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Top April Fools Tech News Updates 2015

April “1st” is my favorite day because it just brings out the best in everyone.. News is much more colorful on this day -which is why I wanted to share some of my favorite “April 1st” tech news.

 

To start…here is a Kifi library dedicated to April Fools links. I summarized all the April Fools and regular humor links in my Kifi “everyday” humor library with a link to Guy Kawasaki Stock Photo’s that always makes me smile!
 

Guy Stock photo

Photo Credit: http://guykawasaki.com/step-aside-vince-here-comes-guystockphoto/

 

Here are some new April “1st” Tech updates:
 
Twitter increased the character limit by “1” character.. via Joel Comm.
 
Burger King has new Paleo menu.. via Cool Mom Picks
 
Instragram bans all Children’s Photo’s… via Cool Mom Tech
 
Groupon announced “Gruber” – Uber with cat drivers! ….via Groupon
 
Think Geek announced special “April 1” products – including steam powered gaming cabinet…
 
Think Geek April Fools
 
 
You can get a text when the CDC reports a Zombie outbreak.. via IFTTT
 
IFTTT April Fools
 
 

Microsoft Announced MS-Dos Mobile!
 

 
 
Google Fiber team announced Dial-up Mode!
 

 
 
Google Maps has a fun surprise when you zoom in on an area. Look closely and then you will see a version of the map that is much better then when I check the highway for traffic and it is “RED” showing traffic has stopped.. This is a map of downtown San Francisco!
 
April Fools 2015 Google Maps
 
 

Samsung finally created a true “multi-use” smartphone called Galaxy “Blade” Edge. The Blade Edge not only has smartphone features but also can help get you ready for dinner with the “blade” features.
 

samsung blade edge

Photo Credit: Samsung


 
 

 Fresh Direct now offers a 5 day “Cheese Cleanse”...
 
 
Fresh Direct Cheese Cleanse

 

 

What was your favorite April Fools Jokes? Teachmama has suggestions to make sure parents can have April Fools Fun with these pranks.. Mashable has more April Fools fun on their post.

 

For a summary of the general April Fools and humor fun – check out my Kifi Humor Library..

 
 

 

How To: Mobile Photo Printing and MyPrintly.com Photo Crafts

I have always open about the dichotomy of being equally tech savvy and craft challenged. Even looking at the beautiful crafts on Pinterest makes me hyper ventilate..When I took the time to understand what caused my advanced state of craft issues, I realized that I just need simple steps to follow. Of course, when those steps involve technology that helps automate some steps, even better! When I was asked by MyPrintly.com (disclosure: my client) to create some videos with steps on how to use the HP Envy Printer to print from iOS and Android mobile devices, I jumped at the chance. Not only would I get the opportunity to do what I love (figuring out how to use technology) but also give myself the challenge of using the technology to do crafts..

 

Photo Crafts MyPrintly.com and Mobile Printing HP Printer

 

Well, not only did it help me start enjoying the art of crafting – but I can’t wait to create more photo crafts (I can’t believe I said that)..  

 

Below are video’s that show how to print from an iOS and Android device to an HP Printer  I used this amazing videographer and editor (my son Ben Blecherman). The videos include the steps we did to create our own version of the Photo Balloon Party Decoration craft I found on MyPrintly.com.

 

Step 1: Get Supplies:

MyPrintly.com Photo CraftsTo gather supplies I went to my local party supply store for balloons, a fun weight for the balloons (I picked a blue metallic party box style) and place card holder that I could put into the balloon weight. It does not really matter what the bottom looks like because it will be placed in the balloon weight.  I could only find heart place card holders in the wedding area of my supply shop, so I used them. Bigger party stores and online party sites may have basic place card holders that you can buy in packs of 6 or 12 at a time (to save money).  We made sure the balloon ribbons where long enough to also tape pictures onto the strings. The last supply was HP 4×6 Photo paper that we found at our local office supply store (but that can also be ordered online).

 

 

 

Step 2: Print Photos and Assemble Photo Craft:
 
I used the wireless features of my HP Envy Printer and my smartphone to send photos to the printer. Then we just placed the photos in the place card holder and taped photos the ribbons of the balloon.  Printing from my mobile phone saved time and enabled me to have more flexibility on the location of where I was printing. The video’s below show how to do the photo craft and mobile printing from an iOS or Android phone.  There is also a guest surprise appearance from our lovable Henry the Hamster.. Of course, he was the star of the show!

 

Mobile Printing with Harry the Hamster TechMamas.com

 

How To: Mobile Printing from iOS Device to HP Printer

 

 

 

How To: Mobile Printing from Android Device to HP Printer

 
 

 

What photo crafts do you want to try?

 

For more photo craft ideas check out MyPrintly.com   Here is the link to the for Photo Balloon Party Decoration craft found on MyPrintly.com.

 

Disclosure: MyPrintly sponsored the videos. Products were supplied for video production. This post is NOT sponsored, I am just sharing the crafting fun….

 

 

 

Top 5 Holiday Humor 2014

There are so many different emotions that my friends and I talk about experiencing during the holidays.  We feel the love of family and friends but at the same time the stress of holiday shopping, entertaining and then as parents making sure our kids have enough activities to keep them busy over the school break. So now that Christmas, Hanukkah and the other winter holidays are close to being over it is a great time to look back at the best holiday humor. Because let’s face it, laughing is one of the best feelings of all! Each year I think that I will see the same humor but each year the creatives win and new ideas are presented.

 

 

1. Holidays Lights went galactic with this “Star Wars Music Christmas Lights Show 2014 – Featured on Great Christmas Light Fight“!
 

 

 

2. Taylor Swift inspired the newest Chanukah song by Six13 “Shake It Off”:
 

 

 
3. Geeky Christmas Comics
 

Comic via foxtrot

Photo Credit: via http://www.iflscience.com/ via FoxTrot http://www.foxtrot.com/

 

 

4. Techie Hanukkah Comics:

 

miracle of hanukkah updated

Photo credit: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/45528646208868222/

 

 

5. Best “ORIGINAL” Holiday Graphics:

 

The following two graphics were created by my creative genius friends Jessi Sanfilippo of SHUGGILIPPO and Andy Herald of HOW TO BE A DAD. If you see any imitations online, please let them know you saw the “ORIGINAL” comic genius version.. Heh..

 

The Shelf of the Elf via @shuggilippo

 

The Shelf of the Elf via  @shuggilippo

Photo Credit: The Shelf of the Elf via @shuggilippo http://www.shuggilippo.com/eyecandy/the-shelf-on-the-elf

 

 

How to Be A Dad helps us continue the Star Wars themed holiday greetings with this “Darth Vader Santa Says“:

 

 

How to be a Dad Darth Vader Santa Says

Photo Credit: Any Herald of How to be a Dad

 

What were your (family friendly) holiday humor favorites?

 
 
Update: Next year think about sending some funny holiday cards like the ones Cool Mom Picks highlighted…
 
 
 

 

Create Professional Graphic Designs With Canva – Now on iPad

Whether you are a social media professional or just a professional in any career –  graphics is an important part of presentations, events, group, online and meeting communications.  In the past expensive and complicated graphics software was needed to create and “size” graphics. I have been following and learning about social media from Guy Kawaski for years and recently he shared information about Canva as a great website to create graphics. I started using Canva for my social media and professional graphic projects and was thrilled at how easy it was for even people like me (graphically challenged).  I just received a press release that Canva is now available on the iPad, which makes it even easier to create graphics on the go!

 

Canva for the iPad

 

The press release explained:

“Canva makes it amazingly simple for everyone to create professional quality graphic designs. Its online design platform brings together a simple drag-and-drop design tool and a library of more than one million photographs, graphics and fonts, allowing anyone to take an idea and present it beautifully in print or online.

Canva can be used to design almost anything: presentations, posters, blog content, cards, online marketing materials, invitations, flyers and so much more. For more information on Canva, visit the website or follow the company on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram or Pinterest.”

 

Key Features from the press release:

 

  • “Design for work, and play. Never worry about dimensions again. Easily design for social media, blog graphics and print. Create social media graphics with ease. Professionally designed layouts that are perfect for Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest, and Instagram.

 

Canva for the iPad

 

 

  • Design on your iPad or the Web. Create a design on your desktop computer, edit it on the go.
  • Collaborate with anyone, anywhere. Canva lets you share and edit your designs with friends, clients and coworkers.
  • Choose from one million images and hundreds of fonts. Design with 1 million photos, graphics and fonts, or upload your own.”

 

 

Canva for the iPad

 

Canva for the iPad

 

 

 

For example, I was on a tight deadline to write a post about tips for finding your kids first phone. Canva enabled me to quickly add a text banner to my graphic that looked great across social media platforms.  I also use Canva to size my graphics for different online platforms. The flexibility to either find my own graphics or use Canva’s vast collection ensures that I can always get what I need. I also follow Peg Fitzpatrick for great social media tips and she explained in her blog the power of maximizing content with visual marketing and tips to better visual marketing using Canva.

 

Here is a video about Canva for more information:

 

Listed below is more information from the press release:

 

Canva Launches App to Bring Amazingly Simple Design to the iPad

● Canva app brings professional design to the iPad

● Canva reaches 870,000 users and 6.2 million designs

● Renowned investors have invested $6.6 million

 

 

Sydney, Australia — 15/10/14 — Australian startup Canva today announced the launch of the Canva app for iPad. The app brings together a simple drag-and-drop design interface with a library of more than one million photographs, graphics and fonts, and it makes creating graphics fast and easy.

 

Canva CEO Melanie Perkins“Canva makes graphic design amazingly simple for everyone, allowing any idea to be beautifully presented in print or online,” said Canva CEO Melanie Perkins. “We are excited to extend this experience and now allow people to design at home, in the office or on the go. In the past year since our launch we have been overwhelmed by the many ways people are using Canva every day. Our new app brings everything people love about Canva to the iPad.”

 

Canva’s iPad app is free to download and provides access to Canva’s library of millions of stock photographs, illustrations and layouts. Users can upload photos from their device or Facebook account, or pay per premium element when they publish their design. Canva also provides professional designers with a faster way to create layouts and collaborate with clients, removing the need for frustrating back-and-forth email exchanges. The iPad app makes it especially easy to collaborate on the go.

 

Canva has been backed by investors including Facebook Director of Engineering and co-
founder of Google Maps Lars Rasmussen, Yahoo! CFO Ken Goldman, and funds including Matrix Partners, InterWest Partners, and 500 Startups.

 

 

Guy Kawasaki CanvaFormer Apple chief evangelist Guy Kawasaki, who recently resurrected this title when he began to work for Canva said, “Canva realizes the creative potential of the iPad. The app is beautiful and it’s intuitive, just like the iPad. It allows everyone to create beautiful designs for work and play.”

 

 

 

Canva will be available in the app store starting from today. Find out more at http://about.canva.com/ipad.

 

 

 

 

Disclosure: This is a press post.

 

 

 

 

 

TechMamas.com Road Trip: Nissan Leaf Electric Car #EcoTech

Using technology that is resource and environmentally friendly (#ecotech) is important to me and one of the most prominent ecotech products is the electric car. These automobiles are run by a rechargeable battery with no gasoline engine or carbon emission pollution like their gas-powered brothers and sisters.  To learn how these cars work and how I could fit them into my busy life as a mom, I have started to review electric as well as hybrid cars for TechMamas.com.

 

TechMamas.com road trip: Nissan Leaf

 

The first car in my series is the Nissan Leaf.  I was happy to receive a press email offering a Nissan Leaf to evaluate for one week (disclosure). All I can say, is that it was very hard to return the car when the week ended. My minivan was still handy when driving my 3 boys and their friends around, while I enjoyed using the Nissan Leaf for two mini-vacations and trips around town. I most enjoyed going a whole week without filling up a gas tank.  I also learned all about the way the Nissan Leaf works.

 

TECHMAMAS.COM NISSAN LEAF ROAD TRIP VIDEO: Here is a video showing our road trips with the Nissan Leaf. My oldest son and cameraman filmed the footage using two GoPros synced up with the GoPro iphone app to recorded the audio. Here it is:
 


 
DETAILS:
 
2015 NISSAN LEAF®S features and specifications:

 

  • 107 Horsepower
  • 126/101 city/hwy MPGe*
  • 5 Seats / 4 Doors
  • 80 kW AC synchronous electric motor
  • Zero tailpipe emissions
  • Nissan Intelligent Key® with Push Button Start
  • Bluetooth® Hands-free Phone System
  • Heated front and rear seats
  • RearView Monitor

 

My Observations:

 

1. Ride: The ride felt comfortable and sturdy, not like smaller cars that feel as though they are going to blow over! We cozily fit all 5 of us (Mom, Dad, Teen and twin 11 year olds) for a one hour road trip to Santa Cruz.

 

Even room for three in the back seat!

 

Nissan Leaf TechMamas.com Road Trip

 

Plus a trunk area that can hold enough for a road trip.

 

Nissan Leaf TechMamas.com Road Trip

 

 

2. Controls: Getting used to the charging controls and routine was the biggest adjustment. All the basic car controls are similar to other cars so there really was not a learning curve. I was able to find the dashboard, steering and general controls I needed and using them was intuitive.

 

Nissan Leaf TechMamas.com Road Trip

 

 

3. Charging: The car’s screen displayed the amount of charge and indicated the remaining miles on the battery, which was very helpful. I was able to drive two long road trips, both around 40-45 miles, on one full charge with a little left over.

 

 

Nissan Leaf TechMamas.com Road Trip

 

 

I did notice that the calculations on mountains adjusted the amount of miles I had left down because the miles are calculated on conditions (i.e. uphill). Once I hit the top of the mountain and was coasting downhill, the vehicle recalculated the remaining mileage upward. Using the regenerative brakes also recharges the battery and increases total miles remaining. In my experience, just plugging the Leaf into a regular house charger for around 4-6 hours charged it up from 75-80%, which was fine for regular use. If I were going on a long trip, I would probably stop by one of the charging stations to make sure the car is either at 100% (the car conveniently lists the closest charging stations on the screen) or I would buy one of the Do-It-Yourself charging stations (AreoVironment is an example of one) to charge the battery more quickly. Along with not needing to buy or use gas, knowing that the Nissan Leaf is zero emissions made me feel I was also doing my part to support the environment.

 

 

Nissan Leaf TechMamas.com Road Trip

 

 

When I was just driving The Nissan Leaf on quick rides around town, the regenerative braking recharged the battery enough to avoid the need to plug in.It was a real treat to know that I did not need to visit a gas station and was not releasing any emissions.

 

I enjoyed driving the Nissan Leaf for a week and it especially made me realize (after NO visits to the gas station) how much gas I use while driving my minivan. Every visit to the gas station makes me want to buy an Electric car even more!

 
Click over to the Nissan Leaf website to find out more information, Facebook: www.facebook.com/thebetterride, @thebetterride and Instagram @thebetterride.

 

 

 

Disclosure: A Nissan Leaf was provided for a one week review. This is a review post.