Archive for October, 2012

Speed up writing in iOS/Mac

I’ve always been frustrated with my iPhone when I want to post something that uses the degree symbol (°). I searched and searched my iOS keyboard but finally had to give up and Google the subject.

Probably what I should have done in the first place…

Anyhow, in my quest for the degree symbol, I came across the great article Keyboard Shortcuts for your iPhone and iPad on the Digital Inspirations site.

If you have an iPhone, check out this awesome How To. It is worth the read and will have you tapping out messages/emails/documents faster than ever before, in no time!



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How to start a YouTube clip from where you want to start it

So, there are times when you want to share a segment of a YouTube video with friends for laughs but you want to skip to where the fun starts.

To do this, just append &t=3m14s to the video’s URL and the video will start from the 3:14 mark in the video. The following is an example of disturbed Cosplay fans in an episode of the Phillip DeFranco Show started at the 3:14 mark:

If you have embedded a YouTube video to your site, you can use the start & end parameters in the src URL of the object.  However, the values for start and end times need to be converted from seconds (eg 3:14 becomes 194)

The following is an example of the same video (embedded), started at the 3:14 (194) mark and then ended at the 4:41 (281) mark:

<iframe src="" frameborder="0" width="420" height="315"></iframe>


Many thanks to the following sites for this information:

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Problems with your new iPhone 5? Then take it to an Apple Store.

If it is an iPhone, and you have a problem with it,
then the people to talk to are at an Apple Store near you.

Tuesday, last week, I dropped by my local Apple Store to check if they had any in stock.  I received the expected response of “No, but we will be getting new stock in any time now.” and was referred to going to the Apple site to check for updates on availability. When I got home, later that day, I checked the site but could find nothing about the availability of the new models for a particular store but did stumble across the Apple – Reserve and Pick Up page. I shrugged my shoulders about this, forgot about it for a few days, and then, on a whim, reserved a new 32GB Black iPhone via the page at about 4pm on the Friday.

Saturday morning I noticed an email from Apple saying that I had an iPhone ready for me to pickup at 11:30am that day. Yippee!

So, after some juggling of other commitments and winning a game of Paper, Scissors, Rock as to who was going to look after the kids, I wandered down to the Apple Store, filled out the paper work, lit a candle in memory of Steve Jobs, chanted mindlessly with the other other drones about the greatness of Apple, and walked out with my not so shiny (because it was the black model, duh!) iPhone 5.

(Can any Android fan (who may be reading this) pick out the two little tid-bits that I included in the last sentence, to provide you with some sense of smugness over your choice of mobile handset ? Yes? :P)

All was good in the collective until I later that night I found that when I was connected to WiFi, I couldn’t access any webpages.  I tried turning WiFi off, then on, and I would get connectivity long enough to do a Google search, but couldn’t access any pages from there.  Not good, especially since my old iPhone 4 (still on iOS 5) was connecting and loading web pages with no issues at all.

So I searched the web and discovered that there were a number of people having problems with their iPhone 5, and also with any iOS device (iPad 2 & 3, 3GS, 4, 4S) that they had upgraded to iOS 6. A number of solutions had been put forward which can be read about further on the iDownloadBlog.  I tried all of these, including performing a factory reset on my iPhone in case it was an issue with my restored iPhone 4 backup, but my wireless issue would not disappear.

So, the next day, I’m back at the Apple Store, with my new iPhone in hand…

Apple Guy: “Hi sir! How can I help you today?”

Me: “My new iPhone 5 is faulty. I can connect to WiFi but cannot access web pages.

Apple Guy: “Let’s have a look, shall we.  Hmmm, yes, I have seen this issue before.  Please wait a minute and we will get you a new iPhone 5.”

And THAT was it!

Apparently, out of all the iPhone 5 stock that has been sold to date, that particular store had had 4 returned with this issue.  This is understandable since you will always have faults in any manufactured electronics product. What I loved about this was the fact that, with an iPhone, if something is wrong with it, the people at the Apple Store will either fix it or replace it.

Do people with Android handsets get that level of support if they have a problem? Not in my experience… and by experience I mean me tech supporting my wife as she suffered numerous issues with a HTC Desire, HTC Legend, and a Samsung Galaxy S.  Needless to say, she has an iPhone 4S now and loves it.

Now, mind you, if it is out of warranty, or the issue appears to be due to damage beyond normal wear and tear (do not hand over your iPhone if it is still dripping water), you aren’t going to get much more than an offer to purchase a subsidised refurbished iPhone. However, if there is a problem with your iPhone take it to an Apple Store.

This also goes for those of you who have purchased/contracted an iPhone from a Telstra/Optus/Vodaphone retailer/agent.  The Apple Store is your “Go To” place for your Apple products, no matter where you have purchased them from.

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Black Adder Goes Forth – Coffee

Now that we are working out of a smaller office, with a fair possibility that coffee supplies may run low at any given time, I always think of this Blackadder episode when I offer to make coffee for the guys… 😀

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Where have I been?

Random photo to prove that yes, I have been busy.

So, anyone who has stumbled upon this little blog AND who has been foolish enough to attempt to follow it would know that it has been a little over a year since I have written anything for it.

I’m pretty sure that I posted a warning somewhere about how infrequent posts could end up being…

Anyway… since my last post I have:

  • posted a number of dining reviews for and
  • helped in the process of bringing another midget into the world
  • gave up on dragonboating as I couldn’t commit the time to training since moving back to the Gold Coast
  • been working on new software (at work) to replace the product that we have been providing professional services for for over 10 years
  • been to the Colorado, USA twice (VERY COOL) for training on the new product
  • working like crazy to gear up the business to “step up to the next level”
  • stopped writing dining reviews because I just have not had the time to do it justice
  • oh, and have completely ignored this blog!

So, as you can see, I have been pretty busy.  Most importantly, now that we are a family of four, I have been very much trying to focus as much time as I can on the upbringing of my two incredible kids, keeping my amazing wife sane, whilst trying to secure our future financially… and it has been bloody exhausting! LOL

So, I am not going to make a commitment to update this blog on a regular basis, but I will be writing of things interesting to myself from time to time. If, by some stretch of the imagination, you find these posts interesting and/or informative, please drop me a comment and let me know.  Everyone loves to know when their rambling interests others… it separates us from that crazy guy that hangs around outside of the local Seven Eleven, with a stuffed Aardvark on his shoulder, mutting about the “End of the World is Nigh”. 😛

Happy Reading!

PS – I have changed the website’s theme as I am no longer trying to impress Telstra to be a part of their Windows Phone 7 Social Review (I feel pretty dirty for even attempting that).

PPS (or is it PSS??) – I had to be honest with myself and remove the “dragon boating” element from the site’s by-line, since I no longer participate in the sport…. actually, I am not participating in ANY sport, which is something that I really need to rectify at some point.

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