Archive for the 'technology' Category

Alexa versus Siri – you said what?

January 02nd, 2017 | Category: technology,thoughts

For a while now I’ve had an Amazon Echo which is powered by Amazon’s Alexa platform in my living room and for much longer Siri on my phone. Having the two is interesting to see how each of them behave in different situations, which bot understands what I’m saying versus the others. Now while Alexa doesn’t always understand generally it isn’t offensive (usually isn’t offensive anyway [NSFW]), Siri on the other hand will quite happily quip back at me something snarky.

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Rotating Apache log files on Mac OS

October 21st, 2016 | Category: macosx,opensource,technology,tips

Recently I went through setting up a new Mac from scratch instead of porting it from another machine. As part of this process I set up Apache with a bunch of log files for various VHost’s I’m working on for a side project I’m playing with. This means plenty of logs files. In the past I’ve generally not worried about doing anything with the log files, I just let them grow and if they got too big, nuked them by hand. However this time round I figured I’d get them rotated properly so that I could have clean logs each day that I’m working.
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Restoring lost Safari tabs

January 20th, 2015 | Category: guides,macosx,technology,tips

Recently I’d been having hardware issues with my Mac which resulted in quite a few hard shutdowns for the machine. Once I got up and running I found to my surprise that I’d managed to lose all of my Safari windows and tabs of which I had in abundance. This was rather distressing as I have far too much research on topics open at any given time for anything from stream processing systems to certificate authorities to research on containerisation to creating grids in AngularJS. Suffice to say I wasn’t excited at the prospect of losing that information.

A quick Google search gave me a bit of hope. There was an article on Mac OS X hints about “Safari loses all your open tabs: recover using Time Machine“. It suggests using a tab backup extension but failing that you can recover it from Time Machine. I have Time Machine backups so this one was easy.

The steps to get this sorted were:

  • Stop Safari.
  • Connect to Time Machine backup.
  • Look for ~/Library/Safari/LastSession.plist in the Time Machine backup (if you press “SHIFT+APPLE+G” and then paste that address, Finder will take you directly to the file).
  • Restart Safari and go “History” -> “Reopen All Windows From Last Session”

Once I did that all of my windows and tabs were restored! As an aside I got curious to see what was in the file and if you are curious too there are a few ways to open up a plist file like this one.


Adventures with NAB Internet Banking

March 17th, 2012 | Category: australia,internet,technology,thoughts,web

For the most part I’m usually happy with NAB Internet Banking. They have a reasonably nice web interface and it also scales down reasonably well onto a mobile device. Functionality wise it has a lot of capabilities including some I wished Wells Fargo had (international transfer being the primary one) and I’m yet to find myself wanting from it. However there are some quirks and it seems just recently, I hit all of them.
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iBooks Author Licensing

Today Apple announced their plan on changing the way the textbook industry works. To achieve this they’ve released a new tool called “iBooks Author” which provides a WYSIWYG interface to building ePUB files. Essentially the rub is that while you can use it to build content and you can give it away for free in any of the formats you want, if you want to sell it you have to use the iBookstore. But let’s take a look back at the product for a second.
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A tale of two experiences: Dealing with Telstra customer support

August 05th, 2011 | Category: australia,technology,thoughts

Once upon a time I was a happy Telstra customer. I had switched to Telstra from Optus after the release of the iPhone4 having realised that I was paying Optus the same amount of money as Telstra was charging to effectively get the same level of service, perhaps even a little less from Optus than what Telstra offered.
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iOS, web apps, native and back again

June 19th, 2011 | Category: apple,mobile,technology,thoughts

At Apple’s World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) in 2007, Steve Jobs came on stage to announce a launch date for the very first iPhone and to announce how developers would build applications for the iPhone. His announcement was that his suggested way of developing for the iPhone was to write web apps (it is a couple of minutes in). So what was the reaction to that?
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Today: 01-FEB-2011: Android unable to operate in enterprise?

February 01st, 2011 | Category: technology,thoughts,today,university

Today was the nail in the coffin of the Samsung Galaxy S that I use at work to do Android based testing of the library’s future work in the mobile area. The device is a stock device running Android 2.1 (Samsung’s updater app cowardly refuses to upgrade it to 2.2 for some reason) however as the device is for testing and since it has WiFi built in I’ve decided to use that. It isn’t connected to the cellular data network (or even have a SIM card) and this has lead to some interesting problems.
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Don’t call us, we’ll call you

August 18th, 2010 | Category: technology,thoughts

It sounds like a line that you get given when you probably don’t have a chance at what ever it is. But it is the sort of line I would have liked to have seen from the insurers this evening. Almost every insurer said “I’m sorry, we can’t insure you over the phone” to my online quote and encouraged me to call them. What I would like to see is a call back facility. Suncorp in particular has a 24 hour phone line I can ring so why not ask me what my phone number is and offer to call me in the next 10 minutes based on their call centre load. In fact if I’m going to call them now then that is the same thing! Depressing!

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Pine Tree – a cut down Joomla!

August 01st, 2010 | Category: joomla,technology,web

The other day someone was talking to me about building a version of Joomla! that is effectively just a simple blog platform. I figured that this wouldn’t be too hard to achieve – just need to pull stuff out. So that’s what I did. This is somewhat similar to another journey I took though in this one I’m not adding anything new.
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