One of my New Years resolutions: Get better organized. Relying on my iphone, sketchbook, and work calendars had become cumbersome to say the least. I realized that despite all of the wonderful tablets, phones, and other gadgets that I couldn’t rely on technology. I am a paper and pen kind of guy especially with my need to sketch and create lists pretty much constantly. So, I had to go old school and find a planner that combined calendar, project to do list, and sketchbook with some flexibility to organize by project.
The Circa system by Levenger was the answer – essentially a flexible notebook system that allows you to create the planner or notebook that works for you. The ring binding with custom holes allows you to move around pages. I was sold but alas – while the weekly planner and project to-do list inserts were available, blank pages for sketching were not. Almost a deal breaker until I did some research online and found that Levenger finessed the technology originally designed by Rollabind who sells blank pages. Everything came together and I am pleased with my choice!
I even found a way to customize the cover. My model making skills came in handy as I cut some illustration board and glued down some fabric samples…the front and back cover are different but I dig the results.
Bring it on 2011 – I am ready!
My advice: everyone works and thinks differently. Be creative and you can find a system that works for you!
Image Credits: Levenger
Really digging this super sleek text based clock by Beigert & Funk which only uses phrases. Available in a variety of colors and languages. The front panel is made of polished acrylic glass and The front surface is made of polished acrylic glass the frame is lacquered wood. The cost is €885.00. Different color panels are €95.00. Additionally there is an iphone app which I love that is $99 from Itunes, click here to get the app.
Watching the video on the new iPhone set to arrive just before my birthday on June 24th (pre-order or reserve June 15th). While critics are skeptical about the new design and capabilities, I can’t help but be blown away by the innovation. Here are some of the great new features:
- Engineered glass on the front display and the back panel
- 326 ppi retina display
- Super sleek and thinner design (the steel frame serves as structural shell and antenna, genius!)
- Video phone calls
- 5 megapixel camera
- 720p HD Video and video editing with iMovie
- Multitasking between apps and the ability to organize apps with folders (finally!)
- Ability to combine email accounts and organize messages by thread/subject
- Larger battery which means up to 40% more talk time
SIGN ME UP….check out the full video on Apple by clicking here.
Image from Engadget
I have been working on getting an LCD TV for years and now when I purchase one – I will still be WAY behind the curve. AdNotam recently released a product that blows my mind. Simultaneously fusing together furniture and multimedia functions, the Glass TV is a mirror wall unit incorporating a mirror LCD TV with all of the necessary connection ports to DVD, cable, and satellite. To clarify, a mirror LCD TV essentially means that the television is within a mirror. Usually there are options for the television screen to vanish when turned off or remain visible. Glass TV is the former and I love that it looks like a mirror when turned off. Properly placed this unit can blend in with its surroundings and eliminate the whole how to conceal the television issue. These units are available in 36″ or 46″ and you can choose either mirrored, black or white glass. For more info, check out AdNotam.
IMAGES from Trendir
The Microsoft Courier just became a real tangible device with the release of a demo of the prototype. Microsoft clearly had interior designers and architects in mind when creating the Courier tablet. My lifelong quest to eliminate all paper from my life may be accomplished sooner than I thought. While I could never see myself trading in my sketchbook for a computer device, the courier retains the elements of the hand with unfathomable organizational capabilities. The tablet is comprised of two 7-inch screens that work together and sit in a case that looks like a book jacket. The displays enable users to organize documents and images among other elements by using a stylus or pen and finger multi-touch. The hinge houses the home button and serves as a holding dock for items that you need to move from one page to the other. And the device also offers a 3 megapixel camera with flash. Descriptions don’t do the device justice, check out the video below. Now, I must remind myself that this tablet is merely a prototype and that should it hit the markets this winter as anticipated, it will still be way out of my price range. For more information on the Courier, check out this informative article from Gizmodo.
Visit YouTube for more videos of the Microsoft Courier.
The research into the Microsoft Courier made me curious about how it compares to the Apple tablet also under development. While a prototype has not yet been released for public view and there is little substantiated information about the technology. The Apple tablet may be nothing more than a larger iphone with the capabilities of the Macbook tablet and stellar video quality. The the tablet has a 10 inch touch screen with a black resin back. The cost will run around $700 to 900 which places it right between and iphone/itouch and a basic Mac notebook. While the technology is quite different, I am a sucker for consistency. And I can visualize an application that might offer a comparable notebook/organizer capability to the dual screen of the Microsoft tablet. Check out this article from Computer World for more on the competition between the two tablets. The Courier demo blew me away but I am sure that Apple has some tricks up their sleeve.
Special thanks Jamie T. for submitting this grea
Many of you may be wondering what happened to DESIGN FOR MEN over the course of the past week. On Saturday, Aug. 29th, I received an email from a reader that the link to the site was not working. I contacted Powweb, the host provider for the site which is certainly not “the perfect hosting solution” as their slogan reads. After someone in technical support resolved the linking issue – I discovered that I could not log in. Every time I entered my username and password, the page refreshed without allowing me access to the site. Later on Saturday, I received an email saying that they had reloaded the password and resolved the issue. While I was able to log in, the link to the site was still not working. So, Sunday I made another call to them, and had to bring a new person up to speed with the issue. And here is where the poor customer service at Powweb began to annoy me.
A little background on this issue, I installed Wordpress through Powweb based on a technician there’s recommendation as my domains, kibwedaisy.com and designformenmag.com are registered through them. Let me tell you, having both domains with powweb has been nothing but trouble since the beginning. When I install or change something on the Kibwe Daisy Design site, something happens to the DESIGN FOR MEN site and vice versa…ugh!!! And this situation is no different – I reworked Kibwe Daisy Design on Friday, the very day that DESIGN FOR MEN went down.
So, back to the story, every day of last week up until Sept 3, I contacted Powweb, speaking to a different person each time in an attempt to figure out how to resolve my issues. And Wordpress support was down until after the holiday – excellent! I was told by customer service people on the front end (those who answer the call initially) that they could not transfer me to the technician working on my account. One such individual informed me that she could not even transfer me to her supervisor. Often my calls were received by call centers in India and the Philippines. I would receive an emails instead of phone calls reiterating the issue I had already expressed or with information that I couldn’t comprehend. All I wanted was for the same person to handle my issue from conception to resolution and to be contacted by phone by that person. Finally, on Sept 3, I reached my savior, Gareth B. Gareth spent a couple hours with a very frustrated and confused me. He was knowledgeable, friendly, and helpful. Together, we tried to reinstall Wordpress and transfer the database which contains the content of my site. While the reinstall was successful, the transfer of the content was not. At my wits end, I asked Gareth, what I should do. Gareth said that he would just begin from scratch with the newly installed version. Grudgingly I agreed, which meant copying and pasting posts – enter the new and improved DESIGN FOR MEN. Geez, I must love doing this!
I confided in Gareth all of what had happened over the past week – he couldn’t understand why technicians didn’t call me back. Readers – do not go with Powweb, they may be cheap but the customer service is not worth it! Powweb management – if you read this – please consider the customer as you provide your services. Your employees are working in a vacuum – a sea of inefficient instant messaging and the reliance on emails and a support tickets. It is unacceptable that it took me a week to resolve this issue. And if you need someone to train employees, I recommend Gareth B. Shame on you Powweb and thanks Gareth!
Not only is the iPhone stylish and user friendly but there are so many applications to install that can make your life easier. Sorry, if you don’t have an iPhone or iPod Touch – this article may not be for you – I recommend reading it though as you may want to get one. OK, so considering I have been having technical difficulties with my website, it seemed appropriate to write something “techie”. I feel like I am always learning about new apps through friends for my iPhone and I am slowly building up my inventory. I am not interested in games, preferring apps that in some way help me to stay organized. I need all the help I can get! I happened upon this article, The Best 35 iPhone Apps of the Year (So Far) As soon as I read the article; I went on a massive app downloading spree. Here are my top ten apps at the moment – hope they can help you organize or save money. For more apps check out the Techcrunch article.
1. Shopper (free) Create a grocery list and keep track of cost. Enter items needed at anytime and check them off as you grab them at the store.
2. Bump (free) Pass along the contact information you choose to people you meet by simply bumping fists – it’s fun and a lot easier than typing. Mover is similar alternative but no bumping –where is the fun in that?
3. Slacker Radio (free) Watch out Pandora, this app has more music and offers Premium customers unlimited song skips.
4. Textfree Unlimited (free lite/full $5.99) Uses push notification for free text messaging, so no more costly SMS plans
5. Print and Share (6.99) Print stuff like emails, files, websites to your home printer…what? Holding off on this one but it is pretty cool.
6. Flight Tracker (9.99) Check flight departure and arrival times and watch flights in real time
7. Mocha VNC Lite (Free) Curious what your computer is doing all alone at home? You can control your computer while on the go. Friends have this and swear by it – it’s time!
8. Birthday Reminder (1.99) How many birthdays have I forgotten – facebook is certainly not enough – I need my phone to tell me these things.
9. QuickOffice (19.99) Get to your Word and Excel files while your on-the-move!
10. Skype (free) Call other skype users for free worldwide using Wi-Fi.
Wildcard – Redlaser Scan UPC codes for price comparisons – the scanning and database are being improved but I am so excited for this one to develop!