* Posts by ROC

27 posts • joined 22 Jan 2008

Can't upgrade, won't upgrade: Windows Mobile's user problem

ROC

Re: What b*llocks

My "old" 635 has been running the last few WP 10 Preview's fine, although I don't use it on the phone network as I like my 640 much better for "real world" use, and it is staying on 8.1 until/unless I see compelling reasons to "upgrade" after go-live (aka public beta) of WP 10.

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ROC

Re: As I've said before

Good summary that captures much of my experience/thinking, and that is after I liked how my wife took to WP 8.1 on a 635 for her first smart phone to upgrade from feature phones. I decided then to switch from my latest Android (4.4), Asus PadFone X after one too many alerts for yet more security issues last spring. I got a 640 for USD 80, and liked it so much (Glance is great for quick time/message checks without resorting to an expensive hockey puck on my wrist to constantly bang into things), that I upgraded her 635 to a 640, and that was USD 70 at the time. I frequently see the 640 (AT&T "GoPhone" model, so locked to them for minimum 6 months I believe) on sale for 40-60, and even 30 once in a great while, such as Black Thursday. One helluava "budget" phone compared to what comparable Androids would cost me.

I do miss some of the Android app choices, but nothing that has been a showstopper since I retired, and did not need corporate email access. Ironically, despite the fact they were using Exchange, they refused to apply a bug fix that would allow "secure" use/management of WP, so the corp standards were iPhone and Android with the Touchdown app. That was a certain UK-based drug giant - glad to be done with 'em since they killed their unicorn...

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Att: Windows Phone owners: Win 10 Mobile has been spotted and it wants your phone

ROC

Re: OH NO!!!

Was the pop-up text brown?

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Windows 10 won't come to old WinPhones until some time in early 2016

ROC

Re: For about one in fifty ?

WP 10 Preview is fitting/working ok on my Lumia 635 with the typical 512MB RAM, and 3-4GB free internal storage. My issue is that it is still not ready to replace 8.1 on my 640, and I am not willing to allow forced updates (as with the PC version) when MS "thinks" they are ready/safe to use. That is an absolute show-stopper for any interest by me in Win 10 on any platform, and the privacy issues are nearly as critical, although it seems most can be turned off, leaving what about any modern system can glean from "metadata" type snooping.

Consider, too, that 1 in 50, or even in 100 is still still millions of users, so would those numbers not interest anyone for app sales??

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Five things that doomed the big and brilliant BlackBerry 10

ROC

Re: BB10 - not dead, worth a lot - HPC's

Right! The Handheld PC (HPC) form factor - I still have a 680, 690, and 728 (inside a 720 case - much less garish screen back), and keep thinking about selling them on eBay since I just don't use them any more. Along those lines, I would love to see an update to modern technology in that form factor - maybe the rumored Surface phone/phablet with a matching Type cover? I also liked the similarly designed, but larger NEC MobilePro 780 and 900 models. Their keyboards were almost full-sized as compared to the Jornadas, and were wonderful for taking notes in classes and meetings with Pocket Word. I keep hoping that form factor, too, will be resurrected with modern components so as to be much thinner, with higher-res touch screens, and capable of running x86 Windows AND LInux.

Actually a current 7-8 inch tablet with built-in clamshell keyboard would be awesome, and not much of a stretch using existing components. I have tried such tablets with separate bluetooth keyboards, but dealing with the separate pieces (including some kind of stand) is a lot of hassle. I wish there were such slim, closely matched keyboard cases for the Windows tablets as are rampant for the iPad Mini, but the only offerings I have found seem to be much clunkier one-size-fits-all hulks from Zagg, Belkin, Logitech etc. A trackpoint would make such a design even more of a killer (optical, ala the Lenovo Thinkpad Tablet 2 keyboard, which is my immediate add-on for any 10-inch, or bigger, tablet).

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ROC

Re: Not just me then...

You and Dinsdale247 seem to have mismatched the Passport with the wrong carrying location. For a short while I had a similarly sized phone with a 4:3 ratio form factor, the LG Intuition from Verizon, and there was no way that was going to work in any of my pockets because of the warm humidity of North Carolina for much of the year - my tendency to sweat has always been toxic to any electronics in my pockets (never mind keys, coins, and pocket knife/tool to scratch up stuff). Also, it was just too big for my size and style of pants - would have looked like I was carrying a bomb or some such, and sitting would have been dangerous to the phone, and myself ;-} . Thus, I have always preferred my phones in belt holsters, but even that way the Intuition was just a bit too large, and had rather sharply squared corners that made it catch on everything, so not easy to carry around in either mode. I did like the size and form factor for viewing email, web pages, ebooks, and other documents, (very rarely bother with small screen video) but I might as well do it right, and carry a 7-inch tablet around in a small shoulder-strapped case (or pack).

I found a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 to have similar issues due to its size (at least its corners were somewhat rounded), so I have found my particular size limit to be about 5 inches, and that is with a decently fitting belt holster. A Lumia 640 (not the XL) is my current choice as an extended test of living without Android, which is going reasonably well. I had considered a BB for that test in the past year when the Passport came out, but when I realized its similarity to the Intuition in size/form, I gave up that notion (cost and availability also factoring in - the 640 is available a lot of places now for USD 80, which is a lot of "bang for the buck").

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Microsoft rolls out Windows 10 Mobile preview update

ROC

Re: And... MORE Privacy settings, not less. Plus forced updates...

Well, I just found a downside today: as with the PC version, MS pushes changes onto YOUR device without permission! I doubt the weird workaround for the PC updates would work, but not too interested in jumping through those hoops anyway (i.e., as I understand it: back out update on your PC AFTER it is applied, and mark it somehow for not being re-applied ... if it does not totally wreck the W10 installation to keep you from doing all that).

Guess I will stick with WP 8.1 on my new Lumia 640 (and wife's) till MS "fixes" that obnoxiousness, or I bite the bullet to go back to Android, and switch it to CyanogenMod, whichever comes first.

And, yes, I do primarily run Linux on my PC's (Mint 17 MATE). Also, I use Lynx (not Lync since that won't run on Linux of course), although mostly as a file browser - SeaMonkey is my preferred graphical browser since it still retains the old Netscape look/feel, and for its email client for my emails from back in those days. I just dabble in Windows 8.x and 10, mostly to keep up with OS trends, but also to update my Garmin PND maps.

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ROC

Re: Microsoft rolls out Windows 10 Mobile preview update

Hmm? My Lumia 635 only had a bit over 3GB free before the update from WP 8.1 (internal storage only - no SD card for testing), and still does after the update. Where do you get "6GB"?

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ROC

Re: And... MORE Privacy settings, not less.

Actually, there seems to be even more granularity in privacy settings than with the PC version of Windows 10 - certainly more than with WP 8.1. Are you referring to something not managed by those settings (either PC or WP versions)? Have any of you checked out the settings?

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WinPhone community descends into CANNIBALISM and WOE

ROC

Re: Windows CE

Actually, it was pretty useful in the Handheld PC (HPC) form factor of the NEC MobilePro 780/900 and smaller HP Jornada 72x models. Instant-on, real keyboards (although the Jornada's were definitely cramped, where the MobilePro's were my dream for class note-taking with Pocket Word). I would love to see their form factor revived with the rumored Surface Phone as a 6-inch phablet with Touch style of keyboard cover (and bootable to Linux, and a Trackpoint to make my dream complete...).

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ROC

Re: Angst

I believe my Lumia 640 (WP 8.1 Update 2) is doing just that with my Ford's MS Sync (base level, not the "nightmare Touch"), although I have not had enough calls to be sure that I am remembering correctly. It definitely does speak source and content with text messages over the car's speaker (but usually not clearly enough for my impaired hearing, so I usually kill the vocalization before it gets far along...).

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Intel, Asus charge sneak into US mobe market with ATOM-powered PadFone X mini

ROC

Re: If only they made the phone part...

Old stuff here I know, but if anyone is reviewing for a unit from my favorite trailing edge supplier, eBay, this update may be of some use.

Dunno what the "90 degrees out of whack" means in regard to the Padfone X (10-inch tablet, and higher end phone vs the Mini). I thought the idea with a tablet was to use it in landscape/tablet mode. In that usage, the X has the phone inserted in "physical phone mode" (portrait orientation), so maybe that bothers you, but it is very snugly encased, and the UI changes completely to tablet mode, much like the Moto Atrix/Bionic Webtop combo does with their Lapdock (if you let it - the Asus does not give the option to avoid that switch. Also, there is no orientation change as the Lapdock is only meant for landscape use vs the tablet rotation modes of the Padfone. I commented more here on the Moto package I had back in October, 2014, when this topic was active.), so it really does not matter.

Since switching from Verizon to AT&T, I have had the X for about 8 months now, and it "just works". And if you rotate the docked phone tablet 90 degrees to portrait mode, the image rotates just fine - great for reading long articles and ebooks on the 1920x1200 10-inch screen, although a bit heavy to hold in the hand for long times (especially with my carpal tunnel), so I have a folding stand for that scenario.

It has been very easy to carry around in a small 8x10-inch stretchy shoulder bag "man purse", along with a small bluetooth mini keyboard and the folding reading stand, that allows me to get around without a notebook PC where I used to take one such as on weekend trips, or for hanging out at a coffee shop.

All that praise aside, I am running an extended experiment in switching to a Windows Phone (8.1), Lumia 640 ($80 new) to see if the MS ecosystem is less intrusive, and more productive than Google/Droid, so a companion notebook or tablet/keyboard is part of my travel kit again - not clear to me yet if the new tradeoffs are worth it. I miss some Android apps, and the Padfone X dock integration, but the WP apps/ecosystem is richer than its first few years, and it integrates well with Windows on PC's, and not badly at all with Linux, my preferred PC platfrom.

WP works well for my wife as her first smartphone in switching after years on feature phones, but she is not as "mobile data intensive" as I am. I sort of made her the initial tester with WP (Lumia 635 - $50 new, now on a 640) when we switched to AT&T around the turn of the year, and believe it was a much easier learning curve for her than trying to get her up to speed on Android (took less of my time as her "tech support" I am sure ;^} ). Also, the hardware entry prices are a huge advantage over comparable Android units.

FWIW

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ROC
Pint

Re: Moto Lapdock..

I still have a Lapdock with Bionic (Vzw version of Atrix) as a backup for my Razr HD. I can attach the Razr with extension cables for USB and HDMI, but it is clumsy, and without Webtop (thinking Google applied some pressure after they took over Moto to help their Chrome OS?) it is ugly to boot. I could tweak the DPI resolution to make better use of the 11" screen, but it would still be a phone UI instead of the more elegant Webtop (3 - 2 was kinda cool in a different way, but buggy, and got upgraded to 3 when Moto went from GB to ICS). I keep considering going back to the Bionic/Labdock combo since that could let me travel without a personal PC (but still having to tote the ball-and-chain unit for my job, though).

This Asus unit could be a lot more interesting if one could dual boot to Linux in tablet mode, or switch Android to a a more desktop type UI ala Webtop. CyanogenMod or Ubuntu Phone could also be attractive options. Add in a close-fitting keyboard cover like those for iPad Mini, and put a trackpoint on it (no space-wasting, twitchy touchpad, PLEASE), and I would be all in (well, add a Vzw model, altho my T-Mobile account should be able use the AT&T radios, right?).

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Small wonder, little competition: Asus Chromebook Flip

ROC

Re: I'll wait for..

You will wait forever for those Windows versions on an ARM CPU. Your only "hope" would be Windows 8 RT, and I don't think that is much to hope for...

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ROC

Re: Hmmm (screen resolution)

Actually, as with any other Chromebook I have checked, it can be "bumped" up to a higher resolution, and, as I recall from the store model I checked, your wished-for 1440x900 is the higher res option.

Any of the other models with 1366x768 as "best" resolution have offered 1536x864 (something like that - a weird pair of numbers that must have some technical basis for the same 16:9 ratio for a "wide-screen" video format?) as the high-res option. I used my Samsung 3 in that mode most of the time while I had it - I hate minimal vertical pixels for web pages and text, which is what I mostly look at on computer monitors of any sort, not "video" since I use a TV for that (and they still have those damn letterbox black borders at top and bottom...)..

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HTC One M9 Android smartphone: Like a M8 with a squinty eye

ROC

Re: Time to change

From what I have read, the Nexus 5 and 6 are from different vendors, and nothing evolutionary in the model uptick, so compare carefully.

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Twitter App Graph exposes smartphone spyware feature

ROC

Version Control?

Most apps will check to see if there are earlier (or newer, for that matter) versions during installation to replace code, and to preserve any relevant settings and/or app-specific data.

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Whopping 10TB disks spin out of HGST – plus 3.2TB flash slabs

ROC
Alien

Do they really need to waste helium on this?

Considering the ever-decreasing supply, and its vital uses (MRI scanners being a notable example), this seems wasteful for that last iota of performance vs a more common gas or putting the effort into increasing SSD capacity and performance (probably need helium to manufacture SSD's anyway, but maybe more TB's per helium unit?).

For a "status report":

http://www.decodedscience.com/helium-shortage-situation-update-one-year-later/42314

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T-Mobile FREES AMERICANS to roam world sans terrifying charges

ROC

Re: Enjoy Your Cruise!

This seems to be the financial form...

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Apple KILLER decloaked? Google lovingly unboxes Nexus 7 Android 4.3 slablette

ROC
FAIL

Re: Note to laptop manufacturers...

Higher densities used to be handled easily by WinXP. I am typing this now on an old Dell Latitude D800 that my brother-in-law cast off in my direction since it was dead. I thought to put a new motherboard from eBay in it, and sell it for some "mad money", but once it lit up with the new mobo, I was blown away by the 1920x1200 (16:10/8:5 aspect ratio) screen. I had no idea a 15" inch screen on a 10-year old notebook could have such a high resolution.

The default density was a bit tiny for easy reading, but setting it 125% scaling helped it a lot. Most of the time though I run Linux (Mint 9 based on Ubuntu 10.04) on it, and that works quite well, too.

Then I "go to work" on my employer's shiny new HP Elitebook 2560p, and its 12.5-inch 1366x768 screen feels so constrictive I have to use external monitors to get any use out of it. That replaced a Latitude D630 with 14-inch 1280x800 screen that I would go back to in a heartbeat for actual "mobile" use when no external monitors are readily available.

What's annoying about the work PC situation is that the corporate decision-makers seem to be clueless as to what hinders/facilitates PC productivity. I could have gotten a 14-inch Elitebook (forget the exact model), but it also was restricted to 1366x768. However, my research on HP's site showed there was 1600x900 screen option, and if I got that, and dropped the useless (to me) optical drive, it would have knocked off $100 from the total price for a win-win situation for me and the company, right? NOT - that was not on the buying contract optons list, so no go, and I opted for the smaller HP to at least save my back if not my time. The big corps(e) perpetuate the problem with clueless contracts like that.

I could do a lot of biz work from a tablet now (just not my essential Solaris server terminal sessions), and get higher res, but that is not so nice on smaller screens when the goal is to have as many windows as possible, and big as possible.

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Hmm, I think I'll order an iPad Mini on Amazon ... Oh no I won't

ROC
Meh

Re: Both products are a big fail.

Yeah, I wonder sometimes if I wasted $125 on my Android 4 iPad MIni .... er Archos 80 - about same screen size, same resolution, microSD slot, micro USB, full USB, mini HDMI. Granted it is about twice as thick/heavy, but I can't hold anything that big for long anyway without getting my carpal tunnel aggravated, and it does not matter much since I can prop up the Archos on its trademark built-in kickstand. It does all I want from a non-true tablet - not sure what I would do with a "true" tablet that is bigger and harder to hold, and locked down to Apple's walled garden and costs over 3 times as much. But for the price (even times 2 - got the wife one, and that is all she has taken on several trips now to check email/FaceBook/etc), I don't feel enough pain in the wallet to care about it.

YMMV

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Microsoft opens Windows Phone 8 dev kit to world+dog

ROC

If MS Wants their phones on my employer's network

they have to be remotely manageable like WinMob 6.x was, and like iOS and Android 2.2+ are now - about anything but WP 7.x. And that's 100K employees around the globe.

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Surface RT: Freedom luvin' app-huggers beware

ROC

A Step Up from Chromebook?

Interestingly, on my wanderings yesterday, I tried out both the new Samsung 11.6 " Chromebook (tethered it on my phone with WifiRouter quite easily since it would not connect to BestBuy's store network), then the RT at a MS pop-up store at a nearby mall. I have read a lot of criticisms of the Chromebook concept for its dependency on network connectivity to be of any use, and I have to concur. If I could not tether it, the CrB would be useless on the go.

The RT is almost in that situation, however it does have enough built-in apps to offset that restriction quite well, and, if it can be tethered (need to see if I can grab one long enough at the mall, and not have a crowd looking over my shoulder...), then it does what the CrB can do, plus a lot more (provided the RT version if IE plays nicely with Google's cloud apps).

And I did like the Surface hardware better, especially the clicky keyboard vs the fuzzy keyboard (neither of which will stay closed over the screen on their own per my test and confirmed by the MS "attendant" - Fail!).

Now if I could figure out a way to put an ARM Linux distro on the Surface....

YMMV

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ROC

Re: Useful features

No, no, no - Apple has patented WINGS, not mere wheels.

What were you thinking?

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ROC
Megaphone

Re: What happens.....?

Pretty much like doing that from a Linux PC (which is what I use for personal use on the Web - no Internet Exposer for me, thanks) - you learn to look out for Win exe files, and skip them. No Big Deal.

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ROC

Re: "Office everyday"? @ Big-nosed Pengie

I think it used to be called MS Works ;-)

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The OLPC XO laptop

ROC
Go

Read the "Case Study" of Arahuay Before Opinionating

As posted by "Jansen":

http://wiki.laptop.org/go/OLPC_Peru/Arahuay

I find it impressive in detailing the XO's impact, but it also highlights the importance of structural preparation and support within the country receiving the XO's. There has to be some kind of educational infrastructure and context in which to integrate the XO. These machines cannot just be "thrown" at the students in hopes something magical will happen - it does take supporting effort, and it seems Peru is making that effort, as well as providing valuable feedback to OLPC to improve the XO, which it seems to have taken seriously.

My wife teaches first grade at a North Carolina inner-city school, and had her eyes opened a bit as to what "underprivleged" means in a non-American context. She has kids on welfare with no parental interest (or often even presence) who would be considered "wealthy" by the Peruvian kids who have received XO's with a great deal of gratitude and keen interest.

I doubt a number of her students would be nearly as appreciative or motivated by an XO because they have been spoiled by ready access to technology for purely entertainment purposes even if they don't have decent housing/clothing/medical care/etc by (US "standards"). It is all a matter of context.

We have ordered an XO with the "Give One, Get One" program to see if it could be of use in her context. I can provide the Linux support, and she uses Mint Linux at home on an almost constant basis (strictly as a "Gnome end-user" ;-), so it should be "interesting".

Think outside the box, but focus on the objective here of bringing the enabling technology to those who have not had any such exposure before. The Arahuay example is very instructive in how much can be accomplished when done right. It remains to be seen how sustainable the effort is, and how well it can be replicated in other locales. It needs CONSTRUCTIVE criticism to succeed, and not just nay-saying based on pre-conceived notions.

ROC

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