Browse Tag: Apple

New toy, the iPad2

So a few weeks ago I entered one of site surveys we all see and most of us just skim past. Take our survey to help improve our site and enter for a chance to win an iPad2! Yea right I thought but the website was one I really enjoy and I thought if nothing else my input might help them actually make the website better.

So a few weeks latter I’m at work talking to my office mate when I see an email from the admin of the site. I thought great, they picked the winner and were announcing it through email, skip. I decided to read the first of the email and noticed it was actually sent only to me, informing me that I had won their iPad2 from the survey drawing!

Anyways, I’ve had a Viewsonic G-Tablet for a few months and even have honeycomb on it. I really loved my HC tablet, the entire HC experience was a huge improvement for tablet users over Android 2.x.

I was actually planning on just loading my work apps on the iPad and not using it much. Well, two weeks later and I can’t put it down. I think the biggest plus over my G-Tablet is the screen size difference. The 9.7″ is a better format than the 10.1″. I didn’t think it would be but it’s easier to hold the iPad than the G-Tablet.

Another plus is the speed. I know I can’t compare a hacked HC to the iPad but the responsiveness overall is just so much better with the iPad.

My one problem where Android does get it right is app scaling. Android 2.x apps scale very well on HC. On the flip side the way Apple offers their 2X button for iPhone apps is a pain in the rear.

Always, just thought I’d share my thoughts after using both platforms for awhile.

Sent from my iPad :)

My Tools & Equipment

I’ve been asked a few times recently what kind of equipment and software I use day to day. What better place then my sparsely populated blog!


T-Mobile G2X

Blackberry Torch

Viewsonic G-Tablet

Google CR-48

HP dv2000 w/ Windows 7 Ultimate & Ubuntu 10.10

HP Mini 311 – For sale! :)


Work Desktop:

HP dc7900 Core 2 Duo 4GB RAM

Windows 7 Enterprise

80GB internal, Maxtor External with 2x 640GB Drives

1 x 22″ Acer LCD + 1 x Acer 19″ (My awesome IT director loves Acer monitors, I’d rather use them as kindling)

Microsoft Comfort Optical Mouse – grabbed it from the hardware pile

Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard – This was my first time to use this for an extended amount of time and I love the split ergo design.

D-Link GB switch – another piece of hardware grabbed from the pile of leftovers



KeePass – I use this mostly for keeping track of SQL and Application passwords along with a bunch of URL’s with their auth info

LastPass – I’ve started to use this for most of the URL’s for both work and personal use, I’ve purchased the premium version for use on my phones and love it.

RD Tabs – I’ve tried just about every other RDP management tool out there but I settled into this one the best. I love the ability to use protocols other then RDP.

Office 2010 – I wouldn’t be allowed in the building if I wasn’t using this

Google Chrome/IE – I use Chrome for just about everything but IE still gets used for our corporate applications that were designed for IE7 and our Helpdesk.

ExInsight – Nice tool for taking a look at Exchange and seeing what is happening.

Synergy+/InputDirector – I’m not using this right now but it has come in handy many times.

Fireplotter – This tool is cheap (~$250) and is worth every penny. Able to connect to all of our ASA’s and break down bandwidth usage based on port and other variables.

FileZilla – Free and good, can’t beat it.

VirtualBox – I’ve come to rely on this for testing software and GPO settings out on XP and even some OSX testing in a crunch.

DameWare NT Utilities – This one group of tools has saved me countless hours of headaches over the years when managing Active Directory and users workstations.

Putty – Hands down the best free SSH/Telnet utility out there.

Solarwinds TFTP Server – Ya know, cause it works.

ImgBurn – Great lightweight utility for burning ISO files and such.

MagicDisc – Simple freeware tool for mounting ISO and IMG files

I’m an Android groupie, so what!

There I said it. I’m an Android groupie.  Though Wikipedia describes a groupie as someone who seeks sexual intimacy with a celebrity or musician, I’m not quite that into Andy.

Back in early 2008 I was still a Nokia loyalist. After having owned only Nokia’s since I began using a cell phone in the mid-late 90’s, I always felt a cell phone could do more. Below is my list of phones that I’ve owned since the dumb candy bar era.

  • Nokia e62 – Cool phone, bad AT&T crippling by taking out WiFi and their software stack made it slow.
  • Nokia n82 – Great phone, best camera in a phone ever, small but usable screen.
  • HTC Dream (G1) – Best idea, worst battery, decent cpu, decent screen and my first Android phone.
  • Blackberry Curve 8310 (Work) – Great for email and calls (sometimes, thanks AT&T), crap for everything else IMO.
  • HTC Magic (MyTouch 3g) – Better phone w/ the increased storage space – same decent CPU.
  • Blackberry Bold 9000 (Work) – Better phone, worse hardware quality then the 8310, better screen and 3G/WiFi.

I preach Android to all my iPhone, WinMo and Blackberry friends. I believe in what Android is doing to the smartphone market and the strengths it has over IOS. The cons of Android are shrinking with every release with Froyo I think pretty much bringing it up to speed with IOS 4.

So as my friends convert to Android they are skeptical at first. Besides app purchases most of the apps are on all four major platforms now. But each one has been happier than ever. I was most leery about the iPhone converts; some have bought four phones in a row from Apple. But thankfully AT&T has the Captivate that is based on the Samsung Galaxy S platform so it’s a great alternative to the iPhone.

I really hope Google continues the Android march and continues to spur companies to build even better hardware but please improve the battery life. I understand these phones do more then ever, but 16 hours on a charge is pretty much crap if you actually wanted to use your phone while not near a power outlet.

I think Nokia got caught up on Symbian and thought they could add enough widgets and screen sizes would compete against Android and IOS. But I think what they failed to see is that an OS born from dumb phones could not compete with a smartphone OS. They are just on a different level in terms of usefulness. RIM has always been centered on Email as the first use and everything else second. To me that is the main reason RIM has become so entrenched in the business world. But every month I have users giving their Blackberries back and getting an iPhone on their personal account. As this scale tips I can see us only having a small number of Blackberry phones mostly due to how AT&T has their corporate minute sharing setup.

Going forward I can see Android topping the market share with IOS as usual in strong second place with RIM and Nokia falling behind unless they really revamp their approach. Thanks Google for buying Android, geeks every have a real phone to use and hack.

Hulu Plus and Hulu Desktop

A huge part of our content is from Hulu. A smooth fast interface that is very 10ft friendly is what all HTPC apps should strive for and Hulu Desktop is just that. I finally got my invite for Hulu Plus on friday and while I’ve been on the fence about paying to participate in a beta program, they sealed the deal the night before I got the invite.

I had seen rumors that Plus wouldn’t work with their Desktop app. This made me hesitant but after reading a forum post by a Hulu employee, they finally integrated the two. This was huge for me as it further fills the coffer of content we have on demand. Now along with back seasons of most of the shows we are watching (close to 70 subscribed shows) we can get most of them in 720p from Hulu.

I’m really glad companies are finally making it easy for consumers to access the content legally and for free or cheap. I have a problem with paying iTunes $0.99 per episode when a movie isn’t much more. I can tolerate that much for a song that I’ll listen to over and over but I don’t care to keep TV shows to watch more then once.

Now if the NFL and NCAA would quit being stall worts and give us the same access the NHL and MLB have offered life would be grand. Sites like can help fill the void but it’s comparable to watching a 10yr old VHS tape. Oh and local news, the finger is pointed at you too.

Update: It seems as though DirecTV is now offering the Sunday Ticket for $350 (source) via broadband. I doubt they’ll be giving any discounts for this like they usually do with current subscribers. Mighty steep price if you ask me, much more then the MLB/NHL offerings. But then again the NFL has a reputation for being very very proud of their brand, more so then any other sport.

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