Tech, Autos, & Gear in Layman's Terms Since 2006

December, 2010 Archive


December 27, 2010 • eBooks, News

Kobo’s Big End of Year Contest!

Kobo is running what they call a “Get-a-Gift” contest. Every day, you head to the site, sign in and scratch off your virtual entry card. You can win a Kobo eReader, coupons or a gift card! If you’re as hooked on lotto scratch-offs as I am, you’ll definitely like this contest! It goes from now …

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December 27, 2010 • Editorials

The Downside to Cloud-Based Products

(It’s not much, but it’s an important set of records for me!) In my previous running life (a few years ago) I kept a simple composition notebook to list my runs. It was low-tech, and I mostly used it because I was tracking my weight lifting and other cross training for rugby. After I hurt …

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December 26, 2010 • eBooks, Editorials

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Amazon Kindle Support

The Kindle 2 was my Christmas present in 2009 from my family.  I have spent most of the last year with nary an issue with my Kindle and I love it to death.  It’s how I prefer to read now.  I’ve read more books in the last year than in any year past.  However, on …

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December 26, 2010 • Editorials

How the iPad and Twitter Have Changed My News Consumption

Image courtesy of CleanSlate and Better Homes and Gardens I’m 47 years old–the “wedge” generation just after the Baby Boom, and just before Generation X.  I’m old enough to have owned a black-and-white TV (13″; it was my high school graduation gift!), had rotary dial phones (Michael just talked about these the other day!), one …

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December 24, 2010 • Reviews

Review: Akron Portable Fold-Up Stand for Apple iPad

(Note: All the photos here but one are from Akron–since they matched my experience, and are of better quality, I used them instead.  Hope y’all don’t mind.) When I was planning what accessories–if any–to get for my iPad, one of the things I was pretty sure I was going to pick up was a stand. …

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December 24, 2010 • Editorials

Forever Lazy: Lazy at Home, Good – At Work, Not So Much

In early December I spotted a video on the Yahoo home page about Forever Lazy.  AP had run the story which was sort of a rags to riches success tale about how the company’s two founders had left their corporate jobs and created a product, basically from their sofa and because of a few celebrities …

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December 24, 2010 • Gaming, Reviews

PlayStation 3 Game Review: TRON: Evolution

Game adaptations from movies usually fall flat, but this decent action adventure excites the senses with considerable challenges while bridging the gap between the two TRON films.

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December 24, 2010 • Gaming, Reviews

Wingnuts MotoChaser for iPhone/Touch Review

We are coming back from my first layoff of the Blue Plate Special since the series began.  Last week the football team I coach for in Texas played for and won the State Championship.  The week was so hectic that I just could not get around to finding apps or writing for that matter.  We …

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December 24, 2010 • Reviews

One Week With Chrome OS: A Mini-Review

It’s been just about a week since I received my CR-48 Chrome OS netbook. In that time I’ve turned on my Toshiba netbook (running Windows 7) twice, and only used my Macbook to check my email a few times. Otherwise all my home computer use has been on Chrome, including writing posts for Gear Diary. …

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December 23, 2010 • Autos, Editorials, News

What Would Santa Drive?

I began this annual ditty around the turn of the century and I find that I enjoy revisiting it each year as the world is buried neck-deep in the (commercial) spirit of the season. Looks like Santa’s load will be a bit heavier this year as early numbers indicate a bit more cheer in the …

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December 23, 2010 • Gaming, Reviews

iPad Game Review: Mystery of the Crystal Portal 2: Beyond the Horizon

I made no pretense about how much I enjoyed the original Mystery of the Crystal Portal, both the PSP Mini and the HD version for iPad. It was a well designed hidden object game with a story that offered an ending that pretty much called for a sequel – so now we’re back following Nicole …

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December 23, 2010 • Gaming, Reviews

DS App Review: Korg DS-10 Plus

For a while I thought I would never see my Nintendo DSi again … I mean, my younger son already permanently took over my original copy of Korg DS-10, and when we were playing around with the new Korg DS-10 Plus on my DSi and he realized that I could add a second bank … …

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December 23, 2010 • Editorials

Still Using E-Mail? U R OLD!

Communication is an evolving thing. When I was a kid everyone had rotary phones, no one had an answering machine, no one had a home computer, and people quite often communicated via hand-written letters sent over the postal service. If I was taking public transit to see a movie with friends or biking to the …

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December 23, 2010 • Gaming, Reviews

DSiWare Game Review: Supermarket Mania

I recently reviewed the PC release of Supermarket Mania 2, and found it a ‘casual thrill ride’. I noted the basic plot from the original game – but I had never played it! It has been available for a while for the PC & Mac, came to the iPhone in early 2009, was released for …

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December 22, 2010 • News

Remember: Starting Tomorrow, No iTunes App Store Additions or Updates for a Week

I have mentioned that the flurry of activity this past week on the iTunes is related to the ‘freeze’ that will be in place from the 23rd through the 28th. Well, iTunes Connect sent out a reminder message, so I figured I’d do the same! Basically it comes down to this: the state of the …

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December 22, 2010 • Reviews

Audio Gear Review- Denon AH-D 1100 Over-The-Ear Headphones

I’ve always loved music but since I got my first iPhone I find myself listening to more music than ever. When I was a kid I had a pair of over-the-ear Pioneer headphones that I played way too loud and, no doubt, did my self some significant longterm damage. Nowadays I tend to prefer earbuds …

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December 22, 2010 • Editorials, Music Diary

Apple Has a Gift Tree … I Have an iPod Tree!

In the ‘last minute gift’ email from Apple yesterday they included the image at the top, showing representations of various Apple products on the base of a Mac Pro, with different colored iPod Shuffles as ornaments. It is a cool image that immediately struck me. On reason it struck me was that while I was …

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December 22, 2010 • Gaming, Reviews

PSP Game Review: Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep

The Kingdom Hearts franchise occupies a unique place in the gaming world: born out of the combined universes of Square Enix’s Final Fantasy multiverse and the multiple characters of Disney, Square Enix has forged a beloved new franchise that brings both together in a way the emphasizes the strength of each without compromise. The original …

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December 22, 2010 • Gaming, Reviews

iPad App Review: Elves Inc: Christmas Mission HD

Whenever I think of Christmas apps I think back to what was one of the absolute worst games ever – Elf Bowling! But when G5 Entertainment offered me their new holiday themed game I was fairly certain it wouldn’t be a Christmas nightmare, so I gave it a shot. The Hype: Plunge yourself into the …

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December 22, 2010 • News

British Humor + Tech = I Thought This Was Funny… How ‘Bout You?

One of my all-time favorite movies is… Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Even though it looks dated now (since it is) I still laugh when I watch it. And I’m not alone. A few years ago Elana and I went to see the Broadway version of it- Spamalot. (More accurately, I dragged her to …

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December 22, 2010 • eBooks, News

Amazon’s Kindle Sales Explode!

Trying to figure out how many Kindles Amazon has sold is like reading tea leaves. No one’s quite sure, though Amazon likes to give vague hints during their earnings calls and make boastful announcements without any actual numbers beyond “double last year!” But several financial analysts have debated and studied, and it seems like a …

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