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Comment Re:Good luck with those new map service. (Score 1) 513

It's their first foray into the mapping world. Google has a huge head start, setting the bar pretty high. For my area it's been spot on for accuracy. And it was nice to know they acknowledged the problem and made a statement that they were working to fix inaccuracies people are reporting.

Comment Re:Not always smooth (Score 1) 513

As of iOS 5, it is smooth now, as long as you use the "Update" feature (not Restore) in iTunes or even better (and smoother), the built in update on the device. I used it to upgrade from 5 to 6. It took a bit to download (600 MB), but besides that it went perfectly.

Settings -> General -> Software Update

I hope this helps.

Comment Not Net Neutrality problem? (Score 1) 95

Here's my question... does net neutrality even come into play here? AT&T doesn't block FaceTime traffic at all. You fan jailbreak your phone, install 3Gunrestrictor (or whatever it's called), and use FaceTime just fine over AT&T's network (I've done this). The blocking is in iOS. I don't know the exact mechanism, but once you pay AT&T, they somehow have the keys to toggle FT over cellular on your device.

So, if this is the case (it's locked locally in device, AT&T with the keys from Apple), it seems to me that AT&T can successfully argue that this is not a net neutrality conflict since the it's the device, not the network or network blocking, preventing the service. That is unless net neutrality rules are very loosely worded, in which case it will be a battle of the lawyers over interpretation I guess (?).

I'd switch from AT&T if they weren't the only carrier with the iPhone on GSM (voice+data) and LTE in the US.

I love being a consumer in a world where corporations work for the customer. Wait, that was just a dream.

Comment Re:He's right. (Score 1) 575

I don't understand the narrow-mindedness about tablets on this forum.

Tablets have come a long way in terms of productivity in the 3 years they have been mainstream. Just because your kids enjoy them doesn't make them less useful to people of all ages. My little cousins love them to play games. My little sister loves it for social media apps (Facebook and such). My wife uses them for reading music while playing piano and organ and reading online, I use it for work (SSH console, Cisco console, RDP, VNC, email, chat, analyze 802.11, etc...), and my grandmother uses it to read books and stream music and netflix. There are tons of other uses too. For the purpose of this community, might as well mention it streams HD porn quite nicely. lol.

It's just a modern multi-purpose tool. They are "made for" whatever you can apply their benefits to. easy to wipe off too.

Comment Re:He's right. (Score 1) 575

If used appropriately, tablets are extremely useful in college. There's no (practical) limit to the amount of notes you can take, you have the ability to record audio while you take notes, you can thousands of text books in under a couple pounds on your back, and your reference tools are almost limitless with apps like WolframAlfa, Google, and Wikipedia, among others. Being able to multi-task means you can switch from your notes to references to email with quick gestures.

Being easily distracted is a personal problem. Even pen and paper can be distracting. I used to doodle when I got bored in class. Students can choose to be responsible and benefit from use of a tablet in class. And I'm sure a lot do.

Educations benefits from iPads to younger children may increase with iOS 6 which has a lock-down capability to disallow exiting an app (such as an edcuational app) to look at other distractions. Not sure if Android has this or not.

Comment Evolving Internet-Only setup (Score 2) 479

I've wondered about the best way to do this as well. I refuse to pay for a service that makes me watch commercials (cable/sat TV). IMHO advertisers should be paying cable companies to give away cable access to people who want it, or there should not be commercials if I'm paying. Why do I need to pay to be advertised to? I'm sure it's more complex, but I just don't care.

My setup has evolved over time. I have a 30 Mbps Internet connection, a 55" LED LG mounted to the wall in my living room, and a mid-line BD/surround system. The evolving part is the media source of course. I started with a small tower with Windows 7 running on it. It let me play my Windows-based games on my big screen and I could stream Netflix, Hulu, iTunes, CDs, DVDs, Blu-Ray, and my questionably acquired collection of movies and TV series.

Disclaimer: I know from reading this site frequently that most people here don't like Apple. The disclaimer part is that I just don't care. My views are based on my experience.

Eventually I decided it was taking up too much space, making too much noise, and taking up too much electricity (didn't want to shut it down because takes a while to boot). Over the last couple years I've picked up an iPhone and an iPad, so as a natural progression I decided to try the Apple TV. It has some nice features such as being 1080p, having AirPlay (lets me stream music and pictures from my iDevices, and lets me mirror the screen on my iPad, some games work with it too), and a superb Netflix interface (much better than most App-enabled media appliances). I've picked up a few TV series and a few movies and they play beautiful video and sound. Since most people seem to have iDevices nowadays, it's nice for friend and family that come over to be able to share pictures and videos and such from their phones on the TV.

The problem with Apple TV is that it's the usually Apple-walled-garden situation. You're limited to the services they provide (for now). I suspect they will open the Apple TV up for app dev soon (like they did for the iPhone when the Appe Store was announced) based on the direction the interface is heading. Once that happens it may be a solve-all solution for my needs. But until then, there is one major problem with it... there's no way to play my video collection.

To fix this, eventually I picked up a Boxee from Best Buy (made by D-Link... not my favorite brand). So far it has been a fantastic solution. It streams my video collection on my LAN flawlessly, streams Netflix (interface is not as polished as Apple's), Pandora, Vudu (decent service), Hulu, and many others. There's an app repository that you can get quite a few apps from, and the ability to add custom repos if you'd like. The remote is not a simple and beautifully made sliver of aluminum like the Apple TV remote, but it's far more functional. It has a full QWERTY keyboard on the back, it's not directional (works in any orientation, so not IR I guess), and the front is a simple interface. The Boxee also support AirPlay for audio and video. I haven't had luck with doing any screen mirroring.

I've only just recently discovered the Vudu service on it. It's owned by Walmart and it's pretty nifty. I don't want to be an advertisement for it but if you go the Boxee route you should definitely check out Vudu.

Over all the Boxee does 99% of what I want and maybe everything that you would want. You can even add an antenna attachment so you can stream local broadcast channels. The Apple TV is nicer in design (smaller, sleeker, cheaper), interface, remote (iDevices can be remotes too), and overall polish. Once they start having apps for it and stuff like Oplayer and Hulu show up on it, I don't think I'll need the Boxee anymore.

I've also considered the Roku, but I haven't had a reason to look at it since I got the Boxee.

Comment Re:Did I miss something? (Score 1) 914

I think the "engineering marvel" isn't about the generation of components, but the form factor, design, and quality of the hardware. Are there any other laptops out there with specs like this? The quality of the display alone (pixel density, contrast, thinness) is unique among what's available. I wouldn't call it a marvel by far, but I would have to say that this looks like the best spec laptop out there now. Far too expensive for some poor IT guy like me, but I'm sure a lot of rich people will buy it and under-appreciate it's capabilities just the right amount.

Comment Apple in-ear (not the stock ones) (Score 1) 448

The best in-ear headphone I've had are Apple's. Not the crap stock ones that come with their devices though. Those leave bruises in my hear-holes (that's the technical term). I get the feeling from reading the rest of this thread that most probably won't agree with me.

I bought some Beats Tour in-ear headphones (the ridiculously overpriced things you see at Best Buy) thinking something that pricey and with the specs that good on the box, it has to be amazing. The quality of them turned out to be crap though. Nice cable (Monster), but the ear-pieces were strangely shaped. The worse part was the ear-tips were a smooth rubber that didn't breathe, so when you put them in your ear, it sealed it and caused suction in your ear-hole (still technical term). Maybe my anatomy is different from people who like these headphones, but this causes the same affect as when I change elevations quickly (I jump really high) and you have to yawn to fix it. I was "yawning" a lot. These things cost (at the time) $200 after taxes and I couldn't stand them. Don't get me wrong, the sound was decent, with a full frequency response range.

For my next pair I picked up Apple's nice in-ear set for $80. I was a bit skeptical because it was Apple, which wasn't exactly known for making headphones. The range was fantastic ( 5 Hz to 21 KHz ) and the rubber tips are great. They are a soft rubber material that doesn't cause the suction problem I experienced with the beats headphones.

On top of solving the suction problem had having amazing range for in-ear, it was also less than half the price of the Beats. It also has a microphone, volume control, and a play/pause button (works with Siri too if you're one of THOSE people (I am)). I use it for both my music and my phone calls. They don't fatigue my ear-holes (technical term) when I'm on a 2-hour conference call, and they are great for air travel too.

The next best ones I would suggest (if you want in-ear) are the $20 JVC Marshmallow headphones at Walmart. Those are a close second (no mic/volume control).

Again, this is for in-ear. I know you specifically mentioned they hurt your ears, which is why I generally avoided them. But these were an exception and are now my favorite. :)

Comment Re:Feds won't like it (Score 1) 188

Geez people. Why not do some research before jumping on the bashing bandwagon?

After 5 seconds of Googling (give or take, didn't have a stopwatch):

"Apple has submitted three cryptographic modules that are in the modules in process queue for FIPS 140-2 compliance..."

Also, there are apps for that.

I used to respect this site and it's posters.

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