GNC-2011-10-24 #716 Back to Basics

Back to basics on this show and, I tighten up the timeline. Lots of tech as always and a huge number of comments have come in pre-show… Today I try pulling unique articles from Google+. Hope you like the new sources.

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Listener Links:
Netflix -800k
Ive versus Jobs
Jobs top Seller Amazon 2011.
Tsunami Debris & Hawaii.
Hard Drive Shortage.
Really See Through Walls.

Links to articles covered in this Podcast on the GNC Show Notes Page [Click Here]

Jack Ellis – Executive Producer
Mike Baine – Associate Producer

GNC-2011-10-17 #714 All the News

You will love the rack overheat alarm going off in the middle of the show. Adds for some comedy and bewilderment by me as I have never heard that alarm coming out of the rack. Lots of great tech news and the show goes way long tonight. Will get that back in check as I do not have to report on “All the News”

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SteamPunk Synth.
iris versus Siri?
Magnet Magic.
Wow How about this one.
Big Brother E-Toll watching us.

Links to articles covered in this Podcast on the GNC Show Notes Page [Click Here]

Jack Ellis – Executive Producer
Mike Baine – Associate Producer


Sonic Bomb Alarm Clock & Bed Shaker Review

When the folks at Sonic Alert reached out about a month ago and asked me if I would like to review the Sonic Bomb Alarm Clock and Bed Shaker I did so under one condition. That condition was that if it could get my  14 yr old out of bed in the morning, then I would declare it the best alarm clock ever made.

I am here to report that the Sonic Bomb Alarm Clock & Bed Shaker is the best Alarm Clock ever made! My 14 yr old daughter is a night owl like me, and she could sleep through anything to include being an absolute bear to get moving in the morning. I have half a box full of so-called alarm clocks that even if taped to her eardrum would not wake her up. Here is what Sonic Bomb does different. The Alarm while loud 113 db comes with the “bed shaker module” thus the alarm clock is the two piece combination. On the first night I strategically placed the shaker in the middle of her double sized bed, one part touching the mattress the other touching the wood base that supports the mattress. I placed the Sonic Bomb out of reaching distance for maximum effect.

The first time it rang she took about 10 seconds to get up cussing the thing out confusion factor on here part on how to shut it off made it the comedy event of the week. The true test was three weeks in, if it could still wake her up then we would have a winner.  She has developed some strategies to try to defeat it but overall she is still getting up on her own. The folks at Sonic Bomb could improve the design just a little. Make the cable that plugs into the alarm from the shaker one that attaches via a locking knurled knob versus a plug . It is way to easy to unplug the shaker. Make the shaker cable about 5 ft longer would help as well, getting the alarm clock out of slap distance is important with a 14 yr old.

But overall this thing is better than any Big Ben any day of the week. The $42.00 price tag may scare some, but I have an annoying Seiko alarm clock that cost $50.00 that I was given as a gift in Japan 30 years ago that still is annoying enough to get me to roll out of bed.

We are getting double duty out of the Sonic Bomb because my boy’s room is next door to their sisters, and it usually motivates them to get moving as well. One thing for sure a lot less yelling to wake up is going on here in the morning. Believe me I have done everything in the arsenal and then some in the past to get the kids to roll out on their own. Someday I will talk about the bucket of water I used on my podcast sometime.

So if you have a person in your home that sleeps through anything, and hates to get up in the morning check out the Sonic Bomb Alarm Clock & Bed Shaker. If nothing else you will get some good vibrations from the 113 db alarm and the pulsing of the bed shaker to start your day off with..

Disclaimer: Sonic Alert provided a free review unit to test and tested it we did over the course of 30 days!

TMS-2011-02-12 #11 Talking Tech

Guest Rob Greenlee from Zune and Jeffrey Powers from Geekazine and dig into what has been happening in tech and trends that we are seeing develop along with the popular memes. Subscribe to The Saturday Morning Tech show. This show is recorded every Saturday that I am home, it is currently advertiser free, we hope that you will support the show by becoming an insider.

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GNC-2010-12-16 #635 Monster Show – Weak Voice!

Well the 64,000 question is, will my voice hold out through the 24hr Podcast. It is going to be touch and go… Doc loaded me up with meds yesterday and hopefully they start doing there magic. Back here in Hawaii, I have a monster show for you hope you enjoy it. I will see all of you here at 11am EST on Saturday for the 24hr Podcast. Spread the word on the net we want you here.

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Listener Links
3G/4G Review
AT&T Blocks Linux Configuration.

Show Notes:
Opportunity Making History.
Pressure Check to be Accomplished.
Supernova Relic.
Where in the Universe.
Massive Storm on Saturn.
Linked In App for Android.
Nexus S Jail Broken.
Playstation iPhone and Android App.
Wi-Fi Analysis Tool for your Phone.
Flipboard Updated for Google Reader.
Google Maps Updated for 3d.
Monitor Accessories.
Google Fiber Announcement Next Year.
Rim doing better than Expected.
New Years Eve resolutions assistant Sites.
HTML5 Tool from Microsoft for Firefox.
Amazon Top 20 Christmas Songs.
Vimeo Video Tutorials.
Facebook your next Social TV Guide?
Nice Xbox Headsets.
Personal Accessories.
Quiet Cars to be made Noisy!
AltaVista and Delicious RIP.
More Site Take Downs.
Chumby Phone App.
Soyuz to ISS.
California Carbon Trading?
CR48 Review.
Bing Making Ground.
T-Mobile says they will compete on Data Speeds.
New UFO.
Twitter 200 Million more!
Cyber War?
TPN Weekly.
Online Video Trends.
Opera 11 Now Available.
Stuxnet like Military Strike.
More Record Label crying.
UK 1.2 Billion illegal Media Downloads?
FCC Net Neutrality Issues.
Broadband Pricing Down Worldwide up US.
Virgin Galactic to ISS?
Nike Sues Customer.

Where Did You Shop This Christmas?

In GNC #539, Todd related the problems that brick’n’mortar stores were having competing against the online retailers and I agree entirely with Todd’s sentiments. While I’m happy to use Amazon et al for specialised purchases or gifts to faraway relatives, I now regularly buy from local stores to try and keep them in business.

And do you know what?  Although it started out as a point of principle, I’m actually discovering that I can sometimes get things cheaper or else I get some freebies thrown in.

To illustrate, while shopping this Christmas, I would price goods on Amazon and then go into town to see what I could get in the real world.

1) In a local toy shop, K’Nex was being sold 2-for-1 at a price only 10% more expensive than Amazon.  Gift just went twice as far.

2) In a sports shop, a “brand name” golfing jumper was being sold with a free box of six golf balls, again at a price very similar to online golfing retailers.  The recipient is always in the water with his shots anyway….

3) The main bookstore was offering best-sellers on three for the price of two, basically a third off, pretty much matching Amazon.  Great for stocking fillers.

So I encourage you to get off your backside and at least see if your local stores can come close to matching the online retailers.  Sure, if they’re wildly uncompetitive, walk away, but at least try to keep some of your money in local circulation.  Local businesses support other local business and we need them to keep our communities thriving.

The eBay Problem

When eBay was fresh and shiny and new, I spent a lot of time there. I bought things that I needed, sold things that I didn’t need, and had good experiences. It was like going garage saling without having to get in the car, with a few perks like the ability to search for something I wanted, and to compare prices on comparable items. When I got married ten years ago, I paid for my wedding dress with proceeds from eBay sales of things I didn’t need anymore. eBay was the first place I looked when I was looking for a specific item.

Ah, those were the days. Now, when I head over to eBay, it’s mostly “power sellers” that are really just big warehouses of closeouts, lots of over-priced Chinese knock-offs, and plenty of businesses in the business of buying crap at flea markets and reselling it on eBay. It’s not the first place I go to anymore when I’m looking for something. Searches I’ve done recently for simple items like netbook cases or sewing patterns have brought up mixed results at best. One of the things I dislike about the eBay search model is that it doesn’t allow you to search within your search results to narrow down your choices. And what I really dislike is how overpriced things seem to be. In my search for a netbook for my daughter for Christmas, I of course took a look over there, but found that the prices were higher than purchasing the same item through a more traditional online retailer (I ended up with an HP Mini 10.1 from OfficeMax for an unbelievable price, for those that are interested). I haven’t seen a reasonably priced computer on eBay in years.

I don’t doubt that eBay still has its value. If I’m looking for a particular thing, like extra-long jeans of a certain brand, or a collectible teapot, eBay is still a great resource. But that is so specialized, and I don’t believe that that is where eBay is making its money in sales fees. A $400 netbook when I can get the same one for $250 delivered from a big-name retailer is not a bargain, and dilutes the value of the eBay brand, in my opinion. Yes, everyone wants to make a dollar or two, I understand that, of course, but when making a dollar borders on gouging, I have to wonder about the business practices of the organization running the show.

What does eBay want to be? Is it ready to devolve into a place full of out-dated closeouts and overpriced Chinese knock-offs? Because that appears to be where it’s headed. And how do they fix what is broken to clean up their act (or the act of their sellers)? I wouldn’t know where to start, but if they want to be Amazon (their main competitor at the moment) then they need to find a way to fix what is going downhill in a hurry.

Ah, eBay. I knew you when…

GNC-2009-07-06 #491 Monster Show

I had so much content tonight that I could not cover it all, here the shock in my voice at 1:03 :). Listen to the show for the promo code tonight to enter to win at you cannot win unless you listen. Special prize next Tuesday for one listener that enters to win.

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Summer of Podcasts Contest

Podcast Madness Shows to listen to Week 2 Radio
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Listener Links:
Satellite to cut cell phone dead areas
Jet Powered F150
New Class of Black Hole
Inflatable Tower to reach Space!

Show Topic Notes:
The Decline of IE have you Quit Using it?
Is Free going to cause massive company failures?
Ultimate iPhone Case
.99 cent Netbook Computer
Does your iPhone look like this?
New Project Clock!
McDonalds to Offer Car Charging Stations
Nokia Android Phone?
Podcast Publishing Refined
Wireless Video Cameras
Nokia N97 Swiss Army Knife Included!
Technology and Sailing a Rich Mans Sport
Clear 80 Cities 18 Months or Bust!
Time Lapse Video from iPhone spectacular!
Automated Ramen Maker
Compuserve RIP
Immigrate us out of a Recession?
SSD Hard Drives and Moore’s Law
Auto Building Linux Machines on Massive Scale
Professional White Label Video Sites
Adult Material hurting Japan Mobile Companies
Justice Department to look at AT&T & Verizon?
Goldman Sachs Grand Theft Code?
Auto Calculating SSN’s?
Jaime Davis Ask for New Trial?
IE has huge Active X Vulnerability
Windows 7 Family Pack Correction
Buy your Twitter Followers for $87.00
1 Million download Sirius iPhone Application
iPod Touch Camera Coming?
Microsoft Warning on IE Vulnerabilities
Battery Measurement App for iPhone
Five Major Data Center Disruptions
Gaming community and death threats
RIAA tells Federal Judge to remove illegal Audio Recordings?
Get you smile scanned before you go to work!
Plasma Rocket Engine Full Power Test
iPhone 3GS Hacked

AT&T Now has the Power to crush Vonage and Others!

I have been very outspoken in recent past about AT&T’s growth, primarily the BellSouth merger. While I cannot do anything about that merger except grumble internally, I can keep my eye on the anti-competitive actions of large companies. If the Internet had not evolved the way it has I would almost be willing to call AT&T a monopoly again. But in the true definition of the word I don’t think they can be classified as that.

But they are big and they own a heck of a lot of real estate both in the hard wired world and in the wireless world so an announcement today to allow customers of AT&T Long Distance that also have Cingular wireless service to talk free is what I would consider a major first strike against the VOIP operators such as Vonage.

If Vonage was smart they would start inking deals with companies like Verizon and Sprint to stay competitive. This move by AT&T is a smart one and how would not want to eliminate all of there Long Distance charges. The question is which of the remaining land line carriers will be the first to broker deals with companies like Vonage and cellular carriers to swing the entire marketplace so that all land line long distance is free so long as you are connected with partner companies.

Sprint Novatel U720 Review

U720Well my Sprint Novatel USB Ovation U720 arrived yesterday and after three tries with Sprint was able to get the ESN from my old card swapped to this new one. Overall the performance is great but I was surprised to see that the you have to use a Dual USB Port Dongle with the unit. Thus running the device on your laptop requires the utilisation of two USB ports.

The antenna access for the device is under the flip-up antenna and I am already concerned about the longevity of the card as looking down into the antenna port hole I do not see a lot of supporting material in and around the connection. Only time will tell if the external port will hold up or not.

This card is Rev A. capable but seeing Hawaii does not get Rev A. till the first of the year I will not be able to report on speeds. In download speed test the unit is comparable in transfer speeds of the PCMCIA version of this card.

I think the folks at Novatel would have been smart of they would have provided a power port for the USB card so as to allowed those that were using it in a permanent location to not have to use two USB ports to run the device.

I paid full retail for this card as I had existing service so I am hoping that in the long run this card works out ok. Meanwhile I have a Sprint PC-5740 card for sale if anyone wants to purchase it.

Update: The Novatel U720 does work with the Kyocera KR-1, I was concerned about this, but my testing here validates the KR1 works with the U720!