Friday, October 12, 2012

PDA vs. Smartphone

It's generally considered that smartphones have won the battle and you will have trouble finding a dedicated PDA nowadays. But have they really won? I think not. What is a smartphone, if not a PDA with a built-in  phone? Making phonecalls is just a tiny part of the package! So what happened is not the death of the PDA but rather a merger. This is good because we don't have to carry two separate devices anymore and it's cheaper too. Would the phones eventually evolve to what they are now without the invention of the PDA? Who knows?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Windows XP: how to disable CTRL+ALT+DEL at Login

By default, Windows XP will ask you to press CTRL+ALT+DEL before you can enter your user credentials. Here's how to get around this:

Go to the Control Panel--> Administrative Tools--> Local Security Policy, select Local Policies --> Security Options, and locate Interactive Logon: Do not require CTRL+ALT+DEL, and Disable that option. Problem solved!

Thursday, March 22, 2012


Note to self: yellow wire* = +12 V not +5 V!

Today's lesson cost me a 2GB Disk on Module (DoM).

* - molex connector

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

HTPC Cooling Part III.

About a year ago I wrote about how I solved the problem of my HTPC overheating. Well, after recently upgrading RAM to 4GB it seemed like a good idea to come up with a better solution. So I did.

Mod #1: Cable ties! The existing fan was perfect so I used cable ties to attach it to the heat pipes.

Fast, easy, neat and works like a charm!

Mod #2: Case fan also needed silencing. On the first try I used a thermistor. Have yet to see, if this is a satisfying solution.

HTPC Cooling - Part III.

Friday, February 3, 2012

News: Fractal PC

It's been 8 years since my last PC build and the time has come for me to replace my aging Toshiba laptop. After much thought and price checks I settled for this:

CPU: Intel i3-2100
MB: Asus P8H67 rev3.0
RAM: 2x 4GB Corsair Vengeance Blue 1333MHz
GFX: XFX Radeon 6850 1GB
PSU: Corsair TX 650W V2
BOX: Fractal Design Arc

Got all of this (except the case) from a shop in Austria ( and the prices were very reasonable. The build worked out of the box and gave me no problems whatsoever which is a first!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

TG3 BL82 mod

In december 2010 I received a used TG3 BL82 compact mechanical keyboard. It was in pretty bad shape but I didn't want to throw it out so I decided to completely renovate it.

The idea was to swap switches for Cherry MX Blue and along the way swap LEDs as well. I got the switches from a fellow member and bought the orange diodes on eBay.

TG3 really has nice and clean soldering. All soldering and desoldering was done at 275C. Since I haven't done anything like this before, it took me almost 7 hours just to desolder the switches and diodes! I estimate that I spent a total of ~14 hours working on the project. Additional time was wasted with desoldering new diodes which turned out not to be bright enough.

The last ingredient was the transparent case I got from Deck thanks to another geekhack member.

You can find more pictures here.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Flea Market Finds #7

No updates for a while but this doesn't mean I haven't bought anything!

Recent finds:
- Diablo (PC CD-ROM), jewel case
- Diablo II (PC CD-ROM), jewel case
- A502/16; 512kB memory expansion for the Amiga 500
- Nintendo Game & Watch Life Boat w/ box & instructions

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Video HowTo: Cherry MX stem&spring swap

A switch is held together by four latches (two to each side). The video shows how you can pop the switch open in 3 easy steps. I did this with a french Goupil G80-1861 keyboard which originally used MX Black linear switches. A Cherry G80-1000 served as a donor for MX Blue stems and springs.

Goupil G80-1861 stem & spring swap from Bojan Kotur on Vimeo.

The end result:

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

HTPC Cooling

I finally got my hands on one Scythe 100x100x12mm slim fan. It turns at roughly 1000rpm and practically cannot be heard. It only moves 15 CFM which means that the PC now gets hotter than before - approximately 60C . This is quite alright as far as I'm concerned so I'll leave it as is (for now).

Friday, January 14, 2011

HTC Touch Diamond 2 problem

This phone has been nothing but trouble since I got it. The joy of owning a sparkling new phone lasted just about 2 days. My first problem was that from time the time the phone just couldn't be woken up without removing and reinserting the battery. This turned out to be a software problem which I fixed after a while.

My second problem is that the "SMS received" sound sometimes doens't play until I turn on the screen. What's that all about? Probably firmware related...

The third and biggest problem is that the receiver speaker is acting up and I sometimes can't hear a thing. This cold be due to a cold solder joint or it could be a bad speaker. Definitely something I can't solve myself so I'll have the phone repaired. Hope it doesn't last long.