Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Tip-Top Calculator = A PhoneGap and Progressive Web Apps project

Lately, I haven't had time to update my iOS and Android Apps.  As many of you know, I'm a hobbyist, self-taught programmer/tinker-er with no actual formal training as my full-time job as a doctor keeps me fairly busy as it is.

I've been experimenting this week with a new framework using PhoneGap which is based on Apache Cordova.   The new thing is to create Progressive Web Apps which are apps that are essentially structured as webpages but can be viewed and used offline (caching) and work on a variety of platforms.  Using PhoneGap the app hopefully can be easily ported to a variety of platforms such as iOS and Android and Windows.  This tutorial was extremely helpful.

So here is the first little experiment - a Tipping Calculator with features to round the tip, total or split the check however many ways you need to.   I was able to create this easily in less than a few hours as the Vue.js framework shown in the Tutorial.   I also learned about firebase, which is a google product, where you can host a progressive web app for free.  You can find the app at :

tinyurl.com/tiptopcalc    (caution: it still may be buggy)

Once you load it in iOS in Safari for example, hit the "up arrow" at the bottom of safari and scroll to find "Add to Home Screen".  This will create a nice little icon for the program and the web-"app" is installed.  For chrome browser, load the above URL, and then CTRL+SHIFT+I --> go to the applications tab in the new window that appears (you may have to scroll right) and "add to Homescreen" (it will prompt you if it's okay to "add to shelf", click "add".  Then in Chrome look for the "Apps" icon in the near top left of the browser.   Find the Tip-top calc app and right click it to Create shortcuts.

The nice thing is this will load on chrome, firefox, edge, safari desktop, iOS and android - a whole variety of platforms as a web-app!  In the past, this would have taken countless more hours to host across various platforms.

Here's a iOS screenshot* (using the chrome developer tools window emulator):






Monday, April 23, 2018

Improve Wifi calling call clarity with this simple fix for your router

Are you having garbled calls on Wifi?  Wi-fi calling is a great feature if you have poor cell service.   You can enable it by going into settings on iPhones as shown HERE


But while it worked for me the call quality was awful.   At first I thought it was bandwidth issues or bufferbloat but nothing seemed to help until I came across this post

Seems SIP ALG can cause problems with wi-fi calling and VOIP applications as well as skype because its not well implemented on SOHO routers.  Here's how to disable it on a netgear router (probably similar for other brands or google it).

 Improve Wifi calling call clarity with this simple fix for your router.  It worked for me and now calls are amazingly clear!


Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Whocrashed finds the reason why your PC crashed

I bought a new HP AIO (all in one PC) and upgraded Windows 10 to the newest anniversary edition (1607).  My PC kept crashing with blue screens of death (BSOD) but it wasn't clear what was causing to crash.

I've used WhoCrashed before (several years ago on Windows 7 to identify a buggy Juno VPN driver) and once again it was quickly able to identify the buggy driver (in my case a buggy driver for Intel Wi-Fi causing the crash):

Crash dump file: 
This was probably caused by the following module: netwtw04.sys (Netwtw04+0x32DC2)
Bugcheck code: 0xD1 (0x8, 0x2, 0x0, 0xFFFFF80194C10E28)
Error: DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL
product: Intel® Wireless WiFi Link Adapter
company: Intel Corporation
description: Intel® Wireless WiFi Link Driver

Review of WhoCrashed (Lifehacker)


When it is done analyzing it gives you an explanation of each crash and at the very bottom conclusions on what to do.

I've updated a new driver....hopefully that solves this BSOD.  

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Lock screen on a damaged iPhone screen/digtizer - how to enter the pin

So, I droppped my phone shattering the screen and digitizer.  It no longer recognized touch input on the screen and the screen was dead.   The home button still worked.  This was an iPhone 6s.

I had to do some research on how to unlock my iphone after damaging my touch screen.  I was able to do it!  And then backup my iPhone saving all the pictures and content!

Here's how

1. Lightning to HDMI adapter - with this I was able to see my phone's lock screen (and later drawer after it was unlocked) - find it at staples or apple store or online (amazon).  This is a great little accessory to have as you can stream content from your phone to an HDMI PC anywhere on the go (travel etc).  I already had this part.


2. Lightning to USB adapter - Normally, these are used for cameras and other accessories but it can be used to hook up a USB keyboard (in my case I used a Costco logitech wireless keyboard from my PC - it worked fine (any wireless keyboard should do) - I inserted the Unifying keyboard USB part of the keyboard into the adapter and was able to type my unlock code on the logitech keyboard.  I ordered this part on amazon:

In my case, that's all I had to do - if you haven't previously synced your phone with your PC you may need to turn on voiceover in siri and/or use the keyboard shortcuts (Ctrl + Alt + Spacebar) to select Trust this computer when the prompt appears on the phone screen.   Instructions for that can be found here: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5839619?tstart=0

in iTunes, backup the phone and choose encrypt backup to make sure all content is backed up!

UPDATE:  You can also turn on voiceover using Siri.  Then open the settings app using siri.  Then hookup your USB keyboard as above and use left and right arrows and follow along using another phone or iPad for the settings menu options.  I was able to navigate to iCloud settings (listen for the prompts from voiceover and follow the menu along on another iOS device) and then using Up + DOWN arrow (press simultaneously) to select and then move left right to toggle photo library backup on.



Lock screen on a damaged iPhone screen/digtizer - how to enter the pin

So, I droppped my phone shattering the screen and digitizer.  It no longer recognized touch input on the screen and the screen was dead.   The home button still worked.  This was an iPhone 6s.

I had to do some research on how to unlock my iphone after damaging my touch screen.  I was able to do it!  And then backup my iPhone saving all the pictures and content!

Here's how

1. Lightning to HDMI adapter - with this I was able to see my phone's lock screen (and later drawer after it was unlocked) - find it at staples or apple store or online (amazon).  This is a great little accessory to have as you can stream content from your phone to an HDMI PC anywhere on the go (travel etc).  I already had this part.


2. Lightning to USB adapter - Normally, these are used for cameras and other accessories but it can be used to hook up a USB keyboard (in my case I used a Costco logitech wireless keyboard from my PC - it worked fine (any wireless keyboard should do) - I inserted the Unifying keyboard USB part of the keyboard into the adapter and was able to type my unlock code on the logitech keyboard.  I ordered this part on amazon:

In my case, that's all I had to do - if you haven't previously synced your phone with your PC you may need to turn on voiceover in siri and/or use the keyboard shortcuts (Ctrl + Alt + Spacebar) to select Trust this computer when the prompt appears on the phone screen.   Instructions for that can be found here: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5839619?tstart=0

in iTunes, backup the phone and choose encrypt backup to make sure all content is backed up!

in iTunes, backup the phone and choose encrypt backup to make sure all content is backed up!

UPDATE:  You can also turn on voiceover using Siri.  Then open the settings app using siri.  Then hookup your USB keyboard as above and use left and right arrows and follow along using another phone or iPad for the settings menu options.  I was able to navigate to iCloud settings and then using Up + down arrow to select and then move left right to toggle photo library backup on.



Lock screen on a damaged iPhone screen/digtizer - how to enter the pin

So, I droppped my phone shattering the screen and digitizer.  It no longer recognized touch input on the screen and the screen was dead.   The home button still worked.  This was an iPhone 6s.

I had to do some research on how to unlock my iphone after damaging my touch screen.  I was able to do it!  And then backup my iPhone saving all the pictures and content!

Here's how

1. Lightning to HDMI adapter - with this I was able to see my phone's lock screen (and later drawer after it was unlocked) - find it at staples or apple store or online (amazon).  This is a great little accessory to have as you can stream content from your phone to an HDMI PC anywhere on the go (travel etc).  I already had this part.


2. Lightning to USB adapter - Normally, these are used for cameras and other accessories but it can be used to hook up a USB keyboard (in my case I used a Costco logitech wireless keyboard from my PC - it worked fine (any wireless keyboard should do) - I inserted the Unifying keyboard USB part of the keyboard into the adapter and was able to type my unlock code on the logitech keyboard.  I ordered this part on amazon:

In my case, that's all I had to do - if you haven't previously synced your phone with your PC you may need to turn on voiceover in siri and/or use the keyboard shortcuts (Ctrl + Alt + Spacebar) to select Trust this computer when the prompt appears on the phone screen.   Instructions for that can be found here: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5839619?tstart=0

in iTunes, backup the phone and choose encrypt backup to make sure all content is backed up!




Lock screen on a damaged iPhone screen/digtizer - how to enter the pin

So, I droppped my phone shattering the screen and digitizer.  It no longer recognized touch input on the screen and the screen was dead.   The home button still worked.  This was an iPhone 6s.

I had to do some research on how to unlock my iphone after damaging my touch screen.  I was able to do it!  And then backup my iPhone saving all the pictures and content!

Here's how

1. Lightning to HDMI adapter - with this I was able to see my phone's lock screen (and later drawer after it was unlocked) - find it at staples or apple store or online (amazon)

2. Lightning to USB adapter - used to hook up a USB keyboard (in my case a Costco logitech wireless keyboard worked fine (any wireless keyboard should do) - I inserted the Unifying keyboard USB part of the keyboard into the adapter and was able to type my unlock code on the logitech keyboard.  I ordered this part on amazon:

In my case, that's all I had to do - if you haven't previously synced your phone with your PC you may need to turn on voiceover in siri and/or use the keyboard shortcuts (Ctrl + Alt + Spacebar) to select Trust this computer when the prompt appears on the phone screen.   Instructions for that can be found here: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5839619?tstart=0

in iTunes, backup the phone and choose encrypt backup to make sure all content is backed up!

UPDATE:  You can also turn on voiceover using Siri.  Then open the settings app using siri.  Then hookup your USB keyboard as above and use left and right arrows and follow along using another phone or iPad for the settings menu options.  I was able to navigate to iCloud settings and then using Up + down arrow to select and then move left right to toggle photo library backup on.