• Android apps on Chrome

    Google has been pushing a lot of effort making Chrome your new home. Despite some memory hog, battery drain issue, it is a web standard for the time being the same way IE was in its day. To me, merging Android and Chrome OS would be an inevitable path for Google and they’ve done a wonderful job running and APK on Chrome with Arc Welder

    Chrome App Launcher APK running on Chrome

    It’s compatible with Kitkat runtime. It’s fast unlike snail-like Android emulator no one uses. I bet if Arc Welder project supports everything it would be a dream all developers seek for a way for debugging app. Try for yourself.

    It was a big download, so be patient. It’s worth wait for I’m sure of it.

  • reverse ssh

    There are times when your machine is behind NAT and you couldn’t access easily. Unless you have VPN tunneling, it would be tricky. However, reverse ssh might be a handy tool.

    | Host A | ----> NAT ---> | Host B |
    

    For above case, you can clearly see that B can access A easily, but reversely, it’s not w/o port forwarding blah blah blah. As a result, you can just do reverse ssh by start ssh from Host B to Host A with command

    $ ssh -NR 8888:localhost:22 user@host-a
    

    Then at Host A, you can just ssh via port 8888.

    $ ssh user@localhost -p 8888
    

    Violà!

  • psql FATAL: database files are incompatible with server

    Once in a while you might see this error.

    LOG:  skipping missing configuration file "/usr/local/var/postgres/postgresql.auto.conf"
    FATAL:  database files are incompatible with server
    DETAIL:  The data directory was initialized by PostgreSQL version 9.3, which is not compatible with this version 9.4.0.
    

    Why?

    Basically it meant that you somehow upgraded postgresql server. All your data was safe, yet it would never work with new server until you upgraded the data.

    Solution

    1. Figure out what version both old and new one are. As example above, older is 9.3 and 9.4 for new one.
    2. Move your existing data to another directory

       $ mv /usr/local/var/postgres /usr/local/var/postgres9351
      
    3. Initial a new database for the new postgresql

       $ initdb /usr/local/var/postgres -E utf8
      
    4. Upgrade the old one to current one with pg_upgrade command; for more information you could check out at postgresql docs

       $ pg_upgrade -b /usr/local/Cellar/postgresql/9.3.5_1/bin -B /usr/local/Cellar/postgresql/9.4.0/bin -d /usr/local/var/postgres9351 -D /usr/local/var/postgres
      

      it was actually simple than it looks with clearer explanation as following:

       $ pg_upgrade -b oldbindir -B newbindir -d olddatadir -D newdatadir
      
    5. Start your postgresql server and continue working!
  • Apps of the 2014

    Over the year, I have found apps that have been very useful for me and I highly recommended them for everyone. These were not necessarily new apps in 2014, but they were apps I found out during the year 2014. Although following apps seemed like OSX-centric, most of them were on every platforms.

    1Password

    I couldn’t praise it enough of how easy it handled all passwords. 1Password wasn’t cheap, but was worth every penny. If you never used this sort of apps before, it basically remembered all your passwords and filled for you via browser’s extensions with one shortcut (command + \) for OSX. When you registered a new account, 1Password could generate a random password for you and then save the password automatically. Everything sync’ed with Dropbox and there were apps on both Android and iOS. Mobile version was free to read all your existing passwords–no editing allowed though. I didn’t use auto-fill passwords in their mobile apps though since it only worked in their own webview. iOS version could fill your information on Safari; I didn’t know that then; I could do that on iOS 8 w/ fingerprint too. If you asked me, desktop version was the one OSX & iOS were fantastic with it. You needed that in order to see how good it was. The rest was acting as support role.

    I had tried LastPass too, but I prefer 1Password still. 1Password regulary had promotions around 20%-50% off during the year.

    Mailbox

    One Dropbox account to rule them all. I didn’t find it as eyecandy as new GMail or new Mail for Yosemite, but it synced all across devices both desktop and mobile. No more setting up for each account again and again for a new device. One Dropbox account was enough. I always came back for Mailbox and eventually used as the sole email client.

    Better yet, it’s free of charge.

    Plex

    I had XBMC and BOXEE, including Boxee Box. I used to try Plex long ago, but I didn’t particularly like how Plex worked then. However, things had changed; mobile devices were ubiquitous. It was troublesome finding apps that just worked for every codecs. Plex handled everything like a boss.

    If you paired Plex with SickRage, then you’d got a much better Netflix or Hulu.

    Plex was free, but if you’d like to support them, you could pay for Plex Pass with more features like offline syncing on mobile devices. I had Plex Pass, but I hadn’t used their extra features much since I prefered to watch things online anyway.

    For Plex server, it didn’t need much. Any old computer would do the trick. Intel i3 could handle 1-2 transcoding active clients with ease, but if you planned for more clients, you’d better off with Intel i5.

    Sublime Text

    If you were into coding, you would need Sublime Text. Nothing better. Free for personal use with a every now and then nagging popup.

    Authy

    Authy was the only mobile-centric apps since it was for two-factor authentication. I used to use Google Authenticator back then, but dropped all 2-factor since it was pain in the butt when changing to new mobile devices or having many mobile devices. Authy fixed all that with multiple devices syncing on both iOS and Android. Since I found Authy, I’d enabled 2-factor authentication for every accounts possible. I knew it would not be a problem regardless of which devices I had at a time and it’s free.

    Pixelmator

    Pixelmator was only on Apple devices although I only had it on OSX. Never tried iOS version since I didn’t see the need of it. It was the Photoshop replacement at $29.99 or less if you could find a discount on iTunes gift card. It was much better than paying $100+ for Photoshop when you didn’t really use that much, but you needed a full fledge photo editor every now and then. I couldn’t say it was better than Photoshop, but I never had a moment I needed Photoshop after I had Pixelmator either.

    Wow, I didn’t realize that only 2 of 6 apps above were paid. That was tough if you were in a software industry. But 2014 was like a dream for consumers indeed.

  • Thermodo - tiny thermometer for your phone

    You probably see more of this short thought of Kickstarter’s stuffs I bought over the year since I have quite a bit. Good or bad? worth or pain in the ass? You’ll see.

    Thermodo was a cool looking gadget. It would shine over most of gadgets you have on your desk. Anodized aluminum casing with a good looking brand and name, who could deny that? Basically, what it did was reading room temperature and displaying on your phone since very few set of phones had thermal sensor inside.

    I backed them for an aluminum (or premium) one as they named in their shop. I couldn’t speak for anything else.

    Impression

    On hardware side, as mentioned earlier, everything about it was awesome. I didn’t see any flaw, but some users complained about its cap which should have been screwing type inside of snap lock. I couldn’t say it was a deal breaker. Although its color did wear after usage, it did look great still I had to admit that.

    On software side, when they started their project, they only claimed to have iOS app, but Android app was introduced later on. Maybe it was a stretch goal. I didn’t remember much. However, as of now, their Android app was crap. Nothing is good coming out of it no matter how hard you wanted it to be. For iOS app, it did look great as advertised.

    Pricing

    It was expensive at $39 Kickstarter price and it is $44.99 which is way too expensive now at Thermodo Shop. Not to mention tax and/or shipping which is outrage as far as their HQ location, Europe, is concerned.

    Did it work?

    This project was a flop. Temperature sensitivity was way too slow. Temperature accuracy which was the vital point of this gadgat was NOT good enough.

    Regardless of its price, don’t waste your $ or time. Not worth it. If it ever works properly, I would have recommended it because of its apperance alone. So unfortunated.

    note: I didn’t open it up since I would have to destroy the look of it, but I bet it would be comparable to a cheap sensor found in DHT11 or so. :( I rather have a cool looking gadget although it didn’t do a thing functionally.