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Building the Ultimate "Fam Cave"

Families spend a lot of time together at home these days, typically digesting hours and hours of digital media and entertainment. Mom is in the living room checking her Facebook page and favorite blogs.  Dad is on his tablet checking the latest scores on ESPN. One of the kids is downloading HD movies from iTunes and another is catching up on her favorite TV show on Hulu, while yet another may be streaming and playing the latest MMORPG from Steam.

It’s a challenge for the whole family to spend more time together. Maybe, just maybe, if there was a state-of-the-art media and entertainment center in the home, they all could enjoy it and share their favorite movies, television programs, games, photos and sports with each other.

Here are some ideas for those of you who would like to build the ultimate “Fam Cave.”

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No Computer on Vacation; iPhone to the Rescue

Didn't bring my laptop on vacation with me and I thought I'd struggle with that. I'd have to check email, be connected, etc.

But, no problem. iPhone to the rescue. I can read my news sites; check email; blog (writing this on the Squarespace iPhone app); take pics and videos; and, keep tabs on my social nets.

I have an Android Samsung inFuse but for some reason the gps crapped out on the way down here. It wasn't reliable for me but the iPhone on the other hand, is rock solid. It just works. So no need for the laptop. iPhone comes through.

Skype To Acquire Year-old Group Messaging Service GroupMe

Convergence  Google Images

So Skype is going to buy group messaging service GroupMe? Facebook bought Beluga. Skype now works within Facebook.

Does this mean that Facebook has eliminated GroupMe as the only real competitor to Beluga, now called Facebook Messenger?

Is this the start of a social media convergence?

Skype To Acquire Year-old Group Messaging Service GroupMe | TechCrunch

AT&T to Drop All But Unlimited Texting Plans

Texting

So AT&T is going to cut all but their pay as you go and the unlimited texting plans. Ok, that's fine. I have unlimited because I text all the time -- text with my family, friends, colleagues, etc. It's a simple way to communicate. It's quick and effective. With the proliferation of smart phones, texting is just about as close to real time messaging as you're going to get (other than instant message services).

The question, why do these plans still exist? Why not just include unlimited texting for every user and just add in those costs to the month plan? Why give users a choice since I'd argue that just about everyone with a mobile phone uses text messaging at some point.

Stop finagling with plans, price ranges, etc. and make things simpler for your customers AT&T.

Via: AT&T to drop all but Unlimited texting plans | iLounge News

AT&T Failed Me But Also Helped Me Unplug on Vacation

I took the family to the White Mountains in New Hampshire this weekend and we had a blast. We hit up Storyland, did a little shopping, chilled at the indoor water park as well as poolside. The weather was awesome and overall we had a great time.

Now, you think a guy like me -- one that is always plugged in -- would be checking email, tweeting, updating my Facebook, GPlusing, checking in on Foursquare, etc. But no, I really wasn't. Not because of my own choice, but because AT&T's coverage on that part of New Hampshire blows. Yes, I realize I'm in the mountain area, but seriously, why can't a company that big have significant coverage in an area that's well populated -- especially during the summer months.

So thank you AT&T for helping me un plug for the weekend, despite not having the option to do so.

Kudo's to Evernote for Reaching 10 Million Users

Evernote logo 153x173For those of you who know me or work with me, you'll eventually hear that I'm trying to be "paperless." I don't like big stacks of paper on my desk. I don't carry around a notebook. I hate those big PowerPoint presentation that equate to half of the rain forrest in paper.

My main productivity application is Evernote. I use it on my various Macs or PCs; iPhone and iPads (1 and 2). In fact, it's probably the one productivity application I can't live without. There's a reason why the logo is an Elephant. It helps me remember everything.

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How Much Technology is Too Much for Your Kids?

My kids are hung up on Club Penguin. They love it. It's interactive. There are games to play. There are other people to interact with (to a certain extent).

My oldest is the one that plays it the most and she's seven. My youngest, of course, wants to do what her big sister is doing. As a result, I succumbed to pressure this morning and got her an account to the tune of 60 bucks for the year.

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