Archives For Technology


iphone6conceptrender

It’s been four days since the iPhone was officially released. My iPhone 5 had a rough life. I didn’t use a case and I was on my third screen glass which was broken. So I decided that I would get the new 6 and I got it the day it was released. I’ve never had new technology immediately. I’m usually late.

I first struggled as to if would get the 6 or the 6 Plus.  The extra features in the video camera on the Plus appealed to me. I tried for days  leading up to the release to find someone who had at least a dummy model of the Plus so I could see how it fit in my hand. It never happened. Friday September 19th I stood in my local Verizon store waiting for my turn at the desk. While waiting I did some quick research. I found out the size of the iPhone 6 Plus was almost identical to that of the Galaxy Note 3. I could get my hand on the demo Note 3 in the store and it was HUGE. There was no way that with my hands I could do any one handed operation with the Plus so my decision was made.  I would get the iPhone 6.

About forty five minutes later I walked out of the store, new 64 GB iPhone 6 in hand. Here are my first impressions.

  • I love the size. The Phone (in a Trident Case) fit Perfectly in my hand.  It’s still really big compared to the 5.  It’s still a stretch for me to do some things one handed but I love it.
  • The display is extremely sharp. I can’t imagine videos being any better.
  • The camera takes exquisite pictures.
  • The internal speaker is robust. Great sound.
  • The internet speed is noticeably  faster than my old 5.
  • I could have updated my old 5 to IOS 8 but did not. I love IOS 8 for so many reasons. One thing I really like is the response when using voice to text, which I do a lot with texting. IOS 8 displays each word as it is spoken.
  • Phone calls are crisper.

WHAT I DO NOT LIKE ABOUT THE IPHONE 6……… Drum Rolllllllllll.    The Lock Button. The lock button has been moved from the top of the phone to the right side. After four days I’m still reaching a finger to the top to lock my phone. I know I will get used to it but it seems to me to be an unnecessary change. Change just for the sake of change.

Bottom Line: So far so good, I really like the iPhone 6. I know this has not been a technical review. If you want that go to CNET or some other tech site. This is just me talking to you. Be Blessed.

 

Screen Shot 2012-09-18 at 8.24.19 PMThe last couple of weeks have been very busy, the wedding of my daughter, a two day get-away with Felicia and then two and a half days at a men’s retreat along with regular sermon preparation and more. Now I’ve been getting  back in the saddle at the office and church ministry. During all of it I’ve been working (in my limited spare time) on a new project.

I’ve made it my intention to do a daily podcast that will be called Start Your Day Right. It will be a 10 to 15 minute devotion with some scripture, encouraging words and a time of prayer. It’s quite an undertaking and a bit overwhelming, the thought that I will need to produce five brand new episodes per week, every week.

I think that once I get into the flow of things it won’t really be a big deal. I did a Ten minute radio broadcast for years and it’s about the same amount of work.

I have actually already created the web site where the podcast will be hosted and the first episode is in the can. I’m ready to go live except for one problem.

I want to have the podcast live on iTunes and other podcast host. I’ve done everything that I know to do and still can’t get iTunes to display my content correctly. I’m determined. I can’t get much done at home because of my limited Internet availability so I have to work in the early morning and late afternoon hours in my office at the church.

I will get it done. I am determined.  I plan to have Start Your Day Right live on iTunes my Monday September 24th.  Stay Tuned

 

UPDATE: I DID GET MY PODCAST SUBMITTED TO ITUNES. NOW I’M WAITING FOR APPROVAL. I’LL LET YOU KNOW WHEN IT IS LIVE.

bluehost-logo2

My blogging journey has moved me from blogspot, where I started to wordpress.com a hosted blog site and now to wordpress.org a self hosted site.

WordPress.com the hosted site is a great place for the individual who just wants to write and have someone read it. It’s free and there are some great looking themes available, but there are some limitations especially when it comes to monetizing your site.

I changed to wordpress.org so that I wouldn’t have to deal with the limitations. That meant I had to find a hosting site for my WordPress blog.  I saw that many in the world of blogging were recommending Bluehost. As a mater of fact one of my favorite bloggers did and that was enough for me to start investigating.

Bluehost is a great place for your site and any other file storage you might want to do. For $6.95 per month I received unlimited file storage and unlimited domain management. There are also tons of tools at the Bluehost site for making  your web site better. I’m still learning but I’m excited about it.

The unlimited file storage is a great tool. What it means is that you can store anything there. It doesn’t have to be related to you web site. It it’s digital it can be stored on your Bluehost site.

I have used the customer support at Bluehost and they have been awesome.

I heard Andy Stanley say in a podcast, “Leadership is learning what you need to know so that you can do what you need to do.”. I’m learning a ton about the tools available for web development and hosting.

We are in the process now of developing a new Website for the church where I pastor using WordPress (free) with a theme we purchased ($79) and Bluehost hosting ($6.95 per month).  The days of needing to spend thousands even hundreds of dollars to have someone develop your church website are gone.

I have three recommendations for you. Check out these sites.

 

 

 

frustrated-businessman

Sometimes learning something new can be fun and exciting. Other times frustrating and trying.

Andy Stanley said, ‘Leadership is learning what you need to know so that you can do what you need to do.”

I started doing my blog in earnest a few weeks ago and my traffic has increased on a nice pace. July was the month I really started putting effort into it and I had 540 page views. I know that views are not the best way to determine traffic but according to all the experts I’ve read it’s the second best indicator. The first being unique visitors and I have not yet learned how to get that info.  Even “unique visitors” can be unreliable if a large number of your viewers are regularly deleting history and cookies on their computer.

The second best indicator is views. Again, the deleting of history and cookies can skew the numbers. The worst indicator to use is HITS. A hit can be anything I do on my page myself from loading a picture to changing a post. One visit from me (the administrator) can create many HITS.

Having said all of that my traffic did increase quite a bit from 540 views in July to 2,800 in August. Even with the unreliability of the numbers that’s a pretty good increase.

I’m working really hard (in my free time) to create a site that not only looks professional but also adds value to the reader. I’ve done most of the things that I have found out are important. The first thing I had to do was set up an account with a hosting company so I would have a place to put my site. I chose Bluehost. Apparently it’s one of the best for the money out there. The next step was to transition from a free, hosted site at WordPress.com to a pay, self hosted site at WordPress.org.

Bluehost looks like it’s going to be a great tool. It’s loaded with features and now I have to spend the time trying to learn how to use them.

My goal is to add one PODCAST per week to my site. I worked very hard for a couple of hours last week creating and editing a PODCAST that is actually sermon audio from a message I preached. Now the dilemma is that I can’t upload it directly to my WordPress Dashboard because it’s too large. The good news is that at Bluehost I have unlimited storage space. Now I’m trying to learn how to upload the file to Bluehost and then get it to show up on my site. It can be done. I know that for sure. I just have not been able to figure out HOW. I’m frustrated because I decided that I would get it all figured out today. It being a holiday and things being quite I decided I could dedicate most of my day to this process. I’ve still not got it done.

Now it’s 4:40pm. I’m tired and have a headache. I’m going to have to call it day without success. I will not quit however. I will get it done. Guess I should have called customer support.

Thank you for being a part of JeffScurlock.com.

I love my iPhone, iPad and MacBook Pro. I am smitten with Apple products. Steve Jobs is no longer with us but I am totally impressed with what he created at Apple.

I love finding new apps for my stuff that assist me in my daily quest to be more productive. Some time ago I downloaded the RunKeeper app to my iPhone. I’m not sure why I did it because I WAS NOT RUNNING.

In the last 50 days I have lost 51 pounds and suddenly my energy level has shot through the roof. Yesterday I did something I haven’t done in a long time. I went walking for the sake of exercise. That’s right. I walked.

I started my day by weighing in at the local fitness center and then I struck out on a walk down one of the primary streets in my small town. I walked three miles.

I remembered that I had this lonely app on the last page of my iPhone apps called RunKeeper.  I opened the app and hit the start button then began my walk.  As I walked I listened to a Michael Hyatt podcast to keep my mind busy and to take my mind off of the exercise. I was well into my walk with I was startled by a strange female voice that told me I was five minutes into my walk, the distance that I had accomplished and the rate at which I was walking. Wow! That was pretty cool. Five minutes later I receive another update and then at every five minute mark until my walk was completed. When finished I knew exactly how far I had walked, the time it took and the rate in which I did it.

Later in the day when I opened my email I had a message in my inbox from RunKeeper with the statistics of my walk, a graph to show future walks and other information.

When you start a new activity you are given many choices as to what kind of activity it will be. Running, Cycling, mountain biking, walking, hiking, downhill skiing, cross-crounty skiing, snowboarding, skating, swimming, wheelchair, and more.

I feel sure that I haven’t yet scratched the surface as to all the ways this cool little app is going to help me. I did though want to tell you about it.  And by the way, I did go to the RunKeeper web site and yes it is available for those of you who are less fortunate and own Droid devices. LOL!

What apps are you finding that are helping you be more productive?

Follow this link to check out RunKeeper

Follow this link to find the best book that I have ever read, WRECKED by Jeff Goins.

Follow this link to find my book, The Eye of A Needle.

Over the course of the last two years we have been planning weddings. Our first daughter was married in July of 2011 and our youngest will be married in three weeks.

Over the last two years I’ve heard the word Pinterest come up possibly hundreds of times in conversation. “Oh” Felicia might say to one of our daughters, “I found a great recipe for a new vegetable dip on Pinterest today.” Our youngest daughter is really into crafts and having things that look really expensive for a fraction of the cost. She mentions Pinterest daily.

One day while checking up on Facebook I saw where the wife of one of my friends updated her status with something like, “Pinterest makes me want to build a log cabin out of sausage.”

Anything that I’ve heard anyone say about Pinterest was said by a female and it was on the subjects of decorating, cooking, crafts, weddings, etc.  Basically it was a about things that quite frankly I wasn’t interested in.

A few days ago I was reading a post by one of my favorite bloggers, Michael Hyatt and he said something about Pinterest. “What? Pinterest is for girls,” was my thought.

A couple of nights ago while sitting in my new recliner with computer in lap I decided to venture into Pinterest. What I discovered was an amazing place to organize my favorite web content, Internet resources and more.

Pinterest is an online bulletin board. You can create as many of these boards as you like with whatever classification you want to give them. Then anything you find online that you want to go back to or you want to share with friends is pinned on a board of your choosing.

You also have the opportunity to follow other people (like Twitter) and have quick access to whatever they are posting on their boards or you can just do searches to see what other people are finding. If you find something on one of the boards belonging to a stranger or a friend that you like you can re-pin it on one of your boards.

I’m just getting started with my Pinterest experience. I have four boards. “Blogs” is my board where I post access to blogs that I like that I want to share with others.  “Organization” is my board where I post information to help me or other people stay organized. “Technology” is my board where I post, well…. information about technology. And last (for right now) I have a board called “Books I Recommend”.

If you want to see my boards FOLLOW THIS LINK TO MY PINTEREST PAGE, or the screencast shot of my Pinterest page below.

Check it out.

Have you used Pinterest? Do you have any advice for my readers or me? Leave a comment.

My blog is hosted at wordpress.com. WordPress.com is a great place for hosting all kinds of information and I highly recommend them for anyone who just wants to put information on the internet for free. There are some limitations and those limitations are affecting some things I want to do with my site in the future. I won’t go into all of that now.

What I will tell you is that I’ve come to understand that I have to move my site from wordpress.com, which is hosted, for free to worpress.org. The good news is that at wordpress.org I will have more freedom as to what I can do and accomplish with my site.  The bad news is….

  • At wordpress.org I will have to arrange my own hosting which will involve a monthly fee.
  • All the good stuff that wordpress.com did for me like backing up my site, protecting me from spam and overall maitinence will now be up to me.
  • And the worst part is two fold.
    • I have to move everything from wordpress.com to wordpress.org.
    • I may loose my subscribers and have to start completely over. I’m not sure about that part yet.

Sometimes life growth requires that we first go backwards. It’s like pruning a tree. It looks sad and barren but within a few months it has grown beyond where it was originally.

So I have to take a step back. This will be my last post for a while. I don’t know how long it will take me to get the new site up. It could be anywhere from a few hours to a few days. Next time I do an update it will be at my new site.

The new site will look very similar to this one and you will find it with the same www.jeffscurlock.com.

What do you think about this story?

PLEASE HELP ME BY SUBSCRIBING TO THIS POST. THE RSS LINK IS AT THE TOP AND THE EMAIL SUBSCRIPTION FORM IS TO THE RIGHT.  THANKS!!!!

There’s a lot  going on in my life and the life of my family right now. I’m sure that many of you have the same busy schedule that I have.  It just so happens that in the last few weeks my first grandchild was born (more about Jackson in a post yet to come) and we have been preparing for the wedding of our second daughter.

This evening we had a wedding shower at our church. At our church showers for people who attend regularly are a whole church Sunday evening event. Lauren and Trevor were blessed with some great stuff. The cleanup crew is tiding up the kitchen and I sit here in my office typing a message to my blog readers.

I have some ideas for some up coming blogs. One that I am particularly excited about is going to be called “How to stay married to the same person for a long, long time.” That one may take more than one post but I began thinking about it as Felicia and I celebrated our thirty-third anniversary this week and yes we were married very young, nineteen and seventeen.

I’ve also been studying and working toward the production of a podcast. I thought I would get started on that this afternoon so I hooked some equipment up to my MacBook Pro, opened up Garage Band and started working. The sound quality was HORRIBLE and while I may not be able (on my budget) to put together a studio quality production,  I’m not going to put anything out that sounds that bad.  So I began some research on a mic that can hook directly to my Mac and bypass all the other stuff. Right now it looks like I’m going to order a Blue Microphones Snowball from Amazon click on this link to see it. It’s going to cost less than $70 and every review I have read and watched gives it high praise. If you think I’m making a big mistake and have any advice I’d love to hear from you.

I would also love to hear from you with suggestions for blog post. What do you want me to write about? Seriously? Let me give you some parameters.  I am a pastor who loves to read Christian non-fiction, leadership and John Grisham books. I’m into life coaching and life in general. Ask me a question. Ask me what you think are life’s important questions and let’s see if I can answer them.

I hope to hear from you!!!

Click here to get a copy of my book, The Eye of A Needle in the Kindle Edition.

Click here to get a copy of my book, The Eye of A needle in paperback.

Click here to see the most recent book that I have completed, Crush It by Gary Vanyerchuk. it’s a great book about Internet business.

 

 

 

I love quotes. I love to hear and say what someone else has said.  A good quote from a respected leader gives credence to a position.  I’ve never been very good at keeping quotes because I’m just not that organized. I heard John Maxwell talk many times of how he has kept quotes on 3X5 cards since he was seventeen years old. I admire him for that. Again, I’m just not that organized.

Thankfully the technology age has and is bringing us tools that make being organized easier.  I am trying my best, as much as finances will allow to stay as close to the technology wave as possible.  I recently went completely Apple with my computing. I started when I received an iPad a couple of years ago for Christmas. When it was time to get a new phone I left Blackberry and went with an iPhone and recently changed from a PC to a MacBook Pro.

One of the great tools I have become acquainted with over the last few months is an application called Evernote.  I had an Evernote app on my iPhone for months before I started learning how powerful this tool is.

Now keeping quotes are a breeze.  I just put them in the Evernote app, which I have on my MacBook, my iPad and my iPhone. Regardless of which device I use to input quotes or anything else for that matter it automatically syncs with the other devices. Now the quotes I save (easily) are always at my fingertips. No digging through card files (sorry John Maxwell).

I have to thak Michael Hyatt the former CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishing for making me aware in one of his blogs of just how useful Evernote is.