Lenovo – Dual screen laptop, smaller than an iPad, ideal teaching device

Sep 08

Lenovo Yoga Book – C930 – short tech review

by Todd Clarke CCIM CIPs

The Lenovo Yoga book has been a game changer – its uber portability, versality and feature set have made it my go to for the backup laptop – whether that is business meetings, traveling or teaching for CCIM.


My full video review can be found here – http://www.nmapartment.com/yogareview



Ten Reasons to own this 2 in 1 :

  1. Amazing keyboard doubles as e-ink reader
  2. Slim and light – smaller than an iPad
  3. Runs Windows 10
  4. Has a Micro SD Slot – supports up to 512 gigs
  5. Touch screen + e-ink screen – pull up a PDF on one side, and your powerpoint on the other – both support stylus
  6. Relatively fast – 4 gig memory, 128 gig storage – works great for MS office, research tool, etc.
  7. Works great as a backup computer, take to meetings computer,
  8. Fingerprint reader for quick login

9. Versatile setup – use as laptop, tablet mode, tent mode and more
10. USB c Ports – easy dongles to HDMI, display port, etc. also charges from USB C

It was $1,299 to $1,400 when I bought it over a year ago – Lenovo shows it on their website for $859(http://www.nmapartment.com/yogabook)  and I have seen some deals on it for closer to $599.

Santa Fe Tech course – Friday, June 21st, 2019

Jun 12

Counts for 4 hours of Core Ethics for all NM Licensees


iTunes updated to version 11

Dec 14

Many iPhone, iPad and computer users have had a love/hate relationship with iTunes. Originally introduced to help manage music collections and sync to iPod, iTunes has grown to a full blown media server, but unfortunately, the frame it was built on was often slow, cranky and unwieldy.

Today Apple has released version 11 of iTunes, which is a significant improvement over all of the previous versions.

Unfortunately, iTunes still does not do a good job of managing apps and app documents

iTunes and iOS device app management

I have also found that iTunes is not suited for managing large collections of movies or TV Shows – as it just takes too many clicks to scroll through our family’s collection.

iTunes Movies and IOS device management

iTunes and Device management has experienced an improvement significantly in ability to tell which device your media is on.
iTunes and device management

Wired Magazine shares their thoughts on the iTunes update here


Sep 10

Apple is announcing its latest iPhone news today (9/10) and that includes a firm release date for iOS 7 – slated to be pushed out to over 700 million iOS devices starting 9/18.

image courtesy – http://mashable.com/2013/06/12/ios-7-apps-comparison/

How does it compare?
Alexis Madrigal at NPR has done a great job explaining why the physical world metaphor no longer applies for your iPhone / iPad.

A live feed from Engadget.com can be found here – Liveblog

Everyone needs a Node remote sensor

Jan 20

I have been using my Variable Technologies Node for the last few months and I can tell you without a doubt, it is one of the best add on gadgets for my iPhone.

The concept is simple – provide the user with a remote hand held sensor that can have different modules that can be swapped in and out. Similar to the medical tricorder in StarTrek, the Node talks to your iPhone or Android via Bluetooth.

The main part of the Node, known as the Kore, contains the rechargeable battery, Bluetooth connection to your device, and 2 interface ports to the sensors that screw on either end (they are about the size of a fat quarter).

Node Kore

Node KoreNode Kore

NODE (8) (1024x768)

The Node includes apps in the iTunes store (and app for Droid)

The two modules I use the most are the Therma and the Chroma.


The Therma app has a real time recording ability to show you what you are taking the temperature on and what its temperature is.

You can see I am using it here to confirm the thermostat reading on one of our properties.
NodeTherma-InUse (3)

NodeTherma-InUse (2)

The Chroma module has a sensor and light that read the color you point it at and turn it into RGB, HEX and standard
L.A.B. Color scales
and it shows you a visual representation of the color which is great for emailing the results.

I’ve used this app to match paint and stucco colors on our properties as it allows me to send my maintenance guys the right color for touchup painting or repairs.
NodeChromaModuleatWork (2)

Here is a large image showing the flashlight.
NodeChromaModuleatWork (1)

And if you need it, it has a programmable flashlight node.
NODE (7) (1024x768)

On a final note, the folks at VariableTechnologies have developed a developer forum to encourage more of their customers to create their own applications using this unique (and amazing) device.

December Virtual garage sale on Craiglist

Dec 04

Includes some interesting items like a dual screen Android ereader, iPods, bluetooth presenters/mice, etc.

Click here
for more info: http://albuquerque.craigslist.org/sys/3454545283.html

Not mentioned on the list is this portable projector – http://albuquerque.craigslist.org/sys/3450432924.html

and Todd Clarke customized MacbookPro (2010) with 1 terrabyte drive + DVD or 2 terrabyte drives – $1,500+any software you want me to install/config.

7″ tablet comparison – 10/2012

Nov 13

Kindle Fire

The following is a review of the Kindle Fire and Google (ASUS) Nexus 7 tablets a portion of which is featured in the Institute of Real Estate Mangement‘s Journal of Property Management Magazine

Comparison of Features between the two tablets:
a PDF of the Gadgets Column from the JPM can be found here

If you have been holding out on purchasing an iPad either due to size or price, you might consider these 7” tablets. Although the Kindle Fire and Google Nexus 7 both use the Android operating system and look virtually identical, I found my experience with them vastly different.

This summary table gives you an idea of the basic internal differences between the two:

How the two machines operate is also vastly different. The Nexus 7 is snappy, responsive and a visual delight. In comparison, the Kindle Fire is pokey, opaque and sometimes difficult to use. The Kindle Fire “home screen” looks similar to the Apple’s iTunes “cover flow”, but is much more difficult to select the right app or book than it should be.

Web Surfing
The Kindle Fire runs all of your websurfing through its “Silk servers”, which was supposed to enhance the delivery of information, but will most likely frustrate the power user of websites. Since the Kindle Fire was created to enhance the users ability to read Kindle Books and shop Amazon.com, the irony is not lost on me that navigating Amazon’s website is difficult at best. The Silk server makes assumptions that you can’t override, which keeps you from being able to order a physical book as it only displays kindle books.

Media Play
Although both devices can use NetFlix and can easily play MP3 files, the Kindle Fire has been designed to get the user into the Amazon Cloud ecosystem by playing any music you’ve uploaded on to your Amazon cloud drive, or renting/buying movies through Amazon prime.

A connected device
If you need to use the video conferencing of Skype, or anything that needs a camera, the Nexus 7 is the way to go. Ditto for mapping and GPS.

Additional devices
The Nexus 7 really shines when you attach any of a number of USB or Bluetooth devices, both of which the Kindle Fire is locked down from using. My favorite Nexus 7 peripheral is a keyboard case that plugs straight into the device with a USB to MicroUSB cable.

Really Amazon?
In addition to half dozen different Kindle hardware platforms, the Kindle software platform runs on Windows, Macintosh, Androids, iPhones, iPads, and even through you r webbrowser, which makes sense as Amazon is touting the Kindle as your “be anywhere virtual library”. What disappoints me is that Amazon has “crippled “the Android version of their app, making it difficult to navigate your book collection, eliminating any sharing options, and making for a disappointing reading environment, all of which is amazing since the Kindle Fire runs on the same platform and has these features.

Added “ahh-hahs”
The Nexus 7 has two really interesting additions to the typical Android tablet – face and voice recognition . The face recognition kicks in if you turn on the option for a security password every time you turn on the tablet. In lieu of the typical number pad PIN, it brings up the camera and ask you to hold your face up the front face camera – if it matches your mug, it logins you in, if not it reverts to asking you for your PIN. If you have used Apple’s Siri on your iPhone 4s, then using Google’s Voice recognition will be comfortable whether you are issuing commands to search the web, or dictating a short memo.

Should you wait?
By the time you are reading this article, Kindle and Apple may have announced new versions of the Kindle Fire and/or the potential iPad Mini. But so long as the Kindle Fire is locked into Silk, would whole heartedly recommend that if you need a 7” tablet, grab the Nexus 7.

Kindle Fire – $199 – http://www.amazon.com/Kindle-Fire-Amazon-Tablet/
Google Nexus 7 – $199 to $249 – http://www.google.com/nexus/#/7

Gizmodo has updated their review of the Kindle HD 8.9- http://gizmodo.com/5962540/kindle-fire-hd-89-review-good-news-and-bad-news

Apple’s textbook entry

Jan 22

Earlier this week Apple announced their intent to disrupt and reshape the textbook market in their iBooks App platform.

In the near future, I plan to test out their authoring system for our 365 page textbook “Understanding NM’s Property Tax system”.

This articles does a great job explaining why the iPad is on top

Dec 29

From Gizmodo.

how to get an iPad for a discount during Christmas

Dec 10

Most folks are not aware of the fact that Apple has a refurbished store that also sells iPads.

iPad 1st generation are available for $499

iPad 2 black 64 gig wifi are only $599

iPad 2 white 64 gig wifi are only $599

and my recommendation – the white, 64 gig, 3g iPad2 for $729, a full $100 discount from a brand new model in the store.