Showing posts with label Smart Phone. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Smart Phone. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

New ARRL Membership Benefits in June

Pretty cool...
arrl Coming Soon: New ARRL Membership Benefits: The ARRL is excited to announce two new membership benefits that will..., Mar 20 10:34:50 from twitterfeed

"In addition to the print copy of QST, all members will have access to an online digital edition of QST -- at no extra cost. You will be able to access QST from anywhere -- on nearly any computer, laptop, mobile device, smartphone and tablet (including Apple iPad, iPhone, iTouch and devices using the Android operating system).
Members will also gain access to archived issues of QST from December 1915 to the present; previously, only issues through 2007 have been available to members. If you are familiar with the current periodicals archive, that platform will be expanded to include all of QST from December 1915 through December 2011. A second, new archive will be introduced for issues beginning January 2012, featuring enhanced functionality including full-text search."

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Utilities Bills vs. Technology Bills

I'm a geek, but maybe I am a frugal geek, because my utilities are much more expensive than my monthly technology cost unlike the findings in this article. If you don't like words, there is a good infograph there, too.

It helps that my company provides my smartphone service, but we have the basic internet service with Knology and no home phone. We don't spend a lot on apps or other services - including an on-line backup service. (I've been tempted, but I use a combination of Dropbox, Windows Live Mesh, and USB hard drives to do the heavy lifting there.) It also helps that my daughter is only three - she probably won't need her own smart phone for another 6 months. ;)

Another factor is that my house is one big energy sink when it comes to heating and cooling. My base usage is a small number compared to the heating and cooling costs. I need a smaller house.

Friday, January 20, 2012


What do you call a watch that combines my smartphone, my GPS run tracker, and a Surefire flashlight?


Okay, it doesn't really exist, but just looking at the size of the Surefire alone suggests it would be a large clock, err lantern, err watch. Convergence has its limits today.

Surefire Watch via Says Uncle

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Form Factor and Integration

We want to do more and more with our personal computing devices - smart phones, GPS watches, tablets, etc. We've seen new smart phones get larger, so that we can have bigger screens. The GPS watches are not exactly tiny. Tablets come in a variety of sizes, too.

I think this really is the future - wearable computing. The key will be the integration of these devices in a personal area network (PAN). I'm sure the internal electronics will continue to get smaller, but if the devices can leverage each other, so there isn't so much redundancy, there is a real opportunity do more with less.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Improve Your Android GPS Performance

I've not had any real problems with using RunKeeper on my Android phone, but it usually exaggerates the distance somewhat as it depends on the phone's GPS. For people that are having a lot of problems, Lifehacker has some suggestions to improve the GPS performance.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The History of Android Phones

They've come a long way, baby, in three years.

Tempted - Garmin Forerunner 610

So I've been running a bit - even completing a half-marathon recently. As with any hobby, you have to get the toys. I'm so tempted by the Garmin Forerunner 610. I've been using RunKeeper on my Android phone. I really like RunKeeper, but the phone isn't the best solution. However, the Android/RunKeeper solution is free. The watch is $350.

The Virtual Racer feature would be a good training tool.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Droid Hams

So I tried to join the Droid Hams Yahoo Group, but I missed the fine print (see below) and was denied.
Droid users that are licensed hams
If you want to join present your call sign otherwise you will be denied
Since I tried to sign up using my Brick account and without mentioning my call, my request was denied. I don't dispute the group owner's right to restrict access, but I think the more open groups have a better chance of success. My supporting data... this group had one message in August and one message so far in September. Not too active.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Google Android Ham Radio: The Golf Oscar Oscar Golf One Echo

A fun exercise... what if Google made a ham radio? It is like when I dream about winning the lottery. The G00G1E? I'm sure it would be better than the dual-band P-A-968 Cell Phone. In the Baofeng UV-3R, we've seen that basically a decent SDR can be crammed into a small package. Apple is probably the best at developing the slickest form factor. (Heck, they are even suggesting that we should cut our plugs in half to help slim down our devices. Maybe that would save room for a better antenna.) But, if anyone could pull something wild like this off, it would be Google. All it takes is a couple of Googlers that are hams to take a crazy notion and who knows what could happen. They are all millionaires and could spend a few bucks on a pet project. ;)

I like Rich's suggestions for several features: DSP filtering, CTCSS, APRS, Echolink, and a D-Star alternative codec.

I say bring on PSK31 and a waterfall!

Plug link via

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Red State, Blue State

Business Insider's Chart of the Day shows which smartphone is getting the Electoral College votes for each state. (Sadly, there are no red states.)

If my math is correct*, then we have:

245 - Google/Android
134 - Apple/iOS
83 - RIM/Blackberry
44 - Too Close to Call

*It isn't. I missed something (besides Alaska and Hawaii.)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

PSK31 (and Ham Apps for Droid)

For a while now, I've been thinking about playing around with the digital modes - specifically PSK31. Unfortunately, the Small Wonder Labs PSK31 kits have been discontinued:
"The PSK-series transceiver is discontinued effective immediately. There will be a successor- schedule is uncertain."
So that option is out for now. I came across several ham apps for the Droid phone by Wolphi LLC that included DroidPSK - PSK31 in addtion to others like a Morse code trainer, DX beacon, DX cluster, etc. I thought "Great! I can play with that." - until I saw that DroidPSK app was $5. I'm pretty cheap when it comes to nickel and dime stuff that I may not use very long.

That led me to another search that turned up K7AGE's "Introduction to PSK31 - Receiving." He makes it look really easy to start recieving - even without any special equipment. All you need is the DigiPan software, your computer, and your radio.

He also posted a video with some sample PSK31 signals, so you can test the DigiPan install without even needing a radio. As usual, hams come up with cheap ways to do ham stuff.

I still may shell out $100 bucks to get a SignaLink USB, so I can Tx. (I know, I know... I won't spend $5 on the app, but will spend $100 on the hardware. Does not compute. Does not compute.)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Tech for Encounters with Police Officers

Man uses Google Tracks GPS data to avoid a speeding ticket. (Via

Open Watch - Android app to record and annonymously upload videos.

It is nice to have the ability to upload anonymously, but it is a shame that we need the option because the police or other officials think that they should be the only ones to record these interactions. At least we are getting that fixed in some places - Okay to record TSA.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Sex Sells

Got lazy users that won't come up with complex passwords? Try using the code from Naked Password to encourage them to think a little harder. Check out the demo at

I love my smart phone, but I don't "love" my smart phone. What's wrong with kids these days?

11% of Gen Y check their iPhone during "heavy petting."


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A New, Smaller iPhone

According to this article, Apple may introduce a new, smaller iPhone that is less expensive than the current models. It would be around $200 without a contract. That doesn't sound like the Apple I know. Steve Jobs is losing his iron grip already.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Android Market

Google has announced the Android Market. This seems like a no-brainer to me. I'm not sure why you wouldn't have released this sooner - if not at the same time as the Market app on the phones.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Brick of Borg

A interesting view from Amber Case... people + technology = cyborg. In the past, tools were an extension of our physical selves, e.g. a club. Today, these little external brains (aka smart phones) are an extension of our mental selves.

These devices eliminate the barriers of time and space, so that we can be connected to anyone at anytime from anywhere. She has a concern that this always connected world leaves little time for self-reflection. As a classic INTJ, I really get that. I love being able to listen to people on the repeater, review Facebook updates, and send e-mail/txts, but I need time downtime to recharge my batteries.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Smart Phone

As you may have gathered from a recent post, I now have an Android phone - a Droid Pro using Verizon Wireless to be exact. After years on a Blackberry, I made the move... and two weeks later, they announce that the iPhone will be with Verizon. I'm happy with the Droid so far, so that doesn't really bother me.

But I do wish I could get a Magpul Executive Field Case for my Droid Pro. It is very high speed, low drag!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Android App: Ham Radio Study

I just found a neat app for Android phones for studying for your ham radio license. TNJeffofAllTrades - you should download it.

Looks like there are Morse Code trainers, scanner apps, and other goodies too.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Smart Phone App for Mobile Callsign and Repeater Search

QSL.FM is a neat little app for looking up repeater information and callsigns while on the go.