Mouth health for dummies
Welcome to another installment of life lessons from Nat Friedman.
Tomorrow I have a 4-hour dentist appointment to grind down three of my teeth and replace the outer portions of them with ceramic. This is my second such visit in the last year or so. The three previous crowns I have installed are temperature sensitive and sometimes hurt when I go on airplanes. They’re over a year old, but they’re still “settling.”
For most of my (27-year) life, I was never really great at dental hygiene, but I was never bad either. I brushed my teeth at least once a day, though I only sometimes used a mouth wash. And I flossed pretty infrequently. Like once a month. Maybe.
That is, until I broke my wrist a few months ago, and one day got a little piece of apple skin caught between my teeth, and needed to find a one-handed flossing solution. I discovered Crest Glide Floss Pics. These things make flossing so easy, I do it all the time now. Go out and buy some. Keep the box near your computer. Trust me.
I have other new habits too. At least one of them is also wrist-injury related. Brushing my teeth with my left hand wasn’t working out (think: drawing with your fist) so I got one of those electric toothbrushes. I always thought those things, or at least their owners, were incredibly dorky, and a sign that you were too lazy to brush your teeth manually. Turns out, they do a much better job than you can ever do. My teeth are smooth and clean now. When I go to the dentist for a cleaning, they’re like “Well, not much to do here.”
In high school and college I drank a lot of soda. I never drink soda anymore. It really does rot your teeth. Don’t do it.
I haven’t found a use for Brush-Ups yet. At least, not a tooth-care use. They are great conversation starters. Pretty girl, standing around, waiting for the train. “Would you like a brush-up?” It’s like some kind of post-Mentos-ad ad.
Also, I don’t like the winning login splash for GNOME 2.10. It is poorly chosen.
Why? Because the chooser (and I really don’t know who chose it) made the classic mistake of failing to distinguish between things that are interesting to the user and things that are interesting to the team building the software. To the team of hackers behind the project, it is interesting and noteworthy that this is a new release of GNOME, and that with each release it gets a little better. It is worth taking note of this milestone, and celebrating it.
And that is what the height-chart theme of the splash screen suggests. But it is not interesting to the user. There is utility in putting the version number in the splash, but the main role of the splash screen design should probably be to convey the personality of the desktop the user is about to experience, not how long it has been under development.
We made a similar kind of mistake at Helix Code, when we printed our first t-shirts. Tuomas came up with a nice design that had our logo on the front, and on the back it said sleep: command not found. This was a little in-joke, because we all worked very hard and rarely slept. It was something the team took pride in.
This was a fine employees-only t-shirt; a team-building kind of thing. But it made no sense as a give-away to non-employees, who should like us for our software, not for our working habits.
That said, I think it’s high time we eliminate the session splash (and perhaps the session manager) altogether and just make login fast.
A walk in the snow.
Happy March first.