Boogie Board Sync 9.7 – A review posted on Amazon

I recently bought one of these “eWriters” when Amazon e-mailed me a recommendation.  At that time it was $69.99.  The price, as of this writing, is now $81.17 on Amazon and the list price is $99.99.  It is also sold from other places for as high as $120, so I figured $69.99 was a pretty good deal.  Here’s my Amazon review:

Excellent eWriter for the price – just a couple issues keeping it from a 5-star rating

This is a nice “notepad” replacement. I only have two small issues with it: 1: If you forget to look at the LED to make sure it’s lit and green (ON), you can fill the entire display with your notes only to find nothing has been saved, even when you turn the power on and press the SAVE button. Anything written on the surface BEFORE you powered it on is lost forever (you might as well take a photo of it with your phone if you need to keep it at that point). It would be awesome if there it had a simple auto-power-on feature built in that would automatically turn it on as soon as you started drawing on it. 2: It occasionally “skips” portions of letters and drawing strokes in saved documents. This seems to be at random times and doesn’t happen very frequently, but the drawn letters and lines are clearly on-screen and not shown in the saved copy once it awhile. This is fairly rare though. I would have given it 5 stars if it hadn’t been for those two issues.

I work in a Help Desk position, taking phone calls for PC issues all day long. Aside from the two issues mentioned above, this device has saved me from using a lot of paper already, and will save me a lot of money in notepads, which I used to go through very quickly taking call after call. I normally write down the details of each call and issue, then as time permits I’ll create tickets for those calls in our ticket system using my notes. It seems a little different to flip through my notes on my phone instead of flipping through all of my notebook pages, but I think that’s just something I’ll need to get used to over time.

Overall, I must admit that I still continue to search for that “perfect” ewriter solution that will provide what this does and fix the two issues I have with it, but this is pretty close and is definitely useful, and well worth the price. My co-workers seemed a bit disappointed that you can’t “recall” saved pages directly on the device, but they understand once I explain how and why the technology is “one-way” and only records keystrokes. The functionality of being able to recall pages would require more “tablet” or “notebook” technology, which would increase it’s thickness, weight and pricetag, I’m sure. Compared to all of the other options I’ve managed to dig up online, this one is “it” for now. Most others don’t allow you to save your pages outside of the device, let alone save in different formats to different services.

Also, I haven’t read anything about file formats other than saving as PDFs for this device, but I was happy to see that the Boogie Board Sync app on Android allows me to “share” any note as an image (png), PDF, or video (plays back your saved page as it was written, stroke by stroke). You can even select MULTIPLE pages (for example, an entire day of notes) and export them as a single multi-page PDF! Very nice!

Lorex – A Rant

Something’s been bugging me lately.  It’s nothing big, just a geeky thing, but it’s bugging me nonetheless.  Lorex.  Lorex is apparently a security camera company, and it seems they may have a financial problem, because they are apparently using their existing customers to provide free advertising on Facebook instead of advertising the proper way everyone else does it – by PAYING for it.  Maybe they do advertise, I’m sure they do if they want to stay in business, I just don’t feel this is the way to do it.

In my case, I only recently heard of them…when my cousin first started posting photos of his cameras on Facebook.  After he had done this several times, over that many days, I finally asked him “why all the security camera spam?”  All of his posts included no text, only a simple hashtag with the company’s name in it and a closeup photo of a security camera or the recording box they’re apparently attached to.  I asked him if he’s trying to tell would-be burglars that he has security, trying to advertise for the security camera company, or what?  He responded explaining that it’s a sweepstakes entry.  Each time he posts one of those with that hashtag, he is apparently entered into a sweepstakes for something. ” Wow, this is quite the advertising scam”, I thought at first, but does it work right?  After I thought about it a bit, I think not.  After seeing these same photos appear over and over, day after day, in my Facebook feed–often making me think there’s a lot of activity going on with my friends at first–then finding out 80% of the post messages in my feed are just more of these camera photos, it only makes me dislike this company and, as a result, I would never even consider them as a source of security cameras.

I certainly have nothing at all against my cousin, but it irritated me so much over many weeks of these posts that I have ended up unfriending him on Facebook.  This is really sad, and makes me dislike this camera company much more.  That might seem like a pretty drastic move on my part, but the way I see it, Sandy (my wife) still has my cousin on her Facebook, and she’ll certainly let me know if he posts anything important (and if the security camera posts stop), so I don’t feel I’m really missing anything.  I just hope my cousin understands my reasoning.  I do consider Facebook a tool for keeping in touch with family and friends, and that’s about it.  There’s enough paid advertising on Facebook already, without tons of these “sweepstakes” posts.   I can certainly understand someone posting a genuine message saying how much they like their security camera system, and even including the hashtag that would get them entered into a sweepstakes contest, maybe even multiple times over a period of time, but this is just over-the-top, in my opinion.  And maybe this posting even gives them more advertising, I don’t know.  Yes I do, I shouldn’t flatter myself–I have about 6 readers total. That’s it.  I check my hits.  Heck, I won’t even post a link to THIS posting on Facebook, just to keep it low profile… I just felt like bitching about it his morning.