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Thursday
Jul072011

An iPhone SLR Mount is here - and it's no joke

I've often said that the best camera I own is my iPhone 4 except for the fact that it lacks an optical zoom lens. But I don't want an SLR. The size, weight and cost make this class of camera an unattractive option for me.

Now, it looks like I can have the best of both worlds. Sort of.

Photojojo has released their iPhone SLR Mount for use with Nikon or Canon EOS lenses allowing you to add not only a simple optical zoom, but enabling you to take your photos to an entirely new level.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jun292011

Wired for iPad Now Available Free to Print Subscribers

Thus keeping print media valuable (to advertisers), yet not, since I'll subscribe to the print edition just to get the iPad edition and never read the print version. I'll probably donate the printed copies to my local library.

Tuesday
Jun282011

New Gmail Interface for iPhone

This morning, I discovered a new Gmail interface on the iPhone.

At the top, you'll now find links to your other Google Apps (Calendar, Docs, Talk, etc.).

But they're not just simple links, tap one and pull down and boom - you've got pretty icons to help direct you to the proper app.

Wednesday
Jun152011

QR Codes Provide Quick and Easy Access to Facebook Likes On-The-Go

Recently, Optify shared some research inferring that social signals (Facebook "Likes") correlate with search engine results. Given this fact, it's a no wonder that so many web sites and businesses are asking you to hit the Like button.

I advised a client that he could use a number of incentives to get people to Like his Facebook page, including using a Like as an entry in a drawing. He took the advice and decided to giveaway an iPad to people who like his page.

What he didn't tell me was that he wanted people to Like his page and perform the giveaway at a professional conference made up of less-than-tech-savvy attendees.

This was a bit of challenge. Access to social networks are, by design, very personal. Most people engage with them on their computers or smartphones - neither of which would be on-hand by many folks at this event.

The fallback method I suggested for acquiring Likes and entering people into the drawing was SMS. Simply send a text to

32665

with the text 

like yourpagenamehere

The only problem with this approach was the name of the page. Instead of being something quick and easy to type like facebook.com/YPN he had chosen a long, search engine-friendly version such as facebook.com/thisismyreallygreatsuperduperpage

It's enough of a challenge to get someone to opt-in so the last thing you want is for him to feel foolish when he can't type the long name on his flip phone or his touchscreen smartphone.

The solution - which I didn't deduce until after the fact - is a QR code. Yes, there still aren't too many people who have QR code scanners installed on their phones either, but it does solve the text-entry challenge.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jun142011

New iOS Podcasting Workflow

Since I began podcasting in 2006, I've been using a variety of methods to record audio, both in the studio and remotely.

I use Macs exclusively and my experiments have included full simultaneous multi-track recording in Garageband using a Firewire mixer, to simply using a conference phone and a pocket recorder to capture phone interviews.

I finally settled upon Audio HiJack Pro for both local and remote recording as the software enables me to capture both sides of a Skype conversation in a single audio file.

This setup worked great for years with only minor hiccups. Finally, a few weeks ago, I had some weirdness occur in this setup and I lost an entire 90-minute episode.

For whatever reason, the Skype connection dropped. We immediately reconnected and everything sounded fine during recording. However, when I played the file back, the audio coming from the studio mics from that point forward was completely garbled. (My caller sounded fine, which was even more strange.)

Sure, we had a good conversation - in fact, it would have been a great episode -  but I wasted everyone's time by not having a better solution for monitoring the audio.

Fixing It

To say that I have a few gadgets in my studio would be a gross understatement so I decided to take stock of my gear and pull together a simple, reliable method for capturing local and remote audio.

Here's the result.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jun062011

Why did Twitter partner with PhotoBucket? iOS 5.

Twitter has gotten into the photo sharing game, but not on their own - they've partnered with PhotoBucket.

Apple's WWDC Keynote (which is happening as I write this) tells us why: Twitter is going to be heavily integrated with Apple's iOS 5, the operating system for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

Having worked with for a company that was (and still is) an Apple partner, I can tell you that it probably went down like this:

"Hi, Twitter? Yeah, this is Apple calling. We want to integrate Twitter pretty deeply into iOS 5. You cool with that? Oh yeah, and we're going to announce it next month."

In the interest of secrecy, Apple likely waited as long as they could before contacting Twitter. Once the company understood the time horizon for getting into the photo sharing game, they most likely decided to partner in order to meet the WWDC deadline.

The details of how it really happened will surely surface over the coming months but I'll bet that's how it happened.

Thursday
May052011

Bigger Video, Not Broken Video

This scenario has bugged me for some time and I'm surprised that no one has thought to fix it:

You're watching an embedded video in a web page. It's small because it has to fit within the width of the page element in which it's placed. To make it larger, your only other option is to maximize it to full screen.

However, unless it's Full HD, what you gain by enlarging the screen you lose in resolution - everything becomes blurred or pixelated.

Why isn't there an option for "Native Resolution"?

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Apr272011

Tungle Acquired by RIM

Seems like a desperate move by RIM to improve its relevance outside its base of enterprise customers.

They better not screw it up - I love Tungle.

[Tungle Announcement]

Monday
Jan312011

Experiments in Minimalism and New Thinking 

Look at this beautiful iPhone 4 leather wallet. Just look at.

Let me tell you why I got one.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jan132011

Satarii Star: Like having a camera operator in your pocket

So, you're one of those people who likes to shoot video of yourself and post it to YouTube or maybe your blog. Or, you might be producing video interviews with clients of your company. Or, maybe you're a journalist without a camera man. Or, maybe you want to use FaceTime on your iPhone 4 while you're moving about the kitchen.

Ok. Maybe you don't fit into any of these profiles but like many of us, you've probably grown tired of having a camera with a fixed location and the confinement it requires in order to get a good shot on your pocket video camera.

If you own an iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, Flip, Kodak Zi8, Android phone or (insert video recording gadget here) then you'll love this product from startup Satarii. (Keep reading to see it in action)

Click to read more ...