Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Apps I use that you should know about

I tend to be an app whore and love the ease of use it provides. With iOS 6 coming out soon and the awesome upgrades Apple is bringing out, here is my list of apps that I find the most useful and hopefully introduce you to some helpful apps that you might not know about.

MapQuest. The only free turn by turn navigation that I have found. (Well my best friend found it) its far from the best navigation, but for the price of free..  It works terrfically and did I mention FREE..
Map Quest

Action Movie FX. This a app for fun and free. Its made by the awesome people behind Bad Robot Productions (JJ ABrams Comapny) Basically you get to make your own action movie clip. Record someone doing anything or nothing. Then put them in an action sceen. A car flipping, a rock falling from the sky, a tornado. Its free and fun and addicting.
Action Movie

MLB at bat. If your like me, a man with a favorite team in another city, and you just can't get enough of hearing "you can put it on the board" this is a must app. Its free to download however you do not get the full functionality unless you buy the subscription. However you get updated scores for free, enough to quench the thurst of any MLB fan. But with the subscription its a MUST HAVE app.

Watch ESPN. If you have cable, you already pay for this. With more and more main event type programming moving over to ESPN, you might as well use this. Its perfect for on the go viewing. If your at a bar and they dont put it on the channel you want, or the wife/girlfriend makes you do something other than watching the game during the game. This is perfect and FREE
Watch Espn

Plex, easly the most I've paid for an app. At 5.99 it could seem pricey. However all of my digital media  is running through myPlex server and I can essentially stream anything over 3G/4G or wifi in that library. No need to plug your phone and connect it with your ITunes account and upload, like before. Its just there, and it works with a signal..Its your media when you want it!! period..
Plex App

Air Video Server, Much like Plex this delivers all your video content to you and can convert it on the fly for awesome playback . Unlike Plex, it only plays video. No music, no pics support. They have a Free Version but in this case I bought the 2.99 version and can't complain. I bought this before Plex and am glad I did because I still use this on occasion for downloaded content. Its terrific
Air Video

Gas Buddy, Because of todays high gas prices, saving a few bucks could mean an extra beer at the end of the week or just being able to get something off the dollar menu at the end of the night. A buck is a buck and this app will show you were to get the cheapest gas around you. Its Free
Gas Buddy

ViewTi Golf GPS. Since I am a golfer I had to tell you about this. Its FREE and it works. However it is a battery hog. It works really well and is the best, most accurate Golf GPS I have found for free. (I'm cheap most of the time)
View Ti

Soundhound,  Most people love shazam, and either is great but I'm a huge fan of Soundhound. It does the same thing as Shazam, push the button and it will listen to the song, when you just cant figure out who sings that song.. With added features as lyrics and the ability to play music from your library its a fun app. Its Free

Melodies. It allows you to play music from your Google Play/Music account. If your like me and like to stream your library from home, than this is perfect. The free version only allows about 10,000 songs in your library. You can upgrade to the pay version and have the abilty for 20,000 of your songs. It Free and has a paid verion

Uverse App, or TWC or Cox Cable App. I currently have Att Uverse, but have had Time Warner Cable and Cox Cable. All of them have apps. This is important if your a TV whore like me and accidentally forgot to record a show or see an awesome promo at work or at the theatre and want to record or set a reminder to watch. Plus everyday they are adding more content the the app for the ability to watch live tv or past episodes over your Pad or Phone. Its Free
Uverse App

Quick Password: This is a password keeper app for your phone. It allows you to save passwords that you use for different apps, or websites and if your like me and have many different passes, this will keep them all so you dont have to rememeber them. Its the best 99 cents Ive spent. Its not free but worth every 99 pennies
Quick Password

Find My IPhone. If you have your entire life on yor phone like I do, than you might need this app. Find my IPhone via GPS and give you a location or have the ability to erase your phone, as long as your phone has power. Its FREE
Find My IPhone App

Cydia Apps

For you jailbroken users
MyWi is a must. It allows to you to tether. Thats really all that needs to be said!!! Its pricey at around 20 bucks but is super handy and works perfectly. Compare it to the monthly fee your cell provider would charge on a monthly basis, you cant beat a one time charge.

Winterboard is a must for all of your customizing goodness. This allows you to edit font, change your themes. Its endless and FREE

Five Dock. This allows you to have five icons in your dock which is how it should be displayed anyhow in my opionon. Free!
Five Dock

Those are the must haves for me. What about you?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A VOIP solution with e-911 support

The NetTalk Duo is a VOIP alternative to your everyday home phone land line solution. The biggest difference for me is the ability to use your internet connections bandwidth to provide your phone service. Essentially you don't have to pay for two services. One internet, two functions at one price. So if your looking for an alternative to the awesome and reviewed Obi 110 I have one for ya. The NetTalk essentially gives you the exact same service however it provides you with a number and does not need a Google voice number.  For the fee of $2.50 a month or $29.95 a year you will get e-911 support, a phone number included, live support, voicemail, call waiting, Caller ID and 3 way calling.

Setup is completely simple and is as easy as calling your phone company and having them set it up a land line. Essentially you do the same thing as you would with the Obihaii 110 which I own and reviewed in a previous article. Connect it to a power strip or wall. Connect your phone to the available phone port on the NetTalk. Connect an Ethernet cord from your router to the netTalk Ethernet port.

The first year of the service is included with the purchase of NetTalk duo. The biggest issue I come across while trying to spread the word on VOIP awesomeness is e-911 support. Most of my friends have kids and having the ability to dial 911 is a must. The second biggest issue is the redundancy factor. Having everything going through your internet connection could be an issue and not having the separate land line could cause some apprehension. Both of these functions for me personally do not matter because I have a mobile phone that I can dial 911 from. 

As I said I use and love the Obihai 110 but if your looking for those extra features you might want to give NetTalk duo a go. Magic Jack Plus has very similar features as the NetTalk duo and should be given a try especially with Magic Jack giving a risk free trial.

My biggest reason for even writing this, is just to get the word out about Home VOIP. (voice over internet protocol) I'm all about saving money when possible. Why would you pay for something extra that you dont need? With VOIP you dont need a land line, you just need an internet and anyone reading this article is going to have internet these days.

Check out their websites and see if this can be a viable option for you. 


NetTalk Duo

Magic Jack

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Mac Outlook 2011 Freeze Fix

For a few weeks I have been experiencing problems getting email through Outlook 2011 for Mac. I would open up the Outlook application and outlook would freeze. I havent really had time to waste on trouble shooting it until today. In my own experience I have noticed that Mac and Windows Office goes together as well as oil and water. It just really doesnt play well with one another and MAC MAIL of all things is what I have been using. However the President of my work uses a Mac and I gotta make sure he is taken care of when his issues arise. So today I finally had some free time to trouble shoot this issue and as I mentioned before, Outlook on a Mac while convenient just has all kinds of issues. My issue specifically was Outlook freezing during startup. Basically I would open/run the the program and it would just sit there and if I was lucky it would error out and ask if I wanted to send a message to Microsoft. The first thing I thought of was like most people, Uninstall. Well on a Mac, you don't just uninstall things. You actually have to go into the Library and delete the cache items that way. If you don't your settings will be the same once your reinstall.

So I asked myself, why uninstall.. Just go to the Outlook 2011 database and delete the following folders.

Thats what I did
~/Documents/Microsoft User Data/Office 2011 Identities/Main Identity/Database
~/Documents/Microsoft User Data/Office 2011 Identities/Main Identity/Data Records


Go to the above file location and delete your heart out. Everything you see can go.
Once thats completed you have to rebuild your database with a new identity. Just opening up Outlook will not do this for you but will lead you down the right path. Dont worry about the first rebuild if that was unsuccessful delete the folder it made

From there go ahead and hit the rebuild button and name it something different. Then use the default option. In my case I had to do that because for whatever reason it told me this was a duplicate name. After renaming, close all the folders that have anything to do with microsoft and open Outlook.

Go ahead and reopen Outlook. You will have a blank Outlook which is just waiting for you to enter in your email settings.

Hopefully this will help you get passed those pesky Outlook 2011 freezing issues.

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