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iPhone OS 4 (aka iOS 4) June 21, 2010

Posted by Matsu in Apple, Information Technology, Software, Technology.
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Well, I did it. I drank the Apple Cool Aid. Today Apple released their new iPhone (and iPod Touch) software known as iOS 4. It took about 40 minutes to download and another 25 minutes to install. So, just about an hour for the entire process.

How did it turn out? Better than I expected. It installed without a problem and I’m writing this blog post from my iPhone using the updated WordPress app. So, it passed the most — a successful installation.

Now that I’m running iPhone 4 software do I see any difference? Well, I am using a 32Gb iPhone 3Gs, so it’s relatively new. And, it doesn’t seem any faster (or slower) than the version 3 iPhone operating system. So, no penalty or benefit, in terms of speed, as far as I can tell. Hopefully, it will not drain the battery any faster. In fact, it would be nice if the battery lasted a little longer.

As for the new features like the ability to create folders and the new multi-tasking (background) processing, they are okay. I’ve been able to significantly reduce the number of screens for my apps, which is nice since now it’s better organized (I’ve downloaded and installed way too many apps). And, the ability to quickly jump between apps (by double-tapping the home button) works well enough. It will make it easier to look up something when I’m in the middle of writing an e-mail, but I could do that before and it always returned to the same place where I left the half-written e-mail, so it’s not a huge difference to me.

What is of great value is the ability to run streaming radio apps or other audio apps and be able to continue hearing the audio (and not having it cut off) when switching to read e-mail (or post to WordPress). That’s actually a great feature, especially when it comes to using apps like Pandora or Skype. In fact, for me that is the main reason to upgrade to iOS 4.

Well, those are my first impressions. If you have an iPhone 3G or iPhone 3Gs or iPod Touch, you should definitely upgrade. You’ll be glad you did.

Now, I’m off to upgrade my iPod Touch then my iPad. Can’t wait to see if performance improves on the iPad. I’ll post a review if there here once I get some experience. (Hey, I just used the new spell-checker built into iOS 4).

Practice Poll – Tell me your favorite season December 5, 2008

Posted by Matsu in Information Technology, Open Source, Software, Technology, Web, Weblog, WordPress.
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WordPress acquired a simple web polling product called Poll Daddy (sound familiar? GoDaddy?) and released it on WordPress.com for all of their bloggers to try out. So, I’m trying it out.

This is one of the pre-designed polling templates they provided:

What do you think of the polling software? Impressed? Not so impressed? And, what do you think the distribution for the answers will be? Evenly distributed (25% for each season)? Or, do you think that winter will get frozen out and people won’t choose it as much as they will summer, spring, and fall?

I guess we will see over time, as visitors answer the poll. If you haven’t, please give it a try so I can have some real data to work with.

Google delays new SMS feature for Gmail November 1, 2008

Posted by Matsu in Information Technology, Software, Web.
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You may already be aware that the Google used to have a send to SMS text message (send to cell phone) but it has been retired. On Friday, Oct. 31, 2008, Google released a new SMS texting feature for Gmail. Only, it proved to be too buggy and too unstable, so they pulled it back from the public and posted this announcement:

Oh snap. Last night, we started rolling out a new feature to Gmail Labs that lets you send SMS text messages right from Gmail. It combines the best parts of IM and texting: you chat from your computer and reach your friends no matter where they are. Your friends who are away from their computers get your messages as texts and can peck out replies on their little keyboards. It was pretty cool for a few minutes last night when we were sitting around texting each other.

Then we found a glitch. When you’d try to turn it on, it wouldn’t fully enable. We thought about keeping it out there — bugs and all — but the experience wasn’t that great. So, in the spirit of Labs, we’ve pulled SMS chat back to fix it, and we’ll get it back out to you as soon as it’s ready — probably within 2 weeks, so stay tuned.

Gmail SMS screen

I guess the good news is there will be a way to send SMS messages through Gmail. The bad news is we will have to wait a little longer for the software to get debugged. Hopefully, it will only be a couple of weeks. In the mean time, if you want to read how the feature works, this article provides a good overview of the new service and includes screen-shots.

What’s Next for Google? March 21, 2008

Posted by Matsu in Business, Information Technology, Microsoft, Software, Technology, Web, Windows/Microsoft.
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Today I was catching up on some reading and came across this post by Robert Scoble. He said:

Several people have told me about an off line version of Gmail, coming soon. Other people say that Google, or a company working with Google, is going to come out with a new server that will let corporations replace their Exchange servers with ones made by Google.

Now, wouldn’t it be interesting if Google did in fact come out with an e-mail client to rival Microsoft’s Outlook or Outlook Express? And, to take that one step further, what would happen if Google did release a server that could replace Exchange servers allowing all existing Outlook and Entourage users to just continue using the same client software with the new server without ever knowing the difference? Obviously, that’s not something Microsoft wants to see, but it may  be coming.

The world of technology is always interesting and ever changing.

NCAA Website Overwhelmed March 16, 2008

Posted by Matsu in Software, Web.
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NCAA busy server

I didn’t catch the whole NCAA tournament team selection announcement so I visited the NCAA website. Boy, was that a mistake. Apparently I am not the only person in to think of checking the team selection and brackets online. Maybe in an hour or two it will be able to handle the traffic.

I can’t help but wonder if the web server administrators and web programmers plan ahead for the flood of traffic or if they just figure that since it only happens once or twice a year they will just let the server crash and recover from it as well as they can.

Does anyone know what kind of web architecture NCAA uses to host their website? (Moose?) — According to the Firefox plug-in, Server Spy, the NCAA website is using Microsoft’s IIS software. That explains a lot.

Note: After giving up on the NCAA website I went searching for the NCAA Mens basketball brackets and came across the CBS printable bracket chart. That gave me what I needed.

Apple Bento: The new personal database for Macs February 10, 2008

Posted by Matsu in Apple, Information Technology, Japan, Mac, Microsoft, Software, Technology, Windows/Microsoft.
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Japanese bentoYup, Apple is finally shipping a database for the rest of us. Yesterday they released a new product called Bento by FileMaker.

As you may know, FileMaker is an Apple company that provides database software designed for small to medium sized businesses. Now, they are selling a new $50 database product for individuals who want to track collections of things or just plan a party.

This product fills a whole in Microsoft’s offering as Office for Mac doesn’t include database software. Now, Mac users have a database program that will fill that need. I wonder how well it integrates with Microsoft Word or Excel.

By the way, did you know that “bento” means “lunch box” in Japanese? It does.

I haven’t installed the demo yet, but I will do it this week and let you know what I what I find out about integration with Microsoft’s office software.