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Tricks & Tips

Posts Tagged ‘GPS’

Find Restaurants with Urbanspoon

September 15th, 2009
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Urbanspoon helps you find places to eat. Using GPS on your smart phone, it will locate restaurants near you by category, price, or only places with Wi-Fi.  How convenient. 😉  Read reviews, see photos of the restaurant, or view the menu.

Urbanspoon is online at www.urbanspoon.com, or available as a free download for your iPhone/iPod, Blackberry, or other smartphone.

Video demo….

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Your Computer Knows Where You Are

November 13th, 2008
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New location-aware services, such as with maps on iPhones or BlackBerry’s, are moving to your computer.  Soon your computer will know where it is physically located and offer services based on this information.

A few examples might include…

  • Loading weather.com to see weather without having to enter city information
  • Finding coffee shops nearby
  • Exact driving directions from your from porch
  • Now, “They Know.”   😉

Technology
Right now the technology uses nearby wireless signals, not GPS.  But soon new options will be upon us.  Services will be built in to the next version of Firefox (3.1).  And Microsoft officially stated the next version of Windows will include geo-location tools.

Testing
I was skeptical.  So I tried installing pre-release extensions to make my web browser instantly locate me.  I was amazed!  I headed to Google Maps and clicked Current Position.  It zeroed right down on me in the very building I was in.  Google loaded a Street View and Flickr images for the area.  Nice.

Learn more?
You need Firefox + Greasemonkey + Geode:  http://labs.mozilla.com/2008/10/introducing-geode/

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USB Port for Your Car

June 19th, 2008
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USB Car Adapter
You can get a USB adapter that plugs into your cigarette lighter in your car.  They can be extremely useful.  I just got one the other day and I love it.  Use it to power or charge your MP3 player, GPS unit, camera, etc.  My BlackBerry uses a standard USB cable so I charge my cell phone battery.  Don’t buy the proprietary $30 chargers for EACH device.  If your electronics have power options via USB, just power it with the cigarette lighter USB converter.

Wal-Mart, OfficeMax, and Radio Shack probably all have them.  I found several suppliers online for less than $5.  Here are some links if you prefer to shop from home:
http://tinyurl.com/5bx38h  (has light to indicate power, 2 USB ports)
http://tinyurl.com/636mat  (great photos and reviews,  no light and only single port)

(There are also some that convert a 110 home power outlet to a USB charger. That’d  be great for traveling / hotels.)

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