• Sidetracked

    Magpul iPhone 4 Field Case

    I was an early adopter of the iPhone 4, so if you all remember, Apple gave (or reimbursed) us protective covers. My first iPhone 4 case was a Speck Fitted case with a fabric back. It was clean and cute but the fabric came off after repeated re-entry into my jeans pocket.

    My second case was a free one I got at an AT&T shop, the iFrogz Luxe Original. The case felt bulky with the square edges and the button on the back. This one completely failed by cracking and falling apart.

    So for the third case, I picked a case from a manufacturer where their other products have survived repeated pushing and pulling from my pocket. Enter Magpul.

    The Magpul Executive Field Case is a no-nonsense, does what it does, kind of case. It’s NOT CUTE at all. I mean, even the pink one looks… like a pink version of something that’s supposed to be black.

    We got a few of these Magpul cases and really like them. I’ve been using the “Executive” Field Case with less ridges and a thinner profile. It slides in and out easily from my pocket, has enough grip, and does not interfere with the controls much if at all. The only thing is that it’s only compatible with the AT&T version of the iPhone 4 and not the Verizon version. iLounge gave this case an A- because of it’s thin lip…

    Well, Magpul has released the classic “Field Case” with the full waffle pattern for the iPhone 4. This case has a taller lip that adds a tad more protection to the front face of the phone. With the full waffle pattern, it’s a little harder to slip in and out of skinny jeans, but has better grip and the Magpul logo on the back gives slightly improved tactile feedback so you don’t pick up the phone up-side-down.

    By the way, the cases are made in the US. If you care about facts like that.

  • Tech

    Mac OS X Lion Autosave (Notes)


    Actually, I don’t know.

    So let’s explore this feature in Apple’s own Pages program.

    First of all, I can’t find this feature. Where is it?

    Does it not activate until the first draft is saved?

    Apparently AutoSave saves a draft every 5 minutes and does not activate unless you save the FIRST draft.

    So if you’re some kind of savant or gifted writer and write that 10 page essay in under 5 minutes, then the light goes out in your office, you’re dead.


    If you write a whole paragraph and then erase it within 5 min. the same thing would happen. You lose it.

    Let’s see if there is a time setting on it.

    Also according to

    Mac OS X Lion: Auto-save or self-destruct?

    It seems as though AutoSave does destructive editing Automatically!! Therefore, you’d probably always want to work on a copy of a document – or have a backup of the original on TimeMachine. Without a backup, you’ll probably end up saving over files on a USB drive your friend brought over.

  • Home Improvement

    Waiting for a Groov

    GE Groov Exterior CaulkA month ago, I tweeted about GE Groov caulk. The tubes I bought at the local Home Depot had been sitting on the shelf too long and were very hard – like sucking cookie dough through one of those thin red cocktail straws. I was then contacted by a rep from Momentive Performance Materials, the GE partner that makes the caulk. We got some e-mails going back and forth and he offered to send me some samples.

    Great, I thought. I sent him my office address.

    A week or so later, I get an e-mail from him saying that FedEx returned his package. FedEx has had problems with delivering to our building. With the economy in the tank, and “For Sale” signs all over the place, the FedEx drivers assume that our building is empty. No, it just has high security. Well, it also didn’t help that we’re all out on the sites and one day our office personnel had a doctor’s appointment.

    This happened twice, so I gave him my super-intendant’s address. Super-intendant, as in construction site manager, NOT the guy that changes lightbulbs in the condo hallway. We have yet to receive any sample.

    Now, I’m not begging or angry that I didn’t get FREE stuff. It’s free and it’s up to the rep to send it. I was actually quite impressed with how this person tracked me down on Twitter and found a valid e-mail address for me. He tried twice to send me the samples afterall. Damn you FedEx.

    So, summer is over and I finished all the caulking needs (went through 16 tubes) with something else. Too bad, because I really wanted to try this product. It would have been so awesome to have a non-glossy finish that held up like silicone.

    *** UPDATE ***

    We’ve received the samples this week and will be trying it out in the coming months – the shelf life is really short on these tubes.

  • Automotive

    2008 Porsche Cayenne Turbo Power Steering Fluid

    Pentosin Central Hydraulic FluidAround 2006, Porsche started using synthetic fluid for the power steering hydraulics. The mineral based Pentosin CHF 7.1 was replaced by Pentosin CHF 11S. According to the Owner’s Manual, Porsche recommends the use of CHF11S or CHF202. The problem on my 2008 Cayenne was that the tank for the hydraulic fluid said “Use only mineral based fluid” in English/German/French.

    I did a little digging and found that all three Pentosin fluid is either Green or Dark Green. The CHF 11S I found at the local O’Reilly Auto Parts was Dark Green, like Christmas Green. But the fluid in my tank was yellow. Not Light Green but YELLOW like Lemonade Yellow. Pentosin 7.1 is lighter colored than 11S or 202, but it’s the color of Mint Julep not Lemonade.

    The Lemonade colored hydraulic fluid suggests that it’s a synthetic oil similar to the Valvoline fluid. Maybe the dealer flushed the system and used American stuff. The dealer this car came from is known to use Valvoline for various systems so it wouldn’t surprise me. It wouldn’t matter mechanically, if the viscosity and heat characteristics match that of Pentosin. But Pentosin IS available in the US, so why not use it.