Category Archives: Technology

Technology

My Apple Maps Experience

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Everyone has been complaining about Apple Maps. The iOS 6 replacement for Google Maps is largely seen as a huge blunder made by Apple. The reasons are many and valid. Bus routes have disappeared as well as walking directions. The accuracy of the maps as well as the level of detail of the Apple Maps vs Google Maps isn’t even in the same echelon. Apple tries to keep a lot of the same functionality but with the amount of time and money that Google has invested in their Maps experience, Apple’s departing from this standard was destined from the beginning to be sub-standard.

With that being said, I gave Apple Maps a trial run yesterday.

I used the app to get from the office to the football field where the Duke of Ginger was to be playing football later in the day. The trips was mapped nicely with a voice giving me directions that were accurate. With exception of the very end of the trip where the final destination was not exactly where the app said it was (luckily, I already knew where I was going) the experience was good.

However, the drive home was a different story. Again, I already knew where I was going, but I gave it a try to see how it would perform. While directing me through a sketchy part of town can’t be blamed on the app, the final destination was way off. Check out these two screenshots from my iPhone:

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If you look at the address in the search field and what is on the map, they are not even close. However, this was a problem I experienced with Google Maps as well and this seems, to me, to be related to the convention of the address. The use of hyphens in the address seems to confuse both Google Maps and Apple Maps alike. Once I removed the hyphen in the address, the proper location showed up:

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Okay, so it’s not perfect on the exact location of the destination. However, for the record, the pin location of the arena is correct. It’s the location of George S. Hughes/Southside Arena on the map that is wrong. Tell me how that one works.

I’m going to keep using Apple Maps. It’s not like I am in New York or need it so desperately. This town is small and, for the most part, I know enough for it to tell me where I need to go.

My biggest beef: it doesn’t show the New JeffLand Empire. At all.

Bastards.

The NJLE App For iPhone

I find Lifehacker to be a wealth of great information; from technology tips to productivity pointers, there is so much great knowledge that is shared between writers and readers.

One such tip is http://lifehac.kr/kleKMV where you can bookmark a website to the home screen of your iPhone. It’s an old tip, I know, but this post has been sitting in my drafts folder for over a year. Sue me.

Anyway. I set up the favicon for this site to be… well, take a look at the address bar on your browser and you can see what it is. (Hint: it’s a J.) But if you follow the instructions in the Lifehacker post, you can create a bookmark on your iPhone that will appear to be the favicon for the site… making it appear to be it’s own app. So I’m going to just say that it IS an app because… well, I want to.

Do it because it’s pretty sweet. And it feeds my bloated ego.

Dead Space 2 – iPad Edition

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Besides this being the first post I’ve put up in quite a while, it’s also the first post I have put up via WordPress with my flashy new iPad 3!

Anyway, I played Dead Space 2 on it (which I had originally bought to play on my iPhone) and the effect of having a big screen is very dramatic! This screenshot above is an example of that and the Retina screen is icing on the awesome cake!

Kijiji Can Suck My Ass

It’s a little like the Radiohead song, ‘Just’.

You do it to yourself, you do… and that’s what really hurts…

In a flurry of civic pride after it was announced that the Edmonton Eskimos would be going head to head against their arch-rivals, the godless Calgary Stampeders, I hit Ticketmaster and secured four seats to this Western Semi-Final match-up. The way I figured this would go would be that the Duke of Ginger and I would occupy two seats and the father-in-law and uncle-in-law could join us and occupy the other two.

Enter: Wrinkle #1

The father-in-law goes back to work and is working that weekend. And the uncle-in-law wasn’t too keen on sitting through a frosty November football game to begin with.

What I was trying to accomplish was to give a little back to some folks who have been pretty good to me but this is a little lesson to think a little before I act.

Enter: Wrinkle #2

The Duke of Ginger and I have season seats and, with season seats, you already pay for a pair of playoff tickets when you fork out your money in the off-season. But how the hell was I supposed to know that? This is only my second year as a season ticket holder and the Eskimos haven’t hosted a playoff game since 2004 anyway! Who’da thunk it?!

So now, I have six tickets and only two butts to actually fill them. Since the tickets I bought from Ticketmaster cost me $198, I would like to try to at least recoup some of my money.

I made a couple of feeble attempts to sell them on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter; hoping that maybe there would be an excited fan who would snap them up right away.

So far, I’ve yet to get even a nibble. (To use a fishing metaphor.)

Now, I’m resorting to Kijiji; daring to brave the world of Kijiji Low-Ballers. The process itself is pretty simple for setting up an ad. However, I got some weird message saying that I’ve activated too many ads today and prevented me from actually posting my ad for these tickets!

How could I have posted too many ads when this is the first time I’ve ever used this fucking site?!?

This is about where I would go thermonuclear… if I weren’t at work right now. With two bills hanging in the balance, I’m really praying for a miracle at this point. And I only get more desperate from here on out.

Google+ Invites

Well, I finally managed to get online with Google+. The service is in limited trial and an invite is required to actually get in, so you can’t just sign up at this point. This is a case where knowing somebody gets you everywhere. So, as King, I dispatched my interweb minions to track down an invite and, low and behold, I was in like Flynn. (It’s best not to ask about their methods… plausible denial and all that.)

Once behind the velvet rope, you find what you’ve come to expect from Google. Clean, streamlined simplicity. Sure, there’s a bit of a learning curve however it’s not a big one if you’ve used Facebook before. And everything you post, you have immediate hands-on control over who you are sharing it with by utilizing Circles (groups of friends or contacts). So if you’re sick to death of the Mark Zuckerberg’s privacy-crushing behemoth and how flippant Facebook is with your information, Google+ might be more up your alley.

If you want in, feel free to let me know in the comments and I’ll hook you up.

My iPhone Is A POS

For real.

iPhone Haterz

The iPhone 3GS

Sure, I’ve professed my love for the iPhone to so many people. I’ve bragged about it and it’s superiority to other smartphones. And there are many other geeks out there that would agree with me.

However, right now… in this very moment, I absolutely HATE my iPhone. HATE.

I’m not even two years into my iPhone 3GS ownership and, already, I have battery issues. Also, I think that I’ve got an issue with my dock connection which cuts the life to an unusable low level. Basically, on a good day, I can get maybe 20 minutes of use out of my phone when it is not plugged in and that’s after I turned off the 3G and dimmed the screen.

I’d read articles that would chide the iPhone for not having a removable battery. I read those articles and thought that they were really backwards thinkers for wanting to have battery access. Having the battery sealed inside the phone housing was an innovation, right?

It’s only an innovation if you have a fresh battery. Otherwise, it’s a massive pain in the fucking ass that turns out to be wicked expensive to fix. It’s so bad that I almost want to consider buying an Android phone but I’ve already invested so much money in apps for iOS devices that it’s a little late to change now.

When Good XBoxes Go Bad

Jumped The Gun

iOS4 Screenshot

iOS4... Looking good!

Ok, maybe I was a little hasty with the whole “making-someone-pay” thing with regards to the Apple iPhone iOS4 update yesterday.  As it appears, patience really is a virtue… albeit one that isn’t very typical of benevolent dictators like myself.

The update was released around 11:00 am MDT so I updated my iPhone once I got home from toiling in the mines of industry.  And no one had to die in the process, so all is well.  So far.

Anyway, I got the update installed with no serious problems and have since spent some time putting all of the settings together and then I realized part way through today that this new iOS is absolutely sucking the life out of my battery!  After fully charging the battery, I walked around the office for about 15-20 minutes I returned to my desk and saw that I’d used 6%!!

Basically, with the multi-tasking… this new operating system is taxing the hardware that comes with my 3GS.  So that gives me a perfect excuse to get the iPhone 4 when it comes available.  And I’m giving that a Hells Yeah.

Not Available Yet

Someone is going down for this.

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