Saturday, April 5, 2014

Apple WWDC 2014 Logo Hint

I'm back!

The last time I blogged here, I got my MacBook Air.  I still have that MacBook Air and it's still the most reliable computer that I own.  I actually just got a new Asus tower.  While 16GB of RAM and 2 TB of onboard HD space are nice, but Windows 8.1 has a lot of quirks that I have to get used to.  At least Windows has an app store, albeit it doesn't have the variety of apps that Google or Apple have.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

We have Air...

I bought a brand-new MacBook Air in early July, mainly for work.  Having an iPhone is great and the iPad is really nice.  But, for my work, I need a computer with a mouse for the program I'm using.  And I need it to be mobile.  And Windows 7 on my desktop has been giving me problems.

I've always wanted a Mac somewhere in my arsenal and it seemed like a great time to add it.  I've resisted a laptop all these years because of the bulk and how heavy it can be.  Netbooks are nice but I also want the power to edit video and other advanced features.  Software is a little easier to get and  sometimes a lot cheaper on the Mac App Store.

This blog's name is not going to change.  I think a number of people do admirably well in the Mac arena and I'm a newbie.  But, I do welcome the change.  I'm also not in a hurry to upgrade to Mountain Lion.  But, I did send in for my free download.

I'm still a PC guy.  I don't think that will ever change.  But, I like having another ecosystem to pull from.

Picture courtesy of Apple

Saturday, October 15, 2011

How To Use Photo Stream On Your Desktop

One of the features of iOS 5 I was really looking forward to was Photo Stream.  For years, I've been manually transferring photos from my phone to my computer.  Occasionally I'd e-mail them to myself.  Maybe even use Dropbox.  But, all of those methods feel like there is one or more extra steps to get it done.  Also, you don't want your picture to degrade in quality.

That's where Photo Stream comes in.

You take a picture on your iPhone 4 and it automatically goes to your iPad, iPod Touch (with internet connection), Apple TV and desktop computer.  If you have pictures taken with a camera, you can download them to your iPad or desktop computer and it can be uploaded to your Photo Stream that will be viewable on all of your iDevices.  Imagine how much easier it would be to organize all of your vacation pictures!

It's easy enough to configure the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Apple TV to use Photo Stream.  For the most part, it involves going to Settings, going to the iCloud section and turning on Photo Stream.  But, there are no apparent instructions to see your Photo Stream on your desktop.  It's not at  Here's how to do it:

iPhone 4S Release Day

Two crazy iPhone days this week!  First, most of us encountered trouble updating to iOS 5, although it sounds like I got the better end of the deal on that one.  People - you need to BACKUP and then RESTORE that backup!

Anyway, yesterday was the release of the iPhone 4S.  On most release days, there are oodles and oodles of lines waiting for the latest iPhone.  At least here in Hawaii, lines were not that bad.  Perhaps it's because many pre-ordered for mail delivery and you could get an iPhone at the Apple Store, AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, Best Buy, Wal-Mart or Target.

The hardest part about the 4S release day was actually trying to activate your iPhone 4S.  It seems like AT&T was the hardest hit since it has the largest base of iPhone users.

A member in my family ordered the iPhone 4S and I was given the task to make it come alive.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

iCloud Setup & Wireless Backup

Wasn't that a crazy day?  The iOS 5 launch was swamped with problems.  Many of us won't forget Error 3200 anytime soon.  But, anyone familiar with OS launch dates know that there is a rush for about a half day after it comes out.  I was able to update my iPhone 4 by early afternoon Hawaii time and I updated my iPad in the evening.

The one thing I've been trying to do is have everything go to the cloud with the new iCloud service.  We got a taste of that back in June when Apple enabled us to sync our apps, music and iBook downloads wirelessly.  Plus, it became a lot easier to see our latest app purchases.

Now, the entire iCloud system has been rolled out.  I'll walk you through the setup:

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Getting Ready For iOS 5

iOS 5 is almost upon us.  I've heard rumors that it is dropping today at 1:00 p.m. EST.  I'll be checking that out.

UPDATE 1: iOS 5 was indeed available at the time predicted above.  There's a HUGE rush right now.  If you're willing to wait hours for this, go ahead.  If not, you can probably wait until you come home from work.

UPDATE 2:  If you're getting an "Error 3200" or something similar all that means is that Apple's servers are getting pummeled.  I did manage to get my iPhone updated to iOS 5 but not without a lot of headache.  I actually disabled my firewall and virus protection.  I also unplugged all of my USB devices except for my mouse, keyboard and iPhone.  I'm not sure if that helped it or I was just lucky to get in.  I never had to do that before.  Even on an iOS launch day. Later tonight I'll update the iPad.

Here's a list of what you need to do:

iPhone 4S Benchmarks - Impressive!

I hate to bring up technical benchmarks because the selling point of the iPhone has never been about specifications.

But, I keep hearing, "specs this," and, "specs that," and, "Why does the iPhone 4S have terrible specs?"

Well, here's a report that you use when the "spec" army comes to your door.  Anandtech posted benchmarks for the iPhone 4S compared with the iPhone 4 running iOS 5 and the iPhone 3GS in addition to popular Android smartphones.  The results may surprise you.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Facebook for iPad Is In The App Store

The wait is over.  The Facebook app for the iPhone is now a universal app that is optimized for the iPad.

Knowing the update was coming today, I installed the Facebook iPhone app on my iPad.  Getting the iPad-optimized version was just a matter of updating the app.

You have to log in once with the new app to get it going.  Once you're in, it's a great experience.

It reminds me a lot of MyPad+ with the swiping and sideloading windows.  But it also keeps the Facebook look just like Friendly Plus.

I don't think the Facebook app has any special function that the other Facebook iPad apps do not have.  But, I'm sure that will change in the future.

Here's more screenshots from the iPad app:

Sunday, October 9, 2011

iPhone 4S Pre-orders Sell Out

The way the world responded to the iPhone 4S announcement last Tuesday, you'd think that nobody wanted the newest iPhone.

Well, all iPhone 4S pre-orders have sold out.

UPDATE 10/10/2011:  Apple has announced that iPhone 4S pre-orders topped one million in the first 24 hours.  That broke the previous single-day order set by the iPhone 4.

What that means is you can't pre-order the iPhone 4S to get it on or around October 14 to be shipped to an address.  If you want the iPhone 4S on launch date, your only option now is to stand in line at one of the stores that will be selling it.

Apple Retail Stores will be open at 8 a.m. to sell the iPhone 4S. Here's a list of the other stores selling the iPhone 4S according to the Apple press release:

  • AT&T
  • Sprint
  • Verizon Wireless
  • Select Best Buy, Wal-Mart and Target stores
  • Select Apple Authorized Resellers

As a buyer of the iPhone 3G and iPhone 4 and having to wait hours in line to get them, I wholeheartedly recommend waiting in line at the Apple Store.  In fact, I would try to make a trip to the largest Apple Store in your area because that one will most likely be better stocked.  Here in Honolulu, that would be the Ala Moana Center store.

The carriers seem to sell out VERY quickly.  From what I've heard, stores like Wal-Mart sell out just as fast.  But on the mainland where there are much more Wal-Marts than Apple Stores, there may be a chance you could get a really short line or no line at all.  Still, selection of the model you want may not be good.

I'm going to check out one of the early lines, probably at Ala Moana.  Then, I'll come home and wait for the iPhone 4S that will be going to one of my immediate family members.  Yes, I've been charged with setting it up and I'm all too eager to do so.