Jul 19 2009

Oregon Coast

Published by under iphone,kids,moblogging,photos

Taken by Ethan.

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Aug 15 2008

jailbroken iphone

Published by under amy's head,iphone,likes & irks

So yesterday I jailbroke my phone. It was very fun and exciting. And also – amazingly EASY. I heard there was a lot of issues with the first (2.0) jailbreak software, but I used the 2.01 version and had no issues whatsoever.

2 applications are put on the phone when you jailbreak, kind of like alternatives to the app store, the first is called Cydia, and the second Installer. I’m still figuring things out in there, I think my trouble is there’s a lot of applications that work for versions UNDER 2.0, but have not yet been ported to 2.0, so I will go to click on an app that looks interesting and get an error.

I have installed quite a few though, and I am so happy! I will write up my favorite 3rd party applications soon, but need to give it a week or so first. One thing I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE though is that you can completely change the look of your phone. The screen where you see all your icons laid out is called the “Springboard” and there are lost of springboard, summerboard and even winterboard themes that you can install and fiddle around with. Here are a few of the ones I tried:

Here is the original iphone “theme”:

And here are some othersI tried out:

This one is called “Sexy Realize”-



And finally, “Pinkameter” – the one I’m going to stick with until I get sick of pink (it might not last until tomorrow):

And last but not least… QUAKE SCREEN SHOT!

Quake 4 iPhone

Quake 4 iPhone

I haven’t really played it. Need to figure out how to set up some customized controls – using some tilting of the phone itself would be awesome, hope that’s available.

WOOT! Jailbroken baby!

-amy got sprung!

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Aug 13 2008

time for an iphone jailbreak!

Published by under amy's head,iphone

I’ve been kind of ansy, wanting to jailbreak my iphone, but kind of nervous to mess with it. I’ve been (semi) following along with the hackers’ iphone blogs and a few other iphone feeds and it seemed as if even if you jailbroke your phone, there weren’t many 3rd party apps for 2.0 anyway, so, easy for me to put off the ants in my pants and just wait.

but no more!!


You see before you, an old quake fanatic. It’s been years, but if there’s network play, I look forward to stomping james into kingdom come. (I used to be able to do it!)

I know what I’ll be doing this weekend.

  1. This link also has other 3rd party apps listed, which might be useful for anyone to read through who is asking, “why would you want to jailbreak your phone, anyway?”

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Jul 29 2008

Top 10 Best and Worst iPhone Apps/Features

Published by under amy's head,moblogging

I’ve been fiddling with my iphone for a week now, and while I first added EVERY free app there was, I’ve since gotten happy with the delete, and been reorganizing my home screens. Here’s the apps I love the best, and the apps/features I think are worthless or are in need of some desparate HELP.

Top Ten Best iPhone Applications! They’ve Made the Cut!

  1. photo

    Tap Tap Revenge by Tapulous

    This is my very favorite app. A song plays and bubbles come down 3 separate “tracks” and you must tap the bubble as it crosses the bottom of the screen in time to the music. Think Dance Dance Revolution for your fingers. I need to figure out some tricks for higher scores though, because I play all the time, and then I go and pester James (who NEVER plays*) to play against me (they have a 2 player mode!) and he kicks my ass. Consistently. Grrrr.

    *Unless maybe he’s secretly practicing and pretending to not be good. I wouldn’t put it past him.

    Love me some tap tap revenge!

    Even though I REALLY suck at the super duper hard songs (the range is Easy, Medium, Hard and Extreme) I still try them out all the time. My high score for Canonfire is 73,245, which I have never come CLOSE to since (I usually range around 20-30k for that one.)

  2. photo

    Twinkle also by Tapulous

    Not only can you twitter away, but it will take your current location, and show you tweets of people within 5, 10, 25, 50 miles of you. Very groovy. I kind of wish it would reverse the order of the tweets so you can see older ones first, but that’s a small pet peeve. I have a bigger pet peeve — which is it is very unstable. In fact, as of writing this, I can’t get it to load all the way. But when it works, I love it.

  3. WordPress

    I see myself using this more and more. Before this came out, I had to set up a whole “email posting” thing on crazymokes, only to be frustrated by the automatically getting the mail and the lack of iphone’s ability to include more than one photo in emails. I can happily ditch the ’email in your post!’ method and open this up for quick posting. I tested it out and found a few bugs, which I hope will be fixed up quickly. The major bug was, the “save” button disappeared after I added some photos to my post, which sucked. Don’t want to “cancel” and lose my post! Somehow I got it to come back and didn’t lose my post. Hopefully that will be worked out quickly. WordPress app gets the primo front page real estate on my iphone!

  4. photo

    Zenbe Lists

    Zenbe Lists is – you guessed it! – a list maker. But not just any list maker! It’s especially nice because you can send a list to anyone and then that list will sync with each other without any fuss. And I mean without ANY fuss! At first, I just logged in with james’ zenbe account, not realizing that the sync feature was so cool. After heading through the grocery store with it, checking things off with just a touch of my finger, I got home and made my own account and tested out the sync. Once you “share” a list with someone, anytime either one of you change something, it’s changed for everybody. There’s a little “sync” button at the bottom for easy syncing, which only takes a second. You can also manage your lists on the website. Overall very intuitive and simple to use and easy sharing/syncing of lists between users.

    I am actually not a list maker by nature, but when things grow hectic and chaotic and I start to feel weird and out of control, that’s when I grab my notepad and start listing everything in my head. It’s as if, once it’s out of my head and down somewhere where I don’t have to remember it anymore, I’m able to breath more easily. So this is a list application that will get used at least weekly for grocery lists, and then probably more heavily off and on as life shoves stuff at me.

    Props go to James for finding this one! Definitely a front page app for me.

  5. Pandora Radio

    Pandora has been around for a while, but I have been clueless about it. No more! I can’t believe how cool this is! To start off, you have to get your account going in a browser. I did this on my desktop rather than on my iphone, but it could be done there as well. You enter some of your favorite artists/songs and it will create a channel for you. When you play that channel, it will start to pull in other artists/songs that it thinks you might enjoy, and you can rate them with a thumbs up or down. You can also add other artists/songs to the same channel for a broader mix. Switching back to my iphone, all the channels I created online were there, and when you play a channel, you have the option to bookmark the current song, bookmark the artist, or buy from itunes. I tend to be pretty cut off when it comes to new music (and I don’t even mean newly RELEASED music, just music I haven’t heard before, which could be old music!) so this is a great way for me to find new artists that I totally love.

  6. Shazam

    This one is pretty cool, but I see it being deleted after the novelty has worn off. Basically this application listens to a song for a few seconds, and then tells you what it is. Very handy for when you’re in the car, or in a store, or on hold, hearing a song that you’re totally digging, but don’t know what it is. It shows you the song/artist and you can save the information for later, visit the itunes page for that artist, or even buy it. Awesome! So far, I have only used it to show others what it can do, not for it’s intended purpose. Not sure I will actually have a NEED for it, but it’s just so cool, how can you not have it? Hollering, “SHA-ZAAAAAM!” as it pulls up the found info not required (but still fun!)

  7. Google Maps

    This is a built in iphone application. It’s basically google maps on your phone.

    I use google maps way too often just when I’m sitting at my computer, even as just a basic phone book for finding nearby businesses, so having it when I’m out and about is just pretty darn nifty. You can get directions from your current location (or somewhere else) to a specific address, and it also has a toggle that will show you current traffic, although on my daily trek up and down I-66, that can be touch and go as far as accuracy.

  8. Phonesaber

    Pretty basic geek-boy (and girl!) app that loads up a picture of a lightsaber, with colors to choose from on the side. Once you’ve chosen a color, the saber lights up with the requisite lightsaber sound, and as you move the phone around, it makes the nifty lightsaber crashy noises. How can you not love it? Light saber is still on the front screen for now, but I see that going away as the novelty wears off. However, with my kids, that won’t be anytime soon!

  9. And finally, myLite
    Who hasn’t crept into their bedroom with their sleeping spouse snoring away, lighted only by the glow of your cell phone? This application lights up your screen so you can tip toe into your kid’s room and not trip over Woody and Jesse, or the latest Geotrax creation. And to set it apart from it’s “FlashLight” competitor, you can change the settings to strobe, including changing the color and speed of the flash. For you know, when you come home from Mamma Mia and just need to disco it up right. Ahem. Not that I know from personal experience or anything. It’s on the front page, baby!
  10. photo

    Google Reader

    This technically isn’t an app. It’s a bookmark that sits on my home screen. However, it’s made the cut to be on the front page of my home screen, because google has really optimized their reader for the iphone. My only beef – I wish it would inherit the settings your normal google reader has, such as, sort from oldest to newest, as I like to read everything chronologically. I also haven’t tried adding any feeds, so no feedback on how that process is — or even if it’s available.

Top 10 Did-Not-Make-The-Cut Apps Or Otherwise Sucky Things That Are iPhone Related or Maybe Stuff That’s Really Not That Sucky But Bring The List Up To Ten Anyway
  1. Check Please
    This is the first application I tried on my phone, and the first that got cut. It is to be used in a restaurant for splitting a bill between several people. It’s for those kind of groups of people where you don’t quibble over who got what and just split the check evenly, even though yes, I got a diet coke and you only got water. We do this at my work on a nearly weekly basis, so I was interested in checking it out. I found it to be kind of confusing. You enter the total bill, and then the tax, and it has a slider bar to use to increase the amount of a tip you want to give, and then you enter in the # of people dining and it will split the check, dynamically altering the split number as you slide the slider back and forth. It pulls up the regular keyboard which is overkill, since you only need numbers, not letters. A somewhat useful app, but I deleted it. I will just use the iphone’s built in calculator, which pops up a calculator screen instead of the keyboard, and does the job just as well. If it got rid of the tax field and brought up a number pad, I’d probably get it again. But as is, plain old calculator wins out over this one.

    From here on out, I don’t dis any apps actually, just iphone capabilities.

  2. Calendar

    I haven’t had a chance to even use the calendar, which is too bad because I LOVE my calendars! However, I use google calendar, and the iphone will only sync with ical (on a mac) or outlook. I’m keeping my ear to the ground on other ways I can sync with google calendar. I have heard of a few jailbroke apps that do this, so once all the jailbreak app builders have caught up with the new 2.0 software and jailbreak software, I will check into it. For now, the calendar just sits there, unused. If anyone has any tips for this, I’m dying to hear them!

  3. No cut and paste.
    Um, hello? This is kind of basic.. This sucks.
  4. Adding contacts from missed/received calls
    If you get a call from someone not in your contacts, there’s no way to add them to you contacts. I would love to be able to tap a phone number in my calls list and have a “Add to contacts?” option. You would have to go into contacts and add them in manually. I am actually hoping I’m wrong on this, and just missing something obvious, so if I am, please enlighten me!
  5. Contacts
    It will sync with google contacts in your gmail account, but it won’t import the photos you have set up in gmail to your iphone. Bummer. I have also experienced some wonkiness with losing some info I put into my phone, after I synced, but I can’t rule out user error in that one. It flashed a popup about adding and deleting and I just shrugged and hit the ok button and then feigned ignorance when I couldn’t phone up my dad anymore.
  6. No front camera – which makes taking a picture of yourself pretty tricky. Never realized I would miss this ability from my old phone, but I do. This was one of the “will it have it? won’t it have it?” features that people postulated about wildly before the 3G announcement came out.
  7. I know I said it already. But the whole google calendar thing it REALLY sucks.
  8. YouTube app. It doesn’t suck, but I’m not sure why it needs a permanent position on my home screen(s). I’ve moved it to the last screen, because whenever i watch somethign on youtube, it’s because someone sent it to me, and i will click on it from there.
  9. Clock – I have set up a few daily alarms/reminders (do your timesheet!) but other than that, fairly useless. If you really want to know what time it is in London, good for you. I don’t though. Last page of home screens.
  10. Notes
    Just your basic notes. When I need to make a note of something, I’ll open up zenbe instead. I guess you can email your Notes. I’ve stuck this one on the back page of my home screens.
  11. Stocks – This is probably nice for some people, but useless for me. No need for me to check on cow futures. Although we do own a few shares of IBM… Last page of the home screens.

Well, there you go.

I have not yet taken the plunge to purchase any applications, being stingy and worried that I would try it out and not like it. Mostly it’s been a few games I’ve wanted to try out. I will probably bite the bullet in the future and give some a try, but for now, aside from some bugginess, I’m pretty happy with what I’ve got.

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Jul 22 2008

Testing out iphone wordpress app

Published by under amy's head,moblogging

Nice app. Let’s me put in a whole mess of photos. Hope it resized them.










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Jul 16 2008


Published by under amy's head,likes & irks

Well, the time has come to stop pussy footin’ around and get me an iphone. I took part of the day off and I’m not going home without one. Unfortunately, getting up at 5.30am got me to Tyson’s Corner mall (the only place on the apple availability checker* that still had 16G phones) at about 7am, and shortly after I arrived, the nice Apple guy came out and said they have plenty of 8G phones, but only a handful of 16G. Not enough to get to where I was in line. He also said they expected a shipment today but who knows when, how many, what, etc. I sat in line for a while longer, but then I got to thinking that as long as I was waiting around for a shipment anyway, I might as well head down to Fair Oaks and wait for *their* shipment. Fair Oaks is more accessible (Vienna is a mess to drive around in, so much traffic) and whenever I do get my hands on a few 16G iphones, James is going to have to meet me, and Fair Oaks would be easier for him.

*Just a note on this apple availability checker: The real one, on apple’s site, is only accessibly after 9pm. One night while I was sitting waiting for it to be 9pm so I could check it, I thought, “what if i just turn my clock forward?” Which I did. And it showed me the availability. Someone else noticed the same thing and put it in the page I linked to above, so you can check the availability anytime, not just after 9pm. I have double checked it’s accuracy by calling stores which the checker said had phones in stock, and it checked out, so this checker is pulling actual store inventory, and not estimated shipping or anything like that. Good stuff!

So I left and zipped down to Fair Oaks and am currently lounging in one of the loungey areas, right in front of the apple store. Nobody else is here in line, even though the availability thingee says they have the 8G in stock. Guess everyone wants the 16G! (Whoops, my bad, that is Pentagon City that has some 8G. This store is completely sold out.) I’m going to be hanging out here until they either receive some, or I see in the availability thingee that another store has gotten some in, in which case, I’ll be zipping on over.

In anticipation of getting the iphone, I’ve been reading up on it, downloaded a few iphone podcasts, etc. which has only served to make my iphone fervor reach MANIA level.

Wish me luck, because I AM GETTING AN IPHONE TODAY!


Jul 11 2008

iphone – WANTY WANTY!

Published by under amy's head

James and I did a drive by our local AT&T store this morning and saw there was a decent sized line, about 40 folks. We kept on driving to work, hoping to go out later today and avoid the lines.


I’ve been using james’ old Treo 700w since my phone got ruined (and it still doesn’t work, after many man MANY days of drying out) and I have to say 2 things. The damn thing never rings EXCEPT WHEN I’M TESTING WHETHER OR NOT IT WILL RING, and solitaire is way too addictive. At least when I was addicted to sudoku I can rationalize it away because it’s good for your brain. Solitaire probably KILLS brain cells with it’s mindlessness. AND YET I CANNOT STOP PLAYING IT.


I already downloaded a crapload of applications already! Last night in fact, at 1:30am, because I could not sleep! Because I was too excited! ABOUT THE IPHONE!

OK, that isn’t true. I couldn’t sleep, but it wasn’t because of the iphone. HOwever, when I was laying there trying to sleep and trying not to look at the clock to calculate how many hours of sleep I could get before my alarm went off BUT ONLY IF I FELL ASLEEP AT THAT MOMENT, the iphone played a recurring theme in the brain that is me.



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