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  • (Most Compact 20000mAh Portable Charger) Anker PowerCore 20100 - Ultra High Capacity Power Bank with Most Powerful 4.8A Output, PowerIQ Technology
    (Most Compact 20000mAh Portable Charger) Anker PowerCore 20100 - Ultra High Capacity Power Bank with Most Powerful 4.8A Output, PowerIQ Technology

    This thing, you need. Run your smartphone for days.

  • Klear Screen iKlear Cleaning Kit for iPad, iPhone, Galaxy, LCD, Plasma TV, Computer Monitor and Keyboard (Cloth, Wipes and Spray)
    Klear Screen iKlear Cleaning Kit for iPad, iPhone, Galaxy, LCD, Plasma TV, Computer Monitor and Keyboard (Cloth, Wipes and Spray)
    Klear Screen

    I use this cleaner for my iPhone, iPad 3, iPad mini and MacBook Pro. It’s great all-around and won’t mess up the oleophobic coating on iOS device screens.

  • Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5 Grams
    Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5 Grams
    Artic Silver

    If you’re having problems with your Adonit Jot capacitive touch stylus or Hex3 Jaja, you can improve its performance and reliability with careful application of thermal paste! For more on this, check out my capacitive touch stylus how-to fix-it guide. Months later (Sep 2013), my styli are still performing great!

  • Adonit Jot Touch with Pixelpoint pressure sensitive stylus for iPad - Black
    Adonit Jot Touch with Pixelpoint pressure sensitive stylus for iPad - Black

    Adonit Jot with Pixelpoint, works with a lot of new drawing apps on iPad.

  • Klear Screen's iKlear 8 oz. Pump Spray Bottle 7351-IKHP, Others, Electronics & Computers
    Klear Screen's iKlear 8 oz. Pump Spray Bottle 7351-IKHP, Others, Electronics & Computers
    Klear Screen

    The stuff I use to keep my iPad screen nice and clean!

  • Cosmonaut: Wide-Grip Stylus for Capacitive Touch Screens
    Cosmonaut: Wide-Grip Stylus for Capacitive Touch Screens
    Studio Neat

    Awesome capacitive touch stylus created by Studio Neat. Great guys, great product. I use mine every day! Bradtastic Approved.

  • Adonit Jot Pro Stylus for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Other Touch Screens (ADJPG)
    Adonit Jot Pro Stylus for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Other Touch Screens (ADJPG)

    Adonit Jot Pro is an awesome capacitive touch stylus for iPad & other tablets.

  • Pencil by FiftyThree Digital Stylus for iPad Air, iPad Mini and iPad 3/4 - Walnut
    Pencil by FiftyThree Digital Stylus for iPad Air, iPad Mini and iPad 3/4 - Walnut

    Even if you consider yourself a casual doodler or note-taker, you’ll love this well designed stylus. Built for Paper by FiftyThree, the iPad app — however, many other apps support Pencil.

  • Bicycle Standard Index Playing Cards (Pack of 2)
    Bicycle Standard Index Playing Cards (Pack of 2)
    Sportsman Supply Inc.

    Playing Cards for your password creation or poker game!

My Wish List
If you’re looking for an app, need personal or corporate branding, marketing material, an illustration, logo, sketch or design — there’s a Brad for that!

Entries in cloud (4)


iCloud Drive Sucks: Apple is Screwing Up

Presently, iCloud Drive is unreliable crap.

If it’s working for you, I’m happy for you and hope that it continues to work well. For me and probably tens of thousands of other people, files appear, disappear, appear but won’t open, take days or weeks to sync…

It’s a mess.

I’ve been working on more substantial, long-form content for this site and other things, but since iOS 8 and Yosemite, I haven’t been able to reliably work on documents on my various devices.

I prefer to work in Ulysses III/Daedalus Touch, iA Writer Pro and Day One, and all three worked great before the switch to iCloud Drive. Now I’m having issues with all three.

  • Ulysses/Daedalus — None of my documents from Ulysses III show up in Daedalus on iPhone/iPad. Waiting for a sync to spontaneously occur yields nothing. Tried the reset troubleshooting instructions; nothing.

  • iA Writer Pro — Numerous documents aren’t listed on iOS. They are viewable when using the iCloud Drive folder feature, but are gray and won’t open. New documents take over 20 hours to sync — some have failed to sync entirely.

  • Day One — After waiting weeks and trying the troubleshooting methods repeatedly, the majority of the entries have synced across the various devices. However, 14 entries from my iPhone 5S wouldn’t upload for another few weeks, and finally synced today. During this time, entries would appear synced and then disappear a day later.

To be fair, a lot of the first-party iCloud Drive features are working okay. Photos enter the stream much quicker, and that’s nice.

Additionally, iOS 8 is problematic in general.

Shame on you, Apple. I’m really glad that I never moved beyond iOS 6 on my old iPad 2, because iOS7 ran and iOS8 runs so poorly on the iPad mini (first gen). My iPad 3 has issues with iOS8 as well; random lag and crashes. For the most part, the iPhone 5S handles iOS 8, but there are still random crashes and occasional device restarts.

In an attempt to beautify the OS, you’ve made it slower and glitchier. Turning off the fancy visual effects makes for a minor stability improvement, but overall, iOS devices haven’t seemed faster than iOS 6. When I first received the iPad 2, I was impressed by the lack of slowdown and minimal (if any) wait times. Now, idling has become the standard. In many ways, it feels like devices have taken a step back. I really miss Steve Jobs.

It’s as if these new iOS iterations are designed this way to force people to upgrade to the newest devices every year — and yet most of their phone deals with the major carriers are based on two-year contracts and upgrade cycles.

While it’s a nice idea to have synchronicity across devices with iOS 8, I’d prefer speed and reliability. Ideally both is best, but right now, that’s not reality. Also, Apple removed the Camera Roll in favor of a new organization system; while some may prefer it, it’s not optional. This seemingly small change has serious consequences for many apps and is far less usable for me.

Apple, please don’t be like Microsoft. Put your customers first and you’ll continue to stay on top.

If you try to put short term gains in profit and market penetration ahead of the user experience, put the desires of shareholders ahead of the needs of the consumer, your supporters will begin looking elsewhere. As I’m sure many already have.


Free virtual workstation! OnLive Desktop for iPad

I'll get right to it: OnLive Desktop is awesome.

It's free. It's amazing. Made by the mad-scientists behind the uber cloud gaming service, OnLive Desktop for iPad offers users a cloud-based virtual desktop, complete with Microsoft Office, storage and basic apps/tools like Calculator and Paint. The paid version includes web browsing as well. All of the processing happens on their end, they simply take your keystrokes and inputs and give you the visual.

Love the clouds

Current technology trends remind me of a character from the manga/anime Naruto: Shikamaru, the cloud-loving loafer. Years ago, technology enthusiasts obsessed about terabyte hard drives, but now that we have them, we prefer smaller solid state drives. Why? It's all about speed and convenience.

We're impatient. We need it now!

Luckily, ISPs have kept up with our increasing demands (though they demand their pound of flesh and price gouge us to near-death), offering super-fast net connections that offer incredible connectivity and mobility. Wi-Fi, 3G, 4G... powerful 2lbs notebook computers and fantastic do-everything tablets — there are too many reasons to get away from the desk, and now there are plenty of ways to do it.

But desktops have advantages. At least, they used to. Now you can get that power and stability on-the-go! If you have an iPad, try OnLive Desktop. it's better than buying Windows and Microsoft Office, and you really don't have much to lose if it's not for you — you may even know someone who could really use it. I haven't tried it in any other form (other than the iPad app), but if it can run well on iOS, it should be great everywhere.

Need something else?

Later on I'll share thoughts on two more similar apps, Splashtop Remote Desktop, and Air Desktop (an app that allows the iPad to become a second computer screen). I'll also share some sweet accessories!


Migrating from iPad 2 to new iPad

The new iPad — so exciting!

But not without its own issues. (This update applies most to people thinking about upgrading to the new iPad from an earlier model) The new iPad, or iPad 3, is slightly thicker and heavier than the 2, but is otherwise similar in look, shape and feel.

I won't go into the specs too much, but for those unfamiliar with it, here are the highlights.

  • retina display, 2048x1536 resolution (versus 1024x768), 4x pixels!
  • 5MP camera, 1080p video & FaceTime camera
  • dictation (translates spoken English into text in the cloud; requires net connection) — works well!
  • optional 4G LTE (Verizon model can act as a hotspot)
  • still no Siricome on, Apple, give it to us! Please send them an email and let them know you want Siri on the iPad. Maybe if enough people complain… (let us be the squeaky wheel)

Two things to keep in mind

For $99, Apple offers AppleCare+ protection for the new iPad. This coverages extends the warranty to two years and also covers two instances of accidental damage ($49 service fee per instance). For the price, it's a great deal for the higher end models; it's peace of mind, and will cover screen scratches, coating wear and more.

However, if you intend to get AppleCare+, purchase it together with the new iPad. It must be purchased within 15 days otherwise, and if the iPad is opened, you'll need to make a genius bar appointment at a retail store for an "iPad inspection." Trust me, this is a huge hassle.

Last, if you're "restoring" from an iPad backup (migrating/transferring from iPad or iPad 2 to the new iPad), many apps will sync without converting to retina graphics. Example: although I had the newest version of SketchBook Pro installed on my iPad 2 when I made the backup, when I opened it on the iPad 3, no retina graphics. It's like it was running in iPad 2 mode. Many of my favorite apps ran similarly, and needed to be reinstalled to correct the issue.

Unfortunately, many of my favorite apps still lack new iPad versions. With time, developers will update apps and the retina display issue should be resolved. For now, I'm using it as an opportunity to start fresh — my new iPad will run my favorite apps, and the iPad 2 will be a testing ground for new apps I'm not yet sure about.

Don't let me dissuade you from the new iPad, however. It's awesome. Whatever the hassles, I think it's worth it!


Lion and the iCloud

I really want a new iPhone this year, 'iPhone 5,' maybe? Perhaps Apple is waiting for the release of iOS 5 and iCloud, their new cloud service that they say will be free for iOS 5 and Mac OS X Lion users. I just keep thinking about how bad call quality is on my AT&T iPhone 4.

It's not that AT&T is cheaper, either. Sprint and T-Mobile both offer unlimited plans that are cheaper than AT&T's very-finite plan offerings. If a new iPhone model were to release, I would hope that a Verizon version would exist — because I'd switch. Meanwhile, I do have a second line (with T-Mobile) setup as a BlackBerry, and I'm eligible to upgrade that phone for something better. I've been seeing a lot of 4G commercials; I winder if it's any good for talking.

It shouldn't be so hard to get a phone designed to be good at voice calls. Wasn't that the primary job of a cell phone at some point, or has it always been about playing 'Snake' or Infinity Blade? It must've been about the calls; I had a Siemens S40, a phone with a blue backlit screen and no games. I used it to talk, and its battery lasted for about five hours of talk time... that was ten years ago, at least.

I think that 'iCloud' sounds promising, but I'm a little upset with these transitions. First .Mac to MobileMe, and now to iCloud. What's next?! I remember reading an article ten years ago talking about Jobs' intent to drag OS X out as long as possible before cashing out of Apple. Back then, I thought that, surely, we'd be using OS XI or XII by now... oops.

I just hope that the reliance on these service doesn't doom our privacy and security. In theory, I like the idea of smaller HDDs, movies streamed from my collection to anywhere. It would mean that iPhone and iPad hard drives could stay small, and the money and development could go to graphics, RAM, battery life and better screens (better cellular reception would be nice, too).

'Lion' will sell for $29.99 through the Mac App Store. Yay, another "250+ features," aka 'padding;' we're going to be encouraged to pay for a fairly nominal upgrade — combine iOS tech with 'regular' OS X.

Perhaps I'll enjoy a Sprint Android phone, enough to use it... as a phone first.