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ZDNet | orchant RSS



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Published: Mon, 05 Dec 2016 03:12:19 +0000

Last Build Date: Mon, 05 Dec 2016 03:12:19 +0000

Copyright: 2016 CBS Interactive Inc. All rights reserved
 



So long and thanks for all the fish

Sat, 25 Aug 2007 10:15:46 +0000

I’ve had an interesting and varied journey through the sphere as a blogger with the exceptional good fortune to have been involved with three great communities of writers at the OfficeZealot.com portal, Weblogs, Inc.(image)



Best mobile VoIP headset ever

Thu, 23 Aug 2007 06:53:15 +0000

I've been using the new Virtual Phone Booth from Plantronics for the past few weeks and it has utterly transformed my Skype (and Gizmo and Google Talk) experience. Formerly, I have either relied on the built-in microphone and speakers on my laptops (with the attendant howling and echoing that too often seems to plague VoIP calls) or used the excellent but too-bulky-for-travel Plantronics DSP 500 headset. That big unit has been a great solution for voice recognition and podcasting but is not exactly comfortable or convenient for all-day work.(image)



Keeping my (laptop) cool

Tue, 21 Aug 2007 08:52:31 +0000

I've been using the latest model from the folks at LapWorks - the Futura - for a while now and was delighted to see that every attendee at the recent Gnomedex conference received one as a premium for attending. It's a nice sturdy unit that provides two form factors - a flat desk surface when you have no desk or table available and an elevated wedge stand when you do.(image)



Zoho takes the first step towards offline apps

Tue, 21 Aug 2007 05:23:46 +0000

Zoho announced early this morning that they've taken the first steps toward making Zoho Writer available as an offline app using the Google Gears tool. Initially the docs saved offline will be read only but full offline functionality is planned.(image)



Is the iPhone wrecking the web?

Sat, 18 Aug 2007 09:13:14 +0000

Scott Gilbertson, writing at Compiler on Wired News posted a pretty inflammatory piece titled "The iPhone is Internet Explorer 4 All Over Again". As you might imagine, the comment thread is long, heated at times, and populated with the expected mix of "you're an idiot!" and thoughtful replies both positive and negative. Gilbertson is essentially trying to argue that Apple gets a pass on stuff that would (and has) gotten Microsoft into big trouble and unloved.(image)



iWork '08 - no Office killer 'cause it's not supposed to be

Fri, 17 Aug 2007 07:12:21 +0000

I picked up a copy of iWork '08, the new update to Apple's productivity suite, the other day and have been noodling around in it since I installed it on my MacBook and my wife's iMac. It's a worthy upgrade for two principal reasons in my opinion: the significant improvements made to Pages (document processor) and the addition of Numbers, a new layout-oriented spreadsheet application. I'm not going to do a full, feature-by-feature review here – there's plenty of those already on the tubes. I just want to address the notion that this signals some throwing down of a gauntlet by Apple in front of Microsoft. It doesn't.(image)



Worldwide Skype outage - updated

Thu, 16 Aug 2007 09:42:40 +0000

I've been unable to access Skype all day and it turns out it's not just me. User from around the world are reporting the service is down and impacting personal and business communications for potentially millions of people. There's not a lot of information available at this time. Here's what Skype posted on their blog earlier today...(image)



Skype release 2.7 beta for the Mac

Wed, 15 Aug 2007 07:21:37 +0000

Skype has just released a beta version of Skype 2.7 for the Mac with Chat groups, Address Book integration and more. Downloading it now. I live in Skype – it's my office number and preferred IM and video chat environment. I also use Gizmo Project (especially on the Nokia N95 and N800) and a number of IM clients but the bulk of my contacts and friends are on Skype so that's where I look first. These enhancements will make it all the more useful and bring things more on a par with the capabilities I already enjoy when working on the Tablet PC.(image)



Great set of iPhone wallpaper images

Wed, 15 Aug 2007 07:13:45 +0000

Chris Glass has posted a terrific set of images sized perfectly to be used as wallpaper on the iPhone. My personal favorite (and the one that's replaced Van Gogh's Starry Night - at least for now) is pictured here. I love robots - especially ones that transform! What can I say?(image)



Musings on Gnomedex and evolution

Tue, 14 Aug 2007 05:12:35 +0000

So a funny thing happened this week. After 4+ years covering events and blogging about them live, I attended Gnomedex, the Blogosphere's Conference, this past week in Seattle and I didn't blog a thing. More about why below. Gnomedex is an event I've always wanted to attend. I've known Chris Pirillo for years. Every year Chris asks me if I'm attending and every year I've had one bad excuse or another for not attending. But after last year's event – a watershed moment in this conference's history – I resolved to make it to Gnomedex 7.0 no matter what.(image)



Media Temple offers iPhone Account Center

Wed, 08 Aug 2007 06:50:26 +0000

Media Temple is my hosting provider for my new personal blog and a few web projects I'm currently developing. This morning, they announced a web-based control center specifically designed for the iPhone that allows customers to manage their accounts, add domains, reboot servers, pay bills, and more from the iPhone from a very Apple-esque UI. It's one of the best designs I've encountered to date for the iPhone and provides an anytime, anywhere portal for me to manage my (mt) account.(image)



Heading to Gnomedex

Wed, 08 Aug 2007 06:34:47 +0000

I'm heading up to Seattle for Gnomedex which kicks off tomorrow evening. I'm looking forward to seeing a bunch of my friends and making some new ones too. There should be a lot to blog about from this event which Chris and Ponzi Pirillo, the organizers, have dubbed the Blogosphere's Conference.(image)



SpeedFiler 2.0 for Outlook - faster and smarter

Tue, 07 Aug 2007 11:30:23 +0000

Claritude Software has announced version 2.0 of their SpeedFiler add-in for Microsoft Outlook 2003 and 2007. This utility makes processing and clearing your inbox a much less onerous chore and the new version adds a few welcome new features and a blast of performance tuning.(image)



Vista IE7 issue remains unsolved for many users

Sun, 05 Aug 2007 09:54:14 +0000

When I read stuff like this, it confirms my belief that there's something very broken in the world of Vista. Here's a very knowledgeable user and talented developer who's confounded and befuddled by a well-documented and still unaddressed issue affecting Vista users running Internet Explorer 7. The problem manifests itself as an annoying and increasingly frequent hang or time-out during which the PC is essentially rendered useless. This is not a productivity enhancing experience folks. This is a huge time sink.(image)



Microsoft delays Office 2008 for Mac until... 2008

Thu, 02 Aug 2007 06:46:31 +0000

This is bad news for those of us who need some of the advanced functionality in Mac Office to collaborate with folks in the Windows world. Track Changes, in particular, is a compatibility issue that keep from from switching off Microsoft entirely on the Mac. It's so commonly used in the work I do that I simply can't afford to rely on another suite or set of products. I was pretty excited about the changes I've been hearing about in this next release but I guess I'll just have to continue muddling along with Office 2004 on my MacBook a while longer.(image)



BodyGuardz has my iPhone covered

Wed, 01 Aug 2007 16:40:31 +0000

I'm happy to report that the film was die-cut very precisely and fit around the various ports and buttons on the iPhone perfectly. The entire process took about 20 minutes (I was trying really hard to be slow and deliberate) and the results are simply extraordinary. The iPhone is now encased in a virtually scratch-proof plastic skin that is crystal clear. As an added bonus, the BodyGuardz material offers better surface adhesion that makes holding the iPhone feel a lot more secure than the slippery finish of the device itself.(image)



The Vista productivity debate rages on

Wed, 01 Aug 2007 08:53:02 +0000

Well I seem to have hit a nerve (or struck a chord at least) with a lot of people with my recent post about the decidedly mixed reaction to Vista. It's the most heavily trafficked and commented post I've made here at ZDNet and reading through the comment thread reveals a few interesting topics of conversation. Aside from the ever-present Linux (or Mac OS) vs. Windows comments that are a staple of any contentious thread here in ZDNet-land, the actual issue I hoped to address – productivity – was well covered along with the historical perspective suggested by more than a few commenters that things were not so different when Windows XP (or Windows 2000) were first released.(image)



iPhone update now available

Wed, 01 Aug 2007 07:28:40 +0000

I just performed the iPhone Update (to version 1.01) and it went without a hitch. There appear to be numerous small improvements but nothing to get too terribly excited about. Overall performance is just fine (WiFi feels a bit snappier, EDGE about the same) and the only thing I needed to reset was the password on my WiFi connection. Others who have hacked their iPhone are reporting that a full restore needs to be performed and mail accounts and other settings reset. More information is available from the TUAW team who are "live blogging" the update. An updated iPhone manual is also available from the Apple web site (link is in the updater startup screen).(image)



What am I reading?

Sat, 28 Jul 2007 11:14:24 +0000

There's so much information available that I often come across stuff I find terrificly interesting but difficult to find time to cover. Other items are orthogonal to the topics I focus on here but still of interest to me and, potentially, to you too. So I've set up a link blog using Google Reader's sharing feature. If you're interested, here's the link.(image)



Office 2.0 Conference - an iPhone for every attendee

Thu, 26 Jul 2007 07:45:18 +0000

I've been working with Ismael Ghalimi, Oliver Starr, and Brian Solis on developing a Mobility and Productivity track for the upcoming Office 2.0 Conference. We're still in the early planning stages in terms of content for that track but Ismael made a bombshell announcement yesterday that is tremendously exciting. Every paid attendee (as well as speakers and sponsors) will receive an iPhone as part of their registration!(image)