Makeshift Linux Heads-Up Display

Per my last post, I began upgrading my Dell Mini 9 last night…from Ubuntu 10.10 to 11.04. Well, at some point, it tossed a fit about not being able to snag a package, and hung on a dialogue box all night. No worries…I’ll finish this install on the way to work.

ubuntu linux netbook on my silverado dashboard

check the speedometer...

Who said netbooks are passe? Looks like that guy was designed to ride on the dash of a Silverado if you ask me.

For the record, I was not doing 110 MPH by the MSU campus. I have an issue with my speedometer. I was doing 90 MPH, tops.

My install was a success for the record. I will see if all functions are fully functional soon, and put together a post.

Verizon Wifi Tether…Droid + Ubuntu

The internets have been abuzz with talk of further stifling of Android tethering. Regardless of what will come of this, I would recommend getting a setup in place. May as well…you paid for the device. Am I right?

My breaking point came with continued poor results from the wireless connection at work. Enough was enough. After trying several mean with which to tether, I think I have found one that is suitable for my needs.

droid 2 verizon tether

scrubbed MAC / IP

My hardware is simple…mid-line Dell Studio Notebook running Ubuntu 11.04…Droid 2, rooted, running Fro-Yo. Verizon with data plan…unlimited, if that is still the case. Connection…check

droid verizon tether

swantron = my connection

I played around with several apps, but have found that Barnacle Wifi Tether from the Android Market does the trick quite nicely. I have dumped several gigs through 3G, and it is decently fast. Haven’t had to reboot, or do anything wonky to this point. I have had two clients connected simultaneously, and it seems to be chugging along. You must configure the security settings, as this puppy lets it rip wide open out of the box.

Grab the app from the Market before Google folds to Verizon. If you need any help rooting your phone, holler at me as well.

Just…About…Published…

Getting close to having my live wallpaper on the Android Market. I’ve hammered down the image, polished up the cube, tested the app on several emulators, and optimized the rotaion rate. More importantly, I haven’t drop kicked my notebook or tossed my Droid 2 out the door. I’m going to chalk this one up as a…
+1 probably the best Android App developer I know of.
For the win. I don’t know any other Android app developers, but I’m still giving this a big For the win.

Here is a sneak peak of said wallpaper:

new cube

-1 no animated gif

Not too shabby, huh? I’ll figure out how to sign the cert tomorrow, and see if I can get an account started with Google. Stay tuned, Android folk. I’m going to offer this for free.99, so you all better fire this up on your mobiles and report some bugs.

Stay tuned.

Android Hello World

Pushing code to the phone, FTW!

I managed to throw together a quick Hello World using the Android SDK, configure a FroYo emulator, and drop the code to my Droid 2. Not a bad little Saturday, really.

Screen shot from the emulator…

hi

hi

Webcam snap of code on phone…

oh hey

oh hey there

So it begins. Stay tuned for snippets.

iM tiRed of lazy tech journaliSm

Tech writers are the best. I most certainly don’t read the stuff that hits news aggregates because of informative banter and notable content, I read it for comic value.

Well… comic value and insight into human nature. Most notably: laziness

It seems to me that the easiest way to get published is to talk about a i* killer. Replace the wildcard with either “pod”

pod

(expensive media player)

“pad”

pad

(expensive tablet)

or “phone”

iphone

(sort of like an Android, but worse, except for battery life, which doesn't matter)

…and write a half-assed article about a new product. Guaranteed Google, MSN, Yahoo, Drudge, or whoever else will have that bad boy on the front page.

Protip: Next time you are charged with the task of covering a new Samsung product’s press release, save some time and just go with “End of Apple???” and be done with it. The whole killer angle was spent several years ago…when we nerds were buying Sandisk players, loading Ubuntu on netbooks, and making wild guesses on forums what RIM was going to do with the next generation of BB phones. Oh….the good old days.

FWIW, I’ll put a Droid X up against all three of those products. For the price point, nothing can touch that machine…my Droid 2 included.

Uses for Old Cell Phones

I remember how excited I was when I picked up my first BlackBerry Pearl. My new, shiny, metallic, trackball-having, Brick Breaker playing, T9 is history-making-me-say, Blackberry Pearl. That bad boy had a two inch screen, if you measured it diagonally. I swear.

Actually, I have it sitting on my work bench right now. One second…

I was wrong…it is easily two and a quarter. Diagonal.

So the question at hand is quickly becoming an age-old question. What do we do with all of this tech once it hits the end of the road? For phones, this is increasingly hard…the older unit is too nice to toss, but too slow to hit paydirt on eBay. Now what?

I’d like to be coy and say something like “two words…[two words here]”…but URLs cross me up. So…here you go….check out sellcell.com. They can solve the problem of which I speak.

cool new phone

too...many....phones....

We still have a big ol’ tube TV upstairs. What do you do with a cathode ray tube? You can toss it in the trash, dropping heavy metals in the water table. You could bring it out to the sticks, and use it for target practice with a rifle. Or shotgun, equipped with slugs. Not that I would know, but that may make for a good target, albeit another way to pollute the crap out of the water run-off.

Fortunately for us (and quite unfortunately for the gun toting hillbillies) there are options when it comes to cell phones. I am proud to say that the cellular market has become pervasive enough to allow for cell phone recycling to take root. Even if you are completely over your cell phone, there are people willing to recycle it for you. They will give you far more loot for your old unit, provided it has a market value…i.e. it is not a Zach Morris phone. Or a BB Pearl. Snaps.

Well, I would say long story short, but my story was long to begin with. Long story in summation, a reputable EU company is extending their service to the US. They provide the best option out there, as far as uses for old cell phones are concerned. They are doing so well, that they can pay me to write about their launch in the States…dang.

Hit one of those links to see what is up. I’m still looking at my old BlackBerry…how pathetic does that little sucker look? Plus, nothing happens when you push on that screen…ghetto as hell.

Old Cell Phone Uses

I am now an official Android fanboi. It would be impossible to hide that fact. Granted, I have yet to root my Droid 2, but I am at least ninety something out of a possible one hundred ‘big into’ this OS. Pretty pumped I waited for Snapdragon…pretty pumped I feigned the urge to get a first generation device…pretty pumped that Apple and or AT&T are not around my neck of the woods…you name it. I’m in a good place, cellularly.

+1 use of the word ‘cellularly’

Regardless, I am left with the problem of what to do with all of my passé phones.

+1 tilde

I have a stack of Verizon phones sitting around, with very little use. Zero use, in fact, unless you can count ‘looking at and laughing about how ridiculously horrid technology was two years ago’ a use, which in fact I do not. Good thing I found a site that will give you money for your mobile phone. Not just a bit, either. That is, of course, unless you are still rocking the Zach Morris phone:

slater

and you can sit backwards in your chair...

Damn right A.C. is going to sit backwards in his chair, Preppy.

You know what is cool about SellMyMobile? Not only will they give you money for your cell, but they are saving the environment as well. My old Blackberry may not be as worth as much as the big hitters (iPhone, iPad, Nokia N8, etc.) but it will at very least stay out of a landfill. There are some toxins in that sucker…gold too, but also toxins.

Hit that bump up there to see what I’m talking about. Worth a shot, especially if you have a sweet phone that you are looking to monetize. Reduce, Reuse, Monetize. I think.

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.****