Kindle PDF and gmail, google Reader and gcal

The Kindle is pretty cool in terms of screen, but the rest of it is pretty well, not elegant. Here are some tips that are pretty much mandatory for PDF conversion (why isn’t this in the box???). The keyboard is really terrible and the way the menus work is confusing, and why is there no email or web browser. So that is sad. I think folks would pay $20/month to make this a true wireless device. But worth it for the long, long battery life and the nice screen.

Kindle PDF conversion – View PDF on Kindle « Kindle 2, Kindle Books Reader 2.0 – Amazon Kindle 2 Review

PDF support on the Kindle is experimental – there are a few ways to convert PDF files for the Kindle. One is by using the MobiPocket Creator – MobiPocket Creator – a free software from MobiPocket. In addition to PDF you can easily convert Word, HTML, and .txt for the Kindle. If you do not use the link above and go to the MobiPocket Software page, then you will get a choice between Home edition and Publisher edition, choose MobiPocket Creator Publisher edition. The Home edition does not have the PDF option.

Another option is to use Stanza, which lets you ‘read eBooks on your Mac or PC and share with your iPhone, iPod Touch, & Kindle.

Opinion: Amazon Kindle does e-mail and more

The Kindle comes with a low-key, “experimental,” largely nonconfigurable Web browser. Called Basic Web, the Kindle browser supports cookies, JavaScript and SSL, but doesn’t support plug-ins like Flash or Shockwave, or even Java applets. It can’t read XML pages, either.

Opinion: Amazon Kindle does e-mail and more

From the Home screen, use the Select wheel [on Kindle 1, on Kindle 2, just press Menu] to choose Menu at the bottom, then select Experimental. Choose Basic Web, then press the Select wheel to bring up the Enter URL box. The box should already have “http://” after which you can type (or go there from my Kindle page), then press the Select wheel on the Submit option to enter.

Now you’re on the mobile version of Gmail. Selecting, opening and reading e-mail is self-explanatory. However, sending e-mail requires some explanation. Here are some tips on how to do it.

* Press one of the Next Page bars until you see the Compose Mail option. Use the Select wheel to choose that grouping of links, then choose Compose Mail from the menu.
* Select the To: box with the Select wheel, then choose INPUT FIELD. Enter your recipient’s e-mail address and choose Done. Add a subject, then the body of your message in the same way.

* Click on the row of buttons under the main message box, then choose Send.
* You’ll get an error message that says, “Your Kindle is unable to access this Web site at this time. Please try again later.” Choose Close. Despite the error message, your e-mail was sent.

Press the Kindle’s Back button (under the right-side Next Page bar) to go back to the main Gmail page.

To reply to e-mail, select the message with the Select wheel, and choose the Subject line from the menu. Select Reply with the Select wheel, then, either Reply or Reply to All. After that, it’s just like sending a new message.

Opinion: Amazon Kindle does e-mail and more

Google offers a free online RSS feed reader called Google Reader. Although the “mobile” version of Google Reader is best for reading feeds on the Kindle, I recommend that you use the “normal” version of Google Reader to add and manage feeds. The address is You can add feeds you run into or if you have feeds in a PC-based RSS reader application, you can likely export your OMPL file, then import it into Google Reader.

Once you’ve got your feeds set up, here’s how to read them with the Kindle. The address for the mobile version is Navigate there with the Kindle browser (or go there from my Kindle page).

Opinion: Amazon Kindle does e-mail and more

Using Google Calendar is super easy. Simply point your Kindle’s Basic Web browser at (or go there from my Kindle page).

The mobile version of Google Calendar shows you appointments for today and tomorrow by default. Choose an item with the Select wheel to see details.

Analyst: 32GB iPhone could debut in June

Analyst: 32GB iPhone could debut in June | iPhone Atlas – CNET Reviews

Apple is expected to begin production on a high-end iPhone with 32GB of flash memory and a low-end 3G version this spring, according to a research report released Tuesday by Lazard Capital Markets analyst.

Production is anticipated to begin in April and ramp up in May, and the new phones could be announced in June, Daniel Amir, a Lazard Capital Markets analyst, said in his report.

He noted, however, that the low-end version may only be available in the fast-growing, emerging markets of Brazil, Russia, India, and China, while the high-end version is expected to make its way to North America and Europe.
(Credit: Apple)

The low-end version is expected to run on a 3G network, rather than on Wi-Fi, while the high-end version is anticipated to double its storage capacity from 16GB to 32GB of NAND flash memory and feature improvements to its camera,


TUAW — The Unofficial Apple Weblog

We had a lot of mail from users eager to let us know that the NeoOffice 3.0 is now available. NeoOffice is a Mac OS X native open-source office suite originally crafted from the code used for OpenOffice, and its developers are boasting about the following features not found in the current release of OpenOffice for Mac:

Should have waited? Wow, the Canon 500D

For $800, you get 15mp, ISO to 3200, full 1080p movie mode and it is $800. That is really a value leader compared with the amazing 21MP Canon 5DII that I have. Maybe I should get as the low end body 🙂

Canon unveils HD Rebel T1i / EOS 500D digital SLR

Canon Breaks the $1,000 Mark Again with the First EOS Rebel Camera to Feature HD Movie Recording Capabilities, DIGIC 4 Imaging Processor and 15.1 Megapixel Resolution

Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging, today introduced a new addition to its Rebel lineup, the EOS Rebel T1i Digital SLR camera, the first in the Rebel line to feature Full HD video capture. The new Canon Rebel T1i SLR incorporates some of the best technologies from the EOS 50D and EOS 5D Mark II models into an entry-level juggernaut. With a 15.1 megapixel CMOS sensor and HD video capture, along with the DIGIC 4 Imaging Processor, the Rebel T1i gives aspiring photographers plenty of reason to step-up to the latest and greatest model in the Rebel lineup.

The new Canon EOS Rebel T1i raises the entry-level bar with a host of enhanced Canon technologies now available in an entry-level DSLR. Along with the boost in megapixels and Canon’s most advanced imaging processor to-date, this latest Rebel camera has also been enhanced with HD video capture, a 3.0-inch Clear View LCD (920,000 dots/VGA) monitor and user-friendly functions such as Auto Lighting Optimizer, Creative Auto Mode and Canon’s Live View modes, all the right tools to open new doors for imaging enthusiasts. From high-resolution to high-definition, the new EOS Rebel T1i Digital SLR camera helps to give creative consumers a jumpstart on the next evolution in digital imaging.

car batteries

Consumer Reports really likes the Walmart Ever Start but there are so few Walmarts around here. So alternatives are.

Kirkland (Costco) auto batteries any good?

Johnson Controls makes Diehard (Sears), Duralast (AutoZone), Interstate, Kirkland (Costco), Motorcraft (Ford), and some EverStarts. If you bring your core back, then you get $5 back.

Kirkland (Costco) auto batteries any good?

get a gel battery (Optima for example) it will last 15 years I sheet you not

many in the car business buy one and take it out when the vehicle dies and puts it into another vehicle

I am reffering to the Optima yellow btw, the Optima Red is not as long life

Kirkland (Costco) auto batteries any good?

CR magazine did a rating of car batteries in their October issue. Kirkland wasn’t their best-buy or quick pick in any of the categories, sort of middle or towards the end of the pack. I recall NAPA and Everstart were always near the top of the rating. I needed a battery and went with Duralast, it was rated ‘best buy’ in it’s size.

Kirkland (Costco) auto batteries any good?

Something people should also know…the ‘trickle’ chargers they sell just about everywhere will KILL your battery…mostly by shortening its livespan by overheating

the only charger you should use is a battery tender, this gives a very low amp charge to the battery…trickle chargers usually are outputing 4 times the amps of a Tender and in doing so cause low grade cycling which reduces the lifespan by as I said before overheating.

Battery Tender is a great product and can be used all the time.

J.M. Weston

These are folks who didn’t get the memo that we are in a global recession 🙂

J.M. Weston – – Upper East Side – New York Store & Shopping Guide

With occasional resoling, these timeless, hand-cobbled French shoes last for life. A good thing, since they cost you your life savings—crocodile moccasins are $2,450; basic styles are $600 to $900.

812 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10065
at 68th St.

Audyssey, Dolby and DTS

What the heck is this Audyssey thing and all these new audio modes? In short, you use a little microphone, the system walks you through 6-8 listening locations and it trys to calculate the right equalization (that is which speakers should be louder or softer) and does it dynamically as people hear different frequencies better at different noise levels. That is what Dynamic EQ is.

They also have something called Dynamic Volume which essentially listens to the source input and changes the volume automatically. That is softer parts of a movie get louder and vice versa. I’m not sure how it really does this and if it really works.

Audyssey: Frequently Asked Questions

The first microphone position must always be in the center of the listening area. Then we recommend moving the mic about two feet to the left of that first position for measurement two and two to the right of the original spot for measurement three.

If you are running MultEQ or MultEQ XT you should use all six or eight measurements available. The next three should be taken about two feet in front of the first three. The final two measurements (if available) should be about one foot to the left and right of the first central measurement and about one foot forward to form a triangle.

You should avoid taking measurements that are too far off to the side and outside the front Left and Right loudspeakers even if there are seats there. These measurements will suffer from a drop in high frequencies and can cause the room correction filters to compensate for that unnecessarily.

Also avoid taking measurements too close to the back wall even if the only listening seats are up against the wall. Move the mic at least one foot from the back wall to avoid the bass build-up that happens there.

Audyssey: Frequently Asked Questions

The Audyssey Flat setting uses the MultEQ filters in the same way as the Audyssey curve, but it does not apply a high frequency roll-off. This setting is appropriate for very small or highly treated rooms in which the listener is seated quite close to the loudspeakers. It is also recommended for all rooms when the receiver is in THX processing mode. This allows THX re-equalization to operate exactly as it was intended.

This seems as clear as mud to me, but here’s an explanation in Denon 3806 Audyssey “Flat”? [Archive] – Audioholics Home Theater Forums

If you have the EQ set to Audyssey, the EQ will add a bit of high frequency roll-off in addition to the room compensation. The HF rolloff is for taking the brightness out of DVD’s that have not been equalized for the difference between movie theaters and home theaters. The rolloff is supposed to be similar to the effects you would get from Denon’s “Cinema EQ” setting.

With the EQ set to Flat, there is no HF rolloff, just room compensation. The only difference between the Audyssey setting and the Flat setting is in the high frequencies; mid-range, bass, etc. should be the same for either setting. The recommended setting for listening to music is Flat.

So what does Dolby TrueHD or the also lossless DTS-HD Master Audio do with equalization. How are you supposed to know if a BluRay movie is too bright or there is a correction? What are all these a names anyway:

Dolby – Technology Overview: Definitions of Dolby’s Technologies

Dolby® TrueHD is Dolby’s latest lossless technology, the ultimate audio experience for high-definition disc-based media. Dolby TrueHD on Blu-ray Disc™ allows viewers to hear exactly what was captured during the recording and mastering process, bringing a palpable and involving audio presence to the home theater experience. 18Mbps, loss-less, 5.1 24-bit/192KHz audio

Dolby Digital Plus is the next-generation audio format that delivers “better-than-DVD” sound in high-definition packaged media because it requires less compression and provides more channels (up to 7.1). Dolby Digital Plus also provides new coding efficiencies for future broadcasting and streaming of multichannel audio. 6Mbps, compressed lossy format, standard for broadcast HDTV

Dolby Digital EX introduces a center rear channel to 5.1-channel playback, expanding the surround sound experience to 6.1 or 7.1 channels. It intelligently identifies audio information in the left and right surround channels. One or two speakers placed behind the listener provide increased realism for front-to-back sounds and those originating from directly behind the listener.

Dolby Digital is a powerful audio format that provides up to 5.1 separate channels of crystal-clear digital surround sound, bringing entertainment to life. A worldwide standard in film, broadcast, and DVDs, Dolby Digital delivers unrivaled audio in home theater systems for an exciting, enveloping surround sound experience. The thing on most DVDs now.

Dolby Surround technology encodes four channels of audio (Left/Center/Right/Mono Surround) onto just two audio tracks for media such as TV broadcasts and feature films on VHS. On systems containing Dolby Pro Logic® technology, the audio is reconstructed to its original four-channel surround sound.

DTS | Technology | At A Glance

DTS-HD Master Audio provides lossless audio that matches, bit-to-bit, the original movie’s studio master soundtrack and is fully backward-compatible with all DTS decoders. 7.1.

DTS Digital Surround is the standard for providing 5.1 channels of discrete digital audio in consumer electronics products and software content. There is a core standard called DTS which supports 5.1 compressed at 1.5Mbps.  Then extensions which receivers can ignore caled  DTS-ES, DTS-96/24 and DTS Neo:6. These are really complicated. DTS-ES Discrete has 6.1 discrete channels whereas DTS-ES Matrix encodes the 6th channel inside the others. DTS-96/24 increases encoding to 96

DTS-ES is the only digital audio format capable of delivering 6.1 channels of discrete audio in the consumer electronics market. DTS-ES is also fully backwards-compatible with DTS decoders that are not Extended Surround equipped. DTS 96/24 DTS 96/24 DTS 5.1 and DTS 96/24 decoding inside The disc is encoded with DTS 96/24 and is playable in 96/24 with any DTS 96/24-equipped hardware. Fully compatible with DTS-capable 5.1 hardware, and backward-compatible (at 48/24) to all DTS-equipped hardware.

DTS Neo:6 DTS Neo:6 DTS Neo:6 is available in all DTS-ES-equipped receivers.

iPhone 3.0 features galore

Wow, some cool new features for the iPhone in July. If you can stand it, wait for the new software and faster phone. Copy and past, MMS, landscape view for mail (finally!), google calendar sync, Spotlight search, tethering your PC to the iPhone, faster 3G are amonth the many features..

AppleInsider | iPhone 3.0: 100 new features for users; 1,000 new APIs for devs

For iPhone and iPod touch owners, Apple announced over 100 new features that will be available when iPhone OS 3.0 is released this summer including cut, copy and paste, which can be done within or across applications; MMS to send and receive photos; contacts; audio files and locations with the Messages app; and the ability to capture and send audio recordings on the go with the new Voice Memo app.

iPhone Copy and Paste
You double tap onto the text, and it automatically selects that text, adding grab points you can drag to customize your selection.

Landscape view will also be available for Mail, Text and Notes. Search capabilities will be expanded, allowing customers to search within Mail, iPod and Notes or search across all key apps by typing a key word or phrase into the new Spotlight search, conveniently accessed from the Home screen.

An updated Stock app will add the ability to display recent company news and current trading information like opening or average price, trading volume or Market Cap, and will offer a landscape view to see a full screen of any stock chart. Users will also be able to view shared calendars right on their iPhone with CalDAV support and sync their calendars with iCal, Yahoo, Google and Oracle.

iPhone Evolution

AppleInsider | Apple’s 2009 iPhone to support faster 3G networks – report

How fast this year’s new iPhone will get actually depends upon the radio components Apple can source. AT&T’s long term plans include an upgrade to 3GPP Release 7 (HSPA+) and later Release 8, also known as LTE (Long Term Evolution). LTE refactors UMTS service as an entirely IP-based, fourth generation network based on orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing technology.

“We’ve already got HSPA [networks built out] and when we go to Release 7,” de la Vega said, “we can go all the way up to 20 megabits per second.” Some UMTS networks in other countries already support 20Mbit/s HSPA+ Release 7 (also referred to as 3.5G), and many have supported 7.2Mbit/s HSPA for some time, making it straightforward for Apple to launch a new iPhone with support for 7.2Mbit/s HSPA mobile networks, if not the even faster 20Mbit/s HSPA+.

“We are, right now, capable of taking our network and improving the speed of it up to 20 megabits per second. So we think that carries us through the next year, year and a half, then I think you begin to look at LTE as the next step [in the 2010-2011 time frame],” de la Vega said.

[Update and clarification: As originally noted at first publication, the current iPhone 3G’s hardware only supports mobile downloads up to 3.6Mbit/s.

According to an interview GearLog conducted with Apple’s Greg Joswiak, the iPhone 3G uses “the HSDPA 3.6 high-speed network standard, which is faster than the HSDPA 1.8 standard previously reported.”

Wikipedia’s notes on AT&T’s currently deployed US 3G networks: “Speeds up to 7.2 Mbit/s are available in most markets. Areas that use UMTS instead of HSUPA as the uplink protocol are limited to 1.8 Mbit/s speeds.”

An earlier update to this article indicated that the current iPhone 3G used Infineon’s X-GOLD 608 platform and could apparently support faster speeds, based on comments made by iFixIt, which correctly identified a power management chip designed to be used with that platform, but did not state that all the platform’s chips (which can support 7.2Mbit/s networks) were being used in the iPhone 3G. They apparently are not. ]