Category Archives: New Products

Back Online — Merry Christmas

Please excuse my my sparse posting nowadays, but due to a biliary colic I had to take some days off(line) at a local hospital.
 
However, I am cured, back @ work and happy to talk about some exciting things that happened in the meantime:
 
– our first SemaBeacon prototype is working now and will soon be presented on this weblog
– the "Business" section of our website is almost complete and is supposed to launch early next year
– some more new developments soon to be announced here…
 
christmas sock with presents falling into itUntil then:
Happy Holidays to all of you, my readers. 🙂
 
Greets,
 
Bardo Nelgen
 

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Trying out my Nokia 770 Internet-Tablet (Developer Device)

When I finally received my Nokia 770 Internet Tablet some weeks ago I was very excited about it, since it will be the first mobile client device for our SemaWorx Project.
   Our context-sensitive backend-interaction already works pretty well with PCs, so now it’s time to try out some smaller clients. If the N 770 works well, hopefully a couple of cellphones will be next.
 
About the 770 itself: No, its certaily not slow as the first press feedback assumed, but it’s just as fast as most other PDAs. The preinstalled Webbrowser (the OS is linux-based, so you will be able to install a broad range of apps yourself soon) seems to be an Opera for Linux, the e-mail software comes with support for encryption and signature certificates and IMAP4 for comfortable, server-based e-mail handling.
 
There have been theoretically two ways to go online with the Nokia 770: Wi-Fi (b/g) or via Bluetooth Dial-Up. Unfortunately the current Bluetooth software only dials up via mobile phones but not via common household access points. So Wi-Fi access is much more convenient, though activating encryption is somewhat ponderous.
 
This is what leaves you hoping for the promised firmware upgrade early next year which will hopefully not only include some fixes for its mediaplayer but also some sort of scheduling software which is missing by now.
 
Something to praise: Although Nokia published a battery life of only three hours, I have to admit I had almost no chance to get it empty within less than three DAYS. Clearly enough time to find a place for recharge.
    I’m also a fan of the handwriting recognition software: Right after teaching it the often strange looking of the characters I produce 😉 i t did an amazing job on their transfer to plain text.
 
I’m really looking forward to what the maemo.org community has saved us for the next upgrade…
 

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Best Podcast Recording Device, by now ?

ADDITIONAL UPDATE: Despite its amazing features, this device seems to be of the "give me this day my daily firmware"-kind…
UPDATE: The MicroTrack 2496 won German c’t magazine’s recent competition against two other mobile recording devices.

 
Last week I had the chance to try out a M-Audio Micro Track 2496 portable recording device for a customer who wants to do podcasting with it: It’s amazing. O.K. we had to upgrade It’s firmware first, since the one it shipped with rendered plain unusable, but afterwards we were granted a fine 24/29 audio experience.
 
Unfortunately the device needs about 30 MB of the accompanying 64 MB Flash-Card as RAM, so if you want to record anything other than cd-resolution MP3, you are strongly advised to invest in a bigger card or even a microdrive.
 
The device comes with a plug-on microphone for conference-recording, though also being open to a variety of other connectors, including S/PDIF. Please see the specs for details. Just keep in mind that the phnatom power provided by the device is limited (though not quoted in the specification) – so if you also consider buying a microphone, be sure to give it a try at the shop before buying.
 
However the most fun part of it is, that if you are recording directly to MP3, you just need to connect the device to your PC’s USB port and it will switch to "server-mode" and you will be able to operate it just like any exernal USB-drive.
 
For podcasting, where time and flexibility count, it’s the most suitable device I’ve seen by now. I’m sure, we’ll have some serious fun with this thing throughout the coming weeks.
 

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FLOCKing to the Future

Last Wednesday I – as many others, I assume – read about FLOCK for the first time on TechCrunch: It’s a new Firefox-Clone with built-in Social Networking.
 
So if you’ve been annoyed by using half a dozen of apps and web services, until you finally get your thoughts on your blog, the photographs on Flickr and the new bookmarks on del.icio.us (proper tagging goes without saying here… 😉 ), this new program may have been built for you.
 
Although their FAQ say, that FLOCK originally had been intended to be released as a set of extensions for the "common" Firefox, it obviously turned out that it would need too big efforts to get it all work together properly, so that its developers decided to release it as a separate app.
 
Despite its current beta state, most of the intended functionality seems to work quite properly and I had quite some fun trying it all out.
 
It is said, that this could be an early predecessor of future Web 2.0 browsing apps.
 
Serverside a readily hosted WordPress-Blog seems to be the appropriate counterpart.
 
Maybe this could also be a way for future deployment and interaction with our SemaWorx services. I’ll have to take some time to think about this option… 😉
 

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