Apple can be a bit sensitive at times. Apparently they’ve told Newsday to pull a commercial from their website or else they would pull their app from the app store. The video is embedded below (at least until Apple makes Google pull it from YouTube). I guess they don’t like the idea of people smashing their iPad to pieces. I think the video is really funny and actually doesn’t hurt the iPad brand at all, but I’m not Steve Jobs.
Google announced today that they’re going to start experimenting with delivering extremely fast internet directly to people’s homes. As in, 1 Gbps. That’s blazing fast no matter who you are. To put the speed in perspective compare it to my current ISP. I currently have 15 Mbps from Verizon Fios, so Google’s planned service would be 67 times faster than what I have now. That would be incredible. I really, really hope Flower Mound, TX gets early access to this, but I won’t hold my breath.
In their blog announcement, Google said that one of the reasons they’re doing this was to help developers create cool new web services and apps. They wrote:
Next generation apps: We want to see what developers and users can do with ultra high-speeds, whether it’s creating new bandwidth-intensive “killer apps” and services, or other uses we can’t yet imagine.
This afternoon Google released their brand-spanking-new web browser called Chrome. I’ve been using it this afternoon for my normal, day-to-day browsing and web use. My initial take is that it’s a great browser with some room to grow.
I spend most of my time using Google products: Gmail, Google Reader, Google Docs, and search. Overall it seems like the response and load time of these apps is quite a bit faster. No surprise here really, though, since they wrote the software they want their products to work really well on it. I also signed into a couple Yahoo products (mail, Flickr, and Delicious) and they seemed to load really well too, so they didn’t just write an app for their own products.
I did notice a few small bugs. First, I was not able to change or upload a new profile pic. I’m thinking part of the problem is with Facebook’s programming, though, since I’ve had a few issues with the site in Firefox. Also, I was not able to sign into Rhapsody’s web interface. The sign in window would open, but there weren’t any fields that I could enter text into. I’m also going to miss the Delicious bookmarking addon, so that will be an adjustment, too.
Other than those minor annoyances I’m impressed with the browser. I’m planning on using it as my primary browser for the time being, so after a week or so I might be able to give a fuller review of the product. Download it for yourself and give it a try (if you use Windows as your OS, that is).
Ever since I can remember I’ve been a fan of maps. We had a world map on our wall when I was growing up that I would stare at for a long time. Anytime I’ve gone on a road trip I’ve planned out the routes by looking at road maps. I love being on a flight that has a GPS map available in-flight. Very early in my ministry I also made a map of where all the students lived using a big wall map and pushpins.
But about five years ago I really thought there could be a better way to keep track of people on a map. The great thing about having the push pin map was that I could get a feel for where everyone lived and plan events based on that info. The bad part was that in order for it to be useful the pins had to be numbered and anytime someone new came to the ministry it totally threw off the numbers being in alphabetic order.
I tried messing with some software and plotting, but I never liked the end result. Google has since come to my rescue. I recently stumbled across a post at the Official Google Docs Blog giving simple instructions on how to insert a google map gadget into your Google Spreadsheet. All you need is a column of addresses, but it’s very useful to have a second column to describe what the marker on the map is (the gadget calls these the tooltip). Once you have both of these columns the steps are very simple:
Highlight all the cells in both columns.
Click Insert | Gadget …
Click the Add to Spreadsheet button under Map.
Give your map gadget a title.
Click the the check box next to “Last column as tooltip” then click “Apply and close” and your map will appear in your spreadsheet.
OPTIONAL: If you want your map to be bigger click the arrow on the top right corner of the gadget and choose “Move to own sheet…” and it will be as big as the screen will allow.
I made an example of the map that will show up using a list of Chipotle restaurants close to my house. Here it is: