My Leopard Impressions

As many of you know Leopard came out on Friday and well, I have it (if you didn’t figure that out from my last post, I’ll have to make it clearer next time a situation like this arises). I do like Leopard a lot, many of the features are great but some of them aren’t that great.

I’ll start off by mentioning the 5 things that I said were my most anticipated features (read this post if you need to catch up), then I’m going to list the things that surprised me about Leopard.

First off is Web Clip, which is really nice to have, but I haven’t actually used it yet other than to just try something out to see how it worked, which was nice. The practical application for Web Clips doesn’t really seem to be there, not just because to look at widgets you have to go into Dashboard land (and if you are anything like me I enjoy spending my time staring at a Firefox window) but also because I can’t think of any reason I really would use it, with the use of RSS readers and widgets that are already available I guess I just can’t find the value in building a widget from a section of a web page.

Next we have Stacks which I believe are one of the number one reasons to buy OS X Leopard, you wouldn’t believe how much I love this feature. It is so handy to have my downloads just sitting in my dock waiting for me to deal with them. I currently have 3 stacks sitting in my dock, the downloads stack which I mentioned above, a stack of the Documents folder, and last I have a stack that is filled with aliases to applications that I use often but not often enough to have their own spot on the dock itself (super handy).

Let’s move on to Frontrow. I really love the new look of Frontrow and I’m amazed at how much faster it is than Frontrow from Tiger, which might have been the slowest application in the world. The only thing that I don’t like about the new version of Frontrow is the movie trailers section, in the first version of Frontrow you could see the movie poster of all of the movie trailers tiled on your screen, which made it very easy to figure out what movie is what, with the new version of Frontrow it is just a list with a single picture on the left side, which is a picture of the movie you are currently highlighting, this doesn’t make finding a specific trailer easy when you can’t really place the name of the movie with what it actually is and vice versa.

We’re almost done with the first five, Quick Look. I don’t use quick look and I’ll tell you why, I actually name my documents well enough so that I can actually find what I’m looking for, I do know some people who aren’t as good at naming documents as I am and I think that Quick Look would work very well for them but for me it isn’t really useful. I guess if I often looked through folders of pictures Quick Look would actually be useful, but I have a little application called iPhoto that works just fine for me.

My iPhone Review

I’m not going to do an extremely long review of the iPhone because everyone is doing that. I will say before I get too much farther into this I will let you all know that I am writing this on my iPhone so if there are any spelling errors, I blame the keyboard.

Before I get into the review I’ll say that the speeds I was getting over EDGE were around 200kbps (150kbps during peak times) and on my home wifi network where I usually get 4mbps I was getting around 2.5mbps with my iPhone. Now I’m going to break it down similar to how John Gruber did on Daring Fireball.

Activation – Mine activated very fast, only took about 2 minutes from the time I hit submit to have it activated until my phone told me it was activated. It was very simple to activate the phone only having to input a few items into boxes and it all was finished. I already had an AT&T plan so the only real option I had was how many minutes to get. Pricing seemed very reasonable.

Mail – There is no way to copy and paste text which makes quoting difficult but the mail application works very well with presets for popular email services. I have 3 email accounts set up on it and it doesn’t seem like there is any artificial limit to how many email accounts you can have.

Safari – It is very fast and works very well. I love the fact that you can have multiple pages open at the same time. The only thing that I have noticed about using Safari is that occasionally if I open a complicated web page or I have a lot of web pages open alongside listening to music from the iPod function the iPod function will crash on me. It is a little frustrating but rarely happens and I’m sure that it can easily be fixed in the first software update.

More after the jump

iPhone Reviews Hit the Net

Last night the first batch of iPhone reviews hit the internet. Not very many of them but they were all pretty good reviews. They all seems to say that even with its downsides it is still an amazing phone.

The iPhone Matches Most of Its Hype – “Talk about hype. In the last six months, Apple’s iPhone has been the subject of 11,000 print articles, and it turns up about…” [New York Times]

Testing out the iPhone – “One of the most important trends in personal technology over the past few years has been the evolution of the humble…” [Wall Street Journal]

Apple’s iPhone isn’t perfect, but it’s worthy of the hype – “The mania over Apple’s iPhone launch has created stratospheric expectations that are near impossible…” [USA Today]

At last the iPhone – “A couple of weeks ago I went to Pittsburgh for what I thought would be a day trip. Since I was headed back that…” [Newsweek]

A couple of videos after the jump

Nintendo DS Browser Review

I purchased the Nintendo DS browser recently and I have to say it isn’t going to blow you away but can be very useful.

I purchased the Nintendo DS browser about a week ago and have been using it ever since. I have tried many websites on it and I think it’s great.

Along the bottom of the screen are all of the buttons you need for the browser. The simple back and forward buttons along with the stop/reload button. A button to show your history, a URL button, Favorites, Find, Settings, Help, SSR/Overview Mode, Load Images, Zoom, and Jump. The history feature will only show the most recent 5 or so pages when you click on it.

Click to Enlarge

The URL button brings up a keyboard letting you type in a URL to go to, what is awesome about this keyboard is that it gives you dedicated .com buttons. You have 5 of these .com buttons that you can customize to your hearts content.

Click to Enlarge

Find let’s you search the page that you are looking at for a specific word, just like in firefox when you hit ctrl+f. It also gives you the option to search the web. The web search can be customized by putting in a custom search string, the default is Yahoo!

In settings you can whether or not the browser loads images, how much it zooms by default, user interface tweaks, etc.

SSR and Overview mode are very interesting. SSR will take the entire webpage and show it to you in a single column similar to how Opera Mini does on cell phones. Overview mode though is extremely cool, it will load the entire webpage and show it in the lower screen zooming out and showing you a little box. The box can be moved around and whatever is within that box is shown in the top screen. In this mode you can use the jump button to switch between the two screens, whatever was on top is on bottom.

Click to Enlarge

More Including a video, after the jump

Nvidia Geforce 8600GTS Reviews and Benchmarks

Nvidia released there newest mid range graphics cards recently and now the net is flooded with news and reviews of it. The card is now available and can be picked up for about $200.

But lets get to it HardOCP, the Inquirer and PC Perspective all have great reviews of the cards and I think the interesting of the 3 is the Inquirer’s. so check them out and let me know what you think.

A Full Day with Joost

Yesterday I spent the entire day substituting Joost in whenever I would usually watch a podcast or watch TV. I’ll let you know how I did my little review and then tell you the results of it.

I spent the first hour of Joost recording some information about it, such as how much data Joost uploads and downloads. I also found out how many commercials I saw during an hour period. The next few hours of Joost were spent finding out two things, how solid the program is (it is still beta) and if there is enough content to substitute cable for a lenghty period of time.

(Sorry About the Blurry Table)

As you can see it downloaded a total of 508 MB of data and uploaded 44 MB. If you have a cap on your download or upload for the month with your ISP Joost is not a program for you. I only saw 8 commercials for the first hour. Only a couple of things bothered me about them, they were significantly louder then the rest of the programing and they are the same commercials. Over that hour I only saw 3 different commercials so They get pretty boring.

The program itself is extremely polished and works very well. I love the interface and one of the things I liked about it was with my Media Center remote I could control the channels so I wouldn’t need a mouse or keyboard to flip around. I didn’t find the widgets interesting at all but I think with time as soon as users will be able to create their own widgets and distribute them they will become more and more useful.

There is a lot of programing but not a whole lot of it is really that good. I spent a lot of time watching Rocky and Bullwinkle and the Lime channel which has some cool cooking shows on it. Joost does have a channel catalog which will show you what is popular and what is new at that time which I found very useful to find new and interesting shows to watch. A problem that I found is that under the My Channels list it doesn’t list all of the available channels because looking in the channel catalog I found 3 or 4 channels that weren’t listed in the “My Channels” list. I think it would be much better for them to show me all of the channels and then give me the option of removing ones I don’t watch very often.

I didn’t get bored watching any of the shows but I do think that Joost needs to try and get more content on the service quicker so that you don’t end up watching all the shows that you like and then being left with two options, rewatching shows you already watched or watching things that don’t really interest you.

All in all Joost is a great program and couple it with Netflix or iTunes can get you by if you are on a tight budget and don’t really want to throw down the cash for Cable service but you need to be very careful about how much data the program downloads if you have a download cap you will hit it very quickly.