The NEW Kindle Paperwhite is the One to Buy!

I spent much of the past week repeatedly forgetting that I was supposed to evaluate the Paperwhite as a gadget. Whether I was reading Paula Hawkins’ “The Girl on the Train” while sitting by the pool or lying in bed with the lights off, the hardware simply disappeared, leaving me alone with the words on the page.

Most of the technology that enables that is in the new 6-inch E Ink touchscreen, which now has the same high-resolution 300 pixels per inch as Amazon’s elite $200 Kindle Voyage.

This is what reading on a device should be. And at $119 with special offers count me in!


Steve Huff is "Wowed" by Leica's New Q!

While only having this camera for a whopping three days, I managed to take it with me EVERYWHERE I went over those three days as I wanted to get as much use with it as possible so I could write this review after having 72 hours with the Q, and wow, for the 1st time in years I am truly “wowed” by a Leica camera that is not an M version! This is good, for all of us and for Leica.

Steve Huff does another great mini review on Leica's latest all-in-one offering. Priced at $4,250, it's around $1,000 than Sony's full frame fixed lens mini, but it's German and yes, I want it!

The Bullseye on a Good Wine isn't it's Cost

I went to a friend's dinner party and as always, personal taste and manners have always prevented me from showing up empty handed. So, off to the local wine store I went. Upon entering, lost in a sea of labels, I asked for a pair of great $25 bottles of wine thinking that sum would quanitfy my being but also provide an adequate pairing. Yea I know what you're thinking. As if I could have told you the difference between them and a $5 bottle I was just going to get taken by the owner. But, just because I couldn't taste the difference, there could have been that one wino that would have been judging / eye glaring at the labels I showed up with.

Essentitally, I didn't want to feel cheap, nor look cheap. I entered the party holding my head mid-level knowing that I went half the distance towards a good bottle and contributed to the drinks' table. Then I stumble onto this Slate article back from 2011.

There are plenty of reasons to go back to our 1990s habits, and to start using 15 bucks to buy four or five bottles instead of just one. Ernest Gallo, who, along with his brother Julio, popularized wine among the American masses, understood the psychology of wine better than anyone. He used to pour two glasses of wine for potential buyers, telling them that one sold for 5 cents, and the other for 10. According to Gallo, his guinea pigs invariably chose the more expensive option. What they didn’t know was that the two wines were exactly the same. Researchers have recently reproduced Gallo’s results, proving that our appreciation of a wine depends on how much we think it costs. If you can break yourself of this psychological quirk—or have your spouse lie to you about the cost of your wine—you’ll save a small fortune.

If hints of cassis, subtle earthiness, and jammy notes don’t interest you, you are not a lesser person. Wine is not art. There’s no reason to believe that aligning your tastes with those of a self-appointed elite will enrich your life, or make you more insightful or sensitive. If wine critics want to spend lavishly on the wine they like, that’s great. Leave them to their fun. Be grateful that you can gain just as much pleasure, if not more, without bankrupting yourself.

Hello $3 bottles!!! Now I know why my crashpad consistently stocks Charles Shaw! ^_^

"Discard Any Clothing That No Longer Sparks Joy"

From The New Yorkers' "Shopping at Anthropologies with Marie Kondo.

Discard any clothing that no longer sparks joy.

Passing a display of denim jeans and dark-blue chambray shirts, Kondo touched almost nothing. She said that she rarely wears pants because several years ago they stopped bringing her joy.

Maybe we’ll start seeing a decline in the shopping habits of women? Ya… right… A husband can wish ^_^

I'm currently finishing up her book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing on my Kindle and I'll admit, I'm SUPER inspiried. Only 50% in, I'm giving this book a 10 our of 10! Go grab yourself a copy and tell me what you think.

My Choice For Portable Battery Chargers

When you find yourself in and out of subway stations and out and about in the city of New York, I bet that your smart phone quickly runs out of battery. Mine sure does and for that, I highly recommend carrying a lipstick size battery pack. The exact one is from Anker called the Astro Mini 3200mAh. It packs a powerful punch and is almost unnoticeable in your jacket pocket. It's also the #1 rater on Amazon for Camera Flash Battery Packs.

Pair that with a NomadKey Lightning to USB and you have yourself a perfect little pocket charging device. Take my word, you'll thank me later. For the Android or Windows Mobile folds, there's also a USB Mini variant of the NomadKey. I have both! =)

Brenthaven Collins Tech Pack 60% off!

For a cool $19.95 (down from $49.95) go grab a stylistic pack / satchel / murse or man bag to hold all your goods whilst traveling to the local coffee shop for a flat white. Brenthaven just slashed the price of their Collins Tech Pack by 60% and that makes it a wonderful steal!

The construction is beautiful and is sure to hold your Moleskine, pens and protect your iPad using their "High Density Foam Protection System"! Oh yeah, did I forget about Brenthaven's lifetime guarantee too! If this sale doesn't suit you, there are a few iPad cases and iPhone cases as well marked down by over 75%!

SNL Does Serial Right!

It's been a while since I've actually laughed at an SNL skit but I think that they did a wonderful Christmas spoof off of NPR's latest and greatest Serial Podcast.  

I just finished the podcast yesterday and will post my thoughts on another day. Did I enjoy it, yes. I also loved listening to it using Overcast.

Fragmentation and Instagram's Hyperlapse

There's a reason for the sanity developers posses in releasing an app on iOS first. Take Instagram's latest.

Hyperlapse from Instagram features built-in stabilization technology that lets you create moving, handheld time lapses that result in a cinematic look, quality and feel—a feat that has previously only been possible with expensive equipment.

If a developer were to design an app for iOS, they have a choice of supporting only a few select devices. In this case, Hyperlapse was created to be compatible with a 2-year old device (iPhone 5) and up running iOS 7. Simple as that. You can bet that with the adoption rate that 90%, that users with at least an iPhone 5 will be downloading or have the ability to try out this fantastic app. Wired has even compared the app to a "$15,000 video setup in your hand."

From a developer standpoint, that's a huge audience! Think about it!

Now comes in Android. There isn't an app yet and here's why... in bold: FRAGMENTATION.

android fragmentation

The article from Open Signal clearly highlights the flaws and the obstacles that developers have when creating apps for Android. From different flavors of Android, to various hardware and sensor kits, screen sizes and adoption rates / operating system update delays from manufacturers, it's not the ideal launch vehicle. Hell, it even took Instagram a two years before they released their Android app and only after more than 30 million people join via iOS.

If you've been following me, I've been an Android 4.4 user since my Samsung Galaxy S5 trial and am still not satisfied with the experience. I've even lost precious moments due to the camera locking up or phone not responding. It's just a mess especially with all of Samsung's included bloatware on top of AT&T's mesh of products. I can't wait until November 15 for when I can go back to iOS. Of course, when September 9, comes around, you can bet your bottom dollar that I'm pre-ordering the iPhone 6 on T-Mobile.

For now, enjoy the sample video of Instagram's Hyperlapse or better yet, go out there and make your own! You can also follow me on Instagram: elijahnicolas

Lake Poway to Mt. Woodson and back

My aunt has been a huge inspiration to the, "Why don't I hike more!" mantra. Bottom line; she's all about it with tickets for Half Dome, Whitney and she's always looking for more. I've been out and about a few times but unlike her, she does it at least once a week. I was fortunate to not only be off of work, but to hike Mt. Woodson with her yesterday and it was awesome. A bit cold in the morning but weather was perfect. I brought along my Garmin Edge 500 for data, but couldn't find my heart rate monitor. It's been months since I last did this hike (maybe two years) and probably only did Torrey Pines twice since then but I was happy that I got to head out! I also got to use my Fusion Sports Ambassador Gear for the first time! Great clothing! If you haven't done it already, I highly recommend it!

Gear: Osprey Syncro 15 Hyrdation Pack LOVE IT! | Fusion Sports PRF PRO T-Shirt | Fusion Visor

mt. woodson instagram