Thursday, December 29, 2005

I AM a phone geek

This afternoon, I just lost my antenna along with the base while walking home. I searched all through the house hoping I could find it, but I didn't; so I walked to a local cell phone store that I bought my lastest antennas from. I was hoping for the experienced salesperson, but he was off to the side, while the person at the counter was a noob.

While she was finding the base for the antenna, she quizzed me about the phone and my cell phone experience as a whole. I answered it professionally, and the other guy overheard our conversation, just nodding at what I said. The next 15 minutes was spent trying tofind the proper base for the phone; with me helping her find the right base (it was my phone) and when it came to ring up the price, I got 2 $15 ($10 for 1). After I walked out the door, I checked to see if she put it on correctly, the antenna came crooked, so I went back and asked for a replacement, which she helped get.

The antennas I got was an extendable metal antenna with a dragon design on it, and a flashing (or supposedly flashing) black and white antenna, to replace my old antenna that I lost.

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As for my Creative Microphoto MP3 player, I'm just waiting for the headphones I ordered from the online apple store (I think its the same one I had for 2 years). So far, I have it storing some of the large files that my thumb drive can't hold, so I'll be bringing it to school to do double duty.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

RIP: 2 year old 3g 10gb iPod

Hello Creative Microphoto 8gb MP3 player!

I broke down today and bought my 3rd MP3 player (my first being an Intel Audio MP3 player with 128mb of memory and FM tuner; and my second is my iPod) (4th, if you count my Motorola v635 with the 128mb of flash memory). I bought it from Circuit City for $260 total, and couldn't wait to get home to test it out.

At first, the touch pad was hard to control, especially the vertical pad, where I "overshot" my selection by a few lines but I'm getting used to it. The ability to show pictures is a bonus, and the FM tuner with the ability to record was a throwback to my first MP3 player (now I can listen to my favorite morning show on the bus).

The only flaw so far, is that it didn't come with an "external power adaptor", meaning that I need to connect it to my computer for five hours to charge it. And because I hate earbuds, I don't have a proper headphones to listen to my music with (although, I went to the mall tonight and raced to six stores trying to find one that matched my old 'phones).

Plus, with the user-replacable battery, hopefully this will last more than two years than what my iPod lasted.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Sony PSP vs Apple's Video iPod

In my previous post, I mentioned that my siblings got a PSP and a video iPod from my parents. And since I'm the computer geek in the house, I got the chance to play with both of them. This is my review.

Video iPod
This is the gift my younger sister got and its the 60gb version. Compared to my 3rd generation 10gb iPod, it has a color screen, photo and video playback capability, a larger storage page and screen. The display is crisp and it displayed the photos taken from our 4mp digital camera beautifully. The size is about the same size as my 10gb iPod and since it has a larger hard drive, it feels a bit heavier.

Putting pics with iTunes was a breeze after searching via google and using some common sense. I haven't been able to add video yet, but I guess that's what using the product will do.

PSP

If Sony didn't pull that rootkit disaster, then I'd have more respect for them and the PSP, but they should have thought of the consumer. My younger brother has the PSP, with a 1gb memory stick. Since my Mom didn't buy any game, then he had to resort to connecting to the internet and listening to music for the first few hours of operation Since we failed miserably just connecting to the internet, we gave up, but my older brother installed a game on it to help him out. The game was beautiful and it didn't hiccup or anything. I thought that since the game was a PS2/xbox port, it'd have a PS2 control style, but it didn't.

The interface was done nicely, with the menu settings easy to navigate through and everything in the right places. My only gripe, is about the inputting of text. I'm used to texting on my cell phone, but some how, this felt different and got me frustrated while trying to test the internet connection. I'll get a better feel for it and what went wrong, but for some reason, that sticks out in my mind.

Of course I don't need those things, because my phone can already play video and MP3 songs ;)

Christmas came, we celebrated, it left

Whew, today was a wild day.

Since we've been doing this for a few years, we all knew our places in organizing this christmas lunch. As the event was going on, we fumbled a bit because the adults wanted to sing karaoke, while the kids want to play the GameCube, so we worked harder and switched the TVs, when we could have got a VCR for the karaoke TV. Because of the karaoke, this was the longest christmas lunch, with people staying for an early dinner.

Compared to my Dad's birthday party -- which we hosted (and everyone got in everyone nerves with the placement of candies and other table favors; plus my Mom drank a bottle of the wine coolers, which she got drunk off) this gathering was flawless. As usual, everyone helped in preperation of the food, execution of the lunch itself, and enjoyed themselves during the karaoke (not as bad as the neighbors, but atleast it was quieter).

As for my christmas presents, I got a shirt from my Mom, and a $240 check, that I'll use for a hard drive, and possibly my grad project. My younger brother got a PSP that we choose a few weeks earlier, and my sister got her video iPod (a 60gb version).

Friday, December 23, 2005

OMFG: I have no life!

Today was a milestone in my computing life: I got 1,000 posts at the Neowin Forums!

Here's a screenshot of my 1,000th post:


I use the pyehac username, over my original username "adri1456" (which I'm trying to phase out, because I'm getting sick of the '1456' ending). Yes, I have a Power Rangers SPD sig, with an edited pic of Kermit the frog holding an SPD morpher (I believe the original pic was of Commander Cruger).

What's weird, was that I got 6x more posts in less time at another forum I browse at (maybe because it talks about cell phones, and I bonded with them).

Oh well, Merry Christmas everyone! and hopefully you have a happy New Year!

EDIT: bah, I can't even spell correctly.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Brands I can't trust anymore: Kodak and Sony

Within the past few months, I had lost my trust in products made by Sony and Kodak.

My Sony dream machine alarm clock's display stopped working a few weeks ago for no apparent reason, and it coincidentally was when people found the Sony rootkits. And the one year old Kodak 4mp camera doesn't want to let me download pics I took for my grad project.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Summary of my day

Even though I went out for a couple of hours today, I felt like I was out for the whole day.

First, I went to Walmart to print out some pictures taken by my Mom with our digital camera, and those 6x4 prints came out better than the film pics others took. Then I had to pay our cell phone bill. While I was there, the store had displays of the current phones they have, and one of them was a live model of the Samsung T809. The screen is gorgeous and the camera swivels from back to front. The keys were a bit small for my fingers, but the width and form factor felt good in my hands, compared to my flagship phone, the Motorola v635. I guess the v635 would be obsolete if it wasn't for the ability to play MP3s and have upgradable memory.

While on the trip home, we hit traffic on the roads, which extended the commute to a full 2 hours. To make it worse, I ran out of music to listen to on my phone, and there were a lot of Nexhellers using their low bitrate ringtones and radio feature (I feel sorry that they'll lose the radio in a few years).

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Newegg.com + UPS = the perfect way to get computer parts

I ordered my motherboard Sunday night, and used the UPS ground shipping method. A few minutes ago, UPS just pulled into my driveway with my motherboard!

I wasn't expecting the package until atleast friday, but its here, on my bed. I only uncovered the manual, and so far I'm loving this motherboard.

I just hope that I can order my other components ASAP.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Project "death in a box" is a go!

I just got my confirmation email from my teacher that he'll be my grad advisor.

Also, last week during christmas shopping, I bought an Antec TruePower 2.0 430watt PSU, but it won't properly fit in the case without the optical drive popping out. So, I'll be searching for a smaller optical drive (some people say that liteons make a good short drive). And last night (it bugged me while I was trying to sleep) I bought my motherboard from newegg.com. Its a biostar 6100 mobo, and it should come later this week or early next week.

My next target, should be the processor, but zipzoomfly has them for a dollar less than newegg (and they're both fast shippers, as I bought from them). I'm eyeing for an AMD x2 3800+ processor, so this will be the third AMD computer in the household, but will be my first AMD machine.

Finally, I'm thinking of getting 2gb of RAM, instead of the more common 1gb. I just want a machine that will play GTA:SA and vmware at the same time (or run two vmware machines: one with win2k running GTA and another with winxp running another GTA game - because I can) . I better control myself before I'll make this a monster machine. I haven't even thought of what watercooling system I should get.

Oh, and this is the last week of school for the year before the xmas break, and my older brother is coming home from a Michigan college, so it will be a good christmas. And when I got the PSU, my Mom was getting my sibling's gifts also. I'm sure that they don't read this, so its safe to put it here. My younger brother will be getting a PSP with a giga pack (unfortunately, with no game) and my younger sister will be getting an iPod video (she had a laptop in her list). As for me, I know how big this project will be, so I decided that the grad project will be my present :D Plus, I get to have two computers (which I'll somehow connect together either with a switch, or be physical with a KVM machine)

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Something's wrong with my computer...

I was suppose to do some school related work at home yesterday afternoon. So after fighting the traffic (actually, I just took the bus, but it took me about 2 hours to get home, when it regularly took 1 hour) I got home and did my normal things before I work on the labs.

Since I was having computer problems since the week started, I wasn't surprised when my computer restarted about the same time as usual. I did the normal thing to solve it, but then it started to reset again. So I repeat the process until I got pissed off. I then took a break and watched some TV. When I got back, I tried powering it on again, pressing the reset button and powering off and on the PSU. I got so frustrated, that I started to reseat the video card because the monitor kept on powering off (which didn't solve it).

When I did boot into Windows, I had to reset the firefox homepage to a local file because it reverted to a website. ZoneAlarm asked if Firefox could access the internet, causing further confusion as to what the failure did. I continued to cycle through the boot process earlier this morning, to no avail. Then I went to my Mom's computer and post on various boards if I could use a PSU from the SFF computer that was supposed to be my grad project (the only PSU I used that came with the case, was the Antec PSU that came with the Antec case.) To make it worse, I spent some of the money I was saving to buy some supplies for school, and I need some extra to finish a project for another class.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

When modern devices lose power...

My computer suddenly lost power while I was on the internet tonight. Thinking it was just a power surge (which was kinda weird, because I have a UPS) I pressed the power button. Since that didn't work, I reset the PSU. After repeating those multiple times with no luck, I gave up and decided it was someone's way of telling me to get off the computer. So I did and went to play Mario Tennis. After I lost the round to someone younger than me, I went back to my room and try again. Then I decided to pull the plug for a minute and try again. And it worked. While my computer was booting, I turned to my attention to my phone, as it has one more bar left in the battery meter after I used it as my MP3 player. I switch batteries with one that was supposed to be charged, but it wasn't, so I attempt to charge it with the charger near my bed (since my $90 Sony alarm clock's display doesn't work [making it useless for setting up] I had to make it an alarm). It failed to charge a few times, so I just left it in there, hoping that the alarm will turn on the phone and atleast wake me up for school.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Geek Gifts

I thought I'd start a Christmas List for every Geek out there (including myself).

Here's my first entry:
USB air darts

The USB-powered darts come in a set of three, are, uh, Mac and PC-compatible, and can be controlled via a mouse. We’re already making plans to figure out how to control a set over VNC so we can deploy these against the dude in the next cube while we’re a safe distance away. He’ll never know what hit him.

Hopefully this blog entry will last longer than the "it looks like christmas" entry.