Monday, October 21, 2013

Waze Quick Review

Waze is an app which is supposed to optimize your commute by gathering a ton of traffic data from it's many many users.  Google bought them recently.  I've used it for a few weeks for a 30 mile daily commute.  So far, it's not particularly useful in Northern Virginia because the HOT/495 Express Lanes completely screw it up.  Also, the voice control is next to useless (I get prompted "OK?" and say "OK" and it asks me to repeat myself three times before canceling my action.  Maybe better for non-toll road commuting.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Quick Verizon MotoX Review

Came to this phone from a Droid Pro (tried a galaxy s4 for a week and returned because it was too big).  Very bright screen with great vivid and apparently accurate colors.  The minimum brightness is way too high in the dark.  The Screen Filter app awesomely fixed that.  It lets you disable a lagre part of the built-in verizon crap that you can't uninstall.  Verizon is being complete jerks about rooting still (I really wish I had convinced my wife to switch to T-Mobile so I could have gotten a better phone for rooting/roms/different OSes).  It gets amazingly hot when charging or playing a game or just leaving the mobile data on in your pocket.  The camera is fine.  The button placement is annoying.  There's no quick way to disable LTE (to reduce the heat problem), but you can set your prefered network setting to global instead of LTE.  It's just as fast as the S4 was for everything I've done.  The motorola assist stuff is moderately ok, but I haven't used it heavily.  The quick camera launch gesture is sweet though.  Google Now doesn't do anything I want well.  If I wake up the phone to tell it to do something, I have to still unlock the phone by looking at the screen and entering my PIN which defeats the purpose of voice control.  It requires a mobile data connection for most commands.  There's no SD card.  It is totally comfortable to hold while running and is isn't waterproof, but it does have a water repellant coating.  So far the voice quality on phone calls is great, which is awesome and makes me wonder why it sucks so bad at recognizing my voice.  The desktop wastes a bunch of screen space and doesn't look as good as cyanogenmod 7 did on my droid pro.  The calendar widget in particular is space-inefficient.  The motorola migrate app is a great idea that I haven't tried out yet.  Apparently the custom shell program will be available outside AT&T in November.  Firefox is a much better browser than Chrome on it and there's no default generic Android internet browser.

Did I mention that it gets way amazingly super duper hot while using mobile data or wifi?  I wish it were rootable and boot loader unlockable.  Can't wait until Verizon Wireless gets a clue or I get a different carrier.

Things left to try: Tethering, OpenVPN

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Java Inanity

I just found out that java on windows now overrides the system path and always runs a version as defined in the registry.  Only does this on Windows.  Every other OS doesn't even have a registry causing secret hidden problems.  Whoever made that design decision should be keelhauled.

I found out that deleting java.exe, javaw.exe, and javaws.exe from c:\windows\system32 took care of the issue.  So dumb . . . .