Test Driving the LifeDrive

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Zombie Elvis

ungelesen,
25.05.2005, 04:53:1725.05.05
an

I've had my new LifeDrive for about thirty hours. It's a remarkable
device -- not perfect mind you -- but it's quite a little machine.

Look and Feel

The first thing you notice about the LifeDrive is the rounded corners.
Every corner on the LifeDrive, except for the Home and Files buttons
is rounded. The next thing you notice is the way the back of the unit
slopes inward. This feature makes the LifeDrive very comfortable to
hold -- more comfortable in fact than a lot of smaller, thinner
machines.

You might also notice that the LifeDrive feels rather warm in your
hands. That's the 4GB hard drive and huge battery churning away. In
fact, most of the LifeDrive's backplate is covered by air holes to
help cool the hard drive and battery. It never gets overly warm except
when it's recharging or rebooting but it will usually become at least
noticeably warm during normal use.

Life most PalmOS PDAs, the LifeDrive has four hard buttons and a
five-way directional pad. The layout of the piano key-like hard
buttons is a little unusual. Normally, you'd expect the hard buttons
to be lined up in an east/west fashion with two buttons on either side
of the d-pad. There are still two buttons on either side of the d-pad
on the LifeDrive but they are stacked on top of each other. This can
cause some confusion in applications like AvantGo which can remap the
buttons for their own use. The d-pad is probably one of the prettier
pieces of technology you'll see and functions flawlessly. It also
feels good when you press it with its gentle curves.

On the left side of the LifeDrive are the Voice Memo and Flip Screen
buttons. They are recessed to prevent accidental activation. The Voice
Memo is a little too difficult to press. (I've never had much use for
voice memos anyway but it's still annoying.) The Flip Screen button
which thankfully is easier to press, does just what its name implies.
It flips the screen from portrait to landscape mode. This was a task
which was previously handled by an icon on the command bar of PDAs
like the Tungsten T3 and T5.

The power button is a "three-way" button. If you slide it to the
right, it turns the LifeDrive on and off. But it you slide it to the
left, it "holds" the LifeDrive's current state and ignores all screen
taps and button presses. This is a great feature for a multimedia
device, since when you listen to music, it allows you to flip the
power button into the hold position, and slip it in your bag or pocket
without worrying about accidentally pressing a button when it
inevitably gets jostled around.

The LifeDrive uses the same springloaded stylus used by the
collapsible Tungsten T PDAs. It looks rather odd sitting in its silo
in one corner of the device which looks as if it has been cut away,
interrupting the otherwise beautiful curves of the LifeDrive.

On the bottom of the LifeDrive are the headphone jack, multiconnector,
and reset button. The multiconnector is the same connector used on the
Tungsten T5 and Treo 650. The most striking thing about it are the
delicate looking wires which look like they are far too easy to bend.
But T5 and 650 users can speak to this issue far better than I can.
The reset button hole is so wide that you can reset the LifeDrive with
your stylus -- no more annoying dismantling of your stylus when the
device crashes.

While the placement of the headphone jack hasn't been a problem for
me, I don't understand the wisdom of putting it on the bottom of the
machine. The only justification that I could think of for this was the
fact that putting the headphone jack on the bottom would encourage you
to put the LifeDrive upside down when you put it in your pocket. This
would allow you easier access to the d-pad which controls the volume
which would allow you to listen to music on your LifeDrive and adjust
the volume of the without removing it from your pocket. But that
doesn't make sense since you'd want to use the hold feature of the
power button to prevent accidental key presses which would negate any
advantage of putting the headphone jack on the bottom since you won't
normally be able to use the d-pad to adjust LifeDrive's volume.

The LifeDrive's screen is brighter than the Tungsten T5's screen but
not as bright as the screens on the Tungsten E or Treo 600.

Deja Vu

Physically, the LifeDrive is almost the exact same size as the old
Handspring Visor PDAs. The Visor was a little longer and wider than
the LifeDrive and the LifeDrive is a little thicker than the original
Visors. The LifeDrive is heavier than early Visors and approaches the
weight of the Visor Prism. This is considerably bigger and heavier
than more modern PDAs like the Tungsten E and T5. Old Visor users who
are unhappy with the slipcase which ships with the LifeDrive, won't
have far to look for an alternative. The original Visor Slipcase
should fit the LifeDrive perfectly.

Speed vs Storage

The 4GB hard drive changes the way you look at your Palm Pilot. You no
longer have to worry about running out of memory. You can just keep
throwing stuff onto the hard LifeDrive without putting much thought
into whether or not you are running out of space. It also allows for
more serious multimedia. Within a few short minutes of putting on my
LifeDrive into "Drive Mode," I had copied 223 songs totaling 905MB and
eight videos, totaling almost 1GB and 200 minutes of viewing pleasure
to my LifeDrive.

The disadvantage is some sluggishness. Even the LifeDrive's 64MB of
system memory is just another partition on the hard drive. (The
LifeDrive does have 32MB of "real RAM" but it merely functions as
temporary storage space for programs and data just like on a desktop
computer.) As a result, a soft reset now takes about a minute as the
LifeDrive must reboot and copy its OS from the hard drive. But normal
usage is nowhere nearly as slow. Typically, applications take about a
second or two the first time they start up after that, they are cached
in the LifeDrive's RAM and start up instantly. delays of more than
three seconds are rare on the LifeDrive but delays of up to a second
are more common. There is also a noticeable delay when turning the
LifeDrive on and off.

In order to test the speed of the LifeDrive relative to other PalmOS
devices, I enlisted my Treo 600, my Tungsten E, and AvantGo, which can
be notoriously slow at times. I have a custom account which I created
for Astrobiology Magazine. When tables are enabled in AvantGo,
astrobio.net's mobile pages load quickly but are so wide that you have
to scroll an entire screen sideways to any text. When tables are
disabled, the pages fit the screen but load very slowly. So with the
latest version of AvantGo installed on each machine, I loaded up the
following page:
http://www.astrobio.net/news/print.php?sid=1569 with the tables turned
off. The results were as follows:

Treo 600 -- <1 second, page loaded almost instantly
LifeDrive -- 3 seconds
Tungsten E -- 11 seconds

I tried this test again, this time with an MP3 playing in the
background:

Treo 600 -- 3 seconds
LifeDrive -- 4 seconds
Tungsten E -- 21 seconds

For the MP3 test, the Treo 600 and the LifeDrive used Pocket Tunes
while the Tungsten E used RealPlayer One.

As you can see while the LifeDrive slows down when running music in
the background, it doesn't slow down as much as older, slower PDAs
would which is what you'd expect hard drive or no hard drive. Another
thing that happens when you have music running in the background is
that the music sometimes skips. This typically happens when you are
loading another application and doesn't happen at all if you are just
listening to music and doing nothing else.

Multimedia

The LifeDrive is what PalmOne calls a "Mobile Manager." When you read
their marketing speak, you see that a Mobile Manager is basically a
multimedia PDA with lots of storage, hence the hard drive, and the
versatility to handle a wide variety of file types. PalmOne includes
Pocket Tunes for music, a media application for pictures and videos,
and Documents To Go for MS Office and other documents.

While the media application excels at viewing pictures, it is less
useful for video. The media application seems to prefers Windows
Media's .asf format but can also play MPEG 1 and 2 files. But if they
are smaller than the LifeDrive's screen, the media application cannot
as far as I can tell scale them up to fill the screen. The media
application is also incapable of playing MPEG 4 (aka, DiVX and XVID)
video.

A better choice for video is The Core Pocket Media Player (TCPMP).
With TCPMP installed, you can play a much wider variety of video,
including DiVX and XVID which can be compressed into much smaller
sizes than other video formats while retaining a great deal of
quality.

It's hard to believe that Palm didn't include at least a crappy pair
of headphones with the LifeDrive. It is true that headphones included
with multimedia devices are almost always of low quality, so perhaps
PalmOne assumed correctly that most people would quickly ditch any
headphones they included anyway. Still, it feels like an oversight and
a downright cheap one at that to not include headphones with the
LifeDrive.

Working and Playing With Others

It's something of a truism that new PDAs will tend to break at least
some existing software. So here is what I've seen with the LifeDrive.

AcidFreecell -- runs perfectly

AvantGo -- runs perfectly

FreeJongg -- runs perfectly

McPhling -- runs perfectly but when you choose a position
other than the top right or top left for your pop up list it will be
at least partially blocked by the LifeDrive's Dynamic Input Area.
(This should be a problem for any PalmOS PDA with a rectangular screen
and is not really an incompatibility between the LifeDrive and
McPhling.)

Minefield -- runs perfectly

MultiUserHack 4.01 -- runs but I haven't done enough testing to see
how well it works with the LifeDrive

Noah -- runs perfectly

PalmFiction -- runs well but the screen shuts off when scrolling
while Pocket Tunes plays music in the background. The only solution is
to disable "Blank screen while in other apps" in Pocket Tunes'
Advanced Preferences.

RepliGo -- runs perfectly

Sol Free -- runs perfectly

TCPMP -- runs perfectly when installed in LifeDrive's
memory partition but cannot be run off an SD Card or off the LifeDrive
partition (odd).

Yanoff -- runs but the LifeDrive's version of the Palm
Desktop is not compatible with its Java conduit.

The LifeDrive's Drive Mode works wonderfully and is very versatile,
mounting both the LifeDrive and the LifeDrive's SD card as removable
drives in Windows. You are free to copy and delete files to your
heart's content. But there are a few annoyances. When you initiate
drive mode under Windows XP, Windows will open not one but two pop up
windows asking you what you want to do with your removable drives.
Sometimes these popups are useful but mostly they're just annoying.

Even more annoying is the fact that every time you turn your LifeDrive
on or off while it is connected to your computer, you get a little pop
up window informing you that the LifeDrive is available (or not
available if you turn it off) and reminding you that you can use the
LifeDrive Manager to manage the files on your LifeDrive. The
LifeDrive Manager as its name implies is a file manager for your
LifeDrive which works when it's not in Drive Mode. So far, I have
found it more convenient to simply put the LifeDrive into Drive Mode
and manage files on it with Windows Explorer.

Battery Life

The hard drive on the LifeDrive is power hungry. Even though the
device comes with a huge battery, the hard drive, wi-fi, and Bluetooth
generally conspire to eat up battery life. I carried the LifeDrive
around for a typical day (by my standards) which included a long two
way commute. I probably listened to MP3s for a total of at least three
hours, played a fifty minute video (a VCD formatted MPG file), and
read a pages in AvantGo and an e-book while MP3s played in the
background for about an hour. I also played around with the wi-fi
looking for networks to connect to. I began getting battery warnings
while playing the video file at about the 39 minute mark. These
warnings continued at two minute intervals until the video completed.
The LifeDrive's battery life was at 2%. I would figure that if I had
just been only playing MP3s I could have gotten more than five hours
of battery life out of it.

The nice thing about the hard drive is that it makes battery life a
little less important. Sure, you need to preserve enough juice so you
can actually use the LifeDrive but you don't have to worry about
losing any data if the battery runs dry. I've had that happen at least
once with my Tungsten E and lived in constant fear of it when I was
using an aging Treo 270 as my cell phone.

Well, that's about it for now. I'm enjoying my new LifeDrive and hope
to continue to enjoy it. I'll try to follow up with more information
later.

--
Roberto Castillo
roberto...@ameritech.net
http://www.freewebs.com/robertocastillo/

Arthur Hagen

ungelesen,
25.05.2005, 09:02:2825.05.05
an
Zombie Elvis <DELETE-ME-2-REPL...@ameritech.net> wrote:
>
> The nice thing about the hard drive is that it makes battery life a
> little less important. Sure, you need to preserve enough juice so you
> can actually use the LifeDrive but you don't have to worry about
> losing any data if the battery runs dry.

This is wrong for at least two reasons:

1: You may have things freshly written to RAM that hasn't been flushed to
the drive yet.

2: The slow write access of a drive means that the integrity of the drive
data can be compromised if the power is lost during a write, much like if
you yank out the power cable while writing to a hard drive on a PC.

Regarding point #2, how long does Palm's equivalent to fsck / scandisk take,
and how well does it work?

> I've had that happen at least
> once with my Tungsten E and lived in constant fear of it when I was
> using an aging Treo 270 as my cell phone.

I like the Sony UX series solution: A dedicated solid state snapshot
partition that you can back up the main memory to, and which you can choose
to copy to main memory in case of problems, without loading special backup
programs first.

This also allows the device to be truly turned off to save battery, unlike
"normal" PalmOS devices, which need at least a trickle of juice to keep the
memory alive. I expect that Palm would have copied this part of the
functionality for the Lifedrive, and that you can shut it down completely,
where no alarms or anything short of the user pressing the power button can
turn it back on automatically. Can anyone verify this?

Regards,
--
*Art

AaronJ

ungelesen,
25.05.2005, 15:42:1325.05.05
an
Zombie Elvis <DELETE-ME-2-REPL...@ameritech.net> wrote:

>The next thing you notice is the way the back of the unit
>slopes inward.

The back slopes inward to hide a fat ass handheld :) It's cosmetic and makes it
look thinner. They do it with (picture tube) TV sets too, nice thin lines until
you turn em around.

>You might also notice that the LifeDrive feels rather warm in your
>hands. That's the 4GB hard drive and huge battery churning away.

*Heat* in a portable device is called inefficiency. Battery power going up in
smoke. I've got a laptop that pumps out heat like an Arizona summer. Shameful.

>The layout of the piano key-like hard buttons is a little unusual.

> Normally, you'd expect the hard buttons to be lined up...

Not that unusual. The Zire 72 is the same.

>putting the headphone jack on the bottom would encourage you
>to put the LifeDrive upside down when you put it in your pocket.

Doesn't everybody pants pocket carry upside down? That allows one handed
operation on retrieval. Course that's not necessarily true of shirt pocket
carrying, but unless you have steel thread in your shirts I doubt you will be
shirt pocket carrying with the LD... ;)



>The 4GB hard drive changes the way you look at your Palm Pilot. You no
>longer have to worry about running out of memory.

Never run out for memory with 4GB?? Didn't they say that about almost every new
computing device that came down the pike. They sure did when they went from 4K
to 32 *K* on my old Interact less than 20 years ago.

>The disadvantage is some sluggishness.

Sluggishness. Something pretty much unheard of in a Palm until now. Palm has now
caught up (?) with the PPC world. Congrats Palm.

>The LifeDrive is what PalmOne calls a "Mobile Manager."

With the exception of convenience how is this LD "Mobile Manager" basically
different from a T5 "PDA" with a WiFi card and two 2gig cards? Answer:
Marketing.

>you don't have to worry about losing any data if the battery runs dry.

But why don't you have to worry if the battery runs dry? Most reports I've read
are that a dry Li-Ion battery is a bad thing that possibly causes permanent
damage to the battery. And that monster battery can't be cheap to replace. If
you can remember not to run out of gas when driving a car why all the big worry
about having to watch a battery icon? Not to mention proper backups. Data loss?
Just wait until those hard drives start failing and/or falling... 8-O

>Well, that's about it for now.

Thanks for the very fine review. Enjoyed it... :)

Zombie Elvis

ungelesen,
25.05.2005, 22:53:5325.05.05
an

Following up on my own post.

It was a time of great turmoil. The strong preyed on the weak, dogs
and cats lived together. One voice cried out in the wilderness: Zombie
Elvis <DELETE-ME-2-REPL...@ameritech.net> wrote in
<rtv791hm3ovf2amma...@4ax.com>:

> Battery Life
>
> The hard drive on the LifeDrive is power hungry. Even though the
> device comes with a huge battery, the hard drive, wi-fi, and Bluetooth
> generally conspire to eat up battery life. I carried the LifeDrive
> around for a typical day (by my standards) which included a long two
> way commute. I probably listened to MP3s for a total of at least three
> hours, played a fifty minute video (a VCD formatted MPG file), and
> read a pages in AvantGo and an e-book while MP3s played in the
> background for about an hour. I also played around with the wi-fi
> looking for networks to connect to. I began getting battery warnings
> while playing the video file at about the 39 minute mark. These
> warnings continued at two minute intervals until the video completed.

> The LifeDrive's battery life was at 2%. I figured at the time that if I had


> just been only playing MP3s I could have gotten more than five hours
> of battery life out of it.

I also tested the LifeDrive's battery life by having it play MP3s.
With wi-fi turned off and Pocket Tunes set to turn off the screen
after thirty seconds of inactivity, I set Pocket Tunes to play every
MP3 file on the LifeDrive (223 in all). It started playing at 10:42 AM
and stopped at 6:37 PM. At this time, the LifeDrive's battery was at
2% and Pocket Tunes would no longer play. So it got just under eight
hours doing nothing but playing MP3s. But this is hardly a realistic
test -- if all you are going to do is play MP3s, you get an iPod. But
these were encouraging results.

Galley

ungelesen,
26.05.2005, 02:00:4926.05.05
an
On Wed, 25 May 2005 03:53:17 -0500, Zombie Elvis
<DELETE-ME-2-REPL...@ameritech.net> spewed forth these words of
wisdom:

>
>While the placement of the headphone jack hasn't been a problem for
>me, I don't understand the wisdom of putting it on the bottom of the
>machine. The only justification that I could think of for this was the
>fact that putting the headphone jack on the bottom would encourage you
>to put the LifeDrive upside down when you put it in your pocket. This
>would allow you easier access to the d-pad which controls the volume
>which would allow you to listen to music on your LifeDrive and adjust
>the volume of the without removing it from your pocket. But that
>doesn't make sense since you'd want to use the hold feature of the
>power button to prevent accidental key presses which would negate any
>advantage of putting the headphone jack on the bottom since you won't
>normally be able to use the d-pad to adjust LifeDrive's volume.
>

I read somewhere that PalmOne simply had no other choice than to have the
headphone jack on the bottom. There was nowhere else that it would fit on the
board.

--
"I'm not a cool person in real life, but I play one on the Internet"
Galley

Logan Shaw

ungelesen,
26.05.2005, 07:21:1426.05.05
an
Zombie Elvis wrote:
> While the placement of the headphone jack hasn't been a problem for
> me, I don't understand the wisdom of putting it on the bottom of the
> machine.

I have an iPod Mini.

I like it, but I think the headphone jack should be on the bottom.

The reason? There are lots of other connectors on the bottom, such
as the one which can be used to power it from the cigarette lighter
in the car. If I were to have both plugged in at once, I'd really
rather the two cables came out the same end of the device. Having
one come out the top and the other out the bottom is just silly, and
it makes the device hard to use.

Another good reason to have all the cabling come out the bottom is
that it makes it easier to hold in one hand and hit buttons with the
other. If the headphone cable is coming out the top, it has to go up
and then down somewhere -- hopefully the back, but not necessarily,
and it might get in the way.

In general, I think on handheld devices the bottom makes more sense
for connectors of most types. I think of other handheld devices I
have, and they all already work that way. My Motorola V180 cell phone
has the charging connector and the headphone connector on the bottom.
I have a hairdryer, and its power cord comes out the bottom of the
handle. Recently I went skeet shooting[1], and the guy in charge
had a little button he'd push to launch the clay targets into the
air when you say "pull", and its cord came out the bottom too. And
when you see someone holding a microphone, where does the cable
come out?

- Logan

[1] Quite unexpectedly -- it's not my normal choice of things to
occupy my time.

Seuss

ungelesen,
26.05.2005, 09:11:3926.05.05
an
What kind of case / cover does it come with? How does that affect
pocketability?

Daniel James

ungelesen,
27.05.2005, 02:44:2427.05.05
an
In article news:<d71t14$vfl$1...@cauldron.broomstick.com>, Arthur Hagen
wrote:

> 2: The slow write access of a drive means that the integrity of
> the drive data can be compromised if the power is lost during a
> write, much like if you yank out the power cable while writing to
> a hard drive on a PC.

A good point ... but surely Palm have designed things so that the
low-power auto-shutdown can't stop the device during a disk access,
and that the device tries to ensure that it will not commence a disk
access it hasn't the power to finish.

Note the "tries to", though ... measuring remaining battery capacity
is still an imprecise science.

Cheers,
Daniel.


idon'...@noneya.com

ungelesen,
27.05.2005, 03:16:3427.05.05
an
On Wed, 25 May 2005 03:53:17 -0500, Zombie Elvis
<DELETE-ME-2-REPL...@ameritech.net> wrote:


Been working with My life drive for about the same amount of time,
just confirguring and see what would happen. I have had only one real
problem When trying to Load Data Viz's beyond Contacts teh device gave
me a sys 0505 0,841. This error forceed me to do a secure reset and
the fast reset. It took aobut six hours to figure out what was
causing the problem.. Once that was figure out, it has been working
well with the blue tooth transfering files to my cell phone etc.
Wi_fi works great.

All other programs seem to work fine except for the beyond conbtaqcts.
Will keep you all posted.

Alan Hoyle

ungelesen,
27.05.2005, 15:50:1527.05.05
an
In comp.sys.palmtops.pilot AaronJ <noe...@noemail.com> wrote:

>>The LifeDrive is what PalmOne calls a "Mobile Manager."

> With the exception of convenience how is this LD "Mobile Manager" basically
> different from a T5 "PDA" with a WiFi card and two 2gig cards? Answer:
> Marketing.

Lifedrive: $500

T5: $300
WiFi: $70 (or are they giving these away now?)
2 GB SD: $160 x2 = $320 (cheapest in a cursory froogle search)

Total: $690 (subtract 70 if I'm wrong about the WiFi cost)

Looks like more than just a "marketing" difference to me.

-alan

--
Alan Hoyle - al...@unc.edu - http://www.alanhoyle.com/
"I don't want the world, I just want your half." -TMBG
Get Horizontal, Play Ultimate.

AaronJ

ungelesen,
27.05.2005, 19:01:3827.05.05
an
Alan Hoyle <al...@unc.edu> wrote:

>In comp.sys.palmtops.pilot AaronJ <noe...@noemail.com> wrote:

>> With the exception of convenience how is this LD "Mobile Manager" basically
>> different from a T5 "PDA" with a WiFi card and two 2gig cards? Answer:
>> Marketing.
>
> Lifedrive: $500
> T5: $300
> WiFi: $70 (or are they giving these away now?)
> 2 GB SD: $160 x2 = $320 (cheapest in a cursory froogle search)
>Total: $690 (subtract 70 if I'm wrong about the WiFi cost)
>
>Looks like more than just a "marketing" difference to me.

It's true that the LifeDrive is *cheaper* than a similarly equipped T5 would be.
But since they both are basically the same thing, why should the LD be called
anything but a PDA? The answer is of course Marketing. If the LD is really a
Mobile Manager then my Zire 72 is really a Mobile Camera and Audio Platform...
;)

Rich G.

ungelesen,
28.05.2005, 10:39:1028.05.05
an
AaronJ wrote:

> It's true that the LifeDrive is *cheaper* than a similarly equipped T5 would be.
> But since they both are basically the same thing, why should the LD be called
> anything but a PDA? The answer is of course Marketing. If the LD is really a
> Mobile Manager then my Zire 72 is really a Mobile Camera and Audio Platform...
> ;)

Can my TE with memory card be a "portable multimedia platform?" :)))

--
http://www.simplerich.com/blog

Read my book!!!
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1411617576/

AaronJ

ungelesen,
28.05.2005, 11:55:0728.05.05
an
"Rich G." <simpl...@gmail.com> wrote:

>Can my TE with memory card be a "portable multimedia platform?" :)))

Yes, your Tungsten E can be so much more than just a lowly PDA by using creative
marketing. "Portable Multimedia Platform" does roll off the tongue doesn't it.
Or how about "Portable Multimedia System"? That way instead of PDA you could
have PMS... ;) (An especially good moniker for the temperamental models.)

Rich G.

ungelesen,
28.05.2005, 12:28:3128.05.05
an

Excellent point! It's a Portable Multimedia System with Built a built in
Productivity Management Suite of applications as well! It's DOUBLE
trouble lolol.

idon'...@noneya.com

ungelesen,
28.05.2005, 12:33:3328.05.05
an
I have got a tungsten e you can buy. Wiht cases and extra battery
packs

Rich G.

ungelesen,
28.05.2005, 12:47:0628.05.05
an
idon'tk...@noneya.com wrote:
> I have got a tungsten e you can buy. Wiht cases and extra battery
> packs

not marketing it that way you don't. Haven't ya been paying attention to
this thread? :P
You have a Portable Multimedia System, tenderly used, with an extra
Portable Wireless Power Supply, and those cases aren't cases... they're
military grade systems to enhance the survivability of the unit in a
variety of hostile environments without sacrificing portability or
useabilty.(1)

(1) You'll need to find at least one person in one of the services to
say that they use the same case to get the military grade tagged on
there, but it shouldn't be too tough.

Luc Le Blanc

ungelesen,
07.06.2005, 00:45:4907.06.05
an
Zombie Elvis a écrit :

> You might also notice that the LifeDrive feels rather warm in your
> hands. That's the 4GB hard drive and huge battery churning away.

I still don't get the reason for this power-hungry heat-producing
performance-degrading 4Gb hard drive while you can now get 20-Gb MP3
players for less than a LifeDrive...


--
Luc Le Blanc


malin...@gmail.com

ungelesen,
07.06.2005, 23:24:4007.06.05
an
Still looking for an MP3 player that has all this stuff...
http://www.palmone.com/us/products/mobilemanagers/lifedrive/specs.epl

"Luc Le Blanc" <lleb...@cam.org> wrote in message
news:42A5267D...@cam.org...

Luc Le Blanc

ungelesen,
07.06.2005, 23:46:1107.06.05
an
malin...@gmail.com a écrit :

> Still looking for an MP3 player that has all this stuff...
> http://www.palmone.com/us/products/mobilemanagers/lifedrive/specs.epl

Indeed. But why a hard drive??? Palm loses the UI snappiness, the battery
life and... the famed small size. This device now lies more on the tablet
PC side.


--
Luc Le Blanc

malin...@gmail.com

ungelesen,
08.06.2005, 10:57:0808.06.05
an
> Still looking for an MP3 player that has all this stuff...
> http://www.palmone.com/us/products/mobilemanagers/lifedrive/specs.epl

> > Indeed. But why a hard drive??? Palm loses the UI snappiness, the
> > battery
> > life and... the famed small size. This device now lies more on the
> > tablet
> > PC side.

Oh, come now, it's about 1/4 to 1/5 the size of one of those..


Paul Nevai

ungelesen,
08.06.2005, 14:55:0208.06.05
an
Luc Le Blanc <lleb...@cam.org> aszonygya:
:Indeed. But why a hard drive??? Palm loses the UI snappiness, the battery

:life and... the famed small size. This device now lies more on the tablet
:PC side.

I agree. /PaulN [pedit, pToolSet, LapTopHack, etc.]

Jason

ungelesen,
08.06.2005, 17:50:3308.06.05
an
On 8 Jun 2005 18:55:02 GMT, ne...@math.ohio-state.edu (Paul Nevai)
wrote:

The harddrive in the LifeDrive is a Hitachi 4G CompactFlash II
microdrive, which is the size of a CompactFlash card. Its not that
big....

The problem with the LifeDrive is that there is actually no real
innovation. Some PDAs have CFII slots....

My main PDA is a Sony Clie which I use daily. I also own a Dell Axim
X50v which I use as a 'multimedia' device. This has SD/CF slots and I
own a 4G CFII microdrive plus a 1G SD card. The processor is at 624
MHZ and has a screen resolution of 640x480. It has a 3D graphics
chip. These specs beat the LifeDrive in every way.

One main disadvantage of the LifeDrive is the use of the harddrive for
system memory. This results in slowing down the whole system, and
using up more power. What was Palm thinking of when they implemented
this, apart from the obvious cost saving to them ?? The use of some
RAM or flash memory in addition to the harddrive would have made a
much quicker machine...

Tony Clark

ungelesen,
08.06.2005, 20:57:0608.06.05
an

"Jason" <jas...@lexicon.removeit.net> wrote in message
news:k4pea1hbmjqqsni3l...@4ax.com...

>
> My main PDA is a Sony Clie which I use daily. I also own a Dell Axim
> X50v which I use as a 'multimedia' device. This has SD/CF slots and I
> own a 4G CFII microdrive plus a 1G SD card. The processor is at 624
> MHZ and has a screen resolution of 640x480. It has a 3D graphics
> chip. These specs beat the LifeDrive in every way.
>
> One main disadvantage of the LifeDrive is the use of the harddrive for
> system memory. This results in slowing down the whole system, and
> using up more power. What was Palm thinking of when they implemented
> this, apart from the obvious cost saving to them ?? The use of some
> RAM or flash memory in addition to the harddrive would have made a
> much quicker machine...
>

Check the specs. There is 64M of RAM for Palm apps and OS use.

TC


J. Clarke

ungelesen,
08.06.2005, 21:01:2508.06.05
an
malin...@gmail.com wrote:

1/3 actually, in volume. It's 28% shorter, 32% narrower, and 30% thinner
than a Vaio U50. Which means that it's not really a whole lot smaller.

--
--John
to email, dial "usenet" and validate
(was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)

Jim Anderson

ungelesen,
08.06.2005, 21:53:3108.06.05
an
In article <CtMpe.1249$hK3...@newsread3.news.pas.earthlink.net>,
curiousg...@hotmail.com says...

Your brain is playing tricks on you, no where does it say RAM, it says
Program memory, which is a Disk based partition. The only confirmed RAM
is a 12MB cache.

<http://www.palmone.com/cgi-bin/cso_kbURL.cgi?ID=39318>
PalmOne Knowledge Library article 39318 palmOne LifeDrive Specifications

But this also states 'Do not confuse it with the Tungsten T5, whose hard
drive is 256MB' and we all know the T5 does not have a hard drive.

--
Jim Anderson
( 8(|) To email me just pull my_finger

Carl Fink

ungelesen,
08.06.2005, 22:21:5808.06.05
an
I'm increasingly leaning toward one of these:

http://archos.com/products/prw_500595.html

Not marketed as a PDA, but it does everything the Sharp Zaurus used to do
plus a lot more. The only real downside (and the only reason I don't
already own one) is the price: over $700.

If my Tungsten T3 fails tomorrow, though, I may be taking some money out of
the money markets and getting one.
--
Carl Fink ca...@fink.to
If you attempt to fix something that isn't broken, it will be.
-Bruce Tognazzini

Tony Clark

ungelesen,
09.06.2005, 00:39:3309.06.05
an

"Jim Anderson" <fro...@frontiernet.my_finger.net> wrote in message
news:MPG.1d115d18c...@news.frontiernet.net...
SNIP

>> >
>>
>> Check the specs. There is 64M of RAM for Palm apps and OS use.
>>
>> TC
>
> Your brain is playing tricks on you, no where does it say RAM, it says
> Program memory, which is a Disk based partition. The only confirmed RAM
> is a 12MB cache.
>
> <http://www.palmone.com/cgi-bin/cso_kbURL.cgi?ID=39318>
> PalmOne Knowledge Library article 39318 palmOne LifeDrive Specifications
>
> But this also states 'Do not confuse it with the Tungsten T5, whose hard
> drive is 256MB' and we all know the T5 does not have a hard drive.
>
> --

You are correct in that I should not have used the term RAM. However it's
possible the 64M is some sort of re-writeable memory. The User Manual is
confusing as to what the "Program Memory" actually is though they way they
refer to it makes it sound as if it's NOT on the 4G hard drive. For example
tha User manual states:

Your device contains two types of storage: program memory and the 4GB hard
drive.

And it says:

Your device saves all information, including information on the drive and in
program memory, even if the battery drains completely; none of your
information is lost. Simply recharge to access the information again.

Makes it sound like the drive and Program memory are 2 separate components.

Cheers
TC


AaronJ

ungelesen,
09.06.2005, 01:27:5709.06.05
an
"Tony Clark" <curiousg...@hotmail.com> wrote:

>You are correct in that I should not have used the term RAM. However it's

>possible the 64M is some sort of re-writeable memory. .

That 64M of program memory *is* on the hard drive. And I think most would agree
that is a poor design. The reason probably being cost. But where marketing is
concerned Palm seems to have a way with words. Like "rewriteable memory" is to
"RAM" as "Mobile Manager" is to "PDA"... ;)

Harold

ungelesen,
09.06.2005, 04:05:1509.06.05
an
"Carl Fink" <ca...@panix.com> wrote in message
news:slrndaf9u6...@panix2.panix.com...

The Archos page cited shows the price as €799.99 (*Euros*). That's more like
$980 (US Dollars) at today's exchange rate.

--
Harold Fuchs
Homo sapiens non urinat in ventum.


Carl Fink

ungelesen,
09.06.2005, 05:44:2109.06.05
an
Much snipping of quotes below.

On 2005-06-09, Harold <har...@wolfeden.demon.co.uk> wrote:
> "Carl Fink" <ca...@panix.com> wrote in message
> news:slrndaf9u6...@panix2.panix.com...

>> http://archos.com/products/prw_500595.html


>>
>> Not marketed as a PDA, but it does everything the Sharp Zaurus used to do
>> plus a lot more. The only real downside (and the only reason I don't
>> already own one) is the price: over $700.

> The Archos page cited shows the price as €799.99 (*Euros*). That's more like

> $980 (US Dollars) at today's exchange rate.

Yes, but a Froogle search found one for $710.

J. Clarke

ungelesen,
09.06.2005, 10:21:4309.06.05
an
Harold wrote:

> "Carl Fink" <ca...@panix.com> wrote in message
> news:slrndaf9u6...@panix2.panix.com...
>> I'm increasingly leaning toward one of these:
>>
>> http://archos.com/products/prw_500595.html
>>
>> Not marketed as a PDA, but it does everything the Sharp Zaurus used to do
>> plus a lot more.

Used to do? What are you saying here, that the feature set of the Zaurus
has progressed far beyond the Archos?

>> The only real downside (and the only reason I don't
>> already own one) is the price: over $700.
>>
>> If my Tungsten T3 fails tomorrow, though, I may be taking some money out
>> of
>> the money markets and getting one.
>> --
>> Carl Fink ca...@fink.to
>> If you attempt to fix something that isn't broken, it will be.
>> -Bruce Tognazzini
>
> The Archos page cited shows the price as €799.99 (*Euros*). That's more
> like $980 (US Dollars) at today's exchange rate.
>

--

Paul Nevai

ungelesen,
09.06.2005, 11:59:4709.06.05
an
Jason <jas...@lexicon.removeit.net> aszonygya:
: What was Palm thinking of when they implemented

:this, apart from the obvious cost saving to them ??

Wrong question. Right question: what was Palm NOT thinking of... /PaulN


Carl Fink

ungelesen,
09.06.2005, 15:53:3109.06.05
an
On 2005-06-09, J. Clarke <jclarke...@snet.net.invalid> wrote:

> Used to do? What are you saying here, that the feature set of the Zaurus
> has progressed far beyond the Archos?

The fact that I thought it was off the US market. Isn't it?

bobbobbob

ungelesen,
16.06.2005, 16:53:1616.06.05
an

Carl Fink wrote:
> I'm increasingly leaning toward one of these:
>
> http://archos.com/products/prw_500595.html
>
> Not marketed as a PDA, but it does everything the Sharp Zaurus used to do
> plus a lot more. The only real downside (and the only reason I don't
> already own one) is the price: over $700.

I received my lifedrive 2 weeks ago and am still checking it out....

1) the lifedrive palm desktop is substantially different so that palm
conduits for my office management program (Phoneslips) will not work
and the Phoneslips company tells me it is so different they do not
anticipate finding a way to work with the new palm

2) WiFi- this works fine with a storng signal. But the software for
finding a wifi connection is buggy. It keeps trying to contact with
wifi providers that are not available (oopen sites I logged into days
ago in far away places) and there is no way to stop these bad attempts
to log on.
It is not possible for force a "search". Instead it goes to
remembered sites even though they do not exist in the current area,
then new sites. It should have a way to force search for currently
available sites.
Signal drops- I check my email at one PPP, then switch to
another and find the signal is dropped. Or try to change to WEB and
the signal is dropped. There is no separate notice of a live signal
until it trys to access again (and there is no way to force it to try
only 1 site, if it doesn't connect to the first it just goes through
the list)

3) Filemanager - it doesn't see documents that are simply copied to the
LD. The Document to Go doesn't access filed copied (only those loaded
through docs to go)

4) Music- The program doesn't allow adjusting the buffer. I have songs
that skip when it access to hard drive. This is not a good way to play
music.
the playlist feature it comes with is primitive. For the cost
of the LD it isn't right to have a forced upgrade on a basic usage
program.

5) Video- I envisioned taking a commercial movie DVD, converting it to
a DIVx and playing it on my Palm. I am not saying it can't be done,
but I haven't seen a way to do this yet.
Also, a MOV file must be converted through the Lifedrive
program before it can be played on the Palm, simply copying the video
to a card or the lifedrive will not play

6) Cable- I already ordered and received my cradle and travel plugs,
enough said, the cable alone is too chintzy to rely on.

7) Desktop for lifedrive will not work with WIndows ME (or 98) so my
older computers can't synch. This is a major problem since I can't use
my home backup computer for the palm

Will I keep the LD? Not yet sure. My zire71 screen is dieing so I
needed something else for my calendar, phones and notes. I wanted WiFi
access and some music and document writing ability.....
I have 2 weeks to decide

Penster

ungelesen,
16.06.2005, 17:29:1816.06.05
an
bob3
To convert a movie, use Pocket DVD studio for palm to convert:
http://www.pqdvd.com/index_palm.html
and core pocket media player (freeware) to play:
http://tcpmp.corecodec.org/download
Both work really well.
Penster
"bobbobbob" <hold...@aol.com> wrote in message
news:1118955196....@g47g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...

Chuck Spears

ungelesen,
22.06.2005, 17:24:1522.06.05
an
>Doesn't everybody pants pocket carry upside down? That allows one handed
>operation on retrieval. Course that's not necessarily true of shirt pocket
>carrying, but unless you have steel thread in your shirts I doubt you will be
>shirt pocket carrying with the LD... ;)
>
They are probrably going to release a speaker set or something and
that is why the yput it at the bottom. It is kind of a stupid place
to put it tho considering its gonna be in my pocket most of the time

>Sluggishness. Something pretty much unheard of in a Palm until now. Palm has now
>caught up (?) with the PPC world. Congrats Palm.
>
Yeh but imagine how slow the pocketpc will be when it runs off of a
hard drive.

>With the exception of convenience how is this LD "Mobile Manager" basically
>different from a T5 "PDA" with a WiFi card and two 2gig cards? Answer:
>Marketing.
>

The wifi card doesnt snap off, is more integrated softwarewise, and it
seems to work more reliably
Much bigger battery
I can put a two 2 gig cards in my LD too :)-
Better built in software for managing and playing media. although the
video app needs work

Chuck Spears

ungelesen,
22.06.2005, 17:26:0322.06.05
an
>It's true that the LifeDrive is *cheaper* than a similarly equipped T5 would be.
>But since they both are basically the same thing, why should the LD be called
>anything but a PDA? The answer is of course Marketing. If the LD is really a
>Mobile Manager then my Zire 72 is really a Mobile Camera and Audio Platform...
>;)


If you look at how the LD is laid out, it really is more than a PDA.
It first and foremost now a meduium for video, audio, and pictures.
The PDA functionality has taken a back seat.

Chuck Spears

ungelesen,
22.06.2005, 17:28:4422.06.05
an
>The problem with the LifeDrive is that there is actually no real
>innovation. Some PDAs have CFII slots....
>
>My main PDA is a Sony Clie which I use daily. I also own a Dell Axim
>X50v which I use as a 'multimedia' device. This has SD/CF slots and I
>own a 4G CFII microdrive plus a 1G SD card. The processor is at 624
>MHZ and has a screen resolution of 640x480. It has a 3D graphics
>chip. These specs beat the LifeDrive in every way.
>

You can probrably cobble the pieces together to build something
similar hardwarewise but it would be expensive and would not be nearly
as integrated on the software end. I wonder how much power management
is going on with an axim/CF hard drive. i doubt you'll get as much
battery life.

J. Clarke

ungelesen,
22.06.2005, 18:08:4322.06.05
an
Chuck Spears wrote:

I'm curious as to what features of the LifeDrive are not present in the Clie
Personal Entertainment Organizers other than the ability to address 4 gig
(they are limited to 2 gig per card but many can hold two).

Zombie Elvis

ungelesen,
22.06.2005, 23:59:5922.06.05
an
Hello, Chuck Spears !
You wrote:

> Better built in software for managing and playing media. although the
> video app needs work
>

Right, the video player is almost an afterthought. Although it appears to
be free of any major bugs, it is extremely basic. It won't play XViD or any
format other than .asf and some MPEG formats and it doesn't stretch lower
resolution videos to fill the screen. Fortunately, TCPMP runs just fine on
the LD so none of this matters.
--
<BANG> "Let her go! Damn, did that backwards."
-- Virgil Webster from The Inside

Roberto Castillo
roberto...@ameritech.net

Marc L.

ungelesen,
23.06.2005, 09:30:2923.06.05
an
AaronJ <noe...@noemail.com> wrote in
news:248f91tq1g25me56p...@4ax.com:

> It's true that the LifeDrive is *cheaper* than a similarly
> equipped T5 would be. But since they both are basically the same
> thing, why should the LD be called anything but a PDA?

Well, why would the T5 be called anything but a PDA?

--
Marc

Rommie : We are not the droids you are looking for
Doyle : What was that ?
Rommie : I don't know, but it didn't work !

Marc L.

ungelesen,
23.06.2005, 09:34:0123.06.05
an
Luc Le Blanc <lleb...@cam.org> wrote in news:42A5267D.647ADEB9
@cam.org:

> I still don't get the reason for this power-hungry heat-producing
> performance-degrading 4Gb hard drive while you can now get 20-Gb
> MP3 players for less than a LifeDrive...
>

Er, comparing a 20GB MP3 player to the LifeDrive sounds rather
silly to me.

J. Clarke

ungelesen,
23.06.2005, 10:27:2723.06.05
an
Marc L. wrote:

> Luc Le Blanc <lleb...@cam.org> wrote in news:42A5267D.647ADEB9
> @cam.org:
>
>> I still don't get the reason for this power-hungry heat-producing
>> performance-degrading 4Gb hard drive while you can now get 20-Gb
>> MP3 players for less than a LifeDrive...
>>
>
> Er, comparing a 20GB MP3 player to the LifeDrive sounds rather
> silly to me.

Not necessarily--at least one of those 20 gig MP3 players is a Windows
Mobile device which puts it solidly into the PDA territory. For the same
price as a Lifedrive.

Chuck Spears

ungelesen,
23.06.2005, 13:22:1423.06.05
an
>Not necessarily--at least one of those 20 gig MP3 players is a Windows
>Mobile device which puts it solidly into the PDA territory. For the same
>price as a Lifedrive.

where is there a 20 gig windows mobile device for $450?

J. Clarke

ungelesen,
23.06.2005, 13:58:2223.06.05
an
Chuck Spears wrote:

Iriver PMC-120 (note the _C_. there is a PM_P_-120 that is not a Windows
Mobile device) in stock for $399 at newegg.com.

Red Rock Lobster

ungelesen,
08.10.2005, 15:51:5808.10.05
an
Just wanted to point out that AvantGo links to this thread on their
support site to prove they "support" the LifeDrive! That's a first,
support via public usenet forums.

Well AvantGo, I'm sorry to say that I don't think AG works nearly as
well as the starter of this thread said on a LifeDrive. In fact it's
one of the more buggy apps. It works tolerably sometimes, but
frequently hangs / softresets while reading or connecting to content.


--
-------------
redrocklobster
use your head with the email spam filter

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