Words On Wednesday

Words on Wednesday, December 3, 2014

No more CyanogenMod for me, plus some other unimportant stuff.



This whole situation reeks of ignorance.


Let me begin by voicing my remorse for the Brown family. Losing a family member is never pleasant, no matter the circumstances. My condolences go out to them in their time of grief. With that taken care of, let’s get down to the grit of this situation.


I genuinely feel that this situation was only so big because the media blew it out of proportion and made it an issue of race. This shouldn’t have been about race at all. Yes, Ferguson is a predominantly black area with a mainly white police force. That does not mean that a scary white cop shot an “innocent, unarmed” black boy just because he wanted to.


From all the information I’ve seen, Mike Brown was a thug. He robbed a convenience store and jay walked, and clearly had no respect for authority of any kind. I could be mistaken, yes. He could’ve been destined for great things. Seems to me, however, that this dude wasn’t going to make anything of himself.


As for the riots, that’s a whole new level of dumb. You don’t agree with the decision of a grand jury (which I think had a perfectly fair trial), so you break the law? That doesn’t make any sense. There are ways to voice your disapproval without putting yourself at risk of the same fate Mike Brown faced.


I stand by my thoughts, if the residents of Ferguson hate the police so bad, let them go ungoverned for a while. Pull out all cops, all military, all law enforcement of any kind, and let them do what they will. Let them pillage, burn, and kill to their hearts content. Then let them see how idiotic they are, how they destroy themselves. Let them see how necessary a police force is, and how dumb it is to think otherwise.


On a somewhat related note, I read an article about how the Ferguson riots were about… how was it put… “Ferguson isn’t about black rage against cops. It’s white rage against progress.” No, this is in no way about the white man keeping the black man down. This is a bunch of idiots throwing a tantrum because they didn’t get their way. A facebook friend posted the article, I simply expressed my disagreement with the content, and I was unfriended because of it. Very well, if you can’t be an adult and engage in intelligent debate and conversation, that isn’t my problem.


I am aware that these thoughts on Ferguson may seem eclectic and thrown together. Most of the discussion I’ve had with people on the situation has spanned several days and consisted of very driven conversation. Most of that is difficult to put into blog form without directly quoting conversation, and I wouldn’t want to cite people here. I welcome comments or private messages on any shared platforms if you want to converse more on the subject. I feel strongly on the subject, but I do think I’m capable of having a debate without any sort of aggression or name-calling.


CyanogenMod to AOSP

After several months of using CyanogenMod on my Nexus 4, I’ve returned to Android Open Source Project.


The decision to revert to stock Android stems from a week or more of terrible bugs, atrocious battery life, and a longing to play with Lollipop on my phone. CyanogenMod has never seemed quite as stable as stock Android to me. From the time I installed it, some things were just… quirky. Apps would occasionally misbehave, but nothing major went wrong. Battery life never seemed remarkably different between the two.


Lately, my phone has been a burden to use. Nothing performed as it should. Apps would try to update, only to be met with an “insufficient storage” error. I already had plenty of open space, but I cleared out a few unused apps just to be safe. Still, the apps wouldn’t update. I tried uninstalling the apps and grabbing the latest versions anew from the play store. Regretfully, I got the same “insufficient storage” message, but this time I didn’t even have an old version present on my phone. Google Search would regularly crash on me, and this seemed to interfere with the operation of other apps. My battery would die after 6 hours or less, with barely over an hour of screen on time. Couple this all with the delay between the release of Android 5.0 Lollipop and the time that CM might put out a stable version of it, and I was done.


I grabbed WugFresh’s Nexus Root Toolkit online. MAJOR thanks to that guy (girl?) for the neat little piece of software. I may be somewhat tech savvy, but not enough to be comfortable tinkering with phones. The toolkit guides you right through everything necessary to do anything on Nexus devices. After updating all my driver software, I flashed stock and unrooted my phone. The whole process took under an hour and my phone was back to AOSP.


This morning has consisted of downloading apps, tweaking settings, and making sure everything is back in place. I backed up all my data physically, but most of my stuff is automatically synced to my Google account (mainly music, contacts, and pictures). Pretty much everything seems to be in order, but I’m sure there will be a few stray apps here and there that I remember to install over the coming weeks.


In returning to AOSP, there are certainly a few features of CM that I will miss:

  • Battery Life PercentageThis is petty, I know, but it is my biggest gripe about stock Android. I like knowing an exact percentage of how much battery I have left, preferably right in the notification bar. Sure, I can install a battery widget (which I did) to see it on my homescreen. It just isn’t the same, though. I want to be able to see how much battery I have left at a glance. The little battery icon used by AOSP isn’t descriptive at all. I can hardly tell if it’s closer to full or empty, probably with a precision of no more than 25% or so. That’s just not enough for me.
  • Notification Light – A little more understandable to most, I miss how much customization CM allows on the notification light. Specifically, I like knowing roughly how much charge my phone has while charging without turning the screen on. Red light means under 20%, green light means over 90%, and purple light means somewhere in between. (Actually found an app to replicate this feature, it just works slightly different)
  • Flashlight in the Settings pull down –
  • Settings pull down

There are certainly facets of CM that I’ll notice and miss over time. I enjoy the software, but I can’t have the caveats that I was facing with it. If having stock Android clears those up, I won’t have it any other way.


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