Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Thoughts On Today's News

I was happy to see the new Surface 3 announced by Microsoft. It's the right size, 10.8 inches, and the processor, although not the most powerful, ia good. I would have to go with the 128 GB with 4 GB of ram for $599, 64 GB is just not enough for all the fun. One major drawback for me is the lack of a Swype like keyboard. When Apple updated the iOS and allowed 3rd party keyboards the Swype app was a top download for sometime. I love it, greatest keyboard out there. If Microsoft would let that happen on Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 that would go a long way to convince me to move. At the moment I'm not really driven. 

Google's new Chromebit looks interesting. Read about it at Buzz Feed here: http://www.buzzfeed.com/brendanklinkenberg/googles-new-chromebit-computer-is-ridiculously-small#.kfWJE6YqX3. Seriously a computer the size of a USB (or a little bigger) and no monitor. Plug it into a USB port on a monitor, link to a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse and you are on the way.

How about IBM investing $3 billion into the "Internet of Things"? My memory recalls they put a very big investment into the PC in the 80's. Keep in mind that IBM is not the only one investing in IoT. It will be coming at us very fast. Check out the link here at the Eponymouspickle:  http://eponymouspickle.blogspot.com/2015/03/ibm-throws-3b-into-internet-of-things.html

I find reading tech news and pondering great fun.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Sunday Morning Wireless Going Down

Well I woke up Sunday morning with no way to connect
My world just stopped and I think I've lost my touch with tech
Now that's pretty bad :)

Network connection is a headache to say it best. When it goes down the world stops - or at least my world. This morning I had an incident that makes me rethink prior problems with a notebook computer. 

I came downstairs to get on the Internet and the wireless was down. Not again. This has happened so many times. In the distant past we would call Time Warner Cable and we go through this ritual of shutting everything down, modem and router, then bringing them back up one at a time. I get the same message from the HP troubleshooter. After years, just shut it down and bring it all back up slowly and everything works. Pain in the neck, time consuming, but it works - most of the time. I have had to do it twice or three times and perhaps reboot the computer. All this while TWC is saying the modem is good it's the router.

This morning a lesson in "observation", "testing", and "Learning". 

History (more information)

We have wireless phone's however once inside the condo we are constantly dropping calls. Years back we added a Samsung Wireless Phone system extender (Verizon), it works great with our Verizonwireless phones. It also connects to my router. When the router goes down so does the Wireless Phone Extender and a few of the lights on the front of the phone extender turn red. 

All this brings me to fixing the wireless connection.

The router and the modem are both on top of a 6 ft. bookcase and I am only 5'8" - I need a ladder. As I am about the get the ladder I notice that all the lights are working on the phone extender (also on top of the bookcase). Wait a minute, if the router is down then some of the lights go red on the phone extender. Hmm... I check my wife's computer which is directly connected to the router, and in the same room (lower down), it is working fine. Is the wireless is bad on the router?

Now I am learning.

Back downstairs I go to my desktop, which is cabled directly to the router. The desktop is working fine  I have another laptop, I am using to run/review Windows 10 it is not directly connected to the router, it is connected via wireless. Not only is it working nicely it had just updated the OS and I had to reboot. 

I return to the original HP Envy, the one with the initial problem, and the wireless connection is down. At this point I run the trouble shooter and discover that the wireless adapter (internally) had to be reset and once reset I am online. 

My question now is; were some of my other wireless downtime in the last couple of months , on this computer (only 2 months old), the result of the wireless adapter not functioning correctly? I would go blindly up and reset everything and maybe re-boot the computer. Time wasted. I don't know. I do know that assumptions that the same thing is always happening can be a time waste. 

Now I have a NEW approach. 

We all learn over time however the next time I will not go blindly up and reboot the modem and router, I will check the computer first. We get in the habit of blaming the old things where perhaps there are changes that alter what we should be looking at. I had to learn from this. The next time I lose Internet connection on this computer I will check the desktop computer and the phone extender - before I get mad at Netgear or Time Warner Cable.

I'm still a student and oh yes, this gave me something to write about. 

Monday, March 2, 2015

Not sure that Apple’s Selling a Smartwatch to Uninterested Public as found in the NY Times

An article in the New York Tines this morning; Apple’s New Job: Selling a Smartwatch to an Uninterested Public - NYTimes.com leave me a little cold. Obviously I don't agree.

I believe there will be a great demand for this watch as watches themselves have gotten rather boring over the years. This watch will be exciting. I think it will stimulate sales in the area of wearable s and bring home the point that "we have gone over to the dark side" :).

I have an Samsung Gear (Android) sold by Google, and I have been very happy with it. I personally can't wait for the Apple watch to be released as I expect ti to be; 1) a big attraction to Apple, 2) legitimize the wearable industry, 3) and sell very, very, well. There are those (Jason Calacanis for one) that said initially this watch would be a billion dollar brand for Apple.

The rate of acceptance of technology in and of itself, has been accelerating. The Apple Watch will only increase that rate of acceptance.

My only problem? It doesn't work with my Samsung Galaxy Note 4, and I love my Samsung Galaxy Note 4. If the watch were independent I might consider buying one. Yes I know I said I already have a wearable, but having two would not hurt. I suspect the Apple watch will be a bit more fashionable.

'via Blog this'

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Thoughts on the Microsoft Word app on the Ipad.

I am using the Microsoft Word app on the iPad to initially write this post and is really great. If it is the same on a Windows tablet when released I know it will succeed. I have seen some screenshots of what it could be for Windows 10 and the upcoming office package and I am impressed.

Touch is fantastic. I recently purchased an HP notebook with Touch and my wife wanted to know why I wasn't using Touch on the screen. Can't hit those tiny 'X's' or whatever - fat fingers (?). I am enjoying the Touch ability on the notebook, just not in Word (or Excel, PowerPoint).

If there is one thing that I like on my iPad is that I can use either an external keyboard or the onscreen Swype keyboard that I installed (after upgrading to iOS 8). The ‘clunker’ (my description) tap-on-each-letter keyboard is very slow, and frustrating – for a keyboarder that is. With the Swype keyboard I can take my iPad portable and still write at a great speed.  When I want I can add the Apple Bluetooth keyboard to fly across the keys. Note: I have been a keyboarder for over 60 years so I know where all the keys are on a QWERTY keyboard.

Being a Windows/Microsoft user all these years, and it’s associated hardware, the Apple keyboard takes some getting used to. The Apple keyboard does not function as well with MS Word as it does in Pages as some of the keyboard (keystroke’s) shortcuts do not apply. One in mind is ‘Backspace’. The Apple keyboard has a delete key and when operating on Apple software/apps depressing the ‘fn’ key in conjunction with the ‘delete’ key, the ‘delete’ key becomes a backspace key, not so in MS Word, all we have is delete.

I have to add that I copied all the text in the Word app and pasted it into the Blogger word processor for completeing this post and found that the keystroke for 'backspace' works. Hmm....

Microsoft may have to allow Nuance (the developer of Swype) to create it's app for Word (Excel and beyond). 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Out with the OLD and in with the NEW - works for technology too!

In the last few months I have not been of a good, positive, excited, entuastic, driven, mind-set to write a great deal. I have found my thoughts to be of a very negative , down, disgusted, disturbed, bent and that is not the way I like to be. I am a positive person (or like to think I am) of the ages.

Too many tech jounalists spend to much time trying to find what's wrong rather than looking for what's right. I am a fan of Guy Fieri and "Dinners, Drive-Ins and Dives" He doesn't review, for public presentation, the bad places, only the good ones. He has to go to the bad ones however his time is spent reporting on what works rather than what does not work.  He brings to the front good food and good people, and that's what it is all about.

I have read and believe in Norman Vincent Peale, Earl Nightengale, Jim Rohn, Zig Ziglar, Bryan Tracy, and my one big counselor and mentor; Tony Robbins. This year was not my best for living up to their standards. I am a Believer and and a Learner and this was a year of learning. I have to admit that my Faith is still strong however some of my other beliefs have had a change.  

I am looking forward to what Apple, Google, and  Microsoft, have in store in the New Year.  

One thing I expect to see clearly in 2015 is it will be the year the consumer takes control, both personally as well as in the Enterprise. "Power to the People!" We will buy what makes our life more productive and happier. 

If there is a resolution for me to make; I will practice the words of Roger Whittaker in A New World In The Morning
"Now I myself don't talk about a New World in the morning, New World in the morning that's today." ----- and everyday!
Happy New Year and may all your technology be good "stuff".  

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Apple Innovates and Designs - What a Show!

WOW! Just got though watching the Live presentation by Tim Cook and supporting cast. I can sum it up in one word; IMPRESSIVE! Maybe I should say that four times.

The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were only the beginning. I was much impressed with size and weight as well as memory - 128 GB - I could put my music on my phone. Sleek looking, would look nice in my hand. I am still attached to my Samsung Galaxy S3 however come November, when the contract is up, I will have to look a the iPhone 6 Plus vs. the Samsung Galaxy Note 4.

As for Apple Pay; it will give sleepless nights to Square, Pay Pal, and others. I suspect that Visa, MasterCard, Amex, won't mind. Of all the solutions for paying with your phone, this appears to be way ahead of anyone else. I did like Eddie Cue's explanation of the security and that is both important and would appear to be handled. I think that as soon as Apple Pay is lose on the public there will be 29,900 people trying to hack the security of which 29,000 will belong to Microsoft and/or Google. :)

I cannot wait for iOS 8. I do have an iPad 3rd Gen and iOS 8 is compatible with it. I know I won't have the latest chip but I get the upgrade for free and that is a good thing.

Now the Apple Watch - WOW! The design just put the others in the also ran class. What a product and the added features (as well as updates coming) make this an incredible buy. Johnnie Ive is a goldmine. I think if it were ready for Christmas they would have 1) sold out, and 2) cleaned up. Maybe that is why we have to wait until 2015 to get one. Meeting demand this late in the season could have been bad.

The final with U2 and the FREE album was a great closer. Before they were through I was trying to download. I did get an "Unavailable in the United States at this time" message however on the second click here it comes. I now have the 12 songs and happy.

I have to admit the presentation was fun even if their iTV delivery messed up at the beginning. Even if it took over 30 minutes to get it right it finally came though and was fun to watch. If there is one thing about an Apple event it is that the audience is with Tim Cook and anyone else who presents. I really enjoy the excitement that is created and it is aimed at the people.

Thanks Apple, Tim Cook, and all the people at Apple for some great devices and great competition.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Government, Broadband Providers, and Double Talk

In yesterday’s Computerworld the following article: FCC told to leave state laws against municipal broadband intact.

All I want to do is provide one quote and a comment. The quote:

The FCC, considering whether to preempt laws in 20 states that restrict municipal broadband projects, should instead give private broadband providers incentives to better service communities, several representatives of broadband providers wrote in comments to the agency.

The comment:

The essence of competition is to work to be the best. Private broadband providers want incentives to provide better service, what better incentive than competition? Unfortunately the private broadband providers are; 1) not smart enough to figure out how to be better, 2) their interest does not lie with the customer and providing better service.

I wonder what the incentives are that they want? Keep out competition? The system work needs competition. That’s the American way, or at least it was. Why would anyone give incentives to organizations with the lowest approval ratings?