Archive for the 'Software' Category


Handheld Video

For the past few years I’ve been using a video player for my Palm Tungsten T5 called TCPMP. This video player allows me to play video files on my mobile device from a SD card or internal memory. This is a great feature of my T5 because now I can watch my own movies when flying on an airplane, entertain my son when we are at a restaruant, or show a home movie to someone on my handheld. I can fit most movies that I watch between 256M and 512M, so I can get at least 2-3 on one 1G SD card.

TCPMP on Palm

To rip DVDs to files that you can load using TCPMP, you can use the free software Fair Use Wizard. This software will convert straight from a DVD to a file that the handheld can handle. I set the resolution to the native resolution of my Palm, which is 480×320. Two pass video encoding will take longer than a quicker setting, but you will get a better quality movie. Fair Use Wizard also works well for me in Ubuntu Linux using Wine, although it is slower than running it in Windows. A fast processor with a lot of memory will help in the conversion process.

I use TCPMP on the Palm platform, but this software is also available for Windows Mobile. The files that are generated from Fair Use Wizard will work on either platform. For my Palm, I use a clear protective case from Proporta that keeps fingers and other objects from smearing the screen and buttons.

RSS Feeds

Something I’ve been using regularly for the past few years with good results is an RSS newsreader. RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a way for websites you like to visit to summarize changes in a way that a news reader can understand. What this means for me is instead of visiting Wired News, Engadget, and about 20 other websites I like to read, I can view all new changes on their site in my RSS newsreader. Each feed can be updated every hour so I can stay up to date on my news sources.

My site now has an RSS feed, you can subscribe by clicking on the RSS Feed link on the lower right hand corner of this page. You can find other RSS feeds by looking for the RSS feed symbol on many websites. I have feeds for quite a few things, including the ski report for Colorado, the latest Dilbert comic, newly released movies on DVD, and recent pictures uploaded by my friends on Flickr. Whenever someone I know on Flickr uploads a new photo, it will show up in my RSS newsreader within the hour.

On Windows, a good RSS newsreader is SharpReader or GreatNews, I use Akregator on my Linux desktop at home. There are quite a few RSS newsreaders that are web-based also, and a few good RSS plugins for the Firefox web browser. I like newsreaders that will show you how many articles are unread, and allow you to organize your RSS feeds into folders so you can categorize them by topic. With Akregator, I can click on the Comics folder I’ve created to see all the latest comic strips I subscribe to.

Empeg Web Lite

Empeg Web Lite is a small, clean web interface for the Empeg car MP3 player. It displays the currently playing track information, and allows the user to browse playlists and enqueue songs and playlists on the Empeg. You must have Mark Lord’s Hijack Empeg Kernel installed to use Empeg Web Lite. With only one file to install, it tastes great and is less filling! more…

AeroMail

AeroMail is a web-based e-mail client written entirely in PHP using PHP’s built in IMAP functions. I wrote AeroMail because I didn’t like the way any other web-based e-mail packages looked or worked, and also because I wanted to get used to writing with PHP. AeroMail is not entirely complete or foolproof, but I think that I’ve got a good start on it. more…