About MY Gear

The ’90s Live on … in My Attic

We have been cleaning out our attic, and found this piece of “once-cutting edge technology”. Yes, Sarah’s ruggedized CD player was her prized possession in the ’90’s…and while it was no doubt super-cool at the time, it’s amazing that we once carried these around happily. Even old school cassette players were less cumbersome! The next time a phone, or a rugged case, feels too big…just remember how big an old…


My Quest for the 99% Computer

I have often stated that my iPad is my ‘80% computer’, meaning that I do (or can do) about 80% of my stuff on it. However, my goal has always been to find an ultraportable device to handle 99% of my non-gaming activities. This quest started with the HP200LX, where I could run Lotus 1-2-3, a great HP Calc, word processing, and so on; then the Newton MessagePad (my first…


D-Star Breathes New Life into Amateur Radio

D-Star is the newest mode I have recently added to my Amateur Radio arsenal.  I bought an Icom ID-31A D-star, radio which I will be reviewing here soon, but I wanted to share a little about D-star and why it’s a cool mode before I did the review. The History of D-Star D-star is a mode that was created by the Japanese Amateur Radio League in 2001 after doing three…


Gear Diary’s Grumpy Old Man on Why He’s Getting the iPhone 5

Gear Diary’s own “Grumpy Old Man” (aka Mark Hager, aka my awesome father-in-law) is getting an iPhone 5. Thing is, Mark’s daughter (my wife Elana) and wife (Debbie) are both fine with the iPhone 4S, and THEY are far more likely to take advantage of the speed the iPhone 5 will offer. So why is Mark (a troglodyte) getting the iPhone 5? I ambushed him while he was grilling, and…


Pocket Informant Saves My Day

Ever have just “one of those weeks”? I have been having one. Between several work commitments, service appointments at my home, and some family and friend obligations, it has been a week of juggling appointments and rearranging schedules. Unfortunately, this week also highlighted my biggest complaint about iOS: iCal. I can’t stand that my only options are list, day and month. The lack of integration with tasks is also a…


Pogoplug – My Own Private Cloud With 1TB Online Backup

I am always on the lookout for simple and secure backup solutions and good methods for syncing personal files across multiple devices. I use Dropbox and Google Drive, but have always liked the idea of my own personal cloud solution for more confidential information. I have been using The free Tonido program on my home Mac, iPad, iPhone and Google Nexus 7 for a few months, and it has worked…


Putting Down the iPad; Nexus 7 in Real Life

Recently I wrote a lengthy comment/review on the Skooba Weekender bag Dan reviewed last July. During that review, I mentioned that I am a road warrior and generally spend at least one or more nights out of town 40+ weeks of the year. A few weeks ago was one of those rare times where I was working in my NYC office all week. Being in the office allowed me an opportunity…


Satechi WTR-C Wireless Timer Remote Shutter for Canon T3i Review

The other day we took a look at the Satechi Bluetooth Media Remote. The little Bluetooth remote has numerous tricks up its sleeve, including being able to remotely fire the iPhone’s camera shutter; this is useful when you want to take a self-portrait or place the iPhone in a stand, thus making sure there is no shake when the camera fires. After all, vibration at the moment a picture is…


MacBook Pro with Retina Display; Why We Bit

Dan: In last week’s newsletter, Judie and I began to address our first impressions of the new MacBook Pro with Retina display. I sat down to flesh out a more in-depth post but soon realized that what might be more compelling was why we both felt this computer was worth the price of admission in the first place. I certainly won’t speak for Judie, but I thought I would lay…


Upping My Photographic Game, Part 1

  I recently decided that after years of writing for various websites and, as a result, taking tons of pictures, it was past time for me to do something about my photographic skills. I’ve been shopping for gear that would really make a difference but not break the bank, and I wanted to invite you along for the journey – especially since my new camera and lenses arrive tomorrow. Before…


Why I Chose the Galaxy Nexus

About a month ago I was in the market for a new phone.  My Droid 2 was at the end of its useful life, and I was ready for a new smartphone.  There was a lot of debate between my friends over what would be better, and it came of shock to no one that I chose the Galaxy Nexus. The Screen The number one feature of the Galaxy Nexus wasn’t…


Tom Bihn Ristretto (New Version) review

  There are a few companies that consistently impress me with the design, functionality and quality of their laptop and iPad bags. Tom Bihn is one of them and, with the recent release of the updated Ristretto bag for iPad, 11″ MacBook air and 13″ MBA they have, yet again, proven why they are such a great company. For the past few months my “go to” bag has been the…


A Week with the iPad 3

The iPad 3 came out a week ago. A quick rundown of iPad users on the site shows that all four editors have the new iPad, and Chris Gavula does too. We have no doubt there will be a few more grabbing one in the weeks to come. Why? Because even though the improvements to the iPad are perhaps technically incremental, we’ve found that they add up to a device which…


Why the Vere Sandal Company Kickstarter Project Needs a Kick in the Pants

UPDATED WITH A DIRECT RESPONSE FROM THE COMPANY Kickstarter is a great way to help new businesses get moving, and in the process get your hands on new products early. Judie and I have both backed numerous Kickstarter projects over the past few years, and we’ve been quite pleased with the process; until now, that is. The Vere Sandal Company has been my first encounter with a Kickstarter project that just…


Apple’s Achilles Heel Revealed

If you have wondered if Apple has an Achilles’ heel you might want to check out a new post over on Gizmodo. It makes clear that there is one and if goes by the name “expectations”. People have come to expect SO much from Apple each and every time they release a new device that there is Simply No Way, Apple can keep pace. That seems to be the case…


The Wilson Electronics AG Pro 75 Was Worth the Upgrade

It’s no secret that if you live or work in an area that isn’t in the middle of a strong cellular coverage zone, your mobile phone signal is going to suffer. That’s one of the things I knew I would have to deal with when I moved to the ranch, but I wasn’t about to let it be the deciding factor.


Seeing Past the Roadblock of Technology

I’m a tech guy.  I’m in a tech-related job and I love tech and gadgets and all the good things they bring to life.  But sometimes, just sometimes, technology gets in the way.  Sometimes we find ourselves unable to see past it and unable to function without it.  And sometimes that causes us to fail to see the real problem.  I was thinking about that a lot as I ran…


What Do You Do When the Internet Is Down?

I’m not going to lie — this looks more like the way I behave than I’d care to admit; okay, minus the crying in the mirror part. My family can tell you that when I am trying to edit or write and the internet goes down, I am an absolute pain in the butt to be around; grumpy and moody and prone to random curse word outbursts. It’s not pretty….


Should We Stay or Will We Go with Windows Phone?

Dan: This is the fourth and final part of our look at Windows Phone and the HTC Titan. In Considering the Move from an iPhone 4S to Windows Phone Titan, we talked a bit about the operating system and its history. In Comparing the iPhone 4s Hardware to the HTC Titan and Dipping into the Windows Phone User Interface, we addressed the user interface and some of Windows Phone’s key features. In Checking Out Windows…


Tales from the Apple Store

(image courtesy Macrumors) The other day Judie and I were in Manhattan for the Dell/Intel create work inspired event and we decided that we needed to make a pilgrimage to the Apple Store at Grand Central Station. If you have not been there you should make a point of stopping in the next time you are in Manhattan. The place is amazing. To have such grand open spaces as the…


Checking Out Windows Phone Speed, Apps, Camera, Music Player and Games

Judie: Our saga began when Dan and I received HTC Titans at a Microsoft sponsored dinner while attending CES; it’s hard to believe that on the 11th it will have been one month ago. You can catch up on our previous posts before starting with this one by clicking the following links: Considering the Move from an iPhone 4S to Windows Phone Titan Comparing the iPhone 4s Hardware to the…