7 Years

The song of the week today is 7 years by Lukas Graham. Coming from Denmark, Graham’s new, self-titled album is surprisingly deep. However, 7 years is certainly the most popular track as it currently sits at number 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 [As of May 28]. Specifically, 7 years is a coming of age story that that jumps from a mother’s words of wisdom to her 7 year old son to the recollections of a 60 year old man. Definitely give it a listen.

Song of the Week

I love music [music festivals too]. Sitting at my desk, walking down the street, or working out at the gym, you are likely to find me with headphones on and music playing. The array of music I listen to is broad. I’m a huge Beatles fan. How can you not be? Seriously, how can you not be a Beatles fan? However, I also enjoy mindless rap hits. The spectrum is large, varying based on my mood, time of day, and the like.

Because of my love for music, I’ve decided to share one song per week that is really catching my attention. There is no way to predicate the song or genre in advance. It could be a throw back [again, The Beatles can take over any week of listening] or a pop hit from the week. Regardless, each Friday I’m going to post one song that’s been absorbing me.

This week, I’ve got a song by The Strumbellas. I’ve actually been listening to their latest album Hope a bunch this week [by a bunch, I mean non-stop]. Specifically, for the inaugural song of the week, I want to recommend Young & Wild. To me, this is a perfect summer song. Upbeat music, catchy lyrics, easy to dance to. I’ve embedded the entire album below [because it’s all worth a listen], but make sure to check out Young & Wild.

Boyz n Poizn — Phoebe Ryan

I really like Phoebe Ryan. I saw her last fall and sadly missed her twitter reply about meeting after the show. Her debut album is slated for release sometime this year, but today Boyz n Poizn, her second single for the album, dropped. I actually remember her playing this in the fall and loved it. I highly suggest listening to the track below.

2016 is going to be a huge year for Phoebe Ryan, so if you have not already, start following her.

Viv, what Siri should be in 2016


Viv is an advanced personal assistant from the creators of Siri. Viv is smarter than current virtual assistants like Siri and Google Now for a myriad of reasons, such as its ability to use natural language technology to determine the users intent. Moreover, Viv uses patent pending technology dubbed “dynamic program generation” to better allow it to solve the problems a user presents. Viv can be used in a myriad of ways that Siri currently fails at, such as calling an Uber, getting the weather at a particular time, and translating a request to pay a friend into a venmo transaction.

Check out the video demo above. The future is coming.

Confirmed: Mega Festival Coming This October

Update:
This festival was confirmed as Desert Trip.

First reported by the LA Times last week, Goldenvoice (the organizer of Coachella) has landed some of the biggest headliners on the planet for a mega-festival. Slated for later this year, the event will take place at the Empire Polo Field in Indio, the same location Coachella takes place. The tentative plan is for Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones to open the festival on October 7th. The following day, Neil Young and Sir Paul McCartney will headline. Finally, The Who and Roger Waters [Pink Floyd] will close the event on October 9th. Unlike other festivals, particularly Coachella, the artists will perform full sets. It also appears that the festival will consist of only these six artists. I was originally suspicious of this report, but it appears to have been confirmed by Neil Young’s manager and the Who’s Roger Daltrey.

Frankly, this is a once in a lifetime event. I am a huge Paul McCartney fan and am willing to travel a great distance to see him perform. Throw in the Stones and I am sold. An event like this would limit my availability to attend Austin City Limits, but it would be hard to turn down a lineup like this.

Fitbit Data Used In Criminal Trial

A woman in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania was convicted of making a false police report based on Fitbit tracking data. Essentially, police used the woman’s Fitbit to show that she was awake and on the move during the period in which she told police she was asleep. The idea that mobile data — whether that data is from a Fitbit, other smartwatch, or smartphone — is being used by police is not surprising. Nevertheless, it’s important to recognize what data our gadgets track and how easy it is for that data to be extracted.

This topic relates to Apple’s recent stance against creating a backdoor to iOS. Our devices track a myriad of information, including health data, location, and financial information. It’s incredibly important to keep this information secure, particularly when it can be accessed by simply plugging the device into a laptop.

Star Wars Rogue One: Trailer 1

The initial trailer for Star Wars Rogue One hit the internet today. Embedded above, the trailer shows a rebel getting assigned with the task of infiltrating the empire in order to recover information about a dangerous weapon (read: the death star). If that sounds familiar, it is this information that the rebel’s use to topple the empire at the end of A New Hope, the original Star Wars film.

Rogue One will be released December 2016.

iOS > Mac OS X?

I read an interesting article today wherein Ben Brooks, the author, described his switch to an iPad Pro as his primary work machine. He argues that iOS is a more advanced operating system than Mac OS X because, in large part, of its simplicity. He notes, “When I look at what people are clinging to on OS X, I see a group clinging to the very things which make computing more complex. We always give way to ease of use.” To summarize Brooks’ point in one line: “I really like Mac OS X, and the MacBook, and would have no problems using them, but knowing what it is like to be on iOS only now — with that knowledge — there’s no way I don’t want to be on iOS.”

In contrast, in a recent video I suggested — mostly incidentally to the message of the video — that iOS isn’t as robust as OS X. To me, multitasking just isn’t there yet in iOS. I still have concern about using an iPad beyond simple media consumption, as my current iPad 3rd generation is basically a netflix and spotify only tool. Moreover, I have my doubts about being able to utilize an iPad for the intense research and writing that the law profession entails.

On the other hand, unlike Brooks, I have yet to really try. In the next few weeks I will be picking up a new 9.7″ iPad Pro. Besides just replacing my older iPad, I’m hoping the power of a new flagship will allow me to test the iPad platform as a viable creation tool, both in terms of media content and in regard to academic/career work. I will be sure to share my thoughts on both points. In the interim, I’m interested in hearing your thoughts. Is iOS, as Brooks asserts, the superior platform? Or, is iOS still too immature?

Fitz and The Tantrums HandClap

In 2014, Fitz and The Tantrums became one of my favorite new bands. In fact, I saw them perform the same set twice that summer and enjoyed every moment of it. Their energy and lyrics kept me extremely engaged, in spite of my favorite song Tighter not being played. If you haven’t herd any of their music before, give a listen to their 2013 album More Than Just A Dream and I’m confident you’ll get on the bandwagon.

On June 10 of this year, Fitz will be releasing a new, self-titled album. I’m counting down the days. In the meantime, the first single from the Album — titled HandClap — was released today. Give it a listen below. I’ve listened to it about ten times through this writing. My initial impressions: extremely catchy, upbeat, and enjoyable. If the album flows from this track I’ll be incredibly pleased on June 10.

Check out the current 2016 tour dates if you are enticed.