Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Warning: Nerdy Post

I'm a gadget whore. I love gadgets. I have 3 GPS devices and a laptop with GPS built in. I have 6 laptops, 3 of which I use on a regular basis. I have an iPad, and iPod (3 actually), and my current phone is an Android after having had Blackberries for the last 7 years. I have dozens of two-way radios of my own (lots for sale), and access to hundreds more in a pinch. I have wired and wireless headphones and headsets. I have a Bluetooth speakermic in the car to comply with California law.

I've got computer certifications like crazy, and I've had FCC licenses for more than 3/4 of my life.

So I'm pretty qualified to comment on what works and what doesn't when it comes to communications devices from both a consumer and techie standpoint.

Here's my take on the iPhone 5:
Ignore all the pundits out there that want all the changes. Remember this: Make it better, stronger, faster.

  • Increase the resolution on the screen. The Retina Display is fantastic, but if you can do better, than DO IT!
  • Make the battery life longer. I don't like having to keep a charging cable with me if I want more than 8 hours of life out of my Android.
  • Make the battery replaceable. People don't want to have to ship the unit back just to swap out a battery.

Stronger & Faster:

  • Make sure that all the 4G bands are included. This includes LTE and HSPA+. I don't like being left out because I'm not an AT&T, Verizon or Sprint customer, and all they have is 3G. My 4G HTC Sensation is faster than an iPhone 4, which only has 3G. 
  • Quad-Core Processor. The new Android devices are shipping with Quad-Core processors, so the iPhone 4S's Dual Core processor is behind the curve.
  • Make the iPhone more attractive to the Enterprise. The main reason that I had a Blackberry is because of the push email and the real keyboard. The main reason that I got rid of the BB is the lack of apps and the tiny screen. Both the iTunes Store and Android Market have thousands of apps, and the screen size on the iPhone and Android are at least 2x the BB's size, and 4x the resolution. All they need now is real push email. A real keyboard isn't all that necessary, as long as the buttons on the screen are big enough. 

What to leave alone:

  • Don't change the form factor. People have already bought cases and other accessories for their iPhone 4 series. They don't like spending another wad of money on the same thing over again, especially in this economy.

Hopefully, we'll see the iPhone 5 this year. I expect it to be released around October in order to take advantage of the holiday selling season.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Hi, I'm Smokey, and I'm a Brony.

I might as well admit it. I'm a Brony. Before you go and call me something you might regret, realize that I'm a huge fan of The Powerpuff Girls, SpongeBob Squarepants, and the animated stuff coming out of Williams Street. If you know me IRL, you know that I'm not what people think bronies might be. I haven't gone full cosplay, but I do have almost all the shows DVR'd, I have a MLP:FIM ringtone on my phone, and I wander through Equestria Daily and My Little Brony on a daily basis.

If you're a fan of the old school Warner Brothers cartoons, and vegged out watching the cartoons every Saturday morning, you'll enjoy MLP:FIM. The episodes actually have a point, and aren't there just to sell toys. There's enough pop culture sprinkled through to keep you guessing what's next.

That is all.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Virtual theft is a crime, too.


"This is a virtual crime case that involved real violence used to obtain
virtual goods.  The victim was beaten and threatened with a (real)
knife, with the defendants demanding he hand over a virtual mask and a
virtual amulet within the online game Runescape.  So at the very least,
this was a case of criminal assault.  The only issue was whether the
crime amounted to theft, which hinged on whether or not the virtual
items could be classified, under Dutch law, as goods."

We've got a lot of ankle biters customers that play RS on the public machines. There haven't been any incidents of physical violence related to any MMO games in the System, but kids will be kids, and I can see that happening outside the buildings, such as at school or their usual "hangouts".

My thoughts: When virtual items are able to be bought and sold using real cash, the prime example being eBay, then virtual items should be treated the same as tangible goods.