Today I got a nice surprise in that my phone received an update! I know, it’s a silly thing to get excited about but still, I love the little goodies that come with the software refresh. This time, I am most happy with the option to have a different wallpaper for the home screen and lock screens. I actually used to be able to do it when I had a different home screen launcher, but these days I am too lazy to add all the fancy stuff to my phone. I like to keep it streamlined (which is why I have a Moto G that runs a barebones version of Android) and simple. But if that stock experience includes cool animations and goodies with Android N, then it’s a win-win!
This is so cool! The future is here. 😃 And it works in real-time, with the translated text automagically appearing over the original like some hyped-up photoshop wizardry. Take a look at this photo I took of the feature in action:
While Mariko is preparing the New Year’s osechi feast, I am in charge taking care of the kids and running other errands. That included buying a new hard drive for one that is on the blink, taking Bay to get his haircut, dropping Koa off at his friend’s house, going to the pet store, dropping Bay off at the mall, picking up our dog Lani from the sitter, changing out water from the aquarium, giving Lani a bath, cleaning the battery terminals on my minivan, and picking up dinner (In N Out, yay!).
I got a lot done, but one of the fun things I did was to buy a new phone! My Moto G2 is getting really slow, and Mariko and the kids have been telling me to upgrade for a while now, so I finally pulled the trigger and ordered a new Moto G4. There is a good deal on Amazon right now – the 32 GB version for $189 (normally $229). I really like my G2 but it only has 8 GB of internal storage so I have run out of space for apps. And it’s not like I have a lot of apps, but the standard Google apps have gotten so big that they take up almost all of the internal memory!
I’m pretty sure 32 GB should last me a while, and of course there’s the SD card so I can pop in my 64 GB card for my music and photos.
The phone arrives in a couple days… can’t wait!
Today’s photo is of some carrots that Mariko carved into beautiful flower shapes. They will be part of the osechi, or Japanese new years food.
For my birthday this year, my parents bought me a new Kindle Paperwhite. It is awesome! I’ve had an older Kindle “Keyboard” version for a while now (I blogged about it here) but have wanted a new Paperwhite version because of the upgrades.
Here is a list of advantages of new Kindle PaperWhite (which I named “Echo”):
Backlight: Not only can I read at night without the light on (which bothered Mariko), but the backlight adds some contrast for increased readability in daylight
Higher resolution: The text looks sharper and the display is more like a printed page
Smaller: Although the screen size is the same as my old Kindle, the bezel is smaller and I can “palm” it with one hand
X-Ray: I can find out more about the characters in the story by tapping on a name
It’s another cold one here in Austin and tonight it will get down to just above freezing. I think next week it will warm back up with Wednesday’s high back into the mid-70s! I’ll be happy to have the warm temperatures again since I can’t stand too much cold.
The other day I started up my old Dell Venue 8 Pro tablet, which is a device that I don’t use much anymore since I got my Chromebook. For a while I used the tablet thinking it would be a great blogging device but it’s just too small, and even with a bluetooth keyboard, the typing experience was lacking. It’s a nice tool for consuming information, but not creating.
A while back I upgraded the OS from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10, and while successful, there were a few problems. The battery life suffered and the performance wasn’t so great as compared to Windows 8.1. Also, Windows 10 took up so much space that it only left me with about 1.5 GB free on the 32 GB internal drive. This is not enough space to apply the regular Windows maintenance updates!
So, I decided to downgrade the OS back to Windows 8.1 and I am so glad I did. The speed is back, and the tablet experience of 8.1 is much better than 10. I have to admit that on of this little tablet’s best features is that the lockscreen can display saved photos. It’s a pretty sweet-looking digital photo frame!
Honestly, though, my other devices are much better for the type of things I do, for instance, my Chromebook for blogging/typing, the Kindle Paperwhite for reading, and the phone for browsing Instagram. I think it may be good for Netflix since the screen is so nice, but it’s a shame that I don’t have much more use for it.