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Showing posts from April, 2013

Keep Moving Forward.

This has been a week of change at the AAAD household. After 4 years at a job I loved, I decided to move on to a fantastic in-house position. I'm still a computer lawyer, but now I have only one client. It's an exciting time, and I couldn't be happier to have this opportunity to move forward.

It looks like the next Keynote will be at WWDC 2013

For a company that's in the midst of a "malaise", Apple sure generates a lot of excitement.  Tickets for WWDC 2013, which takes place from June 10-14, went on sale this morning. Of course, they sold out immediately.  It's fair to assume that there's going to be a Tim Cook Keynote somewhere during the conference - there always has been a Keynote at WWDC in the past. 

DirecTV Adding Voice Search to its iOS App

In all of the excitement about Apple's earnings announcement, I missed the story about how DirecTV is adding a voice search to its incredible iOS app  later this year.

AAPL Beats Official Estimates (and Crushes Pessimistic Contrarian Estimates)

Well, that answers that. After putting up with weeks of spiralling stock prices, and even speculation about whether he's fit to serve as Apple's CEO, Tim Cook got his chance to provide us with some cold, hard facts today. Apple always plays their hand close to the vest. But how much fun must it have been for Mr. Cook to throw the number " 43 billion, 600 million" down on the table this afternoon?

High Five #11 - The Five Best "Silver Era" Konami NES Games

It's been a busy few days here at the AAAD household. I'm starting a new job next week - still computer lawyering, but moving in-house - and we're working to get our new tenants in place when the lease expires June 1.  On the fun side, I got to chop down my first tree today. Just like George Washington! Tomorrow, it's replacing a garbage disposal unit, more tree-chopping, and general cleanup.  That's some quality landlording!  There's an iOS connection to all this - over the last year, I've learned quite a bit about how tech can help out first-time landlords.  But that property management stuff can wait for tomorrow. Today, a Videogame High Five!

What's the future for AAPL?

I don't like writing about stocks and finance. This is a tech/home DIY blog, not a finance blog.  But Apple has gone SO long without any keynotes - or really, any product releases whatsoever - that we're left without a lot to talk about. And that, frankly, is the problem with AAPL as a stock.  When Apple doesn't give us something to talk about - to get excited about - Apple looks less like a "way of life", and more like another widget factory. 

Well, that was something. Flooded Basements, power outages, and sump pump backups.

My son's school was cancelled yesterday due to rain. RAIN. And you know what? It was the right call. I have never seen it rain this much over a 24-hour period. Our streets were flooded, our backyard was a lake. Fortunately, we cleared out that blockage in the underground gutter pipes last weekend. Unfortunately, our backup sump pump battery died.  And then the power went out. 

Spring Preview #4: Review - Scotts Snap Spreader

This weekend wasn't ALL home disasters and fire department visits. We also did a bunch of spring yard work (and completely transformed the dining room with new fixtures, paint & wainscoting, but that's another post.) And in doing our spring yard work, we happened across one lawn gadget that I can recommend for weekend warrior non-pros like me - the Scotts Snap Spreader.

Spring Preview #3 - Underground Drainage Pipe Blockages, and Carbon Monoxide?

I thought that spring had arrived in Chicago. And then I attended Saturday's Cubs game. I've been to 46 Cubs games in the last 5 years, and I have NEVER been that cold at Wrigley.  38 degrees is bad for baseball. It was, however, a great weekend at the AAAD household. We had a full house this weekend - my parents and my wife's mom were in town from Iowa. Which is a great thing, because we needed all of the help we could get around here the last few days.

DirecTV's New HR44 Genie Coming Soon

As you know, I'm a fan of DirecTV's HR34 Genie.  From its interface, to its 5-tuner functionality, to its online and iOS capabilities, I think it is the best DVR I've ever used. Well... it's getting better.  DirecTV's HR44 is right around the corner, and I'm going to be pulling every possible string to get one. 

When is the Next Apple Keynote?

Is Apple really going to make us wait until June for the WWDC keynote?  If so, that would be an unprecedented eight-month span between keynotes... and as I wrote in a previous post , it's my opinion that this lack of "Apple events" is one of the primary factors in Apple's perceived doldrums. 

How do you use iCloud?

iCloud takes a lot of criticism. Some of that criticism is well-earned - there have been outages, and occasional issues with functionality.  A lot of the criticism, however, seems to be the result of misplaced expecations. This criticism is usually along the lines of "iCloud doesn't live up to the hype", or arises from the sentiment that "iCloud didn't   really change anything", or even "I don't understand this." iCloud can do a lot of things very well. Most of the time, you don't even notice that iCloud has been doing those things, until you need one.  This post will briefly discuss some of the issues and limitations of iCloud, and then will give a few examples of how you can integrate it into your routine.  We'll follow up with a deeper dive into each of these iCloud features in later posts. 

Notes from the Weekend - and Property Management

It's Opening Day (at Wrigley!) Rainy around Chicago, but they should find a way to get the game in.  I'll be using the MLB At the Ballpark app throughout today's game, and I'll have a full review tonight. (UPDATE: It worked more or less as expected. Foursquare-style check-in, followed by the ability to share photos with other people at the game. Great app!) Before the game, I'm off to the city to make some repairs around the old house, as the (fantastic!) tenants are approaching the end of their lease. New LED bulbs, and some general maintenance. Landlord stuff.

Capitol v. ReDigi - What Does "Ownership" Mean in the Digital Era?

A few days ago, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York granted summary judgment to Capitol Records in  Capitol v. ReDigi . This case has far-reaching implications.  What's at stake, really, is what it means to "own" music in the digital era. And based on the March 30th ruling, "ownership" isn't what it used to be.  As a "computer lawyer", I'm not exactly sure what to think about that. But I'm sure interested in where this discussion leads. 

High Five #10 - Our 5 Favorite iOS "Tricks"

The slogan of AAAD is "building an iOS home, bit by bit."  We're trying to leverage Apple and iOS to the greatest extent possible. These are some of the best, most   helpful uses of iOS that we've seen so far.

Apple Doesn't Need A "Hit". It Needs More Keynotes.

The conventional wisdom, right now, is that Apple is in a tailspin and badly needs a new, "magical" product. If Steve Jobs were still alive, we hear, Apple would never go this long without dazzling us.  I don't know if that's necessarily the case. 

iRadio Reportedly Launching This Summer

I've posted quite a bit about Apple's proposed "iRadio" service, and why their lowball offer on royalties per song streamed may be justified.  Put simply, if the Apple music service is anything like what's been described, it will drive music sales, while making the iPod (or the "Music" app on the iPhone) more indispensable than ever. And now, it appears that iRadio is closer than ever - maybe arriving this summer. 

Opening Day App Review: MLB at the Ballpark Update

Just in time for Opening Day, MLB At the Ballpark just got a major update. New "ticket-style" icon, new features. I'll be using this app all season, so the review will be ongoing. But for now, some Opening Day thoughts: