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September 2010
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November 2010

October 2010

Zune vs iPod touch

First I like the Zune pass and Zune software infinitely better than iTunes.

I was in class the other day waiting on kids to finish projects so I could hard and a kid asked in I like a band. Used my Zune to find their greatest hits -downloaded the album -played a few songs and determined that I thought they sucked -deleted it hot on with my life.

While I could have done with some thing similar with pandora I like that it doesn't cost money and done with relative ease.

However not very impressed with Zune apps.

On the other hand, audible books, podcasts and iPhone apps make having the iPod touch worth having. All are better on it.

Yes worth having both.

Windows Phone 7 Dev Conference

We’ve seen just code to make app live but too fast to catch, sure it will be better later.  It’s 11:30 and most of this has been a sales pitch and how to make money on apps.  Not bad, useful in fact, but they are still talking at us.

If you haven’t been reading my blog, my pet peeve lately is that as CS teachers were modeling the worst kind of teaching to each other.  And talking to people is the worse way to teach.

This is cool – sitting next to a Words with Friends developer.  Local kid, went to college here and working here.  Awesome.  Former softie.  (yes, I suck people brains out).


So the rest of the day was talking to us.  <sigh>  But I learned a lot and it was good.


Thursday rocked, and someone made a suggestion that would have made it rock more – having talk to us for half a day and lab half a day would have been better.  I wanted the screen on my screen as I was having seeing theirs.

Now, I had major issues.  I had installed the Expression Studio and the VB 2010 Professional version but the Phone tools wouldn’t installed.  I spent all morning uninstalling everything so I missed most of the lab, but I got most of it set up before the XNA part and just finished debugging it a bit ago.  Basically a twitter app, and it looks very pretty with very little work.  First time I programmed in Blend.

The afternoon went better, we did the first parts of an XNA game and since I’ve taught that to kids, I really grog that process.  I can’t wait until I have time to finish the lab.

I have some really good concrete ideas for some apps, so we’ll see what I can get going.

Windows Phone 7 Dev Conference

I was a bit offended by the fact that there were two Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders greeting people at registration.  I need to talk to one of my favorite teachers about it, because she is a former SMU Dancer, and former Mavericks Dancer (and one of our former students).

The Mascot was cool.  So maybe since the Cowboys and the Cheerleaders are icons it might be okay.

First, there are not a lot of women here, but there are a few.  We’re here to learn about programming, but I am sure that there are non-locals here and having some Dallas icons is okay.  Just wish they had more clothing on, but at the same time, the room is so cold I’m wishing for more clothing myself….

AP online class

The good things:

Lots of good materials and lots of practical advice.

The fact that the presentation will be available for two months.

I also compliment the presenter for keeping up with the back channel.

But talking for two hours - please my students would never let me pull that off nor do i have that much in my head at any one time.

Again thankfully the presentation is supposed to be available for two months.

Not Happy With Apple

So last Saturday night my Mac Mini blew up (literally, I think the noise the power supply made blowing up woke me up.

I took my Mac Mini to the Knox Street Apple store, and as always they took their own sweet time. 

Before I go further, I am an experienced Ham Radio operator (Extra class) and Computer Scientist and I know darn well if a power supply explodes to the point that you can smell the burnt component, more than the power supply is gone.

Now, if they had replaced the Mac Mini on the spot, I would have bought something else, and I was leaning towards a notebook or iPod, hadn't decided. I am quite serious about this.

However, they lost their chance and it gets worse.  i looked up the service status yesterday and it was still showing "Service in Process".  Good news is that it now showing "Service Complete".

I had to call and ask the status on day 7 of the estimated repair.  They did replace the Mac Mini with a new computer BUT they should have called me and told me that they were replacing it as soon as they opened it up.  I NEVER SHOULD HAVE HAD TO CALL!  And the status should have not been showing "In Service", but it should have told me to pick it up.

Very unhappy with the Apple Store experience.

Going to the Windows 7 Development Conference

I’ve been registered for some time, but wasn’t 100% sure I was going.  TCEA is rewriting our TEKS though and adding courses, including a course in writing mobile phone software.  This looks as good as any to get started on that, though I have played with Mobile phone programming with Visual Basic and even a little with Java.

I’ve been trying to get the school to give me the time off for staff development but haven’t gotten anything back.  Plus looking at the new attendance report, it seems we don’t have a Staff Development code that doesn’t dock days anyway.  Weird.  I already mentioned to Alfred that I figured one of the reasons it hadn’t been approved  was budget issues, and I suspect I’m right again.

Looking forward to some training on something new!

Still Frustrated with Apple

I posted last weekend that my Mac Mini blew up.  Apparently the power supply is no longer working.  The device smells burned and won’t power up.

Took it to the Apple Store and they told me the repair would take 5-7 days.  It’s morning of day 5, and no signs of repair. 

Here’s what I expected to take place:

Be given a refurbished Mac Mini on the spot, and have to restore my data from Time Machine

If that had occurred, I would have bought a new device on the spot, either a notebook, an iPad or an iPhone, not sure what I would have gone with.  Probably the new iPhone because my Windows Mobile phone is driving me nuts.

I really liked the Mac Mini until it blew up.  It kind of scares me now, and I probably won’t leave it on over night any more, I keep wondering about it catching the house on fire after it blew up.

I also don’t like their service – I paid extra for Apple Care and honestly did expect faster service.  They could at least keep spare supplies in stock.  What is standard turn around on Notebooks, etc?