Friday, November 30, 2012

Today’s Tool’s and Lack Of Great App’s

I know that I have gone down this road before however each day a new thought occurs. We have all these really great devices/tools; smartphone’s and tablets (of all kinds), and yet we are lacking in apps that allow us to take great advantage of these devices/tools.

google-nexus-7-tablet 002As I have said recently, “most of the developers think it is all about games”. Not only the developers but the major players in the world of intelligent handheld devices think the same. I have to write this post on a laptop because I may want to add a picture (inline with text), or formatting something bold or italic, and maybe put in a hyperlink for the reader (the thousands of them) to allow them to find what I am selling (idea’s or thoughts).

I guess the thinking at Amazon, Apple, or Google, Microsoft, is that the mass market for these devices/tools only want to read, play games, or check email. I forgot listen to music (which I do).

I know that specific data checking software is written for corporate suits however they may also want to reply in more than plain text. They may want to also add a picture, format, or enhance their reply. These are the tools of the future and they are here today however the operating apps/software is OLD!

We can add mustaches on faces in Google Hangout but we can’t put an inline picture in text very easily.

If these devices/tools are going to take over we need powerful apps to work with. GOOD word processing, GOOD spreadsheet apps, really GOOD presentation apps. These apps do not have to be as powerful as desktop apps (software) however they have to be GOOD. The power of these devices/tools can handle it.

I have some good apps for production (Evernote, Sketchbook, AK Notepad and Pages on the iPad) however they are then different between devices/tools. I use desktop’s and laptops (or notebooks) as well as Android phones (Samsung now) and I have an iPad. The iPad may have been a mistake in that I now have to be multi-lingual. I had enough trouble between Windows and Android.

I can go from auto maker to auto maker and still get in the vehicle and drive it. The design of the auto is different however no one decided to put the brake pedal on the right and the gas pedal on the left.

In my mind the winning feature of Windows is I can buy an HP computer,  Dell, Toshiba, or Sony, etc., and Windows works the same and therefore so does Word, Excel, Photoshop, Evernote, or whatever Windows software I am using.

As for these devices/tools; Apple reminds me of Henry Ford, “You can have any color as long as it’s black.” You either buy into the Apple program and ONLY Apple or too bad. Everything must be APPLE. We are not built that way. Android, on the other hand, is across many devices however, unlike McDonald’s, they did not control the packaging. You buy an HTC and it does things one way, you buy Samsung and it works another way. Same for the Android tablets.

I started this blog post using the tools at Blogger (where I have moved to recently) however it does not function as well as Windows Live Writer and Live Writer is FREE! Since I do not use WordPress this is the best. There should be an app for Live Writer for these handheld devices/tools however Microsoft cannot bring itself to see the world is changing and they are not the only horse in the race. Hmmm….. Reminds me of Kodak or RIM.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Installed the Blogger Tool On The iPad

I have not used any blogging tools on the iPad with the exception of email. Once I installed this Blogger app on my phone I decided to see if it was in the App Store and it was. Here we are.

The only issue I have with most apps are those of us who have used really good tools in the past and not having to cut back the ability to really put out an enhanced blog post. For example; to add a picture or graphic I have to add it at the end and not inline with my writing.

The overriding thought that goes behind this is that the tech world itself is not taking seriously these tools and therefore they only think in terms of gaming or maybe reading books or watching movies. Who would want to do serious work on a toy. Folks it is no longer a toy.

For this same reason I see Microsoft heading in the same direction that Word Perfect did and perhaps for the reverse reason. Word Perfect could not cope with the rising tide of the Windows OS and now Microsoft is not believing in the rising tide of the different tablet OS's.

Still no one has of yet even come close to building an app that is a reasonable competitor to Word. It will happen. Once everyone realizes that only part of the power of Microsoft Word is necessary in over 85% (maybe 90%) of the uses. Same could be said for PowerPoint and perhaps Excel, although with the coming data revolution Excel is in a pretty good position.

It is very possible that there are many more devices using the Android OS, Apple's iOS and perhaps Chrome than there were using the Linux OS directly. Times are changing continually, almost everyday.

Since the tablet is the coming device and Microsoft is a late entry (once again) the Windows OS could fall behind in this area and then what will happen to the GREAT office package? Hmm......

I have heard the rumors that there is something coming from Microsoft for all these tablets but if it is a lame app they might follow the once powerful RIM.

In StarTrek it was all in a handheld device including the Tricorder.

More on Blogging Tool

Not sure pictures work well from this tool however the text appears well.

Blogging Tool

Just added the Blogger app by Google and wanted to test it out. I used this a long time ago and it did not appear to work well. Today, on this phone, it looks very good.

Now to add a picture. Need to see how that works.

Password Enlightenment

Everyone should read "Hacked" by Mat Honan in the December 2012 issue of Wired magazine. Very powerful. In fact you should leave it around the house for all too read. The article starts on page 180.

There are other good articles in this issue however read "Hacked" first just in case you get distracted.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

More On Phones & Wireless Keyboards

This afternoon I wrote a blog post re: connecting my Apple wireless (bluetooth) keyboard to my Samsung Galaxy S III and although it worked there was a great deal to be desired.

Tonight I have connected a Microsoft Wireless Entertainment 7000 Keyboard (also bluetooth) and it works really well with AK Notepad. All the keys, Home, End, Arrows, appeaded to work really well.

The screen is big enough so that you can work with ease.

I did try to use this with Blogger and had mixed results. It started out well and then began acting strange.

This was started in AK Notepad however I opened AK Notepad using the track pad and then the mouse buttons on the keyboard. I really was not sure what would happen and everything worked. Now one does not need a mouse with the phone however if you connect it to a monitor and use the phone just for your 'hard drive' then a mouse might just be a fine thing.

I guess my next step is to get the HDMI adapter and connect this to a 23 HD monitor that I have.

App's, we need app's. I think I am about to look for something more powerful than Google Docs but not necessarily Microsoft Word. Microsoft may never make Word (or Excel) available on anything running something other than Windows OS so we need something else.

I think it is interesting that investors and others still believe that this is an Enterprise driven market when the in roads gained by the iPhone and iPad were consumer driven. It will continue to be that. The Power is now in the hands of the people and that is what is freaking everyone out. I know, some do not believe it, they are not living the dream - WE ARE!!!

The NEW Phone

OK we jumped on board the Samsung Galaxy S III bandwagon and are pretty happy with the upgrade. Phone has a bigger and brighter screen (better resolution also) and it is a bit bigger in the hand but we can handle that (no pun intended).

Because we have everything backed up at Google 'most' all the app's we had on our Thunderbolts were subsequently installed on the new phones. There were a couple of lapses but for the most part it worked swimmingly. Interestingly  my FlexT9 keyboard was installed and I am having trouble finding it on Google Play. Nuance, the developer, also shows it however the last time I was out there it was not available either.

Speaking of keyboards; I am using the Samsung Galaxy S III to type this blog post (at Blogger) however I have synced, via Bluetooth, my Apple keyboard to do the typing.  It appears to be doing a decent job with a few minor glitches.

I think the most time consuming part is activating all the app's that are installed. Enter passwords and email addresses and in some cases updating the app for Ice Cream Sandwich. There were a few app's that did not work but not the important ones.

There is a learning curve as there is with anything new and when going from HTC to Samsung you have a different appearance of features such as Messages and even Gmail has a different feel.  This is still too small to do a great deal of work on and I am finding more issues with the keyboard.

I think I will post this and learn more. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

The Phone Dilemma

OK in the process of the great debate; do we upgrade our phones or do we keep the old phones and change just the billing plan. I am one of those who does like his HTC Thunderbolt. I use it everyday and in fact I am using it as my hotspot it with my Pad to write this blog post.

What are we considering? The Samsung Galaxy S III. My friend John has one and it appears to be a very nice phone with a lot of power. One concern is that it comes with Ice Cream Sandwich OS and I am wondering if it will ever be upgraded to Jelly Bean? The HTC Thunderbolt was supposed to be upgraded to Ice Cream Sandwich however that never happened. Why should I believe that Verizon will allow the upgrade to Jelly Bean?

After all these years I have come to trust HP (even when I get mad), and I have come to know Microsoft (and trust them to do what they say), however I tend to think of the Telco's with the same trepidation as I do used car sales. Never knowing what to quite believe.

Funny when I deal with Verizon Corporate about billing or technical support it is right-on. They have always been great support and that is one big selling point with me. Their coverage map is also very important. I go places the others do not cover well.

Hmm........ Have to go check the deal again. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Moving to Blogger and Other Thoughts

This move has not been easy for me. I did not lose the 6 to 7 years of blogging that I have over at Typepad however trying to sort out the small disaster that hit me when I attempted to export the blog has not been easy. I think this has had something to do with my lack of writing recently. I am working on getting better at that.

Since I basically work alone blogging has been a way for me to talk about my thoughts on the ever changing technology arena, and I think of it just that way sometimes, “arena”. The iPad comes out and WOW. Then right on it’s heels comes the Kindle, then the Nexus 7. During this time more versions of the iPad and more ‘Quick to market’ knock offs of tablets, many of which fell by the wayside. Building and marketing for the money just does not work.

Same with the smartphone. What a wonderful time we live in.

The accelerating rate of acceptance of all these new tools is mind boggling. Then we also face the anticipation of newer devices. I think, if one were to read all the predictions of what was next we could have a wild list of products that people have expected to appear. Perhaps some of these could be real advantages however gathering these predictions should lead thoughts of future products.

Now that I am actually using my domain it will be easier to find for everyone – I hope.

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