Audio available from my Interview with Leo Laporte

If you are interested I was on the Leo Leporte show on KFI Radio 640AM last week. You can get the audiostream now. Leo talked to me about the current issue I was having with Microsoft. If you have some time come listen..

If you aren’t familiar with Leo here is his bio.

Leo Laporte majored in Chinese history as an undergraduate at Yale University. Since then he has worked as an author, speaker, and broadcaster in New Haven, Monterey, San Jose, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, most recently focusing on technology coverage for radio and television.

Laporte has written software for CP/M, Macintosh, and PC compatible computers including the popular open source programs, QDial and MacArc for the Macintosh. From 1985 to 1988, he operated one of the first Macintosh-only computer bulletin board systems, MacQueue.

He was the co-author, with former ABC Technology Correspondent Gina Smith, of ” 101 Computer Answers You Need to Know,” a computer book for beginners published in 1995 by Ziff-Davis Press. He has written about computer hardware and software for Byte, MacUser, and InfoWorld magazines, and he has contributed chapters to “Dvorak’s Guide to PC Telecommunications” and “Dvorak’s Inside Track to the Mac,” both published by Osborne/McGraw Hill. He has written four bestselling “Technology Almanacs.” “Leo Laporte’s 2003 Technology Almanac” was Pearson Publishing’s Book of the Year.

In 2000-2001, Leo was a Contributing Editor at Access Magazine, a Sunday newspaper magazine supplement with an estimated readership of 13 million in 80 markets nationwide.

In January, 1991 he created and co-hosted Dvorak On Computers, the most listened to high tech talk radio show in the nation, syndicated on over 60 stations and around the world on the Armed Forces Radio Network. Laporte also hosted Laporte on Computers on KSFO and KGO Radio in San Francisco.

On television, Laporte was host of Internet! a weekly half-hour show airing on PBS in 215 cities nationwide. He reported on new media for Today’s First Edition, on PBS, and did daily product reviews and demos on New Media News, broadcast nationally on Jones Computer Network and ME/U, and regionally on San Francisco’s Bay TV.

He was a Managing Editor at Ziff-Davis Television, where he wrote and co-hosted “The Personal Computing Show,” a half-hour weekly television show for beginning computer users that aired on CNBC. He created and was a daily contributor to The Site, an hour-long technology newsmagazine that aired nightly on MSNBC, CNBC International, and NBC Superchannel in Europe and Asia. Laporte won an Emmy in 1997 for his work on The Site. He also hosted two shows on TechTV (formerly ZDTV), a 24-hour cable channel dedicated to computers and the Internet. Call for Help and The Screen Savers aired live every weekday from 1998 to 2004.

Download the interview Here

CasesOnline – Superior Products!

There are a myriad of cases available for a consumer to choose from to guard and protect their iPAQ. Some are plastic, some are metal and others are leather. Coupled with the quality of the product and price ranges from economical to ultra expensive, the choice is difficult to make; that is until you look at the superb line of cases created by CasesOnline.

I needed a new case for my 5555 and I wanted to have a better means of carrying my 1940…where did I go? CasesOnLine of course! Why? Actually, I made my choice for a variety of reasons. I found that the look of all their cases is simple and I like that. They have a look of elegance that is clearly understated. Nothing fancy, just a great looking case that draws attention without the appearance of being ostentatious. The design is classy; it has style and fashion.

With the variety of choices offered, the most discriminating shopper can pick a case that is understated and yet, very professional looking. With all that however, the real reason for getting a case is to have a place to store it and keep it protected from drops and other types of abuse. Each case that is offered has a design that will protect your unit from the unexpected. I was very impressed with the way that the leather enveloped my iPAQ so it was protected from any angle.

My 5555 is a constant companion and rarely is not with me. Its functionality is too useful not to have it with me especially with the increase of hotspots. Because I dislike carrying a wallet in my back pocket, having a case that I could keep my driver’s license, health, credit cards and some money in was a factor in the case I would choose. The choice was easy; the Deluxe Case fit the need!

While Michael is correct that a company’s first obligation is to its stockholders, he has missed a crucial point — if you piss off your customers, they’re likely to leave. As the HP Forum thread on this shows, many people will take exactly that approach — and they’ll stop buying other HP products, too. I recall reading that customers are about seven times as likely to tell others about bad experiences with a company than about good experiences, too. That won’t help HP’s stockholders, will it? As for the claim that all the features won’t fit, I don’t buy that. My iPAQ 5550 has a 17.4 MB iPAQ File Store, which is basically Flash ROM that hasn’t been used. Put the extra features there and reduce the size of my iPAQ File Store. Another alternative is to offer the Professional version as the upgrade, which leaves some of the programs normally in the ROM image out and supplies them as RAM-installable versions. That’s what Microsoft did with Pocket PC 2002 and, I think, Windows Mobile 2003.

As for HP’s claim that some applications won’t work in landscape in SE, so what? The user can switch back to portrait without a soft reset.

Even if the application crashes the iPAQ, so what? Not all Pocket PC 2000 applications worked in Pocket PC 2002, and Compaq made the upgrade available. Not all Pocket PC 2002 applications worked in Windows Mobile 2003, and HP made that upgrade available. In fact, WM 2003 was a much more “dangerous” upgrade, I thought, because it severely changed the operating system infrastructure (swithcing from Windows CE 3.0 to 4.2, for example). The claim that current programs exist for landscape mode is also full of holes.

First, many of Microsoft’s existing Windows Mobile 2003 applications won’t work well in landscape, requiring a switch back to portrait to function properly. They should work fine in the SE upgrade because they’ll be designed to work properly in both portrait and landscape mode.

Second, the existing landscape programs require a soft reset to switch modes, a significant penalty. I have dotPocket, but don’t use it for landscape mode precisely because I don’t want to soft rest while I’m in the middle of doing something.

To see examples of applications that don’t work well in landscape, see my dotPocket review.

The only feature of SE that may not provide a benefit to existing iPAQ users is the VGA support, but even that’s iffy. If the ability to scale fonts works in QVGA mode, even the VGA support will provide a benefit. Compaq and HP have shown in the past that they can offer challenging upgrades, and I’m sure HP could do it again. They just don’t want to.

Many people still won’t buy Toshiba Pocket PCs because Toshiba had a habit of abandoning users of recently purchased devices. They seem to have learned their lesson, and offered SE upgrades for the e400 and e800 series. (And the upgrades were free, too.) It’s too bad HP is going backwards, and will likely learn the same lesson the hard way.

Steve Silicon Valley Pocket PC

http://www.svpocketpc.com

Speck Products Skin Tight Case

I was lucky enough to be browsing our forums and noticed a username speckproducts. I sent this user an email since I went over to their site and was pleasantly suprised. Speck Products is announcing a new line of rubberized skin cases under their SkinTight brand for PDAs. The new SkinTight cases provide rubberized protection and a ‘skin tight’ fit without adding bulk.

Their unique Dynaflex material stretches over and hugs the PDA and provides a great grippy feel. The included screen cover easily flips out of the way and prevents damage to the delicate screen.

The SkinTight cases are available for the HP IPAQ 1900 series PDAs. They come in 3 colors which allow consumers to personalize their PDA with a splash of translucent color. They are available now at retailers and www.speckproducts.com and are sold individually for $24.95 and as a 3-Pack for $34.95. The SkinTight case for the Zire 71 will be available in late April.

“Speck Products has had tremendous success with our line of rubberized skins for the iPods.” said General Manager Tim Hickman. “iPod Consumers love the low-profile protection that doesn’t add bulk and they love the great non-slip grippy feel. PDA consumers will especially love our SkinTight PDA skins because they’re small, they protect the screen, and the PDA can be synced without taking it out of the case..”

I was lucky enough to get my case to review and I was pleasantly suprised. These cases are extremely form fitting and for my 1940 add the needed protection. I enjoyed these cases so much I sent my over to our assitant editor Jack Cook for his ideas. I can say I am extremely impressed with this case and especially the price factor. If you are looking for a skin case and can’t afford a Vaja case be sure to run over to Speck Products and order yours now..

Order from Speck Products!

iPAQ Pocket PC h5400 Nevo Update for English ROM Version 1.00.45

I am catching up so if you already have this sorry. This SoftPaq contains the Nevo software update for English ROM Version 1.00.45 to fix the issue with reading the serial number on the iPAQ h5400 Series Pocket PC to allow downloading device codes and key functions. I personally am not a big Nevo user have always had issues with the range of the iPAQ’s IR port.

JAVOClearCase – A Clear Solution for iPAQ Protection

Many of you know from past reviews how I love a leather case over almost every other type of case. The look, the feel, the professional aspect of a leather case has always been part of my belief in how I should protect my investment. The problem however is when you encase your device in leather (or any other material), you lose the ability to SEE your device.

I suppose for a variety of situations that is OK but more often than not, I have found myself in a situation were the covering of the front has been a CLEAR obstacle in the ability to use my device. One example is using my GPS while driving. I found that I would remove my iPAQ from the case it was in just to be able to see the screen…so now where was my protection? CLEARLY, I had none and CLEAR is the operative word here because JAVOedge saw a similar problem.

They recognized that users want the ability to protect their devices and still want to be able to view their screens and continue to admire the inherent beauty of their device. And so they brought forward a unique means for you to have it all — CLEAR Protection for your device.

The JAVOClearCase, made from a polycarbonate plastic that is extremely durable, will protect your device from damage caused from minor drops, bumps, and scraping. This is the same material that is used on bulletproof plastic so you know that there is a high degree of protection. Designed to fit your iPAQ perfectly, it envelops your device allowing you to view and access your iPAQ without having to remove it from the case.

JAVOClearCase – A Clear Solution for iPAQ Protection

Many of you know from past reviews how I love a leather case over almost every other type of case. The look, the feel, the professional aspect of a leather case has always been part of my belief in how I should protect my investment. The problem however is when you encase your device in leather (or any other material), you lose the ability to SEE your device.

I suppose for a variety of situations that is OK but more often than not, I have found myself in a situation were the covering of the front has been a CLEAR obstacle in the ability to use my device. One example is using my GPS while driving. I found that I would remove my iPAQ from the case it was in just to be able to see the screen…so now where was my protection? CLEARLY, I had none and CLEAR is the operative word here because JAVOedge saw a similar problem.

They recognized that users want the ability to protect their devices and still want to be able to view their screens and continue to admire the inherent beauty of their device. And so they brought forward a unique means for you to have it all — CLEAR Protection for your device.

The JAVOClearCase, made from a polycarbonate plastic that is extremely durable, will protect your device from damage caused from minor drops, bumps, and scraping. This is the same material that is used on bulletproof plastic so you know that there is a high degree of protection. Designed to fit your iPAQ perfectly, it envelops your device allowing you to view and access your iPAQ without having to remove it from the case.

High-Speed Broadband Access

Novatel Wireless, Inc., a provider of wireless broadband access solutions, will showcase a diversified portfolio of next-generation solutions during CeBIT 2005 in Hannover, Germany on March 10-16. The Novatel Wireless products to be demonstrated at CeBIT include:

Ovation MCU1000(TM) 3G Multimedia Application Console – The Ovation MCU1000 enables advanced wireless local area networking (WLAN) of multiple laptop computers and other peripheral devices from any room within a home or office to provide broadband wireless wide area network (WWAN) Internet access on 2100 MHz band Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service (UMTS) networks. Developed as a high-speed broadband alternative to dial-up and integrated services digital network (ISDN), Ovation MCU1000(TM) will be targeted at small- to medium-sized businesses, small office/home office (SOHO) users, corporate workgroups and residential customers in Europe. Ovation MCU1000 was recently CE certified and will be distributed through tier-one European operators.

Merlin U630 Wireless PC Card Modem – The Merlin U630 is a second-generation 3G quad band PC Card, offering wireless broadband access on the UMTS 2100 MHz band in Asia, Europe and the Middle East and on 900, 1800 and 1900 MHz band GPRS or GSM networks globally. The Merlin U630 is currently available through Vodafone Germany, Vodafone Group Plc’s largest subsidiary with roughly 27 million customers, Vodacom in South Africa and is in multiple network trials globally.

Merlin U530 Wireless PC Card Modem – The Merlin U530 provides wireless data access to email, the Internet and corporate databases on 2100/900/1800 MHz band UMTS/GPRS/GSM networks in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. The Merlin U530 is available from 13 operators in 16 countries throughout Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

“Novatel Wireless is leading the market with advanced broadband access solutions and CeBIT is the perfect venue to demonstrate the breadth of our product portfolio,” said Peter Leparulo, chief executive officer for Novatel Wireless. “We are excited to demonstrate the market advantages that 3G broadband access and innovative converged wireless solutions present to operators and the convenience and flexibility they provide to their customers.”

Star Wars: Episode III–Revenge of the Sith Ebook

The One and Only Official Screenplay, available exclusively in eBook format, including scenes that won’t appear in the movie itself! Even before the release of the most eagerly awaited Star Wars movie of all time on the theater screen … here’s your chance to experience the action on your own computer screen! Straight from the set, this is the complete, final screenplay written by George Lucas, as brought to life before the cameras by a stellar cast of performers and an unparalleled team of special effects wizards. Enjoy a rare and fascinating director’s-eye-view of all the action, all the legendary characters, and each of the exotic worlds from science fiction cinema’s greatest saga, as it comes full circle. And thanks to the full color images from the final cut of the movie itself, you’ll be able to visualize the adventure as it unfolded throughout the shooting of Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith. For the total Star Wars fan and filmmaking enthusiast alike, this extraordinary e-book is an essential part of the Star Wars experience. As a special bonus, Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith Illustrated Screenplay will be bundled with a free digital copy of The Making of Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith–The Final Chapter by Lucasfilm insider J.W. Rinzler. This eBook is a companion piece to the Del Rey title The Making of Star Wars Revenge of the Sith by the same author, which hits bookstores across the country April 2nd.

Buy it NOW

Its Official…New York Times..

Effective April 11, 2005 I will no longer be part of the Dave’s iPAQ site. I have signed an agreement with the New York Times writing for their Technology Section. This was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make leaving something I worked so hard for the past 5 years. Under the terms I am not able to write for any other online or print publication whatsoever. This opportunity will definitely open doors to other avenues I have never been able to explore. I havent spoken to the moderators about this since I felt everyone deserved to hear it at the same time.

I will miss running this site tremendously.. I have made so many friends with companies such as HP, Microsoft, Sony, Verizon and many others. The people who moderate this site Patrick, Laura, Dave and Steve are tremendous people which I have enjoyed working with. I wish you all the best. I know you are in good hands with Jack.

In my departure Jack Cook will be running the show. Jack told me he would be interested in keeping the Daves iPAQ website name for the interim during this transition. I will continue to visit the site daily and become one of you, a visitor of Dave’s iPAQ. Be sure to read my column every day and drop me a line!

If you arent familiar with the New York Times and are from another planet here you go.. The New York Times Company is a leading media company with 2004 revenues of $3.3 billion, publishes The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, The Boston Globe and 16 other newspapers; owns eight network-affiliated television stations and two New York radio stations; and has more than 40 Web sites, including NYTimes.com, Boston.com and About.com.

Best Regards,

David Ciccone