There are 3 things certain in life: Death, Taxes, and needing new cell phones. The average person gets a new cell phone every 18 months. This means that in the past decade, the average person has had at least six different phones. So what do people do with the cheap cell phones that are no longer in the starting lineup?

The sad truth is most people either let them collect dust in a drawer, or they simply throw them away. Continue reading »

During these rough economic times, many are searching for a quick way to earn some easy cash–but a large percentage of people have no idea just how valuable that used cell phone sitting in their drawer, collecting dust, can really be.  If you have a used phone collecting dust some where (like most people do) check out our Used Cell Phones for Cash at TheBlueDot.net.

Most people do not realize their used cell phone may be worth a significant amount of money.

According to the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) in 2007, approximately 130  used phones ended up in landfills in the US. Only 14 million Americans recycled their used cell phones. Today, donating or recycling cell phones, PDAs, chargers, and batteries has never been easier.

By bringing awareness to the matter, we can make a huge difference. Right now the number of people properly disposing their cellular devices is right around 10%. If more people knew how simple it were to trade-in their device the affects on the environment could be substantial.

Sources: EPA.gov

As we are all pretty much aware–if we dare admit it to ourselves–the Apple iPad is an overpriced toy that, while maintaining some practical purpose, has very little (if any) edge on, say…a laptop or Netbook. Perhaps future generations of the iPad–or when companies like Google, Android, Amazon, etc get their “pad” products out–will be a virtual must-own for many consumers. As the market changes, as does the technology, and once we see a major flux in the social necessity for a notebook-size-touch-screen device, we’ll likely see more nay-sayers like myself rushing out to own one.

Like I said, there are some practical applications for the iPad that often go overlooked, and–for the purpose of this discussion–we’re going to take a look at several uses that may increase productivity in the workplace while substantially decreasing your office’s carbon footprint (that is, of course, if you don’t count the endless quantity of iPads bound to show up in a landfill or lining the streets of a small Chinese village).

There already exists a program called WritePad, which is essentially a note-taking app similar to any computer software that you would get for free. This one will cost you about $9.99.

On the other hand, there’s SoundPaper, a much cooler application (in both practicality and title). SoundPaper (Now SoundNote) is a note-taking application, yes, but it also records audio for personal notes or recording meetings. Not only does this allow you to play back key moments you may have missed, but also allows you to tap a certain portion of your notes to jump right to the recorded audio concerning that topic. Pretty neat.

The key to a “green” office is using less and less throw-away materials. After all, even if you recycle, the carbon footprint is fairly significant. Rather than setting up messy fax machines and an interconnected IT department, a free iPad program called BoxNet or DropBox allows for easy file sharing and transfers across multiple computers and devices–all within a virtual cloud of information.

It’s common knowledge by now that printing virtually anything has become a thing of the past. In any office or home, the only elements that tend to be physically printed out are things that need to be printed out. Otherwise, it’s much faster and easier to use your computer or portable device for all of your reading and viewing pleasure. If you’re on the go, an app called Instapaper may be of use (if you find you’re printing articles and emails to read later). InstaPaper allows the user to bookmark virtually anything with text to read at a later date without the stress of having to remember who the e-mail was from, which website you visited, or why you found that latest Marmaduke strip so hilarious.

The iPad (or any e-reader) practically eliminates the need for printed works. Certainly, a few books or magazines lying around will do you no harm, and some people prefer the physical element of having pages to leaf through in this overwhelmingly technological existence. But if you’re on the go, carrying around reference materials can make you feel like you’re living in the Dark Ages.

The iPad has a plethora of fine applications and reading material to choose from depending on your interests or career. For example, if you need to keep up with The Wall Street Journal, it’s free. That’s right. Free–on the iPad. If you need computer text books, medical encyclopedias, catalogs, or tutorials to get you through your busy schedule as a Computer Engineering Fashion Marketing Doctor on the go, hey–there’s an app for that.

Apple wants the iPad to be your friend and personal assistant (for a price). The Control4 app–if your office or home is set up with Control4–will allow you to automate every electric element using the iPad. Forgot to turn off your work PC or the office lights? No worries, iPad‘s got you covered.

So there you have it. If you spent the money on one of these futuristic toys, you have every opportunity to make the best of it and use it to its fullest potential. And there’s no time to start like the present–because we all know that the clock is ticking on when Apple, Google, Android, or whoever, will render the piece of technology on which you just blew your entire savings obsolete. Anyone not liking their used apple ipad and ready to move on to a different device? The BlueDot will offer top dollar for your used devices.

We’ve all been quite attached to Cell Phones for a while now. It’s time for us to learn some of the rules–or commandments–of phone etiquette. Phones have changed. People have changed. It’s high time for the two to be in sync with one another to a degree at which we can all be comfortable.

You should all know the key rules by now:

Speak quietly in public, avoid extremely personal conversations, avoid a call while in mid-conversation with another human being–and if you must take the call, let them know before you pull the phone out of your pocket. Avoid texting when you’re talking with someone face-to-face as well.

Put your phone’s ringer on silent when in a theater or restaurant. Or better yet, just turn it OFF. Accessing your phone in a dark theater makes everyone else cringe.

Here are some more recent etiquette ideas to think about when customizing your social networking existence:

Some phones and software allow you to control the picture that appears on other devices when you call.

Avoid embarrassing profile pictures through Facebook, Blackberry, AIM, or Twitter.

Don’t look up answers to debates or questions on Google. We’re all guilty of this, but some people find it both annoying and pretentious. Companies like KGB and Cha-Cha offer a fun way to ask anonymous questions that may produce interesting results. Try them instead.

Only use call screening for business. Close friends and family shouldn’t have to go through a Google Voice or business filter to get to you on your cell phone. It’s inconsiderate, and they may disown you.

Don’t play the blame game with dropped calls. Chances are it’s either nobody’s fault, or it could be yours. Blaming the other person for a dropped call is ridiculous–so stop it.

Lastly, compensate for delay. We live in a world of instant gratification now, but with some advancements in technology come minor inconveniences that we have to live with for the time being. Many new and refurbished smart phones have a slight (or perhaps significant) delay that may cause some awkward moments during conversations. Always pause for a moment to give the other person time to receive your voice or text before beginning to speak again. Believe me, it can work wonders–and bring an end to frustrating overlapping conversations.

Following these simple steps will not only bring you into a peaceful and civilized 21st Century of technology, but also make you a much better person for it.

–Alex G. (The Blue Dot)

checklistIt’s easy to let life become so busy that you forget what and who is most important to you. Fortunately, technology is available to make life easier, even when it comes to prioritizing and maintaining the relationships that matter most in your life. Here is a list of five text messages that, if sent out every day from your new or refurbished cell phone, will not only keep you on track but will help you and your loved ones succeed in all of your endeavors.

Number 1: “I love you” – This seems obvious, but I’d wager that most people don’t speak these words as often as they should (or want). Think about how nice it would be to receive a text that says, “Hey (your name), you know I love you, right?”

Number 2: “I miss you” – What’s almost as nice to hear as “I love you”? Simple, “I miss you.” One of the beautiful things about technology is that it makes it easier to express our emotions. Letting people know that you miss them is an easy way to brighten anyone’s day.

Number 3: “Thank you” – Thanking people is an easy way to show people that you appreciate them and your relationship with them. Even something as simple as, “Thanks again for dropping by last week,” will change a person’s impression of you a great deal for the better.

Number 4: “Hey, remember that idea you had about… that was really a great idea. I think you should pursue it further” – Reminding someone of an idea they had but let fade is a great way to keep your friends and loved ones encouraged. Encouragement leads to action, and action leads to success. You can be sure that the more your friends and loved ones succeed, the more they will help and encourage you with your own aspirations.

Number 5: “Hey (name), you know I’m always here for you if ever need to talk.” – With life comes obstacles and setbacks. More likely than not, someone you care about is going through something difficult. Letting them know that you are available to listen and talk can really make it easier for them to get through a rough time. This one requires that you will actually be available when they call.

Positivity attracts positivity. If you send these five texts out every day, your circle of friends and loved ones will be charged with positive energy on a daily basis, which will undoubtedly come back to you.

phoneInstallErrorHere at The Blue Dot, we often have customers contact us for assistance because they are getting a “JVM 102 Error” on their Blackberry cell phone. First of all, it is important to note that all cell phones, like all electronics, are prone to malfunctions so if you have important data on your device, you should be sure to frequently back it up on your computer. That being said, the JVM error means that a .code file on your phone is corrupt, so your device will not load the file. You can do a hard reset on the device, which will totally wipe the phone clean so that you can start over but if you do not want to lose everything on your device, you can follow the instructions below (I am pretty sure you can only do this on a PC).

  • Download the JL Cmder
  • Connect your device to your PC via USB cable
  • Run JL_Cmder and select option 2, which is the event log
  • Go to the bottom of the log and look for “JVM Error 102.” The line before it will tell you exactly what file is causing the error. Here is an example of what it will look like. The text in pink shows the corrupted file. Save the file name because it will be needed later but do not include the numbers in parenthesis.
  • Go to Start > Run, and type “cmd” then press Enter
  • Change directory to the JL_Cmder installation folder. EXAMPLE: type: cd “C:\Program Files\JL_Cmder\” and press enter
  • Type the following command to remove the offending file:

javaloader.exe -u erase -f FILENAME
(FILENAME is the name of the .cod file. NOTE – do not include the numbers in parenthesis after the file name)

  • Disconnect your phone from your PC and restart it.


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