Give Me Back My Headphone Jack

Headphone jack on the iPhone

This is one of my rants, so if you’re not into snarky griping with your facts, this might not be for you. Okay, let’s do this. I’m sick of the trend to remove the headphone jack from phones (and surely other devices). There’s nothing wrong, and plenty right, with the 3.5mm headphone jack, and replacing it with Bluetooth is totally self-serving for vendors with no benefit to consumers. I’m not going to say anything here that hasn’t been said countless times before, but I want to add my voice to the choir of the perturbed and get this off my chest.

Goodbye, Google Voice

Google Voice logo

I’ve been a Google Voice user since June 2009, when it was still invite-only and had the promise of doing to phones what Gmail did to email. When I finally got access I was excited, and even though I didn’t have a smartphone (which meant using Voice was cumbersome) I was happy with its performance. It was one of the driving factors behind my getting an Android phone, and at first things were awesome.

What I'm Reading

Sunset on the Chesapeake

Whistleblowing Is the New Civil Disobedience: Why Edward Snowden Matters “The US government, far from deterring future whistleblowers, has just incentivized a new generation of them by acting like a megalomaniac.” Why Silicon Valley Should Save Drive-in Movies Drive-in theaters are the perfect alternative to indoor theaters for people who want the freedom to use their phone or other device while watching. Also, I’d love to see drive-in movies become popular again.

What I'm Reading

Sunset over a river

9 ways a billion dollar new mobile company might be created In Secret, Court Vastly Broadens Powers of N.S.A. Android distribution numbers updated for July, Jelly Bean now the most used version

My Thoughts on the Nexus 4

Nexus 4

This is a first for me on this blog: a post about a phone. I’ve written posts about specific devices (even ones that don’t yet exist) before, but I haven’t gone down the smartphone rabbit trail. I’m breaking that pattern. On Monday Google announced their latest additions to the Nexus line. I already have a Nexus 7, so their update to that product wasn’t very interesting to me. Nor was the Nexus 10, despite its impressive specs, since I’m just not looking for a tablet that big (part of the reason I’ve not bothered with an iPad).

Nexus 7: Pictures

Nexus 7

My office ordered a Nexus 7 tablet, which I’ll be using. It arrived this week, and so far I’m pretty blown away by it. I’m not going to go into too many details about features and day-to-day with it yet, but I figured I’d provide some pictures.

LTE Tethering FTW

I recently rooted my HTC Thunderbolt and put Cyanogen Mod 7 on it, which includes tethering capability. This morning I connected my iMac at work to my phone, and ran a speed test. The results are impressive. Download: 15.48 Mb/s Upload: 4.86 Mb/s Ping: 104ms The test was run with the following signal status: So in case there was still any doubt, LTE is awesome.

Why the New YouTube Mobile Site is Better Than the Mobile Apps

A couple of weeks ago YouTube released their new mobile site, which added some really cool features. The most notable: watch videos directly from the mobile site in a device-native format, without the need for a dedicated app. Aside from this being really cool from a technical standpoint - as an indicator of the true potential for shifting from platform-specific apps to web apps that can run on any device - it’s important from a philosophical & content-centric standpoint.

Google Voice Goes Public - Right Before the New iPhone

Google has just announced that starting today, Google Voice will be open to the general public & will no longer require an invite. For those unfamiliar, Google Voice is a service from Google that gives you a phone number which you in turn can have forward to any combination of phones, use as a voicemail service that automatically transcribes them, and much more. I’ve been using Google Voice since I got my invite in June of last year & absolutely love it.

Best Buy/Geek Squad Doesn't Fully Grasp the Concept of "Customer Service"

Now this is the story all about how My life got flipped, turned upside down And I’d like to take a minute just sit right there I’ll tell you how I became screwed by a store called Best Buy. Based on the title of this post and its apparent topic you may be thinking that I’m being melodramatic or overreacting, but I am not. You see, the incident that has incited this post involved my cell phone, more specifically a smartphone.