Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Quicktime Easter Egg - Play Quicktime Movies Backwards

Quicktime Easter Egg - Play Quicktime Movies Backwards

1. Open a QuickTime Movie
2. Hold down shift.
3. Keep holding shift and double click the movie image

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Muda (Japanese term) reducing waste - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The plan is therefore to build a fast, flexible process where the immediate impact is to reduce waste and therefore costs. By ratcheting the process towards this aim with focused muda reduction to achieve each step, the improvements are 'locked in' and become required for the process to function. Without this intent to build a fast, flexible process there is a significant danger that any improvements achieved will not be sustained because they are just desirable and can slip back towards old behaviours without the process stopping.

Thursday, September 16, 2010


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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

New Kindle Pool Ad

When asked if I still like my Kindle after seeing the iPad I say yes. This commercial shows
one reason why; you can read the Kindle in any light.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Original iPhone (hint: it was not Apple's)


www.cinchcast.com%2fCinchPlaylist.aspx%3FRecordingID%3D93840&playermode=full&autostart=false&bufferlength=5&volume=80&callback=http://www.cinchcast.com/FlashPlayerCallback.aspx&width=300&height=200&volume=80&corner=rounded" quality="high" width="300">

Friday, September 3, 2010

Reviews, News, and Opinion About Personal Technology by Harry McCracken & Friends | Technologizer

The Curse of 3D TV

Tech makers think three dimensions are the next big thing after HD. God, I hope not.

By Harry McCracken  |  Posted at 5:10 pm on Friday, September 3, 2010


The curse of 3D television is not the glasses or the technology, per se, it's lack of interest and money on the part of consumers.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Chart Wizard - Google Chart Tools / Image Charts (aka Chart API) - Google Code

Chart Wizard

Use the wizard below to generate image charts.

Official Gmail Blog

Call phones from Gmail

Wednesday, August 25, 2010 | 9:40 AM

Gmail voice and video chat makes it easy to stay in touch with friends and family using your computer’s microphone and speakers. But until now, this required both people to be at their computers, signed into Gmail at the same time. Given that most of us don’t spend all day in front of our computers, we thought, “wouldn’t it be nice if you could call people directly on their phones?”

Starting today, you can call any phone right from Gmail.

Calls to the U.S. and Canada will be free for at least the rest of the year and calls to other countries will be billed at our very low rates. We worked hard to make these rates really cheap (see comparison table) with calls to the U.K., France, Germany, China, Japan—and many more countries—for as little as $0.02 per minute.

Dialing a phone number works just like a normal phone. Just click “Call phone” at the top of your chat list and dial a number or enter a contact’s name.

We’ve been testing this feature internally and have found it to be useful in a lot of situations, ranging from making a quick call to a restaurant to placing a call when you’re in an area with bad reception.

If you have a Google Voice phone number, calls made from Gmail will display this number as the outbound caller ID. And if you decide to, you can receive calls made to this number right inside Gmail (see instructions).

We’re rolling out this feature to U.S. based Gmail users over the next few days, so you’ll be ready to get started once “Call Phones” shows up in your chat list (you will need to install the voice and video plug-in if you haven’t already). If you’re using Google Apps for your school or business, then you won’t see it quite yet. We’re working on making this available more broadly - so stay tuned!

For more information, visit gmail.com/call.

Update (8/26): This has now been rolled out to everyone in the U.S. If you don't see the feature yet, try logging out of Gmail and signing back in.

Is this useful, or what? Google continues to make me more productive than any other company, except Levi Strauss.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

People and Terminology - The Redheaded Skeptic

Been invited you to a wave?

Google WaveImage via Wikipedia
Google wave
Thomas Beek has invited you to a wave.
Read the full wave →
Google Wave lets you communicate and collaborate in real time.
Google Inc., 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, CA 94043

Amplify Update: Amplifying the conversation… major upgrades!

Amplify LogoAmplify Update: Amplifying the conversation… major upgrades today! 
Hi Thomas Beek,

Amplify's mission has always been to give people a place to engage in good old fashioned conversation around news, thoughts, ideas or anything else that's on their mind. From the start we have been committed to developing a way for users to easily keep up with the conversation without having to rely on email notifications. Today, we are excited to introduce the following new features that take the conversation on Amplify to a whole level. To hear more, check out this interview I did with Robert Scoble this morning. To experience all the upgrades yourself, just visit amplify.com

1. Live Feeds: The Amplify Newsfeed now updates in real-time so that new posts stream in without you ever having to refresh the page (all other feeds mentioned below also defaulting to playing live).

2. Mentions: One of the most important ways to keep up with a conversation is to know when you are being spoken to or about. With this in mind, every user now has a "Mentions" feed that displays the latest mentions of their twitter @username on Amplify. So, if you'd like to make sure someone sees one of your comments or posts on Amplify, just be sure to include their Twitter @username.

3. Conversations feed: This is the place to see all the latest comments on Amps you've posted, previously commented on or are "eavesdropping on" (described below). So, if you don't want to receive emails from Amplify telling you about new comments, just turn them off and keep an eye on your Conversations feed.

4. Eavesdropping: An "Eavesdrop" link has been added to the bottom of every Amp that lets you add it to your Conversations feed. This way, you can keep up with the latest conversation on Amps you haven't yet commented on just as easily as one's you have.

5. Action Feed: When you want to quickly check the latest comments and recommends of your Amps, the new Action feed is the place to go.

6. Managing emails: To help you become less dependent on email notifications, in addition to a global setting that lets you turn off all email notifications for new comments, you will now see a check box on the Amplify save page and below every comment form that lets you opt out of email notifications on a per post basis. This way, you can turn on email notifications for some conversations without having to leave them on for all.

7. Permalinks: The changes described above apply to conversations that take place from within one of the various main feeds on amplify.com. But sometimes, you might open a specific post in a new tab and want to keep up with new comments on it right from there. Now, all permalinks will automatically let you know when new comments have come in, so you don't have to keep refreshing the page to find out.

8. Microblogging and Direct Messaging: The limit on microblog posts and direct messages has been increased from 500 to 1,000 characters, giving you more room to say what you need to say in those instances.

We hope you find these upgrades as exciting as we do… enjoy the conversation!

Eric Goldstein

Want to stop receiving email alerts?

Please do not reply to this message; it was sent from an unmonitored email address. This message is a service email related to your use of Amplify. For general inquiries or to request support with your Amplify account, please contact us at help@amplify.com.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

CoolIris on Mac OS X: How to uninstall/remove

Image representing Cooliris as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase

CoolIris on Mac OS X: How to uninstall/remove

Cooliris is a WONDERFUL app. It makes looking at pictures and movies positively an enchanting experience.. I am not sure why you would want to remove it from your Mac, but if you should so desire, ... here is how to remove it:

  • Close your browser
  • Trash the Cooliris Previews folder found in $LIBRARY/InputManagers/)
  • Trash the cooliris' .plugin file found in $LIBRARY/Internet Plugins
Depending on whether you installed Cooliris for just your user or system-wide, substitute $LIBRARY with /Users/

Beauty Meets Brute Force

Tough love

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Merge Skype with Outlook with Skylook

It was easy to install and use via a new toolbar in Outlook 2000.
Amplify’d from www.skylook.biz
Skylook brings Skype inside Microsoft Outlook®. (NOTE: If you don’t run Outlook, or if you only have Outlook Express, you can Record Skype Calls by downloading CallBurner instead).
Read more at www.skylook.biz

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Monday, July 19, 2010

Zemanta Now Native on Blogger.com!

Zemanta is the best thing to happen for Bloggers since the beginning of Web 2.0.

If you blog at all, especially using Blogger, you have to try Zemanta! It enables you to add related material to a blog post without having to open and search in a separate window.

The big deal about Zemanta's becoming native on Blogger is that now you have access to the service/tool regardless of what browser you are using.  I love Safari's speed, and Chrome's extensions; Firefox runs and starts slower than these on my Mac, but I LOVE Zemanta, and until now it was the only Browser with a Zemanta add-on for Blogging. But with this new widget on my Blogger blog, I can use Zemanta with any browser.

Thank you team Zemanta for showing such love for bloggers.

Image representing Zemanta as depicted in Crun...Image representing Blogger as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBase

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Dial2Do - the future has arrived

"Handsfree assistant: Use your voice to Text, Email and more while you drive"

I just downloaded the Android app.  It works as advertised.  I was able to sent my wife a love note, set a reminder on my Google calendar, hear a weather forecast, and listen to my email while driving - hands free. Pretty damn cool!

My wife has an iPhone and an unlimited data plan. But we couldn't afford the same for me, so I have an Android phone with no data plan. So until now, it's been just a phone unless I connect to a wireless network. Not any more. With Dial2Do, and companion service, Voice2Note, I can join the party with just phone service. I can even do Web 2.0 by emailing blog posts via the service.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Voice2Note - Home

Image representing Evernote as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase
This is the dawning of the implicit promise of the AI: the ability to direct actions and message content by voice. In this case the actions are ones that occur to me almost every day after leaving work for home: I need to send such and such email message(s). If only I could do this with my "smart" phone. Well, now I can, with Voice2Note, by Dial2Do.

I just dial a local number, speak my notes, and they get automatically transcribed and added to Evernote. I can even tag the note by saying "tag as list," or whatever, at the end of the message. When I'm done, the robotic voice, a sort of sexy Irish female, says, "that's done." And it is!

I am stoked.

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Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology (Ray Kurzweil)

Cover of Cover via

Information technologies are not available only to an elite. As discussed, desirable information technologies rapidly become ubiquitous and almost free. It is only when they don’t work very well (that is, in an early stage of development) that they are expensive and restricted to an elite.

Early in the second decade of this century, the Web will provide full immersion visual-auditory virtual reality with images written directly to our retinas from our eyeglasses and lenses and very high-bandwidth wireless Internet access woven in our clothing. These capabilities will not be restricted just to the privileged. Just like cell phones, by the time they work well they will be everywhere. In the 2020s we will routinely have nanobots in our bloodstream keeping us healthy and augmenting our mental capabilities. By the time these work well they will be inexpensive and widely used.

As I discussed above, reducing the lag between early and late adoption of information technologies will itself accelerate from the current ten-year period to only a couple of years two decades from now. Once nonbiological intelligence gets a foothold in our brains, it will at least double in capability each year, as is the nature of information technology. Thus it will not take long for the nonbiological portion of our intelligence to predominate. This will not be a luxury reserved for the rich, any more than search engines are today. And to the extent that there will be a debate about the desirability of such augmentation, it’s easy to predict who will win, since those with enhanced intelligence will be far better debaters.

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Coming soon: Google Voice Search

By Ken Fisher

The master of text-based search is looking to lend a voice to Internet users everywhere, or so it appears based on Google's latest patent. Patent #7,027,987 issued today by the US Patent and Trademark Office covers a "Voice interface for a search engine," which is described as:

"A system provides search results from a voice search query. The system receives a voice search query from a user, derives one or more recognition hypotheses, each being associated with a weight, from the voice search query, and constructs a weighted boolean query using the recognition hypotheses. The system then provides the weighted boolean query to a search system and provides the results of the search system to a user."

Translation: the system listens to your spoken query, does its magic, and returns the results.

Google has not recently commented on this voice search effort, although the company's Alexander Franz did co-author a an article on the topic back in 2002 (PDF). Nevertheless, it is clear that this service would be ideal for users of Google's mobile search. In fact, voice recognition could possibly power Google's mobile search right into competition with local 411 services.

And while those 411 services and other voice-to-text providers are working on their own voice-powered systems, Google's looks to leapfrog the competition by attempting to support a wide-ranging voice vocabulary. According to the patent itself, existing solutions often require multiple steps to make voice queries manageable, at times foisting limited vocabulary support onto users. A system may, for instance, require the user to respond to specific voice queries with a limited set of options pre-determined by the system.

"Current speech recognition technology has high word error rates for large vocabulary sizes. There is very little repetition in queries, providing little information that could be used to guide the speech recognizer. In other speech recognition applications, the recognizer can use context, such as a dialogue history, to set up certain expectations and guide the recognition. Voice search queries lack such context. Voice queries can be very short (on the order of only a few words or single word), so there is very little information in the utterance itself upon which to make a voice recognition determination."

Google's system is aimed at making the voice-based search process more like a standard text-based search query, where the search engine itself attempts to provide the most relevant results with as little interaction with the end user as possible. They key to this the weighted approach. By using an algorithm to weight reconstructions of user's queries, the system looks to tap into the Google search system in order to increase the accuracy of their voice recognition system.

Can it handle Massachusetts accents, though? That would be wicked smaht.

MacSpeech - Power Team

MacSpeech - Power Team: "Together, MacSpeech Dictate and MacSpeech Scribe make you far more productive and your computing experience much more intuitive. And through June 30, 2010, we’re proud to offer MacSpeech Dictate and MacSpeech Scribe together for only $249.00, a savings of $100.00."