New Mac..Need Suggestions

By on Jan 28, 2010 | 5 comments

So I recently stopped smoking at the beginning of  the month for various reasons, and one of my goals to finally kick this for good was to put the money I would have spent on smoking towards a goal.  I have always wanted to purchase a Mac, and now this is my chance to set a goal.  I am planning by June to make my purchase, but I am really unsure of the route to take. I’m setting a budget of $1,200 dollars (give or take) for this purchase.  I am not sure which route to take, Mac Mini, Macbook Pro, or the base iMac.  I currently have a laptop (single 2.0Ghz, 2GB RAM, 100GB hard drive running Windows 7), but I am not sure if I should purchase another laptop or move towards a desktop (iMac). I like the idea of getting another laptop but I’m not sure if I would like going from a 17″ display down to a 13″ model.  The iMac does have a 21″ display however I am tied to a desk.  Steve mentioned tonight that he had some display issues with his iMac, so I am worried now if I purchase a iMac and have display issues, then basically without having to pay a lot of money the PC could be shot.  On the other hand if I go the iMac route, I still will have my Dell laptop to use throughout the house, however I am not sure if that will end up getting more use than a Macbook or Macbook Pro. Here is what I plan on using the new PC for, and maybe your suggestions will help me out. Web Browsing Email Listening to Music (iTunes) I’d like to work more with photos than what I am now, (editing, general playing around) Chat What should I be looking for long term wise?  Would a MacBook Pro be the better route due to adding more memory / hard drive size? Please bring the comments along.  This will be my first Mac purchase, and I’d hate to be unhappy after a few months. What Apple computer should I purchase? iMac Macbook Pro Mac Mini View Results  Loading...

VOIP Apps using 3g now allowed on iPhone

By on Jan 28, 2010 | 2 comments

By now, just about everyone has heard of the announcement of the iPad.  But, the more important announcement yesterday as far as I’m concerned is a change to the Apple SDK. Apple Computer, Inc. has updated the iPhone developer SDK to allow VoIP over cellular networks. What this means is, as of yesterday, Apple allows VOIP applications such as Skype, and iCall to use the 3g network rather than limiting them to WIFI as they have up until this point. Currently only one app, iCall, has this functionality built in. Keep checking for updates to your favorite VOIP apps over the next week or so, as I am sure they will quickly try to update. For now, I am going to give iCall a try. I will post my initial impressions of it within the next few...

The Apple iPad

By on Jan 27, 2010 | 6 comments

Today Apple had finally answered a lot of questions about its newest creation, the “iPad”.  We know it has a 9.7-inch screen, weighs 1.5 pounds, has Wi-Fi with a 3G option, and Apple claims it has up to 10 hours of battery life. The iPad runs the iPhone OS and “almost all” iPhone apps and uses the ePub format for books. All of the applications built in on the iPad have been created from the ground up to take full advantage of the very large multi-touch screen.  The apps will work in any both portrait as well as in landscape orientations.  From the demo that Steve Jobs had shown, it appears the transition between applications as well as orientation is very fluid. The iPad’s mutli-touch screen will allow you to view entire web pages all at one time.  Just like the iPhone and iPod Touch, the iPad has no need for an external pointing device because Steve Jobs said, your finger is the most natural pointing device.  You can scroll through a page just by flicking your finger up or down on the screen, or pinch to zoom in or out on a photo. Apple has stated that you are able to watch 10 hours of video on the iPad, that also can sit in standby mode for one month on a single charge.  I’m not sure how much to believe this completely, as most manufacturers tend to exaggerate the battery life on most devices, however I certainly hope this is true. There are mutliple configurations for the iPad.  Those configurations include hard drive (16GB, 32GB & 64GB) configurations as well as a Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + 3G model.  Apple has noted that users whom choose the 3G route can elect two 3G packages via AT&T.  The first is a 250MB data plan for $14.99 USD, or a unlimited data plan for $29.99 USD, with both not requiring a contract.  This should prove to be a big win for both Apple and AT&T. The pricing listed for these models seem to be fairly reasonable considering the technology in this product, and the attention to detail that Apple puts into every product they release, see table below. 16 GB 32 GB 64 GB $499 $599 $699 Wi-Fi $629 $729 $829 Wi-Fi +3G Specifications: Size and weight: Height:   9.56 inches (242.8 mm) Width:   7.47 inches (189.7 mm) Depth:   0.5 inch (13.4 mm) Weight:  1.5 pounds (.68 kg) Wi-Fi model; Weight: 1.6 pounds (.73 kg) Wi-Fi + 3G model Display 9.7-inch (diagonal) LED-backlit glossy widescreen Multi-Touch display with IPS technology 1024-by-768-pixel resolution at 132 pixels per inch (ppi) Processor 1GHz Apple A4 custom-designed. Capacity 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB flash...

iPhone: Push GMail without an App

By on Jan 25, 2010 | 5 comments

People have been searching a long time for applications to push GMail messages to their iPhone or Touch. Many pay apps have become available in the App Store which send the user a push notification of new mail to their GMail accounts, but that is literally all they do. I can’t believe I never came across this before, but thanks to Twitter I saw a link posted regarding Google Sync. Below are the simple steps involved to set up Google Sync on your iPhone or Touch. By doing so, it will set up your Gmail account to work basically like Mobile Me (an Apple service) and push your mail directly to your Mail App in real time. It will also sync your Contacts and Calendars if you choose to do so. Requirements and Upload 1. Google Sync is only supported on iPhone OS versions 3.0 and above. You can check your current version by going to Settings > General > About > Version. To upgrade, follow the instructions at http://www.apple.com/iphone/softwareupdate/. Please upgrade to iPhone OS 3.0 before setting up Google Sync. 2. Perform a sync with iTunes to ensure that Contacts and Calendars from your iPhone are backed up to your computer. 3. If your business, school, or organization uses Google Apps, your administrator will first need to enable Google Sync before you can take advantage of this feature. Getting Started 1. Open the Settings application on your device’s home screen. 2. Open Mail, Contacts, Calendars. 3. Tap Add Account…. 4. Select Microsoft Exchange. Enter Account Info 5. In the Email field, enter your full Google Account email address. If you use an @googlemail.com address, you may see an “Unable to verify certificate” warning when you proceed to the next step. 6. Leave the Domain field blank. 7. Enter your full Google Account email address as the Username. 8. Enter your Google Account password as the Password. 9. Tap Next at the top of your screen. 9a. Choose Accept if the Unable to Verify Certificate dialog appears. 10. When the new Server field appears, enter m.google.com. 11. Press Next at the top of your screen again. 12. Select the Google services you want to sync. 13. Unless you want to delete all the existing Contacts and Calendars on your phone, select the Keep on my iPhone option when prompted. This will also allow you to keep syncing with your computer via iTunes. If you want to sync only the My Contacts group, you must choose to Delete Existing Contacts during the Google Sync install when prompted. If you choose to keep existing contacts, it will sync the contents of the “All Contacts” group instead. You’ve set up Google Sync for your iPhone. Synchronization will begin automatically if you have Push enabled on your phone. You can also open the Mail, Calendar or Contacts app and wait a few seconds to start a sync. More detailed information for this process can be found here:  Google Sync: Setting Up Your iPhone or iPod...

Verizon Tech Support (FW 1.7 related)

By on Jan 20, 2010 | 7 comments

Ah, another FiOS post here. Usually I am very happy with the service…today, not so much. I contacted support because the 1.7 firmware was finally rolled out to Pittsburgh. It is fairly common knowledge that the 1.7 firmware totally screws up the guide to a point that it is actually a pain to use. It looks horrendous and is not right at all on the 7xxx series boxes. But, it displays correctly on the older 6400 series ones. Here is my chat with tech support regarding the issues I have. He was by far one of the worst representatives I have come across while talking to Verizon support. Anthony(18:55:31): Thank you. One moment while I pull up your account. I am sorry for your problems, but I will help you. Please be patient. Anthony(18:55:51): Are you havign a HDMI issue since the 1.7 firmware update to the boxes? StevoFC(18:56:09): no I’m having guide issues on the 7100 series boxes StevoFC(18:56:14): it looks horrible Anthony(18:56:30): unrelated… StevoFC(18:56:36): no it’s not Anthony(18:56:41): you don’t like it StevoFC(18:56:53): it’s a proven fact that the guide is stretched only on the 7xxx series boxes StevoFC(18:57:09): it shows correctly on my older 6400 series dvr StevoFC(18:57:31): I am unhappy with the service since this update Anthony(18:57:36): I am sorrty Anthony(18:57:41): sorry Anthony(18:57:57): It can’t be changed but I have notated your tech support notes StevoFC(18:58:04): it can be changed Anthony(18:58:15): how? StevoFC(18:58:16): i would like my box replaced with a model that doesn’t have the problem Anthony(18:58:51): I can’t replace the boxes because you don’t like the way the guide is displayed Anthony(18:59:06): The 7000 boxes are HD StevoFC(18:59:13): so are the others Anthony(18:59:18): the 6416 is HD & standard StevoFC(18:59:31): i have the 6416 dvr Anthony(18:59:36): I see that StevoFC(18:59:46): and it displays correctly Anthony(18:59:56): the 7000 are correct also StevoFC(19:00:02): no it is not Anthony(19:00:22): all 3 display the same way correct? StevoFC(19:00:49): all 3 what? 7100? Anthony(19:00:55): yes StevoFC(19:01:16): yes, but they dont look like they used to, and they dont look like the 6400 does Anthony(19:01:41): I am sorry they don’t look the same Anthony(19:01:46): but they are correct StevoFC(19:01:50): can you roll my firmware back? Anthony(19:01:55): no StevoFC(19:02:17): how much is the verizon cancellation fee? Anthony(19:03:07): I am tech support Anthony(19:03:13): 1-800-VERIZON (1-800-837-4966), available Monday through Friday between 8:00 AM and 6:00 PM. Anthony(19:03:18): give them a call and they will work with you StevoFC(19:03:35): if you are unwilling to help I will most likely cancel my service StevoFC(19:03:46): because this update is not acceptable Anthony(19:03:57): I can’t roll your firmware back Anthony(19:04:03): I am sorry StevoFC(19:04:16): you would if the update didn’t install correctly on my end Anthony(19:04:41): it installed correctly StevoFC(19:04:58): so you are saying verizon purposely screwed up the guide? Anthony(19:05:08): no Anthony(19:05:23): Unfortunately you don’t like the way it loks Anthony(19:05:28): looks Anthony(19:05:28): I am sorry StevoFC(19:06:18): then like i said, I will have to call the number you gave me and possibly cancel my service Anthony(19:06:28): I am sorry to hear that. Anthony(19:06:39): Thanks for using Verizon Click to Chat. For more information visit http://help.verizon.net . You can also download the Verizon In Home Agent at http://verizon.com/inhomeagent to help with any future issues with your service. You may receive a survey regarding this chat. I hope you can rate us a 10 based on your experience with me today. Thank you for choosing Verizon. Your session is now closed. Thank you,have a nice day. Yes, I was rude…I normally try to be nice but the guy was treating me like an idiot. Sorry Anthony, but don’t assume people who contact you are dumb and maybe you would be treated nicer. To make things even better, They include an email link at the bottom of the chat when you are done so that you can email the log to your account. I click the link to email the transcript to myself and I got this… I started to laugh when this happened…Why, you ask? The FiOS email addresses are .net not .com, so I couldn’t even email the transcript to myself. Thanks Verizon, you seem to be getting better each...

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