This is getting closer to my ideal laptop

Jul 24

I don’t know much about it except that a company called iTronix is manufacturing it.

As soon as they have a model that packs a terrabyte of storage so I can carry most of my data around, I’m a buyer!

A 3D scan of your face?

May 28

Trimensional is a new app in the iTunes App store that does one simple thing – it takes a “3D” photo, converts that photo to a series of data points and into an animated graphic.

Although I have not yet found a lot of practical applicaition, it is a lot of fun to play with.

I realize, I will most likely only be able to keep this post up a day or two before it drives us all nuts!

Introducing the amazing EggBot!

May 07

Introducing the amazing EggBot, a robotic egg designer. Determined to best my wife’s amazing Ukrainian egg designs, this Easter, I applied by tech prowess with my able assistant, the EggBot. Unfortunately, it is still a work in progress, but I remain hopeful that we can generate thousands of egg designs. Until the next Easter, we are practicing on ping pong balls!

Info on the EggBot can be found here.

And you can order the Eggbot

Apple finally releases a white iPhone…meanwhile

Apr 28

I’ve had mine for 48 days already…see this post

I wonder what took Apple so long?

Fly the Friendly skies and take the internet with you

Apr 04

Thanks to Southwest Airlines, my favorite airline, for offering the $5 wi-fi internet this morning. Turned a morning snooze into a burst of productivity. As you can see from the speedtest below, speeds are not blindingly fast, but it is better than nothing!

My latest computer is… a Mac?

Dec 06

Yes its true, I’ve migrated into a MacBookPro for my primary laptop.

Was it the allure of Mac OS X? no.
Was it the sex appeal of a sleek machine? no.

It was simply, the best built machine money could buy. After decades of taking apart my Sony VAIO’s and Toshiba Tecra’s, Portege’s and Librettos, I’ve come to realize that the design of these machines is grossly inferior to the MacBookPro. Within the first few months of owning a laptop, I often end up pulling it apart to upgrade the memory or hard drive. Some of my favorite machines are Sony’s (TX, TZ, P), but I am appalled at how difficult it is to replace simple components like the hard drive. Unlike my Acer netbooks that I can replace a hard drive in minutes (or my Samsung, that has an external access port), I can spend hours on a Sony, carefully taking pictures as I remove each layer, only to find some “switch” or button has been booby trapped to make reassembly very difficult.

When my Sony TZ needed a windows reformat and redo, I realized its hard drive space was just too small, so I upgraded to a Samsung R480 (now for sale)

which offered a 500 gig harddrive, and a blu-ray drive that would allow be to read my backups.

Unfortunately, the Samsung just ended up being to big and clumsy to take to meetings, and although I had removed the Blu-Ray drive and added a 750 gig harddrive for data, I was concerned about jostling the machine, so I ended up restore the blu-ray and resetting the machine to its original settings and then set off on my quest to find a durable long last machine.

I wanted a machine that could easily hold all of my data and media (i.e. iTunes) – check
I wanted a machine that could be my hub for synching the iPhones, iPad iTouches and iPods, in our family.
I wanted a machine with enough USB ports and a SD Card reader to be helpful – check
I wanted a machine that felt solid to travel with – check
I wanted a machine that had a large high resolution screen (1680×1050)
I wanted a machine that was fast enough to be my main machine during the day – which means a lot of multitasking (which ruled out most netbooks) – check
I wanted a machine that was well built and easily upgraded – check
I wanted a machine that would let me create apps for the iPhone and iPad – check

While I liked the idea of a Mac Air, the hard drive and processor speed ended up being a limitation.

I purchased the 15″ model with the Core i7 and 4 gigs of RAM and a 500 gig hard drive. I had the hard rive replaced with the 750 gig model and had the superdrive (thats a DVD to PC users) replaced with another 750 gig for a toal of 1.5 Terabytes.

For the first time in a long time, I can carry ALL of my data around with me.

(this photo shows the now replaced Superdrive with an additional hard drive above the existing hard drive.

What was appealing about the design?

Start with the original concept – instead of a series of plastic parts held together by a bunch of screws (if you’ve taken apart an Acer, Asus, Sony or Toshiba you know what I mean), the MacBookPro starts out as a solid aluminum brick:

and then they carve the keyboard out of the top,

followed by the computer innards out of the middle, leaving a small sheet of aluminum on the bottom to seal the machine in. In short – remove ten screws and you have access to the elegance of design of the laptop and easy upgrades to the harddrive, memory and DVD-drive.

Word of advice on upgrades and using Bootcamp: don’t move the DVD drive until after you’ve installed Bootcamp – I spent easily a day of time trying to figure that one out. Also if you plan to run Parallels (Macs version of allowing you access to Windows while running the Mac, as opposed to bootcamp which switches between the OS’s on bootup), install bootcamp first, then windows, the install all of your software, and BEFORE you activate, go back into parallels, install it, run it and then tell Windows (office, etc.) to activate- this will save you from having to repeatedly activate for what is essentially the same machine.

Finally, for those CCIM instructors, Designee’s, and candidates, you should know that the new Microsoft Office 2011 for the Mac now works with Macros for our CCIM spreadsheets.

Has the upgrade been seamless? Not quite, but I have enjoyed it and I love the laptop. I still use my Sony netbook P for meetings during the day, but I prefer the MacBookPro for all other tasks.

I think my new Mac, fits right in – how about you? (bottom right of all the monitors)

Getting closer to my dream laptop

Nov 29

Acer has announced their Iconia line – a dual screen laptop

While the hands on review of the Acer Iconia indicates that the virtual keyboard is tough to use, I’d turn this laptop on its side, and use Apple’s Bluetooth keyboard instead.

We’ve written about the need for this many times:
paperless office
and I hope laptop manufacturers are starting to pay attention to the needs of the power users.

By the way – if you are curious – here is my current multiple monitor configuration

And some past incarnations can be found here

Thanks to Engadget for the headsup on this new release

helping kickstart a tool iPhone users could love?

Oct 05

I love the idea of a large group of people, with a small amount of money, can put someone in business and allow us to turn a simple concept into a real project. I’m talking about more than an add on for the iPhone, I’m talking about Kickstarter.

My dream machine (for 2010)

Sep 27


Now this is my idea of an ideal laptop – something that would “store” my iPhone, my iPad and an external USB or Harddrive – each of which would be components that I could remove AND that I could use as an extra screen, storage, etc.

More info can be found by clicking here.

Thanks to Gizmodo for the article.

If there is an app for your iPhone to wake you up at a certain time (the alarm clock), why isn’t there an app to wake you up once you near your destination?

Aug 12

Has anyone seen an app that does that? (no, I’m not talking about sleepdriving in NM, but when my son and I rode the train in DC this week, it would have been easy to doze off and miss our destination).

UPDATE: thanks to my longtime computer friend, Jeff Sauer (who is also Deforest Kelly’s (Bones on the original Star Trek) nephew) – who pointed out “there is an app for that” called iNap.

and thanks to Facebook friends for finding the answer so fast!