Organizing Messy Cables

Organizing cables can be done very easily and cheaply with Velcro Reusable Self-Gripping Cable Ties, which cost $6.99 on Amazon. At 7 cents per tie, it’s a cheap price to pay to organize your whole house. There are endless uses for these minimalist cable ties. These second generation Velcro ties are not like the ones you find on shoes. Both sides of the Velcro strip are very low profile.

Jailbreaking with Whited00r

Last night I had the opportunity to try out the Whited00r jailbreak program for my 2G iPod touch.  What makes this program unique compared to other jailbreaks is that it is the whole package, whereas jailbreaks like RedSn0w only add the jailbreak code to the existing Apple iOS version.  The main goal of the Whited00r jailbreak is to give older iOS devices such as the iPhone, iPhone 3G, 1st and 2nd gen iPod touch the ability to run a stripped down version of iOS 5.  Some of the features include access to iCloud, Newsstand, Reminders, wallpapers, and a custom version of multi-tasking.  The Cydia app store and Terminal app are installed as well.

I do need to make a note that jailbreaking your iOS device is not supported by Apple and could brick your device.  Jailbreaking also voids your warranty, but most likely since these devices are over 2 years old, the warranty has long since expired, even with AppleCare.

Just so you understand, Whited00r is not really iOS 5.  It is a heavily customized version of iOS 3.1.3, at least for my 2nd gen iPod touch.  Since I do not have an iPhone, I cannot tell what version that runs on.  It has the look and feel of what iOS 5 has, but it doesn’t have everything.  The main issue is because of the hardware limitations that these older devices have.

There are some downsides with Whited00r though.

1. Apps that require to run with iOS 4 or higher will not work.

2. No iMessage app.  I really don’t see how these devices cannot work with iMessage, but I am going to assume that much like how Siri works, Apple keeps a firm grip on what devices can access the iMessage servers.

3. You can access the Apple App Store, but it has to be done through the Safari browser by a pre-installed bookmark.  The App Store that is shown on the homescreen is actually a link to Whited00r’s App Store of iOS 3 compatible apps.  That can be confusing to some people.

4. Multi-tasking is slightly different.  Whereas in stock iOS 4 and above that automatically uses multi-tasking, in Whited00r you have to specify which apps you want to do multi-tasking by holding down the home button.  I tried it with Angry Birds at the start screen and could still hear the music playing when I switched over to Safari.  This is one of those customizations done to compensate for the hardware limitations.  It’s not quite a downside, but it’s just an extra step. Any apps that you do not specify to multi-task, or run in the background, will only work one at a time, like it used to before Apple released multi-tasking.

5. I has some problems with installing it onto my iPod touch to begin with.  After reading through the forum on the Whited00r website on problems with installing on the 2nd gen iPod touch, I read that using the program “iReb” would help get the device into DFU mode.  I did a search for “iReb” and managed to get the program, load the iPod touch into DFU mode, and put the Whited00r jailbreak on the same way as restoring using iTunes.

Whited00r is great for someone who wants to get some more use out of their older Apple iOS devices, though as of right now you cannot do everything.  If your iOS device is running iOS 4.x, do realize that any apps that require that level will not run in Whited00r since it is at iOS 3.1.3.  Whited00r should be coming out with better revisions later on, but I do not know how long.

This is my first blog post with Micro Patrol, so please leave any comments, positive or constructive, down below.

The Chromebook One Month Later: Tantalizingly Close But Still Feels Beta

Wait. Why Do I Have A Desktop?

This is the desktop on my Samsung Chromebook.

Two things should jump out at you.

1. It’s awesomely reminiscent of Mac OS (but slightly sexier)

and

2. Why the heck do I have a desktop on my Chromebook?

The answer to 2 is that I shouldn’t, but I have to.

As everyone who’s been reading lately knows, I am an unabashed fan of the idea of ChromeOS and Chromebooks in general. A super light, super quick OS that is essentially just a web browser with a file manager built-in? In a world where most users either do, or could if properly informed, spend all of their time in a web browser, ChromeOS is a computing philosophy that feels perfect. It’s certainly the shape of things to come.

In practice the idea mostly holds up. I’ve used my Samsung Series 5 as my primary machine for the past month and, with very few exceptions, it’s functioned exactly as I’d expected it to. Samsung’s claims of an eight-hour battery life have more than held up; I do most of my work from coffee shops and client’s offices and I haven’t had to pack my charging cable once. In fact, most days I get home and still get an hour or two of use out of the machine before I finally see the low battery warning.

Likewise, the Chromebook’s footprint is nigh perfect. I hate the cramped feel of a netbook, but I also hate the weight and bulk of most laptops. The Series 5 straddles the gap between the two quite nicely. It’s almost as compact as a netbook, but the slightly larger screen and full size keyboard make it feel far less like a toy than comparable offerings from ASUS, Acer and Dell.

Web browsing is terrific; the wi-fi radio seems to have a better range than that in any of the notebooks I’ve used in the last year, which means that, compared to my wife’s Macbook on our home wi-fi network, I get far less signal and drop issues. Occasionally I’ve run into the too-many-tabs= uber-lag issues that others have reported, but with every OS update those occurrences happen less and less frequently.

But the Chromebook does have a few failings. And, unfortunately, the areas it fails at are fairly crippling. [Read more...]

Price Comparison of Adobe CS5 vs Subscription Service

Subscription editions

1-year monthly

Month-to-month

Total 1 year

Total 2 year

 Amazon
Pricing CS5/5.5*

Retail CS5/5.5

Photoshop®

$35

$49

420

840

$650

$699

Photoshop Extended

$49

$75

588

1176

$932

$999

Illustrator®

$29

$45

348

696

$576

$599

InDesign®

$35

$49

420

840

$667

$699

Dreamweaver®

$19

$29

228

456

$383

$399

Flash® Professional

$35

$49

420

840

$615

$699

Adobe Premiere® Pro

$39

$59

468

936

$659

$799

After Effects®

$49

$75

588

1176

$610

$999

*total for 1 year was based on 1-year monthly
cost.

*Amazon pricing as of 1-20-11

*Pricing for InDesign, Flash Pro,
Dreamweaver, Premiere and After Effects was from CS5.5 edition.

Visit http://goo.gl/NoI8i
for more information on Adobe’s website.