Sunday, October 11, 2015

iPhone 6s Days 5 - 7: Out of Town

Sorry for the lack of posts. I was out of town for a few days, so the phone got its first bit of traveling in. Nothing special went on, though I'm a bit nervous running around without a Lifeproof case on. The one thing I noticed was that the Calendar app had my flight info already in there, so I assume there is some Calendar/Mail or Delta/Calendar integration going on. The Delta flight was delayed (what's new?) but the app had the courtesy of letting me know early enough so that I could stop driving like a bat out of hell because we were running a bit behind. 

I had a chance to use Apple Pay at a Rite Aid, but I didn't know what exactly to do. The dude at the counter just looked at me strangely while I fumbled around and eventually gave up and just swiped. I've looked it up now, and added a card via camera (which was crazy convenient) so I'll try it soon and let you know how it goes. What was cool was any time I used the card, the Wallet app gave me a notification. My hope is that they can then find a way for me to use one of these apps to print out my receipts somehow for expense reports. Currently like have to "scan" them in by taking a picture. Not the end of the world, but anything to make my life easier. 

I think I may want an Apple Watch, but I'm afraid it might be racist like my Fitbit. My Fitbit doesn't measure my heart rate very well, and it may have something to do with the color of my skin. Maybe calling it racist is a bit extreme. Prejudiced perhaps? Basically my melanin proficiency causes a couple issues: the LEDs can't shine through my skin as well as they're supposed to, and the Fitbit also thinks I'm not wearing it every once in a while. I'm afraid the Apple Watch will have the same issue. I should go test it in a store, and then ask Santa to bring me one if it works out. 

My mother had the boys and took them to Disney on Ice, and let them stay up crazy late. My little one all but refused to get out of her car and said he was staying with her. I think his portion of the inheritance just got bigger...

Reality will be here at 6:45. Let me try and get some rest before then. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

iPhone 6s Day 4: Slow Burn

Phone acted normal today. I've discovered another minor annoyance: the six digit passcode. Even though I'm an IT guy, security is probably the least important thing to me. If you want to hack me, go ahead and take the couple pennies I have saved up. I do have Touch ID set up, and it seems to be faster and more accurate (or maybe easier?) than the 5s, but I've gotten used to using my 4 digit passcode, especially after the Lifeproof case started showing its age and getting my fingerprint to register was a crap shoot. Maybe I'll get used to Touch ID again...

The bigger screen is nicer when I use Waze. I don't think the map is showing me any more than it did before, but the details are easier to see. Or maybe I'm getting old and need bigger icons? I guess I'll be getting one of those Jitterbug phones next time I upgrade. Oh, I almost forgot that I have an extra row of icons on the main screen. That's been messing me up, but I'm almost used to it. I just need Apple to rotate home screen icons when the phone is in landscape mode and all will be well.

I met some friends/ex-coworkers for dinner at Taco Mac. Taco Mac had these new wing flavors, one of which was called "Slow Burn". It's made with scorpion peppers, which I (nor anyone I've talked to about it) had ever heard of. They came out, and they were hot, but not hot enough to need a drink after every bit hot. If you've ever had my sister's pepper sauce, you'd know what that feeling is like. The wings were also roasted, which I didn't know Taco Mac did. I liked it better than the fried wings for sure, and we assumed that they were better for us (albeit very slightly). I'd definitely get them again.

I'm also not sure why I'm awake right now. Probably the weight of not having done this post on time. Or maybe the scorpion peppers are having their revenge for me laughing in their face. I'm going to guess 2pm today is going to be really interesting...

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

iPhone 6s Day 3: Beat Up

First 'crisis' with the phone today: I had a crazy battery drain episode. It also refused to charge until I turned it off and then back on again. After that it went back to normal, but I'm still a little leery. I went to the Battery page in Settings, and it looks like Facebook might have been the offender as its power consumption was way higher than the other apps. I'll keep an eye on it and report back if I figure out anything.

Thanks to a friend and former coworker, I figured out the Reachability function. I didn't know a tap would register on the Home button, but it makes sense. My thumb can almost reach without it, but that feature makes it convenient to touch the top of the screen without contorting your thumb too badly. 

As I told you earlier, I've started running again. My body is starting to reject this form of exercise, but I'm going to try and push through. I bought some new cheap running shoes because my current ones were shot and my right knee made that well known about a mile in. They are some Asiacs GEL-Contend 3 and my right knee approved of them immediately. I'll upgrade to a nicer pair once the new house costs settle down a bit. First run was a little over 10 minute miles for the 3 miles I did. Today I did 9 minute miles. I'm guessing I'll never get back down to the 6 minute miles I did in high school, but I'll settle for 7.5. 

Lastly, I took the iPhone 5s out of its Lifeproof case. While the phone looks great and the case might still be drop proof, it is definitely letting all the elements in:

I did lose one 5s to a leak with a Lifeproof case, but I was smart enough to know I'm unlucky, and I bought the $10 Lifeproof insurance policy. It cost me a $50 deductible, but they sent me a new phone with no problem, so I'm hoping that policy is still around when I get the new case. 

I need to test and see if AT&T unlocked my 5s so I can sell it on eBay. Anyone near me have a non AT&T GSM phone whose SIM card I could borrow? I'll buy the coffee...

Day 3 of Hell had a few moments, but it was not terrible. The good news is as long as the fumes don't seem overwhelming, we can sleep in the bedrooms tomorrow. We couldn't even make it the 7 days. We are quitters. Speaking of quitting, I'm going to bed. Deuces...

iPhone 6s Day 2: Accessories

So I've had a full day to play with this thing (TWSS), and it's doing fine. I'm getting used to the bigger size, but I'm refusing to like it. What I am not getting used to is the power button being moved. Why does Apple do things like that? First it was the headphone jack, and now the power button. I keep hitting the top of the phone and cursing when the screen won't turn on. Battery life seems to be a bit better than on my 5s, even though I have some extra features turned on currently. I have the "Hey Siri" feature turned on, and fortunately my sister-in-law doesn't live nearby or I would set it off quite frequently. "Siri" (remember my sister-in-law was first, so she doesn't get quotes for her name) is answering and dictating better, though I haven't tried the word "lime" yet. The pressure sensitive screen seems a bit gimmicky currently, but I think they'll find better uses for it. I'm not sure why I'd want to preview an email. Either I open it or ignore it. Previewing URLs in emails or texts seems a bit more useful. I think there's a feature to make the screen move down to assist with the phone being unnecessarily big, but I haven't figured it out yet. I should Google it. I went for a run with it in my pocket and it seemed ridiculously obtrusive, so when I got back, the hunt for accessories began.

Since I am planning to go with a Lifeproof case (which from what I've read, a fre case for an iPhone 6 will fit a 6s, but it will be a bit snug, which could take away from some of the protective features), I looked into their armband first. I had a Lifeproof armband for my 5s, which was a crazy large clamp around the phone. It worked fine but always got bumped when I went through doorways or around workout equipment. Lifeproof's current armband employs a connector that you stick to the back of the case, and then this allows you to quickly connect and disconnect to a variety of accessories (hence the name Quickmount). I won't stick a bumper sticker to my truck, so there's no way I'm sticking anything to my phone cover. Fortunately my search for an alternative led me to a familiar place. Back when I had a Palm Pre, I used a Tune Belt arm band to hold it when I worked out. Tune Belt has a band that will work with the Lifeproof case on, It's already ordered and should be here Friday. I still foresee bumping into everything with it, but at least it'll be heavily protected when it occurs.

Minor annoyance of the day is that it appears most of my Bluetooth accessories will need to be re-paired. My Fitbit did not need to be re-paired, but my Plantronics Backbeat Fit headphones did. Have not tried the Jawbone yet. There are like 3 or 4 other devices, so we'll see how those fare at a later time.

Day 2 of Hell also didn't go too badly. The flooring folks couldn't do anything today because it was still too wet (shut it!), so this evening we could go upstairs and grab some extra stuff. The floor looks amazing though. I'll take a picture tomorrow. The sweet tea vodka was cracked open today, that probably helped a bit. Aight, time to go to bed while there is still time to go to bed. Hasta manana...

Monday, October 5, 2015

iPhone 6s Day 1: 7 Days of Hell (The #FWP version)

It appears the only time I can write blog posts is the 30 days after getting a new iPhone. Things haven't changed much. I'm still happy with my iPhone experience, so I'll continue to stay with the iPhone, though I am not happy I had to get a bigger phone. I really needed more space, and I really wanted Apple Pay, so an upgrade it is. It's currently still syncing and backing up, and then there's an update to 9.0.2, so it may be a while before I can actually use the thing. But before I bore you with my unrelated story, I got a Space Gray 64GB. I had a Space Gray 32GB 5s. Seems faster, screen seems more crisp, and it's definitely bigger, which since I don't feel the need for compensating for anything, is very annoying. I will most likely get a Lifeproof case for this one as well, but they haven't come out yet, so I currently have an Amzer Slim Pudding Soft Gel TPU Skin Fit Case Cover coupled with a Tech Armor HD Clear Ballistic Glass Screen Protector. I had good luck with both these with my 5s while I waited for its Lifeproof case to come out, so hopefully they'll do just as good this go around. Now onto my story...

If you're Facebook friends with me, you probably saw that we bought a house. The lady of the house wanted a few changes done, one of which was the color of the hardwood floor on the main level. The way the house is laid out, we can't get to the bedrooms on the upper floor while the floor is getting done, so we are spending the next 5 days in the basement, which is set up like a one bedroom apartment. By "we" I mean, me, my wife, my two kids, and the two cats. Basement is about 800 sq. ft. I understand that many people live in smaller spaces with more people, but this is my first world problem, and I'll whine as much as I please. Also, 7 Days of Hell sounds better than 5 Days. So far Day 1 of Hell is not going badly yet, even though we didn't grab nearly enough stuff from upstairs. We should have a window of opportunity in the morning before the flooring people come to put down another coat. I do fear the alcohol consumption around here is going to skyrocket in the next day or two. I think the phone is finally finished updating. I should go to bed, as I going to guess that 6:45 is going to come a lot sooner this week. Until tomorrow...

Monday, October 21, 2013

iPhone 5s Day 23: Ice ice baby

I'm going to start a new segment. I will call it "Irate Wisdom." Today's Irate Wisdom is, if you fly into a city, rent a car, and in the car is this:
It is too damn cold. I mentioned yesterday that I do not like cold, and this is not helping the mood. Fortunately I brought a leather jacket, gloves and a handknit wool skull cap. Hopefully I won't freeze to death.

The phone is working as it should on a business trip. Maybe even too well. I have an app called TripCase, recommended to me by a friend and frequent business traveler, which has all my travel info: my flight, car rental, and hotel. It alerts me if my flight plan changes, and shares my travel info with anyone I designate. The Delta app also alerts me, so I'm getting double alerts when things change. I put my boarding pass in Passbook, so about 3 hours before departure, I get the boarding pass on my lock screen, and it makes it easy to go through security and board the plane with no paper needed. My phone has apparently made me a tree hugger. The National Car Rental app reminded me that I had a car waiting, and the Marriott app allowed me to check in mobily mobilely mobile-ly from the app, so when I got to the counter, the person at the counter just reached in a drawer, handed me my room keys, and off I went.

I'm hungry. I'm going to find something to munch on before I call it a night. Hasta mañana...

Saturday, October 19, 2013

iPhone 5s Day 22: I just want to hold you

It is always a great day when Georgia Tech wins and Georgia loses. I know, you're going to say how Georgia Tech beat a basketball school and Georgia lost to SEC perennial powerhouse Vanderbilt. Unfortunately typing can't show you how hard I'm laughing right now. I'm pretty sure this was the end of the Mark Richt era at Georgia. My guess is, if they beat Florida, he'll get to ride the season out. If they lose, he'll be fired by Tuesday. Hopefully they can continue their losing ways for the Saturday after Thanksgiving. 

I got another suggestion for a phone mount today, so I figured I'd go in depth with my laundry list of criteria for a phone mount. Here is the current mount:
 It's connected to the air conditioner vent and it's fine, except it's blocking the vent which now that I have people in the back that need air, I would like to have it free to do what it does best, which is blow. Air that is. This was the old mount:
What I loved about this one was that it gave me two power sockets. It did block the vent a little, but not as badly. This one was top heavy, so it would fall out after a while and eventually ripped the socket out of the console. Here is one of the ones recommended to me:
I thought the neck was a little long, but the other criteria I forgot about was that my Pioneer head unit has a 30 pin cable that I attach to the phone so it can control the music and show me the song info and album art. This mount wouldn't accommodate that. It does have me thinking about a newer head unit that could do Bluetooth, but that is money I don't feel like spending currently. The other mount I was recommended:
I really like the concept of this one, since no one uses CDs anymore. My head unit can handle DVDs, but I can count the number of times I've used it. The issue with this one for me is that it would partially block the touchscreen on my head unit, and if you look closely at the next picture, you will see I have a 1.25" lip above the CD slot which I'm not sure the mount would clear:
So here's my current front runner:
It is a Chinese no-name product, but its neck is short so I don't think I'll have a top heavy issue nor will it block the vent, and I get a power port and a USB port, so I can power two devices if need be. And it's cheap which Is good for my bottom line, but as the saying goes, "you get what you pay for." Let's hope what I get is a good product for a low price.

I had a little more to say, but if you look at the previous couple screen shots, you'll see that the phone is about to die. Lots of GPS and Pandora without charging. Good night!