After my initial experience with this new (to me) iPhone/iPad App, I thought I would share what I’ve learned.
First of all if you are unfamiliar with the Bloglovin’ service I would describe it as website that helps you find and follow great blogs. With the Apps, I am an Apple lover so please forgive my bias, I found it to be very convenient and fun way to get caught up inside the blogosphere. My caveat to this is a certain reticence to use Apps over my preference for Safari or Google Chrome on the web. I just feel that too many Apps are lacking to such a degree that it isn’t worth the bother. Know what I mean?
Anyway, here’s what I found: There are four master pages titled My Feed,Popular,Search and Me
A+, this really doesn’t seem like an App, it has a web-like feel to it.
A+, even better – there is a web option that allows you to view the blogs on the web!
B+, there is a handy menu button which drops down to reveal all your favorite blogs in My Feed.
B+, I like the handy share tab there too.
B+, the popular posts offer a terrific way of finding good blogs when you are pressed for time.
B+, great images.
C+, searching for blogs is clean, without advertisements and extraneous distractions from what you really want, to read blog articles.
C+, as an added plus the ‘Me’ page allows you to create your own blog.
NOT SO PLUSSES
C-, there is a feedback link to get input from users, though the response to users seems to be less than ideal
C-, some of ‘features’ are a little tricky to use and the instructions are not as ‘simple’ as I’d like.
As an avid supporter of WordPress for all the reasons you might imagine, I would say Bloglovin’ Apps are in the category of the “next best thing” and rate them as “recommended”.
It took Ex Machina for me to break a hiatus. While it entertains as well as it provokes thought and dialogue, this film strikes that delicate balance which every great science fiction seeks to achieve.
Having read the first four Leonid McGill Mysteries; All I Did Was Shoot My Man, When the Thrill is Gone, Known to Evil, and The Long Fall, I was excited to see this new entry in print.
If you aren’t familiar with New York City Private Detective McGill or haven’t tried any of Mosley’s 49 works, you are in for a treat. While his genre repertoire tends towards the hard-boiled, there are plenty of diverse offerings for the casual reader.
For more about the author you can check out his Facebook page
“So, Mr. Powell, tell me your story again,” Samantha said. She was readjusting her gear in preparation for the next climb. Her climbing partner Stacie was working similarly on the other side of the tent. Andrew thrust his fists into his pockets where hand warmers embraced them with intense heat. He’d spent the last hour trying to explain his presence without jeopardizing the chances of gaining Samantha’s cooperation. Her reaction was tending towards skepticism so far.
“David and I work at the college together. The chancellor asked me to find him. He’s heading up a research project that is very important to us and it is nearing a very critical phase. Since he left unexpectedly without leaving a method for contacting him, I was sent to do it the old fashioned way, in person.” Not knowing just what Samantha knew about David or his work, Andrew was taking a risk by fabricating part of his story. But standing near the top of the mountain he felt he had to play every card in his deck now that he’d found his only lead. Failing to put Samantha’s piece of the puzzle in place could result in Andrew’s investigation coming to an abrupt end.
“And he sent you why?”
“She, Marie Marisol, thought I’d be a quick and inexpensive option. For starters I know David. I also have experience finding people. Add to that the fact that I’m relatively free during the summer term.”
“What kind of experience?” Stacie asked. She had been quietly but attentively listening since they’d met. Now her curiosity was apparently piqued by what he’d said.
“He’s a cop. I recognized your name. Aren’t you the Police Chief of South Hills PD?” Samantha asked. Andrew could see that Stacie was now giving him her full attention.
“I used to be. I’m retired from law enforcement now. I work at the police academy which is run under the auspices of the college, my current employer.” Andrew pulled his hands out of his pockets and held his palms open. Years of experience had taught him that if he was going to be able to establish rapport and build trust quickly, then his time to strike was now. Otherwise he might never succeed, even after the considerably longer investment of time that would have to be spent in the relationship.
“So after talking with family and friends my search has narrowed down to Samantha being the only person known to possibly be able to help locate David. We really appreciate any information you could give us. Anything at all, no matter how trivial, I’d like to know.” Andrew sat down on a cot and leaned on his elbows. Body language was a key tool for interrogators and he was careful with his now – lower the tension, hide any indication of desperation – but keep the conversation moving forward on the subject of David’s whereabouts.
Samantha, however, was clearly resistant as she asked, “If you’re saying David is missing, shouldn’t the police be involved?”
“The South Hills PD does have a missing persons case open. I am acting on their behalf. The current chief Kenneth Hand will confirm that if you call the number on his card here.” Andrew handed the card to Samantha who looked over at Stacie.
“So,” Stacie began, “the department found no evidence of criminal or suspicious activity at David’s home and there were no hits from his credit cards or cell phone I take it?”
Stacie nodded at Samantha and Andrew detected an unspoken message passing between them.
Samantha asked, “Why not just wait to hear from him? I assume that is what happens typically in these cases. He knows the importance of the project obviously since he’s in charge of it.”
Everything about his police instincts told Andrew that something was not right about Samantha’s reluctance to accept him. After years of dealing with interested parties an officer could recognize distinguishable patterns of behavior. Innocent or uninvolved witnesses did not act the way Samantha had. As sure as he was about Samantha’s behavior Andrew was also as sure that he had to get something out of her or all his efforts so far would be for naught.
“Well there is that yes,” he said calmly, slowing the pace of conversation, “But I’d hate to think that David might be in a situation where it’s not possible.”
“You aren’t suggesting that David is either in danger or has been harmed, is that correct?” Stacie asked.
“That is correct.” Andrew answered. He was trying to plant a seed without pressing down too hard on the earth above it. The question remained as to whether he had added the right amount of water.
Samantha appeared to have lost some color. Her eyes widened and she folded her arms tight around her. “Well what do you think? What should I do?” She was speaking to Stacie but pacing back and forth while doing so.
“I don’t know Sam. But if it were my brother, husband or boyfriend, and he was missing under similar circumstances, I’d want somebody like Andrew here to care enough to come all this way to find him. I like that in a man.”
Hearing those words caused Andrew to again take notice of this impressive woman. A mystery lay there he thought, and well hidden. He was motivated to stay around long enough to uncover those secrets. If for no other reason than the fact there was so much more to her that Andrew found attractive. Andrew stood, walked over to Stacie and smiled as he bowed before her.
“This is what I can tell you, Andrew is it? I don’t know where David is or how to reach him. I am expecting to meet him in three days though I can’t tell you where. That leaves you with two choices in my view. You can go home and wait until I meet David, and then let him decide whether or not to call you, but your problem is solved knowing you’ll eventually hear from him. Or you can tag along with us and see him when we do.”
Andrew turned back towards Samantha as she spoke that last sentence and uttered the only reply he could think of, “Thank you.”