push present*

Last June, while chilling in Oxford, Jen told us about the Ringly. I love shiny things, technology, AND impulse purchases, so I gleefully hopped on the bangwagon and ordered one from Jen’s couch.

Yesterday, my Ringly finally arrived. There were some manufacturing hiccups along the way, which added to the delivery time – and as you may know, waiting is my number one pet peeve. Still, the amount of time it took to get my Ringly was nothing compared to how long it took to get my Pebble, so I can’t really complain – especially if the extra time went into making it even better. As much as I want things now now now, I do appreciate quality. Having something work properly out of the box is the best.

I thought about making an unboxing video, but then I remembered that I really hate video so you get words instead. Here is my initial Ringly review:

Dude, this thing is awesome. For starters, it’s gorgeous – I don’t wear large rings because of my tiny elf hands, but the Ringly doesn’t look out of place at all. I chose the black onyx version, and wear it on my right hand:

my ringly in "stargazer"

my ringly in “stargazer”, please ignore the alligator state of my hands

In order to get the most out of your Ringly, you need to install the companion app. Without it, it’s just a ring. The app is available for Android and iOS phones (sorry, Windows/Blackberry/tablet only users), and is free. It’s a simple app without a lot of clutter, which the iOS designer in me appreciates:

IMG_0460

Each line indicates the colour of the notification light, and the dots represent the number of vibrations. There are 5 colours (red, yellow, green, blue, purple) and 4 buzz patterns (1-4 buzzes), plus the option for no light or no vibration. The picture above shows the notifications I have set up, but there are other apps that work with Ringly such as Calendar, Tumblr, Pinterest, Google Hangouts, Vine, and more.

The notification light on the ring is located in the middle on the side, and is bright. My ring also has a diamond where the light is, because I am super fucking fancy (those of us who had to wait an extra long time for our Ringlys were upgraded to the “Diamond Club”, which means yay diamond) – it gives my notifications a little extra sparkle, and is pretty. Plus, random diamond!

lights

blue and purple notification lights. not shown: good vibrations

The Ringly has worked really well for me so far. I’ve been setting up all the notifications with specific patterns and colours, and trying to remember what it all means. One of the things I thought was really cool is the ability to set up a special notification for people in your contacts, so if Ed or any of my secret lovers calls or texts me, I can differentiate from those looking for candy or drugs. You can also isolate notifications to ONLY people you’ve selected from your contacts. If you don’t care about the rest of the world but want to drop everything when Aunt Erma calls, you can make sure you don’t miss her. It’s neat.

I can’t speak to battery life just yet, but I’ll hopefully test it out this weekend. I’ve heard reports that it’s hard on your phone battery, but I’m never not charged/charging so I can’t tell. The app does indicate the battery level, which is helpful (and would be more helpful if it indicated with numbers instead of icon only, but it’s better than nothing).

I’ve been asked multiple times about charging the Ringly. I purposefully left that for last, because it’s pretty sweet:

what a twist!

charging! and also red notification light.

The box is the charger for the ring. It comes with a mini-USB cable that plugs into the back, and the ring sits on the charging prongs. It’ll blink red while charging, and when it’s off it’s full and good to go. The box has a nice smooth finish on it, which is good for stroking. I appreciate that.

So, yeah. I’m pretty impressed with this thing – the pictures don’t really do it justice. It’s a really nice piece of jewellery in addition to being useful, and I am awfully pleased with it. If you’re in the market for wearable tech but don’t want wear a watch or pretend your Fitbit is baller, consider one of these. It doesn’t have a display, but the whole reason for the Ringly is notifications – with it, you’ll know when you NEED to look at your phone versus always having it out just in case.

Plus, pretty. As I mentioned, mine is onyx (black like my soul) but it also comes in pink sapphire, moonstone, emerald, and crazy quartz. All versions are currently sold as pre-orders and I don’t know how far behind they are on shipping (people were complaining online that they’ve waited THREE WHOLE MONTHS oh you poor babies), but I’ve heard rumours that Ringlys ordered through ShopBop ship in 24 hours.

Initial Verdict: A+++, would Ringly again.

*: the Ringly was a present to myself. And it uses push notifications.

husky

 

 

 

keep it wholesome

A Petition to Nintendo:

The Animal Crossing franchise and series, created and produced by Nintendo Entertainment (hereafter referred to as Nintendo), is marketed as family-friendly and child-safe. We believe that the new installment of this series for the new Nintendo 3DS handheld console, hereafter referred to as “Animal Crossing 3DS”, should maintain this tradition.

In particular, we believe that romance and dating have no place in this game. The purpose of this petition is to voice our concerns as loyal customers, good parents, and/or concerned consumers that Animal Crossing 3DS should stick to its family-friendly roots. We implore Nintendo to remove the ability for the player’s in-game character to date and romance fellow villagers, who take the form of walking, talking animals. This can be construed as a sign of support for bestiality, and while we are not making the claim that this is Nintendo’s purpose, we certainly do not wish to see anything even remotely related to this sentiment present in the final product.

In one conference demonstration, the player was shown kissing a porcupine. This is not only completely unacceptable for its context, it also could have more immediate health concerns should any young and impressionable players attempt to emulate what they see.

In short, this is a game marketed toward family audiences and young children, and we find the introduction of romance, dating, and anything of its kind to be wholly inappropriate content given this consideration. Doubly so, because of the animal-like nature of the possible targets of that romance. We ask that Nintendo remove this content for the North American release of Animal Crossing 3DS.

Sincerely,

The Undersigned

Oh. My. God.

I .. I don’t have any other words.

So I’m going to go make out with a porcupine.

Posted in Nerd-Fu. 1 Comment »

nerdgasm

I spent a very long time answering repetitive Nintendo game surveys last month, all to bring my Club Nintendo status up to “Elite”. This is the second year Club Nintendo has been around in North America, and as I qualified for Elite Status last year, I knew it’d be worth my time. Thing is, I didn’t even have to think about my points last year – I had purchased SO MANY DS games in 2008 that when it came time for the points to count (it’s not how many points you have but how many you rack up during a year – important, because I redeem my points for free shit all the time) I was so far past the required amount for Elite Status I was given a princess to stuff into any castle I pleased.

This year, it was much more difficult – Nintendo’s banner year wasa 2008, and my game buying has dropped off to a sad, almost non-existent level. The announcement came out in late May saying we had until June 30th to get enough points to qualify for Elite. I had SOME points, but I was still a long way off; over 500 short if I remember correctly. I wasn’t about to go out and buy games I had no interest in just to collect the Club Nintendo points, but I had to find a way – last year’s Platinum Elite reward was a goddamn Mario Hat which was the basis of my entire October. I knew the reward would be something good, so I had a lot of work to do.

I did over 50 post-game surveys at 10 points each to bring my total up. With aching fingers, I slogged my way to Platinum Elite status – Gold Elite is for the weak – and waited for Nintendo to tell me what would be coming my way. The email arrived this morning:

Gold Elite Status Reward: a 2011 calendar featuring your favourite Nintendo characters!

well that is pretty neat!

Platinum Elite Status Reward: A motherfucking NINTENDO STATUE:

holy crap awesome awesome awesome

Sweet jebus, now I have something worthy of being an HEIRLOOM to pass down to my grandkids! I knew the reward would likely be cool and appeal to the Rare Game Swag Whore in me, but this is kind of INCREDIBLY AWESOME. YAY! CLUB NINTENDO IS THE BEST!

This will be especially sweet; knowing that I didn’t go completely broke buying a thousand games to get the points necessary – I EARNED it. For reals! My mom would be so proud.

nerd street cred

I like badges and I like collecting things things, so it’s only natural that I am in Mad Nerd Love with Nerd Merit Badges:

click the picture for a description of each badge, and be jealous that you are not as cool as me

You may remember my posting about Nerd Merit Badges before, when we Did Some Science together (with sexy results). While my insatiable lust for awesome things has lead me to find additional badges in secret places online, NMB will always be my first love (not in the least because I’m their favourite):

i am certified awesome

I wonder if I could find a Brownie uniform in my size – I have an awesome idea for a porno.

Posted in Nerd-Fu. 1 Comment »

i have ridden the mighty moon worm

.. or done something else equally impressive: I removed the Stocks, YouTube, and Notes default iPhone apps from my phone.

I still don’t know if I actually broke something or if Bad Things are going to happen to my phone soon, but I’ve been through my installed app list a dozen times and nope – those icons aren’t there. People have been asking me all night on Twitter how I did it, so I thought I’d share even if I don’t think the “fix” is going to appeal to everyone.

Basically, I’m an app whore – there are 288 apps on my computer and 180 installed on my phone (this includes the native apps like Settings, Mail, Safari, etc). I’m also extremely anal retentive – I keep everything organized using special Kimli Logic, which I don’t recommend you try at home. In addition to the 4 applications on the toolbar (my phone isn’t jailbroken), I have 11 full pages of things; the maximum you can have in side-scrolling content goodness. You can certainly install more than 11 pages worth of stuff, but the items past page 11 will only be accessible via the Search function on page 0 of your phone (1 screen to the left of your home page).

Prior to my amazing and totally intentional discovery, I had to settle for moving my unwanted icons to the last page and never looking at them. I installed a dozen new things over last night and today, and was shuffling things around when I thought “hey, why can’t I move these stupid things to page 12 and have them vanish?!” .. so I did.

Here’s the catch, though – if you have less than 11 FULL pages of icons, iTunes will simply move the native app icons to any available hole on a page. So, the solution is to obviously install EVERY SINGLE APP and force that Stocks icon right into oblivion (I told you this wouldn’t appeal to everyone). Easy as pie, right?

This fix didn’t work for everything. For some reason, iTunes insisted that Voice Memo live on page 1 no matter what until I allowed it to live on page 11, not 12. I finally wrestled it into submission by removing everything except the three unwanted items onto the invisible page, at which point it dropped off my iTunes like an umbilical cord – I can’t actually SEE page 12 on my device profile page anymore. I’m scared to try and add another app to force page 12 to reappear, because I kind of enjoy not having the stupid YouTube icon mocking me with it’s party-killing buzz.

Another weird? If I go to page 0 and search for “Stocks”, it appears in the list. Again, I’m too scared to try and open the tool – what if it makes them all come back? No, I’d rather live like an ostrich. I don’t want those things back on my phone. If I can’t see them, they aren’t there.

I found a couple more awesome things to share, but since they’re games, I’ll write about them over on Gamers with Casts soon (ie: after my birthday weekend). Stay tuned, and let me know if you try this bizarre “fix” – I’m curious to know if I am somehow special/haunted, or if it really is a valid way to remove native applications.

Of course, when iOS4 comes out next week, this will all be moot. Thanks a lot, Apple. Way to make my efforts meaningless.

Posted in Nerd-Fu. 1 Comment »

demons and trickery

There is WITCHCRAFT AFOOT:

original image on the left; satan-tweaked on the right

Click the above image for the large version on Flickr.

I went on a bit of an app spree last night, downloading a half dozen things that looked interesting. Most of these things were games – Robot Unicorn Attack has been ported to the iPhone, and is glorious – but I also spent $1 on an app called “TouchRetouch“.

People, this app is MADE OF HELLFIRE LIES AND SATAN’S TRICKERY.

I’m not saying the app is bad – rather, the exact opposite. This app is SCARY. It shouldn’t be able to DO THOSE THINGS. The image above is just four examples Ed and I did last night – select or take a photo, then use the TouchRetouch tool to remove aspects that you don’t like. AND IT WORKS REALLY WELL.

In the examples above:

  • Taken in the Britannia Heritage Shipyard in Steveston, this picture is one of my favourites – except for the STUPID WHITE HAIR that I didn’t see until halfway through my shot. I removed it, but subsequent pictures didn’t turn out as well as this one did so I’ve always had to live with that ugly little hair reminding me of how much I suck .. until now
  • Eddy Street in San Francisco, taken because Ed’s childhood nickname was “Eddy” (not Eddie) – but now the intersection has no marker at all
  • The Village Dick at the Ren Faire, shouting insults as people look on in the distance .. OR DO THEY?
  • My thumb, holding a leaf upon which the tiniest snail in existence perches – but no more; my thumb is but a memory of my inability to frame pictures properly

This app basically does what the Content Aware and/or Clone tool in Photoshop does, except all the above were done in bed, naked, ON MY PHONE, and for a dollar. How much is Photoshop 5? $699USD, not to mention the computer needed to run it? Yeah. This app is a frickin’ dollar, and is amazing – truly the work of Old Scratch himself. There’s even an HD version for the iPad, also priced at $1.

I was blown away by this last night, and I’m still a little freaked out with awe – people, the future is here. I keep mine in my bra for safety.

Blown. Away.

more words

Hey look I totally did a thing:

i did words

I’ve join the crew at Gamers with Casts to review games and estrogen up the place a little. I love video games and words and it’s high time I reviewed things other than my own vagina, so here I am. My first review is up and I have a bio and everything. Check it out. There will be more reviews coming soon!

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