Happy birthday!

Stunning flowers To me, that is! I’m officially 23 years old. What better way to celebrate this than to blog about it 😉 Anyhow, it has been quiet here for a while, due to a visit to Shanghai and a busy week. My greatest birthday present is still Shirley, but I also wish some other things, which maybe you could help me with?

Basically, I will stay in Hong Kong longer than previously planned, as I have the approval of staying at HKUST until December 2006 (or maybe longer). What I will do here is a research project, that also will function as my finishing thesis (“examensarbete“) for my Swedish degree in software engineering from Chalmers. There are of course a cartload of formalities to go through before this can be 100% sure, but what I need right now is a research topic, in other words, what exactly will I occupy myself with during the whole autumn? I have the possibility of choosing a topic in two research fields, 3D-graphics and computer music. So what cool things should I do? Feel free to suggest anything, because I have to choose topic soon and I’m in bad need of inspiration.

I will now continue my celebrations by doing school work and have a pizza tonight. Soon more posts will arrive here, for example about my visit to Shanghai, my experiences with having a smartphone and some historical revelations

Mobile gadgeteer – Eten M600

You thought I had enough gadgets? C’mon, you should know me better than that! This time it’s a super gadget – an Eten M600 Windows Mobile Phone. It did not only lighten my materialisti conscience, it also lightened my wallet – or account, quite dramatically. (I payed 4800 HKD for the phone including a 1GB SD-card).

I was chosing between this device and the O2 Xda Atom or Dopod 818 Pro. In the end I chose Eten for it’s good price, good reviews and fast processor. The cons I already knew about, compared to the two other devices, was that the Eten is slightly larger and heavier, lacks EDGE (fast GRPS data transfer) and it also didn’t have an FM radio as the Atom or a 2MP camera as both the Atom and the Dopod had. The camera was a minor interest for me though as no PDA cameras are good enough for serious photography, no matter if they are 1.3MP or 2MP.

Now my Eten is up ‘n running – what can I say about it? Well, it is fast (except the restarting of the device, which is very slow). It is very cool. The screen is really good and so is the general build quality of the device. The basic phone functionality works as it should and the sound is apparently good. What have gone wrong then? I had a lot of trouble setting up the WiFi and it is still not running as smooth as I wanted (might have to find a 3rd part application for that). However, the problems is not in performance of the wireless but in getting it to connect in the first place – which I solved after doing everything step by step from the manual.

The biggest trouble, however, is that my Eten somehow triggered an avalanche of general computer problems. Synchronisation failed sometimes, my USB Hub behaved strange, I couldn’t connect my old Motorola E1 ROKR and Windows started locking up for no reason at all. A few strange application crashes has happened on the Eten, but nothing catastrophic. At the moment though most problems seem to have vanished or stabilized so I just have to wait and see – they might just have been freak errors.

Eten M600My concern right now is to find good software for Windows Mobile 5.0. I though I just had to search Google, but I was mistaken. The web is cluttered with sites proclaiming freeware Pocket PC (PPC) software which is actually shareware or stupid themes. In the end, it seems most PPC software, no matter how unneccesary it might be, will cost me. And I don’t like paying for software. I found a few programs, none of which I have been able to try out seriously, but sooner or later I might compile a list of good, trustable PPC freeware just because of the apparent lack of such lists online. Maybe you know any good freeware?

A couple of sites of interest for Eten users or speculants:

Muhammed’s self image

MuhammedI have to warn you, this short post contains politics. Read further at your own risk. Politics may cause head ache, rashes, bad breath and less spare time. Consider yourself warned.

Yes, I’m afraid I have to state my opinion here, as so many else have done. Luckily for you still reading, my opinion isn’t very complicated. So here it comes:

It’s a cartoon. It’s just a cartoon. Cartoons of that kind are supposed to provoke, generalize and make fun of people that do or don’t deserve it. And what more, the cartoons where published in a smaller danish newspaper, not international media. Cartoons are published everywhere in the world daily that provoke people of different religions, races, opinions, organizations, etc. I thought only Swedish people would be picky enough to portest about cartoons, but obviously the muslims are as picky as Swedes (but in Sweden people write to the newspapers, in Middle East they start a riot).

What’s happening now is sad and a bit bizarre, but not unpredictable. The conflict is not about the cartoon, it’s about the polarization between the west and islam. A polarization that is neither new nor based on as simple things as cartoons or general alienation. It is conflict over millenias and it’s also, nowadays, a conflict of oil and global economics. The constant conflict have made the islamic world unstable (with very few exceptions) while the west in general have a much greater political stability.

So basically, people, forget the cartoons. They are not the issue. Stop debating them, it’s just silly. Unfortunately, the protesters will use the cartoons as a pretext for further instability – they have all the reason to protest, but not about cartoons, but about how their own regimes are corrupt and how the US stations troops in their countries (or neighbouring countries). The issue of the cartoons are not a reason to the polarization, they are a consequence of a much deeper conflict, that most certainly will get worse over the following years. I’m just waiting to see if the muslims manage to unite and start making political demands with the power to back them up instead of bombings and riots.