A Tale of Two Chromebooks

A couple of years ago I spent weeks searching high and lo for a Samsung Series 3 Chromebook which was the first of the really affordable cloud laptops. I finally found one and paid £240 – nothing compared to the price of some Windows and especially Mac laptops.

Initially I was amazed at the start-up time of seconds and the fantastic battery life. I found that I could access my email and calendar through the browser (as I had been for a while since ditching Outlook) and do all my general web-browsing. I was hooked and decided that, away from … Read the rest

Acompli Email Client for iPhone Review

Almost since the day I got my first iPhone I have been looking for a better email client and preferably one that also worked on the iPad too. I think I have tried pretty much all of them and the only one that has stuck is Sparrow which is sadly no longer maintain since Google bought it, grr.

A few weeks ago I was introduced to Acompli which merges email with the calendar, something that is so blindingly obviously that it is a surprise it hasn’t been done before. While the jury is still out on whether it stays or … Read the rest

I don’t want a thinner iPhone 6 and here’s why

So the rumours have moved on and now the leaks are coming thick and fast. A new iPhone is on the way. Of course nobody knows what Apple are going to deliver but all the leaks point to a device with a larger screen… And thinner.

Why?!

It is pretty much acknowledged that battery technology hasn’t kept pace with all the other components in a smartphone. I have an iPhone 4S and have to charge it at least twice a day. That’s a real pain as it means I have to carry with me the means to deal with that. … Read the rest

Diary Apps

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For some time now I have been keeping a personal diary for which I have been using a Moleskine page a day diary. This has worked well and I like the process of actually writing into the book but I am also trying to go paperless.

There are a few reasons for moving from paper to an electronic diary. The first and most important reason for me is to be able to backup my entries and out of choice I would want the entries to go to Evernote. Secondly, it is easier to be able to type a quick entry … Read the rest

ASUS WL-33NUL Pocket Router Review

IMG_6649The Asus Pocket Router was first announced at the beginning of year but has only just become available.

The box proudly announces that it is the “world’s smallest router”, which I don’t doubt that it is – it just also comes in a disproportionately large box, which seems a complete nonsense.

As you can see from the image left it really is small and portable with a usb cable that folds back into the case so, depending on how you intend to use it you might not need to carry anything else.

From the images that I had seen I … Read the rest

What a 5 Inch iPhone Would Look Like

IMG_0521There are all sorts of rumours swirling around at the moment about whether Apple is going to create a larger version of the iPhone. By which I don’t mean just a stretched version (yeah iPhone 5 I am looking at you) but a properly proportioned version.

The suggestion is that later this year Apple is going to release and iPhone with a 5 inch screen. Why that size? Because its dimensions would mean that they could do so without having to change the user interface. Which is exactly what they did for the iPad Mini only in reverse. Marco Arment … Read the rest

Google Authenticator Bug

Google AuthenticatorI am a big fan of Google’s Autheticator app which adds 2-factor authentication to a number of popular apps including Dropbox, WordPress, LastPass and, of course, Google accounts.

Since my mother-in-law’s GMail account was compromised and she wasn’t able to recover it I have considered the use of 2-factor authentication as mandatory rather than a nicety.

What this means in practice is that in order to access your account you need something that you know (the password) and something that you have (your phone). This should considerably increase your online security as if anyone does get your password they still … Read the rest

Moves for iPhone

Moves for iPhoneRecently I have been getting more interested in my personal health as I try and shed some pounds – so much so that I have even built the website The Chubby Challenge to help me and others do so.

Been a gadget lover this has inevitably led me to look at some technology to help with fitness, weight loss and well-being. Currently there are two players in this market: Nike and Fitbit. Both produce hardware that will record your activity during the day (and night with Fitbit) allowing you to see how active you have been. They both do this … Read the rest

Do Not Disturb (Ever)

IMG_5978So here’s a fun way to start the new year, with a bug courtesy of those kind people at Apple.

In iOS 6 they added this great new feature called Do Not Disturb (DND) which allows you to either manually or automatically silence your phone but still allow incoming calls from certain groups of people, those marked as your favourites for example.

It works really well, or at least it did until the turn of the year. Since yesterday Do Not Disturb is staying permanently on. You can see that on the picture left with DND supposed to go off … Read the rest

Time to re-evaluate Flickr

IMG_5826The blogsphere is all abuzz with Instagram’s proposed change of terms of service from the middle of next month which some have already dubbed “Instagram’s suicide note”. Basically the changes give Instagram (or parent Facebook) to sell your pictures of which you get no portion of that sale or any choice in the matter.

You can read a good summary of the situation over at c|net but I am already considering whether I want someone else to have such control over work that I produce and I am thinking that I don’t. I still have a Flickr account that I … Read the rest