Archive for Android

Tech Tuesday: Coding on the Go

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For months I’ve tried to write-up my experience trying to turn my Note 10.1 tablet into a coding machine. I’ve had this post sitting in my draft folder since February every so often I pull it out and try to finish writing it. every time so far I have saved incomplete. Of course my circumstances have changed a bit since I started writing this, but I still think there is useful information for others in this post. So this last weekend I finally sat down and finished it. So I’ll be writing up a post to discuss what’s changed and why I’m less interested in finding development solutions for Android.

One of the reasons for replacing my Nexus 7 with the larger Note 10.1 was that I wanted to use my tablet for more than entertainment. From blogging to note tacking it has severed me well over the last 6 months, What I have yet to find a way to do productively and consistently is write code. To be fair up until the beginning of the year I haven’t made that a priority, I was content with using CodeAnywhere to make minor tweaks to projects, that was until it failed me completely when I was trying to write a procedure to review my picture of the day posts from 2014, ever since then I’ve tried to find alternatives. I’ve even been in contact with CodeAnywhere support, who’ve been reasonably responsive when dealing with a non paying customer, but ultimately it’s not reliable enough to be my primary mobile solution or even move up from the free service.  So where does that leave me?

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POD: Lollipop


Today started with a bit of a surprised, my phone announced that the Lollipop update was available.  I’ve been waiting for months for Samsung and Telus to ship the update for my Note 3. Today the wait need and do I had to celebrate with some lollipops for me and the kids.

Tech Tuesday: NaNoWriMo


Yesterday I wrote about my personal experience competing in NaNoWriMo, Today I thought I would take a look at the different technology I used to try to reach 50,000 words. My first year I had a personal notebook that I wrote on quite successfully. In the years since my laptop died and I haven’t replaced really replaced it. So instead I’ve tried a few different technologies for writing my novel. One year I had hopped to write on my Motorola Milestone, I thought with its slide out keyboard it would be perfect. It wasn’t. So this year I was thrilled when through some opportunities at home and work I started November we access to a Laptop and a Tablet to write my novel. So I thought I’d break this post into two parts, first I will compare the Hardware and then I will compare the different software I used.

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Today I thought I’d share an app I’ve been using for a couple of months that I use to keep track of my battery.  Batter Widget? Reborn provides a window into the inner working of your phone’s battery. It’s primary feature is to provide a circular battery status. Beyond that it includes also includes a usually fairly accurate time remaining plus provides a very good interface to see Android’s battery stats.  There are 2 sides to the app, the quick view that are provided by the Widget and Notification Area,  and then the detailed view in the application itself.

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Mobile Monday: Photo Grid

Today I thought I’d share an application that I find myself using more and more for my picture of the day. Photo Grid is a collage application for Android. It creates 4 type’s of collage, plus the ability to add boarders to a single image.  I’ve spent a lot of time looking for applications for adding effects to photos on my phone. Most are filled with tacky effects and usually lower the resolution of your images to un-usable quality. I usually use the Grid Collage for my picture of the day. I like the clean look it produces and how easy it is to use. It still lowers the quality of the pictures to 720 or 1080p, but most of the time, I find the grid look worth the loss of image quality.

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How brave am I?

When I first broke my phone, I did a search for replacement parts for my phone and found that the screen was only between $40 and $50 to buy. This gave me hope that it wouldn’t be to expensive to get fixed. Of course when I contact local places to do the repairs I was presented with a price of around $170, I decided to put the repairs on the back burner and live with the broken screen. Then today I saw that HTC will probably be bringing Jelly Bean to the Amaze in the new year the desire to repair my broke screen return. So I did a search for ‘How to repair a HTC Amaze screen’ and found this video.

And this post: HTC Amaze 4G Screen Take Apart Repair Guide

Between the two it show’s that it should be possible for me to replace the screen myself. Though I’m not sure if I’m confident in my abilities to actually try. After all there were plenty of electrics that I took apart in my youth that never seemed to go back together right. Do I want to try it with my phone? Do I want to risk being without even my broken phone?  It’s a tough call. For now I’ll leave it as is and see if HTC does indeed release Jelly Been for it, before I take such a big step. Of course it could be possible that Google will bring the cost of the new Nexus down low enough that I can just get a new phone(Shhh don’t tell Melissa I’m thinking of buying a new phone).

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Mobile Monday: Cracked up

A couple of weeks ago I had a tragic accident with my phone. It slipped from my pocket at the pool and landed on the hard ceramic floor, cracking the screen. It was a tragic event, specially considering the phone is less than a year old and that kind of damage isn’t covered. I tried to go back to the borrowed nexus one, but it stopped charging shortly after I started using it. So I’m let with a phone with a broken screen. Some of you might be wondering why I didn’t subscribe to the device protection plan from my Carrier. Well that’s $7 a month and I would still have to pay $150 to replace my phone. Over the course of the 3 year contract that’s $252. I’ve been quoted around $170 to repair my phone from 2 different shops.  So I have no regrets with my Choice, just a dilemma of what to do next.

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POD: The Wrong Ice Cream Sandwich

From Pictures of the Day 2012

When we went shopping this weekend we picked up a box of Ice Cream Sandwiches. I wanted to celebrate the release of Ice Cream Sandwich for my HTC Amaze, which I expected today. The kids thought this was a great idea and were looking forward to have them all day. Unfortunately the update never got released and so I was left with the choice of saving them for when it did get released and disappointing my kids, or just enjoying the treat tonight. As you can see by today’s picture we chose to enjoy the Ice Cream Sandwich tonight. Plus we have another 3 to have when the update does finally ship.

POD: A new toy for Daddy

Today I bit the bullet and singed away my freedom for the next 3 years. That’s right I got a new Cell phone. I got a HTC Amaze from Telus. I usually would use a picture of the phone, or of my unboxing. But this picture makes me wonder who was more excited by my new phone, me or Jacob. I will be doing a right up on the phone in the coming weeks, but the one thing you can be sure of, is that my POD will get an upgrade with its 8 Mega pixel camera.

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Mobile Monday: Toronto Transit Tracker


Today we look at Toronto Transit Tracker. A handy app that uses real-time information about when the next streetcar will arrive. the next Streetcar will be arriving. There are 3 tabs to the application, Favourites, Streetcar and Map.

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