Gieson Cacho on Madden 2013

The day of buying a new Madden game every year ended when I got bored but looks like this year might offer the upgrade that everyone needed. Are you going to pick it next Tuesday and if so, which console are you going to be playing?

"It needed a fresh look that took advantage of the current technology. EA Tiburon has slowly worked toward it, and finally, that game has arrived."

via San Jose Mercury News

I Fight Dragons: Kaboom! Review

This is only the second album that I’ve officially reviewed and by that I mean, listening to each song in repetition as well as spreading its songs throughout my day.  Of course, I also happen to be on a flight from JFK to San Diego on jetBlue using my wife’s MacBook Air paired with her Lady Gaga Beats Headphones.  Not the best listening setup as compared to my review of Justin Bieber’s latest album, but it’s what I have. So here goes. p.s. I’m also thinking about changing the format for reviews to be more like a simpler general review, but tell me your thoughts.


  1. Fanfare
    1. basic intro with all the video game sound effects you can expect from an intro when popping in your 8-bit NES cartridge --> excitement
  2. KABOOM!
    1. the title track starts off with a very fast upbeat drum line and mixes in more sound effects that help out transitions between the chorus.
  3. Save World Get Girl
    1. deep bass line intro, you’d never think it’d be fast paced.  Bottom line, it’s a great pick me up type song reassuring you always get the girl when you save the world.
  4. cRaZie$
    1. definitely a slower tempo that realigns the feel of the album a third through mixed in with multiple harmonies.
  5. Gloria (Interlude)
    1. A perfect throwback to a text and graphic transition from a frightful world to much calmer one.
  6. My Way
    1. Happy.  There’s clapping and “la la la’s” all around.  This is where the album actually starts to incorporate more game like midi files and sound effects.  It’s definitely calmer than the rest.
  7. With You
    1. one of the biggest changes of pace especially with guest Kina Grannis dropping in with a great harmony.  I almost thought that it was Incubus on the album.  This is a sweet song and is cute.  Probably could have been on an RPG of sorts.  Definitely an easy favorite to chill to and completely unexpected.  Probably my favorite on the track.
  8. Fight For You
    1. I’ll fight for you if you care about me.  I guess you can say we’re in it together.
  9. The Geeks Will Inherit The Earth
    1. the understanding and old adage of geeks being the losers of high school and the winners in the end. the song itself is a little geeky with robotic speak and spell coming at you.  they have funny lines such as “we need some sun” make the song entertaining.  I guess it’s almost like telling an old crush, we’re awesome now!
  10. Disaster Hearts
    1. A very slow song bringing you back down to earth and reality.  About getting over a dramatic life changing event its proves to be a sad song.  A very emo themed Death Cab kind of song.  Good but just a little too different in the mix.
  11. Don’t You?
    1. Partying after a disaster to get over things.  the guitar rift is pretty sweet beginning at 2:00.  that definitely brought the song back from the dead.
  12. Working
    1. it’s not working for me that’s what the song says and I agree.  it’s just too different.
  13. Before I Wake
    1. a charming song that might have sounded better as an acoustic solo
  14. Suburban Doxology
    1. a song that concludes the album well.  it’s almost like the end of a movie


It’s a great alternative album along the lines of a sub par Green Day mix.  Honestly, that might be a little bit of an overshoot, but that’s what it happened to remind of.  Fun throughout and the 8 bit anecdotes sprinkled within the tracks are honestly perfect.  Download the free tracks here or buy the album and support the group!!!

Justin Bieber: Believe Deluxe Edition Review

Disclaimer: This was originally meant to be posted on June 28th, but I was simply embarrassed.  But here it is with my name posted to it.  Have at it! Yes, I’m serious that I’m reviewing his new album Boyfriend.  Why?  Because Justin Bieber is without a doubt one of the internet’s biggest names and he is a social media monger!  Take my word for it, once you start following him on twitter, your feed will blow up with his retweets and messages leaving you with a daunting task of filtering out your friends’ news.  This is my first album review so here goes.  Oh yeah, I forgot to add, I’m listening to each song at least once and then again on repeat.  Yes, that’s at at least twice, maybe three time but it's so I can give each song an honest live review followed by multiple revisits.  By the way, I’m using Adelle’s Lady Gaga Beats headphones paried with my JDS Labs c421 headphone amplifier.  Just think of it as flowing commentary.

  1. All Around the World (featuring Ludacris)
    1. opening up the album is a deep bass dance hit.  it’s catchy yes especially with Ludacris inserting his few lines (2:34) creating the bridge.  either than that, its’ nothing special or different from a traditional dance song.  I’ll bet we’ll be hearing it soon at a club near by.  Mixed with the fast then slow down rhythm, its a hit.
  2. Boyfriend
    1. its been on the radio for at least the past month as his hit single.  everyone that has heard it mistakes it for Justin Timberlake as his falsetto hits key notes during the lead in.  am I tired of it, maybe just a touch but its still a hit as iTunes will tell you.
  3. As Long As You Love Me (featuring Big Sean)
    1. boring.  its tries to be an interlude reminiscent of maybe a dru hill era but its confusing and too edited.  there’s a limit to how much you can post produce a song and this one is over the top.  I’m not impressed by Big Sean (2:03) either.  “I don’t know if this makes sense...” yeah, it doesn’t really.  The lyrics are okay at best.  “But the grass ain’t always greener on the other side, its’ green where you water it...but i’d rather work on this with you than go ahead and start with someone new as long as you love me.”  To me, it’s just talk.  It just tries too hard.
  4. Catching Feelings
    1. a great acoustic intro and different than the three previous songs.  It’s a welcome change of pace.  It’s a great love song.  Shoot, i think it’ll be great on piano and better as an acoustic solo.  Bieber actually sings on this track which is a nice surprise.
  5. Take You
    1. Bass is back and Justin’s voice is deeper.  =)  He’s a little more serious.  It almost feels like the third song song especially with the dance beat.  I was about to skip ahead about a minute and half into it.  It’s just boring.
  6. Right Here (featuring Drake)
    1. Electronic again but its expected right?  a slower beat, a duet mix makes this track different.  Drake opens up and Justin flows in and out as they complete each other’s sentences.  Justin says “Right Here” 35 times in 204 seconds.
    2. :44, :49, :54, :59, 1:00, 1:02, 1:03, 1:07, 1:09, 1:12, 1:14, 1:48, 1:52, 1:57, 2:02, 2:03, 2:05, 2:06, 2:10, 2:11, 2:15, 2:17, 2:39, 2:44, 2:49, 2:54, 2:55, 2:57, 2:58, 3:02, 3:03, 3:07, 3:09, 3:13, 3:14,
  7. Fall
    1. Acoustic again, thank you.  It sounds almost like a musical play coming to an end.  Its celebratory.  I’m guessing it’s suppose to bring you an uplifting feeling.  Positive.
  8. Die In Your Arms
    1. Gospel?  I like the snapping.  He even has an aside and talks in various parts of the song.  It’s almost Jackson 5 like.  Okay, that might be too crazy of a compliment, but I’m moving my head and jamming at the same time.  I like the track.  I might not listen to it ALL the time, but it’s nice.
  9. Thought of You
    1. Clapping this time.  the Chorus isn’t exciting.  The you-whos are okay to say the least but it does border annoying.  Justin is now trying too hard to be gospel / up beat but its not horrible.
  10. Beauty and a Beat (featuring Nicki Minaj)
    1. partying like 3012?  that’s just absurd.  What finer things are you going to be able to show her then than what you can in 2012?  It’s going to take you 1000 years to convince her you’re good enough. “All I need is a beauty and a beat who can make my life complete?”  I mean, it’s cute but just silly.  The bass lines and electronica are annoying especially the popping.  This could have been a better song with it.
    2. Nicki Minaj (2:29) doesn’t make sense until around... yeah never.  Calling Selena, “Selener” to make a rhyme, that’s just silly.  That’s taking it a little too far in my amateur book.
  11.   One Love
    1. quick percussion, warm organ, it’s a dreamer song.  mediocre again, nothing that exciting or different.  gets a little long
  12. Be Alright
    1. I’m starting to get the feeling that I prefer the acoustic songs a lot better.  It’s a ballad and you once again get the opportunity to hear Justin as is.  It’s pleasant and he communicates the lyrics well reassuring me that “everything’s going to alright.” =P
  13. Believe
    1. the title track to the album, this should be it right?!  It’s an admission to Justin’s life and a thank you to all his fans and those that supported his throughout his career.   It’s a great acknowledgement and welcoming.  It fits the bill as a Broadway musical song.  A moving chorus, gospel for the bridge, its definitely a celebration of awesomeness.
  14. Out of Town Girl
    1. I don’t know where the start.  It’s not catchy or exciting.  Almost Ginuwine.  Come in and ride up on it.  My Pony.  Skip it.
  15. She Don’t Like the Lights
    1. the sound of a camera shutter rewinding and shooting over and over.  great... apparently Selena doesn’t like the lights.  stay away and give us some privacy please.  Got it.  She wants the Biebs for herself apparently.
  16. Maria
    1. I love how Justin Bieber calls out his stalker.  Its a little long and by the end, we get the point.  Did she deserver her own track?  Well, I guess that’s her “reward.”  Michael Jackson inspired without question.  You can figure out that one for yourself as it mimics
  17. Love Me Like You Do
    1. Robin Thicke but worse.

I guess you can follow that as the album progressed, I got tired of the album but it does have its highlights if few.  Sure, Justin Bieber is able to compose a full album with only a few fillers and sure his songs are hits.  Luckily, its sprinkled with his talent and I’lll even go as far as saying his guests weren’t needed.   a solid B-  

Kickstarter: Fairy Quest

You don't usually find that many stories or original value and intrigue mixed in with amazing art. Going through some of Kickstarter's many different projects, I stumbled upon "Fairy Quest" by Paul Jenkins. It's an amazingly and I'm assuming painstakingly 48 page fully illustrated fictional tale. Starting at $14, you can have the huge PDF file and read it through on your iPad or iPhone or what have you. For only $30, you can have a "beautiful, hardbound, shrink-wrapped copy of Fairy Quest 1 – Outlaws by Paul Jenkins, Humberto Ramos and featuring gorgeous color and design work by our old pal and collaborator, Leonardo Olea!" That's the winner. If you want to up your pledge, get a signed copy for $60! (unfortunately the $40 signed edition is already pledged out and I am still trying to find out the difference between the two save for the personal message)

Kickstart it already! As you know, we did!

'Insanely Simple' Adds to Issacson's Biography

With the release of Walter Issacson's "Steve Jobs" biography last fall, Steve's legendary passion and style of management came to life.  Stories came unfolded and many people from within the industry shared their intimate Steve Jobs' stories.  Tomorrow, we have a first hand "fly on the wall" story by Ken Segall.

Spread throughout Ken Segall's new book, Insanely Simple: The Obsession That Drives Apple's Success, he shares his personal experiences dealing and working with the late Steve Jobs.  He details an exciting roller coaster whilst maintaining that is was the mantra of simplicity that stood prime for Apple's success.  Playing a prominent roll as ad agency creative director, he delivered one of Apple's most memorable campaigns specifically "Think Different" and help create the "intelligent" moniker that is present in most of Apple's current offerings.

Ken Segall's book is available now for pre-order on Amazon and is slated to be released tomorrow in hardback. You can also download it on the aptly named iBookstore.

Withings Smart Baby Monitor

Temperature and humidty monitor, high resolution video with night time mode, 4x zoom, pan & tilt camera, active sound warnings, two way microphones so that you can talk or sing to you baby, and even an interactive color changing night light!!!  Withings has introduced a truly amazing "MacGuyver" monitor but I'll admit, $299 isn't that peachy. It actually puts it at the top of the baby monitors in terms of price. Yes you can argue that this feature set is second to none, but let me ask, are you willing to pay for this? I want to think that I am, but it's not the spontaneous purchase that I thought it would be. At $199, I'm all in! Peep the sample video below and tell me what you think.

There is one disturbing feature that I read on the Withings website though and it talks about the ability to monitor outside the network. It beings up the question, are you streaming to their server? Why would I have to pay to connect to my home network? Here's the exact text below.

The Smart Baby Monitor allows you to monitor your baby everywhere with an unlimited range and for an unlimited time. When you are outisde of home Wi-Fi network, audio/video streaming is free for 15 minutes a day. We propose services upgrades so that you can buy 100 minutes of audio/video streaming for 4.99 euros (in-app purchase by Apple).

Sprint TV now on Sprint iPhone

How does Sprint attract more customers? Make mobile television free!!! Your move AT&T / Verizon. Would I switch carriers with the iPhone 5 coming this summer? Maybe...and only because AT&T hasn't made me happy at all especially since I received a text saying that I'm a top 5% data user? I barely went over 2 gigs and I pay for "unlimited" data! <-- scam (someone sued and won btw)

Sprint customers with iPhone can now watch free live TV and video-on-demand with the Sprint TV App, available now on the App Store. The Sprint TV App, powered by MobiTV, includes free live news and sports, along with shows from popular content brands such as ABC, CBS, NBC, ESPN, The Disney Channel, MTV, Comedy Central and more.

Click here for the FREE APP!

Free App Saturday!

It's amazing how you can think of something you need, search the Apple iOS App Store, and viola -- free for a limited time, I give you the Tabata Timer by Garaio Technology Lab. Hanging out in Miami for a quick two day stint, I found a quick start solution with some WOD (Workout of the Day) strategies. Downloadable and printable in PDF format, Michael Ashcroft maps out a 16 day strategy and I got Jojo to do it up with me. Day 2 was all about Tabata workouts and it always helps with a timer. Download it now!

It does exactly what it states and best of all, it's free!

Apple Key, Splat & Swedish Campground

Sometimes, the interesting things are already spoken about, read and filtered.  Sometimes, you run into interesting things that are worthy of an individual post and are lazy.  Every now and then, you might find yourself energized with an idea but then get lost in the writing.  So, I decided to start here.

For those with an Apple computer, i.e., Macintosh, you may have now noticed the Apple Key down on your keyboard to the right or left of the spacebar.  Look for it.  If you don't have it, then you probably bought into the Apple side of things post 2007 when the keyboard was redesigned without it.  In place, "command" was written.  But that little symbol accompanying either the former or the latter, what the heck do we call it?  Enter a story found on, "Swedish Campground"

Finally she came across a floral symbol that was used in Sweden to indicate an interesting feature or attraction in a campground. She rendered a 16 x 16 bitmap of the little symbol and showed it to the rest of the team, and everybody liked it. Twenty years later, even in OS X, the Macintosh still has a little bit of a Swedish campground in it.  -Andy Hertzfeld

In another story, a famous blogger named Dan Frommer launched his adeptly named blog "Splat Eff" back in July 2011 further enlightening readers about the symbol.  Check out what he says here on, What does SplatF mean?

Did you learn something?

Linsanity Live!

I really don't know what to call it.  Happy coincidence or serendipitous but my schedule happened follow him.  At first, I was able to get a glimpse of Madison Square Garden's own Boeing 737 (tail number N37NY) preflighting at Westchester County Airport (KHPN) before flying the New York Knicks to Toronto and it just so happened that I was going to be in Toronto for an overnight on the 14th!  It didn't matter that I was going to make the trek by myself because I was set on looking for excitement.  I'll tell you right away, I was not let down!

I arrived at the Fairfield Inn Toronto Airport around 1600 and knew that I needed to search for a ticket (thanks Craigslist), get back on a shuttle to the airport, either pay $33.00 roundtrip for a Toronto Airport Express to Downtown or $6.00 roundtrip for the 192 Express Bus to Kipling Station then transfer two stops on the subway (Kipling --> St. George --> Union) then find the Air Canada Centre, meet up with said ticket seller / owner then venture in and watch the Knicks take on the Raptors. I've done the expensive "quicker" bus but thought that I should save some money since my ticket would end up costing $90 so off I went.

It was really easier as the subway only goes either east / west then north and south and if I missed my stops, I would it them later on the same line. People were friendly and I was able to get around. Granted it was a whole 30 minutes longer than the express, but the game started at 1900 so I had plenty of time.

Union Station was CRAZY!  Food places abundant, and everywhere I looked, people were all talking about Jeremy Lin.  It was almost like a constant meditation and chant all around me.  I was even getting excited as most of the people there were yes, unfortunately for the Raptors, there to watch the Linsanity live.

I met up with the "guy" and to be honest, I'm not all that much of a fan of scalping especially since it was a lone seat but he reassured that I had him number and I was able to get in, sit in my seat and not have anyone kick me out.  Good stuff. The seat was next to a great couple who actually were gifted the tickets months ago and were more than excited that it was this particular game especially that Jeremy Lin was part of his fantasy team!

Admittedly, the game started off slow and at the end of the first half, the Raptors were holding a strong lead and Jeremy Lin only had 9 points but did have 4 assists.  It looked like Stoudemire and Lin were trying to play off of each other but to no avail.  It almost looked like there were communicating in foreign dialects adding to the sloppy plays, mishaps and turnovers.  Hoping for a better second half, the third quarter would only have Lin adding another 6 points with back to back foul shots missing the rim.  At one point, I was afraid that Lin wouldn't hit "the 20" or heaven forbid, the Knicks winning streak would end...all because I was at the game??? I'm not that vain, but a thought, that I'm sure we all conjure up lining up perfectly well as superstition, popped up that it was because I went to game.

Going into the fourth quarter, the Knicks finally started knocking at door and with 1:05 left, Jeremy Lin hit a 2 and 1 tying the game. The arena was on their feet and the chanting began. I was yelling along with everyone else and after a couple of great blocks back and forth, Lin found himself with the ball asking Coach Mike D'Antoni for a timeout. Unexpectedly, Coach waved his hands off and a play was called. Apparently Lin went with an audible and successfully hit the three-pointer! High fives, screams and chants later...the Knicks continued their fairytale and I had the best time EVER!

Great recaps of the game!  Oh yeah, by the way, his 137 points in his first five career starts, is the most for any player who began his career since the NBA-ABA merger in 1976-77, passing Shaquille O’Neal (129).

WSJ: Lin's Legend Grows With Late Theatrics / Phenom Hits Game-Winner to Cap a Stunning Comeback

ESPN: Linsanity goes international in Toronto

To Fly. To Serve

Last year, British Airways released a truly amazing commercial titled "To Fly.  To Serve." Recognizing the sacrifice the early pioneers in aviation made in mapping the skies, it brings to light what us pilots still bear; the truth in leaving their families at home waiting for their return. I can't stop thinking about it ever since I first saw the ad and wanted to share with you the commercial that still gives me goosebumps every time I watch it.  It makes me proud to be a commercial airline pilot and yes, there are days that I need a reminder.  Maybe someday, the prestige will come back, but until then, we have amazing CGI and story telling to keep us at bay.  What are your thoughts on the advertisement?