1More Dual Driver LTNG ANC In-Ear Headphones

1More LTNG ANCIt has been quite a while since I reviewed a 1More product, and I was very pleased to review something new from them for the holidays. The 1More company is very good at making headphones and earbuds that are of a higher quality than the standard, and the Dual Driver LTNG ANC In-Ear Headphones are of that great standard.

So where to begin…hmm. Let’s start with ANC, and what it stands for, which is Active Noise Cancellation. It seems that 1More excels at this, and it is made for reducing noises on an airplane, car, or train. For those that care about these numbers, it has a frequency range of 50-2000 Hz with 20 db Reduction. Apparently, they have five-stars in noise reduction performance and multiple environments, and yeah, I took that from their website.

It all boils down to some terrific sound that is expected from this company. Then there is the dual driver sound with a one balanced armature along with one dynamic driver which works like a mini-tweeter and dynamic driver respectively.

There is also a feature that includes a 5-in-1 controller that feels really unique to me. For a call, you just hit it in the center to answer/hang up, and press and hold to reject a call. As for the music, you hit it in the center to play, toggle left for the previous track, and toggle right for the next track. You can also control the volume and take phone calls.

All of this is put in a very great design package with lightweight alloys and made specifically with the Apple Lightning connector in mind, which is why it won a design award this year. You should be able to purchase them on the 1More Site for $149.99.

AOL Says Goodbye to Instant Messenger

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Many of us older people began our internet memories with the sounds of screeching and humming, and after glorious connection finally appeared, the famous “You’ve got mail!” announcement.

AOL Instant Messenger was integrated in the AOL program. Remember when you could get free hours of internet with a simple CD sent in the mail? The little yellow running man greeting us on the screen? Ah, fond memories of the late 90s.

There were competitors to the chat app, though. ICQ, and Yahoo! IM were some big rivals. When Facebook came along, there wasn’t much use for the app anymore, but there have still been users on a platform with some bare bones support.

From their blog on Tumblr, Michael Albers, VP of Communications Product at Oath announced,“AIM tapped into new digital technologies and ignited a cultural shift, but the way in which we communicate with each other has profoundly changed. As a result we’ve made the decision that we will be discontinuing AIM effective December 15, 2017. We are more excited than ever to continue building the next generation of iconic brands and life-changing products for users around the world.”

Thanks for the memories, AOL!

Bodyguardz Pure Screen Protector for iPad Pro 10.5 and Trainr for the iPhone 6S/7 Plus

Well, it is time to review another great product from Bodyguardz, and they are very good at making screen protectors. They also make some cases, and today I am going to review both a screen protector and a case.

BodyGuardz Pure Premium Glass Screen Protector for Apple iPad Pro 10.5

bodyguardz Tempered iPad Pro 10.5If you are not familiar with a screen protector, then you probably need one. I remember seeing one of these ten years ago, before the age of smartphones really hit. It is a simple thin piece of glass to keep the touchscreen safe, and the Bodyguardz Pure is Tempered Glass for the iPad Pro 10.5.

This one is made from ion fortified tempered glass that is not just as hard as steel, it is harder than steel. This has some extreme impact and scratch protection that is optically clear with anti-smudge coating.

The end result is one of those screen protectors that goes on pretty easily as it comes with an installation kit and a microfiber cleaning cloth. By the way, it won some innovation awards back at CES 2013.

You should be able to purchase the Bodyguardz Pure Premium Glass Screen Protector for the Apple iPad Pro 10.5 on the Bodyguardz site for $59.95.

BodyGuardz Trainr Case for the iPhone 6/6S/7 Plus

Bodyguardz TrainrI actually reviewed this protect’s brother with the Trainr Pro, but this is just the Trainr Case with Unequal Technology. I’m not certain what makes it unequal, but it is made of sport-grip materials with a clear back and has some composite padding.

Similar to the Bodyguardz Pure, it is able to absorb impact, on contact. Also, this has some impact gel with a polycarbonate back, and the end result feels like a soft grip. The entire thing is actually quite flexible to easily accommodate the iPhone 6/6S/7 Plus, and presumably the iPhone 8 Plus.

If this is something that you like, head on over to the Bodyguardz site and pay $39.95 for it. It is available in Black/Gray, Gray/Blue, Gray/Mint, and Rose Gold/White. About the only difference between the Trainr and the Trainr Pro is that the Trainr Pro has this removable armband.

SmartHalo Turns Regular Bicycles into Smart Ones

Technology is improving life all the time, and this product will improve your life if you like to bike. The SmartHalo will turn any ordinary bike into a smart one.

This project was funded on Kick-Starter and Indiegogo, and started shipping in late June. Customers all over the world have enjoyed great features like navigation, a fitness tracker, an alarm, and even a personal assistant- all in one little gadget that fits on any standard bike.

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Navigation

Wouldn’t it be nice to have the convenience of finding your way without looking at your phone, or trying to hear directions over the din of traffic? The lights on this device will smartly point you in the direction you want to go. Simply plug the address in to the special app for SmartHalo, and follow the smart lights that point you in the direction you want to go.

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This invisible cyclist will be turning left.

When you reach your destination, the entire circle lights up. Also, the navigation system will try to keep you on bike routes, and will inform you when you should use caution and walk your bike.

Light

If you are riding at night, you want to be seen. The SmartHalo is super smart, and turns on as it gets dark. When you’re done with your ride, it turns off automatically. Set the brightness, or adjust it to flash through the app.

Alarm

Cars have alarms to annoy people if they get set off. You now have the option of a similar annoyance with your bike. The alarm is quite loud, not as loud as a car alarm, maybe, but it could probably deter a thief if they are messing with your bike.

Fitness

Track your speed, elevation and mileage. Set some goals. You don’t even have to take your phone out of your pocket.

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Personal Assistant

Want to know if a call is coming in? A blue light will flash to notify you.

 

All in all, we’re pretty impressed with this little device. The price is right at $150 US dollars, and you can buy it on the SmartHalo website, and even in Apple stores!

disclaimer- TheGeekChurch was sent this product to review in exchange for our unbiased opinion.

The MOXYO Mission Wireless Earbuds

Moxyo Mission WirelessIt’s been a year since we have reviewed a MOXYO product, and I enjoyed their earbuds, charging cable, and powerbank. Today, I had a chance to review a Blueooth set of earbuds with the Mission Wireless. I’m not certain if they are called Mission Wireless as a sequel to the Avenue earbuds that I reviewed before (you know, like Mission Avenue), or it is some kind of spy reference like Mission: Impossible.

I will have to say that I will describe the design as minimalist, but this is for lack of a better word. I mean, we live in a world where Bluetooth earbuds are a dime a dozen, even though they don’t cost that much. I find that MOXYO has a good price, and it gives a lot.

I’ll start by getting the specs out of the way, as the Mission Wireless is good for six hours of playtime. The range is the usual 33 feet (10 meters), and I say “usual” because that is what I have discovered is the range for most Bluetooth.

The Mission Wireless has a controller with a quick press for the volume control and long press for skipping forward/backward. The last remaining button is for the on/off to take a phone call, which is again a usual feature for Bluetooth earbuds.

I hope that you aren’t noticing the word “usual” and think that these earbuds are so-so. There is an interesting cable cinch allowing for a “perfect fit”, and that is pretty great.

You should be able to purchase the MOXYO Wireless Earbuds for about $39.99 on the MOXYO site.

UAG 2017 Part 2: Monarch Series for iPhone 8/7/6S and PYLO Series iPhone 8/7/6S Cases

Well, in addition to the Monarch and PYLO series for the iPhone X that I reviewed yesterday, today is going to be another UAG (Urban Armor Gear). This time, we are talking about the iPhone 8/7/6S and iPhone 8/7/6S Plus.

Monarch Series iPhone 8/7/6S Plus

UAG Monarch iPhone 7 and 6 PlusWell, this is the time where I could seriously just cut and paste the Monarch review for the iPhone X. I suppose that the Monarch case for the iPhone 8 Plus/7Plus/6S Plus/6 Plus is just that, but it is bigger.

Yes, it has the same 5-layers of protection, and the top grain leather and alloy metal hardware. It also has that same terrific look with the honeycomb traction grip.

There is something that I forgot to mention in my last review of the Monarch Series. It meets 2X military drop-test standards, and I don’t know why I forgot to write about the protection of this series offers.

Also, I forgot to mention that some of the colors of Monarch for the iPhone X look really similar. Not so with the iPhone 8/7/6 Plus, as it only comes in three options: Platinum, Graphite, and Crimson. The Platinum is kind of silver with black, and the Graphite is the one that you see here.

You can purchase the Monarch for the iPhone 8 Plus and its accommodating series of Apple smartphones on the UAG site for $59.95.

PYLO Series for the iPhone 8/7/6S

UAG PYLO iPhone 8Again, there is hardly any difference between the PYLO for the iPhone x and the one for the iPhone 7/6S. It has that transparent case with soft corners, but there is one thing that I want you to notice.

Just look at the images on my two articles. Go on, I’ll wait. Do you see it yet? Here’s a hint: look in the corner for the hole for the camera. You can see that the iPhone 8 version has a hole that is horizontal, but the PYLO for the iPhone X has a more vertical look to it. Yeah, I thought that I would point that out because I needed something to write about, and no one else is writing about that.

So, you can purchase get the PYLO for the iPhone 8/7/6S Case for $39.95 on the UAG site.

Moscow, Idaho Joins the Movement to Change the Name of Columbus Day

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The first city in the state of Idaho to do so, Moscow City Council members voted on Monday to change the name of Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples’ Day. The vote was in favor of changing it 5 to 1.  This just in time- as Columbus Day happens on October 9th.

The Moscow Human Rights Commission Chair, Ken Faunce, was in attendance at the city council meeting to explain why the name change needed to happen.

“Columbus is a symbol to Native American groups of slavery, massacres, genocides, violence,” Faunce stated. “All of these kinds of things, so we want to change it for that symbolic reason, that it honors Native Americans.”

Moscow sits on Nez Perce land, and other tribes lived in the area as well.

“We wanted to show that this was Native land first, and we came here second, so we wanted to honor them for that.”

 

“The other reason we’re pushing it is Columbus himself,” explained Faunce. “He shouldn’t have a holiday. He shouldn’t be a hero because he was a mass murderer, he was an abuser, he was a slaver, a sexual slaver, selling people as young as age 10 into the sex trade.”

Not all area residents are thrilled with this decision. Comments on the article on the local radio news page has comments such as ” Very poor move it changes nothing just a bunch of liberal left wing Democrats wanting to revise history,” and “That is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of, what’s wrong with You people! 

The Oatmeal has a great cartoon lesson on Columbus Day for those who want a challenge to the lessons they learned about in elementary school.

I wish I had clips from the ABC show Blackish. Tonight’s episode fit right in with the subject matter at hand, as the characters were upset about the way the kids’ Columbus Day was inaccurately portrayed. They came up with a new holiday “Juneteenth” to fill in the void in the lack of “black holidays.”

So what do you think? Join in the discussion with your thoughts in the comments below.

 

UAG 2017 Part 1: PLYO and Monarch Series, both for the iPhone X

Since the unveiling of the new iPhone, I have been itching to try out some of their newest accessories. I was pleased to receive in my mailbox the more new ones for the iPhone X. Today, I will discuss the PLYO and Monarch Series from our old friend, UAG (Urban Armor Gear).

Just as a reminder of the iPhone X, it was kind of a “one more thing” at Apple’s big event on September 12. The iPhone 8 will accommodate last year’s iPhone 7 model, but the iPhone X is an entirely different animal. It has a big price and a 5.8-inch screen that goes from edge to edge, with no home button.

PLYO Series iPhone X Case Review

UAG Plyo iPhone XI would imagine that it would be difficult to design a case for the iPhone X with its all-screen design. It’s pretty clear that they went with the hard plastic route, and the PYLO has a clear look, at least on its backside.

It is entirely different feel than the edges, which are very soft and flexible. It is designed to clearly be cushioning the sides, and the tactile buttons stand out well. Of course, it is set up to meet military drop-test standards.

It’s all very great, and it is pretty light as well. Just to let you know, it is set up for Apple Pay and the wireless charging feature. It’s a solid case, and can be purchased on the UAG site for $39.95 in Ice (Clear), Ash (Gray), and Crimson.

Monarch Series iPhone X Case

UAG Monarch iPhone XI’ll start by explaining that the Monarch is similar to PYLO, as it is Apple Pay and Wireless charging compatible, but it is a different set-up. Unlike the PYLO, it isn’t made with a solid plastic mold, but it boasts “5 layers of protection”.

Part of these layers is grain leather and alloy metal hardware. The end result is what has become almost a trademark for UAG with what looks like steel framework and black fill-in. Yeah, I can’t figure out how to describe it either, but there are some weird screws in it.

As for the sides, they are very soft with “honeycomb traction grip”, which you can see in the picture is aptly named. The tactile buttons are also prominent, which is also a part of their “premium design and precise engineering”.

The Monarch case is also available on the UAG site in Graphite, Platinum, Crimson, Black, and Carbon Fiber for $59.95.

Massacre in Las Vegas Kills at Least 58, More Than 500 Wounded

Flags are at half-mast today in the wake of this tragedy

Flags are at half-mast today in the wake of this tragedy/PublicDomainPhotos

People are mourning, speculating this morning, as late night news broke over a mass shooting at a Country music concert last night in Las Vegas, Nevada. The current count is 58 dead, 515 injured. This latest terrorist attack adds to the heartbreak our nation faces as more and more people die every day.

The facts are that the shooter was a sixty-four year old, Caucasian male. Although ISIS has made claims that this shooting was attributed to them, there has not been any indication that is the truth. The gunman shot at the concert-goers with an automatic rifle from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort. He was found dead in his hotel room with 10 other guns. The brother of the shooter said that he wasn’t aware of any mental illness.

So now we come to the questioning of what can we do. Has our nation become numb to this kind of event anymore? Wringing our hands and offering our prayers and condolences. Prayer seems to work only as much as giving us something to do when we don’t know what else to do, but it hasn’t stopped the other 272 mass shootings in 2017. 

Jeff Sessions, U.S. Attorney General, said in a statement, “The investigation into the horrific shooting last night in Las Vegas is ongoing.” He added,“To the many families whose lives have been changed forever by this heinous act, we offer you our prayers and our promise that we will do everything in our power to get justice for your loved ones.”

I can’t begin to fathom what kind of justice their families are going to get. The man who committed the act has killed himself. Will Congress step up and put limits on guns? I can’t imagine that is likely. Note, I do not believe all guns should be banned.  I believe we need to see limits.  I allow my kids to shoot rifles and shot guns at Scout camp. Guns are not inherently evil, but I believe that our culture has lifted them as idols, and I would hope to see something done. Other countries have seen their gun violence go down as a result of their gun bans. For sure, there are always people who say that criminals will find a way. Maybe so, but perhaps we can decrease the rates. No one needs a gun that can mow down 50 plus people in 10 minutes or less.

How can we resolve this problem we face in America? Leave your comments below.

 

#NationalCoffeeDay

#NationalCoffeeDay

#NationalCoffeeDay- My drink of choice tonight was Mocha Frappe from McDonalds

Today is a day that people who are connoisseurs of a certain kind of bean can get in on. It is National Coffee Day! Now, I know, every day is a celebration of coffee, right? Well, maybe not to the members of the faith that I was raised in, but I can drink the beverage guilt-free now! So how did you celebrate the day?

Stores across the nation had special deals on some coffee drinks. Ironically, the store one would think would offer their customers some kind of bargain on their specialty item did not really have a sale, but Starbucks celebrated today, and will continue to celebrate through Sunday by having no menu boards. Instead, Starbucks is sharing information with customers about how their coffee purchases have made a difference, and will educate on the company’s commitment to coffee from ethical and sustainable sources.

Several other offers were available. A local coffee shop in our area used 20% of the proceeds made today on purchases to go toward Puerto Rico’s hurricane disaster relief.

Fun facts about coffee:

 80% of adults consume caffeine every day in the United States.

The Food and Drug Administration says the average intake is 200 milligrams,which is about two five-ounce cups of coffee.

The original definition of coffee means “wine.”

Coffee was originally named qahwah, came from the Yemen term for wine. The Turks called it kahveh, then the Dutch referred to it as koffie. Donald Trump prefers covfefe. Just kidding, I had to get the joke in somehow.

Decaf is not really caffeine-free.

An eight ounce brewed cup of decaf coffee actually has two-to-12 milligrams of caffeine, while a regular cup of coffee has anywhere from 95 to 200 milligrams. Not a whole lot of caffeine, but you are not escaping it altogether by pouring the decaf in your cup.

 Brazil produces most of the world’s coffee.

40% of the world’s coffee comes out of Brazil- twice as much as Colombia and Vietnam(who come in 2nd and 3rd in production).

Coffee is the second most traded commodity on our planet.

The Global Exchange tells us that there are approximately 25 million farmers in over 50 countries involved in producing coffee. It comes in 2nd to oil.

Mormons aren’t the only ones who have banned coffee.

The first ban seems to originate in Mecca in 1511. Why?  Leaders believed it stimulated radical thinking.  Italian clergymen in the 16th century tried to ban coffee because they believed it to be “satanic.” That ban was lifted by Pope Clement VII, a coffee lover in 1600. Ottoman leader Murad IV created punishments for coffee drinkers in 1623  which included beatings and being thrown into the sea. In 1746, Swedes weren’t even allowed to have cups or plates for coffee. In 1777, Frederick the Great of Prussia declared that beer was superior to coffee, so he proclaimed a manifesto to prevent coffee from being chosen over beer.

There may be some health benefits to drinking coffee

According to WebMD, research shows that coffee drinkers, compared to nondrinkers, are less likely to have type 2 diabetesParkinson’s disease, and dementia. They also have fewer cases of certain cancers, heart rhythm problems, and strokes.

 

Now I leave you with Ralph’s World “The Coffee Song.” Let me know what your favorite drink is by leaving a comment below!