch the videos online in the way my viewers would watch them, just to get their experience. Even though I could just watch the video on my computer, I'm missing something from the user's experience by viewing it that way. And after all, I need to know that the user-facing view is optimal. Why wouldn't I want that? It's also why I read all my blog posts on the reader interface...even though I still can't catch all the typos!

Inspiration: Google Trips
As I alluded to earlier, I have been planning my trip to Munich, and this app is God's gift to trip planning. You know of my earlier-professed love of pretty much all the standard Google apps that come on the Nexus 5, and this new one is so excellent.

As Google puts it,
Whether you’re juggling work, school, family, or just the demands of daily life, everyone needs a little break and a new adventure sometimes.
But knowing what to do once your vacation starts can turn what’s supposed to be fun into a lot of work. You might get recommendations from friends, professional travel guides, or online reviews — but figuring out how to squeeze everything you want to do into a finite window of time can be stressful, especially when you’re in a new place, often with limited access to the web. In fact, a GoodThink study showed that 74% of travelers feel the most stressful aspect of travel is figuring out the details.
Awesome! This is 100% me. So this app literally plans your trip for you. Just put in all your destinations and the dates through which you'll be there, and shazam. You have a trip planned.


It even tells you how long it'll take to walk between destinations and how long people usually stay. I assume all of this is drawn out of Google searches and Google Maps-type data or something. Great idea!

Probably the best part of it all is that you can save all of your plans offline with the flip of a switch. You literally do not need a shred of internet to get around the city. It's perfect.

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