Wednesday, December 31, 2008

CAD Hatch Pattern T-Shirt

CAD all day, CAD all night. Those hatch patterns start to dance and tease you with promises of sleep. Nope... sleep is for the... the weak...... zzzzzzzzzzzz

Seriously neat shirts with AutoCAD hatch patterns on the front. Really inside joke, which will be shared by only those who use the program. The only problem with the shirt is the pen style is off (another joke). LINK

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

2008 Logo Trends

The 2008 year in review of logo designs. Interesting the styles that became new, novel and nifty in 2008. LINK

Holy @!*$, Rocket Crayons

Ummmm.... WOW! Where can I get a pack? LINK

Crayon Carvings

Pete Goldlust has patients, and a steady hand to carve these intricately carved crayons. No coffee for him! Extra caffeine in my coca-cola coffee please.

Recycle Old Crayons

Very good article by Chica & Jo on melting down old crayons into new shapes. It kind of reminds me of the melted crayons at Hallmark's Kelidiscope here in Kansas City.

  1. prep crayons
  2. sort crayons
  3. boil crayons
  4. mold crayons
  5. use new crayons

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Art of Jim Denevan

Jim Denevan has made large freehand drawing on a dry lake low tide beaches. Jim walked all day creating his art and can walk up to 40 miles in its creation. His work is transient, as the ocean or rains come in and wash away the art. He seems to have the same, 'appreciate the moment' mentality the Buddhist monks have when creating their sand art.

Posting to Blogger while on the road.

How to send posts to your Blogger Account while using your mobile phone.

Dogs at play on Christmas Day

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Common Craft Video

CommonCraft are the wonderful and creative people who explain the complex with simple & fun stop motion videos. You can see some of the CC's videos on my blog. For example, I just used the video below to enplane Twitter.

Check out more of their fun, instructional videos at

Twitter in Plain English

Zooboing is on Twitter

Look Ma... I'm Tweeting... Twittering.... Twiterpated.

I've decided to give twitter a try and have started using the service. I've even downloaded the twitter software for my iphone and have easy access to send and receive from my account. I already have one follower and am following several. I'm still kicking the tires and trying it out. Tell me what you think of twitter, and follow me at the link below.

For those of you who don’t know what Twitter is. It’s a microblogging host. It’s like a blog, but you are limited to 140 characters per each post. It is kind of like this blog, however it is much shorter, does not have pretty images, and focuses mostly on my personal life.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Belize Blue Hole

Huh... Ya do learn a new thing every day!

Blue holes are roughly circular, steep-walled depressions, and so named for the dramatic contrast between the dark blue, deep waters of their depths and the lighter blue of the shallows around them


Monday, December 22, 2008

Tileable Texture - Bamboo

Seamless Tileable Texture by Patrick Hoesly
Bamboo siding... what every house needs.
Now all together.... 'in the tiki tiki tiki room, in the tiki tiki tiki room'
(click for larger image)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Dead Like Me... Back from the Dead.

Dead Like Me Comes Back For More Life After Death

Back among the non-living Showtime canceled Dead Like Me back in 2004 after just two seasons, but five years later it’s been resurrected in straight-to-dvd movie form. MGM announced today that Dead Like Me: Life After Death will be released on February 17th, and it will again star Ellen Muth and Callum Blue. The characters of Joy, Roxy, and Daisy back as well, but Mandy Patinkin is gone. Instead, there will be a new head reaper and the story takes off from there. Two writers/EPs from the series wrote the screenplay, but it looks like series creator Bryan Fuller (of the recently canceled Pushing Daisies) was not involved. A new complete series collection of Dead Like Me will also be released on February 17th. It will include both seasons and the new movie. --- quote from INDb

Saturday, December 20, 2008

SketchUp & Google Earth

Sketchup and Google Earth are building up city after city. Both pieces of software makes it easy to build, locate and texture a massing model of a building.


So... who do you love?

Cute photo found on the web.

Attack Clouds

So, How exactly do you teach clouds to attack? There must be a night-school class somewhere.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Morgue Files

I discovered this wonderful website with free images for the downloading. The images are free for corporations to use. NICE! Don't worry about quality, these images are well composed, and nicely finished. Just make sure you give credit to the photographer!


Click on the image to see the larger version... now take a look at her shoulder.... where is the dude? Call a medic, he left his left hand behind. YIKES!!!

[tchap-ek-tuh-mee] –noun, plural Photoshoppery.
the excision of extraneous male[s] in a photograph of a model. Origin: 1990–95; CHAP + -ectomy

The good guys over at Photoshop Disasters always make me laugh. To think, there are professional companies out there who don't hire professional illustrators. Glitches like this are indeed funny, but really do sabotage a real world marketing budget.

Check out more of the Photoshop glitches at

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Several LinkedIn Buttons

LinkedIn has several buttons which can be pasted onto Blog pages (look Right) or added to the bottom of your email signature line. It appears the link to these buttons has shifted around on LinkedIn and now is hard (if not impossible) to find. I've included a few buttons for you to copy & paste and use yourself. Happy connecting!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Adobe CS4 and Photoshop Extended.

Finally got my version of Adobe CS4 installed tonight. It was a large install and took several hours from start to finish. Not too bad, but still time consuming.

I'm really excited about Photoshop Extended. I've never used the 3d version before. Supposedly, I can take a 3d model and paint directly onto the surfaces. I'm anxious to give it a whorl. My only reservation is that I'm use to texturing models within the 3D app. I'm hoping there will be a connection of some sorts I can use to bridge the texturing between the applications.

Have you used Photoshop Extended? If so, send me an email and let me know what you think.

I've also come across this review of CS4 over at MacWorld. Not a bad read.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The LinkedIn Love

I've spent some time time uploading my resume and poking around LinkedIn. I've quickly discovered the potential with the service. Not only is it a business/social website, it allows for connecting with people you know on a business level and do web based networking. It has been done well in the attached video...

LinkedIn allows members of the community to stay in touch with each other, and a variety of tools for meeting new people. Visit my LinkedIn page at:

Windows 7 faster than Vista

Life hacker points to a review of the upcoming Windows 7. The reviewer points out that Windows 7 is faster than Vista. Some to-do was made of this... but in reality, every new OS needs to offer something new, and better than the previous version for anyone to justify buying the OS.

I'm happy Windows 7 is faster than Vista... though I would expect it to be just so.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Books to help fall asleep. Humor Compitition.

Before & After magazine (a wonderful magazine to help spark creativity and improve design) has come out with a very funny 'assignment'

They called out for people to design the cover of a book that you’d keep near your bed to read and fall asleep. They received over 150 covers.

Some covers are indeed boring, however some have a spark of humor that rings out due to minimalism. Check out the covers at Before & After.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

CG Interview

Nice interview with Haydn Shaughnessy.

His Blog

Sketchup 7 has been released for all.

I'm happy that Google has updated the software. I was very worried no updates would occur as, shortly after Google acquired SketchUp from @Last software, version 6 was release. Very little has been supported since that time, with only minor point updates occurring. I personally thought the software was in deaths grips. It seems Google does indeed have an interest of keeping the software alive. I'm sure everyone appreciates this!

It appears most of the updating has been on the Layout extension of Sketchup with a few updates to the core application. I'll be digging deaper into the application and will soon learn of all the changes.

Download your free copy of the software and check it out also.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

3rd post from iPhone

Our dog Shala.

$1.49 Gas Prices

I think that prices were around this price when Bush came into power. Kind of a book-end paradox for the American public.

Monday, August 11, 2008

My first post from my new iPhone

EDIT: The posting from the iphone for this entry did not work. Got to find another way...

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The 50 Plus Acquisitions of Google

Wikipedia entry listing of all of Google's acquisitions. Wow!

read more | digg story

Thursday, July 3, 2008

BIM Proto-Buldings

John Tobin has written a wonderful article discussing the old and new uses of BIM building creation. His whole article boils down to using the software to not mimic or describe a building, but to actually build a digital building. It's a very compelling argument as many of our document discrepancies can be realized by creating building documents not just in 2D space but in real-time 3D space.

Buildings are intensely complicated, and so immense, that the most reliable way to convey design intent has been to rely on drafted views which try to describe their configuration. As a result, the architect’s work has traditionally become an exercise on paper trying to represent something that has a different, more physical reality.

Though many designers continue to use BIM to produce drawings—and a recent industry survey (Top Criteria for BIM Solutions: AECbytes Survey Results, Oct. 2007) favored that issue over several others—this is probably a transitional phase for BIM. We would be better served to look beyond using BIM merely as a more powerful representation tool, and instead to treat the models we create as proto-buildings.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

iPhone release date missed

So I predicted with such absolute certainty the iPhone would come out June 20th

Wow was I wrong! But I have to wonder.... why July 11th is the real release date? My ideas are:
  • Apple signed some crazy contract with one of the nation providers that they would be able to release the phone the same time as everyone else. And... it took the extra time to get the phones to that nation.
  • Apple messed up, and was not ready for the launch and took the extra time to CYA.
  • Apple could not stand to sell the phones and make money, and decided to not sell any phones for over 2 solid months (remember the phone was out of stock for over a month, and wont be released for an additional 31 days after the announcement).
  • Steve Jobs lost a bet with someone at RIM and was forced to sell the phones later than he wanted.
I have no idea why Apple is waiting so long. It makes no business sense at all. If I was a major stockholder I'd be trying to get Steve on the phone. But as I'm not... I'll just keep those calls to myself.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

iPhone Review. Good, Bad & Ugly

So..... Last Monday the iPhone was released. I happily watched the release from the liveblogs. but..... Steve seems to have taken a shortcut with the new phone. Here is my thoughts:

The Good
  • 3G. Yep the fast fast fast, is good, good, good. I'm hopeful that AT&T will keep up the aggressive roll out of 3G in many more areas.
  • Price. I like that the phone is subsidised. ATT will get their money back over the 2 years, and this will bring more customers into the iPhone world.
  • Applications. So many people have said that apps are nice but web based apps are the way to go. I disagree 100%. I encounter so many areas that don't have wifi, and also many areas where cell phone coverage (and Edge & 3G) is very weak. On-phone apps run no matter what the coverage is like.
  • Business support. For consumers this means little. For the long term forecast and life of the phone it is a MUST DO. I'm glad Apple started down the business road.
  • Flush headset jack. Apple sometimes does listen to it's customers. Nuf' said.
  • GPS. Wow! I really didn't think this would be on the phone. This is great. Having exact location information is very useful. Some say it's not necesary, but I think a whole big industry will spring up with this one addition. A few examples would be
    • Geotaging photos.
    • Keeping track of where you kids, friends, or spouse is located.
    • real time traffic info based on users speeds.
    • location based advertising
    • calling AAA when your car breaks down, and telling them exactly where your at.
    • theft recovery of 100% of the phones
    • secure money transfers because PIN usage can be double checked against device location.
    • guided city/museum tours displaying info based on real location.
    • parking lot space location info.
    • theam park maps inside the phone, with google style maps showing you which rides are currently under a 30 minute wait.... and where the nearest restrooms are located.
    • coupons beamed to the phone only when entering or passing by a store.
The Bad
  • Lack of Business Apps. So.... Steve..... this was to be a big rollout for business users, yet ya didn't add any intigrated business apps? Business people need a good note taking app, a robust ToDo app, a calender that is very flexible, a 5 star contact manager program & the ability to read and edit MS Office documents. I know, the app store might fill in the gaps... I have my doubts. Native apps from Apple will always run smoother than add-ons.
  • Price. Apple dropped the price (via AT&T subsidy) but failed to keep high end products. There are users who need to basic level phone at a basement level price. There are also those people who would spend $500 on a phone (just look at the initial release of the phone). A more feature intensive phone coupled with cheaper phones would address this issue better.
  • Memory. Music, photos, applications, data, and games. All this on 8 or 16Gigs is a tight fit. A larger 24Gig or 32Gig device is in order to solve storage problems. Again (back to my last point) there are users who would pay for the extra storage... and I'm one of them.
  • Camera. I could rant that 2Mpixel cameras were all the rage 10 years ago, but why bother. I really don't think Apple feels this is a big issue for consumers. I personally carry a nice digital camera, but having a decent camera on the phone would be great for those times I don't have (or forgot) my real camera.
The Ugly
  • Video. The iPhone can't call itself a great multi media device when basic video is not supported through the camera.
  • Flash support. Again, Apple can't say this is a true internet device when Flash is not supported. This must be added into the phone!
  • AT&T. Dang... I know we are stuck with em for some time. I still hate them for trashing the US constitution with the Bush administration. Full time wiretapping?!?!? I'm amazed more people don't care about this issue.
  • No Data Storage. I really wish the iPhone could store data on it just as the iPods do. It would be nice to treat the phone like a USB drive and transfer files with it. Sigh. I don't think Steve will do this for many years.
So all in all the iPhone is a nice device in a very small form package. Apple did add some nice features that will help push the phone along, but I don't think they addressed them fully. But as the fan-boys will say.... that will all be in iPhone 3.0

Dang! 97 degrees...

Friday, June 13, 2008

Live Blogging the iPhone release

Well the new phone was announced Monday, and I watched the live blogging on Engadget, and Gizmodo. Both places did a wonderful job posting quick comments, and images. I really enjoyed those posts which came every 40 seconds or so.

I have to say that while sitting in Panera Bread, I was so worried that their 'iffy' internet service would come to a halt and leave me sitting in frustration. It has done this in the past... grrrr. Well, this time, it held up quite well.... even if most people were franticly hitting the refresh button every half second.

Kudos to both sites for their great coverage... and Thank You.
Kudos to Panera for their free internet service... and Thank You.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Cute Cute Cute

Ahhhhh... ain't he cute?

50 Excellent Blog Designs

Smashing Magazine puts together yet another great list of well-designed blogs. Very inspirational and some really unique designs made the cut.

70 Really Stunning Typographic Designs

Over 70 examples of sexy, bold and experimental typography. Some examples are typographic posters, some are typographic illustrations and some are just sketches with type. In any case, you will hopefully find some inspiration for your future works.

read more | digg story

Monday, May 12, 2008

Celebrate National Preservation Month with a movie!

My Friend Amanda Loughlin reminded her Architectural friends that May is National Preservation Month, and in honor of this occasion she outlined several good movies with a preservation bend to them. In her own words, "Watching one or all of these will do nothing to save the world, but it will enlighten you on issues pertaining to the preservation of buildings, neighborhoods, and land."

Here is Amanda's movie pics:

Blandings Builds His Dream House (Myrna Loy, Cary Grant) 1948 Comedy about a couple who buy a great old house in New England but end up having to build a new home because the old one is unlivable. This was made into a movie after the book of the same title. It’s the one book in a million that I don’t prefer to the movie. Preservation Issue: How much are you willing to invest in an old structure to save it?

The Haunting (Julie Harris) 1963 A great scary story about an evil old house that seems to be alive and manipulating the mind of a visitor. This is also a book (Shirley Jackson). It was “remade” in 1999, but don’t bother with that one because it’s horrible. Preservation Issue: Is it justifiable to tear down a stable historic building because of its association with evil?

Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte (Bette Davis, Olivia de Haviland) 1964 Very macabre, but rather a great thriller about an old woman with a terrible family secret. Preservation Issue: She lives in an antebellum house that is going to be torn down for a highway (this is pre-National Historic Preservation Act of 1966).

The Goonies (Sean Astin, Corey Feldman) 1985 Group of friends embark on a treasure hunt to find money to pay off a developer who wants to buy their neighborhood. Pirates, preservation, and the truffle-shuffle. It can’t get much better than that. Preservation Issue: Neighborhood and Community Preservation…did I mention there is a pirate ship in this?

Two Weeks Notice (Sandra Bullock, Hugh Grant) 2002 She is an activist who chains herself to buildings. She “falls in love” with her developer-loving boss. Warning, it’s a chick flick…but it’s not too sappy. Preservation Issue: The differing opinions of preservationists and developers.

Miss Potter (Renee Zellweger, Ewan McGregor) 2007 Really wonderful story about Beatrix Potter; she was instrumental in land conservation in England at the beginning of the 20th century. Preservation Issue: Land conservation vs. development in early 20th century England.

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (John Cusak, Kevin Spacey) 1997 About the preservation of historic Savannah. I’ve only read the book, and if you can get through all the filth that makes you want to take a shower after reading each chapter, the preservation issues are intriguing. Preservation Issues: Gentrification, Historic District Preservation

Cars (Owen Wilson, Paul Newman) 2006 Animated comedy about a forgotten highway out West. Preservation Issue: The decline of the small town when the big new highway takes travelers away – think Route 66.
Amanda Loughlin is wonderfuly creative person with a great sence of humor. She also seems to have a good talent for picking movies. Way to go Amanda! This is a fantastic list of movies.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Cash not accepted at Apple?

No Credit... No Service... No Apple

Alex Palen’s visit to the Apple Store in the Walden Galleria last week began as a pleasant one. Walking the electronics retailer’s sleek aisles, Palen found the sales staff helpful in selecting the 16 gigabyte iPhone he wanted to buy.

But when he took the cash from his wallet to pay for the latest must-have gadget, things took a turn for the worse.

“She looked at my money and said, ‘We don’t accept cash as a form of payment for the iPhone.’ When I asked why, she would only say it was the store’s policy that I use a credit card,” Palen said.

Since he doesn’t have one, Palen asked another customer if he could give him the $499 plus tax to charge it for him. Store staffers said that was against the rules, and then escorted him — and his pocket full of bills — from the store.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

iPhone Coming June 20th

Well, it appears the clearing of Apple's iphone stock can now be felt, not just in ATT stores, and Apple stores, but one Apples own on-line store. So this does seem to emphasize that Apple will indeed soon have a new phone. This also leads to serious speculation as to when the phone will be release. Here are some thoughts regarding some release dates:

  • Steve Jobs will 'for sure' want to be the FIRST person to announce the phone and he is expected to speak at the ADC come early June. Apple has also started a release of the phone is several countries, which leads to logistical difficulty in maintaining silence worldwide. For these two reasons... June 9th thru 13th are out. Again, Steve does not want to be scooped by anyone.
  • June 29th? This would seem to be a natural date for release date, as it is the 'birthday' of the first iPhone. Unfortuantaly, This would mean no sales of iphones for almost 2 months (this is written on May 10th). This date does not sync with Job's desire to sell millions of phones before the end of 2008. I also doubt whether the stock holders & board members, and ATT would allow such a major hole in the schedule. For these reasons the 29th is right out. Also, the 29 is on a Sunday this year... a really weird day to release anything to the public.
  • The fall or late summer. This idea has been floated by several people who follow the phone closely. I have great respect for them, however Apple needs to sell, and sell as many possible days as they can. Waiting until the end of summer will not help sales, as right now, they are out of stock almost everywhere. Waiting until the fall will also hurt Apples WallStreet stocks also.
  • June 15 to July 12 has been designated as days its employees should not take time off from work. AT&T did this last year with the release of the first phone. Now reasoning says, AT&T would not need people manning the store, if no customers can get their hands on a iphone. But, they would need extra manpower early to stock shelves, train staff on procedures, and prime everyone on what to say and how to say it. This clue does narrow down the release date.
  • Steve Jobs also has announced the 3rd party software will be release in late June. Apple also has had many of its 'release dates' slip in the past, so it would not surprise anyone if the software is release on the very last day of June, or possibly early July. Now this gives a small indication that Apple will want people who buy the phone to soon be able to install the apps. However, I'm betting Apple will want the phone to our hands prior to the app store launch. This will have the phones for people (read the press and blogging community) to get excited about first, and then the app store second.
  • Some have predicted June 27th as the day. It's towards the end of the month; it is near the one year anniversary; it fits in with the AT&T schedule; it is also on a Friday, which allows people to rush the stores and have the entire weekend to play with the phone. It also allows Job's to boast about weekend sales, much like the movie industry does. One last thing... Friday also allows for WallStreet to hear about everyone swarming the stores to get the phone... which makes investors swarm all over Apple stock. This is a very good, but why again, wait one additional week with no one being able to buy the phone (which again, is out of stock almost everywhere)?
  • So... with all this taken into account, what day will the iPhone be released? June 20th. Why?.... well.....
    • It is on a Friday.
    • It is near the anniversary.
    • the 20th gives AT&T one working week fully staffed to set up and train it's sales force.
    • It give the media 10ish days to go berzerk after Job's announces the phone which will dominate the news, then the press can go nuts for 10 days after the actual phone is released, and then the press/bloggers can dominate the news with the 3rd party apps news. A whole month of Apple news. Dang!!!
    • And lastly, it gives apple several weeks after the anouncement to ship phones everyone, without the fear of leaked information getting onto the web... not scooping Steve.
So there you have it. My prediction of June 20th for the iPhone release. I really would like the phone to come out sooner. Really, I would love it out today... but me thinks Steve likes all the suspense... and all the press.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Nuclear Explosive Diarrhea

Prepare for a good laugh....
Diarrhea so powerful it instantly destroys your toilet, and tears a small hole in the space time continuim. It is like (Diarrhea) except it's flow is near unstoppable by any mortal being. It is very powerful, and can occour at anytime. Is usually unexpected, and can leave one with large holes in their pants. When this occours, one should immediatly head to the nearest washroom, or atleast away from any public place. Usually requires 5 or 6 rolls of toilet paper to clean up. Beware that this may be re-occuring, and if it is, make sure you visit a doctor A.S.A.P. for this can leave you dehydrated and may cause you to lose up to 130 pounds.

"After that night of eating 400 pounds of jalapeno peppers, i had an extreme case of Nuclear Explosive Diarrhea. At first i thought it was regular explosive diarrhea, but then i noticed a large portal around me, and i noticed a deadly aroma that ended up killing 600,000 unsuspecting people."

Friday, May 2, 2008

Mac & PC UK

A compilation of TV ads. from UK for Apple's Mac.

read more | digg story

O'Reilly: 'We Didn't Invade Iraq'

What an amazingly amazing Idiot!

Yesterday, Fox News host Bill O’Reilly made the incredible claim that the United States never invaded Iraq: “We didn’t invade Iraq.” He added, “It was a declaration of war, it was a declaration to enforce the first Gulf War Treaty.”

read more | digg story

Obama Truth on Gas Tax

Monday, April 28, 2008

What laptop does Steve Ballmer use for his presentations?

Does Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO, uses this laptop for his presentations? You Judge

read more | digg story

The iPhone Effect

Why other cell phone venders don't really understand why the iPhone is taking people by storm....

Many thought marketing on mobile phones would be more robust by now. However, the lack of a mass market user-friendly phone like the iPhone was just one of many hurdles.

While Apple-inspired cell phones from LG, Samsung and others mimic iPhone attributes like the touch screen and user interaction, they are missing the point, said Iain Gillott, president of iGR, a mobile communication consultant in Austin, Texas. "The value of the iPhone to me is that I get software updates from Apple," "You just plug it in and it works, and that is what everyone is missing."

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Photoshop Disasters Blog

Photoshop Disasters. Whats wrong with that image? Hummm.... This blog points out those images put together by advertisers who didn't think, before they clicked.

10 Features Apple & the iPhone 3.0 Need

Not to add to the list of lists, but below are 10 items Apple needs to incorporate into its iPhone plan. We shall see come June if any of these items makes the cut.

10. Voice Dialing
A feature even the cheapest phones come with. Why the iPhone does not have this basic feature is beyond me. In my life I use this all the time for placing calls while driving. It keeps my eyes and focus on the road.

9. Voice Capture (or voice notes)
When ideas come, sometimes its best to speak the mad rambling into a recorder. This again, is a wonderful thing while driving. Thoughts can be stored when pen and paper are not ideal. I’ve used this feature several years back when struck while driving on the LA highways. Quickly I grabbed my PalmPilot and spoke the license plate number, a description of the truck, and the location of the colision.

8. Video Capture.
Why is this not on the iPhone? Every phone with a camera can handle video. Was Steve Jobs concerned about low quality, slower frame rates, or just the possibility of filling up the phone with lots of video. I’m not sure why it was left out, but video is a part of everyones lives. From birthday parties to car crashes, video can be worked into our daily lives.

7. Headphone replacement
Come on Steve. Inventing a new type of port for plugging in headphones is just plane LAME. I understand that the ‘new’ iPhone headphones can have audio input. Fine, but forcing everyone to invent and purchase a new headphone is a slap in a customer’s face. This is not a feature. It is a blatant design glitch.

6. Removable Battery.
My current LG clam phone has a removable battery. Unfortunately, the pins that connect to the battery have weakened over time and when I hold the phone just so, it looses the connection with the battery. I not only loose the call, but have to turn the phone back on.
Maybe sealing in the battery is a smart thing, however, I think the real reason for having permanent batteries, is plane old corporate greed. Yep, if I have to go back to Apple (and only Apple) to have the battery replaced, then Apple controls the supply of batteries, controls the price, and controls the profit. Nifty if you think of it as a capitalist, but down right smug if you’re the end user.

5. Cell Carrier other than AT&T
Well, many people have their opinions. I myself feel that AT&T lacks good customer service. Enough said.

4. GPS The rumors say that the next phone might have GPS. Again, this seems to be offered in most other phones, and seriously, the 911 service uses GPS & cell towers to locate an emergency number. I really want someone to find me in an emergency.

3. Accidental Care Insurance
A good warranty to cover accidental damage, or problems would be a nice extra service. Granted it would cost more than Apple Care, but insurance would help many of us sleep well at night. For example, I paid for Dell’s accidental care insurance for my laptop. I’ve had it for 18 months I've not needed to use the insurance. Yet if I do accidentally drop it and it stops working, Dell will help out. Very comforting.

2. Upgrade path. I’ve always thought Apple should make it easier for people to upgrade to the latest technology. A trade in offer for older iPhones / iPods when purchasing the new device would 1) smooth out the financial decision to upgrade, 2) insure your customers stay with the brand, and 3) allow for refurbishment & resell of the older tech, thus insuring more proliferation of Apple’s brand.

1. Contract Termination Reimbursement
Apple knows there are many people who can not consider their phone until a contract is complete. More people would switch over to AT&T if termination fees were paid by AT&T. For example, breaking with Verizon costs $175. If that is reimbursed over the full two year contract, a credit of $7.30 would be applied to every bill. In essence, I would get the money back, and AT&T would have a customer sooner than latter. Why would they do this? Simple, because customers go over their monthly plan, use additional services not covered under their plan, or buy a bigger plan than they need. Again, AT&T makes money sooner rather than later.

The iPhone will always have new features, and as a rule, we will want more. The truth is, the phone is very good, but lacks core features that the competition already has. It seems odd that Apple, who prides itself on easy user experience, would overlook some of the obvious.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

iPhone 2.0 - Will I buy one?

About two years ago, several months before my cellphone contract was up, I picked up a magazine touting all the new cellphones. Many of the phones were cool, and offered high quality cameras, web surfing, music playback, and PDA services. I sat & salivated over what new phones I could have, but as I read more I soon realized that most of the phones were available overseas, and not in the USA. Needless to say, I was very disappointed.

Why can’t the good old US have nice phones? Why did the cell companies sell clam shells with limited capabilities? Why can’t they sell easy to use phones with an integrate PDA? Sure there were several to choose from. Palm, Windows Moble & Blackbarry were at the top, but they had their flaws. Palm & Windows hardware were rarely improved upon since their conception and neither really upgrade their OS to make life easer for the end user. Blackbarry had a nice interface, yet the price for all the additional features steared me away. Maybe if a company backed me up, but as an individual, it didn’t have as much ROI appeal.

Soon after re-upping my contract with Verizon (getting a LG phone which Verizon locked down to the nth) Apple came out with the iPhone. It was very very impressive. Large screen, decent camera (better than any cell phone I’ve owned), easy interface, really web capable, nice apps, touch screen, email compatable and a familiar music player. It was what I was looking for... and what was never delivered to Americans.

Though the iPhone is efficient & practical, I was locked into a contract, and did not want to fork over the early termination fee. So, like many, I shelved my excitement thinking I would upgrade in early 2009... That is until now.

The rumors flying about the iPhone 2.0 are appealing, however, they are just rumors. That said, We do know about the SDK, which will expand the capabilities of the phone tremendously; We do know Steve will talk again in June; We do know that store supplies are drying up; and we do know that investors are chomping down hard wanting more sales of the phone. All of these lend credence to the rumors. Better camera? More battery life? 3G and GPS? Built in butler service? Who knows…. But I do agree that a upgraded phone will be announced soon... and like a kid before Christmas, I can’t wait.

Will I buy one? We will see come June, when Steve speaks again.