Electronic devices

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bryan
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by bryan » Wed Sep 21, 2016 2:07 pm

BRUTE wrote: brute actually seems to get allergic reactions when watching any Apple presentations lately.
BRUTE watches Apple presentations? wth?
IlliniDave wrote:
BRUTE wrote:at this point, not even an EE major could repair modern phones/laptops. too embedded.
Not true!
I mostly side with BRUTE. The category of repairs you can make on a phone/laptop is more limited than that of a PC. Smartphones are not like PCs, where you can really have a go at making mods and soldering things or trying new softwares, due to 1) so much of the HW being integrated into the SoC and 2) many unique hardware/firmwares/software combinations for a single device that do not translate easily to another device. For instance, savvy users may be able to do some kludging to repair a smartphone or to get it running newer system software, but it will usually be at the expense of something else breaking (performance tunings, power management, sw security like authenticated modules, or DRM related things like video playback come to mind immediately). Note, even makers of smartphones with many EEs on staff can't get it right (power management of a device is complex and not many devices are close to optimal, especially after system software updates).

IlliniDave
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by IlliniDave » Wed Sep 21, 2016 3:22 pm

bryan wrote:
IlliniDave wrote:
BRUTE wrote:at this point, not even an EE major could repair modern phones/laptops. too embedded.
Not true!
I mostly side with BRUTE. The category of repairs you can make on a phone/laptop is more limited than that of a PC. Smartphones are not like PCs, where you can really have a go at making mods and soldering things or trying new softwares, due to 1) so much of the HW being integrated into the SoC and 2) many unique hardware/firmwares/software combinations for a single device that do not translate easily to another device. For instance, savvy users may be able to do some kludging to repair a smartphone or to get it running newer system software, but it will usually be at the expense of something else breaking (performance tunings, power management, sw security like authenticated modules, or DRM related things like video playback come to mind immediately). Note, even makers of smartphones with many EEs on staff can't get it right (power management of a device is complex and not many devices are close to optimal, especially after system software updates).
Well, I'm one EE and I fixed my phone, restored it to perfect working condition. :) BRUTE did not specify all the qualifications or specific actions you did. Many times (not always) repairs are actually quite simple if they can be properly diagnosed. I cut my teeth in the business doing exactly that. Cell phones are a different beast (PCs less so) compared to what I worked on, but the principles are not so different.

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daylen
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by daylen » Wed Sep 21, 2016 3:55 pm

BRUTE wrote:brute really, really wants to not go back to Linux, but Apple is making it harder and harder..
Why do you not want to go back to linux?

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BRUTE
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by BRUTE » Wed Sep 21, 2016 4:17 pm

daylen wrote:
BRUTE wrote:brute really, really wants to not go back to Linux, but Apple is making it harder and harder..
Why do you not want to go back to linux?
Linux feels like computing in the stone age. but Apple is working hard every day to make Mac OS into a concentration camp, and at one point, the stone age just doesn't seem that bad any longer.

for reference, brute had a Linux laptop as his last machine, now on a MBP. there is simply no laptop out there that even comes close in terms of hardware quality and being balanced, and Mac OS X is the better UNIX. but they keep adding all this shit and making actual stuff harder. there hasn't been a feature added to MacOS X that was useful to brute since.. maybe Snow Leopard? some of the bugs/bullshit from 10.0 is still present today. and Apple not only doesn't show any interest in appealing to the crowd of individuals who actually use their computer for typing and stuff like that, they insult them by removing useful features and adding fucking balloons and fireworks and siri and locking everything in the app store, so now everybody can have a shitty ecosystem full of crap, not just iOS users.

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daylen
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by daylen » Wed Sep 21, 2016 4:29 pm

BRUTE wrote:Linux feels like computing in the stone age.
I don't know about that. Both gnome 3 and kde plasma feel just as modern as anything windows or mac has created.

Maybe I am biased, but anything other than arch linux or debian annoys me.

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BRUTE
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by BRUTE » Wed Sep 21, 2016 6:03 pm

brute really wants to like Linux/OSS, but on the consumer level, they're just terrible. brute never liked any KDE (admittedly didn't even try the newest one) and gnome was more like.. well, it's not KDE. Ubuntu's new window manager (Unity?) was terrible and crashy, maybe it's better now. brute had arch + awesomeWM for a while, but it does get tiresome to have to spend so much time just to do regular stuff.. make the font not look terrible, make the battery last even 1/2 as long as on a Mac, make the text readable at high resolution, map ctrl to caps lock (the first 17 tutorials didn't work), watch that one flash video a friend sends brute, wonder if the computer will boot after dist upgrade, find intel wifi driver that works well, mail client that's still under development (Thunderbird isn't), browser that's not a memory hog(both FF and Chrome/Chromium are terrible in that regard), copy and paste between terminal and window manager apps, getting screen brightness to 100% (apparently not trivial), gvim is way worse than mvim, apt is worse than brew, making the sound card work, making the HDMI output work, making the sound in the HDMI output work (not trivial), finding a working video editor for that 1 video per year...

add to that, Macs are actually not much/any more expensive for similar quality hardware. brute had to spend $1,500 for a laptop that he would consider "mostly same quality", and even then it had a terrible track pad and keyboard, basically disqualifiers. it's possible do spend much less than on a Mac, but then it's going to be a terrible laptop. the $400 Dell laptop is unusable comparing by build quality, battery life, quality keyboard and trackpad and screen with almost every Mac laptop (Air is excluded for shitty screen resolution).

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daylen
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by daylen » Wed Sep 21, 2016 6:54 pm

I don't like kde either.

I tried to build from the ground up using arch + i3 for a year or so (manually configuring booting, fonts, battery power, wifi, blah, blah) and eventually settled with arch + gnome de package which basically takes care of all this for you. Gnome is simple and is very reliable. I don't mind how FF hogs memory since I rarely max out 4gb ram. Wifi drivers can be a pain sometimes though. Pacman is the reason I stay with arch, it is the best package manager I have used by far (for my purposes).

I bought my labtop refurbished for just under $300 and built my desktop from parts for about $600 (both of which I am happy with), so I don't really need the quality or computational power that apple computer's provide.

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Sclass
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by Sclass » Thu Sep 22, 2016 12:31 am

bryan wrote: . Smartphones are not like PCs, where you can really have a go at making mods and soldering things or trying new softwares, due to 1) so much of the HW being integrated into the SoC and 2) many unique hardware/firmwares/software combinations for a single device that do not translate easily to another device. For instance, savvy users may be able to do some kludging to repair a smartphone or to get it running newer system software, but it will usually be at the expense of something else breaking (performance tunings, power management, sw security like authenticated modules, or DRM related things like video playback come to mind immediately). Note, even makers of smartphones with many EEs on staff can't get it right (power management of a device is complex and not many devices are close to optimal, especially after system software updates).
I still manage to fix a lot of stuff. I find weak solder and connectors come up more often than people think. It is an area that is hard for a designer to control that gets challenged every time you drop your phone. Granted I like to restrict my work to items that worked very well prior to me getting them. That helps get rid of some of the impossible scenarios you listed.

Edit - something I forgot to mention is if I get one fixed and learn its problem I go out and get more. There is nothing like probing a known good model side by side with a dead one. You can get to the root of the failure faster by comparing the two.

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Forskaren
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by Forskaren » Sun Jan 08, 2017 7:13 am

I have been thinking about the advantages of focusing in one ecosystem compared to using stuff from different suppliers or ecosystems. There is a lot of options both for hardware and services today. For example if you focus on Apple, you pay a premium but expect to get reasonable good stuff every time. Buying a windows PC or android phone can be better value than what Apple offer, but if you don't do your research you can be very displeased.

What do you think generally about the advantages and disadvantages to stay in one ecosystem as much as possibly?

Apple:
-Mac
-iOS
-Apple watch
-Apple tv
-iTunes, Apple music, iBooks
-iCloud

Google:
-Chrome os or chrome web browser
-Android or Google apps on iOS
-Google play (apps, music, books)
-Chrome-cast
-Google drive


Microsoft:
-Windows
-Windows phone (almost dead), or Microsoft apps for iOS or Android
-Xbox
-Microsoft office
-Microsofts' offerings for music and movies
-OneDrive

Independent
-Spotify
-Amazon
-Yahoo
-Linux
-Facebook
-Sony/playstation

ducknalddon
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by ducknalddon » Sun Jan 08, 2017 8:05 am

The trouble with a lot of the technology in your list is it exists just for the purpose of selling you something else, be it movies, music, services, more hardware, etc.

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Forskaren
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by Forskaren » Sun Jan 08, 2017 9:05 am

@ducknalddon
Yes and that is true about almost everything else as well. Depending on your priorities, buying is not always bad.

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Sclass
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Re: Electronic devices

Post by Sclass » Sun Jan 08, 2017 11:48 pm

I like the iPhones because they usually worked when shipped.

I remember working on an MP3 player by creative years ago. It was an HDD unit. It was buggy from the factory and no amount of tinkering could get it to work because it never worked reliably.

Somebody passed me an iPad 1 and an iPhone 4 recently. They worked but the OS was so old and not upgrade able that they are just paper weights. I guess I can use them as iPods.

I did a bunch of digital cameras a few years ago. Sony and Nikon. I'd just buy dead ones cheap on eBay and cobble cameras together with what parts were still good. I standardized on two specific cameras. Broken LCDs, broken power buttons, shorted backup power capacitors. Bad ribbon connectors. Bad solder. Now I have a pile of those.

Fun stuff. Kind of my fixit rush heroin.

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