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Next thing on my mind for epaper Downloader..

A quick post. Just to let my fans [: ) ] know the next thing on my mind for the app. A way to view the paper in your browser without downloading! Click on the embedded content below to read in full screen. But this might take some time and will cost me! Let me know if you like this idea. Leave comments about this or on Facebook (if u r my friend i.e.)..

ePaper Downloader – Now includes TOI and Mint !! Improved UI! Improved Stability!

epaper DownloaderSo its been quite some time since I have updated the app. But I have been busy with my studies/research/job interviews and such. But I have finally finished with the new version of the app and it’s up for download.. Fellow NRIs! Rejoice! No need to pay for TOI epaper. You can download it free using this app :).

Download Links :
Web version : Get it here.
Desktop version : Get it here.

What’s changed :
– Times of India and Mint added. Previously included Hindustan Times, Hindustan Dainik & DNA.
– Improved UI : Progress indicator much more reliable now.
– Much more stable than the previous versions.
– Now you can automatically get the latest version if you use the web version. However the downside is that the app will be downloaded from the web on every launch. If that is a problem, use my desktop jar version and keep checking this blog for updates :).

I have received more than 500 downloads, which is much more than I initially anticipated.  Also received a couple of fan mails. Thank you for the continued support!

Credits: Many thanks to Dhruv Arya for letting me know that TOI epaper is still free (when visited using an Indian IP address).

Till then!

ePaper downloader has been updated to include DNA!

Hi all,

Thanks for the awesome response for the application.. Considering the same, I decided to update it and add DNA India ePaper to the list, taking the count of newspapers to three (HTimes, Dainik and DNA). 😀

Again, find the browser runnable version here.

The desktop jar version can be found here.

Until then!

Get Hindustan Times/Dainik Full ePaper as PDF!!

I have been outside India for quite sometime now, but still I always love to read Indian News! There is nothing like it! Even more enjoyable is reading the epaper.. Times Of India used to provide it for free but now you have to pay to get the full paper. So I decided to switch to Hindustan Times. The epaper site of HT is good, but quite buggy at times. Some times it just stops responding or even worse spits out an SQL error! Luckily it provides a pdf version, but you have to go through their painful and extremely buggy registration process! Even after that you just get to download the pdf of a single page at a time! LAME!!!!

After fiddling a little with the site, I figured out tht the pdfs actually are jst static objects, located on their server and can be retrieved via a simple get request. Also, they follow a similar url construction pattern. This was enough information! Got down to work last night, eager to utilize my Java skills and the recently mastered Java Concurrent API !! The result? A GUI program which retrieves all the pdfs and merges them into a single  pdf, using PDFBox 😀 .. It doesnot end there. This program currently supports two languages (Hindi and English) and 4 cities per language! Plus you can get archived papers also.

Eager to try?

The Java Web Start version is available here. This will download the jar and run it. The jar is self-signed by me :).

The conventional jar is available  here. It is an executable jar. Just double click to run it. You will require Java Runtime 1.5+ installed on your computer.

 

Known Issues: You have to exit the program to start using the ePaper. This is a problem with PDFBox. Hopefully they should fix it in the next version.

Let me know if you run into any problems.

Edit: The paper is about 20 mb in size! So for users with slow internet connection, it will take quite some time! Have patience!

Phone Buyer’s Dilemma – QWERTY or No QWERTY ..

[tweetmeme source=”puneet21” only_single=false]

About two days back, I had the opportunity to compare the two stalwarts in the android phone market, viz the Motorola Droid and the Google Nexus One. Both the  phones  looked sleek and packed a punch. However the one thing that the Droid stood out for was its 4-row QWERTY slide-out keypad. I currently use a HTC Fuze (yeah.. i know .. its passe.. ) which has one of the best QWERTYs ever to come out on a mobile device and the short experience i had with Droid was very much comparable to that. It has all the keys (include the symbols) that one might need and the key press seems just right. I was so impressed by its feel that if my friends had offered to sell their phones off and I had surplus money enuf  to buy only one of the phones, then  I would hve definitely chosen the Droid despite it having  a slower processor and an older OS. Of course! That didnt happen, but that did lead me to an important question: How much role does a QWERTY keypad play  in the selection of a phone ??

QWERTY keypad on Droid

QWERTY keypad on Droid

Well.. I am sure this dilemma is faced by every buyer and the answer to this depends on what you intend to use your phone for.. One thing a qwerty is really good at is to churn out long texts easily and quickly. So if you are the kind of person who is into texting or tweeting or emailing using ur phone on a regular basis, then qwerty is the way to go. From the gamers perspective, although a qwerty may seem to be a good option , there arent actually many games out there in the market that make “playing using a keypad” more fun. Most of them have onscreen buttons which are very easy to use and some others make use of accelerometer instead.  So I wouldnt mandate buying a qwerty phone for gaming enthusiasts.  If you fall in neither of the two categories (basically an avg user), then a non-qwerty phone wud be the best choice as it would definitely be much sleeker than the qwerty ones. Also, the absence of the keypad could be compensated for such softwares as Swype, which claims to provide a typing speed of over 40 wpm. If you have already bought a phone and miss having the qwerty keypad, then you can look at options like the Logitech diNovo Mini or wait for the Pelikon’s MorphPad to be released.

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HD2 WP7S upgrade not possible – Senseless

I was having my morning coffee, reading my blog-roll and things were going as usual , but jst then a piece of news caught my eye and i couldnt believe what i was reading. “HD2 not upgradeable to WP7S OS” , this was not what was unbelievable, but the reason given for this, was what baffled me. Coming from Natasha Kwan, who is the General Manager for Microsoft’s Mobile Communications Business in the Asia-Pacific region, she said that the HD2: “doesn’t qualify because it doesn’t have the three buttons”, which if simplistically put implies the phone will be ruled out bcoz it has five buttons instead of the three mandated for all Windows Phone 7 devices. Huh !! I am sure most HD2 users will be more than willing to rip off the extra two buttons off their HD2s, without second thought just to make their phone compatible for WP7S.. lol.. But as noted by apcmag, There has to be some other reason .. Tony Wilkinson, Business Operations Director for Microsoft Australia, told APC that “there are some hardware components that the HD doesn’t have”. which defintely makes much more sense. Considering the total WP7S experience depends on the smooth transitions between the home screen Start screen and the many hubs. . It surely wont be fun if this is hampered.

HTC’s slick HD2 smartphone seems to have most of what Microsoft wants in a Windows Phone 7 device, except for two buttons too many...

HTC’s slick HD2 smartphone seems to have most of what Microsoft wants in a Windows Phone 7 device, except for two buttons too many...

What would also anger the HD2 users is that having spent a fortune to get the most sort-after phone (one of my colleagues paid as much as 600 euros for it), they will now be absorbed into the pool of “Budget Minded Smartphone Buyers” as Microsoft puts it.  Its far too early to say if the new OS or a stripped sown version of it will be portable to HD2, or the HD2 users will have to be contented with one of the WP7S themes that are currently under developement, but one thing is for sure, Microsoft isnt willing to compromise on any front as far as WP7S is concerned.

Via ApcMag, FuzeMobilityBookmark and Share

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