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126  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Best note-taking setup with tablet and keyboard? on: January 08, 2014, 09:58:41 PM
Although I set out looking for a tablet + keyboard + app combination, I'm starting to lean towards the Chromebook idea. The new HP Chromebook 14 seems interesting. Bigger screen, bigger keyboard, more memory, faster processor (than the Samsung 303), and people are reporting 9+ hr battery life. There is a fan to cool the processor, but supposedly it's not too loud. Plus there is 2 yrs free (though limited) mobile internet access with one of the models.

The key benefits are the speed, half the price of the iPad Air + ZAGGKeys keyboard combo, instant on from sleep, battery life, integrated keyboard, not as heavy as a netbook/laptop.
Check the specs: The HP Chromebook 14 weighs over 4 lbs, nearly twice the weight of the Asus T100, which is a full Windows 8.1 device and includes a full version of MS Office 2013 in the $349 price of the 32GB version.  The HP has a bigger screen, but the same measly 1366x768 resolution, meaning that it is considerably less sharp visually. By comparison, the Nexus 7 has 1980x1200, the Nexus 10 has 2560x1600 resolution. The T100 also has better battery life (over 11 hours, supposedly).


127  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Too many programs in my start menu! on: January 04, 2014, 07:39:08 AM
Organize your Start Menu into folders.
128  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Best note-taking setup with tablet and keyboard? on: January 04, 2014, 07:22:05 AM
Please note that I'm not just looking for a writing machine in general. For that there is my P (where I also use WriteMonkey, Outline 4D, Gingko app, Scrivener or Dragon NS for various writing tasks).

I want a portable and cordless note-taking/writing solution that I can use when I expressly do not want to turn on my PC or my netbook. It might be the weekend when I don't want to turn on my work machine, or the middle of the night, when I just had an idea before falling asleep, or sitting on the couch, or being out and about, or at a business meeting.

Originally I bought my Asus eee PC exactly for this reason. However, eventually the ever-increasing booting or waking-up time with Win machines just put me off from using them. The competition to what I am looking for is pen and paper, which are instantly on.

Professional photographers will tell you that the best camera is the one you have with you.

You seem to have plenty of devices that you can use in the comfort of your home, so I would suggest looking for something that will always be on you and you can use anywhere.  Unless you wear Harpo Marx's topcoat, to me, that means the smallest form factor device you can live with.

I use both  a Nexus 10 and a Nexus 7 (2013), and while the 10 is unbeatable for reading large format documents, the 7 is what I use most of the time, because its portability means that I almost always have it at hand. The 7 is also faster and more responsive than the 10. even though it is, in theory, less powerful.

A keyboard is nice, but removes the "always with you" factor. Logitech makes a backlit Android keyboard that you can keep nearby to use with the tablet when convenient (e.g., at your bedside), but for quick and ever-present access, I'd suggest learning to work effectively with the tablet alone so that you can do so when you need to.

Finally, while I don't use an Android editor with your requirements, and so can't give you any recommendations, here is a place to start looking.

129  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Code Sector software 50% off through January 7, 2014 on: January 02, 2014, 09:59:56 AM
Code Sector has some really great software, but is somewhat inconsistent in terms of support and development.

They also make a superb GPS app for Android called Maverick, which I could never use because of a flickering display problem on many devices (including mine).  They seem to have fixed it finally, so I purchased the Pro version, which is listed on the site 50% off page for $4.95, but is available on the Play Store for 50% off at $3.45.  As I said, inconsistent.
130  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: text file editor personalyzable on: January 01, 2014, 07:07:39 PM
I would like to find a text editor where I can personalyze the background colour of the lines.

By example each four lines change the colour.

You can do that in Kedit if you are sufficiently proficient in REXX (which I am not). 

I knew someone many years ago who did just that to make printouts look like they came off a mainframe on old-fashioned green bar computer paper.
131  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Code Sector software 50% off through January 7, 2014 on: January 01, 2014, 06:52:44 PM
Code Sector has a 50% discount on all  of their Windows software (TeraCopy, Direct Folders, etc.) through January 7, 2014.
132  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Jazz Recommendation Thread on: December 17, 2013, 10:22:44 AM
[Lee] Morgan is not an extreme example: he was tragically killed at a young age, whereas artists like Coltrane, Hancock and Davis have been evolving throughout each decade.

Huh? Morgan was 33 when he died in 1972, Coltrane was only 40 when he died in 1967. 
133  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Mid-range DSLR Camera Recommendations on: December 17, 2013, 10:07:55 AM
If you decide that a DSLR is really where you want to go, let me suggest a dark horse candidate: the Pentax K-30.

+1 to everything in CWuesterfeld's post, but the K-30 has been superseded by the K-50, which is the same camera with slightly different styling (Pentax took some flack for the K-30's "aggressive"appearance) and updated electronics. Same great value though.

134  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: free web storage service that offers the biggest amount of data? on: December 12, 2013, 08:30:21 AM
www.surdoc.com 100GB free

This is not quite what that sounds like. 

You get free storage of 100GB of document files, but only 5GB of everything else, and non-document files are limited to 10MB size.  You can also access only 30 documents a month for free. It costs $2.50/month to access up to 300 documents a month and $8.33/month for 100GB of storage with no restrictions on access or file types.  That's $100/year for $100GB of storage - hardly a good deal!

And while we're at it, be warned that SugarSync will become a paid only service on February 8, 2014.  If you have been using their free service, you have until then to move your data elsewhere or either pay for it or lose it.   Ransomware?
135  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Heeee's Baaaaack!!! Stephen Wolfram is going to revolutionize everything again. on: November 15, 2013, 06:11:47 PM
...well it will be INTERESTING, that's for sure.  but if it's a new language in the same way that his book was a new kind of science, it basically means we are going to get a reinvention of Perl with new terms for everything.

... just wait for the price tag.
136  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: software to edit pdfs on: November 15, 2013, 06:07:32 PM
Tracker Software has just released version 3 of their PDF-XChange Viewer Pro software and changed the name to PDF-XChange Editor because it supposedly now allows in-place editing of PDF files.
137  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: YouTube finally forces creation of google+ A/C to comment on: November 15, 2013, 05:56:51 PM
Google also now requires users to sign in with a Google+ account to rate Android apps in the Play Store.

I find that a lot more disturbing than requiring it for YouTube, because I really don't care what anyone says about a video, but I do care about who gets to rate apps I might be considering.
138  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: How long do hard drives actually live for? on: November 14, 2013, 09:07:35 PM
If a drive is 5-6 years old, it is a couple of HD generations old, which means it can be replaced by a drive that uses less power, runs cooler and has higher data transfer rates, to say nothing of costing much less for the same or greater capacity.

I've never replaced a drive preemptively because I was worried about it failing, but I do upgrade drives from time to time. The older drives are then used for off line (e.g., backup) storage.
139  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: How long do hard drives actually live for? on: November 13, 2013, 10:21:00 PM
Intel has published a good paper on the differences between enterprise and desktop disk drives. 10-pages of good reading for any who might be interested. (Copy attached. It's small.)
 (see attachment in previous post)
This paper is some 5 years old, which is an eon or two in high tech.  If your focus is on performance, you are more likely to be using SSDs than HDDs today.

If the main thing you care about is reliability, there really is little difference, which is why most of the big cloud companies don't bother with enterprise drives any more.  Google led the way after noting that failure rates were pretty much the same for both types.  Let's just say they had a VERY large sample to test and compare.

Hard drive failure rates are reported as predicted statistical distributions - MTBF or AFR - look those up if you are having trouble sleeping at night and counting sheep isn't working - which means that you only have a projected probability of a drive failing at any time.  That probability goes up as the drive ages, but it remains just a probability.  

Your 4 year-old drive will have a much higher probability of failure during the next year than a 1 year-old drive, but either of them could fail tomorrow, which means that you should be just as well prepared for failure in a brand new drive than in an older one.
140  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Android upgrade ... help ... lost internet page shortcuts on: November 02, 2013, 08:19:55 PM
I have a simpler solution - if I want a link on the home page I add it to a bookmarks folder too!

Old IT saying: if data isn't stored in at least three different locations, it doesn't really exist.

Translation to your situation: keep a copy off your device somewhere as well, or you may find yourself in the same situation again.
141  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Firefox Extensions: Your favorite or most useful on: October 27, 2013, 09:44:18 AM
One for those that dislike cookies: Self-Destructing Cookies

Quote
Cookies when you need them, not when others need them to track you - gets rid of a site's cookies and LocalStorage as soon as you close its tabs. Protects against trackers and zombie-cookies. Trustworthy services can be whitelisted.
(see attachment in previous post)  (see attachment in previous post)

I use this on Android, and it seems to work, but on Firefox for Windows, I prefer CookieCuller which is very simple but gives me much better manual control over which cookies I want to allow and for how long I want to keep them.
142  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: October 22, 2013, 12:58:27 PM
Peer Review has a very specific meaning in academia.

Academic journals use panels of reviewers with experience in the fields they cover to screen manuscripts submitted to them and determine whether they are worthy of being published by the journal.  These reviewers are the "peers" of the authors and papers they accept for publication are said to have been "peer reviewed."

Note that acceptance for publication does not necessarily mean that the reviewers agree with a paper, just that they find it to be good enough to be published in that journal. Thus "peer review' is (or at least should be - there are many abuses in practice) more of a triage process than an endorsement. The main purpose is to weed out the cranks and charlatans who would otherwise flood the journal just as they do the comments sections of many blogs.
143  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: 010 Editor 25% off through September 2013 on: October 05, 2013, 07:34:39 AM
010 Editor is on BitsDuJour today  (Oct. 3, 2013) at $19.95 for a home/academic license and $49.95 for a commercial license.
144  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: October 04, 2013, 05:13:57 PM
I then just now finally got around to watching the vidcast of Prof./PhD Don Easterbrook testifying before a hearing for a senate commission in Washington on 2013-03-26. He is a geologist. Start watching at 10 minutes and 30 seconds. Basically, using just raw, unadulterated data, Easterbrook explains to the senators all about "climate change" and why the theories, models and manipulated data (GISS, NASA, CRU) used by IPCC/CAGW alarmists are bunk. It's like watching a curious and highly rational child knock down a row of standing dominoes, each one onto the next.
Scam exposed. Time spent: approx. 1:20hrs, including Q&A.

Towards the end of it, even though he has kept mentioning that this or that point has been substantiated/verified by other scientists with whom he works, Easterbrook is asked if his work has been peer reviewed, and he says "Everything I have spoken about today, all this work, has been peer reviewed by other scientists, astronomers, physicists" (OWTTE).
He is also asked if he can explain how the IPCC with its peer-reviewed material can come to such different conclusions, and he politely says he can't explain it.
I'm not a geologist or a climatologist, so I won't address specifics, but watching the Easterbrook testimony reminded me of many people I have come across who have built what they believe to be an irrefutable case for some crackpot theory or another.  Unless you have a really deep understanding of the issues involved, it can be hard to challenge them because they know enough to sound as if they really do know what they are talking about.

As it happens, the geology department of Western Washington University, from which Dr. Easterbrook retired some time ago, issued a statement dissociating themselves from his testimony, which they describe as "filled with misrepresentations, misuse of data and repeated mixing of local vs. global records."  I'd suggest reading that before accepting his ideas as valid.
145  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Which MP3 tagger do you use? on: September 29, 2013, 02:05:49 PM
I only know i was able to use it to do all kinds of things like parsing tags from the filename in different ways, sorting and filtering, and cleaning up tags using regular expressions, etc.  It had a way to do everything i wanted to do.
Perhaps the most awesome ability is that tags selected by a user defined template can be exported to a text file which can be manipulated any way you want, then imported using the same or a different template into the same, or different music.

Without MP3Tag. life would be too short to even think about providing consistent labeling across multiple versions of Bach's Well Tempered Clavier, which consists of either 48 or 96 files, depending on whether the preludes and fugues are combined or separate.

146  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Jazz Recommendation Thread on: September 26, 2013, 08:25:26 PM
As far as mainstream jazzers go, I'd strongly recommend listening to just about anything by Thelonious Monk. Brilliant improvisational madness.
Monk was one of the early practitioners of a style that eventually evolved into a style generally known as: Bebop. Other notables in the bebop style were Dizzy Gillespie Kiss and Charlie Parker Kiss, both of whom are well worth listening to.

Strongly agree!

I recorded a lot of live Jazz in the 1960's (including some at the Village Vanguard) and although I haven't done sound recording work since then, am still a big Jazz fan.  I probably have about a thousand Jazz CDs, including about 40 Mosaic sets.

Given the kind of albums mentioned, here are 10 of the greatest (IMHO) Jazz albums that might appeal.

Miles Davis – Kind of Blue
Cannonball Adderley – Somethin’ Else
Jim Hall – Concierto
Thelonious Monk Quartet – Monk’s Dream
Modern Jazz Quartet – The Complete Last Concert
Gil Evans Orchestra – Out of the Cool
Shelly Manne and his Men – At the Blackhawk, Vol. 1
Lee Morgan – The Sidewinder
Oliver Nelson – The Blues and the Abstract Truth
Duke Ellington – Money Jungle

For a taste of the excitement that the Bebop movement brought to Jazz, listen to "Jazz at Massey Hall - The Quintet," a bootleg recording (by Mingus) of a live concert in Toronto featuring Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, Bud Powell, Max Roach and Charles Mingus, that many call the greatest Jazz concert ever.

Be warned that Jazz is addictive! If you like these, you won't be able to stop there.
147  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: National debt/defecit: what does it REALLY mean?? on: September 20, 2013, 01:02:00 PM
These are my personal views, though some like Paul Krugman would concur with most of them.

Actually, anyone who understands anything about economics would concur with most of them.

Unfortunately, not many people know much about economics, and thus are easy prey for hucksters who peddle political dogma as alternative economic theory. 
148  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Alternative to Linkman on: September 19, 2013, 09:19:04 PM
LinkCollector would probably fit the bill.

I have a license, but haven't used it in quite a while, for no particular reason other than I found Linkman to do everything I wanted, and I haven't really needed the portability of LinkCollector.
149  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors on: September 18, 2013, 09:13:14 PM
I can recommend Paint.NET

 I also used Paint Shop Pro for many years but gave up on it after Corel bought it and made a DRM nightmare out of it.   I don't do much photo editing, but I do need to do some basic things every so often.  Paint.NET had the right mix of serious capabilities and ease of use for my purposes, and it is free.
150  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Did Microsoft put a mole in Nokia? on: September 15, 2013, 12:41:31 PM
Microsoft didn't place Elop at Nokia.

Nokia's management hired Elop from Microsoft because they knew that they needed to replace Symbian with something that might be around next year, and they were afraid that if they went with Android, they'd be crushed by the competition, namely Samsung, HTC and all the cheap Chinese phone makers.   So they grabbed whoever was available at Microsoft with the idea that maybe Windows Phone could actually compete against Android and iOS in the marketplace.  Elop was probably the best they could come away with, because Microsoft didn't care enough to try and keep him.

It was a bad bet for Nokia, and they paid the price.

According to this NY Times article, Nokia had been experimenting with Android and had it up and running on Lumia handsets.  This while Elop was CEO! That might have been one (but certainly not the only) factor pushing Microsoft to buy Nokia and put it out of its misery.
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