The iFrogz GoLite Makes A Great And Usable Gift

I have a great gift idea to recommend for any of your friends, family, or co-workers who need phone backup chargers at hand. From iFrogz, the GoLite,   is a a backup charger and a flashlight and it is small enough to fit in pocket or purse. And, while it is made by a reliable company, it is also very inexpensive as these things go. I am looking right now at a similar product that goes for $70. The MSRP for the iFrogz is $29.99. I found it on Amazon for $24.53 (black). If the user has a smart phone that can be charged with a USB cable then this is the perfect gift for them. Here are the four color choices.

ifrogzgolite

This product is rechargeable, featuring a 2600mAh lithium ion battery.

The built-in LED flashlight battery is best for low-light situations.

It delivers enough power to charge any smartphone. The package includes a USB/micro cable for self charging and has a USB port to charge the phone.

It weighs 3.49-oz. The dimensions are 0.875 x 0.875 x 4.125-in.

So this is a good way to get started on that holiday list. (OK, so I am a virgo and do things like shop ahead.) Besides, this will work no matter what cool phone someone gets for Christmas.

Posted in Beginner Mac Tips, Holiday Gift Suggestions, iPhone Tips | Tagged , | Leave a comment

A Tip To Wow Your Audience When Using Keynote

You can spice things up with a judicious use of Magic Move in your slide show. With Magic Move you animate objects between slides so the objects seem to move without any action on your part. Magic move works with two consecutive slides that have at least one common image.

For this example I am going to have an image seem to move up on a page by itself.

The first step is to create the first slide with the graphics, images, or text that you want to appear first.

20140826keynote17

Now create a duplicate of that slide. To do that click on the slide in the Slide Navigator panel to the left and press Command + D.

20140828keynote19

The next step is to open the duplicated slide and modify it. In my example I moved the graphic to the top of the slide and added different text. The element that you wish to move must be the exact same size on both slides or this won’t work.

20140826keynote20

Now, go back to the first of the two slides so it once again becomes the active slide. Click the blue “Inspector” from the Keynote toolbar. (In Yosemite that button is named “Animate”)  Click the Transitions button and choose Add an effect. One of your options is “Magic Move”. Select it.

20140826keynote18

Now go back and play your two slides. The finished product should look like this.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Before You Sell Your iPhone

iPhone 6 and 6 plus will re released Friday (like you don’t already know that). Before you sell your current phone there is one important thing you must do in addition to removing all your personal data. You have to turn off “Find My Phone”.

The purchasers can’t reprogram the old phone if Find My Phone is still turned on. Say you sell your iphone to Gazelle. If you don’t turn off Find My Phone and they can’t use the phone, you don’t get the money and you don’t get your phone back.

To turn it off,  go to Settings > iCloud, then tap to turn off Find My [device].

Easy but important.

Posted in Beginner Mac Tips, iPhone Tips | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The Optimal Case For iPhone Users Who Don’t Like Traditional Cases

Bumpie Protectors  are currently available for the iPhone5/5s and may be preordered for the iPhone 6. Humm.  Wonder what they know that we don’t know.

In a nutshell, Bumpies are four plastic-like protectors for each corner of your iPhone. They exceed military specs for shock.

20140906bumpie4Sample black Bumpie

The bonding is very tight but are east to remove if necessary. Once removed they can not be reused.

They come in black, blue, fuchsia, gray, green, red, white, and yellow. The MSRP is US $24.00. Shipping is free if two or more sets are ordered, and they offer a replacement warranty for two years from date of purchase.

Getting Down To It

I have reviewed similar products in the past and they all had two problems.  They were hard to place in the correct spot, and they did’t stay on through daily use. I am happy to report that I found neither of these problems to exist with the Bumpies I tested.

The packaging includes a unique system that allows you to place them in exactly the right spot. The packaging includes a sleeve that allows you to align your phone perfectly.

20140906bumpie1

Once it is aligned it is a simple matter to remove the backing and place the Bumpies on each of the four corners. The whole process takes less than a minute.

20140906bumpie2

When the Bumpies are in place, you flip the sleeve over and open it up by removing the tab that holds it together.

20140906bumpie3

I carried my phone, wearing the Bumpies, around in my pocket and purse for ten days. They worked perfectly. Even if you grab one and try to move it around, it won’t move and yet, I purposely removed them by simply inserting my thumb nail under one edge and raising it up. There was no residue left on my phone. It reminded me of removing those wall hangers that are made by 3M that hold all kinds of things, yet can be pulled off the wall, leaving no marks.

This kind of protection is not for everyone, but anyone who likes it will do well to look at the Bumpies.

Posted in Bumpie Protectors, iPhone 5s, Mac Tips | Tagged , | Leave a comment

A Tip To Make Your Keynote Presentation Shine

One of the basic tenets of a good slide show is that there is a minimum number of words on each slide. Think of your words as thought generators rather than information. You are there to share the information.

There is a cool visual that you can use to splash one sentence or heading on a slide and have each piece of text appear individually, and with a bit of pizazz.

To have information appear and disappear on a slide use these steps.

Select the slide you want to use. It helps to use one with predetermined elements such as the placement of central information as demonstrated below. It will also contain recommended font size and color that work well with the background. After you get comfortable with this method you can experiment with placement, font, etc.

20140826keynote1

Enter the text you want featured into the text box. If there is too much text to fit nicely in the suggested box, double click on the box lines and make it bigger by dragging on the corners. Remember though that your text is a thought generator, not a complete description.

20140826keynote2

Once you start rearranging the sizes of text boxes you can center them once again by right-clicking in the center of the box. Guide lines will appear when your text box is once again centered.

20140826keynote3

When your text is entered to your satisfaction, you can start the animation process. Click on the Animate option in the top right corner of your Keynote screen. You will see options for “Build in”, “Action”, and “Build Out”.

20140826keynote4

Highlight the text box in question. If you want the text to appear when you open the slide, simply click on Build Out” and then click on “Add an Effect”. Choose your effect. Don’t get so flamboyant that you distract from your message.

When I choose Disappear the app will show me that this is my first action and that it will happen all at once.

20140826keynote5

Now I have two choices. I can enter my second line of text right on top of the first which makes for a smooth transition, or I can place it elsewhere on the page. Start by copying your existing text box and pasting it somewhere on the page. Delete the old text and enter the new text. To place it on top of the existing text just drag the text box to the appropriate point. This animation activity will take two steps. The text box should still be highlighted.

First choose “Build in” and select your action. Then choose “Build out” and select that action. In this sample I choose appear and confetti. Continue this process as many times as needed. The latest version of Keynote will assume you want to continue the pattern so you don’t have to make the same choices over and over.

20140826keynote6

My finished slide looks like this before I tell the slide show to play.

20140826keynote7

And when viewed by an audience, the slide show will look like this. Although this movie moves through the slides automatically, in real life you get to talk as much as you want and then manually click for the next topic.

Posted in Mac Tips, Mountain Lion Tips, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Inateck’s BP2001Bluetooth Speaker Has A Unique Feature

Inateck has released it’s BP 2001 Bluetooth speaker, a speaker specifically designed to work with iPads and iPhones. A groove across the width of the speaker holds an iPad, iPad mini, or iPhone and any one of them will instantly pair with the speaker. The design of the groove means that it should work equally well with future versions of iPads or iPhones.

20140801inateck3

The built-in lithium battery offers 5-6 hours of play time. There is a single built-in high sensitivity microphone. Pairing is instantaneous once the device is in place the the speaker is turned on. There is a fold out stand on the back that allows the speaker to hold the iPad or iPhone straight up for easy viewing. Connections for the charging cable, auxiliary port, and on/off button are located on the back The package includes a USB charging cable, a 3.5mm audio cable, and a manual. The speaker weighs 11.64-oz (330g).

20140801inateck4

The MSRP for the BP 2001 is US $59.99, but is is currently available on Amazon for US $29.99.

The speaker is 9.5 x 2 x 1.5-in (24.13 x 5.08 x 3.81-cm). The speaker supports all venues of media playback, and is of a size that can fit into many bags or cases.

20140801inateck2

Using The Product

There is instant pairing as soon as the speaker is turned on. I tested it using an old PBS series wherein the actors all had Scottish accents. My thinking was that the primary use of this speaker may well be for listening to, and viewing, streamed videos because of the convenience of mounting your iPad or iPhone using the groove. It really is quite convenient to use the speaker this way. I choose a series with Scottish actors because I find the Scottish accent to be the most difficult to understand during casual conversation. I viewed about three hours of the series and had absolutely no problem understanding the actors, which I consider a major element when rating the quality of a speaker’s sound. I viewed the series using an iPad mini.

20140801inateck1

I also want to point out that the groove designed in the top of this speaker is of a size and depth that it should continue to function well as the size of iPads or iPhones change sizes. Note though that the devices need to be free of cases when using this speaker.

I recommend this speaker and feel it would be a good buy.

Posted in Bluetooth Speaker, Inateck Speaker | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Getting Help At The Genius Bar

Apple Retail Stores have this wonderful feature called the Genius Bar. You can take your Apple device in and a genius will diagnosis the problem and if possible, fix it right there. If it can’t be fixed on site, they will shop your computer off for repair and notify you when it comes back in for pickup. There is never a charge unless parts have to be replaced.

You can not just walk in off the street and see a genius. You must make an appointment via computer.  The URL for this is  http://concierge.apple.com/reservation/us/en/techsupport/.

Here is a tip for getting the best service.

  • Don’t tell the genius the whole litany of things you have tried. To do so just wastes their time and yours.
  • Be on time for your appointment or you will lose it.
  • On a post-it or other paper that size, write down the problem in three sentences or less. That helps you focus on the problem and the genius to focus on the solution.
  • Assuming you registered your device during the initial setup, the genius will be able to instantly access necessary information about your device, including the status of any warranty.

All of this said, I have seen some unusual behavior at the Genius Bar. From adults, not kids. The kids are all too busy playing with the Mac’s that are in place for just that purpose.

There was the man who wanted his phone replaced at no cost even though it had been out of warranty for 5 months and the damage to the phone was self inflected. This guy was in his late 30’s. He used “dude” to start every sentence. He kept on and on trying to get the Genius to do what he wanted. Eventually his wife came up and he started telling her that the phone was no longer covered. She said “nuhuh”. The last time I heard someone utter that phrase was from my 5 year old great grandson.

Then there was the lawyer who was in a panic because his case was going to trial in three days, but his computer had crashed and his whole case information was gone. Well, no, he hadn’t backed anything up. He was a busy lawyer and didn’t have time for that kind of stuff. Yeah.

The staff at the Genius bars are well trained and customer oriented. It is pleasure to do business with them.

Posted in Beginner Mac Tips, Genius Bar, Mac Tips | Tagged , | Leave a comment