Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Handicapped Accessories

No, that was not a misprint--or mis-type--I actually have a "handicapped" accessory.  It is my mobile phone.  I have an iPhone 4. The model number proves that this phone is less than 2 years old (perhaps even just about 1 which in mobile phone years is anywhere from 40 to 80 years.  (I use the industry standard: 1 human year is equal to 40 mobile phone years; otherwise known as "near death.")  At 40+ it should not come as a surprise that my aging phone is starting to fall apart a bit (not unlike me).  It is starting slowly--most everything still works except for the "home" button.  For those of you unacquainted with the iPhone (there are still some of you out there?!) the "home" button resides at the center bottom of the face of the phone and it provides access back to your home screen whenever you have wandered away from home to explore applications ("apps"), the internet, games, music and...the actual phone.  Without a working home button you can get permanently stuck in your weather app or your tide app and are unable to access anything else basically relegating your phone to an electronic weather reporter.

It wasn't that my home button didn't work exactly; it just didn't work all the time.  It would start out working and then suddenly, without warning, while I was cruising the internet, it would leave me stranded on the internet highway.  It was as if it had dozed off while I was driving.  Sometimes I could coax it awake by continuously pressing the button several times.  Sometimes I had to actually turn the phone off and back on again just to arrive back home again.  Needless to say, this was a very annoying habit but what can you expect from the elderly?

 Well, I'm not about to buy a replacement yet (even though that is what the industry would like me to do and even though not doing so is thoroughly un-American!) because other than that one little quirk my phone works perfectly fine. (I know.  What does that have to do with my decision, right?)  It turns out that there is a workaround.  It is not known to the general public but it exists right there in the bowels of the phone.  It is a home-assist button and once activated it provides a virtual button on the screen, a cane if you will for my handicapped phone.  Now I can press that button and get "home."  Me and my phone, just a couple of gimps.

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