Category Archives: Technology

Back With Apple – A Month Later

About a month ago, I decided to go back to using an iPhone – my Motorola Droid, just wasn’t doing it for me and as a part of this move, I also got out my old MacBook Pro.

Yeah, I know this is a running blog, but the technology I use does affect my blogging, social media presence and how I keep track of my training and how I look back on what I have done.

So the technology I use does affect my running.

How has iPhone done?

I use my iPhone primarily as a phone (yeah believe it or not), camera and to check my email.
Along with sending/receiving the occasional text message and as an emergency GPS device. In other words, I under-utilize my smart phone considerably, but that is okay – that is why I have a laptop.
Other than missing the “back” button, I love my iPhone 5c.
When and since I updated to IOS 8.1.1, I have had zero issues and haven’t looked back.
I can usually get a couple of days of normal use (for me) out of the battery before re-charging. Unlike many people, I do not have a bunch of apps and work hard to keep the number of apps on my phone to a minimum.
Just two pages of Apps on the iPhone and I could probably get rid of almost half of these if I really needed to.

Just two pages of Apps on the iPhone and I could probably get rid of almost half of these if I really needed to.

No, I don’t have Facebook or Twitter on there, but I do use Instagram.
One of the things that I really like about the iPhone is its camera, it is much more intuitive for me than the Droid’s was and I believe that the photos are a better quality. Now that I have figured out some of the quirks between iPhoto and iCloud, posting those photos to my blog is easy.
Even looking back with 20/20 hindsight moving back to an iPhone was the right thing for me.

Why change back to the “old” MacBook Pro?

Since I already knew that an iPhone is more integrated with a Mac than a PC, I took out my old MacBook Pro from late 2009 and started using it a few days after I got the iPhone.
My MacBook Pro's Desktop

My MacBook Pro’s Desktop

I had upgraded the MacBook Pro’s RAM to 8GB, about a little before I got the Sony Vaio (after I brick-tested my Chromebook), but hadn’t really had a chance to do much with it, I had retired the MacBook as old and unreliable and it became a backup laptop) so I didn’t realize how big a difference the extra RAM would make in my MacBook Pro.
That RAM upgrade to 8GB made all the difference and my MacBook Pro has done everything I have asked of it over the past month. Even when I upgraded to Yosemite, I experienced no issues whatsoever.
I do like Yosemite a LOT better than Mavericks or other older versions of OS X and having it installed has made my return to using the Mac an awesome experience.
Especially, with some of the new features that Yosemite brought to the table. Well at least the ones that are supported and work on my 2009 MacBook Pro.
The biggest changes moving from Windows back to OS X were remembering/figuring out where the commands were hidden for the different programs. OS X programs are more drop down menu driven than toolbar/icon driven, so finding the commands, took a little getting used to and also changing some muscle memory.
Personally I find that OS X software is a more old school UNISYS (Lanier, Wang, Burroughs) style of interface. It is elegant in its uncluttered and more minimalist styling, which now that I have gotten used to it again, I prefer. The icon toolbar is there and you have the inspector is there on the side, but most everything is in command bar.

Staying in the Apple Silo

The one thing that I have done differently this time moving to a Mac, is that I have purposely stayed as much within the Apple tech silo for my software – as possible. Apple makes 90% of the software that I need or want to use and the other 10% is stuff that I still have licenses for or can get cheaply.
Yes, there are some Apps that are superior to Apple’s offerings, but the way I look at things now, Apple’s Apps work good enough. I am tired of constantly looking for the next best thing or trying some new software just because I can. At this point I just want things to work – good enough.

Old Fashioned

However, one thing that I want from my computer is if the Internet is down or not available for whatever reason, that I can still do my work, do things that I want/need to do and do it seamlessly, without me having to frig, fart around with it. Although I haven’t had any issues or problems with iCloud, but at the same time, I don’t feel all warm and fuzzy about it. This is something I am going to be watching closely – it is improving, but…
So any Apps/software that I use a lot, needs to have offline/online capabilities.
Am I being old-fashioned?
Yep, no doubt about it, but that is okay – I can handle and like being old-fashioned. I will still be doing things that I want to do on my computer, when others are bitching, moaning and groaning about how they can’t do anything without Internet acces.
Seems like Win-Win scenario to me.

The Reality is that

During the last month, I have purposely stayed within the Apple tech silo and you know something…
It has just worked.
I haven’t had any urge to turn-on my Sony Vaio Laptop, go back to the Droid, use Evernote/OneNote, or even use Google’s Chrome Web browser – at all. All things that I used pretty much exclusively and daily for the past couple of years.
My move back to Apple’s Tech Silo has been problem-free and the experience was much better than my first move to Apple (which was pretty bumpy). Yes, it helped that for 2 1/2 years I had to use the MacBook in the classroom and have had 2 iPhones before, so I was familiar with what I was getting myself into, by going back to Apple.
Although moving back to the iPhone that was the impetous for the move back to Apple, now that I am back, I use my MacBook Pro a LOT more than I do my iPhone and the iPhone is something I use when I do not have access to my MBP or need a phone or camera.
The next question will happen in a couple of years, when Apple stops supporting my MacBook Pro (it already does not have full capabilities in Yosemite), what will I get?
Another MacBook Pro or an iPad with a keyboard?
They both have their pros and cons, but that is a decision that I do not have to worry about for a while, but either way, I need to start saving up for whichever I decide on sooner rather than later.

Moving Back to the MacBook Pro

Although the post’s title is Back to the Mac, to be completely accurate, it should be Moving to Apple.

Photo by Harold Shaw of MacBook Pro back

Photo by Harold Shaw of MacBook Pro back


After I got my iPhone 5c a couple of weeks ago (see iPhone My Phone), I decided to dig out my old MacBook Pro and use it.

The more I played around with it – the more I enjoyed using my MBP and since I downloaded Yosemite, I really like the way it looks and works. Also I have started using more and more of the Apple software.

Isn’t that the way it works sometimes, you put something on the shelf and then after trying several other things, you find that you had the solution sitting right there all along. Continue reading →

iPhone – MyPhone

Okay, this doesn’t have a lot to do with running or does it?

Not really, but in a way it is pretty important – at least to me. Especially since I carry my phone on about 90% of my runs outside – for safety reasons.

So I guess the choice of what phone I have can be an important part of my running.

On Thursday, I moved back to an iPhone 5c, from my Motorola Droid, but why?

My new iPhone 5c

My new iPhone 5c

My Smart Phone

First, how or what do I want from “my” smart phone? Continue reading →


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