Thursday, September 26, 2013

KOMO News Radio's Afternoons w/Tom Hutyler: "iOS 7 Makes Users Sick" - 26 September 2013 (KOMO-AM/FM)

If you're in Seattle, today during your drive home on KOMO Newsradio, you may have heard me talking about how iOS 7, the latest version of Apple's iPhone and iPad operating system is literally making some user's sick.

No, I'm not referring to the hours it took you to download... or your empty bank balance after upgrading to a new iPhone 5C or 5S this past weekend-- but sick from the transition animations built into the most popular software upgrade of all time.

Also, we touch on a security update to iOS 7, out today, version 7.0.2 which you should download if you haven't already.

Listen to my report on the subject with KOMO Newsradio's Tom Hutyler and let me know what you think.  (MP3)

Is iOS7 giving you nausea?





Friday, August 23, 2013

Schlage Touchscreen Deadbolt: Strong lock for NW lifestyles

For the active Northwest family, keeping your home secure while constantly heading out to enjoy the outdoors can become problematic quickly.

Schlage Touchscreen Deadbolt
Enter the Schlage Touchscreen Deadbolt. Its sleek pad comes to life with a quick tap. This convenient security device contains the convenience of a touchscreen with the strength and confidence of Schlage, a brand known for security.

After the fine folks at Schlage graciously sent me a device for my own home, I was excited to replace our standard builder-provided, generic, deadbolt with this connected solution.

The installation process was relatively straightforward, even for the novice DIY’er. I hate to admit that I did consult the instructions a few times, but someone experienced with installing locks and deadbolts could likely leave the surprisingly easy-to-read instructions in the package. I had mine installed in less than 25 minutes. I suspect if you’re installing more than one (say, on a back door or side access area), you could have a few minutes off subsequent installs.

You won’t, however, want to ignore the directions when it comes to programming the Schlage Touchscreen Deadbolt. With capabilities such as holding up to 30 programmable codes, it’s perfect for guests, housekeepers and neighbors that need temporary access.
Given our front door is on the first level, I’ve assigned custom codes to various friends and family members to save myself a trip downstairs to let them in. (Sure, call me lazy- but technology is supposed to make our lives easier? :-) )

In addition to the custom codes – that can be easily tracked – the lock has sensitivity-adjustable alarms. The alert can act as a deterrent for break-ins making me feel secure that my home is protected – and ensure my friends won’t be left banging on my door for too long if they come for a surprise visit.

Within about a week I was adding and removing codes without consulting the directions—but the power of this smart home security device was really taken to the next level with its z-wave compatibility.



Nexia Bridge
As if the lock isn’t loaded enough with features for you, the Touchscreen Deadbolt connects to your home automation system like Nexia Home Intelligence. By using the Nexia Bridge, your Nexia system’s workhorse, you can access your lock via an internet-connected device. Unlock your front door with your phone or Ipad, program codes remotely, keep track of who has entered your house and when, and receive text alerts about alarm triggers or activation—all from a simple and intuitive interface.

While the power of the Schlage Touchscreen Deadbolt was further maximized with the addition of the Nexia Bridge, for many households the smart, strong lock will provide convenience all by itself. Imagine a world without remembering or losing your house keys!

Find yours in a variety of custom finishes and two distinct styles and a variety of finishes to match your d├ęcor at Amazon.com, HomeDepot.com, Lowes.com, or other hardware stores for around $199. (The optional Nexia Bridge is available from the same sources under $100 with a reasonable $9/month subscription price.)








Wednesday, March 20, 2013

KING-TV's New Day Northwest w/Margaret Larson: "Travel Tech 2013" - 20 March 2013 (KING-TV)


As we hit the road this spring on adventures by plane, train, and automobile- there are various devices that will make your vacation or business trip more pleasant. Here, as featured on KING 5's New Day Northwest, are some travel tech recommendations:




Slingbox 500: No more missing your favorite TV shows while you travel! Watch your own TV, from back home, via. the internet using the Slingbox 500 and players available for smartphones, tablets, and portable computers. Pause, replay, and fast-forward your own DVR as if you were sitting in your living room. No monthly subscriptions or usage fees once you’re online! ($299slingbox.com)
Lytro cameraThe innovative camera that lets you adjust the image’s focus AFTER you get home!  It's great for travelers because it can be operated with one hand and requires just one click to capture a picture-no focusing required, so you never miss a moment. ($400+lytro.com)
Globalgig:With a bag full of connected gadgets, you’re going to be scrounging around for a WiFi hotspot on the road. With the Globalgig international hotspot, you can stay connected anywhere there’s wireless data in the world. With flat-rate pricing and simple operation, you can ump online with up to five devices. ($99 (device) $17/mo. (1GB service),globalgig.com)
Computer Apparel Laptop/Tablet Hoodie case: Sure there are plenty of laptop cases and slipcovers out there… but this one really caught my eye. Disguised as your favorite hoodie, this case is made from soft cotton sweatshirt material. Made for laptops up to 15” and tablets such as the iPad. ($40+computer-apparel.com)
Schlage Touchscreen Deadbolt: The touchscreen deadbolt will alert you when family members, the housekeeper, or other authorized guests use their unique code to enter your house. Part of the Nexia Home Intelligence family, you can control lights and open/close blinds making your house look “lived in” even when you’re thousands of miles away.($199+, http://www.schlage.com/)
UClear HBC220Uclear creates a wireless Bluetooth-powered conversation without cell phones or crazy radios. Simple helmet-mountable devices create a web of communications on-the-fly and is the perfect solution for staying in touch with family on spring adventures. ($250uclear-digital.com)

What are your must have gadgets for the road? Leave your recommendations below or "like" my Facebook Page to comment!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Live @ 7: Cybersecurity - 19 February 2013 (KGW-TV)

On Monday it was @BurgerKing. Today? @Jeep

Apple, Facebook, Twitter, major media outlets and even government agencies have admitted to being hacked. While some are pointing to the Chinese government, there’s a consensus that cybersecurity is a topic we’ll discussing for the foreseeable future.

Tonight, on The Square Live @ 7 w/Stephanie Stricklen, we tackled the topic:

No doubt it’s been a rough week for these brands on Twitter. While these calculated attacks targeted specific brands, they serve as an important reminder for everyone from major companies to individuals, that online security is an important topic.

To make matters, some might say, worse, MTV & sister-company BET got in on the action through an unfortunate PR stunt. The “fake” attack today following the Jeep compromise made light of the attack against Jeep & Burger King. One can certainly see the temptation–Jeep gained approximately 10,000 new followers (the account typically gets a few hundred per day according to twittercounter.com).

When I consult with major brands, we change the passwords often, use secure hard-to-guess codewords and remain cautious of who has those keys. If you are a brand and value your online reputation—take a look at your own strategy much as I’m confident Twitter is also doing.

This is certainly not a problem limited to major companies-- I advise even small businesses and individuals to have a security plan, one they review often, and don’t be afraid to ask for help.

If they’re NOT reviewing them today—they will (or SHOULD) be by tomorrow.

While we may not have the budgets of the Federal Gov’t or a fortune 500 company—nor, hopefully, the risk that goes along with it—there are definitely some simple things we can do to stay protected:

  1. change passwords often
  2. avoid common passwords
  3. don’t reuse passwords
  4. never share access information
  5. watch where you login
  6. have a security plan

What is your cybersecurity plan?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

KING-TV's New Day Northwest w/Margaret Larson: CES Recap - 27 June 2012 (KING-TV)

Check out the gadgets I brought back to KING 5's New Day Northwest with Margaret Larson on the Thursday, January 10th show:

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Live @ 7: Live from CES 2013 - 8 January 2013 (KGW-TV)

Here's my appearance on KGW's "Live @ 7" w/Stephanie Stricklen from the 2013 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, NV.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Apple's iPhone 5: Launch Day Recap

It was a late night / early morning for those needing to have the latest in a series of Apple iPhones. Today's launch of the iPhone 5 marked the sixth time fans have lined up to own the latest smartphone. And those willing to camp out overnight, and in many cases MUCH longer, did not disappoint. As I've done in the past, I checked out the line for news partners FM News 101 (KXL-FM, Portland) and KGW Newschannel 8 (NBC, Portland). Here's a collection of reports from the (long!) morning: LIVE with Portland's Morning News on FM News 101 KXL: 8:19am. Listen to my reports weekly on FM News 101 KXL. I'll have more on the story tonight at 7pm with Live at 7 with Stephanie Stricklen on KGW-TV.