TREG Impressions @colinng

I got a new Pi 3 B+, hoping the improved WiFi would stop my Remote Desktop setup from freezing several times a day. I just realized that Raspbian Stretch is now available!

I had been using
sudo apt-get upgrade
I needed to edit the sources and
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

In Stretch, using the menu Bluetooth > Add Device… finally works for TextBlade!

It seems they also improved the graphics (though I don’t recall them mentioning that). My biggest peeve with the 3 B was that windows dragged okay at Full HD but slowed to a crawl at 2560x1440: they would move slowly and keep moving up to 30 seconds after you let go of the mouse button. It was terrible!

With the 3 B+, windows drag properly, even at 2560x1440. Definitely worth the upgrade for Remote Desktop users.

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I’m not sure I completely understand, but I think I do.

I have a MacBook Air which I very rarely use, and a Samsung Note8, which is my main computer. Both machines have an app called Join, which allows me to cut / copy between devices. (So, I cut something on the Mac and it is now on the clipboard of my Android.

Hope this helps.

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I think Mac and iOS are supposed to let you copy/paste across devices, but I never got it to work dependably. The few times I’ve needed to do it, I’ve copied something on one device, pasted it into my account on Slack, and then went to Slack on the other device to copy from there to wherever I needed it. Not ideal, but at least it’s been dependable.

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Idea2go - you mentioned the few second delay when you jump between bluetooth devices. I have this same experience on the various Logitech Bluetooth keyboards I use (that each support up to three devices). While that “switch” delay is annoying, what I find worse are the issues on my windows 7 work laptop - it seems to be very agressive at disconnecting (perhaps powering down the bluetooth radio or something like that. What I end up seeing is I’ll tap the button for the work laptop and then give it the time it should need and start typing. Then what usually happens is that it will delay before I start SEEING the letters, but then I see them and all is fine. But maybe 15-20% of the time I’ll instead see the first few characters dropped and then some other ones dropped at the end. It looks something like this:

taps button to switch to windows computer, waits 2 seconds

TYPED: “This is a test, this is only a test”

DISPLAYED: “is is a test, this is only a te”

Or it might be something like this displayed:

DISPLAYED: “is is a test, th is only a te”

It is annoying. Easily fixed, but if I’m (as I sometimes do when my wife is texting me and I’m responding on my iPad while coding on the windows laptop, thus switching back and forth a lot) really irritated by having to fix it over and over when it happens. It seems most prevalent when I’m switching back and forth rapidly than when I’m typing to the windows laptop for long periods at a time.

Have you seen anything like this on the TextBlade?

Colin - I just want to say I applaud you coming BACK HERE to report your findings on the same thread, over time. I have been annoyed by people that got into TREG and basically reported that they got into TREG. They’ll say how they haven’t had much time to use it yet, and that they’ll report back, but they don’t. I spent the past few months going backwards in time and looking at a lot of old posts and I hated every one of those that I found. :frowning:

In your case, you’ve not only come back, but you are reporting on some of the very things I use every day (VS, vim, apt, etc.). Anyway - thanks! :slight_smile:

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@Verxion I haven’t ever seen the tail end characters get dropped with TextBlade. That sounds pretty annoying!

Also good news. Subjectively I think I’ve noticed that while the jump is occurring it starts MUCH sooner to buffer keypresses. So if I jump and wait just a tiny bit before I start typing, all of those keys will come through as soon as the connection is fully established. As I said this is subjective I haven’t tried timing it and I don’t 100% recall how much different it was before. But I do know that previously it bothered me a lot, and now it does not, so it must have changed!!!


@idea2go I think you’re right - I think there is some keystroke buffering before the jump completes. One of my issues is how impatient I am - I start typing without waiting for power on or jumps to confirm completion, so the first few keystrokes don’t appear on screen, and the suddenly they do, all at once.

Poor WayTools has had to troubleshoot my impatience. I think there were some chords that didn’t activate because I had already held them down while the TextBlade was powering up. We get used to speed so quickly!


@colinng The things you are talking about (essentially performance issues) are quite important. I do a LOT of troubleshooting for people on their computers and learned a very valuable lesson one day back when the “Intel Pentium” was first released. I forget now what it was precisely (windows installation?), but some aspect of a brand new computer build and setup was taking EONS to complete. I’d get to the same spot, wait five or six minutes, see nothing at all (also noticing it was non responsive to input), turn the machine off, reseat the memory, cpu, cards, etc, and try again, to no avail.

Turns out the (then brand new) Pentium BIOS was slowing things down so much at install time that it took something like TEN MINUTES to get past a screen that normally took a few seconds on my trusty 486! This was just a simple growing pain - the 386/486 BIOSes were so mature at that time, and Pentium so new, that I’d come to expect something that just wasn’t the case on the newer system. This, coupled with my expectation that “everything would be faster” on the new shiny - the Pentium computer, and it wasn’t until I eventually was reading the flimsy motherboard/BIOS manual long enough while on that screen that it eventually got past it… after close to TEN MINUTES. Only then did I know if I’d just been patient it would all have been fine.

This is of course an extreme example, but still, it is important that new users have an experience as close to (or better than) their expectations as possible.

I’m glad to hear there is some apparent buffering present in the keyboard when doing a jump. The chording is more intriguing. Are you saying if you try a chord before the TextBlade is fully powered up that you can no longer chord afterwards? Or perhaps it was that way originally and then they had to fix that?


@Verxion were you this guy on the right??


Original video here:


The TextBlade works around stuck keys on power up (so if you hold down, say D and F, then click the TextBlade together, and keep DF held down, it won’t detect DF or any arrow-key chords until you release DF and then some internal scan resets their presence.

My specific case was: kinetic power up, hold down DF, start trying to arrow around, and get JKLI instead.

But it’s not TextBlade’s fault - it’s me.

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I was indeed the person on the right. I didn’t switch from home built PCs (running primarily Linux, but also Windows for gaming) until the original MacBook Air had been around long enough to be available refurbished. I bought it and had LOTS of overheating problems with it. They took it in for service three or four times and ultimately replaced it with the next generation MacBook Air, which did NOT exhibit overheating issues for me at all.

Apple won me over with a combination of their service ethic (replacing a REFURBISHED unit with a brand new, second generation version?!?!?) and the quality of the software included with their computers (I forget all of them because it has been so long ago, but I remember being stunned that I didn’t need Adobe Acrobat Reader for PDF viewing, SSH client (and server!) were built in, VNC was built in, and several others I was stunned were part of the BASE OSX Operating System).

I don’t miss being the person on the right. At all. I still help people that run Windows, but I don’t like it. I just like helping people.