Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Website trackers

Have you ever wondered what's tracking you on websites? Take a look, this is just from one site.

Making a copy of a car key

Today I decided to get a key copy for a Miata. For whatever reason my other key just wasn't working right after I picked up my car from the shop. I had made a key before at pepboys, but I looked at it closer and noticed that it didn't have the right notches as the one that actually worked. So I went to home depot and had them make a key. It's been a long time since I had a key made and I found out that they have these new key laser machines which is pretty cool. They just scan your key and the computer does the cutting. Except that I also found out what happens when a database has the wrong information, well at least for what they tried or maybe it was just due to the wrong year. The system didn't have my car year to begin with. Apparently they start around 1995 and my car is a bit older than that.

Anyway, the guy tried it and I guess he just used the earliest year that was on there. Sure enough, the key got cut, but I found out that the key being cut was the key for the trunk. Yup, he used the ignition key, but the machine still cut a trunk key. Needless to say I could not get a new key. So they suggested and old time locksmith. Which brings me to my next problem, apparently they have been disappearing due to all the new boxes replacing them. I guess this is exactly what happened at pepboys and I didn't realized it at the time. Now I got 2 extra trunk keys. Walmart and Lowes uses the same system so I got nowhere no matter where I went. Sometimes new technology just can't cut it. LOL

These are the new machines being used today in case you haven't seen them. They're actually pretty neat.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

How they design free games to make money, and you thought it was all just for fun

Of course making money is one thing, but those with ads and all those pop ups, well you better be very careful with just installing random apps. At least now many of them tell you they have ads before you install them, at least on android which is more than you would like.  You can now get who knows what from ads not to mention your battery getting drained because those same apps won't let your phone sleep. Even if they don't have ads, you still need to check what rights they want or have. For example, why would a notepad app need camera access or why would a flashlight app need the camera and mic for?

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Small 3D Printer

I accidentally bumped into this little 3d printer. What I like about it is that it's a metal case and it looks very nice if you just want to print fairly small parts. I noticed from reading that the only problem you may have with it may be the power supply. I don't own one so I really don't know, but it does look pretty nice compared to all the acrylic types that are sold all over the internet.

It looks like monoprice sells this for 199 and they are located here in California. The only down side is that you probably will be on your own as it doesn't look like they themselves support this other than your regular rma for a broken item or whatever the case is. Now this seems to be the same one made by Malyan called the M200. Like I said, many of the other small printers have plastic covers and things like that which just don't look that great since you could run into other issues with broken side panels due to over tightening, etc. They may not be perfect, but they sure look nice. Youtube has some videos you can check about them yourself. I just thought for the price, they looked nice.

I should also note that Malyan has a larger printer too. It actually has a larger print area than my craftbot so that's also something to check out on their site.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

I've been slowly organizing my files and as you may know video files just take a lot of space and time to edit.

Well, I saw this video I took a while back and tried editing the file, but as you can see it's 38.8 GB! Try editing a file this large and you'll quickly find out if your old computer can even open it up. My old computer could barely open the file up, so I never bothered to try editing it again. Needless to say I also tried creating a .ogg file but even this file is 4.66 GB in size. It's definitely more manageable, but still about a dvd movie and more. Today I put the file through handbrake and got the file down to 1.67 GB! I am not doing any special video editing or need this to have any special resolution since it was a video from and old camcorder. Needless to say, the new mp4 file is just what I need. If I want to actually edit the file, I rather work with the smaller file since most of what I do is split the video or add to it. I just wanted to add this here because it's possible to do this much easier now. In some high quality videos you may lose a tiny bit of resolution, but I'm no video guru and this works for what I need to do. Now I can go delete the original after I view the mp4 to make sure everything went through okay and get some of my space back.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Android phone having battery discharging

It looks like my android phone has been having some issues. I had to reset the phone due to some odd things happening on it without me doing anything to it. So after the resetting I noticed that android starts updating itself which is odd since I normally do that if I want to. So I installed my two or three apps since I no longer even like to do that any more. You just don't know what apps do and most of them like to take over the phone or prevent it from sleeping. Which is why I started uninstalling all the apps and updates one by one. So my battery was about to die this morning, again. I know the battery is fine, but still can't tell which update or program is causing it so they are all going. Then again there's been some malware going around even though I try not to install anything anymore. It's a shame that these things just want to take over. BUT, there is a way to really take care of this if you really, really want to.

The first thing is not to add an account, which of course won't allow you to download anything. However, I'm starting to go back to that point as a backup. Now the problem with that is that your phone list is on an account if you use gmail for example. So you could download your phone list or any list and make a pdf and any document for example that you can look at in your phone. This would require an app download to read it though. But after installing just what you need you can always just remove the account which is probably the better alternative. The problem with this is if you update or add a number, you can't synch with your account until you add the account again. The other alternative would be a phone app that holds the numbers totally separate from any account that needs to be synchronized anywhere until you decide to do it, say your computer only in this case.

Although not the best way to go around it, I think this is the better way to keep all of these things from really screwing things up like draining the battery in my case. Today, everything wants to be connected, but the truth is, you don't really know what program is doing what. So you really have to be careful. I'm just annoyed that I can't use the phone because the battery is almost dead every time I look at it in the morning even though I charged it the night before. This is what I always did and since it was off, it would still be at 90 something percent charged still. Imagine if someone got all your information, then you wouldn't be annoyed, but really mad, among other things. So the quest to find the balance between using these smart phones and just not using them continues. And yes I know many use their phones for everything, but I really wouldn't recommend that for the many obvious reasons too. I don't really use my phone much, so completely ditching the phone has be something I have been contemplating. Many people can't do that, but I have no problem doing that since I hardly talk to anyone on the phone myself. But it does come in handy for emergency like if you get stuck somewhere, but a simple phone would probably work just as well. But syncing your phone list is much faster than trying to key in a list of name and numbers. Obviously for businesses this wouldn't work unless you want to spend all your days doing this.

Mobius Bionics Prostethic Arm

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Slim power supply case

I didn't like the way the case cover was fitting so I had to do a bit of thinking and redesigning. I also made a couple of minor changes on the case itself. The cover tabs kept breaking on me and the printer just didn't like printing 2 mm walls. Getting this one right has been a challenge but I think I'm there. Cooling is very important as been using the computer case so this is why I decided to make the new larger holes.