Friday, February 18, 2011

Cr-48 update - fixed a problem that I didn't know I needed fixed.

For the past few weeks, my Cr-48, which is running on the developer channel, ran into some issues with the webcam.  No matter what site I tried, it simply wouldn't work.  I hadn't really paid it much mind, simply because I don't do much related to videos.  However, when I wanted to use it for Google video chat, and couldn't get it to work, I decided to take my little notebook to work and figure out the problem.

I didn't have to do much.  The update that dropped yesterday (I believe) fixed the issue for me.  I downloaded it when I got to the office, and discovered that my problem had disappeared.

For what it's worth, Google is doing a great job of keeping these units up to date for the testers, fixing bugs and taking care of issues in quick order.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Pinch Zoom functionality, and Cr-48 Pilots user map

So, I think I should be reading new release info more often.  I've just noticed, with the latest Dev channel update, that I can perform pinch zoom functions on my Cr-48.  I'm not sure if this was added in the most recent update, or if it's been there for awhile.  I guess I need to catch up on my reading.

Also, a few users from the Cr-48 Pilot user group on Facebook are attempting to get a map of us users together  Tag yourselves at the link below.  Particularly if you are from the Philadelphia area - I'd love to see just how many active folks got one of these sweet little netbooks out here.

Also, if you haven't joined the Facebook Cr-48 Pilot User Group, or the Cr-48 Philadelphia Area User Group, there's no better time than the present!

Thinkpad X201 Fingerprint Reader in Ubuntu

My project for the evening - configure my X201's fingerprint reader for use in Ubuntu 10.10.  Here's the process.


Open terminal, enter the following

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fingerprint/fingerprint-gui
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install fingerprint-gui policykit-1-fingerprint-guid libbsapi

Close terminal, then reboot.  Open System>Preferences>Fingerprint GUI.  Select the upec Biometric Touchchip/Touchstrip Fingerprint Sensor, click next.  The GUI will walk you through enrolling your fingerprints, and voila - logins, sudo, and keyring are all tied to your swiped fingerprint. 

Friday, February 11, 2011


As some of you know, I just got back from the much anticipated HP WebOS developer event.  The big news of the event was the trio of new devices from HP, running WebOS 2.0.  Let's go over the list, shall we?

First up is this little guy, the HP Veer.  At first glance, this looks like a smaller, chunky Pre.  It features a 2.6 inch multitouch 320x400 screen, nearly identical to the Pixi that accompanied me to the event.  Unlike my Pixi, this mini-smartphone sports a powerful 5MP camera, an 800mhz Qualcomm processor, and a slide out keyboard.  HP seems to be targeting the dumb-phone market with this diminutive device, and I think this is a perfect stepping stone for folks looking to enter into the smartphone world.  That being said, it is not as feature rich as the two real show stoppers from HP.  This little guy will be available by spring.

The successor to the Pre and Pre2, came in the form of the Pre3. Sporting a 3.58 inch multitouch screen, running at 480x800, a super slim form factor that is nearly as pocketable as my Pixi, built in GPS, 5MP camera, and a screaming fast 1.4ghz Qualcomm CPU, this phone is built for the WebOS power user.  The jump in screen resolution is a nice change from the Pre and Pre2.  WebOS 2.0 looks sharp and crisp on the larger display, and the boosted processor makes multitasking a blast, even moreso than on the original flock of WebOS devices.  The extra power is felt when using the new stackable card view, and with the available memory, the dreaded "too many cards" error may be gone for good.  Although there has been no pricing announced for this phone, it will release in the summer.

Of course, most folks showing up at the event weren't looking for the phones.  Everyone was aware of the elephant in the room - several of them were present at the event, in fact.  The iPad, super device of this generation, needs a competitor.
Meet the real star of the show - the HP Touchpad.  It sports a 9.7 inch 1024x768 tablet with a dual core Qualcomm APQ8060 processor, clocked at a whopping 1.2ghz.  Additional features include a 1.3 megapixel front facing webcam, 16 or 32gb of available internal storage, internal stereo speakers with HP's Beats Audio, and a special touchstone dock.  I can't say this enough - this thing looks better in person than in pictures.  It is unbelievably thin and very light, coming in at roughly 1.6 pounds for the whole package.

One of the most impressive demos at the show involved the way this new tablet works with the Pre3 seamlessly.  Our demo rep pulled up a popular recipe website on the Touchpad, selecting a recipe for dinner that night.  Touching a paired Pre3 to the home button of the Touchpad created a slick ripple effect across the screen.  The web browser of the Pre3 opened and began loading the page on the Touchpad's screen, all via a single touch.  The representative also demonstrated that text messages and phone calls coming in from that paired device would also show on the Touchpad screen.  Responding to a text message no longer needs to be done on the tiny phone keyboard, but can be done from the TouchPad itself.

The notifications system has changed somewhat for the Touchpad - instead of the familiar bottom notifications that could be swiped away with the handheld WebOS devices, the Touchpad features a notification that scrolls across the top bar of the screen, and then tucks itself away in a notification icon that can be tapped to display all pending notifications.  It is a VERY slick interface, even though it does move away from the WebOS notification model we've all come to love.  The Touchpad is also not sporting a gesture area.  At first, that decision puzzled me, but after seeing it in action, our swipe gestures - which make so much sense on the handhelds - wouldn't work quite as well on the much larger Touchpad.

Overall, this is a very slick looking team of devices coming out of HP.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Well, this is interesting.

I wonder, is there some kind of event going on here.  Seems like something I might be interested in.  I've been meandering around San Francisco all day now, taking pictures and enjoying the sights, but I think this is something I'm really interested in.........

0:55 minutes to go.

Holed up at a Starbucks.

Trying to recover from lunch (McDonalds, totally local San Francisco cuisine) before I hike back up the hill toward Fort Mason.  I ordered something.....I thought they sold coffee here.  This has ice in it and no sugar.  The only sugar I could find in the entire store doesn't dissolve - sugar in the raw is delicious, but I'm chewing my not-hot coffee drink I can't pronounce or identify.  Crunchy.

Anyway, Photo dump time.


Final decent into SFO.

I like these trees for some reason.

That's a street?  My god.

And a thousand parking brakes cried out.

Is that what I think it is?

YES!  Take that, Wawa.

Over a decade of avoiding planes.....

Beautiful sunrise.
Almost time to board.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

San Francisco, here I come.

I'm headed to San Francisco to check out some interesting WebOS news coming from HP/Palm.  Stay tuned here for updates.  Here's hoping the warmer weather won't convince me to stay.