Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 1st Dec 2012 09:05 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes I was on vacation to the US last week, and a few technology-related things stood out to me. One, the in-flight entertainment things aboard international Delta flights are absolutely terrible. Worst software I've ever used, and many of them were plain broken. iPads/Android tablets please, Delta. Second, there were more employees than customers in the Las Vegas Apple Store. Since there were a reasonable amount of customers, there were even more employees. It looked ridiculous. Are they all like that? Three, using a Windows Phone 8 device to mooch off an Apple Store's wifi is strangely satisfying. Four, there are a lot of technology commercials on US TV, and they are all corny as hell. Two iPads playing piano? Children holding a PowerPoint presentation to convince their parents to switch mobile plans? Seriously? Is this what this industry has come to? Five, it's pretty clear iPads and iPhones are way, way, way more popular in the US than in The Netherlands. You see them everywhere, and people display them so openly. It was jarring. In The Netherlands, I always feel as if people are ashamed to take devices out of their pockets in the first place. No wonder US-based writers like Gruber and Arment think Apple dominates everything - if you rarely leave the US, it seems as if they do! Six, and this is not technology related at all but I want to get it off my chest because us Europeans could learn a thing or two from it: Americans are the nicest people I've ever had the pleasure of dealing with. I knew this from my existing American friends and from my previous trip to the US (Texas, ten years ago), but it bears repeating. Open, interested, kind, helpful, considerate, and nice. Not exactly qualities I'd ascribe to most of my fellow countrymen. Alright, as you were!
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The US
by iswrong on Sat 1st Dec 2012 18:03 UTC
iswrong
Member since:
2012-07-15

Some observations from another Dutchman who has been in the US > 10 times (I lost count).

One, the in-flight entertainment things aboard international Delta flights are absolutely terrible.

Delta is terrible, period. From broken entertainment systems, cheesy videos, rude personell, to broken sanitary facilities. The quality of US airlines has gone down downhill since 2001 on transatlantic flights.

Second, there were more employees than customers in the Las Vegas Apple Store. Since there were a reasonable amount of customers, there were even more employees. It looked ridiculous. Are they all like that?

It seems so. Last year I have been to Apple stores in Portland and Bellevue, in both cases there were more employees than customers, although there were plenty of customers. I liked it, since it was easy to purchase something, etc.

Five, it's pretty clear iPads and iPhones are way, way, way more popular in the US than in The Netherlands. You see them everywhere, and people display them so openly. It was jarring. In The Netherlands, I always feel as if people are ashamed to take devices out of their pockets in the first place.

I think that you are biased or are not on long train trips ;) . In the train I usually see lots of people working on iPads. I also encounter lots of students and colleagues with iPhones, which they publicly show. It's not the majority of course, lots op people also have Android or Nokia phones. But I also encountered lots of Americans without an iPhone.

Six, and this is not technology related at all but I want to get it off my chest because us Europeans could learn a thing or two from it: Americans are the nicest people I've ever had the pleasure of dealing with.

I have met nice people in many countries (e.g. look lost for 5 seconds on a Singapore street and somebody will offer to help you), but I always felt welcome in the US (except when going through East coast customs). What I like a lot is that, if you are e.g. sitting in a restaurant, somebody will often approach you for some small talk.

What I also noticed is how much poorer the average American is than the average, say Dutchmen or Dane. Once you leave the fancy business centers and go to the suburbs or drive through the countryside, you start noticing that many people are poor. The income inequality in Westen European and Scandinavian countries is much smaller than in the US. It's a difference in culture: Americans are prepared to take more risks, if you make it, you make it big. We tend to spread risk, if you make it big, you'll be paying a lot of taxes ;) .

Anyway, the US great sceneries and nice people, so I'd definitely recommend people to visit the US at least once ;) .

Edited 2012-12-01 18:06 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE: The US
by bhtooefr on Sat 1st Dec 2012 18:23 in reply to "The US"
bhtooefr Member since:
2009-02-19

In theory you'll be paying lots of taxes, here in the US.

In reality, you'll be paying extremely low taxes (because there are ways to hide income to avoid taxes, and capital gains are taxed at a much lower rate), and definitely a lower tax rate than the middle class, if you make it big.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: The US
by zima on Thu 6th Dec 2012 15:08 in reply to "The US"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

What I also noticed is how much poorer the average American is than the average, say Dutchmen or Dane. Once you leave the fancy business centers and go to the suburbs or drive through the countryside, you start noticing that many people are poor. The income inequality in Westen European and Scandinavian countries is much smaller than in the US. It's a difference in culture: Americans are prepared to take more risks, if you make it, you make it big. We tend to spread risk, if you make it big, you'll be paying a lot of taxes ;) .

BTW you might find http://web.mit.edu/krugman/www/ratrace.html article interesting.

Plus, people in the US also believe in myths such as "land of opportunity" or "American Dream" ...while the place is actually at the bottom in actual measure of this stuff, social mobility (in short, how much your success depends on your own efforts, and how much on being born into it, in the right social group). Many of the popularly disparaged "nanny states" - at the top.

Reply Parent Score: 2