Things That Make Me Go GAGA This Week

*Random, trending topics that caught my attention this week*

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Nokia played the trump card few weeks ago with “Imitation is the highest form of flattery”, laughing off Apple’s attempt at colourful iPhone 5C.

This time, Apple can direct the same insult to Samsung. The latter unveiled a gold edition of Samsung Galaxy S4 on their United Arab Emirates twitter account after news broke out that the champagne-coloured iPhone 5S sold out within days in the U.S.

However, it has yet to be disclosed whether this model will make its way to the U.S. market or anywhere else for that matter.

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The invincible, effortlessly funny duo Jimmy Fallon and JT imitates what a real life conversation would be like with the shameless, excessive use of hashtags.

The use of hashtag in its earlier days serves as an avenue to gather like-minded people in a conversation. But the usage of hashtag, for some has since changed. Yes, I am talking about some wannabes who think it is super cool. #notcool #itisreallyreallyannoying #ididntevenfinishreading

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I have been digging a lot of TV series lately. I know I am a little late to start catching Drop Dead Diva when it’s already in Season 5 now.

Then Revolution, See Dad Run, plus on the list of to-watch: Under the Dome, Smash, Elementary, Arrow, Beauty and the Beast and Do No Harm.

Anyhoo, in the midst of all the catching-ups, I am glad that my all-time favourites are making a comeback.

Modern Family that I spent the last summer watching all previous 4 seasons unveiled the first 2 episodes of Season 5 yesterday. I fell in love with the cast all over again. They deserve all the Emmys, hands down!

Parks and Rec along with American Horror Story will be premiering in a matter of weeks. Pretty Little Liars much, much-anticipated Halloween episode will be aired next month too. So I am pretty hyped up now!

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The real power lies inside you.
Be a donor. Save lives. Brazilian Organ Donation Ads by Propeg

When we design advertisement, the message has to be there to be easily conveyed to the audience.

Ads have to be able to grasp viewers’ attention and etched in their mind. When it comes to organ donation ads, it is only effective if it can move people’s hearts, then cause them to reflect and waver.

Propeg did great this time, by instilling the familiar superheroes icon that we all admire dearly and the message is simply “The real power lies inside you”. Be a superhero yourself and save someone’s lives today.

iOS 7 In A Nutshell

iOS 7 marks the change in visual appearance as compared to previous versions.

First attempt to install the iOS 7 at 9 a.m. (GMT +8) on my iPhone 4 failed. As expected on the first few hours of the much anticipated software update.

The 6 hours wait before I had another go at downloading proved to be successful. Hallelujah.

The whole process took roughly 30 minutes – depending on your network speed. It is essential to note that backup/syncing is necessary before you proceed any further.

As the lock screen lights up, it is aesthetically beautiful in every way. You can see its futuristic features as with the clock and “slide to unlock” – a vast difference from its predecessors. The keyboard is truly revolutionary.

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It might be a little laggy when you experiment it for the first few minutes but things is smooth-sailing afterwards.

You can also note the new “animation and motion” as you slide your finger across the screen to unlock your phone, when you open an app, navigating a folder, and of course, the multitasking had a complete makeover that will make all jailbreakers pretty proud.

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The addition of Control Center is truly a bliss as handling the utilities option are so much easier now and can be done anywhere from the lockscreen to when you are in the midst of typing a message – WiFi, Bluetooth, Music Player, Brightness setting, flashlight, camera, etc.

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Notification center is no longer the same as it is a day ago. Divided into 3 tabs – one for the Calendar, another for notifications, as well as Missed for notifications we previously ‘ignored’ or didn’t view. The ‘Quick Tweet’ option is no longer available in iOS 7. Thumbs down for the latter.

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All native Apple apps are revamped to fit the new funky iOS 7 interface. The Calendar, clock, notably App Store and Photo, as well as Music player are some of the major change.

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Other third-party app developers were quick to join in the fun with additions like Facebook (awesome one here), Twitter, GetGlue, FourSquare, Camera +, WordPress coming out with updates to fit into the ‘in’ crowd.

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Nevertheless, some are still struggling or waiting for the right moment to come out with an update prior to iOS 7′s release. I anticipate that Tweetbot and FB Messenger among some of them would be rolling out some changes soon… hopefully.

All in all, as always there are some who like it and some who prefer iOS 6′s simplicity and less ‘colorful’ interface. Personally, for me it’s a YAY! A drastic change, yes but I’m lovin’ most of  it. It’s your turn to make the choice, my friend.

Remember it’s a one way trip. You can’t revert back to an older version. Unless, you are familiar with using IPSW, then that’s a different story. :)

Four Shades of Wonders

“Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph. – Matt Hardy

Does it matter the brand and model of the DSLR you used to snap a stunning photo? Does owning the best of the best really makes a difference? There is always this misconception that by owning the most complex, hefty, expensive DSLR, your photos will turn out like the pros. Don’t fall into this trap, pals! Before you invest into a high-end DSLR, ask yourself: Will I be using all these features? Is 1080p shooting really important? Do I really need 24MP?

If you are an amateur, get a semi-DSLR and learn the basics first. Familiarize yourself with the Shutter Speed, Aperture, Manual and Program modes. Don’t rush into getting unnecessary accessories and DSLR lens. You might find out that you don’t actually need them all. I bought a tripod a few years back and now, I felt it was an impulsive decision. The tripod is still in good care, unscathed but it has not seen a day of sunlight since the day it lands on my doorstep.

Being at the right place at the right time, with a little spin of luck, sometimes you will capture the best shots even with a 5MP gadget, namely the iPhone. There are a few particular nifty users in Instagram, the famous app bought over by Facebook just months ago who capture amazing shots of landscapes and natures alike. Coupled with the right amount of effect, the photo is just as good as one taken on an expensive camera.

When it comes to landscapes and urban photography, we altered the exposure, hue, saturation and a pinch of effects to rejuvenate the shots. Vintage, black and white, tilt-shift as well as lomo are some of the more common filters photographers used to add some spice into their photos. I, for one love to experiment with different effects and saturation though there are times when I couldn’t make up my mind which is the best filter for my photo.

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B

C

D

As you can see above, Photo A, B, C, and D are the same stills taken from the same angle, same time and the same Olympus E-PL1. But a little tweaking turns it into an extraordinary piece that generates different aura and flavour. It brings out the deep details of the sky, the peaceful river, the calm boats, the serene greeneries as well as some tiny bits of magic (Photo A and D).

The point is, don’t be quick to judge that a semi-DSLR is not as good as an expensive one. The price tag plays no importance to the beauty of the photos you take. It is by practice and experience that produce the best shots. Oh, and don’t forget a little pinch of filters (and luck) too!

Happy Birthday, Zhe Chair and Salyna!

I can’t find the exact word to describe my feelings today. I woke up early after a rough night yesterday and reached the Sungei Wang mall, alone with less than 10 stores open. I was a bit nervous, I gotta’ admit because I’m not familiar with the area.

Anyway, to cut things short, I’m really excited to celebrate my friends’ birthday today: Zhe Chair and Salyna. Mine is just in 13 days time. It was memorable and I hope they enjoyed themselves just as much.

Before heading back, the six of us shopped around. There’s this iPhone cover which I really liked since the very first day I’ve seen it weeks ago but didn’t get it then because it was a wee-bit too expensive IMHO. However, since then, it’s glued on my mind and I know unless I get it, my mind won’t leave me alone. I managed to bargain to the lowest price and got home a happy girl, maybe even happier than the birthday boy and girl. :)

Top Tweets in Trends for 3rd Party Twitter app

I wonder why 3rd party Twitter apps like Hootsuite, Seesmic and even Tweetdeck, which Twitter bought early this year do not show Top Tweets in Trends. I find this rather inconvenient because I want to share my retweets on Facebook without sharing all of my other tweets. Surprising that only Twitter main app can do so. Adding Trends to a column seem to be impossible at the moment too. Only adding a single trend is available now which is a big boo-hoo. Is Twitter keeping the best features for themselves to attract users?