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

July, 2011 Archive


July 26, 2011 • News

Twelve South Introduces BookBook for iPhone

Twelve South makes some of the nicest accessories around. We reviewed their BookBook iPad case and loved it. (My father-in-law stole it for his iPad and still won’t give it back!) We bought and reviewed their Compass iPad stand and I still use it quite often. Now Twelve South is introducing the BookBook for iPhone …

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July 26, 2011 • eBooks, Editorials

Apple’s In-App Sales Policy: An Intimidation Tactic?

(image courtesy mofunu) There was so much drama and upheaval in the eBook, magazine,and subscription services on iOS yesterday as Amazon, Barnes and Noble and others caved to Apple’s demands that they either get a 30% cut of in-app sales or all links to external purchasing systems be removed, that is is easy to assume …

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July 25, 2011 • Music Diary

Music Diary Notes: R.I.P. Pop Singer Amy Winehouse Self-Destructs at 27

This weekend we got the news that bluesy-pop singer Amy Winehouse has died at age 27. While the immediate cause of death is not known, speculation that her rampant heavy drug use came into play are probably not far off. Her drug use and many trips to hospitals, making her song Rehab all-too-biographical, are better …

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July 25, 2011 • Music Diary, News

Random Cool Video: 1951 ‘Wanna Buy A Record’ Promo Surfaces!

My younger son recently produced a full length album of his electronic music entirely on his iPad and has some of it on SoundCloud. It is an amazing, all-digital process that is a world away from what was possible just a decade ago. When I took a few classes in music as an undergraduate, we …

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July 25, 2011 • eBooks

And … the Nook App Update Removes Store Links from iOS

Carly said it best – A picture is worth 1,000 words… Carly just posted about Amazon removing store links from their Kindle app. Now Barnes & Noble has done the same. Here is the description of their update: What’s New in Version 2.1.2 You can read any NOOK Book you have purchased on this updated …

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July 25, 2011 • eBooks

Kindle App Removes Store Links from iOS

A picture is worth 1,000 words… Amazon has updated the Kindle app to reflect Apple’s new rules, namely that you cannot link to an external store in an iOS application. Will this impact buying habits? Only time will tell, but one thing is clear: we, as consumers, are losing. Spotify, Netflix, Rhapsody, NOOK, Kobo, Google …

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July 25, 2011 • Editorials

How Can Apple Improve iBooks Without Ruining Other eBook Stores?

Something very fishy is going on at Apple. It looks like they’re taking in-app purchasing very seriously, and are enforcing what has been rumored for months: eBookstores can no longer link to their respective stores in Safari in any way, even for account sign-ups. Kobo was forced to change over, as did NOOKkids; Google Books …

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July 25, 2011 • Editorials

It’s a Post-PC, Post-Spec World but in the Real World Specs Still Matter

By his own admission Steve Jobs is quickly moving us into a “Post-PC” era. This new era is not “post computer” era. Rather, it is an era in which computers look less and less like desktops or laptops and more like… well iPads and iPhones. (Perhaps a better name for this new era in computing …

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July 24, 2011 • Reviews

Review: Nest Case For iPhone 4 and iPod Touch 4G

Finding a case is like an ongoing quest and adventure for any device. I have come to enjoy cases that provide dual uses such as a battery or stand. It seems that case makers are continuing to combine functions for cases while still maintaining protection and style. I recently was able to try an iPhone …

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July 23, 2011 • Reviews

iOS App Review: Paper Camera

I’m the farthest thing from a professional or even amateur photographer, but I have a developing (analog pun intended!) obsession with apps that augment my phone’s camera.  My latest find is Paper Camera, which I happily purchased for my iPhone and iPad.  At the time of this writing, it’s on sale for $.99, which is …

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July 23, 2011 • News

Gear Diary Video Round-Up

  Last week saw us post a larger number of videos than ever. In them we took a first look at the AT&T Status phone running Android 3.2.2, Carly talked to us about the benefits of Chromebooks and why they might be a great choice for you and we launched not one but two contest/giveaways. …

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July 23, 2011 • Music Diary, Reviews

Music Diary Review: The New Gary Burton Quartet – ‘Common Ground’ (2011, Jazz)

The New Gary Burton Quartet – ‘Common Ground’ In school bands the vibraphone is taught as a percussion instrument, which it certainly is to an extent as a mallet-based instrument. Yet when you listen to the sounds it produces, it is hard not to classify it closer to the piano or guitar in terms of …

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July 22, 2011 • Gear Bits

The Brave New (App) World

It is truly an iOS world. Need proof? Elana and I are out to dinner on the Jersey shore and Elana comes back from speaking to the front desk with… Yes, the restaurant has its own app and has cards advertising it at the front desk. And to top it off the musician playing the …

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July 22, 2011 • Reviews

My 15 Hour ‘Make It Last’ Torture Test: Sony Vaio S-Series ‘Unplugged for a Day’

In this article I test out my ‘Make It Last’ scenario – that is just what it sounds like: a svelte setup that doesn’t use any power unless it absolutely needs to, but allows me to go about my day and get stuff done. The graphics is set to ‘Stamina’ (integrated) and the power plan …

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July 22, 2011 • Editorials, Rants and Raves

The Ballad of An Android Fan…

(image courtesy Underdog of Perfection) I’ve talked before about my Motorola Droid. We’ve had a love/hate relationship over the last 18 months or so, but all good things must come to an end. Ours has a specific end date, as I am up for a new phone on August 12th. Unfortunately, none of the Android …

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July 22, 2011 • Gaming, Reviews

iPad Game Review: Special Enquiry Detail: The Hand that Feeds

Mix together a crime-drama mystery, puzzles, hidden objects, and tons of twists and turns and intrigue … and you have the makings of one of the most compelling games made for the iPad this year. The name of that game is “Special Enquiry Detail: The Hand that Feeds” from G5 Entertainment. Let’s take a look …

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July 22, 2011 • Editorials, News

MacBook Air 11″ (rev Summer 2011) First Impressions

For the last few months I have been using a 13″ MacBook Air as my primary computer. It works beautifully. It is thin, light, and more than speedy enough for my needs. In addition, since the screen resolution is the same as the 15″ MacBook Pro I used briefly a few years ago I don’t …

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July 22, 2011 • Editorials, Rants and Raves

GD QuickRant: Why Apple is Correct to Aggressively Litigate IP Issues

This week Google Chairman Eric Schmidt made a widely covered statement: “The big news in the past year has been the explosion of Google Android handsets and this means our competitors are responding,” Schmidt reportedly said. “Because they are not responding with innovation, they’re responding with lawsuits. We have not done anything wrong and these …

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July 22, 2011 • News

News Flash: Google Has Done NOTHING About Android Fragmentation in 2011!

Over at Android Central there was a reminder of the stark reality facing Android users: the Blackberry PlayBook has a newer version of Android than 81% of all users! As noted there: It’s running a newer version of Android than some 80 percent of you guys out there. When last we looked, some 18.6 percent …

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July 21, 2011 • News

Victorinox Swiss Army Releases Innovative Luxury USB Line

Need an expensive and colorful device to store your extremely important personal or professional data? Want a USB stick with a self-destruct function? Look no further. Consumers may be surprised to learn that Victorinox Swiss Army’s latest products, the Slim and Slim Duo USB lines, have just one function. Marketed as an innovative and decidedly …

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July 21, 2011 • News

Win up to $10,000 with Verizon’s 4G LTE Field Tester’s Challenge

    Are you an aspiring filmmaker? A smartphone owner? If so, it might be time to get down to business making a 60 – second video for Verizon Wireless’ new Field Tester’s Challenge. The premise is simple: create a unique video short showcasing a field test of Verizon’s 4G LTE network. In other words, …

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