Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ryan's Review: Samsung Galaxy Nexus [video] | Android in Canada Blog

Ryan's Review: Samsung Galaxy Nexus [video] | Android in Canada Blog:

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Yup, got it

Okay, so I don't want to sound like bragging.... But...

Yup got it.

I found out that tbaytel was getting them in and just called teleco a few times. Then I found out that they hit the store and I was over in a flash.

They hadn't even finished scanning them into the stock system. I nabbed mine before they could put that dealer sticker on it too.

I want to say FIRST in Thunder Bay but I doubt that that's true..? Still it'd be nice to say.

First impressions:
-really skinny, like delicate and I'm scared that it'll fall out of my grip
-blazing fast, even after loading up phone
-dialer kinda socks (can't have it guess who I want to call by using letters in the dial pad)
-I notice the pentile display... Especially when it's dark and on auto brightness
-so far have had 2 of the random reboots, but that's it.

Okay, I'll leave the rest for my official review on AiC.

Now to set about practicing flashing on my old phone then I can sell it.

Selling my captivate, laptop and potentially my eeepad. Need to recoup some cost on this.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Man, I'm getting antsy

Gosh it's taking a long time... okay, just feels like it.

I placed the 'order on Monday.  Then I hear that the stores would get regular stock today.  I called Teleco up and they don't have any yet, maybe next week... but mine should be in tomorrow.

So, do I do the douche move and just find out which store has one, and buy it, thus thumbing the finger to Teleco who special ordered it (oh, yeah... hey, no thanks now)... or just wait patiently.  I don't want to annoy them by calling them every hour... but I feel like I want to.

WiFi Finder - updated for tablet use | Android in Canada Blog

For those who do a lot of travelling in other countries, or areas with limited data connectivity, having Wifi is a MUST.

WiFi Finder - updated for tablet use | Android in Canada Blog:

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Deluge of updates [Maps / Goggles / Wikipedia / Data counter widget] | Android in Canada Blog

I loves me some updates!!

Deluge of updates [Maps / Goggles / Wikipedia / Data counter widget] | Android in Canada Blog:

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CX cloud storage app now available for Android | Android in Canada Blog

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

tbaytel now has the Galaxy Nexus! | Android in Canada Blog

Blarg... just ... get me the phone already

Okay, I didn't want to automatically post a crazy rant about my final "I'm going to do it" action to get the Nexus... I waited a bit; let myself calm down... and let me tell you.  I'm still ticked.

First it started off with a "I'll give tbaytel just one more chance".  Afterall, they said it should 'probably be there Friday'.  So, I called tbaytel and asked if they had a date yet.  2 different people gave me, what I can only guess would be cross-eyed looks over a phone.  One had no idea what I was asking, the other said there was no way to tell, it "...might be several more weeks", and that "...I best call Teleco, they know things better over there..."

Wow, so you blatantly admit that you don't know your own product line.

That's why I was better off with Rogers.

I call Teleco (the old Rogers dealer), and they also say they won't get notice of when the phone is coming in.  Pretty short and succinct... that sucks.

I call TouchUnwired, just in case.  The person there suggests I just keep calling back.  He suggests that I call on "inventory day" to see if they got any then.  I point out that it seems kind of redundant to call on the day they open packages.  Usually, companies have forewarning of what they're getting before they get it.  He chuckles and says "yah, we should".

So, it's decided, nobody attached to tbaytel clearly wants my money, so I call Rogers.  Last week I called them and they said it would take 2 days, and be only $575.  I told her to hold, and would get back to her... this is me hoping to pick up that conversation where it left off.

The new Rogers person I talked to seemed to take a dislike for me for some reason after I told her I was with tbaytel.  Despite all the reassurances that we are the same for all intents and purposes when we were FORCED to become tbaytel customers, it is, in fact, the opposite.  If I am not an actual Rogers customer, with a customer number (and tbaytel customer numbers, or a faked number would not work), the call centre would not be able to relinquish said phone.  Despite many numerous attempts to explain my predicament it continues to fall on deaf ears and the script is stuck to.

I manager up...

...or try to.  I ask repeatedly and she eventually puts me on hold to say "nope, Chuck Testa"... j/k, she literally says "my manager said the same thing".  How am I to know that?  I ask to speak to said manager, with no luck.

I do leave with a bit of a suggestion and a hint of success by the fact she says that this restriction is only for call centres, whereas dealers don't have it.  At first I thought -- dang, we have no dealers for Rogers in our area.  After I hung up I realized Teleco was the Rogers dealer, so the other locations should also be as well (only in Thunder Bay were their hands forced).  Now, if the other locations are carrying the phone, could they not stock-transfer (an ICST in the ol' Radio Shack lingo) one to the Thunder Bay location?  You would have thought the previous sales person (who I'm sure are working on commission and want every chance to separate you from your wallet) would have thought of this...

I call Teleco again.  I get somebody new this time, so I decide to explain what it is I want him to do in simple steps.  Luckily he comprehends and texts/IMs/messages the other store in Winnipeg, and within a minute has an answer that they do have them -- and his compatriot will send one over.

Kaloo Kalay... so however long it takes a store to transfer one the 800km from Winnipeg to Thunder Bay, I'll have the phone.  He couldn't confirm the price of it, but said "whatever Rogers was charging, we'd charge.".  Maybe I'll haggle him some.  Maybe I should call Frank.

All the while, I still had that struggle of "buy outright, or get subsidy".  And after this ordeal, I realize I'm going to buy outright for sure.  Even if it came out to some sort of less money scenario on the subsidy (read my previous post about how the monthly rate would be more expensive) I will not keep my money with tbaytel a moment longer than physically possible.  It is this kind of poor customer service and knowledge of the hardware that keeps me staying away.  Now, some might say "well, they're at the mercy of whenever Rogers sends them the phone...".  I call bull.  If they truly are the company they say they are, then they would have some pull and some clout (klout?) to be able to get the same items to satisfy their customer base.  Fido doesn't have this 'delay' with Rogers.  Kodoo gets the same treatment as Telus.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

BagpipeLessons.com Blog: New BagpipeLessons.com Online Piping & Drumming Competition for March 2012

Definitely going to do this again.  Plenty of time too!

BagpipeLessons.com Blog: New BagpipeLessons.com Online Piping & Drumming Competition for March 2012:

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AiC user Wallpapers [File Folders] | Android in Canada Blog

Another file repository, this time for wallpapers.

AiC user Wallpapers [File Folders] | Android in Canada Blog:

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Original eeePad'ers will have to wait until mid-February for ICS | Android in Canada Blog

awww shucks!

Original eeePad'ers will have to wait until mid-February for ICS | Android in Canada Blog:

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Minus updated - better uploading | Android in Canada Blog

This is my favourite Cloud Storage option... and the android app got just a little better.

Minus updated - better uploading | Android in Canada Blog:

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Saturday, January 21, 2012

To buy the Nexus or not...

To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep

Always loved that Shakespeare line (not much of an English Lit. guy tho').

I was going to wittily change it to something about ...

to buy, or not to buy, that is my question
whether to tbaytel and suffer
the increase in rage and misfortune
or, to take out my wallet and visa
and purchasing off contract, 'fend them
to buy; ...

...okay, that really went off course there.  I'm definitely not a writer by any stretch of the imagination.  But I think you get my point.  I have an option to purchase the new Galaxy Nexus.  Well, by saying I have, ... most people have as well.  Just more so exploring the option.

I recently found out that tbaytel, in an effort to try to win over the Rogers screw-overs, are offering us a chance to break the Rogers contract, if we sign with a sole-tbaytel plan.  They'll offer up an extra $150 credit if we do.  But an equivalent tbaytel plan for what I have right now is about $5 - $10 extra / month.  I can't quite tell, it's pretty vague from their pamphlet.

But I'm so conflicted... I need to break it down:

Option 1 - do nothing
Option 2a - buy it from tbaytel (on contract)
Option 2b - buy it from tbaytel (outright)
Option 3 - buy it from Rogers (outright)
then I'm stuck with a Captivate..., but I could just use the upgrade option and get a decent phone, like the S2 I pay an extra $360 or so to tbaytel, which I never wanted to be with in the first place.  And if I can get an option to leave, I'd have to pay the ETF, which would be astronomical.

I also don't know WHEN the phone is coming in (and the promo for the extra credit runs out at the end of the month).

But, the phone would be only $99, and then I get the $150 credit... so I'm $50 up!
Now, because they don't know WHEN they'll get it (they just figure they will eventually), I'm doubting they'll know the price.  And historically tbaytel has been slightly more expensive than Rogers. According to the last conversation I had with their customer service they have them in stock and they were selling them for $575, and could ship in 2 days.

Downside is that if something went wrong with the phone... I don't know who I'd get to yell at?  That's kinda important to me.

So that's my conundrum.  I think it's a pretty clear winner, but I hate just plopping down the cash ... the inner scot in me I guess.

TouchRetouch App - want to replace photoshop? [Review] | Android in Canada Blog

TouchRetouch App - want to replace photoshop? [Review] | Android in Canada Blog:

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PressReader - A Newsstand for your Phone/Tablet [Review] | Android in Canada Blog

PressReader - A Newsstand for your Phone/Tablet [Review] | Android in Canada Blog:

'via Blog this'

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

My foray into 'tweaking' Android

Okay, I believe I discussed this some time back about me playing around with trying to ROOT and flash my HTC Magic.  It just never took.  Ah well.

heh...  I need me texting on the Galaxy Nexus at the end (and it's missing my Rolodex REX)

I get a little gunshy pretty easy.  And when it comes to messing with my expensive gadgets, I get worried.

I pooched a Treo700w, a Treo650, and nearly a couple other Palms when I would attempt to do some 'fun' with it.  I've jiggered with dozens of WinXP or Ubuntu ISO's for my netbooks, and nearly had a couple unrecoverable.

So when I'm trying with my latest phone, the one I've had over a year now, and contemplating getting a new one, I start getting somewhat braver.

I start to read up, and I'm no slouch -- should be pretty straight forward.  In order to flash a non-signed ROM (version of an operating system) I need a special recovery mode... so you flash that kernel, and you should be fine.  Except it wouldn't boot up.  I could boot into recovery mode, but I had no ROM to flash onto the phone.

Luckily with the help of some G+ friends (and a real chance to play with the Hangouts feature - which is awesome btw), I was able to get it back to where it was before I experiemented (nothing lost, but nothing gained either -- except a healthy dose of respect to not do things wrong).  But so close to having to make a quick choice.

Not my first foray into tweaking, but a true honest try, not a successful one however... *le sigh*.

So, I'm debating about buying the new Galaxy Nexus... I'll have a separate post about that.

Here's my geekery on what happened, play by play.

I rooted my phone with  - http://www.unlockroot.com/
very straight forward (thanks Sylvain)

Then got the Heimdall program from the Cyanogen Wiki site for the Captivate.

I downloaded the Speedmod for the recovery, and I think that it didn't like being installed and then booting into the standard Samsung ROM, which is why it just hung.

I'm debating doing it again (maybe after I have my new phone in hand).  Do it the 'standard cyanogen' way, or go all freaky and try the leaked ICS option?

Woz says what all you iSheep feel

admitting you iSheep like Android is not admitting a weakness... just admit it


My eeePad will get ICS update pretty soon!!

From my AndroidinCanada Blog


#Patentfun January 9 - 15 '12

My weekly roundup of Android lawsuits.


Monday, January 16, 2012

Line-ups and that silly silly grocery store divider

Okay, I wrote this draft after a long day with kids and parties, so forgive me if I sound a little like Mitch Hedberg getting through his notes.

Okay, so I think this had something to do about a rant and me getting in line, but being able to pick the appropriate line.

I remember being in a workshop where they talked about the different "colour personalities", and one of them; the greens; had algorithms to do everything.  I totally get that.  So was it when I went to the grocery store late after the party and had to choose which to get into.  I had 2 choices:

  • long line with only a few items each
  • short line but with lots of items (but several multiples)

Which would you pick?  Really, I'll let that settle in.

What'd you pick?

For me it comes down to a gut reaction -- whether I'm really calculating or not, I do some estimation etc... and say "well, the multiple items will speed up that overall transaction..."  I'll get all geeky for a bit... the equation would look something like:

T = S + t*i

something like Time = Startup time + time per item * # of items.
[reminds me of that book I have:  Geek Logic]

Each person, a new transaction, would carry an initial startup/setup time.  Clearing the register, "do you need bags", processing payment, etc...  Then it's a matter of how long it takes to scan an item multiplied by how many items they have.  For multiple items it can almost be assumed it's like one item.

So, where the time for all people to be processed ahead of me, in the longer line up, but less items, so long as the startup time per person is small, it's best to go there, but when it's big... it may be the same as the short line of LOTS OF items.

Seriously, Rich has to go and do some equations/statistics for me.  I can't be the only one who's thought of this.

Well, it all goes for a crap when the person throws the cp variable into the mix.  The unaccountable 'crazy person' variable, who'll ask a ton of questions from the cashier, and not know how to use their VISA etc...  then it messes with your math.  You can't judge that (hmm... maybe a probably of cp... but that'd require understanding of the cp coefficient of the general populace ... anyhow).

Just so you know, in the end, I still beat out the long line up of lesser items.  So, yay me!

My final thought about being in the grocery store had to deal with that divider you put down.  Surprising how hard it is to google an image of one.  But here ya go.

Who decides to put the 'divider' in at the grocery check out?  This is a social quandry.  I mean, who's obligation is it to put that thing down, especially when there's a limited number of them (sometimes there's only one).

Is it my job to put it down behind me?  Is it insulting to the person behind me that "I don't want to be seen as buying your stuff.."

What about me putting it in front of my stuff to the person ahead of me?  "Hey, make sure I get my own stuff, I don't want him stealing it into his order ... "

For the past few times that I've had the opportunity, I just wait.  I leave some space, a clear understanding of "this is my buffer of null space between their order and mind" and see what happens.

Eventually somebody gets uncomfortable without the divider and puts it in.  It's interesting to see who cracks first.  The person ahead of me, or the person behind.

I think I'm just weird.

What's your take?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

How to Side-Load Applications onto your phone [Video] | Android in Canada Blog

If you didn't know... you didn't know. Well, now watch, and then you'll know.

How to Side-Load Applications onto your phone [Video] | Android in Canada Blog:

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Want some unique sounds for your phone? [File Folder] | Android in Canada Blog

Change your ringtones/sounds from the default people.. it'll avoid you all looking at your phone and wondering who's it is.

Want some unique sounds for your phone? [File Folder] | Android in Canada Blog:

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Asus eeePad Transformer TF101 to get ICS end of the month. | Android in Canada Blog

soon... oh, so very soon!!

Asus eeePad Transformer TF101 to get ICS end of the month. | Android in Canada Blog:

My android army

Heh... my geek toys... they're growing in number!

Thanks Mandy and Charm.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Some winter weather

Yeah, I know... We get a lot of winter weather, but we've been spoiled lately.

Something about the start of a light snow (leading to A LOT more later most likely) that makes me want to bike.

Hopefully it stays just like this, but I doubt it.

At least the snow will help build up the snow forts we're building.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

SanDisk Memory Zone App - A Great Cloud Aggregate! | Android in Canada Blog

Okay, I have a problem... I like cloud apps too much. I have 50GB for Box, and for Minus; I have 25 in SkyDrive, 15GB in SugarSync and about5 for dropbox.

this app is a good one to keep track of them.

SanDisk Memory Zone App - A Great Cloud Aggregate! | Android in Canada Blog:

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Want a non-Canadian APK? [File Folder] | Android in Canada Blog

I got tired of seeing apps in the market that wouldn't let me download because of my country, but I know it would work.

Well I put together a list of some of those files for you to download and side load them.  Getting the service to work is up to you.

Want a non-Canadian APK? [File Folder] | Android in Canada Blog

Friday, January 6, 2012

Phi day 2012

So, today was phi day.

You don't know what phi is?  It's the golden ratio.

See, Mandy wanted to get me something for my Pi day celebrations (you know, 3.14... celebrated on 3/14).

Unfortunately she got me a Phi shirt (see below).

Thus Phi day (being 1.618... we'll celebrated on 1/6).

Unfortunately I ended up succumbing to this nasty bug I've got and didn't get to wear the shirt to work today.  Next year.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011 - My Year in Review

So, I'm promising myself that I will try to blog more this upcoming year.  And not just for www.AndroidinCanada.ca but for myself as well.  It's really helpful with improving my writing, and just a relaxing experience really.

Plus, maybe it'll alleviate a plethora of G+ posts.  Well, maybe not, I'm also planning on removing my Facebook/Twitter integration, so I'll be G+'ing all the year, so only bits you may get to see, depending on which circles of mine you're in.

[I'm getting most of my dates and stuff via my Google Calendar, and from stats from my wordpress blog - which I've exported to this blogger now -- you can see a report here]

So let's go by the month (note, each of the months are clickable to see the blog posts):

  • Those of you who know me, knew that this was a particularly tough time, and yet exciting for me as I left the Passport to Prosperity program (which I loved the program) to embark on a new adventure with the Chamber.

  • I get to play a medley with the TBSO at the Celtic Cabaret, and learned a new piobaireachd to play on my own (MacCrimmon's Sweetheart)
  • Met the Premier as he started his campaign for re-election with our luncheon at work.

  • I have always been a big Android fan, and I get the opportunity to start writing for AndroidinCanada.
  • Alister's health has started to decline some more, and in effort to help a few of us got together and helped Peter move a bed.  Not as easy as you may think.
  • With no official plans for March 17th, we had  made some informal ones for a few pipers to go and hang out some places -- unfortunately this was the year of the St. Paddy's Day Flooding in our basement.
  • I got the opportunity to perform Orkney Wedding with the TBSO.  Very interesting.

  • Month starts of with a great opportunity to meet the Simon Fraser Pipe Band in Winnipeg for workshops and a concert.
  • Work holds the Annual Business Awards, and it's a great opportunity for me as I help plan and coordinate the nominees, meeting some great people and hearing some even better stories.
  • This is also the month that I start biking to work.  You start to notice that my posts have the running tally of my biking ratio.

  • The Annual Folklore Festival is held and we perform at it (I happen to get in the paper again... :)
  • I also saw an opportunity, so I left AiC to start writing for CanadiAndroid.  He lived closer (Sudbury) and I thought it would be good to write for something smaller.
  • What was really cool was getting back my 1923 Alexander Ross pipes from Ringo Bowen after he had done some restoration work on them.  Amazing fun - not true 'small pipes', as they don't really pitch well, but historic none-the-less.
  • In following with piping, I also competed in my first ever online competition.  I ended up getting a 6th place in my Hornpipe Jig.

  • Hit 34.  Yup I'm getting old.
  • For the past few years, my work life has revolved around community partnerships, and there was none better than being a part of Pierre Schryer's Canadian Celtic Celebration. Pierre is a class act, and the show he puts on (with the talent he collects) and the workshops held, I was totally in the wrong sphere for me.  But it was great that he included me.
  • I also start realizing this month that there's some wicked Android tablets, and all the piping gigs I've been doing need to going towards me getting one.

  • Google+ is introduced, and thanks to some geeky friends I get an invite.  My baptism into Google geekdom is near completion.
  • Mega parade season starts and concludes.  I had never felt so tired after a parade, as I did after Minocqua.  Looking forward to it again in 2012.
  • Someone's life long goal is reached while at Rory and Rain's wedding...  Too bad I screwed up her entrance.  It would have been neat had I done it right -- sorry guys.  But excellent day.
  • I finally grab my eeePad, but I'll let you read the articles about all the fun that ensues.  But I love my tablet.
  • After noticing the CdnDroid blog site dwindling, and my involvement in it increasing, I decide to leave and return to AiC.  Good move on my part.
  • Mandy and I are officially 8 years married!

  • 2nd Annual Day out with Thomas event.  New location, same Thomas fun and great times with the family.
  • In honour of my parents' 40th Anniversary we hold the first ever Moore Family Reunion.  As much as we all kind of winced at the idea of hanging out with each other - it was a great time actually.
  • As August is a slower time of the year, we also got to get away and have Dean's first time camping in a tent.  Kakabeka mind you, but still - it's camping.  Dean enjoys it, and learns all sorts of fun things; like peeing outside and telling ghost stories.

  • Eliza enters the world via Kris and Greg, making Dean no longer the lonely grandchild on Mandy's side.
  • As with most things in life, with every addition, there's also a loss, and the day before Eliza came into the world there was Margaret's passing
  • Our band held our annual information night for students (got myself on Shaw and CBC), and got probably our best batch yet.  Will be good to see where these are in a year.

  • This was the year that Dean really got into Hallowe'en.  Not only did he pick out the costume (which mommy made), he enjoyed showing it off.
  • I try out Blogger vs. Wordpress.  Both have their plusses and minuses.  I think I'm sticking with blogger, just as it's more 'google' related... we'll see how it plays out.
  • Steve drops a bomb on the pipe band moves to Barrie after the Bayfield trip.  Truly missing ya Steve.

  • I finish up my 2nd Online Competition and get the results... zip.  Well, 6th for my piobaireachd.  Kinda crushing, but I am competing against people across the world.
  • My pathetic attempts for Movember.  But I did raise $145 this year via:  mobro.co/ryanmmoore
  • I get a message about doing a recording with Rodney Brown.  Another tip of the hat from Pierre.  It was fun... different, working with others, but it worked out well in the end... I hope.
  • Our fundraising calendars are officially out and we get an opportunity to sell them in the mall... however, poor weather kept a lot of people away.  Still, sold through the first batch amazingly quickly.  Still have some from the 2nd.
  • Work at AiC is getting interesting and I get my first 'demo phone', the Sony Xperia Pro.  Go watch my review of it (and then I do a review of the Motorola RAZR).  Something I definitely want more of.
  • I also unofficially ended my biking to work -- however, I'd like to try it some time in the winter.  I hear there's more 'man points' to be had.

  • Dean gets into Christmas, and is almost paying attention to the 'Santa's watching you' stuff.
  • I also got in a visit with Don/Brandon as they came into town.
  • The Galaxy Nexus is introduced and Bell/Virgin get exclusivity for a month.  I'm just waiting until Rogers gets it, then a week later tbaytel will... not sure I want to stay with tbaytel, but i do want that phone, and can't afford to purchase without a subsidy.
  • Christmas and New Years were great.  Very 'battery recharging' as my boss puts it.  I would list my gifts I got this year, but that's pretty childish, and I wouldn't want to highlight what some got me and others didn't.  I did get some geek cred presents:  2 Android figures, an Android shirt, a Logitech Revue Google TV box and some Doctor Who paraphernalia. Cool.
So, that's my 2011.  Hope yours was as good (but not better :)

What am I looking forward to in 2012?

Well, besides "phi day" (I'm inventing it to save Mandy some face), I'm looking forward to the Galaxy Nexus, obviously, and more time with my family.  I'm rolling over some vacation days that I didn't use last year and will whole heartedly use them up this year.  Camping is very much on my list.

This is also the year that we said we'd start to look at new houses, as we originally vowed only 5 years with this one.

It also might be the year, sad to say it, that my Aztek will bite the dust.  She's hanging in for sure, but nothing'll last forever.

And speaking of putting things to rest - this may also be the year I'll walk away from Facebook.  Perhaps not entirely, as 99% of the people are still there, but I'll distance myself further and further.