From Fukui, with Love

The geekiest way to go sightseeing

Posted by in Mike's blog

There was a day last fall when the way we see the world around us totally changed.  Places that once were uninteresting became much anticipated attractions.  We started seeking out nooks and crannies in our city that other people couldn’t care less about.  We began to go for long drives with the kids (while they nap) with no set destination, far into the mountains, through tiny villages, and often in circles. Mary and I got involved in a little game called Ingress. Except it’s not little.  There were more than 500 000 active…read more

Pretty smart for a dumbphone

Posted by in Mike's blog

This is part 3 of a 3 part series about how we got our phones, how we get away with paying peanuts for great service, and what our awesome “dumbphones” can do without any kind of data plan. “Can you send me a pin”?  We had no idea what this meant after the first time we heard it…but it didn’t end there.  Everybody wanted pins, and everybody wanted to send me pins when I asked for directions to anywhere.  I later found out that “sending a pin” is the local…read more

Mobile services: Japan vs. Canada

Posted by in Mike's blog

  This is part 2 of a 3 part series about how we got our phones, how we get away with paying peanuts for great service, and what our awesome “dumbphones” can do without any kind of data plan.    Yes, yes, I know – Japan has awesome technology and it’s not fair to compare it to Canada – but from a consumer’s point of view I feel like I’m getting my money’s worth here, and not because of the technology.  It’s because of the policies of cell phone companies…read more

Getting cell phones in Japan without selling a kidney

Posted by in Mike's blog

This is the beginning of a 3 part series about how we got our phones, how we get away with paying peanuts for great service, and what our awesome “dumbphones” can do without any kind of data plan.   Before this year, the last time I remember being satisfied with my cell phone service was in 2006. It’s been a long time coming.  When the mobile industry in Canada went from being poor to thievery, I got out.  I happily functioned with only a land-line for years before we moved…read more