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OK Robespierre - you convinced me. Now which PDA?

OK Robespierre - you convinced me. Now which PDA?

Old Feb 27th, 2005, 09:40 AM
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OK Robespierre - you convinced me. Now which PDA?

I have been considering a PDA for some time and I'm ready. I suspect that the under $100 ones you talk about won't really do the job - to access WiFi for emails, Blue Tooth, enough memory to hold travel docs & books, keep a diary, maps, schedules, phrases,subway, etc. Can some of this go into spare memory? Is technology there yet for GPS or only in a car? Is a spare battery necessary? Am considering Dell Axim X50v. Comments? Do you buy an Orange Card for France?
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Old Feb 27th, 2005, 10:03 AM
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No, the $100 jobs don't have wireless connectivity - but you can still jack into a net-connected PC through its USB port and you're on the air! If you buy a used one (or a new one, for that matter), make sure that you can flash it with the latest firmware. Some early models of every make required a certain amount of tinkering.

You can put anything you want to in any number of flash memory modules - I keep my "travel" programs and data in one, my "flight management" in another, and so on. The more you can offload to SD storage, the more elbow room you give the application in main memory, resulting in faster operation.

There are a number of ways to approach GPS. I have a GlobalSat BC307 (globalsat.com.tw) receiver that plugs into the CompactFlash slot. You may find a USB more flexible.

I carry a spare battery, but the only time I've found it necessary is after I've used the iPAQ during a flight and immediately hit the street. Oh - and the time I left the GPS on by accident.

I don't know the Dell line - check the forums for user reports.

I use carnets, Mobilis, or Carte Orange, whichever is cheaper for a particular itinerary.
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Old Feb 27th, 2005, 10:18 AM
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The Palm Tungsten C is a self-contained wireless device that works wherever there's a wireless service available. It works fine, but is not cheap.

The Tungsten E, and several other models, have GPS capability with an add on device.
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Old Feb 27th, 2005, 03:14 PM
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Thanks for your replies and help.
I am not exactly sure what is meant by "make sure that you can flash it with the latest firmware".
I note that there are two distinct operating systems. Is one type better - more software available? Do any of the GPS systems allow you to use them while walking or do they require cradles, AC plugs, etc?
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Old Feb 27th, 2005, 05:02 PM
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The firmware is analogous to the BIOS in a desktop or laptop. It runs the devices. Sometimes (particularly with new technologies like Bluetooth), they don't get it quite right on the first try.

I think that at the moment, Windows PC is winning the software race. Palm OS jumped out to a big lead initially, but they didn't consolidate their gains very well. But there's still a load of stuff for both OSs, and probably always will be.

GPS systems don't require any attachments. See the photos at

http://www.globalsat.com.tw/english/products_detail.php?main_id=5&p_id=9

The middle picture shows a CF model plugged into a PPC.
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Old Feb 28th, 2005, 07:07 AM
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Thanks again Robespierre. I have ordered a PDA with MS OS. As you are certainly knowledgable about this, can you give me some tips on software? Do you use MS Reader for EBooks or Acrobat Reader?
Does Streets have maps for Europe?
Have seen iMetro - other top notch stuff free or otherwise?
Any suggestions are appreciated.
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Old Feb 28th, 2005, 07:51 AM
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I use both Acrobat for graphics (such as public transport maps or scans of travel guides) and MSReader for e-books. Another rich source of travel-related information is the Web. You can snapshot a page and download it to the PPC, then view it with IE.

Pocket Streets doesn't include Europe, but you can get an obsolete version free from

http://www.pocketpccity.com/software/pocketpc/Pocket-Streets-for-free-2003-11-21-ce-pocketpc.html

if you don't want to shell out $10 for the latest features. Note the links to Microsoft for maps and PSConvert.exe if you use Streets 1.0

More maps are available at

http://www.ppc-welt.info/ppc-welt/karten/index.php?dir=europa
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Old Feb 28th, 2005, 08:22 AM
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Michelin maps for PDA

http://www.shop.viamichelin.co.uk/csasp_index.asp?id=119

I have downloaded the Europe demo, and it seems to work fine for the area around Hounslow (west of London).
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Old Feb 28th, 2005, 02:59 PM
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Currency converter (updates from European Central Bank web site):

http://www.indecka.com/software/currencyconverter.exe
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Old Mar 1st, 2005, 09:47 AM
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Robespierre, thanks again for the help and suggestions. I am running into a terminology problem. Fodors site says that their software works on "devices with an ARM processor, Windows CE 3.0, or Pocket PC 2002/2003 and 32 MB of RAM. iFodor's does not support MIPS or SH3 processors." My new PDA has, as an operating system, MS Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition. Where does this fall into the the above?
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Old Mar 1st, 2005, 11:51 AM
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You probably have an ARM CPU if it's a new machine. Test it by downloading and running a freebie for that processor, like the Michelin mapper demo.
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Old Apr 9th, 2005, 12:11 PM
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I have downloaded Skype for my wifi enabled pda. Are hotspots on every other corner in Italy?
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Old Apr 10th, 2005, 07:18 PM
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All MS Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition Pocket PCs will have ARM-compatible CPUs (probably Intel PXA270).
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Old Apr 11th, 2005, 08:01 AM
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Please help!!!!!!!!!!!I have downloaded the maps and converter program and the conversion seems to have gone OK but what application do I use to view the maps?
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Old Apr 12th, 2005, 07:31 PM
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What maps have you downloaded? Skype is a Voice over IP application.
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Old Apr 13th, 2005, 07:17 AM
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Robes
Skype works fine. I may not even get a cell phone What I am having problems with is the Pocket Streets.(http://www.pocketpccity.com/software...-pocketpc.html)

I downloaded and converted the maps and moved them (only the maps)to the pda. The problem is how to view them. What program do I use? Do I put the converter program on the ppc????

Oh please give guidance you techie guru!
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Old Apr 13th, 2005, 09:59 AM
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Robespierre, is he saying he needs something like Adobe to view the maps?
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Old Apr 13th, 2005, 10:44 AM
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Yes that's exactly what I'm saying. Will Adobe do it?
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Old Apr 13th, 2005, 11:30 AM
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Then he has already answered...

Author: Robespierre
Date: 02/28/2005, 10:51 am
I use both Acrobat for graphics (such as public transport maps or . . . .

http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/main.html
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Old Apr 14th, 2005, 09:17 AM
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# Download Pocket Streets 2001 from the link above - it's a setup program, just run it.

# Download free maps from Microsoft.

# Run PSConvert.exe on your desktop machine and convert the maps you downloaded. Note that you can select multiple files to convert at once.

# Copy the maps to your Pocket PC with Explorer and ActiveSync.

# Run Pocket Streets on your PPC.
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