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

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122

July 4, 2010 • How to Do It Yourself!

Fun on the Fourth and fabulous fireworks photos

While preparing for part II of my ‘Picture This’ digital photography series I discover the calendar has turned to Independence Day here in the States. Many of you will be heading out to catch your local fireworks displays this evening, and some may have already been treated to early celebrations that lit up the night …

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109

July 2, 2010 • Editorials

Picture this: Photography in the iPhone world, part I

pho·tog·ra·phy (f?-t?g’r?-f?) n. The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition defines photography as: 1)The art or process of producing images of objects on photosensitive surfaces. 2)The art, practice, or occupation of taking and printing photographs. 3)A body of photographs. A photograph is merely defined as “an image, especially a positive print, recorded …

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246

July 1, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

First Drive: 2011 Chevrolet Volt

Well, I did it. I drove the new Chevy Volt extended range electric vehicle that will be available later this year. What is it? In many ways it is similar to the current Toyota Prius hybrid. It features a battery pack that powers an electric motor that turns the wheels to make the thing go. …

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371

June 22, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

2010 Chrysler 300C SRT8

During my lifetime (thus far) I have witnessed Chrysler, Dodge and the late Plymouth (R.I.P.) deliver a wide range of vehicles, taking consumers and enthusiasts on a wild roller coaster ride. Ultimate highs courtesy the likes of Super Bee, Barracuda, HEMI (of course) and Viper and bottomless lows, a.k.a. K car, Jeep Compass and bankruptcy …

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173

June 16, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

LaCrosse driving force behind modern Buick

With Buick being one of the four remaining cornerstones of the General Motors family, executives in the division find themselves in a difficult but familiar dilemma: Deliver competitive vehicles that attract new buyers while not alienating a loyal demographic. The new Buick LaCrosse is completely redesigned for 2010 and is built on global architecture at …

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264

June 14, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

At nearly 70, Jeep is still the one.

Jeep has such a storied and legendary history while also being the one brand most synonymous with offroad. For nearly half a century the iconic runabout carried American servicemen and women to and from their assigned posts and in recent decades the Jeep Wrangler has garnered more “best of” awards in the offroad segment than …

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243

June 11, 2010 • Autos, Editorials

Chevy vs. Chevrolet: Social media schools GM

Call it a simple misunderstanding or an experiment in the power of the new social media, but General Motors quickly found out yesterday just how fast and wide a wildfire of emotion can spread electronically. No sooner did word come out from the General that anyone with corporate connections needs to shy away from using …

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232

June 8, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

2010 Lexus GS450h Delivers ‘Warm Fuzzies’

All photos courtesy Lexus Lexus (via parent company Toyota) has been providing the auto industry with production model hybrid vehicles longer than most and with greater ferocity, and, under most circumstances, we do not associate hybrid vehicles being much more than “eco-friendly” or “miserly” – we certainly keep from allowing our imaginations wander anywhere near …

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144

June 3, 2010 • Autos, Editorials

LeaseTrader.com app picks leads to ‘Wheels of Summer’

From the good folks at LeaseTrader.com came an e-mail announcing their picks for the top car leasing apps for smartphones. While I personally have not explored the depths of the auto lease, I know it is a choice many consumers have made. Not to kill their thunder, I got to wondering that with summer upon …

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259

June 2, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

Volvo C70 Rocks the ‘Wow’ Factor

All photos courtesy Volvo A Volvo with “wow” factor and, dare I say it, sex appeal? One does not normally associate the three-letter expression of excitement and surprise with a Volvo vehicle but the C70 hardtop convertible coupe is changing all that. Re-introduced a few years back and refreshed last year, the latest C70 is …

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241

May 26, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

Despite Early Issues, 2010 Toyota Prius Best Yet

(All photos courtesy Toyota) Toyota Prius is the ubiquitous hybrid. And yes, I did have to look that word up. The 2010 model is the third generation Prius to hit U.S. soil and this new midsize model bring better fuel economy, enhanced performance and modern styling to the platform. It is roomier, quieter and equipped …

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190

May 25, 2010 • Autos, News

iPhone Calls Shotgun With New Safe Driver App

Here is an app that caught my interest as soon as I saw the e-mail. Worry is probably the leading cause of stress for many parents and vehicle fleet managers alike. Dangerous Decisions has released an Apple iPhone app designed to monitor driving conditions in a vehicle and it is available as a basic free …

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249

May 21, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

Bimmer not a bummer, just different drummer: BMW 335i coupe

Stop the presses. An automotive journalist has been discovered that does not love, love, love the BMW 3-series. What is this heresy? Refusing to drink the Kool-Aid? Next they will be telling us this global warming scare is not all it is cracked up to be and that American automakers will be profitable despite all …

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258

May 20, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

2010 MAZDA3 and MAZDASPEED3 leave you grinning

As I look at the new front fascia for the 2010 model year MAZDA3 I wonder if designers found a little inspiration from CGI artists working on the latest Alice in Wonderland movie. Perhaps the two parties share a favorite pub and the latter left some napkin sketches lying around as carelessly as an Apple …

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129

May 18, 2010 • Autos, Editorials

OnStar Googles Volt

Photo courtesy GM While I don’t mean this as negative criticism of a recent press release, I do find the meat behind the message a bit premature for the masses and limited in range and use. And I thank them (sort of) for the revelation it led to. OnStar is announcing they will be at …

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229

May 14, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

MINI Cooper John Cooper Works convertible – Oliver Twist finally gets his wish

All photos by the Author The tide has turned on large, mobile real estate-hogging vehicles here in the U.S. and the new trend is small – OK, mini. And one of my favorite vehicles of the past decade has been the MINI Cooper. It was love at first sight (and drive) when the millennial Cooper …

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217

May 5, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

Ford F-150 expanded portfolio: Harley and Raptor

If it seems like reviews of certain brands seem to come in waves it is because I get the vehicles by brand in waves. There are five companies regionally located here in north Texas that rep for the major automakers. A couple of them only handle families of brands, i.e. the Ford office delivers Ford/Lincoln/Mercury …

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179

May 3, 2010 • Autos, Events

Chevrolet celebrates diamond anniversary of Suburban

I attended an event today at the General Motors Assembly Plant in Arlington, Texas, that gave me cause for deeper reflection. Chevy is celebrating the 75th year of the Suburban model. A single product with three-quarters of a century lineage – now that is something. It got me to wondering: In this modern era of …

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92

April 22, 2010 • Reviews

WiebeTech ToughTech Mini pocket drives: Functional portability

For many, portability is a key determiner when considering new technology, and functional portability is an absolute priority. Myself, I chose to ditch the behemoth desktop computing system years ago in favor of a highly capable new generation of laptops. And as has been the case for my workstation at home, I am ladened with …

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242

April 16, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

2010 Jeep Liberty offers bit of freedom from the day-to-day

Photos courtesy Jeep While Jeep heritage has been going strong for more than half a century, most of its product lineup is still in its infancy. Compass and Patriot are actually more like adopted children – loved by their new parents but not sharing any DNA. Then there is Liberty. The Jeep Liberty was first …

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223

April 9, 2010 • Autos, Reviews

2010 Toyota 4Runner the “Miley Cyrus” of SUVs

Photos courtesy of Toyota The State Fair of Texas hosted the world debut of the fifth-generation 4Runner midsize SUV this past fall. The event marked the 25th anniversary for 4Runner, and celebrating more than 1.5 million units sold since launch. “Backed by a quarter-century of heritage combined with the integration of the latest comfort, convenience …

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