Categories
Tech Reviews University

Spiders, Sunday & Windows Phone 7.5 Mango Review

Spiders

Last night as I mentioned in my previous post I went to spiders with the Rock Society of the Hull University Union and Jess. It was totally different to any club or venue I’ve been to before. Its essentially a big house and garden in the middle of an industrial estate with 3 rooms, each dedicated to a different genre of rock, our favourite of which was the 60’s-80’s room which played classic bands such as Madness, The Selecter and The Ramones. We were also happy with the great variety of cheap drinks available — notably a special called The JUGular — a 6 drink jug containing two shots of your choice, two liquors and loads of soft drink — in our case Coke! It was so tasty, but also incredibly alcoholic! Yum.

Today

Today I spent most of my time in Cottingham and Hull City Centre — with Jess — finding a reasonably priced place we could both eat which with her being vegetarian that was somewhat difficult. Eventually we settled on a small pub which offered a Sunday Roast Carvery for me and a Veggie burger for her. After that we spent a lot of time enjoying the compact, yet full city centre in hull which offers many shops, resturants and facilities. After only being here a week I can safely say Hull doesn’t deserve the reputation it gets, its an enjoyable place to live with great night life, friendly locals and a buzzing atmosphere. Unfortunately Jess also left tonight at 6:30 after a fun filled weekend of clubbing and student life! Fortunately ill be able to see her soon when she comes back to see the amazing Specials in just under two weeks!

Windows Phone 7.5 Mango running on the HTC 7 Mozart

As I posted yesterday I bought a HTC 7 Mozart, originally running Windows Phone 7, on O2 as part of a 24 month contract. Since then I have upgraded the phone to Windows Phone 7.5 using the slightly hacky method documented on WinRumours. The update has bought a lot of functionality that was missing from the original 7.0 release of the OS. Most notably custom ringtone support and multi-tasking, all of which are very well explained and reviewed on Ars Technica, so I wont delve into those so much — however I would like to bring to peoples attention some of the lesser of the 500 updates which I feel have a great impact!

Messaging Improvements

The first thing I noticed when changing from 7.0 to 7.5 was perhaps one of the smallest changes to the OS — Emotions in text messages, whereas before the operating literally showed a string of symbols such as “:-)” if you selected a smiley face from the emotions keyboard it now shows some cool, single colour mango styled faces or icons depending on what you typed. Here is a collation of all the emotions produced by 1800PocketPC;

Windows Phone 7 Mango Text Emotions
Windows Phone 7 Mango Text Emotions

Another small but notable improvement was the fact that the phone now uses two different tones of your accent colour to differentiate between incoming and outgoing messages, rather than just using left and right. This is excellent UI design and makes reading texts a much more enjoyable experiance.

Other Aesthetic Changes

Another small aesthetic change is the improvement of the XBOX Live logo, which is now a lot more suited to the Metro Design the OS uses, before it felt ugly and out of place, but now it feels like a 1st rate application on the device. Yet another UI design change I like is the fact that Internet Explorers UI is now all at the bottom of the screen, rather than the top — this allows for a larger viewing area and in my opinion looks better. (IE also went from being based off of IE6/7 to IE9, a massive HTML5 powered difference 😉

Overall Feeling

Windows Phone 7.5 feels complete. In a nutshell it is what 7.0 should have been and is easily my favourite Phone OS due to its simple yet pretty look, mass of features and future potential (due to hopefully an influx of customers when Nokia release their device, and therefore an Influx of money hungry developers). I would definately recommend this OS to anyone — from tech savvy to totally technophobic — because it is simple enough for normal use (internet browsing, sending texts, making calls) but also extremely flexible for those who want a little more from their mobile device.

Thanks for Reading
Danny

Categories
University

Friday/Saturday/Sunday

(Mum, Ruby, Dad and Michael at my new Flat at the Lawns in Cottingham)

Well, I havn’t updated this blog for a few days now, which I’m annoyed to say! So I’m going to cover the last 2 days — and today in one post.

Friday

Friday was an emotional night, my last one in my home town of Dunstable for at least a few months – the last time I’d see my family for around 6 weeks, and the last time I would see my girlfriend for at least 3 weeks. I was sad to say goodbye to the people who mean the most to me, but I know its necessary for me to go further with my education and hopefully have a better life as a result, and have good fun whilst I’m at it!

My family and Jess were obviously upset too, which I found hard to deal with as I love them so!

Saturday

My Computer Set Up at The Lawns
My Computer Set Up at The Lawns

Saturday I woke up at around 7:30 to get my final packing sorted and the last few pieces into the car, about 45 minutes later we set off from Dunstable to Cottingham a village just outside the City of Hull where my student accommodation is situated. The journey took us from 8:15 till 11:30 including a stop for a Burger King breakfast, which was good going on the travel front and tasty on the food front!

I then proceeded to meet the warden and get a key from my room, as well as get my stuff out of the car and move in. Within minutes of saying my goodbyes to my family I was chatting to another Computer Scientist and a chemist who were staying on the same floor as me, which was nice. I invited them in for a drink and we started chatting.

Later our entire block went to dinner together, which was nice and we had Pie, chips and new potatoes! A Right northern meal, which was wicked (and came with the northern delicacy– gravy) ! An hour or so after dinner we met our ‘freshers parents’ — two students from the year above who were to show us around, tell us the rules and then escort us to Asylum, the hull student union night club. Clubbing isn’t really my thing so I sat in the beer garden with a few friends I’ve made. It was great fun.

I came home around 12 because I was so tired from such a busy day and I wanted to chat to Jess, which I enjoyed. As soon as i hit my bed I fell asleep, which was a pleasant surprise compared to my normal insomnia.

Sunday (Today)

Today I woke up around 9:30 and just chilled in my room on my own for a few hours to catch a breather from the constant pounding of information I’ve had since I got here. At 11:30 I met up with my friend Sean who also went to Queensbury Upper School with me in Dunstable, and was in my AS/A2  Business class – we went to the Freshers Fair – which is basically a tent full of companies advertising themselves by giving you free stuff. Wicked.

I got:

  • A DVD of Public Enemies (from Microsoft for playing higher or lower and getting 8 right!)
  • A free half chicken at Nandos (for playing higher or lower and getting it WRONG)
  • Loads of leaflets
  • Dominos promotional stuff
  • A big wall chart with all of HUU’s events for the year!
Later I’m going to go to an acoustic night at the Student union, which will be fun and I’m going to get a relatively early night due to the fact my course starts at 9:30 and it lasts till 5 with only an hours break! Intensive first day or what!?
Anyway, thats all for now
Danny.