Google Home: Great For Music & Radio

After a few weeks with the Google Home (the voice-activated speaker powered by the Google Assistant) I’m a fan because it’s so convenient for playing music and radio.  I’m finding myself listening to both more (and consequently watching less TV!) since it’s just so easy to walk into my apartment and say “Hey Google, play 90.9FM” […]

Web Landmines: Thrash, Nags & Bloat

This is a rant.  The wealth of information on the web is amazing, but I find it riddled with user experience landmines that make it an unpleasant medium for reading.  These landmines are so frequent that stumbling on nice plain HTML page, like paulgraham.com, is refreshing and relieving, instead of normal.  The modern web is […]

Outlook for Web

Recently I was somewhat shocked to learn that Microsoft Outlook for web has awesome features like pinning and the notion of important messages.  I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised, since awesome open source web mail clients exist like RainLoop, but I was living under the rock of “nothing-compares-to-gmail.” The history of email web clients […]

Google Photos Has It All

Google Photos is a spectacular product that has helped to rekindle my passion for photography.  Since the launch in May 2015, I’ve uploaded 39,524 photos, created 117 albums and enjoyed countless “aha” moments, all while benefitting from a steady rollout of new features.  Google Photos makes it a joy to share and find my photos taken on both my […]

Pebble 2 is Part Fitness Tracker, Part Smartwatch

I’m now a week into using the Pebble 2 and I’m a fan.  I’ve wanted to try Pebble’s next generation smartwatch for ages, and almost 100 days after my wife’s pre-order and about a month after Pebble’s demise, it finally arrived*.  For my taste, the Pebble 2 gets all the hardware stuff right including: screen, waterproofing, battery, sensors […]

Wedding Name Cards

One task for our wedding was printing cards with names, table number and entreé choice. Microsoft Word would be great for the mail merge, but not the aesthetics; Adobe Illustrator would be great for the design, but I’m unfamiliar with it’s “variable data importer.” I wondered: “Can the browser do this?” and before long, with […]

Android 5.0 Battery Observations

I recently got a Droid Turbo 2 (Verizon edition,) which features a 3,760mAh battery, and with light use it lasts 2 full days on a single charge.  This endurance, combined with the rapid charger, is a compelling feature.  Once in a while my device consumes battery at twice the normal rate, which has lead me […]

Using Google Contacts on Android

I finally have my Android contacts synced in a way I like with my Google Contacts and it only took 2 years.  I wanted a single, unified contacts tool with photos.  I didn’t want to have to use a 3rd party app to “automagically” manage my contacts.  I didn’t want to permanently or irreversibly link my various […]