Monday, April 19, 2010

iPhone 3G: navigon vs tomtom

Yeah, I spent money on both and got to compare them. I'll list some pros and cons for each app, those will be stuff that the other app doesn't have or does worse or better.

- I had Navigon as soon as it came out, you probably remember how TomTom kept stalling its release. Navigon is feature rich, and I love it.
-- Pros:
--- Pricing (the live traffic option and panorama 3D are one-time lifetime subscriptions). I haven't taken advantage of its region apps since I already had the all-in-one.
--- Features: I love how it shows the speed limit of the road you're on, especially when you see that HP in the distance. Also the lane assist when exiting a freeway is awesomely handy.
-- Cons:
--- It's slow to load, definitely not something you want to access quickly, iPod control from within the app is horrible. The workaround is to start playing the iPod before starting the app and controlling the iPod from some remote.

- I tried TomTom because I got tired of Navigon crashing occasionally and its slow slow start ups.
-- Pros:
--- It starts wicked fast, definitely something you can and want to quickly consult. Also, switching to options within the app is fast and not annoying.
--- It has more voices to choose from, though that is not an issue with Navigon.
--- It seems to do a better job guessing where you are if the GPS information is a bit off, Navigon easily goes all over the place.
-- Cons:
--- Pricing: The traffic option is a yearly subscription.
--- It's not as feature rich, I miss the lane assist and the speed limits but I gladly do without those considering how fast it starts up.

For usability I always fire up TomTom since Navigon takes too long. But for long trips I sometimes stick to Navigon, since its features are fun. But I frequently decline incoming calls when using navigon, especially when there's a lot of switching roads ahead. It seems that this is something Navigon _can_ fix since, well, TomTom did it. But it also seems they don't want to invest resources in that and expect you to fork out the $$ for a better phone.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

coolbook on a Macbook pro 15", 2.2 Ghz

After the 10.6.3 update my MBP was playing tricks on me and the fans were blowing at their maximal rpms almost constantly. I was sure it was the update, or so I thought, it turned out that the Firefox update a few days later messed something up with my Sage plugin and I assumed that 30% cpu usage by firefox was normal, I was wrong. But I was pretty annoyed with my fans by that time and I discovered the 10USD shareware CoolBook that claims to lower your cpu's heat output by reducing the voltage to the cpu, and hardly compromising the performance in doing so. I'm really pleased and definitely recommend it but I'm posting this to share the settings I 'm using for my machine. It took me a few hours of testing and a lot of kernel panics but here they are, I hope they work for you. If they don't, then definitely spend some time to discover your optimal settings because it's worth it.

Update here.