Dennis Spielman

The real and imaginative adventures of Dennis Spielman

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First Impressions: Pebble Time

Pebble Box
I was part of the group of the first 10,000 Kickstart backers who got the early bird special for the new Pebble Time watch! Since I loved my original Pebble, I’d thought I would write about my first impressions.

The Pebble Time Unboxed
On Friday, June 5th I finally received my Pebble Time in the mail. However, due to some drama and/or issues with Apple, the required companion app wasn’t available on the iPhone app store until the next day. Still, I pulled the clever cardboard zipper and opened the box. I couldn’t do anything without setting it up with the companion app first, but now it’s all set up and on my wrist.

The Pebble Time on my wrist
My first impressions are positive. I love the color screen and I’m able to read it in bright and low light with a shake or button press to activate the backlight. There is a setting to always leave the backlight on too.

I can feel the lighter weight difference immediately on my wrist. While washing dishes, cleaning house, playing videos games, writing, and bike riding the watch never got in my way, unlike my headphones that wanted to get caught on everything…

Timeline with Backlight On
The timeline feature is fun, which I wasn’t sure how I was going to feel about it at first, but I like it now. Pressing the down arrow to see my daily outlook is a nice compliment to my Today Notifications on my iPhone, but does not have the detail, such as driving times, to replace it.

The vibration of notifications is as strong and noticeable as the original. If you’ve never had a smartwatch, I recommended getting one to cure phantom phone vibrations.

As with my last Pebble watch, I felt it got better as updates were pushed out and I’m sure the Pebble Time will be the same. Being an iPhone user, the microphone is useless at the moment.

This is a minor gripe, but I am going to say it so people can be aware of it. The Pebble Time did require a smartphone to set it up. Without setting it up, it won’t even tell the time. This may have been logistics solution for the first batch of watches. In their defense, why would buy such as watch without having a smartphone? Thought I’d mention it anyway.

With it being brand new, not every app has been updated for the color screen yet. None of the apps I own at the moment have an icon for them in the menu screen like Pebble’s Music and Settings. It’s just text. There’s a loading bar when opening some apps, which may be a feature to save on battery/memory.

Pebble Time's Music App
The first thing that has bugged me has been some the smaller text, like the time display in music. I have to bring the watch closer and steadier to my face to read it than I did with the classic Pebble watch. It could just be me, my surroundings, and the automatic backlight I had it set on. In any case, I bet there will be some update tweaks to make everything better.

Overall, I’m excited to own the new Pebble Time and I’m looking forward to future updates.

I updated this post on June 7 to elaborate more. Follow me on Twitter for more updates.

Band Photos: Trouble Clef & the Bass Reality Boyz

Band Photos of Trouble Clef & the Bass Reality Boyz. The band included: Kyle Gossett, Noah Taylor, and Blake Fisher.

I took these band photos with my new Panasonic GH4 at a Birthday Party improv show for Kyle Gossett and Kendon Lacy. It was a great live action field test for me. I loved how all the photos turned out and so did the band as they requested copies for publicity use. 😎

No Parking Anytime

2015-05-17 at Lake Thunderbird - Photo by Dennis Spielman
No Parking Anytime
I took this photo of the record high water levers with my iPhone at Lake Thunderbird in Norman, Oklahoma.

Photos from Premiere on Film Row on Friday, May 15, 2015

Photos I took with my new camera from Premiere on Film Row on Friday, May 15, 2015.

Words on Presentations

Presentation Norman West Library-04
I’ve had the honor of being invited to speak at the Norman Public Library West about my Uncovering Oklahoma Date Idea Books. My first presentation was on Friday, February 20. This was first time I gave a talk about myself, what I do, and my travels. I enjoy talking to people about places, so I knew talking in front of crowd, about something I was passionate, I would be comfortable.

Before the event though, I sent a tweet out to one of my favorite writers, Neil Gaiman, asking for advice. To my joy, and later embarrassment of the typo I made, he responded. The conversation went as such:

Twitter Chat with Neil

Wisdom I kept in mind.

The subject of my first talk was road trip ideas. I spoke about such places as Talimena National Scenic Byway, Heavener Runestone Park, Center of the Universe, Chickasaw National Recreation Area, Arbuckle Wilderness, and a few others. Overall, the presentation was about 20 minutes.

The feedback I received on the first presentation was it was okay, however, people wanted it to be be longer and more in-depth. They also suggested to have more pictures, give a prize, show off the Uncovering Oklahoma site, and share some videos.

Presentation at Norman West Library

I took everyone’s comments and the next time I spoke in March on the subject of date ideas, it was nearly an hour long. Fewer people showed up for the second one–partly due to bad timing as it was also spring break and there were St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. Despite the lackluster turnout, I felt way better about everything and I enjoyed myself. Plus, I have a solid presentation for future use and I got pictures of me speaking to add to my resumé.

To recap what I’ve learned:

1. Know What To Say
2. Breathe
3. Pace, don’t rush
4. Pictures are awesome
5. Have text with slides for viewer note taking
6. Video clips are awesome too (doesn’t have to have sound to be effective)
7. Give something away
8. Investigate surrounding days for scheduling conflicts
9. Enjoy It
10. It’s Public Speaking – Not Pubic Speaking

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