NosillaCast is Now on Alpha Geek Radio

Alpha Geek Radio announcement of NosillaCastI am really excited to announce that the NosillaCast is now available on Alpha Geek Radio. Rather than try to explain it to you myself, here’s what founder Todd Whitehead sent me:

“Alpha Geek Radio is an association of independent Internet Radio hosts and Podcasters, dedicated to advancing the cause of Geek Culture in all of the marvelous forms that it takes. In addition to regularly scheduled talk radio shows and a 24/7 music channel run by Coverville, the network also provides live streaming of annual conventions and shows such as Phoenix Comicon, w00tstock, PAX, and Nerdtacular. The station streams 24/7 on all channels, with recent repeats of episodes playing whenever a live show is not on the air, so there is always good, nerdy content available whenever you may tune in.”

I’m really excited because the other shows in there are so awesome – everything Scott Johnson and Tom Merritt – some of my favorite geeks! If you go to AlphaGeekRadio.com any time of the day or night you’ll see three regular channels, the Coverville music channel and a special events channel. The channel shows the cover art for whatever is currently playing and you simply tap on it and hit play.

At first it was hard for me to get used to this idea – it’s streaming, not on demand, so you pick up the show wherever it is in the stream, just like, well, radio! But you actually can pause and rewind unlike radio, so if you miss something you can back up.

I love the way there are all these amazing ways to listen to shows these days, and Alpha Geek Radio is a great example of fun innovation getting the content out to more people. Todd also turned me onto an app for iOS, Android AND Windows Phone for Chris Ashley, and even for BlackBerry that lets you listen to live radio including Alpha Geek Radio, and it’s called TuneIn from tunein.com. Install TuneIn and you’ll get a search area where you can browse local “real” radio stations, music, sports, news or talk station, and then Top Podcasts. If you do a search for Alpha Geek Radio you’ll see all of the channels there too. Be sure to favorite Channel 3 of course because that’s where you can hear the NosillaCast!

One more thing I should explain, he will be playing the live show, well, live, on Sunday nights at 5pm Pacific time so it’s another great way to hear the live show. In between those live shows, he’ll run the NosillaCast from that week, together with other shows on that same channel. Let me know what you think about it – I think it’s awesome.

1Password vs LastPass for Unsophisticated Users?

LastPass vs. 1Password poll results as I'll describe in textSteve’s parents are VERY security conscious and like all of us struggle with multiple passwords. Ken and I have spent a great deal of time discussing what makes a good password, and he trusts my advice on how to strengthen his own. I’ve showed him Steve Gibson’s Password Haystack where you can learn what the effect of adding more characters and more types of characters can do to affect how long it takes it to get cracked. I like this tool because it helped me illustrate how a password generated by the first letter of every word of a phrase isn’t all that hard to crack since it was only 8 characters long. Even substituting a number for one of the letters didn’t take more than moments to crack in an offline scenario with a good compute server. With Password Haystacks I was able to show him how padding his password with some meaningless special characters (even repeating characters) took it in to the hundreds of centuries to crack if he doubled it in length. He was delighted that there was an easy solution to making it secure.

However, Steve’s parents are so security conscious that they don’t yet trust the idea of a password manager. Having all that information in one place is a concern and so far I’m just barely getting a crack into them that their own ability to create and safely secure a good set of random passwords is much worse than the possibility of something like LastPass or 1Password even being able to be cracked. Continue reading “1Password vs LastPass for Unsophisticated Users?”

Can OneNote from Microsoft Replace Evernote?

I’ve been experimenting around with something that might shock you – OneNote from Microsoft. You might think that’s crazy, but hey, it’s free, it runs on all of my iOS and Mac devices, so why not give it a try and see if it solves some problems, right?

OneNote on the Mac showing a bunch of glop I threw on screen
If you love Evernote and every time you open it you feel happy and it thinks just the way you think, then you should probably tune out and go read or listen to something else. I like Evernote, but I’m never entirely comfortable in there. It seems to be a bit hinky at all times – formatting is weird, finding things seems harder than it should be with all the tagging and such, and I just don’t reach for it as often as the true believers do. I don’t dislike it but I don’t love it. OneNote has SO many fans on the PC side, I figured there must be something awesome about it so I decided to give it a try. When Don McAllister did a screencast on it over on ScreenCastsOnline, I got even more excited. Let’s dig in and see how OneNote works. Continue reading “Can OneNote from Microsoft Replace Evernote?”

Add Apple Remote Functions to Any Headphones

Steve and I are both runners, and we love listening to podcasts while we run. We both used to use the little square iPod Nanos (loved them) but when Apple got rid of the clip version we knew it was time to start finally using our iPhones. We weren’t totally against the idea of switching, especially since it would free us from using iTunes on the desktop and all that syncing nonsense.

Belkin and iLuv adaptersThe reason we hesitated to use our iPhones for running was because we both hated all of the ways to hook them to your body. I hate armbands in particular – I’d used one ages ago on the long-form iPod Nanos and it was always slipping and I was always messing with it. When Rod Simmons of the SMR Podcast told me about the Spibelt, I had my solution. I told you about the Spibelt a few shows back – it’s a thin, adjustable belt with a stretchy pouch that you can squeeze your phone into. I wear mine on the front, Steve on the back and in both positions it stays firmly against us, no slipping, no bouncing. We have a great solution. Continue reading “Add Apple Remote Functions to Any Headphones”

Run Activity Monitor on iOS Using Instruments

This story starts as a tale about a failing iPhone battery but it turns into an awesome new tool to allow you to use Activity Monitor on your iPhone. But since I get to tell the story you’re going to hear about my iPhone battery first!

Instruments window showing fun graphsA few weeks ago, a gentleman named Scotty Loveless wrote a fabulous blog post about fixing iPhone battery problems. He speaks from experience, as he was an Apple Genius for almost two years. He developed this set of things to look for through experience. I like that the first thing he says is that this will not be one of those posts that says to turn off everything that makes an iPhone fun. You’ve read those, right? They say to turn the screen down till you can’t see it, turn off all your mapping applications, put your phone in airplane mode, and while you’re at it wrap it in bubble wrap and bury it in a kleenex box. I know these things work – my iPad battery lasted nearly two weeks on vacation when I couldn’t use the Internet on it the whole time!
Continue reading “Run Activity Monitor on iOS Using Instruments”

Back Up Your Phone or Tablet Using the Kingston MobileLite

Listener review from the inimitable George from Tulsa

kingston_mobilelite sitting next to a phone of the same size with the old NosillaCast logoEver been on a cruise? Out at sea you may be able to pick up some text emails in the ship’s computer center, but you can forget the kind of automatic backup of photos to iCloud, Dropbox, or Google Plus you’ve come to rely on when there’s dirt underfoot.

Enter the Kingston MobileLite Wireless Reader. It’s a self-contained WiFi gadget that with Apps for either Android or iOS can serve files to mobile devices, or more uniquely, receive and store them wirelessly. It comes with a slot for a standard SD card, the kind used in most cameras. And also has a USB slot for thumb drives.

Imagine. Your iPhone is filled with pictures from your cruise. Connect to the MobileLite and copy them safely off to an SD card or thumb drive. For extra safety, duplicate the files by copying them from the SD card to a Thumbdrive.

Imagine. You’ve taken hundreds of photos using your real camera. You’d like to view them on your iPad or Nexus 7. Simple. Insert the SD card from the camera into the MobileLite, turn it on, and use your App to browse. Once connected, you could easily copy the files off to your tablet, or duplicate them to a Thumb Drive.

The MobileLite supports many kinds of files, including music and videos, if you’d like to take along some movies on your cruise.

It can even function as a supplementary battery for a mobile device. I picked mine up for about $35 on a deep discount Amazon offer, though the regular price there seems to be about $42. I added a 128 GB SD card for lots of storage.

This is a useful gadget! I’m including a link to the Kingston site with lots more information, including useful Video Tutorials. More photos from George of the Kingston MobileLite available here.

Easily Mount Your Phone to Your Bike with Handleband from Nite Ize

My birthday was last week so I asked Steve to get me something to mount my iPhone to the bike so I could use some of those cool apps Kirschen talked about last week. That did, of course, mean it was time to drag my bike out of the shed and dust it off from last winter. Yeah, the winters here in California are pretty tough, it can dip down below 60 from time to time.

Handleband from Nite Ize
iPhone in Handleband showing how it is mounted to the bike
Continue reading “Easily Mount Your Phone to Your Bike with Handleband from Nite Ize”

Dumb Question Corner – How to Stop Safari from Offering Push Notifications

David Bogdan sent in our Dumb Question for this week. He wrote:

Hello Bart and Allison,
Hello from Japan. It’s been awhile, though I’ve been listening to you on podcasts and it sounds like the two of you are doing well.

I wanted to ask another dumb question regarding security. Recently, I’ve been getting occasional popups such as the one below which ask me whether I want push notifications sent to me from the website.

The popup is incredibly intrusive and worries me. You can’t close the tab or quit Safari. You have to either click on the button or resort to force quitting.

Clicking on the one of the buttons would no doubt be the easiest route, but it seems someone could easily use javascript to produce a similarly appearing popup, and I prefer not to click on things I don’t know about. I’d prefer to show the better part of valor and just close the tab, but this new feature of Safari doesn’t seem to allow that. Is there any way to disable this Push popup in Safari?

Bart says these aren’t typical popups, which are really websites sending you somewhere else. This is Safari asking permission to send you notification (it’s a feature!) not a true popup. The good news is that we found the checkbox in Safari that stops this behavior. In Safari Preferences, Notifications tab, at the bottom uncheck the box that says “Allow websites to ask for permission to send push notifications”.

And of course I created a step by step tutorial using Clarify on how to get Safari to quit annoying you!

Why Dave Hamilton Rocks

I was really conflicted this week thinking back on how I slammed the Transporter Sync. I mentioned that I was influenced by the podcasters who advertise for Drobo, and I feel badly about it because all of them are friends of mine. I was trying to think about what to say on the show to make myself not feel bad about it but I kept coming back to the realization that I just told you guys the truth as I experienced it.

One thing I didn’t tell you is that before I posted that rant, I wrote to Dave Hamilton telling him I was going to do it. Drobo and hence Transporter are big advertisers for Dave on the Mac Geek Gab but you’ll be amazed what he wrote back. He told me to do it. He told me that I can only talk to what I know and there’s no reason to hold back. That was pretty cool, but what he did this week blew me away. On his show, he told his audience that while he’s had nothing but great success with the original Transporter, he’s heard from other folks, like Allison and Pilot Pete that there do seem to be some problems. He warned people to read these reviews and comments before buying the Transporter Sync and that maybe it does have to have some stuff wrung out in the software before it’s ready for the mainstream user.

The just amazed me. It’s easy for me to say something is bad if I’m not being paid to say it’s good, but for Dave to point out these problems and suggest people pay attention while they ARE one of his advertisers shows that he’s a man of great integrity, and I really really admire him for that.

Shared Photo Streams May be Eating Up Your Disk Space

Photo Streams are an awesome feature of OSX via iPhoto or Aperture and through iOS. With “regular” Photo Stream, the last 1000 photos you’ve taken on your iOS device are pushed up to the cloud as a short term backup (take photo 1001 and the first photo vanishes). If you turn on Photo Stream in Aperture or iPhoto those same photos come whooshing down to your desktop for safe keeping. I love this feature. I’ll take a photo with my iPhone, wait a few seconds and then go to my Mac to tweet it out. It’s awesome. But you probably know all that. Either you’re like most of us and love it, or you’re like George from Tulsa, Jim Sewell or Kim Landwehr and haven’t turned it on on purpose.
Continue reading “Shared Photo Streams May be Eating Up Your Disk Space”

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