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Messages - Mike D. aka jmiked

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Not Quite Kindle / Re: What are you binge-watching?
« on: October 23, 2017, 09:19:09 pm »
This week I binge-watched the whole 14th series of the British comedy quiz show QI on Britbox. New shows will show up a day or so after they air in the UK. I don't quite understand why I like this show so much considering it's exceptionally non-PC, and contains a lot of vulgarities and explicit material (something which I normally would not watch). Last night I laughed so hard there were tears running down my face. I had to rewind the stream to pick up what I missed while laughing.

Fire Talk / Security updates
« on: October 23, 2017, 09:06:49 pm »
Does anybody know if Amazon ever pushes security updates to the Fires?

Frankly, it's my long-time K[indle]Boards friends that keep me here, since I'm not an aspiring author. :)

I'll echo that.

Has anyone tried using Calibre to convert to AZW and then dropping them onto Kindle rather than emailing? I hope the bold option shows up with this method, as that's how I normally process (you get covers too). I'll try later or tomorrow.

I use Calibre to convert to AZW, but I use the server built into Calibre to send the books wirelessly to my Kindle. The bold option did show up.

Anything Else Amazon / Re: Echo remote
« on: October 16, 2017, 06:52:22 pm »
Update: Tried to take the thing apart. Failed. Brushed the negative contact again, sprayed with silicon lube, worked the contact up and down a dozen times or so.

Now it works. So it apparently was an internal corrosion problem, even though there was no evidence of the batteries leaking. File procedure for future use.

Anything Else Amazon / Re: Echo remote
« on: October 16, 2017, 06:32:29 pm »
I had one that seemed to fail a while ago. I replaced the battery, even though the battery was fairly new, and it started working again. I'm  still not sure if there was actually anything wrong with the battery, or if taking it out and replacing it allowed the remote to reboot itself. Any chance the issue with yours is related to the battery and not to the remote itself?

I re-booted both the Echo and the Dot multiple times, replaced the remote batteries, brushed the contacts, and sacrificed two cookies. No luck.

Anything Else Amazon / Echo remote
« on: October 16, 2017, 08:39:57 am »
I've just had my second Echo Remote fail yesterday. It lasted a year and a week. I'm more than a bit annoyed. I have to use the thing frequently, since neither the Echo or the Dot are that good at rejecting even low-level ambient noise from TVs and such.

Pfui (as a famous detective would say).

Unfortunately the Left Justify option still seems only to work with books that have Enhanced Typesetting, so it's not very useful to me. I'm still going to have to run books through Calibre. The new Boldness option is pretty nice, though. I do prefer it to be set on 1. Nice.

Not Quite Kindle / Re: What are you binge-watching?
« on: October 14, 2017, 12:30:12 pm »
Binge watching Kingdom. I've watched it all before (3 seasons) and they left the last episode hanging. I mean, Stephen Fry, Tony Slattery, Celia Imrie ... why would they cancel it?

Network budget cuts, according to the info I got. The series was just too expensive, although it didn't seem to have any unusual features that would require a lot of money. Maybe salaries.

I enjoyed it a lot.

Let's Talk Kindle! / Re: Has Kindle Been Abandoned?
« on: October 10, 2017, 05:26:49 pm »

 (And can you imagine how risky it would be if you had a small child?  A machine that lets you order things verbally.  I'm sure nothing could go wrong around a curious little kid with an obsessive need to repeat themselves or ask question after question.)

The ordering feature can be turned off. Amazon may have made a mistake when they shipped the product with it turned on by default.

Apple devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod...) / Re: New iPhones coming
« on: October 04, 2017, 08:51:56 am »
I think I'll wait a while before deciding on which model to get. In the meantime, I picked up an LG V20 Android phone for a remarkably good price, so I'll be using that for a while. I predict that by the time the iPhone X is in good supply and any warts have been exposed, I'll be ready to go back to iPhone. I have relatives I can foist the LG phone onto.

I'm very annoyed with Apple at the moment, due to them dropping 32-bit support, eliminating backups of phones to your computer (new 'improved' version of iTunes), and 'fixing' iOS so that my network analysis app can't label devices anymore (so I can't tell what is logged into the WiFi network). It will take a while before the hassle of using Android overrides my snit*.

*Well, it didn't take all that long. Geofencing hardly works, a wretched notifications system, and the non-responsiveness of the developer on problems with an interface app for my home automation system ("well, some phones seem to have problems"). Back to the iPhone.

Let's Talk Kindle! / Re: Has Kindle Been Abandoned?
« on: October 01, 2017, 06:09:33 am »
I think the hardware is fine. It's the software that needs more work. There just aren't anywhere near enough customization options.


Not Quite Kindle / Re: Hearing Aid Advice
« on: September 29, 2017, 09:20:51 pm »
Somehow I missed this at the time, but a few weeks ago, Congress actually managed to pass something that was signed into law: The FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017. This Act includes The Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act, which directs the FDA to issue regulations making prescription-quality hearing aids available without a medical exam or prescription for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss.

This should result in much lower-priced devices in the not-too-distant future. I have to wonder how this bill got signed into law, as I'm sure the lobbyists of hearing aid manufacturers threw a ton of money at legislators to kill it.

We won one. Congratulations to us.  ;D ;D


11700 Rock Rose
Austin, TX 78758

And of course they had to choose a place in Austin with one of the worst parking situations.  >:(

Apple devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod...) / Re: Waze app on Apple iphone
« on: September 18, 2017, 05:11:30 pm »
or a separate charger that plugs into a cigarrete lighter/power port

That's what the 12V to 5V adapter is. It steps down the voltage from the 12V car system to the 5V USB standard.

Apple devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod...) / Re: Waze app on Apple iphone
« on: September 17, 2017, 09:50:16 pm »
I was talking about plugging my iphone into the car charger

As was I. The 12V to 5V USB adapters that plug into the car power plug/lighter socket are not all the same. Some will furnish more current than others. The upper limit is determined by the fuse in the car, though. You need to have one that will furnish enough current to keep ahead of what the phone is using.

If you are using a USB port built into the car, then you can't change it. In which case, a rechargeable power pack may be the answer.

Apple devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod...) / Re: Waze app on Apple iphone
« on: September 17, 2017, 03:32:45 pm »
Yeah, you might need a higher-wattage charger. The one I use will keep iPhone/Waze going all day at 100%. When I really load down the iPhone 6 with more apps, I use a high-output battery pack, which keeps things going all day.

Apple devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod...) / Re: New iPhones coming
« on: September 12, 2017, 08:32:32 pm »
I watched the presentation of the new phones this afternoon. There are some improvements, but the flagship phone is about $1,200, which is not quite double what I want to pay for a phone. I'm obviously not the target market. Not unexpectedly, the phone part of it hasn't improved at all. And I didn't hear anything about an improved Siri.

It's possible that I may get an iPhone 8 (the smaller one), but I don't feel in a rush to do it. I just don't feel the "gotta-haves" for any of those things except maybe the new iWatch. I need more info on how the new watch connects with carriers and current plans.

I think I'll wait on some long-term usage reports before I decide.

Not Quite Kindle / Re: What are you binge-watching?
« on: September 09, 2017, 03:49:03 pm »
My new program to binge-watch is The Avengers. The real Avengers, with John Steed and Emma Peel, not the super-hero one from Marvel.

I discovered it while searching through programs on my Roku box. It's on a free channel called TubiTV. The commercials are sort of annoying, but worth it to see a classic TV series. They have the two series prior to Diana Rigg joining the cast, and the one series after she left. I'm nearly finished with the first Rigg series (in B&W). Fun stuff.

Not Quite Kindle / Re: Pill Splitter
« on: September 03, 2017, 10:59:06 pm »
I use one like the top one. You do have to line things up pretty well to get good results

Apple devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod...) / New iPhones coming
« on: August 29, 2017, 09:07:39 am »
Apple's new phones are scheduled to be announced on 12 Sep. Anybody thinking about getting a new phone? It looks as thought the new flagship iPhone is going to be priced over $1000, so that's clearly out for me.

The rest of the line (rumored to be called the 7s and 7s Plus) will likely be around $800-$900.This is still pretty steep, but the Samsung and Google phones cost that also.

I'm thinking to get the previous model when the price drops in two months or so to replace my three-year old phone. An iPhone 7 Plus will do me fine. It would have four things I would like to have: slightly larger keyboard for my clumsy old fingers, enough memory to get all my music on, better camera, and better battery life on a charge.

I really like the Motorola G5 phones (at $300 or so), but the thing that keeps me from getting one is that the ones they sell here in the US don't have NFC (Near Field Communications), which means I couldn't use my phone to pay for things at stores. I've gotten accustomed to zipping through checkout lines with a button tap to pay from a debit card, not to mention the massive security improvement over plastic cards.

Not Quite Kindle / Re: What are you binge-watching?
« on: August 23, 2017, 07:33:30 pm »
I've been watching The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. This evening after the villain that killed County's father escaped from custody for the third time in as many discs, I gave up. I have little patience for writers that can't come up with more than one storyline.

Heh...I'd say stop while you're ahead and just stick with the original 3 films. ;)

Agreed. But I did like Rogue One.

Anything Else Amazon / Re: Chrome browser problems
« on: August 20, 2017, 09:57:29 am »
I have Chrome working properly with Amazon now. The fix was doing a factory restore on my laptop. Things had been accumulating for over 10 years, and it was time for a general clean-up. After making three complete backups on different drives, I did the disk wipe and re-installed the OS from the Recovery Partition. I have only the essentials on the device at the moment along with Chrome, Safari and Firefox. Chrome is now dealing properly with Amazon's Devices and Content page now.

Over the next few weeks I will be re-installing some essential apps, but I'm unlikely to ever put all the stuff back that I removed.

Of course, I'm still stuck with old versions of software, but I'm hoping I can retire this hardware by the end of the year and switch to my other, up-to-date laptop.

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