Category Archives: GMG Tech Talk

A sneak peak behind the scenes

If you went to The Slide Brothers concert we presented on Saturday, you hopefully had a good time, but had no clue as to last-minute scrambling that went on.  That’s because everyone involved is a pro — and that’s the way it should be.  Today, we’d like to offer a special shout-out to some of the folks whose work made this event happen and let you peek behind the scenes just a bit.

The scrambling began a couple of days before the show when we learned The Slide Brothers were not going to be able to bring a drum kit.  Mike Doyle happened to be at the theatre when we heard this, so he scooted down to Nate’s The Drum Shop North Shore on Rantoul St. and arrived back at the theatre in less than half an hour with a very nice sounding Premier kit in gorgeous white pearl, which you can see in the photo.  Thanks MTD and Nate for making this happen so quickly.

Then, on the day of the show, we discover we need even more gear and everyone in the Michael Thomas Doyle band chipped in to lend The Slide Brothers all that was needed for their stellar performance.  Thanks guys.  You’re real pros.

That performance relied, in good measure, on the expert talents of our sound crew, led by Will Hunt, who spent half of Friday drilling through a brick wall in order to hide the snake.

And on the night of the show, Bill Winn and Bradley Royds gave us absolutely perfect sound — so good that we heard compliments from both performers and fans!

Perhaps the last person ever to get any credit for his hard work is the guy in the light booth, which for this concert — and for Allen Estes, was Inge Berge, whose artistic lighting enhanced both performances.  And when Calvin Cooke (the B.B. King of Slide Guitar) told Inge to raise the house lights for a gospel tune so it would feel more like a church, he obliged gracefully and then returned the theatre to a performance feel with class and style.

You’ll notice that most of these people are from Gloucester and all are from Boston’s North Shore.  We are terribly grateful to live in a place so full of talented professionals!

GloucesterCast 10/27/13 With Guest Toby Pett and Joey Ciaramitaro

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GloucesterCast Podcast Taped 10/27/13 With Guest Toby Pett and Host Joey Ciaramitaro

Topics Include: Controversial Boston Pro Sports Officiating,Sista Felicia Makes It Official, Rotary Trivia Night, Chad Konecky, iPad Air vs Microsoft Surface Pro,Reminder To Vote In Local Elections

Topics Include: Controversial Boston Pro Sports Officiating, Sista Felicia Makes It Official, Rotary Trivia Night, Chad Konecky, iPad Air vs Microsoft Surface Pro, Reminder To Vote In Local Elections

Search Questions I Get

Joey,

Could you please tell me where I can find the promo you ran about my new book.  I’ve been looking through today’s GMG and I can’t locate it.
Thanks,
Barry Stacks

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Go Ahead Click The Google Search Button.  Please.  I know you have it in you.  I just know it can’t be that difficult to grasp that there is thing on the interwebs called Google that actually allows you to find things that may be posted about a certain subject you may be interested in.

If you have a thing against the word “Google” and it sends shivers up your spine perhaps you could try Bing.

Googlephobia- the fear of using a friggin search engine to find something on the internet.

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I swear to Christ I get 3-5 of these questions a day.  Every day.  It’s maddening.

On top of being able to search anything on the internet there’s also a Good Morning Gloucester Search Engine.  I swear it’s there.  I promise

actual screen Shot of Good Morning Gloucester Home Page below

You can go to the homepage here- www.goodmorninggloucester.com  Bookmark it for easy reference.  The search engine is in the top right corner.

You can use it to search.  I promise you won’t get herpes or anything.  It’s been tested.

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Should I be a tech reporter or should I be a tech reporter?

When Apple announced it was coming out with a cheaper plastic version of it’s iPhone I panned it saying that people that are buying iPhones don’t want inferior products.  They want the best and are willing to pay for it.  I suggested that instead of offering a lower cost iPhone that they should have introduced a mega iPhone that was even more costly and you would have seen iPhone fanatics tripping over themselves to buy it at double the cost.

You can read my original article posted on  September 12th here

iPhone 5s and 5c and What I Would Have Done If I Were Apple

Posted on September 12, 2013 by Joey C

 

Now low and behold the Wall Street Journal is reporting sales of the cheap iPhine 5c are slugginsh and they are slashing orders for them from manufacturers-

WSJ: Apple Is Slashing Orders for the iPhone 5C

Don’t believe on-line reviews unless you know the reviewer personally — or it’s GMG

SocialMediaYou’ve probably guessed that this was happening right?  Companies who want good reviews create fake ones on Yelp, Citysearch, Yahoo, Google, Kayak — even Facebook & Twitter.  Well you’re right. It’s called astroturfing.  It’s gotten so big that you can now hire companies to write and post fake reviews for your product or service.  You can even get them to write fake bad reviews about your competitors.

There’s a very interesting article in today’s New York Times about a crackdown on astroturfing that exposes several companies, including Main Street Host, which is one of those companies people hire to write fake reviews.  Main Street Host even went so far as to condemn astroturfing on one of their own blogs, while at the same time they wrote their own fake reviews about their own services, prompting this line from the New York Times article, “Faking reviews often begins with faked reviews of the company faking the reviews.”  You just can’t make this stuff up!

So, if you want to know the truth, stick with GMG.  No fake reviews here.

Now did I get this right or did I get this right? People who buy Apple products aren’t looking for the cheap version, they’re looking for the best version available.

Posted by Joe Rossignol at 9:37 am

Apple Cites ‘Incredible’ Launch Day Demand for iPhone 5s

iPhone 5S FrontIt appears that Apple is having yet another successful iPhone launch day, with the all-new gold iPhone 5s facing the biggest constraints thus far.

“Demand for the new iPhones has been incredible, and we are currently sold out or have limited supply of certain iPhone 5s models in some stores,” an Apple representative told AllThingsD.

Estimated shipping dates for most iPhone 5s models have been pushed back to at least 7 – 10 days worldwide, with certain models not shipping until October. On the contrary, there remains more widespread availability of the iPhone 5c in all colors through most retail channels.


The cheaper plastic 5c is readily available while the upscale top of the line iPhone 5s is getting backed up and limited supply.

Now if they would just listen to me instead of offering the cheaper version, they should have offered the super no-compromises version which includes a larger screen, more memory and a larger battery and charge $400 for it and watch apple freaks from all over line up half way to China to buy one and in the process probably win over a bunch of android fans who would have liked a larger phone which previously had only been available on the android platform.

 

My previous posts on the subject-

iPhone 5s and 5c and What I Would Have Done If I Were Apple

Posted on September 12, 2013 by Joey C

In light of the recent iPhone releases of the 5c and 5s a poll for iPhone users or potential iPhone users

Posted on September 16, 2013 by Joey C

In light of the recent iPhone releases of the 5c and 5s a poll for iPhone users or potential iPhone users

I’m fairly confident that we can all agree that smartphones of today including Apple’s iPhones and the high end Android phones are incredible marvels of innovation, productivity and communication powerhouses.

The iPhone is a great phone, the android powered Samsung Galaxy s4 is a great phone, bottom line, end of story.

Not here to debate which is better.  What I would like to know from current iPhone users is what features you would like most to see in the next version of the iPhone or were you most disappointed weren’t included in the latest iPhone release.

I contend that instead of a cheaper iPhone made with plastic parts like the iPhone 5c, a larger iPhone with more screen real estate and a larger longer lasting internal battery would bring larger numbers of people upgrading to that iPhone or converting from Android.  I think there are a huge number of power users and gamers who don’t care about having the lightest slimmest phones, they just want a performance beast with more real estate on the screen.

I’m not discounting the benefit of small and light, all I’m saying I think there’s a whole other segment of the market that would happily give up small and light for large and without a care in the world about having to not get through a day on a battery charge.

In the comment section on this post please share your thoughts about what you would like to see in the next iPhone or additional model to complement the current iPhone.  Even if you’re not an iPhone user I’d like to hear your thoughts about the larger heavier phone with longer lasting battery and more screen vs smaller lighter phone with a battery that may not get you through a day.

I’m not trying to convince anyone that one way is better than the other- for some people they just want the most unobtrusive, smallest, lightest phone they can carry, for others maybe having a larger screen means you can read and see things a little better, for others not being able to get through a day without charging their phone might drive them up a wall.  Fortunately there are many options in phones out there which push each manufacturer to get better and better.

I personally fall into the camp where I favor a larger phone and longer lasting battery but for someone that hardly uses the multimedia capabilities of their phone a smaller phone might be a better fit for them.

For size comparison- Samsung Galaxy s4 on the left and current version of the iPhone on right.

Samsung Galaxy s4 size vs iPhone Size

iPhone 5s and 5c and What I Would Have Done If I Were Apple

I’m am an apple product fan.  Huge fan of the iPhone and the iPad.  I own a first gen iPad and still use it. Even though I am an android phone user I can still appreciate Apple hardware.

Every product refresh they make they include great enhancements but I think there is one move they have yet to make but I think would be an absolute monster boost to their sales.

A larger iPhone to me would be a monster hit.  As a Samsung Galaxy s3 user I really appreciate the extra screen real estate and I appreciate even more the ability to strap on a cheap aftermarket battery to the back of my s3 which triples the battery life. 

I believe there are many people out there that want the smallest and lightest phones they can get but with the sheer computing power available on today’s smartphones they are being used more as portable computing machines and I think there is a distinct trend with people who want larger phones to be able to hit the keys easier and navigate easier, see videos more clearly, ect, ect ect. 

Although I recognize that Apple will probably never let you open up your iPhone or add a micro sd card slot for more memory a larger iPhone would mean more space internally for a larger high capacity battery.  If there’s one thing that sucks about a smartphone for a power user it’s the amount of life a battery on a small phone has.  Bigger phone, bigger battery.

For me the ability to get many different android smartphones with detachable backplates allowing for huge batteries and larger screens are the difference and why I’d recommend an android phone over an iPhone.  But if I was a casual non-demanding smartphone user it would probably be iPhone.

The success of the Samsung Galaxy Note which is basically a Samsung Galaxy with an even larger screen shows there is big demand.

I don’t agree with Apple’s tactic of offering a low cost iPhone either with the 5c and it’s plastic parts.   Apple has always been synonymous with unapologetic top grade hardware and premium pricing.  people were and are willing to pay for it knowing they are getting the best hardware without ever questioning it. 

I equate coming out with a lower grade iPhone to a brand like Tommy Hilfiger who for a brief moment was competing with the likes of Polo/ Ralph Lauren and then went and sold out and buried there products into discounters like Marshalls and TJ Max.  Forever to be equated with a poor man’s Polo and never will they ever be able to command the premium pricing they once did.

I say instead of offering a cheaper iPhone option that they should have offered a larger iPhone option with a mongo battery and charge even MORE for it.  That would have pleased Wall Street I bet.

.Samsung Galaxy s4 vs iPhone size-

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Galazy Note vs iPhone size-

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Samsung Galaxy vs Samsung Note size

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CATA’s new website helps you get around Cape Ann on your phone

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CATA Routes Page on an iPhone (portrait)

No, you can’t use your phone as a magic carpet to whisk you to and fro — not yet, anyhow.  But you can use it to see CATA Bus & Trolley schedules.  You can also get real-time transit directions from wherever you are (assuming you have the phone’s GPS feature turned on) and you can call 978-290-5875, follow instructions and get a text telling you when and where to get the next available bus closest to you.  If you see tourists, be sure to tell them about this — and don’t forget to mention that they can park at Stage Fort Park for FREE and take the Trolley Shuttle to downtown, Rocky Neck and the beaches (see schedule here).  Let’s keep their cars off our roads.

So, does CATA have a new app?  Nope.  It’s better than an app.  It’s CATA’s new website built using Responsive Web Design (RWD for short).

Websites that use RWD automatically reconfigure their display depending on what device you’re using.  One reason RWD websites are better than apps is that you can see the ENTIRE WEBSITE on your phone — and it’s optimized for your particular phone’s display based on how you’re holding the phone when you click on the website.

Here’s an example:  The picture above shows what CATA’s new Routes & Schedules page looks like on an iPhone held portrait (taller than it is wide).  Below is the same page on an iPad held portrait.  Click here to see the same page on a computer (but only if you’re on a computer.)

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CATA Routes page on an iPad (portrait)

The top third of this image is what you see on a Droid phone held landscape (sideways).  And when you turn a smart-phone or tablet from portrait to landscape, the website’s design automatically adjusts to the new aspect ratio.

Again, the best thing about RWD is that regardless of the device you use, iPhone, Droid phone, iPad, any other tablet or any computer, you’re getting the complete website — all the info.  And when schedules change, CATA only has to change them in one place and all devices will see the new info automatically.  That’s why Google recommends developing smartphone-optimized websites using RWD (see their recommendations here.)

Pretty spiffy, huh.  WARNING – SHAMELESS PLUG: Vickie and I built CATA’s new website.  That’s what we do when we’re not presenting concerts and keeping gimmesound’s live music listings up to date.

Is It Astounding In 2013 That Someone Would Ask This Question Rather Than Google “Hard Merchandise T-Shirt”?

I got this email last night (name removed as to not embarrass the nice person)-

where can i find t-shirts for the hard merchandise?  cant find it on this place, or im looking in the wrong place.  help me out ok?  thanx

 

In no way shape or form am I trying to be a prick here.  It’s just interesting to me and I thought I’d share the fact that there are HUGE numbers of the population that haven’t figured out how to do an online search using a search engine.

I mean it had to take more energy for this kind person to type out the email asking where they can find Hard Merchandise T-Shirts than the energy it would have taken to type “Hard Merchandise T-shirt” into a search engine.

So you know they truly don’t understand how.  They’re not being lazy, they just don’t understand that they could Google it.

Here’s a Public Service Announcement for those folks that haven’t figured out how to search for stuff online (an everyday life tool I think you should know about)-

There are other Search engines such as www.bing.com and www.lmgtfy.com you can use to perform searches for things you would like information about or products to buy.

I understand that many of you already understand this but if you saw how many questions a day I get with simple questions that can be answered with far fewer keystrokes you would understand that there are huge chunks of the population for which this tutorial will help immensely.

If we can help just one person understand how to perform an internet search that previously didn’t know how I’ll consider this post a smashing success.

thank you for your time and understanding

Joey C

SpamBots- A PSA- Don’t Ever Open Email When It’s Just a Link

I get roughly 2-5 emails a day from people I may or may not have heard from in forever whose email accounts get hacked and the hackers generally send out mass emails from their email accounts that say something like-

Hey check this out-

www.ifyouclickonthislinkyourregonnabescrewed.co

Really at this point we should all have had enough experience and know not to click on links to sites we’re not familiar with but if you’re not here’s your warning.

Apparently my email account just sent oput a round of these.  Don’t click on link’s in anyone’s email to you that is just a line and a link to a weird site you’ve never heard of.

There’s your lesson for the day

"Letters, E-Mail, Texts — What’s Next?", a podcast episode of "On Point with Tom Ashbrook"

From NPR-

Letters, E-Mail, Texts — What’s Next?

Letters are dead. E-mail outdated. Text messages so passé. What’s going on with how we communicate?

http://onpoint.wbur.org


Text messages passe?  Jeeze I’m a huge fan of the simple text message to get my point across in a pinch.

Letters totally dead.  Email outdated?  I’m a dinosaur I guess.

BREAKING NEWS: GMG to be the Boston area’s first Slog (Smell Blog)

Keeping up with bleeding edge technologies has always been Joey’s passion, so it was no surprise when he told me he had already been approved by Google to be the first Boston Area blog to get his smell into their new Aromabase.

Just in case you didn’t know, Google introduced smell search today under the moniker   Google Nose, which has been hailed as the latest scentsation in search — and as you might expect, Our Boy Joey is right on top of things.

We all know that email is for old farts.  Facebook’s already in decline.  Joey’s interviews with people who tweet are all done.  Now it’s time for the next big thing… and here it is:

Watch the video and you’ll see how to get the full aroma of Joey’s dock right at your computer, tablet or smart-phone.  GMG’s new tag My Smell on the Dock will debut next week after the rest of you FOBs  watch the video and follow instructions for getting your smells into Google’s Aromabase too.

Let’s make GMG one of the first blogs to adopt this new cutting edge technology with every post.  Perhaps next year BONS will nominate GMG in their new “Smell” category.  

Vickie and I are doing our part this afternoon.  We’re bringing our smell phones to The Cave’s wine & cheese tasting at 4pm.  With any luck, you’ll be able to get the full aroma from our post tomorrow.

There’s a new website in town

Usually we post about music, but we’re so excited about having launched our latest Web project that we just can’t resist showing it to you.  Just in case you didn’t know, in addition to publishing gimmesound and producing concerts, Vickie and I also design and build websites (see a list of some of them here, but remember, we’re too busy to update our own website, which was built in 1998) and we do Web and social media marketing.

Yesterday, we finished a new website for one of our favorite new local stores, The Cave.  This is different from all other websites we’ve built.  It’s a “responsive design”, which means it optimizes the viewing experience on what ever device you’re using: desktop computer, tablet or phone.  For example, here’s what it looks like on a desktop computer:

CaveHomeScreenShotHomePhonePortrait

Here’s what it looks like on my Samsung Galaxy III held portrait (the way you talk on the phone).

Notice the menu system is completely different and the top heading is centered instead of flush-left.  The Facebook plugin is off the screen in this picture, but you can scroll down to it.  Everything is stacked nicely so you can easily find it on a phone.

If you tap the phone number at the top-right it will call the The Cave.

The photo is different too, but that’s because it’s a slideshow and a different photo was showing when I took this picture.  (This is actually a little more than you’ll see all at once on a phone, but I wanted to give you an idea of how it looks below the photo.)

There are many reasons why you want a website in a responsive design.  Most importantly, you want your site to be easy to use no matter what device you’re on.  And you don’t want to build a completely different site for each device.

This site uses the EXACT SAME HTML CODE for the phone display you see on the right as we do for the desktop version, above.  The difference in how it looks is controlled by one little file called CSS.

This helps your website rise to the top of Google search results and it also makes it easier when you need to change something (like your store hours).  You only have to write content once and maintain it in one place.

HomePhoneLandscape

Here’s what it looks like when I turn my phone sideways.

Check out The Cave’s new website on all of your devices and see how it looks.

Be sure to go down there on Tuesday and try some of their excellent cheeses and other delicacies.  You’ll be glad you discovered this gem in the heart of Gloucester’s thriving downtown.

Al MF Bezanson Expounds On The Perfect Snow Shovel. Do You Agree?

Al writes-

I’ve been shoveling for more than 70 years, starting back on the farm where we tended to the input and output of 20 cows.  Later, I learned in IE 1-01 that 21-1/2 lb is the optimum shovel-load, as determined by none other than Frederick W. Taylor, the father of scientific management.  This made perfect sense to me.

Now I have a long driveway, and I don’t mind shoveling it, within certain limits.  Nice way to work out and it feels real good to gaze back at what’s been accomplished.   And I never get a backache.  Because I use a strong, lightweight LONG HANDLED SHOVEL with the perfect aluminum business end.  No short handles for me.  They should be outlawed – except for little people, of course.  You can really send that snow flying off the slippery aluminum.

Where do you find the Perfect Shovel?  No place around these parts.  I buy mine at Big Blue Farm Supply in Clinton, NC, right in the heart of hog farming country.  Perfect for grain, corn and SNOW.

Al Bezanson

PS — I just spotted that photo of David Cox with the exotic S-curve job …. but I will stand by my Big Blue Hog Farmer’s Special.

The Perfect Snow Shovel

See Al I agree with you on the aluminum shovel shaped just the way yours is but I like it with a handle.  The kind we used for years to ice fish down the dock before they came up with the stupid white plastic ones.

New York Times puts Gloucester’s big debate on the front page

from the New York Times story: “The harbor in Gloucester, Mass., part of the Northeastern fishery declared a disaster by the Commerce Department last fall.”
photo: Gretchen Ertl for The New York Times

The home page of today’s New York Times website features a story on Gloucester’s big debate about what to do with our waterfront (see story here).

Mayor Kirk is quoted a number of times promoting her vision of our port supporting both fishing and marine science, saying some of the $150 million Congress might appropriate should be used for “Programs that might attract those other uses that allow you to maintain a smaller fleet, and maintain an infrastructure for that fleet, and sit side by side.”

Everybody who’s seriously working on attracting marine science to Gloucester knows we need more than a port.  We also need a thriving cultural economy in order to attract the workers that power marine science.  Most of these workers are young, single PhDs who work very long hours and want to go out after work — and on weekends — for food, drink and music.  They want to feel surrounded by culture.  These people think they want to live in Cambridge.  What they may not know is that Gloucester has a burgeoning cultural economy.  Just look at all the live music available this weekend — and it’s supposed to be the dead of winter!

We’ve got momentum.  But in order to grow a sustainable economy for Gloucester’s long-term, we have to grow our cultural economy a lot more.  That’s where you come in.  Think of Gloucester FIRST when planning what to do at night and on weekends.  Not sure where to eat?  Check out this HUGE list of restaurants.  Check the live music schedule.  You’ll likely find music for every taste.  Want to enrich your life and the lives of your kids?  Check out this impressive list of galleries, studios, museums, theatres, etc.  Think you need to drive to the mall?  STOP!  Check this out and think again.

The secret to growing our cultural economy without losing our soul is to honor our past and embrace our future.  That’s precisely what Fred Bodin does.  His store honors our past by helping to keep the core of our history and culture alive.  And now, he’s taken to filming the future.  Here he is filming Jon Butcher with Dave Brown, Dave Mattacks and Wolf Ginandes at Jalapenos on Tuesday singing Sam Cooke’s classic Change is Gonna Come — how perfect it that!  Boston rock star Jon Butcher moved to Gloucester.  Let’s get out and support his decision, prove him right, boost our cultural economy and — most importantly — have a blast doing it!

Just to be safe, you might want to look up at about 2:25pm today, so you don’t get hit like the folks in Russia did earlier this morning

Scientists are still trying to figure out what happened here . . .

Watch the Asteroid 2012 DA14 LIVE as it passes by Earth today. NASA will broadcast LIVE Video of the asteroid beginning at 2pm (click here) when it passes closer to earth than the GPS satellite you use to find your way around Boston. They say nobody on Earth is in danger . . .

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