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KrazyDad » Blog Archive » Mayor of the North Pole

2010 Feb 22, 4:16On cheating at Four Square. Man becomes mayor of North Pole among other things.PermalinkCommentshack game security humor article geo gps cheat social api technical

How to catch an iPhone thief: Busting an iPhone thief

2010 Jan 29, 10:52Another technology stolen but then remotely using the tech to get it back story.PermalinkCommentsiphone apple gps privacy crime

Sprint fed customer GPS data to cops over 8 million times

2009 Dec 1, 9:40Wow: 'The fact that federal, state, and local law enforcement can obtain communications "metadata"—URLs of sites visited, e-mail message headers, numbers dialed, GPS locations, etc.—without any real oversight or reporting requirements should be shocking, but it isn't. The courts ruled in 2005 that law enforcement doesn't need to show probable cause to obtain your physical location via the cell phone grid. All of the aforementioned metadata can be accessed with an easy-to-obtain pen register/trap & trace order. But given the volume of requests, it's hard to imagine that the courts are involved in all of these.'PermalinkCommentsprivacy security gps phone cellphone government politics

Google adds free turn-by-turn navigation, car dock UI to Android 2.0 (video)

2009 Oct 28, 8:33
PermalinkCommentsgps google android phone cellphone map

Dandella by DIC - Design Year Book

2009 Aug 11, 7:35Lovely Dandella looks like an electric scallion and it "... works with GPS enabled mobile phones to track physical locations. Dandella bends and points toward the targeted location."
PermalinkCommentsdesign technology cool wishlist shopping cellphone gps

G1 Android Phone

2008 Nov 9, 11:29

T-Mobile G1 Wallpapers by romainguy
I finally replaced my old regular cell-phone which was literally being held together by a rubber band with a fancy new G1, my first Internet accessible phone.

I had to call the T-Mobile support line to get data added to my plan and the person helping me was disconcertingly friendly. She asked about my weekend plans and so I felt compelled to ask her the same. Her plans involved replacing her video card so she could get back to World of Warcraft and do I enjoy computer gaming? I couldn't tell if she was genuine or if she was signing me up for magazines.

I was with Sarah in her new car, trying out the phone's GPS functionality via Google Maps while she drove. I switched to Street View and happened to find my car. It was a weird feeling, kind of like those Google conspiracy videos.

The phone runs Google's open source OS and I really enjoy the application API. Its all in Java and URIs and mime-types are sort of basics. Rather than invoking the builtin item picker control directly you invoke an 'intent' specifying the URI of your list of items, a mime-type describing the type of items in the list, and an action 'PICK' and whatever is registered as the picker on the system pops up and lets the user pick from that list. The same goes if you want to 'EDIT' an image, or 'VIEW' an mp3.

I wanted to replace the Google search box gadget that appears on the home screen with my own search box widget that uses OpenSearch descriptors but apparently in the current API you can't make home screen gadgets without changing parts of the OS. My other desired application is something to replace this GPS photo tracker device by recording my location to a file and an additional program on my computer to apply those locations to photos.

PermalinkCommentstmobile personal api phone technical g1 android google

Failing Electronics

2008 Oct 22, 12:54

Electronic devices shouldn't fail, they should just sit wherever I place them and work forever. A while back my home web server started failing so I moved over to a real web hosting service. And this was the home web server I built from pieces Eric gave me after my previous one died during the big power failure the year before. The power socket on my old laptop has come undone from the motherboard so that it can no longer be powered. Just a week or two ago my Xbox 360 stopped displaying video. The CPU fan on my media center died. I also want to put my camera and GPS in this list, but the camera died due to accidentally turning on in my pocket and the GPS was stolen so those aren't the devices just arbitrarily failing.

PermalinkCommentsboring personal complaining nontechnical

GPS Stolen

2008 Jun 6, 3:03

My GPS was stolen last night or this morning and I'm missing it already. For instance when I drove to Novus glass repair to get my front passenger window replaced I drove down the wrong road for a while.

When I got out of my apartment this morning there was a police car sitting in my parking lot and the officer asked me: "David? ... What'd you leave in your car?". My face must have changed a lot when I had the following sequence of realizations: (a) a police officer is asking for me by name, (b) I'm not in trouble, (c) my car must have been burgled, and (d) my GPS must be stolen.

The officer was waiting outside my complex because someone had reported my car's broken window to the police in the morning. The officer was very courteous and upon taking my date of birth noted that we were born on exactly the same day. The window's safety glass was shattered and lying in tons of tiny pieces all over the passenger seat, my glove box was open and the middle armrest where I keep my CDs was open. Nothing appears to be missing other than the GPS, the GPS power cable, and the GPS dash mount. Adding insult to theft, the their scattered my CDs throughout my car and didn't take any of them, insulting my taste in music.

My car's window should be repaired now and hopefully the rain that came in through the broken window until I covered it with plastic bags (classy!) didn't do any permanent damage.

PermalinkCommentsgps theft personal nontechnical

Saul and Ciera's Wedding

2008 Apr 26, 11:45

Saul IncredulousLast weekend while Sarah was up in Canada for a spa weekend with her sister and her sister's other bridesmaids, I went to Saul and Ciera's wedding in Three Rivers, California near Sequoia National Park. I flew into Fresno picked up a rental car and my GPS device navigated me to a restaurant with the wedding location no where in sight. "No problem," I thought, "I'll just call someone with an Internet connection and..." I had no cell reception. What did people do before GPS, Internet, and cell phones?

Saul and Ciera's Wedding CakeA waitress in the restaurant pointed me down the road a bit to the wedding location which was outside overlooking a river. Their wedding cake was made up like a mountain with two backpacks at the top and rope hanging down. Ciera's father married them and the ceremony was lovely. The music after included Code Monkey to which all the nerds were forced to get up and awkwardly dance.

Vlad plays with KatieBesides getting to see Ciera and Saul who I hadn't seen in quite a while, I got to see Daniil and Val, Vlad, and Nathaniel. Since last I saw Daniil and Val they had a child, Katie who is very cute and in whom I can see a lot of family resemblance. The always hilarious Vlad, Daniil's brother, was there as well with his wife who I got to meet. Nathaniel, my manager from Vizolutions was there and I don't know if I've seen him since I moved to Washington. It was fun to see him and meet his girlfriend who was kind enough to donate her extra male to male mini-phono cord so I could listen to my Zune in the rental car stereo on the drive back.

PermalinkCommentswedding saul and ciera california nontechnical

GPS Jamming Circumvention Scheme

2008 Apr 22, 4:34Anti-anti GPS. Wait, they need a second positioning scheme to make this work? Lame. "A first signal is transmitted from a portable unit including the receiver to a component of a second positioning system that is different from the GPS. A second signal isPermalinkCommentsgps gps-jamming patent

Homemade GPS jammers raise concerns

2008 Apr 22, 4:33Reaction to Phrack's howto on GPS jammer. Sounds like the article wants to make it into a bigger issue than it is: "Information in the article that appears in the current issue of the online hacker magazine Phrack potentially puts at risk GPS devices usePermalinkCommentsgps gps-jamming phrack government

Make your own vehicle surveillance system - DIY Life

2008 Apr 22, 4:14DIY car lo-jack system using a cellphone and cellphone charger. "Now, if your vehicle is stolen, you can give the authorities the IMEI number from that in-car 'hidden' handset, which can then be tracked using cell tower triangulation or GPS, and hopefullPermalinkCommentsdiy howto video cellphone car

Chumby will be cool, despite its name

2008 Feb 19, 1:51

Bedside ChumbyI signed up for the pre-release beta and purchased a Chumby last year. Chumby looks like a cousin to a GPS unit. Its similar in size with a touch screen, but has WiFi, accelerometers, and is pillow like on the sides that aren't a screen. In practice its like an Internet alarm clock that shows you photos and videos off the Web. Its hackable in that Chumby Industries tells you about the various ways to run your own stuff on the Chumby, modifying the boot sequence (it runs Linux), turning on sshd, etc, etc. The Chumby forum too has lots of info from folks who have found interesting hacks for the device.

When you turn on the Chumby it downloads and runs the latest version of the Chumby software which lets you set alarms, play music, and display Flash widgets. The Chumby website lets anyone upload their own Flash widgets to share with the community. I tried my hand at creating one using Adobe's free Flash creation SDK but I don't know Flash and didn't have the patience to learn.

Currently my Chumby is set to wake me up at 8am on weekdays with music from ShoutCast and then displays traffic and weather. At 10am everyday it switches to showing me a slide-show of LolCats. At 11pm it switches to night mode where it displays the time in dark grey text on a black background at a reduced light level so as not to disturb me while I sleep.

I like the Chumby but I have two complaints. The first is that it forces me to learn flash in order to create anything cool rather than having a built-in Web browser or depending on a more Web friendly technology. The second complaint is about its name. At first I thought the name was stupid in a kind of silly way, but now that I'm used to the name it sounds vaguely dirty.

PermalinkCommentschumby review flash linux

Global Positioning System - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

2008 Jan 18, 7:00Overview article on the functionings of GPS.PermalinkCommentsgps reference wikipedia article electronics radio

GPS Luddites - the English countryside rebels against satnav | Decentralized Information Group (DIG) Breadcrumbs

2008 Jan 2, 2:13FTA: "Seems that a number of villages in the English countryside are being overrun by errant trans-European trucks which are regularly misdirected by their GPS satnav systems onto roads that were better suited for horse-drawn carriages than big, long-distPermalinkCommentsgps humor article metadata blog england

geobloggers

2007 Nov 12, 5:13Blog from Dan Catt. Dan (FTA) "... works for Flickr. He also works on Maps. Sometimes he does both of these at the same time."PermalinkCommentsflickr map mashup visualization gps geo gis earth dan-catt

Brief Miscellany

2007 Oct 29, 7:07Two brief updates to previous posts:

  1. I noted that I had a new entry on the IE blog. Some comments on the IE blog have recently been rude in their request for information on future versions of IE. For example see the first two comments responding to my post. Feeling bad about that I looked at my posts entry on delicious and saw the following:

    "This is the first blog from the IE team that I have found rigorous and informative. I skipped to the bottom to find it was written by one of the TA's from my first class at Cal Poly."

    That made me feel a bit better and I was able to catch up with someone from college. Thanks Kris!

  2. I previously had my GPS set with an Australian accent. When it encountered 'WA', as in the abbreviation for Washington in freeway exits, it pronounced it 'Western Australia'. Now I've got it with a British accent and WA is just 'W.A.' but when I tell it to drive to 'MS', the name of my saved location for work, it pronounces it 'Manuscript'.
PermalinkCommentsmicrosoft blog gps personal nontechnical

GPS

2007 Sep 18, 2:16Sarah got me the Garmin StreetPilot c580 for my birthday last month. I really like this because its a small device that makes my life easier without me having to learn anything new. Just the way tech. should be.

The device gets current weather, traffic, and movie times. The information is sent via FM and received via the FM receiver in the cigarette lighter power adapter of the GPS device. MSN sends out this info and I get a free one year subscription. In addition to taking traffic info into account when planning my route it will estimate the number of minutes I'm going to spend in traffic. Just knowing how long I might be in traffic somehow makes it more bareable.

The other day while driving for dinner I got a call. I got my phone out of my pocket and answered it. I heard Jon's saying 'Hello' under my passenger seat. After a moment of confusion I remembered that the GPS device also acts as a bluetooth hands free phone adapter and that it was under my seat.PermalinkCommentsgps garmin personal traffic nontechnical

Annals of the Road: Getting There: The New Yorker

2007 Mar 13, 5:06An article on the companies and people behind the GPS units found in cars.PermalinkCommentsarticle the-new-yorker technology map car driving gps
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