Monday, November 21, 2016

A perfect mouse, vertical

Vertical mouse is a great idea, because your arm is not twisted or tortured. Well, the problem is: you cannot find a vertical mouse that is not too large. Such as this Anker, its huge size kills all its potentials.


The good news is, you can perfect it with a saw:


Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Trump won

川普赢了,因为:

1)作为竞选策略,他划清和臭名昭著的共和党大佬们(比如小布什)的界限;
2)作为一名成功和精明的商人,他知道人们想要什么,所以他就精准地许诺什么。

往后呢:

1)像小布什之流一样,不会放过任何一个机会来掏空国库,行业垄断更加寡头,物价飞涨。而且他必须和共和党串通一气,否则怎么对付参众两院?

2)他知道人们想要什么,他会满足他们呢,还是利用他们?他的历史还有他的那张脸难道还不清楚吗?

从十六年前小布什选举开始,到欧巴马,再到昨晚,我注意到一个现象: 只要华人挺谁,谁就能当总统。能把华人都给忽悠了,其他人就更不在话下了。总是相信有灵丹妙药的华人,当然也总会盼救星。问题是这两样东西都是没有的,然后等待他们的(将)是一次比一次更深的失望。

昨晚有一件事值得庆幸: 那令人厌恶的老两口没能重回白宫。

记住今天: 八年小布什劫难的又一轮回。是的,又是八年,不管你愿不愿意。

欲让其衰亡,先让它猖狂,川普乃不二人选。

Monday, October 24, 2016

Printers: Epson vs. Canon

Lets take Epson XP-810 and Canon MX870 or MP560 as examples.

Epson is not refill friendly

The Epson uses sponge-less cartridges. I searched hard but could find only one place where sells refillable sponge-free cartridges for Epson and that company is located in FL.

There is no resetter worth of buying. If you're lucky to find one that works, you must reset a cartridge before it reaches empty or the cartridge is game over.

This refill issue alone is a deal breaker. With canon, you can clearly see how much ink is left and refill it easily anytime, empty or not.

Epson is ink eater

Ink goes down fast, really fast! Never had such a feel in the past 10 years with Canon printers.

Last week I replaced all cartridges except the photo black:


After only few test pages:


And after I take out the BK and C cartridges and then put them back:


Once any one of the cartridges runs out, the printer won't do any work for you other than telling you to buy ink. For example, if just yellow runs out while even if you are printing pure black text, you're still screwed. Canon is never this rude.

With Epson, you have to clean all cartridges altogether even if you know exactly which color(s) really need:

 
With Canon, you may clean only black or other colors, in addition to all:


The rear tray of Epson is second to useless

It takes only one piece at a time; so it is only for printing a single photo or envelope:


There is a second tray above the standard cassette, but it is for small photo papers only:


With Canon, I can fill 150 sheets in both the rear tray and the bottom cassette, respectively, and pick up freely between them.

Paper Handling Sucks

If the computer is set to use letter papers (8.5x11) and you print with a filler paper (8x10.5), printing will stop with an error. With Canon, the printing will always go through fine regardless what paper you tell the computer and what paper you actually use, smaller or larger.


Furthermore, auto duplex is limited to letter size at the minimum. If you use smaller papers such as filler paper, it refuses to do auto double-side printing. Although Canon have such a limitation too (on theory), but you can still duplex with filler papers just fine as long as you fake your computer with letter size.

Lacking of a multi-page rear tray, manual duplex printing is not practical, - it is a big hassle to reload papers in a cassette. So forget about duplex, auto or manual, if you need to use papers smaller than letter size such as filler papers sold unbelievably cheaply - 150 pages for 10 cents by Fry's Electronics during each and every back-to-school season.

When loading paper into the cassette, it is face down for single side and auto duplex, but face up for manual duplex. What a lousy engineering.

When printing starts, the output tray slides out automatically. Nice ha? Well, they forgot a button, neither hard nor soft, for sending it back! Man, even a 30 years old CD drive has a button so you don't have to push the tray and suffer from gear roaring.

Epson software is like malware

Once installed, there is no option to uninstall, like Chinese software. It adds some background stuff running on your computer - a monitor service and two scheduled tasks that run hourly (I disabled them all):


Canon software always play nicely.

The Epson is far more compact and neat though, while Canon are all bulky and ugly. The quality of scanned images is superb - extremely sharp with accurate colors while Canon's is quite poor and never get colors right. These are the only two things attractive and pretty much all other aspects are disgusting.



Tuesday, October 11, 2016

LeapDroid no audio fix

Windows PC used to be the main source of entertainment, but no longer, Android now dominates. LeapDroid is a great way to bring that back to your computer and enjoy vast music and video while you work.

If you ever experience no audio from LeapDroid, here is the fix: right click on the little speak at the bottom right corner and select "Playback devices":


Click on the device you are using and click on "Properties" and then "Advanced":



Uncheck "Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device:


That's it and enjoy!

Related articles:

LeapDroid, finally a practical Android on PC

Sunday, August 7, 2016

ATH-ANC33iS Noise Cancelling headphones $48.09

决定把最近买的MM 550-X退了,实在是受不了。很奇怪,夹力并不大,耳罩子也不算太小,但是只要一扣到耳朵上,就像是紧箍咒。另外降噪实在是太弱。

上个星期在Walmart试听了ATH-ANC50iS,非常喜欢那种平坦的低音不夸张的声音,降噪效果感觉也很好,但是也是太不舒服了。今天看到ATH-ANC33iS降价$48.09(原价80),就去买了一付,虽然不少评阅都说降噪太弱,还是决定一试,反正好退。





结果你猜怎么着?完美无缺,降噪非常好,声音和50iS一样!其它方面都做的很到位,比如镀金弯插头、钢丝弹簧夹子弹性适中好使、线的长度适宜可以把电池盒别在皮带上手机放裤兜里、园盘式古典音量调节很好使、一节AAA电池盒换电池顺手(60小时!)、打开/关闭降噪时音质和音量前后无太大的区别、带线控和话筒、椭圆的浅入的塞子舒服(还送一对Comply子)、座子牢靠又不突出好侧睡枕头。。。

不抗风声。比如在我的老破车里,在粗糙的高速路上跑75mph的时候,那是轰轰的吵,收音机里的脱口秀都无法听,更别说听音乐了。打开降噪后,整个世界立马安静了,可以静静地欣赏音乐。但是,如果把窗户打开一点的话,那风声就会让33iS嘶啦嘶啦的叫。因为塞子入的很浅又不紧,所以不能隔离较高频率的噪声。

没有蓝牙,不过不要紧,我有三星HS3000。蓝牙版的ATH-ANC40BT太贵了,$180,而且设计愚蠢。

舒服好听的耳机,不论何时何地都好用。

20年前,找一付有低音的耳机很难;现在呢,找一付低音不夸张的难,很难。

Monday, July 18, 2016

LeapDroid, finally a practical Android on PC

I have tried many Android emulators, but none of them could play TV Plus 2.0 - the best way for watching Chinese TV. This problem is now solved by LeapDroid, now I can watch TV on any one of my monitors, Windowed or full screen. CPU usage is only 50% or so while watching HD TV.

By default, there are two virtual machines installed to  "C:\Users\Username\Documents\Leapdroid\VMs". You may delete one of them to save about 500-800 MB space. The install file, LeapdroidVMInstaller.exe, is copied to "C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\Leapdroid"; you may delete this file to save another 200MB.





[update] By default it uses too much RAM, so I modified the following line in \Documents\LeapDroid\VMs\vm1.vbox

Memory RAMSize="512" PageFusion="false"

Friday, June 10, 2016

Philips SHE3905, finally the ideal headphones

Philips read my mind: the SHE3905 and SHE3900 (without mic & remote) fixed all the issues of SHE3590.


  • Like the SHE3590, oval tip seats for comfortable fit.
  • Improved tips - more comfortable and better fit.
  • Mic and remote button (SHE3905).
  • Right-angle plug for stupid Android phones that have the jack on the top.
Sound wise my initial impression is: warmer, more refined, and firmer voice than SHE3590 with Dollartree tips. Incredible noise isolation, I almost no longer want active noise cancellation, even in a noisy car on highway. I'll try the Dollartree tips later to see if they'll also do the same magic to sound quality. If you like bass, then these new tips are already perfect and totally comfortable, no need to replace them. For SHE3590, however, I had to replace their tips, because they are too thick to be comfortable and to sound good.


As you can see in above photo, there are even some more very welcome thoughts been put into these earbuds:
  • Now you can easily see the very large and bold "L" and "R" before you insert them into the correct ears.
  • A tiny slider to tighten up the wires around your cheeks for less cable movement/noise while you move.
  • The cord is more stiff - less prone to tangle.
  • Strain reliefs off the earbuds, should be much more durable than before.
  • The buds now look and feel more high-end, thanking to the new shinning finishing, the strain reliefs and gold plated plug.
Overall, these are totally comfortable, secure (running or in bed) and audiophile-level sounding headphones that happen to be the cheapest.  About $10 - $15 from Target and Amazon. If you buy from Target, either order online and pick up in stores or let the store match its online price.

[update] After several days of listening, I have got a firm feel about the sound. I then tried the Dollartree tips on this SHE3905 and I much prefer these tips - less bass and more transparent.


[update] I noticed that the stock tips go quite deep, which result into better isolation and more bass, but not comfortable and transparent. The Dollar Tree tips correct this.