Category Archives Misc

I can’t believe it has come to this, after not even two full weeks, but I either have to dump my Apple watch and go back to my Fossil watch, or I’m literally going to have to buy a 2nd Apple watch because the battery life issue is ruining the entire Apple Watch experience for me.

By having a 2nd watch, I could keep one on the charger, and then each day or so swap the watches, so one would always be charged.

I am not kidding.

How did it come to this?
It hit me this morning, when I woke up and my watch was just about dead. I put it on the charger for a couple of hours and went about my morning, but I noticed that during that two hour block I looked at my empty wrist about 5 times. The fifth time, I really needed to know what time it was, and my iPhone was charging on the other side of the house, so I had to find my iPad just to know what time it was.

A couple of days ago, it was when it went dead at work because I had forgotten to charge it and my charging cable was back at home. A few days before that it was when I went to look at it after waking in the middle of the night but it was dead (I really like knowing the time if I wake up…do I have 15 minutes left to sleep or three hours? I even made a special Apple Watch clock face just for when I go to sleep).

These are all my fault for not monitoring the battery life of my Apple watch closely enough, but I don’t want to have to baby sit the battery on something I’ve never given a second thought to in my entire life. Watch batteries had been something I had to replace every four years, but now I’m worrying about my watch battery every single day.

I know it sounds like a “1st world problem” but I’m already worrying about my iPhone 6’s battery charge (so much so that I’m now carrying a Mophie), and my iPad, and my MacBook Pro’s battery, and I needed another thing to worry about charging like I needed a hole in my head. I’m sure over time I could condition myself to monitor the watch battery status more closely, but the problem is…I don’t want to. This watch is supposed to make my life easier — not give me something new to worry about charging each day.

Besides telling time, the Apple Watch really does just one main thing…
It keeps me from having to dig my iPhone out of my pocket. That’s really its main advantage, and that’s great, but I’ve just replaced one minor inconvenience (pulling my iPhone out of my pocket), with a bigger inconvenience (losing the use of my Apple Watch for two hours at a time every day or so).

Aren’t there other options?
Sure. I could buy a clock for my nightstand, and that way I could charge my Apple Watch all night every night. I just don’t want to do that. I want a wrist watch like I’ve always had. I could buy another $40 charging cable and keep it at work, so I’d have one at home and one at work, so the whole “battery ran out at work thing” wouldn’t happen again, but then I’d have to take off my watch at work for a couple of hours each day. I don’t want to do that either. There are probably other compromises and workarounds, and I hate to say it but the one that makes the most sense is:

…to buy a second Apple watch.

That way, one of the two would always be charged. When I wake up in the morning each day (or before I go to bed each night), I would just take the fully changed one off the charger; put it on my wrist, and put the other one on the charger to get fully charged. It’s too perfect. Except of course, for the price.

I already bought the cheapest one they make — the $399 sport version. I wanted the Stainless Steel version for $700, but I just couldn’t mentally spend that much on a watch (I never have — that kind of money is reserved for guitars). ;-). So, I couldn’t pull the trigger on the $700 Stainless Steel model, and today I’m doubly glad I didn’t.

So, if I bought a 2nd Apple Sport Watch, I’d be at around $800, but then I’d have to order the black sport band separately (I’m still waiting on the original black sport band I ordered on pre-order day), and that was another $50, so a 2nd one would make a total of $100, which would bring my total Apple Watch investment (for two of the cheapest ones they make, but with black sport bands) to…

$900. Plus tax.

That’s a lot just to make my one Apple Watch not stress me out.

As for the rest of the watch…
I’m perfectly happy with all the rest of it. I love the screen. It’s slickly designed overall. The apps are pretty clever. It’s well-thought out and solid, and it’s fun (and fun is worth a lot to me), but after using it for about two weeks, I realize what I use it the most for is…a watch, and I don’t need a watch that requires me to baby sit the battery or buy a second one to make up for the really bad battery life.

That’s why I’m dumping my Apple watch
So, today I’m going back to my simple $85 Fossil watch (seen below), and the next time I’ll have to worry about the battery is probably sometime in 2019.

 

 

I really like Twitter a bunch. I do. Super Dig it!
That being  said, I could totally and utterly “love” Twitterâ¦if somehow for Christmas (or maybe just for 2015) Twitter added these four things that I believe would revolutionize, re-engerize, and just do a lot of awful lot of good all around. Here goes:

(1) Stop penalizing me for including a photo with my Tweets
You send me emails telling me how awesome it is to add images to my tweets. You show me stats which show that each tweet with a photo is likely to get so many more retweets and favorites, it’s just crazy. But then if I actually add an image to my tweet, you subtract characters from my 140-character limit per tweet. You basically penalize me for doing the thing you’re asking me to do. Please let me add an image and still have my 140 characters. I promise to add more photos in 2015 if you do. We all will.

(2) Give me one 10 or 12-character hashtag for free
You’re penalizing me again â” I know that using hashtags will expand the number of potential people who read my tweets, but I already added a photo to my tweet, and I could barely say anything cohesive when I had the full 140-characters. Between losing characters for the photo I attached, and being penalized for adding a search term (hashtag), I spend 15-minutes just to get my tweet under the limit with what little is left. I usually don’t even add hashtags â” I just don’t have the room. Plus, I often say lots of inappropriate words during this frustrating pruning process so I have to stay clear of children or small pets during this critical phase of the tweet-shortening process. Could you please give me just one hashtag per tweet “on the house?” â” without subtracting from my 140-charaters? Make it a 10 or 12 character limit, and make it just one hashtag for free per tweet (so things don’t get out of hand) and we promise to use more hashtags in 2015.

(3) Give us a 50% discount on links
I use bit.ly like a boss. It really helps. It does. But even using bit.ly, sometimes the link eats up so many precious characters. I looked at a bit.ly link I created last week and it took 14 character’s out of my allotment. When you see something starting with http:// have your magical unicorn of backend database stuff automatically give us a 50% discount, and only count it as 7 characters instead of 14. Please help me to share more stuff and I promise to share even more stuff in 2015.

(4) Let me buy an extra character or two with the proceeds going to charity
Sometimes I just can’t make my thought or idea fit. I’m two characters away from making it fit, and I’ve cut and cut, but I just can’t make it work. There are times where if I could buy two or three characters for a buck a piece (so $2 or $3 total) that would be the fastest two or three bucks I would spent all week, especially if I knew the proceeds went to charity. Each week you could choose a different charity (might I suggest, for week one, that all the “character buyers” contributions go to the Springs of Hope Orphanage in Kenya. They need the help like you cannot believe. It’s just 33 kids, but it’s 33 kids that matter. Please, let us give a buck for each extra character in 2015 (you could limit the extra characters, so maybe the maximum you could buy would be 10-characters, so a $10 limit per tweet). It could do a lot of good in the bigger picture, and I promise to buy a few extra characters fairly often in 2015. Especially in that first week. ;-)

So there ya have it. This is perhaps not the most photography or Photoshop-related thing that I’ve covered here on the blog, but I’m hoping that somebody at Twitter might be in the Holiday Spirit this year and take the time to give it a read, like you just did. Hey, ya never know, right?

Here’s wishing you all the best Monday you’ve had all year!

Cheers,

-Scott

Today is Veterans Day here in the US, and I wanted to take a moment to honor and thank the men and women who have served in our country's military, and who fought to defend the very freedoms we enjoy today.

America owes you a debt of gratitude for your service and sacrifice, and I just wanted to join in with a heartfelt thanks.

Friday before last, my company threw a big party for me to celebrate my being “The #1 Best Selling Book Author in Computers or Photography for 10 Consecutive Years.” 

My awesome wife Kalebra organized the event (she is the queen of incredible events), and since my wonderful Publisher Peachpit Press had already presented me with a beautiful award during Photoshop World, she wanted to do something really unique to commemorate this milestone. So she called my whole family up on stage and presented me with the amazing Paul Reed Smith Custom guitar (you see above), with a personalized plaque right below the bridge (a close up of the plaque is seen below).

I have a few PRS (Paul Reed Smith) guitars but they are all “SE” models, which are their much lower-priced kind of “entry-level” models, and I dearly love mine (they don’t play like entry level models). But when my wife handed this one to me, I didn’t (at first) realize it wasn’t an SE model ”this was the ‘real deal” my first real PRS! Well, as blown away as I was, I was not at all prepared for what was coming next…

What came next…
So I’m standing there holding the guitar, and everybody’s clapping, and my daughter and son are there and I keep saying to my wife, “This is a real PRS!!!” and the whole thing is kind of surreal. Then my wife says, “Your son wants to say something,” and she hands him the mic.

Now, my son is a really good public speaker, and he started by cracking a couples of little jokes that got everybody laughing. But then he started into his speech”one that absolutely had me and everybody speechless.

I wish I had it on tape, but I’ll paraphrase as best I can. Here’s what he said:

“Dad, I was 7-years-old when you won this award for the first time and now it’s been 10 years in a row. This has been a tremendous amount of work for you, but when I was in elementary school, and we had presentations at school, you were always there. When I played basketball or soccer in middle school, you were always at my games. When we had parent/teacher conferences at school you were always there…”

…and he went on and on through all the times he needed me there, from dealing with a broken heart to cheering at his Crew races, and he listed them one after another in a list that seemed to go on forever, and he ended every single one with “and you were always there…” By this time I’m in tears and everybody at the party is in tears, and he’s just describing this all so eloquently, and he’s on stage in front of this large crowd, and he keeps listing all these things and then he pauses for a moment and saysâ¦

“And you know what all this taught me, dad?”

And the whole place goes silent. And he says…

It taught me how to be a man.” 

That was it — tears just came pouring out, and I hugged him, and everybody cheered, and it was literally one of the most amazing moments of my entire life. There isn’t a dad out there that could have asked for his son to say anything more. I was so incredibly touched, and he did such a wonderful job presenting the whole thing (which of course, made me even prouder). Needless to say it’s a moment I’ll never forget, and as much as I love awesome guitars, this meant so, so, so much more.

As I write this post (which is very late for a Friday post I might add), I’m with my wife and son  — for the past two days we’ve been visiting college campuses around the country (six flights in two days) and just having a ball. We’re about to head out for another campus tour, and I’m so excited for the adventures, learning, and fun my son will embark on next year. We’re a very close family, and he and I have always been very close, and it’s going to be really hard on me when he goes off to school in a different state, but no matter how old he and I get, I’ll never forget his words, or what it means to be his dad.

Here’s to all the dads out there, who know exactly what I mean, and how I feel. :)

Have a great weekend everybody!

Best,

-Scott

After feeling sicky for about a week, and every day feeling like the next day I was going to be better, I actually started getting worse in the past couple of days.  My wifey gave me that “Boy, you need to go to the doctor” look yesterday, so I did and the Doc didn’t like my cough at all — he did chest X-rays, and I do have a full-on case of Bronchitis. After looking at my x-rays he said if I hadn’t come in, it would have been pneumonia by Friday, so as usual, the wifey was right (man, I say that a lot).

I felt really cruddy yesterday, but now I’m on four different medications to knock this out fast (and I do feel quite a bit better today, but not good enough to jump on a plane and hack all over everybody).  So, I’m delaying my trip to the Photo Plus Expo, and I’ll miss out on moderating that panel tomorrow night on “How technology is leading the story-telling revolution” which really stinks, but I feel like if I can get that extra day of rest and antibiotics in me, I’ll be feeling great by Thursday.

Of course, at this point (today), I sound like that dog above looks (weird thing is, my throat isn’t sore at all). Anyway, I’m already on the mend (I know, I should have gone to the doctors last week). Luckily, my wifey is taking awesome care of me (even made me some of the most amazing chicken soup last night), so I’ll be back up and running in no time (and by no time, I mean Thursday).

I had a location portrait shoot set up for tomorrow afternoon in New York with my buddy David Vaskevitch that I’ll be missing out on now too, and I was really looking forward to it. Hope I’ll get the chance again soon.

My thanks to Greg Scoblete (tech editor for PDN and Rangefinder magazine) for covering my moderator duties on that panel (very cool of him), and in the meantime, I’ll be taking it VERY easy, and mostly playing Jelly Splash on my iPad, which has proven medicinal healing powers, only surpassed by Kalebra’s Chicken Soup. :)

Here’s wishing you good health (wash your hands often), and an awesome Tuesday!

Best,

-Scott
Cough, Hacker & Wheezing, Inc.

 

http://youtu.be/ymi4v-A49ss

Last week, while we were all at Photoshop World, the always amazing Karen Hutton released an interview she did with me on her show “The Chat” and of all the interviews I’ve ever done, a lot of folks have told me this was the most revealing. I wouldn’t’ know, because I haven’t been able to bring myself to watch the interview because of something that happened to me during the interview as it went to a place I was not expecting, or prepared to go.

Anyway, I shared it on social last week when she posted it, but I wanted to share it here with my readers who have been with me for so long because we’ve all been through a lot together here on the blog. Here’s how Karen described the interview:

“…It was a revelation; so moving, so deep, heartfelt and genuine. Scott opened up in ways that will probably take you by surprise. He is incredibly passionate about teaching - and about making knowledge accessible to the many, not only the few. You're about to find out why⦠and discover the moment in Scott's life that started an empire.”

You can watch the interview right here on the blog (above), but even though I doubt I’ll ever be able to watch it myself, I am still grateful for Karen being for being such a wonderful and caring interviewer and for bringing out something different in each of her guests. Her show is really taking off, so I hope you’ll jump on board with her â” here’s the link to her blog so you can check out other “The Chat” interviews as well.

I’m in Salt Lake City today
My first time in at least 10 years, and I’m excited to be back. I’ve already had an adventure or two and the seminar hasn’t even begun.

Here’s wishing you all an adventure-filled day (in a good way)!

-Scott 

 

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