Man life can be funny sometimes

I remember the good old days. The days when I had time to write in my blog and keep up with work. I would sit and write things that were meaningless to anyone but myself. This would go on for ever it seemed. I would write and people would not read it, but it made me happy.

Then the older I got that all ended as I started to focus more on other things. I started businesses, picked up hobbies, traveled more for work and spent more time with my family. This lead the blog to sit here and do nothing. I think now is time to address this.

I am going to bring the blog back, but this time it is going to be more of what I want. I am not going to focus on anything else but write about my interests and my opinions. This is not to say that I do not appreciate input, but I am not going to change my opinion or remove a post because someone does not like my grammar.

Stay Tuned.

iPhone 6 plus' killer feature

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After a few days with my iPhone 6 plus I have found the killer feature and it was a bit of a surprise. Initially I thought it was just going to be gaming and a great camera. Then I thought it was going to be battery life. I was wrong. As it turns out it is the keyboard.

Normally to take notes and get work done the iPhone could but it was cumbersome. He iPad was better for this, but again it was a little to big. The mini was better but just not right. The 6 plus is perfect. I feel like I can compose much better on this device and with the additions of 3rd party keyboards I can customize the experience to better suit my needs.

So yeah, if you have not tried it give it a shot. Pay attention to how easy it to type and I think you will be sold. 

My Thoughts On BendGate

Recently Apple has been getting some bad press about the 6 plus bending. This blew up all of a sudden and it seems like people just start bashing Apple. After spending some time thinking about it, I have to agree with them. Let me be clear. I would not expect many phones to be able to with stand much intentional bending like in the video. However, Apple could have faired a bit better.

Apple has an obsession with design. This is what many people, including myself, love about the company. It is this very obsession with design that is causing this problem. They want to make the phone thiner every year, but in doing so they sacrifice battery life, camera performance, and structural integrity. If they would have kept the thickness of the iPhone 5 the phone would have faired far better int his type of condition. Just imagine for a moment that they had kept the 5s thickness. The camera, while being amazing as is, could have been that much better. What about the 6plus batter? That would have been fantastic!

I know that the we are out of luck for the 6s 6s plus or what ever Apple decides to call it, but here is my list of what I am hoping for.

  • iPhone 5 thickness
  • Larger battery
  • Thinner bezel
  • Sapphire screen

Undocumented Continuity / Hand Off Feature?

While playing around with my iPhone today, I notice a feature that I have not heard anyone talk about. It has to do with continuity and hand offs. When double tap to bring up the application control you can swipe all the way to the left you can continue any application that supports the feature.

In this case I was wanting to open a site from my Mac on my iPhone. This is a pretty handy feature!

Apple Sells 10 Million iPhones in 3 days

iMore has reported Apple sells over 10 million handsets in the first three days. This has lead to long delays in customers receiving pre-ordered devices and a general feeling that this is the big hit Apple has been waiting for since the launch of the iPad.

I for one am one of those pre-order customers and it does not look like I will be receiving my handset for any time soon. Oh, well patience is a virtue... I guess.

I am not camping for the new iPhone 6+

I am not camping for the new iPhone 6+, but it is not because I don’t think it is a great phone. I honestly think this is going to be a game changer for Apple and the iOS community. The real reason is that I am changing carriers to T-Mobile! I know what some of you are thinking. Yes, they have worse coverage than Verizon. However, they are saving me $2400 a year! I can deal with poor coverage in areas that I don’t travel to much for that kind of saving.

New Watch

For Father’s Day my wife bought me a new watch. While this is not a Rolex, to me it is far better. This is a Casio G-Shock Masters of G Rangeman (Japan version)! The reason I am so excited about this watch is the features it brings to the game. Since a large part of my life is shifting to being outside and active, I wanted a watch that would serve well in SCUBA, swimming, shooting, and camping. This watch packs all of those features and more.

The watch has all the typical G-Shock features including 20 bar water resistance, back lighting, alarms, countdown timer, and stopwatch. In addition this model gets the Triple Sensor treatment. It has a barometer, thermometer, altimeter, and compass. In addition it is both solar and atomic. Because it is a Japan version it also has a carbon fiber band, instead of the us resin band, and reversed face.

The reverse face really gives it a unique appearance. Unlike the normal version which has a grayish white face with black numbers, this one has a black face with grayish white numbers. Pair this with less colors on the band and the watch has a very tactical look.

So far I am happy with this watch and I can’t wait to get it out on the field and see how it perforce. If you would like to get one for yourself try Amazon.

TouchID and Security

I wrote this when Apple first anounced TouchID. I showed it to several friends and was not well received because nothing else was allowed to use it but the iPhone. With todays announcement I wanted to post it here, unedited.

The Post

I have been thinking about the attack vectors for TouchID every since it was announced. I think attackers are going to focus on defeating this system for the mere challenge and the profit it could bring. However, I don't think the attacks are going to be on the sensor itself. I think attackers are going to go after the API. If you look at this API from an attackers standpoint it could lead to some pretty big breaches. It also could expose other sensitive information.

One of the possibilities for the attack would be developing an app that used the TouchID API. There are several techniques for hiding code and using the API to steal information passed by the API. This could lead to the attacker having access to your thumbprint, iTunes account, or any other application that might be using the thumbprint to secure itself.

What about maleware? Lets say that Apple starts allowing the TouchID API for use in password managers. This seems like a great idea since it would make the barrier to access much easier as you would not have to enter a password to use the system. Most of these application have a web browser component. If this browser has an exploit the attacker could use this vector to possibly expose these thumb prints and gain access to sensitive information.

Apple has not released this API to the public yet, but we can only imagine that it is coming. If Apple does not handle this API correctly it could be a big threat to security. I am sure attackers are already thinking about this and planning attacks. The two examples I have pointed out are only the tip of the iceberg. I for one will be watching this develop with keen interest.

The future of car ownership

Recently I have been thinking about what is to become of private car ownership in this country and others. It seems to me that this major expense, for most people, will go the way of the dodo. The major reason for this will be economies of scale as it relates to autonomous cars that some companies are working on. Most people will see this as a major problem and resist, but mark my word, it is on its way. It will make our roads safer and more economical with far less pollution.

I agree that this seems like a difficult proposition at first, but think about services like Uber. Today Uber makes it relatively painless to get a reliable and comfortable ride in several cities around the world. This has pissed off quite a few cab companies, but it has not slowed the companies progress to this point. Now imagine that instead of a drive on the car you just order from Uber, but an autonomous car showing up to shuttle you to your next appointment. The system would automatically plot the most efficient way to get to that location based on traffic and your arrival time.

In this world you would not have to worry about parking your car since it would be off to service the next customer. Need to stop and get gas? Nope the service would automatically take care of that for you. How about ongoing maintenance? Already done by the company or local government that was providing the car. Texting and driving would be a thing of the past as you could login and work while the car did all the work.

I fully admit that there would be some planning challenges for capacity and such and that most people would be scared of giving up private property in a country that values cars almost more than any other. However, the benefits in economic stability, air quality and safety would out way these in the long run.

However, this does not solve all the problems that one uses a car for. What about weekend travel, trips and such. I think that people might still have some type of personal car in rural areas of the country to perform weekend activities, but those that live close to a city will still use the car services that are provided. So that leaves travel.

Long weekend and “road trips” would likely have to be handled in a different way. You might take a large bus or some other type of long range transportation to those places that we would drive today. However, you might also just use a service that provides one car for the whole weekend. That would be an expense proposition to be sure, but far less than what we are spending today on keeping cars up that spend the majority of the time parked.

Look, I know this is a stretch at the moment. I also know that I am going to get comments blasting me for not loving cars. I know I will also get the “commie” type comments as well. I never said I was a huge fan of this solution, but I do feel very strongly that this is coming faster than we can imagine. With companies like google and the like working on it I personally feel we are less than 10 years away before these companies start to emerge with the technology to allow cars to be completely autonomous. We live in exciting and scary times.