Tag Archives: smartphone apps

An Audio Travel Journal, Using your Smartphone

recorderA while back, after presenting one of our smartphone seminars, someone asked us if he could use his smartphone to record messages that he would send to his family and friends about his travels.  He is an RV traveler and he wanted to share his experiences, but he really wasn’t into photography and didn’t want to keep a blog.  I thought he meant that he wanted to dictate messages, like we show in our seminars.  You can talk to your smartphone and it will transcribe your words.  You can do this while composing an email message, saving you the trouble of typing.  It does a pretty good job, but you still need to check for errors and fix them before clicking Send.

An Audio Travel Journal

Nope, that wasn’t what he meant!  He wanted his family and friends to hear his voice.  He wanted to tell of his adventures and have an audio file as a result.  What a great idea!  I remember when I was a little girl and my family traveled to Guatemala from Alaska.  We took a reel to reel tape recorder with us and we each took turns recording our impressions of our travels.  When a half-hour tape was full, we’d package it up and mail it off to my grandparents in Florida.  I sure wish I knew where those tapes were now!  That would be a find.

Anyway, how to accomplish this?  I tried it out using my note-taking app from Catch.com.  Sure enough, I just tap the icon to create a new note, then instead of tapping on the pencil to create a written note, I just tap on the microphone icon to record a voice note.  When I’m done, I can either share the Catch note with my friends, or, I can simply tap the Share icon and select email.  The voice note is sent as an attachment to the email.  The same thing can be done with Evernote.  If you make the recordings with an App like Evernote, or Catch, they can all be gathered together in a folder for easy access at any time.  Because both these apps are Cloud-based, it means that they are accessible on your computer as well as your phone and your tablet.  You don’t even need to send it in an email, just share the Evernote folder with your family and friends.  They’ll receive a link in an email, when they click on that link they’ll be able to listen to your recordings.

How About a Podcast?

Jim has been talking about doing a Podcast for years!  (See this previous article to learn about podcasts) For a while there, we were making video recordings of the two of us talking about technology and travel.  We called it Gabbing with the Geeks, and we put each video on a blog post on our website.  Although we really liked it, we stopped after a while because it was just too much work.  Oh … not the recording part.  The getting dressed and putting on makeup part!  It really is a lot more intimidating to sit yourself down in front of a camera instead of just a microphone.  Then there was the editing, rendering, uploading and posting.

We often listen to the podcast of our friends John and Kathy Huggins – Living the RV Dream.  They record a full hour show every week!  It’s a wonderful way to be entertained while you’re driving, and we know more and more RVers who are using their smartphones for downloading and listening to podcasts.  Most new car radios have a way to either plugin your smartphone, or use Bluetooth so that the sound comes out the radio speakers.  If not, you can also use inexpensive devices like the Jupiter Jack.

We’ve been researching and testing to see if we could come up with a way to use our smartphones to record an audio version of Gabbing with the Geeks.  If it could be done with our smartphones, that means we could record at any time that we thought of something to say!  Like a candid photo, you could hear us in a more natural, unrehearsed mode.  No pressure to set up a video recording session.  And, if the recording software could pause and resume, then we could probably get away with no editing.  Then we had to research the file format, a way to upload the file to a website, and a way to play the audio from our website.

Listen Now!

I’m sure we’ll keep researching and improving, but, we have come up with a way that is easy enough, and successful enough.  Check it out.  Here’s the recording we made just today, while on our morning walk!  Jim talks about Windows 8 as we both breathe heavily and try to get some exercise!  Just open the post and click the play button.  We’ve found the results are best if you’re using the Chrome browser, but people have tested it in Safari and others and reported good results.  We’ve also included a link to the .wav file itself so you can download it if the Play button doesn’t work on your device/browser.

For those of you accustomed to subscribing to real podcasts, we don’t have that piece in place.  Right now, it’s just an audio file that you can either listen to, or download, by going to the web page where it is posted.  This also means that you can leave comments.  Please do.

September 2012 Newsletter: RV Destinations on the Map, Smartphone Apps, Gmail Universal Inbox,

Geeks on Tour

September Rallies

We’ve been busy.  I won’t go so far as to say we’ve been working hard, because we subscribe to the notion that when you’ve found what you love to do you never have to work!  But, we have been very busy doing what we love – teaching technology to travelers.  Read more about the Escapade Rally.

2012092

Calendar: Coming up in October

For more details, see our website Calendar.

Hang Out With Us

Did you know we have a  Geeks on Tour Google+ page?  If you’re on Google+, check it out and give us a +1.  Then you will be notified when we have a hangout.  Hangouts are a cool way to see and hear each other as well as share our computer screens.  It’s a high-tech meeting room you can use anytime, anywhere.  On our last hangout we met Rolland Lawrenz.  Rolland has been following Geeks on Tour for quite some time and loves the idea of traveling and teaching at the same time.  He teaches iPads / iPhones and such by scheduling ‘Ask Away’ sessions at local (Seattle) Starbucks.  hmmm – what a cool idea.

Forum Topics

The Q&A Forums on the Geeks on Tour website are a great place to discuss the topics we cover.  This is where we answer our members’ questions.  Anyone can read the forums, you need to be a member to post.   Here are some topics of interest:

  1. Uploading Edited Pictures from Picasa to my iPad
  2. Unable to open Email picture attachment
  3. Feedburner for Blogs
  4. Delete a Facebook Account
  5. How to Format Lat/Lon for Streets and Trips
  6. Identifying duplicate pictures in folders

TechnoGeek Learning Rally

techno-geekYes! We’re doing it again.  Phil and Tracey from TechnoRV and Jim and Chris from Geeks on Tour are teaming up to deliver the most learning, the best food, and the most fun of any RV rally you can imagine.  Watch the video of the first TechnoGeek Learning Rally to see what I mean!

You will learn about cameras, computers, smartphones and more at this week-long event in Bushnell, Florida December 2-8.  See the Rally Page for all the details.

Hands-on PIcasa class at Techno-Geek Learning Rally


A Free RVing Newsletter

RVTravel.com

image Learn about RV camping, RV travel, RV news and much more. This newsletter is now in its eleventh year of continuous weekly publication by Chuck Woodbury.  In the current issue you will learn about Chuck’s travels, including an RV Park within sight of the Statue of Liberty, RV News about fuel prices, new BLM campgrounds, RV Recalls, RV Shows, and overnight parking rules.  Also included is expert advice on high tire pressure, overheating 30Amp plugs, and RV Holding Tanks 101.  And that’s just a start!  Subscribe now. And, tell ’em the Geeks sent you!


Must-Have Smartphone Apps

passportWe have two Apps we want to tell you about.

Ever turn your phone to silent, then forget to turn it back on?  The Silent Mode Timer is for you.

And, if you’re an RVer with a Passport America membership, you’ll love the App that helps you find all the participating parks.

Read the Article …



RVer’s Favorite Destinations Plotted on a Map at FMCA Convention

imageFor the last several FMCA conventions, Jim has provided computer support for an interactive session named RV Destinations.  People attending the sessions share their favorite destinations from their RV travels, and Jim finds those destinations using Google Earth.  Now you can have the results!  

The article will also teach you how you can make your own maps.

Read the Article …


Use Gmail for One In-Box, Multiple Addresses and Devices

Here’s the question: Can you look at your email inbox on your phone, your computer, and your iPad/tablet and be seeing the same thing?  Can you delete an email while using your phone, and it will be gone when you look at email on your computer?

If you answer ‘Yes’, then all is well.  If not, then you’ve got some work to do.  It’s called device independence.  Your email experience should be the same regardless of what device you’re using – phone, computer, or tablet.  It can be done and it should be done.  There are many ways to do it, we think the easiest is by using Gmail for your inbox.  Yes, that means you have an email that ends in @gmail.com, but it doesn’t mean you have to use that address.  You just need to use the Gmail software for your aggregate or universal inbox.  This article will tell you how.

Read the Article …


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