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My article in The Loop Magazine

The Beard called. He asked if I’d be interested in writing something for The Loop Magazine.

You don’t say no to The Beard.

I’m thrilled to have an article issue 4 of The Loop Magazine. I hope you like it. And the pictures. Oh, the pictures.

Flying for iPhone looks like a great flight app

Flying – an iPhone app for all your air travel from Flying on Vimeo.

Flying for iPhone, still in public beta, wants to be on my iPhone so badly I can hear it whispering, “Install meeeee.” This seriously good-looking app shares information you’d expect like departure and arrival times, terminal and gate info (both sides) and weather. It’s also a bit playful, presenting your route data in a fun, novel way (see the video above).

The social aspect looks great, and reminds me of the bits of Gowalla that I enjoyed so much. You can receive “stamps” for achievements and share/compete with your traveling friends. For example, “You crossed the Atlantic Ocean!” Who among your buddies has racked up the most miles?

I don’t have any flights planned in the immediate future (I *might* go to Florida in a few weeks), but I’ll try out Flying as soon as I do. It looks great.

Newsstand can be placed in a folder in iOS 7

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Well, look at that. Newsstand can be placed in a folder in iOS 7. No more hacky hacks that break things.

Use your iPhone to book a private jet

blackjetappThere’s an app for today’s mobile one-percenter. BlackJet‘s private jet service is now taking reservations via its iPhone app.

You can book a seat up to two days in advance of your departure date and travel between San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Boston and South Florida. As you might expect, it ain’t cheap. I searched for an AM flight between Boston and “South Florida” (I don’t know which airport, actually) and was quoted $2,368.90.

To protect itself from people who would waste their time (like me), BlackJet booking requires a membership plus a one-time membership fee of $2,500. But the benefit is, if you can swing it, you get a guaranteed seat in your preferred time frame on a very nice airplane.

BlackJet says additional cities are coming soon and that well-behaved pets are welcome on board. The company recently received $5 million in funding, according to Galding, and Ashton Kutcher is reportedly a customer.

All I can say is the headphones better be free.

DODOnotes winner announced

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Congratulations to Joshua Edison! He’s won the black DODOnotes case for iPhone 5. Enjoy, Josh!

Government nixes plans to allow small knives on planes

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You may carry small knives on airplanes except that you may not.

The US government has done a 180 on a recent decision that would allow passengers to carry small knives (those under 2.36 inches long), bats and golf clubs onto planes. Several airline CEOs, lawmakers, and relatives, friends and victims of terrorist attacks balked at the idea, and now the TSA has changed its mind. Again.

So keep your commemorative Yankee Stadium bat and Tom Mix pocket knife in your checked luggage. Unless you want a friendly TSA agent to take it home.

Photo Credit: SHeva4ever1 via Compfight cc

iPhone-powered European photo essay

shotDo not photograph the pickled mussels on Jægersborggade.

That’s my take-away from this brief photo essay from travel writer Alex Robertson. Why else wouldn’t they appear in this otherwise beautiful gallery, taken entirely with an iPhone (in portrait orientation, no less)?

Alex’s enviable career (seriously, I hate him) has him traveling and writing for the New York Times, Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel, Guardian Unlimited, and Condé Nast Traveler. In a recent blog post, he recorded a journey through Milan, Turin, Ivrea, Aosta, Sion, Copenhagen, Malmö, and Lund (See? Hate him.) using his iPhone as his only camera.

Alex called the experience a “plus for convenience [but] minus for quality.” I think his shots look great, but there’s no doubt a pro DSLR would have done stellar job.

As for the “fantastic” pickled mussels, I’ll take Alex’s word on it.

Exploring Mexico City by iPhone

cityshotHere’s a great post by National Geographic’s Andrew Evans. Andrew spent a few days exploring Mexico City with no Internet connection and no “heavy cameras.” The only gear he had was his iPhone.

His photos are great and make me want to visit what Andrew calls, “The most exciting city on earth.” Has anyone been? Are you a pro photographer or traveler who’s ditched the pro-level gear for a day with the iPhone? If so, let me know.

Managing iPhone photos while traveling

Here’s a great and very comprehensive article on managing your iPhone photos while traveling. The Mac Observer’s Sandro Cuccia took two iPhones and an iPad mini to Italy for a two-week stay. He details how he used each device, including hardware and apps. This is a super article and a must-read for anyone traveling internationally with Apple’s devices.

What surprised you about visiting the United States?

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Yesterday I pointed out a post on Reddit that asked Americans what surprised them while visiting Europe. Today, let’s switch it around. If you’re a traveler who has visited the United States, what did you find surprising? Comments are open.

Photo Credit: Pauldc via Compfight cc