« Do You Still Hear the Silence of the Law Review, Clarice? | Main | Japanese Character Entry on an English PDA »

Bring Me The Head of Bill Gates

So yesterday my new Dell Axim x50v PDA arrived. For those of my readers interested in tech, I'll give a more detailed review, but for those who don't need the details: great piece of kit, pity about the operating system.

The Device Itself: The Axim's come a long way since the clunky, clumsy days of the X5. It's a bit larger than some of its competitors, but the ability to take both SD cards and CF cards means I'm not out a couple Jacksons in accessories. I've got a few complaints about the button-placement, which seem optimized for women with spidery fingers. I think I've opened the Rhinoskin case about three times without accidentally pressing the wireless button.

Which brings me to one other question. Dell is marketing the x50v, with its VGA screen, as a "gamer's PDA." What in heaven's name are they thinking? OK, I'm sure that if I installed a game on this thing it would look great, but what am I going to play it with? The directional button would look small as a cracker topping. Unless you're going to buy some bluetooth D-pad (and by the way, the bluetooth on this thing works great), just go buy a Gameboy.

Which brings us to the best of the best: the screen. You just can't describe the difference between this and the earlier Axim models. It's bright, it's crisp, and it probably does to battery life what Nader fears Bush is doing to the environment. But what the heck, it's a thing of beauty, and I can't recommend it more highly.

The Operating System: On the other hand, that screen is supported by the new Microsoft Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition. For that, I can give you a two-word evaluation:

Windows ME

Seriously, it's that bad. I've had this thing less than twenty-four hours, and already I'm best friends with the soft-reset button. Hell, I'm on passing aquaintance with the hard reset function, and I'm keeping multiple backups to make certain that if there's a crash I can get back to a stable position without too much trouble.

Admittedly, I'm doing some fairly rough things. I've tried to install a task manager, because despite persistent user complaints, Microsoft still hasn't provided a way to do one of the most basic OS tasks: shut down a goddamn program. I've installed a Japanese screen font (and did I mention that on a VGA screen those fonts look bloody fantastic?). And I added one of the agenda management programs that comes bundled from Dell. Anything else that I tried to add from my old PDA resulted in this error message: "This application may not function because it was designed for a previous version of Windows CE."

(Incidentally, Microsoft, can you make up your fucking mind? I'm either running a Windows CE device, a Windows Pocket PC device, or a Windows Mobile device. Could someone please go back through your OS and make sure the operating system gives me consistent error messages as to the nature of the device I've got in my hands?)

The lack of stability, the freezes, the lockups--these are inexcusable. Indeed, at one point the operating system was so screwed up that the screen was showing nothing but pin-striped lines.

But worst of all is the lack of backwards compatibility. Some of you might remember that I recommended Decuma's Japanese handwriting recognition software a few months back. Well, guess what? It doesn't work on the new version of.... whatever this OS is called. Once you install it, it disables every input system and keeps all applications from launching. And you can't remove it. Hard-reset, anyone?

So now I'm stuck. I've got a piece of kit I really like, but the primary function I hoped to use it for--a Japanese/English dictionary--can't be managed until I find a replacement for Decuma. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd greatly appreciate it.

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.threeyearsofhell.com/cgi-user/mt/mtPleaseLinktoMe.cgi/744

Comments

Spare a thought for me, if you would: I have to *work* with Windows Mobile devices. It's no fun at all. Incidentally, there is a way to kill programs. (Wait for it - this is quite silly !) It's under "Memory Management" on the 'System' page of the 'Settings' mode.
Bateleur: I'm sorry, I should have been clear. I know of that way to kill programs. I meant a simple, sensible way to close a program.
Well, i'm from russia and had some problems with decuma, but after some efforts (hard res, new fonts, such as msmincho) it's fine now, except one problem - input works in any windows application, but in decuma interface itself fonts do not work. Can anyone help me out with this problem ? Wich fonts do i need ? P.S. BTW, i have iPaq rx3715
Well, i'm from russia and had some problems with decuma, but after some efforts (hard res, new fonts, such as msmincho) it's fine now, except one problem - input works in any windows application, but in decuma interface itself fonts do not work. Can anyone help me out with this problem ? Wich fonts do i need ? P.S. BTW, i have iPaq rx3715
I'm running into the same problem with Decuma Japanese on my new HP hx4700. I'm only using the demo version at the moment, and after installation it will work fine *until* I do a soft-reset, and then it goes into the state you describe ("not enough program memory...")—but constantly reinstalling isn't much of a work-around. Over on the never-ending Brighthand Japanese-on-English-Pocket-PC thread: http://discussion.brighthand.com/showthread.php?s=fe6fad4f8a854dab5990aec215d85893&threadid=74282&perpage=10&pagenumber=26 ...NYCKiwi claims that Decuma is coming out with a new version soon for 2003SE and VGA, and so we can hope it plays better with the OS. What J-E/E-J dictionary are you using? So far I've been making do with Mike Johnson's edict-based dictionary, but it's not as slick as it could be. (BTW, I'm a graduate student in linguistics studying Japanese, and I'm particularly interested in kanji handwriting recognition solutions, because I'm woefully illiterate in Japanese.)
Have you tried ATOK as your handwriting input editor? It works for me--even on a second edition hx2750.
Just so you know, you can now switch your x50v ROM into Japanese...then get the wonderful native Windows Japanese IME programs.
This problem has finally be solved. :) I highly recommend you read this thread to see how to get MS Japanese Handwriting IME installed on English WM2003SE (and FE too). Serious business this. Please help get the word out! This freeware fix is exactly what I've been looking for for the last three years. All the input apps work perfectly on my Tosh e800 - they should be fine on the Axim.
Quite seriously cool. I'll write an updated post on this today.

Post a comment

NOTICE TO SPAMMERS, COMMENT ROBOTS, TRACKBACK SPAMMERS AND OTHER NON-HUMAN VISITORS: No comment or trackback left via a robot is ever welcome at Three Years of Hell. Your interference imposes significant costs upon me and my legitimate users. The owner, user or affiliate who advertises using non-human visitors and leaves a comment or trackback on this site therefore agrees to the following: (a) they will pay fifty cents (US$0.50) to Anthony Rickey (hereinafter, the "Host") for every spam trackback or comment processed through any blogs hosted on threeyearsofhell.com, morgrave.com or housevirgo.com, irrespective of whether that comment or trackback is actually posted on the publicly-accessible site, such fees to cover Host's costs of hosting and bandwidth, time in tending to your comment or trackback and costs of enforcement; (b) if such comment or trackback is published on the publicly-accessible site, an additional fee of one dollar (US$1.00) per day per URL included in the comment or trackback for every day the comment or trackback remains publicly available, such fee to represent the value of publicity and search-engine placement advantages.

Giving The Devil His Due

Choose Stylesheet

What I'm Reading

cover
D.C. Noir

My city. But darker.
cover
A Clockwork Orange

About time I read this...


Shopping

Projects I've Been Involved With

A Round-the-World Travel Blog: Devil May Care (A new round-the-world travel blog, co-written with my wife)
Parents for Inclusive Education (From my Clinic)

Syndicated from other sites

The Columbia Continuum
Other Blogs by CLS students

De Novo
Theory and Practice
Liberal Federalism?
Good News, No Foolin'


Althouse
Nancy Pelosi covers her head and visits the head of John the Baptist.
Vlogging in from Austin.
Omikase/"American Idol"


Jeremy Blachman's Weblog: 2007
Happy Passover
Looking for Advice re: LA
Google Books


Stay of Execution
What I've Learned From This Blog, or My Yellow Underpants
The End
Mid Thirties


Legal Theory Blog
Program Announcement: Summer Programs on the Constitution at George Washington
Book Announement: Political Foundations of Judicial Supremacy by Whittington
Entry Level Hiring Report


The Volokh Conspiracy
Making the Daily Show:
Civil unions pass New Hampshire House:
Profile of Yale Law Dean Harold Koh:


Crescat Sententia
Hillary II
Hillary
Politics and Principal/Agents


Law Dork
Election Approaches
Following Lewis
New Jersey High Court: 'Same Rights and Benefits'


IrishLaw
Homecoming
Surveying the revival
Birds of paradise


Half the Sins of Mankind
Cheney Has Spoken Religious conservatives who may ...
Does Ahmadinejad Know Christianity Better Than MSN...
Borders as Genocide In discussions of climate chan...


pf.org
Progress
For lovers of garden gnomes...and any China-freaks out there
We Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Programming


Ideoblog
Does SOX explain the flight from NY?
More Litvak on SOX effect on cross-listed firms
What did the market learn from internal controls reporting?


The Yin Blog
Iowa City = Riyadh
Jeffrey Rosen's "The Supreme Court"
Geek alert -- who would win between Battlestar Galactica and the U.S.S. Enterprise?


Letters of Marque
Graduation
And there we are
Oil!


BuffaloWings&Vodka
Signing Off


Dark Bilious Vapors
Jim (The Waco Kid): Where you headed, cowboy?
Bart: Nowhere special.
Jim: Nowhere special. I always wanted to go there.
Bart: Come on.
--"Blazing Saddles"

Technical Difficulties... please stand by....
The Onion should have gotten a patent first....


Legal Ethics Forum
Interesting new Expert DQ case
Decency, Due Care, and The Yoo-Delahunty Memorandum
Thinking About the Fired U.S. Attorneys


Ex Post
Student Symposium- Chicago!
More Hmong - Now at Law School
Good Samaritan Laws: Good For America?


Appellate Law & Practice
Those turned over documents
CA1: courts can’t help people acquitted of crimes purge the taint of acquitted conduct
CA1: restrictions on chain liquor stores in Rhode Island are STILL okay


the imbroglio
High schoolers turn in plagiarism screeners for copyright infringement
talisman
Paris to offer 20,600 bikes at 1,450 stations to rent by the end of the year


The Republic of T.
The Secret of the Snack Attack
links for 2007-04-04
Where You Link is What You Get

Distractions for stressed law students

The Other Side: Twisted AnimationsSomething Positive, a truly good webcomic

Syndicate This Site

Sitemeter

Technologies


Stop Spam Harvesters, Join Project Honey Pot