Archive for the ‘Tips’ Category

h1

Functions of Personal Digital Assistant (PDA)

April 27, 2009

FG Logo

When I ask someone who has not used a PDA before; Why are you not using a PDA?” or Will you use a PDA?”, some of the most common replies I get are…

A1: “My RM300 phone already has appointment and task built in. So I don’t need a powerful device to do it.”

A2: “I don’t have so many contacts/email to store.”

A3: “I don’t need to set appointments as I am not in sales/marketing line.”

A4: “Expensive!”

A5: “Don’t know how to use.”


Generally, when people think of PDA, they think of only appointments, task and contacts. PDA has evolve so much since the day I started using it. I do not blame them for thinking that way as PDA was mainly used for that purpose 5 to 6 years ago. Palm was so popular back then people generally refer PDA as Palm. How things have changed. I hope to bridge the knowledge gap with the simple slideshow I created below.

Buying a PDA is very much like buying a computer. It is all about what you install into it that makes it worth while.

Recent years, prices of PDA has also come down to a very reasonable range. Did you know that you can get a PDA phone with Bluetooth, WiFi, 2MP camera, GPS with Touch Screen for under RM1,000?

Hint: HTC P3300

Anyway, back to the functions of PDA… Did you know that

  • you can search through ANY words among your thousands of SMS?
  • you can sort your SMS like a chat window? Making it easier to reply and read your SMS instead of just Inbox/Outbox.
  • you can schedule a SMS to be sent tomorrow, next week, next month and even a year later? Never forget a birthday wish!
  • you can watch youtube movies clips anytime, anywhere?
  • you can do PUSH EMAIL on Windows Exchange Server? Arguably faster than Blackberry?
  • you can WIRELESSLY SYNCHRONIZE all your contacts using FREE Google Sync?
  • you can view all your friend’s current location with the latest Google Map/Latitude?
  • you can have all your Yahoo messanger, MSN, GTalk, AOL, Skype all launched in one application?
  • you can filter out unwanted calls/sms?
  • 90% of our customers are actually new users?

Leave your comments and share with me what do you use your PDA for besides the usual appointment and task?

Subscribe to Fresh Gear Weblog by Email

Facebook

h1

Tips: Screen Capture on MacOS X

February 25, 2009

Apple Logo

Mac OS X has a built-in ability to capture screenshots using simple keyboard commands, with shots saved to the Desktop as “Picture 1, 2, 3, etc.” This feature can be exceptionally useful for generating documents, or sending system configurations to friends and colleagues. Although most users are aware of the basic functionality of the screen capture feature, there are some hidden features that can really enhance the usability of screenshots.

Using “Screen Capture” Here is a list of the known features of “Screen Capture” (using key commands to take screen shots):

  • “shift-command-3” — The basic screenshot, will take an image of the full screen.
  • “shift-command-4” — The “selection” mode, will take a shot of the area outlined by dragging the cursor.
  • “shift-command-4” then tapping “Space” — The “Window” mode, will take a shot of the highlighted window.
  • “shift-command-4” dragging, then holding “space” — Drag mode, will allow the current sized box to be relocated.
  • “shift-command-4” then “options” — The “center” mode, will resize the box focusing on the center.
  • “shift-command-4” then “shift” — The “axis” lock, will resize while locking the movement to one axis, determined by initial mouse movement.

Pressing “escape” before releasing the mouse in any mode will cancel the screenshot.

Holding “control” in any mode (ie: “control-shift-command-3”) will output the results to the clipboard instead of to a file, allowing the contents to immediately be pasted into documents.

Go on, try it out yourself!

Subscribe to Fresh Gear Weblog by Email

Facebook

h1

Tips: Email Settings for PDA

December 31, 2008

Below are settings for Streamyx, TMNet, Jaring and GMail.

Streamyx

Incoming Mail (POP3): pop.streamyx.com
Outgoing Mail Server (SMTP): roam.tm.net.my

  • Do NOT tick SSL
  • Advanced Options : Tick Outgoing mail needs authentication (not SSL)

TMNet (Prepaid)

Incoming Mail (POP3): pop.tm.net.my
Outgoing Mail Server (SMTP): roam.tm.net.my

  • Do NOT tick SSL
  • Advanced Options : Tick Outgoing mail needs authentication (not SSL)

Jaring (Prepaid/Postpaid)

Incoming Mail (POP3): mbox.jaring.my
Outgoing Mail Server (SMTP): smtp.jaring.my

  • Do NOT tick SSL
  • Advanced Options : Tick Outgoing mail needs authentication (not SSL)

Gmail (POP)

Incoming Mail (POP3): pop.gmail.com
Outgoing Mail Server (SMTP): smtp.gmail.com

 

  • Select SSL
  • Advanced Options : Tick Outgoing mail needs authentication

Gmail (IMAP)

Incoming Mail (IMAP): imap.gmail.com
Outgoing Mail Server (SMTP): smtp.gmail.com

 

  • Select SSL (Both incoming and outgoing)
  • Advanced Options : Tick Outgoing mail needs authentication

 

If you have more email settings to share/contribute, please email me and I will put it up.

Note: Thanks to Johnny who sent this in.

Facebook

h1

Tips: Reseting your Apple iPod / iPhone

October 9, 2008

Like any electronic devices, sometimes something inside might go wrong and you find that your iPod is not responding to any key press. Fret not, this is what you can try to do before you call your Apple hotline or your favorite retailer.

Reseting your Apple iPod do not remove any of your songs. It MIGHT remove some of your customized settings. Restoring however will set your Apple iPod to factory default.

Apple iPod Nano/ Video / Classic

Apple iPod Nano (1st Generation)

Apple iPod Nano (2nd Generation)

Apple iPod Nano (3rd Generation)

Apple iPod Nano (4th Generation)

Apple iPod Video (5th Generation)

Apple iPod Classic

STEPS:

  • Toggle the Hold switch on and off. (Slide it to Hold, then turn it off again.)
  • Press and hold the Menu and Select (Centre) buttons until the Apple logo appears, about 6 to 10 seconds. You may need to repeat this step.

Tip: If you are having difficulty resetting your iPod, set it on a flat surface. Make sure the finger pressing the Select button is not touching any part of the click wheel. Also make sure that you are pressing the Menu button toward the outside of the click wheel, and not near the center.

If the above steps did not work, try connecting iPod to a power adapter and plug the power adapter into an electrical outlet, or connect iPod to your computer. Make sure the computer is turned on and isn’t set to go to sleep.

Apple iPod Shuffle

Apple iPod Shuffle (1st Generation)

Apple iPod Shuffle (2nd Generation)

To reset iPod shuffle:

  • Disconnect iPod shuffle from the computer (if connected).
  • Move the switch on the back of iPod shuffle to the off position.

Tip: When iPod shuffle is off, the green stripe by the switch is not visible. (See below illustration)

  • Wait 5 seconds
  • Move the switch on the back to the play in order or the shuffle position. The green stripe will be visible in either position
  • iPod shuffle is now reset. If after resetting iPod shuffle you are going to attach it to your computer, be sure to place the switch in the off position. If you were resetting as part of some troubleshooting steps, continue with those steps now. For general troubleshooting steps see the iPod shuffle troubleshooting and service FAQ.

iPod Reset Utility / iPod Shuffle Reset Utility

Use iPod Reset Utility to restore the iPod Shuffle back to their factory settings when iTunes is unable to do so and the reset above do not help. The process completely erases all music and data and reinstalls the iPod software version listed below:

  • iPod shuffle (1st generation) – iPod Software version 1.1.5
  • iPod shuffle (2nd generation) – iPod Software version 1.0.4

IMPORTANT NOTE: iPod Reset Utility is intended for use only with the iPod models listed above; other iPods are NOT supported.

IMPORTANT NOTE: iPod shuffle Reset Utility is only for iPod shuffle (1st generation) 512 MB and 1 GB models only. Any other iPod, including iPod shuffle (2nd generation), is not supported.

Use iPod Reset Utility to fix the following issues:

  • iPod will not play music, and cannot be restored using iTunes.
  • iPod is not recognized by iTunes, but is visible in My Computer or in Device Manager on a Windows PC, or in Apple System Profiler on a Mac.
  • iPod shuffle (1st generation) is identified as a device in “Recovery mode.” iPod shuffle (2nd generation) is identified as a “USB DFU device.”

Important: Read Before Using

  • You must have administrator privileges to use this utility.
  • iPod Reset Utility restores your iPod to factory conditions and installs current iPod software for that model, deleting all content on iPod.
  • If iPod Reset Utility cannot reset your iPod, then your iPod may need service. Go to the iPod Service page for additional information.

System Requirements

  • Mac OS X 10.3.9, or later*
  • Windows 2000 with Service Pack 4, Windows XP with Service Pack 2**

*Mac OS X 10.2.8 customers with an iPod shuffle (1st generation) can use the iPod shuffle Reset Utility

**iPod Reset Utility is not supported for use with Windows Vista.

Installation

To install iPod Reset Utility:

  1. Download the iPod Reset Utility from one of the following locations
  2. Double-click iPodResetUtility.pkg (Mac) or iPodResetUtilitySetup.exe (Windows).
  3. Follow the onscreen instructions.
  4. After installation is complete, iPod Reset Utility will be available on a Mac at /Applications/Utilities/iPod Reset Utility or on Windows by choosing Start > Programs > iPod > iPod Reset Utility.
To install iPod Shuffle Reset Utility:
  1. Download Mac OS X – iPod Shuffle Reset Utility for Mac
  2. Open the iPodshuffleResetUtility.pkg.
  3. Follow the onscreen instructions.
  4. Once installation is complete, the iPod shuffle Reset Utility will be available on a Mac at/Applications/Utilities/iPod shuffle Reset Utility.

Using iPod Reset Utility / iPod Shuffle Reset Utility

  1. Quit all running applications on your computer.
  2. Open iPod Reset Utility / iPod Shuffle Reset Utility.
  3. Connect iPod to a USB port on your computer. Do not connect iPod to a USB port on your keyboard, or other non-powered USB hub.
  4. Click the Reset/Restore button.
  5. If prompted, enter an administrator name and password. Notice: Do not disconnect iPod during the reset process.
  6. When complete, quit iPod Reset Utility and open iTunes to load music onto iPod.

Apple iPod Touch / iPhone / iPhone 3G

Apple iPod Touch (1st Generation)
Apple iPod Touch (2nd Generation)

Apple iPhone / Apple iPhone 3G

To turn completely off

Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button for a few seconds until the red slider appears, then slide the slider. When iPhone is off, incoming calls go straight to voicemail.

To reset

Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button and the Home button at the same time for at least ten seconds, until the Apple logo appears.

If iPhone won’t turn on, or the display freezes or doesn’t respond

  1. Press and hold the Home button for at least six seconds, until the application you were using quits.
  2. If that doesn’t work, turn iPhone off and turn it on again. Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button on top of iPhone for a few seconds until a red slider appears, and then slide the slider. Then press and hold the Sleep/Wake button until the Apple logo appears.
  3. If that doesn’t work, reset iPhone. Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button and the Home button at the same time for at least ten seconds, until the Apple logo appears.

If iPhone continues to freeze or not respond after you reset it

  1. Reset iPhone settings. From the Home screen choose Settings > General > Reset > Reset All Settings. All your preferences are reset, but no data or media is deleted.
  2. If that doesn’t work, restore the iPhone software. See document 305744 “Updating and Restoring iPhone Software.”

Subscribe to Fresh Gear Weblog by Email

Facebook

h1

Tech Tips: Which PDA is right for me? (Part 1)

October 8, 2008

With so many PDAs in the market currently, exactly how do you find the right one for yourself? We hope to have the solutions for your questions.

In this article, we will cover key components/features of today’s PDA and hopefully after going through, you will be able to understand better and decide on what is a necessity and what is nice-to-have.

PDA has come a long way. Not too long ago, PDA was essentially called “Palm” by many. This was not surprising as Palm “was” the dominant player in the market. Back then, Palm PDA has built in of only 8MB (with no memory slot) and does not even come with color screen! Consumer has to organize mass gathering to upgrade their 8GB to 16GB and this usually also void their warranty.

Fast forward to today, how we are spoilt for choices and the PDA market changed significantly. We now have PDA with all kind of features one could ever dream of. Some PDA have built-in WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, 3.5G, 5 MP camera, Bio-metric finger print scanner, 600++ Mhz and built in 16GB of memory! Recent range of PDA comes with accelerometer and WVGA.

In the world of tech, just how do you choose one which is suitable? Below are some questions which you should ask yourself first.

Which Operating System (OS) should I choose?

There are 6 major OS dominating the smartphone/PDA market; Windows Mobile, Palm, Symbian, Blackberry, Apple and the new Android by Google. Each has its own strength and weakness and to say which is a better than another would be akin to comparing Mercedes Benz with BMW.

Since Apple, Android, Palm and Blackberry are very hardware specific, we shall not include in this tech tip. E.g., If you like the Apple iPhone, there is no other choice/alternative to it.

In Malaysia, the most popular OS for PDA (not smartphone) is Windows Mobile. For easy discussion sake, we shall just concentrate on the Windows Mobile 6.1.

Tech Tips: Windows Mobile and Palm has one of the most number of third-party software you can purchase from the Internet.

What are the different features/built-in?

Not all PDA are built equal to cater to different market. Hence, it is important for you to think carefully if you really need a particular feature before paying money for it. E.g., if you already have a GPS navigator in your vehicle, why pay extra to get one with built-in? Below are some of the key features found in today’s PDA.

EDGE or HSPDA

This is essentially the speed of the data transfer rate between the network. Below shows a simple overview of all the different connection name with their speed.

GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) – Max Speed of 80 kbits/second

EDGE (Enhanced Data Rates for GSM) – Max Speed of 236.8 kbit/second

UMTS aka 3G (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) – Max Speed of 384kbits/second

HPSDA aka 3.5G (High-Speed Download Packet Access) – Max 14.4Mbp/second

For those who access the Internet often, this is a very important point to consider. Although not all telco are currently ready to provide HSDPA and even if they do, usually are in limited locations only. Nevertheless, if possible, always choose 3.5G and above as your PDA can also act as a wireless modem for your laptop.

Tips: Always check with your local telco for a unlimited data package. Failure to do this might unknowingly cause you hundreds to thousand of ringgit on data charges alone. At the time of writing, Maxis offers RM99 (3.5G), U Mobile (3.5G) capped it at RM176 and Digi (EDGE) offers RM66 for unlimited data transfer.

Some of the PDA currently that supports HSDPA are the HTC Touch 3G, HTC Touch HD, HTC Touch Diamond, HTC Touch Pro, HTC Tytn II, HTC Touch Cruise, Samsung Omnia, Samsung i780

Global Positioning System (G.P.S)

GPS is relatively new in Malaysia. When GPS devices first started selling in our retail outlets some 4 to 5 years ago, we had a hard time educating the general consumers. Most of the people confused GPS with GPRS and hence the question we always get is “How much is the monthly access fee?”.

The built-in GPS in PDA is essentially a receiver which receives signal from multiple satellite orbiting the earth at a certain location. The receiver is able to calculate the exact distance based on the fixed interval of the signal and the location of the satellite info in the signal. With this information, the receiver will be able to triangulate and get the precise coordinates from a minimum of 3 satellites. Of course, the more satellite it detects, the more accurate the location.

number of satellite a receiver can “see” at any point in time

Coordinate is pretty much useless to ordinary folks. What you need then is a map software so tell you what road are you on, where you will be able to travel, how long is the distance, the estimated time of arrival. There are several mapping company in Malaysia you can get your maps from. One very useful website you start reading is Malsingmaps.com

Tips: Some of the maps comes bundled free when you purchase the PDA. If not, you can always purchase it online. There are NO monthly charges, just yearly charges for the updates of maps if you want to keep your map updated.

Some of the PDA currently that comes with built-in GPS function are HTC Touch 3G, HTC Touch HD, HTC Touch DiamondHTC Touch ProHTC Tytn IIHTC Touch Cruise, HTC P3300, Asus P320Samsung OmniaSamsung i780

Weight, Size and Form-Factor

PDA nowadays comes with all kind of shape and sizes. Lets briefly go through some of the more common ones.

Type 1 – Candy Bar

Type 2 – Candy bar with Sliding Keypad (Up)

Type 3 – Candy Bar with Keypad

Type 4 – Candy Bar with Full Keyboard

Type 5 – Candy Bar with Keypad and Slide out Keyboard

Type 6 – With Slide Out Keyboard

Type 7 – With Slide out Keyboard (Curved)

Type 8 – With Slide Out Tilting Keyboard

Type 9 – Clamshell with Keypad

Type 10 – Clamshell with Keyboard

Type 11 – Clamshell Keyboard with Rotating Screen

Type 12 – Detachable Keyboard

Type 13 – Dual Hinge with Keyboard

Tech Tips: Always try to go for a PDA with built-in keyboard as this makes input much easier. Also, one-handed operation is much more feasible on a PDA with keypad. PDA with keyboard normally do not look as nice as those without but sometimes a little compromise is good for the long run.

[To be continued]

Subscribe to Fresh Gear Weblog by Email

Facebook

h1

Tips: How to Hard Reset LG KS-20

March 25, 2008

LG Logo

1. Turn off the LG KS-20 completely (do this by pressing and holding the power button and wait for the prompt).
2. Press and hold these three buttons–volume down, Call and power–till the LED (this is beside the front camera) flashes.
3. Release the buttons. That same LED should flash blue/red/green and power up.
4. The KS20 should be in a clean state.

LG KS20

Subscribe to Fresh Gear Weblog by Email

Facebook

h1

Tips: View Higher Quality Video on YouTube

March 22, 2008

Did you know that you can simply append “&fmt=18” (without quote) to the end of the URL.

Example:

Low quality video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B67dAQshPk8

High quality video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B67dAQshPk8&fmt=18

Try it out yourself!

Subscribe to Fresh Gear Weblog by Email

Facebook