Why I cancelled my Eo order

, posted: 21-May-2006 16:30

I made a decision a week or two ago to cancel my order for an EO. Heres why...

1. Production delays. Part of the idea of being an early adopter is to be an early adopter - when this doesn't happen (and it didnt for me due to the engineering problems), the value is lost somewhat.
2. Power issues. The EO has been badly affected by extremely poor battery life. I can handle a 2.5 hour battery life, but 1.5 hour is just not good enough - particularly when you've been promised 3 hours.
3. Crazy disk partitioning schemes out of the box.  I dont want to have to rebuild my Eo the moment I get it because some idiot has decided that multiple partitions is what I want (I hate multiple partitions by the way).

Those are the two primary reason - and the fact that number 1 happened means that I could figure out number 2 and take precautions against getting hit by it - so its a mixed blessing really.

So - where to now? I'm currently contemplating what I'm going to do now. My current thinking is to get the slightly more expensive Samsung Q1. My thinking is

1. It actually delivers the battery life promised
2. External VGA output
3. Well known brand name with a reasonable reputation

The problems with this of course is that they are not available in New Zealand, so I'll have to get one delivered in the US and sent to me here.  This also means I'll have to get a NZ/Australian power adapter for it, which will take a little bit of research.

Anyway, I've got my money still, so I'm in the market :-).  In the mean time I'll have to make do with the M400.


, posted: 12-May-2006 23:00

I've got a nice new shiny Toshiba M400...

It arrived about a week ago, but I've only just had a chance to play with it in the last day or so.  I started by installing Windows Vista on it - a late internal build.  Very nice.  Quite quick too.

I've got Aero going, although the WDDM drivers are pre-alpha, so they are far from perfect.

Most things are working - WiFi is, which is great.  Got to install 2007 Office System next - not going with 2003 at all (although I have OneNote installed at the moment). 

Its not a UMPC, but its here and the battery lasts well Wink

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UMPC's are still coming in...

, posted: 12-May-2006 08:28

I'm still waiting... sigh...

The EO is plagued with a nasty battery consumption problem which is not good.  Chippy has some good detailed findings here.  Here's hoping VIA get a fix going for it quickly.

The Q1 has started arriving and people are reporting good things about it.

Hmmm... I might be going to the US in July.... maybe I should pull my order and wait...

My Mobile Applications

, posted: 5-May-2006 04:44

I've written a couple of applications for Windows Mobile Pocket PC and it seems they are actually useful to the odd person or two.

Unfortunately the site where I host them is a little bit "broken" at the moment and I haven't had time to fix it.  Thus - if you are looking for the download links and cant find them - thats why.

So - for your convenience (should you be looking for said applications) you'll find them here:

Obviously the next question is - what do they do?

Voice Enable allows you to change the default behaviour of the voice button on the iMate K-Jam and Jasjar to support Microsoft Voice Command instead of the built in Voice Tagging application.  IMPORTANT: No support or warranties are given - so dont ask Wink

Topical Bible is an application for recording notes in a heirarcical and topical manner.  I wrote this because ts often useful to record thoughts this way when you are thinking through a biblical subject.


If only I had my UMPC

, posted: 1-May-2006 18:49

I had a wee incident in my car on SundayEmbarassed, so I'm taking the train this week.  Ideal time to work on a UMPC, but dag nab it, I just dont have it yet.

I'm told that I might have some news tomorrow (thanks Hugo), so maybe next week (assuming I'm still in the train) I'll be able to spend some time with it...

Here's hoping Wink

UMPC configuration considerations

, posted: 27-Apr-2006 22:12

If you take a look at this TabletKiosk page you'll see a nice little configurator.

Just make sure that you're mindful of battery vs performance.

A 7200 RPM drive will perform better than a 5400 RPM drive, but it will also soak up more juice.

So ask yourself whats most important to you in this device?  Performance or battery? 

My choice was battery, but 30 Gb was just not enough, so I went for the 40 Gb 5400 RPM version which should allow for solid performance but reasonable battery life too.

Memory uses memory to keep the state in the cells, but this is minimal compared with paging out to the hard drive, so more memory is a better choice than less.

Update: It turns out that Hitachi have been innovating while I'm not looking.  They've got a low powered 7200 RPM hard drive that will be in the EO.  Frank has the details.  See his comments below and here

Another week of waiting

, posted: 27-Apr-2006 21:59

It looks like I'll be waiting another week before I get my EOTabletKiosk have delayed shipments of some devices, but Hugo tells us we should still get them next week.

Now I read that Tegatech probably wont get them until late next week, which means another week of waiting.

So now its going to arrive in the second week of May (not the last week of April, as initially projected), unless of course Hugo wants to exceed customer expectations somehow Wink

Probably just as well.  I've got lots on at the moment and I dont need another distraction - and a new toy would be a disraction.

And yeah, I'd rather it was right too...

Soma on the UMPC

, posted: 20-Apr-2006 16:26

Soma is a Corporate VP in Microsofts Developer Division - responsible for the development tools and technologies that Microsoft is developing.

He's just blogged about Soduku on the UMPC... Apparenly it's written in the .Net Framework (I hadn't thought about what it was written in), which is interesting - more details on it here.

The tablet API's are really nice - moredetails on these are available in the MSDN Tablet PC developer center.

UMPCs will be great for pilots

, posted: 17-Apr-2006 22:22

I was corresponding with Craig from Laridian and he gave me a bunch of reasons why UMPC's will be great for pilots.

Not being a pilot, I actually had no idea about this stuff until he told me - its good to see how these will be useful for a specific segment that is currently not served well by technology.

Craig writes:
It's a hot form factor for use in the cockpit. Laptops and traditional
tablets are too big. Something about the size of a paperback or even a
hard-cover book is better. There's a lot of software for displaying all the
charts that we normally have to carry on paper. Instead of taking a couple
dozen folding paper maps when I fly from here to the coast I just load up
the hard drive. All the maps are georeferenced to GPS so if you have a
portable GPS you can see your position all all the maps.

The other problem they solve are approach plates. It's not a problem to cary
a dozen pages for the destination airport, detailing the instrument approach
procedures. But if the enroute weather is bad it's a good idea to carry
approach plates for ALL the airports within gliding distance of your route.
That means carrying one or two big leather binders. But I can get them all
on the hard drive, again georeferenced to GPS.

Last is NexRad weather. I get weather downloaded via XM radio (do you guys
have XM radio down there?) to my tablet PC, which is overlayed on my route
so I can see exactly when I'm going to get wet (or worse). And I can
piggyback an XM receiver so I get 170 channels of music and news to play
through the headset.

Thanks Craig!

Where are the other UMPCs?

, posted: 10-Apr-2006 21:56

In a weird quirke, it seems that in spite of Asus and Samsung being the key partners for the Microsoft announcement of the UMPC, it seems that TabletKiosk have stolen the limelight somewhat with the EO.

If you search the net, you'll sse lots of people talking about the EO, but not many people at all talking about the Samsung and even less talking about the Asus or Founder.

TabletKiosk have done a great job of getting units in front of people quickly.  They were the first to offer pre-orders, the first to offer pre-production units for test/review and the first to release a manual on the internet (although the FCC "leaked" the Samsung one first).

They are also cheaper than the Samsung, which makes them more attractive from a purchasing perspective too.

I wonder if they'll be able to keep this mind share going once the dust settles and the devices start hitting the market...

darrylb's profile

Darryl Burling
New Zealand

Officially my homepage on the web is at www.burling.co.nz.

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Software on my Pocket PC

Laridian Pocket Bible
SPB AirIslands
Ilium eWallet
Ilium ListPro