The New Google Nexus 7

The New Google Nexus 7 Android Tablet – July 2012

Google has just released a tablet by Asus, that it helped design:   the Nexus 7 with Android 4.1 operating system, Nvidia Quad core Tegra 3 processor and 12 core GPU.  The tablet is priced at $199 for the eight (8) gig model; $249 for the 16 gig model and has a seven inch screen with 1280 x 800 pixel resolution.  It provides a seven inch screen area and weighs just 12 ounces.

The Nexus tablet has support for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, micro USB port and NFC (New Field Communication); NFC allows the tablet to support mobile transactions such as credit card payments, transportation, ticketing, physical access, etc.  This is the really cool part of this new device.  It runs faster than the Kindle with its Nvidia Quad core Tegra 3 processor and has  battery life of some nine (9) hours of video playback and 300 hours on standby (beats the iPad).     Some of the negatives are:  no cellular connection, or micro SD card slot; and no rear camera.    The memory is not expandable.

The Nexus 7 provides Google Chrome and integrates the Goggle Service apps:   Google Play, Music, Book, Maps, Gmail, Google Plus, etc.   The devices includes some artificial intelligence features  and is able to answer some questions as well as Google Now ability to present relevant information to you such as schedule and location.    It is lacking in applications and has fewer choices for music, movies, or TV shows than the iPad.   However, this tablet is a good choice for the budget conscious consumers who want a tablet that is lightweight, easy to carry and use and who like Google applications, cloud services and content.

The mobile markets have been primarily driven by consumers and this is one that will please many buyers.  In the market,  Microsoft is now promising a new release of the Surface tablet running the new Office 15 in the cloud and a full blown version of MS 8 so the tablet will operate like a real laptop.  If the pricing is right, corporate markets will want to take a serious look.   Also,  Apple is rumored to be coming out with the mini iPad with a 7.85 screen size and lower price tag.

M. Ash 07/16/2012

Yikes !!! What to do when you Drop your iPhone in Water

Water, coffee, coke and other liquids are not good for iPhones or iPods, laptops, or any electronic devices.  These are delicate and expensive devices.   The corrosive effect of water on the device is not good and water and liquids can short out electrical circuits.  Therefore, the best position to take is to protect your phone.   Keep your soft drinks and coffee cups away from your electronic devices; do not use your cell phone in the rain.    If you know you are hitting the beaches, purchase a waterproof case for your phone.  If you work in an environment which is hot, cold or wet; invest in a protective cell phone case.

Per the Apple web site, if the iPhone or iPod has been damaged by liquid, the Apple one year limited warranty or Apple Care Protection Plan (APP) is voided.  However, you can receive a refurbished replacement phone for $199.00 with a 90 day warranty.

How does Apple know that your phone has been dropped in water?     IPhone models and iPod models that were built after 2006 have built-in liquid  contact Indicators that will show whether the device has been in contact with water or liquid containing water.  In fact, most cell phones and electronic devices have indicators for contact with water.     IPhone and iPod products are equipped with liquid contact Indicators in the bottom of the headphone jack. iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, and later models also have an indicator on the bottom of the dock-connector housing. If you bring phone to the Apple store, this is the first thing they will check; the indicator is very clear that the phone has been submerged in liquid.    The indicator is not designed to be triggered by humidity and temperature changes.

You can recover your phone if you act quickly and follow some simple steps.

  1. The first step is to remove the device from water.  Do not turn the phone on as the water will cause the electrical components to short out.    Remove the SIM card if possible.
  2. If you have compressed air, blow the parts and the phone dry as you can but be careful not to blow the moisture further in the device.  Also, try a lint free cloth/paper towel and remove as much moisture as you can.
  3. Put the device in a large Ziploc bag filled with dry rice.  The rice acts as a desiccant to remove water from the air and aids in drying your device out quicker.    You can expect to leave the phone overnight or a couple of days in the Ziploc depending on how much moisture is in your phone.

If time is of an essence,  you need a working cell phone  and the above process did not work, or you don’t have the $199 dollars to replace your phone,  there are also second party cell phone ‘ hospitals’  which  provide low cost, on the spot recovery services for  damaged phones, e.g., cracked screens, water damage, phones which do not charge, etc.  The advertised cost of one cell phone hospital to fix a phone with water damage is about $50.00.   This of course voids your Apple warranty, but dropping the phone in water already has.    Remember when you do laundry; always check your shirt pockets and pants for your phone before throwing your clothes in the wash.    Good luck in keeping your cell phone safe and operating.

M.Ash  07/12/12

World of Tomorrow

I recently read a review about a book titled:   “Physics of the Future” by Michio Kaku, Ph.D., released in February of 2012.   Kaku is a professor of physics at the City College of New York.    The book interested me because the author makes prophesies about technology and he is also a theoretical physicist.    What captured me was his comment:  “Human are born with the curiosity of scientists but switch to investment banking.”  I started scanning his articles and web site for more information and found that he has written a series of books:   “Parallel Worlds” and “Einstein’s Cosmos.”  The Discovery Channel will be producing a ten series program on his bestselling book “Physics of the Future” and he has appeared in BBC series on:  “In Search of Time.”    

 Some of Dr.  Kaku’s  predictions:    

We will have driverless cars, Internet glasses (glasses/lenses which allow you to download from the internet), universal translators, synthetic organs, robot surgeons, and the resurrection of extinct life forms, designer children, space tourism, and a manned mission to Mars.  As we are aware, every 18 months computer power doubles (Moore’s Law)    in eight years, according to Professor Kaku, the cost of one chip will be a penny.  Instead of having one chip in our computer, we will have millions of chips in our cars, appliances, clothes.     

 Does most of this sound familiar?  Use of hand held language translators is advertised by the cell phone companies. Robotic surgery and driverless cars already exist in some form.   Many of these developments are already in the works and can be developed from existing research and technology.  Professor Kaku is drawing on current research and our future is there if we can reach it.    He believes human beings want to understand the sciences and technology but then we hit the years where the lack of good teachers and no inspiration turns people to banking.  How can education help students to want to learn? Many students are intimidated by science and technology.    His biggest concern is that the U.S. will fall behind these technical changes and lose our technological edge.   Even though our high schools graduate students lacking in math and science skills, by the time they hit college, then that’s when they begin to accelerate.    Our students are our future.    Scientists and engineers can change the world. 

M.Ash 4/27/12