Firts touch with Ubuntu Phone

Recently I find an opportunity to acquire a second-hand Aquaris bq 4.5 Ubuntu Edition. So below is a first batch of my experiences.

Ubuntu Touch lockscreen

The phone is nice and simple and really well done (for such class of things, of course). A great “Reminders” application comes pre-installed (and it has Evernote sync). It’s not (only) for reminders but it’s a very good notetaking application like the Evernote.

Ubutnu Touch: launcher

The basic OS is quite nice (easy to use). The problem is lack of applications and there also other glitches:

  1. Many things assume than one is always connected (even Today scope every time searches for someting on the net – that’s anoying).
  2. No off-line navigation or map application.
  3. No integrated CalDAV/WebDAV/CartDAV sync (there is syncevolution which can be used but only form the command line – and it’s pretty uncomfortable on a touch-based computer).
  4. Most applications are just polished web pages (so they don’t work off-line), even the GMail app.
  5. The WWW browser does not remember passwords or other entered texts.
  6. There is a quite nice ebook reader and a pair o PDF viewers but no way to view DJVu, dox/docx/odt or other office file formats.

Beskydy from Klimovice (Koenigsberg)

That’s all for the moment. Still playing with it…

Firts touch with Ubuntu Phone

Do things in a modern way

Recently I was on a short trip. Of course, I tried to find some geocaches. As I forgot to load some them into my GPS device at home, I had to do it on the road. With a good wifi and a modern Android tablet it should be no problem. But:

  • The tablet refused to write files to the GPS (attached via USB cable). It was recognized OK but it was read-only for some reason.
  • It is not possible to write anything to a MicroSD taken from GPS and inserted into the tablet (it is possible only into the Android/*** directory – which is not that the GPS device expects…).

Gosau See

So I had to enter the coordinates manually and save the help as a POI note. Thats’ really user-friendly 😦

Next time I will know that carrying of a tablet is pointless.

Do things in a modern way

Some BASIC programming: Gauss ellimination

During my attempts to test the MK-90 I have written a simple (thus ugly and ineffective) BASIC code for the Gauss Elimination Method. The data (a left-side matrix and a right-side vector) are located in the DATA statement.


REM Data input:
10 DATA 3 1 2 3 2 1 3 3 3 7 5 5 5
20 READ M
25 LET N = M-1
30 DIM A(9,9)
35 DIM B(9)
36 DIM X(9)
40 FOR I = 0 TO N
50 FOR J = 0 TO N
60 READ A(I,J)
70 NEXT J
80 NEXT I
90 FOR I = 0 TO N
95 READ B(I)
100 NEXT I

REM Forward run:
300 FOR J = 0 TO N
310 FOR I = J+1 TO N
320 LET C = A(I,J)/A(J,J)
330 FOR K = 0 TO N
340 LET A(I,K) = A(I,K) - C*A(J,K)
350 NEXT K
360 LET B(I) = B(I) - C*B(J)
370 NEXT I
380 NEXT J
390 LET X(N) = B(N) / A(N,N)

REM Backward run:
400 FOR I = N-1 TO 0 STEP -1
410 LET S = 0
420 FOR J = I+1 TO N
430 LET S = S + A(I,J) * X(J)
440 NEXT J
450 LET X(I) = (B(I)-S)/A(I,I)
460 NEXT I

REM Results:
500 PRINT "Results:"
510 FOR I = 0 TO N
520 PRINT X(I)
530 NEXT I

It should work in the old PDP-11 BASIC, and with the old Soviet BASIC (DVK computers, MK-90 and so). It is not suitable for the MK-85 because it supports only 1D fields (and also because it wastes the memory with unnecessary stuff which is a problem for the MK-85).

Elektronika MK-92 with MK-90

And, of course, it is compatible with the Bywater BASIC which I recently have compiled for all my main computers (the SGI O2, the NanoNote and for the Linux-based Zauri)

Some BASIC programming: Gauss ellimination

What is in my bag?

There is a group at the Flickr which is called “What is in my bag”. Some people are showing their stuff here and sometimes it is interesting that people can take with them. I’m not a member of this group. But I find that an evolution of so-called necessary things can be very strange.

My current equipment (which is in my shoulder bag) is quite simple:

  • keys and a wallet (no surprise here, I think),
  • two pens (a Rotring Tikky II and a combined laser-light-stylus one),
  • small notepad,
  • iPhone 3G with a wired headset,
  • a calculator.
  • The calculator is actually a BASIC-programmable pocket computer (the Elektronika MK-85 or the Casio FX-700P). It is usefull when I want to compute something. The phone is good for music and as a calendar but there is no good programming environment nor the calculator for the 3G (I mean one that can actually be installed and can really work here). Also the calculator has battery life which can be measure in weeks or years, unlike the phone.

    If you are curious why I carry so less devices with me, there is a simple reason: I travel to my work by walk (one way is less under 3 km) which makes no use for any reading/browsing device. And at work I have a deskop so I can do most of work on it. If I need to work outside my office then the phone and the calculator i usually just enough. That’s it. For longer trips I usually take a tablet or the Zaurus, of course.

What is in my bag?