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Hire Me! Hire me for your writing assignment or event. I'm reasonable and reliable. Also looking for additional writing gigs. Email me at rclimpert003@yahoo.com

Each week, Rick joins his buddy Sully to talk tech on the Limpert Tech "SullyCast on Radio 105.7, formerly TalkRadio 640 WGST

Friday
Jun272014

My Appearance on WGST's "The Sully Show" 6/27/14 Talking Tech

Rick and Sully talk the tech topics of the week - and now it looks like the government will need a warrant to search your mobile phone.

Have a listen:

 

Current tech topics

Google i/o conference going on this week in San Francisco

An Android update, "the ultimate smart TV," wearable gadgets and so-called smart home devices are just some of the innovations Google showed off today as its two-day developers conference, known as Google I/O (for Input/Output), got underway in San Francisco.

In recent years, the conference has focused on smartphones and tablets, but this year Google's Android operating system is expected to stretch into cars, homes and smartwatches.
The head of Google's Android division, Sundar Pichai, took the stage first to talk about the growing reach of Android phones and tablets. He said Android now has one billion users, who take 93 million selfies, walk 1.5 trillion steps, and check their phones 100 billion times each day. Android app installations rose 236 percent over last year, he said.

Dave Burke, director of engineering for Android, described highlights of Google's latest Android operating system update, referred to as "L."

One new security feature called personal unlocking will allow a device to automatically unlock when its owner picks it up, by recognizing a familiar Bluetooth signal and other clues. If a stranger picks it up, it will stay locked.

It will have a battery saving feature that Burke says can extend battery life by 90 minutes, and 3D graphics capability for an immersive gaming experience.

Then came the much-anticipated announcement of Android's expansion into wearables. Google engineering director David Singleton introduced Android Wear, the software that will run smartwatches like the LG G and the Samsung Gear, which go on sale starting today on the Google Play store. Another model, the Moto 360, will be coming from Motorola later this summer.

Android Wear will enable developers to offer health tracking, navigation apps, voice-activated ride sharing requests, step-by-step cooking instructions and other functions in an even more portable format.

The company also announced Android Auto, which will bring many popular features of smartphones to new car models from more than 40 automakers


Report: Apple having pro athletes like Kobe Bryant test iWatch

-Does Sully want an iWatch?

Following recent news that Apple is prepping an iWatch for release this fall, a new report claims that the company has enlisted several professional athletes to test the still-unannounced device.
Top players from U.S. professional sports leagues, including Major League Baseball (MLB), the National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Basketball Association (NBA), are testing the device's "fitness capabilities in intense training environments," according to 9to5Mac.

Among the athletes testing the iWatch are Lakers star Kobe Bryant and Los Angeles Kings player Dustin Brown. In addition to citing sources with knowledge of the collaboration, the report said Bryant was seen on Apple's Cupertino, Calif. campus last month to meet with the company's design chief Jony Ive.
While Apple appears to be covering all of its bases by involving nearly every professional U.S. sports league to test its new device, it's easy to see why the company is singling out Bryant in particular.

Facebook speeds up app after a trip to Africa

Facebook this week rolled out an update to its Android app that adds some new options for liking and tagging posts, but the social network also provided a sneak peek into how a team trip to Africa helped boost apps speeds for users around the globe.

Within the new update, Facebook added the ability to "Like" posts, photos, and Pages when you'reoffline; remove tags you've created; remove tags of yourself that your friends have created; and turn post notifications on and off, in addition to improvements for speed and reliability.

Facebook sent a team of product managers and engineers to Africa, where mobile performance doesn't quite match up with service in the U.S. - from network connections to actual devices.

The result of Facebook's trip? Its engineers and product managers came up with four key areas where they could tweak its mobile app a bit: Performace, data efficiency, networking, and the size of the application.

Facebook's modifications to the application's loading process involved tweaking how features get loaded within the app — on single-core mobile devices, this presented a bit of a bottleneck as the smartphones struggled to churn up a bunch of processes simultaneously. Facebook also tweaked the loading process for News Feed stories to more quickly deliver cached content (for those on crappy networks). Together, these two modifications "reduced start times by more than 50 percent in the six months following the trip to Africa," Sourov wrote.

China Builds Artificial Islands In South China Sea

Sand, cement, wood, and steel are China's weapons of choice as it asserts its claim over the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. China, the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan, and Brunei have sparred for decades over ownership of the 100 islands and reefs, which measure less than 1,300 acres in total but stretch across an area about the size of Iraq. In recent months, vessels belonging to the People's Republic have been spotted ferrying construction materials to build new islands in the sea. Pasi Abdulpata, a Filipino fishing contractor who in October was plying the waters near Parola Island in the northern Spratlys, says he came across "this huge Chinese ship sucking sand and rocks from one end of the ocean and blasting it to the other using a tube."

Artificial islands could help China anchor its claim to waters that host some of the world's busiest shipping lanes. The South China Sea may hold as much as 11 billion barrels of oil and 190 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, according to a 2013 report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration. China has considered the Spratlys—which it calls Nansha—part of its territory since the 1940s and on occasion has used its military might to enforce its claim. In 1988 a Chinese naval attack at Johnson South Reef, in the northern portion of the archipelago, killed 64 Vietnamese border guards.

Friday
Jun202014

My Appearance on WGST's "The Sully Show" 6/20/14 Talking Tech

Rick is in Detroit this week. Doing some pieces on Detroit golf, travel, etc.  Detroit is making an effort to come bck from the dead and PureMichigan.com is the travel arm of Michigan.

Have a listen:

Current tech topics

Amazon Releases their new "Fire" Smartphone

Is this the "shopping" or "buy" phone

Amazon took to the stage in Seattle this week to talk about its first smartphone. The device is a rather middle-of-the-road piece of hardware, and comes with features that range from genius to gimmicky. The Fire Phone has a 4.7-inch 720p HD screen that Android claims is one of the brightest available for better outdoor viewing and reading. It is powered by a 2.2-GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor from Qualcomm with Adreno 330 graphics and 2 GB of RAM. The phone will be sold in 32-GB and 64-GB varieties.

The Fire Phone includes a 13-megapixel main camera that can shoot 1080p HD video. Amazon is providing unlimited Cloud Drive storage for photos taken with the Fire Phone. The camera has an aperture of f/2.0 for better low-light performance and optical image stabilization for sharper photos. It also has a 2.1-megapixel user-facing camera for selfies.
Dynamic Perspective puts four user-facing cameras to work in defining and tracking the human face. This lets Amazon add a three-dimensional element to many parts of the user interface, such as the lock screen wallpapers. Dynamic Perspective also helps users control on-screen content, such as the pages of an ebook. Amazon is offering a software development kit for Dynamic Perspective to third-party developers so they may take advantage of the technology. The effect is certainly cool.
Firefly uses the Fire Phone's main camera to recognize objects and text or language. Think of it as a barcode scanner on steroids. Not only can it root out the details of the movie, CD, garden hose, and frying pan you want to buy, it links to the items on Amazon's website if they're being sold there. Firefly is not a new technology, but Amazon appears to have done it better than anyone else. For example, it is lightning quick. It can recognize and link to items far faster than many similar apps and services. Firefly can also be used to recognize music, like the popular Shazam app, or live television shows. Amazon thinks Firefly is so important it gave the app a dedicated button on the side of the phone. Like Dynamic Perspective, Amazon is offering developers an SDK so they may use Amazon's object recognition tools for their own Firefly-based apps.

HP bets it all on The Machine, a new computer architecture

HP, one of the original 800lb Silicon Valley gorillas that has seen much happier days, is staking everything on a brand new computer architecture that it calls… The Machine. Judging by an early report from Bloomberg Businessweek, up to 75% of HP’s once fairly illustrious R&D division — HP Labs – are working on The Machine. As you would expect, details of what will actually make The Machine a unique proposition are hard to come by, but it sounds like HP’s groundbreaking work on memristors (pictured top) and silicon photonics will play a key role.

In the words of HP Labs, The Machine will be a complete replacement for current computer system architectures. There will be a new operating system, a new type of memory (memristors), and super-fast buses/peripheral interconnects (photonics). Speaking to Bloomberg, HP says it will commercialize The Machine within a few years, “or fall on its face trying.”

Google Fit To Curate Steps, Calories, Heart Rate, Other Biometric Data

Do we want Google to know all of our health data?

Google is planning to release a new product called Google Fit that will aggregate health data from various devices and apps, according to a report Thursday from Forbes. Fit will use available APIs to pull biometric information together into one place, but it's unclear whether it will be a standalone app or part of the Android OS. Reports of Fit come on the heels of Apple's announcement of HealthKit in iOS 8, a system that also interacts with apps and APIs to curate and present health data like steps walked, calories consumed, and heart rates logged. Fit also follows the announcement of Sami, Samsung's health platform for culling health-related info.

The World Cup is a hit Online

Almost half of the people watching the World Cup are watching in online or on a mobile device.
FIFA 2014 world cup is on right now, and there is no doubt that this tournament will showcase how online media consumption has grown over the last few years. Akamai being a world leader in online content delivery, is bound to benefit from this trend. In this analysis, we attempt to estimate Akamai’s incremental revenues for the second quarter from the delivery of World Cup matches and related content online. Media content delivery accounts for roughly 40% of the company’s value according to our estimates. Media traffic continues to surge as mobile devices proliferate and demand for social media, video streaming and online gaming continues to grow at a frenetic pace.

Friday
Jun132014

My Appearance on WGST's "The Sully Show" 6/13/14 Talking Last-Minute Father's Day

Rick joins Sully on WGST on Friday the 13th.

Father's Day is just days away and Rick has some last-minute gadgets and tech items that would make great Father's Day gifts.

Have a listen:

 

1.  Samsung Galaxy S5 Active -  A new smartphone exclusively through AT&T

A new rugged Android phone

When Samsung unveiled its flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S5, back in March, one of the device’s headline features was dust and water resistance.

By no means was this an innovation. In fact, almost a year prior, it announced the dust and water resistant S4 Active. But by bringing these features from a secondary device to its flagship, it appeared Samsung was following in the footsteps of rival Sony in making weather proofing a standard feature.
One would also think that with a weather-proof S5 an S5 Active wouldn’t be necessary. But Samsung is determined to add yet another phone to its smartphone lineup.

The Korea-based smartphone giant quietly released the Galaxy S5 Active exclusively to AT&T subscribers in the United States. The smartphone is an update to 2013’s S4 Active and retains most of the same features as the new S5, but with a more rugged and shock resistant case. Think of it as an S5 with a built-in Otterbox case.

Like the S5, the S5 Active has the same 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a 2800 mAh battery. It also sports the same 16 megapixel camera that can shoot 4K video and with the same Focus Select feature, but without the ultra-fast Contrast Detection Autofocus that was a headline feature on the S5. The S5 Active has the S5’s built-in heart rate monitor but not its fingerprint scanner.

Unique to the S5 Active is a “convenience key” located on the left hand side of the device above the volume rocker. When pressed, the dedicated button will launch Samsung Activity Zone, an app which contains a compass, stopwatch, and flashlight – meant for outdoor activities.

The S5 Active is available online at AT&T brick and mortar stores starting at $35.75 per month for 20 months on the AT&T Next 12 plan, $199.99 with a two-year contract.


 

2.  A "Phablet"  -  Combination phone and tablet - Nokia Lumia 1320

The Nokia Lumia 1320, a large, powerful and versatile 4G LTE device, is available exclusively in Cricket stores and online beginning this Friday, June 13.

IDEAL USER:

The free thinking individualist –Windows Live Tiles let them personalize their start screen to see just what they need, at a glance in 3 columns.
Active, On-the-Go, Student - Great for students who need to stay both productive and connected throughout their busy day. Talk, text, message, take notes, all on one device.  Create and edit Microsoft Office documents and seamlessly sync them to the cloud with SkyDrive for access anywhere.

The frequent traveler – When mobile data is not available, access offline content by downloading files to your device (maps and music).   Nokia Mix Radio lets you save a Playlist so you can enjoy it on a plane and HERE Maps offline maps lets you navigate without burning up data.

Big Gamers – Extend your gaming experience on the go with Xbox live. Play the games stored on your Xbox at home, using your same avatar and profile.
Budget Conscious/Tech lovers – An affordable 2 in 1 device option, when a tablet and phone are out of budget.
Innovative/Unique:
Great alternative to Android and iOS using Windows 8
    Combination of a phone and tablet. Cricket’s first “Phablet” device.
    Multi-taskers can take advantage of all the Lumia benefits with this versatile device.
Always on the go and need your technology to keep up? The versatile Lumia 1320, with its  6 “ HD display and great features, is the perfect, affordable 2-in-1 solution for users who want to carry one device for all their communication needs.

    Big, bright 6" HD LCD display featuring Sun Light Readability and Corning® Gorilla® Glass 3 for added protection.
    5MP camera with auto-focus, LED flash and 1080p video recording. A host of downloadable digital lenses to quickly edit your photos.
    Nokia Camera app with new simplified UI and Smart Sequence burst mode.
    Nokia HERE apps: Maps and Drive that help you get around with ease.
    Nokia Mix Radio for subscription free streaming music.
    A large battery ensures that all your experiences will last all day.
Specs
    Operating System: Windows Mobile 8 GDR3
    Dimensions: 6.47” (H) x 3.38” (W) x .38” (D)
 


3.  Zepp 3D Multi-Sport Motion Sensor

- For golf, tennis and baseball or softball   www.zepp.com

The Zepp 3D motion sensor attaches to any bat, club, or racket by a Zepp sports mount.
It then gives you baseball, golf, or tennis data that a player has never been able to see before. It happens as the sensor wirelessly transmits the data to your smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth. The feedback is instant.
For tennis players, there is new 3D serve analysis.
The new app keeps track of important serve metrics like racket speed, ball speed potential, spin, back swing time and impact time.
This is not only great information for the professional or elite player, but also solid data for the recreational or club player. if dad loves statistics, he will love the Zepp sensor and the new and improved app. Also available at Best Buy stores.
 
4.  Keurig Coffee Machines

Keurig has new college-themed "Minis" with your college colors and logos.     The Keurig Elite brewing system (SRP: $119.99) brews hot or cold beverages in under a minute and is available in cool new colors including, Patriot Blue, Coconut White and Midnight Black.
 

5.  Roku - Streaming Stick avail at Radio Shack  $49.99

Get 1000's of channels on your TV through your Wi-Fi  - "Cut the Cord"
Let dad watch "The Internet" and all the streaming content available right on his TV with the Roku Stick.

The Roku 3500R Streaming Stick (HDMI Version) is a convenient little stick that streams loads of entertainment to your TV. Choose from 1,000+ channels and 31,000+ movies with more added all the time. Control it with the included remote or from your mobile device. Even cast Netflix, YouTube and personal media from your smartphone or tablet to your TV.
Roku 3500R Streaming Stick Product Features:

    Compact stick design. Plugs discreetly right into the HDMI port. Great for wall-mounted TVs.
    1,000+ entertainment channels and counting. By far the most movies, TV episodes, sports, news, music, kids’ shows, and free channels of any streaming player.
    Control with included remote. Comes with a simple-to-use remote that the household can share. With RF technology, you can use your remote without pointing it at the TV.
    Or control with your smartphone and tablet. Download the free Roku iOS or Android app to choose what you want to watch on your Roku player via your mobile device. It’s your choice.
 
If you have questions about any other tech Father's Day gifts... Tweet Rick at @RickRoswell

Tuesday
Jun102014

My Appearance on WGST's "The Sully Show" 6/5/14 Talking Tech Topics and More

Current tech topics

Apple's "World Wide Developer Conference" took place this week

What happened?
- OSX 10:10  Yosemite
Cosmetic enhancements to your Mac's operating system
• iCloud Drive is new and will allow for synchronizing all your content across your Macs. It’s all accessible via iOS devices as well. (Plus, it will also sync over Windows devices.) Neat! Documents sync across multiple devices in iCloud. Apple, however, is not typically great at services, so Dropbox may only be OK.
• Mail has some tweaks and a nifty new feature called “Markup” where you can draw on your emails and PDFs using the trackpad to take notes (or draw dirty pictures lol).
- IOS 8  
• iOS 8 has a new feature that will allow you quick access to your favorite contacts. It looks a little like Facebook’s Chat Heads.
• QuickType is a new feature that will help you type faster. As you type you’ll get suggestions for the next words in the sentence. It’ll be personalized and based off context. Welcome to the birth of a whole new set of autocorrect fails!
• Apple announced HealthKit: a single place where your apps can interact to give you a real-time picture of your current vitals.

Faster Wi-Fi coming.... in 2018

Chinese ICT developer Huawei has confirmed that it was able to achieve a record transmission data rate of 10.53Gbps on 5GHz frequency bands in laboratory trials of their new 802.11ax WiFi (WLAN) wireless networking standard. The testing, which was conducted at Huawei's campus in Shenzhen, used a mix of MIMO-OFDA, intelligence spectrum allocation, interference coordination and hybrid access to achieve the result and the new technology could hit the market during 2018.  Wah Way


SnapChat CEO Evan Spiegel's explicit college emails leak

Snapchat chief executive Evan Spiegel apologized for e-mails he sent during his fraternity days that celebrated getting drunk and covorting with sorority women.

The profanity-laced e-mails were published yesterday by Gawker Media’s Valleywag blog and mostly related to Spiegel organizing Stanford University fraternity parties for Kappa Sigma in 2009 and 2010.

“I’m obviously mortified and embarrassed that my idiotic e-mails during my fraternity days were made public,” Spiegel said in an e-mailed statement yesterday.

“I have no excuse. I’m sorry I wrote them at the time and I was jerk to have written them. They in no way reflect who I am today or my views towards women.”

The disclosure of the e-mails is the latest growing pain faced by Spiegel, 23, whose Los Angeles-based company, SnapChat makes a mobile application for disappearing photo messages.

Looks like Spiegel coud've used SnapChat back in the day....

Solar Roadways Project Beats $1M Goal, Should Enter Production

It appears an Idaho-based company that created prototype panels for constructing roads that (among other features) gather solar power, will be going into production after it exceeded its crowdfunding goal of $1M. ... Solar Roadways' Indiegogo project has already exceeded $1.6 million. The hexagonal-shaped solar panels consist of four layers, including photovoltaic cells, LED lights, an electronic support structure (circuit board) and a base layer made of recyclable materials. The panels plug together to form circuits that can then use LED lights to create any number of traffic patterns, as well as issue lighted warnings for drivers. The panels also have the ability to melt snow and ice. Along with the crowdfunding money, Solar Roadways has received federal grant money for development.
 

Friday
May302014

My Appearance on WGST's "The Sully Show" 5/30/14 Talking Tech Topics and More

Current tech topics

Rick with all of the tech news of the week...   including Blackberry since Sully wants that

Have a listen:

Change your eBay Password

If you have an eBay account and haven't changed your password since May 21, you should do so today.
There was a big security and data breech at eBay and they have been advising everyone to change their password.

It's official - Apple buys Beats

It's not really about the headphones, it's about streaming music and what a big industry that is becoming.

Google Working on Tablets With Enhanced Vision Capabilities

Could be used for 2 purposes - will capture and allow you see 3D and complex images on a tablet as well as helping visually impaired.

Google is working to create some 4,000 prototypes of advanced mobile tablet devices equipped with features that will allow users to view complex 3D objects on their screens.

The development of the futuristic tablets, which are allegedly slated to begin production sometime in June, was reported May 22 by The Wall Street Journal, based on information from sources who had been briefed on Google's activities. The tablets will be equipped with 7-inch screens and include two rear cameras, infrared depth sensors and software that will render the three-dimensional images, the story reported,

Such a phone could be used, according to Project Tango, with apps that could use the camera to offer guidance to the visually impaired or even apps that use the camera to show shoppers how the furniture in a catalog would literally fit in their living rooms. Other potential apps could even scan a room in a home to create a virtual game world within it, or offer directions that don't stop at the front door of an office.

LG to announce New Ultra Widescreen Display

"Forget about 4K displays, are Ultra Widescreen 'cinematic' displays the real deal? Earlier this year LG announced its new 34UM95 – a 34-inch Ultra Widescreen monitor with a cinematic 21:9 aspect ratio and a generous 3440 x1440 resolution — a recent hands-on review suggests that this monitor might be the new productivity king, for those who simply can't stand that annoying bezel between their multiple monitors."

The  LG 34UM95 – a 34 inch Ultra Widescreen monitor with a “cinematic” 21:9 aspect ratio and a generous 3440 x1440 resolution is perfect for editing pictures and those long videos.
 

Redbox to get rid of 500 rental kiosks

Do you rent from Redbox. Redbox has more that 40,000 kiosks around the country.
To say there are a lot of Redbox kiosks is an understatement. Almost 70 million Americans currently live within a five mile drive of a Redbox kiosk. You probably walk by a Redbox kiosk more than once a day.

They are located inside or outside grocery stores, gas stations, drug stores, and even restaurants.

A Redbox kiosk only takes up about 12-square feet of retail space and they hold about 630 movie and game discs.

By the end of 2014, the company will uninstall more than 500 of it's DVD/Blu-ray machines.

Will you notice a difference?

Probably not.
There will still be well over 40,000 Redbox kiosks to serve your needs.

Redbox is running out of locations to put new machines and with any business, current spots that are underperforming are the ones that are up for elimination.

Redbox is also looking to renegotiate their deals with movie studios by the end of the year. Redbox has been hurt by some of their current deals which don't give them access to movies until they have been on retailer's shelves for a couple weeks.

Redbox is also fighting the tough batter against streaming services like Hulu and Netflix. While many are used to Redbox's $1-per day rental service, the times are a changing.

While Redbox Instant, Redbox's attempt at a streaming service hasn't really taken hold, there is some room for growth. To attract customers and subscribers to "Instant," Redbox is offering bonuses like rental credits.

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