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tadSpot http://www.tadspot.com Preventing Eschaton Immanentization since 1969! Sat, 17 Jan 2009 22:57:39 +0000 http://wordpress.org/?v=2.7 en hourly 1 cliKball Screencast http://www.tadspot.com/?p=67 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=67#comments Sat, 17 Jan 2009 21:12:00 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=67 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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Click the image above to view my screencast about a new web app called cliKball.  cliKball is a new link sharing service that has a great idea, but unless they quickly integrate it into other, more commonly used link sharing utilities it’ll just be more dust in the wind. Also, cliKball is way too freakin’ hard [...]]]>
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Click for video review of cliKball

Click for video review of cliKball

Click the image above to view my screencast about a new web app called cliKball.  cliKball is a new link sharing service that has a great idea, but unless they quickly integrate it into other, more commonly used link sharing utilities it’ll just be more dust in the wind.

Also, cliKball is way too freakin’ hard to type.

Here’s another screencast showing off the IM and real-time functionalities:

cliKball IM

cliKball IM

I want something like this added to FriendFeed NOW!

If you want to follow me on cliKball my name, as usual, is Tad.

]]>
http://www.tadspot.com/?feed=rss2&p=67
Tad’s Jan 2009 Digital Lifestyle Part 2 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=45 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=45#comments Wed, 14 Jan 2009 22:58:47 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=45 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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Here are the indispensable web apps for early 2009.  It will be interesting to see how this list changes between now and 2010.  Note: I’m not going to describe these services in detail - that’s what the links are for if you’re unfamiliar with any of the following. FriendFeed is my primary destination and habitation on [...]]]>
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Here are the indispensable web apps for early 2009.  It will be interesting to see how this list changes between now and 2010.  Note: I’m not going to describe these services in detail - that’s what the links are for if you’re unfamiliar with any of the following.

Friend Feed

FriendFeed is my primary destination and habitation on the internet.  It is the pillar around which pretty much everything revolves for me on the web. Most of my internet friends have a presence on FriendFeed.  I get almost all of my technology and web-related news via FriendFeed.  If you’re not on FriendFeed then you’re well behind the times.

Twitter is kind of ancillary to FriendFeed.  For a long time I resisted using Twitter at all in favor of FF, but recently I’ve begun using Twitter more often.  Why?  There are some people that I like and respect who, for whatever reason, refuse to use FriendFeed.  I decided that I didn’t want to shut off that part of my online life.  And Twitter has its own delicious flavor which is different from FF.  They scratch similar, but different itches.

Lindsay convinced me to try Evernote and after a few false starts, I finally “get” it.  Evernote is my constant companion in the cloud.  It has a ways to grow to be even more awesome, but even in its current not-fully-formed state it is incredibly important.  Everything digital that’s important to me (and currently less than 25MB) goes into Evernote.

Stitcher is an iPhone/Touch app that I’ve found myself using every single day.  I’m a news hound and I listen to their “Updated Hourly” channel several times a day.  Almost all of my favorite podcasts (there aren’t that many) are on Stitcher too.  Stitcher has announced an update that will make their service so much better I’ll be talking about it a lot more.  I’m hoping they make an android version soon though!

Pandora is another iPhone/Touch app that I use every day.  I don’t really care much for the web version of Pandora, but I listen to the Touch app every day.

Blogs:

I don’t read blogs nearly as often as I did a few years ago.  Today I primarily read blog entries that my friends talk about on Twitter and Friend Feed.  But there are a few that I look at nearly every day:

I used to use Google Reader and all sorts of other tools, but since I’ve been using FriendFeed I no longer feel the need or desire.  My FriendFeed friends and their friends let me know what’s important to read.  Anything that I miss I pick up on the few blogs that I read.

So, what indispensable websites or apps have I missed?  Anything else I should be using on a daily basis to enrich my lifestyle?

What do you find indispensable?

]]>
http://www.tadspot.com/?feed=rss2&p=45
Tad’s Jan 2009 Digital Lifestyle Part 1 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=36 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=36#comments Fri, 02 Jan 2009 00:44:03 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=36 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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Since today is the first day of a new year, I figured it would be a good time to reflect on my current Digital Lifestyle.  6 months from now we can look back and see if anything major has changed.  A year from now I’m thinking I’ll be using some really different tools/sites/etc. Stuff I Wear: T-Mobile [...]]]>
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Since today is the first day of a new year, I figured it would be a good time to reflect on my current Digital Lifestyle.  6 months from now we can look back and see if anything major has changed.  A year from now I’m thinking I’ll be using some really different tools/sites/etc.

Stuff I Wear:

  • T-Mobile G1 “Google Phone”
  • Apple iPod Touch

These devices are on my body or within reach nearly 24 hours a day.  I sleep right next to my G1.  With them, I am in constant contact with the rest of the world.  I think I would rather have just an iPhone, but I loath AT&T and was already a T-Mobile customer.  I think, though that eventually Lindsay and I will develop some apps for our G1s - a process much more onerous on the iPhone.

Devices I Carry:

  • Amazon Kindle
  • Nintendo DS

When I head out to work, or where ever, I usually carry a messenger bag full of stuff I might need, like my DS.  I play Brain Age 2 every day and try to have at least one book on my Kindle worth reading at all times.  Since buying my Kindle, I have resolved not to buy any more meatspace books besides technical books.  This strategy has worked well.  I recently finished Anathem on my Kindle - much nicer than lugging around a 1200 page book!

First Websites I Look at in the AM:

I am a news addict.  One of the first things I wonder about when I wake up in the morning is, “What’s going on in the world.”  These two websites are great launching points for answering that question.  I’ve followed Drudge since 1998, and Huffington since not too long after they launched.

My Digital Entertainment Lifestyle:

  • Apple TV
  • iTunes

Since I bought my Apple TV I have tried really hard not to buy any DVDs.  I think that physical media ownership is very retro.  I noticed that I rarely ever watched any DVD that I bought more than once, so I prefer to rent movies.  Apple TV and iTunes make it boneheadedly easy to rent movies.  True, they don’t have 1080p movie rentals, but my relatively meager 37″ LCD only shows 720p - I don’t miss the higher resolution at all.

Unlike movies, we end up purchasing a lot of television shows.  Apple TV makes it too easy.  This is one habit, though, I’m probably going to put a hold on.  We end up buying shows that we missed watching on our Tivo.  That’s not too smart, and if I buy an external drive for the Tivo it won’t run out of room any time soon.  Though, if Apple continues to add retro shows, I’m sure we’ll keep buying.  Avynn has seen almost all of Babylon 5 thanks to iTunes.

I realize that I can watch a lot of shows on Hulu or CBS, etc for free, but I enjoy watching shows with Lindsay and Avynn and that’s a major drag on a little computer screen.

This is an area I see improving for us in 2009.

I’ve got a list of more stuff (FriendFeed, Twitter, Evernote, etc) that I’ll post soon.  My non-digital lifestyle is encroaching… I have to walk the dog.  :)

]]>
http://www.tadspot.com/?feed=rss2&p=36
The Wrist is Wasted Real Estate http://www.tadspot.com/?p=27 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=27#comments Fri, 20 Jun 2008 05:43:15 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=27 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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Nowadays most people I know don’t wear watches.  Nearly everyone has a mobile phone and those usually display the time in big huge numbers whenever you’re interested. However, I really feel like we’re missing some opportunities by not taking full advantage of our wristerly regions.  I have two wrists that I want to adorn with something [...]]]>
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Nowadays most people I know don’t wear watches.  Nearly everyone has a mobile phone and those usually display the time in big huge numbers whenever you’re interested.

However, I really feel like we’re missing some opportunities by not taking full advantage of our wristerly regions.  I have two wrists that I want to adorn with something that’s stylish and useful.  But I don’t want a boring ole 20th century watch.  Yuck.

Boring!

I do not want to look at my wrist to see what time it is.  To be honest, I usually don’t give a damn what time it is.

I don’t want to use a lame tiny stylus.

Lame Stylus Watch!

I don’t want a calculator watch,

or a tv watch

or a weird Japanese watch that just tells time.

No - I want something completely different on my wrist.  Here are some ideas:

Imagine something like a watch, but in place of a clock face is an opaque face that lightly glows and changes color according to the program it’s running.  It can guide you to a nearby destination via the “getting hot, getting cold” game.  It can slowly change from green through yellow to red to let you know of a pending time limit - “I’ll sit here at the bar until the face turns red.  I set that to be an hour from now.”

How about a musical instrument?  The stones on your bracelet can be used to play notes or beats or whatever.  Friends can get together and have mini-jam sessions.  Collect new bracelets for new sounds and rhythms.

Maybe in the right form factor we could wear our e-book readers on our wrists.  Instead of having to hold something like a kindle, it would be attached to your wrist.  You could use a finger on your free hand to navigate and scroll like you do on an iPhone.  I can imagine a future flexible OLED screen that would be light enough to do the trick nicely.  I guess this could be a decent platform for an always available web browser and media player.  I don’t think I’d want to put my wrist up to my ear to use it like a phone though!  iWrist maybe?

I like the idea of just plain attractive jewelry that also hides a lot of technology.  No need for any interface at all.  Your bracelet could house multiple micro-SD cards (or equivalent) wirelessly available to your phone or camera.  It could also house a radio transceiver that could be used to unlock your car and/or house and/or office.

Finally I think it would be the perfect host for a tag for augmented reality systems - it would allow AR systems to discover who you are (with links by to your Friend Feed or whatever accounts).

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http://www.tadspot.com/?feed=rss2&p=27
The FriendFeed Front Page Game http://www.tadspot.com/?p=26 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=26#comments Thu, 19 Jun 2008 05:27:01 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=26 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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One of the emergent properties of FriendFeed is a new type of competitive content creation.  Only the most interesting content remains on the front page for any length of time.  All day long you can watch entries float on down the Rio del FriendFeed down, down into the tubez.  I think most people, like me, [...]]]>
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One of the emergent properties of FriendFeed is a new type of competitive content creation.  Only the most interesting content remains on the front page for any length of time.  All day long you can watch entries float on down the Rio del FriendFeed down, down into the tubez.  I think most people, like me, rarely look past the front page.

So, I like to play the FriendFeed Front Page Game.  It’s simply really.  Create threads or comment on threads that stay on the front page for as long as possible.  This not only helps you score imaginary points, it also helps keep the quality of front page material as high as possible.

I realize that everyone’s front page is different, but the threads that stay on your front page the longest also show up on most of your friends’ front page as well.  So, get your scorecards boys and girls.  2 points for each thread you start for each hour it remains on the front page and 1 point for each thread you comment on at least 3 times that for each hour that it stays on the front page.

So, play the FFFPG with me and help make Friend Feed the most interesting non-dump truck related site on the internets!

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http://www.tadspot.com/?feed=rss2&p=26
United American Insurance Company SUCKS http://www.tadspot.com/?p=25 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=25#comments Tue, 17 Jun 2008 00:18:13 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=25 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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There.  I put it out into the internets.  United American Insurance Company sucks.  It suck suck suckity sucks.  Jim Ford of United American Insurance Company is an evil spammer. Recently I placed my resume on Monster.com and CareerBuilder.com because I’m looking for a new job.  A programming job.  I have 12 years experience working as a [...]]]>
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Spam Fail

There.  I put it out into the internets.  United American Insurance Company sucks.  It suck suck suckity sucks.  Jim Ford of United American Insurance Company is an evil spammer.

Recently I placed my resume on Monster.com and CareerBuilder.com because I’m looking for a new job.  A programming job.  I have 12 years experience working as a software engineer.  At least once a week I get an email like this:

I have reviewed your resume and would like to schedule a time to meet with you and discuss sales and sales management opportunities at United American Insurance Company.

Liar!  The bastard certainly didn’t review my resume.  Sigh.

United American Insurance Company sucks and Jim Ford sucks.

Seriously Jim, WTF?

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FriendFeed Wish List http://www.tadspot.com/?p=24 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=24#comments Fri, 13 Jun 2008 20:00:20 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=24 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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Dear FriendFeed, Please add the following features: I love how when I hover over someone’s name I can subscribe to them and see if they’re subscribed to me.  Please also let us add a few sentences to introduce ourselves. When I hover over someone I’m not subscribed to I’d love to have a link to a “Similarity Matrix” [...]]]>
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Dear FriendFeed,

Please add the following features:

  1. I love how when I hover over someone’s name I can subscribe to them and see if they’re subscribed to me.  Please also let us add a few sentences to introduce ourselves.
  2. When I hover over someone I’m not subscribed to I’d love to have a link to a “Similarity Matrix” - something showing how often we’ve “Liked” the same threads and how often we’ve commented on the same thread.
  3. When I look at the list of people subscribed to me, PLEASE make it obvious for me to tell which ones I’m not subscribed to.
  4. Similarly, please give me the option to always subscribe to someone whenever they subscribe to me.  I do this anyway.  I figure that if they later turn out to be spammers I’ll be able to easily block them.
  5. I don’t like the idea of giving out kudos, brownie points or positive karma to FF users, but I do think I’d like users to be able to mark someone as an obnoxious troll.  We could each set a threshold for trolliness and once a user hits the threshold we wouldn’t see any content from them.  Can this be done without allowing a huge amount of griefing?  Maybe if the threshold only looks at your friends’ negative karma points or whatever.  Currently though, this isn’t a big problem.
  6. Let us set up new FF views - how about a tab that only shows threads with X or more Likes and X or more Comments?  I don’t want to lose the ability to see everything, but I’d like a way to occasionally dial down the noise.

That’s enough for now.

Thanks guys!

Tad

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Las Vegas Reviewed http://www.tadspot.com/?p=22 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=22#comments Tue, 10 Jun 2008 04:33:24 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=22 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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My wife Lindsay and I spent the past weekend in Las Vegas for our 12th Wedding Anniversary. We had a great time. Here are some reviews of some of the stuff we did: ]]>
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My wife Lindsay and I spent the past weekend in Las Vegas for our 12th Wedding Anniversary. We had a great time. Here are some reviews of some of the stuff we did:

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3G iPhone for $199? Not really. http://www.tadspot.com/?p=21 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=21#comments Mon, 09 Jun 2008 20:15:28 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=21 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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So, Real Steve announced the new 3G iPhones today and there’s lots to love.  GPS, Mobile Me, faster speeds, etc etc.  If you’ve seen the WWDC coverage you’ve seen it all.  My initial impression was something along the lines of: “Omg omg omg omg omg!  Want want want want want!”  But now that I’ve had [...]]]>
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So, Real Steve announced the new 3G iPhones today and there’s lots to love.  GPS, Mobile Me, faster speeds, etc etc.  If you’ve seen the WWDC coverage you’ve seen it all.  My initial impression was something along the lines of: “Omg omg omg omg omg!  Want want want want want!”  But now that I’ve had lunch and a few minutes to think it over, I think I’m still going to pass this time.

To buy an iPhone would require me to get a new contract with AT&T.  Currently I have a contract with T-Mobile (through 2009).  So, in addition to my T-Mobile monthly bill I’ll have a minimum $30/month for a data plan plus another minimum $40/month for their basic talk plan.  So, $1000 more or less to own an iPhone for 2 years in addition to what I’ll be paying T-Mobile.

No thanks.

This is what’s totally wrong about mobile phone carriers in the United States.  We’re forced into epochal 2 year contracts with whoever we buy from just so they’ll lop off a couple hundred dollars off the price of a new phone.  Two years is a ridiculously long time in an era where even hardware tech is accelerating at a super fast rate.

I’ll stick with my iPod Touch.  The Touch is what’s totally right about Apple.  I have almost all of the coolest features of the iPhone with NO monthly contract.

The Touch shows us the proper path.  Here’s what I want that will send me to Nerd Heaven:

  1. New iPod Touch with GPS built in.  Already a Garmin killer.
  2. Also add a 2 MP camera to the iPod Touch.
  3. Free Public Wi-Fi everywhere!  Apple can’t deliver that, but we need to keep advocating for it as much and as often as we can.  I complain to management nowadays when I eat at a restaurant that doesn’t provide free Wi-Fi.
  4. The Killer bit of tech we need - a simple microphone for the iPod Touch.  Microphone + SDK + Wi-Fi == better than iPhone.  Free calls anywhere.

I think I’ll be very happy with the App Store when that’s opened.  Us Touch owners had better not be excluded from much of the content there.

So, overall, today’s announcement was exciting primarily for new AT&T customers.  Otherwise it was kind of a dud.

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Las Vegas Trip 2008 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=20 http://www.tadspot.com/?p=20#comments Mon, 09 Jun 2008 03:27:20 +0000 Tad http://www.tadspot.com/?p=20 Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method GA_Filter::the_content() should not be called statically in /home/tdonaghe/tadspot.icuo.us/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 166

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We went to Las Vegas to celebrate our 12th Wedding Anniversary. Here are some pics: ]]>
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We went to Las Vegas to celebrate our 12th Wedding Anniversary. Here are some pics:

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