Zune External Battery Reviewed

February 2, 2007

The Belkin TunePower for Zune Review

The holster of the TunePower is composed of a tight fitting, matte black rubber gasket which surrounds the Zune’s outer edges. A glossy black plastic shell covers the extended battery, and it is ringed by a matte silver border, which flips open…

…to form a kickstand for movie viewing…

…as well as to reveal the charging port for the included AC adapter. It takes approximately five hours to charge the TunePower, and both Zune and battery pack can be charged simultaneously.

I was wondering about external batteries for the Zune just the other day. Very slick, that kickstand! Good work by Judie at Gear Diary.

iPhone Blog Worth A Look

February 2, 2007


There are probably many, but this one merits a look if only for starting an entry with:

The blissfully bitter Mike Cane

Zune Review Part 3 & 4

February 2, 2007

The Daily Gadget Zune Review (Part 3 of 4)

The Zune itself is solid. The casing is scratch free after two months of use and I don’t use a case. It’s been a tough call because I want to protect it from damage but at the same time I love the look of it and it seems a shame to put it in a case. Fortunately the Zune seems simply impervious to damage and two months later my Zune looks as good as the day I bought it. The directional pad, back button and play/pause button are very tactile and responsive. I also really like the double shot effect. The lime green is a great complement to the brown. If you prefer the black and blue combination you can’t go wrong there either. The Zune is a joy to hold as the shell feels almost soft.

The Daily Gadget Zune Review (Part 4 of 4)

Now, for all you people who have just scoffed at Microsoft’s “Welcome to the Social” campaign, you can’t understand this unless you’ve done it. For the record, this guy is really nice but not someone I’ve had much contact with before yesterday. Over the past two days we’ve probably chatted for about an hour and it’s entirely because of the Zune. And the swapping we did wasn’t just to test out to see how it worked (though it certainly started like that). I wanted some of the backgrounds he had on his Zune so he just sent them on over.

Reference: iPod And Audiobooks

February 2, 2007

Convert audiobooks to Audiobooks

Given some recent-ish posts in Playlist’s forums, it seems there’s some confusion about putting audiobooks on an iPod that weren’t purchased from Audible.com or the iTunes Store. Let me see what I can do to clear up that confusion.

More iPhone Absolute Must-Reads

February 2, 2007

Daniel Eran over at RoughlyDrafted Magazine continues to take my breath away with his keen analysis of what the iPhone will actually be and the hows and whys everything on the market today will be crushed in its path. He continues to push my enthusiasm pedal for owning an iPhone.

These three articles are lengthy, detailed, and thoughtful. Sit back for a good hour and get a true education.

More Absurd iPhone Myths: Third Party Software Panic

Opening up the Sega Dreamcast nothing for that platform, because hobbyist developers didn’t actually write any apps worth playing.

That’s the same problem hounding Linux on the desktop: everyone likes the idea of a communist paradise, but only if magical workers do all the work and maintenance for free. As it turns out, supply and demand are really both measured in terms of dollars, not in fantasy wishes and ideological karma points.


Just like the failure of common Java VM development on desktop machines however, mobile middleware development results in lowest common denominator apps that are poorly integrated with native programs, don’t look good, and aren’t easy to use, and are best suited for very simple games and toy applications.

That’s why they’re called craplets.


Anyone trying to portray the iPhone as a consumer toy compared to existing mobiles is simply an idiot. Existing mobiles are all toy junk, and everyone knows it. That’s why everyone from Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer to Nokia’s Anssi Vanjoki are sweating bullets as they try to casually shrug off the iPhone.


That makes the iPhone unlikely to have a Java VM. Good riddance. The whole “Write Once, Deploy Anywhere” mantra of Java has been revealed to be an impractical joke for mobile devices. Java has useful applications elsewhere, but there simply isn’t a demand for general purpose applets that can run on every phone.

If the world really wanted generalized sorta-works-everywhere software, we’d be running WinCE on mobiles, Linux on the desktop, and all of our applications would be written for the most minimal version of X Window. All three have been a failure in the mass market, for good reason: the middle of the road is no place to drive.

The Egregious Incompetence of Palm

In many ways, the Palm OS has hit the wall in a manner similar to Apple’s Mac System 7 in the early 90s. Problems in the Palm OS relate to legacy issues from the late 90s, just as Apple’s problems with the Mac were bound to design considerations made a decade prior. Just as the Classic Mac’s golden age was in the late 80s and early 90s, Palm’s occurred in the late 90s and into the millennium.


Palm Copies Apple: 2002-2003
Palm found itself in a position similar to Apple in the early 90s: falling behind while watching its once glorious empire slowly fall to Microsoft licensees. It made a number of efforts remarkably similar to Apple’s.

Copland: Rather than rapidly pushing the Palm OS to a new foundation with modern OS features, Palm struggled with the Palm OS much like the old Apple struggled with its aging Mac System Software between 1991 and 1997.

Efforts to deliver a fully modernized Palm OS similarly never materialized at Palm between 2001 and 2007 either.

Move to RISC: Instead, Palm moved the Palm OS from DragonBall processors to the more modern ARM Architecture in 2002; this step mirrored Apple’s move from 68k to PowerPC.

Origins: Why the iPhone is ARM, and isn’t Symbian

The iPhone isn’t a smartphone as much as it is a handheld computer with specialized mobile and media applications. Apple already has a platform suitable for a full computing environment. Everyone else has Linux. How does Apple’s OS X compare to Linux in sophisticated mobile devices?

Such Brilliance!

February 2, 2007

I’ve taken this guy up on his offer to steal his stuff by posting one here that is all so applicable to my prior post:


Thank you!

The Man. The Blog. The Shizzle.

February 2, 2007

Riding with Rickey
All things Rickey. By Rickey, For Rickey.

Shhhh! He’s Pondering!

Someone please explain to Rickey why it took a month of deliberation for our esteemed Decider in Chief, George W. Bush, to arrive at the decision to ship more troops over to Iraq. Because Rickey doesn’t get it. Rickey can be fairly dense on occasion. In fact, up until recently, Rickey was under the impression that “Call of Cthulhu” was actually a memoir by a Brazilian telemarketer. But that’s a story for another time.

The way Rickey sees it, you either send a whole lot of troops, or you just pack it in and call it a day over there in that apocalyptic funhouse of horrors (or “cradle of civilization,” if you will). Kind of a no-brainer really. It’s not as if Iraq is offering to trade us Anna Benson for 20,000 troops. So why the prolonged pondering O Great One? And why was it necessary to ponder in such ostentatious fashion?

Rickey, have you met David Bamford?

Christ, put you two funny guys in the same room together and it’d be nuclear.

Charity Auction: Get Your Name In A Mystery Novel

February 2, 2007

Got this in my emailbox today:

Summer 1990: on his way back from a night out Terry Patterson is abducted from his own front step by a terrifying, faceless man bent on killing him.

Then you pop up!

Oxfam Scotland are auctioning the chance to get your name into the next Denise Mina novel featuring Paddy Meehan. Slip of the Knife is due for worldwide publication in July/August 2007.

You can bid to have a character named after you in the novel and a mention in the acknowledgments paragraph at the beginning.

Simply go to ebay to place your bid

Between now and 9/10th of Feb.

Well, at Oxfam 84% of donations go directly to emergency, development and campaign work in their bid to end world poverty.

The last Paddy Meehan novel, The Dead Hour has been nominated for an Edgar Award for Crime Novel of the Year 2006.

BBC Scotland are developing the books as a TV series, you could be on telly, you might even be the bad guy/girl.

Plus, how many pairs of shoes have you got already?

Personal note to Prof. Penis McApplepants of Utrecht: you’re barred from bidding.

Denise’s books are still in my Long Tail Book Queue. But I’ve seen her twice now at signings. She’s a hoot. A great sense of humor. Wonderful readings of her own work. The auction is actually at ebay.co.uk (see bid link above) — but don’t let that stop you! Help her out.