Mobile Vikings & iPhones

Because it took me about 10 minutes to Google it, I’ll recap it here;

 

If tethering is unavailable on ones iPhone, and you have to helpdesk him/her out of it, go to:

Settings > General > Network > Cellular Data Network

And set “Cellular data” to:

APN: web.be
username: web
password: web

And reboot the device… Tethering should/will be available.

Data roaming

I bricked my Nexus S yesterday, while trying to root it (with an howto for an old Android version). As usual I was trying to do too much stuff with too little time (as I had to catch my plane later that evening).

I had to root it to get OpenVPN, ssh tunnel, or system wide proxies up and running. Things I needed to by-pass the Great Firewall in China on my mobile.

However, when landing in Beijing, and connecting to Twitter, Facebook, and all that other shizzle on my “backup” Nexus S; I noticed all sites were working just fine. Just a tad slow…

I was amazed. As if someone turned off the Great Firewall… ๐Ÿ˜‰

But apparently, when checking what public IP my phone had, it was a Belgian IP address. So basically it seems when roaming, all traffic is rerouted from, say, China Mobile to Proximus (through a VPN?), and routed to the internet, in my case, from Belgium. Which is pretty cool here in China. Means I can access everything as if I were in Belgium.

Anyway, something I didn’t know. Learned something new today. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Mobile B-Rail website

Only one and a half year after I launched iRail, the NMBS/SNCB launched their own mobile website (with a few additional functions, but not all of them optimized for mobile view).

Well done I’d say. Just a tiny bit late. ๐Ÿ™‚ And too bad there doesn’t seem to be an iPhone optimized version (later?).

Oh well, *finally*. I’ll be testing it next time I’ll be taking the train. ๐Ÿ™‚

NMBS API?

While trying to find an API or “mobile” (read: iPhone) access for the NMBS website, I came upon some cool stuff.

The time table and train managing software seems made in Germany. The NMBS “look up” site gives you the software and version it is using (“Software versie/dataversie: HAFAS 5.21.B-RAIL.4.7f/5.21.B-RAIL.4.7k – 14/09/08“).

Googling for Hafas returns some cool websites.

Using this one, you can download a pdf with all train (including hours) info between two stations. Not quite the same as an API-key, but at least you have something you can save and use lateron.

This seems to be giving all stops a train will have (or all trains) between two stations. Though the “stoptrains” aren’t in the list, and the IR-train does stop at Mechelen-Nekkerspoel too, which isn’t on the list either. This PDF seems more accurate, and seems to be including all trains.

But still, the DB seem to be ahead of us (well, what country isn’t?). Here is one of the functionalities of HAFAS, which I haven’t seen on the NMBS site yet. Correct me if I’m wrong, but this seems something different. And… Windows-fucking-mobile-only.

Pretty much same problem with Thalys. They even made thalys.mobi, yet, when accessing it with the iPhone (as I lack other PDA-ish devices to test it at the moment) it doesn’t scale/resize/fit my screen, and is displaying the same window I have when browsing it with Firefox.

Wouldn’t it be cool if we had some open (xml?) API, where we could submit departure station, arrival station, and some time, and get a reply with one or multiple results?

I guess I would’ve hoped for more in these “mobile” days.

Edit: my attempt to make something.