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Archive for December, 2010

Best iPad Apps – Peter Meyers

December 13th, 2010

Best iPad Apps – The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders is a book by Peter Meyers, who was formerly an editor for O’Reilly Media and now writes about and designs digital books.
The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders is a series of books by O’Reilly which has covered iPhone Apps and Android Apps.

This book is targetted only to the iPad applications.

Summary
This book has over 200 pages with nice graphics, designed just like Apple’s range of products.
The applications being recommended are categorize as:

  • At Work – Applications use for documents editing and calculations
  • At Leisure – eBooks, reading, news, music, and radio related applications
  • Creative Corner – A fun collection of digital tools like band jamming, drawings, and photos editing
  • At Play – Best Games out there, Scrabble for iPad, Cut the Rope, Angry Birds, Need For Speed, Fruit Ninja
  • At Home – Online shopping, Cooking, Educational apps
  • Out and About – Travelling, restaurant guides, and language translation
  • For Your Health – Health related apps, such as application for health references and general fitness

My Review
With the sheer number of applications in the Apple App Store, it would take a long time for one to pick the best app for the task of accomplishing something.
This might be the main problem for one who has just picked up the iPad.
With that in mind, this book is a god-send guide for first time iPad users who might not have the pleasure to purchase and try all the apps in a specific category and to pick up the best app.
However, users who have been using iPhone or the iPod Touch would probably have their own preference of applications.
The author has picked the ‘Best Apps’ with the purpose of selecting apps as elegant as the iPad itself and apps that are usable without much instructions. They should be intuitive for first time users.
That said, we all know that the content and applications published in the App Store is constantly changing, but this book might not.
So most of the apps are either official ones, such as Twitter app from Twitter.com or Scrabble for iPad. Then there are popular games such as Angry Birds and Cut The Rope.
It’s pretty safe to say for non-advanced iPad users, this book would be most beneficial, to have a quick start in using the iPad without wasting time trying apps or purchasing them one-by-one, as you have a review with very graphical description of the reviewed apps in this book.

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A visit to Atlanta, Georgia – United States of America

December 7th, 2010

I had a chance to visit the United States of America this year, on a business trip.

It was an exciting affair, for a guy who have always been in the region of Asia.


Click Photo to enlarge: View of the Downtown Atlanta overseeing the CNN headquarters, Centennial Olympic Park, Georgia Dome, and Georgia Aquarium.

The city of Atlanta (ATL) is the capital city of the State of Georgia (GA).

Metro Atlanta or the metropolitan area of Atlanta is the ninth largest in the US, inhabited by more than 5.4 million people.

Atlanta contains the world headquarters of such large corporations as The Coca-Cola Company, AT&T Mobility, the Cable News Network (CNN), Delta Air Lines, United Parcel Service (UPS) and Turner Broadcasting.

Atlanta has the country’s fourth-largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies and more than 75 percent of Fortune 1000 companies have business operations in the metropolitan area


Click Photo to enlarge: View of the Downtown Atlanta taken from Westin Hotel’s Sun Dial Restaurant.


Click Photo to enlarge: Centennial Olympic Park.

Centennial Olympic Park is a 21 acre (85,000 m²) public park located in downtown Atlanta.

Atlanta played host to the Summer Olympics in 1996.


Click Photo to enlarge: View of buildings from Centennial Olympic Park.

As amazing as hosting the Olympics, the Centennial Olympic Park, like most of the public attractions in Atlanta are made possible by donations.
The estimated $75 million in development costs of the park came entirely from private-sector donations – contributions in the form of commemorative bricks, funds raised by the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce and local philanthropic foundation grants.


Click Photo to enlarge: One of the many entrances to the Centennial Olympic Park.

Centennial Olympic Park is the largest downtown park in the US developed in the last 25 years.


Click Photo to enlarge: Directions to I-75 and I-85.

There are three major interstate highways converge in Atlanta; I-20 runs east to west across town, while I-75 runs from northwest to southeast, and I-85 runs from northeast to southwest.


Click Photo to enlarge: MARTA station near to the Georgia Dome, Philips Arena, and CNN Center.

The MARTA rail system has a station in the airport terminal, and provides direct service to Downtown, Midtown, Buckhead, and Sandy Springs.


Click Photo to enlarge: MARTA train.

Do you know that Atlanta’s airport, the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is the world’s busiest airport by passenger traffic?
With such reputation, do expect a thorough scan from the airport officials to gain entry too. 🙂


Click Photo to enlarge: Autopay lane of a highway toll, accepting coins.

The southern section of Georgia 400 (from I-285 to I-85) was the last section to be constructed, and is the only active toll road in Georgia.

Atlanta is mostly encircled by Interstate 285, a beltway locally known as “the Perimeter” which has come to mark the boundary between the interior of the region and its surrounding suburbs.

The I-285 highway is very heavily traveled, and portions of the highway always slow, sometimes to a crawl, during rush hour.

The best transport option available is MARTA, and if you really need to drive, and if it’s rush hour, do try to avoid certain stretch of the I-285, especially the downtown area.


Click Photo to enlarge: Downtown Atlanta highway.

Click Photo to enlarge: View of a open space car park of an outdoor event, the Renaissance festival.

Atlanta is a good destination for vacation, and one thing that I was grateful to have with me then was the Atlanta CityPASS, allowing me to visit six most popular attractions conveniently, and a few without the long queues too.

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KLIMS 2010 – Kuala Lumpur International Motor Show

December 3rd, 2010


Kuala Lumpur International Motor Show 2010 is here in Malaysia’s Putra World Trade Center from 3rd Dec til 12 Dec 2010.

Checkout the photos at the end of this post.

Here are some of what you can expect from the Motor Show:

Kia
There are a number of Kia vehicles on display, including the two door Koup, the Kia Forte’s sibling.
Kia also launched the new Sorento in KLIMS 2010.

Naza
Naza unveiled the Maserati GranCabrio with pride as KLIMS 2010 is said to be first location to reveal the GranCabrio in Malaysia.

A huge part of a hall was taken up by Naza, for example Naza Kia, Naza Italia and Naza Bikes.
Piaggio, Aprilia, Gilera, Vespa and Harley Davidson bikes are on display.

Hyundai
Hyundai revealed the facelifted Santa Fe SUV and the new Avante at KLIMS 2010.

Mitsubishi Motors
MiEV – The Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle was revealed. Recent models including the ASX and Lancer Sportback are also displayed.

Toyota/Lexus
Toyota showcases the Toyota FT-HS, which is a hybrid sports car concept.
Green seems to be a popular topic in KLIMS 2010, with hybrid cars, and electric cars on display from a number of manufacturers.

Honda
Honda launches the Insight for Malaysia in KLIMS 2010, with a OTR price of RM 98k.

Proton
Proton also showcases EV and a few concept cars, with windows heavily tinted. 🙂
Half of the hall was taken up and the CEO Datuk Syed Zainal was there to answer questions.

Perodua
Perodua displays a very early preview of its prototype model, the ‘Perodua Bezza’.
It has a very heavy similarity with the Toyota Prius.

Chevrolet
Chevrolet showcases the Transformers Camaro and its latest model, the Chevrolet Cruze.

Nissan
Nissan showcases the 370Z Roadster, Juke, March, Elgrand, and the most recently launched Nissan Teana.

Transformers/Bumble bee
One of the highlights of KLIMS 2010, is the Bumble bee. It is on display for photography sessions at RM 15 onwards.

Batmobile
The Batmobile together with Batman is also available for photographs from RM 15 onwards.
The Batmobile however, is somewhat a disappointment.

Lucky Draw
With a purchase of KLIMS 2010 entrance ticket, visitors are eligible to partipate in a lucky draw with the Grand Prize of a Toyota Prius and two consolation prize of a Proton Saga.
The catch is you need to submit the form with your details including your vehicle number plate, together with your ticket stub.

KLIMS 2010 Information
For more information, visit KLIMS 2010 website.

Photo Gallery: You can click on them to view a larger version of the photos, or contact me if you want the originals.

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