Zaurus – English ROM

I bought a Sharp Zaurus 760 from Japan through one of my friends a couple of months back. This model is not sold in the US and I have been wanting to get my hands on it for a long time. I was well aware of the fact that the interface was all in Japanese, but since it runs Linux, I was confident of being able to hack it and change the locale settings. And there are a lot of enthusiast sites on the Internet which have information about this. Well, I got the PDA or rather Personal Mobile Tool (as Sharp likes to call it) and changed the locale settings by following the instructions in the following links
http://members.rogers.com/e46m3/zaurus/
http://downloads.conics.net/pda/zaurus-sl-c700/eng-inst/
http://www.zaurususergroup.com/index.php

Although I got most of the settings and menu options converted into English, I was still not satisfied. I wanted to modify the ROM to a complete english setting. Unfortunately, I am not such a Linux Guru (aspire to become one 🙂 ). Months passed by and as happens with such toys, it started piling dust until I came upon this site. They claimed to have a completely customized ROM with english. It was 11:00 PM in the night and the battery on the Zaurus was completely drained. Well, such goodies shouldn’t be kept waiting :). So I charged the batteries for ~ 15 minutes and got to work. Here is what I did

1) Download the ROM image from Cacko.biz.
2) Follow instructions found here.
3) Reboot the Zaurus and presto… you have an English ROM

Note: Apparently you cannot start up the Zaurus if your battery is completely dead although it is connected to an AC power source. You will have to wait at least 15-20 minutes for the batteries to charge up partially. Weird..

Here is a screenshot of the Zaurus running Netfront. It is connected to the Internet with a prism wireless card.
Zaurus :: Netfront :: BBC

That is the original screen size (640X480 pixels!!). Isn’t that impressive. I just cannot understand why Sharp doesn’t release these great PDAs in the US. They do have the Zaurus 5xxx series for sale over here.

Thanks to the Cacko Group, I now have an english version of the ROM. The same group has a X11 based distribution for the Zaurus. I will try that sometime next week. If you are having trouble getting to the main site (it is damn slow!!!), try this mirror site.

How many kilometers in a mile??

Ever wondered about such questions? How about “How many liters in 20 gallons?”. Well, the almighty Google is right there to help you. One of the little knows features of Google is it’ calculator functionality. Type in “20 gallons in liters” in the google search box and see what you get. Hope you understand why Google is my homepage 🙂 now.

UPDATED (3/28/2006) :
Looks like a lot of people are getting to this post by searching for the number of kilometers per mile in Yahoo. Just so that you don’t have to go somewhere else :), here’s the data

1 MILE = 1.609344 KILOMETERS
1 KILOMETER = 0.621371192 MILES

1 KILO = 2.20462262 POUNDS
1 POUND = 0.45359237 KILOS

Larry the lobster – Ocean to Kitchen

Brian is an avid scuba diver. His typical routine is Work – Home – Dive – Work – Home – Dive … He is even working on getting a rescue diver license. He usually finds interesting stuff during his diving trips, so when he tells me that he found something “special”, I was expecting a shell or something like that. Little did I know that I was in for a treat today :). So without further audue, here we go

Brian - Diver - Fisherman!!
[Brian with his catch of the day.]
Vinay - Poser - Uneasy with Lobster
[Me, taking the chance to pose with a lobster.]
Larry - The Lobster
[Larry – The Lobster]
Larry' Death Bed (tub)
[Colorful food.]
Larry - Goodbye!!
[In he goes :)]
Larry - ready for the table
[Out he comes]
Presentation..Presentation..Presentation
[And right onto the table]

Yummy… To quote Brian “Hey man, he was at the wrong place at the wrong time” :). Sorry Larry.

Inuyasha

I am big anime fan. Blame Cartoon Network for that. Although Cartoon Network shows some good anime, there are a lot of undiscovered gems out there. And people with phat pipes need not look far. Check out this great site. I am nearly done getting Inuyasha. Now have to figure out how to play the OGM files. But that is a story for another post.

head

I was asked by one of my friends, how he could get the top 10 processes in a Unix system. I knew of the usual commands “top”and “ps” and never thought of how you could just get the top 10. Interestingly there is a command called “head“. So if you wanted the top 10 processes you would use “ps -auxw | head“. “man head” returns the following

NAME
head – output the first part of files

SYNOPSIS
head [OPTION]… [FILE]…

DESCRIPTION
Print first 10 lines of each FILE to standard output. With more than
one FILE, precede each with a header giving the file name. With no
FILE, or when FILE is -, read standard input.

Sunset

Although I live pretty close by the ocean
in Hawaii, I rarely take the time to go by and enjoy it. The fact that I cannot swim is a big factor :).

Today I had the strange urge to go to the beach and enjoy the sunset. Took some beautiful pictures. Here is a sample

Sunset at Ko'Olina

How ironical

I came across this news item on the BBC’ website. Isn’t it amazing that we need studies and scientific findings nowadays to come to common sense deductions. Is there a sane person in this world who doesn’t know that we are pillaging mother earth? But still we try to cover up by saying that there “isn’t enough evidence“. But I guess it is human nature. Once we get used to comforts in life, it is pretty hard to give them up.

After all this ranting, I go and get two 19” pizzas just because they have a 2 for $22 special. And we wonder why we are fat!!!!

Swimming-Japanese Lessons

I live in the wonderful state of Hawaii and I can’t swim!! My friends have been having a ball about this for sometime. I decided to rectify this by learning to swim. So I call up the local YMCA and find out that they have swimming lessons for adults [me] :). Lessons start on Jan. 10. If there are no postings after that date, you know what happened :).

On the same note, I have always been fascinated with Japanese culture and language. I like the way the Samurai masters speak in the movies. Such authority and command. Well, I was in the local library the other day and came upon a brochure for the local community school. $40 for an introductory course to speaking Japanese!!! Classes start on the 26th of Jan. I hope after the course, I can enjoy my anime‘ in their original glory.

It is amazing how many resources (and not expensive either) one can find if you only know where to look.

Too Many Smilies!!

One of the cool features of WordPress is that it replaces all the smilies with icons. And now that I see my postings, I tend to use a lot of them :). There I go again!! :). Maybe my resolution of the year should be “STOP using so many smilies” :).

The Tao Of Security

I came across this blog by Richard Bejtlich while I was researching for security related sites. Richard is a principal consultant at Foundstone and his knowledge and methodology just amazes me. I visit this site everyday if not more :). I hope to add more bits about technology as I come across interesting things.