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I just wanted to thank you, Shades, for this brilliant idea to use IrfanView even for that, especially in bulk mode scanning. I've got an old Canon scanner and a quite new Canon copier/printer/scanner (no feeder), and both devices come with scan softwares which as soon as you want to scan more than one page become almost unusable.

VueScan is around 40 Euro in a very rudimentary edition and around 100 Euro in its full edition, depending or your VAT rate; some time ago I had been interested in that software but finally didn't buy it after reading some user complaints about the developer's alleged rudeness but that very probably was a big mistake because in-between Euro prices rose by almost 50 p.c., Euro losing a third of its value against the Dollar - it comes with lifetime updates so waiting to buy made/makes no sense in the case, and the only really competitive software - from what they say -, Silverfast, you must buy for each scanner separately.

But there also is PaperScan, which is 150€ plus VAT and which I didn't try out either - their rudimentary version is free, does not do bulk of course.

But is there any scan software which does bulk in fixed time increments?

I have the following scenario: That 3-in-1 Canon office thingy without feeder but which is at some meters from my computer (connected by LAN, not USB). Need to scan in bulk, with some seconds in-between, number of seconds depending on the material to scan, perhaps between 5 and 8 seconds after each scan or between 12 and 15 seconds including the scan.

So I currently often copy instead of scanning, in order to avoid to running around in a quite frenzy way for any one scan. I am aware that I probably could try to solve that problem with some macro program clicking on the right screen buttons every "n" seconds, but it's evident that some program which would do the next scan automatically even when there is NO feeder available, after a given delay instead, would be ideal for my means - IrfanView does not do it alone, but in combination with the right macro tool, it could be ideal free tool for that. (Since it's scanning, not copying/printing, not being ready for the next scan here and there would not harm.)

EDIT June 10, 2017
What I described above, I got some days ago. It's called ScanPapyrus and it costs 30$. It works well with both of my scanners, incl. the Canon ColorNetwork ScanGear for my ImageRunner 2520 (which has no internal bulk scan functionality). In ScanPapyrus, you set up the seconds between scans, and it will trigger a new scan every such seconds: No running between copier/scanner/printer and pc anymore. I'm more than pleased with this tool and recommend it warmly.

Thank you for the Chromebook hint.

I had not thought of that line of product indeed. Unfortunately, they don't do anything really tiny but all come in full format, from 10,1" on, with a keyboard part of again that same size. I don't know where their weight starts, but it's evident they are in the Windows subnotebooks or Netbook range, not in the size and weight range of 7" or 8" tablets or then, that defunct HP mini pc.

Thank you for the full office application suites for Android hint.

I had not thought of those either, had been focused on text-only. On that SoftMaker comparison page, I do not see the term "search" though, so I suppose they do not display all search results in a list either. I understand this is more a feature of some more sophisticated desktop text/programming editors so it cannot really be expected elsewhere, but for me, as said, it would be only function in the text program/editor I would really use so it's quite special or simply too special.

Thus, logically, I should discard that editor idea but get acquainted with the possibilities to get my data from text files into an SQLite database which I then would shift around, by WLAN, from desktop to Android tablet or iPad and back to desktop. After all, handling data with databases is natural, while handling them in editors may be practical in some use cases but quickly becomes unmanageable when extending the use case, as we clearly see in my case here.

Android/iPad instead of Windows tablet.

As I said in the thread I began with my FF bug and which then switched to the problems of buying second-hand hardware, it's very surprising an i5 processor is so lame. Thinking on it, upon the introduction of Windows 10, they said it was even light on load and good for old hardware (Dual Core etc.) - I now suppose that was marketing speak, and fact probably is that each new Windows, exactly as in the old days, more or less eats up most or at least much of additional processor power you buy in new devices.

And this means that if I'm not completely mistaken, Windows 8.1 or 10 simply aren't good mobile OS, for underpowered i3/i5 notebooks - and with i7 you get into heat problems - and all the less so for even more underpowered tablets - the lesser expensive Surface 3/4 which do not even have an "i" processor. Fact is, many user reviews speak of lame response with those Surface 3 devices, and even with Surface 4 i5 - and of heat problems with Surface 4 i7 which is not surprising at all.

In other terms, MS simply do not have an adequate modern OS for mobile devices, their Windows eating up too much memory and too much processor power which simply cannot be available in really tiny devices - and not speaking of battery time sharply going down by this, too.

Which brings me to the question if iPad/iOS or Android is the better, lighter, more effective - or do they say efficient? - system for tiny mobile devices?

Sorry for almost systematically deviating from my original questions!

I cannot find a good solution for my mobile needs.


Tiny Windows tablets (7-8") - when available in Europe - seem to be all of very bad quality, see the amazon and other reviews, the brake (without falling) within some months it seems, and get much too hot (which could explain them breaking). It seems there is no real market for them so there is just a niche left, without much money for production since they are sold between 70 and 230 Euros (80-240$ even including VAT between 20 and 25 p.c.); good quality would cost then 400 Euros, for which there is no market. Good Windows tablets are too big and too heavy (Microsoft, from 10"). Windows smartphones seem to be ok for some of them (from Microsoft again), but they do not run Windows (8.1 or 10, as the Windows tablets do), but Windows Mobile, a telephone tool, which means you cannot run regular Windows programs on them but almost nothing.

With Android or iOs, there are available good tiny tablets, with external memory for Android, without that for iOS, so for the latter you must check how much internal memory will suffice even in the long run, which can become difficult, considering the prices for additional internal memory and which is only available upfront.

Since I need geographical map functionality only here and there, but would need a tablet to be really lightweight and easygoing, I am not that fond of tablets of 10" and more, also because for map functionality, Windows would be far from ideal, and with Android or iPad, you don't need to buy a 10" tablet in order to get a good tablet, so Android or iPad 7-8" seems to be the ideal solution if it weren't for the text software.


As I said some months ago, I use ListPro for some lists, and my agenda also with it, on my pc, and that's available for iOS but not for Android, but I discovered that the iOS version does not do alarms anyway, so that doesn't make sense, and I cannot put all my lists into ListPro since as a database, it's just too basic: No good search, no global replace.

But anyway, I would like to avoid to put all my lists into a database since that would be manual work for a week for some of them, or I would have to dig deep into RegEx replacements.

Currently, I have those lists (on my pc) in an editor with good search functionality, which means I can search for some entry, and it displays all the lines with a hit in them in a table-like extra list, as would do a database frontend, and this is exactly what I am looking for for mobile use.

Currently, I print out those lists and take those printouts with me, which is not only lots of paper stuff, but much worse, and since it's all that much paper, I only print out those lists, which I need mobile, here and then, and in-between, I update the lists on my pc, and also, by hand, in the printouts. More often than not, I forget the manual updating, which regularly causes problems, and it even occurred that I forgot to update the pc list, so I have to visually check the printouts and their manual additions in order to be sure that my pc lists are up-to-date. Let alone only very basic search functionality in the print-outs, in fact only alphabetic search possible for one aspect, none for others. So my current overall system is a complete mess.

I tried to find some good text program (with rtf which I would prefer) or text editor (without rtf) on Android, reading into the descriptions and reviews for hours, but there does not seem to be any, while for iPad, there does not seem to be such a thing either, but here I'm less sure, my searching having been less intensive, for lack of information if you don't have an iPad and cannot try those programs.

I do not understand why all those Android text programs of which many are praised as being sophisticated, do not offer good search but ask for manual browsing all the occurrences of some search term one by one, by "go to next", BUT
- I hope I may have overlooked some which does do it better, OR
- I hope there may be such a program in the iPad side

So that I finally could solve my problem which system make of mobile tablet to buy, and solve my mobile data access problem. I am aware of the fact that I could solve it, less the maps, by buying and taking around a Microsoft Surface (10" or bigger), which would then run the same programs as my pc for these needs, or, when it's a database, I could probably choose Android as well as iPad, but would need to put all my lists into a SQLite database, with the manual work that this way would need. Here, I suppose that the same databases in SQLite format would run, without transformation (but just copying over the current version by WLAN), on the mobile device as on the pc, but this could be an error on my side.

In fact, what I would really need would be such a HP mobile pc of some years ago, weighting about 500 g and with a physical keyboard: The iPad unfortunately killed that market of really mobile real, fully functional computers, but regrets over that will not make them available again so I have to get something of the available builds.

Thank you both for your tips and hints.

My current assumption goes with "old graphics cards", above I mistakenly called them "screen drivers". In fact, I used the NVidia Quadro 2200 with a modern driver for the Quadro 4000. I admit I only had the graphics card idea after posting here, so my edit above.

I should have been more specific, the thing I've observed on two completely different systems (on the second system I even had not installed most of my FF add-ons yet, but Addblock Plus, Click&Clean, and perhaps New Tab Override, I don't remember, so there is a chance the culprit is among those.

Next time I'll install it into a new system, I'll leave out those add-ins for some days, to check - it's only now that I see that with those add-ons, my FF was not a fresh installation, too bad.

It has nothing, or very little, to do with FF system load, on the other system it occurred almost instantly. It always (in both systems) comes with some sort of a shadow in the "menu" corner (top left corner) of FF, in other words, from that shadow, I can even see my input will not be processed if I try (on condition that I see that shadow first of course, but it's always there before, and it has nothing to do with the keyboard?).

This brings me to the fact that mouse and keyboard/keyboard driver were the same, too, so that is another possibility indeed, my saying "totally nother system" was wrong, obviously, so there's lots of possible reasons I realize now.

So I've disabled the "Filterkey" function, never knew what it was good for anyway, never used it in any way but it was on indeed. CPUBalance seems interesting, but does not work with XP. Have installed Cyberfox, will try it, first without add-ons, than with the more important ones, then with the rest of them, but the question remains, if Cyberfox was FF but without the memory problems, why doesn't everybody use Cyberfox? Correction: Cyberfox 52 is incompatible with XP, 45 seems to be compatible, in-between: doubtful. Will report my FF trial, as well as the CPUBalance trial, to after having bought a new pc.

For the "old graphics cards" and old computers. I have sent back the second-hand pc, for probable motherboard problems, should buy instead a modern and new i7 (6700 or 7700 or probably 6700 if I can it for less because of the 7700 being new now, I'm looking for sales) instead.

It was an i5, and it was far from running at the speed I had expected, ditto for the 4 gb graphics card: ridiculous! So it seems that when buying something new today, i5 is not good, let alone i3.

Also, 8GB of memory will suffice for most uses it seems, with that 16 GB thing I often checked the memory load, it it was never higher than 35, 40 p.c., while at the same time, as said, speed was much too low for my wishes. In other words, you'll need 16 MB when you run several heavy programs concurrently, but if not, you don't need them, and above all, plenty of memory will not replace processor power. (This may be an evidence, but it was good to have seen my own eyes.)

Old graphics cards are not good either: Office 2016 was preinstalled, but the graphics card, even with its modern driver - or because of the combination old card-new driver, but the old driver would not have been compatible with Windows 10 anyway -, did not correctly display the very last line in these Office applications: you typed without seeing what you typed.

So with your old pc, you know exactly what to expect from it, but with a new one, if it's a i3/i5, you risk to be quite let down; I would not have expected an i5 to be that lame, with quite simple (office) software - not speaking of video cut or such things.

But my problem with FF does not seem to be that widespread, so I'll have to check any "old" component with a new computer, incl. keyboard drivers etc.

This last element is probably even the one, since on forums, people complain about incompatibilities between Cherry kb drivers and newer Windows versions, and I had said on that other system the problem occurred five times as much as on my old one. And then, this does never occur in any other program than FF...

In this forum, complaints about Firefox abound, and since I use FF for all my browsing, I know none of the complaints are unjustified, it's just that with other browser, you get into even more trouble, or then, add-ins/-ons are not available you depend on.

Just one example, I use Youtube Video and Audio Downloader, manually, so that it lets me download the highest sound (music) quality, whereas all automatic downloaders (and even the automatic way to do it in the aforementioned FF tool) just download some thing or then the highest video quality, even if that means that you do NOT get the highest audio quality, but for me, audio quality is more important than video quality (classical music downloads).

Also, I'm fond of the FF bookmarks strip to the left of its main window, and which I have always open. In my opinion, it's much better than third-party bookmark managers, free or paid, since those either do not appear/disappear in sync with the browser, or/and take valuable screen space below the main window, where there isn't any space for that with modern screens, while on the side of the main window, there is plenty of space. This especially concerns Linkman which is in high praise everywhere, but I don't need its plenty of comments or the link in full or other info, I just need to get to the short title of a link/bookmark as fast and easy as possible, and without that taking too much screen space. My bookmarks are sorted into a tree, now imagine how I would manage a tree in some 100 or 200 pixels under the main window, instead of full height, not speaking of the fact that the main window would then have only 924 or 824 pixels left from its original height of 1024.

So there are very good reasons for continuing to use FF, even if that means living with its many faults.

But now to my question. I regularly use FF on XP, so I never know if some fault is with FF or with XP, and quite regularly, perhaps once in a hour or two, I need to minimize FF, then reopen it again to its original size, in order for it to continue to take my keyboard input, or more precisely, to react to it, when I put an url into the address line, then press enter, the screen does not change. It goes without saying that I attributed that behavior to XP.

But recently, I tried a brand-new (!) Win 10 installation on another (!) pc (and with 16 gb of memory, also with another monitor, and with another screen driver, BUT I have to add that it was another OLD screen driver, NVidia Quattro 2200, so it's possible that the problem lies with old screen drivers in general, and that the Windows version does not matter), and I not only got that same phenomenon there, too, but it was five times as frequent here, so I encountered that fault several times per hour, and that's quite a disturbance. Also, I would have never expected that in the described environment, while with my old XP, well, I'm willing to live with incompatibilities of all sorts now.

Does anyone know that behavior, and did you find a way to eliminate it?

I am too lazy to try this with alternative browsers, but here's the link in case you're interested in checking:

Just a bit from the text as a mockup "screenshot" (formatted as in the 2-columns original text):

Il regolamento (CE) n. 883/2004 del Parlamento europeo
e del Consiglio, del 29 aprile 2004, relativo al coordina-
mento dei sistemi di sicurezza sociale(3), dispone che il
contenuto degli allegati II, X e XI di detto regolamento sia
determinato prima della sua data di applicazione.

Note the "(3)" in it is a link to a footnote, so the footnote will appear in the following texts, by way of programming of the pdf, but you can try with any other paragraph in those pdf's of the European Union, without such a footnote, and the respective formatting results are similar, as follows:

Display the linked page in Firefox, then copy and paste the paragraph in question into any editor or text program. You'll get:

Il regolamento
(CE) n. 883/2004 del Parlamen
to europeo
 del Con
 del    29 aprile 2004, relativo al coordin
  dei  sistemi  di  sicurezza  sociale
)  GU L 166 del 30.4.2004, pag
),  dispon
e  che  il
, X e XI di
 detto reg
prima della sua data di applicazion

As you can see, this text is unusable, copying by typing it from the screen will be faster than trying to manually reformat what you've got.

But save the pdf, then open it in Adobe Reader (or probably any other pdf viewer, didn't try those), you'll get:

Il regolamento (CE) n. 883/2004 del Parlamento europeo e del Consiglio, del 29 aprile 2004, relativo al coordinamento dei sistemi di sicurezza sociale(3)
GU L 166 del 30.4.2004, pag. 1. (3), dispone che il contenuto degli allegati II, X e XI di detto regolamento sia determinato prima della sua data di applicazione.

As you can see, there's a line break between the link code and the link target, but except from that, you'll get the text as expected.

The problem described here regularly appears with pdf's from the UE and in some cases also with third-party pdf's, so when you encounter it, don't think they have found a way to prevent copying by other means than securing the pdf, but just download and copy from your local copy, or have a non-browser pdf viewer display web pdf links, by tweaking the browser settings.

Living Room / Re: Looking for smartphone
« on: January 23, 2017, 07:02 PM »

The main reason behind why there are so many different implementations is to prevent lockout by a country if there was only a single system.

Yes, I remember now to have read that GPS had been invented for military reasons, so a plethora of Chinese gps signals, on top of the American ones, will only become of interest when the U.S. satellites send out deviated signals, for the aforementioned reasons, but I suppose we'll have bigger problem than then sightseeing. But to be serious, I now understand why the shear number signals received is irrelevant, it's the quality the receiver that counts, or in other, as you say, don't buy cheap.

I still use paper maps, I've never needed a compass. All my maps are topographic, I can work out my position from what terrain I'm on, heading towards, or have driven through.

This made me spontaneously laugh out, not because I don't believe this but to the contrary, admirably, I believe you 100 %, you're an expert in these questions and know what you do, even in the wilderness.

I admire this all the more so since I do get lost rather often - I always try my best to train my senses, and then it's just another case of getting lost, so all I train is my sense of humor.

As for OS and size, it's difficult, "one size fits it all" does not apply. I'm really enormously fond of that Android 8" thing, don't want to name it for a third or fourth time here, but it's so cute, brilliant quality, and you can take it everywhere; it's got just the right size (and good resolution) for even looking up data and such, but it's not too big to go in your hand or in your purse. But for a quick glance in the car when driving AND getting all the necessary info you need, it's simply not big enough. And then, you always need to take it with you, some 500€ 10" or 12" device clearly visible in a parked car is an invitation to take it immediately away from you. So, even if you were willing to buy 2 such devices, which I'm not really, you would have to take the bigger one with you all the same, so to buy the 8" one for convenience reasons is thought to short since you will then have 2 of them to carry with you.

Which means when you need 10", you'll have to buy them, and then you will them carry around anyway, convenient or not, so no need for an additional 8". The S2 is available in 9.7", too... So no mobile ListPro for me, probably. I'll need it in Summer (travel season)...

Tablet prices have risen sharply in the E.U. but E.U. allows to send hardware back after trialing for some days, so I'll have to well prepare my double trial software-wise, and then I need both iPad and another tablet to be delivered more or less at the same time, and then I should even try them both in parallel for navigation, gps receiver quality and all. That's immoral, but prices are immoral, too: Apple prices anyway, and surprisingly, the Korean's prices do not show real clemency either. Well, they have big losses battery-wise to recover from.

But oh well, you know something about navigational matters!


You are probably right, Android seems to be more versatile. I could not buy ListPro for Android, though, while I could buy it for iPad, and I would not be that happy about that since I use it daily on my pc, for reference material, and I would have liked to access that in a mobile device.

As for possible Samsung battery problems, I'm not afraid at all. Just today, they published a very neat explanation for their exploding smartphones (in English): https://www.androidp...amsung-galaxy-note-7 which clearly indicates that such things will never happen again. There are other makers, but as said, I had compared iPad mini and Galaxy S2 8", and the latter was even cuter than the iPad, so for me, Android will probably mean Samsung, others' mileage may vary.

(I had to rectify my post above, not finding my question had been all my fault.)

Living Room / Re: Looking for smartphone
« on: January 22, 2017, 07:04 PM »

I am sorry, my post above was meant to be in the original thread: http://www.donationc....msg405922#msg405922

You mentioned those other signal sources, beyond GPS: A-GPS, Glonass, TTFF, BDS - so these are all GPSsignals, just from non-GPS satellites, or in other words, technically, they are all the same, but they are named differently since the organizations behind them are different? And you spoke of 3m accuracy, your device getting signals from 18 out of 27 satellites. That seems perfect. So I suppose it depends on the device if it is able to get those signals other than GPS, too, and perhaps it's also a question of the map software then if it, or some intermediary software proper to the device itself, can aggregate all this info. You now also mention D-GPS / Differential-GPS, I suppose high-end navigation devices can treat them.

I believe you on your compass signal not being deviated in your car. It's just that I had had, with 3 different magnetic compasses, including 2 car compasses, at least they were sold as such, in 3 different cars, deviations of up to 100 degrees.

Thank you for the link which explains it very well. I admit my idea of differing signal strength for positions that are 100 or 200 m apart was a stupid one, but minute length differences are as surprising. But to answer your question, I thought the satellites also sent their position and an identification code, and that the receiver also receives lists of which satellite is where when or does what orbit and such, but you're right, spatial thinking is not for everyone, that's why I so heavily rely upon maps and compasses, and to be frank, my not wanting to buy a traditional navigation device for years was due to the fact that with maps on the passenger seat, I at least have an idea where I am, while traditional navigation devices of the kind I knew told you to go straight or to turn, but all between departure and arrival, you did not know where you were, except for city-limit signs on the road.

I've seen the slider in some map on my pc and agree that would be fine on the move, had not understood it there since on my pc it did not slide so as to the real direction coming into center. So this slider is no other that what I had imagined, plus the neighboring directions in order for people not having to remember that West is alway to the left of North, etc.

You sometimes speak of your receiver, which is obviously very, very good, and then you speak of your smartphones or tablets. What is your current receiver, or do you mean the one built into your current smartphone? 2m is awesomely impressive! Perhaps we could deduct that some makers use better gps receivers in their smartphones/tablets than others. This interests me a lot, since when in some town I do a 90-degree turn, it would be nice to have the map rotating after 15, 20 m instead of 150, 200 m only!


I just see that I inadvertently posted my answer yesterday in the thread you mentioned, http://www.donationc....msg404844#msg404844 Sorry - got it now.


In the map direction thread, my answer has vanished, will try to repost. This thread I find in Living Room, while I thought it was a software question, but no problem. I am sorry, the Smartphone thread was here in "Living Room", so I myself, inadvertently, put this thread herein, so no chance to find it in the main category "General Software Discussion". So all my fault and my fault alone.

I opened up a second thread because I did not want to mix this general iOS/Android screen navigation issue with map navigation, and as said, I mainly think of navigation in web pages, it's absolutely correct that for maps, zooming in an zooming out would be best, and/or shifting the screen in any direction, but for web pages, most of the time, the smartphone PgDn equivalent is needed.

Thank you for mentioning Android macro apps, I'm not sure they can do what I want. After posting yesterday, I had a second thought.

First, I did not think of lefthanders. So this tap area of 1 cm2 should be in every screen corner, perhaps optionally right OR left or right AND left. Second, functionality would switch with landscape/portrait direction of the device, as with every other app for smartphones/tablets. Third, if the tap area is only 1 cm2 and square, it would be reasonable to have Home (top) and End (bottom) by 2 quick tabs, and PgUp/PgDn by single taps. Home and End being the equivalent to the pc keyboard keys, so Home/End would go to the start/end of the current page, and PgUp/Dn would shift by 1 screen length.

Perhaps I do not understand smartphone programming correctly but since those apps function with a sensitive/touch screen, and apps being independent from each other, I had thought that any tap on the screen could only reach that app which is directly under the pixels of that screen region, so if your browser app has the full screen, normally top layer, I wasn't aware that a second app could be, invisibly, be laid on top of the current app, but with the browser app, which is under it, second layer now, getting all other screen taps etc. notwithstanding, except for a cm2 in each corner, which should react to the macro app.

This evening, I spent several hours trying with Android emulators, Bluestacks, then Andy. According to Bluestacks, my graphics card was fine, but then, installation never went through, and Andy told me, again after downloading the whole program, that there was something wrong with my graphics card - I know that Android does graphics in another way than Windows.

So I was not able to try anything out, let alone scrolling by tapping, by lack of a touchscreen to begin with, but I had hoped I could perhaps mimic that with mouseclicks.

I am not sure I'll be happy with Android since I also need a database, or more correct, an sql database viewer, and here it seems there is better software available for the iPad - hence my unsuccessful tries to try Android at least on my pc, in order to decide upon the OS before buying.

I had hoped somebody already uses some additional app with their browser, for Home/End, PgUp/PgDn and thus could tell that it works, or even that this is possible with Android but not with iPad, or the other way round - by lack of special macro app or for technical reasons, so that such an app is not even possible here or there -, as to make my decision which OS to buy, for me.


I have another questions about smartphones and tablets. I had been in a store in order to have a look, and I liked mini tablets (Apple iPad Mini and Samsung S2 8.0) since you can hold them in one hand, but now that I decided I need the tablet for car navigation, too, it's evident they are both too tiny, so I need a full-size tablet.

But I was very surprised scrolling is as bad as that. Bot iOS and Android force you to sweep to the top if you want to go down to the next page, and while only iOS seems allow for tapping on top of the screen in order to mimic the home key of your pc/Apple keyboard, there is no way, with both systems, to tap somewhere in order to mimic end, pgup and, much more important, pgdn, pgdn being a missing key you would need to press again and again though.

Further web research brought that there are even more and more orthopedic problems arising from this, after years of sweeping, instead of being a tap area in the bottom 10 % of the screen. Some macro apps allow for using the Android side buttons for pgup and pgdn, but these buttons are obviously not made for being pressed hundreds of times each day, and with iOS, there are not even side buttons in needed number.

I suppose that app developers could, individually, put pgup/pgdn buttons in the right top and down corners of their app, but most app developers do not seem to do that, I tried that out with apps on smartphones of friends of mine.

So my question, after having searched for such a solution in vain, is, do you know any macro app, for iOS or for Android or even for both which will put such buttons, or better, a home button in top corner and a pgdn button in bottom corner, onto any app? Or perhaps that is not possible technically since it would imply laying out an additional layer onto the screen, over current app, but in these areas alone, 1 cm2 each would be sufficient, and it would acceptable that any screen element of the current app which is under these areas would not be responsive anymore for that app, but only for the macro app.

Besides, most screen readers, or many of them at least, do have physical buttons for next/previous page, so I cannot understand why smartphones and tablets do not have such physical buttons, so much needed for web browsing, all the more so since most modern pages are now constructed by multiple pages in one big page which calls for scrolling down.

Living Room / Re: Looking for smartphone
« on: January 21, 2017, 08:29 PM »

I'm sorry. The other thread is just 1 month old, but I didn't pay attention to it, and its page 4 is a mine of information indeed, thanks to you.

I wasn't aware of there being several signal sources, had just heard of gps, but after posting yesterday, I thought there probably are quality differences between the gps devices in the phones/tablets/navigation devices, so it would probably be a good idea to search for comparative tests looking for that.

Now there are so many different signal sources, I suppose that not every map software is able to get data from all of these, so that would be another factor.

I admit my compass misunderstanding or better not understanding compasses has grown. First. You say electronic compasses sense the magnetic field of the earth, but then they probably would be deviated by car magnetism in some way, as magnetic compasses do, since for sensing magnetism, there would be some magnetism, some magnetic sensor? But perhaps they do it differently, after all.

Second, I always thought that both direction and position were calculated from the difference of signal strength of different gps satellites, so if a device, smartphone, etc., gets its position, it also gets the info where is North, since different gps satellites also send some sort of positional data of their own, so the device knows where they are, and hence can calculate the compass data, without sensing the magnetic field?

While in the other thread, it's said - between what is worded I mean - that for pedestrian purposes, a compass should be there since you would have to march straight into one direction for some time in order for the device establishing gps data history, from which then only it could identify both direction and position, and from that only, compass data?

Besides, my wish for a N/E/S/W arrow within the 10 o'clock and the 2 o'clock range was understood to be mutually exclusive, I meant one big arrow, with either a big N, E, S or W character, just one of them, within that screen part, in order to indicate the direction in which you are heading on-the-spot, while a full compass, with N AND E, S and W is much less able to indicate your direction with just one quick glance when driving, possible in narrow streets. I know that range is a third of a full circle, but I really meant just a quarter of a full circle, something between minus 8 and plus 7 minutes there, so that just one direction arrow would appear there at any time, not two, and if that's South, it goes without saying that to your left, it's East, and West to your right, and so on.


An additional compass I had missed yesterday, was going to add it: Either a North arrow to the North direction (which of course could then point to anywhere near 6 o'clock) or, much better, a direction arrow for North, East, South or West but anywhere in the range of 10 o'clock to 2 o'clock - in practice, you probably will have a compass like in your pic, somewhere to the side, with all four directions, which is not as immediately comprehensive.

It's interesting you say that besides a gps, also a compass has to be integrated into the device. I hadn't thought of this, all the less so since I did some tries with several compasses, including car compasses, and all of them were heavily distorted from the electronics within the instrument panel. Only when I held them far away from that, with my arm behind my back, near the back seats, the showed the North correct again. Since navigation devices are fixed on/near the instrument panel, I wonder how a compass in them could be precise, from these tries.

From your description, I become aware that I did not clearly enough distinguish the different problems. When you are as a tourist in some other country, being online data-wise can quickly become quite onerous, especially if heavy data traffic (mapping) is involved. On the other hand, most navigation devices do not download their maps in real time but have them stored in the device itself and use some web services just for gps, or even get gps positions from some satellite, for free, so they do not need any web communication at all.

I admit I only superficially know navigation systems from some years ago, so I hadn't been aware of their map functionality today, which is different from their route functionality and which had been the only one I knew. So after reading you, I downloaded a manual from Garmin, and from TomTom each, and I found that map functionality, but without a manual turning function for the map and with rather bad or missing compass: No pic for Garmin, rather poor pic for TomTom, in both cases I downloaded manuals for rather expensive devices.

It seems - the descriptions were not precise, so I could be mistaken about this - they both automatically present the map in a way that your current route/street driving direction goes more or less up, not down the screen, but that up also can be just slightly up and decidedly to the right or the left instead, and there does not seem to be any manual way of turning the map, but zoom they have.

All of them function without web access, the maps are bought and downloaded into the device once and for all. The same for for Android from your example, and which is free, and there seem to be lots of such apps for Android and also some for iPad.

Garmin/TomTom can be bought as apps, which frees you from the rather tiny screens of navigation devices, more expensive ones will be at risk anyway in the parked car, so it seems reasonable to buy a tablet instead, of 10" size, and to fix it near the steering wheel with some holder, then clip it out when you leave the car, ready to use it in a more general way then - I was going to buy some 7" mini tablet but that would be too tiny for maps in the car since when driving, the least fiddling around with the screen is best, so a bigger screen will be better, needing lesser fiddling.

As for the compass you speak of, I got some interesting info from some Apple help forum where they speak of electronic compasses which are in-built into iPhones, but not into iPads, according to them, and they say iPhone and iPad apps are different and not only different in screen size, as I had thought you could use the same Apple app on both which is not the case then, but, and here it gets interesting, they say some map applications (!) have an in-built electronic compass, which obviously means that an electronic compass is not a real compass which then transfers its data electronically to some app, but it's not a compass at all but just software which checks history of gps data and calculates the direction of the movement of the device from that, so if I'm not mistaken here, the problem with physical compasses will not be relevant anymore.

But if the device doesn't move, there is no recent history of different gps data, so you would need an internal compass, as you say, and you are obviously speaking of a real - magnetic - internal compass - or how would it be done otherwise?

As for google maps which you mention, I always use them on my pc - and I print out screenshots as get-there-maps and destination maps from them which I use in the car, so I'm thankful for red lights - so I don't know of their functionality on the move, but it seems evident from past searches on that matter that google maps need web access for heavy map downloading.

Considering prices only, I should very probably buy a Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10,1 with a robust car holder, since it has got a resolution of 1920x1200 pix and seems to be reasonably fast, and then trial free and paid map software for/on it, iPads start at double the Tab A price, with some 30 p.c. better resolution and probably not being faster at their starting prices.

But an internal compass neither of them have, while the Samsung Tab 3 - but which is old and slow and quite bad, screen resolution a mere 1024x800, has got one, physically it seems, and lots of apps rely on that internal compass, googling "samsung/android tab compass" will bring discussions on problems arising from missing compasses, so, even without really getting why there is a problem, I think a missing compass could become a problem, according to the app, even on the move, so that criterion should probably not be discarded too early.

Anyway, thank you very much for your very helpful info, 4wd, which was new for me: It seems that my problem can be quite easily resolved with the right hardware and the right software, with some tablet and perhaps a paid map app, since to be frank I quite abhor the look of Openstreetmap. Besides, Bing Maps are really beautiful, so I use them more and more on my pc instead of google maps, at least for big, standard towns where they are precise enough, which is not always the case elsewhere.


I have a question with regards to navigation devices. Modern ones come with gps functionality, meaning they know, more or less precisely, where the car is in which they are installed. They are used to get from point A to point B, so you enter the target address, and they tell you how to go there.

My intention to use such a device for a different purpose. Imagine you don't know some town which you visit, and you want to do some sightseeing, for example as a tourist, or you are new in that town and want to know that town better, after having relocated there or even before relocating there, for example in order to check in which precinct you would like to search for a flat, or what precincts to avoid.

That's why you would need different functionality than the one described above. In the old days, you would have taken a map with you, and you would have tried to identify your position within that map, which for most people, after some turns, would not have been possible anymore, the distance between your eyes and the map on the other seat being too big anyway.

Or even, you could have cut up the map in pieces rather large but tiny enough in order to glue them to your steering wheel, and, depending on the kind of the glue, it would even have been possible to turn the map piece around with every turn, in order to always have your current direction at around twelve o'clock before your eyes.

I've done this description in order to make me better understood in what functionality I am searching for within a navigation device, or with a tablet, Android or iPad:

- has gps, thus knows where you are, with more or less precision

- knows your direction from a combination of gps positions history checked against the street data in the map: streets assumedly taken - directions, lengths - I know this may not be entirely accurate since the device is in the car but not electronically relied to the car, so it does not know turns from your steering wheel but only from gps positions checked again the street data

- has some prefigured zoom level, as with google maps - it should be possible to change zoom levels quickly, in order to see every narrow lane, or in order to see where you are going within a big picture - perhaps 1 tap for zooming in, 2 quick taps for zooming out

- will shift the map to be displayed on the screen in accordance with your movement out of the map - assumes you want to see a maximum of map in front of you, and not so much behind you

- will turn the map with your turns, at least some time after your turn when by checking the new gps data against the map data, it then knows your new direction - will accordingly shift the map area, too - since with a 90 degrees turn, what had been sideways becomes front and should hence be enlarged, so the software would turn the map and step back, too

- a big red, wandering point will show your current position in the map, at far as the device can identify your position - in fact, that position indicator missing is the factor that makes you lose position when trying to cope with printed maps spread on the passenger seat

Does anybody know such functionality, inbuilt in a navigation device or as additional software - application - for a navigation device, or for a tablet, even in rudimentary form, instead of the elaborated version I've dreamed of above?

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