Tag Archive | Technology

Nintendo Switch Review

On the 26th June I got a neon Nintendo Switch and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. Since then it has kind of taken over my life. I’ve left school and finished my a-level exams now so I have more time to relax, more time to read, write and play games and spend time with the important people in my life.

11396090-1784485336392124The Nintendo Switch was released in March of this year (2017) and for those who have been hiding under a rock, it is a hybrid console. You can play the switch in a variety of ways, as a handheld, as a home console and each joycon can be used as a separate controller or they can be put as one controller. Now I can’t speak much in terms of games because I only have the one at the moment (Mario Kart 8 Deluxe) but I do love it and I can say that both on the TV and as a portable console it is fantastic. I think the graphics look beautiful, the console feels well-made and the joycons, although being small for my boyfriend, they fit perfectly in my girly hands!

So, what do you get in the box for your £279.99? Actually more than you may expect. You get the switch itself, which is about the same size as an Amazon 7 tablet, two joycons (left and right), 2 joycon straps (please look at the + and – when putting these on!!), the dock, an AC adapter which is USB-C, a HDMI cable and a joycon grip (dock? thing to turn it into one controller?). You’ve got everything you need to get set up and honestly the switch for both portable and home console mode is very easy to set up and it took me a matter of minutes. All the cables are tucked away nicely in the dock so it looks a bit nicer too. A word of warning about the dock though, please be careful. I myself am restraining from using the switch until I my glass screen protector arrives because there have been multiple people say that the dock has scratched their screen (which is a plastic one), so I’d recommend a screen protector or a dock-sock, which you can get from etsy and I’ll definitely be purchasing one at some stage.

Nintendo SwitchLike I said before, the graphics are great and although I’ve only had a full experience with Mario Kart, I have played demos for Puyo-Puyo Tetris and Snipperclips with my boyfriend and they are really fun and Snipperclips is a really funny and silly game. Out of what has been released so far I have seen a fair few games I want, but being the fresh-out-of-school human that I am, it’s gonna take me a while to get money to get games but my wishlist is full and I’ve seen a lot of great reviews for a variety of games and the lineup for what is to come looks amazing. Mario games are coming out this year as well as Skyrim and there are Kirby, Yoshi and Pokemon games being lined up as well. I also hope for an Animal Crossing game. That’ll be amazing!

Other than all that, all I can really say in summary is for the £279.99, this is an amazing console. I love it. I highly highly highly recommend it and I’m so excited to build a collection of joycons and games. Nintendo have done an amazing job on this and it’s really fun. I think my 3DS and Wii U are gonna be neglected for a while but the 3DS will still be one of my favourite Nintendo products. Let me know your opinions on the Switch, if you have one or want one!

Sims 2 – My Favourite Game

If you’re about my age (18), maybe a bit older, maybe a bit younger, you’ll know of Sims 2. When I was younger I absolutely loved it. For a while I’ve been unable to play any PC game because I have a Chromebook for school, but more recently I’ve gotten a laptop. Now, it’s obviously not the best laptop in the world, but it runs sims 2 and I’m able to use Word and play some other games and it makes me very happy. Being able to play Sims 2 again has been like I’ve reopened and rediscovered my childhood. I have so many memories of playing that game. I loved sending sims off to university, I loved making big families, designing houses, creating stories and playing around with the pre-made families in their little houses and continuing on with their stories, and even looking up about the mystery behind the famous sim of Bella Goth.

I used to be a huge lover of custom content, I always found myself downloading nice clothes and skins and famous celebrities turned into sims from websites like Modthesims and even directly from the Sims 2 website. But playing it again, I realise I love just the original content and what got brought into each expansion pack and stuff pack. I’ll admit my favourite stuff pack was the H&M Stuff, and my favourite expansion pack was most likely Pets. I just loved being able to make pets and put them into my game, it to me added so much to the families. I’ve found myself now enjoying the more simple things within the game, I’ve not felt this need to download extra content into my game like I used to feel. I’ll admit, some more hair colour choices may be nice, I may benefit from those but in all I do enjoy the game how it is.

When I moved house I did struggle to find a lot of my packs for Sims 2, but it wasn’t until I think a few years ago I realised at the time Origin had been doing an amazing thing. I think it may have been to celebrate an anniversary of Sims 2 or something, but they released the entire collection out for FREE if you put in a certain code. I did it and that is how I’ve been playing the game. Thanks to the generosity of Origin, I’ve been able to play a game that meant so much to me in my childhood. I have played Sims 3, and as much as I loved the open world and the customisation options for every single item, I do prefer the simplicity of Sims 2. I haven’t had the chance to play Sims 4, as unfortunately I know my laptop won’t run it, but from what I’ve seen, although I know I’d enjoy it, I also know for certain that I’d go back to Sims 2 every single time. It’s a game that has meant a lot to me and honestly, I’m just glad to have it back in my life.

-Laura

A Month With The Apple Watch – A Review

At the end of March, I got the Apple Watch Series 1 (38mm) in rose gold and since then it has been a big part of my everyday life. For a hefty price of £269, you can actually do a fair bit with it.

apple-watch-series-1-38mm-rose-gold-aluminium-case-with-pink-sand-sport-bandI used to own a Fitbit Flex, and honestly as much as enjoyed it for the basic fitness tracker, it just wasn’t doing it for me anymore, and after seeing what had happened to my old Fitbit Charge and my mums Fitbit Alta, I was starting to get worried my Flex would pack in. So as I was looking into similar things not by Fitbit, I remembered about the Apple Watch. I absolutely love Apple, and over the past 7 years I’ve owned iPhones. I tried out a Blackberry and didn’t like it, and I always find myself going back to Apples technology. I have a friend who has an Apple Watch and after I looked into it not just for the fitness tracker, but for the ability to check and answer messages, phone calls, check your bank and the heart rate monitor, I asked her what she thought of it and she said she couldn’t live without it.

When I got my Apple Watch, I was completely amazed. My first week with the Apple Watch was great. Although I had to charge it every night (which to me was no issue), the battery is quite good, I can easily get through an entire day and that’s when using it at school as well. It benefited me a lot because I am able to check messages from family while in lessons when I’m not allowed my phone out, or even just when I’m letting my boyfriend play a game on my phone. And, although I’ve never been a fitnessy person, (I’m quite lazy and I mainly had the Flex just out of interest to see how many steps I did on a daily basis) but the Apple Watch has kind of made me get more determined to fill up those little fitness circles! I absolutely love this thing. One annoying thing about the watch however is that in the box there was no power adapter. It came with the cable but nothing to plug it into, which I think was a bit of a silly idea from Apple, meaning if people do not have spares around the house (luckily I did), you’ll have to spend money on that on top of the £269 you just spent on the watch itself.

Now cut to a month later, what do I think of the Apple Watch now I’m used it and have kinda gotten over the initial OMG over how cool some of the features (like the heart rate monitor and the scribble feature to answer texts)? I still love it. If my phone is in my bag or whatever at school or during days out, I’m still able to check texts, which for me is essential as it means if anything as an emergency or important comes up from my family, I’m able to check and reply without people really noticing. The fitness stuff really has become quite interesting to me though, although I don’t think I’d ever use the workout app on it, the activity app is useful. I like getting the updates telling me how I’ve been doing with my goals throughout the day and it really has gotten me more determined to try to fill up the circles. I’ve discovered though that it’s easier if I’m out with my boyfriend as I have someone to go on a walk with. The heart rate feature for me is quite useful. As someone who does have an irregular heartbeat, it’s interesting to see how it changes throughout the day and I’ve been able to work out an average for my resting heart rate, but have also figured out ways to slow it down a bit, which makes me a bit calmer about it all.

In all, although this watch is expensive, it has a lot of great features on it and there are plenty of apps available which will suit a variety of people. It’s a great little device and I honestly think it’s become a big part of my life just over this past month. I do highly recommend this watch, but if you’re a swimmer or think you’d benefit from having GPS without your phone, the series 2 (priced at £369 in Argos) is probably a better option for you. The Apple Watch is amazing and I find it so useful. Let me know if you have one and what you think of it in the comments.

-Laura

Review – Kindle Paperwhite 2

I own the Kindle Paperwhite 2 and have for a good couple of years now. I’ve had it probably since around 2014 and since then I have used it a fair bit. It’s something I keep going back to because of how portable it is. I own a lot of physical copies of books, and sometimes I find it much easier to have copies of these books on my Kindle so it is easier for me to carry them around. I take it on long journeys, to school and I use it at home a lot, just recently I finished Star Wars: Bloodline by Claudia Gray and I found it much easier to read on my Kindle than on the physical copy because I’m able to change the font size to something my eyes can handle easier. I will also mention now that my Kindle has a magnetic case on it and I highly recommend these. Not only are they protective for both the front and back of the Kindle, but when you open the case, it automatically turns on the Kindle, saving a little bit of time and effort for you.

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The reason I got the Kindle Paperwhite is because of the light feature. I had an older Kindle but I couldn’t see it very well in certain lighting, so the fact that the Paperwhite had this light feature so I could read books both in the dark and in sunlight was amazing, and so useful to me.  I remember a trip I went on a good couple of years ago and I wanted to read a book to pass the time during the journey, but I wasn’t able to read anything on my old kindle because it was so dark, so the fact that the Paperwhite has a light built into it has really benefited me and allowed me to read in multiple situations.

Something else I completely and utterly adore about Kindles in general is that Amazon has such a wide variety of eBooks available, and quite a lot of them from various genres are free. As someone who loves classics, I adored that Amazon had so many classics from authors such as Jane Austen and Charles Dickens available for free, and I have most definitely reached into reading classics more often because of this. I also love that if you have downloaded eBooks from elsewhere or even have a PDF file, you can send them to your Kindle wirelessly. I own a Chromebook, so I only have simple features available to me on a laptop, so having the ability to convert eBooks and send them wirelessly was amazing to me and something I have found very useful.

Overall, would I recommend a Kindle Paperwhite? Absolutely! Not only is it so good for reading in various different lighting situations, but they’re so easy to use and the battery is absolutely fantastic. I tend to use my Kindle a fair bit and use it from full to empty without a charge in between and the battery lasts for absolutely ages, but this may be shorter or longer depending on how heavily you use it and what else you do with it. I obviously do not know much about other features on it such as Goodreads, or even how easy it is to purchase eBooks straight from the Kindle, as I tend to use my phone or the Amazon website to do that, but as a basic eReader with a light built into it, it is absolutely fantastic and I would highly recommend one of these to someone who either is a heavy book reader, or even someone who doesn’t read as often, but would like the portability of the Kindle.

-Laura

Review – Polaroid ZIP

The Polaroid ZIP is a tiny portable printer that links via Bluetooth to your phone. It prints the image in the perfect wallet size, just like a little Polaroid camera, and requires no ink whatsoever, as the ink is built into the paper itself. It uses this paper called ZINK Photo Paper, which I assume means ‘zero ink’ and can sometimes be a bit expensive depending on where you get the paper from. To print the photos, you load them up in the Polaroid ZIP app, and from there your phone will connect via Bluetooth to the printer and print your image onto the ZINK paper.

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I got my Polaroid ZIP in Argos about a year or so ago and it’s something I’ve used on and
off. As someone who loves photography, I have printed a few of my favourite photos onto these little bits of paper before and have them in a photo album made specifically for Polaroid sized images. I do absolutely love the thing and it has become very useful. The paper itself is even a sticker, you just peel off the back and stick it to whatever you want. I have used them as stickers before, back when I used a Filofax for my organisation.

I personally think these little portable printers are better than getting a Polaroid camera, as it means we can take full advantage of the camera quality on our phones, and it means we can record the moment instantly, and worry about printing later. It also means that a single photo can be printed multiple times. For example, with a Polaroid-style camera, if you were with your friends and took a photo together, for everyone to have a copy, you’d have to try to take that same photo multiple times, but with the ZIP, you can just take the photo on your phone as usual and print it multiple times whenever and wherever you want. The actual device itself is a little shorter than the iPhone 6/6S but a lot thicker, so it still is portable.

In all, if you’re someone who likes the size of Polaroid photos, but do not want to get a camera, I fully recommend one of these. You can use this for so many things, like making stickers for your Filofax, printing memories out to keep in an album or even using it to create little bits for a scrapbook. It may seem expensive, as it is currently £119.99 in Argos and varying in price on Amazon, but it is most definitely worth it and a handy little gadget for photography lovers or even just a wide variety of people.

-Laura

An Introduction

Hi everyone,

I thought I’d write a little introduction to this blog, and give you an opportunity to get to know the person behind it, and what sorts of things will be posted on here. I want to use this blog as something that gives me a chance to put down my thoughts on things such as technology, books and photography, and even maybe give some helpful hints into things.

I really really love photography, reading and techy stuff, so these will be the 3 main things that get mentioned on here. I may do reviews on bits of technology that have had an impact on my life, or things that may be useful for other things that I own, which could benefit other people. With books, I will most likely post my thoughts about certain books that have really gotten to me in one way or another and with photography, I’m not sure what I would post but it’ll most definitely get incorporated into this blog.

Anyway, getting to know me. I’ll most likely publish an ‘about’ page on here, but my here’s a few things about me. My name is Laura and I’m 18 and from Kent. I’m a September baby and as of right now, I’m doing 3 A-Levels and an EPQ (extended project qualification). My 3 A-Levels are Religious Studies, English Literature and Film Studies, so as you can tell, I do enjoy writing things, as these are 3 essay subjects. My favourite things are photography, reading, casual games, technology and animals, and more recently I have just loved going outside on walks, and that’s thanks to my boyfriend. I’m not the sort of girl who is really into makeup, as honestly, even though I own some, I never wear any, and the only time I do is on special occasions. I tend to only wear lipstick or tinted lip balms semi-regularly, so that’ll be something that will most likely never appear on here.

Considering that I love writing things, I sometimes do not know what to say or how to end things. So, if anyone is reading this, thank you so much for reading and I look forward to posting more on here in the future 🙂

-Laura