Droid 2 Must Have Games

Games kick ass, am I right? Am I right? (****Spoiler…YES!*****)

Since I haven’t blathered about how awesome Android stuff is in a while, I figured I would ramble about games for a while. So far, I have found four games that are pretty much “must-have.” I hate that term, but it gets me search engine traffic. And traffic is a must-have. (Sorry.) You can find these must-havers on Android Market, but you probably knew that. Let’s begin.

In order of most-must-have, to still-must-have-but-not-as-much-as-most-must-have…

Angry Birds — Q. Why so angry, birds? A. Those egg-stealing pigs, that’s why.

mofo

I like that one ^


Robo Defense — Tower defense, FTW. I got really, really sucked into this one, keeping it in the two spot. All acheivements, check.
joke fail

D - Fence...get it (shakes head)


Fruit Ninja — Chopping the shit out of fruit…this game is as fun as it sounds
nacho ninja

Fruit Ninja looks more like Nacho Ninja


Doodle Jump — Pretty sure this (like Angry Birds) made some waves on iStuff. You jump a doodle…it is amusing as hell.
stupid flanders

Stupid Flanders


I’m still waiting for the non-advertisment-laden version of Angry Birds to drop. Right now, the free app is all that is out there on the Android Market. I’m not entirely sure, but I think I spent less than 3 bucks for the other three apps. Robo Defense has a pretty solid trial version, FWIW.

Well, in any regards, get Angry Birds. Meetings at work become little workday vay-kays. Little bird flinging vay-kays.

If you come across anything that I should check out, hit me with a comment. Or, Tweet that crap over to @swantron. Plug.

Awesome Droid Apps Redux

Guess what? I’m posting this via my Droid 2, since Verizon’s 3G is faster than my Bresnan high-speed. Maybe one of their sys admins knocked some servers offline…I bet it is really hard to get around those racks with GIGANTIC CLOWN SHOES. Fuck Bresnan…whatever.

Here is a pic of an angry bird:

soooo mad

kaw kaw so mad kaw kaw

I feel your pain, angry bird. I’m picking up what you are angrily putting down. Now to the point of the post. I’m bringin Droid Apps back. You Apple fanboiz don’t know how to act.

Back in the day, I posted a little gem about the Android apps that I deemed must haves. Well, as fate would have it, my title brought me a bit of traffic. SEO FTW. Here is another (hopefully) perfectly titled post, that is dually of value for my fellow Android users.

Here we go…my top 5 Droid apps as of right now.

1) ATK, again. Battery life is still a perpetual issue. Blast your junk processes, and blast them often.

2) Angry Birds. Those birds are angrier than I. Best game I have seen on this damn thing. Bar none.

Tie, 3/4) Nesoid/GameBoid. Emultating the crap out of NES and GBA games. I found a bunch of stuff I used to play when I was a youngster. +1 usage of younster.

5) WiimoteControl. You know what…this will assuredly jump to the number two spot, once I can chop up the code and figure out the motion control aspect. Perhaps number one…who needs a ton of battery life when you can map the crap out of motions and use that as your input scheme I bet ten minutes with that interface combo will sufficiently blow your mind.

Grab one of these phones, root it, and grab those ^ apps. Good times will ensue.

I Love Newegg, You Should Too

You know that part of your brain that makes you do stuff unconsciously, but slowly enough that you have to wonder if it was deliberate?

Case in point…

You are watching TV, and some botox-faced newscaster mentions something about a stolen wallet. Your find your hand checking the contours of your pockets, making sure that your wallet is still where it should be, by your junk. You feel yourself reaching for it, and try to take control from the brain stem…take charge…you got it. Nope. That was impulse, dog.

Well, I don’t rock a wallet in the traditional sense. I use a binder clip to keep my credit cards from migrating to the floor. I also have the same knee jerk reaction to computer part prices as most would have with the wallet example. Hear of a computer type product…look on Newegg.

Remember that HP touchscreen tablet I was pining about a few days ago… check this out:

newegg is nice

when did robot become a bro...nice?

That is 20 USD cheaper than I saw on HP’s website, and that is without a NewEgg promo code. Get a promo code and we make that twenty dollar savings from the HP site looks small. Small, like my wallet, which once again, is a binder clip.

Even writing about my binder clip makes me check my pocket for my binder clip. I feel for you wallet folk. Check out Newegg…it’ll work itself out. If you feel really bad, check out Savings.com on the regular. The Newegg promo codes are just one of many that those guys toss out there.

FWIW, I want that HP even more. Gutted with Ubuntu Unity…that’s the stuff dreams are made of. Nerd dreams are dreams too…nerd dreams are dreams.

Droid 2 or Nexus One 2.2 Plus

The proof is in the pudding (or in the froyo?) on this guy. Droid 2, hands down. Sorry Nexus fans.

I ran a benchmark test on my Droid 2 running Froyo. Here are the results, in slick, colorful, sideways bar graph form.

droid2

crappy pic...awesome font

Sorry for the awful picture quality…I had to log into my dual boot, in order to use Dell Webcam Central (garbage) to snap a picture of my phone. Turns out, my phone is also my camera, and I have yet to grab a screenshot app. Whatever. I’ll summarize the results.

Droid 2 with Froyo —— 1384 units
Nexus One 2.2 ——————— fewer unit than 1384
Others Played ——————– far fewer units than even 1384

Not sure what these units are, really, but the Droid 2 is clearly superior. I used an app called Quadrant, which is alleged to be quite legit.

It surprised me that the Droid X is lagging behind 2.2+ that much…it was supposed to be hotter than Hades. The Samsung Galaxy S is making a solid case for itself, sitting well above the Nexus One and HTC Desire.

As for those on the Moto Droid…hang in there. Hopefully you can manage to break your phone under warranty and get something with the Snapdragon under the hood.

****Bonus Bloggage…after I snapped the above picture and put together this post, I knuckled up on the Widowmaker pictured in the background. My knuckles indicate that I once again lost.****

Discount Tech Time

Guess what back to school means to me…a longer commute to and from work. Dodging coeds isn’t as fun as it sounds. Well, maybe cutting extremely close to bikers is fun. Actually, that is very fun.

The only real bonus to this time of year is for the barn-burner sales that pop up for technology aimed at students. If there is any chance that a college bound dude or dudette will be shopping for a tech item of some sort, chances are high that that item will be super cheap, somewhere.

Case in point…how about some discounts at HP

awesome

swantron on droid on HP

(say what you will…I still want one of those damned HPs with the flip around screen…badly)

I was poking around Savings.com, and noticed that they have all sorts of deals that are aimed at students. Free shipping and all sorts of discounts on HP notebooks, ink, you name it. They also had some deals from Verizon regarding Droid phones and $50 off. I’m somewhat upset that I bought my Droid 2 without checking out the back to school deals.

Anyhow, hit that link to see what I’m talking about. I’ll be playing with my phone, and wishing I was playing with a picture of my phone on my swivelly HP netbook.

Arduino Solar Cell Input

Here we go. As I mentioned a few days ago, I’m horsing around with analog input to my Arduino, in the form of input via a solar cell. For the win. It turns out, that I’m getting far better with my casual electronics experimentation…I will chalk this one up as a win.

My basic set-up is this…Radio Shack solar cell, breadboard, florescent light source, Arduino, and a notebook.

Step 1) gauge light source via multimeter.

test

one point twenty-one gigawatts

1.7 V…no need to toss in a resister, as the Arduino can handle 5V without issue. Good to go.

Step 2) Interface with Arduino via breadboard.

setup

breadless soldierboard

This could have been a direct setup, but for the sake of not soldering a solid lead to my solar cell array, I chose to twist the crap out of the existing + and – leads of the wire outs on the unit, and cram them into the breadboard. USB connected to the Arduino, of course

Step 3) Chop in some code for the Arduino. This was the tricky part…not that tricky, however:

~~code snippet time~~

void setup() {
Serial.begin(9600); }
void loop() {
int v = analogRead(0);
Serial.print(v);
Serial.print(‘ ‘);
delay(900);
}

~~~end code snippet time~~~

enhance

enhance...enhance

Note the lack of comments? I’m a flipping math dude, so that is wholly optional in my book. Long story short, Wiring is a stripped cousin of C++…I have to void setup and loop here, since I am not concerned with anything once I let ‘er rip. I will touch on the programming specifics at a later date, but inquiring minds can find this info quite easily on the Arduino project’s main page, or on Wikipedia. Knock your socks off. I added the delay for sake of real-time monitoring, and matched the baud rate to which I had configured my USB connection. ttyUSB0 would be that in question…9600 would be the rate.

Step 4) Read input via serial monitor.

solar

those figures average out to 'awesome'

As you can see, it is pretty much constant, with some fluctuation due to my set-up. Noisy, yes. Cheap components, yes.

Step 5) Testing ‘zero’ state. Here, I have employed my box of smokes. American Spirit Lights, to be precise.

cigs

Yellow Box of American Spirits...A Labritory Must-Have

Step 6) Gauge system.

Here, I’m altering between ‘on’ and ‘off’ states. I start with the ‘off’ (smokes on solar panel) configuration for a time, remove the box to open the system to ‘max input’ for appx 7 secs, and then place the box to remove the input energy.

for the goddamned win

FOR THE WIN INDEED

Most definitely for the win…with the experimental noise, that could be considered effectively zero. For the win.

In summation, I have read in analog, as intended. Lessons learned? Pretty straight forward I suppose. My cheap-o solar cell is rated for a max of 6V, which I was far under. If I was to use this setup with a stronger light source, I would need to take this into consideration. I didn’t perform any data transformation, as I was not concerned with ‘actual voltage input values’ in this case…merely relative. Most importantly, I was able to knock out the task I had set out to do. Hopefully, I can ride my EE high and get cranking on something awesome, like a netbook robot. With some lasers.

Japanese Humanoid Moon Robot. Whoa.

I might have to move to Japan. First, they have that food thing down. Secondly, and more importantly, they are BUILDING A DAMN HUMANOID ROBOT TO GO TO AND RETURN FROM THE MOON BY 2015.

That happens, and we have officially lost, my friends.

japan humanoid robot

robot + humanoid + space = nerd boner

FTA:

Looking largely to inspire dreams of space among the Japanese, a manufacturing cooperative named Astro-Technology SOHLA announced on April 27th that they are planning to create and send a two-legged humanoid robot to the moon, have it draw the Japanese flag on the surface, and then hopefully get it back to the Earth, all by the year 2015.

Making inspirational ideas about space technology a reality is not new to the Osaka-based cooperative of six small and medium sized enterprises. SOHLA had previously built a small-scale satellite, named Maido-1, as a demonstration of the ability of SMEs to research and create short-term, low-cost space technology which could help improve local economic activity. Maido-1 was sent into orbit aboard a Japanese H-IIA rocket in January of 2009. Following that successful launch, the group asked people to start forgetting about the word “recession.”

SOHLA believes that there is a growing passion in Japan about space technology and exploration with recent national successes, such as two Japanese astronauts meeting on the International Space Station for the first time. However, the group also feels that the ISS’ highly visible robotic arms not being Japanese-made is a real letdown for a nation well-known for its robotic technology prowess.

Robotic prowess indeed. First the Gundham statue, now this. Fuck you Washington…we need MORE federal funding for space science. It will take a lot more than some accelerator problems on imports to spin this story into oblivion.

Come on…robotic astronauts…I am in awe.

HTC HD2

While I’ve been caught up dealing with the epic battle between the Moto Droid and the RIM Storm 2, there have been some slick phones dropping. FWIW, Motorola whupped the beans out of the Storm, whatever that means. Whatevs.

Here is one in particular. The HTC HD2.

hero

Heroic

This puppy is pretty much loaded. Like I’ll be after this paid post…

Really though, this is a sweet phone. 480×800 res screen at 4.3 inches…we’re talking Eros stats. HTC Accessories are where it is at, though. You can outfit this guy (which runs Microsoft Windows Mobile 6.5 Professional, for you Microsoft-eers) with all kinds of phone stuffs…hit that bump to find out more.

Long story short…I need to stay up on my phone current events. I’m still clinging to my seen-better-days BlackBerry Pearl. For the loss.

Nintendo to Rock Your World in 3D

Unfortunately, said world from the title is the world in the palm of your hands. Long story short, the DS is going to drop some sweet glasses-free 3D on yall suckaz.

dot awesome

swan tron dot com slash AWESOME

But don’t take my word from it…
TFA from PCW:

Imagine picking up a Nintendo DS and playing games in 3D without the clunky, dork-tastic glasses. Nintendo says a handheld gaming device that’ll do just that will launch in Japan before the end of March 2011, and that it’ll reveal its so-called “Nintendo 3DS” to the world for the first time at E3 2010 this summer.

But wait–3D without the funky eyewear? How does that work? Like those tricky picture perception puzzles, where you have to “relax” your eyes to see the mathematically embedded 3D picture? Or like the laser heads-up-displays that project an imagine onto your retina? Or how about actual head jacks, like the metal prongs plunged through occipital bones in The Matrix?

Matrix reference in aught-10. Poorly played, PC World. They continue…

Speculation aside, let’s assume Nintendo’s got the 3D part down pat, and that it’ll be at least as persuasive as the technology in the video above. The real question’s this: Will gamers buy a so-called “Nintendo 3DS” on the merits of 3D alone?

Ask that question in a broader sense, “Is anyone really interested in 3D?” and the answer’s “No one knows.” The technology’s all hype and punditry to date, a public relations push by technology vendors eager to sell pricey versions of existing view-screen technology with a slight visual twist.

Whatever, naysayers. 3D is awesome, and since it is Nintendo, it will be incredibly playable, and it will sell very well. Without any doubt.

I’m looking forward to it.