Archive for September, 2009

Sony VAIO (VGN-)P nearing refresh or end-of-life?

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Sony Style Store Europe (Germany) lists most VAIO P models as “not available anymore”. Refresh or End-Of-Life?

Update: I got a tip from store employee: it’s supposed to be a refresh.

Update 2 Or maybe rather a replacement by the Vaio X series as showcasted at this years IFA (2009) in Berlin? I can imagine most customers found the 8″ screen of the P too tiny to actually use it, the X series would be a pretty slick update given it’s ~11″ screen. Certainly more pleasure and helpful to use the device, at all.

Update 3 Got another tip: Sony Vaio (VGN-)P is apparently being phased out in Germany. (Maybe the display was just too tiny, heh? If they had made it span the whole case and use and not as exorbitant high (1366×786 instead of 1600×768), so that one can read it without a magnification glass, …)

German Bundestagswahl 2009 - Be sure to make your vote!

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

So time to vote, again. To make sure your position counts for the next years in German and European political development be sure to go and make your vote!

Without taking part there is no excuse for complaining what the politicians do wrong - they are elected by the public, including you. If you are lazy, or think you show them your discomfort with the governing party you do not do any better. By skipping the vote you do not express your opinion, but just contribute to an higher overall percentage for left and right extreme parties (as their fellows certainly do go vote and thus people who do not vote bias the relative percentage towards these extremes).

If you are dissatisfied with your favorite (or any) political party a better options is to write a letter to them, expressing your dissatisfaction and points to improve.

To contribute to the future, and hopefully sustained development, especially given the current economic and environmentally challenging times, of Germany, Europe and the world as a whole I strongly suggest to go and make your vote.

It can be a quite comfortable and sunny walk this Sunday in anyway.

Intel opens App store – Vodafone, too

Friday, September 25th, 2009

Joke from the IDF: Intel to open Intel Atom (Moblin) App store. Any they really expect apps to be submitted and sold in quantities over there?

According to my this mornings newspaper, even Vodafone is about to open their own App store.

I really wonder how so many companies (Google, RIM, Palm, Nokia, …) manage to copy Apple that badly. Do they really expect to gain more than a single digit percentage of that market and sell thru this kind of channel?

Companies: If you have not noticed, Apple’s App store is successful only because they have a single, compatible platform that even sold well.

Where are the Intel Atom Moblin devices? And where is the single, compatible and coherent platform Nokia and Vodafone want to target?

I wonder where all those zillion app stores will be in a year. My bet: All lonely, forgotten, buried under dust like an old ghost town – until the power is finally switched of at their dedicated servers, …

Side anecdote: I recently even tried out some Intel Moblin Beta: On non-Intel graphic chips it run in software rendering mode slower than an i386 run Windows 3.11, and on three different Intel GMA systems I had around the shipped Intel driver crashed and froze the whole machine. Funnily at that time no GMA500 driver was supplied either, so that Sony Vaio P run even in the slowest software blitting mode I ever saw!

That where golden times when we developers had to target Windows, Linux and Mac. Nowadays it’s one app store per device and vendor :-(

Core i7 for Notebooks

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

45 to 55 Watt Thermal Design Power (TDP), self over-clocking (Turbo Boost) by up to ten 133MHz steps (on some models this means by over 50%!). On battery power for about 1 hour (under full CPU load) and up to around 2.5 hours for a more idle workload.

So basing on an average 50W for an i7 this means an Intel i7 consumes approximately 20 times the energy of an N-series Intel Atom (2.5W)!

This is a joke, isn’t it?

Update: decide yourself how much of a joke the mobile i7 is, …

Update 2:And still an issue, …

TN TFT displays, no way

Saturday, September 19th, 2009

For the last three years I enjoyed an 20″ Apple Cinema Display. Unfortunately, however, TUIfly (or better, maybe, some airport staff) lost it on the way back from the last trade-show.

Spending some good hour in the nearby Cyberport store I quickly found out: TN panels (such as in the LED backlit Lenovo Thinkvision L2440X) are definitely no joy. On top of the “just 6 bit” color range, with time or area dithering comes the extreme angle dependent color dependency.

Looks like I’ll definitely have to invest in a IPS or PVA display. Devices from NEC and, surprisingly, HP looked quite good.

Update: You may track lost baggage at this site:

Update 2: Looks like my lost display was indeed found, crossing fingers it’s still intact and in the box :-)

Update 3: It did arrive! Looks like it travelled over Tel Aviv!!!

Update 4: From my time as student I still have two ViewSonic VP912s display, too. I invested one into my company, while the other still lives on my home desk. However, I mostly use a notebook on the living room / kitchen table when at home. It happen that I just got to sit on said ViewSonic TN display at home, once again, and I must say it ain’t too bad! For example way better than the approximately 5 years newer Lenovo ThinkVision L2440X display I checked out in the store, as mentioned above. For example simple text (editor, web page) scrolling was tearing badly on the Lenovo display, while it is pretty ok on the old ViewSonic model.

Amazing how much the individual panel technologies varies, especially how much worser it can be even after five years (of R&D one should think).

Acer Ferrari One

Friday, September 18th, 2009

Since it looks like the MSI Wind U210 will only sport an older, AMD Neo MV-40 (single core) CPU – the Acer Ferrari One might be the first light and slim dual-core “NetBook”.

Too bad it has this ugly, impropriate Ferrari design language written all over it (yeah, I guess I always find something to nitpick, … maybe sticking an Apple sticker over the Ferrari logo might help :-).

Hopefully they’ll ship the 3G equipped flavor in Europe in a timely manner, for me to finally get my envisioned 64 bit, VT capable, digital video out (HDMI et al.) 3G equipped Netbook. Let’s hope battery life is in a reasonable 4-5h++ range (best would be 8h anyway). Please.

Update: Looks like Acer put a very uncommon XGP port (ATI eXternal Graphics Port) which allows to plug in very rare external graphic cards, instead of a way more useful HDMI (or similar) digital video out. If that is final it looks like a quite a show-stopper (on top of the red Ferrari finish).

Update 2: Received a spectacular rating of 9.0, lack of HDMI is official, noted and complained about twice … oh my :-(

First gen Aluminum iPhone looked gorgeous

Friday, September 4th, 2009

and AT&T apparently thinks so, too – uses 1st generation iPhone in 3GS MMS press announcement, … If just the Aluminum would not hinder reception that much.

T2 SDE gains non-Linux kernel support, adds MinGW (Win32)

Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

I guess no-one would expect the first non-Linux kernel support added to the T2 SDE to be Win32 (32 bit Windows), or in our case more precisely MinGW. But that’s how the first bits of non-Linux, alternative kernel support finally found it’s way into the T2 SVN tree. As of T2 r34090 one should be able to get Windows .exe files cross-compiled, and out of T2.

This is just the beginning, basic and preliminary support glue. Of course all of this is new, and will get a little more advanced with other BSD, et al. kernels to be added to T2. Time and contributions will tell.

Of course you can engage ExactCODE for professional software development and support, and this new Win32 bits, as usual.