Monday, August 17, 2009

Dating Advice: 10 Annoying Text Habits to Avoid

Unless you're living a seriously alternative lifestyle, you've probably been communicating via text for a while now. You text your friends, your dates -- even your parents. It's quick, convenient, and usually makes your life more pleasant... except when you come face to face with the 10 worst texting offenses in the world. Check 'em out below, plus some advice on how to stop offenders in their tracks.
More Dating Articles from Cosmopolitan:#1. The Mass Text
It's Friday night, you're at home on the couch, and you get a text that goes something like this: "What are you getting into tonight?" You know for a fact that this very same text just went out to 20 other people at exactly the same time, and that the sender is just waiting to receive all his/her options before deciding what to do. So what if the only thing you have planned for the night is that lame (but sooo good) Lifetime movie at 11? You refuse to hang out with someone unless they make specific plans to hang out with you. You know how you can block those newsletters that you never signed up for by sending an email with "unsubscribe" in the body? We suggest doing the same thing in a reply-text.
#2. The Texting Cult
There is always at least one point in the night -- a lull in the conversation, a pause between thoughts -- when it gets really quiet, and you look around and realize that all your friends are busy texting. One person pulls out her iPhone while everyone else is looking at the dinner bill, and then someone else starts doing it, and before you know it, you're in the middle of the sacred circle of text. Resist the urge to choose some random person in your contacts to send a useless message to. Instead, pull out your phone and send a text to everyone at the table asking, "Should we order something else?" It will make everyone laugh but also point out the silliness of the situation.
#3. The Double Message
Of course you screen calls. Everyone does. Sometimes you're in the middle of something and sometimes you just don't feel like talking. But your phone is still working, and you see the missed call and the voice message alert. So why -- why?! -- do certain people feel the need to send a text letting you know that they just left a message? Don't they realize that if someone is smart enough to read a text, they're also capable of understanding what the little bobble head with the sound waves coming out of him symbolizes? Text back, "What's next, a carrier pigeon?"
#4: The Texting Tease
You're seeing a really cute/smart/funny/cool new guy, and your heart skips a tiny beat every time you get a text from him. In the middle of the week, you get one asking what you're up to this weekend. Assuming he wants to do something together, you let him know that it's looking pretty relaxed so far. Does he then proceed to make a plan with you? No. He responds, "Oh OK, cool." You stand there with a perplexed look on your face. Respond "Yeah, but call my secretary if you want to schedule something." This way, the ball is in his court, but ultimately you're the one who is in charge, thanks to your confident attitude.
#5. The Bulk Texter
An example of what a series of texts from this person might look like:
  1. Hey!
  2. What's up?
  3. What are you doing tonight?
  4. Some of us are going to Cool People Club tonight.
  5. Around 10
  6. It's gonna be me and Chris
  7. Are you coming?
  8. Let us know
  9. Byeee!
  10. lolz
An example of what that exchange should look like:
Text 1: Hey, Chris and I are going to Cool People Bar around 10 tonight. Let us know if you wanna come.
An example of what you could text back:
  1. Please
  2. never
  3. text
  4. me
  5. this
  6. way
  7. again.(one minute pause)
  8. For "realz."
6. The Bored Texter
You've just finished a sufficiently long and entertaining texting exchange with someone, and now you're ready to put your phone down for a little while. But your phone dings, and it's another text from said person. It looks like this: "Soooo..." Or, "What upppp." Or, "la la la..." Clearly, they have nothing else to say and just want something to do. Send a text saying, "Running, watching movies, reading books, baking." Your buddy will get the point that some people actually have a life.
7. The Show-and-Teller
Love is wonderful. We're huge advocates of love and being in love and enjoying that love. People gushing on and on about their amazing love life? Not so much. Not only do you have to listen to them tell every insignificant story about how cute it was that their boyfriends ate pancakes for dinner and woke up with a funny hairdo, but you also have to read all of their SUPER-cute texts. "Guys, look what he wrote to me! Omg look at what he said now! Haha aww, look at this one!!" The cure? A dose of their own medicine. "Hey, look what my mom said about her gallbladder! Omg you won't believe how I'm planning to organize my sock drawer! Aww, my dog is wagging his tail. Oh, he's doing it again!!"
8. The Goobers-and-Popcorn Texter
The previews are over, you've been waiting to see this movie for weeks, and here you finally are, snacks in hand. But the guy in front of you insists on ruining your experience by texting for the entire 96 minutes. Here's a little secret he doesn't know: EVERYONE sees his phone lighting up. And hears it vibrating violently every two minutes. When the lights come up at the end of the flick, call up a friend and loudly discuss how rude the guy texting throughout the entire movie was. Then get ready to start running.
9. The Lingering K
This one is especially aggravating if you're not on an unlimited texting plan. You get a message asking how your day went or if you'll be free at a certain time, so you send back a detailed and informative reply. Your phone dings again. You open the message and it says..."k." Do people not even have the decency to include the o? The offender doesn't even need to reply to the message. But if they feel the need to, could they not at least drum up something a little more personal/creative/not totally unnecessary? Respond by letting them know how much, to the cent, they owe you for superfluous texts the next time you're together. Then hold your palm out expectantly.
10. The Needs-to-Grow-Up Texter
Guys should never, ever get comfortable with using text slang and abbreviations. Whether he's a friend, date, or boyfriend, no girl wants to associate the men in their lives with tween-speak. The next time he sends you a "TTY L8ER" or "C U 2morrow," tell him that he should really consider an iPhone, BlackBerry, Sidekick, or "anything that gives you more room to text." He'll realize how outdated his text-talk is.
Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.
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Saturday, August 1, 2009

Dating Tips: 9 Simple Things Women Want

By YourTango.comUpdated: Jul 30, 2009
dating couple

Besides the meaning of life and the ingredients of hot dogs,
many a man has questioned, "What exactly do women want?" We're not playing coy here, we know we're complex creatures. And, true, we operate on a different wavelength than men.
But women aren't exactly the great mystery that men often make us out to be. The proof? We polled the YourTango staff and compiled a list of 9 simple things women want. Note: you won't find diamond rings or other fancy things anywhere on this list. While many women really do want luxury goods from men, when you break it down they are just physical representations of some of the points on this list. We promise.
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1. Respect. Show us through your actions that you respect our opinions, careers, interests, friends, bodies, and minds. You don't have to agree with all that we say or do, but try to honor our opinions as valuable contributions. Follow the golden rule and treat us as you would like to be treated: Be honest, fair, kind, and considerate.
2. Romance. It's another night on the couch with takeout and TiVo? Just because we're staying in doesn't mean the evening can't be romantic. Light a few candles and see where the night leads. Treat us like your girlfriend, even after we become your wife. Date nights, physical affection in the car, kissing like when we first started dating -- all of the things that made us fall in love with you don't have to stop just because now there are bills to pay, a house to be cleaned, and kids to be bathed. Bring home flowers for no reason. We're not talking $100 bouquets of roses here. Even the $10 bouquets from the supermarket are enough to make us smile.
3. Time. We understand relationships can't be all wine and roses; simply making the time to be with us and treating us like your top priority says "love" more than all the fancy gifts and lovely letters ever could. This includes helping around the house. The realities of a 21st-century relationship are that both partners probably work. If you happen to get home before we do, why not vacuum the living room or throw in a load of laundry? If you take the garbage out without being asked, chances are you'll be getting a big ole smooch when you come back.
4. Dinner. Of the homemade variety. You may not be good at cooking and you may not know how to boil water. But greeting us at the door after a long day with fish sticks (or whatever you can wrastle up) makes us swoon, because it shows that you've been thinking about us and our hectic day.
5. Communication. Women are vocal creatures. We know you love us, but it's nice to hear you say it, too. We can also be insecure. We wish we weren't, but the reality is that we often notice our wobbly thighs and forget about our gorgeous eyes. So let us know when you think we're hot. Tell us we're beautiful. It helps us feel good. Words of appreciation aren't half-bad either. Tell us you love the lasagna we made. Notice that we cleaned the bathtub. It doesn't have to be over the top, just let us know that you see the effort we put in, and you're grateful.
6. Consistency. This doesn't mean be boring and predictable. It means that we know you will (usually -- no one is perfect!) give us the love and support we need. Knowing that you're coming at this with the same desires and energy as we are goes a long way to making us feel secure.
7. Engagement. Of the mental kind, not the "I'm getting married in the morning" kind. You don't have to like everything we like (we might be a little concerned if you do), but showing interest in our passions, be it career-related, a sport, or a hobby, goes a long way. Listen when we talk to you. We're not speaking just so we can hear our own voice; we want to connect with you and this is one valuable way we do this. This also means paying attention to the little things. Whether it's the name of your best friend's husband or the fact that you hate Nicolas Cage movies, it's the little things you remember about us that's so endearing.
8. Humor and Humility. These two tend to go hand in hand. This doesn't mean that you have to crack jokes or entertain us, but just being able to laugh at yourself is enough. Guys who take themselves too seriously bring everyone down.
9. Challenge. Not the kind that makes a relationship constant work, but the good kind that surprises and motivates us to do, be, or achieve what we desire. Studies show that partners who prod each other to meet goals -- in other words, don't support lazy or bad habits -- are ultimately happier than those who don't hold each other accountable.
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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Rings : Before You Buy

Before you rush out and buy that wedding ring, keep in mind some general information before doing so.

  • Know the differences between the different metals used in wedding rings. Metals that aren't as durable and won't last as long as other metals. You can usually tell by the price of the ring. The more durable the metal, the more expensive the ring.
  • Don't pick a wedding band that will overpower your wedding ring and vice-versa. You want to pick something that blends nicely together on your finger.
  • It is okay to pick a men's wedding band that doesn't exactly match the female's wedding ring. Focus on comfort, style and personal taste.
  • Make sure you have enough time before your wedding for your rings to be custom sized, mounted and shipped to you or your jeweler. Some jewelers send your rings to another site to be manufactured or to be sized correctly. This can take several weeks before the rings are returned to you.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Cell Phones : HTC Touch Diamond vs. Samsung i900 Omnia: Head-to-Head

It's PocketPC playoffs and HTC are giving Samsung a match at the GSM Arena. With two of the stars of the season arriving in our office all at once, we thought it's a heck of an opportunity for some Diamond-Omnia-Diamond-Omnia-Diamond-Omnia game-set-match with a pinch of iPhone flavor. We got two aces up to the challenge, so sit back and stretch out. Ah well, get that six-pack too and join us for the kick-off.

HTC Touch Diamond HTC Touch Diamond HTC Touch Diamond HTC Touch Diamond
HTC Touch Diamond official photos

Diamond over Omnia:

  • VGA display (2.8-inch, 480 x 640 pixels)
  • TouchFLO 3D Home screen (better than Omnia's Touchwiz UI)
  • Nicer design
  • More compact body
  • Lighter weight
  • Active magnetic stylus (Omnia has no stylus slot)
  • Touch-sensitive scroll wheel (better than Omnia's optical joystick)
  • Better sunlight legibility (by a small margin)
  • Standard miniUSB slot (as opposed to Samsung's proprietary custom plus)
  • Dedicated graphics chip with 64MB memory
  • Comes with the amusing Teeter game (uses the accelerometer)
  • Has pre-installed YouTube client and MP3 Trimmer application for ringtones
  • Better video playback performance

Samsung i900 Omnia Samsung i900 Omnia Samsung i900 Omnia Samsung i900 Omnia
Samsung i900 Omnia official photos

Omnia over Diamond:

  • Bigger, though lower-res display (3.2", 240 x 400 pixels)
  • Has a better, more solid build and finish
  • Almost double battery life
  • Better CPU performance (by a nice margin according to software benchmarks)
  • Quad-band GSM support (Diamond has two versions to cover all the four bands)
  • microSD card slot (Diamond has none)
  • 8 or 16 GB of storage memory (Diamond has 4GB)
  • Much better 5 megapixel camera (better processing, higher resolution, face and smile detection, geotagging)
  • TV-out (Diamond lacks that)
  • Landscape QWERTY keyboard (Diamond has one but only in browser)
  • Auto screen rotation is available in all applications and can be switched off
  • Comes with DivX video support (Diamond has none, but DivX players can be installed)
  • Has pre-installed a custom Alarms app, a Video editor and a unit converter

Samsung i900 Omnia and HTC Touch Diamond might differ here and there in specs but no doubt we're talking fine top-of-the-shelf species. Never before have Windows Mobile powered devices been so rich in features without being coyote-ugly (another way of saying TyTN-bulky).

It's been a year now since Apple iPhone is out and its ground-breaking user interface took the industry by a storm. Windows Mobile however still fails to pick up the gauntlet thrown by the iPhone so device manufacturers are creating their own customized touch interfaces that don't necessarily require a stylus to make the Microsoft OS a bit more competitive and much more intuitive.

It took almost a year to see all manufacturers introduce their solutions. With the HTC Touch Diamond we are looking at the third generation TouchFLO UI - a really mature and impressive piece of software. The Omnia and its TouchWiz UI is Samsung's first attempt in this field, but they're building on their expertise in full touchscreen feature phones and they have achieved some impressive results too.

So you already probably guess that we will be spicing up today's Windows Mobile competition with a few Apple iPhone quotes. With the iPhone 3G just behind the corner, we think that several key generic comparisons might be of use to most of you. But for starters, check out some photos of the contenders lining up for the Windows Mobile cup. Slick, aye?

HTC Touch Diamond HTC Touch Diamond HTC Touch Diamond HTC Touch Diamond
HTC Touch Diamond

Samsung i900 Omnia Samsung i900 Omnia Samsung i900 Omnia Samsung i900 Omnia
Samsung i900 Omnia

Before we begin today's match, we should warn you about the units we are testing. The Samsung i900 Omnia is still a beta version, while the HTC Touch Diamond is a retail unit. However, dozens of bugs are being reported for the Diamond recently, so it isn't actually as stable as it should be. In fact, HTC are struggling to polish the Diamond performance, which - even though utterly impressive - is rather unfinished at its launch. Looks like HTC made haste to beat the iPhone 3G announcement.

HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia
The three hottest touch devices of the season

In all fairness, the both handsets seem pretty stable at this point so their non-final status is not an issue and we can get to reviewing them in detail.

HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia HTC Touch Diamond vs Samsung i900 Omnia
The two contenders for the WinMo throne

Join us after the jump for the first round - hardware comparison

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