Chris Croft's Personal Blog

June 27, 2012

PS Collection part 4

Filed under: Uncategorized — chriscroft @ 11:09 pm
Reprints from some of my old email tips of the month in case you missed them:
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A couple of time saving gadgets:
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I’d really recommend a cordless phone headset so you can type using both hands while on the phone, or walk around while on the phone;
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and also you may be suited to Z-pen which allows you to write on any paper and then, later, plug your pen into your computer and see a copy of everything you wrote, on your screen (with OCR software it can even convert your writing to text, fairly reliably).
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dane-Elec-DA-DP1-01GC5-R-Zpen/dp/B0013JHJWE
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The more upmarket one records as well…
smart-pen http://www.amazon.co.uk/Livescribe-2GB-Pulse-Smartpen-APA-00002/dp/B001AAN4PW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=officeproduct&qid=1254829890&sr=8-1
records the speaker as you write notes in meetings or at lectures, and if you click on the notes it replays whatever was being said at that moment – amazing! A big long recording of a meeting is pretty useless, you’ll never listen to it again, but if you can dip into the key point in a presentation or a negotiation then that could be really useful I reckon.
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PS – Listening to Free and Bad Company today. Is Paul Rogers the greatest male voice in rock, ever? Let me know!   (The female accolade must go to Annie Lennox – I’m not even going to discuss that!!)   and while on spotify, check out the Gotan Project…  intriguing….
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PPS – Is the signal strength on Orange getting worse, or is it my imagination? Everywhere I stay seems to have no phone reception. I’m seriously thinking of changing to O2 when my contract comes up for renewal in a few weeks. You can take your number with you you know.
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PPPS – no ticket ever arrived for the frontal double camera flash.   Whew!
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PS – On Spotify I am enjoying Public Image, The Durutti Column, and Wishbone Ash (particularly the classic album Argus) – it’s my antidote to all the Christmas music that’s in the shops
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PPS – Find out what sort of person you are with my lifestyle diagnostic http://www.online-time-management.co.uk/demos/lifestyle/lifestyle_diagnostic.html
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PPPS – Fed up with Turkey? OK, maybe not yet, but when you are, try Chili Mitt Oeuf, the brilliantly named recipe from my friend Pete Baylis where you put one hardboiled egg (obviously without the shell) per person into the chilli con carne, whole, they can cut it up themselves. A touch of class!
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PPPPS – test your TV remote batteries by pointing it at your mobile phone camera, and you’ll see it shine. The phone camera can see infra red light.
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PPPPPS – when coiling up wires or ropes for storage, (or computer cables, USB, Ethernet, ipod, etc) I always use the Mike Kneller Method. Don’t coil them up because they’ll only get tangled, and twisted, and can tangle with others next to them, but instead fold them in half again and again until about 2 feet long (thick cables) or 6” (thin cables like headphones) and then tie the whole thing in an overhand knot. Much neater, can’t get tangled or come undone, and doesn’t involve twisting so unrolls neater – and less risk of damage.
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PPPPPS – when driving and talking using a bluetooth phone headset (yes, it is legal), switch off any air vents that are pointing at you, and you’ll get a much better sound
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PPPPPPS – if you’ve got an external USB hard drive for backing up music photos and data (and everyone should have one) remember to use it every few months, because if left unused they can seize up. I guess it’s the oil dropping down off the bearings or something. Anyway, they like to be used occasionally. Could be bad if your computer crashed so you went to your USB and found it was beggared and you’d therefore lost all your data! I’ve got two and swap them over every month or so, but then I might be a bit OCD…
In fact an update is that now (solid state) memory sticks are getting so cheap you can get one or two or three 32gig ones and stick everything on there.  No moving parts so the safest of all.  And small too!
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PPPPPPPS – I’m really impressed by the iTunes genius function. You select any track you like and then click on the genius button (bottom right) and it makes a play list of similar stuff. You can tell it how many tracks you want (it defaults to 50). It seems to work really well.
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