Technology at Geneseo Community School District 228
My two new iPhone Apps
My First iPhone App
I have spend a little more time familiarizing myself with mobile app development on the iPhone and now have two more approved apps on the itunes app store. The first app is called the Princess and the Goblin and is my first attempt at creating a mobile reading platform for the iphone. The app is free and straightforward featuring over 30 high res illustrations and sketches along with the entire text of the novel. Since this is a chilldren’s fantasy story I thought including full illustrations a definite must and was surprised that larger free domain literature warehouses like Gutenberg do not include illustrations. I also have hopes for this being my first iPad specific app as well since I am almost finished working on a modified version of this app that uses the better screen resolution on the iPad and includes more illustrations.
Here is a screen shot of this app from the itunes App Store.
My next recently approved app is called Emergency Dial. The concept is simple and comes from a friend of mine(Thanks Tom). How does a 3 year call for help on an iPhone? With many families abandoing landlines and only having cell phones this can actually present a real issue. This app – currently free as of this writing is straigtforward and acts like a modified Speed Dial. With a Red Phone Icon you simply go to settings and setup a special emergency number (the police, 911, relatives, etc). Then when you hit the red button this number is automatically dialed. Simple and to the point, a 3 year old can simply hit the red help phone button and help is called.
Here is another iTunes App Screen shot.
Lately many people have approached me asking my opinion on recommendations for new laptops or for tips on upgrading their desktop. With all the different specs related to computers and the corresponding marketing campaigns behind many of the biggest computer producers it is easy to confuse which specs really make a significant performance difference and which are just aimed at moving more machines out of the warehouse. This will be a short post because the answer is buy a Solid State Drive – in the form of the Intel X-25 II. For example lets say you are looking at buying the new MacBook Pro 13 inch model, on the site they have listed two options.
Which option is best you say? The answer is not neither. For the best overall performance it would be wisest to get the cheaper 1099.00$ Macbook Pro and then use the 300$ to purchase the Intel X-25 160 gb solid state drive. Six screws removes the outer case and 2 more screws remove the internal hard drive, in 10 minutes you can self install this component and you will never look back.
What about the Solid State Drives offered on the Mac Store already? This is a good sign that these options are now appearing on the store but unfortunately the Apple store does not sell the Intel X25 and this model is still the industry leader by a large margin. That is not all solid state drives are equal and for the money it is better to stick with Intel’s product.
The difference between and Intel Core 2 Duo at 2.4 GHz versus 2.66 is absolutely meaningless for 98% of computer users. Both processors are extremely fast and with either one you will most likely rarely or possibly never be bottle necked by this component. The rest of the specs on these machines look very similar except for Hard Drive Size.
With Intel’s new release of the i5 and i7 they have even furthered their developmental lead over AMD and produced an even better performing processor. This kind of processing power is great for database enterprise style servers but for most consumers who again getting the faster processor looking for a faster feeling machine in a day to day productivity style setting you may be disappointed.
Traditional spinning hard drives are cheap and large. Sadly even faster 10,000K (or even 15,000K SCSI) spinning drives cannot deliver data fast enough to keep up with today’s 4 and 8 gigabyte RAM machines with Intel Core 2 Duo processors. The traditional spinning drive has been the slow poke for sometime and upgrading components around will result in only minor visible speed increases.
Changing to the Intel X25 Solid State Drive will result in a 30-40% feel in performance gain in everyday use. The system boot time will drastically be reduced, cold starting programs will launch at a unbelievably faster rate. In fact I predict that in less than two years the majority of all desktops and laptops will have their primary drive be a solid state. If you are looking to upgrade a Desktop again it is best to go with the same Intel x25M drive and perhaps by a secondary large 2 TB drive for media storage. The key is getting the OS and main program files loaded onto the Intel X25-M.