Archive for the ‘Tech n' giggles’ category

So you think your iPad is one-of-a-kind?

September 27, 2010

If you’re one of those people who have to have those top-of-the-line, brand new technological gadgets the first day they come out, you were probably one of the 300,000+ who camped out for days awaiting the release of the new iPad. The allure of this one of a kind touch tablet was too much for you to bear.

But was it worth it? The iPad did market itself originally as a breakthrough in new, one-of-a-kind technology, hopefully one day replacing the personal computer/laptop altogether. Although at the time this might have been true, it is not true anymore. Other companies have come up with iPad-equivalent technologies, but more appealing to those loyal PC users. Here are our top 3 iPad alternatives and how they measure up to the iPad itself.

ExoPC Slate
Rumors might be true that this critically acclaimed “iPad Killer” is the next best thing. With Windows 7 Premium Home Edition and a comfortable 11+ inch screen. Add on a 32 GB memory, 8.9-inch multi-touch screen, webcam, and full browser with flash support. It also has an Ethernet port as well as a way to hook up your bluetooth. What sets this apart from the iPad? The ExoPC Slate’s keyboard is supposed to flow with ease. It is super smooth and doesn’t give you all of the problems of the iPad’s faulty keyboard. Pre-orders for the ExoPC Slate began at the beginning of September, with a competitive price to the iPad.

NotionInk’s Adam Android
Add this to your Christmas list, since that’s when they’re planning on releasing this $129, 24-hr long battery tablet. But that’s not all that’s super cool about this tablet: add to that a 10 inch transflective screen–yes, that means you can take it outside, unlike the iPad which has terrible glare. There is also a 180 degree swiveling camera and a complete content eco-system at the fraction of the cost of the iPad. What are they waiting for for the release? Well, to stabilize flash, of course (which iPad has failed to do). Tablets like Adam, which run on Windows 7, plan to be as functional as the PC in terms of an operating system. All reviews point to Adam giving the iPad a run for its money, because, as far as I can tell, they’ve done it better.

WeTab
Say “guten tag” to the German alternative to the iPad. Hey, if they’re as good at making tablets as they are at making cars, then we should all be jumping on the bandwagon to buy one.  With clever tag lines like “we’ch out and touch faith” coupled with an 11.6 inch touch screen and 1366×768 resolution, the WeTab seems to out-do the iPad in more areas than one (aside from the 6 hr battery life). There is a 1.3 mega pixel camera as well that allows for taking photos and video chatting.  You can even make an inquiry on their website about being notified first when the WePad gets released.

The verdict: Unfortunately, at the moment, nothing has been created that you can buy that is even comparable to the iPad. Nonetheless, there will be a time (very soon, in fact) that you can buy these tablets that run on Windows 7 and have all of the compatibilities of a PC. It’s quite fantastic how Apple has revolutionized the tablet world. However, time may show these other competitors picking up the slack where the iPad lacks.

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Because we love Windows errors

September 29, 2009

I installed a new webcam on my computer two weeks ago and today I got my 4th BSoD. Yes, for all the Windows users out there that would be our dear friend, the “Blue Screen of Death.”

Oh dear.

Oh dear.

I’m currently still using XP since I never made the switch to Vista (which has its ups and downs, but mostly ups) and I never had to deal with the BSoD until recently. Amazingly, my encounters with this problem have been sparing throughout my years using Windows – though I’ve heard the horror stories. Hence, you can understand my utter confusion when my system kept crashing and this pesky error kept popping up all the time, all of a sudden.

Initially I took the easy (or lazy) route and resorted to restarting my computer every time as a temporary fix. A friend mentioned that the problem probably had  something to do with my webcam installation but I was too busy (really too lazy) and didn’t take time to troubleshoot the issue. That is until I was working on a report late one night and my computer crashed. Again. And I saw the BSoD. Again.

And all I thought was: “Oh Dear. I really hope I didn’t save too long ago,”… and… “Microsoft, thou art a heartless friend.”

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Yes, Microsoft fanboys exist.

September 10, 2009

We currently live in a tech age where Microsoft is better known as “Micro$oft”, and Macbook-and-iPhone-toting fans are eager to spread the love around for their darling fruit company. Microsoft is popularly considered to be uncool and evil – the software “man” that everyone wants to stick it to. Any pro-Microsoft dissenting voices are muffled under waves of criticism.

Since the web is brimming with Apple fanboys and fangirls. It makes me wonder about the Microsoft die-hards… do they even exist?

Yes, there have been missteps by Microsoft as I’m sure everyone is well versed in. However, there must still be fans left that are highly devoted to Microsoft’s mission: Creating software that works for anyone who wants to use it. Sometimes it’s important to remember that Microsoft was key in revolutionizing the idea of personal computers and laptops, as well as making strides in the software field. Because of this, Microsoft deserves some kudos.

Here are 5 indicators that Microsoft is appreciated by the company’s fanboys across the web…

1. They campaign to release Windows 7 early: Self-described “BIG Windows fan” Kelly Poe started a movement to collect votes petitioning for Windows 7’s early release. So far 3,003 voters have supported his cause. Check out the site here and show your support.

2. They name their children after Microsoft OS: One of the members of Microsoft’s Most Valuable Professional program (a site where “Microsoft experts [can] use, evangelize, and champion the company’s technologies”), Bill Simser, blogged about how he named his daughter “Vista Avalon Simser”. In addition to being named after Microsoft’s best OS, her middle name derives from the code name for the Windows Presentation Foundation – the graphical subsystem of .Net 3.0. Apparently if Bill, the father of Vista, had a son instead, the boy’s first name would be “Dev” (for developer) and his initials would have been DOS.

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Hidden YouTube Features Revealed!

August 18, 2009

… by CH Labs that is.

I couldn’t help but test out the feature where you type the URL extension to skip in the videos. I still felt a twinge of disappointment when it didn’t work. Sigh.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Best of the Best iPhone Apps (Not.)

August 12, 2009

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Ever since the rejection of the Google Voice app for the iPhone, it seems like Apple has risen to a new level of fascist control over what content does or does not gain entry into their smart phone application club.

The Apple app approval process has been strict from the get-go – but now it seems downright impossible for some developers to get a “yes”, even if their apps are worthwhile. This certainly is the case with Google Voice. And it’s no secret now that standing in the way is Apple’s BFF status with AT&T, particularly since one of the reasons Apple cited for rejecting the Google app was based on “duplicate features.” When an app offers users unlimited SMS texting and the associated phone service provider doesn’t, well, we see how that would be a problem. Additionally, Other iPhone apps that have been previously approved are now being rejected if they use Google Voice in any way. (Wow, really?)

Creative developers and users alike are upset that business politics are interfering with mobile tech innovation.  Who can blame them? With so many restrictions, it seems difficult for a truly unique and awesome app to reach the iPhone public if their ideas aren’t 100 percent in line.

Because of Apple’s rising app standards, we looked up what ingenious, cutting-edge, never-seen-before, KICK BUTT apps made it through the cut. Here’s a sample of what came up. We’d like to add our top 3 masterpiece apps we came across. Because really, they’ve just got to be the best of the best. (Or not.)

In addition to “Hold On!” and “iBeer,” there’s:

1. iJiggles-3D-Wobble (99 cents)

Move a target onto your image and watch that area jiggle. Very useful for jello. But apparently that’s not what most people are using it for.

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Net makes smrt pplz

August 11, 2009

Like Microsoft Surface, but Better

August 7, 2009

A friend sent me this video from TED. My jaw dropped.

Does anyone remember the Microsoft Surface Table? Picture that, but on every surface imaginable – even your skin. MIT’s Fluid Interface takes seamless integration of technology/information with life to a whole new level.

Perhaps MIT Media Lab can partner with Apple (nifty gadget King) to get the ball rolling on this one.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

…Tags on people? Brilliant.