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Etikett: Android (sida 1 av 2)

Whitelines

I just found a great Swedish invention out there that I wanted to share with everyone who are taking notes at some time or the other. First of all, the idea is to have low contrast lines or squares on your papers so as not to be distracting as the normal patterns are on normal notebook / college book paper is.

The whitelines paper uses white lines by printing slightly grey around it. It is ingenious for many reasons, one is that the lines are not visible if you copy or scan your paperwork. And now with the digital mobile camera you can scan yours or your friends notes in a second and also send them automatically to dropbox, evernote or have them mailed somewhere with a simple app that you can get for both iOS and Android. Using the Whitelines Link it goes automatically and can correct for skewing and perspective. It’s awesome.

Here is the kicker. If you don’t feel like buying their pre-printed stationary you can print it yourself by downloading a PDF file from their home page. They have PDF files for lined and squared A5 and A4 papers. Print them, make your notes, scan them with the Whitelines app and then find them in your dropbox. Never loose a field note again.

The trick is that they have printed codes in all 4 corners of the papers. Codes that reminds you of QR codes (but are simpler). The app finds these codes and can then perspective-correct your photo scan of your notes.

On their site you can also buy tags to put on your white board. Then when you scan that it will also perspective correct and store your brain storms and what not in your phone or you can share with any one of your services really.

Check it out, it’s neater than you would believe!

 

Har din Google Navigator slutat fungera?

Den senaste uppdateringen till Android Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.2 i kombination med senaste maps medförde också att många fick problem med Google Navigate.

Anledningen är en uppdatering av Android TTS (Text To Speech) och om man går in i menyn i telefonen och återställer språket till Engelska i stället för Spanska så fungerar det utmärkt igen.

Inställningar -> Språk och inmatning -> Test-till-tal-utdata

Tryck på inställningsknappen bredvid ”Google TTS Engine”, välj sedan ”språk” och till sist ”Engelska (USA)”.

Nu fungerar Google Navigate utmärkt igen.

The Perfect To-Do App

Do it (Tomorrow) Web version

I have for a long time looked for the perfect To-Do application. I have looked at very complex software on the Android platform such as Astrid, I have looked at some of the more simple ones such as Taskos but I have in time stopped using them one by one.

The reason is that they are not working with me, they are working against me. I used to love Remember The Milk but when I got the smartphone app it started dwindle. It just gets too fiddlesome and after a while I stop maintaining the database and then I might just as well do with good old pen and paper.

Until a couple of weeks ago when I found the perfect to-do manager that works as my brain works. I have now tried it out for a while and I am really happy with it. So happy I want to share my joy with you!

I have tried to follow the Getting Things Done scheme of things, different focus and various perspectives, never felt very natural to me. I have a more geometric kind of memory, i have no problem remembering numbers, figures and symbols, I also know roughly in which pile I have put something. Even if my home folder looks disorganised I know how to find my stuff pretty quickly. But the Getting Things Done (GTD) scheme just clashes with my frontal neo-cortex somewhere.

Enter the fantastic ”Do it (Tomorrow)”. It’s so simple it is brilliant. You have a notebook like app in your phone (and on the web) which has two pages. It has a page for TODAY and a page for TOMORROW. Everything you want to do today you put on the TODAY page and everything else on the TOMORROW.

Every morning all tasks ends up on your TODAY page and you quickly dismiss all you can not do today, all you do not want to do today, and those that you think you won’t have time for by pressing the right hand arrow and they just whiff off to the TOMORROW page. What is left is your todays task list.

As the day progresses you probably find new stuff you need to add. Make a decision, either put it on todays list if you seriously think you will handle it today or put it on the TOMORROW page if you want to do it tomorrow (or later).

It wors brilliant because this is exactly how my brain organises tasks naturally. It has pretty much two compartments for not finished tasks and they are ”now” and ”later” which corresponds pretty well to the TODAY and TOMORROW pages.

I have also realised I put far too many tasks in the GTD schemes and similar, it’s no use. Things that ought to be completed in november should not be in your task book in June. Just let it mature for a while. Maybe in October it is a candidate. But keep it simple, that really works – for me at least.

The android, iPhone and web versions can be synced. Just input your email address and a password of your choosing (does not have to be the same as your webmail password mind you) then it will synchronize automatically across platforms.

On the smartphone app you switch between TODAY and TOMORROW by swiping. Moving a task from one page to the other is done by touching the arrow pointing to the opposite side. You can also arrange the order and delete them completely, just touch the EDIT button first and you will see how you accomplis that.

To tick of a task when it is done, simply touch it. A pencil-line crosses it out and you are done. The next morning it is gone if you ticked it done on the TODAY page, if you ticked it on the TOMORROW page it will be moved, already ticked off, to your TODAY page and sit there for a day. Quite simple.

Find their home page now or if you have an Android phone you can download it form Market immediately. iPhone users find it in the app store or from the home page on the web first.

Google Navigation nu i Sverige

Äntligen har Google Navigation släppts för bl.a. Sverige! Många har vi varit som har väntat på detta och nu fungerar det äntligen. Jag blev så glad när jag upptäckte detta i går kväll att jag tom tog bilen till jobbet för att testa den ordentligt.

Den fungerade mycket bra. Den har kanske inte alla finesser hos alla betalapparna men den gör det den skall väldigt bra. Navigationen är mycket smidig och det är lätt att hitta alternativa vägar om man vill jämföra lite olika vägar till sitt mål. Den är väldigt snabb på att räkna om rutten ifall man väljer att köra en annan väg än den föreslagna (läs: kör fel) och jag är väldigt väldigt nöjd med den.

Jag har tidigare testat ett antal olika navigationsappar för Android men de flesta har fallit på antingen orimligt pris (ofta får man en 30 dagars prövotid eller liknande) eller så har de helt enkelt fungerat rätt dåligt. En som har fungerat bra för mig är annars NDrive men jag kommer nog inte nyttja den jättemycket nu när Navigate fungerar så bra.

Jag har inte hittat fartkameradata och liknande till den ännu men skall undersöka vilka add-ons som finns där ute.

Connect those androids

This is so cool it is almost insane! And this will definitely increase the usefulness of an already extremely useful device beyond what anyone can dream of today.

Android 3.1 SDK new Open Accessory API

The new Android API, primarily for tablets (let’s hope it will be used on smartphone devices soon as well) means it will be much simpler for hardware manufacturers to connect peripherals to your Android device.

The API allows any device with host USB functionality to connect to a multitude of USB devices and interact with many different kinds of devices from music devices, exercise equipment, input devices such as joysticks, standard USB keyboard… you can almost find no end to the stuff that you could potenmtially hook up to your android.

Lovely.

Android runner app: iMapMyRun

I was prompted on Twitter to test out the Android mobile app ”iMapMyRun” and so I did today. My first impression was that the software is not there yet, it has not reached a mature enough state to seriously compete with BuddyRunner or Endomondo or CardioTrainer or to be used even for beginners.

When registering I got buttons to select imperial/european units but none of the buttons seemed to work when I pressed them and in the end I had to chose to move on. When I did so I could not find another way to go back and change the settings, nor could I update my personal data such as weight and so on.

Today I took it for a test run and I used other tracking software at the same time. After about 2/3 of the way the iMapMyRun software stopped recording it seems and instead it just plotted the last position when I turned it off at my finish. Therefore it just went in a straight line for the last 1/3 of the run. Definitely something fishy was going on there. Neither did it record the GPS elevation data for some reason, the accompanying web site says ”There was an error retrieving the elevation”, I have no idea why. Of my 5 km run this app recorded only 3.

Both other recording apps (Google Tracks and Endomondo) worked fine through all this. On top of all that it feels unintuitive and quirky and a little backwards but that may be just me expecting things from being used to the other apps in this field.

When the workout finished I got a ridiculous question about peanyut butter, an ad that felt intrusive and out of place. Peanut butter is hardly the stuff for athletes so it felt rather misplaced. The whole app and the accompanying web site is riddled with ads. If you are viewing your runs, you have to upgrade to the payed version or wait 15 seconds before you can see your run. Again it is not on the level with the competing softwares in this respect.

My recommendation is to wait and see if this app matures. In the mean time check out BuddyRunner or Endomondo, both very mature and well working GPS tracking apps for runners.

It gets one running shoe out of five for now.

Phishing attempt or real?

Edit: As you can see in the comments below the email was actually legit.

I recently got an email from what appears to be the manufacturer of an app I am using on my Android phone. The app in question is the GeotagPhotos Pro, which records GPS locations and time to a database, then when you take pictures using your digital camera (not the mobile camera) providing the camera’s time is set to the same time the GPS has it will then be able to geotag your pictures after you have downloaded them from the camera.

I have used this software for a few months now and out of the blue I get the following email from what appears to be a legitimate email from the manufacturer:

Dear Geotag Photos Pro user,

recently, we got information from Android Market / App Store about all licences of Geotag Photos Pro. When mathed with users in our database, we were unable to find valid licence for your account. This can be just bug in licence database, so that please if you are sure, that you bought our application officially, please send us your order id. You can find it in orders history in Google Checkout (for Android) or in iTunes (for iPhone). We apologize all legal users for this inconvenience.

If you downloaded our app from another source, than official store (Android Market or AppStore), please consider of buying  official full version. To help you with this, we will make ”licence amnesty” this Wed, April the 6th, when Geotag Photos Pro will be offered with 50% discount – for $1.99 instead of $3.99.

Please contact our support staff, if you have any questions.

Best regards,

Jindrich Sarson
CEO of TappyTaps

I find this deeply disturbing. All the signs of a bad phishing attempt is here, the bad spelling (however the manufacturer is a Czhech company which may explain that in part, but the idea of sending payment credentials from the Android Market and Google checkout is deeply disturbing to me.

I have contacted the manufacturer to ask them to verify that they actually are who they claim to be but if they, as they claim, have a problem with their licencing database they should be able to verify the data with the raw payment data from Google Checkout that they as a seller receives.

There is also no information about this problem on their home page and this leads me to suspect foul business and that this is not legitimate. Otherwise I should think that there would be at least a mention about this…

We will see what comes back…

PowerPack

Battery life on smartphones

Most users of their smart phones have realized that althought the phone can do a lot, battery time is definitely a problem once you start using it streaming music with Spotify, surfing, watching movies on youtube and so on. The reason is that the processor needed to run these applications needs to be quite spiffy and being spiffy means it will use a lot of power.

Since there is a limit to the size of most phones, there is a limit to the battery size that can be used and so the phones with the fanciest processors are left with low battery times – unless you keep them in standby most of the time but then they are not so bad and might last a couple of days actually.

But what is the fun in that, you bought the phone to use it so you want to use it but you still wish you could avoid depleting the battery before that important call comes through. Or what if your youtube watching escapades drained the battery just before you really needed google maps to find the address in the old town you where looking for?

Solar charger

There is a solution for that and this is to get a secondary power source. There are plenty of different versions out there, some with solar panels that claim to charge themselves in the sun light and then you can connect your phone to them to charge the phone. They also have an internal battery so you can let them drink the sunlight in the day time and charge its internal battery, then later connect your phone to charge it. However I have tested two different brands of these and it does not really works.

First of all it takes forever for it to charge the internal battery. On the box and in the manuals it says 6-12 hours of sunlight ought to do it. Well, not in Sweden, not even in the summertime, in broad day light the charging is acceptable but not more. Even after three days in the windowtill trying to charge it was not good enough, in the summer with a really nice weather. Fortunately that one could also be connected to a USB port and be charged by the computer. And on a clody day you won’t charge enough to keep the internal drain on the battery at bay…

Powerpack pre-charged

So unless you live in a country with a scorching sunlight, just avoid the solar charged power packs. What you want is something that can be charged in the car, from the computer or from a wall socket and carries enough of amps to charge your phone at least twice.

A lot of the modern phones can be charged on the USB port of an ordinary computer. This is good because it means we are finally seeing some kind of standard for charging small appliances such as MP3 players, phones and even camera batteries. So a power pack should have a USB port or perhaps 2 even.

My Powerpack

The Galaxy S and the Power Pack

The site is in Swedish but the facts for this power pack are: 2xUSB ports that can do up to 500 mA (which is standard USB current) each. The pack contains 5000 mAh (or 5 Ah if you want) which is more than twice that of my phone pack which also has a lower voltage. I should be able to get 2-3 charges out of this pack and now that I have tested it for about a month I am really happy with it.

PortsIt is small enough to fit in my pocket, only thing I need to take with me is a USB cable to charge the power pack or the phone as I want. I usually charge it from a USB wall socket charger and then just use the standard data cable for the phone.

The powerpack can be charging at the same time as you put 2 more appliances to charge from it. This is really good cause you can thus use it to charge your phone while at the same time you charge the power pack.

 

Screen capture on Galaxy S with Android 2.2

image

I found more or less by mistake how to make a screen capture on the Galaxy S Android mobile. Other such instructiond requires the installation of an SDK or similar but this anyone can do really.

Go to the screen you wish to capture. Then press and hold the back/return button for a couple of seconds and then hit the middle button. A camera shutter sound is played and the image is captured.

The picture can then be found int he gallery of the phone as would any normal camera picture be, it can thus be uploaded, shared with face book, blogged (actually I wrote this on the phone using a WordPress agent straight from the phone)

From Jonas comment below I would conclude this is a Galaxy S specific feature that is not android 2.2 common unfortunately.

All of us who like the Android and writes about specific software on the android would love to have this feature implemented so I will suggest it to Google and see what happens in the coming versions on Android.

EasyTether for Android

Fantastic application. Connect your mobile with the USB cable to your laptop, install driver and EasyTether program on your mobile and use your mobile as a mobile broadband internet connection while you are charging your phone!

This is a fantastic development, when I got my Android phone I missed that kind of application and there was some hacks that could be used but nothing that worked this good.

It does not require a root:ed phone, it just works. The software will soon cost a few bucks but it is well worth it if you want to be able to use your phone as a gateway to the internet.

It also uses the phones built-in firewalling capabilities protecting your laptop from attacks from the outside by filtering various protocols. You might even filter UDP ports (except DNS requests) if you like.

(links are coming)