Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Tips & Tricks Every webOS User Should Know! (Part 4 of 5)

Tips and tricks Part 4
We're rolling right along in our "Tips & Tricks" series, and we're about to serve up a trifecta:  three very important aspects of webOS ... the calendar, browser, and camera!

Just joining us?  Then do your homework first!  Check out Parts 1, 2, and 3. Then come back.  No worries, we'll all be here waiting patiently for you. Here's what we've covered so far:

As you can see, we've covered quite a bit. Let's keep this ball rolling, shall we? Read on after the jump!


Having used the iPhone calendar and the calendar on my wife's (former) HTC Hero, I can say with confidence that Palm's calendar remains the best mobile calendar to date. There's missing features and occasional bugs here and there (I'm looking right at you, Outlook), but overall? You won't find a better calendar. Palm has made great improvements to make it faster, more powerful, and easier to use. (Getting off soap box) ... Okay, let's dive into it:

1) Google Calendar. Use it. Love it.
Some people are more than content to use the Palm Profile as their sole calendar. That's fine. But remember, this calendar is made to handle all facets of our life: business, personal, sports... and it does it very well. I'm a big fan of Google calendar.  It's easy to use, updates quickly.  I won't go into how to use it, but if you have a Gmail account, you already have a Google Calendar account.  All you need to do is activate it.  The next time you log in to Gmail, look at the upper left-hand side of the page.  You'll see "Gmail, Calendar, Documents..."  Click on Calendar and away you go.

What if I use another calendar like Outlook or iCal for Mac?
You can import all your info into Google Calendar from these accounts, if you like.  My wife did that with iCal and it works great for her.  If you want to learn how to sync iCal to Google, click here

If you'd rather not mess with all that and would rather sync your iCal directly, check out The Missing Sync by Markspace.  If you prefer to sync Outlook calendars, try Pocket Mirror for Microsoft Outlook by Chapura.  (Note:  these both cost $$$.)

2)  Quickly delete an event
Want to delete an event you just entered?  Hold down the orange key and tap the event.  That's all there is to it. 

3)  Compress your calendar into one view calendar_2010-04-02_223036
Here’s a fun trick I learned a while back on jkontherun.com. You can compact your daily calendar by “tricking” the Pre’s “accordian effect” to scrunch your daily view into one easy-to-see view.  Here’s how:
a. Create a “Start Day” event from 12:05 am – 12:10 am every day
b. Make it recur daily.
c. Create an “End Day” event from 11:50 pm – 11:55 pm every day.
d. Make it recur daily.
You’re done!  Your Pre/Pixi will compress your all your free time so appointments will stand out with far less scrolling, as shown. (Thanks, @jjshore!)


1) To access the URL, scroll ALL the way to the top
Many people ask me how they can copy a URL from a browser.  There’s several ways to do that.  If you’re ON the page that you want to copy, just scroll ALL the way to the top of the page. When you do that, the URL will pop down.  Just tap the top bar once and you will see the web address highlighted in yellow.  All that’s left is copy and paste!  :)

2)  Copy a URL from a link
Well, what if you want to copy a link?  That’s easy, too.  Just hold down the ORANGE button on the Pre (it’s gray on the Verizon Pre) and tap the link.  You’ll get the menu as shown in the picture.  Just choose what you want.

3)  Download a picture from a web page
Apply what you just learned with copying URLs from links, and do the same thing with pictures!  When you do, you will see the menu as shown in the picture on the right.  You’ll notice that you can even share photos directly from a webpage. 

By the way, you can share entire web pages by tapping the main menu (upper left corner) in any webpage and tapping “Share.”  This will send you directly to the e-mail app, so you can send someone a direct link to that webpage.

4)  Copy text in a web page
There's a way to copy text from a web page, though I admit it's a little... janky. You can only copy whole paragraphs of text at a time, rather than just one word. Hopefully Palm will refine this, but until then, this is how you do it. Hold the "Shift" key and tap the text you want to copy. If you want to copy several paragraphs, scroll down (still holding the shift key) and tap the bottom paragraph. You should see a bunch of text highlighted. After that, just copy and paste!

4)  Page scroll while in landscape

If you like reading your web pages in landscape mode (sideways), know that you can do quick scrolling using the gesture area…  just flick your finger across half of the gesture area up or down, depending on where you want to go.  It’s more convenient than regularly flicking the screen line-by-line…  I use this feature pretty frequently.


pre back

I have just one tip here, but I couldn’t resist throwin’ it in… not only does the spacebar work to take  pictures, but if you hold the spacebar down, it acts like a quick shutter, taking pictures as fast as one second apart!  You’ll usually have to have the flash turned off in order to get the fastest effect.

That’s it!  Part 4 of 5 is now concluded…  Tune in next time for the GRAND FINALE of “Tips & Tricks Every webOS User Should Know…” Trust me when I say I’m bringin’ the big guns next time.  You won’t wanna miss it.

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