Posts tagged SPOILER

Sick and twisted fruit

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To scratch the topic of Mobile Computing once again I want to take you through the processes of setting up an iPhone and a Nokia N97 Mini with a Bluetooth driven wireless Keyboard. The reason I’m doing this is of course due to recent events I experienced and – SPOILER ALERT – the iPhone fails miserably under almost all circumstances. Successful ones could unfortunately not be tested.

The Keyboard used can be seen on the following picture, accompanied by the successfully paired N97 Mini:

HPIM0277

Why it’s a Bluetooth Keyboard designed by Apple themselves, just to make it a little less tough for the iPhone one might think. But I digress.

The step-by-step Instructions for the N97 Mini (or basically any Symbian S60 device) go as follows:

  1. Download the free Bluetooth Keyboard Application from Nokia.com. Choosing the right one shouldn’t be too hard, I didn’t find one for Symbian S60 5th Edition so i just took the first one which popped up an incompatibility alert but still installed and worked fine.
  2. After opening said Application, turn on your Keyboard and pair it with the Phone. In my case this included defining a Passkey like “123456” and then entering exactly that Passkey on the Keyboard. Pressing Return should finish the pairing process. I assume this works the same on all Bluetooth enabled Keyboards.
  3. That’s it. You’re set to write some text messages or even emails with your Bluetooth Keyboard.

On the iPhone on the other hand, the situation looks as follows. (At least that’s all I found out on a jailbroken iPhone 3G with the latest jailbreakable iPhone OS 3 on it).
When you turn on Bluetooth and search for devices, the (Apple !!) Keyboard does not show up. So if I’m not wrong that takes care of our first approach. The second approach then would be taking advantage of the freedom of a jailbroken iPhone. Do some searching on Google/Youtube and what I found was a Video explaining how to use an App (namely BTStack Keyboard) from the Cydia Store (which of course comes with jailbreaking the device) to use Bluetooth Keyboards with your iPhone. The only catch you ask? It costs 5 Dollars and since I neither own an iPhone, nor a Cydia Store Account (or whatever is needed to buy their Apps) my trail to success stopped there.

If there is another approach, be it for jailbroken or non-jailbroken iPhones please let me know. Nothing would please me more than knowing that Apple isn’t having such a tight stranglehold on its customers after all. Smartphones set aside, I’m one of them as you can see from the picture.

Of course it’s not surprising that the Nokia Device works with an Apple Keyboard. The Bluetooth Standard is the same for everybody, also for Apple luckily. And of course it might not make perfect sense to everybody that I’m connecting a Keyboard to a Mobile Phone that has a QWERTZ Keyboard built-in. To be honest I’d know a lot more to do with such a keyboard on an iPhone than on this N97 Mini. Seems like it’s not supposed to happen.

Windows vs. Mac OS X: Aspects reviewed

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Tiny Spoiler: no Macintosh/Apple praising found in this post.

So to make my blog interesting to a bigger audience I decided to publish both in german (because I think one should never forget where they came from, especially if you’re partially surrounded by all those programmers who write great programs in bad english and think that’s OK) and english of course.

The language i choose will most likely be based on the subjects i cover. Whether they are of interest for everyone or rather just the people from my language area (which is Austria and not Germany for all those who didn’t know).
What i want to talk about are the following experiences i had with the operating systems Windows from Microsoft and Mac OS X from Apple in specific scenarios.

My School (University of Applied Sciences Hagenberg) offers me the possibility to access my personal files on their server from everywhere where i have internet – through a WebDAV protocol. Which is great by the way.
Anyways, here are two short overviews of how the previously mentioned operating systems handle all the fuzz:
Mac OS X 10.5.6: When I connect it asks me for my credentials and everything seems to be working smoothly. But after moving some files back and forth you realize that OSX tends to for example say it overwrites a folder but in fact it just uses a different set of characters to name the folders and files so then you might have 2 Folders with almost the same Name existing side by side (i.e. Übung01 and Ubung01), but OSX will still only show you the one you just copied over. Furthermore what seems really cool is that no matter how bad your WiFi connection might be at the moment, OSX seems to be browsing through the folder structure smoothly at any time. Which is until you find out that OSX just buffers the contents of the folders you’ve already been to and what you see can very likely just be an outdated view of the actual data, someone else might have edited.
Windows XP: So Windows has the possibility to access FTP/WebDAV/… from within the Explorer as well which I didn’t find out until recently. Just like OSX it asks me for my credentials at first login which i then choose to save for further logins. First of all, with Windows you can access the server over its own file protocol (called Samba in the UNIX world) if you’re in its local network (so in this case when I’m at school). The hierarchically highest link you would be able to access is \\fshome\students and then you have to go through all the subfolders until you eventually find your own files. But the problem is that you may not dare to access \\fshome for example. Because if you do you’re on your way to eternal damnation. You don’t have the rights to access it but contrary to other Samba servers you wont get the opportunity to correct your mistake through a simple altert-window. You’ll just find out that this explorer.exe is lost forever. (Apparently this doesn’t happen on all Windows machines but my point stands.) On the upside of things, Windows doesn’t seem as smooth as OSX while browsing through the folder structure, which assures me that whatever Windows shows me is up-to-date content
So why can’t I work with my files on every type of computer the same way? Using anything else than Explorer/Finder is not an option because I want it to work with the same File Browser I use for everything else on said operating system.
So maybe I’ve just been a Windows user for a too long period of time and just don’t know my way around UNIX systems and if anyone would try to point that out i will not hesitate to agree with them but what do you think: Would you rather have an operating system that claims to work in every scenario but doesn’t, or an operating system which obviously doesn’t work in every scenario but seems to be doing the job well if you know how to work with it?
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