Wednesday, December 26, 2007

video - Ubuntu 7.10 on my TC1100 w/tablet and digitizer working

[youtube 1rvnK9SmXfg]

-view post to see embedded video!

-video demo of my HP TC1100 dual booting w/XP Tablet Ed2005 and Ubuntu 7.10 (gutsy gibbon). also a quick demo of using the digitizer/pen in Ubuntu; my first attempt at a 'tabuntu' machine (not coined by me, tabuntu = tablet ubuntu device!) and also how the onboard keyboard looks/works.


Tuesday, December 25, 2007

a walk on the alternative side: ubuntu on my hp tc1100 tablet

being as big of a geek as i am, i admit that i am a bit disappointed in myself for not really getting onto the whole linux bandwagon a while back.  linux, imo, is the uber geekiest of all operating systems and should come naturally to me since i did mess around in AIX (unix variant) and kornshell scripting.

a few weekends back, i fixed up an 'about to be junked' laptop and was able to revive it w/a few hardware swapouts (new hd, memory) and a full disassemble and clean (pop was spilled on it).  since i now had a decent laptop along w/my tablet i figured i'd remove my vista from my tablet (since it ran a bit sluggish and i downgraded my memory to a 512mb stick) and in turn install ubuntu.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

video - sony locationfree tv in action

[youtube rZYuNdA-Jcw]
(whats with not being able to embed video in wordpress?? or is it just me?)

more to come! psp and remote use upcoming..

update: youtube embed fixed! q and davak are the men! hehe.. thanks guys! :)

a real, live sony locationfreetv setup in the wild! (ie in my apt)

well.. this week i was able to get my little geeky mits onto a fun little device i've been eyeing for a while now; Sony's LocationFreeTV LF-X11 unit and lcd/screen.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

thoughts on guitar hero 3 and rock band for my ps3

a few weeks back, i broke down and got Guitar Hero 3 for my PS3.  the main reason being that it was $70 cheaper than Rock Band (yes, i know that you get a guitar, drum set, and mic w/it) and was out then.  however, after playing Guitar Hero 3 religously for the last few weeks with my pals, i realized that Rock Band would really be fun since we could all be playing at once.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

weekend projects: slides to dvd and batch encoding of videos

happy belated turkey day to everyone! 

like most that work in the retail sector, i sadly had to work this weekend also (oncall but still working imo).  so since i had to be around my pc all weekend anyways, i figured i'd pick up on a few projects i've been meaning to get done.

my first and now-bigger-than-i-thought-it-would-be project is turning out to be quite the task.  my mom had a ton of slides from back in the 1960s of her trips across the USA.   being the geek and good son i am, i told her that for part of her xmas present, i would scan about 1000 of them in and make a DVD video showing them (thinking it would be a weekend project only).

Friday, November 23, 2007

zune software and understanding how syncing works

well, after messing w/my Zune Flash 8GB continuously for the last 3 days, i think i finally understand how syncing and managing media on the zune works. at first, it is not very intuitive and a bit backwards (at least imo) but once you understand how it works, things get easier so here's my quickie intro to understanding syncing w/the zune device and zune software (version 2.0+)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

sellout styled: my first mp3 player purchase in over 9 years (Zune Flash 8GB)

yes, the title of this post is correct.  being as big of a geek as i am, most of my pals are pretty shocked to hear that i hadn't owned an mp3 player since the first generation of mp3 playesr.  back in 1998, i bought my first ever and up to this point 2nd ever mp3 player.  it was a Rio PMP300 that had a whopping 32mbs of memory and 10 hour battery life.  video? photo? click wheel/touchpad? none.  this was before Apple made mp3 players.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Sony VAIO VGN-TZ170N quick look (ultra-portable)

This last week or so the company i work for had in several ultra-portable laptops to evaluate.   To my surprise and delight, one of them happened to be a VAIO TZ model. 

I've always have been a pretty big fan of the VAIO VNG TZ series in the ultra-portable world.  So, would Sony keep me as a fan or would Vista on it be a show stopper?  Lets take a quick look at the VGN TZ170N (youtube video quick look embedded at the bottom):

Saturday, November 10, 2007

how does one become an 'expert' in their field?

really, how? i've been very curious about this lately since i've been working with quite a few 'experts' at work.  so, off to the web i went to see if there were any articles or posts on this question.

my search yielded a very good article from Matthew Moran on this topic.

Friday, November 09, 2007

gaming and downloadable content (DLC); how i would do it

downloadable content, micro-transactions; the buzz words for 2007 and how developers feel they can gain extra revenue off a base product/game.

i've blogged previously about my disgust of downloadable content that IS NOT FREE.  in my opinion, downloadable content seems to be overpriced and usually things that SHOULD have been in the final game.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

PS3 2.0 firmware released.. no ingame music or xmb :(

well, sony finally did it and released firmware version 2.0 for the PS3.. for most PS3 faithfuls, this was supposed to be the FIXITALL one that would give us ingame XMB and custom music at the very least.  however, 2.0 does not seem to live up to its version number.. hehe..

things that are fixed taken from the playstation blog :

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

thoughts on ASUS's Eee PC

just in the last month, ASUS has released its eagerly awaited Eee pc. the Eee pc is basically a super compact laptop made mainly for websurfing/chatting. it has a 7" lcd and weighs in at around 2lbs. it has either a 2gb, 4gb or 8gb ssd harddrive and various memory flavors (4 different models total) and the best part being that the pricing on it is very reasonable; starting around $245 for the basic model to the top end model at $425. all models include wifi, usb ports, and the ssd. also, it comes with a preinstalled linux variant os; xp can be installed but you'd really want to do this if you have the 8gb version.

to me, i get to finally say ITS ABOUT TIME the small, mobile computing niche saw a device w/a realistic pricepoint. i really want to love the UMPC format but who really is looking to spend over $1,000 on an ultraportable laptop that only has 7" screen and will probably only used for web surfing?

however, to me i see this device as being a fun, ongoing project. i'd really like to see if one can get OS X Tiger to run on it; since it does run an Intel processor vs a VIA or non-OSX86 compatible processor. i have not purchased the Eee pc yet but now have decided to wait for the black version and hopefully will be getting the 8GB version in the next month or so.

i'm very curious to see how XP runs on it, 1gb memory and an 8GB ssd should be pretty speedy. the Dell D430 i have runs XP pretty nicely, boot up time is around 19 seconds from start to desktop (it also has a 30gb SSD).

plus, streaming is where its at for music even though a nice ole USB flash drive or HDD would work just fine too. :) yes, harddrive space is not a limiter here, rather memory limited to 1gb may prove to be a downfall found out topend model does allow upgrade to 2gb but voids warranty in process, worth it imo.  also, top end 8GB model will not be available in USA; so it looks like i'll have to ebay it or import it, boo!!  whats up with that ASUS?

but then again, it is only a $425 ultra portable.. :) anyone have one yet? let me know if its what you expected or not.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

rock band or guitar hero 3?

so.. after 2 versions of the game, i finally got my hands on Guitar Hero 3 for the XBOX360... and i must say.. its pretty fun! i can see why so many people are addicted to it..

at first, i was a bit slow and bad but after a few easy songs, i was jamming Rockstar like.. :)

Guitar Hero 3 just released on Oct 28th for almost every console out there. however later this Nov, around the 23rd Rock Band will be released.  Rock Band was created by the prev. developers that did the original GH.

Both games are music beat-based. Guitar Hero 3 builds on the original franchise by going w/just guitars for instruments. Rock Band is basically what its name says; a band. if you get the full band bundle, you get a drum set, a guitar, and a mic.

The Guitar Hero 3 w/wireless controller (PS3/X360) goes for about $100-110.

The Rock Band bundle will go for around $159 for the complete setup.

Now, one must ask themselves; which one do you go for? Honestly, can you justify buying both setups? You could end up spending over $300 (if you get a 2nd wireless guitar for guitar hero 3; Rock Bands guitars are not cross compatible w/GH3, but GH3 will work w/rock band just no special moves buttons).

Honestly, i think i am going to wait until Rock Band is released or even try it out in a store before hand. Spending over $100 for a game is a lot of money! Thats more than my cell phone bill.

So, whose waiting for Rock Band? Or did you get GH3 already? Or perhaps are getting both?

I'll be waiting.. but may break down and go GH3.. we'll see how Rock Band feels.. :)

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Apple's Leopard already hacked for PC!

i love it.. as a windows user/pc user, i love how the other side claims that its product/os is nearly unhackable but yet only less than a day after being released; Leopard has been hacked and patched to work on an Intel/AMD based pc hardware. 

Daily Apps has the full guide to making your own patched dvd and installing over here:

i plan to try the patch myself on my Tiger partition.  hopefully my network cards (one of the two hopefully) will be recognized and then i can try using Leopard as a main os for a week or two and give a write up on it.

just thought i'd let the uninformed informed! Go OSX86 Hackers and pc geeks!

Friday, October 26, 2007

my G5 logic board swap adventure...

well.. as i had previously blogged about, i've been working on a pals G5 tower just recently.  he had the logic board (ie motherboard for the windows hardware geeks) go bad and found out it would prob cost about $700 to get it replaced including labor.

so he went out and got a new board and then asked me to install it.  hell, i figured it couldn't be more than an hour long swap.  boy, was i wrong.  apple hardware is probably the worst designed for the DIYers in life.  i swear apple does this purposedly so they not only make money off of hardware but also off of service.

the hardest part of the swap was finding an appropriate tool to get to the screws on the heatsinks.  basically you need a 7-8" long screwdriver and torque wrench to get to them; however finding a place that makes this tool is next to impossible.  my pal decided to fabricate two specialized tools for the job.

after making the tools and of course tweaking them to fit; we had the heatsinks off and it was downhill from there! 

here's a great tip for anyone that messes with or takes apart hardware they are unfamiliar with; take photo of it as your doing it.  it will save you hours of troubleshooting and frustrations!  after i had the board swapped out and put back together, the G5 would boot but nothing would show for video.  after reading the service manual i found for the G5, realized the problem was the DIMM configuration; basically i had to move the four sticks to the 1/2 spots for each processor.  once i did that, bam! got the OS X boot screen and finally the desktop!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

why apples are not oranges.. disassembling a Mac G5 Tower, arg!!

well, i apologize to my readers or followers for not updating in a few weeks.. been a busy geek lately and trying to catch the attention of a girl at the same time! i tell ya, a full time job indeed!

this last week, one of my mac pals called me and dropped off his G5 Mac.

basically he had it looked at and found out the motherboard/logic board went bad in it. the place he went to though wanted to charge him $700 to get a new board and to put it in. so he decided to go out and buy a new board (around $500) and asked me to remove and install the new one.

the removal was going great until i got to removing the two heatsinks for the processors. there are 4 screws that are nearly impossible to get to. to get to them, you really need a long (8inch or so) screwdriver w/a very narrow shaft to get to them. however, finding such a tool can be nearly impossible.

my pal decided to try out his welding skills and we have in turn gotten one of the two heatsinks off. we'll see if his second tool gets to the final screws.

this is my biggest gripe of apple products. they work great and have great warranties; but once that warranty is up and gone, your basically screwed and are better off getting a new mac if its a mainboard/logic board issue.

if my motherboard on my windows pc goes down, i can have a new board in in prob about 25mins if i have the part..

arggg!! i like oranges much better than apples when it comes to fixing.. hehe.. :P

i'll post a full dis-assemble pics later and also the order in which i did it and also a shot of the tools we made to get to the screws.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

sony and its lack to support the multimedia functions of PS3

well, its been about 6 months now since i've had my ps3 and so far i'm not really regretting its purchase.  however, i have been VERY DISAPPOINTED with sony and its  lack of adding any functionality to the multimedia playback options of the PS3.  yes, they tout the PS3 as being more than a gaming machine but still leave us with a GIMPED media player and options.

Monday, October 01, 2007

help sites that aren't that helpful....

i admit it, i don't always have a solution for a problem and in turn need to use the power of the web and google to assist. 

for the most part, most 'howto' and 'help' web sites are pretty good.  however, every once in a while i'll run into one that REQUIRES you to register to view any of the responses.  an example, experts exchange (  is a site that is like this.

i HATE these type of sites.  the most annoying part about these sites is that google seems to always put them at the top of most searches.  why would i want to join a site and in turn have to pay a fee to register to see a fix that was submitted by users? like most people, i just move on and find a more 'helpful' site that i can read the fix w/o having to register or pay.

this is why i applaud and love TechRX since you can read any of the recipes, without having to sign up or register or pay.

just a quick rant of mine i had to get off my chest, back to my research.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

iPhone firmware updates break third-party software

hahah! again, this is why when the iPhone launched, i really wasn't too excited.  the iphone was the 'jesus' phone when first launched.  it was viewed as 'revolutionary' by the first, early adopters (who in turn also go screwed on a price drop only 3 months later, sure $100 voucher to the apple store but thats almost an insult since you HAVE to use the voucher at an apple store).

the hacking community started to really get involved in both unlocking the iphone's sim card and also allowing third-party code to run.  however the apple's latest 1.1.1 iphone firmware update appears to not only break/brick unlocked iPhones but also kills all the thirdparty apps that have been installed too.

the iPhone is starting to look more and more like my older Danger Sidekick in regards to closing off of the phone's OS and third-party software. even was pretty mad about this and they seem to be pretty hardcore apple fanboys too ( 

in my opinion, i still would not get an iphone or ever since i hate systems that are so closed.  now open up the iphone to hackers again and maybe i'd consider one but then i would have to worry that apple may send another update and break it again.  

so, any iphone users w/thoughts on their purchase? are you having buyer remorse after apple's lock-down?

Saturday, September 22, 2007

my w810i, service cable and file system hacking.. :)

Well, i've been working off and on with my W810i (make that 2, long story w/the whole one not working an then buying a 2nd used one on ebay and then frankensteining the best parts from each into a 'new' W810i, mwaa) and trying to hack it.

the best site to for CID49 hacking is one of my hangout sites, . a few members over there were the first to get into the CID49 filesystem using free apps and a service cable. mad props to the original hackers! so, the last few weeks i've been doing a ton of reading and playing. i'm using my w810i w/the weird battery problem as my test machine and i purchased a totalmultiserver credit just in case (use it to flash the firmware if i mess it up bad).

the first few tries of mine were unsuccessful. i didn't have a service cable or the right firmwares or tools. also, trying to understand the whole process was very confusing w/the conflicting guides and all. so last week i received my 2in1 service cable (self-powered, usb) and finally figured out how to get it all working and fix my phone if i screw up.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Dell Latitude D430 Review (with 32GB SSD)

I love computers and gadgets, especially shiny new ones or ones that i don't have to pay for.

My work is currently evaluating a few newer Dell laptops to see which one we will be upgrading to early next year. One of the models that we had purchased for testing got pushed off of our list due to several quirks/downfalls and in turn ended up in my little geeky, gruby hands.

Today I will give a quick mini-review of a Dell Latitude D430. This review will be using Vista 64-Bit as the OS and part of the review.

Friday, September 07, 2007

AHHHHHH! W810i not repaired, says water damage??

man, sony has really been testing my loyalty the last few months.. first problems w/my W810i (i have yet to have a FULLY working W810i since i purchased it one back in July) and then a few PS3 problems..

anywho, i got my phone finally back from Sony Ericsson and first thing i notice is that action says: RUR-Returned Unrepaired.  Check the details and they state water corrosion as reason why phone was not repaired.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

techrx swag! who wants some? :)

well, Q sent out a nice ole Tech RX swag package last week (thanks buddy!) and after receiving it realized that a few of the shirts and polos are just a bit too big for me.. (i'm a small man or boy or person.. hehe..)

so i figure i'd see if any of my loyal readers would be proud and interested in sporting their geek love for techrx.

i hope to randomly pick 2 people to send out a tech rx "Computers fear me" t-shirts (L and XL, i love this one); to get a chance to grab a hold of some swag, just leave a comment (be sure to fill in the email part on the comment form so i can email you for your addy).

i'll pick and post the two winners next friday! until then, comment away!! :)

btw, warhawk still rules!

Monday, September 03, 2007

PS3 firmware update v1.92 is live!

just got done watching a movie on the PS3 and got notified that an update was available, good ole 1.92.  hopefully this resolves the warhawk issues we've been having with my ps3 freezing on bad connects to servers and of course the stat tracking.

no update info was included on the update so... i guess we'll see if warhawk is good to go or not.

bitmapping feature in Music (not sure what that is, options include Off, Type1, Type2) seems to be the only UI change i can see.

warhawk.. so much fun but...

well, i broke down on friday and got a new game for my PS3.  i was stuck between Lair or Warhawk.  Lair looked crazy cool and beautiful but warhawk seemed like a blast to play (played the beta a few times via a backdoor trick). 

after hearing about a few of the iffy reviews on Lair and its controls, i decided to go the warhawk route.

the game is a blast to play and looks very nice.  however there are a few issues that really need to be addressed.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

quad booting my pc w/XP, MCE, Vista and OSX86

well, a few weeks back i did a full system rebuild from scratch and originally had planned to do a six os install but decided to cut back to just a quad booting system.  i realized that installing windows98se and windows 2000 was just a waste of partitions and space since i really have no need for them. 

Thursday, August 30, 2007

sony ericsson, where's my W810i????

man, this last phone purchase has been the bane of my existence lately. all i wanted was a mid-level phone since i'm holding out to get a high-end once the new 5mp Cybershot phone is out.  but man, first phone i get is DOA, second one i had to send back to Sony, now they can't seem to find my damn IMEI number on the Proof of Purchase order.  seriously, i sent a copy w/my phone along w/my paypal receipt and they still say they do not see the IMEI number..

Sunday, August 26, 2007

oooo.. its so purty... where are the visualizers?

i don't know about you but i love graphic equalizers and visualizers. theres something about seeing music converted into random forms that makes me happy (perhaps a few flashbacks from the college days, hehe).

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

osx86 and a pc.. a brief read...

well, today shamanstears inquired on what it takes to get osx up on a pc so i thought i'd get up a quickie on osx on an amd/intel pc.

first thing you will need to have is a p-ata harddrive.  thus far, you can not install on a s-ata drive since the current builds for pcs of osx86 do not have the driver support....

Monday, August 20, 2007

the format wars and current state of the union.

blu-ray and hd dvd formats have now been at war for about a year and half.  many have compared the latest formats war to one we saw just a few decades ago, vhs vs betamax.  so sony (main backer of blu-ray, prev of betamax) is no stranger in a format war, in actuality they really have been big backers/creators of other formats that succeeded (ms duo) and also failed (minidisc, umd??). while toshiba (main backer of hd dvd) is somewhat new in this regard but has some big backers such as microsoft and intel.   (wiki pages for bluray and hd dvd ).

the two formats are not compatible with each other and each has different storage capacities.  hd dvd offers single and dual layer disks w/max capacities of 15gb/30gb while blu ray offers 25gb/50gb.  both offer a similar encryption system to twarth unauthorized copying (usually requires using an hdcp hdmi connection).

Sunday, August 19, 2007

online purchasing and researching tips...

well, i'd consider myself a veteran if not expert on buying products online. i joined ebay about 8 years ago and prior to ebay had used and since their inception. however, after speaking with co-workers and friends throughout the year; i realized that there are still a lot of newbs or first timers out there when it comes to online purchasing.

so this blog is a very quick overview on things to watch out for if you are a newbie.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

last madden 08 note, pc vs ps3 versions.. PS3 version still sucks!

well, i promise this is my last madden post for a while.

i loaded up good ole madden 08 on my pc and have to say, holy shit; its good, very good.  my system is not the fastest or ideal gaming rig (Athlon X3 2ghz, 2gb ram, X800 ATI vid card) but man, it plays so smooth. 

i have my settings cranked up to 1900x1200 at 60hz and i have no delays.

madden 08 problems narrowed down, more w810i updates..

well, thought i'd just post an update to my two current love/hate relationships i have in my geek lovelife.. hehe. i love them and hate em but hopefully atleast one of them i'll just love in a few weeks. :)

Thursday, August 16, 2007

seamonkey's daily twitter recap [2007-08-16]

  • giving madden another chance.. not as bad as i thought after a while... still, expected too much from madden.. lots of options = good! #

  • @shamanstears i like the blog of twits.. :) easy summary.. #

  • wow.. 300 look spretty sweet on bluray.. #

  • doing some more bb setups.. found out i may get to meet the organizer of DefCon and possibly get access to next years convention! very cool! #

  • @shamanstears coffee is the fuel to my geek fire.. 'nectar of the gods' as i say.. hehe.. #

  • off early, in the words of ice cube "Today was a good day"!... :P #

  • good deal on 2gb microsd for $23 at newegg #

  • oh yea, while on deals, quality hdmi cables @ got me 2 3ft hdmi cables for $14 shipped.. the hdmi switch didn't come w/cables #

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

seamonkey's daily twitter recap [2007-08-15]

  • loading up my new addiction! madden 08 for the ps3... doing the oncall thing again tonight.. gotta get more ot for my geek purchases! :P #

  • finally! a madden is worth purchasing! has online vids, nfl news, and other sports news.. not bad!! now lets see how it plays! #

  • first madden win! yea yea! #

  • beatles and beers... mmm.. tasty.. hehe. chatting abouts the need of tech in education and need for the youngns to learn the old ways.. #

  • a bit pissed about the framerate issues and stuttering of madden 08 for ps3. man, ea just keeps dropping the ball in the madden series! :( #

  • @davak the x360 version runs at 60fps and has not had any probs w/freezing. the ps3 runs only at 30fps and maxes out to 720p vs 1080p (x360) #

  • @davak yes and no, i love the bluray/media player in the ps3. the games are still behind the x360.hopefully devs make the game, not port it #

  • more recipe ideas! hmm.. will be adding later tonight.. after some 300 in bluray! :) #

Madden 08 and the PS3.. what the hell happened????

yes,  its true.  i broke down and bought Madden 08 for the PS3.  i've played Madden football since its first release back in the day on the Genesis; back before it even had a number behind it and they had the Championship Editions.  through the years i saw madden go from a pretty decent/basic football game to its current state.

the first playstation versions of madden were amazing in regards to graphics and gameplay.  however after a few years, each new year's version of madden really never expanded on the fundamentals of football and really just looked a little better and had updated rosters. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

seamonkey's daily twitter recap [2007-08-14]

  • just watching some dvr'd simpsons and family guy.. #

  • @qmchenry i really don't need it but couldn't say no to a deal like that, usually they run about $100+ and don't have a remote to switch.. #

  • nothing like another t-storm.. dang, some crazy thunder and lightning #

Monday, August 13, 2007

seamonkey's daily twitter recap [2007-08-13]

Sunday, August 12, 2007

seamonkey's daily twitter recap for 2007-08-12

  • doing the oncall thing... playing a little NHL2K7 on the PS3.. #

  • working on banner for blog header... #

  • banner done.. off and away.. hehe.. hmm.. blog didn't create a twitter for new post.. weird. #

  • @shamanstears thanks! thanks Q for getting it up and going so fast.. #

  • the Meizu M8.. ie iphone clone.. hehe #

  • interesting read, us spy agencies view bloggers as journalist, #

  • my pals bottle-opening sandals! good for the weekend at the lake #

  • ps3 exploit found in tiff, now able to play ps1 backups? will post results after trying! #

being a "geek" and its evolution...

well, i am a geek and i'm proud of it.  but what does that mean? what is the definition of geek these days?

the term/word "geek" has gone quite a few major changes/definitions in the past 20 years.  like most language/words, they evolve as we evolve and their defintions can change drastically to the point that the context in which they are used can be flip-flopped from say a decade prior. 

merriam-webster currently give the following definitions for the word "geek"
Main Entry: geek
Pronunciation: \ˈgēk\
Function: noun
Etymology: probably from English dialect geek, geck fool, from Low German geck, from Middle Low German
Date: 1914
1 : a carnival performer often billed as a wild man whose act usually includes biting the head off a live chicken or snake
2 : a person often of an intellectual bent who is disliked
3 : an enthusiast or expert especially in a technological field or activity

Saturday, August 11, 2007

seamonkey's daily twitter recap for 2007-08-11

  • @21c i ain't in asia but i'm asian and up.. hehe. blogging and posting a quickie ps3 recipe #

  • @qmchenry hehe.. hard to even try to gain on shamanstears! :) just added new recipe for outlook 2003 and printing probs.. #

Thursday, August 09, 2007

my w810i woes continue..

well, i was pretty pumped to get my w810 (twice that is since first had to be rma'd, DOA) but so far have been having some very annoying problems.  mainly the phone does not seem to hold a charge or even charge properly. i will plug it in overnight and check it in the morning its only 55% charged. tried 2 different batteries (the K750 uses same battery type), once of which was brand new and same problem.

internet is back up!! go justin from comcast!

well, on tues night, my good ole internet and cable tv both went down.  in the past year or so i've had this happen off and on but usually a few hours later the signal would come back and i'd be good; if not i could usually wiggle the cables by the outlet enough to get it to work.

however, this time i had a feeling that i just needed to get the cabling to my apt redone.  so i called up comcast, setup a time for  them to swing out and took the day off (also had to get my work license, long story short i got a dwi but got it dropped to a careless). 

comcast sent out justin (a younger tech, about my age or so, worked 7 years or so in the industry) to take a look.  he replaced my inside jack and still had major connection problems/negative signal; after investigating some more he decided to run a totally new line to my apt.  we went and talked w/my apt management office and got access to the roof and got a new cable strung.  the cabling i had was prob from when the apts were built (the cable was dried out from water and sun and just being old).

after he finished running the cable and reconnecting, bam! internet was up and hd and cable was looking very crisp.  also, he suggested to use the Pass-Through setting on my Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8300HD to get the best picture quality (prev i was using the upconvert-2) and i did notice a slight increase in quality of my hd channels.  however the quality boost may also be in part from the new cabling. 

so all in all, its good to have my tv and internet back.  evdo tethering was a great inbetween time solution but nothing beats good ole broadband.

now to call comcast and give justin some props! thanks dude!

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Blackberry 8830 follow-up review

well, prior to working at my current job, i had always been either Palm or Windows smartphone user. blackberries were for the business elite not the geek, or so it went in my head.  however, after using a blackberry for quite some time i've come to love my blackberry and loathe the palm treo or moto q or other smartphones.  the blackberry just does the job so well.

up until the last year, blackberries were not really the nicest looking phone.  they were big black bricks.  however the introduction of the sleek Pearl and now the 8800 series seems to be changing this mold. 

a while back ago, i posted a review over at techrx ( here ) and gave it a very respectful/great 9.5/10. 

Monday, August 06, 2007

iPhone: unlocking that sim and browsing those filez? seems so!

well, i and the rest of the world knew this was coming; a way to unlock the iPhone sim card.  prior to this newest hack (which will run about $90-100 for the blank sim card and sim card reader/writer), the non-ATT/Cingular users could activate the iPhone via a hack but were still unable to use the phone (basically it made it a wifi ipod).

however, the good folks over at hackint0sh forums have found a way around this!  here's direct link to the forum post on the how-to.

so, it seems like i may perhaps end up w/an iphone at some point if this hack works w/Tmobile USA.  i've  always wanted to get into the whole SIM card hacking but really never had a reason to and now i may.  i know, i am still an iphone naysayer (but thats mainly because i didn't want to switch to cingular/att) but may sway to the dark side.  we shall see.

oh yea, on top of this, Windows users now have a nice iPhone file browser. check it out at

so.. anyone wanna send me an iphone to unlock and then in turn post up a nice tutorial?? hehe, had to try.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

more PS3 requests of mine...

well, was playing The Darkness today and messing around on the PS3 and decided i'd write down a few more requests/features i'd like added/changed.

-Ability to send full resolution images attached to messages in the XMB. come on, i have my photos all scaled to and hd-ready, why can't i share them?

-Ability to send images as part of the Triangle option when viewing the phots

-Playlist feature for music/vids (still!)

-Ability to pair PS3 w/Sony Ericsson phones to then use BT Remote Control to control movies (like bluetooth remote control does).

also just received back my remastered Fifth Element Bluray.  i purchased the original Bluray of The Fifth Element and after some complaints in conversion, Sony has remastered it again and actually is replacing copies of the original w/the new mastered one.  so far it seems the pixelation probs have been fixed!

By the way, here is the address to send your request to get your copy of the fifth element (bluray) replaced w/the newly released remaster.
To receive an exchange for the remastered Fifth Element Blu-ray disc, please return your Blu-ray disc (case not needed) to the following address:

SPHE Consumer Support
PO Box 157
Neenah, WI 54957
Attn: 760239

Please be sure to include your return address (no PO Boxes) and a copy of this email. Your replacement will be shipped to you via Fed Ex Ground. The disc will be sent out after July 17th.


SPHE Consumer Affairs Team

my next tablet pc?? dell's latitude xt tablet

well, since getting, i love my tablet pc.  however, recently though it has been starting to show its age and can't quite keep up to what it needs to do.  nonetheless it might be time for an upgrade.

the tablet pc market really wasn't too big or successful initially, however recently it has started to take off.  the selection of tablets is pretty big and prices have dropped quite a bit too (previously tablet pcs were usually more a 'premium' type of laptop, 2K+ ranges). 

after looking around, found out about Dell's Latitude XT.  so far the specs look pretty sweet.

 rumors say it will be out in Q3 (perfect for me since i get my bonus in dec.. :P ) and have these type of specs (specs from engadget:
  • Single or dual-core Intel ULV CPUs (with integrated graphics)

  • LED-backlit WXGA 1280 x 800 display option

  • Outdoor viewing WXGA 1280 x 800 display option

  • Pen and touch support (digitizer and touchscreen)

  • (3) USB 2.0 ports, Ethernet (duh), 1394, VGA out

  • WiFi options up to 802.11n, optional Bluetooth

  • Optional 3G (HSDPA, EV-DO Rev. A)

  • ExpressCard slot, optional Smart Card slot, fingerprint reader

  • i like the idea of the LED backlit display and outdoor viewing.  i wonder if you can get both features or if its a one or the other type of option/upgrade? 

    however the TC1100's form factor is still one i wish another manufacturer would take up.  its so nice being able to detach the keyboard and go pure slate mode.  perhaps HP will resurrect the TC1X00 someday, i can always dream!

    Friday, August 03, 2007

    the craziness of life

    well, not sure if most know this or not but i live in Minneapolis, MN and if you follow any news lately, you probably have heard about the collapse of the 35W bridge that spans over the Mississippi River.  the bridge collapsed on wed around 6pm during the tail-end of rush hour.  around 50 vehicles were involved and so far the death toll has been very low for such a catostraphic event. 

    i was shocked when my pal called me around 6:15pm after hearing about the collapse on the radio.  i flipped on my tv and was awed by the pure shock of seeing the bridge, collapes and in pieces. 

    if you live in Minneapolis or near it, you probably have driven on that section of road quite a bit.  that area is considered to be one of the main veins into downtown minneapolis, usually seeing about 200,000 vehicles passing over it each day. 

    the scary thing about whole incident is that there was no warning of the collapse.  it just literally fell to the river.  most of my pals live in the southern part of minneapolis (aka uptown) however i still made sure everyone was accounted for and thankfully no one i knew was involved or at the scene.   even crazier is that if this would have happened on Thur night instead of Wed, i might have been on that bridge around that time since i was meeting some pals for a reunion-tour happy hour over on the UMN campus.

    my heart goes out to all of the victims and family/friends of those injured/killed.  hopefully the cause of the collapse will be found and lessons are learned.

    props to my fellow MNers and their willingness to always help those in need or at the scene, always great to see/hear!

    Wednesday, August 01, 2007

    blog theme updates, twitter, and randomness

    well, figured it was time to update/change my blog theme.  finally found a decent theme to use that met my criteria, black and basic.  davak then uploaded it for me and made a few tweaks and thus the new look!  thanks again for updating it so fast!!

    after reading about twitter on the other techrx blogs, decided i'd join up and take it for a spin.  its pretty sweet.  i've been using the text messaging option of posting since its so easy and i can do it anywhere.  plus, its fun seeing what davak and q and shamantears are up to throughout the day.  sure seem like a bunch of busy guys!

    and finally, some randomness on randomness and shuffle.  why is it that most media players have such a limited shuffle/random playback options?  i really hate it when you put a bunch of songs (ie 100 to 300) on shuffle yet after each time i start playback it shuffles the same order as it previously did.  this is a really huge annoyance i have w/my Civic Si's sound system.  i have the navigation package and in turn have the PC Card reader for music files.  i noticed that when i turn on shuffle/random it uses the same random list.  come on, it can't be that hard to make the random playback order random on each time the feature is turned on!!!! you'd think its a very basic random function in the software. i remember making a few basic java script applets and the first excercise was to make a random number generator; so its not like i'm asking for anything complex or hard to do.  just seems like most manufacturers just don't think that people use the feature or don't put much effort into it.

    so thats my randomness rant on randomness. :P


    Monday, July 30, 2007

    my W810i housing mod

    well, i got my rma'd W810i back. so nice having a decent phone vs a crappy one. hehe.  however, after verifying that it worked normally i decided to the front camera case mod.  its probably one of the easiest housing mods you can do w/the W810i.  Just remove the two screws under the battery cover, pop off the housing, put on the K750 or W800 housing (almost identical housings / hardware is used among these three phones).


    in addition to the camera housing change, i also fully disassembled my W810i and used my silver buttons from the spare parts K750i i had. the camera cover slide will not turn off/on the camera (i even purchased the camera ribbon for the K750i which did fit, however the connector that goes to the phone's pcb was vertically set not horizontally). i can now fully disassemble and reassemble my W810i in prob under 5 minutes (tried to swap out a few parts but had to then go back and replace w/the W810i pieces).

    my next step will be doing some File System customizations and CID49 hacking using XS++ and Far Manager. i'll post some screenies of my phone once i get some new flash themes added and custom drivers updated. should be fun, given i don't brick my phone!!

    Sunday, July 29, 2007

    the future of the ps3.. brighter?

    well, its been about 4 months since i've purchased my PS3 and figured its time to do a little recap on on my past, current and future thoughts on the big black beast (aka ps3.. hehe).

    my past relationship w/sony has been a love / hate relationship. i loved the original playstation, didn't get a ps2 at all (really just modded xboxs, didn't really get into this generation; got into the computer gaming side), got a psp but was disappointed w/the lack of good games, had no original interest in the ps3 since it was just gonna be all glitz and not much of a new experience. my sony allegiance in the other consumer electronics area still burned bright. i love sony digital cameras and their nice highend mobile phones (ie K800).

    however, after jumping into the HD realm i realized it was time to pick my other next gen system. i already had my wii and enjoyed it for what it was and not for what it wasn't. so it came down to the xbox360 and the ps3. the x360 had the game advantage and a year headstart on the ps3, however the x360 didn't do the music and photos like the ps3 so the ps3 it was. the bluray player also was a selling point and the possibility of future firmware updates to do upscaling of dvds helped.

    bluray looked great, the audio/video options were a nice bonus, and the initial games were pretty decent (being a racing fan, nfs:carbon was my kind of game). however up until recently, the ps3 saw a pretty nasty game drought, which really wasn't that bad since it was from early to late summer and i was super busy and its summer!

    the near future for the ps3 looks very promising. we'll see some great looking games in the next few months including Lair, Heavenly Sword, Stranglehold, EyeCreate, Warhawk, and the usual sports games. the game i'm most excited for is LittleBigPlanet. that game looks amazing and so much fun, plus i'm a huge fan of games that allow for user submitted content. should be a blast and perhaps will establish its own cult following to say the least. plus, we'll have metal gear and gt5 to look forward to and also ffxiii (however that may be late 08 or even 09 for us americans.. boo! however i'd take a remixed/upconvert of FFVII to hold me off though. ).

    i haven't lost faith in sony yet. i'll give them to 2008 to sell me on my purchase and the next few months should do that. lair could end up being a system selling game, the scale of it seems almost on the epic side (seeing that many enemies on screen is crazy!).

    so go sony, keep up the good firmware updates and releases!!

    Friday, July 13, 2007

    is july RMA month?? wsod on new W810i and more geek pains

    is july the official RMA month? sure seems so for me, had to RMA three items this last week: my new W810i phone (arrived DOA, argh!!), a 1GB MicroSD card, and of course my Western Digital 80GB laptop hd.  however, i guess i can't really complain since prior to this month i've only had to RMA 4 items in the last 5 years (considering how many geek toys/items i buy, not a bad number).

    i've officially given up on getting OSX on my HP TC1100.  using a different external cd/dvd drive did not seem to resolve any of the install problems/slowness.  i might try the deedmo image method but at this point don't see any reason to try since it will prob run slow as heck.  so instead, i'm back to my dual booting XP/Vista setup.

    been thinking about a few of the mods i want to do w/my new phone (that is once i get a replacement and verify that it works fine since my mods will nullify the warranty).  so far these are the mods i plan to do (given the phone is CID36 not CID49; the RMAd W810i was a CID49 so i may be limited on what i can do w/the filesystem and UI hacks).  glad i held onto my buddies dead K750 so that i can use those parts w/my W810i. i love how sony ericsson phones are so moddable! now if only they could get rid of that WSOD; however i think the problem i had w/my phone was mainly because it was really not a NIB phone (phone had signs of wear and tear; the camera lense had a nasty coating on it and the memory card slot was broken and the LCD display was not properly centered; i could see light on the side of the lcd). so hopefully get that back soon.   here's the mods list i want to try:

    -housing mod:  going to use K750i camera cover side, replace all black buttons w/silver K750 buttons

    -software mods: complete overhaul of UI (black/orange brushed metal style) and Walkman player.  Possible camera and acoustic driver hacks (use drivers from K750, W800). I may see its possible to add the camera lense switch from the K750 (given there this is supported on the W810i, which it may not be).

    and i'll see if i can get tethering working too since i was able to get the non-existant VPN Internet plan from Tmobile (the $19.99 that doesn't include wifi since who wants hotspot service to start with eh?).

    i'll be posting up some recipes to my hacks/mods later next week.  btw, if your a sony ericsson user, head over to my other fave SE hangout area:  some good SE fanboys/hackers over there.


    Tuesday, July 10, 2007

    my tip on getting 'hooked up' in life as a geek/person

    let me start off on the right foot and warn my readers that this is not one of my typical geek posts. it is, but isn't.  no, this really is a post with some tips on life itself and getting oneself through it a little easier.  like most geeks of my generation (ie Nintendo generation, late 20s to 30s), i've got 'soft' skills.  no, i'm not good at knitting or stitching, but i'm good with people.  the previous generation geeks were always criticized for lacking these skills (for most of the prev gen, you could get away with being a total geek/tech expert and not have to worry about the people skills.  the technical knowledge itself overrided dealing w/co-workers and supervisors and others outside of the tech realm (not a rip on any generation or a 'my dads stronger than yours' statement, our world got much more 'PC' than previous).

    OSX86 update and other geeky tidbits

    well, i figure its time for me to do a follow up post on my recent experience on getting Mac OSX 10.4.6 on my HP TC1100.  previously i was having some major problems getting OSX86 to install and to even boot after install.  sadly, my situation/experience has not changed in regards to getting OSX86 installed and running on my TC1100 tablet pc.

    my installation will take over 5 hours to complete (if it does complete) but never boots.  i have tried using all of the known flags for darwin to see if that would speed up the install but none of them seem to have any effect (ie tried platform=x86pc and acpi, tried idehalt=0 and cpu=1, nothing seems to help).  i also have tried using a different install dvd (10.4.6 and 1.04.8, both JaS versions w/the amd/intel patches built in), different harddrive (since my 80gb died, but should be back this week), removed my 1GB memory and used only the builtin memory (512mb), removed the battery; again still over 5 hours to install and no luck on booting.

    Wednesday, July 04, 2007

    happy 4th of july!

    some fireworks from the good ole taste of mn (where you can get anything fried! hehe)

    hacks and developers

    just recently two huge breakthroughs were made in the PSP underground/hacking world.  Noobz and Archaemic found an exploit in the game Lumines that basically allow all PSP firmware versions (1.5 to 3.50) and allow it to run homebrew.  this is a pretty huge find, so much so that for a few days Lumines sales on amazon exploded, at one point its sales were up 5,700%! whoa.

    however, this is not the first instance that a game exploit/buffer overflow has been the entry point for hackers into a gaming console.  with the xbox there came to be a way to softmod it via a hacked game save file, i believe the game used was mech assault. 

    the gamecube also had a game hack too, that game was phantasy star online. it allowed users to even put linux on the gamecube.

    so i've always wondered, do developers purposedly leave the rare exploit in their code in hopes to drive their own software sales due to the exploit? even though the console maker and other software makers may not like the idea, it really seems to be plausible thought.  one that i am sure that most devs would ever speak of. 

    anywho, i also see that the iphone activation has been hacked, DVD Jon has figured out a way to emulate the apple activation servers, however you will not have any cell phone abilities (but give this some time, once the sim card lock has been broken, a combination of this hack and a future one could allow those non-cingular/att users to have actual working iphones; not saying it will be me but ya never know.. i like a good hack!).


    Friday, June 29, 2007

    the iphone launches, and i still don't care...

    yes, you heard that correctly.  the iphone launch has come and gone yet honestly i still could care less about this phone.  to me its still an overpriced, uber locked down, last years feature phone... 

    i guess i have not really ever bought into the whole hype of the phone.  as a self-proclaimed phone geek, the iphone does not offer me the features i want for a phone that costs that much.  i'd much rather save my pennies and get sony ericsson's new replacement to the K800/K790.  hey, atleast then i get a 5.0 mp camera and a phone thats capable of sending MMS.  and again, i hate itunes and refuse to use it on my windows machine. 

    plus, i've grown up in life and need to actually be able to access work emails to justify such a price for a phone (hell, my MDA cost me only $349 and prob still can offer the same exact features w/appropriate add-ons or hacks).

    as for the iphone.. i'll pass... to me, its just a glorified music sidekick...  plus, i want that damn sliding qwerty keyboard; software keyboards will never live up to an actual full qwerty keyboard.

    however, to each his/her own.  perhaps that is why i still don't own an ipod too.. :)

    Monday, June 25, 2007

    netflix and Watch Now..

    well, i've been using the Netflix Watch Now option w/my netflix account.  basically what the Watch Now option is netflix's VOD via the internet and an embedded video player in IE.  they offer a slim selection but have been good about adding more and more older movies. 

    however, i am blogging about their service since tonight i've noticed a very dramatic boost in quality.  the video looks pretty decent even on my 24" fullscreen.  pixelation is pretty low and i have not experienced any lag or stuttering most services usually encounter.  then again the performance boost i'm seeing may be due to the fact that i've been getting some nice 2mbs download speeds lately w/azerus and just normal web downloads. 

    the amount of free per month viewing you get depends on what type of subscription you have, basically for each $1 of your subscription, you get 1 hour of viewing; with a max of 13 hours per month.  ( more details over here: )

    so check it out if your a netflix member w/a highspeed internet account! i know i can't say no to some free and decent quality VOD!  peace

    Saturday, June 23, 2007

    OSX86 fun.. or not!

    well, as previously blogged; i have been attempting to get Mac OS X 10.4.8 up and going on my HP TC1100, however i have not had much success.  the first installs never completed (over 6 hours and sitting at end of install, gave up at that point and tried again), second install did install but never made it past the grey Apple logo on the first boot, the third and fourth times came up with errors. 

     Oh yea, and to top it off; my TC1100's HDD poops out yesterday.  Hmmm, i almost wonder if the OSX86 installs might have caused the failure or not.  had me worried, however my 80gb is still under warranty and i had my original 60gb that i could swap back in.  btw, i still am a huge fan of making ghost backups in case things like this happen.  did a ghost bkup before doing the OSX stuff so i had my system back up and running in 15minutes.  its nice being a geek. :P  hehe.

    anywho, so round 1 of my OSX86 install goes to Apple.   i'm wondering if my problems may have been related to my tc's hd failing or did the installs/failed installs cause the failure?  i swear the drive was beeping (like when your desktop won't POST and all you get are the error diagnostic beeps); couldn't even boot from a LiveCD or floppy w/the drive in.

    however, round 2 hopefully will go my way; i've decided to install it on my main desktop pc on a spare p-ata harddrive (20gb). realized the OSX86 install does not let you install to S-ata harddrive (i have 3 of them of course and no P-ata), so i had to pull out a 20gb p-ata drive from a gutted system and find a spot in my case.  sure am glad i upgraded away from my htpc cases; no way i could fit my: 3 s-ata drive, 1 p-ata drive, 1 dvd burner, 1 front panel VFD display/remote.

    got the install running right now and so far so good (knock on wood), figure it should run pretty decent on my system since i finally upgraded to 2gb of memory; really need to get a new mobo and upgrade to 4gb memory and newer x2 cpu.  however, bills be bills..

    if only computer upgrades grew on trees.. ;)

    --update:  just got osx86 running on my desktop machine, runs pretty smooth! also got my system setup to triple boot via the vista bootloader and chain0 hack; works like butter.  i posted a recipe to triple booting over at 's main site, should be live in a day or two.  i'll post more tips and notes as i come across them.

    Sunday, June 17, 2007

    osx86 and the TC1100: round 1, install frustrations

    well, this weekend has been a weekend of some geek frustration.  previously i had mentioned i wanted to try to get OS X Tiger up and running on my HP TC, however i have been having some issues. 

    my main problems have been the install itself.  my first install attempts ended w/me not being patient enough and giving up. after about 3 hours of waiting and seeming like nothing was happening i would power off my tablet and start over.  i realized that stuff was going on in the background but the Apple boot screen was hiding it, i decided to use the -v flag while booting via darwin.  this atleast gave me the piece of mind knowing something was going on. 

    however this still did not resolve the SUPER long time it takes to install.  my first install did not boot past the grey Apple logo and the install itself took over 5 hours (took a nap in between prompts).  the logs seemed to point to titan failing to start.  i decided to now try another full install and not installing the titan video drivers.  hopefully my tablet will boot!

    if it does, i think i will make a ghost image of the partition (avoid having to go through the painful install again!) and then reghost my whole machine w/OS X on the first partition and my tablet xp on second and then using Darwin bootloader for my dual booting.

    i'll post an update once or if i get it running or not. btw, i'm using the JaS 10.4.8 AMD Intel SSE2/SSE3 PP1 and PP2 iso. i also patched w/the defiant ppf patch.  it almost seems like my problems may be my cd drive, i might grab my ext from work tomorrow if i can't boot after this install and start from scratch.

    more to come!

    Thursday, June 14, 2007

    New geek project: getting OS X Tiger on my HP TC1100

    well, after helping one of my pals get her work Mac G4 server back up and going, i decided that its time that i tried to get OS X Tiger going on one of my Intel/AMD machines. 

    since i rely on my main pc and can't afford to 'accidently' wipe out any of my 3 hds in that sytem, i had to find an alternative system to try the farked install on.

    hmm, thus my HP TC1100 came to mind.  how sweet would it be to have a Mac Tablet, eh? hehe. i have not done any installing yet but have been doing mainly just some research on it prior to installing.

    my goal is to triple boot my tablet pc w/XP, Vista, and OS X Tiger.  I currently have 4 partitions on my 80gb drive and have allocated about 10gb for the OS X install. 

    Partition2=User files
    Partition3=OS X

    also, i am using the Vista bootloader and intend to use that for my triple booting.

    tonight i plan to try the install and will post my results/notes on the process (since i have not seen any TC1100 running OS X yet).

    i am hoping that i can use drivers from a serial based wacom tablet for the TC1100's wacom digitizer, but this may be very interesting.  also, from what i've been reading i may need to recompile a few things to work w/my tablets Intel Centrino processor; i'm hoping there have been others w/this processor that have gotten OS X to work. 

    nonetheless, should turn out to be a pretty fun sounding project! i'll post a followup this weekend on if or how i got it all working! :)

    Sunday, June 10, 2007

    XP vs Vista: the crappy pc test

    well, like most geeks out there, i have quite a few 'crappy' systems.  basically computers that have been 'frankensteined' together with parts i've gotten from pals, co-workers, random strangers. 

    one of these systems consists of an Athlon 64 3000+, Winfast mobo, 512mb memory, 100gb hd, and using onboard memory (64mb shared).  for a while i was using this pc as a living room pc and had vista business ed running on it, however dvd playback on it was horrible, unbearable and the OS just seemed to lag.  i decided to bring it back to the parent's farm so i had a pc to watch movies at night when up there.  after struggling through the choppiest movie i've ever seen (major lag probs in vista, video playback just seems to blow). 

    so this last weekend i decided to put good ole XP Prof back on it.  dvd playback was perfect, no lag or anything.  os was much snappier and music playback also was smoother.

    obviously this makes sense since vista requires a much higher set of hardware requirements and i was using onboard video.  however i never thought the difference in video playback would be so much different (unbearable in vista and smooth in xp).

    this actually leads me to my rant on vista. where is the video driver support??  seriously, i'm a little sick of not having the ability to use full screen overlays on my secondary monitor.  for being an OS that claims to be aimed towards multimedia, it sure seems to fall flat on its back. however most of the blame still goes towards the video card manufacturers and their horribly slow updates to drivers. come on! you've had over 2 years to get drivers working.

    i'll get off my box now, but seamonkey's 'mr. obvious' tip of the day, stick w/XP for those crappier, slower systems.  vista just is too much of a hog for these notsopowerful systems. 


    Friday, June 01, 2007

    Blackberry 8830 - Mini-review/first impressions

    For all of those Blackberry users (or crackberry), Verizon released the much anticipated 8830 World Edition phone. 


    The Blackberry 8830 is offered by Verizon and has both CDMA and GSM technology in it.  Basically this phone should work anywhere in the world, hence the "World Edition" branding.  Of course, using the phone/data in a different country will require the World plan.

    I got my grubby little mits on one just last week since we have a ton of attorneys that travel abroad.  I've so far used the following blackberry phones and will use them as reference to the features/options of the new Verizon Blackberry 8830: 7250, 7103e, 8703e, 8800 (pearl).  I've also used the following smartphones too: Motorola Q, Treo 600/650/700P/700W/700WX/755P/678, Tmobile MDA/Cingular 8125. 

    Thursday, May 24, 2007

    PS3, hdmi and digital optical audio at same time; figured out!!!

    well, one of my previous blogs about my PS3 mentioned how i was able to get HDMI and Digital Optical output at the same time and then how i wasn't able to duplicate it. well, i think i have finally figured it out and mastered audio out on my PS3! hehe..

    first things first, my setup.

    • Olevia 237V LCD HDTV (1080i) connected to PS3 via HDMI cable only (no other audio cables from ps3 to tv)

    • standard run of the mill Sony 5.1/DTS AV receiver connected to PS3 via Digital Optical Cable

    • PS3 set to output all formats to Digital Optical (aac,dts,dolby,pcm). Movie/BD audio set to Bitstream.

    what i've found out, atleast in my case, is that its the order in which i turn on my devices and how i turn off my ps3.

    whenever i power off my PS3 when watching a movie (just have movie playing, hold PS button, turn off system) and then if i turn on my setup in this order i get both HDMI and Digital Optical sound on my PS3.

    1. PS3

    2. TV

    3. Receiver

    it almost seems like by doing this tricks the PS3 in its digital/drm rules of audio output.

    i have now duplicated this 5 times in a row.. however, i do have to do the exact steps above to get it to work including power down the ps3 while in a movie/dvd.

    also, this works ONLY with DVD movies, not Blu-ray movies

    my youtube clip of it in action!

    Wednesday, May 23, 2007

    PS3 firmware v1.80; UPSCALING!!!! joy!

    well, i've been using my ps3 mainly for its multimedia capabalities as of late and was overjoyed to see at midnight my ps3 saw the v1.80 update!!

    basically this update adds a slew of things we've been wanting, not quite the infamous v2.0 update list but very nice nonetheless.

    the list includes the ability to now upscale dvds and ps2/ps games to 1080p.  on top of that add in the ability to connect to DLNA devices (ie my pc running vista and Windows Media Player Media Sharing; lets me stream all of my music, vids, photos to the ps3 now; works pretty good.  however you can only stream a limited but popular formats like mp3, wmv, jpg, etc).  head over here for the full press release from sony.

    nice job sony! this summer may end up being a good sony summer afterall. :P

    the upscaling on my hackers dvd looked pretty good, figure w/that much cell power you should be able upscale better than most standalone dvd upscaling players.  prob will check out god of war tomorrow sometime and see how that upscaling looks.

    aiy, peace.

    Tuesday, May 22, 2007

    apple's iphone.. will it be worth the money? (opinion)

    are you going to go and snatch up Apple's iPhone once its released this summer?  as a phone geek, i am losing interest as each day goes by.  yes, Apple's UI will be very easy to use and very clean looking.  yes, its nice having the iPod features and the touchscreen/gestures.  yes, it will probably be a very stable OS/phone and has a nice amount of onboard memory.  it will prob be the best if not one of the best music/video phones in 07; however i still love my walkman phones though. 

    however, these good points don't do it for me and here's why:

    Saturday, May 19, 2007

    consipiracy theories and the likes

    well, i admit it.  as a kid and young adult, i was totally into the whole 'conspiracy theory' stuff.  that 'big brother' was covering up the facts and controlling the flow of media/news. 

    Friday, May 11, 2007

    firefox, wordpress blogs, and youtube problems w/embedded videos...

    i would consider myself still to be a rather newer user of wordpress for my blogging. i previously had used blogger for all of my blogging needs. however, i hate how wordpress handles youtube's embedding code.

    for example, this is the code that : <object width="425" height="350"><param name="movie" value=""></param><param name="wmode" value="transparent"></param><embed src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" wmode="transparent" width="425" height="350"></embed></object>

    normally, if i want to embed a youtube video into one of my wordpress posts, i will go to the HTML tab in my post and then paste the above code in.  however, i noticed that after i did this and then viewed the published posts in firefox; the formatting of anything after the embedded video would get really 'funky'.   the problem does not happen when i view the posts in Internet Explorer 7.0 (ironically eh?).   i also noticed that if i embed video in a post via the HTML tab in the wordpress Editor and have the Ad-Block extension enabled it will add the "block this ad" to the photos/images or video.  this only seemed to happen if i saved the post and then went back to edit it.

    what i have done to avoid the formatting weirdness w/embedded videos from youtube is to just remove the <object .... code lines, so from the above code i would only put in this to embed the video into one of my blog posts:

    <embed src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" wmode="transparent" width="425" height="350"></embed>

    once i did this, the posts formatting seemed to be fixed for me and my posts.  almost seems like the <object> and <param> are the problems.
    hopefully that helps other wp users w/these problems. :)

    Thursday, May 10, 2007

    ps3 random notes, hdmi and optical digital sound at the same time?

    well, i admit it.. my ps3 at times sees more loving from my than my wii.. but that really depends on if i have pals over (wii) or am going solo mode (ps3).. however, today i realized something i hadn't up until now. my ps3 is hooked up via hdmi to my tv (no other audio except hdmi), audio is then connected to my sony receiver via digital optical and my ps3 is setup to output via digital optical (dts,dolby,pcm).

    however, yesterday i was watching the news in the morning via my tv's tuner and had the tv's speakers on and up. after flipping through the news, i flipped on my ps3 to get some downloads setup for while i was at work. and then voila! my tv's sound seemed to magically work even though i have the audio setting to digital optical. put on some music, plays fine and same w/videos.

    can some verify this has this always been true or added in the latest firmware?? nonetheless, i'm happy! hdmi and digital optical output = :)

    well, i gave in and decided to get MKII for the PS3 and just tonight, calling all cars since.. well.. there hasn't been crap released on the PS3 in some time... man, both my wii and ps3 are lacking games still.. only good thing is that this fall looks very good!

    Thursday, May 03, 2007

    the power of the masses, go digg!

    well, yesterday we witnessed a pretty significant event on the web. we saw a site/company bow down to their users ( and in turn disregarded the advice of their attorneys. we also finally saw the power that we users hold and the beauty of the web and inability to censor it.

    for those uniformed, here is a quick recap of what happened. received several cease and desist letters from the movie industry to take down any user submitted content relating to the HD DVD crack thats floating around on the web. initially, Digg wanted to avoid any possible legal issues or take down of their site by removing the content ( ) but after receiving tons of emails, posts, they decided that they would listen to their users and leave the content up.

    Surfers/Users then started their backlash towards the industry by posting the now infamous HDDVD key in any way possible. some create some very witty photos w/the key, while others flooded message boards and post comments w/the code. Initially Blogspot and Wordpress tried to remove any posts/blogs that contained the code; i'm not sure if they are still doing this or not (guess we'll see!)

    Sunday, April 29, 2007

    creative notions; wallpapers and my pals modded wii

    this weekend i decided to go back and visit the parents out on the farm. had a great peaceful and unplugged weekend. unplugged meaning no internet, cellphone, or text messaging (still had my tablet pc and all but no web, hehe). i feel so lucky to be able to go back to my parent's farm to relax and unwind. its such a stark contrast to my usual daily techno life in minneapolis, mn.

    (however sega never seemed to deliver after the ole genesis... just a poster i still have hanging in my old bedroom at my parents house.. hehe)

    Saturday, April 21, 2007

    my 'now-gen' gaming thoughts on the ps3, wii

    well, i'm a PS3wii guy. i got my Wii on launch (i laugh at all who assumed they could get one whenever they wanted after launch.. haha!). i got my PS3 about less than a month ago. after playing both and using them to their abilities:

    Wii: browsing web, mii exchanging, adding friends, adding music/photos/video to sd cards, gaming, virtual console purchases, etc

    PS3: installed yellowdog linux, added music/video/photos, web browsing, PSN setup, adding friends, gaming, blu-ray, remote play w/my psp, etc

    i've decided i' give my thoughts on what i liked, hated, and want from the now-gen consoles. so here we go (remember, as much as it may sound like i'm dogging the ps3 and wii, i'm not. just some constructive criticism, hehe. x360 lovers are lucky i don't have one or else their machine may be the next victim!)

    Wednesday, April 18, 2007

    PS3 firmware update v1.70 available now!

    well, was just messing around on the PS3 tonight and noticed when i got done watching A Scanner Darkly, that i was not logged into the PSN.  

    after trying to connect i received a message saying that a system update was available, went to the update section and noticed that v1.70 firmware being out!

    hmm. this one sure sneaked in under the radar, no sites i could see knew or saw this update. i wonder if this update will resolve the problems that some were having after updating to v1.60 and system freezing problems (ie my own).

    a quick jump over to the site but i see no mention of what changes are in v1.70 or any hints that it is even out. hmm.. (

    i'll post some vids and comments on what i see.  maybe we'll get our XMB wishes!! (  :P

    links/embedded video after my update completes and youtube uploads are finished!

    update: headed over to and found out the updates.

    i guess the update allows PS3 owners to play the games on their PS3 they download (ie PSone games) , saved data will be transfered to PSP from PS3, and vibration features added for PS and PS2 connected accessories (ie dual shock controller via usb, etc).  now i wonder if my own homebrewed PSone games will work. i'll let ya know after the update.

    Tuesday, April 17, 2007

    HP TC1100, Vista, and Bluetooth problems and fix!

    well, i've been running vista for a while now w/my TC1100.  up till now i've been using the bluetooth to mainly tether my work phone to my tc1100 for good ole evdo browsing on the train/commute.  however, i just recently purchased a Plantronics 510 Voyager BT Headset and thought i'd pair it w/my tc1100 and try using it for voice commands (built into vista).

    Thursday, April 12, 2007

    Playstation Store Updates! Spiderman3 trailer, littlebigplanet!

    well, it seems that the PS store has updated content and included content such as:

    trailers for: LittleBigPlanet, Spiderman3

    downloable classic Mortal Kombat 2 (with blood, fatalities, babalities, etc)

    and a "Coming Soon" link that brings you to vids of future PS3 games.

    enjoy my fellow PS3 owners!

     updated:  btw, for you wii owners, the Wii/Opera final version is out.  it requires a system update and then going to the Wii Store and updating the Opera Browser in the Wii Ware section.  the added/finishing touches on the browser still make it the best console browsing experience of the big 3, well atleast in my opinion.. :P

    Blu-Ray/HD DVD Movies = not always fullscreen (argh letterboxing!!)

    i admit it. i still consider myself to be a newb in regards to HD and the nextgen movie formats (bluray, hd dvd).  however, as a newb to the HD realm, i always thought that w/the nextgen movie formats that letterboxing would be a thing of the past. 

    Boy was i wrong!  after getting a few blu-ray movies via netflix and borrowing a few from my pal; i noticed the infamous black bars above and below the movie.  it seems there are three main aspect ratios used in blu-ray and hd dvd movies.  (info gathered from: )

    1) Academy (1.37 wide)
    2) Flat Widescreen (1.66-1.85 wide)
    3) Anamorphic "Scope"/70mm Widescreen (2.00-2.75 wide)

    if a movie has the #2 aspect ratio, it will be fullscreen.  if its #1 or #3, you will see the blackbars.  so hopefully that will help others out that are perplexed by this.  those guys over at sure do know their blu-ray! head over there and check out their forums, some pretty tech savy av guys i'd say!

    thats about all for now.

    Monday, April 09, 2007

    my PS3 videos (visual player, remote play, thumbnails)

    here's a quick wrapup of my PS3 vids over at 

    including the nasty freezing/lockup probs i was having.

    PS3 back up and going again! for now...

    well, after talking w/a sony rep on my problems, she had me do a full hard reset on my PS3 and then a Full Format. So far that has solved/fixed my freezing problems and i'm now able to watch movies and play games again! joy!

    a quickie guide on doing a hard reset will be posted up at later today and should be live in a few days, i'll post a link to it once its up.
    (link here! )
    i guess i'll see if my problems come back or if my ps3 was overheating. this upcoming weekend will be a true test since i plan to do some major gaming on NBA2K7 and FFXII. :)

    btw, here is what my PS3 freezing/problems looked like:

    Friday, April 06, 2007

    me and my ps3 woes.. :(

    well.... i've had my PS3 for about a week now and have some definite feedback about my PS3 experience thus far (some goods, a few bads, and more annoyings)

    Goods:  Amazing graphics, beautiful Blu-Ray movies, great sound.  Linux can be installed, not a bad sized HDD.

    Bads:  Games? hello, when are they coming out?? Price (even though i scored mine for $500).  Power consumption.  FREEZING UP OF THE PS3!!!

    Annoyings: FREEZING/Locking up of my PS3 randomly.  Not able to save NDFS:Carbon gamesaves to a SD card.  Background Downloading isn't really background downloading (does not download when watching a movie, playing game offline, etc).  Searching for music is impossible.

    So.... here's my PS3 story so far...

    as most know, i got my Wii on launch and really had no interest in the PS3 due to its super high price and lack of innovation (besides awesome graphics, nothing really that new).  however after finding a great deal and my pal urging me to get one and seeing the upcoming game lineups for 2007, i decided it was time to get me one.

    i got the 60GB version, an extra controller, the blu-ray remote, and 3 games.  i hooked it up to my HDTV via HDMI (max output of 1080i on my Olevia) and have sound going to my receiver via Optical Digital (instead of HDMI audio). 

    the first thing i did was updated the firmware to v1.60 (since it enables background downloading and adds more video formats).  i then went ahead and installed Yellowdog Linux and shortly after removed linux (yea, its cool to say you have linux on your PS3 but really what am i going to use it for? plus, i'd rather have the extra 10gb of storage for trailers, demos, etc).

    however, most recenly i've noticed a few disturbing trends w/my PS3. the most annoying/discouraging being that my PS3 has started freezing up almost on a daily basis.  the lockups will occur randomly; sometimes when on the XMB, while exiting a blu-ray movie, or while loading a game.  last night, i decided to go and get 3 demos (GT, Armored Core, and MLB) and downloaded them overnight.  however this morning after downloading the demos and 2 trailers, my PS3 locked up 4 times in a row.  the first time it locked up when i tried to play the movie trailer for Stardust, it started the video but then went to a blank screen and i was unable to get to any menus or even exit the video. ok, no biggie, maybe a corrupted video.    after warm rebooting the PS3, i browsed to my Games on the XMB and when i paused on my Blast Factor demo, my PS3 locked up again.  This time though i had to do a full cold reboot (turn off power switch, unplug from AC).

    at this point, i started to get very worried and annoyed.  when you pay over $500 for a gaming system, you do not expect it to lock up.  especially considering that my Wii has only locked up twice and that was after playing it for over 10 hours straight.

    so after getting a bit freaked out, i decided that maybe my probs will be resolved by doing a complete full format of the hdd.  before doing the format, i deleted all of my music, pictures, movies, and game demos.  i then did a backup of my game saves and proceeded to do a full HD format (allocating all space to the PS3, no linux partiton for me since again its pointless imo).  tonight i'll check to see if this has helped or not. 

    if my lockups continue, lets just say that you don't want to work for Sony's Tech/Customer support because i will have an earful for them.  maybe i'll record the call and post it up.

    btw, my PS3 is NOT OVERHEATING, i've checked the heat and also have it in a nicely ventilated area. however  i have heard of other users w/similar lockups that only started happening after the v1.60 update (yet my pal's PS3 has not locked up on him ever).

    updates will be added...

    Friday, March 30, 2007

    my PS3 and gamerid..

     well, after compusa finally added a 15% off to its PS3 it had (store was closing) i broke down and got me one. hell, almost $100 off a new retail PS3, who can really say no? 


    so, i got home from work last night and setup the PS3.  setup w/cables was a cinch since i used HDMI from the PS3 to my TV and just had to hook up the power.  setting up the online seemed to take forever since there is like 20 some steps to go through, but nonetheless i was able to finish and secure my classic gamerid:  seamonkey420, feel free to add me as a friend! 

    i also updated to firmware v1.6 since the PS3 i got must have been one they had since launch.  the update did seem to take a while to download. 

    graphically, wow! motostorm looks great but sadly the game itself is pretty disappointing.  i plan to trade it in today for Need for Speed (my pal has that, figure atleast then i can race him online).   also popped in a blu-ray movie, Behind Enemy Lines, and it looked very nice.  it may be hard to go back to DVDs but i have to do more comparisons today.  sound did not play back in full dolby but that was fixed by me hooking up my receiver using an optical digital cable and changing a few settings on the PS3 to output DTS and Dolby Digital.

    so yes, the PS3 is a powerhouse and graphics are excellent.  the games on so-so but that is to be expected of a launch system.  i'll post more info/tips/tricks later tonight.  oh yea, i'm a true SonyNintendo boy now too! :)

    Thursday, March 29, 2007

    its official, i'm a PS3wii guy.. my Playstation 3...

    well, after coming across a heck of a deal on a PS3 over at compusa (closing store, got a nice %15 off on a brand new ps3 60gb!!), i took the plunge and picked one up.

    i had to rearrange my whole enterntainment center (not very big, might need a bigger one soon) to fit in the PS3 and also put my dvd player in my room and will use the PS3 for dvd/blu-ray or my PC (need more memory and a vid card for it, ebay should have what i need).   i also had to redo my setup/connections to my hd tv too since i wanted the PS3 to be connected via HDMI and moving my cable hd dvr box over to component.  i did notice a difference in picture quality when using component vs hdmi; hdmi seemed much crisper and defined while component seems to have a softer look.

    tonight i hope to get all of my music moved over to the PS3 (have them on a usb hd already).  hopefully my album art is embedded into the songs (which i believe they are now w/media player 10 and up) but we'll see.

    thinking of doing the linux install on the PS3 just so i can say i did it; but then again i do have my htpc still in the living room and thus have no real need for a linux box.  we'll see on that. 

    now the hard part.. waiting for training to get done and me to get home and get the PS3 up and going..

    so yes, i'm now that PS3wii guy.. PS3 screenshots to come!


    Thursday, March 22, 2007

    my 06 honda civic si and notchy shifting; fixed ...maybe...

    well, i've had my civic si since last april and since having her (got her w/4 miles..)  have noticed a slight notchy feel when shifting 1st to 2nd, and 2nd to 3rd.  also noticed downshifting from 4th to 3rd and 3rd to 4th a similar prob.  well, i headed over to good ole temple of vtec ( and the forum boards for the civic and found that others w/the 06 si had similar probs.

    one user decided that he'd try to change his mtf using a synthetic Amsoil Synthetic Transaxle Fluid.  he found that his tranny was actually over filled and by replacing the mtf the notchiness was almost gone. 

    so today i went to my dealership (luther hopkins honda, ) and had them do the change.  at first they were worried it may violate my warranty terms by using a non-Honda mtf, however after realizing i had an si w/the 6speed he apologized and got er done.  btw, i give props to my dealership for the easy buy, great service (have a very nice lounge area w/free wifi, tvs, couches and are open till 1am m-th).

    i instantly noticed a difference.  my car seemed to run much smoother and w/more power.  the notchiness appears to be gone from 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 3rd.  downshifting does not seem like its a chore, nice and smooth.  i almost wonder if my tranny was overfilled too.. nonetheless things seem to be much better.  i'll post an update after this weekend (gonna be 60s and sunny, gotta cruise around!).

    previously, i had the rev hang problem  but was lucky enough that my car's vin was included in the ECU update, that problem nearly non-existent for me now.  so it seems my si may now be running at 100%.  the SRI sounds sweeter and sweeter each 100 miles i put on, i've been tempted to perhaps to a header change or exhaust but we'll see how hard it is to do.  i figure after i pay vicki off, i'll think about doing turbo but till then, no turbo.

    btw my baby, vicki;

    check out my si videos over at youtube including my civic si navi startup screen hack guide (based on guicide/bysin hack, my guide):

    rant: tmobile's lack of decent data networks, txt messaging fee increase

    well.. i'm a phone geek or was a phone geek.  i've had a MDA, K800i, Z710, K750i, and play with Treo's/BBs/Qs at work.  however, my obsession for phones has faded dramatically. mainly due to the fact that the newer cool, european phones will not work w/Tmobiles upcoming UMTS/3G data networks (if they ever get rolled out) or they are only triband (900mhz not the 850mhz band we use here in the USA).

    so after getting a bit disgusted w/Tmobile's lack of a vision or timeframe for upgrading to 3G networks, i decided to see when my contract would expire.  it seems i'm locked in till next Feb 2008 but really want to get to a month-to-month contract and have emailed their CS about this and of course have not been able to.

    however, recently Tmobile is increasing the cost for txt messaging and also decreasing the cost of mms messages.  what does this mean? in actuality it means that you may be able to get out of your contract early since Tmobile in turn really has violated their Terms and Conditions of service. If you go to tmobile's website and to the "Terms and Conditions" section, under item #3, this rate increase does indeed constitute as a material change to the terms and thus allows a user (if they make a request within 14 days) to cancel their service w/o any ETF (early termination fees).

    so i called tmobile's customer service, 4 times now.  each time i received a different reason on why I CANNOT do this.  one rep stated that i would have to wait till i received the changes to my service/terms and then call to cancel/change my contract to a month-to-month; however i emailed their customer support also and they said that i missed my opportunity back in Jan when they sent out the terms/change.  however, i did not receive this document and also this change does not take effect until June of this year and the actual paperwork will be sent to users this month (found on a website the actual message).  i resent an email to them to see what may happen. 

    nonetheless this leads me to a very obvious rant; why the hell does the USA have two non-compatible cellular network types?? why can't we have GSM and that only??    i understand that competition for the most part is good for the consumer, but at times it really isn't.  if we had a single network type, all handhelds we buy in the USA would work with any carrier (yes, the carriers may lose money and prob the reason why there are two types  and w/CDMA you can't just popout your SIM card and use a second phone).

    ok.. i'll step down now.. i'll post an update on what happens; i wonder if they knew that i worked for a law firm if that may help at all? hehe..


    Wednesday, March 21, 2007

    PSP Lovin: getting my PlaystationOne games on my psp and PS3 thoughts

    well, as many or most that read my blogs may notice is that well, i've swayed to the nintendo-side these days. my sleek black ds lite had replaced the psp on my morning commutes since its battery life is superior to the psp and the wii purchased on launch day.

    however my ds lite has been sitting on my desk while my PSP steals the glory/spotlight again due to me updating the firmware w/Dark_AleX's 3.10 OE firmware and getting my old PSone games on it!!

    recently, Sony has decided to dust off its PlaystationOne games library and in turn is releasing PSone games to play on the PSP (downloaded from your PS3). the funny thing is that a homebrew PSone emulator was released about two weeks prior to Sony's official emulator. like nintendo's virtual console, game selection is a bit small and limited. however, what if your like me and actually still have your PSone game discs; can i convert these games over?

    the answer is YES! however it will require a few steps to do and also a custom firmware (Dark Alexa 3.10 OE-A' firmware). here's a VERY quick run-through on how to do this:

    here's what applications/utilities you will need:

    Saturday, March 17, 2007

    upgrading the htpc to vista, running origami pack on it...

    well, i finally broke down and decided to upgrade my htpc in the living room to vista.  wasn't so sure on how it would go since my specs on my htpc are pretty sad (athlon 64 2.0ghz, 512mb ram (128mb used for onboard video), 100gb hd, no cd/dvd drive), but vista installed in under an hour and seems to run much better than xp did on my crappy little box.

    after editing the origami pack last night so i could use it on my HP TC1100, decided i'd try it out on my htpc's vista since the interface seems to be a great fit for what i want to use my htpc for. i changed my resolution in vista to 800x600 so that the origami experience would be full screen, i noticed that when i switch my Olevia 237V Aspect to Full screen, text in vista looks wider due to the stretch (expected), however Origami's aspect ratio appears and looks normal, bonus!. 

    i really don't know why MS didn't include the Origami experience interface into all Vistas since its a nice UI for HTPC setups or even car setups (given you got a touch screen).  who knows, maybe they will release an add-on for all Vistas to add keyboard navigation support within it (you need to use a mouse input to select menus, up/down/arrows won't do a thing which is a shame since i wanted to get down to being able to use just my remote w/o the keyboard).

    here's a link to my youtube of origami and vista on my olevia 237v and vista htpc:

    Friday, March 16, 2007

    my HP TC1100, Vista and Origami experience pack

    well, as w/the other cult believers in the HP TC1x00 tablet; i upgraded my OS to Vista for almost a month now and finally have gotten my performance/stability issues all worked out!  i decided to redo my setup (only the 6th os setup i've done on my baby.. hehe) and soley run Vista since i prefer its tablet features over XP.  so here's two more tips i've found and tried for my TC1100.

    one thing i've always wanted to get working or try to get working was Microsoft's Origami experience pack for Vista.  This addon to Vista is mainly aimed at UMPC machines and in turn if you attempt to install it on a non-UMPC device w/Vista it will of course give us errors. 


    After some digging, i ran across a nice article over at  on how to get it to work on a non-UMPC, so lets see if we can get it to work on our TC1100/TC1x00.

    --Getting Origami Experience Pack to work on your TC1100/1000 (notes from and and of course my own experience).

    First things first, you will need to download the Vista Origami Experience pack from microsoft.  Get it here:

    you will need to download it from a PC running a genuine copy of windows.

    Next, you will need to get the SDK Installer (we will need to use ORCA to customize the MSI installer file so that it does not check for the screen resolution; the main problem/reason why the Origami pack does not install on non UMPCs is because the installer checks the devices screen size and if it sees anything over 7" it assumes the device is NOT a UMPC).  that can be found over here:

    This download is for the windows sdk for vista, again you will need to download from a genuine windows pc . run the setup.exe file you downloaded


    when you get to the Installation Options, just uncheck everything except the Win32 Development Tools.


    It will just download the setup files to this location: 

    C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v6.0\Bin

    browse to here and run the file called orca.exe, this installs our good ole MSI Editor that we will use to hack the origami msi to bypass the screen check! :)


    after you install ORCA, open it up from your start menu.  Once you do, then click on File > Open.

    Find the OrigamiExperiencePack.msi file we downloaded.

    on the left side, scroll down and click on InstallExecuteSequence and then on the right side click on the LaunchConditions item and then hit the delete button and choose yes to the warning.


    Next, we will want to click on the InstallUISequence option on the left and again click on the LaunchConditions option on the right  and hit the delete button and choose yes to the warning.


    now just go to File > Save or click the save icon. 

    Finally, run the origami msi file we just updated and choose your installation!


    After it finishes you should now have some origami options in the start menu.


    here are some screenshots of it on my tc1100.  


    a note; the origami experience does not fill the full desktop if you run any resolution higher than 800x600; just drop down your rez to 800x600 to get the full effect. :)


    --Divx playback in Media Player

    this is a super easy one, just go and download the latest Divx build over at , when you go to install just install the Divx Decoder/Codec and you should be able to playback your divx files in Media Player.

     hopefully those tips will help out you other TC1100 lovers that want the origami experience. peace