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  1. #41  
    As this thread illustrates, the next Palm phone will need one mainly for one reason: everyone else has one.

    Doesn't matter that there aren't many or particularly compelling reasons for having one. It will be a selling point against the phone if there isn't one.
  2. Stihl's Avatar
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    #42  
    The compass argument is the same as the microphone api argument, it comes down to apps, which make or break systems these days. It's almost harrowing that a compass isn't in the Pre 2, but it's almost such a no-brainer that you sort of assume it has to be in the very next upcoming Palm product.

    I'm waiting patiently for CES.
  3. #43  
    Quote Originally Posted by way2muchkc4u View Post
    Geocacheing...

    That is y i want one...

    2 cents
    Probably one of the better reasons to require a compass.
  4. #44  
    Quote Originally Posted by Rkguy View Post
    Ex: you have an accelerometer app to determine your rate of acceleration for your car. It is only useful on flat land without a compass because if you are on a hill then gravity is partly in the plane of interest. You'd be accelerating while actually waiting at a stoplight on a hill
    What? This is so wrong dude. I suggest you take at least an introductory college course in physics before you make statements like that.
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    #45  
    Quote Originally Posted by rsanchez1 View Post
    What? This is so wrong dude. I suggest you take at least an introductory college course in physics before you make statements like that.
    I was going to let it go but laughed when I read that too.
  6. #46  
    Quote Originally Posted by Rkguy View Post
    Ex: you have an accelerometer app to determine your rate of acceleration for your car. It is only useful on flat land without a compass because if you are on a hill then gravity is partly in the plane of interest. You'd be accelerating while actually waiting at a stoplight on a hill
    Bwahahahahaha. There's a difference between gravity acting on a body, and actually accelerating...

    But yes, gravity would be in the plane of interest. If you're on a hill...
  7. #47  
    aahhh forgot about compas...

    so my list of the uber super WebOS Phone now includes compass!!

    Auto Focus Camera
    Compass = more "Apps" (remember, everyone complains about lack of apps!!)
    dual camera

    and of course the API's that everyone wants (Mic, and camera)
  8. #48  
    One more thing, you don't need a compass for augmented reality. You just need Qualcomm's AR SDK. Unfortunately, that's another thing webOS won't have, but at least this is one that HP might make possible if they cut a deal with Qualcomm. Heck, it might even be possible on current phones if they have the processing power for it.


    Qualcomm’s AR platform, which includes the AR SDK, uses computer vision technology to align graphics tightly with underlying objects. The approach is an evolution from current AR techniques that use a phone’s GPS and compass for mapping applications. Vision-based AR enables a fundamentally different user experience in which graphics appear as if they are anchored to real world objects.
    Emphasis added. Link: Qualcomm Announces Availability of Augmented Reality SDK | Qualcomm Developer Network
  9. #49  
    I can't believe only one or two people mentioned walking as a use for the compass, though I guess not many people are using the Pre in a city.

    I use Sprint Navigation all the time when walking to unfamiliar sections of the city. The problem is that at the slower speed of walking, it takes a much longer period of time before the GPS positional information is able to tell you if you're going in the right direction (immediately coming out of a building or subway for example).

    Sure, it's only a few blocks maybe, but it can be the difference between being on time and being a few minutes late by the time you and the GPS figure out you're heading in the wrong direction.
  10. #50  
    Quote Originally Posted by jhoff80 View Post
    I can't believe only one or two people mentioned walking as a use for the compass, though I guess not many people are using the Pre in a city.

    I use Sprint Navigation all the time when walking to unfamiliar sections of the city. The problem is that at the slower speed of walking, it takes a much longer period of time before the GPS positional information is able to tell you if you're going in the right direction (immediately coming out of a building or subway for example).

    Sure, it's only a few blocks maybe, but it can be the difference between being on time and being a few minutes late by the time you and the GPS figure out you're heading in the wrong direction.
    Is it really that difficult to check the street names? If you're in a city that has a subway, street signs are everywhere. Find a few quick, and check on your map the direction from one street sign to the other.
  11. #51  
    Quote Originally Posted by rsanchez1 View Post
    If you're in a city that has a subway, street signs are everywhere
    Actually, not always, sometimes smaller streets don't have signs every block, or you're exiting a building or station in the middle of a street, or things like that.

    Regardless, the technology exists to make this 100% foolproof, and the Pre 2 is the only major smartphone that doesn't support it.

    I'm a huge webOS supporter, but I can't deny that it's ridiculous in 2010.

    Here's hoping whatever device comes next alleviates that.
  12. #52  
    It would've been ridiculous to be seen with a compass in the middle of the city in 2000...
  13. Analog's Avatar
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    #53  
    Quote Originally Posted by jhoff80 View Post
    I can't believe only one or two people mentioned walking as a use for the compass, though I guess not many people are using the Pre in a city.
    If it makes you feel any better, I have made that point in another compass thread. And the part about coming up out of the subway is one of the things that makes a compass particularly useful in the real world.
  14. rkguy's Avatar
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    #54  
    Quote Originally Posted by rsanchez1 View Post
    What? This is so wrong dude. I suggest you take at least an introductory college course in physics before you make statements like that.
    Ok. I'm not a dunce. That sentence was meant to read that the app would show that you were accelerating when indeed you were not (well not in the way we experience acceleration) because of this

    . . . . g = 9.81 m/s2
    . . . . |
    . . . . |
    . . . . |
    . . . . |
    . . . . |
    . . . . \/

    ...\
    ....--
    ........\8D <----- (a=0, v=0) this is a vehicle (maybe a little bit TOO vertical)
    ...........--
    .............\ <---this is a hill

    Inside the vehicle, if you were to rest your phone horizontally on the dash before calibrating it to whatever plane your car was in before (assume almost horizontal for clarity) then the app will remove the fraction gravity that would be in your plane of interest, which is forward and truly horizontal W.r.to the reference frame of the vehicle using a Kalman (or other) filter Kalman filter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. The problem is that when the vehicle is parked on the hill, then the entire reference frame is "experiencing" the gravity vector in a different x/y/z direction. The phone doesn't know the reference frame moved because it is only calibrated to the vehicle. OOPS. it thinks you are accelerating at a non-zero constant rate that is proportional to your angle on the hill, with a completely vertical hill causing your phone to show you as having a 9.8m/s2 acceleration in the positive direction. Incidentally this also means that your rear bumper is also crushed :O

    So, how to solve this? Well, that's (somewhat) simple using today's available tech (on other platforms for the time being). Use the compass to calibrate to the earth. That is, your reference frame is W.r.to the earth not the vehicle, then you need to calibrate still, laying the phone on a flat table for example, and the phone is able to account for two things (given some programming) which as gravity but with respect to the orientation of the phone. So, if the phone is horizontal (face down or up) then the phone subtracts 0 from the horizontal plane, if it is vertical up (top of the phone up), it substracts 9.8m/s2 from the horizontal plane. The beauty is that anywhere in between is possible too. At 45 degrees from the horizon, it would subtract 4.9 from the horizontal plane. Ok. there's still bugs to think about like if your phone is placed slightly sideways that I haven't thought about (I believe this is referred to as yaw)....thank you for that. Hmm.

    Anyway. Just so we are clear, technically you do accelerate while waiting at a stop light on a hill. Tangential acceleration is about 0.03 m/s2 assuming radius of 6371km of the earth. There is an additional tangential acceleration of 5.8987E-03 m/s2 given the rotation of the earth around the sun. Of course, in this case, your reference frame is with respect to the sun. So, since both the cars, human, and phones are on earth, this doesn't matter 'cause it's all relative to the smaller frame we live in.

    Admittedly, I did not calculate that last value. Have a look at the interesting forum thread here :-) Centripetal acceleration of Earth around Sun

    P.S. Get the Heck Out. :P
    Last edited by Rkguy; 11/05/2010 at 10:15 PM.
    ...This programming stuff is actually addictive but really hard :/
  15. #55  
    Quote Originally Posted by Rkguy View Post
    ...
    technically you do accelerate while waiting at a stop light on a hill.
    ...
    Not technically or in any other way. If there's no movement, there's no acceleration (since acceleration is rate of change of velocity).
  16. rkguy's Avatar
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    #56  
    Can anyone help?

    I really don't know how to account for yaw...does anybody have any thoughts on how this could be done easily using compass/accelerometer or some ingenuity? It seems like the phone would have to be placed in the same position each time you are in the car using a cradle or what-have-you. Without that...Heaven forbid that the phone were to shift during driving because it wouldn't know the difference between you turning right and it being turned to the "right" 'cause it shifted in your console or wherever you left it.

    Edit: Sorry OP. I will stop as to not hijack this thread any more Please PM me with any honest suggestions.

    Edit: johnCC, at least check the link i put there. i mean, due diligence
    ...This programming stuff is actually addictive but really hard :/
  17. #57  
    Quote Originally Posted by Rkguy View Post
    ...
    Edit: johnCC, at least check the link i put there. i mean, due diligence
    And here I was thinking that the Earth was moving.
  18. #58  
    I'm not even sure what the argument is here about Rkguy .... in a car the apps should be defaulting to the GPS signal as this will give you rate of acceleration and all other information a navigation device needs. Is there GPS devices that actually use an accelerometer? I know some Pioneer decks have an accelerometer, but that is to sense movement in the vehicle to keep people from watching video content while the vehicle is moving.



    Anyways, on topic. I can see the use for a compass, not surprised it's not in the Pre2 since the phone is the same internally as the first Pre and clearly HP/Palm was not going to reinvent the internals of the phone this time. With that said, I would rather have my Touchstones than a compass for those that keep comparing 1 to the other, the Touchstone does and would get more use for the majority of users. Especially for those of us with a TS at work, I see WebOS 2.0 bringing even more reason for TS use with the new features hoping we see some cool app uses of the new TS mode.
    I love physical keyboards... but there is two devices that would make me consider a slab, one is something running a full version of Open webOS. The other is an iPhone!!!! HA HA just kidding (about the iPhone that is)...
  19. #59  
    Quote Originally Posted by Rkguy View Post
    Can anyone help?

    I really don't know how to account for yaw...does anybody have any thoughts on how this could be done easily using compass/accelerometer or some ingenuity? It seems like the phone would have to be placed in the same position each time you are in the car using a cradle or what-have-you. Without that...Heaven forbid that the phone were to shift during driving because it wouldn't know the difference between you turning right and it being turned to the "right" 'cause it shifted in your console or wherever you left it.

    Edit: Sorry OP. I will stop as to not hijack this thread any more Please PM me with any honest suggestions.

    Edit: johnCC, at least check the link i put there. i mean, due diligence
    Inertial navigation has been around a pretty long time. I don't know how they deal with yaw, but I would think that there is enough literature out there to explain how its done. But with respect to the apparent acceleration while sitting on a hill problem, you'll note that the magnitude of the acceleration vector doesn't change from straight and level. Any motion would necessarily change the magnitude of the total acceleration vector. So if the magnitude of the acceleration vector is exactly equal to gravity, the frame of reference must not be changing. Clearly a compass would be helpful, as would accelerometers that are in place only to detect yaw motion. Satellites use a three-axis magnetometer to detect their orientation with respect to the orientation of the earth's magnetic field, I believe.
    Last edited by jbg7474; 11/06/2010 at 01:41 PM.
    Palm III-->Handspring Visor-->Sony Clie PEG-NR70-->no PDA -->Palm Treo 755p-->Palm Pre-->HP Veer
  20. #60  
    I've been wondering about this argument of "we snap our phones to a large magnet (touchstone), therefore we can't have a compass because it would always be inaccurate".

    It would certainly be inaccurate while ON the touchstone, but I don't think there'd be any lasting damage done. In other words, once you picked your phone off the magnet and moved away from it, the compass should work again.

    The only "permanent" damage I know of that can be done to a compass by exposure to strong magnetic fields is a polar swap; ie. "north" on the compass would start to point south, even when off the magnet. I don't think this would be too hard to recognize lol. With an old whiskey compass, you'd need to have your needle re-magnetized to fix it. In an electronic compass, they could just give us a button to press to swap poles manually.

    I doubt the touchstone would be strong enough to cause that anyway.
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