What We Know, What We Don’t Know, and What We Don’t Know We Don’t Know

"I never think of the future. It comes soon enough." – Albert Einstein

30 November 2013
Loren W
Melbourne, Oz

Technorati Tags: Apple, Prime Sense, Kinect, Microsoft, iPhone,

skynet

What We Know

Interesting Apple Patents – It is known companies including Apple will often introduce hundred that have little no intention of ever being developed, partly to hide the patents they do intend to release. Apple was granted over 220 patents in November 2013, alone.

clip_image003[4]If we simply look at some of the patents Apple has received in the last 4 years, especially recently how they relate to what PrimeSense is already doing themselves or with partners, then some interesting elements appear.

Who Are PrimeSense? – Founded in 2005 by Israeli’s Alexander Shpunt and Aviad Maizels. Both were in Military R&D with Aviad serving as head of a technical R&D section in the Israeli Ministry of Defense.

Previous Apple Patents –In 2010 2 months before Microsoft announced the Kinect, Apple applied for a patent to track information from its users. There was a minor kafuffle over this at the time, in early September 2010, based on personal spying concerns including form the EFF. This technology could;

· View a user’s face & take pictures with no noise. · Record the user’s voice, whether or not a phone call is even being made,’· Determine the users’ heartbeat, take a photograph of the surrounding area, and determine where it is being used. · Bottom Line The patent looks who you are, where you are, and what you are doing and saying and even how fast your heart is beating.

clip_image004[4]October 2012 Patents – Showed us finger print scanning that was released but also Polymer dispersed liquid crystal window, uses technology to hide the camera, and fingerprint lenses on the phone.
May 2013 – Patent offers a technique where a sensor for an iPad or iPhone recognizes movement away from the screen not just touch in a pull gesture (aka Kinect like).
November 2013 – Patent 8,593,534- Offers a mode of taking photographs only when the subject is in proper view, addressing the subject and background images. rove of facial recognition. Patent 8,593,423/5/ – tracking not just touch but hand recognition technique (note: a partner of PrimeSense has also brought that technology to market themselves 3GearSystems. Patent 8,593,426 looks to image identification by differentiating or matching colors in multiple images

My Favorite Patent (application) wording – 20130265378 The method terminates the transmission of images captured by the first camera and transmits images captured by the second camera of the first mobile device to the second device during the video conference.”

As clear as that might be it made by head explode

clip_image005[4]Relevant PrimeSense Timeline

CES 2011 – 2 months after launch of Microsoft Kinect, Multiple companies show off new products and partnership with PrimeSense, the highlight is picked up by many as the potential of using sensors in smartphones. In 2012 – PrimeSense announced the launch of their new Capri 3D sensor their smallest yet (x10 smaller), and due to be launched for OEMs in mid-2013, able to fit into a phone or other small device (e.g. TVs, Watch etc.), offering short and long range detection/ viewing.
Early 2013 – PrimeSense Releases World of Sensing Marketing Video, showing off different technology uses including TV, and PC image sensing
Mid 2013 – PrimeSense releases 3d Sensor SDK, makes it available to developers. Late 2013 – Apple buys PrimeSense
Note: In the recent pre-Apple purchase marketing Video PrimeSense released a PR video showing some potential uses for their tech nology. These included;

· Eye-tracking tech – already in other vendor’s phones. Adjust volume as you move them away from your ear. Face recognition – obvious choice with the tech form the Kinect and all. 3D Mobile – is possible now as the HTC phones have shown us, how that can be used to be more usable is still to be seen

What We Don’t Know, We Don’t Know.

· It is interesting none the less, that many of the patents Apple has obtained or requested are now very similar to product elements that PrimeSense and their partners have already released or has been tried unsuccessfully by others.

clip_image007[4]· We know Apple released their Touch · ID system recently for the iPhone 5S, it improved on the biometric finger reading technology that had been in the marketplace already for some time but not working very well until now.

· Similarly, the Android Galaxy Nexus released in 2011 offered facial recognition that many to this day cannot use as the product is not great.

· Even the Kinect itself from Microsoft and PrimeSense was greatly flawed needing a huge amount of room to work well.

· Technology and software has evolved as has the marketplace, with sensors now small enough for phones, or watches. Much of the technology will be less of surprise when released but welcome as the evolution it is rather than a revolution in technology.

References:
http://blog.freedomsite.orghttps://twitter.com/juliepsamuels , http://www.macworld.co.uk, http://twitter.com/AshleighAllsopp, twitter.com/threegear, http://www.latestpatents.com, http://www.patentlyapple.com


Xbox One At Least Temporarily Kills Cord Cutting Technology

29 November 2013 
loren w
Melbourne Oz

In case you didn’t know Australia is a big place. It is the size of the USA but with the population of Cameroon. Most of the population are in a handful of cities as a result of the area covered the majority of TV is via satellite instead of cable With Foxtel the largest of the satellite TV providers only servicing the largest cities a different company Austar served the rural ones but with substandard customer service and substandard user interface.

So as not to lose to the competition that they could not serve, Foxtel started providing TV shows over the Internet via the Xbox 360 4 years ago 4 is little as 5 dollars a channel with no minimum. They called the service Foxtel play catchy huh? This meant at the time you could buy any station you wanted and only the stations you wanted. Foxtel has not
long ago purchased the competition and as a result has only just now increased the minimum purchase required to buy stations in packs at 25 dollars each via the Internet alone. However the selection of stations is still huge the selection enormous and ability to spend very little with no cable is a blessing as long as you have an Xbox 360.

Unfortunately with the release of the Xbox One Foxtel over Internet service is not available and has not confirmed if it ever will be. This is a real shame as Foxtel was ahead of the curve on the service of offering all stations over the Internet alone. Currently Foxtel says the technology is very different but they are in negotiation with Microsoft

 


 


Good Design Makes a Useful Accessory

Loren W
23 November 2013
Melbourne Australia


Firstly, I have to admit upfront I have always HATED phone power packs. Strong words I know but they are usually cumbersome to use, don’t work, get in the way, too heavy, offer little value the list goes on.

However, if you have a phone, that allows you to take advantage of a bit of good design tech on the phone itself, then a smart design for a battery pack is possible and in this ‘case’ is really good (no pun intended)


I am referring to the 4500mAh Power Jacket for the Sony Xperia Ultra distributed by MobileZap in Australia. The cool bit it of tech I am referring to on the phone is the magnetic connector for power charging or docking. This means the power jacket that also protects the phone very discreetly uses the magnetic charging port to charge the phone.

Specifications
The extra battery is a whopping 4500 mAH, meaning it is about 50% bigger than the huge battery on the phone already. This means it extends standby talk time from 34 days to a crazy 85 days, talk time from 16 to 40 hours and music playing from 120 hours to almost 300 hours that is over 12 days. This will of course vary with real world usage.

There are a couple of other side benefits as well. The case does not cover the micro USB port on the phone as it charges to the magnetic dock as mentioned. This means you can charge the phone at the same time you are charging the power case (especially handy in the car with a 2 port USB adapter) . It also has really functional blue led lights on the back so you know when it is charging, or discharging. Finally there is a little kick stand on the back of the case that is useful as well.

PROS

  • Good Design – (no wires, does not cover any ports, easy to put on and remove)
  • Good Value (4500mAH battery for $56.49)
  • Discreet Useful Case – Some would buy it just for being s case with a stand
  • Not too heavy –
  • Powerful – adds 150% battery use- Great for the traveler

More more information visit the MobileZap website here , their facebook page here or say hello on their new twitter page here


11 October 2013
Melbourne, Australia
Loren W

When cooking BBQ, Stews, Sauces, Dips, etc., liquid smoke is an important ingredient adding a smokiness that is amazing. Hard to find here in Australia, but not impossible. It is actually easy to make as well. If you do find it, Colgin is the best brand and has been made in Texas since 1945. Otherwise, here is an easy way to do it yourself but believe me is not as good as colgin.

bbq

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1. Fill your grill with the wood chips of your choice, Note: the type of wood you use will make a big difference in the taste you get. Do not mix the type of wood you use if you plan to do this again as the mix of woods can often not be duplicated. I prefer Mesquite, then Hickory.  It is always best to soak your wood chips for 30 minutes before you cook so they cook more slowly and will no incinerate (leaving you more wood taste for your liquid smoke). Cook your food as you would Note: Do not use any starter fluid or starter chips coated in starter fluid. If the chips have starter fluid on them, they cannot be used when making liquid smoke, because the chemicals from the starter would become part of the end result and would not be safe to eat. After you have cooked.

2. Go through the grill to collect roughly 1 pound of wood chips that did not completely burn up. Sift through it, and try to avoid getting ash mixed in, as it is hard to filter out later and taints the taste.

3. Fill a pillowcase with the wood chips. Note: Use a pillowcase that you do not want to use again because once this process is complete, you will not be able to use it. Rinse the clean pillow case out.

4. Bring a pot of water to a boil. You will need enough water to completely cover the chips.

5. Place the pillowcase of chips in the boiling water, and allow it to boil for at least 30 to 45 minutes. When the water reaches a dark reddish-brown color, you can stop boiling the chips and pillowcase because you’ve obtained sufficient material from the chips. Note: If possible, boil the water outside. You may want to do this step outside because the smell may become overwhelming inside.

6. Let the pot of boiling water stand until everything has cooled down enough to allow you to touch it.

7. Take the pillowcase and chips out of the water. Drain the water out of the pillowcase, and throw away the wood chips.

8. Bring the reddish-brown liquid back to boil until it has reduced down to 1/3 to 1/4 of the original amount. This will concentrate the smoked flavor.

9. Let the liquid cool down, filter through a tea strainer or old type coffee filter and taste.

10. If it tastes bitter, add a small amount of honey or other sweetener to cut down the bitterness.

11. Put it in the bottle of your choice.

Google Officially Releases Android 4.4

Posted: November 10, 2013 in Misc Tech

The Hunt for Defragmentationism Begins

10 November 2013
Melbourne, Oz
Loren W

First I have to say I was disappointed when Google surprisingly changed the name of their new Android 4.4 operating system at the last minute from ‘Key Lime Pie’ to ‘Kit Kat’. For those that do not know all of their versions have been named after a tasty sweet since 2009 (namely in Cupcake, Donut, Éclair, Froyo, Gingerbread, Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich, and Jellybean)

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My simplistic logic was by using the name key lime pie it would bring this amazing dessert more to prominence and if it only meant one more physical key lime pies in the world (and who doesn’t love key lime pie ) then that would be a good thing. Alas I’m over it now.

The news as Google has said is that the new android version Kit Kat will be backwards compatible with older mobile phone hardware than ever due to the requirements of less memory been required to run the operating system. Mainly where many smart android phones have 1-4GB ram memory, the new lower spec means a phone with 512MB of ram will now be compatible, in most cases.

What remains to be answered though is if this will cause new problems. Likely yes, some seen some not.

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Fragmentation
Google has a problem in the marketplace to some extent with ‘fragmentation’ and always has had. That is because there are so many new phone models every few weeks or months and google unlike Microsoft and Apple does not manage the hardware, each phone was not necessarily compatible with the latest OS perhaps only the one previously or before. Oddly, this means 3 different phones purchased in the same store on the same today, might have 4 different operating systems, (gingerbread, jellybean, or honeycomb, or even ice cream sandwich).

Operating systems are partly Google, the handset manufacturer and phone carrier’s responsibility. Crazier still, the same exact model phone supporting one carrier can often be on a different version of Android than the other. This makes supporting the device, product clarity for the consumer, and developing new apps for the devices ‘fragmented’ in the marketplace.

Apple or Windows makes updates mandatory on new phones or makes the phones obsolete, to manage this continuity. So, Google is fixing this by making the specification level required for Android 4.4 Kit Kat, lower so 4.4 is compatible with more phones, thus less fragmentation.

The desktop operating system is similar where the new Apple 10.9 Mavericks and Windows 7, required lower specifications or offered more backward compatibility for consumers and business to upgrade.

In the case of Windows 7, whilst its predecessor Windows Vista might not run on a certain Windows XP machine or do so very poorly, Windows 7 in many cases would run and work well.

There you could run Windows 7 on all the machines even windows XP that would not run vista, and not sacrifice anything.

In the case of Apple iPhones some devices that would not be supported with a new mobile operating system iOS, means you would buy have to buy a new iPhone.

With Google lowering the specification for Kit Kat though, the trouble there is many applications make better use of more than 512mb ram, and some phones might suffer with Kit Kat or might not get the update at all, adding another layer of fragmentation to the confusing mix, that is running the new OS but not very well, or with less features.

In most of these cases the OS (Google Android), the hardware manufacturer, and carrier might not release the update. Unfortunately the update is good, so demand will be high internally at Google and by the consumer. Many consumers already use updates bypassing these steps getting their updates (ROMs) online quite easily. It remains to be seen if the attempt to reduce fragmentation causes more problems than it fixes.


With Friends Like that Who Needs Enemas?

 

Untitled

2 November  2013
Melbourne, Oz
Loren W

· When the Provisional IRA bombed the tallest building in London (BT Tower) 42 years ago this week on Halloween 1971, it reaffirmed a resulting chain of events that are very timely today. The re-enforcing and sharing of communication and intelligence across continents between allies, of course the USA and UK. In 1971 it was a time of Nixon, fund raising in America for the IRA that was their main source of funding, as the USA did not recognize the IRA as terrorists (another story there worth reading). This was only 2 years after ARPANET (later DARPA) carried the first packets of Data). ARPANET being The Advanced Research Projects Agency Network a USA endeavor based on a a British design (Donald Davies CBE NPL UK) that later with Vint Cerf created of course elements of what we call the Internet today. London was the first International node of ARPNET, showing the bond digital communication would have from 1971.

arpanet1_small

However it was not till  years later that Margaret Thatcher had buddy Ronald Regan stop the collections to stop the flow of IRA funding. There was of course a multilateral agreement in place already of course since 1946 as part of the until 2012 unknown named, name Project ‘StoneGhost’ a Top Secret Sensitive Compartmented Information Network and part what is known as the 5 eyes alliance. This included Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK and USA, but the UK and USA had a special bond

BT-Tower-Star-Wars-Lightsaber

· This was previously known as Intelink-C, Q-Lat and Quad link. Few even knew of the alliance till 2012, when a Canadian Navy officer was sentenced to 20 years for contravening information from Operation ‘StoneGhost’. Part of the alliance was the sharing of data as well. Today all of the fibre in the UK connects via BT Tower, in London with the 34th floor of BT Tower still covered by the Official Secrets Act. The UK still does its information gathering, the building is still closed to the public and you have to have a level clearance so high that clearance to Buckingham Palace and No 10 Downing Street (home of the Queen of England and Prime Minister) are below access levels required.

bucky

As the story continues to unfold that the US Government (wrongly or rightly I am not judging here), had concerns of the closeness Germany’s leader Merkel, had with Putin of Russia, it would not be too farfetched to find another ally had some small or large part in the exercise. to monitor (not spy that is illegal).

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HTC One Max vs Samung Note 3 vs Sony Ultra

14 October, 2013
Loren W
Melbourne Oz

 

Well well, previously a fan of the Samsung Note (I had the both the I & II), I jumped ship and dumped the II just prior to the launch of the III, to avoid any hardware loss and because I expected it to be boring, (as it was to me) and I got the Dive Safe / Waterproof Sony Xperia Ultra, the wonderful but slightly buggy, big brother of the Sony Experia Z, and predecessor of the new Sony Xperia Z1 (got all that).

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I have written previously how the main stream media has yet to address that a large slice of the Chinese mobile phone market (a larger slice percentage wise than the USA for instance) prefer larger phones (phablets). However, you need to look at the mobile phone marketplace to see the real interesting stories, and consider if HTC can survive to generate any success now.

Sony’s CEO Kazuo Hirai has just said it is planning to be number 3 mobile phone provider in the world avoiding China, and the USA for now, by focusing more on Europe and Japan where it has less of a fight. Sony has further said they plan on getting out of the low end mobile phone market entirely.

Sony has set a target of selling 42 million smartphones worldwide in the financial year to next March, an increase of 27 percent from a year ago. In 2012, Samsung shipped 218.2 million Galaxy phones while Apple sold 135.9 million iPhones, according to IDC.

HTC has recently slid into the red for the 1st time showing a loss of T$2.97 billion ($100 million), bigger than an expected loss of T$1.8 billion, according to Thomson Reuters Smart Estimates. That compares with a net profit of T$3.9 billion in the same quarter last year. Making HTC a possible target for a Lenovo buy out unless another player emerges like RIM (joke)…

Samsung still strong globally, risks running away with global market share as it saturates the market with every size phone and tablet possible. It has sales of almost $200 billion a year, made a $9.4bn profit in the third quarter and employs 270,000 people in 79 countries. It has a whopping 32 per cent market share, compared with Apple – its nearest rival – at 15 per cent. –

All that being said, for many it is whichever company innovates the best is the one that will win the hearts, minds, and dollars of customers.

The Phablet Contenders

HTC produced a very impressive phone with the HTC One, probably next to the iPhone the most appreciated phone design and build quality in the marketplace. The other phones the Note3, and Sony Ultra, all have produced similar size and spec phones.

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The 6” Note3 has a 13MP camera, Qualcom Snapdragon Chip and a 2300MHZ Processor, and a 3840×2160 (4k video and camera)


The 7” Sony has a 8MP camera but 3264×2448 (4k) camera.

Sony Xperia Z Ultra

The 6” HTC One Max sports, a 1920×1080 and 4MP camera, it will be market saturation and build quality (and being popular in the USA) that will help HTC. The Sony is likely a dead duck, outside Japan, and Samsung is already talking their next generation of phones before the Note 3 even gets a chance to succeed or fail.

What Next ? The US market will likely ignore the Sony Xperia Ultra, as much as Sony ignores them, though Newegg is releasing the Sony Xperia Ultra today October 14 in the USA. If the product gets a fair look, the specs will give HTC a run for their money, with better specs and good build quality. HTC will dazzle with nice hardware and average specs, Samsung will continue to etch away for the US dollar as it makes a phone for ever demographic. It will be interesting to see what Apple and Microsoft/Nokia can do in the 6” phablet space, in the next 12 months but currently no one has captured the imagination on the 6-7” mobile phone market with the perfect phone.

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Why Apple Needs to Build the 6" iPhone

Melbourne Australia
Loren W

One of the nice things about being an insignificant blogger with 100,000 followers,  is when you see the main stream media discuss important issues but miss an obvious yet crucial parts of the story.

Watching a BBC news interview recently based in China, they were speaking to locals about the new iPhone 5s and 5c mobile launch. When asked what they thought, the common answer surprised me a little. The common thread was the Chinese in the Apple iPhone & Microsoft/Nokia  new demographic interviewed preferred larger phones like the Samsung Note 1/2/3 / LG  meaning a 5.3 inch and larger screen. The interviewer elaborated that many do not have computers, so having a smart mobile with tablet PC-like features/ size means a bigger phone is VERY popular and a growing demand.

Samsung, LG and more recently Sony have all introduced phablet mobile phones to warm  receptions.
it is not rocket science that a New iPhone 6, if larger might be very successful in China

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My Intolerance at Incompetence Continues  On A Terrible Trip to Paradise

5 October 2013
Melbourne Australia
Loren W –

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One of the worst things that happens sometimes to a company is their streamlining when they are being sold. It is not rocket science, they ‘lean-up’, reduce costs so they look that much better to their perspective buyers, regardless of the impact on their customers or staff. This is what happened to me recently on a holiday of a lifetime to the Cook Islands.

Hearing Air New Zealand is buying a larger stake in Virgin does explain the repeated appalling service we received, or just bad service. Firstly, having some sort of stupid loyalty to an airline with the name Australia in it, versus the alternative one with the name New Zealand proved my undoing and that of my better half.

On a simple flight going from Melbourne, to the Cook Islands on Holiday via, Auckland, to my paradise, we lost 10% of our holiday stuck in Auckland a beautiful city in New Zealand. Though there was a bit of weather in Auckland, it was already the 2nd challenge I had before my holiday had begun.

On the flight over, a mere 4 hours, I was not served any food and none was available on the plane to purchase. I queried the flight staff, and told I had the wrong class ticket, was not on their sheet, and would have to sort it out when I got to Auckland. I doubted myself thinking I had made a mistake, I also had to pay for in average in-flight entertainment something I again had thought I had addressed, but again it went with the same class ticket as the food.

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I found to my surprise there was no virgin support desk in Auckland Airport. By bad luck my mobile phone was not working in New Zealand either after being told from my carrier Telstra, it was all set-up.

So trying to call Virgin on the phone in Auckland resulted in spending much of my initial layover on hold and subsequently being cut off. I then tweeted Virgin that said they wanted to know more, but again was not contactable in a hub airport Virgin had no presence in.

Then the fun began, after a few hours initial delay at the airport, we were all told that bad news you hate to hear, our flight was being delayed due to bad weather at Auckland airport. Now speaking to the recently appearing staff, I queried, what the impact was, staff levels in case of delays, and my food query. I was not able to be helped on the food issue, and told there were back up staff available if the delay continued. Later I was told by the same staff our flight was going to be cancelled.

A few surprises happened then, multiple air new Zealand flights left in the same window of time, we were told air New Zealand had a lower safety requirement for cross winds than virgin had, something that seemed odd, but we were then all summoned to go to the plane though I had been told minutes earlier our flight was going to be canceled due to the weather. Almost an hour later after being bordered were told indeed the flight was not going to take off, and had to get back off the plane, whilst they changed crews, due to the delays.

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Again being told there were no staff issues, but the flight was being cancelled, then boarding the plane to only be told there WERE staffing issues seemed suspect. So after all being rounded up were told the bad news. Due to bad weather, our flight was being canceled for almost 24 hours, and we would try again tomorrow. We were told as it was an act of god sort of thing, there would be no accommodation except those with children if at all. When queried if it was a weather issue or a staffing issue we were assured it was a weather only issue. Later I was told it was a staffing issue only as it was after 8pm, and back-up staff were just not available. Calls to Auckland airport confirmed this, as did the weather reports that though it was gusty, flights were not delayed due to weather in our time slot.

Abandoned in Auckland

Now being in a strange (but nice) city, when I asked how best to source our own accommodation we were given letters, saying the flight was canceled, that was it, I said NO, how do we sort our own accommodation as we did not know the city. They mentioned there were help desks by the exits, and a company that would help us get rooms, great.

Ongoing to collect our luggage in our stranded city, we were confronted with a sad sight of dozens of bags from our and other flights all, thrown together leaving the passengers fumbling through rows and stacks of suit cases. It seemed in our case bags were taken off very early, as we were one of the first to visit this suitcase cemetery after learning we were stranded, this added to abandonment issue.

After collecting our bags, unfortunately a recently canceled Chinese flight due to technical issues meant the hotel seeking company, could not cope with them or us, now again with no service desk, no ground staff, the help desk folk gave us an Auckland guide that had some hotels in it. While my better half started there, I called directory enquiries, who were of no use.

We found a hotel 45 minutes away, turned out to be connected to the YMCA was a dump, but staff was nice, the linen clean, no phone to call the airline but all was good.

Again staff on the leg to the Cook Islands again were not able to address the on board food, drink or entertainment issue. We were however prior to boarding given $64 in food vouchers, to use at the airport, which would have been better the day before. Silly whilst many had to spend the night at the airport now folks were not able to spend $32 per person 2 hours before flying out. I saw quite a few folks buying $5 in soft drinks with $64 in food vouchers, a good day for the airport economy at least, as there of course is no change given.

NOTE: FYI, later I found all of that was not true, and my flexi ticket was all the proof I actually needed, adding to my disappointment in all the process issues we were impacted by, but resolved for my return journey, after a few emails over a few days, something I should not have had to deal with on my holiday.

We eventually made it to the Cook Islands, had an amazing holiday, however, at Auckland, after the 24 hour delays.

ET Cannot Go Home

Just prior to leaving for the airport in the Cook Islands for our return leg to Auckland then home to Melbourne, we were told our flight had been cancelled by our hotel staff due to a technical issue. They double checked and they said no our flight should be ok but there were some issues with other virgin flights??

After a great holiday on boarding to return to Melbourne, we were asked by check in staff, if we enjoyed our stay, and would like to stay longer if we could. Thinking this was a social question said the obligatory yes, with a smile and were then asked if we wanted to stay a few days as the flight was over booked.

We were a bit disappointed in this as we thought this was just a social conversation, we politely refused and continued on our way.

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As time ticked by we noted our plane had not arrived, and when it did, it was obvious there was an issue, as it did not totally disembark until 15 minutes before, we were due to leave again.

Then the announcement came that due to bad weather in Auckland, we were going to be delayed exactly 2 hours??

I note, in the mean- time an Air New Zealand, plane landed re-fueled and left again within minutes of the same time window and left for Auckland. As we only had a 2 hour layover in Auckland, (hopefully), this meant we would miss our connecting flight barring some action to address this. We were told the pilot would make up some time in the air and we would be fine. I queried the plentiful, Air New Zealand flight staff and they said there was a fog issue earlier but none impacting their flights. Huh?

We eventually made it to Auckland, and were hustled to the international transfer gates, and were the last groups to get on the plane, after being told we were not on the list for the entertainment, drink food, etc. I had them double check and we were there, what happened I am not sure but the flight went well for at least the last leg.

Final Observations

Airlines have to run lean in this tight economic climate, but they always have to. Of course an airline can have a bad day. However, having been lucky enough to travel to 23 or so different countries, either for work, pleasure or both, with many different airlines, I have never seen anything the level of incompetence poor communication and appears to be out and out lies, at what seemed to be general disregard for customers as we experienced MULTIPLE times on this otherwise trip of a lifetime.

I heard one Virgin staffer tell someone they tell’ limited truths’ to customers as many do not have high enough education to understand and appreciate the full story. Geez, great so lie to customers to appease them not something I thought I was paying for, and not what customer service should EVER be about.

There was some serious damage limitation offered for the return flight, that was appreciated, but if I learned one thing is if you are traveling to ANY city with ANY layover, you should NEVER use an airline without a service desk at that airport. Will I ever fly Virgin again, jury is out on that one

cc 100,000


17 September 2013
Melbourne, Oz
Loren W

I keep hearing other podcasters using Skype where the sound / video fails, becomes pitchy, dalek-like etc. Sometimes this is unfixable due to Skype, or bandwidth etc. But most of the time these 5 steps will either help rule out your own PC being at least partially to blame & I have found it quite effective many times in solving the problem all together. It also works well with other apps like AirVideo etc. to improve how the PC manages the resources when streaming. Even my 16gb of ram Quad-Core PC still gets help from this improving performance.

1) CTRL-Alt-Delete

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2) Click Tasks Manager

3) Got to Details

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Note: If you did not know the process running skype is (i.e Skype is not Skype) then you could right click on the process name (skype) go to details, then it tells you the running file name in this case is WWAHost.exe per below

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4) Change Priority from ‘Low/Normal’ to ‘Real-time’

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Do the same in reverse to lower the priority of some other apps that might be using resource in the background (browsers etc), if running in the background

In a perfect world this would have no use be of no relevance or use, but as in Windows 8, Windows 8.1 benefits from this DRAMITCALLY.

Enjoy


Sony’s New Xperia Z Ultra ‘Phablet’ Now for Something Completely Different

Loren W
Melbourne Oz
Update 15 August 2013

Question: What do you get when you cross technology from a mobile phone, tablet, and a classy TV ?
Answer : A real big phone, an average size tablet (based on the new 7" form factors) , and a real small TV, a GREAT picture, with a sophisticated elegance

Ladies & Gents, Geeks & Geekettes the Sony Xperia Z Ultra Mobile Phone / Phablet (or c6802)

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Actually launched in June 2013 (shhh don’t tell anyone), Note: that quiet launch unless repeated for the west, might be the only downfall of this otherwise spectacular device.

As when I got the Samsung Note 1, the first thing I thought was, Oh Crap, this thing is too big.  But I knew as with the Samsung Note 1, I would get used to it fast. Now, as a long time Samsung fan in everything they offer, from TVs, and Appliances to testing their first phablets (large mobile phones) via the Galaxy Note 1, since its launch in 2011 so this was an easy decision.

Unfortunately being a new tech junkie wanting everything new, the Samsung Note 2 did not float my boat beyond, the boat floating I was still feeling from the Note 1. I loved it, and am now hooked on the form factor of the Phablets. I am not so sure that the Samsung Note 3 will be so radical to make me want it as bad, as I thought I wanted the Note 2.

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Magpie Effect- However, on looking to see what my next phone was going to be, I made a discovery I am sure many already had made. The Samsung Note 2, has a larger bezel on it than many of the new phones. This means I could buy a smaller phone yet still get the same or similar screen size depending on the phone of course of what many refer to as the first real Phablet (tablet sized mobile phone).
This has been badly reported on in the media.

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Nokia- Personally I almost bought a Nokia 1020, I love the idea, of the amazing camera. But I did not for the same reason I dumped my 1st Windows 8 Phone Mobile, the eco-system for Microsoft does not do it for me app wise. There are some great apps, but how Microsoft goes from being the world leader in dumb phones / PDAs, with Windows CE to last place in smart phones war still amazes me as an old school Microsoft fan boy. I want to play as well as work, and the balance is skewed against Windows Phone 8 for me. Windows has a big advantage, the last to market, but I have not seen anything to make me think they are going to pull out an Internet Explorer vs.. Netscape Play.

The result of all of that and as I will soon be going on a holiday to an exotic South Pacific destination, a bit of snorkeling and a bit of diving, so am getting a GoPro pro, but I was looking strongly at the benefits of the Sony Xperia Z, then I discovered something amazing to me, Sony has gone and launched their new Phablet version of the Xperia Z (called the Ultra) globally (outside the USA). It then turned out it is for sale in many countries already. Again to well reported and not reported at all in most of the usual USA press.

One phone call later and I have a review unit due in 2 days herein Australia. As I scratch below the surface (no MS pun attended), I have discovered a few interesting facts on this device that is raising as many questions as it answers, before I even receive the device.

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Convergence – Before I get into the device, (a more detailed review is forthcoming when I receive it), I have to raise what might the elephant in the room that has not been discussed in the present sense yet.
We have long known that the day would come when a Phablet would be the same size as a tablet. But with the rise in demand and increased interest in 7”tablets, and now 6+” Phablets, emerging, more so with the Samsung Note 3, at least a 5’7” phone, that day is nigh and I expect a big story in the weeks ahead. Obvious questions is when the next iPhone will be a Phablet, or the iPad a phone. Will the Nexus 7 (2014) be a phone, and an alternative to a Nexus 4. Or the Motorola Nexus Phone 2 (announced) be a Phablet?

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Phablets = Tablets – An interesting element of this is reading reviews comparing the Sony Xperia Z Ultra, not to any present or forthcoming phone/phablets, but to the new Nexus 7 (2013) and iPad mini. A silly comparison if you ask me, unless the Nexus 7 (2013) and iPads are a phone, but sets I believe the ground game for what happens next.

Picture This – The physical size as mentioned is 6.4” on the Sony, and 7” on the Nexus 7 – ( 2013) 1080×1920 and 1280 x 800 respectively. However, the Nexus 7 has an impressive ~323ppi whilst the Sony has an equally amazing ~344ppi. The Sony takes a micro SSD to 64gb whilst tablets do not. Wi-Fi is also offers a/b/g/n/ac, and a 2.2 ghz cpu vs the 1.5GHz on the Nexus

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Waterproof – Oh, did I mention HD Video underwater- to 5 feet ? Though the phone has an average camera by today’s standard, (same as the Note 2). However the Sony has no flash, possibly a big deal. In all the tests I have seen thus far, the Sony, Ultra Z appears to triumph pretty easily over the Samsung Note 2, how it will compare against the Note 3 remains to be seen. Sony have competed against the stylus pen of Samsung by suggesting users can use anything they want from their finger to a real pencil instead of the OMG I going to lose Samsung Note stylus. Possible improvements by Samsung in the Note 3 might include a flexible display, 3GB vs. 2GB of RAM, whilst the Note 3 will likely have the respectable 13MP camera vs. the Note 2 camera in the Sony. Samsung Note 3 body construction is still a bit of a mystery.

A Little TV – Tech

Sony Bravia range

With the Z Ultra, Sony uses 2 bits of Tv tech to Improve the picture from the Bravia TV side of things partly.

These are Triluminos and X-Reality Engine technologies. With the ~342 pixel density, this gives the Z Ultra one of the best displays period and the best by far on a Phablet. Sony had been given a bad rap previously (perhaps deserved) for not having the crispest of colors. Triluminos effectively uses quantum dots, to give a 50% crisper color by allowing better color separation thus less wash out. This is further done by something called quantum dots, that effectively means to the human eye colors are crisper. The X reality engine does the same thing in reverse sort of by analyzing the image received then separating the colors. Effectively it improves image quality in dark or over bright areas to get the tones right.

Not for everyone perhaps this hybrid device really is one to be considered.

Image  —  Posted: August 11, 2013 in Android, Hardware
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Sony Experia Z Ultra Launched

Posted: August 8, 2013 in Misc Tech

Review soon


How Google is Helping Customers Get Over Apple.

 

31 July 2013
Melbourne Oz,
Loren W.

 

 clip_image002_thumb.jpg With the release of the Nexus 7 Tablet, Google with Asus did something pretty special. They took the tablet form factor dominated by Apple since the launch of the iPad since its release in November 2012, and shrank it from a 9.5 x 7.3 x .37 inch device to a more ‘svelte’ 7.8 x 4.7x .41 inch device with only a little bit lower screen quality (~216 ppi vs ~264 ppi for the iPad). This happened  a month after Apple launched the iPad mini with a 7.87×5.3x.28 in model in October 2012., However the iPad Mini took a step back and only offered a ~162ppi screen a whopping 25% reduction in screen quality of the Nexus 7 and a 29% reduction over the larger iPad.

This is all relevant because when Google/Asus launched the Nexus 7 they did this for under $200, Apple for $329, for what many felt was a lower quality device. However, many marveled at the new Apple device whilst others were just locked into using Apple eco-system having media, such as music and video in the Apple only iTunes, so it was not a slam dunk for Google by any stretch of the imagination.

 clip_image004_thumb.jpg Well Google/Asus has done it again, this time with the launch of the new Nexus 7 (or Nexus 7 – 2013).
Now the quality gets a big bump above the golden chalice title of retina screen with ~323ppi. Retina® screen being the name Apple gives to devices with over 326ppi for small devices and 264ppi for iPads.

Apple has hinted the retina screen for their iPad is not possible till 2014 at the earliest (either a market issue or a technical one). In the case of the new Nexus 7, few will care, it will attract new users, now a slave to the Apple eco-system or make many consider the jump.

For 15% of this huge marketplace there is yet another factor. The television, that other golden chalice, which has yet to see an elegant transition of content and users otherwise watching from other mobile devices or computers. That is many watch content (movies, video, YouTube, Netflix etc.) on a device other than the TV (85% to be exact), and using 50% of the Internet in the process. But getting content to the TV has proved less than simple.

 clip_image006_thumb.jpg In my case I get content from my PC computer and ‘stream’ it my Apple device then stream it to my Apple TV connected to my TV. Far from difficult it is not elegant, but works well usually. The complication there, is the streaming device (say an iPhone or iPad) cannot totally be used to turn off during the streaming process, and there is no social element to it, just a technical one.
 clip_image008_thumb.jpg For that Google has launched the GoogleCast a small device looking a lot like a USB key, but offering a method to stream from apps, videos, PCs, Macs, music etc. simply and cleanly. It essentially makes any TV with an HDMI port (smart tv or dumb), into a viewing device via a method it would not normally get.

About Me

Loren W

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An American/ Brit, that immigrated to Australia less than a decade ago, after running an ISP or two, then as a product manager for one of the largest Telcos in the world British Telecom, I went on to introduce something called business broadband in the UK then several other mobile, and cloud services in the UK and here in Australia for some of the largest companies in the world including NEC Japan (man this dude is old). Many of these are mainstays of technology today. As a result passion for all things tech are part professional and part personal. Full of funny and not so stories, this is my brain dump page.“The Technology Market like the Internet itself, evolves differently in different continents and countries”. Like the cars shown in Mad Max and the fact the last Pontiac GTO was made here, Australia, offers a different view, cool, and sometimes out of sync with the rest of the world. A country the size of the USA but the population of New York City, some things here are just not like the others

Image  —  Posted: July 29, 2013 in Misc Tech


21 July 2013
Melbourne, Oz

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If you were to give away to an existing moderately heavy mobile phone user the best phone of every phone platform Apple, Android, Windows, and Blackberry, on the condition you actually had to use the phone as your only phone, many would pass on the opportunity. Not so surprising, this is due to the ecosystem we are bought into already. This might be apps, music, or some other phone feature we cannot do without. clip_image006

As many of us use our phones more as computers than ever, this matters more than ever. Here I am for instance writing this on my nexus7, then sending to my PC for spell checking adding art formatting, and then uploaded here.

I thought about this now because Nokia is about to launch what many think (myself included) is one the best if not the best mobile ever made. Having owned then ditched one of the first Windows8 phones due to the lack of ecosystem mainly apps, appreciate how gorgeous a Windows phone is. When I had it, I had a Now what feeling about it. This was during a time when Apple app store was becoming mature, and Androids own App store was developing well as also. Like the iPhone and unlike Android Windows phone is quite locked down in terms of tweaking. This means you need to be happy with what it does do. It is all about timing, marketing, perception,   and delivery in the IT game. Computers, tablets, and mobiles are no different. Microsoft showed us the way from mobiles, (now called dumb phones) & PDAs, to smart phones, phablets (big mobiles), and tablets. Yet it took Apple with the iPhone, and iPad to start it off and make it happen. It took Samsung to kick start the phablets craze (one I like). However with the launch this week of the innovative new Nokia 1020, we will likely see what I think is very sad. A great new phone from the barely third place provider in Microsoft. Since the launch of Windows Phone, updates have been slow, when they needed to be better, a problem Apple and Android had but not as late in the marketplace as Microsoft was. Then there is the ongoing naming mess and confusion between, Windows Phone 8, Windows 8, Windows8 RT 8 and Windows 8 Pro. All look the same with Windows 8 Pro being  the same as Windows 8 but the name was adopted for certain tablets so they could be differentiated from those running the hopefully soon to die Windows8  RT. On top of that mess, all of them look the same, but different apps must be used for tablets, PC and phone. This debacle means Windows phones have sold very badly. There are pockets of hope outside the USA with main provider Nokia always being less successful in the USA than out of it. Just to make bad matters worse, to lessen the financial risk of poor sales of the new Nokia 1020,  stock is in short supply before it is even released because a minimal amount of units are being produced by Nokia This sell out is viewed as favorably versus over production. The risk to Microsoft and Nokia is that is viewed as a stunt or just turns people off.

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The bottom line is Windows Phone 8 (should be called windows 8 phone) by perception if nothing else seems to lack enough features as an operating system to draw customers over from the same customers with iPhones or Android that have phones like the S4 by Samsung or the One X by HTC and Nexus, as and Sony Also in retrospect had Microsoft like Android offered a tablet with Windows Phone 8, and not 2 different OS, it might be a different story again (still not too late.) I think this is the only thing can save windows phone and if done soon only. (Not likely) Even Apple has one OS for Macs and only one OS for mobile devices. The new Nokia 1020 phone itself is very attractive has decent battery life, an inspiring and market leading 41 mega pixel camera, but no SD card memory, a real challenge I think. Unfortunately it is doubtful the  Nokia 1020 hail Mary Jesus phone , can win the day without Microsoft throwing some smart hail Mary marketing and awareness money at it not likely.

About The Author
Loren W.

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After running an ISP or two, then as a product manager for one of the largest telcos in the world,  I went on to introduce something called business broadband in the UK and then several other cloud services  in the UK and here in Australia (man this dude is old).


But Will It Make A Difference This Late in The Game for Microsoft ?

Melbourne Australia
19 July 2013

The Computer Business is Fickle. Recent Stats from Gartner and others show a steady decline in PC Sales, but tablets, laptops and hybrid tablet/PCs are not counted in the equation. So is the market on the decline or just evolving, who knows.

However, in terms of tablets, as an early Windows 8 adopter and more recently, an early Windows 8 tablet adopter as well, I was prepared for the challenges. As I have written previously, had a windows 8 or 7 tablet come out in July 2009 when Windows 7 launched, I am sure others would have hailed it amazing. It took Apple another year to launch the iPad in April 2010 for amazing to happen.

In my case I purchased the Asus ME400c recently for review, it has the Intel Atom Z2760 CPU and a battery that gives an industry tested (per PC World) 8.5 hours. Better than the HP Envy at 7 hours and less than the Lenovo TP2 with over 10 hours. For the price as a test device I was pretty impressed at @$450AU RRP.

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There were GREAT challenges of course. The Windows OSK (on screen keyboard) for a tablet is lousy at best. Especially when compared to an iPad or an Android device like my Samsung Nexus 10.1, but again living in a Microsoft eco-sphere at least partially means compromises. Sometimes though it is so bad you have to hold down a screen then keep it held down press a keyboard key to stop the keyboard going away again, buggy at best.

SO an upgrade to windows 8.1 Preview in my mind could not be any worse hopefully. The first challenge is actually getting 8.1 onto my tablet. With a 6mb Wi-Fi connection and trying to get it to connect to the Microsoft Server in Australia to download meant an hour in it was only 5% in. Downloading Windows 8.1 to PC, then sharing it across a network saved heaps of time. As soon as windows 8 was detected the tablet said it needed to download some KB updates before it could install windows 8.1. About 30 minutes later all was done including install, but there were more than a few problems. Going to check updates again post 8.1 meant the installation of more KB updates. This is interesting as it is the same update it installed prior to installation.

My guess is it needs some drivers form the update and others after, but perhaps I am just being simplistic. So after the pre-install, and post install there are around 30 KB updates made to enable 8.1. However the last ones make it very worthwhile. There were some niggly issues right after install, that these updates seem to address.

All and all the update makes a huge difference. I am just not sure with all the confusion and some apathy from suppliers, around the RT, Windows 8, now Windows 8.1 and lack of support etc, I am not sure who will bother

About The Author
Loren W.

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After running an ISP or two, then as a product manager for one of the largest telcos in the world,  I went on to introduce something called business broadband in the UK and then several other cloud services  in the UK and here in Australia (man this dude is old).


Dealing with Large Volumes of Email is Not that Hard

15 July 2013
Melbourne Australia
@mr_internet

I get asked all the time how I manage email whilst working for a company of 400,000 employees, and also manage having 100,000 followers in social media, without getting viruses or going crazy with the volume of email.

I have found no one solution that works well, but rather a combination of services that act with as few interfaces as possible, and also deployed email for millions as well.

From the user side, this makes an email client a big deal when trying to manage work, and home life email, especially when trying to find a work email from home or a home email from work, making sure as few NSFW emails appear when searching from work. The first exercise here is to stretch the definition of ‘white lists’ and ‘black lists’ to white activity and black activity with white lists thought of as just friendly emails, and black lists (the opposite of white lists per above.

The first exercise is to make a list of black (things you are trying to prevent), and white (things you want to allow). It might look like this

White Activity

Black Activity

· Allow work email to be viewed at home

· Allow non-work email to be viewed at work

· Enable some 3rd part search tool to enable better search on work or home email

· Prevent non work email from mixing with work email viewed from work

· Allow a failsafe for all blacklisted email to go for a certain period of time so it can be viewed separately (to ensure accuracy or view what junk is being sent).

· Stop spam, malware, junk email and black listed (non-friendlies) from all emails

· Filter email at home to be work and non-work

 

· Create a secondary back up of work and home email that can be viewed at home or at work

 

· Allow archiving that can be monitored for accuracy and has some separate duplicity.

 

· Have only 1 interface required

 

My personal challenges requirements in this
I am a geek, sometimes crazy busy, sometimes less so. I want tools I can fiddle with when not busy or not fiddle with and still have everything just work. If I lose an important email I could lose my job

Keep it Simple

3 or 4 Tools

· 3 x Gmail Accounts

o Personal email sent to me@my-personal-domain.com spam and all

o Work Email only Clean me@work.com

o Work and Personal email clean me@my-personal-domain.com and me@work.com

· Microsoft Outlook – (Home and Work Primary)

· Firetrust – MailWasherPro (the best of New Zealand) –

· Optional – Xobni for Outlook

What it looks like

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Making it all work simply

· This looks a bit complicated, but I assure you requires little intervention once set-up.

· Step 1- Set-up 3 Gmail accounts

· Step 2 – I have 2 primary email addresses me@my-personal-domain.com and me@work.com

· Step 3 – Forward all me@work.com email to Gmail account 2. Note: you could send to account 1 but my work email is clean already by this stage, filtering again could mean a missed email, also I want a work only Gmail account.

· Step 4 – Forward all me@my-personal-domain.com to Gmail account 1, non-cleaned

· Step 5 – Set up a mailwasher pro account (or other filtering software) on your pc, and set it up that pulls in email from Gmail account 1 to filter spam, black lists, white lists etc.

· Step 6 – Set-up Outlook on PC to include now cleaned email from Gmail account 1, and email from Gmail Account 2 (already cleaned)

· Step 7 – Forward all now clean work and personal email to Gmail Account 3 (offers a clean email account in the cloud this could also be copied to another email cloud provider (Yahoo, Hotmail etc).

· Step 8 Optional, install Xobni for outlook offers great archive searching.

· Step 9 – Enjoy email.

Summary & Redundancy

Email is important to me, and perhaps you also. I have been using this model for years. If my PC goes down, or I am traveling I have another PC /Mac/Tablet/Phone Internet café I can look at filtered or unfiltered email for work or home. If Gmail goes down, my email that was last backed up to the cloud is still there. The only better solution I can see is a mailwasher pro type app that works in the cloud rather than locally. Otherwise I think this might be as near perfect as it gets.

Got a better solution let me know

About The Author

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After running an ISP or two, As product manager I went on to introduce business broadband in the UK and then several other cloud services  in the UK and here in Australia (man this dude is old).


June 2013
Loren W
Melbourne Australia

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Tired Looking Apple Hoping for some Mojo

With Apple iOS for iPhones and iPads being 6 years old soon, it will finally get a major uplift, thanks Senior VP of Design and Apple steadfast Sir Johnny Ive. The problem is Apple is at that stage in its mobile operating system that Microsoft also found itself in recently with its desktop software Windows 8 . That is evolution, Apple has refused to evolve it’s iOS for so long 2 things have happened, fans of the iOS have upgraded their hardware along the way or are new to it and love it, and may not like change, or have tired of it and jumped ship to world leader Android via usually Samsung hardware. Now with a long awaited update on the way never will there be more scrutiny than there will be when iOS 7 is announced hopefully in great detail at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on 10 June 2013.

With the passing of the late great Steve Jobs in 2011, much has stayed largely the same with very few exceptions. Steve Jobs imprinted his view of design all over iOS, and many viewed it disrespectful to tear it apart.

However growth and competition to Apple in the mobile space has never been greater in mobiles or in tablets, seeing Apple market share losing out to some and staying stagnant in other markets depending on which analysis’s you interpret this week.

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In the case of Microsoft they saw a good sales in Windows 7, impacted immensely when they did a great (others may disagree) update in the evolution of Windows by changing it (aesthetically and technically) with Windows 8. Largely due the major change (evolution) they saw happening with Android, and Apple chipping away at the marketplace Microsoft (I think) took the bold move to add a layer to their OS, offering tiles as well as the normal and more familiar desktop . Also it was a move to more align their less than market leading windows 8 phone operating system. Unfortunately with change comes fear and expense in retraining, and change management from enterprise and just plain change from consumers. So much so Microsoft is now forced to launch an apology via the way of an update to Windows 8, plus more evolution in the form of Windows 8.1 (1 might stand for 1 is the loneliest number you may ever see).

However, had Microsoft done nothing they would have been forced to change anyhow all but perhaps less dramatically so fast.

Apple unfortunately, is less diversified having more of their financial eggs in the iOS basket so to speak. For them to not do something, would likely see their business model suffer further. Hard to consider when you are a company worth around $14billion and #6 in Fortune 500.

The challenge Apple will have is will iOS 7 excite a new generation causing them to move from Android to Apple, a new opportunity for Apple, keep the existing consumers considering a change, with maturing contracts, or be viewed as more of the same, and do nothing to help Apples currently unexcited stock prices, which in the end is all Apple will care about (as they should being a public traded company).

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Apple’s ‘mojo’ has largely been the fact they have created ‘magic’ more than any other tech company, but like all things can they offer anything new and invigorating.
Many like I are hoping but necessarily hopeful of more ‘Steve-Jobsion’ reminiscent mojo-magic on 10 June.

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About Me:

Loren is an Texas-Cali-English mutt now living in Australia has been in the tech industry for 19 years, his accomplishments include everything from introducing business broadband in 1994 in the UK for British Telecom, SaaS, and Data Centre Services in Australia for NEC Japan and others, debugging iPads for Apple etc.  He has been around so long his followers on twitter @mr_internet feel sorry for him and hang around.  He likes telling bad jokes and going to cooking schools (20 countries so far), and speaking 3rd person about himself.  He blames not getting enough oxygen as a child for some of this. Ask him about his tenor when BT decided to go after Microsoft as BT owned the patent on URLs (it wasn’t pretty).


21 April 2013
Melbourne Australia
Loren W

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As Intel announced this week it had another tough quarter over last year. There was some light that ties in well with what else is going on in the marketplace.

Intel mentioned it was pinning hopes on 2 new chips, Haswell for higher end laptops and pc’s with Bay Trail taking up the low end for cheaper models.

With Android growing fast in the phone marketplace, but so much in tablets, and Windows struggling more so at this stage, a couple of interesting things happened recently that could change things or offer consumers a nice choice in the next few weeks.

Android announced last week they had released an Intel friendly update to Android (version 4.2.2 Jellybean). Also Intel announced they were releasing faster cheaper chips for the tablet market. See where this is going.

Microsoft has some, but many apps, and let’s face it who wants another 1million apps in the market. Android on the other hand is culling their million apps as we speak to offer better quality and less junk for consumers in their app store.

Microsoft lacks apps, and app developers. Android lacks some business apps, if these two do not work together they may not have to for it to still work. Samsung, Lenovo and others sit in both the Microsoft Camp and Android Google camps.

The advantage of having a windows android hybrids, if able to be switched from easily without a reboot (a feature in the new Android release) see my previous story on this release currently in alpha release.

Personally I would love Android on my Windows Tablet and Vice Versa. These are exciting times.

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About Me:

Loren is an Tex-Cali-English mutt now living in Australia has been in the tech industry for 19 years, his accomplishments include everything from introducing business broadband in 1994 in the UK for British Telecom, SaaS, and Data Centre Services in Australia for NEC Japan and others, debugging iPads for Apple etc.  He has been around so long his 150,000 followers on twitter @mr_internet feel sorry for him and hang around.  He likes telling bad jokes and going to cooking schools (20 countries so far) , and speaking 3rd person about himself.  He blames not getting enough oxygen as a child for some of this. Ask him about his tenor when BT decided to go after Microsoft IE as BT owned the patent on URLs (it isn’t pretty).

Technorati Tags: Windows 8,Android,iOS,Android Windows 8 Dual Boot.


Android on Intel allows Dual Booting with Windows 8

14 April 2013
Melbourne Australia
Loren W

android-intel

Firstly I  am a Technology fan boy. Those that have followed me over the years know this. I own and use daily, and build my own PC. But also use my Macs, and tablets, including Android Nexus 7, 10, and mini iPad. Like Windows Vista, Windows 8, has a marketing problem. I was an early fan of of Windows Vista as I am of Windows 8 but I am the the bubble on that perhaps, being in new tech for 20 years. To evolve and not die they had to go a bit radical, adding almost a separate operating system in an operating system with the new Metro interface. Radical because it was a huge leap from the now more hidden windows desktop. This makes Windows 8 more iOS like, or even more Android like, whilst keeping the more traditional values of Windows intact. Unless you look at Windows RT 8. The bad idea that won’t go away. If anything has confused the marketplace more than what Microsoft has done with RT I cannot remember it. Unless you talk Microsoft Outlook, that is 2 different products in Microsoft with the same name but the confusion is only starting there.

download

A cou ple of years back I was impressed by a laptop I saw that was an android dual boot windows 7 hybrid. I liked it but it was not easy to go between them. This is a due to something called UEFI Boot. Windows 8 uses this instead of something called BIOS.

Android has not supported UEFI boot, previously, and Intel the chip manufacturer has not supported it via their architecture. What was needed was an version of Android optimized to run on Intel chips.

This has now happened with the release of Android 4.2.2 r1a0. This means you can now run Android on the same PCs, Tablets, and Laptops, you run Windows 8 on.

This has HUGE potential and something I will be installing very soon. The opportunity for Microsoft is to capitalize on the Android momentum on its own devices, or their own either adding Android to a Windows 8 device or vice versa. With Microsoft not having the largest selection of apps in their own library, this would slow the issue as they would gain almost 1m apps instantly.

To do the install you can get started here or read more about it http://bit.ly/115fBNQ

wanted 2
Loren is an Tex-Cali-English hybrid  now living in Australia has been in the tech industry for 19 years, his accomplishments include everything from introducing business broadband in 1994 in the UK for British Telecom, SaaS, and Data Centre Services in Australia for NEC Japan and others, debugging iPads for Apple. He has been around so long his 150,000 followers on twitter @mr_internet feel sorry for him and hang around.  He likes telling bad jokes and going to cooking schools (20 countries so far) , and speaking 3rd person about himself.  He blames not getting enough oxygen as a child for some of this. Ask him about his tenor when BT decided to go after Microsoft IE as BT owned the patent on URLs (it isn’t pretty).


It’s like Déjà Vu all Over Again

4 April 2013
Melbourne Australia
LorenW

Well well, well. When I broke my 1st iPad in April 2010 before they were out in Australia (almost exactly 3 years ago),  I did something else as well. I found out how I broke it, what the bug was and how to fix it as well for many. It turned out had either Apple had not detected the bug (then a DHCP issue), or chose not to go public with it here is a view of that story http://bit.ly/ipad-woes. However it turned out Princeton University and thousands of other had the same problem now long ago fixed. I earned a few seconds of fame for it very funny, did a couple of interviews etc.

So I was a bit surprised when my iPad Mini started doing bad things, recently, but I could not duplicate the problem. Apple was kind enough to give me a new iPad Mini, anyhow, with little issue (and without asking). Now a week later the new iPad Mini, is doing the same thing. Effectively without warning going crazy. The specfics are if I go to any apps they will shut down, others randomly open, type a letter and it will spit out random keystrokes.

However, this time I figured out the scenario. When the iPad is charged 100% (and on the charger), then I use a CPU demanding app Air Video,  (or when there are a few in the background in memory), my guess is the iPad Mini, tries to draw more power, but being it is being charged, the power it is drawing is impacted by the mains power and freaks out. I notice the mini gets warm as well during this scenario, and one I will try to avoid. Hopefully this bug will not cause any long term damage to my other iPad MinisTo prove this I immediately unplugged the power adapter (I use different ones all Apple), and after a few seconds the problem goes away. Also why I could not duplicate it at Apple.

Now I have and I await to hear from Apple http://bit.ly/ipad-mini-issue

wanted 2
Loren is an anglo-american hybrid  has been in the tech industry for 19 years, his accomplishments include introducing business broadband in 1994 in the UK for British Telecom, SaaS, and Data Centre Services in Australia for NEC Japan and others, debugging iPads for Apple. He has been around so long his 150,000 followers on twitter @mr_internet feel sorry for him and hang around.  He likes telling bad jokes and going to cooking schools (20 countries so far) , and speaking 3rd person about himself.  He blames not getting enough oxygen as a child for some of this.