The New and Shiny pt 1

In this series of posts I am going to tell you, gentle reader, of my new toys. What’s good? What’s bad? What is this rash about?

First up, and the newest of the new is a new cell phone, the Motorola Droid X (on Verizon Wireless). I needed a new phone because the old one I had was having network issues dropped calls and such, and was unreliable on the bluetooth front. Plus it was old and I wanted the new and shiny.

The visit to the Verizon store went well for the most part, as I had already done my research into plans and options. I somehow managed to leave without having any SMS messages built into my plan. There was an option for free mobile to mobile SMS and 250 out of network for $5 a month, but now that I’ve signed up, I can’t seem to add that to my plan. I am going back either tomorrow or the day after for an accessory I ordered (more on that later), and I’ll see if I can add that on then.

The good:

  • Call quality. Much improved over the old Nokia 6085 I had. Haven’t used the Verizon network enough yet to say this with much conviction yet.
  • Nice screen! Very good resolution (848×480 I think) and pretty good from the touch sensitivity side as well. Maybe a little too sensitive, but that could just be because my hands shake.
  • Real GPS! Verizon offers a $9.99/month navigation service, but it also comes with Google navigation which seems to be free. So far I have only used the feature once but it didn’t run me into an oncoming train so it gets full marks there.
  • Being connected! My old phone wasn’t a smart phone, in fact it was downright stupid. So being able to connect to the internet at decent speeds wherever I am is for me a new and very cool sensation.
  • Apps! I am enjoying the Android app store immensely. The barcode scanner software is a hoot, and I love having Google Earth in my pocket.
  • 8 Mp camera. It comes with a very nice camera with flash. The picture quality seems to be pretty good, and the internal editing tools are sufficient.

The Bad:

  • The onscreen keyboard is good, but not up to IPod/Phone/Pad standards.
  • The camera – it is lonely. I have a Skype app that would let me do video calls when going through WiFi, but the only camera is on the back of the phone. The only way I could use it for video chat would require me to have a mirror. Unwieldy, but since I have no friends anyway, this probably won’t be too much of a problem.
  • The battery life SUCKS. I understand this is common to most smart phones, but I am not used to it. The old Nokia could go over a week without charging, this phone needs to be recharged daily, or even more often if you do much surfing/video/navigation/what have you. I went ahead and ordered a higher capacity battery when I bought the phone, but it hasn’t arrived yet. Happily the phone uses the now nearly standard micro-USB charger connection so I was easily able to find a car charger at a reasonable price at Target.

All in all I am happy with my purchase, but like with all phones I am at the mercy of my carrier, so my user experience could go down the toilet suddenly.

For my next post I am going to discuss my new Apple Hotness.

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Just Another Post To Show I’m Still Alive

Yep, still alive. Can’t evangelize Linux these days as my hard drive controller is on the fritz and I had two hard drive failures (in my Linux RAID array and in my LVM) as well. Windows freezes up every few hours when the SATA controller drops a drive. Sigh. Well, if I can nurse the poor machine until January I can put it out of my misery and build a new one. Only five months to go.

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Settling on an IDE – Maybe

I am leaning towards Anjuta as a C++ IDE for Linux. I really like Eclipse but the integrated Glade editor is pretty nice to have. I have a feeling though that I will get little actually done for a few days. I kinda wanna play some games.

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Too Cute

Some things are just too cute to believe.

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Still Alive and Still Lazy…

Though I have long been away I still live and wheeze. The weeks drag and life goes on.

On the OSS front, I have upgraded to Ubuntu 9.10 and after fixing the mess they made of Pulseaudio in their distribution, I am very happy with it. The tools it gives me rock hard. I just turned some video into a video DVD quickly, cleanly and without error. The same process when in Windows land required $100 paid to Nero, triple the transcoding time, and many wasted discs. DVDStyler is great. I just wish I had found it before Nero had sucked up my cash. It also works in Windows. I have no idea why the Nero program took 90 minutes longer than DVDStyler to transcode, but the improved speed was great. My only issue was that I used text as chapter buttons in my project and it didn’t anti-alias that so I got “jaggies.”

Now I am looking for a good IDE and enough motivation to overcome my fear of C++. Any suggestions world?

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Still Lazy…

Boxes still lurking… head still hurting… bed looks comfortable…  another night wasted.

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A Moving Experience

Two hellish weeks are over, and my move is done. Only a few boxes are lurking hideously in the shadows…

I have some more laundry and organizing to do, but tonight I need to watch some mindless entertainment. I queued up a Haruhi Suzumiya DVD and am taking a break between episodes. I just learned that they are broadcasting a new season in Japan right now!

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