Archive for the 'Tech' Category

19
Jul
11

An Ugly Black Splotch

I was riding the Metro North home last night after a great night with the guys from √čko when I snapped this picture.

QR Codes are ugly

Doesn't he look happy to be photographed?

Notice that black square in the bottom left? The one that’s taking away from an otherwise visually pleasing advertisement? This is called a QR code.

QR codes were designed to be scanned by smart phones to give users quick access to premium content or a brand’s website in a way that is measurable. While a code like this makes sense to a computer or a smart phone, they look hideous to anyone viewing the ad. App stores and mobile browsers have evolved to the point of making such shortcuts unnecessary and outdated. An anecdote: I had a single serving friend on a flight to Buffalo once who tried to convince me of QR codes efficacy. Her employer? The yellow pages.

In my mind, nothing should take away from a brand’s eye-catching logo. When I see an ad, I want to come away with an idea of what a company’s value and vision are. That message has to stay with me; it has to inspire me to want to buy. The only thing that stayed with me here was an ugly black splotch

Have you ever scanned a QR code? Do you think they’re as ugly as I do? Do we need shortcuts like these when App environments like the App Store and Android Market exist?

25
Mar
11

Things I do in Photoshop

Aside from making lulzy photos like this:
Fuck the Canes

I also occasionally make actual important things. I just finished making a landing page for my Dad’s company using Photoshop Express and a fantastic tutorial I think it came out just dandy but I’m going to probably be searching for a version of Photoshop proper.

12
Apr
10

The Death Knell of Palm: New Beginnings Elsewhere?

In a move that should surprise no one who’s kept their ear to the ground for the last few months, Palm has put itself on the block according to Bloomberg. Between the failure of Sprint to initially capitalize on the Pre’s fantastic Web Os, lack of app support, failed bizarre marketing schemes, and lackluster earning reports the signs were all there. CEO Jon Rubenstein’s hesitance to speak on the sale just a week ago hints to me that today’s announcement hadn’t just been in the works for weeks, this was a scheduled event. So where does Palm, who brought such innovation to the mobile space with Web OS go from here?

Interested parties appear to include HTC and Lenovo though all signs point to HTC winning out this battle. I don’t really see how Palm would help make Thinkpads any more potent than they are at present though any company would be glad to have the forward thinkers at Palm behind them. HTC has been one of my favorite handset makers since I first demoed the T-Mobile G1 for customers. Outside of an obvious fruit themed company, they’ve best implemented touch screen based input in mobile devices and their allegiance to Android has brought forth some truly fantastic handsets. The two things I’d be curious to see is to what extent HTC preserves Web OS if they acquire Palm. Does it become a discarded fetus on the way to greater Android supremacy, integrated into the Sense UI, or developed further as an in house OS? It seems to me that any of these options save the first bodes poorly for Android’s already fragmenting platform. My second point of curiosity is whether or not the patents HTC would gain in the acquisition will give them enough firepower to defeat Apple in the upcoming infringement suit. I’m an unabashed Apple acolyte but the capitalist in me knows the value of true competition. If HTC could at least settle on even terms with Apple it would bring them closer to finally giving the iPhone a real run for its mountains of money. This is one deal I will be paying close attention to.

13
Mar
10

Goin out on a Safari

So I rolled over out of bed in my apartment to find a cold rainy day outside and an update to Safari inside. I’ve become a serious Chrome fanboy in the last couple weeks and as such have never finished my OSX Browser War comparison. I figure over this fantastic Spring Break would be great time to check out the features on Safari. This newest version I am running is 4.0.5 and I find that while it wasn’t the perfect browser off the bat, by adding the ability to auto-fill passwords from my Keychain or where OSX stores nearly all the passwords you type for all you vapid pretty person Mac users out there. I’m sorely missing my Google bar, I can’t stress how baller it is to be able to have a google search running while you type into an address bar. After using Chrome the search/address bar dichotomy simply does not make sense. We’ll see if I can turn my compass around on Safari but my opinion seems to only go South.

08
Mar
10

Steam Coming to Macs, Productivity Never Coming Back

It’s finally happened. The crippling blow to my attempts to be productive. After years of being exclusively available to PC users, Valve’s releasing a Mac version of not only Steam, but also the Source engine. By April mac users will be able to play through the Half Life and L4D series, which is pretty badass and LONG overdue. As a Mac AND PC user (blasphemy!) this makes me especially happy since there are times I’m on the go and need to get my Portal or L4D on. Now instead of say, writing a paper in the library, I’ll be crowbar-ing headcrabs or headshot-ing pouncing hunters with a shotgun.

Oh, and just to pound the final nail in productivity’s coffin, Portal 2 is coming out later this year and will be the first game simultaneously released for Mac and PC on Steam.

Well played, Valve, but where the fuck is Half Life 2: Episode 3?!

Here’s a link to the Engadget article: Valve confirms Steam for Mac, debuts in April

05
Mar
10

ipad is due April 3rd, Your Mother is still a Whore Trebek

A little Shoop I did

So Trebek I bet your a weee bit excited. Not unlike your mother was when I told her I wasn’t going to grease the old pistol last night. Harr Harr Harr. I know I cannot wait to catch up on all my favorite shows, read a book or two (still haven’t finished the last book on Kama Sutra yer mum got me), and look for funny pictures of myself on the intersex. Based on Apple’s plans, we can expect the 3G version here in the States around May 3rd then which means if your good, your mother and I may just buy you one with an ATT service plan. But remember Trebek, no contract means I can pull the plug at anytime. Like say if you beat my high score at Robot Unicorn Attack!

03
Mar
10

Breaking News!!! Blogger wants item he can’t afford!

So while perusing Crackberry I stumbled upon this little number:

It’s like the cell phone gods have shined their grace down upon me. A sliding touchscreen Blackberry with a full physical keyboard. Long have I pined for a phone that brought the functionality and sense of faux-importance of a Blackberry, but with a larger screen and a real keyboard. I’ve tried many a phone in my day, and as novel an attempt Apple had made at creating a “user friendly” virtual keyboard, nothing beats the real deal. I’ve futzed around with some older Blackberry models, and while I unanimously enjoyed the experiences, I was always left disappointed in that tiny screen, but loved nearly everything else about the phone. Now, finally, there is hope that my dream phone will be put into production. Only one (albeit very large) question remains: will this phone be coming to Big Red? As a Verizon user, the decision for manufacturers to make their handhelds available in CDMA flavor is a big breaking point that too often prevents me on the shiniest of gadgets.

With fingers crossed, this blogger hopes that this phone will be available to the reigning map king. Because then I’ll have one of these AND an iPod Touch, and then I won’t even need to leave the house.

In response to this great news, this blogger is going to finish off his beer and pass out to episodes of American Dad!

Here’s the full article for people who want some real information/ speculation: