Saturday, July 31, 2010

Hello Droid!

I recently bought an android based internet tablet. Its really cheap, and inferior to iPad in all aspects (slower processor, less ram, capacitative touch screen, less memory, smaller real estate to list a few). Yet, it is considerably more open than iPad.

Apple has never been known for openness, but the extent to which they have locked down iPad is frustrating. It was frustrating with iPhone, yet iPhone’s frame of reference was other phones, and they are not open either. On the other hand, I compare my iPad to a netbook, and not being able do anything beyond apple's imagination of what people should do with there iPads is very disheartening.

Maybe the lock down is a great idea - my parents love the device for its simplicity. But for the rest of us who feel a little bit less intimidated with computers, not so. So if you have not jailbroken your iPad, craiglisting would not be a surprise to me. There's an app for everything, but there is only so much you can do.

Back to my new tablet. Its a 7 inch SmartQ v7, running a 600 MHz processor. Its capable of triple booting, and comes pre-installed with Windows CE, Linux and Android. Android looks very promising - I am still awaiting my SD card to ship, but looks like there are a lot of things I can do with it. Things like installing a 3G modem, connecting it to other USB devices, and so on. Because it runs Ubuntu too - the possibilities are endless, although by far, android is the most usable system on it.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

A wallpaper a day on iPad

Guardian Eyewitness is such a great app on iPad, and I wish it had a feature allowing you to set the images as a wallpaper for that day. Being able to rotate wallpapers would be even better. Unfortunately, it won't let us do that, at least not in the current version.

However, if you have a jailbroken iPad, it should be easy to do this. First, you need to know the location of the wallpaper, which is


Then, you need to find out the location where Eyewitness app stores the Photos. For my ipad, it is

/User/Applications/7C322A28-737A-48DC-8535-08878D6001ED/Library/Application\ Support/Eyewitness/Photos/

I don't know how the cryptic names like 7C322A28-737A-48DC-8535-08878D6001ED are derived, and I found it out using trial and error, but I believe tools like iFile have a setting in their plist that allow you to see both the encoded name and the actual app name.

For now, I just overwrote HomeBackground.jpg with one of the photos in this app, and respringed. It should be possible to write a script that runs once in a while in background, and automatically rotates between available pictures. Let's see when I have a relatively free weekend to try this out - back to work for now.