Child Car Seat Tester Android App

I came to the conclusion that an App solution for my Child Car Seat problem would be the path of least resistance with the most immediate impact. This app is free, super simple to use and supports different age ranges.

I only spent an hour or so in total developing the app so please forgive me when you encounter bugs. When you do encounter bugs feel free to report & fix them yourself as I uploaded all of the source code and released the project under the Apache 2 license (open source).

Grab the Child Car Seat Angle Tester App on the Play store


Child Seat Angle Tester Download

3 reasons I can’t use the Jolla handset

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Email slowness

Exchange Emails are horribly slow to come through, emails don’t update in general (after delete event etc.). I recieve/send thousands of emails each day so when this feature is lacking I’m really scuppered. Why no button to SEND emails when composing? This seems like a no brainer.. A task I do many times a day now takes at least 5 times longer, there is no sense in this.. This should be fixed in a software update and maybe it’s being worked on right now, I really hope so…

No NFC Support

Despite the Jolla rocking an NFC chip for some reason you can’t get any NFC functionality, this seems somewhat insane and I hope it’s fixed in a future update. If it is, please comment :)

UX overly focused on swipe gestures

The trend away from buttons and towards UI is really bad. The UX is confusing and feels fragmented, it’s not as if the UI is cluttered neither, it just feels like you do it their way or no way at all.. They should check out Tinder as a good UX reference. The simple and right solution here is to introduce buttons aswell as swipe gestures like y’know, every other frigging phone.

Summary

Overall the handset feels okay, I’m pleased it’s built by a European company and that it should serve as a competitor to the US giants but until the 3 key issues above are resolved I can’t use it as a daily driver so I’m switching back to my Huawei (Android). I tried to use it for ~24 hours, probably not long enough to really get used to the UX, I didn’t find anything “nice”, it all felt a bit dissapointing for the price point but I’m not writing Jolla off. The brand and image is strong, the hardware is sturdy, would I recommend it to consumers right now? No. Would I recommend it to developers? No. So who is this phone for? It’s for advocates of open source and believers that we need a numbers of suppliers in the phone market so we don’t fall into the Microsoft style monopoly that we had on the desktops..

Watch out for Google people, they are gonna fsk your shit up.

Publishing to Npm on Git commit using Github Hooks and Travis

Travis-CI can auto “npm publish” your git repo to npmjs, this means that whenever you commit to your github repository your software is always updated and available to users via npm update. This should also work with pull requests so no need to jump onto CLI After a merge, just hit merge and after a few minutes / hours you should see your application updated on npmjs.

Step 1.

Create Travis-CI account, ideally signing in with your github account.

Step 2.

Find the repository you want to auto publish on the Travis Web interface (under your profile) and click Enable.

Step 3.

Install Ruby Gems

sudo apt-get install rubygems

Step 4.

Install travis CLI gem and json gem

sudo gem install json
gem install travis

Step 5.

Create a .travis.yml file in the root of your repository that looks like this (replacing your email)

language: node_js
deploy:
  api_key:
  email: your@emailhere.com
  provider: npm

Step 6.

Get your npmjs api key and copy it into the clip board (Copy the bit after the _auth =)

cat ~/.npmrc | grep _auth

Step 7.

Run the Travis CI secret key generator

travis encrypt --add deploy.api_key

When prompted paste your APIKey then hit Control D, don’t add an additional line break or enter.

Step 8.

Add, Commit and Push the new .travis.yml file, this will trigger a build on Travis

git add .travis.yml && git commit -m "Travis auto publish config" && git push

Step 9.

Head over to your Travis page and wait for your build to begin, if it doesn’t it’s likely you didn’t push correctly up to github.

Doing lots of packages?

You will only need to complete steps 5 to 9 on future packages (assuming you enabled them on travis)

Some good stuff

Every now and again I write about some good stuff, here is my latest good stuff.

Whiteboard paint

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I use whiteboard paint in my office, I have written about it before, it’s still really useful. I specifically use Rust-Oleum Dry Erase Whiteboard Paint, you can buy it online or at homebase in the UK.

Nokia 925 & Huwaei ascend

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It’s kinda shocking Microsoft get a product in my “good stuff” list but it’s not the operating system that makes the 925 a useful phone, it’s purely the hardware. Putting Android on a 925 would by far make it the best phone on the market. The Huweai ascend is my daily driver, it’s a great phone all round.

Gore-tex jacket

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I hate to admit it but this jacket is pretty epic, I have taken it into a bunch of wild scenarios and it has stood up each time. Well worth the cost.

SDR Kits Spectrum analyzer

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Not for everyone.. I use spectrum analyzers to anaylze the frequency of some electronics components I work with, the SDR-Kits one I’m using is way below the price of most on the market but does a great job.

DT 770 Pros

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These headphones are great if you spend a long time in front of a computer or working at a desk, the sound quality is unmatched and the price point is fair.

Oomlout

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Oomlout isn’t actually stuff, it’s a place, an experience and a part of any good journey. Oomlout is technically speaking a warehouse full of electronics and bits for hackers and makers, if this sounds like you, you should visit.

Digital door lock and key

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So I’m kinda bias here but really, having the digital door lock and using the NFC Ring to unlock it has been useful, it’s not like it’s a gimmick any more, it’s part of my daily life and I’m safer and less inconvenienced now than I was before, I guess that is the intention of any invention and this one ticks the boxes.