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Showing posts from July, 2011

July Read of the Month Review.....My First e-Book

My July Read of the Month was A Slaying in The Suburbs by Andrea Billups and Steve Miller.  This would be the first e-Book I ever purchased and read.  I bought the e-Book via the Apple i-Tunes for $7.99 (the same price it was available for in the Amazon Kindle store).  I will provide both a brief review of the book itself, and the experience of reading an e-Book on my iPad 2. First the book.  Like I have mentioned before, I usually try to read one true crime novel a year.  I enjoy the genre for a little escape.  I picked this title because it was a recent case that took place close to my home, which added to my interest.  I was somewhat familiar with the story of the case, so there was very little in the book that I found surprising.  The early chapters providing background on the crime and the investigation were well done.  The first half of the book was very good, my issue is with the coverage of the trial (the second half of the book).  It just seemed rushed and lacking of much i

Are All Book Stores.....and Libraries Next?

As I wrote about in my last post, it looks like Borders is gone for good.   I am really not surprised, when they first announced seeking bankruptcy protection in February of this year I had a feeling they were not going to make it.  The closing has become a rather large news story nationwide and especially here in Michigan with the chain founded and based out of Ann Arbor.  It even was a topic on sports talk radio 97.1 The Ticket with Pat Caputo and Dennis Fithian on Monday evening.  The future of all book stores, physical books and libraries was at the heart of the discussion.  I had to call in, it was the first time I called into talk radio in years.  I guess it was important for me to provide my input, books and libraries are kind of important to me. I guess I am split on the debate.  I hope all bookstores do not disappear, however e-Books and online sales have to be difficult to compete with.  The one positive Barnes and Nobel have going for them is their own e-Reader, the Nook

Looks Like The End Really is Near For Borders

Back in February I wrote about Borders Group filing for bankruptcy protection .  There was some hope that through organization and cuts the chain could survive.  However, news broke last week that an offer from a private-equity investor fell apart.   It now appears the entire chain may disappear with no settlement in place. Mitch Albom   (whom I normally do not enjoy reading) wrote a nice piece on the history and possible loss of Borders.  I agree with much of what Mr. Albom has to say about the giant book store chain.  I can repeat myself and tell you how I used to love spending hours in Borders.  I would roam the store looking for nothing in particular, then finally pick out a book or two and make my purchase.  However, in recent years I found myself rarely buying books from Borders.  The main reason.....price.  Books are so much cheaper via Amazon.  Even using the 40% or 50% off coupons that would flood my inbox each week did not inspire me to take a trip to Borders. I really ho

Test Post Via Cell Phone

  Wow, just a simple test post from my phone.  Technology is just amazing, I love learning something new every day.  Proud to be a geek!

Is The Hard Drive The Next to Go?

In early 2008, Apple released the Macbookair , an ultra thin and powerful notebook computer.  I really liked the look of the computer, however the idea of a machine with no hard drive was pushing me away.  I really did not think the idea of a computer with no hard drive storage would catch on.  One of the main features I look for when purchasing a computer is the amount of storage space.  However, with the increased use of portable storage devices (ranging from portable hard drives to tiny flash drives) the computer hard drive is becoming a less important feature. The MacBook Air, Hard Drive Not Included  Now, with the recent growth of "Cloud Computing," the local hard drive has taken another hit.  Over at Harry McCracken wonders if Cloud Computing will spell the end of the hard drive.   It is not a crazy concept; when I think of all the changes to computers regarding storage just in the past ten years.  Remember using floppy disks (both large and small) and ev

Gadgets Then and Now

As many of you know, I enjoy "then and now" columns.  My last published piece was a "then and now" piece on road trips.   Well, today I stumbled across a piece on Time Magazine's site comparing modern gadgets to their ancient predecessors. I personally love that some of the items on the list include their original price (and price adjusted for today's dollar).  Would you be willing to pay $3,995 for a cell phone that offered an entire 30 minutes of talk time?  Do not worry, it only takes 10 hours to charge. While my television is not nearly as old as the model in the list, I feel like I am still behind the modern television movement.  When I moved into my current house, my first purchase was a new high definition television, unfortunately this was nearly nine years ago, which means I still have a huge box television, see below. My Sweet HD Television  Once the iPad 2 is paid off, a new television is next for sure.  Are any of your gadgets outdated

Are You Ready For a New Social Network.....Google+ is Here

So you are flying on high on Facebook and Tweeting daily on Twitter......are you ready for another account to manage?  It appears web giant Google is ready to take on Facebook with their new social network Google+.  Time put together a good piece introducing Google+ and why Google decided it need to get into the social network "game." Currently, Google+ is only available in a beta test form, and can only be accessed via invite (a nice trick to drum up interest I'm sure, much like creating a line outside of a club/bar.).  After reading the Time article and many other reviews, it appears there is a lot to like about Google+.  One interesting aspect of Google+ is the fact that no profiles will be private.  If you decide to create an account you can keep aspects of your profile private, however a user's full name and gender will always be public for anyone to see. In other social networking news, Facebook and Skype announced a partnership to improve the Facebook Chat

The YouTube Zone Out, One of My Geekly Habits

It seems with each passing year I find myself watching less and less television.  Most of the time I entertain myself in the evening either by reading, writing, gaming or surfing the web.  Some nights it is a mix of each of my hobbies, or one just grabs my attention and I run with it.  Tonight was one of those evenings where I hopped onto my laptop and started browsing around on YouTube.  I really had no true "reason" to head to the site.  I was just bored, and there was nothing to watch on TV, so I plugged in my headphones and drifted away for a good hour. Whenever I get into on of these "YouTube Zone Out" modes I find myself jumping from video to video in no related pattern.  Sometimes I will click on the recommended videos based upon the video I searched for, other times something will just pop into my head and I will search for the video.  Tonight I was mainly on a music video/live performance kick, with most of the the music coming from the 1980's.  Do an

iPad 2 Review

I have been going back and forth since I started this blog about purchasing an e-Reader.  In June I finally decided the iPad 2 was the purchase I was going to make.  I made this choice for a number of reasons.  I wanted a device I could use as an e-Reader, but I did not like the idea of a non-color screen.  I also was happy with my other Apple products, so I figured the iPad 2 was for me. I purchased the 16g Black WIFI model.  I decided I did not need a 3G model, because I have my iPhone when I am not on a wifi network and I carry that with me everywhere.  That is the same reason I only picked up the 16g model.  My phone is 32g and is able to carry my entire music collection.  I do not need to carry around two copies of my data with me everywhere.  Now if you don't own an iPhone you may want a larger storage size and/or the 3g availability. After a few weeks I have to say I love the device.  It is so much more than a "larger iPhone."  I find myself using it daily for