See the title. I’ve consolidated all my blog properties under one umbrella. Need your gadget fix? Then click on over to JeffCutler.com and read all the past, present and future posts and ramblings there. Thanks!
This site will soon just redirect you to JeffCutler.com to save you all the time, angst and effort of clicking.
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Posted by gershwin9 in Social Media, tags: Android, android apps, ipad, iPad apps, iPhone, iPhone apps, jobs, linkedin, social networking, social networks, Windows Phone
This post was written by Christopher Rauschnot and was originally posted to LinkedIn App Upgrades Get Real-Time Features For Smartphone & iPad Mobile Users. You can follow him on Twitter @24k & @24kMedia and the 24kMedia Facebook Page.
LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional social network with more than 175,000,000 members in over 200 countries, recently updated their Android and combo iPhone plus iPad apps, to entice mobile users for more engagement. Their website will be rolling out similar features to its users over the next few weeks.
Real-time is a must in today’s business environment and so is communications on social networks like Facebook. That is why LinkedIn released these app updates, with features such as a new notification system. The system alerts users when people accept your invitations to connect, likes or shares content from your stream, views your profile and more.
Company pages on the LinkedIn apps have also undergone a revamp to display current job openings, members that you are connected to and see official news.
Growth for social networks is coming from new users outside of the United States. The iPad app has been updated with new features along with languages, Spanish, German, French, Italian, Brazilian, Korean and Portuguese to keep pace. But they are not done yet, more languages and the ability to edit profiles from these mobile apps are coming soon.
As I had hinted at earlier, the website is integrating real-time features and notifications as well. A small flag and an envelope icon will be presented at the top of the screen. In addition, a red circle will pop up when comments, inMail, likes are received or when connections are established.
LinkedIn has taken huge steps forward by upgrading their mobile apps, revamping their website, while simultaneously paying attention to international growth. As more of their 175 million members on the service go mobile with their smartphones and iPads, finding a job or connecting with those who can help will now occur in real-time.
LinkedIn Slideshare presentation to see new features of the mobile apps.
Download the latest LinkedIn mobile apps for iPhone iPad, Android and Windows Phone.
LinkedIn Website Image Credit – The Nick Page | Flickr
[via Mashable, TNW]
Connect With Chris Rauschnot On LinkedIn.
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Phone protection these days is of paramount importance. We have so much data on our mobile devices that losing or damaging a phone could result in lost hours recompiling information on contacts, conversations and content.
Further, the ubiquitous nature of these mobile devices often necessitates additional power so we can stay in touch all the time. And there’s the rub.
Do we try and protect our phone against all hazards or do we take a more balanced approach and choose lesser protection with the benefit of battery back-up?
For me, I’ve been a protection-first kind of guy. Every time OtterBox comes out with a new mega iPhone case, I’m first in line to get a review sample and put it through its paces. I’ve had their Defender Series cases since I owned the iPhone 3 and hardly looked back…until now. And the reason isn’t because the case is bad, it’s because it’s a bit more bulky than I need and because I’m starting to think about efficiency and power.
So, here’s what I’ve done…
I threw out my two-year-old Defender Case
I bought a $6 case at a thrift store (savings of $40+ over the OtterBox Defender)
I requested that the kind folks at OnTrion send me their latest iBatteryCase
I put all three through their paces
1 – The OtterBox is a proven entity. You can toss it across a tile bathroom floor and not worry about scratching, cracking or otherwise injuring your iPhone. It’s bombproof. In some instances the inside plastic case will crack (mine did after about 14 months) and the rubber/silicone flap at the bottom will tear off if you’re constantly charging, syncing and using the bottom port. But overall, the Defender served me well and I’d get another…with a caveat or two. I’d like a slightly better design (and word has it that OtterBox has something up its sleeve for this year’s CES show in Las Vegas). And I’d love an OtterBox with a battery. It’s already bulky enough that it seems like it’s a battery case, why not put one in it?
2 – Thrift-store model. Seriously, $6 for a solid iPhone case is a steal. I got this case in a discount rack at a Wegman’s Supermarket in Dewitt, NY. They had a bunch of cases that were affordable and protective, but most were just silicone sleeves. This case – no brand name – is harder plastic and has a flexible clip integrated into the case so you can hold $$, credit cards, IDs or just clip it to your pocket. For the first time in my iPhone-owning days, I’ve been carrying my iPhone in my front pants pocket. No way I could do that with the bulky Defender case. Only drawback is that the case would likely NOT protect against the flinging across tile floors or dropping from any significant height. Otherwise, it’s $6 well-spent.
*One thing to note, so many iPhone repair shops are popping up that the cost to replace the front glass has dropped dramatically. Now, it’s about $30-$50 to replace a shattered iPhone display. That’s less than the cost of a Defender case. If you’re careful with your stuff, you’ve saved some $$ to spend on other accessories.
3 – OnTrion iBatteryCase. This thing arrived at the house the other day, so I haven’t figured out how well the battery responds to multiple charges and discharges yet, but at first blush it works great. It charges up quickly and adds about five hours to my iPhone use time. In effect, the iBatteryCase is like doubling the iPhone’s battery capacity in a slim-design case. The indicators on the back let you know what you have left for charge, and you can use it just to charge up your depleted phone, as a case/charger or a mix of the two. There’s an on-off switch so you can control whether you’re using the iPhone battery or the iBatteryCase to run your phone.
Drawbacks on this…a couple. It’s not a full case. As you can see from the second photo, it is more like a sleeve that leaves the top and front exposed. This is a much better design than the Mophie Juice Pack (which breaks your nails off every time you try to remove it). But it does leave your iPhone a bit more exposed to the world than a full, wrap-around case. My biggest fear is the the top 1/4 of the iPhone is really exposed and I don’t know if I can be careful enough all the time.
If you’re working construction or going mountain biking, get the OtterBox Defender.
If you’re just living your life and don’t like to go ‘naked’ or the Mike Langford minimalist route with just a bumper on your iPhone, go get a thrift-store case and save up to replace the front glass if you ever play fast and loose with your iPhone. *MANY iPhones get shattered at events like SXSW and NMX.
And if you’re looking for a power-back-up solution that’s affordable and won’t hold your phone hostage like the Mophie, then go with the iBatteryCase from OnTrion for $40.
What’s your experience been with iPhone cases and repairs – if you’ve been unfortunate enough to need them?
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As you’ll hear from a lot of people – especially if you’re high-strung – you would be better served if you had a way to relax and calm your entire body. The stress you’re putting your body and mind through by getting all worked up isn’t something healthy.
As true as that is, most of us don’t have the time or money to go get the requisite treatment. My preferred regimen is a full-body massage and a few days off from work. That doesn’t work for everyone, and in many cases people only have small blocks of time in which to get themselves back on track. Enter the emWave2 by HeartMath.
This little device, and it is little – about the size of a chopped down iPhone or maybe a pack of Pall Malls. OK, I was going for the unhealthy joke there, but the unit is small enough to fit in nearly any pocket and it charges and runs via USB. So the emWave2 can be taken with you anywhere to help you get a handle on your overall mind, body and emotions. The really cool thing is that you can use the device remotely and then download data for review and comparison when you get home. This gives you a real understanding of how well you’re doing over time.
In fact, the literature in the box talks about how the emWave2 can transform the physiological response you have to stressful situations. By giving you the power to control your physical reactions to situations, this little device is said to help you be more creative, productive, happy and healthy. What did I find? A mixed bag.
I’m not a fitness nut, but I am a strong believer in the power of the mind and the connection your mind has to your body. This gadget is right up my alley because it tests a lot of the things I already understood to be true – like if you can remain calm in thoughts, your body and pulse will remain calm. If you can be ‘centered’ (define that however you’d like), then you can be healthier and more balanced overall. But all of these things are difficult to do. That’s why so few people have really good emotional and physical balance and that’s why we might need a device like the emWave2 to help us.
In a nutshell, the emWave2 connects to your computer and a little clip goes on your earlobe. The device tracks your pulse and gives you feedback to help you control your pulse with just calm thoughts and concentration. I found that I was able to slow my pulse down and feel more relaxed after a few sessions with the emWave2. I also found that if I didn’t maintain calming thoughts after I was done with my session, then my emotions and pulse jumped back up.
As with any healthcare-type technology, I think a longer-term test would reveal even more beneficial data. Just like doing an exercise program for two days isn’t going to turn you into Charles Atlas, using the emWave2 for two weeks isn’t going to calm you dramatically. I could definitely see that after a few sessions, though, it was easier to find my ‘happy’ place and get myself calm. I also liked that it was easy to use, charged right from the USB cable, and the instructions were straightforward and clear.
At just over $200, the emWave2 is worthwhile if you are looking for a good way to take control of your wellness and find a way to be calmer. I like the methods they use and I found it starting to work when I had to send my review unit back. Even then, I didn’t get overly agitated, so it must have done some good.
Here are a few quotes from some other users – yes, provided by HeartMath, so take with a grain of salt. But they also did an informative Webinar on the product where you can learn more and really see if it is for you. That’s at the HeartMath Website.
“In these highly stressful times, I find the emWave as my reconnection to reality! Racing through airports, coping with the daily barrage of phone calls and emails, and dealing with short-tempered people, it’s easy for me to lose control of my emotions, forget what’s important and suffer the physical side-effects of unending stress. But with my emWave I can now instantaneously monitor my level of stress and regain control of my inner self. It not only helps me calm down, but it vastly improves my performance. And what’s best is that it’s a cool little gadget that’s easy to use and fits right in my pocket. I recommend the emWave for anyone who wants to reduce stress and take charge of their emotional well-being.”
–Charles B. Inlander, President, People’s Medical Society
“Using the emWave has enabled me to recognize the effects of stress on my body at any given time, which then allows me to use the HeartMath techniques to immediately help relieve this stress position. My tournament performances in Germany and Holland were helped by the use of HeartMath.emWave can recognize stress levels not otherwise detectable.”
–Ian Woosnam, 2006 European Ryder Cup Captain and 1991 Masters winner
Have you used devices like this for your wellbeing? What did you think? Would love to hear from you in the comments.
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I came from film. Not literally, as I’m a 3-D human made up of cells and organs. But figuratively and professionally, my imaging career began with film. This meant, as most pro photogs can attest, I was trained not to waste film or create headaches for myself in post processing. I was further trained to try and compose as much of a shot in the camera as humanly or technologically possible.
Then came Photoshop and myriad other photo-manipulation software products and my training went out the window. But I still believed in – and carried with me – a slew of screw-on filters for my lenses. I thought, “the software is good, but would I rather spend two seconds screwing on a filter or 20 minutes working on a shot on the computer?”
Now THAT thought too is obsolete. I’ve found with Tiffen’s Dfx 3.0 standalone product, I can spend a few seconds (or minutes) ‘filtering’ a shot and end up with some really cool effects that are as good as if I’d put glass in front of my glass. This also means that I can carry fewer accessories and still not waste a ton of time in post processing on my laptop.
Let’s look at some real-world examples…originals first and then Tiffen adjusted. These took a grand total of FOUR minutes to adjust…SERIOUSLY!
*One note – I originally used the Supermoon and other winter shots to illustrate this software. As I’m FINALLY pushing this review live in August, I have redone (quickly, mind you) some shots to show the same features and offer a more calendar-appropriate image. Therefore, you will get whales instead of wintery moons.
Here are a few screenshots of the interface screens in Dfx 3.0. They’re easy to understand (if you know photos and colors) and they work quickly. Like I said earlier, these four photo adjustments took me a grand total of four minutes to do from start to finish.
Pictures are worth many words and you can see what I was able to do in a short period of time. What’s my take on the product?
I like it. The interface is easy to use and it’s FAST. The main reason I would choose this over Photoshop is because it’s one-click simple and you’re done. No need to waste time and energy fine-tuning stuff…but the Tiffen Dfx 3.0 lets you do that too if you’re so inclined.
Ultimately, for under $200 for the plug-in that works with CS3, or around $100 for the standalone, get it. You spend more buying one quality skylight filter for a 72 or 86mm lens. And you’ll spend much more on physical filters to get anywhere near the functionality you find here.
What’s your take on the product? What else have you used? How much photography do you do?
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Posted by gershwin9 in Social Media, Software, tags: Android, iOS, ipad, iPhone, pin, pinners, pinning, pins, Pinterest, repinning, social media, social network
his post was written by Christopher Rauschnot and was originally posted to Pin This. Pinterest Releases Android and iPad Apps
. You can follow him on Twitter @24k
or his 24kMedia Facebook Page.
Social networking site Pinterest, is on a roll with app releases. Their first-ever Android app, at 1.0.2, along with a newer iOS app, Version 2.0.1, now support the iPad. Pinterest’s blog says, “…the app works well on Android phones and tablets, regardless of your device’s cost, speed or screen size.”
The new Android and upgraded iOS apps come days after the service went invite free. Formerly, people that wanted to sign up for it needed an invite from a friend or wait for the site to send them one. However, not all of the app interface changes have been positive for a subset of pinners, as they are called.
The new iOS app changes the interface to two columns on the iPhone, instead of one before the update. Unfortunately, the app is not receiving good reviews on the iTunes app store with one and a half stars at 1,108 ratings (at time of post creation). This may be a temporary low rating, as all versions have four and a half stars at 378,283 ratings. So far, I have experienced fewer crashes on the iOS app and it has increased my ability to repin compelling content faster, via the multi-column view.
Multiple columns, even on a smartphone, allowed me to see up to four pins on a single iPhone screen. Of note, the original iPad is compatible with category browsing, following users and pin boards plus repinning.
Both the Android and iOS apps look and operate similarly. Creating new pins, known as pinning, is easy. Tap the camera icon on the bottom of the screen to take a photo or import one from the camera roll. However, the Android app has its buttons located at the top. Pull the feed down slightly to find the camera icon to create a pin or to refresh the feed. The original iPad is compatible with the iOS app, even though creating pins is not possible in their latest version. The stackable pane interface for category browsing and search is similar to that found on the official Twitter app for the iPad and is easy to operate. Swipe left to right and the categories appear. Swipe right to left and the pane disappears.
Updates and changes like these will be good for Pinterest. I have been using the service and sharing more with people after the app releases. With a few speed tweaks on the iPad app, they will have even more of a reason for users to repin compelling content. All of the changes, upgrades and app releases go towards their goal of inspiring people to do things that they love.
Want to see some delicious food photos, learn some new recipes or checkout over 350 infographics, along with some other fun pins? Follow 24kMedia on Pinterest.
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In the grand scheme of things, if you need to remain connected or use your devices regularly, you’re going to need a solution that allows you to work these devices when it’s cold out.
Yes, right now it’s about 81 degrees AND we had an abnormally warm Winter. But when the snow flies again in the fall and the consumer goods divisions of every company under the sun (too much climate talk here??) focus on touch functionality, everyone will need to keep their fingers warm while still enabling the use of tablets, iPhones, touch-pad computers and even smart TVs if you keep your house cold.
To that end, the folks at the Joy Factory sent me a few pairs of gloves that just plain worked for my touch devices. In fact, I’ve tried a few types of gloves in the past that hadn’t been able to activate the screens on my devices because of additional protective layers we all put on our phones and tablets. The eGloves didn’t have that issue.
Seriously, who do you know who hasn’t put some sort of secondary film or case or BOTH on their iPhone, HTC Incredible or other device to keep shrapnel and other detritus from damaging the screen? Right! Nobody! But the eGloves were able to activate my apps, open my screens, slide stuff across and even allow me to play Angry Birds with easy.
The material isn’t scratchy wool either, so I didn’t get all itchy when trying to use these gloves. According to the literature (yes, there’s literature that comes with these), The Joy Factory says “carefully knitted with the finest fabric to keep your hands warm and comfortable.” And they are.
That’s it. They work. If you use your devices in the cold, they’re worth the $25 they cost.
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The folks who create Road Mice tell you to cruise the Web in Style. Well, it’s actually as easy as they say.
While I’m a regular reviewer for the folks over at Automotive Rhythms, I also poke around quite a bit at technology devices. This collectible, wireless mouse was as easy as pushing the start button on a new Hyundai. I just ripped open the box, plugged in the miniature USB connector and put the batteries into the unit.
Lo and behold, the lights lit up, the mouse wheel and buttons were functional and the car allowed me to abandon my trackpad for a cool little Lamborghini. Fun stuff.
Sadly, the car isn’t as full-size or functional as its Italian brethren, but I loved it. Here are a few shots of the car/mouse in action.
To find out more, go to Road Mice.com and select the model(s) you want to use to get your computer on the fast track to productivity. For the Reventón, they charge $50. But when compared to the cost of the original at about $2Million, it’s a pretty good deal. The other cars at Road Mice include cop cars and other cool vehicles.
Do you need a car to power your mouse? I’m not sure it’s necessary. But it’s a fun little desk item for folks who spend long hours in front of a computer. And it’s a little bit of style for anyone who might not have an extra couple million hanging around.
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This year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas wasn’t as fruitful for me as in past years because I didn’t make the trip west. But, thanks to the kind folks in media relations and PR at a number of technology product companies, I’ve been able to share with readers my reviews of a variety of products.
Today, let’s take a look at the fūl Powerbag. This backpack lets you charge your gadgets, has padding to protect your laptop and other accessories, and has plenty of room and ergonomic features that make it useful when covering conventions, festivals and conferences. To that end, I’m putting the Powerbag through its paces prior to SXSW in Austin, TX.
First, SXSW is a crazy festival that requires a lot of walking…but it also requires that you have content-creation tools with you at all times. Here’s what I plan to put into the Powerbag…
Canon T3i DSLR
LED video light
Zoom H2 recorder
Assorted cables and connectors
MiFi Hotspot from Verizon
USB flash drive
Well, that last item is overkill and only necessary for the All-Hat event on March 11. But the rest of it is what I need to carry with me to create photos, write blog posts, tweet, film video and otherwise stay connected during the week I’m in Austin. So, in a preliminary evaluation, how does the bag measure up?
It’s pretty good. While it’s a little bigger than I’d prefer to carry during the festival, the padding on the back and the straps is cushy and comfortable. Inside, you find a number of different sleeves and pockets – one for a tablet, one hidden one for a laptop, and a lot of little sections for pens, cards, USB drives and other stuff like cables.
When I loaded the bag completely – even putting my camera bag AND my existing laptop bag inside the Powerbag – I still had room to fit more stuff and it didn’t seem too heavy on my back. That brings me back to the true use of this bag and what it’s great for and where it falls short. Here’s the skinny…
1 – The bag is really too big to lug around SXSW or similar event. While it carries a lot of stuff, that’s not what you need when you’re trekking around Austin, TX for five or more days.
2 – The bag is perfect if you are using it as a day-bag on a car trip or other venture where you have transportation. While it’s not great for walking about if you have it fully loaded, it is fantastic for keeping all your gear right at hand.
3 – It is POWERFUL. And by that, I mean it powers your stuff. The bag’s best feature is that it has a micro USB, mini USB and iPhone/iPod-specific adapter cables built right in. It also comes with a 3000mAh battery (upgradable to 6000mAh) that will charge your phone twice on a full charge. The other adapters will charge a tablet or any device that fits their connectors – or you can bring your own USB cable which fits a port inside the bag near the battery. This is what the bag is all about and that’s where it shines.
4 – Style. It’s actually pretty good looking. Take a gander at the gallery on the site or poke around at the other models.
My final take…
If you have $140 for a sturdy, versatile bag that supplies you with power, get this. Don’t buy it if you’re looking to travel light. But it’s actually pretty comfy on your back when it’s loaded. Just make sure you have some transport and maybe some comfortable shoes.
I welcome your thoughts on this bag if you’ve seen it or tried it.
BONUS – I’ll be giving this bag away during SXSW 2012. First person who finds me in Austin on Monday, March 12 and says the words “Give me the Power”, will be the proud new owner of this practically new fūl Powerbag. That’s what you get for reading all the way to the bottom. Congrats.
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This is a guest post by Clair Wyant
Editor’s note – Clair provided links to all his photos, you’re better served seeing all his great shots of CES over HERE ON FLICKR
There is nothing like the Consumer Electronics Show, the annual event that brought 153,000 attendees to multiple convention halls in Las Vegas. Exhibits sizes range from the size of your closet to twice as big as your house.
Anyone with slightest interest in technology lists this show as a must attend at least once. How long that will last with Microsoft leaving remains to be seen. Many people go every year, but there is always the crowd who are first timers. This year, I was one of them.
There was not one area I was attracted to as I flew into Vegas, but I was interested on seeing the TVs, tablets and cell phones.
As a social media advocate, with a past in traditional media, and current blogger with a new media interest, I wanted to see the continuation of these areas are merging.
I walked away impressed with the internet connected TVs, where viewing online content, and social media is getting more integrated, interactive and seamless, as they were heavily shown, along with 3D TVs, as presented by LG at the entrance, for example.
Random CES observations:
• Every cell phone and computer company had a tablet (usually run on Android OS), most with the ability to watch live broadcast TV. Most cable, satellite providers and few individual cable stations already offer this (like ESPN, CNN).
• Cell phones are cell phones, only with faster processors and brighter screens.
• There were a million makers of “iCovers/Cases.” They all look the same (exactly the same). Saw one, you saw everyone that exists.
• A TV with an XBOX Kinect like device to digitally see what you look with various cloths
• There was also a really cool robot
If you have an interest on going, here are 6 tips from rookies:
• If you think there is a slight chance you will attend next year, sign up in the summer (it’s free then!). It’s $200 week before the show. Goes without saying to check with your hotel, and airline on cancelation information when booking reservations (Southwest Airlines endorsement here!). Stay on the strip as they have free shuttles to and from the convention to avoid $20 one-way cab fares.
• CES advised to wear comfortable shoes. I agree, but advise to wear sneakers if they are your comfortable shoes. There are so many people attending, no one will notice your shoes if they tried. It is business casual, but you will be walking in a crowd, not sitting in a semi-empty cubical office.
• Go to the registration booth day before the show (or day before your first day). Your badge is mailed to you if you register ahead of time, but will have to pick up your badge holder. There is a booth right at the airport baggage claim area! Lot less hassle on your first show day.
• Plan out what you might want to see, and go to the area most of the companies are located. You will save time by seeing a cluster of them in one area then hoping from hall to hall all day. Face it, as you explore, you will see interesting exhibits, and may discover other technologies you want to learn more about, depending on what is being shown (like internet connected TVs for me this year). Factor that in.
• Go to the convention hall as soon as it opens, and go right to the major companies. They have large exhibits, but everyone goes to those. See the smaller ones at peak attendance mid-day. Do not waste your time sleeping in or early morning gambling. There is of time in the evening and night for that.
• Just accept the reality you will not see everything, not to say anything about all you want to see. Time management is one thing, but your legs, and feet are another.
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