I hope everyone had a great holiday season and started 2018 off in a positive way. Things have been busy around IndyScan HQ and the Blog has suffered a bit by lack of activity. This post is sort of a catch up post summarizing some of the events in 2017 and, hopefully, setting the stage for 2018 entries.
I’m going to challenge myself to post a minimum of 1 entry a week detailing the things going on around me and the new things I’m discovering and/or enjoying. I’m going to harness the power of ToDoist to keep me from slipping. It’s one of my favorite task managers and when combined with Evernote helps keep my life organized and commitments met.
I had a log of fun posting images on Instagram this year and viewed some amazing photography. Most of it was from cell phones that have evolved to a point where they could replace the SLR for all but the serious photographers. I still love my SLR but you just can’t beat the convenience of a good cell phone camera.
I really enjoyed the new road bike I purchased in early 2017. It took me a while to get back into the groove and I still have a way to go to get back to the distances I used to ride when I was younger. I have a few trips planned for 2018 that should prove to be challenging as well as rewarding. One of my favorite rides of 2017 was the Monon Trail from Westfield to Indy and back. It was a little longer of a ride than I was expecting but it was a great accomplishment that sets a base for my 2018 riding goals.
I found the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy to be an awesome resource for identifying places to ride around the US. I’ve already found some rides I want to do in Ohio as well as a great looking 2-day loop in Iowa. Stay tuned for trip reports and photos from the trail. It has to be above freezing though before I even think about the bikes…
We’re trying our hand at making wine this year too. We purchased a kit at Great Fermentations as a joint Christmas gift and have been brewing up 6-gallons of Pinot Grigio (30-bottles) the past month. Hoping to start the bottling process by the end of January and, after a little more aging, start sampling in April or May.
2017 was a great year full of its share of challenges but overall we had a lot of fun and tried some new things. I’m already expecting 2018 to top last year and I hope to share some experiences with all of you on the blog.
Until next time…
I’ve used TVShow Time! (now called TV Time) for over a year and it’s been a great resource to keep track of show’s I’m watching and shows I want to watch. I always wished there was a similar tool out there for Movies. When I reached out to the developers at TV Time I was told it had been “discussed”.
Without a useful app I resorted to keeping a list in Evernote that I would try to keep updated and accurate. The problem with this list was the lack of social integration and reviews/ratings by others. Then I found Letterboxd.
Letterboxd is about as close to TV Time for movies as it gets. It has a huge database of movies you can add to your “Watch” or “Watched” lists as well as thousands of users form around the world sharing reviews and opinions.
And like TV Time it will tell you WHERE to find your movies online through integration with a service called GoWatchIt. All you need to do is create an account and tell it which streaming services you have access to.
Let’s say I want to watch the 1963 classic “The Great Escape”. All I need to do it look it up and check the Watch area in the movie description. I see that I can rent it from iTunes for $3.99 or Amazon for $2.99. There are also options to purchase it through the various streaming services as well.
After adding my movie list into Letterboxd and clicking around to discover all the options I was happy to drop $19 for a year of their Pro subscription which adds filtering and complicated query functions to get the best out of the site. It has an iOS companion app as well as an app for the
If you love movies and want a great way to keep track of the ones you see, own, or rent, you should give Letterboxd a try. Let me know in the comments if you use Letterboxd or if you prefer another service. I’m curious to see what else is out there I might have missed!
I just realized the cord cutting “experiment” I started 2 years ago is still going strong so I think we’re beyond experimenting & it’s become a lifestyle. I’ve not run into any real issues but managing an antenna for each TV was a bit of a pain. Not having DVR capabilities made catching some shows (like F1 races at 2am) a little more difficult.
I’ve been waiting for a new type of antenna to come out for over a year. The Mohu Airwave is a device that allows you to get access to Over the Air (OTA) content from various devices on your Network. No more running COAX cable or antennas to every TV. Now your web-enabled devices (Smart TV, AppleTV, Roku, iPad, iPhone, etc.) can stream LIVE OTA content!
After mentioning the Airwave and the past due release to the Executive Chef at Kibbyhanas I learned of an even better product that’s available NOW! The HDHomeRun line of products connect to your home network just like the AirWave and are 100% compatible with the PLEX DVR service. This meant that not only could I get rid of all the ugly antennas in the house I could also DVR any OTA program free of charge using my existing setup and storage.
To setup the HDHomeRun you need to connect it to a WIRED Ethernet connection and connect an HD antenna. I put everything upstairs in the corner of a room so it was out of sight had had better line of sight to the TV Transmitters. Now that I have everything setup I may be moving things to the attic on the other side of the wall.
A bonus I quickly discovered was my Smart-TV treated the HDHomeRun signal on the network just like a COAX input so all the automation I had set up would continue to work like before. Win-Win all around!
The only negative I can say about all of this is your network needs to be able to handle the amount of wired and/or wireless traffic generated by multiple HD streams. I have a slight bottleneck in my setup that should be resolved soon with a new (faster) network switch.
If you’re looking to make OTA content available on more devices on your network and like the idea of getting rid of antennas on all your TV’s you should check out the HDHomeRun line of products to see if they might be right for you.
Found this video on Reddit that shows the other side of the moon. The side we don’t see looks a lot different! This would make an awesome screen saver…
After purchasing Christmas presents for everyone on my list this year I decided to get myself a gift. After 3-weeks of waiting the package finally arrived… Apple AirPods!
I love listening to music (mostly Spotify) whenever I can and after seeing the AirPods announcement last fall I was curious about how they performed. Thanks to a lot of media outlets getting advanced units the reviews were out there before the AirPods were even available for order. For the most part they were very positive.
I’ve tried the inexpensive Bluetooth earbuds connected with a cord that is supposed to go behind your head and I’m not a fan. The cord gets caught up in your clothing and makes the entire process rather uncomfortable and annoying. Now, with the AirPods, you can actually go completely wireless and it addresses all the issues I was frustrated with.
The AirPods sound better than the EarPods that come with the iPhones. They are just slightly larger and, in my case, fit very comfortably in my ears. The bass is noticeably improved and the overall sound is very nice. Battery life and bluetooth range is very impressive too.
These are not going to replace my Bose noise canceling over-the-ear headphones that I use when I want to tune the world out but they will be part of my daily carry for those times where I need a little music to make the day go a little better.
It’s to early to say if they were worth the $159 asking price but so far I haven’t regretted the purchase!