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Get Together with RVillage

March 16, 2014 by Chris Guld · 1 Comment 

If you're new here, you may want to subscribe to our E-mail Digest or RSS Feed. We will then send you the stories that are posted each day in an e-mail digest. We use a service called Feedburner for delivery of these emails. You will receive an e-mail from Feedburner after you subscribe and you must click on that email to activate your subscription. Thanks for visiting and enjoy all the information! RV.Net Blog Adminby Chris Guld, www.GeeksOnTour.com We are here at the Fairgrounds in Perry, GA (in the rain) getting ready for a week of seminars and fun at the FMCA Convention.  We will have an informal get together this evening at 5 in the Multi-Purpose building by the Geeks on Tour table and the computer help desk area.  How did we arrange this get together?  With a new website meant specifically for just this purpose.  It’s called RVillage.  It’s for RVers, but we pronounce it like Our Village, a social network just for RVers. Now, before you immediately say, “I don’t need another social network” check out the special features RVillage.com offers.  Each one who joins RVillage can easily ‘check in’ whenever you pull into a new RV park, and when you do, you get an icon on the map so friends can easily see where you are.  You can also join all sorts of special groups within RVillage.  Here is a map of just the RVillagers who have added themselves to the Geeks on Tour group.  And, notice that clicking on one icon shows you the... Read more



VIDEO: “Top 5 Places to RV Camp” in the USA

March 5, 2014 by Loloho.com · Leave a Comment 

Subscribers to our YouTube Channel already know about this latest video. (Subscriptions are FREE and found at http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=walkaboutgroup) Our new show will address key questions about RV camping and travel that we’ve received from viewers over the years. Of course, one of the most popular questions is always, “What’s your favorite place to go RV camping?” We decided to answer the question in this video. In a landscape as diverse and beautiful as the United States, we couldn’t pick just one. You can watch the new video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kzIET2FrnW4 More to come. Got any more topics you want us to gab about?  Read More →



Apps for Travelers: Field Trip and Historical Markers

December 27, 2013 by Chris Guld · Leave a Comment 

We spent some time in the Portland area this summer and one day we took a delightful walk on the Washington side of the Columbia river.  The city of Vancouver maintains a wonderful paved path for a couple of miles along the river’s edge and we were out for some exercise.  Along the way, we were intrigued by a statue of beautiful woman.  We assumed this statue represented Sacagawea, but, as we admired it, the smartphone in my pocket rang a special alert letting me know that the Field Trip App had some information for me.  Aha!  It was an informational card on this statue. We were wrong, this wasn’t Sacagawea at all.  The card that popped up on my screen informed us that this was the Ilchee Moon Girl, daughter of Chinook Chief Concomley and, later, wife of  Chief Casinos leader in Vancouver area.  According to the card, the Ilchee Moon Girl had the power of a Shaman and she paddled her own canoe, the sign of a chief.  Cool! Read Historical Markers while you Drive Both Jim and I love history and we would love to stop every time we see a road sign that says, “Historical Marker Ahead,” but we find that is near impossible when you’re traveling in a motorhome towing a car.  I have the Historical Marker Database app on our smartphones, but I’ve learned that all of that information is now incorporated in the Field Trip app.  Now, whenever I see the sign “Historical Marker Ahead,” I will also hear that special ring on my phone.  I pick up my phone and look at... Read more



The Best Tablet for Travelers

December 8, 2013 by Chris Guld · Leave a Comment 

We won’t even pretend to be able to compare all the different tablets available today.  We do have our opinions however!  And, a few specific features that we think are important to travelers.  We own 3 tablets, a Nexus 7, an iPad mini, and an MS Surface Pro.  We highly recommend any of them, but be sure to read the section below on features and accessories. . . Four Categories There are generally 4 choices in tablets, divided by their operating systems: iPad and iPad mini with the iOS operating system from Apple.  If you already have an iPhone, then this is probably the right tablet for you.  We like the size of the mini.  It’s easier to hold in your hand, and it fits in a small purse/bag … and it costs less. Android tablets like Nexus, Samsung, and countless others.  We have the Nexus 7 and think it is the most bang for the buck.  The Samsung is currently the most popular brand. Kindle Fire HD and HDX.  Although this is based on the Android operating system, it needs a category of its own because it is highly customized by Amazon.   You can only download Apps from the Amazon store and that does not include Google Maps or Gmail.  The HDX is the one with the nifty “Mayday” feature where a live person appears on your screen and can help with anything about your tablet.  FYI you don’t need a Kindle to read Kindle books.  All of these devices have Kindle reader apps. Windows 8.1 tablets like the Microsoft Surface Pro or Surface RT and many others... Read more



TECH: The New Kindle Fire HDX

November 7, 2013 by Loloho.com · Leave a Comment 

We enjoy using tablets to browse the Internet when RV camping. While Apple practically invented the tablet category with the iPad (http://goo.gl/9dyKVN), Amazon has upped the ante with its Kindle Fire series. The new Kindle Fire HDX (http://goo.gl/KkEQ0U) takes on the iPad Mini (http://goo.gl/8huRKu). With the HDX, Amazon has delivered a powerful tablet with premium features that goes head-to-head with the iPad. Yet it costs almost half the price. Over the past couple of years, it’s become clear that consumers love the small 7-inch tablet size. Steve Jobs swore that Apple would never make a smaller iPad; well, even ol’ Steve was wrong about a few things. The new Kindle Fire HDX is powerful and lightweight. (Click the pic for more info.) Shortly after Steve moved on to that great product launch in the sky, Apple unleashed the iPad Mini. For many people, the 7” size simply feels right; it’s about the same as a traditional book. It’s easy to slip into a bag or purse (or “murse” if you’re so inclined) and take it wherever you want to go. Let’s take a look at some highlights of the Kindle Fire HDX. LIGHT WEIGHT The Kindle Fire HDX is light as a 10.7-ounce feather. That light weight means you can hold the Kindle Fire HDX for lengthy periods of time without getting fatigued. It makes a difference when you’re relaxing in bed with your evening reading. BEEFY PROCESSOR This year Amazon has beefed up the Kindle Fire HDX processor to a quad-core... Read more



ROKU – for TV in the RV

October 31, 2013 by Loloho.com · Leave a Comment 

One of our favorite methods of watching TV in the RV is by using our Roku box (http://goo.gl/BY0VJp). What is a Roku? It’s an Internet streaming video device that delivers 1000+ different channels of video content. You simply plug the Roku into your TV, connect to a wifi network, and start adding channels of interest. If you are paying for cable TV, switching to Roku can save you a lot of money. Content is “free” in that there’s no subscription to Roku (of course there may be a subscription for certain premium channels like HBO). The Roku box is tiny, which makes it ideal for use in an RV. (Click the pic for more info.) The only subscription channels we use are Netflix and Amazon Prime. (Amazon Prime is a fantastic service for Amazon shoppers that offers free 2-day shipping on all purchases, a free Kindle lending library, as well as other benefits. For example, if you are a current subscriber to Amazon Prime, you get access to a huge library of free quality video content on Roku. If you want more info about Amazon Prime click here.) The free channels on Roku range from the weird (there’s an RV news channel?) to the fascinating (I personally enjoy the TED talks channel which is loaded with great public speaking presentations). As for the Roku itself, I admire its design simplicity. First of all, it’s extremely small and lightweight. The size works well in an RV. It’s not as small as a Google Chromecast, but it’s tiny– about the size of... Read more



Use THESE When Backing Up Your RV

September 16, 2013 by Loloho.com · Leave a Comment 

When we RV camp – especially when we are backing up our travel trailer – we need direct reliable communication. Smartphones don’t always cut it. That’s why we use “walkie-talkies” (two-way radios) like the Midland LTX600VP3 (http://goo.gl/vLRiJu). We carry a pair in our truck glovebox and use them daily. The Midland LTX600 "walkie-talkies" also include NOAA WEATHER ALERTS, so you get 2-in-1 functionality. (Click the pic for more info.) Walkie-talkies simply work better than smartphones in certain situations. There’s no dialing, no connecting, no signals dropping, no accidentally hanging up. You just mash a button and talk. Bingo! No delays, no fiddling with a Bluetooth or headset. Just talk and go. The Midland LTX600VP3 walkie-talkies are especially handy because they also include NOAA weather alert. So you are getting 2-in-1 functionality with these two-way radios. Our dedicated weather radio is a Midland unit. I would rather own the LTX600VP3 to cover both needs. >We keep our walkie-talkies handy and use 'em daily! (Click the pic for more info.) Walkie-talkies work in rural and urban areas and you can take ‘em places your cell services won’t go. For us, this means Canada – there are no roaming fees with walkie-talkies. In fact, there are no fees of any kind! Walkie-talkies – don’t go RV camping without ‘em. Click here to get your own Midland walkie-talkies.  Read More →



Get More “Cigarette Lighter” Power Outlets with this Handy Device

September 2, 2013 by Loloho.com · Leave a Comment 

One of the most useful devices we carry in our RV tow vehicle SEEMORE is a 12V socket duplicator. What is a socket duplicator? It’s a little adapter cable that gives us more “cigarette lighter” 12V charging receptacles. This guy gives you FOUR 12V "cigarette lighter" adapter outlets instead of one! (CLICK THE PIC for more info.) These days, it seems we’re always charging something like a phone or tablet. Then there’s our GPS, which requires 12V socket power. We also carry a radar detector. With a socket adapter, we have all the charging recptacles we need. I like the XTG socket adapter, because it not only includes FOUR 12V sockets, but also a USB charge socket (for phones and tablets). If you travel extensively, you need a socket adapter! ‘Nuff said.  Read More →



Google Chromecast – for TV in the RV!

August 28, 2013 by Loloho.com · Leave a Comment 

My wife and I recently bought a Google Chromecast (http://goo.gl/2sZny3) for use in our RV. As tech gadgets go, these things are CHEAP – only $35, cheaper than Roku and Apple TV. They are selling so fast, supplies are limited – most people are placing orders to get in line for shipment. What is a Chromecast? It’s a tiny device that allows us to stream video content from our phone onto our TV. It’s intended to take Netflix and YouTube video from a phone or tablet onto the big screen. Is Google Chromecast the answer to TV in an RV? (Click the pic for more info.) Chromecast is useful in an RV for several reasons. Since many RV parks these days do not offer cable, we often find ourselves watching Netflix streaming video. Instead of just streaming to a phone or iPad, wouldn’t it be nice to watch it on the TV? That’s the idea behind Chromecast. Setting up a Chromecast is not as easy as we would like. While the box and packaging are very streamlined in an Apple sort of way, the actual setup was not. First we had to install an app onto our iPhones. That part was easy enough, but when we tried to complete the setup the app kept crashing. Hmm, perhaps this was an Apple/Google conflict? Supplies are limited! Chromecasts are selling like hotcakes. (Click the pic for more info.) We finally got Chromecast to connect with our phones and the streaming began to work. It’s quite simple – when watching a video on Netflix, for example, clicking a small... Read more



Don’t Settle for the Camera that Came with Your Smartphone

August 16, 2013 by Chris Guld · Leave a Comment 

by Chris Guld, GeeksOnTour.TV Your smartphone has a camera lens, a sensor, and a shutter, but it’s the software, the Camera App that makes it a camera.  All smartphones come with a stock Camera app, but there is so much more!  Here is an article by CNET on the 12 best Android camera apps around.  And, here’s an article from howstuffworks on 10 Great iPhone Camera Apps. What is HDR I just want to tell you about the one extra camera app that I use – it’s called Pro HDR.  No, HDR doesn’t stand for High Definition something … it stands for High Dynamic Range.  It is a special photographic technique intended for scenes that have a wide range of exposure needs.  A lot of light, and a lot of dark. The HDR technique takes 3 separate photos of these scenes at 3 different exposures.  This way it can get the perfect exposure for the light parts AND the perfect exposure for the dark parts.  It also takes a middle exposure.  When these three pictures are put together, you not only get a great exposure but also depth in the color.  I love taking HDR photos – they look so special. Professional photographers actually take 3 different exposures manually and put them together later to produce HDR photos.  See some excellent examples here. HDR on a Smartphone To take an HDR photo with a smartphone, you just need an app that automatically takes the 3 exposures and puts them together.  On the iPhone with iOS 6 HDR is a simple on/off option on the stock camera app.  It takes... Read more



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