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R.I.P Windows XP, October 25th, 2001 - April 14th, 2009.

Well, not exactly. 

Microsoft will finally be pulling the plug on its most reliable Operating System to date on April 14th, 2009, hoping more users will make the switch to Vista.  This isn't surprising news since Microsoft has stated that they were stopping all retail sales of boxed versions of XP, and computer manufactures were forced to stop installing XP on their consumer machines as early as last year. 

However, this doesn't mean XP is just officially done.  Microsoft will continue to support security fixes, not bugs in the OS.  They will continue to do so until 2014.  They call this their "Extended Support".  By that time Windows Vista will be on it's last legs and Windows 7 will have already had a couple years out on the market.

Are you looking to make the switch to Vista right now?  Take a look at my Top 5 reasons why you should NOT make the switch to Vista at all.

  1. Microsoft will still support XP until 2014, why even bother changing what is already working for you?
  2. Windows 7 is right around the corner, and if you thought XP was great, wait until this OS comes out.  There are already testing being done and the reviews are out of this world for what this OS can do.  From security to top notch extras that truely are needed, I suggest waiting it out.  It's not too far away.
  3. Why spend $200-$500 for an Operating System that still has bugs?  OH, and also for the fact that it'll be obsolete in less than 2 years, just proves the point to wait it out for Windows 7.
  4. Vista doesn't provide anything different except for a few design changes than XP.  For the average user, we won't see the difference. In fact, users when switching to Vista, end of changing their start menu back to XP or even 98 style.  Just ask my mom ;-)
  5. The cost factor involved in getting a new OS installed, and then finding out your old Dell doesn't have enough memory or speed to work with the average Windows Vista Home Premium software.  In this economy, who has money to just spend on an average, at best, operating system?
What are your thoughts? Are you still making the switch?  Let us know, and why!

Top 5 iPod/Phone Apps

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Before I go on, I must admit, Apple really made me a believer.  It wasn't long ago I was part of the gang of Windows followers who truely did not like what Apple had to offer.  I mean, sure, Apple did have the fancy iMacs and really awesome iPods.  But price and the fact that 98% of my applications did not work on a Mac had me denying ever buying Apple. 

That's why just a week ago I purchase the Apple iPod Touch.  Yes, that's right, a Microsoft user for years finally picks up an Apple product.  I wasn't even skeptic at first honestly.  I loved the iPod designs over the years, and believed in the product.  I just couldn't believe in the extra $100 price difference from a Sandisk Sansa MP3 player. 

But a few reasons had me wanting and drooling over this gadget.  For starters, the iPod Touch had a very sleek design (something I love in new technology). Factor that and the actual touchscreen and GUI (Graphical User Interface), and I had wished I had this when I was young ... wait ...

Secondly, the "extras" were really something.  Wireless access with internet and email (big plus), lots of space packed in a small form (with the help of flash memory instead of an actual hard drive), and those APPS!

Yes!  The single most deserving feature that makes the iPod Touch come alive!  If you are not familar, Apple has an App Store that enables anyone to download games, utilities, movies, music, tools and much more.  It's like a on going swiss army knife that continues to change every day.

I played with my toy for a good week, and I can say it has it all.  The games are amazing, the utilities are incredible.  I just couldn't help but to share this excitement. 

So here it is, the list of my top 5 iPod (or iPhone, since they are the same) apps you can get for FREE at the App Store.

 

Nike+

When I first purchased the iPod Touch I also picked up the Nike+ transmitter.  If you are into fitness, or someone who's not (like me), the Nike+ offer motivation for your daily run (or walk).  If you purchase any other iPod besides the Touch you will need to pick up the Nike+ Kit which contains the transmitter and receiver.  If you have the Touch, just the transmitter is fine since the Touch has the receiver built in.  This is an awesome addition for FREE!  Once you open the box you will notice a small quarter sized peice that will fit neatly inside your Nike+ shoe.  Wait, what?  I now have to purchase Nike+ shoes in order to use this?  Well, not really, and there are other ways around this; you will just have to find this out yourself. ;-)  The setup was easy, just click on Settings on the front iPod screen and go to Nike + iPod submenu.  From there just turn it on.  That's it!  Go back to the main screen and you will see the icon for Nike +.  You will need to calibrate your first time, and once you do, upload the calibration through iTunes.  DO this very important step. This will upload the data to Nikeplus.com so you and your friends can see your every step.  After the first time Calibration, work out, sync it with iTunes and you have yourself a personal trainer/motivator for life! 

I give this app 4.5 out of 5 stars.  It's awesome, not 100% free, but it really makes walking or running fun.

 

FS5 Hockey

I couldn't wait to take advantage of the dual touch screen, so when I looked through the apps I came across this particular game.  It's FREE and if you love air hockey, you will love this app.  It's air hockey with two player dual support on the one iPod.  Extremely graphical, and right on with the touch.  It really makes you feel like you are playing with a real table. 

I give this app 3.5 out of 5 starts.  I often time score in my own goal, which I don't like.  However this game is realistic and worth the download.

 

Facebook

I am a Facebook warrior.  I am consistantly on, checking friends, family and others who may not know I'm checking statuses.  Although, there are times I'm not at my desk or at home, the iPod stays with me at all times.  With the built in WiFi, I connect to Facebook wherever I go.  The easy setup and awesome GUI design makes this app a friendly status checking, photo downloading, emailing crazy, need on your iPod Touch. 

 

Fastlane Lite

A lot of games that are 100% have ads and/or don't have the full game.  It's true with this game, however it's remarkable using the Accelerometer. In this game, imagine using the iPod as a steering wheel.  Turn it sideways and start driving.  It's that simple.  It's real to the touch or movement in this case, and makes you feel like the driver of a real race. 

I give this app 3.5 out of 5 starts.  Needs a little more levels and challenges, but then again, it's a FREE app.

 

Tap Tap Revenge 2

WOW!  Take Guitar Hero, better music, mix it in the iPod, and use just your thumbs. What do you get?  Oh, that's right, Tap Tap Revenge 2!!  If you only download 1 game EVER on the iPod Touch, this is the game to download.  If it's the one game you pay for and buy the full version without the ads, it's Tap Tap Revenge 2.    There aren't many words to describe this game.  What I can say is that the FREE version includes a LOT of available music to download, easy to learn, and makes you play it all night.  Take a see for yourself.

I give this app a 4.9 out of 5 stars.  Why the 4.9?  I still can't figure out how to shake left and right.  But other that that, it's 99% hit for me!

 

So there you have it, the 5 best apps (so far) for the iPod Touch/iPhone.  Do you have any other suggestions?  Comment below.

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