Tech Stuff

A new update (2.9) for Meeting Minutes Pro and the first version of Meeting Minutes Sync has been released today. It will be available on Google Play in the next 2-3 hours.

This release adds the following features to the app:

  • Sync data between multiple devices (requires the new add-on app Meeting Minutes Sync)
  • Minor bug fixes

 

We are pleased to inform that very soon we are coming up with Meeting Minutes Sync, an add-on app for Meeting Minutes to enable easy syncing of your data between multiple devices. The first release of Meeting Minutes Sync will be available in the next 1-2 weeks.

Meeting Minutes Sync will enable syncing your data between multiple devices through our secure cloud platform provider. In the initial release, the sync will be done at the database level giving you full control of what you want to upload or download to or from the server. In future releases, we plan to enable sync at the individual element level to improve the efficiency.

We hope you will appreciate this effort and support Meeting Minutes Sync.

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Disclosure: Due to a special offer from iPage, I am being compensated for this review and any resulting referrals from my affiliate links posted above. However, the review itself is an honest feedback on our experience so far.

A new update (2.8) for Meeting Minutes Pro has been released today. It will be available on Google Play in the next 2-3 hours.

This release adds the following features to the app:

  • New data element Comments to store any additional information for the Action Items
  • Feature to add linked discussion/action items from the agenda page or agenda long press menu
  • Export Meeting to Calendar
  • Feature to take pictures using camera and add as attachments
  • Feature to record audio and add as attachments
  • A new and easy to use Help section
  • Other minor bug fixes

A new update (2.7) for Meeting Minutes Pro has been released today. It will be available on Google Play in the next 2-3 hours and will be available on BlackBerry World in the next few days (based on how long BlackBerry takes to approve the release).

This release adds the following features to the app:

  • New data element Meeting Category to store project or client or anything else
  • Feature to create new Agenda Items when linking Agenda to Discussion/Action Item
  • Open Meeting Attachments from within the app by long pressing on them
  • Option to hide any element(s) in any list by setting column width as 0
  • Display Email Address on Participant/Contact lists
  • Display Linked Agenda on Discussion and Action Item lists
  • Option to show Meeting Time in 24 or 12 Hour format in exported Meeting Minutes/Agenda
  • Option to choose time range for meeting import from Calendar
  • Bug Fix: Error while importing meetings from calendar with secondary user
  • Bug Fix: Error while importing meetings from calendar with email address with apostrophe
  • Other minor bug fixes

Courtesy AppSurfer, you can now get a sneak peek preview of Meeting Minutes Pro from your browser on ANY device. Sounds interesting? Go here, take a look and let me know what you think about the app…

Note: AppSurfer shows the preview on a phone-like simulator. Meeting Minutes Pro, though now has a fully optimized UI for mobile phones, works and feels a lot better on Tablets.

Google launched the Nexus 4 smartphone, Nexus 7 HSPA+ 7″ tablet and the Nexus 10 10″ tablet earlier this week with the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OS. Needless to say all the 3 new products were sold out like hot cakes within a few hours of launch. Subsequently, Google started rolling out the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OTA update to the Nexus family of devices. My Nexus 7 got the update yesterday and my Galaxy Nexus phone got the update today. Here is a quick and simple peek into what has changed with Jelly Bean 4.2 and what I feel about the update…

Multi-User Support: This is something that I haven’t seen till now in mobile devices. Right now, it is available only on tablets and lets you create multiple user accounts with a separate home screen, apps etc. So you and your partner/friend can share a tablet and still keep the data separate.

Photo Sphere Camera: This is the BEST features of this update. Using this you can very easily capture a panoramic shot covering 360 degrees. Now you don’t need an SLR camera or take a shot from a long distance to cover all the 100 people that attended your birthday party in a single picture. I will try to post some pictures taken using the feature soon..

Gesture (swipe) Typing: This feature looks very cool but am not sure about its usability. I was able to type much faster using the traditional method on my tablet than with gesture typing. It is better suited for phones than tablets. Also, it might be useful for those that cannot use their both hands to type.

Performance: The previous version of Jelly Bean itself was pretty slick. This version has just raised the bar. The devices have become even slicker with the update that can be very easily noticed.

Lock Screen Widgets: You can create multiple lock screen widgets to display useful information while the screen is locked. Photos, Email, News etc can be placed here. The email lock screen widget shows you a preview of the message that helps you determine whether or not to unlock to device to read it.

Mini Settings from Notification bar: The most commonly used settings can be simply reached from the notification bar instead of needing to go to the Settings app. This is a useful feature update.

Miscellaneous: There is a new clock app, improved and optimized UI around the OS, clear demarcation of the permissions required while downloading new apps/updates from Google Play etc.

Note: This post is just my experience of playing around with the Jelly Bean 4.2 update for a few hours. There could be a lot more features that I have not tired yet.  For more information on the update, please go here.

An interesting write up on Google. This has been taken from a forum on the internet. Credit goes to the original author…

Google is trying to be part of your life in every way. They want to be your phone (Nexus, Google Voice), your social network (Google+, Gtalk etc.), the way you find new places (Navigation, Google Maps), where you go and check-in (Latitude, if you haven’t checked your location tracking you might want to see this and log in with a Google account attached to an android device. It’s pretty…creepy. Google knows where I work, where I live, where I’ve been, how often I stayed at each place and put it in a pie chart of how many hours I spend at each place. I haven’t turned this off because I find this really interesting and I didn’t know Google tracked me so…accurately.)

Google wants to be your ads (adwords etc.), they want to know how you shop and what you like to shop for (Google Wallet, Shopping, Offers, Checkout), they want to be your ISP and cable provider (Google Fiber), they want to be the service to also take you to the places you need to go (Google self-driving car).

Google wants to know everything you see (Google Glass), and how you spend your day to day life.

Google wants to be your web browser (Chrome), they want to be your OS (Chrome OS), and they want to be your tablet, e-reader, music player etc. (Google Books, Google Music, Android, Nexus, Google Movies, etc.)

Google wants to know what makes you laugh and what your interests are (YouTube, Search, News), they want to know the people that you love and the things you like to take pictures of (Picasa, contacts, Google+, Gmail etc.)

And Google also wants to help you find what you want (Search) and help you succeed in your studies (Scholar).

Google Now also knows that package that just shipped from Amazon and when it’s going to arrive, the weather where you live and work, the traffice on your commute, your appointments, the currency and language you’ll need while travelling, and timezones. It’ll also help you find new places to see (FieldTrip), and if your flight is delayed or whether your sports team is winning.

Google also wants to let you know when there’s an emergency and how to get to safety (Hurrican Sandy Google Now alerts showed gas and shelter etc.).

Google also wants to know what money you make (Stocks), when your birthday is and your friends birthdays, hotels restaurants etc.

Apple and Microsoft have got NOTHING on how much Google knows about you.

But I’m okay with it. If I wanted, I can delete much of what Google knows about me, in one click (data liberation of Google account).

Google offers it’s services to better themselves and your own lives. They learn about you so they can market/advertise to you better. Every company wants to do this, and out of all of them, I trust Google the most, because they are transparent at least on how they track me and let me know how I can modify the data they track about me.

So I upgraded my Windows 7 laptop to Windows 8 Pro last week for $15. Here is a short write up on my experience with Windows 8 in the past week.

How to upgrade:

Windows 8 Pro upgrade can be purchased for $40 or a similar price in other countries around the world. Just go here to purchase and download the upgrade. Note that if you have purchased a Windows 7 PC between  June 2, 2012 and January 31, 2013, you can purchase a download of Windows 8 Pro at a special promotional price ($15 in the US). First go here to register and get a promo code to avail the discount and then proceed to purchasing the upgrade and enter the promo code you received at checkout to get the discount.

Now lets see what has changed (rather what I have noticed) in Windows 8.

Performance: One of the best changes that I noticed with the upgrade. Overall, my laptop has become snappier. It boots up and shuts down very fast too. Almost all programs start and run fast on Windows 8 compared to previous versions of Windows.

Compatibility: All my programs, devices and drivers work on Windows 8 too. I have not noticed any major compatibility issues due to the upgrade.

Start Menu: The start menu is replaced with the new, mobile like, start screen (metro UI). This tiled start screen can be completely customized and looks pretty cool unlike anything else that was seen in the previous versions of Windows. The start button is gone (rather hidden) but can be seen by hovering the mouse on the bottom left hand corner of the screen. The start screen can be opened by pressing the windows key or on this invisible start menu button.

Desktop Mode: This is probably the area where you will find no difference between Windows 7 and Windows 8. Most programs (that are not Windows 8 apps) open up in the desktop mode.

Charms Bar: A charms bar appears when you swipe on the right hand portion of the screen. It contains short cuts for search, sharing, start screen, connected devices and settings. To shut down your device, which is a bit tricky in Windows 8, you will need to tap on the settings of this charms bar.

Lock Screen: The standard lock screen has been enhanced in Windows 8. Again, it is mobile inspired and can be customized with your choice of background photo, notifications like weather, calendar appointments, unread messages etc.

Windows Store: Similar to the Apple AppStore, Google Play (Android Market) or BlackBerry AppWorld there is a Windows Store on Windows 8 with a few apps to begin with. There are not many apps right now but I guess there will be more in the coming months.

To wrap up, it is pretty clear that, with Windows 8, Microsoft has taken a shot at making their OS mobile device friendly. While the OS still works and feels good on a PC, it will be best experienced on a tablet or a PC with touch screen. However, since the upgrade itself is not very expensive it is something you might want to try given the improvement in performance.