Photoshop iPhone App

I posted awhile back about some of my favorite iPhone apps. That was before I had acquired this little gem. The official Adobe Photoshop app – PS Express – is now one of my favorite and most used apps. It allows you to do a variety of things with your photos including:

Crop, Straighten, Rotate, Flip

Change your Exposure, Tint, Contrast, etc.

Add Effects and Borders

For someone who has little experience in photo editing and no experience using Photoshop, I found this app a breeze. It has allowed me to increase the quality of the pics I upload online. And I can edit a pic using this program in under 3 minutes. Very cool.

If you have an iPhone and you upload pictures, I would highly recommend you try this app. Did I mention it’s FREE?

Here’s some example of pics I’ve edited using the app:

Why we need NASA

There is a daycare playground that I pass almost every day. On the playground sit two plastic space shuttles – of the springy, bouncy, fun variety.

I believe in American exceptionalism. America is great, not because of skin color or cultural nuances, but because of her principled freedom and resulting achievements. The ultimate example of this is the U.S. space agency – NASA – and her crowning achievement: the Space Shuttle.

I have a family member that works in the space program, and there has been much talk of President Obama’s plans to cancel the space shuttle. NASA, and specifically the shuttle program, represents America’s best and most innovative work. Many of the things we use everyday were created or perfected by NASA scientists: scratch resistant lenses, memory foam, ear thermometers, cordless tools, and water filters. But in addition to these things, NASA gives us something greater: the ability to explore the unknown world of space, and the resulting innovations that benefit all mankind.

I listened yesterday as my friend’s son, 5 years old, explained to me the workings of the space shuttle toy that he was so proudly exhibiting. He had me “countdown” for the launch, and then lifted the space shuttle and rocket boosters up, up, up towards the ceiling fan. I was amazed when the rocket booster fell away at precisely the right moment, and he indicated that a “parachute” would open and bring them back down. NASA is the stuff dreams are made of – exploring the unknown. American dreams. No other country could produce a space shuttle. We should not stop launching them, if only for that reason. But further still, NASA provides an outlet for dreaming the impossible, and making it reality.

Imagine if one day on that playground, a little boy asks his teacher, “what’s a ‘space shuttle’?”

What’s on my iPhone?

I love my iPhone. Not because it’s cool looking. Or the most revolutionary device since the home PC. I like it because I can be more productive with it. Now that’s a good toy.

Actual screen shot of my iPhone

Actual screen-shot of my iPhone

Here’s a look at some of my favorite apps:

MailChimp – I use mailchimp for our ministry newsletters, and this app lets me see up to the minute stats on how our email campaigns are doing.

FlightTrack – helps me keep track of all the flights we are taking, and if any are delayed.

Skype – I pay the $5.95 monthly fee, and I can cal l from anywhere in the world that I can get a wi-fi signal. Used my cell to call my mom from Outback in Manila one time. Sweet.

Dropbox – I use dropbox all the time to share files with people. This little app lets me see those files, and edit them, right on my phone.

Carbonite – If you don’t have Carbonite online backup, you should. Their app is even cooler than their protection service. I can see any file that’s on my PC right on my iPhone. They should charge for this app, but they don’t.

YouVersion Bible – I use this all the time to reference verses, bookmark verses, etc. I even use it to keep track of my weekly Bible memory verse. The only downside is that people think you are playing Pacman on your phone if you decide to use it in church.

There you have it. Some of my favorite apps.

Unsubscribe

I have spent a few minutes the last few mornings conveniently removing myself from various company email lists. I realized that I never have time to read the “Bassmasters” newsletter (though I’d like too), and I never buy anything from B&N because Amazon is way, way cheaper every time (used books are where it’s at).

There is a point to spending time removing my name from these lists: saving time in the long run. I found that I was spending  time just in scanning and deleting these emails – time that adds up and can be used for other things. So I am on an unsubcribing kick. The nice thing is, the good companies make it easy by providing a link at the bottom of the e-mail.

How much time are you wasting on junk email?

If you’d like to receive our ministry newsletter (only once a month and NOT junk), click here. We have some very exciting news coming in January. Don’t worry – we have an unsubsribe option too.

Dropbox

dropbox_logo_home

Tired of emailing stuff to yourself? Me too. That’s why I was extremely excited to learn about DropBox. I’m trying to avoid this blog post sounding like an informercial, but this service is really cool. If you have more than one PC (office, iPhone, etc) and find yourself emailing stuff to yourself all the time – this is the solution. It also eliminates the flash drive taking up room in your pocket (or purse….or….man purse….). The best part?  It updates in real time. Drop something into the desktop application, and it is instantly available on your other PC, your phone, the web, and your dog’s microchip implant. Okay, so the implant thing is coming I hear, but the point is – you should get this software.

Try it out for a bit, then post your thoughts on it. I see alot of uses for business, school, ministry….

What does your technology say?

1090907_95064686I spent yesterday on the phone with my bank trying to order checks for our ministry account. I ended up ordering from an online check printing service instead. Why? I was bounced to three different departments (all of them very nice, by the way), only to receive a message that said something along the lines of “we cannot process that request, please hang up and try your call again”. This was after 10 minutes of routing and re-routing through their system, explaining what I needed over and over. I’m not writing this to blow off steam – I wasn’t that upset. I’m not writing it to tell you I’m switching banks – I love my bank. But I am tired of not being able to contact people when I need too. I love technology – but not when it replaces people (side note: THAT is the issue with SOME online churches). Seth Godin (see blogroll) has an interesting article today about a similar thing – not being able to contact a company directly by email. That is ultimately frustrating as well. I have even encountered church websites that have forms going to office@thischurch.org instead of straight to the Pastor or whomever. If that doesn’t say “disconnected” and “leave us alone” I don’t know what does. The point: if you are going to use technology in your business (email, voice automated systems), then make it personable. What does your technology say to people?

Any thoughts on this?  Am I the only one?

FREE

Yesterday I was on a conference call with some team members about the recent flooding in Manila due to the typhoon (more on this in a few days). To facilitate the call we used freeconferencecall.com. I was amazed by the ease and simplicity of the equally amazing FREE service.

It works like this: you sign up and they email you a conference phone number and access code. Up to 96 people can participate in the call (seriously?!). As the admin, you can press *9 at any time during the call to record the conference, which is stored on their servers. Did I mention this is all FREE? For business owners and professionals this is a great service.

I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. Michael Hyatt (see blogroll) recently posted on his blog a video from Wired magazine. In the video, it talks about how as technology increases, online services will gradually become cheaper until they eventually become free. The economy of free. That’s where we are headed kids. No word yet on how this will fit into the current socialist trend of our country….

Speaking of FREE technology, I just downloaded the new Starbucks App….made a custom drink called Choc Cap….sweet….