What’s going on guys?

site stuff

I’ve successfully changed hosting providers from the awful and overpriced Powweb to the fairly priced and not too shabby NearlyFreeSpeech.net thanks to a recommendation by my dear friend Berklee. They’re a small hosting company that offers web hosting services on a ‘pay as you go’ system. With no early contracts, I figured I would try them out, see if I like them, and then see where I go from there.

If my traffic stays the same, I estimate that a year of hosting from them would cost me roughly $20. What a steal!

You can still get to my site from both runawaysquirrels.com and nakedsushi.net. It’s probably confusing having two URLs and two ‘site names’ whatever that means, but I still can’t decide on keeping just one.

iphone stuff

My work came out with their new, spiffy, iPhone app! If you like reading and you like keeping track of your books and seeing what other people are reading and you have an iPhone, give it a go. It’s free.

I’ve also been playing a lot of Plants vs. Zombies on the iPhone. Even though the slowdown gets pretty bad in the later levels when there are tons of zombies and projectiles on screen, it’s still playable and the game is still a blast to play. I just wish it didn’t take so long to load.

Project365, Flickr, and more

My friend Jessica showed me the Project 365 iPhone app (iTunes link) which inspired me to finally try my hand at Project 365 this year. In a nutshell, it’s taking one picture for every day of the year so that at the end of the year, I have a picture diary. The main hurdle that kept me from partaking in it previously was the effort involved not in taking pictures, but plugging in my camera every day and downloading the picture from it. Now, thanks to the iPhone and the ease of uploading to flickr from it, the workflow is streamlined enough for it to only take a minute or two.

The first step is to take the picture, which can be done directly through the Project365 app, but I typically take a picture using a separate iPhone app (Camerabag or ShakeIt) and just pick that picture from the library.

Then, I send it to my flickr upload-by-email address. There’s more information on it here on flickr’s site. Anything I send to that email address will get uploaded to my flickr account.

Finally, I created a set for Project365 in Flickr to organize all my pictures. It’s the most manual part of it because I need to move individual pictures into there, but really, it’s not so hard to do it in batch every week or so.

As a bonus, I also have flickr2twitter activated on my flickr account, which gives me a second email address that I can email pictures to. Any pictures I send there will not only be uploaded to my flickr, but a tweet will also be created out of my subject line with a link to the picture. That way, I can tweet pictures but still have it hosted on my flickr account instead of it being lost somewhere in twitpic or some other server.

PushGmail is Better Than GPush

pushgmailPreviously, I wrote about GPush for the iPhone, an app that offers push notification.  It kind of worked, but it wasn’t perfect.  There were times where it would just completely stop working and I’d have to reset the program and reactivate my account in order for it to work.  I also didn’t like that it would bring you to the in-browser gmail webapp instead of just the native mail.app on the phone.

Enter PushGmail. It does several things that I like.  It just plain works — no need to fiddle around every week or so to get it working again.  It also goes straight to the mail.app when users click or slide on the notification.  This part isn’t perfect because it opens up mail.app’s compose page, but that’s more Apple’s fault than the app’s.

Even though Google has released official support for push notification through Microsoft’s Exchange server, it didn’t work that well when I first tried it. There was a noticeable delay between when an email reached my inbox and when the push notification was activated.  It defeats the whole purpose of instant email notification.  Also, doing it through the official Google way only supports one account.  I usually only check one account, so it doesn’t matter to me, but it may be a deal-breaker for some.

Until Google fixes their server, PushGmail is probably the best and most simple choice.

PushGmail $1.99(site)