This next month's great meeting topics is "Mistakes to Avoid". The meeting will be held at 7:00 pm, April 4, 2017, in Kennedy Hall at IC School, 1208 E. McCarty St., Jefferson City. Please bring your friends who are Mac or iOS users to our meetings.
Our April meeting was all about iHealth when George and Tom showed how you can use your technology to monitor your own health factors. We also had several entries for the Video Contest.
With yard work,spring weddings, and regular job, (if your like me) you don’t have much time left for hobbies this time of the year. I think this might be the only weekend until June that something isn’t on the calendar. I am glad I took the time to do a few things before Spring.
If there is something you would like to share with the group, we would be happy to give you 20-30 minutes to show off how you use your Apple device. Its always fun to learn more about your perspectives.
The following people won door prizes at the April meeting:
Shubha Miller - iTunes Card
Julie Smith - Charger Bonnie Culley - Stocking Cap
Margie Stevenson - Sunglasses
Jim Stevenson - Reusable Bag Joe Mertzlufft - Pen w/ Stylus Carole Van Vranken - Pen w/ Stylus Janet Gallaher - Pen w/ Stylus
Jim Springs - Pen w/ Stylus
Dan Walsh - Pen w/ Stylus
Rosalind Moulton - Pen w/ Stylus
Jane Szabados - Stylus
Beverly Giangiacomo - Stylus
Our upcoming May 3, 2016, meeting will feature the Apple Device Contest Results plus eBay & CraigsList (see agenda below). We will show the submissions from the Apple Device Contest, then Julie will announce the Winners in each category. We plan to have time for Q&A on how the movies were made. After the Great Break, Donna Deitz owner of “Click to Sell” will show the ins and outs of eBay. Next, Tom Piper will do the same for CraigsList.
As always, there will be time for everyone to ask questions and share your tips and tricks to the group. Please continue to visit our website for more updates and fresh information.
I’ve been a video doorbell user for several years with a SkyBell. At CES 2016, I was introduced to another competing vendor with a very robust product.
The DoorBird Video Door Station D101 with a white polycarbonate housing has been my test model for the past few weeks. It allows me to speak with my visitors and open my door (if I had an electric lock) by my iPhone (or iPad) from anywhere in the world. It can actually be paired with up to 8 devices (like iPhones, iPads, and Androids). With this unit, I will not need to miss any more deliveries or visitors since I will be informed right away when the person rings.
It really has a broad field of vision. Thanks to the integrated high-end motion sensor, I can know what happens in front of my home with the 180° camera lens and infrared motion sensor can which has the ability to set off an alarm without ever touching the doorbell unit.
It has a durable all-weather case with temperature-resistant from just below 0° F to over 100°F, and rain water protection (in accordance with IP54 industry standard), all packaged in a stylish product design (high quality stainless steel models also available). This smart solution is of the highest quality and made in Germany. It has many features which are summarized at below.
Installation was relatively easy, in spite of a multi-language instruction book with tiny print. Thankfully, an easier-to-read online version was conveniently available online. It initially seemed complex only because of the international power unit with adapters, wide variety of connections, wire assemblies, and mounting screws included in the package. A few minutes of reading clarified that it really was easy to install. Downloading and installing the DoorBird app was also simple.
At about 1.5” x 3” x 6”, this unit is rather large for external mounting to replace the doorbell button, but the quality of the speaker, microphone, video camera, and motion detector certainly justify this size. I was amazed at how quickly I was notified of a visitor when the doorbell button was pushed, even when I was out of town. The very wide field of view allowed me to see the visitor plainly, even when they stood close to the door (the infra-red feature is also nice for night vision). I also like the ability to turn on the camera remotely just to view the area in front of the house using my iPhone (cannot yet be viewed from my computer screen, probably later).
If I had an electric front door lock or garage door opener, with the indoor and outdoor add-on of BirdGuard, I could even see what the visitor is doing after I had opened the door. To go even further, I could send potential burglars packing with a siren of 100dB or a loud announcement using their external speaker. Unfortunately, the DoorBird is not HomeKit compatible.
The DoorBird Video Door Station D101 can be viewed and purchased for $349.00 at doorbird.com (available colors are black, grey, white and yellow). This innovative idea was developed by the Bird Home Automation Group located in Berlin and San Francisco. The also have nine other models and four accessories to enhance the functionality of this innovative unit. This is a very nice, well-made unit.
Document scanning has been my passion for over 30 years, going as far back as the ThunderScan ribbon cartridge replacement on the early Apple ImageWriter, and ThunderWare handheld scanner. I’ve had sheetfed, flatscreen, pencil-type, bar-type, overhead, portable and tabletop versions (as well as the iPhone apps). My newest scanner discovery is truly awesome!
Dacuda describes its PocketScan as “The World‘s Smallest Wireless Scanner” which is obvious accurate, but a real understatement. I certainly believe that it can be the perfect companion for home, education, work and travel because it can scan almost anything of any size at virtually any time while connected wirelessly to most iOS and Android phones and tablets, as well as Mac and Windows computers.
Setup is remarkably easy and quick. The box includes the scanner unit, a micro-USB charge cable, a soft cloth pouch, a cleaning cloth, a plastic ScanPad sheet, and Quick Guide instruction sheet (in 8 languages). Since it has a rechargeable battery, it should be plugged in for a few hours first (until the red light turns off). Once fully charged, it needs to be paired to the host device or computer (I started with my iPhone 6s Plus, then used my iPad Pro 12.9”, then my MacBook Pro 15” retina, then my iMac 27” retina . . . each of which had to be paired separately), which connects quickly in each case. There are only two buttons, a small square grey on the bottom (a short press for power, or a long press for pairing), and the large white “S” button on the top (press once to start scan, and again to stop scan).
Once setup is complete, scanning is very intuitive and forgiving. The PocketScan scans using overlapping side-to-side swipes which stitches these images into files of all popular formats such as letter, A4, photos and much more at high-quality output (400 dpi) while recognizing text and tables. It then translates and reads these out to text which can be edited locally. Thanks to the clever built-in illumination, it works under any lighting condition to create a consistently clear scan with bright colors.
It is amazing simple to use while I watch my scanned image appear on my devise or computer screen during my scanning progress. It is important to do the overlapping scans in a slow steady S-shaped sweeping motion; some practice is needed to get the technique done correctly. An inquiry to Dacuda tech support provided comprehensive and adequate responses to my questions.
Much to my amazement, the integrated text recognition software allows me to directly edit scanned text and tables in Word and Excel. It even works great with applications like Apple iWorks (Pages and Numbers), Evernote or Microsoft Office suite. Tables are transformed into spreadsheets and accurate OCR allows instant text-editing. When the unit’s firmware is updated by Dacuda, it happens automatically via the host that it is connected to (takes about 3 minutes).
PocketScan instantly recognizes text in over 60 different languages, and translates back to English using Google Translate, which in itself is incredible. Since text recognition runs locally on the device, it works great even with poor Internet connectivity. The interactive scan technique allows me to scan things that don't fit in a regular scanner which means unlimited scanning from as small as a business card or receipt (it even comes with a transparent ScanPad to overlay and stabilize small objects), up to a A3 document, picture or drawing (11.7” x 16.5”).
This scanner is really small (3.7” x 1.9” x 1.0”, 3 oz) and fits perfectly in my pocket so that I can take it wherever I go. It can handle up to 400 scans on a single charge. It communicates with Bluetooth 2.1 or higher, and works with all of my Apple products (compatible with iPhone 5 and above, iPad mini 2nd gen and iPad air and above, Mac OS X 10.10 and above). More compatibility specifications are available on their website.
The Dacuda PocketScan is available for $149 from shop.dacuda.com (also found it for as little as $107.61 at amazon.com/Pocket-Scan). The unit is designed and engineered in Switzerland. Dacuda is a Swiss software company offering a unique content capturing technology based on real-time image processing. Dacuda's patented, proprietary SLAM Scan technology enables fast data entry of text and images, instant editing, as well as easy sharing of contents. It also offers 3D scanning (by iPhone) and 3D printable selfies (for more information, visit dacuda.com).