The Nokia N900 To HTC Desire X

Well The end of my Nokia N900 did not come with a bang, but a bonus, a Christmas bonus gift card from my current employer. And and even though the N900 was still pulling it’s weight, it wasn’t current technology. The choosen replacement is not a top-of-the-line, it was priced to matched the value of the gift card and the mininum hardware specs I applied to make it useful. Hence the HTC Desire X, a relative new dual core Snapdragon S4 with version 4.0.4 Android.

HTC_Desire_X

And it is in White, Another irony as my laptop went from Apple MacBook white to Clevo Black, now my phone from Black to White.

So far I’m happy with the choice, but I’ve only had it a few days, and while I think it’s already a better phone than the N900, it will never replace the the N900 as a computer.

Oh, and one other thing, it doesn’t look like an iPhone.

UPDATE: I just got the Android 4.1.1 upgrade, Thanks HTC

Nokia’s direction down

If anyone has any doubts about the sanity of Nokia’s, rather eFlops selection of windows to hang Nokia’s future upon, this should settle them as Nokia Lumia 800 sales forecast gets chopped that puts first batch sales almost half of what the MeeGo powered N9’s sales already achieved. And that was even after the N9 sales were deliberately handicapped by eFlop himself into some of the most obscure markets in the world. If the N9 had been sold in the same regions that the eFlop 800 is being pushed into, there would be no deigning that Window-Phone is a flop, an Elop.

The Mobile Convergence

Over the past few years there has been a subject called Technological convergence not to be confused with Technological singularity In one aspect that event has happened to me this year. Because no one noticed, I have been pretty sporadic with posting on this site. Some of the reason is work related, more of it has been due to me being overwhelmed with events in and out of my control. And others have been due to some health issues.

During and between these events, I’ve been without my laptop (for some the sole source of internet communications). However I have not been without my mobile phone. But to call what I have, just a mobile phone, is questionable. I have a Nokia N900, more a small internet tablet than a phone and it has been a complete, in fact more than a complete replacement for my laptop. For more than 50 days and nights this year I have used it for email (4 POP, 2 Goggle, 1 Office) Web Browsing (Nokia, Firefox and Opera) and specialized apps for WordPress (2 blogs) Facebook, twitter ( 3 different clients) RSS readers, Podcasting, Music playback (several) internet Radio, Movie watching, Bookreading, IMing (Yahoo(2), AIM, Buzz, facebook) GPS, FM radio, Skype and Moble Telephony (telephone, who knew)

In fact, more things than I can do on a laptop, for 50 days this year I’ve been entirely ‘converged’ on my phone.

Android WEP/WPA useless login features

I have come to the conclusion that if Android encounters a WiFi point that does not have WEP/WPA security, but instead, uses some corney web based HTML login code or password, Android goes bonkers.

Because Android is a very connected OS, the first thing that it tries to do on receipt of an IP address, it attempts to connect to Google services, and fails because it’s not fully on the Interet until it submits the correct HTML code. So the Android framework, that almost all Android apps depends on, Fails! And because the framework fails, the various browsers fail, and you can’t get to the login page to enter the unlock code to the portal, because you have no working browsers.

A classic “Catch 22″ issue. An issue that my N900 does not have

Android Sucks!
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If you Love/Hate Nokia read this


Will the Real Stephen Elop, Please Stand Up?

I couldn’t on my best day, speak to this better than this article.

If anything it should speak to any CEO/CFO/CTO that arrogantly enters a new company environment with preconceived notions of what strategy should be applied to their new positions. So this article isn’t just about Nokia, it’s about ignorance of facts.

New Toy – CnM Touchpad II

Ok, lets name all the things this new Android pad isn’t

  • No Camera’s either front nor back,
    First almost ALL pads have terrible cameras, making them almost useless, and the Facetime crowd is a passing fad, besides I have video Skype on my Nokia N900
  • No 3G wireless internet
    It does support 3G Dongles, which can be purchased anywhere, and 3G roaming is super expensive
  • No Android 2.3 (yet) or 3.0 (never)
    There are hacker versions of Android 2.2, and 2.3 however Android 2.1 still constitutes 27% of the market.
  • No iOS Eco-System or Market
    Thank God, no Apple in my pocket, or looking over my shoulder
  • No Android Market (almost)
    It’s loaded, and sees the market, just can’t download and apps
  • No GPS
    I have GPS on my fore mentioned Phone (another battery killer) it does have Google Maps

What it does have is;

  • A full sized USB2 connector that can take 3G Dongles, Flash Dives and keyboards
  • HDMI output to 720P
  • A Mini-USB connector to host
  • A TF-SD slot to 16GB
  • 3.5 mm audio connector
  • built in trackball
  • A pile of pre-loaded, not installed apps.

And it cost less than 150.00€

Maemo vs Meego – round two

I have been spending way too much time in Quora but it has proved interesting. I have learned from some of the discussions that Meego is a bit of a ruse. It seems that there are actually two Meego’s one is the ‘netbook’ variety, more or less a rehashed Moblin (Intel’s contribution to the partnership) and the other is Meego/Harmattan which is really Maemo 6 with some compatibility with Meego/Moblin.

This whole Meego thing is really just a marketing thing. It’s no wonder that more vendors haven’t jumped onto the open source Meego train, they don’t know which one to get on. Meego/Moblin is Atom based and the Meego/Maemo is ARM.

I wonder how far this bait and switch will last?

Here’s hoping PR 1.4 for my Nokia N900 really will allow a dual boot into Meego/Harmattan where Maemo 6 was headed. And that it does wonderful things.

NOTE: and the BS continues, with Intel killing off MeeGo for Tizen to further delay or destroy Open Source for mobile devices.

MeeGo is now Dead, as a Mobile OS.

This article MeeGo will not displace Symbian as enterprise OS has now demonstrated that Meego is no longer supported by Nokia, and it will be left to die with Maemo as a ‘Non-Runner’ in the Mobile-OS arena. It also indicates that Nokia Management has gone down the MicroSoft path to complete irrelevance in the Mobile Phone market. It’s no wonder the Maemo/Meego managers and developers at Nokia are leaving. Most are heading to the surviving Mobile OS’s Android, Web-OS, iOS and Blackberry.

NOTE: and the BS continues, with Intel killing off MeeGo for Tizen to further delay or destroy Open Source for mobile devices.

Geeks and their toys

A couple of weeks ago a friend from work was clearing out their place, I assume that his wife was involved, but in any case my collection of computers grew a bit when he offered to gift them to me. So now I own a Sun SPARCstation 5 and a Sun SparcStation IPX along with other bits and bobs. My wife was thrilled, as you can well imagine. Now as a rule I only take systems that work, and they do, however the passwords have been lost in the annals of time.

So I was left with a marginal SparcStation 5 with a missing CD drive, which booted to Solaris 2.7, but no further. But I’m a geek, and undaunted by this minor setback, I set out looking for a workaround. The googling net is full of solutions for password recovery … if you have a bootable cd (yes CD not DVD), Ok, next does eBay still have Solaris stuff that old … not cheaply, so what next.

While googling, OpenBSD presented itself, and I downloaded and burned some generic ISO’s of version 4.8. and then to solve the other hardware issue, the Sun IPX was delivered with a cartridge loading CD, but the IPX drive was housed in an external SCSI 1 case, and the SS5 was wired with a SCSI II system externally. so I dismantled the CD drive and searched for a CD cartridge carrier which as any self-respecting Geek, I had stashed away for a rainy day. Then armed with the hardware I jumpered the SCSI CD drive into the SS5 chassis, and bingo a complete and bootable SS5.

Now attempting to boot the OpenBSD was no problem, which surprised me to no end. But then I attempted a password recovery on the Solaris disk and no joy. but I did manage to mount it, and more or less destroy it (latter I found a way to fix it) and determined to go ahead and install the full OpenBSD system. Which more or less worked, there were issues with the X-Fonts archive but I found the tarball contained another version, which worked. It now booted on the internal disk, but I had to add and modify the XF86Config file to find the display, mouse and keyboard. My result does not match the examples of this file you might find on the net. So if you are interested, contact me, the Sun GB keyboard was hell to make work. but TADA:


And I even now have a browser in the form of Links

However, while it can compile most anything, there isn’t much left on the 1GB disk to compile TO. So unless I find some pre-compiled SMALL binaries, or a very cheap internal SCSI Disk to upgrade with, I’m stuck.

There may be more coming for this toy but just to make a comparison with modern hardware;

SparcStation 5 Nokia N900 smartphone
Screen 1024 x 768 (9 screens) 800 x 480 (4 screens)
Memory 64 MBytes 256 MBytes
CPU Freq 110 Mhz 600 Mhz
Storage 1 GByte 32 Gbyte
Price (new) 8,000.00$ to 10,000.00$ ~500.00$

UPDATE: I found amongst the archives another external 1.2GB SCSI disk, which fits nicely in the same connector that the CD-Drive was in, so now the SS5 is without the CD-Drive but has a massive 2.2GB of disks, Impressive :-)

Eircom Speedup

We received a letter in the mail recently informing us that our DSL connection was scheduled to be upgraded to 8Mbits from the current 3Mbs, and without charge. Last weekend it happened, however they are doing it in stages, or else they couldn’t get their equipment to speed up that fast. So we are left with a ‘configured’ speed of 5Mbits (download) / 512Kbits (upload) which in real terms works out to 4.42Mbits down/ 410 up (see below)

But, what the heck, it didn’t cost extra, and it is faster… one can only dream of a vendor who delivers on the promises, reality is another thing.

Apple’s outrageous share of the mobile industry’s profits

That pretty much says it all, doesn’t it?

Pie chart: Apple’s outrageous share of the mobile industry’s profits

In any other businesses this would be called a RIP OFF! by Apple, but with the Apple-Fanboy base, They can do no wrong. I used to be a Apple Evanglista back in Apple’s dark days, and I still use a MacBook. But I use a Nokia N900, because I can do more, with less Apple regulation, and I pay a great deal less than any iPhone ball-and-chain.

Vodafone ripoff in Wales

Moments after we arrived in Wales, we were interested in checking email and whatnot. So we stopped at a McDonald’s to use the non-existant WiFi. So realizing we were in a Vodafone cell site, I thought I’d use my JoikuSpot from my Nokia N900.

No problem we even got decent download performance on the 2MByte download. And then we disconnected, and the shock set in.

I got an immediate SMS with the following;

You’ve spent eur41.43 data roaming and your usage will be capped at eur60.50. To continue past the cap, text PASS EU CAP to 50193. For more info see vodafone.ie

WTF, this is a Vodafone SIM (IE) and they are charging this kind of roaming charge in vodafone Wales. What a Ripoff!