Why you might want to hang onto the unlimited iPhone data plan

I recently just assisted with a project that involved rewiring a server room for a company in San Diego. Given that the project was over the corse of two, 8-hour days. I wanted to have a bit of music to listen to.  I didn’t even think of resetting my phone’s stats to see how much data I actually used until after the first day was over, after resetting the iphone I found that one 8 hour day of listening to pandora over my 3G connection pulled 180Mb of data. If you were to listen to music every day at work that translates to 3.6GB. Now I hardly use that much data but I like to know I can if I need it.

This is not the primary reason however I think it would be in your best intreats to go ahead and hang onto your unlimited plan. the iPhone 4 (Which I have already pre ordered) will offer FaceTime, while this will initially only work on a WiFi connection I can guarantee once they release it on 3G and we all know apple is itching to see it over 3G. its going to cut into your data usage. I don’t know about you but I’d like to not have to worry about how much video calls I make. I already know quite a few people that will be getting an iPhone 4 along side me so I know I’ll be using FaceTime.

Whats your thoughts on Apple killing the Unlimited Data plan and do you decide to keep you unlimited plan or save the $5 a month to cripple your iPhone to 2gigs a month? That being said however I will have to admit that the most data I have ever personally used since having an iPhone was 600Mb. I’m just looking toward whats to come, Data’s not getting any smaller if anything we’ll be seeing much higher resolution images for download to take advantage of the much higher resolution Retina display.

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WordPress 3.0 Release Candidate

WordPress is aiming for a June release of the 3.0 version of there popular blogging software. So far they are right on track, they just released the first RC of the 3.0 platform, whats an RC? The term release candidate (RC) refers to a version with potential to be a final product, ready to release unless fatal bugs emerge. In this stage of product stabilization, all product features have been designed, coded and tested through one or more beta cycles with no known showstopper-class bug.

If your a WordPress developer or even just a WordPress blogger and want to get a peak at the new version you can head over to WordPress.org and download the new RC, DO NOT install this on your live blog, remember its only a candidate for the new version, further testing still needs to be done to ensure all bugs have been discovered and removed.

If your curious whats been changed heres a quick list.

  • Custom menus.
  • Multi-site. (run multiple blog’s off a single install)
  • The look of the WordPress admin has been lightened up a little bit, so you can focus more on your content.
  • There are a ton of changes, so plugin authors, please test your plugins now, so that if there is a compatibility issue, we can figure it out before the final release.
  • Plugin and theme *users* are also encouraged to test things out. If you find problems, let your plugin/theme authors know so they can figure out the cause.
  • There are a couple of known issues.

If you do decide to give RC1 a test spin and come across any bugs please help WordPress out.

Download WordPress 3.0 RC1

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Kindle Software Update Version 2.5

Most of my regular readers know I got my hands on a kindle back when the new kindle was released, It was purchased for me as a gift, the order was actually placed on the first kindle but it was on backorder right at the same time the kindle 2 was announced, I was upgraded to a kindle 2 for free. Since that time I haven’t really seen all that many updates. And of the few updates I’ve seen, not to many new features were added. I do however have to point out one update I really liked since the purchase of my kindle was when they added the support to read PDF’s natively.

However Amazon will soon be rolling out version 2.5 of the kindle software, one feature I’m really looking forward to with this update is the ability to organize your books into Collections. I’m also stoked for the Password Protection, and hoping they will force you to only unlock a forgotten password through your amazon account, this will greatly increase the chances of getting a lost kindle back, since the finder will not be able to actually use the device.

Here’s the full list of the coming enhancements from amazon’s page:

  • Collections: Organize your books and documents into one or more collections.
  • PDF Pan and Zoom: Zoom into PDFs and pan around to easily view small print and detailed tables or graphics.
  • Password Protection: Password protect your Kindle when you’re not using it.
  • More Fonts & Improved Clarity: Enjoy two new larger font sizes and sharper fonts for an even more comfortable reading experience.
  • Facebook & Twitter Posts: Share book passages with friends on Facebook and Twitter directly from your Kindle.
  • Popular Highlights: See what the Kindle community thinks are the most interesting passages in the books you’re reading.

If your curious about how to get the latest update you do not need to actually do anything (assuming you have not installed the screen saver hack). As long as you are running Amazon’s official firmware your kindle 2 automatically check’s for updates and will automatically download and install the firmware when its available. So far theres no official release date, Amazon simply states they will be rolling out the 2.5 software update to users over the coming weeks.

During the update, you’ll see screens that show the update progress. The update should take less than 10 minutes and is complete when your Kindle displays the Home screen. Amazon advises you not to power off or reset your kindle during the process or the update will fail. You can check what version your kindle is currently running by going to the settings screen on the device. The software version will be displayed on the bottom of the screen.

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Apple TV 3.0.1

Looks like apple finally got around to upgrading the Apple TV to support there new found LP format. And in addition to that left a bug in the system that will cause your content to randomly disappear.

But theres a fix if you have not done so already upgrade again to 3.0.1, Apple’s official method for accomplishing this (sent to me via email):

1. Reboot your Apple TV (unplug the power cord and plug it back in)
2. Select Settings > General from the main menu
3. Select Update Software
4. Select Download and Install

I’ve not had the time to thoroughly explore the new updates but what I have seen so far it appears to be a strictly visual update.

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Linux Mint

Linux Mint

So I’ve always been a fan of Ubuntu, yea yea I know what your saying already, but Ubuntu is for people that don’t know anything about Linux. We’ll your right and thats party why I like it because its designed in that manner, It installs super fast, I can have a Ubuntu server up and running AND hosting a web page in under 10 min, and its stable.

I have a few Ubuntu servers I manage that have upwards of 150+ days of uptime and they are still running great. Ok now I hear all the Linux guys out there complaining that Ubuntu systems are so hard to Troubleshoot and Diagnose. Right again, but who cares, remember I can have a Ubuntu system up and running in under 10 min if its a simple Web or Database server, so if I determine I’m going to have more then 10 minutes of troubleshooting time to fix my issue, I reinstall the system and restore backups. My linux boxes do daily backups, if your running a more mission critical Database server you may want to run Hourly backups, in my case its only a simple internal Wiki.

MintDesktop

Okay, enough server talk, lets talk desktops, I’m usually a Mac guy but I have an extra box at work thats my own personal Linux box, I talked my Manager into letting me bring it in because the Linux network diagnostic tools are wonderful, It used to be a Ubuntu system but when the Primary hard disk failed I opted to give Linux Mint a shot.

Initial impressions were wonderful the Installation process was very straight forward and I’m confident any computer user would be able to figure it out, with the exception being the partition management, but then again partition management on any Unix system is fairly hard to wrap your head around for anyone coming from a windows environment. This is largely due to the fact that Unix does away with each disk getting its own filesystem (kinda). On a unix system there is the root filesystem which is mounted on a disk but you can then mount others disks into directories on that filesystem, so while each disk still gets its own filesystem its all transparent to the end user.

A common way to set up your system is to install the os to a small but quick disk then mount a big beefy disk to the /home folder of the partition this allows the system files to load very fast and at the same time allows you to separate tee users home folders. another advantage to this setup is if you ever have a problem with the system you can wipe the main disk reinstall the system then simply remount the disk with the home files back to the new /home folder, instant restore of users files.

This is actually the setup I was running under ubuntu until the primary hard disk failed, then I ditched it and installed the new system to a single disk, eventually I’ll go get a second disk for it an copy the home files over to the new disk and mount it over the systems /home folder.

MintPackage

Package management is super easy in mint, when you see the little green check mark on the lock in the task bar go away you know your system needs an update, click it enter your password and the system automatically downloads and installs all relevant updates. And since Mint is based off Ubuntu any applications designed for Ubuntu should also run on Mint with little or no extra configuration.

if you have an extra machine laying around give Linux Mint a shot Im glad I did you just may decide you like linux =)

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