Every year when we go on vacation, especially if it’s to an exotic place, I write a travelogue of our adventures. I write a page a day while on the trip, and include photos from the day. I do this the old-fashioned way, in an email to my friends and family. Oddly, rather than people being annoyed by this, people actually ask to be on distribution.
At the risk of sounding particularly full of myself, people have told me that my writing style is engaging and even sparkling! All I can say is that I make myself laugh as I write these letters, so at least one person is entertained. It is definitely not your typical, “My Summer Vacation” report.
A few years ago after our huge Dubai, India, and Nepal trip, Wally Cherwinsky suggested that I try to make my travelogue into an iBook. He felt it would be a great way to have them all together as a keepsake of the trip. Well, I tried back then, but it was too hard.
I am an amateur photographer and enjoy travelling and taking pictures, lots of pictures. One of the problems I had, and the reason for this review, was to find a product which allowed me to see all of my pictures on all of my devices. Both Apple and Adobe have products which address this but the developers who write these programs seem to feel that everyone has very high speed internet at all times and oodles of cloud storage. This isn’t the case for me.
When Photos was announced a few years ago I felt it would be the solution to the issue of distributing my images to all of my devices. I had two obstacles to get around. Primarily it was the number of images. When I am travelling I might take 3 – 4 thousand pictures each of which is a 50 Meg RAW file. I don’t want them all in the cloud at that point in my workflow as it would be incredibly slow and, in many locations, impossible.
On Tuesday I had the pleasure of being on the Daily Tech News Show again with Tom Merritt and Sarah Lane and Roger Chang. The main discussion topic was the announcements from Apple as we tried to answer the question of whether Apple can break back into the top spot for schools.
I’ll talk about what tech things we used and learned more about in Paris including improvements in Project Fi, VPN challenges, Apple Pay, calorie metrics with Apple Watch and high-speed trains. Bart barges in on the show to tell me about how he uses a combination of smart playlists and modifications in Overcast to create the best of both worlds. I’ll tell you about a really cool button I found on my Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II to automatically shoot HDR shots. Bart joins us again for an out-of-band Security Bits to talk about the kerfuffle about Cambridge Analytica and Facebook.
It’s easy to get caught up in the rush to buy the newest gadget to replace your old one. The NosillaCast specializes in making you want to do it. When I got the Olympus OM-D E-M10 micro four-thirds camera in 2014, it was a delightful upgrade to my giant DSLR camera. It was light and very small and easy to throw in my bag or even in my purse.
Lately, I’ve been wondering though if I’m ready to graduate to the next model up in the Olympus line of micro four-thirds cameras. Olympus numbers them backward, the top of the line is the E-M1, the middle is the M5 and the beginner is the M10. I originally chose the M10 because it was the smallest and lightest, and compromised on some features because those were my highest priority items. But now I had my eye on the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II.
I’ve had the telltale signs for awhile now – not hearing timers go off, comically misinterpreting words in a conversation, turning up the volume on everything to 10. It was time for hearing aids. In typical geek fashion, I was not concerned about how they would look, but I did care about how they would connect to my phone and my car.
iCloud Photo Library is a glorious thing. With a few dollars a month, you can have all of your photos swooshing up and down to the cloud, resident on all of your devices. On each device, you can choose whether to keep the originals or to let Apple use their algorithms to optimize your photo library. This optimization means you’ll never run out of space on your iPhone, iPad or your Mac.
If you choose optimized photos, some images will be stored locally in full resolution and some come down on demand when you tap on them. At all times thumbnails are available to be tapped, and as long as you have an Internet connection your vast library is always available to you. Any edits on one device are magically reflected on all other devices. Life is good.
My Photos library is giant by any measure, with more than 70,000 images taking up over 500GB of space. And yet I have access to all of these photos on my iPhone and iPad, which certainly don’t have 500GB of storage. I can even get to all of my photos by logging into iCloud.com. It really is a wonderful thing.
Steve and I are off to Paris for a couple of weeks, so be sure to send your audio reviews to Bart to help him out doing the show (Allister has his already in the can). We won’t have a live show for the next two weeks – will miss you! In this episode, I tell you about how CloudMounter might solve your cloud storage problems. Then I’ll tell you the results of my scientific testing of a traditional Netgear router against their cloud router, the Orbi (you might be surprised at the results). Then we’ll talk to PLEX at CES. Finally, we have Bart Busschots on with Security Bits where he’ll tell us about the US Customs epic security fail, answer the question of whether Cellibrite can actually unlock any iPhone and of course other notable security news.
As our last episode of Programming By Stealth before our spring break, Bart wraps up our Cellular Automaton. He goes through his solution to the PBS 49 challenge first, and then he walks us through three examples of how a user could produce three different representations with our code. He demonstrates how to build a Conway Game of Life, the Maze Rule, and Brian’s Brain. It’s fun to see it all wrapped in a bow ending this long project. We’ll be back on March 31st with a whole new project.