Thursday, July 24, 2014

Things You Didn't Know Your iPhone Could Do

Apple iPhone can do all sorts of magical things that you probably aren't aware of. Here's a list of some of the iPhone's coolest hidden features. 

Get Siri to read your emails aloud for you

Just say the magic words “Read my email” and Siri will read all your messages aloud to you. If you like, you can tell her to read only your most recent email (“Read my latest email”) or just those from a specific contact (“Do I have email from Mark?”).

Automatically turn off your music with the timer

If you like to doze off with music playing like I do, you can use the timer to automatically turn your music off so that it doesn't play all night. In the timer app, select “When Timer Ends,” then scroll down and select “Stop Playing.” The Timer will automatically turn off your tunes after whatever length of time you set.

Scroll through videos and music at half, quarter, or eighth speed

This one is super useful. When you scroll—or as Apple calls it, "scrub"—through a movie or a song, the default mode is high-speed scrolling. This sometimes makes it hard to find the exact spot you want. But you can control the rate at which you scroll. To do this, hold down the dot—or "playhead"—in the scrollbar at the top of the video screen (tap the screen to display the scrollbar if it isn't visible) and slide your finger straight down without lifting it. This allows you to change the scrubbing speed to half-speed, quarter-speed, eighth-speed ("fine scrubbing"). Once you've selected the speed, move your finger left or right (without lifting it) to scroll.

Take a photo with the volume buttons

Sometimes it's hard to snap a picture by touching the capture button—if you're wearing gloves, say—in which case, you can take the shoot by pressing either the volume up or the volume down button. Problem solved!

Take multiple photo bursts all at once

If you hold down the capture button, your phone will take a series of rapid shots, or bursts, in quick succession. This is especially useful if you're photographing a moving subject. Later you can scan through all the bursts and pick your favorite ones.

Reveal timestamps on text messages

Drag the text bubble to the left and you'll see a timestamp for every text message. Among other things, this will show you just how much time you waste texting.

Use your iPhone as a level

Need to hang a picture? In the Compass app, swipe left and your iPhone becomes a perfect level.

Make your iPhone speak selected text

I like to use this one randomly just to freak people out. First you have to enable Speak Selection. To do that go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Speak Selection and turn it on. A "Speak" button will now appear whenever you select text. Bonus: you can also choose different accents (would you prefer an Aussie iPhone?) and even control the speed at which selected text is spoken. Trust me, you can waste a lot of time with this one.

Start a new sentence just by double-tapping the spacebar

Whenever you're typing and you need to start a new sentence, just double-tap the spacebar and it will automatically add a period and a space for you.

See a more detailed calendar

When using the calendar app, turn you phone sideways (into landscape position) and voilĂ , you'll get a more detailed look at your sked.

Lock auto-focus and exposure while taking a picture

It can get annoying when when you're trying to take a picture and your iPhone camera keeps refocusing and automatically adjusting the exposure. But you can lock in the focus and exposure by pressing and holding your finger on the screen until you see a yellow square blink twice. A yellow icon that says “AE/AF Lock" will appear at the bottom of the screen letting you know that you've locked in the exposure and focus. It'll stay that way until you're done with the shot.

Add web suffixes with a single tap

It took my a while to learn this one—and I wish I'd known about it sooner. When you're typing in a web address, just hold down the "." at the bottom of your keyboard, and a menu will pop up showing a list of web suffixes (.com, .net, .edu, etc.)

Quickly access your email drafts

This is one that very few people know about. Next time you're using your Mail app, hold down the Compose icon in the lower right corner of your screen, and it'll quickly jump to a list of your drafts. I use this feature all the time.

Create custom keyboard shortcuts

Say there's a certain word or phrase (or a password) that you use a lot. You can create a shortcut for it. Go to Settings > General > Keyboard > Shortcuts > Add New Shortcut. Enter a word or phrase and the shortcut you'd like to use for it. Every time you type that shortcut, the whole word or phrase will magically appear. You can even create shortcuts for emoji!

Create a passcode with letters (not just numbers)

By default, your iPhone asks you to type in numbers when you create the passcode that unlocks your phone. But you can change this setting. Go to Settings > General > Passcode Lock and turn off “Simple Passcode.” You will be prompted to change your passcode, and a full keyboard will appear onscreen instead of just the number pad. This keyboard will pop up every time you unlock your phone.

Set your phone to emit light flashes for alerts

nstead of having your iPhone ring or vibrate when you get a call or a message, you can have it emit an LED flash. Go to Settings > General > Accessibility, then scroll down and turn on “LED Flash for Alerts." Warning: it's REALLY bright!

Recharge your battery faster by switching to airplane mode

Switching to airplane mode turns off battery-draining wireless and cellular access, allowing your phone to recharge up to twice as fast.

Be sure to share these hot tips with your friends by clicking below. They'll thank you for it.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Apple iOS 8: What's new in the latest iPhone, iPad software

Apple unveiled the new iOS 8 software for iPads, iPhones and iPod devices at its annual developers conference in San Francisco. The free updates will come this fall, though app developers get a test version starting Monday. Here is what's new in iOS 8 which is Coming This Fall

  • In iOS 8, every photo and video you take now lives in iCloud. So you can view a photo from last week or last year no matter where you are. 
  • Once you've enabled it on your iOS devices, iCloud Photo Library automatically keeps all your photos and videos in iCloud, at full resolution in their original formats, including RAW files. You can access and download them anytime from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or the web. 
  • iOS 8 makes it simple to find every shot. Now you can search thousands of your photos right from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. Search by the date or time the photo was taken, location, or album name. Just tap the search icon, and you will get choices based on what's important to you. 
  • Even after you take your photo, Photos can automatically straighten horizons and provide the ideal crop. 
  • Crop, straighten, enhance, or add filters to your pictures using Photos in iOS 8. Your changes are immediately uploaded to iCloud and visible on your other devices. 
  • iOS 8 makes it possible for other app developers to create filters and editing tools that you can use in Photos.
  • iOS 8 lets you modify the overall light in a photo with a single control. Use the smart slider to find just the right lighting. Slide to enhance blue skies or make colors pop. Photos also adjusts exposure, brightness, and contrast.
  • The messaging app in iOS 8 has Tap to Talk (make an audio/video recording and send to recipients).
  • Messages in iOS 8 will let users send multiple photos and videos at once. 
  • iOS 8 will let users share their location in the middle of any conversation. 
  • It also has group messaging. Start a group conversation and give it a name. You can include who you want, drop who you don't, and leave the conversation whenever you want.
  • Tap to see every attachment from a conversation. It's simple to browse the photos and videos within a thread. You will see all the photos and videos going back to the very first exchange, without having to scroll through earlier messages. 
  • It will have new gestures, such as double tapping to get a list of people you communicate with most often.
  • The new software will sport interactive notifications, so you can respond to a message without having to leave another app. 
  • Apple says with iOS 8, time-saving features arrive in mail. From your inbox, swipe to mark an email as read or flag it for follow-up. You can jump between a draft email and an email in your inbox to gather the information you need to compose your message.
  • Tab view shows all the open tabs on your iPad as well as tabs on your other devices, too. 
  • Tap the Sidebar to see your bookmarks, Reading List, and Shared Links. 
  • A "quick type"feature promises predictive typing suggestions. For example, if you start typing, "Do you want to go to,"the phone will suggest "dinner"or "movie"as the next word. Currently, the suggestions are limited to spelling corrections.
  • For the first time, iOS 8 opens up the keyboard to developers. It means users will be able to use keyboards from other companies on their iOS devices. 
  • Family Sharing is a new feature in iOS 8. Up to six people in your family can share purchases from iTunes, iBooks, and the App Store without sharing accounts. You will be able to pay for family purchases with the same credit card.
  • Once you set up Family Sharing, family members get access to each other's music, movies, TV shows, books, and apps. 
  • Family Sharing automatically sets up a family photo stream where you can share photos, videos, and comments. And everything stays up to date on everyone's devices. 
  • Now everybody in the family can add events to one calendar. You can even set up family reminders that will appear on everyone's devices at the exact time or place you choose. 
  • Family Sharing can automatically share your location with your family members and show you where they are, too. 
  • iOS 8 will gives users freedom to work with the document of their choice on the device of their choice. Because with iCloud Drive, users will be able to store all their presentations, spreadsheets, PDFs, images, and any other kind of document in iCloud and access them from their iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, or PC.
  • iCloud Drive will give users access to the latest version of their documents from any device. Edits you make on one device appear on all of them.
  • iOS 8 will have a built-in health-management tool to help people track their vital signs, diet and sleeping habits. Called "Healthkit,"it will pull together data such as blood pressure and weight, collected by a growing plethora of healthcare apps on the iPhone or iPad.
  • You can view your most recent health and fitness data in one dashboard. You can also see a list of the different types of data being managed by Health, and then tap to see each one individually. 
  • Apple will work in tandem with Nike, a major player in fitness tracking, and the Mayo Clinic on the new feature, which will be included with the latest versions of Apple's mobile software.
  • iOS 8 gives have complete control over exactly which data to share with each health and fitness app. 
  • With iOS, Apple says that your iPhone, iPad, and Mac will be connected like never before.
  • A new "handoff"feature will let you switch devices more easily, so you can start writing an email on a phone and finish on a Mac. 
  • And when a call comes in on your iPhone, you can get caller ID information on your Mac. Just click or swipe the notification to answer, ignore, or respond with a quick message. You can also make a phone call from your iPad or Mac.
  • Not only from iPhone, you can now send (or receive) SMS and MMS text messages right from your iPad or Mac.
  • Now Spotlight goes beyond your device to find what you're looking for. Before it answers, it considers things like context and location. 
  • The enterprise-grade security technologies built into iOS are even more powerful in iOS 8, says Apple. The company says it has expanded data protection to more apps and enabled finer control over mail encryption.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Short Horror Film Will Make You Sleep With the Lights On

Be warned: If you're afraid of the dark, you might want to skip this one.

Lights Out is a short horror film that follows a woman readying herself for bed, only to find that something may be lurking in the shadows. At just under three minutes, this short video has us wanting to leave the lights on full time.

MH370 A different point of view by chris goodfellow

A lot of speculation about MH370. Terrorism, hijack, meteors. I cannot believe the analysis on CNN - almost disturbing. I tend to look for a more simple explanation of this event.

Loaded 777 departs midnight from Kuala to Beijing. Hot night. Heavy aircraft.  About an hour out across the gulf towards Vietnam the plane goes dark meaning the transponder goes off and secondary radar tracking goes off.

Two days later we hear of reports that Malaysian military radar (which is a primary radar meaning the plane is being tracked by reflection rather than by transponder interrogation response) has tracked the plane on a southwesterly course back across the Malay Peninsula into the straits of Malacca.

When I heard this I immediately brought up Google Earth and I searched for airports in proximity to the track towards southwest.

The left turn is the key here. This was a very experienced senior Captain with 18,000 hours. Maybe some of the younger pilots interviewed on CNN didn't pick up on this left turn. We old pilots were always drilled to always know the closest airport of safe harbor while in cruise. Airports behind us, airports abeam us and airports ahead of us. Always in our head. Always. Because if something happens you don't want to be thinking what are you going to do - you already know what you are going to do. Instinctively when I saw that left turn with a direct heading I knew he was heading for an airport. Actually he was taking a direct route to Palau Langkawi a 13,000 foot strip with an approach over water at night with no obstacles. He did not turn back to Kuala  Lampur because he knew he had 8,000 foot ridges to cross. He knew the terrain was friendlier towards Langkawi and also a shorter distance.

Take a look on Google Earth at this airport. This pilot did all the right things. He was confronted by some major event onboard that made him make that immediate turn back to the closest safe airport.
For me the loss of transponders and communications makes perfect sense if a fire. There was most likely a fire or electrical fire. In the case of fire the first response if to pull all the main busses and restore circuits one by one until you have isolated the bad one.

If they pulled the busses the plane indeed would go silent. It was probably a serious event and they simply were occupied with controlling the plane and trying to fight the fire. Aviate, Navigate and lastly communicate. There are two types of fires. Electrical might not be as fast and furious and there might or might not be incapacitating smoke. However there is the possibility given the timeline that perhaps there was an overheat on one of the front landing gear tires and it blew on takeoff and started slowly burning. Yes this happens with underinflated tires. Remember heavy plane, hot night, sea level, long run takeoff. There was a well known accident in Nigeria of a DC8 that had a landing gear fire on takeoff. A tire fire once going would produce horrific incapacitating smoke. Yes, pilots have access to oxygen masks but this is a no no with fire. Most have access to a smoke hood with a filter but this will only last for a few minutes depending on the smoke level. (I used to carry one of my own in a flight bag and I still carry one in my briefcase today when I fly).

What I think happened is that they were overcome by smoke and the plane just continued on  the heading probably on George (autopilot) until either fuel exhaustion or fire destroyed the control surfaces and it crashed. I said four days ago you will find it along that route - looking elsewhere was pointless.

This pilot, as I say, was a hero struggling with an impossible situation trying to get that plane to Langkawi. No doubt in my mind. That's the reason for the turn and direct route. A hijack would not have made that deliberate left turn with a direct heading for Langkawi. It would probably have weaved around a bit until the hijackers decided on where they were taking it.

Surprisingly none of the reporters , officials, other pilots interviewed have looked at this from the pilot's viewpoint. If something went wrong where would he go? Thanks to Google earth I spotted Langkawi in about 30 seconds, zoomed in and saw how long the runway was and I just instinctively knew this pilot knew this airport. He had probably flown there many times. I guess we will eventually find out when you help me spread this theory on the net and some reporters finally take a look on Google earth and put 2 and 2 together. Also a look at the age and number of cycles on those nose tires might give us a good clue too.  

Fire in an aircraft demands one thing - you get the machine on the ground as soon as possible. There are two well remembered experiences in my memory. The AirCanada DC9 which landed I believe in Columbus Ohio in the eighties. That pilot delayed descent and bypassed several airports.   He didn't instinctively know the closest airports. He got it on the ground eventually but lost 30 odd souls.   In the 1998 crash of Swissair DC-10 off Nova Scotia was another example of heroic pilots. They were 15 minutes out of Halifax but the fire simply  overcame them and they had to ditch in the ocean. Just ran out of time. That fire incidentally started when the aircraft was about an hour out of Kennedy. Guess what the transponders and communications were shut off as they pulled the busses.

Get on Google Earth and type in Pulau Langkawi  and then look at it in relation to the radar track heading. 2+2=4  That for me is the  simple explanation why it turned and headed  in that direction.

Smart pilot. Just didn't have the time.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Friday, November 29, 2013

What Most Schools Don't Teach

Time for us to learn how to code!

Watched It - then just try to tell me you’re not interested in learning how to code. Go on, Ie dare you!