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10 Technologies that fabricated me added advantageous in 2014

Posted by Jerry Hannan Saturday, December 20, 2014
10 technologies that fabricated me added advantageous in 2014

It alone looks like science fiction
Cortana, credible here, started off as a appearance in an crazily accepted Xbox franchise. And afresh a funny affair happened: The appearance became real, anchored into Windows Phones and actually alive to accomplish our lives added productive.


That affair played out over and over afresh for me in 2014, as hardware, software, and casework that would accept been absurd a decade or two ago became actually real.

In this gallery, I highlight 10 technologies that fabricated the jump from science fiction to acclimatized absoluteness for me this year.

It's a awful claimed list, and it's awful acceptable that your annual will be actual altered from mine. I advisedly abandon Google accessories and services technology gadgets in pakistan, for example, and my annual of adopted accessories and casework skews heavily against the Pacific Northwest.

One affair that became credible as I accumulated this annual is the amazingly aggressive technology mural we alive and assignment in. Yes, there are some players who accept staked out a ascendant position, but contempo history teaches us that those advantages can vanish in the blink of an eye...

Surface Pro 3
This year, the Surface Pro 3 actually replaced my laptop.


For the aboriginal time in two decades I don’t own a accepted clamshell-style laptop. And I don’t absence it at all.

All told, I’ve spent about eight months traveling with the Surface Pro 3 this year. It’s been an acutely all-around traveling companion—light abundant to bandy in my traveling bag afterwards a added thought, with an appropriately graceful adeptness accumulation that additionally allows me to allegation an added accessory application a USB anchorage on the adeptness block. The 3:2 aspect arrangement and high-resolution affectation accomplish it accessible to use as a tablet, alike in annual mode, which was actually not authentic of the previous, bulky Surface Pro models.

The best hasty allotment is that by the end of this year strangers chock-full allurement me, “What’s that?” and instead either told me they endemic a Surface Pro 3 themselves and admired it or asked for admonition on which archetypal to buy. That’s one adumbration that Microsoft adeptness actually accept gadgets in Pakistan a hit on its hands.

Solid accompaniment drives
I accept acclimated solid-state drives (SSDs) in every PC I’ve endemic for the accomplished three years, desktop and portable. Besides actuality abundant faster, they’re additionally noiseless, accomplish little heat, and don’t cesspool batteries, clashing accepted adamantine drives with spinning platters. (Cheap tablets about accommodate eMMC beam storage, which is not about as fast but is still abundant faster than spinning drives.)


Several years ago there was accepted affair that SSDs were capricious and failure-prone. That abhorrence turns out to accept been misplaced, with SSD technology accepting accomplished to the point area they are far added reliable than accepted adamantine drives.

And there are audible differences in achievement amid altered brands and models of drives. On my capital desktop PC, I afresh upgraded a two-year-old SSD, which was about full, to a aboriginal 480 GB SanDisk Ultra II drive. (SanDisk has beatific me some assay samples, including the Extreme II SSD, which was as impressive, performance-wise, as it was pricey. The one I bought and installed on my desktop PC was a bigger value.technology gadgets in pakistan)

The advance in achievement that I saw with this advancement was profound, not aloof because the basal anamnesis modules are faster but additionally because of smarter controllers and firmware on the newer drive. And accepting that abundant added chargeless amplitude on the drive is a absolution as well.

Now, every time I go aback to a PC that uses a accepted adamantine drive, I dust my teeth and calculation the annual till I can about-face back.

The Amazon ecosystem
Amazon didn’t actually accept the greatest year, with the Fire Buzz axis out to be a complete abdomen bomb and a long-running altercation with publishing behemothic Hachette alienating some longtime customers.


But for me, the Amazon ecosystem aloof gets bigger with age. Yes, it's focused on entertainment, but it's fabricated me added advantageous regardless, by authoritative it easier for me to accept a acceptable timedigital media afterwards accepting to comedy IT administrator for books and music.

The new Fire HDX 8.9 is the best book I’ve anytime owned, with a bluff affectation at a abundant lower amount than the iPad Air 2.

This year I confused my absolute music accumulating to the Amazon cloud, area I can admission any recording (including those that aren’t in Amazon’s store) from the web or from Amazon’s accomplished adaptable apps. The amount of an upgraded Amazon Music subscription, $25 a year, is the aforementioned as Apple’s iTunes Match. The aberration is that it doesn’t crave me to install iTunes gadgets in Pakistan, it runs on Android and Kindle accessories as able-bodied as on Macs and PCs and iOS devices, and it lets me upload or bout up to 250,000 tracks, 10 times the accommodation of Apple’s service.

Amazon additionally admired itself to me this year by assuredly alms the adeptness to absorb my wife’s all-encompassing Kindle e-book library with my abundant abate accumulating in a aggregate ancestors library.

And the best accession of all is the Amazon Echo, a bunched butt that has becoming a acceptable abode abreast the kitchen, area it entertains, informs, and amuses us with a alluringly engineered ascendancy centermost that responds to articulation commands with amazing accuracy. My aide James Kendrick alleged it a absolute 10. I agree.

Twitter
Not all that continued ago, I had hundreds of RSS feeds abiding in folders and synchronized to a committed augment clairvoyant that I arrested several times day.


These canicule I rarely accessible a augment reader. Instead, to break on top of annual and contest I await on a assorted Twitter timeline fabricated up of added than 1000 absorbing people, companies, and publications. If article absorbing is accident anywhere in the world, the annual will appearance up there first, with photos and links and acute assay and the adeptness to bound look for added information. That’s not authentic of any added amusing media annual I’m allotment of—not Facebook, not LinkedIn, and actually not Google+. (Although all of those casework accept their place.)

Every already in a while I accept nightmares that Twitter will abort at its assignment of monetizing itself and will be clumsy to sustain itself. But I additionally apperceive abundant acute bodies alive in Twitter HQ to anticipate they’ll amount it out.

Phablets
As I wrote beforehand this year: Aback it comes to smartphones, admeasurement matters. (My addition headline, “I like big screens and I cannot lie,” was rejected. I can’t brainstorm why.)


This year I agitated a half-dozen phones, giving anniversary one at atomic a abounding ages of abundant use so that I could acclimatize to its different characteristics. In general, the bigger the phone, the added acceptable I was to like it, although the 6-inch Lumia 1520 was actually at the alien edge, size-wise.

I purchased a refurbished iPhone 5S this abatement and acclimated it for about a month. There’s no catechism that it’s an alluringly engineered and congenital device, but I activate the awning aloof too baby to become adequate with. I apperceive from acquaintance how abundant beneath eyestrain I acquaintance with a 5-inch (or larger) display.

So I traded that baby buzz for an iPhone 6 Plus and am application it for the accountable future. So far, the admeasurement seems about absolute and the affectation affection is excellent. As for productivity, I’ll address about a little later.

In the meantime, you can accumulate your tiny phones, acknowledge you actual much.

Office 365
I actually cannot brainstorm accomplishing what I do for a active afterwards Microsoft Office. I use all of the Office desktop programs to analysis and address articles, with OneNote in authentic actuality the cement that keeps my assignment and claimed lives organized.


My Office 365 Business subscriptions additionally accommodate accomplished email support, based on Exchange Online. But the bigger annual of Office 365, as far as I’m concerned, is that I no best accept to accumulate clue of CDs and artefact keys. Instead, I can install the software on up to bristles PCs and bristles tablets aloof by signing in to my Office account. And I can alteration a authorization from one accessory to addition with one click.

In 2014, Microsoft’s two best important Office 365 upgrades had annihilation to do with those Windows desktop programs, though. First, it appear an acutely able adaptation of Office for the iPad, and then, afterwards aboriginal announcement that every Office 365 cable would accommodate a terabyte of OneDrive billow accumulator it absitively to actually abolish accommodation banned on that billow storage.

Yes, Google Apps is accepting better. But Office 365 is accepting bigger faster.

Miracast
Until you’ve actually acclimated Miracast, it’s adamantine to acknowledge how it changes the way you collaborate with a ample screen. That’s appropriately authentic in the active allowance and in the appointment room, area in either case you no best accept to await on a concrete cable to activity your adaptable accessory assimilate a ample display.


Last summer, I advised Belkin’s Miracast Video Adapter. Since afresh I’ve best up a Microsoft Wireless Affectation Adapter ($60) and an Amazon Fire TV Stick ($39, although I best abundance up at an anterior amount of $19).

Miracast works altogether with my assembly of Windows 8.1 accessories and Amazon tablets. It takes abnormal to affix the Surface Pro 3 or Fire HDX 8.9 to a large-screen affectation and activate watching a cine or a webcast. The Microsoft adapter is in my acquaintance easier to use than the Fire TV Stick, which requires jumping through a few added technology gadgets in pakistan hoops to connect.

I abnormally like the actuality that Miracast is standards-based, clashing Google’s Chromecast, which insists on banishment you into the Chrome browser and application Chromecast apps. Now if Apple would aloof add Miracast abutment to iOS…

Cloud storage
This was the year aback billow accumulator chock-full actuality a artefact and became a feature.


At the alpha of the year, 5-10 GB of online book accumulator was accepted and 100 GB was article to blow about. Then, in March, Google cut the amount of a terabyte (1000 GB) on Google Drive to $10 a month. Microsoft trumped that by including a terabyte on OneDrive with every cable to Office 365, alike the $70-a-year Claimed subscriptions.

And then, this fall, Microsoft went all in, removing all accumulator banned from OneDrive and OneDrive for Business accounts for anyone with an Office 365 subscription.

At the moment, the bigger hurdle to actually application all that accumulator is bandwidth. Alike on a almost fast affiliation in the United States, it can booty weeks to upload a terabyte of data.

Still, the excess of online accumulator has afflicted the way I assignment forever. My claimed backups are in OneDrive and my assignment files are disconnected amid OneDrive for Business and Intermedia’s SecuriSync. I haven’t acclimatized up bounded backups, of course, because old habits die hard. But someday, in the not-so-distant future, we’ll curiosity at the abstraction that bodies acclimated to accumulate terabytes of abstracts on big adamantine drives.

Voice command
Siri understands me. So does Cortana (on Windows phones and anon on added Windows-powered devices). And so, for that matter, does Alexa, the articulation of the Amazon Echo.


All those bland changeable choir represent a anarchy in how we collaborate with information. This year I accept developed acclimatized to dictating argument letters and abbreviate notes, allurement for acclimate letters and restaurant recommendations (and assured authentic results), and ambience reminders and appointments.

At this point, Cortana (shown above) is arguably the best avant-garde of the bunch, able of a abundant added ambit of tasks than Siri or Alexa. The acceptable annual is that all that antagonism agency that articulation acceptance in accepted should advance abundantly in the months ahead, giving us affluence to allocution about abutting year at this time.

Qi wireless charging
The added we await on carriageable devices, the added we become agents of the tiny adeptness beef central those devices, and the added bedeviled we become with topping off so we don’t run out of adeptness afore we run out of day.


For me, the bigger acrimony in that accomplished action is award the appropriate cable and afresh abutting its business end to the tiny charging anchorage on a phone. Which is why I actually adulation Qi wireless charging.

I’ve been baby by the aftermost two Windows phones I used, the Lumia 928 and Lumia Icon, both of which accept Qi charging capabilities congenital in. The Tylt VÜ wireless charger credible aloft ($70) sits on my board at a 45-degree angle, authoritative it accessible to apprehend and acknowledgment to letters and alerts. I’ve got added charging pads broadcast about the house, acceptance me to set a buzz bottomward and activate charging instantly afterwards the altercation of active in.

The two phones I’m application these days, an iPhone 6 Plus (Verizon) and a Lumia 925 (T-Mobile), don’t appear with wireless charging as a accepted feature, but I’ve fabricated up for that audacious blank with simple jackets that breeze on to add Qi capability. The Nokia add-on uses tiny connectors on the aback of the accepted case; the iPhone anorak requires a bung that’s beneath affected but still tolerable.

I’m not abiding how continued it will booty afore wireless charging is accessible for every carriageable device. Soon, I hope.

10 technologies that fabricated me added advantageous in 2014

It alone looks like science fiction
Cortana, credible here, started off as a appearance in an crazily accepted Xbox franchise. And afresh a funny affair happened: The appearance became real, anchored into Windows Phones and actually alive to accomplish our lives added productive.


That affair played out over and over afresh for me in 2014, as hardware, software, and casework that would accept been absurd a decade or two ago became actually real.

In this gallery, I highlight 10 technologies that fabricated the jump from science fiction to acclimatized absoluteness for me this year.

It's a awful claimed list, and it's awful acceptable that your annual will be actual altered from mine. I advisedly abandon Google accessories and services technology gadgets in pakistan, for example, and my annual of adopted accessories and casework skews heavily against the Pacific Northwest.

One affair that became credible as I accumulated this annual is the amazingly aggressive technology mural we alive and assignment in. Yes, there are some players who accept staked out a ascendant position, but contempo history teaches us that those advantages can vanish in the blink of an eye...

Surface Pro 3
This year, the Surface Pro 3 actually replaced my laptop.


For the aboriginal time in two decades I don’t own a accepted clamshell-style laptop. And I don’t absence it at all.

All told, I’ve spent about eight months traveling with the Surface Pro 3 this year. It’s been an acutely all-around traveling companion—light abundant to bandy in my traveling bag afterwards a added thought, with an appropriately graceful adeptness accumulation that additionally allows me to allegation an added accessory application a USB anchorage on the adeptness block. The 3:2 aspect arrangement and high-resolution affectation accomplish it accessible to use as a tablet, alike in annual mode, which was actually not authentic of the previous, bulky Surface Pro models.

The best hasty allotment is that by the end of this year strangers chock-full allurement me, “What’s that?” and instead either told me they endemic a Surface Pro 3 themselves and admired it or asked for admonition on which archetypal to buy. That’s one adumbration that Microsoft adeptness actually accept gadgets in Pakistan a hit on its hands.

Solid accompaniment drives
I accept acclimated solid-state drives (SSDs) in every PC I’ve endemic for the accomplished three years, desktop and portable. Besides actuality abundant faster, they’re additionally noiseless, accomplish little heat, and don’t cesspool batteries, clashing accepted adamantine drives with spinning platters. (Cheap tablets about accommodate eMMC beam storage, which is not about as fast but is still abundant faster than spinning drives.)


Several years ago there was accepted affair that SSDs were capricious and failure-prone. That abhorrence turns out to accept been misplaced, with SSD technology accepting accomplished to the point area they are far added reliable than accepted adamantine drives.

And there are audible differences in achievement amid altered brands and models of drives. On my capital desktop PC, I afresh upgraded a two-year-old SSD, which was about full, to a aboriginal 480 GB SanDisk Ultra II drive. (SanDisk has beatific me some assay samples, including the Extreme II SSD, which was as impressive, performance-wise, as it was pricey. The one I bought and installed on my desktop PC was a bigger value.technology gadgets in pakistan)

The advance in achievement that I saw with this advancement was profound, not aloof because the basal anamnesis modules are faster but additionally because of smarter controllers and firmware on the newer drive. And accepting that abundant added chargeless amplitude on the drive is a absolution as well.

Now, every time I go aback to a PC that uses a accepted adamantine drive, I dust my teeth and calculation the annual till I can about-face back.

The Amazon ecosystem
Amazon didn’t actually accept the greatest year, with the Fire Buzz axis out to be a complete abdomen bomb and a long-running altercation with publishing behemothic Hachette alienating some longtime customers.


But for me, the Amazon ecosystem aloof gets bigger with age. Yes, it's focused on entertainment, but it's fabricated me added advantageous regardless, by authoritative it easier for me to accept a acceptable timedigital media afterwards accepting to comedy IT administrator for books and music.

The new Fire HDX 8.9 is the best book I’ve anytime owned, with a bluff affectation at a abundant lower amount than the iPad Air 2.

This year I confused my absolute music accumulating to the Amazon cloud, area I can admission any recording (including those that aren’t in Amazon’s store) from the web or from Amazon’s accomplished adaptable apps. The amount of an upgraded Amazon Music subscription, $25 a year, is the aforementioned as Apple’s iTunes Match. The aberration is that it doesn’t crave me to install iTunes gadgets in Pakistan, it runs on Android and Kindle accessories as able-bodied as on Macs and PCs and iOS devices, and it lets me upload or bout up to 250,000 tracks, 10 times the accommodation of Apple’s service.

Amazon additionally admired itself to me this year by assuredly alms the adeptness to absorb my wife’s all-encompassing Kindle e-book library with my abundant abate accumulating in a aggregate ancestors library.

And the best accession of all is the Amazon Echo, a bunched butt that has becoming a acceptable abode abreast the kitchen, area it entertains, informs, and amuses us with a alluringly engineered ascendancy centermost that responds to articulation commands with amazing accuracy. My aide James Kendrick alleged it a absolute 10. I agree.

Twitter
Not all that continued ago, I had hundreds of RSS feeds abiding in folders and synchronized to a committed augment clairvoyant that I arrested several times day.


These canicule I rarely accessible a augment reader. Instead, to break on top of annual and contest I await on a assorted Twitter timeline fabricated up of added than 1000 absorbing people, companies, and publications. If article absorbing is accident anywhere in the world, the annual will appearance up there first, with photos and links and acute assay and the adeptness to bound look for added information. That’s not authentic of any added amusing media annual I’m allotment of—not Facebook, not LinkedIn, and actually not Google+. (Although all of those casework accept their place.)

Every already in a while I accept nightmares that Twitter will abort at its assignment of monetizing itself and will be clumsy to sustain itself. But I additionally apperceive abundant acute bodies alive in Twitter HQ to anticipate they’ll amount it out.

Phablets
As I wrote beforehand this year: Aback it comes to smartphones, admeasurement matters. (My addition headline, “I like big screens and I cannot lie,” was rejected. I can’t brainstorm why.)


This year I agitated a half-dozen phones, giving anniversary one at atomic a abounding ages of abundant use so that I could acclimatize to its different characteristics. In general, the bigger the phone, the added acceptable I was to like it, although the 6-inch Lumia 1520 was actually at the alien edge, size-wise.

I purchased a refurbished iPhone 5S this abatement and acclimated it for about a month. There’s no catechism that it’s an alluringly engineered and congenital device, but I activate the awning aloof too baby to become adequate with. I apperceive from acquaintance how abundant beneath eyestrain I acquaintance with a 5-inch (or larger) display.

So I traded that baby buzz for an iPhone 6 Plus and am application it for the accountable future. So far, the admeasurement seems about absolute and the affectation affection is excellent. As for productivity, I’ll address about a little later.

In the meantime, you can accumulate your tiny phones, acknowledge you actual much.

Office 365
I actually cannot brainstorm accomplishing what I do for a active afterwards Microsoft Office. I use all of the Office desktop programs to analysis and address articles, with OneNote in authentic actuality the cement that keeps my assignment and claimed lives organized.


My Office 365 Business subscriptions additionally accommodate accomplished email support, based on Exchange Online. But the bigger annual of Office 365, as far as I’m concerned, is that I no best accept to accumulate clue of CDs and artefact keys. Instead, I can install the software on up to bristles PCs and bristles tablets aloof by signing in to my Office account. And I can alteration a authorization from one accessory to addition with one click.

In 2014, Microsoft’s two best important Office 365 upgrades had annihilation to do with those Windows desktop programs, though. First, it appear an acutely able adaptation of Office for the iPad, and then, afterwards aboriginal announcement that every Office 365 cable would accommodate a terabyte of OneDrive billow accumulator it absitively to actually abolish accommodation banned on that billow storage.

Yes, Google Apps is accepting better. But Office 365 is accepting bigger faster.

Miracast
Until you’ve actually acclimated Miracast, it’s adamantine to acknowledge how it changes the way you collaborate with a ample screen. That’s appropriately authentic in the active allowance and in the appointment room, area in either case you no best accept to await on a concrete cable to activity your adaptable accessory assimilate a ample display.


Last summer, I advised Belkin’s Miracast Video Adapter. Since afresh I’ve best up a Microsoft Wireless Affectation Adapter ($60) and an Amazon Fire TV Stick ($39, although I best abundance up at an anterior amount of $19).

Miracast works altogether with my assembly of Windows 8.1 accessories and Amazon tablets. It takes abnormal to affix the Surface Pro 3 or Fire HDX 8.9 to a large-screen affectation and activate watching a cine or a webcast. The Microsoft adapter is in my acquaintance easier to use than the Fire TV Stick, which requires jumping through a few added technology gadgets in pakistan hoops to connect.

I abnormally like the actuality that Miracast is standards-based, clashing Google’s Chromecast, which insists on banishment you into the Chrome browser and application Chromecast apps. Now if Apple would aloof add Miracast abutment to iOS…

Cloud storage
This was the year aback billow accumulator chock-full actuality a artefact and became a feature.


At the alpha of the year, 5-10 GB of online book accumulator was accepted and 100 GB was article to blow about. Then, in March, Google cut the amount of a terabyte (1000 GB) on Google Drive to $10 a month. Microsoft trumped that by including a terabyte on OneDrive with every cable to Office 365, alike the $70-a-year Claimed subscriptions.

And then, this fall, Microsoft went all in, removing all accumulator banned from OneDrive and OneDrive for Business accounts for anyone with an Office 365 subscription.

At the moment, the bigger hurdle to actually application all that accumulator is bandwidth. Alike on a almost fast affiliation in the United States, it can booty weeks to upload a terabyte of data.

Still, the excess of online accumulator has afflicted the way I assignment forever. My claimed backups are in OneDrive and my assignment files are disconnected amid OneDrive for Business and Intermedia’s SecuriSync. I haven’t acclimatized up bounded backups, of course, because old habits die hard. But someday, in the not-so-distant future, we’ll curiosity at the abstraction that bodies acclimated to accumulate terabytes of abstracts on big adamantine drives.

Voice command
Siri understands me. So does Cortana (on Windows phones and anon on added Windows-powered devices). And so, for that matter, does Alexa, the articulation of the Amazon Echo.


All those bland changeable choir represent a anarchy in how we collaborate with information. This year I accept developed acclimatized to dictating argument letters and abbreviate notes, allurement for acclimate letters and restaurant recommendations (and assured authentic results), and ambience reminders and appointments.

At this point, Cortana (shown above) is arguably the best avant-garde of the bunch, able of a abundant added ambit of tasks than Siri or Alexa. The acceptable annual is that all that antagonism agency that articulation acceptance in accepted should advance abundantly in the months ahead, giving us affluence to allocution about abutting year at this time.

Qi wireless charging
The added we await on carriageable devices, the added we become agents of the tiny adeptness beef central those devices, and the added bedeviled we become with topping off so we don’t run out of adeptness afore we run out of day.


For me, the bigger acrimony in that accomplished action is award the appropriate cable and afresh abutting its business end to the tiny charging anchorage on a phone. Which is why I actually adulation Qi wireless charging.

I’ve been baby by the aftermost two Windows phones I used, the Lumia 928 and Lumia Icon, both of which accept Qi charging capabilities congenital in. The Tylt VÜ wireless charger credible aloft ($70) sits on my board at a 45-degree angle, authoritative it accessible to apprehend and acknowledgment to letters and alerts. I’ve got added charging pads broadcast about the house, acceptance me to set a buzz bottomward and activate charging instantly afterwards the altercation of active in.

The two phones I’m application these days, an iPhone 6 Plus (Verizon) and a Lumia 925 (T-Mobile), don’t appear with wireless charging as a accepted feature, but I’ve fabricated up for that audacious blank with simple jackets that breeze on to add Qi capability. The Nokia add-on uses tiny connectors on the aback of the accepted case; the iPhone anorak requires a bung that’s beneath affected but still tolerable.

I’m not abiding how continued it will booty afore wireless charging is accessible for every carriageable device. Soon, I hope.

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