Songza login with Google credentials: On the Web, but not iOS

I clicked over to Songza today and saw that I could log into the their Website using my Google account.

Songza Website Login That’s what I would have expected given Google’s acquisition of Songza.

Then I pulled out my iPhone to log into the Songza iOS App to listen to some music while I worked. Whoops. No can do.

iOS Songza App Facebook Login onlyIf you want to sign into Songza using the iPhone app, you don’t have the option to do so using your Google credentials. Only Facebook.

This must bug Google, the new owners of Songza. I wonder how long it will take for them to change this situation and push an update to the iOS app update through the Apple approvals process to enable users to log in with their Google credentials. Hmmm. I guess this also raises the question of whether Apple will expedite approval of the update.

Not a big thing. But interesting to me.

Canada and Google Products: So Close Yet so Far Away

Canadians have the best of all worlds. We live close enough to the United States to be able to share US media and pop across the border to spend weekends in US cities (Hello New York, Boston, Chicago, Seattle!) But we still get to keep our own spelling of worlds like colour, pronounce the letter Z as “zed” and watch our democracy unfold in the daily ritual of Parliament’s Question Period.

Yet, when it comes to the introduction of new Google products, we often have a much less happy situation. And this is one of those times.

For the past few weeks I’ve been watching reviews of the Chromecast, the new Nexus 7, the HTC One Google Play and Samsung 4 Google Play phones. All look like awesome devices. And all are just out of reach for a Canadian.

This is what I see when I sign onto the Canadian Google Play device store:

Canadian Google Play device store, July 28, 2013

Canadian Google Play device stores, July 28, 2013

The Canadian store offers only last year’s devices – the Nexus 7 2012 version and the Nexus 4. Not one word about the awesome new devices that my American friends sixty miles south of me are ordering and testing.

When it comes to the introduction of new products from Google, Canadians are so close, yet so far away.


July 31, 2013 Still no sign of the new Nexus 7 on the Google Canada Play devices store. now shows one model of the new Nexus 7. However, it is not available to buy online nor in a store.

BestBuy 130731



August 13, 2013. Slowly, slowly, the rollout is occurring.The New Nexus 7, well at least the 16GB version made its appearance on the Canadian Google Play store this morning.

New Nexus 7 16GB in Canada Play Store 130813


Sherrilynne, Nora and Joe's Excellent Adventure

DSC00035In June, I had a once in a lifetime experience – I flew on a de Havilland Beaver from Vancouver Airport to Galiano Island, one of the gulf islands between Vancouver and Victoria.

I was invited by Darren Barefoot and Julie Szabo to attend Fireworks Factory, a gathering a smart, progressive marketers. I wanted very much to attend. However, I was scheduled to be in Austin the day prior to Fireworks Factory and there was no way I could get to Vancouver in time to catch the last ferry of the day destined for Galiano. As it turned out, both Sherrilynne Starkie and Nora Young also were booked on flights that arrived too late for the ferry.

DSC00039We had three people in search of a solution. And that solution: charter a floatplane  that would take us from the airport to Galiano. So off we went on our excellent adventure. And I recorded it on video to share with my friends. Sadly, I lost almost all of the video I produced. I backup my hard drive to Dropbox. However, the Internet connnection on Galiano Island was iffy and slow. So, the video files were trickling up to Dropbox. And wouldn’t you know it, this would be the time that my computer would pick to fail! After numerous calls to Dell support, my hard drive was wiped and everything but a few still photos and a couple video outtakes were lost. A frustrating experience because I really wanted to capture and hold on to this experience. And a lesson in the ephemeral nature of all media.

So, here’s the little bit of video I could salvage. The rest will play only in the memories of Nora, Sherrilynne and me. 🙁

DSC00036In case you aren’t aware, the DeHavilland Beaver is an aviation icon. Over 1600 Beavers were manufactured in its 20 year production run beginning in 1947. And although the final Beaver came off the assembly line over 45 years ago, in 1967, many are still in service.   It is the quintessential bush plane, used widely in Canada’s north. It is a true Canadian icon that has inspired legions of fans. One fan, Neil Aird has established a Website,, where he is attempting to compile a pictorial history of every individual Beaver.

Other sources of information about the DeHavilland Beaver:, with histories of individual Beavers

The de Havilland Beaver entry on Wikipedia

The Beaver page on

If we had a billion dollars…

YahooOK. I get that it’s an arch statement. Yahoo leads off its release about its $1 billion acquisition of Tumblr with the subhead, “Promises not to screw it up.” And given that Yahoo now is led by someone who for years subscribed to the corporate slogan, “Don’t be evil,” it makes sense.

However, I can’t get over the feeling that, if you and I had a billion dollars to spend, we’d probably aim a little higher. 🙂

Feeling lucky

This morning, I arrived to a darkened office. That’s not surprising, because it was 7 AM and I was the first person to arrive.

As I turned on the lights and walked into our then–empty office, I realized that I’m a lucky guy.

Why? Because 16 years after having co-founded Thornley Fallis, I still love my job.

Yes, there are challenges. There are disappointments. There is stress. But I know that I can rise to these challenges and be the master of my destiny. That’s invigorating.

And I love what I do. I love watching the changing patterns of communication and the evolving relationships we have with the institutions around us. I love learning from what I observe and changing the way that I apply my own skills for myself and for my clients.

I chose to be the first person in the office this morning because I wanted to get to work to tackle the day’s challenges, to stretch myself, to learn and to do something that I find meaningful.

So it’s 7 AM in a darkened office, and I feel I’m a lucky guy.

This is what it looks like on the in-flight map when your plane aborts its landing

Life is like a plane ride. It doesn’t always go as planned.

If you’re wondering what that green paper clip drawing is on the map above, it’s the flight path Air Canada 445 followed when it had to abort its landing in Toronto Pearson this morning.

Yep, an aborted landing. A sudden acceleration and ascent just before you touch down on the runway, followed by 60 seconds of uneasiness (fear?) as you wait for the pilot to come on the PA system and tell you why you and the other 100 passengers aren’t safely on the ground. In this case, the plane ahead of us failed to clear the runway and the pilot pulled up and went around. We made a safe landing on the second try.

And thanks to GPS and the in-flight map app, we got to watch ourselves on the map throughout the whole experience.

By the way, the pilot was great this morning. He was on the microphone telling us what had happened in under a minute after the event. I’ve been on other flights that aborted landing at the last instant and had to wait for three or four minutes (which can be terrifying) before we were reassured that there was nothing wrong with our plane.

Of course, there’s always a bonus by making it through the tough days. Maybe I’ll get extra frequent flyer miles from Aeroplan and Air Canada for the extra miles we flew to make the second landing attempt. 🙂

Do pilots really not smoke in the cockpit? What does that mean for landings?

As I entered the airport this morning, I passed a couple of pilots who were standing outside in the cold, smoking. Judging from the desperate way they were dragging on those cigarettes, they were hooked, really hooked, on tobacco.

As Toronto is a departure point for several long range flights, it got me to thinking. Airplanes are all non-smoking now, right? And some flights can extend to 10 to 14 hours. Do the pilots really go that long without a cigarette? And if they do, what are their nerves like when it comes time to land at the end of a long flight?

I hope that all my flights are piloted by non-smokers. But how would I know?