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Nike+

Nike+ is a workout tracking site. It works by using different Nike+ products to track your workout than uploading the data from your device to the website. I have two different devices/products that I use. I have the iPhone Nike+Running app, and my Nike+iPod device. The reason I use both is that I love the GPS app but it doesn’t work if you are standing still. They also have a host of many different devices from watches to mobile apps, wrist bands and things you put in your shoe. They also range in priced based on what they are capable of doing, from the $0 for the mobile app on the iPhone to $250 for the Nike+Basketball shoes. It’s all about what you want and need from the device you are getting. I would like to have the Fuel Band, which is $150, that tracks your activity and heart rate all day, but I just can’t afford it right now. The website itself is free, it just doesn’t do much without the devices though.

The +iPod device is the first I started with. Basically it is a high-tech pedometer. You put it in your shoe, Nike+ ready shoes have a pocket under the laces or in the soul of the shoe for it, and you just walk. It tracks your steps and motion and sends that data to the app that comes pre-installed on all new iPods and iPhones over bluetooth. you walk a distance that you know the measurement of the first time using it, and you use that distance to calibrate your software and you are good to go. It has different settings for walking and running. After your run you give some info about were you walked and how you feel, then it uploads it all to the Nike+ website. During your workout you can also set it to give you different reminders on time or distance, and even set which playlists will play while working out and even powersongs for set moments in the workout.

The +Running app works about the same as the +iPod device, except it uses the iPhones built-in GPS and location software instead of a device in your shoe. You have all the same choices and preferences, and you make the same selections at the end before uploading to Nike+, just it gets the information differently. What I like about this device more is exactly that. I do more of my walking outside, and this device gets a GPS location at set amounts of time, so it not only can calculate how far I’ve gone and how fast I’m going more accurately, but it does so without me calibrating it. Also, it allows it to do a lot more. It collects and stores all that data, so when you get on Nike+, you can see on a map where you walked and what your speeds were along your trail, as well as the elevation you are at along the trail so you know if you were going up or down hill at the time. I really wish that they integrated the +iPod device to work with the +Running app on the iPhone, so that I could use just one app if I was walking outside or on a treadmill, but for now I will just use both. Now the site and the app both say the app is good for inside and on a treadmill, I have used the built-in feature of +Running for using it on a treadmill as a pedometer, and it is always farther off than the +iPod sensor ever is, just to be clear.

What I really want, like I said already, is a Fuel Band. The Fuel Band fits on like a watch and pretty much tracks you all day. It has an accelerometer instead of a pedometer, so you put it on and it tracks your movements all day collecting data on how active you have been and whether you were sitting around, working out, walking or running. It gives you a read out on how the calories you have burned in that day, the number of steps you have taken or the time, since you will be wearing it as a watch. It syncs with its own section on Nike+ and has its own tracking software for the computer or the iPhone. I do really want one.

These are the ones I have or have looked at. I recommend anyone with a iPhone or Droid to download them. They are free what can it hurt. If you like what you see, you can do what I am doing and save up for the more expensive daily and workout specific gear they sell. If you do make it on there, look me up, my user name is BlaXilver. I just started over and cleared my data, but I am there.

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Posted by on July 18, 2012 in Website

 

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WordPress

Well this is one that really should have been one of the earlier blog posts to get put on. Actually I think it was part of another post that was part of the mass amount of posts that I recently removed. Anyway, I want to say lots of nice things about this site.

Before coming before coming to WordPress I moved around trying different blog sites. While a lot of them have their advantages and disadvantages, most of them have that disadvantage that really makes me not want to use them. WordPress was a wonderful surprise when I came across it. The treatment to the free users, like myself, is just as professional than it is to the paid users, like a friend of mine. I am talking about in customer service and in contacting WordPress with any issues or suggestions. I think a huge deal for me was that you can contact WordPress with issues or suggestions. If you look around for how you do that, you will first find that it isn’t like a 800 number that is given on the front page, they take you through some step by step trouble shooting first, followed by forum support first.

On top of treating everyone on their service with respect no matter the volume of traffic of their site, they also provide a great site. It is also very easy to use. Learn how to get to your dashboard and then everything starts to get easier from there. From posting and formating, to designing your page, to tracking your stats, it’s all pretty simple, and always seem to work.

While I wish I could afford to pay for some of the paid site pre formates, there are enough free ones that I rarely think too much about it. All in all, it’s the best blog site I have seen and I love using it myself. The features and service are vast and this small post will never do them justice. I recommend just signing up for a free account and see what you think, you don’t like it then cancel and you are out a free subscription.

They also have the paid subscriptions and the downloadable software to make major changes to yourself and upload to your own URL server. That is something that you can really do a lot with to build off the amazing web design that they have made here, but I don’t know much about it since I have never paid for it to find anything more out.

CORRECTION:

I wanted to correct myself on a couple of things. The downloadable software at wordpress.org doesn’t cost anything, it is the cost of the hosting and domain that you would have to pay for doing it yourself, not to mention the time consumption of putting it all together, and the cost of add ons and themes. Also, I am happy with the free version, but if you have reason and can afford it, the premium service on wordpress.com is great, I am just really happy with someone else maintaining the software and codes and using the well put together free side of WordPress. Seeing that I have an average of one view per day, it is just what makes the most sense to me. If I get more readers at some future point or just have enough money to make my site look better, than maybe it will be something I do.

 
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Posted by on July 10, 2012 in Website

 

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Mint

Mint is a financial organization website. It is basically designed to keep track of all of your financial accounts online, including your online banking accounts as well as online access to other financial accounts including credit cards, loans, and investments. Basically Quicken, but only using data from online accounts.

While I wish there was more features and the ability to integrate with offline software, I do find this site to be most helpful. I use it as my main financial software, but I might not need as many features as someone paying for something that isn’t free. For me the biggest advantage here is that I do have multiple bank accounts, plus I have school loans and investments and retirement accounts, and this site gives me a quick way to check all of them. I log in, it updates all the accounts, and I have the info I need. When you have multiple accounts, just the time consumption of logging into the separate online banking sites can make things a big headache, and then you have to do all the calculations of how much you have across them and your net worth and so on. Mint gives you one site that puts them all in one place and gives you the charts and calculations you want.

While Mint started out as a separate company, it was later bought by Intuit, so there is some added advantage to output information is compatible with Intuit software, which even if you don’t use Intuit software, most major financial softwares can read Intuit files, plus that shows promise to future possibilities to more Intuit integration.

 
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Posted by on June 22, 2012 in Website

 

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UNO

This site is great for one reason; after 30 years, I still love playing UNO. I don’t think I need to even explain what UNO is to anyone. Most people already know. It is one of my favorite games, one of the easiest to learn and fun for everyone for any age. I do not even remember getting my first deck of UNO cards, but I know that I still keep a deck around. I would rather someone say that they would like to play UNO than to suggest a poker game.

And UNO is far past the old deck of cards these days. There are all sorts of reimagined ways of playing making the game into more than just a card game. Just do a quick Amazon search and see what all comes up for UNO now days. I am currently using the UNO MOD deck, the addition of the extra MOD cards and an updated look for all the rest, plus I nice hard carrying case.

If you want to get past the old rules that come with the deck, there are a thousands places online of people explaining all sorts of variations on the rules. The variations to the version of the game from Gameloft includes Penilty rules (better known as stacking rules), Jump-in rules, and 7-0 rules. I have seen UNO made into a drinking game, into a gambling game, and so much more. There is an iOS version, but if you don’t have an iOS device, check out the Android version as well. Then you can always have a way to play UNO, even when you can’t have a deck of cards or can’t find someone to play with.

 
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Posted by on June 21, 2012 in General Post, Website

 

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XKCD

XKCD

I struggled a little bit about if I should post this one as a UA or a TIL. It qualifies really as both if you think about it, but it really is more of the UA, because it is a website.

XKCD is an online web comic maintained by author/artist Randall Munroe. The comic is primarily stick figures, with an occasional detailed drawing. Unlike most comics, this one doesn’t really have a character theme. You aren’t going to be following situations within on story line or set by reading this. Really each comic strip stands alone and does a really good job at standing out.

Each strip might be about a number of different things. The site’s tag line “A webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math, and language” is really quite accurate. Although he left out computers, science, nostalgic references, programming, and other nerdy things to read about. The strips, according to the about page, come out on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. They seem to come out regularly and without fail.

My favorite is comic 157.

That really isn’t my best of reviews, but it is all I got today. Maybe I will be in a better mindset for the next one.

 
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Posted by on April 16, 2010 in Website

 

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Cursor Invisible

Cursor Invisible

So how well do you think you can judge where your mouse cursor is on the screen? Well you can find out really quick with this game. According to some experts, people who use their computers on a daily basis use their instinct for where the cursor should be based on experience more than they use visual tracking. Basically, they seem to know where the mouse is and remember its location more than they look at it.

This game is simple. When you click start you will have a black screen with three randomly placed, and random sized, white and grey circles. You will have three seconds to start clicking the circles before the cursor disappears. After it disappears you the timer will start and the score kept. You get three seconds to click on a circle. If you fail to click on anything in the three seconds or you click on the black space the game is over. My high score is 150 so far.

 
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Posted by on December 3, 2009 in Website

 

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When Can I Reuse This Calendar?

When Can I Reuse This Calendar?

This one is for those of you that just can’t get rid of ANYTHING.

If you have an old calendar that you found in your attic or at the thrift store, you can go on to this site and select the year the calendar was for originally and they will tell you what years match it. Now you can reuse that calendar, and rub the recycling nature of this into the faces of all those that told you that there was no reason to hang on to a decade old calendar that you would never use.

 
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Posted by on November 25, 2009 in Website

 

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