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The one certainty of life along the Gulf Coast is that it’s going to be hot this summer. And things start heating up next week with a sizzling sale at Directron’s Bi-Annual Customer Appreciation Day. Directron is a national e-tailer with a storefront here in Houston. In addition to a giving you a free sub and cold drink to keep the temperatures of May at bay, they are bringing out representatives from several tech companies to field questions from the public.

AMD, Asus, Cooler Master, Evercool, Gigabyte, Intel, Microsoft, MSI and SuperMicro to name a few. Not that I would want to incite any friction at this kind of event, but it would definitely be fun to bus in some Linux evangelists to hand out leaflets outside the festivities. Are you listening, LUGs?

All of this goes down on Thursday, May 6th, from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM at Directron on Harwin Drive.

If you subscribe to the old addage of ‘Where there’s smoke, there’s fire’, then things are heating up over at Apple, too. Let’s ignore the fact that police have executed a possibly illegal search warrant at the home of the journalist who accepted the infamous ‘found iPhone’ from a California college student and go straight to a smokin’ hot new app hitting iPhones around the nation.

So…Apple has approved a game for inclusion into the App Store called “Puff Puff Pass”, a game where up to five players choose a cigarette, a cigar or a pipe, a location (either indoors or out) and a time frame, then puff and pass as many times as they can before the clock runs out. I’d be curious to know exactly when this hit the App Store… It probably wouldn’t be such a big deal if Apple hadn’t previously banned Wi-Fi searching apps, political parody apps, apps that constitute duplicate functionality, third party code translation frameworks, (*cough* Flash *cough*), an LCD buyers guide and a port of Leisure Suit Larry. I’ve still never gotten to play that game and it looks like I never will, at least on the iPhone.

While the water may be a little warm on the Apple side of the pool, the Android half is doing fine. If you’re running Android 2.0 or better, you will soon have yet another web browser to choose from. A pre-alpha build of FireFox is now available for the platform, and though it’s far from optimized, it does bode well for both Android phones and especially the oncoming onslaught of Android powered tablets.

And if we continue to peer through the tablet Looking Glass, we can see things heating up between users of the HP tablet and those of the iPad. Apparently, there’s some contention in the world of tablet users as to which is best, with lines often being drawn along business Use Cases. Apple could potentially wipe the Slate clean with updates allowing the iPad to be more business-y, much like they tried to do with the iPhone in 2008.

I don’t know: trying to blend the world of business with the world of entertainment may not go so well. Of course I would like a single device akin to Captain Picard’s Ready Room briefing tablet to use at both work and home, but “Business Up Front, Party in the Back” may only produce the digital equivalent of a mullet. I think that Apple should stick to the home experience while HP carves out a place in the business world. Whatever may transpire in the tablet arena, there’s certainly no end to the flames spewing from both camps.

And here at home, we have five Fridays in the month of April, meaning that we are experiencing a bit of a drought as far as user group get-togethers go. In fact, attendees of our Geek Gathering will have gone a full five weeks since having a chance to level their D&D characters, knit a summer scarf, or lay down dark digital tracks from the DJ booth. DJ table. That’s coming up Friday, May 7th, but for now, that’s it for this puff-puff-passing of my Apple angst and that’s that for BarretTime.

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