Archive for the 'gadgets' Category

Seesmic for Blackberry – First Impressions

I was extremely excited when I got the announcement that Seesmic released their first Twitter client for the Blackberry. Seesmic has been one of my favorite clients to use on the desktop (especially since their update to include Twitter lists), a top contender against Tweetdeck, which is my default only because I’ve put so much effort into groups. I’ve been using the Seesmic client for about a day and, as a chronic Twitter user, I’ve used it quite a bit.  Overall, it’s really intuitive and easy to get to everything you want to easily.  I’m impressed.

I’ve been a beta tester for SocialScope for a while and it is, hands down, the best Twitter client available for the Blackberry, in my opinion.  UberTwitter is a close second.  I primarily tweet from my Blackberry and I’m a heavy mobile user, so I’m always in search of the perfect application.

The Good

Lists, lists, lists!

This is the feature I’m most excited about. Twitter lists were only introduced a short time ago, and not everyone is making use of them yet, but I find them VERY useful. Having access to my lists on my Blackberry is invaluable. I can read tweets based on my custom list and NOT have to visit the website — which is useless from a mobile device, really.

Seesmic with lists

Seesmic with lists

Saved searches

Another feature that seems to be lacking from mobile clients is the saved search list.  I don’t use it often, but it’s pretty handy when I do.  SocialScope allows you to search Twitter, but you have to enter the search every time.  Seesmic pulls your saved searches from your Twitter account.

Seesmic Saved Search

Seesmic Saved Search

New replies and DM notification and count

Also in the above screenshot you can see that new replies and DMs are counted.  I’ve missed @ replies countless times on SocialScope because they were below my field of view, or I was scrolling too fast.  Seesmic also notifies you of new replies and new DMs via the trusty red star, blinking LED, and the weird little Seesmic guy on the home screen.

Seesmic Notifications

Seesmic Notifications

Danger, 140 character limit!

Super useful. When you’re typing a tweet you get the remaining character count on the screen, as in other clients, but once you get closer to the 140 limit the tweet field visually warns you.  At 19 characters left, you get a light shade of pink, and then it gradually increases to a deep shade of red the closer you get to zero.

Seesmic - Approaching 140 Character Limit

Seesmic - Approaching 140 Character Limit

Seesmic - Reached Character Limit

Seesmic - Reached Character Limit

That’s not all!

These are just the highlights I find useful. There are a few other features, common to other clients but great to have, like photo sharing, URL shortening, etc.

The Bad

Small annoyances I can live with

There are a few improvements that could be made.  The most annoying being that it doesn’t use the Blackberry typing shortcuts like automatically capitalizing “i”, adding a period after a double space, or your custom shortcuts.  It makes typing a tad slower.

You also can’t send pictures from within the Blackberry pictures menu.  SocialScope lets you do this, but Seesmic does have it from the main screen.  I usually email it to TwitPic anyway.

The Seesmic guy shows up in the home screen even with zero new DMs and replies.

The text is so tiny, although I’m not sure if it’s just me because I always dial down the font size on my Blackberry theme.  I raised the font size up to seven (from five) and it didn’t seem to help.

Also, not sure if it’s just my Blackberry or not, but sometimes there’s a bit of a delay in getting back to the previous screen after posting.

I’ve reported this to Seesmic as it is likely a bug, but sometimes you can’t @ someone from the Replies screen.

Try it out

If you want to download it, you can get it by going to http://m.seesmic.com on your Blackberry. It automatically detects your Blackberry browser and gives you the direct download OTA link.

Note: For those who want to know, I’m using the Blackberry 9700 and I got my theme from here. It’s for the 8900 but it works perfectly. Screenshots were taken using CaptureIt.

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Dear Mac: The Mystery Letter

I took a Lenovo Thinkpad running Mac OS X to work two weeks ago because I needed to do some work in Omnigraffle. I showed it off to the willing geeks who properly “ooohed” and “aaahed” over it. :D

Later that week I hijacked a Mini Mac from another project in the company (we’re a nearly pure Microsoft/IBM shop) to set it up at my desk and use it for a week or so.

When I returned from Web 2.0 Expo, the following note was stuck to the Mini Mac.

(Mystery Letter)

I still don’t know who wrote it, but I’ve got it pinned up in my cubicle.

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Apple iPhone Coming to Canada

In late 2007, early 2008. (via John Wiseman)

I watched the iPhone make it’s debut at CES via MacRumors. I was sitting there oohing and aahing over how so pretty it is, waiting for them to announce it’s availability. As soon as they said “Cingular”, my heart sank. Oh no. US only for how long?

Around a year, apparently.

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Please tell me it’s a joke…

A Swiss Army Eyelash Curler?

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love gadgets and gadgety things, and probably more than the average girl but this? It ranks right up there with silliness such as the She Driver pink and fluffy tool set.

Most of the time, like 99.9% of the time, if something is pink, I’ll actually like it less. Why oh why do companies insist on making things pink to appeal to females?

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ATI vs. Nvidia using Oblivion

ExtremeTech did a great head-to-head comparison of ATI pitted against Nvidia using Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion as the game of choice. According to the article ATI comes out ahead on nearly every aspect of performance.

Wayde and I had researched and discussed at length which card to buy when we both got new systems recently. He went with ATI 1800xt while I opted for Nvidia’s 6700 series…although I did buy two and SLI them. :) I’m partial to Nvidia because it’s the only brand of video card that I never had any problems with, and although Wayde is of the same opinion, he got ATI anyway “just to see”. Neither of us have had any problems yet, and we’ve both played pretty much the same games.

I completed all of the Morrowind series on PC, and this game is proving to be just as good, if not better!

We didn’t get Oblivion for PC, however, we got it for our Xbox 360 instead, which I’ve heard performs way better than PC when it comes to that particular game. Lucky us! :D

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Geek News and Gadgets!

I’ve added two new categories — Geek News and Gadgets. I’m going to be blogging more about new geek things that are coming into the news. I’ve been finding myself ahead of the curve these days on news, so I’ll share with you all!

I’ve got two linkies of goodness to share with you today:

Personalize Google (although I don’t know why they chose “ig”.)
Bittorrent goes trackerless.

Oh yeah, I’ve got one more for you. This is only for the 733t h4X0rs: Das Keyboard. I want one, even though I’m not an uber geek.

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It has been so long…

I wasn’t even sure my weblog was working. At least I remembered the URL to post.

I got a new iPod yesterday. I’m looking for an armband, and any other cool accessories I can get to go with it. :) Yes, I’m hooked.

Ideas, anyone? Links?

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The latest in car audio

I’m not trying to be a Gizmodo-wannabe, I just happen to be a gadget geek.

I was complaining to Wayde, and have been for months, that my car’s audio system sucks. It’s a ‘99 Grand Am and the stock stereo is crap. (Big surprise there.) The speakers have rattled since I got them, and sometimes when you turn the volume down, it goes up instead.

So, I’m going to get this.

If the 20G USB removable hard drive doesn’t get enough GeekPoints ™ for you, the wireless adapter that allows you to sync your files with your computer through your wireless LAN (which I happen to have) will. I’ll pull into my garage and my files will sync at a time I specify overnight, if need be.

Now that rocks. I can hardly wait!

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I want one of these.

Get me a FragBook and I’ll love you forever.

Damn. That is sweet.

And here’s a beer with it’s own fridge for Wayde.

And to continue the linky goodness for today, check out Pixel Girl Presents for the ass-kickinest desktops (and other stuff) I’ve ever seen.

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GoalieGeek Alert!

I am on the cutting edge of technology!

I installed our new D-Link Gateway this evening and we are now online with Primus’ Talkbroadband service. I have entered the world of VoIP.

Wayde is on the phone right now giving it the first test. He asked me if it’s a trick, if I really set it up, because it sounds perfect. I did a download test and he said he didn’t even notice me downloading a 20M file at 150-200K/s.

We’re basically giving up our “regular” phone service, meaning that if the internet service goes down, so does our phone, but if it’s really important we can use my cell phone.

With it we get loads of extras, even though we don’t really need it. Best of all, we get unlimited long distance. A HUGE plus considering most of our calls are made to the States. My mom will be thrilled. :)

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