ROSS LAROCCO

aggregated from rosslarocco.com

Monthly Archives: November 2010

Storing your stuff on @Dropbox

 

Cloud Control with @Dropbox

I’ve been using Dropbox for several years now, but the storage space that comes with a free account can easily escape the mind.  2GB is not much, or is it?

Dropbox is a place to store documents, pictures, videos, and whatever else you’d like.  Easily accessible from a computer, iPad, or smartphone with supported OS.  It functions as a folder that isn’t stored on any electronic device you own.

Now I can access things on the fly, whether the situation calls for it or not.  Sign up here for an extra 250MB of space!

 

My Macbook Air Review

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My Macbook Air Review: 

This laptop blows my mind.  Trading off a Macbook Pro for an Air doesn’t make sense to some,  but it’s the first laptop that fits my personality.  Steve Jobs isn’t kidding about the instant-on feature.  Life started feeling more portable instantly too.

Chose the basic 11 inch model, but cranked up the RAM to 4GB.  Despite being satisfied with the display model I tested out (2GB default),  the extra bump for long term use made sense.  Even though an Air can handle lots of browser tabs open etc,  it will help me focus on things better due to the possibility of overloading the CPU with tons of things going on.

The only con is Flash performance in web browsers.  Apple doesn’t ship the new Macbook Air with Flash installed for this reason possibly.  Even on my Macbook Pro there is some stuttery peformance.  The CPU usage on Safari vs. Chrome on my Air is shown in the picture above.  Chrome maxes out.   Safari is as smooth as a sunrise.

It’s not the computer’s fault.  It’s Flash.  HTML5 is the future.

Less Clutter, Be Free!

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Less Clutter, Be Free!

Just a short time ago, I got rid of my entire CD collection (music, backups, and such). I’m a firm believer we’re headed into a completely mobile way of living. What if we lose everything? It’s still in a cloud somewhere.

Lots rely on physical copies because It’s very comfortable to know things are within reach. More and more things are able to be stored in thin air. Less clutter, but still within reach. 

iTunes was my way of getting new music in the last couple years, but today I upgraded my Pandora account.  Streaming music on-demand with a few extra perks for $36 a year feels more convenient now. I’ll probably even spend less on music.

What about other things besides music? Carbonite is something I’ve been paying attention to for awhile. It backups all your data online, and even has an iPhone App.

Spread your wings and fly!

App Review – Sleep Cycle

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App Review – Sleep Cycle

Ever think your iPhone could help you sleep better? During the night your body enters different stages of sleep.  Light sleep, deep sleep, dream state a.k.a REM sleep. Regular alarm clocks aren’t able to detect this of course, but there’s an app for that.

The Sleep Cycle alarm clock uses the accelerometer built into the iPhone to monitor your movement and figure out which sleep phase you’re in. The app has a 30 minute alarm window that ends at your set alarm time.  It wakes you in your lightest sleep phase.

I set the alarm to 9am even though I tend to wake up prior.  As you can see from my picture above, I started reaching the light sleep phase around 6am. Once calibrated after a few days, it should wake me in the 30 minute window.

Give it a try.  Maybe you’ll remember a bad dream at 2am,  who knows?

RockMelt Review

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Web Browser Review – RockMelt.

Yes, another web browser to choose from in your web surfing journey.  Right away RockMelt felt much cleaner than Flock, which seems to be the only comparable web browser infused with Social Media features.  Taking it for a spin,  RockMelt feels like Chrome with extensions pre-installed.

To give it a social experience, it logs in through Facebook.  Your friends are displayed on the left edge with the ability to write on their walls, share web pages currently displayed in the browser, and the basic Facebook routine.  Although I haven’t seen any instant notification windows pop up yet.

The right edge of the browser has all other social sites and feeds to monitor.  For example, you can add @mashable to the sidebar and then share stories to Facebook like you would from Mashable.com or a bookmarklet.  Wasn’t able to share to anything but Facebook though.

It’s a great start, but personally my social experience doesn’t start at Facebook. It’s very cool to be able to share a story with a friend who’s online,  and have a Facebook Chat window handy to discuss.

I have a few invites if anyone would to try it.  Leave a comment, Kik me, or you can reach me on Twitter @rosslarocco.  

App Review: @Kik for Android, iPhone, Blackberry

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App Review: @Kik for Android, iPhone, Blackberry

I’m all about free messaging.  Cellular providers charge for text messaging plans. Unlimited or a few here and there, it’s still a cost that can be ear ringing or go without being noticed.

Blackberry Messanger provides immediate realtime communication between it’s users. It’s a very strong reason for Blackberry users maintaining high loyalty.  However, it leaves Android and iPhone users on the outside looking in so to speak.

Kik is a relatively new app for iPhone, Blackberry, and Android.  It has a Blackberry Messanger appeal to it.   According to statistics,  Kik went from zero to one million users in 15 days.  Besides features,  I really look forward to their success.

Some features of Kik include Sent, Delivered, and Read message updates.  You’ll be able to tell if a significant other is ignoring you, but I don’t endorse that reasoning.  It’s very fast like an actual face-to-face conversation.  Very basic for now, but more features to come.  Legal music sharing was one!

In the meantime, I’m being Kik’d right now.  Try it out and Kik me your thoughts.  My username is rosslarocco.

*UPDATE* RIM has pulled Kik from Blackberry until further notice.