iPhone

BlogPress


Taking a test drive of the
BlogPress application for the iPhone. It is a handy little app to allow posting blog posts to Acquia Drupal or WordPress or any of the other popular blogging platforms BlogPress makes it easy.

-- Post From My iPhone

Indispensable parenting tools


In celebration of the new arrival soon to join the Boise Drupal User's group I've been thinking about the tools I use lately. One that I've overlooked until recently is just how handy the iPhone can be. The iPod touch is great and all, but the iPhone, with its built-in speaker is a killer tool.

First there are the wonderful Sesame Street Podcasts. Each of these short episodes is a handy little way to spend some time on learning a new word or concept. Combined with the ability to download episodes directly to the iPhone it is also a go-anywhere tool. If we're in a holding pattern here or there, waiting for a table at a restaurant or to meet someone out it's possible to have a little lesson while we wait.

Recently, however, I found an even handier use lately. It started with taking the phone in at bedtime so our little one could talk to her. One night, however, it occurred to me to use the speaker and be able to play songs from the music library. Now we have a nice wind-down playlist. We can start off singing along with the rocking of Jingle Bells and drift off with the chorus of Silent Night.

iPhone software gets 2.2 update

Apple rolled out an upgrade to iPhone software today. Version 2.2 includes some great new features like the ability to access public transit maps on the phone.

The update brings a welcome change, the ability to download podcasts directly to the phone. Unfortunately while this functionality is welcome it is also incomplete. The downloaded episodes are added to the iPod but there is no way to subscribe to a podcast from the phone.

Apple has previously denied applications for podcatcher applications based on this now-released functionality being forthcoming. At the time speculation centered on the likely restriction of Apple's app to WiFi only and not the cellular network. That, however, proved to not be a limitation with today's release.

Apple Remote

Unless one has been living under a rock the coming of iPhone 2.0 software and the iPhone 3G are well known. Apple has a free Apple Remote application that allows an iPhone user to control their AppleTV or iTunes using the WiFi connection from the phone. This is all well and good. The application is great. Uncharacteristically for Apple there is a big gaping hole in the application. It is not a security hole but is a major piece of the application that is missing.

The application provides for the ability to search one's library which is nice. However it has no means to use the phone to make purchases for the AppleTV. This matters so much because entering text to search the store via the standard Apple Remote is a painfully slow experience of choosing a single letter at a time on screen. How cool it would have been if the remote application made finding and purchasing things on the AppleTV possible.

However lest anybody think the iPhone isn't bringing new folks to Apple there was the guy in line this morning extolling how he not only uses Exchange but does so willingly and runs his own Exchange server who was there to buy an iPhone. Worse yet he was bragging about convincing small businesses that Exchange is a good investment for them. Sigh. Now back to saving the world one server at a time...

Check iPhone minutes using only SMS messages

While I love my iPhone it has been frustrating that there wasn't a quick way to check minutes from SMS. The phone tells you there are two ways to check minutes (which amount to the same thing). One method is to navigate to the phone preferences, then AT&T and finally to the button to check your minutes which actually sends the *646# code to get the SMS message. So there is obviously the option of adding a "View minutes" user to the contact list and bringing it up that way. For me the annoyance has always been that I wanted to send an SMS to get this information.

iPhone, gPhone, Androids and the company you keep

So the much awaited gPhone, nee the Android OS for the open handset alliance, debuted this week. Yawn. So Google's going to hock an OS that while it has the trendy underpinnings of Linux and the Open Source code-word attached won't at the end of the day (or year rather) give us much more than we already have on our Blackberries, Treos and iPhones. (Not to even mention the plethora of Windows Mobile cell phones with these capabilities).

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