Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for April, 2017

IDG Connect pointed me to the website of Planet Computers Ltd. Planet Computers uses the Indiegogo platform to fund the development of the Gemini PDA. Basically, the Gemini PDA is a Psion Series 3/5 lookalike – but with modern hardware and running Android and a GNU Linux variant.

Could be a Psion Series 5, indeed!

I must admit that I lusted after a Psion “personal digital assistant” in the late 1990’ies. But the Psion devices were quite expensive, especially when compared to some of the quite capable devices that Palm Computing managed to build. I still have three Palm devices in the house, although these days their functionality is limited to being alarm clocks ;-)

Much as I would like to see Planet Computers succeed in making the Gemini a success, I tend to agree with the IDG expert, Francisco Jeronimo, IDC Research Director for Mobile Devices in EMEA, who..

… is sceptical of the extent to which the Gemini will appeal to buyers, citing the relatively limited uptake of the recent BlackBerry smartphones that also combined the Android OS with a QWERTY keypad.

“There’s a very small market for this kind of device. Everyone has got used to typing on a touch screen, and most users that really need a physical keyboard or a larger screen have a mini tablet plus an external keyboard,” he adds.

On the other hand, the Indiegogo campaign seems to work well, and perhaps many of the millions of Psion buyers are prepared to spend quite a bit less money on a possibly very functional device, even if it’s just out of nostalgia. We’ll see what the pundits say about the Gemini, if and when Planet manages to build (and sell) them!

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

It has been a long time since I needed one, and it turned out that I did no longer have one available (installed) on my current machine: a hex editor. But there is ample choice on the web. I tried two of them: first Hex Fiend, from ridiculous_fish. You wouldn’t tell from looking at the homepage of the site, but the author(s?) has written serious code – and explanations about them to boot. Hex Fiend works well, and can supposedly handle very big files. That could come in handy.

My second test concerned 0xED, a tool (the only one?) by Suavetech. It has a somewhat different user interface, probably because it is a bit older. It works quite well too. Like Hex Fiend, it displays selected bytes in different interpretations, but it has more of them. As an extra, you can even write your own plugins to display your selection – that might come in handy if your dealing with somewhat more exotic data than text or numbers.

0xED examining its own download file

For the moment, I’ll leave 0xED on my disk.

 

Read Full Post »

Brent Simmons isn’t a new name in this blog – I have cited his name several times since 2001. A few days ago he wrote:

It’s been years since I could build the Frontier kernel — but I finally got it building.

[…]
The high-level goal is to make that tool available again, because I think we need it.

The plan is to turn it into a modern Mac app, a 64-bit Cocoa app, and then add new features that make sense these days. (There are so many!) But that first step is a big one.

“Frontier Is Interesting”, says Jim Roepcke – click to see what he writes

It’s an interesting development, from several viewpoints. I wrote some of my first “web applications” in Frontier, and that makes that Frontier will always have a special place in my book of tools. It’s also nice to see a relevant piece of software evolve so that it continues to run on modern hardware and OS’s. At some point, I will certainly download and run a copy on my Mac.

But the question is: do I want to go back to developing stuff in Frontier? Do you want to?

Read Full Post »

Just three months ago, I bought a Galaxy S7 smartphone, then the absolute top-end phone in the Galaxy range. Since then, Samsung has announced the brand-new S8, and Google has already release a preview of Android O.

The Galaxy S8 looks great, and I could have regretted buying an S7 if the S8 was not so expensive!

Ars Technica has a nice, enthusiastic write-up of a first “Hands-on with Android O—A million new settings and an awesome snooze feature“. I’m sure Ron Amadeo and his colleagues will add more details about the upcoming release in the coming days and weeks, detailing performance enhancements, support for keyboard devices, and more.

But why should I care about Android O, when Samsung seems to be incapable of bringing the previous release to the best phone in its current line-up in the shops? First announcements of a possible upgrade dat back to mid-2016, and Nougat has already been seen on a number of markets. So come on, Samsung! Make it happen in Belgium. I really want to see Nougat on my S7 ! Android O can wait a little longer ;-)

Google made Nougat for me, indeed!

Read Full Post »

As Engadget writes:

It’s a tragic time for both music and technology. Ikutaro Kakehashi, best known as the founder of Roland Corporation, has died at 87. The engineer turned corporate leader got his start making electronic drums and rhythm pattern generators, but it was after he founded Roland in 1972 that he hit the big time. His company quickly became synonymous with electronic music effects, and the machines built under his watch didn’t just become popular — they changed the cultural landscape.

It’s safe to say that digital sound as we know it today would not have been the same without Kakehashi.

Read Full Post »

National statistics may say that March 2017 was sunnier than “normal” (statistics since 1830 or so), but on our roof the numbers are different: March 2017 generated less solar electricity than the average of the previous 7 years (178.345 Wh). Still, it could have been worse: the first half of the month made it look as if the system would not even make it half way to the average. So in the end, I guess the conclusion is that March was more or less “average” when it comes to the sun. The good news, of course, is that Spring is in the air, with flowers and blossoms and fresh green all over our garden.

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts