Archive for March, 2009

New iPod shuffle sports huge design flaw

March 15th, 2009 No comments

Massive FlawSo, Apple have brought out yet another generation of iPod shuffle (what was wrong with the previous one I don’t know).

Now, as expected, the memory increases, but someone at Apple has decided that the previous shuffle wasn’t small enough and designed a smaller version at the expense of any actual controls on the unit so the controls have been moved to cable on the right earphone. What if you don’t want to use Apple’s supplied earphones? You’re snookered. Why couldn’t they have duplicated these controls on the unit? It’s only three buttons.

Even before iPods, I had a portable minidisc player but found the supplied ear-bud Sony earphones useless, not anything to do with sound quality, but simply that unless I held my head perfectly still (say, in a vice) they would not stay in my ears. When I went back to the shop I found I was far from alone; I therefore bought a pair of ‘in ear’ earphones that I have used with every iPod since. None of the ear-bud iPod earphones have ever got out of the box.

Apple say that third party earphone manufacturers will be making compatible earphones but why should I have to pay out for another set when I have a perfectly usable pair. This needless extra expense is on top of the price hike on the previous version.

The other problem is that some people will want to plug it into a set of speakers rather than earphones; again how are you supposed to control it then?

Google thinks my iPhone is a malware bot

March 15th, 2009 No comments

Tried using Google while out and about on O2 3G but Google thought I was a malware bot and produced the following message:

iPhone Google Error

Since when has performing a search on Google been classed as suspicious activity?

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , , ,

Reconditioning a Powerbook Battery

March 13th, 2009 No comments

My Powerbook battery has slowly lost its capacity to hold charge for any reasonable amount of time. I recently read about the free Coconut Battery utility and some tips on how to recondition your battery to recover some of the lost capacity.

Battery before conditioningAfter downloading Coconut Battery, I found out how bad my battery had got: From an original capacity of 4200mAh, my battery capacity had reduced to only 1225mAh, a mere 29%! (see left)

Battery after first conditioning cycleI then set about reconditioning the battery. This involves firstly charging until the computer shows 100% and the power plug changes from amber to green. Then the power is disconnected and the laptop used as normal until it goes to sleep on low power. Leave it for a couple of hours then charge it again back to 100% without using it.

After this the battery capacity had increased by to 1737mAh (see right) – an increase of 41% but still only 41% of the original capacity (a strange coincidence). I will try another cycle to see if I get another improvement. I also have a spare battery which I’ve just checked is in an even worse condition – its current capacity is only 11% of its original capacity so that will also need conditioning.

Don’t Believe the Low Battery Warning

It is interesting to note that in trying to drain the battery, the laptop carried on running long after the low battery warning and after the battery was shown at 0%. I have drained my iPhone in a similar fashion (and intend to do so on a regular basis) and this also continued to function long after the 10% battery warning. If most people do, as I did, and plug the charger in when the battery warning comes on, it is hardly surprising that batteries lose their capacity as they are not being properly cycled. Perhaps battery warnings should be set much lower.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , ,

Update to Privacy Policy

March 13th, 2009 No comments

This site’s Privacy Policy has today been updated to include the following text:

Google, as a third party vendor, uses cookies to serve ads on Google’s use of the DART cookie enables it to serve ads to our users based on their visit to our sites and other sites on the Internet. As a user, you may opt out of the use of the DART cookie by visiting the Google ad and content network privacy policy.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

iPhone 3G Pairing with TomTom GO 500

March 12th, 2009 2 comments

iPhone TomTom BluetoothIf you’re looking to buy an iPhone and wondering whether it will pair up on Bluetooth with your TomTom GPS, I can confirm that my iPhone 3G pairs successfully with my TomTom GO 500. The firmware versions are: iPhone 3G (v2.2.1 (5H11)) and TomTom GO 500 (v7.903).

It actually pairs up better than my Nokia 6300 which, as noted in a previous post, fails to properly import the phone book into the TomTom, choosing only to offer one number per contact. By contrast, the iPhone clearly tags each number with work, home, mobile.

I also now have names and numbers of incoming callers showing again on the TomTom. Since switching from my SE k750i to the Nokia 6300, I had lost this, as the Nokia did not pass any information to the TomTom about the incoming call.

UK Style Trimphone Ringtone

March 8th, 2009 15 comments

Trimphone by FunkyWormBack in 2005 when looking for a ringtone for my mobile that sounded like the Trimphone from the 70s, the only one I could find was unfortunately an American style single ring version that someone had posted on a forum, but I have recently edited it in Garageband to shorten the ring and make it the proper UK style ring-ring.

I thought I’d share it so you have the choice here of an m4a version that will work on Sony Ericsson and Nokia, and an m4r version (essentially the same file but renamed) which will go straight into iTunes for syncing with an iPhone.

Trimphone image based on image from FunkyWorm on Flickr used under Creative Commons Licence

Categories: UK Tags: , , , ,