Friday, September 30, 2005

The TCG now wants your mobile

The EFF has just uncovered a pretty crazy announcement made by the TCG (Trusted computing group, those DRM people behind the TPM) at the CTIA Wireless IT & Entertainment Conference.
Actually, the TCP wants tzo spin off a "working group" called MMobile Phone Work Group, whos task is to adapt TCG technologies to mobile phones. As if that doesnt sound bad, here are a few of the so-called "use cases" that they envision:

The primary goal is to ensure that a mobile device remains locked to a particular network (or network subset, service provider, corporation or (U)SIM) until it is unlocked in an authorized manner.
Read: make it really difficult to overcome SIM locks. Since most (Austrian) carriers dont give you unlock codes for free even after your current contract ends, this sounds really really good! Or, maybe a provider even wants to forbid you that you pass the phone on to somebody else on the same network. If this isnt the death blow for used device sales, what is?

The user wants to securely use an application. I.e., the platform enforces predefined software use policies.
........

Read: Non-TCG certifierd software cannot run all functions of the OS,... . Read the PDF available at their homepage for more alarming details!

Mobile payment is to use mobile Devices to make payment transaction.
This can already be done! Just a little thing to make the TCG easier to accept for the average customer!

And there is even more online! What do you think? Isn't DRM starting to go too far? I personally beleive that this thing is slowly but surely starting to get dangerous for free speech et al. Someone needs to slow the TCG down-after all, it is still us who buys the stuff!

More information is available online. Find the EFF post here:
http://www.eff.org/news/archives/2005_09.php#004014
You can find the information published by the TCG here:
https://www.trustedcomputinggroup.org/groups/mobile

Halo for mobile phones-why unadapted desktop FPS don't work well on handhelds

Recently, Microsoft announced plans to port their FPS Halo to mobile phones. Users immediately went bonkers about the news-hoping that ports of Quake 3 and Counterstrike would follow. ZDoom is comfortable without a touchscreen-so why not try Halo?
In order to understand my concerns you need to look at how the typical FPS is controlled. You use the keyboard to control the figure's movement and actions. The other hand is on the mouse, controlling the field of vision and the crosshair.
This topology works well on a PC or Notebook-but not on a handheld. Handhelds usually don't have enough hardkeys for example(use, zoom, buy, anyone?). Touchscreenless handhelds now disqualify themselves due to the lack of a mouse. Touchscreened boxen arent off much better though. When using the touchscreen for controlling the crosshair, your hand covers parts of the screen allowing enemies to "hide". So, a PC player has a small advantage over a handheld man.
Last but not least, dont forget that a handheld can not store as much map data as a PC...
Halo will probably sell well and can probably also be fun. However, the current FPS control principle is not ideally suited for handhelds - so PC gamers always have advantages over handheld users in multiplayer games. Thus, cross-plattform multiplaying is probably not possible...

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Keyboard sounds-they can give away what you type

People know me from far away if I am working at a computer because I tend to slam the keyboard like an ancient typewriter! While this has already led to loads of people making silly jokes, those keyboard sounds can really be dangerous for your data according to Doug Tygar, a berkeley UC professor!
His gang developed a program that just "listened" to a user pressing the different keys on his keyboard for 10 mintes-and then could automatically identify which key was pressed!
This-of course-opens up an all-new facette of attacks on users. Imagine a devious administrator of an internet cafe identifying all his keyboards and then regenerating data! Or imagine a third party just gathering the sound of a keyboard on a public internet terminal. I am pretty sure that they would have an impressive amount of information pretty fast. Anyways, as of now, there is no countermeasure known. I do not beleive that listening to loud techno or other music will greatly help you out here, as one could theoretically filter the keyboard sounds out. Taking your own keyboard with you is not possible anywhere,... .
What do you think?


Read more here!

Apple Ipod nano-how to handle product flaws

Most of you tend to know my oppinion about ipods-I beleive them to be overpriced and hyped beyond reality! So, I was amazed when the first reports of ipod nanos with imploding screens began to surface. Anyways, the claims were gathered on homepages, and Apple now decided to make a move!
The company announced that it will fix all ipods with such a problem and pushed the blame on the vendor of the screen. A cheap, but working way to keep your own back clean!
Anyways, compare that to Palm Inc's handling of flaws. We had the IIIc, the V series power buttons, T3s with drifting digitizers, all sorts of OS5 stuff with hizzing screens,... . And no reaction!
Lets hope that the hard Windiows Mobile competition(typical PPC quality problem: paint going off, how bad) will teach them better!

Read more here

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

UniCMD - now it's freeware

UniCMD, one of the best file managers for Palm OS is now freeware:

It supports RAM, ROM, VFS, launching applications, viewing many file types, f. e. JPEG/exif, HTML with the internal viewer, viewing every file a viewer is installed for (file associations), backup (manual or scheduled), encryption, editing TXT, ZIP-compression, and much more.

Homepage & download: http://www.unicmd.de

The Treo with Windows is coming - 2006

Few minutes ago I received an anonymous mail with the newsletter from PluggedIn, the development ressource of PalmOne as attachment (this person doesn't want its name to be published as his PluggedIn account could be suspended):

Dear Developer,

Today, Palm and Microsoft. announced a powerful, strategic alliance to bring the Palm experience to the Windows Mobile. platform, aimed at growing the smartphone marketplace. This is exciting news for the Palm developer community because were now offering our customers a choice of two great platforms.

If youd like to take advantage of this collaboration, to expand your solution to Windows Mobile, please log into PluggedIn, and go to My Account to modify your existing user profile. You can indicate your interest in the Windows Mobile platform, as well as update your company details, contact, and other development-related information. Current user profiles enable PluggedIn to better meet the needs of Palm's developer community.

Development resources for the Treo on Windows Mobile will be posted to PluggedIn once the product is commercially available, in early calendar 2006.

We look forward to our continuing partnership.

Sincerely,

Paul D. Leeper
Director, Developer Relations



Palm and Microsoft Join to Bring the Palm Experience to Windows Mobile; Verizon Wireless First to Market with New Treo Smartphone

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 26, 2005 - Mobile-computing pioneer Palm, Inc. (Nasdaq: PALM) and software pioneer Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) today announced a strategic alliance to accelerate the smartphone market segment with a new device for mobile professionals and businesses. Palm has licensed the Microsoft. Windows Mobile. operating system for an expanded line of Treo smartphones, the first of which will be available on Verizon Wireless' national wireless broadband network. The news was revealed in a press conference with Ed Colligan, president and chief executive officer of Palm, Inc.; Bill Gates, chairman and chief software architect of Microsoft Corp.; and Denny Strigl, president and chief executive officer of Verizon Wireless.

The collaboration gives customers more choices and marks a dedicated effort to deliver one of the world's most innovative smartphone solutions on the software platform favored by many businesses. Treo smartphones combine the hallmark Palm experience of a full-featured mobile phone with email, messaging, web access9 and organizational software -- in an attractive, compact design. The new Treo smartphone takes advantage of the Windows Mobile 5.0 platform in multiple ways, offering Outlook Mobile, Office Mobile and Internet Explorer Mobile built into the smartphone, as well as direct access to Exchange Server 2003 for mobile access to information.2 In addition, the new Treo will operate with Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess service, the largest high-speed wireless broadband network in the United States. Verizon Wireless expects the new Treo smartphone to be available to its customers in early 2006.

"We've long believed that the future of personal computing is mobile computing, and our collaboration with Microsoft is a historic step in delivering that vision to a larger market," said Colligan. "We're confident customers will see a differentiated smartphone that delivers our world-class usability on Microsoft's flexible and robust Windows Mobile operating system. We collaborated with Verizon Wireless first because of its high-speed wireless network and growing footprint of BroadbandAccess cities."

"This is a landmark alliance that will help businesses remain on the cutting edge of competitiveness," Gates said. "Demand for accessing information on mobile devices is soaring, and businesses want a low-cost, scalable solution. We're excited to team with Palm and Verizon Wireless to deliver a winning Windows Mobile solution that connects professionals to their critical information while on the go."

The Treo smartphone on Windows Mobile is a CDMA-based phone targeted for the U.S. market and takes advantage of Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess service on its EV-DO network with download speeds averaging 400-700 kilobits per second. Today, about half the U.S. population, in more than 84 metropolitan areas and in hundreds of airports across the nation, can access download speeds comparable to DSL or cable-modem connections. Verizon Wireless has been expanding its BroadbandAccess service area steadily since its debut in the fall of 2003.

"The new Treo smartphone running Windows Mobile will highlight the speed and power of our BroadbandAccess service," said Strigl. "The Treo will deliver fast downloading of email and attachments as well as quick access to critical-business information, providing businesses with a great return on investment. Our strong relationships with Microsoft and Palm continue to provide real value for our customers."

The new Treo smartphone is powered by an Intel processor and joins Palm's award-winning family of Treo smartphones, which includes the Treo 600 and Treo 650, both offered today to Verizon Wireless customers.

The Palm Experience on Windows Mobile

During the press conference, the companies demonstrated the Palm experience now brought to life on Windows Mobile. The audience saw a sampling of Palm's award-winning hardware design integrated thoughtfully with a rich Palm software suite, including the ability to:
  • Contact someone quickly from the Today Screen and choose between home, office or mobile numbers, or select email or SMS. With only two letters entered, a customer can find a record from among thousands of contacts;
  • Reach people most often called via photo speed dials visible as a band of images on the Today Screen;
  • Decline a call with a friendly SMS, signaling "In a meeting" or "Talking with the boss" instead of simply ignoring the call; and
  • Rewind, delete or fast-forward through work or cell phone voicemail with familiar and consistent on-screen icons.
About Palm, Inc.

Palm, Inc., a leader in mobile computing, strives to put the power of computing in people's hands so they can access and share their most important information. The company's products for consumers, mobile professionals and businesses include Palm. handheld computers, Palm Treo smartphones, Palm LifeDrive mobile managers, as well as software, services and accessories.

Palm products are sold through select Internet, retail, reseller and wireless operator channels throughout the world, and at Palm Retail Stores and Palm online stores (www.palm.com/store).

More information about Palm, Inc. is available at www.palm.com.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their potential.

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 47.4 million voice and data customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.

###


) 2005 Palm, Inc. All rights reserved. | palm.com| PluggedIn Web Site


What do you think about this?

Monday, September 26, 2005

Mobile phone virii now attack the desktop

Symbian users already know and loath them-virii for Series 60. Up to now, the damage they caused was limited(a few MMS and data loss AFAIK), the desktop PC was not affected. I actually saw Commwarior in action(asleep on a Nokia), but didn't have an MMC card to "capture" it and offer it here for people who are interested! However, this has now changed with Sybos/Cardtrap.A acording to ITworld.
This trojan horse is a pack of different virii that spread themselves around to other Symbian devices. However, the main danger is that it installs onto memory cards and then attempts to attack PC's where the memory card is mounted(launches a worm).
Well, my defence is simple. I keep Bluetooth on my SX1 off or at least in invisible mode and I dont acceopt and files beamed ovwer to me in an unmotivied fashion. People owning a Treo or other PalmOS smartphone can however sleep in peace-we still dont have a real PalmOS virus!
Did you ever see one of these things in action? Do you have a copy to share?

Sunday, September 25, 2005

New summary on TamsPalm.de

It's Sunday again and the new article is available. Just take a look at TamsPalm.de!

Friday, September 23, 2005

The Treo 700w-why I beleive that it will have a hard time

Engadget just announced the first real images of a Treo 700w. Immediately, PalmOS users fired off rants about how this would kill our OS.

Anyways, lets stop bickering for a moment. Lets recapitulate what made the Treo family big-the simplicity of use and the OS. Treos were the only boxen that ran Palm OS and were readily available! Thus, almost all PalmOS users wanting a smart phone went for the Treo. Eventually, a cult began to develop similar to what we currently see over at the ipods.

Now compare that to the WinMobile section. WinMobile phones are available in a variety of styles and sizes, running different versions of WinCE and covering an extreme range of prices(from HTC magician to whatever). The HTC retails for 50€ oer in Europe-and has better specs than the Treo. It is sturdily built(I had one in my hand recently). The Treo 700w will cost at least 400€-and I am sure that HTC already has the contracts with carriers to keep them aboard...

Palm always got away with quality issues as they were the only PalmOS stuff maker and since platform switching is extremely expensive due to all the registered software. But-switching from one PocketPC to another is easy. So, a dissatisfied user simply discards the device, but can keep all the infrastructure.
Overall, I beleive that Palm will have a hard time beeing succesful with the 700w using its old strategies due to fierce competition. Ther main danger I see is that Palm may loose a lot of money on their Windows expedition-money better invested into the PalmOS line!

What do you think?

Treo 700w!!!

Well, the name was a little off, but it turns out that the new Windows Mobile Treo is indeed real. Engadget has pictures and some insight on its capabilities.

Will this be the end of Palm? I dont think so. I have heard there may be a Palm OS version of this device with slighty better hardware. Save the best hardware for the best OS, way to go Palm.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

High color resolution screens-what the Windows Mobile team has to say

Recently, LCDs became available that can do 18bit color. Of course, some handset makers implemented such screens into their products, however, many of them ignored the new technology.
The Windows Mobile team has a nice summary of the problems with high color resolutions in general and the 18bit color resolution in specific. While there is a lot of blah-blah in the M$-sponsored article, it sitll brings over its message very well.
http://blogs.msdn.com/windowsmobile/archive/2005/09/07/462187.aspx
How do you feel about 18bit color screens?

Palm sued over quality problems

Recently, Palm(One) was target of quite a few lawsuits over badly designed/manufactured products which weren't repaired. Now, Palms Treo linegot under fire too-I was pretty sure that that would have to happen eventually, but that is a different story!
Anyways, I loved the following part of the lawsuit document:
Replacement of defective Treo 600 phones with defective and/or “refurbished” Treo 600 phones - creating a cycle of defective product - whereby owners continue to receive defective products until either they tire of the process or their warranty runs out.

This reminds me of my IIIc, which was replaced with a box that failed right out of the box(as if that isnt perfect leetspeak;))! This one was replaced by another fuxated machine, and another one, ..... . And this is where I see a problem. The problem is not returning repaired units(I wanted my original T3 to be repaired instead of exchanged as it had a Sony screen), but the problem is just returning a somehow repaired unit to any customer.
I understand that Palm must work efficiently, but if they want to save cash on customer care, they should create quality products that don't need service after all! We had power button problems since the V series, humming screens since the TT(altough mine was silent), cases falling apart on the IIIc, instabile software on the german IIIxe,... .
If a PalmOS freak and developer seriously evaluates a Windows Mobile handheld and Visual Studio, something must be wrong. Doesn't the company ever learn its lesson?

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

A fleet of new Windows Mobile boxen

As if Brad's announcement didn't taste bad enough-the German c't now reports about a herd of new WM5 boxen. Since little is known about these, this article has a more-less tabular style:

Asus MyPal A632
The FCC was the news leak here. This MyPal runs Windows Mobile 5 PocketPC edition on a 416Mhz PXA272. It has 64MB of RAM, 128MB of Flash and an integrated GPS unit.
Asus MyPal A636
This essentially is an A632 with Bluetooth 1.2 and WiFi. Price and release date of these machines isn’t known yet!
XDA Mini S
This essentially is a re-branded HTC device for the German carrier O2. It will run WM5 on a 200Mhz OMAP850. It has 64MB of RAM, 128MB of Flash, a miniSD slot, a keyboard, WiFi, a 1.3MP camera with flash and an integrated GSM radio. It will ship for 600€ in October.
XDA phone
The XDA phone runs Windows Mobile 5 Smartphone(read:no touchscreen) on a 200Mhz OMAP850. It has 64MB of RAM, 64MB of Flash, a miniSD slot, a 1.3MP camera and an integrated GSM radio. It will ship for 500€ in October.

It looks like WM5 is getting fatter and fatter. Garmin won't like the new GPS MyPals, while the XDA's will go for Treos and other smartphones. Will the PalmOS survive? If you posed this question a week ago, I would have said for sure. But now, who knows what will happen. If GSPDA/Hagenuk, Qool and the rest of the pack don't get carriers on-board, the show could be over soon.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Treo 670 confirmed!!!

The Treo 670 has been confirmed by an anonymous source, and from the info I received, I am inclined to believe it is true. This device will run WM 5.0, and will have 64MB of onboard memory. Hopefully there will be an announcement by Palm regarding this soon, so there are no doubts in your minds about its existence.

This news coming soon after the Access announcement is actually a good time. Had this device been released before the announcement, it would have only taken away more hope for the future of the PalmOS, but with Access now in control, we know that this great mobile OS will live on.

Any comments and questions can be directed to the comments section below.

Note, Tam's warning on speculation applies here, as I have not seen the device, but I trust in the validity of the source.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

TamsPalm.de: New summary online!

As every week a short information for our German-speaking readers: The last week's articles have been summarized and translated. Just take a look at TamsPalm.de!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Tungsten X and Zire 22-more news from an insider

TamsPalm just received the following specifications off a trusted source that wants to stay anonymous:
TamsPalm has not seen any of the two devices and wasn’t able to verify the specifications! So, please treat all analysis below as SPECULATION

I just heard from a reliable source that the TX's specs will be:

128MB NVFS, SD Card, USB 2.0, no camera, no voice record, no vibrate alarms, 320x480, 312Mhz PXA 272, WiFi, BT, Wifi and BT can be used at the same time.

Battery Life: max brightness. wifi connected. bt connected and music playing and warfare inc running (processor intensive app) and proc at 312 MHz is 2hrs and 30minutes!!!

The name TX might not be TX.

The Z22's specs will be:
160 x 160. Garnet. No SD. No Sound Output. No Vibrate. No LED alarm. No camera. No voice record. 200 MHz PXA 255 (processor info is questionable). 32 MB NVFS. The battery life w/ full brightness is 13 hours.


Lets have that sink in for a moment. The Zire 22 doesn’t have a camera, and now, what will happen to the Zire 31? Actually, I dare to say nothing! The Zire 31 and the 22 seem to target entirely different markets!
Now, we’ll start off by looking at the battery life of the two units side-to-side. A Zire 31 survived about 3.5 h in a CNET torture test-this may lead to about 5h of average usage time. However, the Zire 22 reaches 13 h if the information above is rue-ah, the old IIIc days!
Now, who needs such a long run time? The answer is easy: businesses. I have heard of many companies still sticking to fleets of monochrome Visors or other handhelds just for the long battery life that these boxen offer! Of course, the Acceca Meazura is an alternative-but look at the price! 400$ is a lot for a small company-if you have to buy such a box 11 times, that’s 4k bucks! So, the Zire 22 IMHO is not targeted at end consumers but rather at businesses-I wouldn’t be surprised if it had an m5xx st6yle reflective screen that is visible in sunlight... .
The Tungsten X-little to say here! Actually, we knew almost all of this already before. The lack of vibrating alarms, voice record,.. Probably is due to the T5 case and form factor requirements-however, I never quite understood how the TT could have all the stuff integrated and stay so small according to Peter Strobel. The battery life is pretty decent for dual wireless operation-please keep in mind that you will usually not use both radios in connected mode(transmitting data) and that you usually don’t have the screen set to more than half brightness!
What do you think? Which of the two will you get?

Friday, September 16, 2005

New Rumor about Tungsten X and Zire 22

A few days ago Palm published its new desktop version Palm Desktop 4.2 for Windows. It contains also a reference how to do a hardreset at Palm devices. There are two "unknown" files: TX.HTML and Z22.HTML. This means: yes, Zire 22 and Tungsten X exist !! Two images contain further information: they show where to put the reset pin in, and of course the back side of those Palms. Now Palm has removed the new desktop version from its server.



Specifications:

(Zire 22)

  • 160x160 px color screen
  • 32 MB RAM
  • no SD slot
  • 99 USD
(Tungsten X, confirmed in the German Palm board "Nexave")

  • 320x480 px color screen
  • 128 MB RAM
  • no internal drive
  • Bluetooth
  • Wireless LAN
  • 299 USD
  • Palm OS 5.4.9 Garnet
Download "How To Reset Zire 22 / Tungsten X": http://www.tamoggemon.com/blog/contents/2005/September/agrumor_tx_z22/rumor.zip

Podcasts of the week

Over the week there are a number of PDA related podcasts. I listen to the 1src and Palmaddict casts regularly, but I also frequent many of the other sites. Alan Grassia has a great podcast over at Grassnet, and a great list of all of the available Palm podcasts here.

Of course, their is a special occasion for me mentioning podcasts, and that is this weeks PalmAddict podcast. I was again a guest on the podcast, but this not being horribly special in itself, I must say that it was a group panel podcast. We had Tyler, Jeff Kirvin, Alan Grassia, myself, and JAmerican from the 1src forums. As you will see if you take a listen, we managed to stay on topic fairly well. We talked about things from Access to SkinUI, and received many good insights on the current events. Take a listen and a look at the shownotes here if you want to know more.

As a sidenote, Jeff was bashing Clies in the post podcast chat. Any Clies owners wishing to bash, maim, or otherwise disfigure Jeff can feel free to do so.

Note: The above statement and its charges can be taken literally or figuratively. I hold no responsibility in the event that any Jeffs get bashed or maimed, but please remember this is Jeff Kirvin. I would not want to cause mass Jeff hate around the world and end up with a number of dead Jeffs on the streets.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Return of the Palm Tungsten T|X, and a new Zire?

PalmInfoCenter is reporting that Palm is discontinuing the T5, and also seems to be on the verge of releasing a replacement for this device. Rumor has it that this will be the Tunsten X, as some have termed the device, rumors of which have been spreading across the internet for a couple months now. The article also mentions that a new Zire, the Zire 22, may be ready for release.

You can read the full article here.

Thoughts, Questions, Comments? Head for the link to the comments section below.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

BlackBerry 8870 specs leaked

A T-Mobile austria representative has just confirmed that a new BlackBerry is indeed expected very soon! However, she didnt know number, date of arrival or more about the features!

Dont ask me if this is true or not. I never ever used a BlackBerry and doint really plan to either. However, a member of BlackBerryForums.org called athreya has just released the following information:

The new BB 8700 series will be out soon. Highlights are:

1. EVDO +BB and EDGE + BB device for Verizon (Sprint) and Cingular respectively.
2. GPS and IM builtin (Carrier fee applies)
3. faster processor + 64MB RAM
4. Better - more native - attachment viewing
5. No camera, no wifi, no VOIP.
6. Classic form factor + sleeker design, speakerphone
7. In testing now: Due out in Oct/ Nov from Verizon, Cingular and Sprint/Nextel. (I will have one in hand in about two weeks from now)


Like the 7290, dont forget you heard it from me, first. I have shared everything i know.
-find the info here
Overall, these specs look realistic for me from a Palm man's point of view! What really confuses me is the integrated GPS-if it really works like on the new IPAQ phone, Garmin seems to have a problem! The machine not having a touchscreen-however-is still the main deal breaker for me.
Do you beleive that this device is gonna come soon? RIM recently started to give away BlackBerries for free in some promo actions-who knows if they arent trying to clear stock...

Monday, September 12, 2005

It really cant hurt!

"An editorial on the PalmSource acquisition by Access" (Its a long one, so if you dont like long, skip over this)

The past few days there have been many stories, as well as much speculation floating around regarding this acquisition. Some people are praising the move, and a few (though not many at all) do not think it is a great idea. The naysayers are probably more concerned with the fact that Access bought PalmSource at an 83% premium, which I would be most people would think is alot. I would have to agree. At the heart of this matter though is the question, "What does this mean to the Palm community?". I will try to explore the motivations for the acquisition, the current state of PalmSource, what could happen, as well as my personal opinion regarding the sale of the company.

Access is a fairly large company. Their product line before buying PalmSource was mainly limited to the highly successful Netfront browser, as well as some imbedded software that ran on mostly mobile devices. For this reason I would title them a primarily mobile company. Our good friend Jeff Kirvin believes that the Netfront web browser may in fact be on more devices than Firefox, which certainly means that the company is making alot of money somewhere. Obviously they would also need this much money to buy PalmSource for the 300+ million they paid. That said, many people have spoken of Access as having "always wanted an OS". Being the mobile company that they are, this makes alot of sense, because by buying PalmSource, they dont just give themselves a PDA operating system, but also two different smartphone operating systems, if they decide to pursue Cobalt. I have no doubt they will continue to sell Netfront to PPC owners and manufacturers, because they already dominate this section of the market, and would not want to lose that revenue. Well, Access has their OS, and now the most important thing is that they treat it well.

The current state of PalmSource is not something that most would want to hear. If anyone had looked lately, it would seem that they had taken their focus off of Cobalt, the next generation Os that should succeed Garnet, and put their sights towards Palm on Linux. What this means to the user is precisely nothing. When I say that I dont mean what that sounds like. When I say nothing, I mean that users have not seen a handheld running a new PalmSource OS on any handhelds. We have seen nothing. Its like Willy Wonkas chocolate factory, for many years nothing came out. For a little background, all new versions of the PalmOS since 5.4 have really been developed by Palm inc. Palm INC has taken over development of Garnet entirely, leaving PalmSource in the dust. With the list of PalmSource licensees dwindling (after Sony and Tapwave dropped out), there was very little hope that the company would be able to pull themselves from the hole they were digging.

Onto the future state of the OS (This section should be a little brighter). Access has bought PalmSource, and they have done a couple intelligent things. The first was letting the programmers generally go about their business. They announced publicly that they were going to continue POL (Palm on Linux) development, and they have also said that Cobalt development is not out of the question. With these two OSs being developed, and most importantly backed, we have assurance that we may once again see our favorite OS on a better device someday. If I was Access, I would have them release something to hardware companies in the near future. Either a cleaned up version of Garnet with some new features, or a separate OS such as Cobalt. They really need something to compete with current WM OSs.

Now, to the point of this article, which is essentially that "It really cant hurt". After seeing what PalmSource currently was doing, and the fact that it seemed they were heading nowhere, I have to come to this conclusion. The acquisition gives them backing by a stabile company, as well as a company with some good programmers who may be able to give better leadership and support. Although some dont like it, I really dont see how this could hurt PalmSource or the Palm community, because frankly, the situation couldnt have been much worse.

What do you think? Direct comments and questions to the comments section.

Web Browsing on a Palm - Opera Review

Today I review Opera Mini - the J2ME version for mobile phones. J2ME means it has some restrictions - no downloads, no support for local HTML pages on cards, ... But more about that later. There are two versions - one for LoRes and one for HiRes. I test the HiRes version.

The interface

This is the start page which can NOT be changed. There are some hyperlinks from TV2, a TV channel in Norway which provides Opera Mini, a web search and a history of visited pages. In the menu are commands for entering an URL, viewing and editing bookmarks, settings, submitting a bug to Opera Software and a help. The help is, like the whole program, availible in English and Norwegian. There are not much settings to configure: For example, you can choose whether to load images and the quality of images, font smoothing and the language. Font smoothing makes the font smaller - but it will get VERY, VERY slow.

Using Opera

I tested it intensive a week ago, it worked well and fast - today is very slow, but this should be my fault because the wireless access point that connects me to the internet isn't very near and I had to do a hardreset. In my test it could display all web pages I opened. I didn't try flash pages (and they won't work I think) or pages that are *very* difficult to display but all pages I normally go to.

Long pages are no problems, Opera (or the proxy server) splits them into small parts. Images are no problems, but tables or frames aren't shown. Opera has "SSR" (small screen rendering). With this technology you haven't to scroll horizontally because all pages are as broad as the screen. Even forms are availible and so I could post answers on boards.

One thing I liked especially: The Java VM had full support for the 5-way-navigator (also known as D-pad) like Treo 600, 650 or Tungsten T5 f. e. You don't need a stylus because you can handle almost ALL functions with the 5-way-navigator - dialogues, links, buttons, checkboxes, ... For me (Tungsten C) it's something special.

Although there are some good functions - it is J2ME - a language for mobile phones, and this language has restrictions on mobile phones: it doesn't support cards, flash memory, bluetooth, internal databases like contacts or SMS. So this version of Opera doesn't support downloads, uploads or HTML files on cards. There aren't much J2ME applications that support cards or file sysytems, but I think they are NOT impossible. IBM WebSphere Environment supports card operations.

My results

This ís a good idea - for owners of mobile phones and Palms, but there could still be a "true" version for Palm OS. The Opera CEO says that they don't know if there will be a version for Palm OS. So we have to wait and use Opera Mini. It isn't bad and displays many pages better and faster than Web Browser or Web Pro. Nevertheless it isn't the only browser I use - think about NetFront or Picsel Browser - they have SSR, are fast(er than Web Pro), too, support downloads, uploads, ...

Download: http://www.nexave.de/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=2623
J2ME Runtime: http://www.palm.com/us/support/jvm/download.html

Web Browsing on a Palm - UPDATE

"The current Web browser situation for the Palm is a catastrophe", says Tam Hanna, I say "there is no real legal way to get a usable web browser". All browsers I know have problems here and problems there. There are some free or buyable browsers like Eudora, PocketLink, Palmscape, Xiino - nothing special.

In the next weeks, I'll use several browsers, every browser for a week or so and review them here. After all tests I'll compare them and post the results. I'm going to test:

  • Web Browser 2.0
  • Web Pro 1.0
  • Web Pro 3.5
  • Blazer 4.x
  • NetFront 3.1
  • Picsel Browser 1.0
  • Opera (Mini) 1.0
  • Xiino
Do you know other browsers I could test?

UPDATE: I think that I'll test another, not so famous browser called "iPanel". It seems that it doesn't support HiRes because it's already two years old. But it is fast, faster than some other, new browsers.

Zodiac DAA cracked?

A great Zodiac blog, ZodAttack, is reporting that the DAA has been cracked, and now all users can download the patched version and run unsigned programs. What this means in actuality is that if this gets widespread, it will make it alot easier for developers to create programs that run on the Zodiac hardware, as they wont have to get them signed, and they wont have to find a way to bypass the DAA themselves. All around, this is a good development.

Please note that TamsPalm doesnt support breaking DRMed content. The DAA is merely the key to using the Zodiac hardware with unsigned applications. Not many new Zodiac apps will be signed in the future.

I wont link directly to the download, but here is a link to the article at ZodAttack.

Media Players for the Palm, Hands on Review!

You may have read my first look on Media Players for the Palm OS. I was not able to get a review copy of MMPlayer, and so this will be a comparison of Kinoma and TCPMP. Its a little late, mainly because I have been putting it off. The information is pretty much up to date though, as neither of the programs have really changed.

What will follow is a hands on review of each program, its true purpose, and then my overall pick for the best media player. I will start with TCPMP.

The Core Pocket Media Player (TCPMP)
TCPMP is thee newcomer in the world of media on the Palm. It has been around for a little more than three months. The Palm version is based on the same core as the PPC version (originally called Betaplayer), and so it came out as a fast and heavily optimized player. Fortunately for us, it didnt stop there. It can handle most major audio and video codecs, with the exception of WMA. Because of licensing problems, the AAC plugin cannot be stored on Corecodecs servers, but it is available (on servers in countries where it is legal) through links in a couple threads on their website.


The user interface of this player is very basic. It has a play button, fast forward and rewind buttons, a fullscreen button, a prefs button, and a slider. The beauty of the UI is that everything is below the hood, so to speak. Underneath that prefs button are all of the options for functionality. In the prefs menu are options to control speed, a/v sync, video controls, and many other things.

In any benchmark possible, you would find that this program is fast. I must say that it is faster than Kinoma or MMPlayer in respects to playing media at high bitrates. Again, I have to push the fact that this player is very good for video and audio, and does nothing else.

Kinoma Media Player
Kinoma Media Player is a different type of player than TCPMP. It has been around for many years, and has gone through many major revisions. Until the release of TCPMP, it was almost unrivaled in media with its latest version. Some of its features include media organization, an inviting interface, and a large selection of methods to get media onto your handheld.

One you get your hands on this player you realize that it offers more than meets the eye. One of the things that did this for me was the album art that showed up when I started listening to an audio clip available on their website. In addition to this, it is the only media player that can play 3 unique types of media. These types of media are 3D objects, panoramas, and interactive guides. All of these were developed from the ground up by Kinoma, and they have worked to get their media formats up on the net. There are numerous videos in their format, as well as smaller numbers of the other types of media.

Overall, they are both really great players. Kinomas player, along with their separate converter, can handle high quality video with faster handhelds. As I have said, its biggest benefits are in its other media capacilities, as well as its music support with album pictures. TCPMP is the king of all dedicated video players. A dedicated developer, and a very dedicated fan base create a great program that can handle most modern video formats.

I have both of these programs on my device, and can definitely see how they are used for very different things.

Comments and questions can be directed to the comments section.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

News from TamsPalm.de

Just a short message for all German-speaking readers: The new summary is available at TamsPalm.de!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

The big demoscene FAQ

Just in case anyone ever wondered about the demoscene:
http://tomaes.32x.de/text/faq.php
This page has loads of interesting information about how the demo scene developed, about important groups, web sites and many more! Definitely a worthwile read!
By the way, there is a nice load of PalmOS demos-some younger, some older. It really is time that Palm/some other company would host another demo making competition!

Access spokesman speaks up

Recently, PalmSource was aquired by Access Corporation. Now, a spokesman of the new mother company has spoken up over at CNET's-here is a link to the article:
http://news.com.com/PalmSource+sale+wont+kill+Palm+OS/2100-1041_3-5857082.html?part=rss&tag=5857082&subj=news
To cut a long story short, the spokesman did not say much new, but a lot of good stuff. First of all, the PalmOS is not dead! Access will continue working on PalmOS on Linux and even plans to revisit Cobalt in some way or the other.
And, last but not least, Netfront will be integrated into Garnet-whatever that means! So, maybe Access is starting to see the need of current PalmOS device owners and wants to do something against them leaving the platform, which is a good step into the right direction if you ask me! Also, NetFront will be the default browser for Cobalt and POS on Linux. What that means for PalmSource's current, very nice Cobalt web browser cannot be determined currently. Lets just hope NetFront will be better!
How do you feel after this statement?

Friday, September 09, 2005

PalmSource aquired by Access Co(Netfront dudes)

PalmSource has been aquired by Access-for an incredible price. Indeed, the rumor mill was hard at work quite some time, but the mentioned company was wrong.
Now this came as a surprise. A software company that produces portable applications purchasing an OS maker? Indeed, it is difficult to see a benefit for Access-unless you look at their software portfolio. The company does more than just NetFront. It also has a ready menu application for interactive handsets. And this is where PalmOS will come in!
Currently, each product needs to be ported from platform to platform for each licencee. Now, Palm OS for Linux allows Access to offer licencees a complete solution. Why get an OS at A, a web browser at B and a game at C, if you can have all the stuff from one vendor. Less compatibility issues, less problems... . PalmSource provides an everywhere OS(which the Linux core of PalmOS makes it-I beleive that porting away from ARM is not really a problem if the Linux kernel already runs on the platform). Access provides communications programs(PalmSource has a few nice preograms for cobalt already, they could be enhanced with Access's technologies).
So, Access and PalmSource definitely make a good team. Both companies work in the handset sector, and both have their individual licencees. Access has loads of PalmOS experience, so the company already knows the OS they're buying. Also, the company worked together with Sony while the Clies were going big. Thus, they know a lot about the way the Clie concept was designed. Overall, if PalmOS on Linux ships(I am pretty sure about this), we should be prepared to see Access and PalmSource running fast!
What do you think?

Newsflash!!!!! PalmSource will be bought by ACCESS

Wow, this is a surprise. In a world where everything is predicted, this sure came quick, and nobody saw it coming. It is official though, PalmSource, the company that makes the PalmOS, will be aquired by ACCESS, a PalmOS software company that makes the Netfront browsers, as well as the core for the browser found on many newer Palms.

I woke up with this sitting on the front page of 1src and many other sites, so I wont try to decide who broke the story. It is found on PalmSources own website here.

What will this mean for Palm users? In my personal opinion, I believe this is a good move. Access already had a small stake in the Palm world, and now they have a larger one. They are further rooted in the handheld market by their work in the WM sector. I believe the combination of a strongly backed company with a steady revenue from multiple sources will help development as they continue to work on the new Palm on Linux variant.

PalmSource home page
Access home page

Any questions or comments can be put in the comments section, and as always, thanks for reading TamsPalm.

P.S. Dont expect this to be our only article on the issue.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

The Fossil Wrist Watch goes to the internet

Ever since David Zucker bought himself a WristPDA, I was planning to get it connected to the network by porting over libraries from, my old Palm V running OS 4.1. The PalmOS network files are optional, and can be excluded if a licencee beleives it to be a good idea. Since those files-however-are created by PalmSource and not Fossil, backporting them may be successful.
Indeed, a 1src user now succeeded at the idea of moving the TCP stack and accompanying files over. Look here:
http://www.1src.com/forums/showthread.php?t=95842
It looks as if his handheld works well. However, he has not yet tested any communication apps. I personally beleive that the files he used are not enough though, and ripped the following files of my Palm V with OS 4.1:
I dont own a WristPDA-so test this on your own responsibility! A hard reset is possible, so better have a good backup!

  • Cmd-nettrace.prc
  • Cmd-ping.prc
  • Connection.prc
  • Connection_enUS.prc
  • DefConnection2DBVSeries_enUS.pdb
  • DefConnection2DB_enUS.pdb
  • ExgLocal Library-locl.prc
  • ExgLocal Library-locl_enUS.prc
  • Loopback NetIF.prc
  • Lz77 Library.prc
  • Mail.prc
  • Mail_enUS.prc
  • Net Library.prc
  • NetSync.prc
  • NetSync_enUS.prc
  • Network.prc
  • Network_enUS.prc
  • PADHTAL Library.prc
  • Pdi Library.prc
  • Pdi Library_enUS.prc
  • PPP NetIF.prc
  • PPP NetIF_enUS.prc
  • SLIP NetIF.prc
  • SLIP NetIF_enUS.prc

AFAIK, installing all these files at once(beam them over if necceccary) should equip the Fossil with a fully-fledged TCP/IP stack! Please keep me posted if the files work for you!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

"Ringo Pro": Review, part 2

In part 1 of my review I told you about all the functions that "Ringo Pro" offers. Now let's see if the program works properly.

The big testing
Thank God we have an ISDN-telephone at home. That means: I have 3 different phone numbers to call the Treo. I tested "Ringo Pro" with these 3 numbers, let's call them NR1, NR2 and NR3.
  • I added NR1 as a "Ringo Friend". As ringtone I selected "Outcast-Hey Ya" and I picked a picture, let's call it Pic1.
  • NR2 is in no special group and no "friend". The default ringtone is "Gritty Shaker" from the Ocean's 11 soundtrack. Default picture is Pic2
  • NR3 is in the "Private" Group. For this group I selected "U2-Vertigo" as ringtone and used Pic3.


Now I took the 3 phones we have and called the Treo from each phone.
  • Call from NR1: The Treo plays "Hey Ya" and shows the right picture
  • Call from NR2: Treo plays "Gritty Shaker", shows Pic2.
  • Call from NR3: Treo plays "Vertigo" and shows Pic3.
So far, "Ringo" does it's work very well. Now I wanted to test the "Don't disturb"-functionality. I activated the corresponding checkbox for NR1 ("Ringo Friend") and NR3 ("Ringo Group"). And I did some calls again:
  • Call from NR1: The Treo rings, playing the polyphonic tone selected in the built-in ringtone application. The right picture is shown.
  • Call from NR2: Treo plays "Gritty Shaker", shows Pic2.
  • Call from NR3: Treo again plays the polyphonic ringtone, shows Pic3.
Result: Something is wrong with the "Don't disturb" function. The Treo rings, but it shouldn't! As a last test, I set the ringtone for the "friend" and for the "Ringo Group" to default. Perhaps the Treo doesn't ring now. Testing again:
  • Call from NR1: No sound comes out of the Treo
  • Call from NR2: Treo plays "Gritty Shaker".
  • Call from NR3: Treo doesn't ring
As you can see, the "Don't disturb" option only works if no individual ringtone is selected for "Ringo Friends" or "Ringo Groups". But this is the only bug I found.

Conclusion
"Ringo Pro" offers a lot of options to make your Treo ring the way you like. Depending on the size of your MP3-collection you can choose from hundreds or thousands of different ringtones. By using "Ringo Friends" and "Ringo Groups" you can assign an individual ringtone to every person and/or group of your address book. The only negative thing I found is the problem with the "Don't disturb" option.
I don't know if all these functions are worth 29,95 USD. Some other ringtone programs are cheaper. But they need additional MP3-player software like PocketTunes or AeroPlayer. So the price of "Ringo Pro" is not exorbitant high.
I would give "Ringo Pro" 4 points out of 5. One point is missing because the "Don't disturb" option and the "Ringtone Mixer" do not work perfectly. But I can recommend the programm to all Treo users who want more than just the built-in tones.

BugMe-the enhanced note pad

Since the arrival of the m505, I always wished that Palm's note pad app would support multiple colors. A dedicated drawing program usually was too cumbersome to use for a quick sketch. Electric Pocket seems to have the solution for me-BugMe+.
The program starts up in a list view displaying tiny thumbnails of all the notes currently on the handheld(click all images for 480x320 versions):

Category filters are available, the 5way navigator works flawlessly on my T3. Creating notes is easy-hit the new button or the hardkey assigned to BugMe+. The note editing view is really simple:

But-do not let the easy user interface confuse you. The program has loads of different drawing tools and supports up to 24 colors and 6 line widths. The icon at the top of the app enables you to return to the program used before.
The note drawing works at an acceptable speed-I believe Note Pad to be a tiny bit faster. BugMe contains a few predefined symbols that can be inserted easily:

JPEG importing didnt work on my T3. However, the program also contains a screengrabber that can be triggered via the command bar. Since notes are VGA sized, the grabs come out nice. Your doodles can be exported and sent as jpg files. The individual notes can have alarms assigned.
Overall, this is a funky app. It worked reliably on my T3 and adds value to the regular Note Pad. However, the program is very big(1 meg), since it cannot be stored on external memory without loss of functionality. So, the installation/purchase should be evaluated on a case per case basis-graphics people may prefer a full drawing app while easy users may not want to invest the money and memory. Note Pad junkies will definitely like BugMe+ for its features and the ease of use.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

"Ringo Pro": Review, part 1

Introduction
When your Treo comes out-of-the-box, it's not able to use mp3-files as ringtone. You only can use the built-in polyphonic ones. The only way to make music or other sounds a ringtone, is to record them via the Treo's microphone. But the quality of this sound is not very great. If you want your Treo to play "real" music, you need 3rd party software, such as "mRing", "LightWav", "mp3Ringer", "PhoneTechnician", "TreoGuard" or "Ringo Pro".

I had a look at "Ringo Pro for Treo 600 & Treo 650 4.4" by Electric Pocket (Price: 29,95 USD)

Installation
The *.zip file contains the "Ringo-installer.prc". After the transfer via HotSync the software extracts and installs itself on the Treo. While the installer.prc has a size of 918KB, the installed program only uses about 400KB of RAM.

First look and overview
The program offers three different views: "Ringo Ringtones", "Ringo Friends" and "Ringo Groups". You can switch from one view to the other by tapping the corresponding symbol at the lower right corner of the screen.

  • On the "Ringo Ringtones" screen you can choose the default sounds for incomming calls and text messages. And you can pick a picture to be showed when somebody calls you.

  • For important persons you can use "Ringo Friends" to assign each "friend" an individual ringtone and/or picture.


  • The "Ringo Groups"-screen offers the same functions for the different categories of your contact database.


The "Ringo Ringtones" screen
There are 4 different ways to choose a ringtone or a SMS tone:
  1. You can select a MP3 tune from any directory of your storage card. Ringo comes along with 5 tunes which are stored at the /audio directory. Before you definitely pick a MP3 tune you can listen to it by tapping the "Play" button.
  2. The second possibility is to browse the Ringo ringtone store. After choosing this option the web browser is started and connects to the ringtone-website on electricpocket.com. I did not download any file from the website just because using a GPRS-connection is too expensive for that.
  3. Of course you can also use the built-in polyphonic ringtones. Additional MIDI tones can be imported over the menue Tones>Import Tones
  4. Last but not least you can create your own unique ringtone when you tap the button "New". You can choose from different drums, melodies and instruments to mix the ringtone you like most. This is really great fun. I spent hours with trying all the different sounds. There's only one thing I don't like about the "Ringtone Mixer": When I choose a drum pattern and a lead pattern they are played simultaniously until the lead pattern is repeated. Then the lead pattern sets in too early and the rhythm of the drum and the rhythm of the lead voice don't fit together any more. This means it sounds quite horrible. You can avoid this problem when you only use the drum or the lead voice.
As you can see, you have a lot of options to select the ringtone you like. At the next step you can decide if you want a picture to be shown at an incomming call or not. You can use the pictures taken with the Treo's camera or the ones that are on your storage card (in the directory /DCIM).

The "Ringo Friends" screen
This is the screen for important callers. A "friend" is added by tapping the "New" button. You can pick a person from your address book or create a new entry. For each "friend" you can choose an individual ringtone, SMS tone and picture. And you can select the "don't disturb" option which means that the Treo won't ring when this person is calling.




The "Ringo Groups" screen
On this screen the categories from your address book are listed. For each category you can again pick a ringtone, SMS tone and picture. And of course select the "Do not disturb" option.

Monday, September 05, 2005

The value of beeing called a market leader

Recently, Gartner began to fire out studies saying how the PalmOS is behind Windows Mobile in sales. This post should not discuss these studies(we all know that the Treos are excluded...)-but it should rather discuss the value that they have for Microsoft!
Many magazines carried these reports, and many people read them. If they didn't consult a second news source, they would have the impression that Palm is a dying platform(what it isnt if you ask me). And this is the place where M$ comes into the equasion.
People dont like to buy discontinued/doomed products. Ever saw a software developer officially announcing a dead product's discontinuation if there is no successor ready? Nope, there arent many people whop have the honesty to declare the intents of killing a product that sells well... . There always is a chance that some people still want to buy it hoping for further development. A big fat discontinued sign usually kills such hopes.
Now, what shall somebody do who wants a PDA? If he beleives that Garnet/PalmOS is dead, he will usually want to get something that has a bright future. So, he will choose a PocketPC, as there is nothing else available(forget PocketViewers from Casio and the Linux PDA's). Each new PocketPC user helps spreading word about the platform to his friends and coworkers.
I am not intending to accuse anyone of ordering fake studies. However, Gartner also attacks Linux every now and then-so it may just be possible that Microsoft has a hand involved. They definitely would benefit from it... .
What do you think?

TamsPalm.de: New summary online!

For our German-speaking readers: The last week's articles have been summarized and translated. Just take a look at TamsPalm.de!

Sunday, September 04, 2005

LifeDrive headphone problem fix

Many LifeDrive users report various contacting problems with their headphones. The user Mike Chicago has found a cheap way to fix most contact related issues-a RadioShack headphone extender that plugs into the LifeDrive and into the headphones, thus eliminating contact problems(it fits the LifeDrive, and the other end is standard).
Read more in the 1src thread:
http://www.1src.com/forums/showthread.php?t=89218
Also, you get a subtle way to control the volume of the music without taking the LifeDrive out of your pocket-this can be dangerous in subways,... . Solving such a problem for just 6.59$ is great if you ask me.
Did you ever have a problem with your LifeDrive up to now?

Saturday, September 03, 2005

PODS does not find every error

Sometimes, PODS cancels the compiling process with an error message like this shown in the problems tab of the graphical environment:

*** [Project] Error 1 Project 3. September 2005 21:38:22

There is very little information accompanying such an error-at least for people who didnt discover the console tab of Eclipse yet. Well, no problem. There is a lot of tabs at the bottom of eclipse under the editor-and one of them reads console. If not, add it using (Window-Show View->Console) Clicking it leads to more-less random text garbage. Now, rebuild the project from scratch(Project->Clean...). The compiling process now be shown in the Console tab-and you can usually find an error message like this one here:


src/VfsSelect.o(.text+0x1e0):VfsSelect.c: undefined reference to `VFSOpenFile'
collect2: ld returned 1 exit status
make: *** [BinaryClock] Error 1


And indeed, the error is now easy to find. It is a typo in the module VfsSelect.c-the call is VFSFileOpen and not VFSOpenFile. Fixing the call let the program work once again!
Altough PODS is a graphical development environment, it still pays out to look at the console sometimes... . Did you ever have such a problem? Do you use the console view?

A lovely stress toy when people ask stupid questions

If somebody ever annoys you asking stuff that can easily be found on google, dont scream at him anymore! Just craft a web site with a link to one of the pages below, change the displayed name for the link and have the user click it. The lesson will be taught for sure!

http://www.fuckinggoogleit.com
The classic site, with an image of Bart Simpson writing...
http://www.googleityoumoron.com/
Can generate HTML code and even PHPBB code for bulletin boards

In case the person is too lazy to google even after visiting such a site, you can set them up to autoforward the user to Google after a delay!
Do you know another such service?

Palm Desktop 4.2 for Windows, Tungsten X and Zire 22

Three days ago, PalmOne posted Palm Desktop, version 4.2 for Windows on their US page. The download includes Palm Desktop, HotSync Manager and Conduits for Outlook and VersaMail - for free. See Palm, Inc. - Palm Desktop 4.2 for Windows. It seems to contain several languages.

There are help pages how to do a hard reset on palm devices included, too. Two pages tell how to to do a hard reset on "Z22" and "TX". What could that be?

Friday, September 02, 2005

The PUG Vienna met yesterday

The Vienniese Palm user group met yesterday. Yet again, a new site was chosen which was almost impossible to reach, but offered free WLAN. Lovely for a T3 owner... . Anyways, the meeting was very interesting. Find a few images below(sorry for the bad quality, but the SX1 gets bad if it is dark):

Sabine finally got herself a Zire 72-her son ruined the 71 a short time ago!

We have two new faces. The two people pictured above are a couple(sorry, I forgot the names). The man on the left side owns a Treo 650 and works at a helicopter company. The woman on the right side is called Tori and does Kinesiology-she owns a Tungsten C.

Here we have Boris comparing a Stowaway prototype for Vii with his IR keyboard. This is indeed a generation clash...

Boris and Alex-of course-had lots of stuff to discuss!

The Treo 650's screen beats the T3's to smithereens...... .

A happy Sabine-and Herwig in the back. While he is pretty friendly at the beginning of meetings(teaches lots of interesting stuff about Macs and Photoshop, just gotta listen to him) he can get annoying towards the end;).


And here-last but not least-we have Boris lecturing about the Jaguar console's rendering system and the MIDI standard. Did you know that one can reproduce voices using MIDI and the sampler integrated into most SoundBlaster cards? And-did you know that the Jaguar can beat an X800 in some rendering benchmarks?
Overall, this was another interesting meeting! Come on, tell me if there is a Palm User Group in your area!