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Archive for November, 2012

Are you currently running some kind of custom ROM on your SGS+? If for some reason you want (need!) to downgrade to the latest official Android version for this smartphone, fear not. Here are the instructions on “How to upgrade the Galaxy S Plus I9001 to Android 2.3.6 build XXKQI“, at least for European users (for the corresponding versions in other parts of the world, see the XD-Developers website on the subject).

The most difficult part of this guide? Well, for me that is finding a friend with a Windows PC – apparently there is no way for Macintosch or Linux users to run the required non-smartphone software to flash the SGS+ ROM. Not really smart, Samsung!

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I have just upgraded the CM9 on the SGS+ to Beta 4, as described on the XDA Developers site. Nothing special to report until now, except for the fact that I’m getting good at reinstalling apps with the “App Backup and Restore” app from InfoLife LLC. But since that is a very useful app there is no harm in mentioning it, au contraire!

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Bruce Schneier provokes another debate, and his writing is worth reading – and I love the headline: “When It Comes to Security, We’re Back to Feudalism“. Mainstream choices are pretty limited, at the moment – what’s to be done?

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History Of The Smartphone

More history today, after yesterdays romp into “classical” personal computing. No computing device can be more “personal” than a smartphone (well, at least today), and HTC has published an infographic about the emergence of smartphones. You’ll find it on their blog. But the information shown is very incomplete: there is for example no mention of the whole Personal Digital Assistants (PDA) universe, although some of them were not just smart but also very much a mobile phone – like the Treo 180 from 2002. So don’t take this infographic too seriously, please.

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Raw material for historians, proposed by Dave Winer: “If you’re studying the evolution of user interface, being able to look at this time capsule could be pretty useful.” In short: Dave points you to an IBM PC emulator running Visicalc and ThinkTank (and I’m sure more programs could be added without to much trouble). To make things easy, the emulator runs in a browser window – a neat trick.

For those who want more than an emulator: no, I don’t have PC hardware from those years. But I still own a few (running)  Macintoshes that are almost as old: a Macintosh SE/30 from 1989, a Mac IIvi from 1992 and a Performa 6400 from 1997 – and lots of software (on 3.5″ floppy disks – remember those?)…

Macintoshes at home

Macintoshes at home

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Three years of WordPress, that is what today means for this blog. WordPress has shown itself splendidly up to the task of managing my blog, and in those three years I have learned that WP is more than a simple blogging tool: it’s a serious CMS, worthy of consideration for anyone who wants to build and run a website. I’m writing this while riding the train to work, and that proves that WP has included the mobile revolution in its solution package – nice.

I don’t follow the WP blog, so I don’t know what the WP developers are up to. But I am curious to see how WP will evolve in the coming years!

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It took me nearly three years (elapsed time, not working days) to migrate the content of my blog from nukleos.editthispage.com to this platform. I’m glad it’s done, especially since it took so long. Why did it take so long?

Let me explain: three years ago, I thought briefly about automating the migration. The Manila platform of editthispage.com can export a complete site, and WordPress is perfectly capable of importing a site packaged in an XML file. But this route would have required me to relearn Frontier/Manila skills which I had not used for many years, after using Frontier for one of the first websites within the company of my employer in the early nineties. Additionally, automating the migration would not have helped me in discovering typos and failed links.

So I started the migration by hand, copying the text of each blog post , then pasting it into a new WordPress post, resetting the date, checking links and possibly replacing them with relocated URLs or links to the Wayback Machine, adding categories, inserting images, etc. All in all, if my counting is correct, that made for 1561 posts to be copied – and let me assure you that there was no way I could do that for hours at a time: it’s just too tedious and stressing at the same time. Thus the pace of migration was at times fast, and sometimes I didn’t get around to doing it for weeks or months.

But as of now, almost to the day three years after I started the migration, all of my blog posts from the past 13 years are reunited in a single, performant tool. At the same time, those three years made me rediscover not just a lot of links I had forgotten, but also a high number of my own writings, also hidden in far corners of my mind. Maybe it’s because I’m a historian by education, but I liked that journey into the past. All that stuff is now back together in a single searchable form, ready for instant rediscovery – I’m sure that will pay off one of these days.

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