The place where Geeks Blog.

Posts by alexander

A Day In The Internet

Ever wondered how many statuses are posted every day? Or how many emails are sent? How about how long it takes the average person to “take care of business”? Check out the cool infographic below for some fun facts about the everyday goings on online…

A Day in the Internet

Facebook to buy Instagram for $1 Billion

This acquisition is being done partly in cash and part stock. This will see it being kept as a separate brand and continued develop to allow users to upload photos to rival social networks as well as Facebook.

“…For years, we’ve focused on building the best experience for sharing photos with your friends and family. Now, we’ll be able to work even more closely with the Instagram team to also offer the best experiences for sharing beautiful mobile photos with people based on your interests…” – Mark Zuckerberg

The app sees 5million new photos per day from 30million users worldwide, with a choice of 17 filters allow users too quickly and easily share photos with friends primarily through the app and Twitter but also supports Facebook, Foursquare and Tumblr a popular blogging site. The app recently launched a version for the popular platform Android moving away from originally being just an app available on iPhones which caused some waves in the iPhone Instagram camp.

Some view Instagram as an app “to make photos look like your granny took them in the 70s” others as a way to make Photoshop style changes whilst out and about as you take the photo rather than having to download it to your computer first and play with it. Currently you cannot view photos in your browser without a direct link nor see peoples profiles, this is only possible through the app. Whatever your view Instagram is clearly here to stay, and to increase its market share in the photo sharing market.

Personally I am a big fan of it (even if it has just been since the Android release) and can’t wait for Facebook to improve it and possibly give it a public web gallery without the use of a third party app.

Editor’s Note: This guest post was written by Simon Gunton. You can follow him on Twitter @Cessle and Instagram (username: Cessle), when he isn’t tweeting he’s usually hiding behind servers.

Review: LG Quantum Windows Phone

I had the chance to test out the LG Quantum C900 for a week and I have to say I was impressed.

The Design:

This is one of the few Windows Phones with a full hardware keyboard (although not currently released in the UK) and feels fantastic to hold.

With a sleek rounded design and a good weight too it feels fantastic to hold and is a dream to type on and I was able to easily knock out a blog post or 2 on the go without any real hindrance over a desktop PC – something which I can’t say for any other smartphone I’ve used so far!

The phone design appears to be based on LG’s earlier Android based LG InTouch Max GW620 (aka Eve) which was my phone for over a year and was frankly was abysmal – I managed to get through 4 of them – however it seems they have really improved and fixed all the issues and this is a really great phone and a pleasure to use – particularly that it now uses the Windows Phone operating system.

The Screen:

With a 3.5″ 800×480 TFT LCD capacitive touch screen display it’s a nice responsive display, but nothing special when compared to newer phones on the market like the Nokia Lumia 800, but it’s more than acceptable and provides a nice crisp image.

The Camera:

An important part of any modern smartphone the LG Quantum includes a 5 mega-pixel AF camera with built-in flash which is a great little camera for taking quick snaps when out and about.

The Battery:

The phone boasts 4 hrs 22 minutes talk time and as with any other does drain quickly under heavy use, could be better but not unusable.

So, should I get it Dan?

It’s a great phone and I really do love its keyboard but it is getting on a bit in mobile years, it was released in October 2010 and there are now better handsets on the market for a reasonable price. However if you’re on a budget and want a sexy Windows Phone this is definitely a great option and I’d highly recommend it if you’re a fan of hardware keyboards.

Live London Underground updates on Google Maps

Google have now incorporated live service data for the London Underground from TFL (Transport for London) into Google Maps.

If you’re like me and plan out your journey using Google Maps this is a great tool not only including live tube time data, which now also accounts for line closures and delays  as well as being able to suggest alternate routes for commuters.

The new integration will prove useful not only to Londoners making their way across the capital but also the millions which will be flooding London this summer for the Olympics, with travelling in a foreign country additional information and service data at the finger tips of tourists will hopefully be of benefit and help those tech savvy enough navigate the chaos of London transport and ease pressure on the already straining London Underground.

It’s great seeing better use of live data like this being integrated into real-world systems like Google Maps enabling the everyday user to make real use of public data.

Lynx Body Spray App

Lynx have launched a cool new body spray app which lets you stay fresh on the go. Really cool and handy gadget for when you’re on the go but forget your spray.


Sponsored Video

Give it a go and let us know what you think in the comments!

Google Multitask Mode – Get more done!

Google have launched a great new tool called “Multitask Mode” which allows you to be more productive online with multiple mice so you can actively perform numerous tasks at once.

Yes, we know this is an April fools – But fun isn’t it? 😉

Review: Nokia Lumia 800

The Nokia Lumia 800 is the first Nokia handset to use the awesome Windows Phone operating system with some impressive specs such as 16GB internal memory (a big improvement on 512MB on my android) and 512MB SDRAM it’s a big improvement on Nokia’s seen previously.

I’ve now been using the Nokia Lumia 800 for a few months of vigorous testing which any phone I own goes through on a daily basis, it’s proved to be the best one yet!

The Design:

The Nokia Lumia 800 has a smooth and sleek design with rounded sides which fit nicely in the palm.

The Nokia design team have also made some interesting, yet well thought out, design choices in button location; the power button for instance is located on the right hand side middle of the device. This position means you can very easily turn the device on with your middle finger when holding it. This small design choice has a noticeable impact on how you use the device on a day-to-day basis and makes the “pick-up-and-go” nature of modern smart phones just that little bit faster & easier – No more fiddling with a button at the top.

The phone comes with it’s own rubber case to help protect the phone from drops, with the curved poly-carbonate chassis protecting it from the heavier knocks, unfortunately this case does become somewhat slack if removed too many times.

Also the flap for the USB charger, while useful as it protects the socket may be a breakage risk depending on how you treat the phone (it’s been fine for me), this is something Nokia has removed from their Nokia Lumia 900.

The Screen:

The 3.7″ ClearBlack OLED WVGA display with strong Gorilla glass finish is simply, the best screen for a smart phone. Extremely strong and resilient to knocks and scratches and very easy to clean while still being a responsive and it’s impressively good when in bright light too.

The Camera:

The 8 MegaPixel Carl Zeiss Tessar camera is fantastic, with an awesome HD resolution (in both photo & video) it’s fantastic quality, coupled with the Windows Phone’s easy point and shoot functions you can quickly take snaps even while the phone is locked. Not to mention the quick sharing meaning you can snap, upload & share pics within in seconds. Great for social whores like myself who can’t resist sharing that I’m munching on a huge bowl of cereal.

The Battery:

The battery has had some bad press, and many I know with the Lumia do have some problems with the battery life and yes. It will eat the battery if used a lot there is simply no way around that, but things have improved somewhat with the release of updates and being aware of the features left on (bluetooth/wi-fi etc) coupled with battery saver mode I have no real problem as a heavy user, but you do need to remember to plug it in at night… and when you’re at your desk is always a good idea.

So, should I get it Dan?

If you’re looking for a great smart phone which lets you do what you need to do quickly and easily I highly recommend the Nokia Lumia 800, it’s simply a joy to use and I love it. You can pick up a Nokia Lumia 800 SIM free phone for under £450 from Argos

 

Top 4 reasons why you should recycle your old Mobile

Recycling mobile phones and electronic equipment or “e-waste” is just as important as recycling glass and plastic materials. This is a little known fact in many circles, as the environmental movement is still expanding and growing, and people are still becoming aware of the full range of benefits of recycling materials. However, as you can learn from various electronics providers, such as O2, there are numerous benefits of recycling electronic materials as well. This seems a bit complicated for some, but really, it is quite fortunate, as it merely expands the range of helpful outcomes of recycling. Here are the top 4 reasons for recycling old cell phones, many of which you may never have considered.

4.) Many – myself included – never even bother throwing out their mobile phones, which makes forgetting to recycle even worse. It would be one thing to throw away an old phone without realising that it could be recycled – it is still being disposed of. However, to simply leave it in a drawer, when it could still be put to good use, is silly. Why not dig out your old mobile phones from yesteryear, and put them to use via recycling!

3.) You may not realise but most mobile recycling & donation schemes actually do a lot more than simply extracting the useful raw elements and often re-use functioning, but merely outdated, phones in less fortunate 3rd world countries, reducing the need for additional production of newer products and helping a whole new wave of people get their teeth into the mobile age.

2.) Mobile phones, and in particular their batteries, can often contain various harmful materials, such as arsenic, lead, and mercury. Simply throwing your old phone away, usually means it ends up in landfill, where the harmful materials would be free to harm the environment and potentially cause serious dangers. This is senseless when simply recycling  your phone properly can have numerous benefits, with little to no-effort on your part.

1.) Along the same lines, mobile phones also contain a number of materials that can be beneficial to preserve. These materials can include gold, silver, copper, palladium, and a variety of plastics, all of which are valuable materials. Again, throwing your old mobile phones away will lose these materials and require the consumption of more of them in the future, rather than allowing them to be re-used through recycling.

And if those reasons aren’t enough to persuade you…. Did I mention many of these schemes will also give you cash for you’re old phones?

Dig those old phones out and make use of them, donate them, recycle them, sell them. Just do something with them! And now I’ve said it, I’ll go dig mine out…

Twitter Verified FAKE @Wendi_Deng (“wife” of Rupert Murdoch)

As mentioned yesterday Rupert Murdoch has recently joined Twitter, and an account claiming to be his Wife was also mentioned in most news articles as giving him advice on using the service.

[blackbirdpie url=”https://twitter.com/#!/Wendi_Deng/status/154204551690457089″]

I have just stumbled across the account again where it now shows that it was in-fact *NOT* the wife of Rupert Murdoch. More interestingly the account was verified for a full day by Twitter – without even contacting the account owner to verify anything.

[blackbirdpie url=”https://twitter.com/#!/Wendi_Deng/status/154204782331039744″]

[blackbirdpie url=”https://twitter.com/#!/Wendi_Deng/status/154204879030714369″]

This is certainly interesting, and worrying particularly as previously twitter have stated that the verified accounts program was ended, yet apparently they have made an exception for Rupert Murdoch and his apparent wife.

It’s truly  incredible how many media outlets assumed this account was genuine… such as The Telegraph,  The Guardian and The Daily Fail,

Although who could blame thenm when twitter is going around verifying (but not actually verifying) the account… I do take a little glee in the fact I was a little skeptical, and now can’t help but wonder if it’s the real Rupert Murdoch behind @rupertmurdoch

Rupert Murdoch starts Tweeting

It seems no one can resist Twitter, even 80-year-old  Rupert Murdoch wh o is now tweeting under @rupertmurdoch, it seems he started tweeting on New Years Eve and has been regularly updating with fantastic drivel that only a multi-zillionnaire media-tycoon could.

It’s interesting to see Murdoch on a social media platform which has undoubtedly played a key role in much of the controversy and a great source of open-free debate on the actions of News Corp and indeed the now defunct paper News of the World. We also covered the LulzSec hacking of News International sites much of which was being discussed live over Twitter as events unfolded.

Rupert Murdoch’s new social media presence has sparked mixed feedback, with many poking fun at the past years controversy, including avid tweeter John Prescott (@johnprescott):

[blackbirdpie url=”https://twitter.com/#!/johnprescott/status/153411213689225216″]

So far his tweets have included comments on the Steve Jobs blog being unfair, his winter holiday and of course plenty of mentions of papers and films owned by News Corp & 20th Century Fox… (hint: he owns ’em).

At present he’s only following 4 people, the Exec Chairman of Twitter (@Jack), Zynga co-founder Mark Pincus (@markpinc), Lord Allen Sugar (@lord_sugar) and a parody account for Larry Page… Maybe he doesn’t realise it’s not the real one eh?

At present he’s clocked up over 53,000 followers and has been listed over 556 times. Not bad for a few days work… Let’s hope he doesn’t try to buy it though. Otherwise I fear this blog may be one of the few media sources not controlled by the questionable media mogul.