Archive for December, 2012

American Revolution – why did America win?

I got History Channel’s History of America for Christmas. It has many things I did not know and includes many famous / important people speaking.

Here’s my take of why America won the Revolution after watching the documentary:
1. Smallpox. Smallpox came to the Americans whilst they were dug in at Valley Forge. 1000s of people died per week. Washington’s doctors used a cure mentioned by African slaves, which forms the basis of many innoculations today.
2. Changing rules. For first time ever, Washington’s men targetted the officers with snipers (after killing the scouts who had the local knowledge). Without the officers, the foot soldiers were leaderless. Simon Frasier was the first British officer to be killed in this way.
3. Baron von Steuben. Prussian general destroyed by his homosexual reputation. Managed to retrain Washington’s army. Brought order, discipline, hygiene, spirit. Relocated lavatories, kitchens, produced training manual (some still in use today). Introduced new technology: bayonnet.
4. Approach. von Steuben said other nations’ soldiers would just do what they were told. Washington’s men always had to be told why they were doing something before they did it.
5. Spies. Through use of a sophisticated spy network, Washington was able to save the French fleet, giving the rebels dominance at sea.

Extract from wikipedia:
Timothy Murphy shot and killed General Simon Fraser of Balnain on October 7, 1777 at a distance of about 400 yards.

And this shows the thinking of the time…
During the Battle of Brandywine, Capt. Patrick Ferguson had a tall, distinguished American officer in his iron rifle sights. Ferguson did not take the shot as the officer had his back to Ferguson, only later did Ferguson learn that George Washington had been on the battlefield that day.

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Posted by admin - December 30, 2012 at 19:45

Categories: American Revolution, History   Tags:

NFC Charging plate for Nokia Lumia 820

Got my NFC charging plate today for my Nokia Lumia 820. Overall I think this is good – but it’s not a travel accessory, better for your home base.

UK plug is huge – much bigger than the sleek charging plug provided in the Lumia pack.
Power plugs are not USB, so need yet a different set of cables. Although supplied with the pack, you can guarantee those will get lost… why did they not use USB?

No more putting USB connector into the phone (it’s led to some damage on other makes & models).
Really quite easy to charge (as long as the NFC plate is pointing the right way)

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Posted by admin - December 30, 2012 at 19:33

Categories: Mobile Living, Tech, Windows Phone   Tags:

My new HP Envy dv6 7200 EO and windows 8…

Copy of my post… will update later…

When I upgraded my hp envy dv6-7200EO from Win8 to Win8 Pro, there were 4 things that did not work:
1. cd/dvd drive – fixed by plugging in a cd drive onto the usb and then a rescan of hardware
2. PCI card reader – “Realtek PCIE Card Reader”, shown by PCI\VEN_10EC&DEV_5229&SUBSYS_1818103C&REV_01
3. fingerprint reader – USB\VID_138A&PID_0018&REV_0078
4. acpi – “HP Wireless Button Driver”

The ids come from devicemgr/properties/detail/hardwareid.

TOPTIP: before doing anything with your hard drive, copy the c:\swsetup folder. This contains a copy of all the drivers 🙂 The HP product page does *not* have all the drivers: (plus you get into a whole load of problems around installing .net framework, only for the “let hp recommend” assistant to not work).

For the items above, here are the paths in swsetup. In almost all cases, just launch setup.exe:
2. C:\SWSetup\Drivers\Misc
3. C:\SWSetup\Drivers\Fingerprint
4. C:\SWSetup\Drivers\HPWBD

PS: I will try to post my experiences to my blog: shortly… it’s been a very dark few days… some things I have done:
1. updated to windows pro (for bitlocker) – although HP does not seem to have TPM, seems to work ok. used usb boot.
2. updated to samsung 840 pro ssd (for fast encryption) – gave up on their migration software (now written by clonix) and reinstalled win8 from scratch
3. swapped cd drive to original seagate hard drive which came with hp
4. was going to swap out memory, but Amazon sent me wrong memory 🙁
5. updated bios to F13 from F12 (takes a very long time – ie: 3 minutes of black screen with an SSD drive at first start up and then when it had flashed everything)

For those techies out there, the HP support assistant provides some very good tech info (including speed of RAM). Also for MSDN suscribers, download Win8 retail for the Pro version (otherwise looks as though the only Pro version available is VL, which is not the case).

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Posted by admin - December 11, 2012 at 17:19

Categories: Tech, Win8   Tags:

win8 start menu

I am missing the jump list on win8. I downloaded Pokki after reading this cnet article.

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Posted by admin - December 4, 2012 at 14:26

Categories: Mobile Living, Tech, Win8   Tags: