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Starbucks

December 6th, 2014 Comments off

I’m starting to feel like I want to break up with Starbucks. I don’t go there often but when there’s a deal I usually treat myself. Today I decided to try their hot chocolate, but since they use milk and I’m lactose intolerant (and wasn’t interested in trying the soy milk), I only got a short.

Starbucks

That’s my drink on the right. Apparently it’s also considered the child’s size.

Anyway, it was not very good and I was disappointed. My cousin later mentioned that she adds sugar to hers; I hadn’t even considered that but I’m guessing it would have improved it as it definitely wasn’t sweet enough.

It just seems like one of two things happen when it comes to Starbucks drinks:

1) It’s a huge disappointment.

OR

2) I love it and later get the worst stomachache (even if I opt for soy).

So it’s just not meant to be. It’s not you (every time) Starbucks, it’s me.

But hey, I still entered the win Starbucks for life contest because Joe loves his vanilla lattes and I do like them too but I only take a couple of sips to spare me any intestinal misery later.

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iPhone 6 Camera

October 19th, 2014 Comments off

The more I use the iPhone 6 camera, the more I hate it. It’s gotten to the point I’d rather go out and buy a new point and shoot camera than mess with it because I am so disappointed with the resulting photos. The only promising thing is that based on this article, plus comments I’ve been reading online, most of what bothers me would be fixed via a software upgrade. But will Apple do it, and if so, when? I’m just extremely annoyed that my 4S took nicer panorama photos than my brand new $400 phone. I love taking photos so this is no small thing.

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iPhone 6 & iOS 8 Review

September 26th, 2014 Comments off

It’s been a week since I got my new iPhone and it’s safe to say I’m in love. What do I love about it? It’s easier to say what I don’t love, and that’s pretty much nothing. ;)

Ok, to be honest the only thing that has me a little worried is reports of the phone getting bent in people’s pockets. It seems to be happening more with the iPhone 6 Plus, but I’m sure it can happen to either phone since they are thin and made of aluminum. I got the smaller of the two so I could still fit it into my front pocket but it’s rather snug in my jeans so now I’m really nervous about putting it in there. I’ve spent HOURS on Etsy trying to find the perfect little pouch that means my very specific criteria which is as follows:

1 – Closes at the top (whether that be via snap, velcro, or button with a bungie cord, I really don’t care).
2 – Has the ability to add a strap to turn it into a wristlet and/or crossbody purse.
3 – Has a way to attach it to a belt loop.
4 – Pattern is appealing.

I have yet to find one that matches all that criteria and price is not an object (within reason; but everything I see is below $50 anyway).

Ok, so here’s my review of the phone itself.

Predictive keyboard – This feature is awesome! As I’ve written here before, I suck at typing on my phone (or any digital device, really) and between the larger keys and the suggestions, I rarely have to type out a full word. I love that! It saves time and aggravation and is much better than the iPhone just auto correcting words since it likes to change correct ones to incorrect ones (at least for me).

Larger screen – Love that it’s easier to read text, plus I gained two extra rows of apps per page over my old phone.

Battery life – I used my phone on and off all day at work and when I got home it was around 60% whereas my old phone would have been almost dead. I’m not sure is an actual improvement over the 4S or just because the phone and battery is brand new opposed to three years old. In any case, now that you can view which apps are using up the battery, I have turned off Facebook and Facebook Messenger notifications as they were eating up 36% and 25% of my battery life respectively. eBuddy XMS (the app I use to chat with Joe) is also a battery killer but until I find a better alternative I will have to deal with it. I just wish I could pick certain apps to override the volume settings on the phone so that even if the volume isn’t turned all the way up the notifications from my chat app would still be at full volume.

Touch ID is frickin awesome! I let my phone lock within a minute because it saves on battery plus it’s so effortless to unlock it. I hated having to type in my pass code all the time. Plus I can use Touch ID to download apps which rocks because my Apple password is letters and numbers and switching back and forth between the two on the keyboard is annoying.

The camera is amazing and a very noticeable improvement over the 4S. I don’t feel the need to post-process anything before uploading it to Facebook. I’m impressed with the detail it picks up even in lower light situations and the focus appears to be spot on without any input from me. I am itching to make use of the panorama feature as that was always good even on the old phone so I suspect it will be even more awesome on this new one.

I haven’t really tested the video quality yet as I just learned this morning that if you want to shoot in 60fps (i.e. full HD) you need to turn that on in the settings.

I was having a weird issue where if I had the phone in landscape orientation with the volume buttons facing down, the red record button wouldn’t respond when I pressed it. After speaking to an Apple rep and updating to iOS 8.0.2 this morning that issue is now gone. Whew!

The larger screen has made me want to play games on my phone again so if anyone has recommendations, please post a comment!

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Some bad, some good

March 22nd, 2012 Comments off

I’m a little peeved that Aziz Ansari is selling what he’s calling a “brand new standup special” for $5 on his website and it’s anything but. Perhaps it’s the first time it’s on film, but most reasonable people would expect it to be new material, not stuff from almost two years ago! Imagine my disappointment after downloading it and finding I heard all those same jokes in person in June 2010. I guess this is why Louis C.K. is king. He was the first to offer the $5 download option last December and it was all new material… and we had just seen him in June of the same year!

Conditioner

The conditioner pictured here is awesome. My scalp has been itching like crazy lately so I went to Whole Foods and found some SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) free shampoo as well as this special soothing conditioner. At $9 a bottle it’s not cheap but not only has the itching almost disappeared after only four days of use but my hair has never felt softer. My hair isn’t falling out as much as before either.

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Philips Portable Speaker follow-up

March 11th, 2012 Comments off

As a follow-up to this post, I wanted to document that I received the replacement speaker in the mail at the beginning of the week. That evening I switched the batteries from my current unit to the new one and was experiencing the same exact problem. At that point it occurred to me that maybe the batteries were to blame, so I switched them out for new ones and the speaker worked fine, which means the original speaker probably wasn’t broken to begin with (didn’t even think to put new batteries in that one to check). I’m surprised the person at Philips didn’t ask about this. Surely this isn’t the first time they’ve heard of such an issue.

I’m still going to ship back my original unit to them via FedEx (pre-paid postage was included), and despite how very accommodating they’ve been I don’t think I’d buy another portable speaker again due to how quickly it eats through batteries. I barely used my original unit before having issues so it doesn’t seem like a very cost-effective solution particularly because it uses AAA batteries and I only have a charger and rechargeable batteries in AA.

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