Monthly Archives: November 2016

Compact drone alternative to DJI Mavic Pro (Xmas 2016)

If you are a shopaholic, drone addict, don’t own yet a compact drone, you are tempted to get one, you are looking for special deals, or waiting for Christmas: have a look at this interesting idea for a present or just for fun.

Buy a small quadcopter before buying a bigger, more expensive drone. If you don’t know this website yet, give it a try: it’s where I purchased all my mini drones, drone accessories and spare parts.

I recently ordered a few mini drones with camera, to connect to the smartphone/tablet. I will review them soon, asap I receive them. For now I wanna share the most unique one (which I’ve just found a few days ago):

Eachine E50 WIFI FPV

Eachine E50 WIFI FPV With Foldable Arm Altitude Hold RC Quadcopter RTF – only 42 USD !!!
(price checked and last updated on 2016-12-20)

eachine_e50_wifi_fpv_with_foldable_arms_altitude_hold_compact_drone

eachine_e50_pocket

  • Weight: 73g
  • Control distance: about 40m
  • Control: via WIFI UFO app
  • Flying time: 8 – 15min
  • Battery: if you own other Eachine mini drones you may re-use the ones you already have


It’s a mini quadcopter with camera (advertized for selfies) and foldable arms.I believe that this could be an awesome choice for a beginner: it has a built-in barometer to hold the altitude, a feature that I don’t easily find in other mini drones for this price, thus a big plus. I really like it because it reminds me the DJI Mavic Pro compact drone! Of course you can’t even compare this with the Mavic, but still, it looks fun and costs just a fraction. Looking forward to receive it!

See also my comparison between 2 mini drones for beginners.

Good and exciting reading about the future

Today a friend of mine shared a quote: “Every moment in business happens only once. The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin
won’t make a search engine. And the next Mark Zuckerberg won’t create
a social network. If you are copying these guys, you aren’t learning
from them.” ― Peter Thiel, Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the
Future

Good that we have already the next big guy! On my opinion Page & Brin (which I highly respect) are not as exciting as Elon Musk… and in fact I read they even support him with some donations they believe would have a better return on “investment” than charity donations.

I recently discovered this blog “Wait But Why” (WTB), do you know it? I wanted to read the latest article about SpaceX, but it suggested to read the entire series about Musk. So I started here (putting the links in a more organized way than in the WTB pages):

Elon Musk: The World’s Raddest Man – “blog style” biography of Elon Musk (probably you have read enough about him, so you may skip, but if not, good read).

How Tesla will change your life – very good article (my favorite) explaining the story of cars, energy and how Tesla will revolutionize the world. I loved it.

The deal with the Hyperloop – very cool article about super fast public transportation

How (and Why) SpaceX Will Colonize Mars – humans as multi-planetary species and human backup on Mars lot to read (divided in several parts), available also as audio book(s). I listened the audio books and it was well narrated: understandable and entertaining voice.

The AI Revolution: The Road to SuperintelligenceAI and super artificial intelligence, what it is and thoughts on how it could be reached

The AI Revolution: Our Immortality or Extinctionthoughts about super artificial intelligence outcomes: it takes over the world or we get all the good stuff from a friendly AI

All good stuff I can recommend… so have a good read or good listening.

By the way, for such very long articles you may find it useful to have an app to read them later on a tablet or smartphone (that’s what I do, I read most of the articles I find in the public transports or comfy at home on the sofa, not in front of the PC), if you still don’t know the Pocket app, I recommend it. See also my article about Pocket.

Last but not least, if you ended in this page and you like this kind of stuff, you may be on a similar wave length as mine and may be interested in drones. Check my page about drones.

NewsBot iOS app vs Pocket

Introduction

How many times a friend sent you a link containing a nice article and you hadn’t time to read it, or you were browsing something but wanted to read it later? Old school way: bookmark it. New way: add it to your reading list or to your favorite reading app. My favorite reading app is Pocket.

I was recently recommended to try NewsBot, not really knowing what it was. After trying it a bit I could notice that it’s similar to Pocket, thus I can compare the two apps.

Review / comparison between NewsBot and Pocket

Availability: NewsBot is available only for iOS.
Pocket is available also iOS, Android, Windows etc.

Login: both apps support the creation of a standard account with login/password, or you can login with an (existing) Google account.

You can add articles to NewsBot to read now, or later only via Safari.
You can add something to Pocket via the standard “Share” feature from anywhere: Safari, Chrome, any app with a share button… additionally, Pocket has a browser bookmarklet allowing you to save a page for later with a simple click. Pocket has also browser extensions.

Text-to-Speech: NewsBot can read articles only if you are connected to the internet.
Pocket has a TTS option to read them offline. In fact Pocket works perfectly offline.

Text-to-Speech Voice: I tried to add an article to NewsBot from Safari and compared its voice with. They are both ok. The Pocket voice sounds a bit more pleasant, but maybe that’s my personal preference. Both support different languages. I tried English and German.

Bugs: NewsBot comes with a supported list of feeds, e.g. when I first opened the app, “Global Voices” was already added by default. I added also Wired, Ars Technica, PC Magazine but NewsBot was not able to read any articles provided by these feeds. (tested on 2016-11-15)

Both apps (occasionally) do not parse correctly an article. When Pocket detects a problem, it can show you the page in a WebView and it offers you a one click button to report the issue, so they can investigate the page and eventually improve the parsing engine. NewsBot doesn’t offer a report feature, nor a webview.

Conclusion: the clear winner is Pocket

Pocket works on many platforms, you can add pages to it from any app and even from your desktop PC, it works offline and has features to adjust the font size, screen color etc. it’s free and if you are a power user you can buy additional premium options. You can even follow friends and their reading recommendations. If you like to read, give it a try.