Exciting and ever-changing world of modern technology

JPCT 150713 Alan Stainer. Photo by Derek Martin
JPCT 150713 Alan Stainer. Photo by Derek Martin

When someone outside the tech industry looks at me they probably think, “You must be mad. It’s always changing!” Either that or they liken me to Moss in The IT Crowd, but I digress.

The ever changing chaos of technology is the thing I love. There is always something new to learn and try out, which means it never gets boring.

Take this week for instance. Responding to an enquiry from a customer of mine, I started looking into alternative mail software for smartphones. The reason for this was to try and find something that synchronises all of the folders properly using IMAP. Desktop software does it properly, but the built in software you get on any Android or Windows Phone does not, so you find your important drafts and sent folders are not the same between devices.

I had tried an Android app called K9 before, but it wasn’t as polished as I would have liked. Well, the constantly changing world of tech means that what may have been true a few weeks ago, may well not be true now. So I gave it another go.

The look and feel of the app is in line with the most recent version of Android, so it already seemed familiar. It also fully supports the IMAP standard allowing you to choose which folders you wish to subscribe to (synchronise) and which folders are to be used for drafts, sent items, junk and archives. From a technical point of view, it is great and does everything I or you may need.

If you use an iOS device, then you should be able to synchronise your IMAP folders with the default mail software. Windows Phone currently does not do it although there is a new app called MetroMail which is being developed that will apparently support IMAP properly. However, it is still in beta so no guarantees there.

Moving away from mail apps, this week also saw a little social experiment on Google+. The experiment involves around 150 people from around the world (it is still ongoing as I write this) using a new service called Canva. It is an online image editing solution (http://www.canva.com) which makes creating easily shareable graphics easy. Visiting the site you are greeted by a modern looking and beautiful interface.

The important thing to note here, is that the site is fast and from my limited (so far) experience it does everything it sets out to do. You don’t need to have lots of technical skills to use Canva and for the most part it is free, so you may want to give it a try yourself. The only time you are asked for any money, is if you choose one of the range of stock images that requires a small payment. There are also a lot of free images on there, plus you can use your own. So you could just use the service for free all day long.

Alan Stainer