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Old 25th July 2008
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TerryP TerryP is offline
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Default searching for a SP/PDA like device, advice needed

Table of Contents:
0. Abstract
1. Details
2. Question


A mobile device that can edit text files and provide storage accessible from FreeBSD. Something that I can jet over source code from a project, take the device with me to work and edit code in my idle time. Then transfer back to my laptop when I get home.


Ok.. This is (hopefully) a stupid thread but please bare with me for a moment (You may wish to skip to the question part). Simply put my family drives me up the walls and I've tried just about everything short of a shotgun. Which is not something you do to people you love.

They are like the Borg, find one way around the problem and they adapt! Over the past several years I've been shoved from working on projects in the evening (like homework) on a desktop PC, to working after dark on a laptop (good bye homework). All the way to working on things all night long until I pass out, then going to work in the morning a couple hours later... Now they are cutting apart my time for working at night, and between the hours of 0000 and 0900 there is only so much I can do and still be ready to leave for work. I work with my mother, so tinkering with stuff at work is no problem. Actually getting anything done when I'm not at work, is a problem.

Many times when I am at work, I have stretches of idle time. When I have nothing to do because I am either done already or waiting for her to finish something (i.e. get out of my way). Example, yesterday I was stuck standing at ease for at least 20 minutes, today pacing back and forth for almost any hour. If I had some way of bringing a text editor and non-volatile storage tow ork. I could sit and work on stuff, rather then having to wait 2-12 hours for everyone to get squared away before I can actually put my ideas on disk. My laptops to big and too valuable to bring with me, so this only leaves smart phones and PDAs as the remaining options I guess.


So far I have not been able to find squat that I can use and be sure that I can use. The onyl decent find is a model of Zaurus PDA supported by OpenBSD but it's about $700 imported and my budget is about $220.

Does anyone know of anything (hopefully in such a price range) that would fit the bill? Regardless of price is this even a feasible idea? or am I just hopelessly screwed. I'm in the United States and our cell carrier is T-Mobile.

The gizmo has to be able to edit textual files and store them locally. And absolutely has to have someway of transferring it to a FreeBSD machine, such as via USB as a mass storage device, through a removable memory card, or even over a telnet/ssh connection via 802.11b/g. And a keyboard that can actually be used for typing code (e.g. a-z, A-Z, 0-1, and Cs common operators). Stuff like cameras, internet/e-mail, instant messengering, phone, and every thing else is just a luxury for me not a feature. In fact, I utterly hate cell phones with a passion but whatever works is good enough.

I've searched around online but nothing seems to be able to do this, that I can be sure of from the safety of not buying it. I've checked into some of the Blackberry 8x00 models and some of the high tech phones on T-Mobiles website but so far, nothing that seems to do exactly what I need but just about every other dang thing I could possibly dream of needing. Except edit source code on the run... Does anyone have any practical experience, advice, etc, or am I just totally up the creek with out a paddle?

Just for the records, the last time I actually used any sort of PDA like device. The storage capacity for user data was measured in Kilobytes and cell phones less then "everywhere".
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blackberry, handheld computer, pda, smart phone

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