The iPhone vs. Android: What’s the Big Difference?

Look, I’m Team Apple all the way and my Droid geeky friends get sick of posting about Mac products all the time. I’m not paid by Apple and I don’t get paid to blog about gadgets (although, if you know of a gig like that opening up can you PLEASE let me know!). I’m just a power user and a Geek Diva Gadget Girl who likes her techie toys. I’m in love with my iPhone, my Mac Pro and I can hardly contain myself waiting for the new iPad 2. But, if you’re still on the fence and want a comparison between the two hottest smartphone options on the planet (sorry Blackberry, I abandoned you in 2009… RIM sucks the big one… OK, truth be told I still have a Blackberry but that’s beside the point) then this article may help you decide.

Amplify’d from manofthehouse.com
 Thesmartphone has become the Swiss Army knife of the 21st century: endlessly useful, cool, and a necessary tool that every man should carry. The difference is that smart phones carry a hefty cost, and they’re not all designed equally well.Two of the most popular smartphones are the ubiquitous Apple iPhone and its new challenger, Google’s Android platform. Here’s a look at how the two phone giants stack up.

Usability

First, we need to be clear about something. There’s no official “Android” phone, just as there’s no official “Windows” computer. Android is simply the name for Google’s mobile operating system, and as such, it’s somewhat difficult to compare the iPhone to Android without being biased. Many functions of the iPhone seem to work more intuitively than those on Android phones, but that’s mainly because the iPhone and its operating system were designed to work together, while Android was designed to be used on a variety of phones made by a variety of manufacturers.

Therefore, if you’re looking for that “wow, cool!” factor, you’re probably going to be more impressed with what the iPhone has to offer. Every function of the iPhone seems to work effortlessly, with intuitive touch-screen controls that have made it the weapon of choice for countless hipsters in coffee shops everywhere. However, most of what the iPhone offers is available on Android phones. You want the web? The Android phones can get you there. You want a touch screen? Android phones have that, too. In fact, the best Android phone currently available, the Nexus One, feels completely natural.

The big difference is that the iPhone is a single device, while Android is a software platform. That makes a straight comparison difficult but not impossible; it’s like comparing Macs to PCs, as many bloggers have noted. Apple carefully controls everything available on its iPhone. Google’s Android, on the other hand, offers its adherents something else: freedom to do whatever you’d like with your phone.

Read more at manofthehouse.com

How an iPad can Improve Your Dining Experience

The next time you walk into your favorite restaurant you may be handed an iPad rather than a menu. Just think about the possibilities. You’ll be able to see what your dish will look like ahead of time, get the calorie count of your order, have a wine pairing picked out for you and send any modifications you may want directly to the server’s iPad.

For some restaurants, when it comes to wine orders, having the iPad act as a virtual sommelier is proving to be a great business tool. Digital wine lists have reported a significant increase in profits from wine sales. I see this as a win-win. It combines two of my favorite things… mobile technology and wine. Now, if only they could develop a scratch and smell app!

Amplify’d from www.travelandleisure.com

201102-b-ipadjpg

With the release of the iPad nearly one year ago, the device is changing the way we do business. And while it might seem an unlikely combination, even restaurants have hopped on the bandwagon. Yes, a handful are loading their menus onto iPads for customers to peruse—a costly and wasteful business practice, all in the name of flashiness, as far as I’m concerned. But that’s not exactly what I’m talking about; there are more and more turning iPads into useful (and yes, flashy) tools that actually improve the dining experience.

What I’ve been seeing are restaurants digitizing their extensive wine offerings specifically for the iPad. Why am I inclined to value this more than a simple digital food menu? Because besides just listing out the wines, these apps, like the one implemented at Hotel Casa del Mar’s Catch Restaurant in Santa Monica, also offer a wealth of information to help you decide on the perfect wine…that is, without the assistance of an on-site sommelier. (Which, let’s be honest, you’re hard-pressed to find at most restaurants.) Catch’s iPad wine list lets diners browse wines by year, price, tasting notes, high-res images, where it was made, and even dish selection. And with more than 200 wines in their cellar, a little help is more than welcome!

But Catch isn’t the first, nor will it be the last, to put this technological twist on the age-old drink. In Atlanta, Bone’s has a similar app for its 1,300 plus wines, with extensive details, year, region and price. Here in NYC, South Gate has a similar app for its 600 plus bottle collection; Naples Tomato, in—you guessed it—Naples, FL has one for its 500 plus bottles; and Chicago Cut Steakhouse recently debuted its digital 800 plus bottle list.

Oh, and did I mention? In case you’re wondering just how useful this is, most of the restaurants with digital wine lists have reported a significant increase in profits from wine sales.

Read more at www.travelandleisure.com

Get More From Your iPad

Did you know that you can stream movies from your PC to the iPad, use it as a secondary monitor, connect USB speakers and keyboards? Here are some ways to get even more use out of your iPad.

Amplify’d from www.pcworld.com

Turn Your iPad into a Secondary Desktop Display

With its big, high-resolution display, it’s a shame to just park an iPad when switching to a computer. Instead, Air Display ($10) makes your iPad a second screen for your Mac, extending the desktop. The tool has just been submitted to the App Store and should be released soon; I checked out a beta.

You install a utility on the computer and connect with the Air Display System Preference. (It’s Mac-only at launch, but a Windows version is coming.) The iPad then behaves just like an extra screen. You reposition it in the Displays System Preference like a real monitor, in a portrait or landscape view. Although it lags a little when showing video, it refreshes quickly enough for most work. You can even tap on the iPad to click.

If you can’t wait for Air Display’s release, you can check out iDisplay ($5) now. But this buggy competitor needs an update to match Air Display’s ease.

Stream Movies From Your PC

Air Video--click for full-size image.Air Video can stream 720p video from your PC, and convert transcode video formats in real time.

Even if you bought the largest-capacity iPad, if it can’t fit all of your videos, it’s too small. Instead of trying to cram everything into the device, you can stream videos from a local or online PC. The process has one main caveat; if you bought movies or TV shows from the iTunes store, DRM restrictions block those files. (Podcasts and music videos should work.). But you can watch your own videos or DRM-free downloads without taking up iPad storage.

Of the many options available, I like Air Video ($3) the best. (A free version includes the same functions but limits the number of files you can browse in each folder). Similar to competitors, you run a server utility on your PC or Mac in order to route data to the iPad. In my tests, Air Video played most resolutions smoothly, including 720p video files over an 802.11n Wi-Fi network.

That resolution stutters on an 802.11g network, but if you reach a file that’s too big—or just not in an iPad-friendly QuickTime format, including AVI, WMV, ASF, MKV, DIVX, and FLV—you can have the PC remotely convert the clip. Just hit a button from the iPad interface and stream it when ready, or have a speedy PC process it and stream it live. It even supports subtitles and TV output. The iPad can send video to a TV at 1024 by 768 resolution via its $29 Dock Connector to VGA adapter; 576p and 480p with the $49 Apple Component A/V Cable, and 576i or 480i with an Apple Composite Cable (also $49).

Connect More Than a Camera

Apple’s iPad Camera Connection Kit ($29) does so much more than its stated purpose. Instead of just transferring photos and videos from your camera or SD card, the adapter’s USB port attaches a range of devices.


Many USB keyboards work. The iPad presents a warning that the device isn’t supported (shown left), but if it doesn’t draw much power, you can ignore the message. Volume and media keys usually work, and you can even use desktop commands such as Command-Z. (Don’t forget that the iPad also officially supports Bluetooth keyboards and Apple’s iPad Keyboard Dock).

USB audio devices can work, too–including speakers, headsets, and microphones. If a device draws too much power and balks (as when I connected a Zoom H2 mic and Logitech V20 PC speakers), no problem: just attach the device to a powered USB hub, and connect the hub to the Camera Connection Kit adapter. You can even attach different devices—such as a keyboard and speaker set—at the same time.

Read more at www.pcworld.com

 

How an iPad can Improve Your Dining Experience

The next time you walk into your favorite restaurant you may be handed an iPad rather than a menu. Just think about the possibilities. You’ll be able to see what your dish will look like ahead of time, get the calorie count of your order, have a wine pairing picked out for you and send any modifications you may want directly to the server’s iPad.

For some restaurants, when it comes to wine orders, having the iPad act as a virtual sommelier is proving to be a great business tool. Digital wine lists have reported a significant increase in profits from wine sales. I see this as a win-win. It combines two of my favorite things… mobile technology and wine. Now, if only they could develop a scratch and smell app!

Amplify’d from www.travelandleisure.com

201102-b-ipadjpgWith the release of the iPad nearly one year ago, the device is changing the way we do business. And while it might seem an unlikely combination, even restaurants have hopped on the bandwagon. Yes, a handful are loading their menus onto iPads for customers to peruse—a costly and wasteful business practice, all in the name of flashiness, as far as I’m concerned. But that’s not exactly what I’m talking about; there are more and more turning iPads into useful (and yes, flashy) tools that actually improve the dining experience.

What I’ve been seeing are restaurants digitizing their extensive wine offerings specifically for the iPad. Why am I inclined to value this more than a simple digital food menu? Because besides just listing out the wines, these apps, like the one implemented at Hotel Casa del Mar’s Catch Restaurant in Santa Monica, also offer a wealth of information to help you decide on the perfect wine…that is, without the assistance of an on-site sommelier. (Which, let’s be honest, you’re hard-pressed to find at most restaurants.) Catch’s iPad wine list lets diners browse wines by year, price, tasting notes, high-res images, where it was made, and even dish selection. And with more than 200 wines in their cellar, a little help is more than welcome!

But Catch isn’t the first, nor will it be the last, to put this technological twist on the age-old drink. In Atlanta, Bone’s has a similar app for its 1,300 plus wines, with extensive details, year, region and price. Here in NYC, South Gate has a similar app for its 600 plus bottle collection; Naples Tomato, in—you guessed it—Naples, FL has one for its 500 plus bottles; and Chicago Cut Steakhouse recently debuted its digital 800 plus bottle list.

Oh, and did I mention? In case you’re wondering just how useful this is, most of the restaurants with digital wine lists have reported a significant increase in profits from wine sales.

Read more at www.travelandleisure.com

 

iPad 2 Picture Getting Clearer as Rumors Ramp Up

Here is comes folks… the iPad… only better. That’s the rumor anyway. We’ll have to wait to see if any of these things actually pan out. One thing is for sure, Apple consistently delivers a product that’s much better than the one that preceded it. The other thing I know for sure, I’m very glad I waited for the iPad 2 and the iPhone 5. Yes Apple, you have taught me patience. Strange how that works… I’ve been trying to master patience and delayed gratification all my life. Niow, when are these new versions coming out already?!?! I’ve been waiting long enough. Maybe I have a little more work to do.

Amplify’d from gigaom.com

The iPad 2 is said by some to be arriving as early as February or April (at least in the U.S.), and as is always the case when Apple hardware nears the end of a product cycle, the rumor mill starts working overtime. As consensus grows and independent reports start coming in from multiple sources, we end up with a much better picture of what to expect from Apple’s next iPad.

SD Card Slot

The latest rumor making the rounds is that the iPad will indeed have an SD memory card slot. This isn’t the first time such expansion is a possibility for the iPad 2, but now it’s been reported by a “trusted source” talking to Engadget, and it’s showing up in case designs from multiple manufacturers, as identified separately by AppleInsider and MIC Gadget. Since Apple already offers a way to access SD cards via the iPad Camera Connection Kit, there’s no good reason the company would object to building in the same functionality. In fact, it’s possible the only reason an SD slot wasn’t included the first time around was that it wouldn’t fit in the case.

Mini DisplayPort

The same case designs that back up the SD card slot rumor also indicate that another port will be introduced at the top of the device. The cutout for this alleged port is quite small, leaving few options for what it might be. Mini DisplayPort is a likely candidate, since even though it would eliminate the need for the iPad dock connector-to-VGA adapter, Apple could still sell various Mini DisplayPort converter accessories. A far less likely possibility for the spot is a micro-USB port, but there’s no way Apple would include that and still keep the dock connector.

“Retina” Display

The iPhone 4 introduced the world to the Retina Display, a 960×640 pixel screen with 331 ppi, a pixel density apparently beyond the threshold of human detection that makes for super crisp text and graphics. According to recent rumors stemming from resources found in the latest version of Apple iBooks app (1.2), the iPad will get twice the resolution it currently enjoys, bringing the total from 1024×768 to 2048×1536. As Kevin notes, that only adds up to a pixel density of 265 ppi, which, while not at the same level as the iPhone, is still a massive improvement, and will probably still be granted the “Retina” from Apple’s marketing department. Simply doubling the display resolution makes sense, since it’ll allow existing iPad apps to be compatible with the iPad 2 through zooming, though image quality will be somewhat degraded.

Front and Back Cameras

If there is any “sure thing” for the iPad 2, it’s that it will have two cameras: one in front for FaceTime, and one in the back for… well, actually, on a 9.7-inch tablet, probably mostly for occasional FaceTime use, too. Using it for general photographic and film-making seems incredibly awkward, even if the iPad 2 does sport a lighter, smaller body design.

Lighter, Smaller Body Design

Case designs and an actual iPad 2 mock-up used by a developer at CES earlier this month seem to support the idea that the next iPad will be smaller and slimmer than its predecessor. This is a standard improvement for new iterations of Apple gadgets, and it could help appease customers asking for a 7-inch iPad, something the company seems unwilling to provide. AppleInsider recently reported on an Apple patent that would allow the company to reduce the thickness and power consumption of capacitive touchscreens, which could be partially responsible for a new, smaller physical footprint in iPad 2.

Improved Processing and Graphics Power

The iPad 2 (along with the iPhone 5) is expected to get a new version of Apple’s custom A4 system-on-a-chip. According to a source talking to AppleInsider, the new version will have dual graphics cores to support the new Retina Display, and to allow for 1080p video playback (the current version tops out at 720p). The new graphics cores support OpenCL to share the burden of general purpose computing tasks with the GPU. The new chip will also pair the dual graphics cores with a dual core ARM Cortex-A9 chip for general processing. With a huge crop of potential iPad competitors unveiled at CES, these kinds of performance improvements are almost a necessity, but as is always the case with Apple products, hardware specs take a backseat to actual user experience, so if we see more modest improvements I won’t be surprised.

Read more at gigaom.com

 

Publishing Companies Prepare Tablet App Store… notice I did NOT say iPad Store

If you can’t beat ’em… join ’em. Here’s how newspapers and magazines are competing in the eMarket while snubbing Apple’s iPad.

Amplify’d from www.mediabistro.com

Time Inc., Condé Nast, Hearst Corporation, and Meredith Corporation are adding the finishing touches to their tablet app store. Morgan Guenther, the Chief Executive of Next Issue Media (NIM), the new venture owned by the publishing companies, says that it should launch within the next few months.

He says that when the store launches, it will feature at least two titles from each of the companies, and by this summer, every magazine will be available. Guenther also says that News Corporation’s (another owner of NIM) newspapers will be available by then.

For now, the app store will only be available on Android tablets. This is because NIM is the result of publishing houses not wanting other companies (read: Apple) to dictate how their products are distributed.

For NIM, its success comes down to one thing: Will people snub iPads in order to get their favorite magazines on a tablet? Right now Apple has the advantage because the iPad has been out for so long; not to mention the cool factor that comes with the brand.

We’re guessing Apple will win this battle, because being cool is very fun, even if it does mean missing out on tablet versions of O: The Oprah Magazine. Besides, we can probably guess who’ll be on the cover.

Read more at www.mediabistro.com

 

Why Skiing Made a Magazine App … for Your Desktop Computer

Bonnier’s Skiing magazine has introduced a new app that runs on your regular desktop or laptop computer. And yes, the people behind it have heard of the iPad. They just don’t think the frenzy over magazines on iPads or other tablets is all that justified yet.

 

All that snow is clearly messing with their brain cells. QUICK… get these people to the beach so they can thaw out!!

Amplify’d from adage.com
The debut of Skiing Interactive.

 

The debut of Skiing Interactive.

It’s not that they’ve got anything against tablets. Skiing Interactive will actually also run on any Android tablets such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab. But because the app uses Flash, it won’t, at least for now, run on the iPad. And that’s OK with them, because they think the untapped market is on the desktop or laptop you’re very likely using to read this article.

They also think magazines’ iPad editions aren’t interactive enough. So most editorial and advertising units in the debut issue are interactive in some way, beyond a “press play” button on a video that’s been added to an article. Many ask consumers about themselves, then provide a tailored graphic, particular advice or a certain recommendation. One ad unit, for example, asks users to tell it how many days they might ski each of several resorts this winter and tells them which package of passes might be best for them. An interactive editorial infographic displays total acres, vertical drop and peak elevation at various mountains.

The Skiing Interactive app doesn’t include content from the print edition; it’s almost all about snack-sized items and graphics. And it doesn’t follow the monthly print schedule either; it comes out twice a month.

Read more at adage.com

 

Google Earth 3.1 Lets You Look UnderWater!

With the latest release of Google Earth 3.1 for iOS, you can now explore underwater landscapes and terrain on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. By land or sea, Google Earth will take you there.

 

Looking for buried treasure? No problem, just use Google Earth. Want to know if your roof needs repair, just put in your home address (I’m not kidding, I saw a missing shingle thanks to Google Earth).

 

I kid about Google being in the world domination business but I don’t think I’m joking anymore. Gotta go, I’m using Google Earth to see what’s really going on under sea level at the Bermuda Triangle.

Amplify’d from googlemobile.blogspot.com
Dive below the ocean’s surface to explore underwater canyons, or travel to the ocean’s deepest point, the Mariana Trench. Once underwater, simply swipe the screen with two fingers to “look around.” You can always reset your view by clicking on the north arrow on the iPad, or on the compass on the iPhone and iPod.As with the desktop and other mobile versions of Google Earth, we’ve also added the “Ocean” layer, which features hundreds of photos and videos from more than 100 contributors curated by the Sylvia Earle Alliance.


This version also includes native support for the new Retina display, which means that if you have an iPhone 4 or the new iPod touch, you’ll get to enjoy an even sharper view of the world. 

Google Earth 3.2 for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch is available now in the App Store, or navigate to http://m.google.com/earth in your mobile browser. You can also download Google Earth by scanning this QR code:

For help or additional information, visit our help center.

Read more at googlemobile.blogspot.com

 

Are iPads, smartphones, and the Mobile Web rewiring the way we think?

I’m not prepared to give up my gadgets for a week but I know that if I needed to I could. I can quite anytime (isn’t that what all addicts say?). It seems today’s technology may be determining not only how much or how often we are “plugged in” but it could be “rewiring” our entire thought process and how we experience the real world as we surf through the virtual one.

Amplify’d from www.csmonitor.com

A laptop becomes a hand-held device in Cambridge, Mass. Is the way we think evolving because of iPads, smartphones, and the Mobile Web?

Taylor Weidman/Staff


Gregory M. Lamb, / Staff writer /
July 24, 2010

It took an offer to appear on a national TV show for Wade Warren to reluctantly give up what he calls his “technology” for a week.

Skip to next paragraph

This is article is part of the cover story package for the July 26, 2010, edition of The Christian Science Monitor weekly magazine.

Photo illustration: Staff

That was the only way, his mother says, that he would ever pack his 2006 MacBook (with some recent upgrades, he’ll tell you), his iPad tablet computer, and, most regretfully, his Nexus One smart phone into a cardboard box and watch them be hustled out the door of his room to a secret hiding place.

Wade, who’s 14 and heading into ninth grade, survived his seven days of technological withdrawal without updating his 136 Twitter followers about “wonky math tests” and “interesting fort escapades,” or posting on his photography product review blog, or texting his friends about… well, that’s private. But he has returned to his screens with a vengeance, making up for lost time.

Read more at www.csmonitor.com

Today’s technology may be determining not just how we spend our time: It actually may be “rewiring” the way we think, how we experience the world around us.

Techno-Cassandras fret over what’s happening to our attention spans, our ability to think and read deeply, to enjoy time with our own thoughts or a good book.

Techno-enthusiasts scoff that those concerns are nothing new: Socrates, it’s pointed out, thought that writing itself would harm a person’s ability to internalize learning, the printed word acting as a substitute for true understanding. Technologies such as printing, and in recent decades television and the pocket calculator, have all served time as villains only to become innocuous, commonplace parts of modern life. Why should helpful new technologies from Facebook and Twitter to iPhones and laptops be any different?

The Week In Review

Microsoft has completed an integration with my latest addiction, Foursquare.  Don’t worry, you’ll still be able to get your badges but now you can sync your location with Bing maps… although I don’t know why you would want to.

I’m not sure what the difference will be from what we’re already doing on Foursquare but according to BuzzBox reports are:

You will be able to search any location, and overlay it with a FourSquare “layer.” You will then get icons showing where users in this area have been “checking in.” This effectively shows you what the locals currently consider hot — where the action is right now.

The Wall Street Journal could charge readers $17.99  a month to read the newspaper on Apple’s forthcoming iPad device.  In a news item on Wednesday discussing publishers plans to support the iPad, the Wall Street Journal says the newspaper and the New York Times are currently working with test iPads.

“Six advertisers, including Coca-Cola and FedEx, have agreed to advertise with the Journal, and a four-month ad package costs $400,000,” according to people familiar with the matter quoted by the newspaper. Coke and FedEx however, declined to comment on terms.

“The Journal plans to charge subscribers $17.99 a month for iPad subscriptions, according to a person familiar with the matter,” the newspaper notes.  The iPad could prove a good source of revenue for publishers.

Read more at www.networkworld.com

Google pushed hard on China and China pushed back.  Media company Tom Group Led., popular Chinese portal Sina Corp. and online forum Tianya.cn have announced plans to stop using Google search on their sites.

Photo by Gemunu Amarasinghe/Associated Press

Security officers tried to stop people from lighting candles outside Google’s Chinese headquarters in Beijing on Tuesday.

China’s intransigence on the flow of information could harm its links to the global economy and sully its image.

Google Faces Fallout as China Reacts to Site Shift

By MIGUEL HELFT and MICHAEL WINES

Google’s China operations came under pressure as some content from its uncensored Hong Kong site was blocked.

China’s Internet Giants May Be Stuck There

By DAVID BARBOZA

Post-Google, China’s Internet market could increasingly resemble a lucrative, walled-off bazaar, experts say.

Read more at www.nytimes.com

Finally, in case the upcoming Apple iPad isn’t expensive enough, Mervis Diamond Importers recently announced the world’s first diamond studded iPad. The 11.43 carat iPad will sell for $19,999. You can order yours starting June 1.  So if you’d prefer a shiny, blinged out iPad over, say, a new car, you’re in luck.

Social Media And Gadget Trends

Google may be all about world domination but Facebook is running an impressive second.  According to Compete.com, Facbook passed Yahoo making the social networking site the number two most trafficked site after… wait for it… Google.  Facebook drew nearly 135 unique visitors in the January of 2010 and time spent on Facebook was twice that of time spent on Yahoo and Google.  I know I did my part to help them hit the number two spot!

Yahoo for years was the world’s most popular website — its ubiquitous portal has dominated the web since the 90s. Two years ago however, GoogleGoogleGoogle vaulted past Yahoo and became the Internet’s most popular destination. Last month, it became Facebook’sFacebookFacebook turn to knock Yahoo down another peg. via Mashable

In gadget news, BlackBerry is getting a cool new app.  Amazon has released a free Kindle application for BlackBerry smart phones and is planning to launch apps for Macs and the anticipated Apple iPad.  In other BlackBerry news, RIM developers have finally realized the worth of developing a Twitter app which falls under the “Duh” and “It’s About Time” heading.  I guess you could say better late than never but BB users have already taken sides on our favorite third-party Twitter BB apps and RIM is going to have a long way to go to get us to switch to an official BlackBerry app.

Finally, more computer makers are giving the tablet business a second look as we await the release of Apple’s iPad.  According to WSJ.com, Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard Co. have announce their devices and H-P is even looking to under cut the iPad price and release date.

H-P has discussed selling a version of the Slate—similar to the iPad in size and features, and including a cellular connection—for a price below the $629 Apple charges for an equivalent iPad, one of these people said.

Executives at Dell Inc., Acer Inc. and Sony Corp. say they are all watching Apple as they refine their own products. And Microsoft Corp. has a secretive team working on a two-screen tablet device, according to people familiar with the matter.There’s still plenty of skepticism about whether PC companies have the right products to compete against the iPad.  Many of the products risk being seen as “computers without keyboards,” in part because many of them run an operating system, Microsoft’s Windows 7, which is primarily aimed at traditional PC functions, said Forrester Research analyst James McQuivey. In contrast, the iPad’s software, which borrows heavily from the iPhone, is more tailored for consuming media on the go, he said.

However, I can’t help but think that all this open competition will no doubt give those of us who have been holding off on purchasing a tablet or eReader many more choices and choices are always a good thing.