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skyfire’s Awesome Mobile Browser!

November 20th, 2008 | Category: AT&T,ATT,GPRS,live stream,N95,N95-4 8GB NAM,Nokia,qik,TWIT

Up ’till now, I’ve added hacks, and workarounds, and multiple different browsers and software programs to all the different mobile devices I’ve owned, just to make it do things like, get a decent browsing experience (close to a full on computer), listen to audio (any), watch video and most important of all in todays “NOW” environment, do this all live!

Nokia came with a decent browser, capable of many things, but not enough, enter Opera…

I was hoping Opera’s browser would improve upon the lack of things Nokia’s browser was not capable of doing, (live audio/video, better browsing through “more like PC pages”), etc., sadly, no.

Opera would display pages a tad nicer, but that was about it.

What I REALLY wanted was the ability to watch streaming video LIVE! Not, download the video from YouTube or similar sites and watch it… but stream live while the situation unfolds.

Many devices say they stream, but in reality they were simply downloading a “file” to then watch (the buffer might have been the closest thing to an actual “stream”).

Today, I ran into a newer browser called, SkyFire.

SkyFire is currently available for S60 devices (N Series and E Series Nokia mobiles) and Windows Mobile.

I must say, I was more than shocked, as SkyFire did not advertise it’s ability to stream live content, it simply touted it as a browser more like your PCs browser. That alone intrigued me. After all, I had tried several other claiming similar things to no real avail.

This is exactly what I wanted! I was amazed! The first site I tested (simply due to the fact that I wanted a streaming experience) was my favorite live a/v guy, Leo Laporte at twitlive.tv Here is the footage I took while testing it.

 



Then I moved on to my mobile video streaming site Qik.com and sure enough, they both streamed the live content right as it came out of my mouth. It was odd looking at my delayed qik video being streamed up, and then back down to skyFire’s browser on my N95 (over AT&T’s sluggish 3G network), (it was kinda of like watching what I stream from my phone on my full on computer) but hey, it worked, worked well and I am VERY happy!

The browser does not stop there, complete with standard back, forward, enter URL, bookmark, fit to screen, and zoom -+ options, but, I’ll still most likely use my default Nokia browser for quick and dirty things as it’s not really feasible to view a web page built for a monitor resolution of 1024×768 or higher on a 320×240 screen (despite zooming, just too much scrolling at normal size). But when I need a more full on computer like experience, you can bet, I’ll be turning to my newest browser, SkyFire!

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iphone 3G, pleeease.

July 11th, 2008 | Category: Apple,AT&T,ATT,GPS,HSDPA,iPhone,live stream,qik,voip,Wi-fi

This is silly, just silly.

I have to agree with Leo Laporte (of twitlive.tv) and many related to the industry when It’s said that you may be wasting your money if you let “At this time” screw you into a contract for a partially functional (based on definition) device!

Leo’s been online (live) since the first Apple store opened in New Zeland, on Friday July 11th, 2008 convering the launch of the 3G iPhone! And, although I don’t have his following, I have been re-streaming Leo’s audio for those that can’t view it, but want to stay connected via audio only. (my live stream on the right menu). This has been nice for those who only have their mobiles or capable of a .pls stream.

Just as a plug for me and Leo, (as it’s my site)… I re-stream Leo whenever he’s online, for those interested in a mobile version at a lower bit rate for ease of cellular streaming.

But…, the title of the post is really, “iPhone 3G, pleeease.”

So far this is what we’ve learned about the new iPhone 3G.

1. It’s got GPS (but it seems to act more like triangulation) the kind that google maps uses for mobile devices. Hmm, not turn by turn… seems that’s what GPS is mainly used for.
2. It has 3G (thus the title). However, as it’s been repeated, 3G is really (At this time) only available in Major Metro cities (and not even all of them). In fact, there is more wi-fi coverage across the globe than 3G, so you decide which you’d rather use and (NOT) pay for?
3. Apps, Shmaps. Software is cool, but many other devices that have many other cooler and “completely functional” hardware have been open for development for a long time!

These seem to be the 3 most noted changes in the launch of this new device (and the apps don’t really count) since the software version 2.0 enables new apps on the old iPhone, and if you can install Google Maps on the old iPhone, then your “triangulated” GPS has been available since it was installed. Sooo… it seems 3G is the only enhancment. No?

Personally, I’d not get screwed into a contract, and rather have the immediate option to buy the device and plug my own/old sim to work. Sadly, Apple descided that was not a good idea (for who knows what reason)?

In addition to all this, with all the activation problems, (servers down, etc.) Apple and or AT&T “At this time” are sending people out of the stores with an inactive device. This may just lead to some never activating it “under contract”. Rumor has it, it only took approx 3 1/2 hours to unlock it yesterday (Via someone in New Zeland). This of course won’t take long to get into the wild for everyone to use, and thusly, if you have a device that is unactivated (opposed to activated forcefully in the store)… you may just be able to unlock it and pop in your existing sim.

Hmm, I’d love to know the numbers on that one.

If you don’t need the cellular, just get an iPod touch, install a VOIP client and use wi-fi for phone calls. :) Hey, at least your coverage would be greater with Wi-fi. ;)

One positive thing I can say, even though the new iPhone STILL does not have video recording (built in) (as I understand it), a company called qik.com will allow you to do just that, and live at the same time. So, if you’re one of the secondary “early adopters” of the newest iPhone, don’t fret completely, it has one improvement. (oh wait, the old iPhone can do qik too). DANG!

Thoughts, if Apple and At This Time are going to go into a shady @$$ deal like the last and this one, things really need to work, immediately! No? Or, was it your intention to have many unactivated devices in the wild?

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twitterfone.com

May 10th, 2008 | Category: blogging,social network

Got my twitterfone.com account, woohoo! Thank you Pat from twitterfone.com, what a nice guy!

So, I set it up as soon as I woke up and got the message (Pat’s in Ireland, I’m in Seattle). ;)
Setting the account up was a breeze… thanks for that developers, nothing really to do but enter the invite code you receive upon request and your personal info (name, email, phone # and twitter info), that’s it.

After signing up, the twitterfone.com’s site/page is as simple as that, (a single page). It all happens with a login, which is painless.

Twitterfone is exactly what it says, you twit or tweet via a simple phone call, no hassle, no major setup online, no multiple screens to go through, no confusing instructions from the botLady when you call, just call the number you receive in your email, and the lady asks you to make/state your tweet and hang up.

It’s not a local call (for me), but that’s not really a matter since LD does not cost me on my cell service, so (to me) it’s the same as toll free.

The first call I made I was a loss for words (wha?!)… yes, so, I just stuck the phone up to the TV speaker. And… after a 23 second call at 12:11 PST, out popped a tweet on twitter.com at 12:17. Not a bad turnaround. The tweet was truncated, but that’s to be expected, twitter only has a 140 character limit. But, twitterfone knows this and places a tiny URL before the 140 char limit is used to the full recording and translated text on their site at twitterfone.com

The first recording was quite decent. As clear as you’d expect a TV commercial to be, the translation was as well. The recording had an initial startup delay and missed the first 3-4 words spoken, so I’d wait a second or two after the “beep speak”. Also, it added “are” in two places that were not in the audible version. Overall, excellent! The botLady on the phone is funny at the end of your recording (if your silent for long enough stating “that’s a good tweet, bye for now”. ;)

My second test was at 12:48 PST and it came through at 12:50 (probably ’cause it was not english). In this test I re-stated my marriage proposal in Italian (a little fast and botched, but I was trying to fit it all in the time allotted) ;) Unfortunately, it was not recognizable, but at least it tweeted “Not an English language” on twitter and still linked to it for those that still want to listen to it. My suggestion, if you do plan to say it in a foreign language, say so in english first; like “in Italian and then the statement”… that way your tweet would say something like “In Italian… not in english… then the tiny url to the audible translation.”

Over all, twitterfone is exactly what it’s advertised, a phone call to twit or tweet. It’s a simple call to one number, with the instructions to state your tweet and hang up, and it’s posted in a few minutes, no hassle, no major setup at their site and no fuss to wade through to get the recording or translated text.

Good job gals n guys! For just tweets, I like this allot, ’cause it’s simple and fast!

If you want to make more than just a tweet (additional options)… see my vs post.

Update (thanks Pat) <– although not really the same application (by total function) as jott, twitterfone gets the job done excellently for those hands free twits and tweets. :) Now, I don’t even need to touch the phone, just use my BT headset to dial my pre-programmed twitterfone number and twit or tweet through the night. :) Oh, I love technology.

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what’s on your life list?

May 07th, 2008 | Category: life

I’d love to hear from you and know, “what’s on your life list?”.

I hear from many people, that they have developed a list of things they want to do in their “lifetime”.

I’ve never developed such a list, but have many things I’d like to do.  Given the increasing time of all our lives, do you think you can manage to fit it all in, is your list growing, tell me… what’s on your list?

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twitter(ing) makes sense now, I think….

April 29th, 2008 | Category: blogging,social network

ok, I get it.  Twitter is gibberish if you don’t do one of two things:

1. twit yourself (you can understand your own conversations) and

2. follow the same twitterers being followed of those you are following so you understand what they (those you are following) are replying to (based on what they read of those they are following themselves).  Make sense?

Oh that was fun to think and say!  :)

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