Fun Finds | Phone Apps

I have always been a proponent of keeping things “stock.”  Car stereos, my hair color, and until now: the apps on my phone.

In the last month or so, while perusing CNN – Tech, I’ve come across a few articles with suggestions about fun apps to try. Of course, being a total cheapskate, I ignored any apps that were paid (what if I don’t like it? or get bored with it? just money flushed!). In my general filtering process I’ve come across two that tickled my fancy: Sunrise and Mailbox.

Mailbox is an app that allows you to clean up your inbox (only offered with gmail). Now this sounds simple enough but it is kind of amazing how many emails can accumulate.

So here’s the deal, the goal of Mailbox is to get to “inbox zero daily,” which basically means that all your messages have a place. Whether they’ve been archived (different than deleted), or sorted into easy-to-understand categorizes to reference later, the ultimate success is being able to see the daily photo they post for people who’ve successfully cleared their inbox.

Fun Finds: Mailbox App | meganeilers.wordpress.com

Personally, I never really understood the purpose of “all mail” vs. “inbox” in Gmail. Now, it makes far more sense: the inbox is just for the stuff you are getting right now or may need right now. Everything else doesn’t need to sit there taking up screen/mental space, just put it into the archives for safe keeping…. DUH! (can you say: major lightbulb moment?!)

The only downside to Mailbox: it’s in Beta so…. just like the early days of gmail, you’ve gotta wait your turn. When you download the app and register for the service you get to see a lovely countdown of where you’re at in the lineup and how many poor unlucky souls are behind you.

Mailbox App Beta Test | meganeilers.wordpress.com(this was where I was at February 11th — I got it on March 1st)

So that’s Mailbox. All kinds of fun swiping and cleanliness for your email. Now, onto an app I just downloaded today…. Sunrise.

Sunrise is a calendar app, once again designed to work with Google calendars, Facebook calendars, and LinkedIn. So far what I like about it is the fact that you get benefit of multiple views of your calendar at one glance or with simple swiping motions. Plus, I really love the coloration.

I was successfully able to set up a true Gmail account calendar and a Google Apps-based calendar (in case you were concerned about not using the standard google interface).

Fun Finds: Sunrise App | meganeilers.wordpress.com

(this is what it Sunrise looks like)

I’m definitely going to try and get used to Sunrise (there are fun icons that appear, but I’m not sure what they all mean), but so far I’m digging the interface.

Let me know what kind of fun finds you’ve stumbled across lately in the comments section!

Obsession of the Week | United State of Pop 2012 (Shine Brighter)

It’s that time again…. time for a new mashup from DJ Earworm! Last year I posted about the United State of Pop 2011 which was good, but this year’s is even better! You can check out the download on SoundCloud here.

As much as I do truly love the audio versions of all of DJ Earworm’s mashups, the most impressive thing he does is creating the videos to go along with the mixes. To time the videos of each song so accurately is truly a work of art. To check out his video for the United State of Pop 2012, click on the picture below or here. (you may notice that I’ve taken a screen shot of my favorite band in the video: Fun)

Screen Shot 2013-01-02 at 6.51.03 PMI love these mashups because they’re always so upbeat and just make you want to dance. It certainly helps that I absolutely love all the songs that he included this year. I mean I blogged about three of them in the last few months alone!

Alex Clare

Lumineers

Adele

And in case you wanted to know, here is the full list of songs included:

Gotye and Kimbra – Somebody That I Used To Know
Fun. – Some Nights
Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe
Maroon 5 – One More Night
Fun. and Janelle Monáe – We Are Young
Maroon 5 and Wiz Khalifa – Payphone
Ellie Goulding – Lights
Rihanna – Diamonds
Bruno Mars – Locked Out Of Heaven
Ke$Ha – Die Young
Kelly Clarkson – Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)
Flo Rida – Good Feeling
Nicki Minaj – Starships
The Wanted – Glad You Came
Adele – Set Fire To The Rain
Lumineers – Ho Hey
One Direction – What Makes You Beautiful
Flo Rida and Sia – Wild Ones
Phillip Phillips – Home
Bruno Mars – It Will Rain
Katy Perry – Wide Awake
Alex Clare – Too Close
PSY – Gangnam Style
Taylor Swift – We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
Flo Rida – Whistle

Movie Adventures

I love movies. Going to the theater, throwing a DVD in, streaming on the internet. Doesn’t matter to me, I just love to watch movies. Unfortunately, the last few months have been very chaotic in my personal and work lives (yes, I separate those!) and I haven’t had much time to enjoy movies in my favorite form: the big screen.

Aside from worrying about being stuck next to a sniffler, screaming tweens, or perhaps the universally-feared chatterbox, actually GOING to the movies is almost always a great experience. This week I was able to see not one, but two movies in the theater!

So, what did I see, you ask? The top two grossing movies out right now — duh! Sunday was a espionage afternoon with Skyfall and today was a matinee full of vampires and werewolves in Breaking Dawn Pt. 2.

Overall my movie-going experience both days was fantastic. I thought I’d share some brief thoughts on the films in case you too are debating taking the $20+ plunge of going to the theater.

First up, Bond. James Bond.

I am personally not a huge 007 fan. I know, I know… that’s a crime! Well if you can forgive me for that, I will say that I REALLY enjoyed Skyfall. As a stand alone movie (for someone who hasn’t seen all the James Bond movies) it was easy to follow and just as intriguing as say the Bourne series (one of my favorites). I thought they did a great job at keeping twists and turns in the movie without simultaneously losing my interest by confusing me.

The most impressive part about this film: Javier Bardem. He played the most creepy, freakishly smart, and crazy ex-agent ever: Silva. Oh the goosebumps! His bleach blonde hair, removable face implant, and über freaky laugh really made you believe he’d gone off the deep end.

Second best part: Daniel Craig. Enough said. :)

Overall, I give the movie an ‘A’ for being intriguing, suspenseful, and having a very handsome leading man who can kick butt all day long without breaking too much of a sweat (even for an “old” guy).

Next: the end of an era Saga

I don’t know about you, but when I’ve invested time in a TV show, multi-movie franchise, book series, etc. I tend to stick it out even past its expiration date, just because. Prime example: One Tree Hill. I watched that show like it was my job from the first to last season because after the first few seasons I felt committed enough that I couldn’t NOT find out how it ended… it was hardly the same show after 9 seasons.

Same story with Twilight. I couldn’t give up after the New Moon debacle (that movie was a challenge to sit through!). It really was too bad that the movies didn’t do the books justice because they had so much to work with. Fortunately, these last two (Breaking Dawn Pt. 1 & 2) were both really well done. Although the acting of Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson didn’t necessarily get better, I think the directors were able to help them out a bit.

So, I’ve now officially seen all 5 movies (and yes, read the 4 books) and can honestly say this last one was the best of them. The cheese-factor was far less than the prior installments. Even the visual effects were impressive — those wolves almost look real. However Renesmee’s (Mackenzie Foy) digital face on various ages of children was a little creepy, but they did the best they could given the fictional nature of the character.

Anywhoo, it was definitely a great ending to a so-so movie saga. They stuck to the book well enough that I didn’t see any major reasons for complaints, the acting was improved, and the overall feel of completeness of the series (and the characters) was there — something I can say is often lacking in long-lived television shows. I’d give it an ‘A-‘ and say it is definitely worth seeing if you have any remote interest in the story because it repents for the past films that were less than stellar.

There you have it folks, my take on the top two movies of Thanksgiving week. As for what else is coming out that I want to see, the list is quite lengthy after having seen about 10 trailers in the last few days. Costco movie tickets, here I come!

Obsession of the Week | Dating Rules From My Future Self

Anyone who knows me (or reads my blog regularly) knows how much I absolutely love The Vampire Diaries. Well, the actress who plays Caroline (Candice Accola) is this season’s main character on a new show called “Dating Rules from My Future Self.”

Dating Rules is a web series created by Alloy Entertainment (the same creators of great things like Gossip Girl, The Vampire Diaries, Pretty Little Liars, etc…).  There are two “seasons” of the show, which is comprised of 10-ish minute episodes. I’ve officially watched all of them and am quite anxious for new ones to come out.

The premise is pretty funny — the main character of each season communicates via text and FaceTime with an older version of herself. Grown up versions of the characters provide advice about how to navigate the crazy world of dating.

The first season, the main character was actress Shiri Appleby, who a few people may recognize from the CW show Life Unexpected (another show I loved, that unfortunately met its demise after only 2 seasons).

So far, season 2 has been pretty funny with Candice as the main character.  From her “margarita maker” (a blender) named José, to her problematic addiction to Cheetos, Candice’s character Chloe is simply hilarious.

Overall, Dating Rules from My Future Self definitely has some great humor written into it, particularly because they include some of the comical aspects of living life in the modern age where having “The Jimmy Song” posted on your Facebook wall is thought to be the most humiliating thing that could happen to a 20-something!

To watch Dating Rules from My Future Self go to Hulu http://www.hulu.com/dating-rules-from-my-future-self

aboutdotme

aboutdotme

Hi All,

Not quite sure how big an impact this will have on anybody’s lives, but I just discovered about.me and created an account. Now I have yet another way to connect on the web. This is getting out of control, but of course, I LOVE IT!

http://about.me/meganeilers

Hope everyone is having a good weekend and a Happy Easter or Passover! :)

Grammys 2012

I’ve said it before (many times) and I’ll say it again. I absolutely, 100% love Adele.

Tonight she did a phenomenal job performing some of her hit songs, and was acknowledged with not 1, not 2, not 3, but 6 Grammy Awards (Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Short Form Music Video, and Best Pop Solo Performance).

Congrats Adele!!

Adele performing at the 2012 Grammy Awards

 

Feelin’ the Love

I just wanted to say thank you to all my readers, I just surpassed 4,000 views of my blog today, and it feels great!


 

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