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  1.    #601  
    Some of you may have noticed that GeoStrings is showing up today in the app catalog on the Recent list. A week ago I submitted a new video for display on the app catalog page and they just approved it today, so the app is showing up on the Recent list even though the version number has not changed.

    So for anyone interested, check out the new video posted in the app catalog. It's a great demonstration of most of the features within the app and it's specially formatted for viewing on a mobile device. But of course if you haven't tried out GeoStrings yet, you can always download the free trial version. But even so, I think viewing this video is a good way to introduce yourself to the app. And if you're looking for more in-depth information, you can watch my GeoString Guide video series.

    And speaking of videos, I'm going to be shooting two new GeoString Tales videos. Today I saved two GeoStrings on my phone that I think show off unique ways of using this app.
    Last edited by DanPLC; 03/15/2010 at 12:46 PM.
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  2.    #602  
    Here are the latest GeoString Tales I've uploaded:



    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  3. #603  
    Ever since the upgrade to 1.0.7 my strings haven't been triggering properly. For example:
    * Set a string for when I get home. 2 hours (or so; I didn't measure any of the times this happened) the alert goes off. I boomerang it; a couple of hours later it alerts again. This is happening consistently.
    * Another case of the first: I set a string for my parent's house (2+ hours away) and it didn't go off until I'd left their house, came back, and then it still didn't trigger until I'd been there a while.
    * This morning, one of my home strings went off as I was driving in the gate to work. Which is about 7 miles from home.

    Google maps reports my position very accurately; on the drive home yesterday it was keeping up with bends in the interstate; just now it shows me about 100 yards behind the building in which I'm currently sitting. Not next to a window.

    My phone's been rebooted several times; 1.0.6 was working fine under WebOS 1.4,0 so I don't think the OS upgrade is the problem. What would you like me to do to test further?
  4.    #604  
    Quote Originally Posted by someonewhobikes View Post
    Ever since the upgrade to 1.0.7 my strings haven't been triggering properly. For example:
    * Set a string for when I get home. 2 hours (or so; I didn't measure any of the times this happened) the alert goes off. I boomerang it; a couple of hours later it alerts again. This is happening consistently.
    * Another case of the first: I set a string for my parent's house (2+ hours away) and it didn't go off until I'd left their house, came back, and then it still didn't trigger until I'd been there a while.
    * This morning, one of my home strings went off as I was driving in the gate to work. Which is about 7 miles from home.

    Google maps reports my position very accurately; on the drive home yesterday it was keeping up with bends in the interstate; just now it shows me about 100 yards behind the building in which I'm currently sitting. Not next to a window.

    My phone's been rebooted several times; 1.0.6 was working fine under WebOS 1.4,0 so I don't think the OS upgrade is the problem. What would you like me to do to test further?
    To workaround a serious issue in webOS 1.4 (that Palm is aware of and is preparing a fix for), I had to change the way I detected GPS positions when running in the background. Version 1.0.6 may have worked for some people, but it had a high probability of not working at all for others.

    Version 1.0.7 obtains positional fixes via a quick scan to ensure that it finishes its tasks before webOS will kill the background process (this is the serious flaw Palm is working on). Before 1.4, background processes had plenty of time to run, so the app could take its time and retrieve the best possible positional fix.

    Under 1.0.7, it's very possible that some people may not be able to get accurate fixes using the new method. However it was a necessary change to ensure that most people using the app would be able to continue to use it reliably.

    Palm has indicated to the developers in the Palm Dev forums that a webOS fix is coming in a few weeks that will provide a pseudo-fix for the issue. Once the new version of webOS is released, I'll release an update to GeoStrings to take advantage of their pseudo-fix that will allow my app to function the way it did prior to webOS 1.4.

    Incidentally, you're the first person to report an issue with 1.0.7 so I believe that the decision I made was the correct one (for most people). Many other background apps are in the same boat and we're all doing the best we can to workaround this serious webOS issue. Palm really dropped the ball in regards to this change and they've acknowledged their huge mistake and are now doing all they can to rectify it.
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  5. #605  
    Quote Originally Posted by DanPLC View Post
    Incidentally, you're the first person to report an issue with 1.0.7 so I believe that the decision I made was the correct one (for most people). Many other background apps are in the same boat and we're all doing the best we can to workaround this serious webOS issue. Palm really dropped the ball in regards to this change and they've acknowledged their huge mistake and are now doing all they can to rectify it.
    Great, I'm glad to know it's a known problem, that a fix is coming, and that the bug isn't in my favorite program. I guess I'll suffer bravely <sniff> and rely more on my memory. After all, I did survive before GeoStrings, so I know it's possible to do without for a while.

    I'll not hold you accountable for all the stuff I don't end up doing for my wife, and the consequences thereof.
  6.    #606  
    Quote Originally Posted by someonewhobikes View Post
    Great, I'm glad to know it's a known problem, that a fix is coming, and that the bug isn't in my favorite program. I guess I'll suffer bravely <sniff> and rely more on my memory. After all, I did survive before GeoStrings, so I know it's possible to do without for a while.
    After the next version is released, let me know how it's working for you.

    I've done extensive testing on my device and version 1.0.7 has been rock solid for me. I guess it all depends upon where you are and the GPS radio on your device. For me, version 1.0.6 was extremely flaky. That's how I discovered the problem. I found in the webOS logs that the app was being killed inexplicably.

    Well it turns out the Palm developers made this change intentionally; however they neglected to tell anyone about it and never included it in the release notes. They also neglected to realize that most background apps would break. Since then, the Palm reps have been very apologetic. Their solution is not really a total fix; however for my specific purposes, it'll work. For other developers, the fix may not work and Palm has acknowledged this and does plan a major overhaul of its background scheduling to completely fix the issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by someonewhobikes View Post
    I'll not hold you accountable for all the stuff I don't end up doing for my wife, and the consequences thereof.
    Thanks, I appreciate that.
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  7. Eazy123's Avatar
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    #607  
    Ok, this might be a completely dumb set of questions and may not even apply solely to Geostrings, but since Geostrings is one of those apps that runs in the background and the developer is so good at answering questions quickly, I figured I'd ask you, Dan.

    I've experienced more than the usual battery drain as of late. I mean like 5% in 30 minutes without doing anything. I'm trying different things to pinpoint the issue and decided to try shutting off the GPS so it's not constantly going. I noticed Geostrings was still running, as I was prompted to start up the GPS. I guess what I want to know is - is Geostrings still going even without a GPS signal as long as I have an active Geostring, and with or without the GPS running, does Geostrings tax the battery much? Again, I know this is probably dumb so please bear with me.
  8. #608  
    It's good to know what the problem is. I had almost given up on using GeoString since it didn't seemed to be alerting when closed.

    I can't believe the incompetence/arrogance/stupidity (pick one or more) of Palm in not notifying the developers of the change in the background operation. And Palm wonders why their existence is in danger.
    metus delenda est

    "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." -- Edmund Burke

    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants." -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Remember, it's not the fall that kills you, it's the sudden stop when you reach the bottom." -- Jumpmaster, Ft. Benning, 1965
  9.    #609  
    Quote Originally Posted by Eazy123 View Post
    Ok, this might be a completely dumb set of questions and may not even apply solely to Geostrings, but since Geostrings is one of those apps that runs in the background and the developer is so good at answering questions quickly, I figured I'd ask you, Dan.

    I've experienced more than the usual battery drain as of late. I mean like 5% in 30 minutes without doing anything. I'm trying different things to pinpoint the issue and decided to try shutting off the GPS so it's not constantly going. I noticed Geostrings was still running, as I was prompted to start up the GPS. I guess what I want to know is - is Geostrings still going even without a GPS signal as long as I have an active Geostring, and with or without the GPS running, does Geostrings tax the battery much? Again, I know this is probably dumb so please bear with me.
    GeoStrings doesn't run continuously in the background regardless of GPS settings. If there are any active GeoStrings, it runs periodically at a dynamic rate based upon several factors.

    I assume when you say "GPS is off" you mean that Location Services is on, yet you have "GPS" unchecked. In this case, GeoStrings would find your approximate position using Google services (if it was checked); however it would not be as accurate as if you were using GPS. If you have Location Services off completely, then GeoStrings will continue to periodically run in the background; however when attempting to retrieve the current position, it would fail immediately. So it wouldn't have a negative effect on battery consumption. It would actually have a small (however negligible) positive effect.

    Having active GeoStrings will result in a larger overall consumption of your battery; however I have special algorithms in place to ensure it's only running when it needs to be. You can view more details in this video: . In my experience, the extra battery consumption has not adversely affected my use of the phone. I have GeoStrings active all the time and never notice any unusual battery issues.

    Let me know if I answered your question or not.
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  10. Eazy123's Avatar
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    #610  
    You did answer my question, sorry if it was confusing. I did realize I had a geostring that I set 2 weeks ago that never activated, and perhaps that was a small part of the reason, so I deleted that string since I didn't need it. I didn't even realize you could shut off the GPS or Google services separately, I would just shut off location services altogether before.

    Just trying to get to the bottom of this. Thanks for your help.
  11.    #611  
    Quote Originally Posted by Eazy123 View Post
    You did answer my question, sorry if it was confusing. I did realize I had a geostring that I set 2 weeks ago that never activated, and perhaps that was a small part of the reason, so I deleted that string since I didn't need it. I didn't even realize you could shut off the GPS or Google services separately, I would just shut off location services altogether before.

    Just trying to get to the bottom of this. Thanks for your help.
    I would suggest leaving "GPS" checked and "Google Services" unchecked. I cover this in the "FAQ" section on the GeoStrings help screen (available via the app menu).

    In my experience, I haven't found that leaving GPS checked reduces the battery that drastically. Plus I rely on apps like GeoStrings, Google Maps, Sprint Nav, etc. that use GPS so I'd hate to have to turn it on and off all the time.
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  12.    #612  
    Quote Originally Posted by atalbert View Post
    It's good to know what the problem is. I had almost given up on using GeoString since it didn't seemed to be alerting when closed.

    I can't believe the incompetence/arrogance/stupidity (pick one or more) of Palm in not notifying the developers of the change in the background operation. And Palm wonders why their existence is in danger.
    The webOS 1.4 issue could be causing this behavior, but you should also follow the troubleshooting steps in my FAQ (found on the app's help screen). It could also be general GPS issues causing the behavior.
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  13. #613  
    Quote Originally Posted by DanPLC View Post
    The webOS 1.4 issue could be causing this behavior, but you should also follow the troubleshooting steps in my FAQ (found on the app's help screen). It could also be general GPS issues causing the behavior.
    It seemed to be working fine before the update. The hint in the FAQ regarding turning off Google Location Services really did the trick for me. I'll go through the troubleshooting again.

    Thanks.

    Tony
    metus delenda est

    "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." -- Edmund Burke

    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants." -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Remember, it's not the fall that kills you, it's the sudden stop when you reach the bottom." -- Jumpmaster, Ft. Benning, 1965
  14.    #614  
    Preapptastic.com just posted a video review of GeoStrings. I think they did a great job in its production. You can check it out here:
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  15.    #615  
    Originally I had planned on a small 1.0.8 release to coincide with webOS 1.4.1 (to take advantage of the extended background processing time). However in waiting for webOS 1.4.1, I decided to add more features and fixes and eventually the release grew large enough to warrant a 1.1.0 designation.

    Either tonight or tomorrow I'm going to release a new video demonstrating all of the new features. But I figured I'd show you guys a quick pictorial preview of two of the more exciting new features which relate to mapping.

    You now have the ability to view business search results in map view. Tapping on a result (the blue/purple building icon) will select it as a location to save. The ones selected have a red push-pin icon. Details of the location you just selected are displayed at the bottom of the screen.



    You can now select locations via map input. Tap anywhere on the map to add a new location. You can add multiple locations at once and even move the push-pins around by dragging them to a new position. Tapping on the little person icon will save a location at your current position.

    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  16. #616  
    "Tap anywhere on the map to select a location" !!! Hot diggity!

    Geostrings just went from HERO to SUPER HERO in my book. That just raised the usability SO MUCH. After an initial love affair with GeoStrings, I started using it much less because it was frequently a big pain to set locations by business listings... couldn't find it, too new, location wasn't a business, didn't know address... etc.

    Just touching a spot on the map is wonderful! I can't wait for this to update on my phone!
  17.    #617  
    Quote Originally Posted by mobilemitch View Post
    "Tap anywhere on the map to select a location" !!! Hot diggity!

    Geostrings just went from HERO to SUPER HERO in my book. That just raised the usability SO MUCH. After an initial love affair with GeoStrings, I started using it much less because it was frequently a big pain to set locations by business listings... couldn't find it, too new, location wasn't a business, didn't know address... etc.

    Just touching a spot on the map is wonderful! I can't wait for this to update on my phone!
    I think I'll probably still use the business search function more than the map input function. In most cases, business searches produce the desired results for me. However really the most common way I add locations to a GeoString is via the favorites/history since many of my destinations are already saved in the app.

    But there have been a few times when having a map input would be more handy. For instance if I want to save an intersection as a location, it'll be much quicker to pull up the map and tap the intersection. And as you mentioned, certain locations may not come up in a business search.

    In addition to the map input, I think having the map view for the business search results will be nice. It'll allow you to visually see the locations on a map and choose the ones you'd like. And speaking of business search, the results are now automatically sorted by distance to your current location. So I think it'll be easier for people to find their destinations.

    There's also another mapping-related feature that I think people will enjoy, but I'll leave that for the video.
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  18. #618  
    I just watched the "Version 1.1.0 Sneak Preview" new Youtube video.
    These new features are great! The map intuitive interface is wonderful and brings up so many possible quick ways to use Geostrings.
    Super clever Dan
  19.    #619  
    Here's the link to the new video demonstrating some of the new features in the upcoming version 1.1.0:
    Quick Post: The quick way to post messages and photos to Twitter & Facebook (video link)
    Music Player (Remix): The next generation music listening experience on webOS (video link)
    GeoStrings: Set location-based reminders and never forget another task (video link)

    Twitter: @Hedami
  20. jdod's Avatar
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    #620  
    I use this every day, completely satisfied at what it already does, then you deliver more functionality like this, and I think, "I can't believe I only paid $2 or $3 for this." Thanks for the continued development, these additional features will immediately be useful.
    Sprint since 01/06/99: Sanyo SCP-4500 -> Audiovox PPC-6700 -> Palm Treo 755p -> Palm Centro -> Palm Pre 1.4.5 -> Jailbroken iPhone 4s

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