Are we just unlucky, iPod owners, or is Apple throwing bad jokes at us?

I used to have a nice iPod 2g w/3.1.3 firmware and little features ;)
When I updated to 4.0 the expectations were high: backgrounds (is this even a feature? I’ve been using backgrounds on my 40€ cellphone for ages!!), BT keyboard and of course multitasking!

No, these are not supported on iPod 2g :(

Well, just jailbreak… And voila!
You need to enable the feats either via redsn0w or editing yourself the N72AP.plist navigating to the folder
/System/Library/CoreService/SpringBoard.app/
and changing the multitasking key to true:
(just google “enable multitasking ipod 2g” for details)

<key>multitasking</key>
<true/>

Result: 4.0 just sucks and iPod is really sluggish (yeah, you’re thinking: that’s your problem, since you jailbroke), so I went back to no multitasking :( :(

…until 4.2.1 (nah, 4.3 has not been released for 2g)

Now guess what? It seems the iPod2G is working decently, even with multitasking enabled.
The problem is that… multitasking itself is not working! Why?
Because every time you want to pass from an app directly to another (i.e. you touch an url in your email to be opened in Safari), the Springboard crashes! :(

Well, after a lot of searching, it turned out that the multitasking is working as expected, but the new Springboard is calling a infamous OpenGL ES 2 function for showing the so called Fast App switch animation, which, guess what, is not supported by iPod 2G and just make it crash!! :-(

Yes, that stupid flip of the screen needs a new OpenGL ES 2 function: surprised? I guess someone put it there right on purpose! ;-)

Anyways, not without glitches, this problem can be overcome adding (not changing) the following key:

<key>opengles-2</key>
<true/>

This tells your iPod that you have OpenGL ES 2 even if it’s not true, but will save it from crashing the Springboard app.
The downside are that, from time to time, you may get some strange lines on the system buttons. At least this is what someone reports on the forums, and it seems it usually happens on landscape mode.

Well, you know what? After a couple of days of usage, I’m really happy with that! It’s not sluggish, I can use multitasking, it works as expected and I still have to see one of those lines! :-D

Happy multitasking everybody! (jee… it’s Windows 3.1 stuff! 8O )

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When the cat eats fish…

June 22nd, 2011

Last week I had to buy a new PC (no, I didn’t come up with the excuse that mine was too old, too slow or decided I deserved one ;-) ).
So I got a new minitower with a pretty nice hardware and a brand new LCD screen with double luminosity, faster response, etc.

Even after a lot of fine tuning monitor, resolution, gamma correction, etc, the look and feel was quite strange, so I decided to search for some optimizations and I discovered this Cleartype font switch.

Cleartype uses the way monitors are built to create a smoothing effect with sub-pixels calibration (the R, G and B of the RGB).

As one may read on the net, Cleartype is something you hate or love: since it uses single R, G or B pixels, you might end up with multicolor fonts (where the source is single color, typically black). This behaviour may be very annoying to sensitive people, so much that they have nightmares from Cleartype setups :-D

What I did was a very innocuous move: I run the Cleartype tuner of Windows 7 and turned the switch on.
After a few hours I started seeing red halos around characters, with a general effect of an unfocused screen.

I then decided I didn’t like at all this red-ish font corners and just turned off the switch.

“Oh my god! What’s this?!”
The fonts looked so grainy I couldn’t read!
After that, the rest is a nightmare…. I couldn’t possibly imagine a simple switch messed up all Windows settings…

Or it’s just me that got used to smooth chars and couldn’t ho back? ;-)

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