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Author Topic: Bird's optimized N7  (Read 3927 times)

Offline birdastrompgman

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Bird's optimized N7
« on: October 27, 2012, 10:54:25 PM »
I have my N7 working about as well as I ever imagined a tablet could work, so I thought I'd share what I've done with all of you.  If this spurs some of you on to share what you've done with your N7s, then we'll all be richer for the experience.

First, here's my setup on July 18, shortly after I received my 8gb N7.  The home screen wallpaper is my photo of a Black-browed Albatross, taken in Australia.  See the first attached photo.

Next capture shows my current setup, with the wallpaper being my astrophoto of the Great Orion Nebula.  I took the photo from my back yard in the light-polluted metropolitan San Francisco Bay Area of California, stacking about fifty 90 second exposures taken through a Meade Schmidt-Newtonian telescope. 

Notice the red navigation bar buttons.  They're red to preserve my night vision when I use my N7 as a star chart at night.  I'm running the Paranoid Android 2.50 ROM, which lets me customize the navigation bar background, button, and glow colors.

I rooted my N7 as soon as the forum guide to rooting the N7 came out.  i'm keeping about 6gb of Nandroid backups, and 2.5gb of astronomy and birding app data files on a $20 USD 32gb USB flash drive (plus ~$4 for the USB-0TG cable, shipped), and I'm running those data-intensive apps while they're reading the data from the flash drive.  Obviously, I can't do that without being rooted.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2012, 05:38:57 AM by birdastrompgman »


Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2012, 11:38:23 PM »
Paranoid Android has some really neat features.  Notice the day of the week is shown on the status bar in the second screen capture above.  I don't know if you can customize that with the stock 4.1.2, but I can do it in Paranoid Android.

Here's something I know isn't available in stock 4.1.2.  The capture below shows my USB storage stats in Paranoid Android's Settings > Storage function.  I started with 28gb total space, and still have 16gb available - not bad for the $200 base model 8gb N7.  I have a 40gb N7 for $225.  In case you're wondering, I set aside 1.5gb in a second primary partition for future experimentation with moving apps themselves to the second partition.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2012, 05:46:20 AM by birdastrompgman »
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2012, 12:06:18 AM »
I put a lot of work into optimizing my N7.  I use the Screendim app to drop screen brightness well below the minimum stock brightness.  i switch from my bread and butter Swiftkey 3 Tablet keyboard app to the Omegacentauri GB Keyboard app, because it has a red layout that's best for inputting in search target names to Sky Safari Pro, my astronomy app.  See the attached screen capture below.  If I could only change the white magnifying glass icon to red...

I use the Directory Bind app to redirect my app's data queries from the N7's "external" 8gb storage to my 32gb USB flash drive.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2012, 05:51:33 AM by birdastrompgman »
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2012, 12:15:14 AM »
So, here's how Sky Safari portrays the location of Messier 42, the Great Orion Nebula (my current wallpaper), in daytime viewing mode.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2012, 05:54:33 AM by birdastrompgman »
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2012, 12:20:32 AM »
And here's how my night-optimized  8) N7 shows the naked eye view of Orion in red light. Actually, this view is much brighter than I use under dark skies.  It's set this way so you can see it without going dark-adapted.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2012, 05:55:27 AM by birdastrompgman »
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2012, 01:19:23 AM »
I mentioned the data files for my astronomy and birding apps total 2.5gb.  Since the 8gb N7 only has 5.92gb total space after the OS and OEM apps are loaded, and I'm using 1.9gb to store two Nandroid backups (my stock 4.1.2 and my Paranoid Android), those 2.5gb of data had to move outside to the USB flash drive.  It took me a long time (see my 64 gigabyte question thread in the Roots, Hacks, Mods, and Development forum) before other users told me about the Directory Bind app that accomplishes this.

Sky Safari Pro needs 1.4gb of data to store the specifications, locations, descriptions, etc. for its tens of thousands of catalog objects.  It also includes eyepiece and finder views, telescope control (via Bluetooth), and more.

My birding apps need 1+gb of data to store their 800 species illustrations, range maps, song and call recordings, and more.  The following screen capture shows the Sibley Field Guide comparison function results for two species - Black-throated Gray Warbler and Townsend's Warbler.  I'm looking at adult male and adult female comparisons, but juvenile comparisons and songs from several different states are typically available.

Questions?  Comments?
« Last Edit: October 29, 2012, 02:22:42 AM by birdastrompgman »
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline S.Prime

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2012, 04:15:55 AM »
Quite an impressive layout of your Nexus 7, Bird. You have obviously maximized the benefits of a rooted Android device.
IT Service Professional - I just want a device to be productive.

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2012, 06:11:29 AM »
I couldn't have done it without the help of the folks on this forum, Prime. Thanks to you all,
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2012, 01:22:15 AM »
Paranoid Android just came up with the navigation bar button color changing ability a week or two ago, in v. 2.50.  V. 2.20 didn't have it.  This morning, I learned PA v. 2.52 was released 27 October.  Naturally, I upgraded on Sunday.  Unfortunately, v. 2.52 failed to recognize the nav bar button colors I chose.  No matter what I chose, the buttons stayed white.  I rebooted, no change.  Rebooted again, no change.  Reflashed the ROM, no change.  Tried to reset the colors, and got a message (two or three times) that setup stopped working.  Went back to 2.50, and it worked fine.  Reflashed 2.52, and the buttons went back to white.  I'm back on v. 2.50, until they release a more stable version.
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline Bigtroutz

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2012, 01:46:37 PM »
I am curious -- what happens when you disconnect / reconnect your OTGO "external internal" storage ?

Does the rooted device automagically adjust to it's loss and reappearance or do you need to run some configuration process(es) ?

Offline bjs229

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #10 on: November 10, 2012, 02:07:12 PM »
Fine line between the genius and insanity. Love you Bird. You are a great family member.

Offline bjs229

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Re: Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #11 on: November 10, 2012, 02:12:56 PM »
I am curious -- what happens when you disconnect / reconnect your OTGO "external internal" storage ?

Does the rooted device automagically adjust to it's loss and reappearance or do you need to run some configuration process(es) ?
Good question!

Offline birdastrompgman

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #12 on: November 10, 2012, 03:50:39 PM »
Nothing bad happens if I disconnect the USB-OTG cable.  Access to the files stored on my flash drive disappears, so my birding and astronomy apps give me messages asking if I want to download the data files.  Of course, Linux doesn't like it when you remove devices without unmounting them, so I unbind the directories with Directory Bind and unmount the USB partitions before pulling the cable, and all is good.

Once in a while, if I've accessed a bound directory with file explorer or an app, I can't unbind it, and I'll shut the N7 down, as a courtesy to Linux. 

When I reconnect the cable, Stickmount recognizes the USB storage device and mounts the two partitions.  They're ready for access by file explorer.  If I want to run my astronomy or birding apps, I run Directory Bind, or I can set Directory Bind to bind on boot, and my data files are linked for use.

I'm running Paranoid Android 2.54 now.  I learned that even though PA versions 2.52, 2.531, 2.532, and 2.54 didn't implement my nav bar settings on reboot, there is a workaround.  I had saved my settings in settings > system > navigation bar.  If I go to settings > Paranoid Android > apps > system > navigation bar, and save them there, my color button choices take effect after a reboot, as soon as I enter the settings menu.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2012, 07:43:48 PM by birdastrompgman »
Bird has seen >650 North American bird species
Rooted Nexus 7
49.5 mpg avg for 53k miles in non-hybrid Scion xB
Retired 9 yrs, and loving it

Offline Bigtroutz

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2012, 04:03:50 PM »
Thanks very much for that explanation.  Sounds like it is not completely painless.

Have you tried 'imaging' the bound-drive AND unbound-drive condition-sets (wax-on vs wax-off) to the 'Stick' and loading the appropriate image depending on next boot's connectedness ? (if that is even possible).  I have not messed with rooting yet but I understand it is possible to auto-load various configurations with the appropriate apps.

Offline bjs229

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Re: Bird's optimized N7
« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2012, 07:19:27 PM »
You guys party way too hard for me! CHEERS!

 


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