Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Cute Google Labs sites run well on TyTN

I just came across a very cute system developed by Google Labs called Google Sets, at Basically, you type in a few examples of something, and it gives you suggestions of other things that are similar. The interface is simple and looks very good on a TyTN-sized screen, and runs well over Wi-Fi or 3g. (Presumably it'll be equally good on a K-JAM or other cellular PDA.)

As a test, in a video rental store I typed in Mission Impossible, Die Hard, Beverly Hills Cop, and Star Wars, and pressed "go." It gave me back recommendations of Ghostbusters, Indiana Jones, Terminator, Top Gun, and more. Some were less appropriate, like Friday the 13th, but most were in the ballpark.

Yes, I know that there are other sites for movie recommendations. But this seems to be built to do recommendations of anything (in theory), and it's done very well for a TyTN-sized screen and 3g bandwidth.

They also have a version of Froogle, their shopping system, running on cellphones, at Comparison shopping is near and dear to my heart, since I developed the first comparison shopping system (BargainFinder) years ago. So you can compare prices on your TyTN or other cellphone on the road. (But it's less useful to me here in Israel.)


Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Answer regarding my e-mail deleting problem

Regarding my problem of e-mail deleted on the device being deleted from the server (here and here), I got the following answer from someone at Microsoft, on a newsgroup:

Unfortunately there is no way to achieve this in WM5. We are considering
this feature for future releases.

The closest you can get right now is to use Empty Deleted Items = Manually, but of course deleted messages pile up on your device, and they will be deleted from the server once you try to remove them. It sounds like you've already tried this and it's still unacceptable.

Hopefully this doesn't make your device completely useless...

Have you considered some of the 3rd party email clients available for WM5?
Power users such as yourself might enjoy the finer grain customization
possible with some of these 3rd party apps.

The best bet seems to be a third-party app. I wonder if any third-party e-mail apps also support HTML e-mail etc. If anyone has one to recommend, please leave a note here as a comment.

In the meantime, I understand that I can delete things on the device and they'll be fine as long as I don't empty the deleted items folder. I think that I can then move all deleted items older than 7 days back to Inbox, which I've set to show only the past 7 days, and they should disappear on the device without being deleted on the server. I'll have to wait 7 days to try this, I'll let everyone know then how it works. (IT WORKS, READ MY FOLLOWUP HERE.)

Monday, January 29, 2007

More on TyTN deleting email from server

This is really bad. Based on some hunting around the web, I tried emptying my POP email deleted items folder when disconnected, and then connecting and doing a send/receive, and when doing the send/receive it deleted from the server all the messages that had been purged when disconnected.

I use webmail for my main e-mail use, and only want the device for remote access. That said, I want to be able to look at an inbox of significant items without seeing dozens of things that I want to read only on the Web. I need the ability to delete from my device's inbox without deleting from the server.

Any ideas anyone?

Deleting e-mail on server!

I just discovered that my TyTN is deleting mail on my mail server whenever I empty the deleted items folder on the TyTN.

This is an option that can be turned on or off on the regular Outlook client, but I can't find a way to turn it off on the TyTN.

I think that this is absolutely crazy. Since the TyTN will never be my primary e-mail reader, I certainly don't mean for anything I do on my TyTN to delete mail on the server. I delete something on the TyTN whenever I don't want it on the TyTN, not necessarily when I don't want it anywhere.

If anyone knows anything about this, particularly how to turn this feature off, PLEASE leave a blog comment!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Register article on YouTube and TinyTube

It's always fun to scoop the Register, since they're usually up on things that are happening. They've just now reported what I wrote a few weeks ago, about YouTube blocking TinyTube because of the Verizon deal.

In the meantime, there are other systems out there for converting YouTube and Google videos to mobile format. But none are as easy to use as TinyTube.

(Note: if you like this blog, you can subscribe at )

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

TyTN (WM5) software I'm planning to check out

Here's the top of my list of software to check out soon on my TyTN:

  1. The new updated version of Skype Mobile (version 2.2 beta)
  2. CoolCamera program for better video capture

Anyone tried either of these? Anyone know of other software for the TyTN that should be on the list? (Serious and very useful stuff only) Feel free to leave blog comments here.

I'll post reviews of these after I try them out, hopefully soon!

NOTE: While I'm writing, I'll mention that you can now receive updates to this blog by e-mail, by subscribing at


Tuesday, January 09, 2007

YouTube confirms YouTube mobile was broken, and now fixed

I just got two messages from YouTube support, in response to all my complaints about YouTube Mobile not working, saying that it was indeed broken but is now fixed:

It seems like the issue you were having was related to a temporary problem with
our website. Mobile uploads should be working correctly now.
Please try again now, and it should work just fine!
Aaron T.
The YouTube Team

We did have some issues regarding mobile uploads and these issues should have been fixed. You may want to try uploading again and if it continues to fail, you may also want to try creating a new mobile upload profile.
If you continue to experience problems, please reply to this email and let us know! Please also let us know who your cell phone provider is.
Best Regards,
The YouTube Team

This fits my experience that YouTube Mobile is now working.

Of course, this happened before that it was broken, then fixed, then broke again, so I hope it keeps working this time!

Bottom line, submitting videos directly from a TyTN or other connected PDA should work fine. Enjoy!


Friday, January 05, 2007

YouTube Mobile working again (for now...)

After being down and back up and then down again, YouTube Mobile appears to be working for e-mail video submissions. As I said before, it's great when it works, but with all the up and down, it's hard to believe it will last long.

ESPECIALLY because after sending in lots of messages to their support team, I received today messages about all my submissions in the past 2 weeks, saying only that they'd been received. On my account I see all three are there, with two marked as duplicates of the first which is in the system. No message acknowledging a problem and saying it's fixed.

So for now, enjoy it while it works...

Thursday, January 04, 2007

YouTube Mobile still not working

As I said earlier, YouTube Mobile isn't working when videos are submitted by e-mail. I've submitted this several times to YouTube help, with no response.

Several blog readers have commented to me that it's not working for them. Is it working for anyone? Has anyone tried it via MMS?

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

TyTN WLAN WEP 40 or 128 bit

I've been using my TyTN on a wireless network with security (WEP) based on a 40 bit key (10 hex characters) for months, but just now tried to connect to an office wireless lan that uses 128 bit security. I can't get the TyTN to connect. Has anyone else managed to connect their TyTN with a 128 bit key? I'm not sure if the problem is with the key or with something else.

Thanks for any comments that anyone can add about this.