Listen to the music

Last week I told you I was going to tell you about a service that has finally made to the United States from across the pond. What is that service? It’s Spotify!

Spotify has over 15 million tracks that you can listen to either by streaming them or downloading them for offline listening. You can always stream with a free account or Unlimited account but with a Premium account you can download tracks to three devices and listen to tracks offline. You are limited to 3,333 tracks per device.

The main difference between the the free and Unlimited accounts is that the Unlimited doesn’t have ads in it. Also, with the free and Unlimited accounts you can only listen to tracks from a computer. In order to listen from your smartphone, you will have to sign up for the Premium account.

If you love music then this is the service for you. I am listening to music that I listened to when I was a little boy that I wouldn’t even bother with buying from iTunes. I guess with Spotify you are really just renting the music but for $9.99 a month a think this is a great deal.

You can visit Spotify and signup for either an Unlimited or Premium account without an invitation and start listening to music right away but to you must have an invitation to get a free account at this time. If you’d like an invitation, I will be glad to send you one. As of this writing I have 9 invites and if you are one of the first 9 to request one I will send it ASAP. I believe that when you hear what Spotify has to offer you will want a Premium account. The tracks aren’t limited to just music. I have found lots of comedy too.

Thanks for stopping by this week and I will see you again next week.



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Grab a pen and write this down

The news has been plentiful since my last post and one was even a major news story in the world of Apple. As I’ve said in previous post, I am not here to write about what you have already heard in the tech news but just to give my opinion about it.

First things first. Steve Jobs stepped down as CEO of Apple and left Tim Cook in charge. Apparently, Jobs’ health isn’t doing very well but I do think he is more concerned about more important things than just Apple. He has a personal life and family and that should always come first. If he felt this was the time to step down and let more able bodies run the company then I respect that decision. He has been a great CEO and I have enjoyed all of the keynotes that I’ve heard him give over the last six years or so that I have been an Apple fan.

Do think anything is going to change at Apple? I doubt it. I have heard that Apple has a plan for the next two to five years and I believe they will continue with that plan even without Jobs.

My birthday was a little over a month ago and I received a stylus for my iPhone. It isn’t like a regular stylus that were used on the old Pocket PC. this stylus has a soft tip and won’t scratch the screen of the iPhone. Of course, it can be used on the iPod Touch and iPad. I did find it at Best Buy for $12.99 and thought that was a little high but if you use it then it’s a good deal.

One of the apps that I am using with the stylus is Note Taker. It allows you to take notes either by writing on the screen or with the keyboard. It does have a learning curve but if you go through the tutorial then it works like charm. The area you can write on is supposed to be about the size of a 4×6 index card. There is a free version but you can email your notes or make them into PDFs. For $1.99 the full version is a steal.

That’s going to do me for this week and I’m going to try and do better at getting these post out every week. Next week we will be looking at a service that I totally enjoy and I am so glad that it has finally made it to the United States.


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For Sale By Owner

Welcome to another edition of Tech Talk Thursday even though it doesn’t always come out on Thursday.

Couple of things that I want to write about this week are some of the rumors going around in the Apple world. First, is Apple going to buy Barnes & Noble? I think this is just purely a rumor and really won’t go any where. My reason is because Apple already is in the book business with iBooks and I believe that Apple wants to keep it that way. They have already taken most of the boxed software out of the stores and sell it via the Mac App Store so why would they want to buy a book seller that has physical books? Apple wants you to keep everything on an iOS device and not have to carry around anything else.

Second, is Apple going to buy Hulu? I am still kind of up in the air with this one. If I had to guess right now, I would say that they wouldn’t. Apple already has deals in place with most of the networks in selling movies and television shows. I believe that if they wanted to stream they would sign deals on their own and not buy another company that has already went through the process. I also have found that Hulu doesn’t offer as much as I would like but that is a different post. If anything, I think Apple has a better chance of buy Netflix. I really don’t think that will happen either.

This past Sunday I had a little problem with my iPhone. After I returned from my morning run, I noticed that when I pressed the up and down volume buttons that it was telling me that the headphones were still plugged in. I tried plugging my headphone back in and pulling them out but that didn’t work. I even went as far as restoring the iPhone and that still didn’t work.

After church, I decided to Google for a solution to the problem. I found the answer. The problem was solved by most people by plugging and unplugging headphones into the jack 7-8 times. I tried that and that did not work for me.

I was getting a little upset. So after plugging and unplugging my headphones in several times I jerked them out really fast and after about four or five time everything was back to normal.

Apparently, the switch that tells the iPhone that the headphones are either plugged in or not was stuck in the plugged in position. This is a very common problem with both the iPhone and iPod Touch. So if you ever find that your iPhone has this problem then you will know how to fix it.

Hope you enjoyed this weeks post. Thanks for stopping!


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Don’t Get Stuck in Traffic

Sometimes time just isn’t on my side and it has taken me a while to be able to sit down and actually write this. This post is mostly about the new Mac OS, Lion. As much as I loved my MacBook with Snow Leopard, I love it even more with Lion. Apple did a great job of the new OS.

My favorite feature is Mission Control. It allows me to have multiple windows open and also have more than one desktop. I can have one desktop for blogging and another to surf the Internet. Another great thing is that you can have a different background picture for each desktop.

Before Lion, if you were watching a movie in iTunes and wanted to sync your iPhone you had to stop the movie to press the Sync button. Now in Lion, the movie actually plays in a different desktop and all you have to do is double-swipe to get back to iTunes and press the button. The movie will continue to play and you can still hear the audio. I think that is a great feature.

Full-screen apps are great too. In order to use this feature the app must support it. The only app that I have used full-screen at this time is Photo Booth. I’m sure I will use more apps full-screen like Pages, Keynote, GarageBand, and iMovie. It’s easy to double-swipe between full-screen apps too.

I could go on about many other things that I love about Lion but I’m sure you have already read a lot about them and won’t bore you will a repeat of them.

The last thing that I want to share with you is an iPhone app and can help just the regular person but for my trucker buddies it could save you lots of time. The name of the app is INRIX Traffic. You can stay up to date on traffic in just about any area. I used this app while driving through Chicago and Nashville this past week and it was spot on. The best part about this app is that it is free too. You can also get the pro version with an in-app purchase for $24.99 but I’m not sure what it include. The basic is enough for me.

Thanks for stopping by this week and I’ll try to have another post on Thursday.


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Take Control of Your Devices

As of this writing I haven’t upgraded my MacBook to Lion yet. I will be doing that tomorrow and can’t wait. I have heard a lot of great things about it and want to get my hands on it pretty soon.

For this weeks post I am going to tell you about two apps that I use to control two different devices in the house: the Roku and the iMac.

First, let’s start with the Roku. For those of you not familiar with the Roku it is a box that sits on top of our television and is connected to the Internet wirelessly. You can hook it up directly to your router but it works without wires too. It does come with a little remote and you can control all of the functions with that one remote. The hard part is if you want to type a search or even if you lose it like we do all the time. To learn more about the Roku click here. To control the Roku I use the RoRemote. With this app you can control all the features of the Roku just like the remote that comes with it. The exception is that you can type in your search with an onscreen keyboard instead of having to go through going up and down with the remote. Another great feature is that it will work all over the house. Keep in mind that you have to have Wi-Fi turned on and connected to the same network that the Roku is connected to. This app goes for $1.99.

The other app that I use is Mobile Mouse Pro. It’s a great little app to control the iMac. I don’t use it to control my MacBook. I needed an easy way to control the iMac to keep from getting out of bed to change the show we were watching on it. The iMac is mainly just a media center for the bedroom and we watch a lot of Netflix on it. You can use it to control any program on your Mac and can use it to even type on the onscreen keyboard. This app sales for $1.99 too.

Both apps are great and well worth the two bucks.

Thanks for dropping by this week and will see you next wee with my thoughts on the new Mac OS.


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I Work for Steve, You Can Tell Me…

It’s amazing how time passes so fast. It has been three weeks since my last tech post. I really have no excuse but I have been fairly busy the last few weeks.

As most of my Mac readers know, the next Mac OS will be released sometime this month. TupeloGeek and I have had an ongoing debate on the date. He thought yesterday would be the day but I think it will be this next Tuesday. Now some of his sources are saying the 26th. No matter the date, I am excited. I have almost all of my programs updated to the current versions so I will be ready to go. The only one that I haven’t bought yet is iPhoto and I still need to get the update for iMovie. I also need to add more memory to my iMac so it can run Lion because it only has 1 GB of RAM and Lion requires two. Also, I’d like to thank TupeloGeek for helping me get the OS upgraded from Tiger to Snow Leopard.

I went to the Apple Store in Temecula, CA, this past Tuesday afternoon and told they guy at the entrance that I worked for Steve and that it was alright if he told me when Lion was going to be out but he simply said, “I have not idea.” I did tell him I was kidding about working for Steve and TupeloGeek had put me up to telling him that.

With the release of Lion (Mac OS X 10.7) will come many new features that are going to be awesome. The biggest thing that I’m looking forward to is being able to change programs just by running your fingers across the trackpad. Also being able to view programs in full screen is going to be nice too. If you’re not a Mac user then I encourage you to do some looking around for a computer that will do all that a Mac will do right out of the box. I know that my MacBook works great with my iPhone and editing movies is a breeze once you figure it out.

Last week my cousin, Becky, decided to get rid of her Android phone because she hated it. She asked me about the new iPhone and I told her that I didn’t think it would be out before late September. She didn’t want to wait that long and went and get herself an iPhone 4. I recommended the 4 because I think it was a big step up from the 3GS and the next iPhone, I believe, will be a small step. Kind of like from the 3G to the 3GS. I love so many of the features of the 4 and I’m still excited about iOS 5 coming this fall. I wished it was already here but I’ll have to wait like everybody else.

Maybe by this time next week we will have already seen the release of Lion and I can share some of my comments about it. Thanks for stopping by and I will try to see you again next week.


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Do You Still Have Your Music?

Welcome to the 40th edition of Tech Talk Thursday! I know I am a day late this week too but it’s better late than never and this is going to be a short one.

On June 6, Apple announced iCloud and customers could start using some of it’s features almost immediately. I think I might have found something that will be of interest to users of iCloud. Earlier this week as I was listening to some music on iPhone I noticed that the album that I was listening to was missing a song. It was a 6 pack and I thought I had bought the whole album. I tried searching for the album under the Purchased tab in iTunes on the iPhone. I couldn’t find it. I then checked for it on my computer. I still didn’t find it. Evidently, not all songs can downloaded again at this time. My advice for users right now is to make sure all of your purchases are available or just don’t delete your music. I will continue to back my music up like I always have.


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