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Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

Forces of change

I do almost all my computational activities on a browser or in apps except document editing.
I NEED to see the document offline similar to older habit of pen paper traction to get any work done.
I have always loved using MS Office, detractors aside.
But now I work from my home’s dining table with laptop accessible to my toddler who never fails to jab hibernate button till cold boot…and so after a morning of losing my carefully penned and formatted words..I am shifting to Google Docs though it’s tedious and just not the same ‘fun’ (as much as documents can be) as offline MS office.
Sometimes the forces of change are certainly strange.

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Smartphones are getting cheaper(or people are willing to spend more money) and the market is getting quite competitive.

Android phones are steadily pushing their way into Indian market too. And there is a wide choice to pick from due to the extremely competitive Indian handset market.

So after a Sunday evening well spent in mobile shops, this is what the Pune, India market ( prices in INR) has to offer:

As these are smartphones, wi-Fi, Bluetooth and other regular features along with excellent Android apps from the app market are considered to be a given.

HTC Tattoo

HTC Tattoo: This is an entry point Android phone for around 13K. The OS version is 1.6 ( 2.1 is latest shipped on phones), the phone does not have 3G & GPS.

The phone looks like regular HTC windows touch phones. Personally, I wouldn’t recommend it with 3G BSNL cards in market now.

HTC Legend: A phone with superb form factor with Android 2.1. The look is very sleek, business like but rugged as the

HTC Legend

phone is crafted from a single block aluminum. HTC has developed its own Touch technology HTCSense. I had a good mind to purchase it but it does not have 3G & no front camera ( again for video calling, try BSNL video calling. Personally, it felt like a milestone experience in terms of human communication.). The phone costs around 25K.

Motorola Milestone: I own this phone and it’s an absolute pleasure. The only Android phone with a full sliding QWERTY

Motorola Milestone

& overall good build quality typical of Motorola. The display is sharp and touch responsive.

I do have a pet peeve that the screen does not lock itself while receiving calls and occasionally my ear puts the phone into HOLD, much to the caller’s annoyance. A huge screen also means that I have to charge this phone almost every day. But this phone has replaced my laptop for my surfing & social networking. The phone has 3G & front camera. Milestone will set you back by 26K.

Sony Experia X10: A brick of a phone from Sony, ships with Android 2.1. I personally found this phone to be too big

Sony Xperia X10

but guys would like the form factor. The screen display is crisp and the huge screen staring at you in stunning clarity makes you drool. The phone is great for photography enthusiasts with a 8MP camera (surprisingly the phone is pretty slim given the high end camera). The phone plays divX too. The phone costs a whopping 30K and I do have a psychological barrier with 30K (I can spend 29.5K :P). At that price, I do start wondering if I should buy an Inspirion instead even if they are two different horizontals. Though a friend has this phone and he is really happy about it.

Samsung Galaxy: The newest entrant, I saw this phone during World Cup adverts. The phone was not on display & the dealer got this phone from his latest inventory

Samsung Galaxy

canvas bag which would send any mobile enthusiast into a tizzy) at our insistence. This phone’s form factor is like the Google Nexus though slightly longer and thinner and has Google imprinted at the back similar to Nexus ( which would be one of the deciding factor for most geeks 😉 ). What makes this phone awesome is its superior AMOLED display. The display has excellent saturation, brightness & crispness, it’s almost looking into a mini high-end flat TV. Milestone boasts of a superior display but looks like a country cousin in comparison to Galaxy. I found the widgets & Heptic touch keyboard also a tad better than Milestone. It has a front facing camera (5MP along with HD recording), & 3G. Priced at close to 29K, this is my recommendation if you want to buy one right now.

(We got this for my bro.)

And if you don’t want to spend so many bucks, a delightful phone which features along with Samsung Galaxy in the ads, Samsung Wave.

Samsung Wave

The phone has the same form factor & build quality as that of the Galaxy but features Samsung’s own “bada” (not big 😛 , but pronounced..baaadda) OS. The phone’s UI looked pretty similar to Android, touch screen was appropriately responsive. Samsung also has it’s own marketplace to add more applications, though the phone comes with pre-installed applications for FB, Gmail, E-mail clients etc. Wave had 3G too along with the stunning AMOLED display. And all this for a cool 17K. A real value for money phone, though it might not find many takers till reports of bada’s performance come in.

Samsung Galaxy & Wave both boast a 1GHz processor,  I still remember being proud of my Celeron 633MHz PC in college 🙂

P.S:

1. Its really interesting to watch dealers explain “Android” & “Google” to people who don’t earn their bread & butter tapping keyboards. And maybe that would decide the fate of Android phones in the real world. A geeky gadget freak can buy only so many phones.

2. A girl making her boyfriend buy a not-so-good clunky phone for her just coz its PINK (rolling my eyes 180 degrees) makes me cringe for the rest of us girls.

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Winds of Change

My elders pestered me for a 48 hr delay to upload family function photos…. these were the same people who waited an year to finish 36 photos in a roll..
Technology at times changes totally unlikely people !

Disclaimer: Uncles & Aunts , I really enjoy doing this task of “family-pic-uploader”, but the irony was just too irresistable to blog 🙂

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For Panorma enthuisasts

For some people I know who are into panoramic photos and photo stitching enthusiasts:


Do not Miss! 

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Steve Ballmer did the hitherto unthinkable for a MS OS, he released an “Ultimate” version FREE beta with a “forever” (ok, till 1st Aug 2009 as pointed out by Harsh) activation key on request. Yep, Windows 7! 

Now, I am a regular Windows XP user for a long time, forced into Vista with my new oem-branded laptop just recently (and I am already pissed of with “do you want to continue” dialogs)
So between these two and Ubuntu , frankly I didn’t need another OS, but couldn’t resist trying out a legitimate “free” OS from the MS stable, and luckily I had the extra h/w resources to install it too (doesn’t happen often with me).

I run it on VMWare on my Vista m/c, allotted 1.5GB RAM (1 GB min) & 20GB space ( 16GB min., 8GB is OS size) .  Both work fine simultaneously on a 3GB, dual core m/c. And as far as the initial impressions go, installation was a breeze, Vista’s GUI clutter is cleaned, the navigation is elegant, and the system is pretty stable for a beta and that too a  Windows release. 

Interested folks on who want to get it & for continued coverage can get further info from a regular MS technology user here.

Its still early, but I’m guessing, this OS will be a successful  follow-up to Windows XP.

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Tech tid-bits

I absolutely love it when I stumble upon a nifty piece of code and am able to use it to right away at work or pleasure…

You can add a snapshot of a component, placed in a tab, as its tooltip. The code is supplied along with some factory and helper classes in this detailed tutorial but it basically involves overriding the createToolTip() of a JComponent to create a scaled-down-image tooltip and the end result is a web 2.0 esque “preview effect” of a tab. Not at all bad for an older Swing UI application.
( I guess I cant put my work-app screenshots here though I’m really itching to do so)

And I just discovered Google Chrome’s Javascript console (Alt + ) ..I’m sure most of chrome users know its there and many of you must use it already but today was my day to discover it.. and I’m impressed! I have used Firefox’s debugging tools too, but this one is simple to use, debugs your HTML and javascript in a very IDE-esque fashion..right at your browser..


Now it would be perfect, if I could get my ActivexObjects to work in Chrome, the same script works beautifully in IE, maybe a third “discovery” is on it way 😛
 

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Scribbling with scribd

I have been using Scribd  for a while to read lots of interesting stuff, never really used their publishing for my content..so here it goes..a presentation I made about Greece a while ago as a public speaking group. 

(geez, it was really difficult to find a fairly sensible, original & non-work related document written by yourself to post on Internet )
Hellas – Travel

Get your own at Scribd or explore others: Travel greece Hellas
P.S. You can upload .ppt on Scribd, but for some reason, mine wasnt uploaded successfully, had to convert it to a .pdf to upload it..I am guessing large size of the .ppt  but any other suggestions are welcome.

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