Steve Jobs 1955-2011

October 5, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Posted in Macintosh, People, Technology | Leave a comment

The world lost a great man today, one who made a “dent in this universe” and leaving it better for future generations.

Thank you Steve for being a part of my life, even if only through the products you have created. See you on the other side.

77777

May 23, 2011 at 8:39 pm | Posted in Fun Outdoors, Technology | Leave a comment
Prius at 77777

Prius at 77777

One of the better cars I’ve owned. Doesn’t drive like a BMW, but it’s less likely to leave me stranded on the side of the road…

No Frills Phone

November 14, 2010 at 10:50 pm | Posted in Macintosh, Technology | Leave a comment

Since the iPhone can pretty much do anything except make phone calls, this might be my next phone:

Space Station History

March 23, 2010 at 6:11 am | Posted in Technology | Leave a comment
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USA Today has a flash animation of how the Space Station was assembled over the last decade, including the names and purpose of each module. I worked on parts of the program (avionics and mechanical subsystems) and am proud to have been a contributor in a small way, and will remember the relationships and friends I made during that part of my career.

Panic Grips Amazon.com

January 22, 2010 at 12:09 pm | Posted in Macintosh, Rants, Technology | Leave a comment
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Amazon.com is in full-on panic mode as the anticipated announcement of the Apple JesusTablet draws near. First, they reduced the royalty split from 70/30 in Amazon’s favor to 70/30 in the publishers favor. Then they announce a beta version of a Kindle Development Environment to get third party applications. Finally, they announce a money-back guarantee for selected Kindle customers, as long as they buy their Kindle by January 26th.

These developments wouldn’t be bad if they were spread out over months and or announced earlier in the Kindle’s life in response to customer complaints, but the timing and spacing of these events indicates that Amazon is greatly worried about their ability to compete with an unannounced Apple product, and rightfully so – their pricing and the fiasco over copies of Orwell’s “1984” deleted from their customers Kindles has earned them the distrust of many users, including myself.

Sorry Amazon, I’ll be waiting until January 27th to decide if I want an ebook reader.

Dell Mini

November 13, 2009 at 12:27 pm | Posted in Technology | 1 Comment
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Almost five years after the Mac mini was introduced, Dell has finally come up with a competitive product – the Zino HD.

It goes for about $280, or a little less than half the price of a Mac Mini. However, it seems that the Zino is only available with AthlonX2 processors while Mac minis have the more powerful Intel Core2Duos.

I don’t like the placement of the Zino’s power button and the curved upper surface – it makes it difficult to stack them or place them vertically.

NO to Amazon Kindle

July 17, 2009 at 8:16 pm | Posted in Rants, Technology | Leave a comment

A few days ago, I was seriously considering buying an Amazon Kindle since the price went from $359 to $299. However, this morning, I saw what DRM can do – hundreds of people who bought books by George Orwell found that Amazon had deleted their books and refunded the purchase price. So much for the idea of the Kindle being the electronic equivalent of a book. It is all the more ironic given the books in question.

Note the weasel words in the above article – Amazon says they are “changing our systems so that in the future we will not remove books from customers’ devices in these circumstances“.

Amazon, you just lost a sale. I will never buy anything with DRM from you again, unless you “change your system to that in the future you will not remove books from customer’s devices under any circumstances“.

Leo Loses It

June 7, 2009 at 11:14 am | Posted in Humor (G- and R- rated), Rants, Technology | Leave a comment

Proof that Mike Arrington is a total first-class thin-skinned asshole who loves to pour gasoline on fires. He offers nothing constructive to the tech community except snide remarks who can’t even take valid criticism on his own website. You can hear Leo Laporte drop an F-bomb at 0:58:

A Mac Take on the Palm Pre

June 7, 2009 at 10:58 am | Posted in Macintosh, Technology | Leave a comment

Jon Gruber’s review of the Palm Pre is quite fair to Palm and gives it a thumbs-up for treating users like adults. Given the average consumer, their refreshing attitude will probably not challenge the iPhone, but it will give the market a choice, and I’m all for that.

Palm has chosen a different trade-off than Apple in this regard, and it might help them carve out a segment of the market that the iPhone does not, and probably never will, appeal to — the “don’t treat me like a child, let me shoot myself in the foot if I want to, I despise artificial constraints imposed upon me” crowd. Some expert users will see the Pre’s stance as a huge win.

The True Cost of Cell Phones

March 8, 2009 at 10:48 pm | Posted in Rants, Technology | Leave a comment

This LA Times article mentions a study showing that most cell phone users do not use most of their monthly minutes and pay as much as $1 to $3 per minute. Even in this economy, people will continue to pay for too many minutes they will never use. This is due to the cell phone providers charging outrageous fees for going over your monthly minutes (even though their marginal cost for overuse is close to zero), and not giving enough information or in-store exposure about their prepaid or pay-as-you-go plans. Who can blame them when their customers are sheep wanting and willing to be fleeced?

With a good prepaid plan like the one I have with T-Mobile, you always know how much each minute costs and how much you will pay every month. My average monthly cost for the past three years is about $8 a month, and the maximum I’ve paid for a single month was $17. All cell phone users should evaluate their usage once or twice a year and change their plans as needed.

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