Hello, I just got my blackjack II a couple days ago, and have found a strange problem, if I hold down the home key it takes me directly to the task manager, when stopping all tasks, MobileSpeak plays the voice changing sound almost like the taskmanager was trying to end the Deck Talk process but couldn’t.  After this happens, I stop all the extra tasks I have open, return to the today screen, and then I lose my home functions with MobileSpeak and have to restart the phone.

I wondered if this was a strange issue with Windows Mobile six or the AT&T Black Jack Two firmware that is on the phone.

In Windows Mobile Five the Task Manager didn’t try to stop any part of MSS from working.

This is not a strange problem although I can see why you would think it is.
Keep in mind that the task manager is a built-in function of the Windows Mobile operating system.  That is, from the Windows perspective, MSS is merely another third-party application.  Windows does not know that MSS is an accessibility program necessary to provide speech /Braille output or magnification to a low-vision or blind person.  Consequently, when you issue the Stop All command from the Windows Task Manager , it tries to end any or all currently running third-party applications including MSS.

The solution is to use the MSS Switch To Application Dialog box to stop any or all programs.  When this MSS Dialog box is displayed, MSS, not the Windows Mobile operating system, decides which programs to act upon, which, of course, does not include MSS itself.  Therefore, using the MSS Switch To Application Dialog box will allow you to stop any or all currently running programs except MSS, itself.

In the Default command profile, press Home+2; this, like the task manager, will display all running applications except MSS.


In an attempt to make the documentation for MSS a little more user friendly, I have adapted and reformatted Chapter Three of the quick start guide for Mobile Speak Smart Phones in a way that I think is easier to use.  I have removed the tables.  This documentation applies to version 2.0. 

The available formats include MS Word 2003, plain text, and US Braille ready code (*.brf).

Simply right mouse-click on the desired format and choose “Save Target As” or some similar phrase (depending upon your web browser) in order to download the file.

Click Here To Begin:

I hope you find the documentation helpful. 

Mark Marcus


When I first read on this list that Handy Tech would no longer be selling Code Factory’s Mobile Speak licenses, I was truly surprised. 

I called Kelly Dunn, the support specialist at Handy Tech, regarding this.

In short, Kelly told me that the main reason why they are no longer selling MSS licenses is because they cannot afford to do so given that Code Factory has partnered with A T & T.  That is, A T & T can sell the licenses at a subsidized rate–in effect, undercutting smaller vendors.  Further, even though customers are purchasing their licenses from A T & T, they call smaller vendors like Handy Tech for technical support. 

As most of us know, one of the highest costs of doing business is technical support.  It is the primary reason why so many companies have outsourced their tech support teams to countries like India. 

Without being compensated, smaller vendors like Handy Tech, simply cannot afford to support A T & T customers. 

Please note the following two points:

I told Kelly that I was going to send a post of our conversation to the list so no confidence has been breached. 

Kelly informed me that Code Factory has requested a meeting with Handy Tech to discuss this matter further.  So perhaps Handy Tech is not out of the MSS game just yet. 

Until Next Time,



Handy Technology Inc
1349 Pike Lake Drive
New Brighton, MN 55112
(651) 636-5184 Voice
(866) 347-8249 Fax




Well, I am back on stage again. 

The show continues for another day.

In short, I think the entire ordeal was a good thing because it has motivated me to get back on the proverbial road and climb that mountain that is my destiny.  The thought of this brings pure joy to my heart.  No one can or will stop me from my destiny which was ordained before the day I was born.  It is what makes me great; and there is nothing greater except God.

Thank you for being my guardian angel. 

I give you my word that when my ship comes in, you will be on board with me.  Believe me when I say that you have secured passage. 


Mark Marcus

Hello Everyone,

Someone wrote on this list that Dolphin is targeting a slightly different market group than is CodeFactory.  I spoke to Gareth Collins at Dolphin, today, and he assures me that this is not the case. 

Because of our recent discussions regarding alternative voices for MSS and the fact that it appears that some of us want more choices, I started thinking about Dolphin again.  Read the rest of this entry »

You are so very welcome, Bryan. 

(Big Smile)  Your words made my week.  Thank you.

It’s all about taking care of family.  All of us on this list have a common interest and, thus, a common goal.  As far as I am concerned, that makes us family. 

My late grandmother taught me that all any of us have is our good name and our good word.  She taught me that when one says he/she is going to do something then she/he had better be willing to move heaven and earth in order to keep that promise, in order to keep that good word intact.  I grew up in Kentucky and we were extremely poor.  In our darkest hours my grandmother would tell all of us little kids that all a poor man has are his dreams and his good name.  She taught us to treasure these above all else for once they are gone they can never be replaced.  She once said to me, “No one can take your good name away from you; that is something that you must throw away.” Read the rest of this entry »

Believe it or not I found myself, once again, in the A T & T Wireless store today.  (Big Smile)  Yes, they all know me in this particular store.
Whenever I walk in, the sales people yell, “Hi Mark!!!”  I love it.

Anyway, today I took a friend there to assist her in purchasing a new phone.
During my visit, I discovered that A T & T has finally released a 3.5 headset adapter for the BJ2.  What does this mean?  It means that, with this adapter, one can use regular standard earphones with the Black Jack 2.  I’ve been waiting on this for a few weeks now. 

Also, Samsung has released a beautiful form-fitting black leather case for the phone.  Inside the case, the screen is protected by clear plastic while the keyboard remains uncovered.  The back of the case is fitted with a belt clip which can be removed allowing the user to slide the entire unit into a shirt pocket.  All necessary ports are accessible while inside the case.
This case is just for the BJ2. 

The cost of the case is approximately 30 dollars and the price of the headset adapter is approximately 20 dollars. 

Now for the best part, as of today, these two items are not listed on either A T & T’s website or the Samsung site.  In fact, most of the sales people in the store were not aware of their existence.  I learned of them by talking to the store manager.  Further, neither of these two items were out on display.  Strange, eh?



I have noticed something that I think is kind of neat about my BlackJack 2 and ActiveSync 4.5.  I am not sure but I would bet that the same applies to any Windows Mobile 6 device running ActiveSync 4.5 or Mobile Center in Vista.

First, I have set a custom password up on my phone.  This means that after locking the keyboard, I must enter the password to unlock the phone.  Please note that I am not referring to a SIM PIN password but merely a device lock.  I must also enter the password when powering on the phone.  OK, so I am a little paranoid.  (Big Smile)

Because of this security measure, whenever I connect the phone to my PC with the USB cable, ActiveSync gives me about 12 seconds to enter the correct password on the phone which, at the same time, prompts me to enter the password.  If I enter the password, the synchronization process begins as usual.

However, if I do not enter the password within the allotted time, the prompt will disappear from the phone and ActiveSync displays a message telling me that, should I wish to try again, I must disconnect the phone and reconnect it.  At this point, I simply press the [ENTER] key on the computer keyboard to acknowledge the message and that is all. 

Now keep in mind that the phone is still connected to the computer and is charging.  I can still make and receive calls all while the phone is charging. 

The Point: 

The point is, sometimes I want to charge my phone but not sync it up with the computer, for whatever reason.  By not entering the password, I can do just that. 

In effect, the computer becomes merely a charging station and not a sync partner. 

It is great for when all I want is a little power.  (Smile) 

Mark Marcus



The following are the instructions for getting the Samsung BlackJack II connected to the AT&T/Cingular 3G/Edge data network.  Consequently, these instructions apply to AT&T/Cingular customers, only.

From the Settings menu, select Connections.

Select G P R S.

Select ATT IMS.

It should “Connect to: The Internet”.

Under Access Point, it probably says: “ims.cingular”.  If so, change it to “wap.cingular”.  Please note that this should be in lowercase letters.

The Username and Password fields should both be empty of any characters.

Set the Authentication field to “CHAP”.

Both the Primary and Secondary DNS fields should be set to “”.

The IP ADDRESS field should be empty.

Click “Done” until you get back to the 1st settings screen, then, restart your phone.

That’s all there is to it.


Hello Everyone, 

Well, for those of us who choose to not use the commercial software application P D A Net in order to get our BlackJack 2 to act as a broadband MODEM for our computers, there is an alternative. 

Before I list the very simple steps in which to accomplish this please be aware that the Samsung Black Jack 2 does not come with WIFI.  I do not know if it can be upgraded to include this but at this time the unit is G P S capable, only.  For those who may not know, it runs Windows Mobile 6 Standard edition. 

Please note that the following instructions are for subscribers of A T & T/Cingular Wireless with the D P A unlimited data plan.  As far as I know, one must purchase the P D  A unlimited data plan in order to access any data on A T & T’s network with this particular phone so this should not be a concern. 

In short, the reason for the method described below is so you can get your laptop computer connected to the Internet by using your Samsung Black Jack 2 as a MODEM without having to pay a tethering fee or by having to purchase an Air card.  Also, this method necessitates the use of a USB cable to link the phone and the computer.  And, yes, you can receive and make calls while you are using the phone as a MODEM but the data transmission will be halted until the call is ended.  Oh yeah, make sure you are logged onto your computer with administrator privileges when you set this up.  Afterwards, you can return to a limited user if you so desire. 

OK, on to the show:

To get this to work on Windows XP with service pack 2:

Install the Samsung modem driver from the CD which comes inside the phone’s packaging.  Simply insert the CD and the Samsung installation program will launch.  Select the additional tools item and then select to install the MODEM drivers>  This program may or may not be accessible with screen readers.  I think it is, however.

>From the home screen of your phone select Start, Settings, Connection, USB.
Change the field from ActiveSync to MODEM.  Then Click Done until you return to the Home Screen of the phone.  Please note that you will need to change this field back to ActiveSync should you wish to synchronize your phone to a
PC again.   

Connect the included USB data cable to both the phone and the computer.
Because you have switched modes on the phone, ActiveSync will not launch as the computer sees your phone as a MODEM and not as a phone to be synchronized. 

Once the plug-and-play configuration states your new hardware is ready, open Internet Explorer.

>From the Tools menu within Internet Explorer, select Internet Options.

Select the Connections tab.

Click on Setup.  This will launch the New Connection Wizard.

Select “Add Dial-up Connection”.  In the phone number field type in “*99#”
(without the quote marks).  In the username field type in “ISP@CINGULARGPRS.COM” (in all uppercase).  The password should be “CINGULAR1” (In all uppercase).  You are now ready to use your BlackJack2 as a modem using the A T & T G P R S service.

Access speed is about 284k and sometime a little better depending on your location.  You may wish to select the option in IE to use the modem when your network connection is not present.

Close Internet Explorer and restart it to launch the connection dialog box.
When the connection dialog box appears, simply Click the Connect button. 

OK, that is all. 

I absolutely love this new phone.  Of all the cell phones I have owned, I think about 12 in total, this is without a doubt, my favorite. 


Themes Select


January 2008
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