Archive for the ‘Projects’ Category

Break Me

August 7th, 2010 at 10:03 am

LockInfo and the Lock Weather Plugin running on my jailbroken iPod Touch 2G

The simplicity of JailbreakMe.com was just too enticing to pass up. My aging 2G iPod Touch is now “jailbroken,” for the second time this year.

The first time was a few months ago. It took several hours, exhausted my fingers by requiring vulcan-nerve-pinch button presses, and ultimately left me with a device which needed to be factory reset again a day later. One can only wait through so many 3 hour device restores before giving up and moving on.

This time, however, it was simply a matter of browsing to JailbreakMe.com, and “sliding to jailbreak”. Genius. Of course, it uses a PDF/Safari exploit which won’t last beyond the next update (and which, ironically, can currently only be blocked by jailbreaking your device and installing an unauthorized package), so get it while you can.

Just Slide to Jailbreak

Benefits:

  • LockInfo + Lock Weather Plugin: See the screenshot up and to the right. Important info, at a glance, without having to unlock the device. This should be built into iOS. Currently running in trial mode, but it’s pretty great, I might have to buy it.
  • Features 2G: Enables multitasking & home screen wallpaper support. Why the latter isn’t allowed on Touch 2Gs is beyond me.

Drawbacks:

  • Battery life: Of course, this wouldn’t be as much of a problem if I didn’t turn on multitasking using Features 2G.
  • Cydia: My god this app is painful to use. Does it really need to reload packages on every open? And the downloading of package information from repositories (I’m looking at you modmyi.com) is just… so… slow… And you still need to wait for another page to load to see any screenshots! Have you guys seen the AppStore? It is the standard you’re being measured against. Step up.
  • More to do: This may be related to the pain of use and lack of curation in Cydia, but I aside from the two tweaks above, I can’t find much else I would want to install.

Anyone else have a jailbroken iDevice? Let me know what other packages I should look into in the comments.

Bake me a Cake

February 12th, 2006 at 10:42 pm

Initial thoughts on trying to work with the Cake PHP Framework (read: Ruby on Rails in PHP)…

  • The documentation sure is lacking
  • Why doesnt the ‘bake’ script have a ‘–help’ (or any other help type switch)?
  • I refuse to name my db table primary keys as ‘id’. In my opinion it should always be singular-table-name+id, i.e. ‘Users’ table → userid (or user_id), ‘Books’ table → bookid, etc. Is this an normal “Active Record” thing (it seems thats how RoR does it too)? I see that Cake may support the defining of primary key names, but I’m somewhat concerned this will complicate the association magic of it’s ActiveRecord implementation. Again, it’d be nice to have some clear documentation on this.
  • The rd11 programs are interesting resources for fully functioning Cake apps, but so nearly completely uncommented it’s unfortunate (at least, rdBloggery is).
  • I really wish it had some sort of drop-in user system. RoR’s Login Engine looks really nice, and as a ‘rails engine’ it is “a way of dropping in whole chunks of functionality into your existing application without affecting any of your existing code. [Engines] could also be described as mini-applications, or vertical application slices – top-to-bottom units which provide full MVC coverage for a certain, specific application function.” (Introduction in Rails Engines)

Anyways… Overall, I’m not completely dissatissfied with the experience, but the above are really making it more of an uphill battle than it needs to be, especially since, after having read several different cake reference resources for days, once I finally had my ‘Ah-ha’ moment, I had something working after only an hour of work. One of the beautiful things about PHP is it’s online documentation. I’ve pretty much earned my living for the last few years using a language I learned almost entirely through the online documentation (plus a good 10 years of computer programming experience to build-upon, but still! :P )

Networking Panel

January 25th, 2006 at 10:49 pm

So when we were searching for houses one I thing I kept an eye out for were electicity outlets and phone jacks. The house we ended up purchasing was fairly well taken care of for the first point (it had had it’s electricity completely updated a few years ago), but extremely deficient in the phone-jack department.

In fact, it actually only had 1 jack in the entire house, and it was in the living room (despite the fact that whoever ‘staged’ the house for showing had placed a phone in the master bedroom, we noticed on our second showing that it wasn’t connected to anything. Sneaky!).

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Home Buying Discoveries

January 17th, 2006 at 2:15 am

Tools!

The process of buying a house has been an interesting one. There’s the excitement of starting to look, the despair of feeling like you’ll never find anything, the thrill of finding something no one else has seemed to find yet. It’s all very rollercostery.

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I know I’ve got something tdoo…

September 24th, 2005 at 5:14 pm

No, that’s not a typo in the post title. This is just a quick post to let anyone reading my blog know about one of the many projects that have been keeping me from actually blogging.

A few months ago I was looking for a site to easily manage my to-do lists. I found a few but either they were a) crippled in order to entice me to buy a full-featured package, or b) they weren’t very good.

Furthermore I was looking for a project to test out some DHTML+Javascript (known by some as AJAX) interface-goodness.

So without further ado, I introduce you to the latest apathyant empire member:

www.tdoos.com

Try it out and let me know what you think. I appreciate any feedback, and I’m currently gearing up some ideas for the next iteration of the site.

Wikipedia Inline Article Viewer (Greasemonkey userscript)

September 4th, 2005 at 2:17 am

My first greasemonkey script-writing experience has prodouced the ‘Wikipedia Inline Article Viewer‘ userscript. The script appends a little icon after internal article links inside wikipedia articles. When you click the icon it will open the article in a little dhtml frame. Allows quick sub-article skimming without having to leave the context of the original article. Check out the screenshot below (click the thumbnail for a larger version):

Wikipedia Inline Article Viewer screenshot

Download/Install | Project Page