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Raphael Spannocchi's Blog - music, life, tech, citoyen – page 4

custom ROM for my HTC ChaCha pt2

So, after some fretting, and woeing why I hadn’t backed up my original ROM I finally got to the heart of the issue. The SuperDroid 1.0 ROM I installed on my ChaCha comes with A2SD baked in. A2SD or App2SD is a beautiful little app, that moves all of the apps to a ext3 partition on your SD, that you first create on with ClockworkMod (here’s a nice How-To). The problem here: my SD is a very, very cheap, very, very slow SanDisk microSDHC. So Apps like Messaging, Phone and so on take a very long time to load, making my phone very sluggish.

I deactivated A2SD with the GUI that you can download on Google Play and installed Link2SD, a beautiful tool that let’s you put programs on an ext3 partition of your SD and then creating symbolic links in Androids app directory. The advantage of partitioning your SD is, that, once you select the Disk Drive option when USB connecting, your phone only ejects the FAT32 partition of your SD card and not the ext3 partition, thus keeping all of your apps useable.

Now my phone is working really nicely, has lots of features it didn’t have before, like Titanium backup, or SSHDroid and AdFree. Next Step will be getting a fast SD card and then reactivating app2SD.

custom ROM for my HTC ChaCha

I really like my ChaCha, but one thing I got really fed up with is that it runs out of memory very often, so I can’t install some apps, like Instagramm or can’t update to the newest version of Google Maps. So after researching it a bit, I decided to install a custom ROM, SuperDroid, that would allow me to remove some of the built-in apps like Facebook and add a few others like Link2SD.

So I began, and altough my phone was S-ON, for whatever that means, which supposedly makes it more difficult to root it, I succeeded by doing this: (I exclude all the missteps and stepbacks, so it seems like one seamless, easy process, which, believe me, it was not)

  • Converted a microSD card to a gold card, so I can flash another version of the ROM, than the one, that I had.
  • Installed the newest HBoot from HTCs Dev site. (RUU_blabla.exe, before the actual unlocking begins)
  • Unlocked the Bootloader, as discribed in great detail on HTCs Dev site.
  • Installed CWM as described in this post, the XDA method failed me.
  • Installed my SuperUser.zip as described in same post.
  • Installed the SuperDroid ROM as described here.

So, I’ve been using it for a day now, and… IT COMPLETELY SUCKS!!! The phone is slow, drains battery, SMS take 2 minutes (yes that’s 120 seconds) to load, and contacts don’t display correctly!

Unfortunately it’s not easily possible to reinstall the stock ROM, since the HTC Rom Updater won’T flash, for security reasons. So, I’m currently searching for someone who was smart enough to backup their stock ROM before flashing.

Keeping you posted.

building the perfect NAS

I recently bought a Zyxel NSA 210 NAS, which, truth be told, really really sucks. No telnet, No ssh, you can only administer it via a rather slow and cumbersome web interface, that takes all of my patience just to copy all the music I have to the folder I wish to.

I shortly experimented with using an FFP stick, but the system wasn’t that stable, leaving me unable to login to the web interface after a couple of days use for more than once.

So, I decided to get rid of it, and finding QNAP and Synology a little expensive for my liking I found I could build my own NAS. The ingredients:

  • Intel D425 KT Desktop board – Atom processor, 10W TDP, passive cooling, 50€, yes!
  • The 1,5 GB Samsung HD that I have in my Zyxel
  • picoPSU 80W power supply
  • TP-Link Gigabit NIC
  • 1 GB SO-DIMM DDR3 RAM

Total cost will be about 110€ – on par with the small QNAPs – but I can install the OS of MY choice, Ubuntu Server, Fedora, Debian 6…. even Win Server if I wanted to. Eat that run-of-the-mill NAS!

I’m going to put all that in a soapbox for some gritty industrial good-looks. Stay tuned for pics!

crowdfunding and the JOBS Act

In the last couple of days, I’ve been researching about crowdfunding and related internet sites. Kickstarter, IndieGogo, CrowdCube and Seedmatch, all very exciting platforms. Kickstarter and IndieGogo raise funds for small, creative projects mostly. Although IndieGogo is not so strict on letting just creatives raise funds there; as seen by Nicholas Merril – raising 43k$ in just one day for his privacy-protective ISP.

CrowdCube and Seedmatch (Germany) raise capital for business ventures mostly. Seedmatch only has one active project at this moment, and at CrowdCube I noticed a large gap between some (6-8) fully funded projects and active projects that had 46% funding – max. That made me wonder if it’s really taking hold in the UK as a viable platform that attracts investors in the first place. Maybe the completed projects brought their own investors to CrowdCube, and just used it instead of a traditional investment bank, that wouldn’t have bothered with small amounts like that.

The House of Representatives in D.C. recently passed the JOBS Act or crowdfunding act, opening up regulation of who is allowed to invest in small startups. A domain that was closed to the public until now, potentially creating a multi-billion dollar investment market.

The pivotal point here is trust. How can Joe Doe, investor, be confident his investments aren’t just complete rip-offs? This question will no doubt get flaunted by banks and investment outfits (it’s already happening) fearing for their fund-dollars. But then, how can I be shure the money manager in my fund does well? Especially in times like these?

I personally think that whoever can create an environment of trust, that attracts masses of investors, has a goldmine on his hands.

long tail – dead end

Yesterday I had a very interesting conversation with Christian Pirkner, who told me that Amazon actually doesn’t reference it’s long tail as part of its suggestion mechanism. In case any of you are not completely clear as to what I mean, I refer to long tail as in the Blook by Malcom Gladwell, wired magazines chief editor.

Gladwell suggests that aggregator services like iTunes or Amazon increase their revenue as they sell ever more different items, because its customers know they can find almost everything.

But what about the items on the long tail, how do they get found? It turns out that Amazon doesn’t help those at the far end of the long tail to sell. It’s suggestion mechanism is based on actual shopping by prior customers. That means if an item is listed on Amazon, but bought only by very few customers, it almost never gets suggested.

Thereby leaving the far end of the long tail a dead end.