Every time Apple ships a new phone or releases a new version of iOS the first thing most pundits check is battery life. And the news usually isn’t good, meaning that it’s about the same as it was in the previous version, or worse. During international travel, especially when one is on his own, a dead phone can be a very disconcerting thing. Apple’s battery challenges have created an entire market for external batteries to keep their kit going. I’ll comment on external batteries in a moment, but first...
On my recent trips to London and Washington D.C., I had the opportunity to review several pieces of Briggs and Riley luggage. I found them all superbly crafted and well-suited for the life of the commuter. The lifetime warranty on all bags includes repair coverage even for damage caused by an airline (but it does not include cosmetic damage). Each bag includes a unique serial number so it can be registered, eliminating the need to find original proof of purchase should the bag ever need repair.
If you want to take really good pictures with your iPhone or iPad you need to enhance your devices, or perhaps just not use them at all. I'll come back to that last bit later.
We arrived in Norwich after nearly 12 hours in a plane seat, first a flight from Seattle to Amsterdam, and then from Amsterdam to Norwich. We then wandered the Schiphol Airport for several hours, including a long period of time in Lounge 41. Eventually we settled in at the Holiday Inn, Norwich City Center.
To complement our current issue on travel, I’m going to be sharing my thoughts on tools and technologies I’m using during an extended stay in the United Kingdom. Starting this Sunday I’ll be in Norwich, UK, and then in London.
This first post will focus on the apps and other tools I used to plan the trip.
The Ideal Keyboard Case
There are many good cases on the market, but the ideal case hasn’t been produced yet. Here are the features of the ideal case:
I’ve sold most of my art books. I don’t know if this was the intent of Open Door’s Alan Oppenheimer or not, but it was the result of him providing me with Art Authority ($9.99). My iPad is no coffee table book, but that’s a good thing. As Apple touts the pencil thinness of the iPad Air, coffee table books start to look more and more arcane. What coffee table books have over the iPad is the size of their canvas. But when one actually visit museums, art books seem a bit of a travesty of pure form. Books not only fail to represent scale well, they don’t reproduce paintings or drawings with anything like fidelity to the originals; and they offer no way to experience media or paint thickness or pen impression. And when it comes to sculpture they are, of course, overwhelmingly flat (not to dismiss pop-up books).
As people across the world slept on Wednesday night, Microsoft subtly shifted the branding associated with SkyDrive, the company's Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive competitor. The now rebranded OneDrive, offers a basic storage capability across devices. The initial allocation is an interesting 7GB. To get you started, mobile users who choose to backup their photos to OneDrive will be rewarded with an additional 3GB, bringing the storage capacity for new users to 10GB. Like Dropbox before it, OneDrive now encourages its adherents to send out referrals. Each referral that takes up the offer returns 500MB in incremental storage, maxing at 5GB of extra free storage.
Purported Hack of Rovio Angry Birds Website (listed on Google as unverified)
Every week now there seems to be some new revelation about how our information is being collected by U.S. Government agencies for reasons that range from vague to useless to nefarious. In late January, former NSA Edward Snowden suggested that Angry Birds, along with a number of mobile apps, were the source of intelligence information.
As with previous documents provided by Snowden, the NSA did not deny or confirm what information sources they use, but rather said that any communications they did collect not associated with “valid foreign intelligence targets” was not of interest.