Growing Smaller!

9:23:00 PM

Going from the laptop to the Samsung Galaxy Note!

Growth: Noun
1. A progression from simpler to more complex forms.
2. A process of becoming larger or longer.
(Taken from android app: Word Web)

Hello everyone!
When we talk of growth, we usually think of bigger and better! Somehow the world seems to be getting better but instead of growing bigger they seem to be getting smaller!

Well it’s been quite a while since I have written anything! And I decided that this post would be a good way to start this year. I hope all of you are having a great New Year so far! If you have been following me on Twitter; then you would know that I bought a Samsung Galaxy Note very recently. Now, I am not a tech-savvy person; but I decided to write this post anyway on the Note! Who knows whom this might help?

I normally would carry my laptop to my workplace every day. It was heavy (most old laptops would weigh in around 2 to 3 kgs!) and hence I must admit it wasn’t easy. The idea of shifting to something smaller was suggested by my mentor and pastor Mathew George. And hence I began to research the so called ‘tablet’.

Of course, I did a bit of research online; looked at various tablets including the I-pad and finally decided on getting the Samsung tablet. You might consider reading this blog on a comparison between the tablet and the I-pad! I found it quite informative!

We had gone with the decision to buy the tablet and at the shop; the salesman showed us to the Samsung Galaxy Note which was just fascinating! He said we could do everything with the Note just as what we could do with the tablet. What really took me away was the display of the Note over the tablet! The resolution was simply fantastic! So I went back and after researching for two more days, I bought the Note! What followed after making the transition from the laptop to the Note was definitely most difficult! It was a totally different ball game!

Author Daniel A. Brown observes “Change is uncomfortable. It forces us to think. It complicates normal routines by breaking our unconscious rhythms and habits. It forces us to learn new skills, and it causes disagreements and insecurity. Change is disconcerting, personally and corporately.”

I must admit that I had a tough time getting used to the note. It wasn’t easy. There were so many programs on the laptop that I was using. Suddenly when I couldn't use them anymore, I felt handicapped! I kept searching for Android applications that would fit in for my use.

Now change is not something that we can easily get accustomed to. It takes time to get used to change. Change is normally always a process. It’s been around three or so weeks now since I have started using the note and I must say it has really replaced a majority of what I used to get done on the laptop.

Here are a few Android applications that I have been using that may help you in case you are using an Android or are considering one!

Word Web: This is an offline dictionary with a thesaurus. Really great app especially when you are on the look for synonymous words to use while writing!

You version Bibles: This is a bible app which comes for free. You can use this offline or online. It contains most basic versions of the bible.

My sword: While you can use the Youversion app for looking up different versions of the bible, this is a great app to do some referencing!This contains both the Hebrew and Greek translations and its got a few commentaries so you can have your whole bible study done out!

Polaris Office: I was desperately looking out for something to write on. I normally use Microsoft OneNote and Word. While Polaris does not contain OneNote, it does have Word, PowerPoint and Excel. So that takes care of most of my writing work. Although I still get back to the laptop to make a final draft!

I was just recently introduced to this by my friend Roshan Radhakrishnan! This is a great tool for writing out notes. For instance, if you were to write out something on the phone, evernote syncs it with your account and later if you were to open evernote on your laptop (considering you have evernote installed on your laptop!) you could continue to write from where you left off!
Tweet deck: Now this is a great app for using all of your social media! I still say this is one of the best platforms where you can access almost all social media websites namely, Twitter, Face book, LinkedIn etc. And that is Any dot do! I just recently picked this one from the android market. It’s a great tool in helping you set reminders for the day, tomorrow and the week. You could use the normal calendar but this is more simplified and helps you to jot down reminders quickly!

The list goes on... Whatsapp, News & weather, Skype, Maps, Google talk....

Some of the pros of the Note that I found:
  • It’s got an excellent screen resolution and the camera is around 8Mpx with flash so you could pick up some awesome photography if you are into it!
  • Because the resolution is so good, reading becomes much better. And you could flip through the pages like that of a normal book!
  • Of course, it’s so light and therefore carrying it around is so much easier!
  • It comes with a pen, so navigating and writing becomes much easier. You could carry this device anywhere literally and write out thoughts or ideas instantaneously!
  • I loved the voice app on this! You don't have to write out a message or even a whole Word document! You just need to speak into the phone and it will write it out for you!
  • You can connect an USB drive to it and also if you want to transfer files from the laptop, you just have to connect and copy paste it!
  • The video clarity and the audio sound are quite good!
  • You can check your emails (multiple too!) quite easily.
  • They have a GPS system, so if you are on the go and lost, let Note find the way out for you!
Some of the cons:
  • They say all android devices and even the I-phones battery lives stay maximum up to a day or two! The battery life lasts here just for around a day!
  • While the voice search option is great, we have to speak slowly and make sure we get our pronunciation right or they could type out completely something very different!
  • You cannot connect external drives with larger storage space! I tried to connect my external drive of 1tb which was externally powered but it still failed to read! 
Well this is kind of what I know right now in the Note. I am still learning new things and there is a long way to go! So if you ask me, can you replace the laptop with the Note? My answer is you can up to 80%! You still need the laptop to get completely organized!

So what are some of the apps you use? Do leave a reply!

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  1. Quick fixes..
    1) inability to connect an external hard drive: download dropbox on your phone and computer .. files saved in your dropbox account are accessible from either or laptop. More over they're backed up online so even if your external hard drive or laptop crashed you'll always have your files.
    2) voice search: change your voice recognition option to English India and turn personalized voice recognition on . That should help.
    3) battery life:install a task killer which kills unused apps that run in the background while they're not being used. Or root your tab and underclock your device when the battery starts going low.

  2. Thanks for the quickfixes! I do have voice search with English India and a task killer app. It helps to a certain extent I guess.
    Let me try out drop box!

  3. ya, I should have mentioned dropbox... it works for pics/documents in much the same way evernote works for written stuff.

    Will download word web.. i need a good offline dictionary. oTHERS WHICH I use commonly are :

    1. Yahoomail app.
    2. aWallet Password - good for keeping all passwords : its categorised ( banking, mail etc ). best part is it doesnt sync online so no chance of them stealing your passwords.
    3. expense manager - again categoriese by day/month/category
    4. fake call - a lot handier than you think :)
    5. India Tv guide- full weeks tv schedule of all channels.
    6. Lightbox - will add some neat effects to photos taken via it.
    7. Zomato - good for finding places in metros
    8. Doctor at Home - local home remedies :)


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