If there was a theme in our Gnomedex schedule, it was that YOU have the power to change the world. No one embodies this ideal more than this year’s keynote speaker Brian Solis.
Brian has been coming to Gnomedex for many years as a paid attendee. He felt that this was the only conference which held value for him. He always walked away with something special. He used this to talk to our audience about what Gnomedex is and was… and what it has meant to him.
“If the elite have TED, the Geeks have Gnomedex.” Gnomedex, to Brian, is the place where community comes together and creates positive change… in ourselves and the world around us. The web defines a whole new era of society. Anyone who doesn’t realize the true power at their fingertips needs to be educated. Every tweet, blog post and podcast is a tool that you can use to help create the change that you desire to see.
We are the last generation to know privacy as it was. Each of us has the opportunity – and obligation – to help educate those around us. Party of the beauty of social media is to earn a response. Isn’t that why you tweet? You want to see what someone has to say about your thoughts. You want to know how the community will embrace them and take them further.
There are studies that show Twitter is making the world a smaller place. Social media is closing the distance. However, the way we communicate and connect is changing drastically.
People talk about how social media is about relationships. Brian reminds us that we don’t exactly send each other birthday cards. We check in with the idea of those we are connected with. We’re grooming an idea of relations over relationships.
Brian is globally recognized as one of most prominent thought leaders in new media. A digital analyst, sociologist, and futurist, Solis has influenced the effects of emerging media on the convergence of marketing, communications, and publishing.
He is principal of FutureWorks, an award-winning New Media agency in Silicon Valley, and has led interactive and social programs for Fortune 500 companies, notable celebrities, and Web 2.0 startups. His website is ranked among the top of world’s leading business and marketing online resources.
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KIRO 7 has long been a supporter of our community and the types of things we do. Jenni Hogan herself has attended any number of events in the past. She and her team GET social media and the opportunities to connect with all of you that the various tools provide. Jenni couldn’t attend our recent Gnomedex conference herself, so she sent her super intern Meg McNamara. Armed with a Flip camcorder, Meg learned the ropes faster than anyone in recent memory.
Her enthusiasm is boundless, as evidenced by a quote from her in the story KIRO 7 published: “I left Gnomedex pumped about the social media celebs I met and excited to claim my name in the online world! Yay!”
Thank you for being with us, Meg. You’re more than welcome to hang out with the rest of the gang any time. Thank you also to KIRO 7 for their support.
Even though I couldn’t be there in person to witness the goodness at the WWDC today, I was able to listen along live in my car via Twuner. This is a talking Twitter app that lets you actually hear the tweets you want to follow. I was traveling during much of Steve Jobs’ keynote and was to keep up with what was happening almost as quickly as Steve was saying it. My assistant Kat was sitting in her office at home following the updates via the live blog at MacRumors and taking notes for me.
The news of the day, of course, is iPhone 4. Pre-sale orders begin very soon: on June 15th! The device will be available for purchase on June 24th. The pricing is about what was expected with a new two-year contract: $199 for the 16GB model and $299 for the 32GB model. Although you’ll have to choose between black and white as the basic color, you’ll be able to use one of the new “bumper” cases to change things up. They will sell for $29.00, and come in six colors: black, white, pink, light blue, orange and lime green.
Steve spent more than an hour discussing what he feels are eight of the most important features of iPhone 4. He chuckled about the fact that we “saw” photos already back when Gizmodo had one of the devices in their hot little hands. He was quick to point out, though, that we hadn’t really seen it. The design is completely new and is “beyond a doubt the most precise things, one of the most beautiful things we’ve ever made.” There is glass on the front and rear of the phone with stainless steel running around the side. The top features a headphone jack, a second mic for noise cancellation and a sleep/wake button. The bottom has another mic, a 30-pin connector and a speaker. Jobs boasts that this is the thinnest smartphone on the planet at only 9.3mm thick… 24% thinner than the current iPhone 3GS model.
The first audible gasp from those assembled came when Steve grinned almost smugly as he described the display. Retina display is a brand-new technology that dramatically increases pixel density. 300 pixels per inch is the limit of the human retina when held about ten inches away from the eye. The display on the iPhone 4 features 326 ppi – which is four times as many pixels as before in the same amount of space! Text will appear on the screen just like you were reading a “fine printed book.” The screen resolution will be 960 x 640 pixels with an 800:1 contrast ratio.
Next up, Jobs reiterated what we already knew about how the phone will be powered. iPhone 4 packs an Apple-developed A4 chip which is incredibly small – yet incredibly powerful. The bigger battery coupled with this chip means 40% more talk time. Steve estimates you’ll get 7 hours of talk time, 6 hours of 3G browsing, 10 hours of both WiFi browsing and video consumption, 40 hours of music listening and about 300 hours of standby time. This is absolutely incredible, and is a development that we’ve long hoped for. Thanks to this chip, the device will have 32GB of storage and will be capable of 7.2 Mbit down and 5.8 Mb up – as soon as carriers support those types of speeds.
The next announcement was met with raucous cheers. iPhone 4 will have a Gyroscope included! The Gyroscope coupled with the accelerometer gives you six-axis motion sensoring. Steve demonstrated by playing a game that looks quite similar to Jenga – he lost the game, by the way. With the Gyroscope enabled, rotation is insanely better. Rotation of 3D objects is unbelievably smooth.
The new camera system had me pumping my fist in the air… right in the car as I was driving. You already know that I use my current iPhone 3GS to take a lot of pictures and videos. The new iPhone is going to make this about a gazillion times better. With both front and rear-facing cameras, you’ll never miss the perfect shot again. The camera is 5 megapixels, and Jobs is quick to point out that a good camera has nothing to do with megapixels – it’s all about the actual photo quality. Even better news is that I will be able to use my iPhone to record HD video in full 720p at 30fps! The quality shown in the demonstration was honestly incredible by all accounts. You’ll be able to tap to focus your video and have built-in video editing. One-click sharing makes life much easier. The LED flash can even stay on during recording.
Insert drum roll here!
Along with that HD recording goodness comes the announcement that iMovie will now be available for the iPhone! You’ll be able to record directly in to your timeline or choose from previously recorded clips and videos on your device. The workflow is very similar to the desktop version… just on a smaller screen. You can edit your movies with themes, transitions and titles. Change the scale of your timeline by pinching the screen, much as you would on the iPad. You can easily add music, switch themes and use geolocation data. Export your creation to 260p, 520p or 720p. The app will be available for only $4.99!
The iPhone OS has been renamed to iOS 4. There are more than 100 new user features. This update will be available for FREE beginning June 21st for your iPhone 3GS, iPhone 3G (with not all features supported) and your iPod Touch (again – not all features supported, and not on first generation devices). That’s right – this update will finally be free! Steve went over all of the features that were previously released. iOS4 has multitasking, folders, retina display technology, enhancements to mail, camera and photo apps and much deeper Enterprise integration. Microsoft Bing was officially named as the third search option for iOS4, with Google still being the default option.
iBooks and iAds were discussed for a few moments, and then Steve unveiled the last big surprise of the day: FaceTime. FaceTime will be face-to-face video chatting from iPhone 4 to iPhone 4. The video demonstration showed a grandparent chatting with their grandchild, a dad traveling on business chatting with his children back home and two people conversing via sign language. This was met with many loud cheers and wild clapping from the audience.
My iPhone 3GS has served me well in the time I have had it. However, it is currently whimpering and cowering in a corner. I think it already knows what its fate is going to be come June 24th. What are your thoughts on all of the announcements made during the WWDC keynote? Are you counting down the days until you can officially have an iPhone 4 in your hands, or are you still not convinced you need an iPhone?
Credit for all of the photos in this post go to MacRumors.
I was at a conference a few weeks ago, and realized I hadn’t taken my presentation with me! I had the iPad on the trip, so I purchased Keynote and threw it on there. I created a pretty awesome presentation in just minutes. For my needs, it was more than sufficient. It’s perfect if you need to create presentations and things of that nature on the fly. The software only cost me right around ten dollars, so I was even more happy at how well it worked.
I also ended up picking up Pages. I don’t really like the regular notes application, so I decided to give this a try. Again, this application was only ten bucks. I’m very appreciative of the features that Apple just released. I like being able to turn the iPad into landscape mode instead of portrait and still have Pages work properly. Pages definitely isn’t perfect. If you want my opinion, I think you should likely wait to buy it. There are other document-editing programs out there that you can grab.
Then, I was lucky enough to have Alex donate Numbers to me for the iPad. If you need spreadsheets, I’d say the implementation of Numbers on the iPad is well worth the money it costs. It’s very comprehensive and works really well. They’ve done a very good job with this app to optimize it for the iPad.
If you don’t need the apps, don’t get them. I feel there are much better things available at lower prices. What are your thoughts if you’re using any part of the iWork suite on your iPad?
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You only have to wait a few more days, my impatient friends. Your iPad will soon arrive, and you’ll be able to play to your heart’s content. In order to help keep you occupied, I have found a few videos that showcase some of the features and apps built in to the device. Productivity is important, and many nay-sayers are adamant that the iPad won’t be usable for any type of work. How wrong they are.
Keynote is a very powerful presentation application, and was built from the ground up specifically for the iPad. You can create beautiful presentations from photos, charts and animations. You can use a template to create a new presentation, or bring in an existing document from your Mac or from PowerPoint. The large disply on the iPad will give you a good view of whatever you’re working on.
Pages is a word processor made for the mobile device. It can create newsletters, reports and other documents with a few flicks of a finger. When you rotate the iPad, your page fills the screen. Pages tracks what you type, so it can suggest words, correct your spelling, and insert punctuation automatically. It can even tell when you’re creating a list, and format it for you while you’re typing.
Numbers is the spreadsheet application from iWork that you’re already used to, and it’s powerful on the iPad. It’s easy to work with tables, charts and graphics on a canvas that you can use just by touching. You can again use one of the preset templates to get started, or import an Excel spreadsheet from Microsoft Office.
Who says you can’t be productive on an iPad? These built-in applications would suggest otherwise. While the iPad may not be suitable to be your “main” computer, I think it will do nicely when you’re on the go and need to get some work done.
After watching my Macworld presentation last week, he reached out to ask if I would be able to deliver all future Macworld keynotes. Apparently, the idea of “community” really resonated!
I (of course) obliged. He’s overnighting his black turtlenecks to me. Sadly, I will not get to keep any products I present to the audience on stage. But I guess I get some kind of employee discount? Better than nothing.
Just when you thought Gnomedex couldn’t get any better, Senator John Edwards signs on as our Keynote. The senator is a long-standing supporter of technology – including podcasting and blogging. Every year, we wonder how we’re going to top ourselves. When conversations started with Senator John Edwards’ office, they were intrigued and enthralled with our approach to content! Sentator Edwards will quickly turn his time over to the Gnomedex audience, fielding questions and fostering discussion over how technology could and should play a role in our world. This is fantastic! I’m sure you’ll agree, no matter your political persuasion. This is a tremendous opportunity to have your voice heard. Does anybody know any political bloggers out there? I don’t know any…