Top five things I’ve jotted down over the past few days, but haven’t posted anywhere

Random thoughts, in no particular order.

Free vs. Pay on SWA: Here’s another experiment in “free-conomics.” Rather than charge for your baggage, Southwest charges for premium services. There are no assigned seats on an SWA plane, so your place in line determines where you will sit. Checking in online, starting 24 yours early, will get you a better place in line than what you’ll get if you don’t check in until you get to the airport. As of Wednesday, there are now three ways to get in front of the line without checking in early: 1. By flying a lot, you can get on SWA’s A-list and receive an “A” position in line, no matter when you check in. 2. By purchasing a Business Select ticket that puts you at the front of the line — and gives you a drink ticket. 3. (Here’s the new way.) By purchasing an EarlyBird Check in for $10, you can get in line right after the A-Listers and BusinessSelect passengers. You must purchase it by 25 hours before the flight.


Why not to be an Apple Fan Boy Scout: (Update to yesterday’s obligatory Snow Safari post.) (Note to self: Never upgrade software until Apple Fan Boys who use your favorite software have used it for a month or so.) First, a very tiny positive thing: The Time & Date system preference of Snow Leopard is the first that allows the user to select “Nashville” as a Central Time Zone city. That’s because the feature now has an option that will allow the computer to determine its location. I assume that’s done via magic or triangulating wifi signals or doing whatever Google does when they serve up ads related to whatever town you’re in — but, I’d prefer to assume it’s done with magic.

Now, for the not-so-good stuff: First off, as I write this, I can’t access the internet because my 3G modem’s software is not working since I upgraded. [Later: After installing latest software to drive the modem fixed that bug.] Yesterday, I spent 30 minutes yesterday re-installing my most used software program, Evernote because I couldn’t get it to work. (Fortunately, the online version mirrors everything on my desktop.)

From Stephen Wildstrom on, comes this appropriate observation I always have right after OS updates: “Snow Leopard is a great product, but an ambitious one; the relatively unchanged user interface belies a major revision of the underlying code. A little more testing would have been a good idea.”

Another BusinessWeek writer, Aaron Pressman, wrote a comment on my earlier post that his upgrade problem was this: “I use the Tivo Transfer software from version 8 of Roxio Toast to grab programs from my Tivo and put them on an iPod. Snow Leopard is incompatible with all current versions of the Tivo Transfer program and Roxio says it’s only going to offer an upgrade to customers of Toast versions 9 and 10.”

Aaron wins the most obscure incompatibility issue merit badge.

Photo quiz: Uploading some photos on Flickr recently, I noticed that over the past couple of years of visiting colleges, I’ve taken photos of three neo-gothic chapels tower I shot from similar angles. Before looking at the answers below, see if you can name the colleges. Hint: two of the schools are small New England colleges and one is below the Mason Dixon Line.

Answer: Use your cursor to highlight the white type between the arrows –> 1. Sewanee – The Univeristy of the South 2. Williams 3. Trinity (Hartford) <–

It’s alive: Google Calendar now has calendars for lots of sports teams that will update the scores realtime. (Just don’t let the SEC know).

Obscure trivia about this post: It’s the first time I’ve quoted two different BusinessWeek writers in one post.