Top Menu

Category Archives Tech

Google announced their “talking shoe” today at SXSW. Please remember this is all concept apparel and it could never make it anywhere. It aims to translate movement data in witty messages to users and their friends. I personally do not find this better than Google Glass and really do not see how some people would; even if they can have their own opinion. I see more usefulness out of the Glass then Shoes, especially as far as what you can do with one another and cannot be compared.

Even with that all said, I still think it is cool but my guess it would need a lot of work for it to take off and probably would only be more active in certain and few markets of the world. When you think of all the data that can be collected and what other companies such as Nike can do with it and even go as far as using them on professional athletes either it be the NFL, NBA, Soccer and everything else it could provide to be quite useful and interesting stats.

I think similar products to this are cooler though, take for instance the Nike+ FuelBand. They also attempt to take a step forward with everyone becoming more social and encouraging others to set goals and what not. Which I understand is what Google Shoes wants to attempt at eventually doing. I have personally never tried the Nike+ FuelBand but would not be opposed to it if I were to get my hands on it especially if they ever did come out with an Android app as I believe it is still iOS only without further looking into it.

You can read more about it here at TechCrunch, with much more information and what not that I would rather not copy and paste.

Would you wear and use these shoes actively if it ever came out of concept and on the market?

There are not a lot of solutions in streaming your content straight from your Drobo FS using DroboApps.

I find this to be the best, easiest and most up-to-date solution to stream your content straight from the Drobo FS including support for Xbox 360 consoles (and possibly other devices) which MediaTomb (another solution) does not offer and it being a dead project for over 3 years now.

If you come across FUPPES or are already using it, drop it now as it is a dead project and not just myself but others recommend moving to MiniDLNA.

You can skip this all together if you prefer to use other ways to stream content such as using TVersity, Serviio, Mezzmo, Plex and many more other programs out there which rely on having to use your desktop (or laptop) to stream content which would of course require it be always on and running in order to do so. Unless this is not a problem and/or only yourself to watch or view the content.

Downloading and Installing:

You can download the latest MiniDLNA 1.0.25 (July 13th 2012) from DroboPorts.com

There are many ways to install DroboApps, below is the easiest and least technical. You first need to make sure you have DroboApps enabled which you can do by opening Drobo Dashboard then select your Drobo and go to Drobo Settings > Admin > Enabled DroboApps under DroboApps.

Then once that is taken care of, you will drag and drop the minidlna.tgz file into the DroboApps folder and then restart the Drobo FS from Drobo Dashboard. Once the Drobo FS restarts, you will notice the minidlna.tgz gone and a new folder “minidlna.” Everything should now be installed and working properly, now you just need to barely edit the config file.

Configuring and Adding Folders to MiniDLNA:

The configuration file; minidlna.conf, will be found in the DroboApps\minidlna\etc folder.

You can add folders by editing the media_dir line, this is how I have mine.

media_dir=V,/mnt/DroboFS/Shares/Public/Media

You can simply do the same to make it extremely easy and organized, and just add sub-folders to the Media folder such as “Movies”, “Shows”, “Music” and so forth to your needs. This makes getting and viewing content much easier on the Xbox 360 and other devices.

As noted in the configuration file, you can have multiple media_dir= lines, and restrict content to Video, Audio and Images if you wish.

You can rename what the device shows as on your Xbox 360, PS3 or any other compatible device by changing the following line:

friendly_name=DroboFS DLNA Server

The rest of the configuration file can normally remain unchanged and are all self explanatory too.

Can I play MKV files on Xbox 360 with MiniDLNA?

MiniDLNA will NOT play or transcode MKV files to play on Xbox 360 until they decide to support it. You can still play MKV files on other devices though that support it. I suggest using TVersity in this case to play MKV files on your Xbox 360.

That being said, there is a new project started in late 2012 called MiniDLNA-transcode and here is the original announcement thread. I have not given this a try yet or seen if it can be done, which I think it can be. I hopefully will be trying soon though.

Are there any problems using MiniDLNA on Xbox 360?

The only on-going problem I ever run into frequently is while streaming video content to an Xbox 360 when the video is Xvid and encoded differently than other Xvid files. What happens is after a short period of time, normally between every 5 and 15 minutes, the video will basically halt requiring you to back out of the video (on Xbox 360) and resume play again till the next time it happens again (randomly).

It can be quite a nuisance but from what I have found out, from viewing the files in GSpot, I still think it has to be with Xvid encoded videos and how it was encoded. I have not had a problem with that I can recall of this happening with any x264/mp4 files. It is also 100% not related to a networking problem either.

How can stream my media to Android Phones?

First install BubbleUPnP on your Android Phone and on your Desktop as well. Then install either VPlayer (the best imho) or any alternative video player software such as MX Player on your Android to play the content.

You would then select the source of the files to be from your Drobo FS and either to play the files locally (on the phone) or control and send them to a specific device if listed and supported.

You also have the option to stream the content over the internet with this, so if you wanted to watch media on your Android on the go, you can. You can also use your Android Phone as a controller and send content to play and pause on support devices, the Xbox 360 does work with this.

For the first time for me, I have had one of the worst T-Mobile Support experiences. Which is actually quite bad coming from someone such as myself, since I have always stuck by T-Mobile and supported or recommend them as a customer, even after 11 years or more now. What makes this even more sad, is that it is over the littlest thing you could possibly imagine, a broken charger.

It all started with their Twitter support, which many companies have now a days and it is really just the same as phone or FAQ/online support for most companies too. It is pretty much automated and they actually do not want to help you more than they do when you call them. It use to be different in the past, for example Comcast use to have great Twitter support, but the last few years that is non-existent.

It does not seem that T-Mobile wants to strive for customer service anymore. Why do I think this? Well aside from my experience, take a look at these results:

That’s not a good sign at all, and things do not look to be getting better. Especially when you have issues like mine come up, or far much worse issues for people that will up and leave T-Mobile and are not loyal. And speaking of loyalty, I am even questioning mine after this experience which I will be explaining now. Then there are just more, older articles like this one, Has T-Mobile Customer Service Taken A Turn For The Worse? or others that have continue to get written more of late.

What happened with me?

I used the option to upgrade a line of mine with a free and refurbished phone, nothing special either, just a Samsung T159 flip phone. The phone works just fine, but found out the charger actually is broken, closer look at it reveals that 1 of the copper pieces inside of the connector piece is missing.

So I decided to contact T-Mobile via Twitter and they are very much unwilling to help without wasting time and money. They want me to claim buyers remorse, which requires you to send the entire phone back and then order a new one. I am not sure how this would work with my upgrade option and so forth free (I am sure something bad would have happened), then again I do not want to pay shipping either and of course, waste more time without the phone in use, which I am sure would take up to 2 weeks. Maybe if T-Mobile would give me a free month I would actually consider doing this.

The other option would be to use buyers remorse and replace the entire kit by sending that one back and we send another. ^KM

That is it, there is nothing else they can do and have said twice now the following:

I wish we had a more efficient way but currently we do not ^KM.

Yes, thanks for really nothing. Honestly, their Twitter support might as well be automated. When I asked them if I would be able to trade one at a store, this was their response:

They should sell the cables in store too :) ^LG.

Are you serious? That was their response when I asked that and to have you spend more money because they could not even ship you a working charger. You would think that refurbished phones go through additional checks, and that would include the charger as well but I guess not.

That all having been said…

I more than understand this was not the worst support anyone has ever received and that it could have been worse. But at the same time, there is no reason why even people unlike me should have to deal with this lack of support, being told to use “buyer’s remorse” and be without a phone or have to purchase a new charger when you should not have to.

UPDATE: Samsung being awesome reached out to me and already in the process of getting a new charger replacement. I should have just contacted them to begin with. :)

I recently came across the Drobo FS Internal Problem/Mount Failed error. This happened to me twice about 2 weeks apart but I was the one that did cause the error. The first time I was able to fix it fast and easily but the second time, not so much and not without Drobo’s great support.

Now this error is well documented now over at the Drobo Support site and with very few search results. However, at the same time that article might not help you if say you were in my situation. There are more than a few ways to get this error from my understanding, the reason I received this error however was due to me using 100% disk space.

If you receive this error, first and foremost make sure you contact Drobo Support so they can help you.

With that said, I was able to get rid of the DroboFS Internal Problem/Mount Failed error by gaining a custom firmware from Drobo Tier 3 Support that enabled SSH again (I had it disabled). With SSH enabled again, I moved a few files off the Drobo to clean up space. After that I restarted the DroboFS and once again was able to access my data easily and without any Internal Problem/Mount Failed error.

If you already have SSH enabled then you do not need to gain a custom firmware and you can simply just run the following command in PuTTY:

mount -O rw /dev/sda1/ /mnt/DroboFS

Then close PuTTY and use WinSCP to connect via SCH to move or delete files from your Shares. WinSCP just makes things easier with an interface to look at and what not else. This typicall goes without saying but by including “-O rw” to mount, we make sure everything is Read/Write, otherwise it will be Read-Only File System and you will not be able to do anything (move/delete/etc). Once completed, restart the DroboFS and your error should be gone as mine was. If you do get a custom firmware, it is safe to go back to the latest DroboFS firmware when you are finished.

Around a week ago Google decide to rename Google Market to Google Play as well as other services such as Google Music to Google Play Music. I think it is one of the most ridiculous name changes I have seen especially in the longest time. It does not make much sense to me, other than the complete obvious.

What was wrong with “Market”? It is the most simplest name for anyone non-tech-savvy to completely understand where to get applications, games, music and much more from.

Then you also have the new icon for it; shown above, which I think is one of the most ugliest and hideous icons Google has ever given us too. I know this is my own opinion but I am sure there is at least a large group of other people out there that will agree with me on that too.

I really wish that customer loyalty meant at least a little or more to T-Mobile or any other company for that matter. While this post will be directed towards T-Mobile, I already know that 99.8% of other companies out there do not care about customer loyalty either, and most, if not all, should.

Why is there not some type of loyalty program or something similar to existing customers that have been around for say more than 6+ or 8+ years at T-Mobile? I have personally been a loyal customer of theirs; since I have always loved T-Mobile for that matter too, for over 8 years now. I have I never been with another carrier, and I hope to never especially the death star AT&T. Which I am glad they pulled out of the merger! :)

I am a huge tech geek I guess you would say. I normally happen to pick a phone that will last me more than 2 years not just because of the horrible decisions cell phone companies make for a customer to only be able to upgrade your phone every 2 years with contract renewals. However, in my case, a newer and better phone has since come out that I absolutely want but do not necessary need per say. That phone is the Samsung Galaxy S2 and on T-Mobile it is called the “Hercules.”

I would honestly love to see some type of loyalty program exist to where maybe you could upgrade your phone, with a renewal contract, every year once you have been with them for an x amount of years that they would decide rather it be 4, 6, or even over 8 in my case. Could this program have other perks? Sure, why not, I mean you are showing a company that you are indeed loyal to them already, would it be that hard to offer you more than they would a newer customer? I know some people might say, they are just a company, what makes them feel they have to reward you for your loyalty? I am sure anyone could argue back and forth on this all day, but in the end all that should really matter to them is that you are giving them your money rather than you giving another carrier money instead of them.

Every time I see a great new deal for T-Mobile, it is almost always just for new customers more than half the time, and the other half of the time for existing customers you can only get it if you are eligible for an upgrade. This is just wrong and should not be the case for long time customers. I do understand why in its current state but also 2 years is just a long time in today’s world.

The phone I currently have is the Samsung Galaxy S Vibrant and I bought it Day-1 at the T-Mobile store on July 15th, 2010. I absolutely love this phone, the problem? No official updates, period. There also seems to be none coming out out the foreseeable either. Before this phone I bought the T-Mobile G1 about a month after its release and used it up until the Samsung Galaxy S Vibrant.

But with that said on no official updates, you can still get the latest Android version (or almost latest sometimes) over at the XDA Developers forums because of the great community of developers working together to still bring us updates for all our Vibrant phones. There are some developers right now, one in particular by neobuddy, already providing a Android 4.0 rom (ICS Passion) to the Vibrant. It is still a work in progress and while I have not personally tested it yet, has had for the most part great feedback from the community. I am waiting for another release or two post 8.0 until I flash mine but at the moment, it seems like it is really stable to use now.

I just wish there were plans to bring an official update to our Vibrant. Now why will they not provide an update? Simple answer, because T-Mobile considers it an ancient phone, so why provide an update when they longer support or sell it. They would rather you pay, likely more money too, to get the latest and greatest phone instead. They make money that way.

I still want the Samsung Galaxy S II (S2) “Hercules” branded T-Mobile phone though, even when I do get Android 4.0 on my Vibrant because of the latest hardware inside of it such as the 8.0 MP camera, flash, front facing camera, screen size, and so forth inside of it.

Do you feel as if T-Mobile should have some type of loyalty program? If so, why? What would you love to see them offer in such a program?

Update 12/13/2011: Samsung has stated that we will not be getting Android 4.0 on any Galaxy S phone because of TouchWiz as well as the Galaxy Tab. Source: CNET and other many sites.

I know what I would be able to do, and that is backup my raw captures in 720p uncompressed from video games in for location and achievement guides and walkthroughs. Ideally, 100 drobos, with at least 1TB each would allow me to to be able to back that up as well as the compressed footage, for quite a long time.

So what would you end up doing with 100 Drobos?

So today is the day where I no longer use the Razer Onza yet alone any other future Razer product.

I preordered the Onza the minute it was made available for preorder back in January 2011. I had been waiting to play with it for over a year since it was announced. It was finally shipped to me just over 2 months ago. I loved it at first, but will not even bother to love it anymore. Read on as to why.

I was actually told to contact Min-Liang Tan on Twitter via email, the CEO of Razer, week ago about my issues with the Onza. I was actually going to email a lot of what I said below in an email to them, but decided not to. Why? Because I do not feel as if these issues have been fixed, not only does my brother’s controller and girlfriends have the same issues but people online around forums and other comments elsewhere have reported the same issues as mine or similar. Plus I would be without the controller for who knows how long aside from using the main Xbox 360 controller.

Now that that has been said, I will get to the main reasons why I am disappointed with the Razer Onza, Razer and just overall think the product is terrible to purchase.

  • 1st issue (big issue/main problem): The left joystick will always stop you from running in games. To be more specific, games such as Call of Duty: Black Ops, where when the left joystick is clicked, this allows you to run. It is always a damn problem, usually a hit or miss each time you use it, for me, it has frequent use. I have tried disconnecting and reconnecting the controller to regain control of the left joystick but that does not work. The only time it starts to work right for a short while it when I have shut down the Xbox 360 and turned it back on.
  • 2nd issue (big issue/main problem): The right joystick (very rarely the left joystick) will sometimes physically get stuck in a position. The position it nearly always gets stuck in is towards the right and slightly downwards, think of it getting stuck around the 0 degree angle towards 320 degree. It actually gets stuck, it does not move back into position if I let go over the joystick.
    This does not happen on a constant basis but I can almost always get it to happen and it will normally happen about 6 times (guessing) over a course of around a 5 hour gaming session.
    • What happens in-game with this above, 2nd, issue?
      I use the controller for all games, but its main purpose is for each Call of Duty title online/multiplayer, right now it is Black Ops. When the right joystick gets stuck, it causes me to spin in the game until I physically remove the joystick from being stuck at that position.
  • 3rd issue (minor problem): The X button feels like it has begun to act like it has worn out when it is touched/pressed. It feels different when “touched/pressed” versus the other Y, B, A buttons that feel perfectly when pressed/touched. I hope this makes sense.
    It has not rendered the X button inoperable though, it still works just fine and the response time just does not feel the same anymore over the last 31 days of usage when pressed.
  • 4th issue (minor problem): After the first week of using the controller, the sticker on the back containing the serial number among other information has started to peel off. I have tried to stop this process from happening but with no luck. I definitely try to avoid touching that area but I do have big hands and I cannot just constantly think about making sure I am not touching it and have to play the game. How I use the controller is how I hold the controller too, so I cannot just easily change how I hold it, it should never start to peal off within the first week anyways.
  • I would personally suggest to avoid purchasing the Onza controller. I also do not see them fixing the above issues anytime soon, and even if they did, I am sure people like myself and others who have had these problems are screwed anyways.

    So with that said, what issues have you had with your Onza controller? Do you still use it? Please comment!

Close