Posts Tagged ‘iPad’

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iOS7 thoughts

September 22, 2013

I updated both my iPhone 4s and my third-gen iPad to iOS7, and everything worked fine. I think the default typeface is pretty light, making it a bit more difficult for those of us with older eyes, but it is a kind of a refreshing change…although it tends to look more “Windows-8-like” than I expected from Apple. But the apps seem to work fine. I’ve encountered no problems or speed hits.

But, I have one issue not really related to the update: I am going to move up to a new iMac soon from my aging Mac Pro. I’ve done the research on how to back up the iPhone first, and all of that, but the process still seems very tedious and fraught with potential disaster. Does anybody have a good, simple way to do this?

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Stupid iCal tricks

May 29, 2012

I use the Reminders app on my iPhone and iPad a lot. I wish all the functions that are available in iCal were available on the phone, but I still use it without them. I actually use it more now that Siri adds them for me.

I created a new list because I had a bunch of things to do today, and I didn’t want to hunt through the long list. Then I moved the reminders from the default “Reminders” list to the new list. (I did all this on the iPad.)

When I opened Reminders on the iPhone, the new list was there, but the regular “Reminders” list had no entries! They showed up in iCal, and on the iPad, but not on the phone.

Searches through the intertubes didn’t help much, but finally, though, I found an old Apple forum post that said…you guessed it…turn the phone off and then on again. I figured it wouldn’t work since it described behavior from a previous iOS version.

Yeah. That’s all it took. Hold the Sleep button down until the red slider appears, then turn it off, then hold the button again until it starts up.

All my Reminders were there.

One the one hand, duh; on the other, why would you have to do that? I thought all this stuff was in iCloud and synced automatically? I had all the settings correct!

Anyway, they are in there, and that makes me happier. Not delirious, but happier.

Now I’d better get to work…

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Halloween Angry Birds and more

October 26, 2011

I’m not a games guy, but I’ve found I can waste a lot of time very enjoyably playing Angry Birds – all three versions – on the iPad. Not on the iPhone, mind you – anybody who can do that has tiny fingers and great eyes. But I’ve caught the dang AB bug like millions of others. This image is from a pumpkin carving contest sponsored by TMZ. It doesn’t look like much carving was done to create it, but it’s cool anyway.

You can also get a stencil at that site so you can carve your jack-o-lantern this year to look like a portrait of Ice-T. Who doesn’t need that?

Ice-T is very unhappy!

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Little stuff

October 12, 2011

I read this in a Tweet from Frank J. Fleming: it’s nice that Blackberry decided to have 3 days of silence in honor of Steve Job’s passing.

Speaking of Steve and Apple, today is the day the iCloud is open for business and iOS 5 is available. I started to download it for my iPad and iTunes said it would take 12 hours. The servers must be “a little busy.”

I’ve not updated either Mac to OSX Lion yet. I don’t know how involved the updates for applications will be and I don’t really need the upgrade to the OS as much as I need the apps. The iOS is different. It seems most everything I need should work with it. At least, I hope it will.

I looked at upgrading to the iPhone 4S. I only bought my iPhone 4 last fall, so I would have to pay the higher price for a new one from AT&T – a minimum of $ 450! Not going to happen. Not just for voice control and the few other big things, sorry. If it had been the rumored iPhone 5, with a bigger screen, it would have been different. Sorry, guys. I pass on this one. My wife is getting one, but she’s been using my old hand-me-down 3GS.

I guess the pretty weather is about gone. Too bad. It’s been really nice. I’m going to really miss it – I’ve gotten awfully used to near-perfect weather!

 

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Steven Paul Jobs, 1955-2011

October 5, 2011

The “insanely great” Steve Jobs finally lost his battle with cancer. I figure what went on today was something like this:

St. Peter: Hello, Steve.

Steve: Hi! It sure is great to get out of that bag!*

St. Peter (checking Steve’s name off on his iPad): Go on in, man. We’ve been waiting for you. We’re glad you’re here!

*If you don’t get the reference, check just after 3:00 on this:

We’re sure glad you were with us, Steve, and that you brought us so much with your unique talents. I’m writing this on my three-month-old MacBook Pro. My life would not have been anything close to what it is without the vision and passion of Steve Jobs. There are millions of people like me out there now. We should all strive to bring even a little of that kind of vision and passion to bear in our own lives.

I’m sorry to see you go, Steve, but I know that you were in great pain. Now that pain is gone. May God be with you, and may He comfort your family in this time of their loss.

 

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Jobs resigns as CEO of Apple, Inc.

August 25, 2011

Steve Jobs promo photo from the first issue of MacWorld when the Macintosh was introduced in 1984

Steve Jobs, who has revitalized Apple over the last 14 years and made it one of the most successful and most talked-about companies in America, has stepped down from the CEO position. He has been ill for some time, originally from pancreatic cancer. He received a liver transplant and has been treated in a variety of ways but he and Apple have been very close-mouthed about his health situation.

Tim Cook, COO, has been moved up to the CEO position. He had been running Apple since January when Steve took a leave of absence. Steve remains as Chairman of Apple’s board. He recommended Cook for the position in his resignation letter. This ensures a smooth transition and there should be little disruption in the day-to-day operation of Apple.

But day-to-day wasn’t Steve’s bit. Steve is the vision guy. Somehow – and nobody, probably Steve included, understands how – he has an incredible ability to pick winners. Apparently he pushed and pushed the design teams for the iPhone and iPad until he was satisfied…apparently he pushed them far more than other design teams at other companies do, as evidenced by their competing products. Historically he has been very demanding of his people, and very opinionated. He’s been able to do it because (a) he’s been mainly right, and (b) because he’s been right so often they make a lot of money. I don’t think he “invents” in the traditional sense of the word, but he “filters” – taking the ideas of others and determining which of those are the best and most marketable. That is a particular kind of genius.

If you read a biography of Steve Jobs, you will see that he had absolutely no training for such a thing. He’s a college dropout, was kind of a Seventies hippie – slash – tech geek, but he has something – something you can’t learn at Harvard Business School. I don’t know where it comes from.

I want to believe that without his guidance Apple will continue to innovate the way it has for the last decade and a half. The history of Apple from 1985 to 1995 doesn’t support that belief, of course. A parade of poor management almost destroyed the company. When Jobs came back, it was like a breath of fresh air. It wasn’t the design people who were at fault, but those who decided what direction the company should go in. In other words, the leadership. Somehow, Steve Jobs is a leader. He doesn’t fit most of the models that have been thrown out there the last few decades for what a leader should be, but you can’t argue with the numbers. He’s done the job, and far beyond. He deserves some time to rest and recuperate.

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Book Review” “Outies,” by Dr. Jennifer Pournelle

January 21, 2011

Dr. Jennifer Pournelle

Dr. Jennifer Pournelle is an Assistant Professor in the School of the Environment at the University of South Carolina. She is a former US Army Intelligence officer and extensive experience and training in archaeology, especially in the Middle East. In addition to a bundle of scholarly articles, she has now written a science fiction novel. It’s set in the universe created by her father, Dr. Jerry Pournelle, and Larry Niven, in the landmark First Contact novel “The Mote In God’s Eye.”

A Motie Engineer

“Outies” is the term used for those humans who live on planets not yet formally admitted to the Second Empire of Man.The planet of New Utah is one such place, colonized by two Mormon splinter groups from another Empire world, and then also populated by religious groups from a variety of other places. Still, there’s a lot of open space on a planet, and the humans who have been on New Utah for only a few generations don’t all know what’s going on everywhere

The book is pretty well written, especially if it is a first novel. There are a few nagging misspellings and other editing errors that another careful reading would have cleaned out, but nothing that detracts from the story. The main characters are pretty well drawn, even though there are quite a few and at first it’s difficult to keep them straight.

I’d hate to give the story line away too much. I will tell you this – the story not only connects with “The Gripping Hand,” the sequel to “Mote,” (it takes place shortly after the events in that book), but to the events in “Mote” as well. It adds depth to the universe created by Niven and Pournelle the Elder and opens the possibility for more books to come, without this one being a cliff-hanger.

"Outies" cover illustration

The book is only available electronically. Right now it’s only available for B&N Nook and for Kindle, but you can use the Kindle version on a variety of platforms, so that shouldn’t be that much of a problem.I don’t doubt it will be available on print-on-demand eventually through Amazon as well. I’ve purchased several POD books through Amazon over the last year or so and the quality is very good. Any problems I’ve noted came from the original source document, not from the printing process.

By the way, I like the iPhone version of the Kindle app a lot better than the Nook app right now, and on the iPad I think it’s every bit as good as Apple’s iBook app, and searching for content is far easier.

If you’ve never read the other two books, I recommend you read them first, in the original order. “Mote” is not a short book, but as I said, it is considered one of the definitive First Contact novels, if not THE definitive one – even Robert A. Heinlein said so! There is an essay Niven and Pournelle wrote called “Building ‘The Mote in God’s Eye'” that can be found in Larry Niven’s short story collection “N-Space.” In it they explain how they created the Moties, and how the Motie biology dictated much of the plot of the story. They even talk about how a model kit of a fictional spaceship, the Leif Ericsson, was used as a starting point for the INS MacArthur in the book.

Chris Doll's magnificent "MacArthur" scratchbuilt model

As I said, it’s a deep and rich universe. The Second Empire of Man is a part of Jerry Niven’s future history series, which includes many of his novels describing the time leading up to the First Empire of Man. It’s all worth reading, but you don’t need to read all those to get the storyline of these books. “Mote,” “Hand,” and “Outies” work together very well to give you a very satisfying picture of a spacefaring civilization by the best hard-science fiction writing team (and now, daughter) in the business. The book, like the two before it, is very much recommended.