App Review: Day One

I'm going to start a series of app reviews. My first post is on a Journaling app called DayOne. Lora and I have been using DayOne for a few years now to document our kids growing up. We also document our travel and a few other things. The reality of our photos these days is that they are incredible tools for photographing and documenting life's memories and moments, but the easy of capture means that are camera rolls are a jumbled mess of pictures mixing things, people, places, documents and so on. No one wants to organize this and we are a few years out from amazing AI to clean all this up for us. Even if we did have that amazing AI, I find that I like adding a few bits of text here and there to augment memories, places and events.

DayOne is an absolutely awesome app for doing all this stuff and I really appreciate how it gives us a diary of our lives.

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Omar’s Finds July 4 : 15 Finds

01 Devices: Anker introduced a new charger that can charge the MacBook 12 at full speed over USB-C (29W) 

02 Headphones: Intel wants USB-C to replace the headphone jack. Apple wants lightning connector to replace the headphone jack. 

03 Headphones: Bose updated their very popular noise cancelling headphones with a wireless version. The QC35 now supports bluetooth and comes in an awesome black color.

04 Headphones: Bose also announced the SoundSport wireless headphones that are priced well and look great as daily walk around headphones.

05 Headphones: Bang & Olufsen also got in on the wireless headphone action with the B&O PLAY H5. It seems everyone is shipping products ahead of the rumored removal of the headphone jack on the iPhone 7. I like the wireless charging dock for these headphones, but at $100 over the Bose, I hope they are that much better.

06 Books: On a recommendation from a friend, we picked up the Thing Explainer for our daughter. It’s an awesome illustrated book from Randall Munroe (XKCD). 

07 Tools: I really want to get a set of linesman’s pliers. Probably these from Wiha, a german tool maker.

08 Kitchen: Cook’s Illustrated recently rated the Knapp Made Small Ring Chainmail Scrubber the best way to clean an iron pan. I’ve always wanted to own some chainmail.

09 Kitchen: I’ve been looking for a travel scale to take on trips so that I can make great pour-over coffee. The Joseph Joseph TriScale looks to fit the bill.

10 Beer: I recently discovered the Miir Growler. It’s awesome. So are the rest of their products such as tumblerscamp cups and water bottles. Miir is a local Seattle Company

11 Beach: I backed these micro fiber beach towels and just received them. They are amazing. So compact and the same size as a normal towel.

12 Solar: Deep into the solar production season here in Seattle, I continue to be impressed with how well our solar array is doing. I don’t think I’ll be paying for electricity for a few years. From the looks of things, Solar is just going to get cheaper and more common.

13 Wifi: I can’t wait to get my Luma devices. Luma is a competitor to Eero. I decided on Luma due to their better parental control features. they should arrive by the end of the month

14 Elon Musk: You can now purchase the awesome Elon Musk Blog Series on Kindle by Tim Urban. Elon Musk is currently the most impactful human being I can think of. I highly recommend reading this series.

14 Apps: Streaks is a cool goal oriented app for iOS and Apple Watch. It’s good for setting goal setting if you are disciplined enough to do that. It’s got a nice complication and built in integration to the Activity and Health apps on iOS. 

15 Education: Osmo, the awesome iPad educational tool I reviewed released a coding kit. I’ll be getting this.

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August Smart Lock - HomeKit Edition

I previously reviewed the August Smart Lock and gave it 3 stars. Back in that review I mentioned the following issues with the lock

  1. Auto unlock does not always work.
  2. The auto lock (ever lock) was not customizable enough
  3. The auto lock can damage your door frame if the door is not completely shut when the August attempts to lock the door.
  4. The battery door is held in by magnets, and often people in our house turn the lock and inadvertently unseat the battery cover

In the time I owned the original August, issues #1 and #2 were solved through better software. In that time the software has really matured a lot.

But August released a new version of their lock, and this review is about that.

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AR Blue Clean AR390SS Electric Pressure Washer

After a year of living in Seattle, I experienced what most people soon come to know. A blanket of green growth on nearly every outdoor surface come spring. So a few years go, without knowing anything about Power Washers, I purchased a tiny / small portable power washer. After a season of usage, and a lot of elbow grease I started researching a replacement (as well as other techniques). 

The main complaint I had with my old pressure washer was that it was inconvenient to use often (lots of hoses and power cords without proper storage) and it was not strong enough, clocking in at 1500 psi.

My first thought was get a gas power washer. So I borrowed my neighbor's. That didn't work out so well. For one thing, I didn't find it was so much more powerful that it warranted all the headache of dealing with gas. It was also much heavier and louder.

At the same time, most of the power washers I was reading about on Amazon, did not have great reviews. It seemed they all suffered from some kind of problem (cheap construction, breaking, poor hoses and so on).

That is when I discovered a new power washer, the AR Blue Clean AR390SS Electric Pressure Washer. This is a 2000 psi electric power washer. 2000 psi is pretty impressive for an electric washer, and gets you close, but not quite there, for the gas units. 

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Haflinger AS Classic Slipper

A few months ago I decided to replace my decade old house slippers. I headed over to the Sweet Home and read their review of the best slippers for Men and Women.

Next stop was Zappos where I ordered two sizes of the AS (indoor slipper), my true size (12) and a size up (13). Thanks to Zappos VIP I had the slippers next day, and found that these slippers ran small and the 13 was the right size. You may have similar results. The great thing about Zappos is you can order as much as you want and return things that don't fit.

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