Solutions At Hand

Handhelds, smartphones, mobile technology and the digital lifestyle.

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    Michael is a trainer and consultant specializing in making mobility technology work in people's everyday lives.
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Posts Tagged ‘Palm’

Get some colour happening in your calendar

Posted by Michael Brown on April 24, 2008

Colour is an effective means for getting a grasp on a lot of information in one place. When it comes to your calendar, it can really help you get a handle on your schedule and commitments. For those people who synchronize with Microsoft Outlook, there is an easy way to add some colour to your life. This works with Outlook 2003 and 2007, and the built-in Palm Calendar on modern handhelds. It could also be implemented on other Palm calendars like DateBk6.

Calendar Labels

First of all, get your Palm and open the calendar application. In the category picker, choose Edit Categories. At the same time, open Outlook, select the Calendar, and choose the menus Edit => Label => Edit Labels. Choose Colours that match on both Outlook and the Handheld, and edit the Labels text to match the category you’re using on the handheld. In this example below, I’d edit the “Phone Call” label to match up with the colour I’ve chosen on the handheld. Finish choosing colours for all the Palm categories, and edit the corresponding Outlook labels.

Edit Categories

Automatic Formatting

Now, here’s where the magic really happens. In Outlook, choose the menus Edit => Automatic Formatting. Add a new rule, and call it one of your categories. Choose the same-named label in the picker below, and then click the condition button. Click on the More Choices tab, then type in the name of your category in the Categories field. Click OK when you’re done entering your rule. Add rules for each of the categories you wish to colour code. You can also add rules to look for specific text if you tend to use keywords in your appointments.

Now, your desktop and handheld calendars are just as colourful and co-ordinated!

Outlook Coloured CalendarPalm Colour week view

Originally posted to PalmAddicts here.

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Posted in GTD, Palm, PalmAddicts, PIM, Time & Task Management, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

Is there a virtual Palm in your Future?

Posted by Michael Brown on January 2, 2008


First there was virtual pets, now there is virtual Palms. With the recent release of the Garnet Virtual Machine for the Nokia Internet tablets, it now joins StyleTap as another contender for virtualizing your Palm device on different portable hardware. The real benefit of the Palm OS platform has always been the abundance of third-party applications which can personalize your handheld for your lifestyle. Many people get hooked on a particular application, which may not have a counterpart on another platform, and that confines them to staying on the same platform. Virtualization technologies like StyleTap and the Garnet VM allow you to run your favourite applications on a different hardware/OS platform, which means you can choose new hardware which has the features you want, while still being able to run your favourite applications. For those people who tire of dealing with the limitations of the existing Palm OS or hardware, you now have the freedom to choose something more to your liking.

As for the timing of this release, it’s definately a shot across Palm’s bow, and will hurt Palm’s handheld sales to some degree this holiday season. Nokia has recently released it’s N810 Internet Tablet, and the N800’s are still selling strong, priced around $260 CDN, compared to the Palm Tungsten TX priced around $280 CDN. So, for $20 less, you get 2 memory slots, a webcam, stereo speakers and headphones, and a 800×480 screen, along with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and a Linux-based OS. Up till now, the Internet tablet was really only lacking a viable PIM suite; with the release of the Garnet VM, you can now have all your old favourites for free, and HotSync too! It also benefits Access in promoting it’s ALP product to potential clients, and by building in feedback tools to the Garnet VM, they can benefit from the “testing” by a large userbase.

So, Palm, I’ll say it again; it’s time to swallow your pride and look long and hard at licensing ALP, since your home-grown OS won’t be out ’till late 2008, or the next virtual Palm we see may be a virtual Palm Inc., as seen in the Wayback Machine.

Originally posted to Palm Addicts here.

Posted in Linux, Open Source Software, Palm, PalmAddicts, Technology | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Get Multi-tasking with your Palm

Posted by Michael Brown on January 2, 2008

Detractors of the Palm platform have long complained about the lack of multi-tasking in the OS. Palm hasn’t done it in the past because the Palm has been designed to do what it’s doing well, without being bogged down by other things running in the background (unlike Windows Mobile). Creative Palm OS programmers have created something called Desk Accessories or DA’s, which pop-up over your currently running application, giving you some of the benefits of multi-tasking on your existing device. DA’s were usually written as little single-purpose programs, but a brillant programmer named Alexander Pruss has upped the ante for DA’s. He’s created “the Accessorizer”, allowing you to generate a DA from most programs. This gives you the ability to pop-up one of the other built-ins (for example, Memos) over top of say VersaMail, allowing you to copy from one application into another. Then you simply hit the Launcher button (the house icon) to return to the previous application.

You can only pop-up one DA at a time, then you have to return to the previous (normal) application. Trying to pop-up one one DA over another DA will crash and reset your Palm device. Alexander recommends backing up to a memory card before generating DA’s; Accessorizer is Beta software, meaning it is under active development and is not necessarily stable. So, there are no guarantees that it won’t eat your Palm, your cat, or your spouse. However, in my preliminary testing, I’ve found that it does what it advertises, and very well at that! I’ve replaced daMemoPad and it’s 4K limit with a DA of psMemo, so I get the full 32K of Memos in a pop-up fashion. Accessorizer can be found at 1src.com here.

Originally posted to Palm Addicts here.

Posted in Palm, PalmAddicts, Productivity | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »