#travel

Tweets In The Time Of Travel

Fine, Hunter, here you go:

Yes, I find myself tweeting less now that I’m living abroad. My assumption is that it’s mainly related to the time difference (8 hours). My tweeting cadence has basically been destroyed.

Granted, I have always been sort of a “lumpy” tweeter. That is, I tend to tweet a lot in relatively short bursts of time. (1/ Though not 2/in Tweetstorm™ 3/ format.) In fact, I did tonight about “iOS 8.0.1-gate”.

But now the stuff that tends to pique my tweeting interest usually happens at odd times of the day for me here. Either I’m asleep or in the middle of something else. 

Maybe I’ll find a new rhythm or other things to care about (the other football). Or maybe I’ll just mainly lurk. Or maybe I’ll just tweet more pictures of flowers and British thingsThe fact remains that a lot of what I tweet about (breaking tech news, live sports, etc) tends to happen on American hours. So I either come late to the game, or more likely, not at all. 

And I think I’m okay with that. At first, it was a little weird. But it’s also kind of nice having one less thing to be constantly checking and thinking about. 

Graham Boynton on the rise of the Gulf airlines:

At the back of the upper-deck cabin, directly behind business class, is the pièce de résistance: a fully operative stand-up bar that has been the social hub on every Emirates A380 flight I have taken. To make space for this in-flight lounge, Emirates president Tim Clark says, he has had to sacrifice six premium seats, but declares, “It’s the most popular thing we’ve ever done. They have a real party down there.” On this flight a group of Italian contractors join two British couples around the bar soon after takeoff. And they’re all still there six hours later as the plane starts its descent. It is, indeed, some party.

Even the humble masses in coach are able to partake of the A380’s in-flight video-and-audio system, which offers more than 1,500 channels featuring movies, television shows, news, games, and music from around the world, all delivered through high-end, 13-inch seatback monitors.

For anyone who has endured the post-deregulation austerity of U.S. airlines over the past few decades—uncomfortable, overcrowded, bare-bones bus journeys in the sky—the experience of flying on Emirates, Etihad, or Qatar comes close to recapturing the joy of jet travel from Pan Am’s heyday. There is a sense of fun on board, and that has come down from the top. Tim Clark says he wants to bring a bit of glamour back into flying.

Such a stark contrast to the state of flying with the U.S. airlines. Nice job on that deregulation, America.

codethekitty-deactivated2014013 asked:

So I head you like magma! Did you know about the 'Door to Hell', located in Derweze, Ahal Province, Turkmenistan? Apparently it was a natural cave filled with gas. Scientists wanted to enter the cave and explore it. So they thought of lighting it up, expecting the cave to burn for a few days, maybe a week. But as it turns out, it still burns today. It was lit in 1971. Fun world, we live in! :)

Fascinating. Thanks for sharing (here’s a link for others). I hope to be able to check it out one day!

Verizon Has A Funny Definition Of “Global”

Yesterday, as I landed in a foreign country, I did my normal routine: switched off airplane mode on my phone, waited for signal to kick in, repeat, repeat, repeat.1 Once I connected, in poured the push notifications, the first of which is usually a text from the foreign carrier I just connected to warning me that I’m roaming and threatening to take my first child for every MB of data used. Yesterday, the message was a little different.

It was actually a text message from my U.S. carrier, Verizon, notifying me to turn data services off or use WiFi to avoid data charges. I thought nothing of this since I had the global data plan already enabled on my phone. Next, in came the foreign carrier text telling me the current take-your-first-child rates: $20.48 per MB of data used. Not even one minute later (I checked the time stamps), a third message came in, this time from Verizon again, alerting me that I’ve “exceeded $50 in global data charges.”

Again, I didn’t think too much of this because I knew my global data plan was enabled. That plan allows you to pay $25 for each 100MB of data usage when traveling abroad — still a rip-off, yes, but a relative steal compared to the aforementioned take-your-first-child rates normally associated with international data roaming. Because I had been in another country a few weeks prior, I thought such a message might just be a residual warning from data usage on that trip.

Nope.

Read More

David Pogue:

Look: international roaming has always been insanely priced. And like many people, I’ve always assumed that there’s some reason for it. International tariffs, maybe. Special equipment. Something. It couldn’t be as simple as outrageous, consumer-hostile greed, could it?

Yes, it could.

This is a very clever thing for T-Mobile to try — even if the data will be hampered by very slow speeds. As with SMS, the carriers have long used roaming charges to gouge customers simply because they could.

The general rule seems to be that being a dick is not a sustainable business model.

Adam Nagourney on the shift underway in Las Veags:

In 1984, the city’s sprawling casinos accounted for 59 percent of all the money collected on the Strip. Last year, gambling made up just 36 percent of the revenue. Clark County, which includes Las Vegas, took in $9.4 billion in gambling revenue last year, up from the year before but still far short of the $10.8 billion during the peak year of 2007, according to statistics from the Center for Gaming Research.

So what are people doing instead?

“Gaming went down more than total visitor spending, by a greater percentage,” said Stephen P. A. Brown, the director of the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. “The visitors who have come back are here for clubs and shopping. They’re buying swimsuits to go to the day clubs and evening clothes to go to the nightclubs. That’s the big growth.” “I think what’s going on here is we’re seeing a shift away from Las Vegas as the only gaming destination in the United States to being one of many gaming destinations,” Mr. Brown said. “But it is holding up as a tourist destination.”

Shopping. What would Bugsy Siegel think? At least they’re still drinking.