Two iPad’s are better than one

I’ve been living with two iPads for the month give or take and I gotta say it’s pretty sweet. I bought the original iPad as a gift to myself when I got a bonus from work. I bought the iPad 2 using another bonus I got from work. I originally was skeptical of getting a second iPad because I already have the original one. Truth be told, I use both iPads the same way because the user experience is the same for the most part.

My iPad 2 is lighter than the old one and because I got a smart cover for it, it’s not as bulky as the original one with the black iPad cover that protected the whole device. I almost miss the larger cover that Apple originally made because it provided protection for the whole device and not just the screen. What makes it really cool to have two iPads is that my wife and I can each use one which keeps us out of the office where we used to spend quite a bit of time since the computer was there and we didn’t want to use our work laptops.

I just tried out using FaceTime with my friend who just got an iPad 2 as well and I have to admit that the experience was pretty cool. I’m hoping to use my iPad 2 while on the road with some iPhone 5’s that I’m going to get for me and my wife so I can see her instead of just talking to her. I’m hoping that more websites become more tablet and mobile friendly. I think as tablets become more prolific, the PC will not become as important in the home. I still wish that i had access to some sort of file system on the iPad so I know that my files are semi secure on the device rather than having my stuff in the cloud. What I think will make the iPad truly powerful will be the day when I don’t need to tether the iPad to a computer or Mac to activate or update the device. Maybe that will come with the iPad 3 but I might actually skip that device since I’ll need to use the money for the family and I would have dropped a ton on getting new iPhones.

I’m getting good at cooking pasta

Since about February I’ve been working from home which in my line of work is pretty unusual. I am normally used to traveling for work on an air plane and eating out for most of the week. Since I was spending a lot of time at home I had to find simple things that I could cook since I am not much of a cook. Normally I eat whatever my wife cooks because she cooks really well but most of what she cooks I would probably screw up so I needed something more simple than chicken adobo or black bean spare ribs.

When I went on my first spring break with my wife, I attempted to cook pasta thinking it was a fairly simple enterprise. Boiling water and pasta, how hard could that be? I can say that my first attempt was less than stellar. I had lots of clumps in it and it was way over cooked, needless to say, it wasn’t eaten. Since that time I was banned from cooking pasta for about five years but I have greatly improved my skill in cooking pasta with meat sauce.

My current specialty that I have developed is cooking shell pasta with spicy meat sauce. Cooking the sauce and the meat is actually the easiest part. I don’t have to take care of it and it’s all about cooking the meat till it’s nice and brown and dumping in the sauce and heating it up. The real triumph that I have achieved is perfectly cooking the pasta. Perfect pasta comes out al dente where the pasta isn’t all mushy but just cooked enough so that it’s soft but isn’t too soft. Kind of hard to explain but the best Italian places that I’ve been to always cook their pasta al dente. Normally I need to test the out the pasta to make sure I don’t over cook it but lately I’ve gotten good enough just by looking at the pasta and poking at it with a spoon that I can tell when it’s cooked perfectly. So now I’m eating pasta almost every day, except for Friday’s and weekends because my wife cooks more variety than me when she’s home, but at least now I know I can cook shell pasta on demand and it won’t be all clumped up like it was in 1999. Maybe I need to start experimenting with other foods so I can get some more variety in my diet when I’m home alone.

Talking and surfing matter

I’ve come to realize that for me, talking and surfing the web on my phone is pretty essential. There is so much stuff that I look up on the web while on the phone because the people that I talk to need information or at the very least I need information so I know what they’re talking about. The AT&T commercials are true in that regard that being able to do both is a huge advantage.

I learned this past week while I was in NY that my tmobile mytouch 4g doesn’t have this ability to talk and tether. I don’t use the phone that much to surf the Internet since I have most of what I need on my iPhone and I always carry both phones anyway. What I was trying to do was to tether the phone (which it is advertised to do) and talk on a conference call at the same time. I found out that I could only do one or the other which is really limiting. I jailbreak my iPhone so I have tethering with that and I have never had that problem before. I think it’s rather annoying not being able to do both talk and surf at once. There are a lot of apps that rely on having an Internet connection (Evernote comes to mind) that won’t work if you’re chatting on the phone. I guess it could also be seen as rude if the person on the other line knows you’re surfing the web and ignoring them when you should be having a meaningful conversation.

I guess I’m going to have to wait for AT&T to release the next iPhone. While I’m ok with the tmobile network, I’m still not a big fain of android at the moment. I’ll give it more time but I don’t think my opinion will change even if they pushed Honeycomb to my work phone. I would take a few things from Android and drop it into my iPhone like notifications and I like how the webOS has multi-tasking with cards. I can do most of this using jailbreak but I’m trying to limit what I do in that space.