Belkin Making Waves.

For Christmas, my brother bought himself a 2G ipod touch, so of course I had to get him a case to protect this new tech (because I am such a great sister and all)! Knowing my brother’s tastes, I selected for him the Belkin Sonic Wave Two-Tone Silicone Sleeve in black/infrared. He LOVED it and so did I! I was so impressed with the quality of the case I stole his ipod touch for a few minutes to do a little photo shoot and review. As you can see this case is silicone, and despite the fact that I do not usually like silicone cases, the quality of this case was excellent. I really liked the thickness of the case, it wasn’t flimsy, but it was thin enough to show off the slim features of the touch.

Obviously this case doesn’t have any screen protection, but as you can see from the pictures, my brother uses a screen cover and the combination of the Belkin case and the screen protector actually seems to prevent scratches and other damage pretty well. Obviously a screen protector can’t prevent a hard object from cracking the glass, but it will prevent everyday scratches and can be easily cleaned. Overall, I recomment this case to anyone looking for the everyday shock protection of a silicone case for their ipod touch as long as you pair it with a decent screen shield.

Happy Inauguration Day!

Sorry, but I am busy celebrating the inauguration of the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama! I will be back to posting after the fun has died down!

{Image via Doug Mills/The New York Times}

Belkin Mini Surge Protector with USB Charger.

This weekend I finally bought the Belkin Mini Surge Protector with USB Charger! I found it on sale at Circuit City for $20.99 down from the usually $24.99 so I thought I should get it while it was on the cheap. I have been scoping this out for a while because not only is it a mini portable surge protector, it also includes 2 USB outlets and a USB to Mini USB cable for charging devices. I don’t have a wall charger for my iPods, so this is perfect for me! Plus it covers up to $75,000 in damages if it is defective, which is pretty spectacular. I have been using it for the past few days and I, of course, love it. There is not much more to say other than it has a 360 degree rotating head that comes in handy. Oh, but one small flaw that I discovered– when I tried to charge my iPod and my cell phone via the USB ports, the charge flow was interrupted and kept cutting in and out. I haven’t tried to charge two things simultaneously again, but if it keeps happening that is a major flaw because there is no reason to have two USB ports if it doesn’t actually charge two things at once. Other than that, I love the fact that it is a portable surge protector that also acts as a charger for my USB devices especially my iPods.

{This has been reposted from}

EnV Me.

I am totally excited to announce to you all that I FINALLY got a new cell phone today and it is completely awesome. I bought the new LG enV2 in black, it is fabulous! My old cell phone was a razr, and was beginning to crap out on me after only a year of use, which I find to be unacceptable. It is my own fault though, I was attracted to the slim design, nifty camera, and pink, of course, and I completely ignored the negative feedback from friends about the phone being a piece of… well, you know! Today the saga ends, however, because this new LG really rocks. My friend El Night Owl picked up one a few days ago and wrote about it, so check that out, but I am still going to do a little bit of a product review for you as well.

Let’s begin with the features I love, shall we? Okay, for starters, I love the fact that this is a brick phone that also flips open for texting! I used to be a big fan of the Nokia brick style phones, but they disappeared a few years ago and in there place were clam shell flips or sliders. Well, I am getting the best of both worlds with this phone because the brick is super easy to use not having to fumble with flipping it open to take a call, but on the other hand we have the full keyboard for texting. And, man, have I been texting! It is a breeze to text on this phone! I love the fact that I can text complete sentences, insert punctuation, etc, without having to sort through different menu options! That brings me to the next amazing feature, the speaking text option. Basically, you can have your phone speak your text messages to you! Yeah, wow, right? That’s what she said! Anyway, final feature I love is the camera. 2.0 mega pixels and it takes great quality images! What more is there to want in a cell phone, really?

Okay, so now maybe I should talk about features this phone is lacking. Really, this phone doesn’t lack much, but I have a pet peeve about one of the features that is not fully functional and that is the speaker phone. This phone does have a speaker phone option, however, as far as I can tell, you can only activate speaker phone when the phone is open. Hopefully, I am going to be found incorrect on this, however, so far, I can’t make the speaker phone turn on when I have the phone closed. This is a problem for me, because when I am driving and I get a call, I like to turn speaker phone on and set my phone down in the cup holder when I talk. Well, if the phone has to be open for the speaker to activate, that means I need to flip it open, which I know isn’t a big deal, but it is an annoying step to have to take. Oh, one more complaint I have about the phone– the ringer. I guess the speakers for the phone are technically inside the the flip portion of it, because when the phone is closed, the ringer is muffled. This is more than a little annoying because the ringer never seems to get very loud. More testing must be done to check how this works, but for now, I wish the volume on the ringer was louder when the phone is closed.

Okay, well I hope you enjoyed this review of my new LG enV2! I am really excited about this phone and I totally think the positives outweigh the negatives I listed above. One final thing I want to say about this phone, however, is just the quality of the construction. I really feel as though this phone is going to last me. LG phones are usually a great quality, and I think this model is no different. I don’t feel as though I am going to break it when I flip it open, the way I did the with razr, and I think it could totally survive some major drops- it just feels solid, which is always a great thing for a cell phone! Okay, so check back soon because I ordered a skin for the phone that I will also be reviewing when it arrives. As you can see in the picture above, it is a pink plaid style sticker that protects from minor scratches and such. So, get back here soon to check out that review and if you happen to have either an enV2 or a similar sticker style skin for the phone, let me know what you think in the comments below!

Coolest Moleskine Ever!

I know that Moleskine notebooks are part of the analog word and might seem to have no place on this technology blog, but this is a horse of a different color! This customized “Geekster Moleskine” as it is called by its creator, is actually an 80 GB external hard drive casing. Now, I don’t know about you, but I love the look and feel of a Moleskine notebook, so this hard drive speaks to my personal interests very much and I have to say, I sorta want one! I know I have more external hard drives than I need right now, but what is one more? This Moleskine hack was created using a laptop  hard drive, something I do happen to have an extra of, so perhaps I might be able to create my own custom Moleskine drive using the directions written up by the creator of this hack! Hmm, this is totally moving the wheels inside my mind! You can take a look at more pictures of the project here, and see the work in progress here. Enjoy!

ReqWIRED Reading.

Today, while perusing the magazine section at the grocery store, I picked up a new magazine as you can see. I have heard of WIRED before and since it is tech and all, you would think I would have caved for it a while ago. Well, I finally got myself a copy of the magazine to read through, and so far it looks good. The headline stories are about Obama, Apple, and global warming so it should make for a good read!

Steve Jobs Steps Down… for now.

I just found out the late breaking news that today Apple CEO Steve Jobs is stepping down due to his health and leaving COO Tim Cook in charge while he takes a leave of absence. This medical leave, prompted by the news of a hormone deficiency he is suffering from, will be until he end of June and I am sure I am not alone when I say that I hope Steve gets well soon! I might not work at Apple or anything, but I sure am going to miss him not being in charge for a while.

What’s your Tech Life Style?

What sort of tech life do you lead?

When it comes to the internet, you don’t need to know much to get yourself around. A little knowledge can go a long way with computers, but then again there are some among us who know more than others and whose digital lives are more amazing then some actual lives. With technology all around us everyday it is hard not to have some sort of tech life, but what exactly is that tech lifestyle? Take this short quiz to find out! It’s simple, just give yourself a point for each statement you can answer and use the rubric to find out your tech life style!

Ask yourself…

– Name as many search engines as you can (1 point for each)
– I can shop online
– I can search terms on a web page
– I can send and receive email
– I read newspapers online
– I download music or movies online
– I can burn a CD or DVD
– I know the difference between a Mac and a PC
– I have ____ number of iPods or MP3/Audio/Video Devices (1 point for each)
– I have ____ number of digital cameras (1 point for each)
– I know the difference between internal memory and internal hard drives
– I know what CD-RW means.
– I know what a GB is
– I have an external hard drive
– I backup my hard drive
– I have a wireless router
– I have owned ____ number of computers/laptops in my lifetime (1 point for each)
– I can edit digital photographs
– I can edit digital movies
– I make my own digital movies
– I use social networking sites/ write a blog
– I design my own graphics
– I can change a laptop battery
– I can replace/upgrade my RAM
– I can troubleshoot most computer issues
– I can replace a hard drive
– I can replace a motherboard
– I can build a computer
– I write software

What’s my Tech Life Style?

Amateur Surfer (0-14)

You know how to ride the waves of the web, browse your favorite sites and search for the name of that actor in the movie you saw the other night, all while keeping your eye on your eBay bidding war! Email is not your main form of communication, but you sure do love getting those funny emails from friends and family once in a while!

Gifted Gadgetteur (15-24)

Not only are you a web expert, but you are also an avid gadget user. You have your iPod, Digital Cameras and the rest of your peripherals ready and rearing to go at all times. Just make sure you don’t forget to charge them before you take that flight with your favorite multimedia player and the newest episodes of your favorite shows!

Digital Diva (25-34)

The internet bows down to you and your diverse range of tech skills. Not only do you own the interwebs, but you make your own lip dubs, you take pictures of everyplace you go and make sure to post them to your favorite social network site, and of course you devote time each day to developing your web presence!

Motherboard Maven (35<)

You put the genius in mac genius and the geek in geek squad. You can defrag, upgrade, download, program, and convert whatever, whenever! You know the inner workings of a computer the way a psychiatrist knows the inner workings of a brain, and much like them you have no trouble analyzing and troubleshooting technical errors!

All I got for Christmas {Part 3}

So, to continue on the theme of sharing my wonderful tech Christmas presents with you, it is time to share one of my favorite gifts, the 500 GB Western Digital Passport Elite! As you can see in the picture above, I got the bronze color; which honestly wasn’t my first choice, but the vendor it was ordered from ran out of the titanium that I wanted and to avoid a shipping and refund disaster, I stuck with the bronze. It was okay because I ended up also getting a great silicon sleeve cover for the hard drive to give it extra support. I ordered seafoam, as you can see below, and although it looks bright blue, it is actually more of a tiffany blue/robins egg in person. Anyway, back to the hard drive! I cannot tell you how long it took me to decide on an external hard drive for my backup needs, but I knew what I was looking for and what my needs were and this drive is exactly what I wanted. Lets go through a bit of the features and see if this drive is something you might also need to fit your life if you are in the market for a portable external hard drive.

First of all, this drive is obviously portable. Very important to me, the portability factor, especially since I am a laptop user 100% of the time and require that all my accessories function in a “to go” manner. This is a very small drive, it can probably fit into most pockets. It is very lightweight and has a great shape like the rest of the Western Digital Passport series. One difference in the external appearance of this drive compared to other WD models is that the finish is soft to the touch and easy to grip- another plus for the portability. I feel like I can take this drive with me, throw it in a bag, and it can knock around without getting damaged. The soft touch almost seems like shock resistance, as well as resistance to scratches because the surface really can’t be damaged other than through cracking.

Next, this drive is a USB 2.0 only. So no fire wire, but that’s cool with me because I never use firewire with my Mac! The transfer rate is great and the drive has a handy dandy indicator light that marks capacity as well as establishes the presence of its connection to a computer. The indicator lights are located on the side of the drive on a sliding door that covers and reveals the mini USB port so that when the drive is not in use, it has a very flush finish. I like the addition of this sliding door because previous models of this drive used a soft plug to fill in the ports, something I always found to be cheap and easily broken!

Finally, this drive has some major storage capacity! 500 GB is more space than I might ever need, and that is why I bought such a large drive- I won’t have to buy another or replace it anytime soon! I already have an 80 GB WD Passport from a year or so ago that is now too small to fit everything on my laptop’s hard drive. I feel like it was such a waste and I didn’t want to have the same thing happen again if I bought a new hard drive or a new laptop in the next year. This way I cover all my bases! I have enough space to backup my laptop and enough space to keep extras on my hard drive. Right now, I have primarily been using it to store all the videos and pictures I take, instead of putting those files onto my laptop hard drive and taking up too much space. I also use this hard drive for video and image editing because it is recommended that laptop users not use their internal hard drives for such large and complicated tasks. I think this is in case of internal drive failure and it slows down the drive as well to process large files on your laptop’s hard drive.

So, overall, I am very very excited about this new drive of mine! It is everything I could ever need: portable, dependable and functional! I would very much recommend this drive to anyone looking for an external portable hard drive for their own similar interest and needs!

CES 2009: iLuv.

In my exploration and deciphering of all the coverage going on at CES 2009, I have discovered a company that produces some fabulous iPod and multimedia accessories and gadgets, so I thought I would share this information in case anyone out there is looking for another great gadget company! The company, iLuv, specializes in audio and video equipment and accessories that cater to Apple products as well as other mp3 devices. As you can see, they have a great selection of really advanced audio products like Bluetooth headphones, video multimedia systems, and stereos.

The i202 Bluetooth Ear Clips

The i1166 Portable Media Player for iPod and DVD

The i9200 Mini Audio System

For more information on these and other iLuv products, visit their website!

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