Category Archives: Apple

Mobile WebApp Frameworks

So I went digging for mobile webapp frameworks, and I found a nice list to investigate at a later time. While I have used iUI in the past, and it worked well for my purposes… I have read a few reasons why you may consider others (CiUI). Also, I seem to think that there would be some obvious advantages (and disadvantages) to using a cross-platform mobile webapp framework like PhoneGap and others.

Here the list I came up with:

I also wonder about any IDE’s out there, like Dashcode from Apple.

Update (2010-08-13). I just found this article: Announcing the jQuery Mobile Project

Once they get up and running, I imagine it will be a serious contender with the others.

Update (2010-08-18). Here’s an article from Mashable about some of the frameworks and libraries talked about above (and others): HOW TO: Make Your Mobile Websites Act More Like Native Apps

Databases on 1and1

After wanting to test WordPress 3.0 on a 1and1 hosting account, I ran into the following issue… the particular setup I was dealing with had only one database available, and it wasn’t MySQL 5, but instead MySQL 4… furthermore, it was a version lower than 4.1.2, which more recent versions of WordPress require as a minimum.

So after doing a bit of research on what others had done, I went about fixing the problem. Interestingly enough, 1and1 could have made some money in this situation if they would allow customers to simply purchase another database to add to their packages, but no, they want an entire upgrade to be purchased.

The first step was to backup the website and database. I ssh’ed into the web host:

username@localhostname:~$ ssh $

Then I backed up the database. The command below will dump all of the databases on the host (in this case, only one MySQL 4.x database) into a dated bzip file, in the home directory.

username@remotehostname:~$ mysqldump -C -A -u $databaseUsername -h $databaseHostName -p$databasePassword | bzip2 -cq9 > ~/`date +%F-%I-%M-%p`-db-backup.sql.bz2

Now to backup the site itself (not only in case disaster struck, but this would get a local copy of the sql dump I just made as well). On a local OS X workstation (or Ubuntu, if that suits your tastes) I ran something similar to the following:

username@localhostname:~$ mkdir ~/website_backups
username@localhostname:~$ rsync -avz --exclude="logs" $ ~/website_backups/

From there, I was able to log into the 1and1 control panel and delete the existing database. This allowed me to setup a new one, and in particular, choose MySQL 4 or 5 as the type.

Back to the 1and1 hosting account:

username@localhostname:~$ ssh $

I uncompressed the sql dump:

username@remotehostname:~$ bunzip2 2010-01-14-01-59-PM-db-backup.sql.bz2

and was greeted with the raw sql in the file, “2010-01-14-01-59-PM-db-backup.sql”. From here it was only a hop skip and a jump away to restoration. It was necessary to edit the sql file in order to have it restore properly to the newly created database that was just created:

username@remotehostname:~$ nano -w 2010-01-14-01-59-PM-db-backup.sql

And I changed the $oldDatabaseName to $newDatabaseName.

-- Current Database: `$oldDatabaseName`
CREATE DATABASE /*!32312 IF NOT EXISTS*/ `$oldDatabaseName`;
USE `$oldDatabaseName`;

ctrl+o, enter, and ctrl+x, to save the file and exit nano. The sql dump was now ready to restore to the new database.

username@remotehostname:~$ mysql -u $databaseUsername -h $databaseHostName -p$databasePassword $databaseName < 2010-01-14-01-59-PM-db-backup.sql

The only other things to do were to update any existing applications that needed the new database name, username, hostname, and password.

As a note, if you are updating a WordPress install to point to a new database, this info can be changed in the file, wp-config.php.

Time Machine Size Limits

So I have this new My Book World Edition, and I set it up to allow for Time Machine backups. The problem? On OS X, Time Machine wants to eat up almost the entire amount of free space before it goes about deleting old files… (un)conveniently there is no option to restrict the size of the backups.

Never fear… I google’d a bunch and found that if you run the following command on the Mac doing the backups:

defaults write /Library/Preferences/ MaxSize 209715200

It doesn’t appear to do anything (or may possibly do something else that isn’t related to what I was after). :-)

So, I went about it in a different manner. If I clicked on the Time Machine icon (rotating clock) in the menu bar, and clicked “Enter Time Machine”… exited the GUI of Time Machine, and then opened terminal, I could do the following:

  1. Become root:
    sudo -s
  2. Goto the /Volumes directory, and look for which folder is mounted for Time Machine backups:
    cd /Volumes && ls -l
  3. Enter the folder that is mounted for Time Machine backups:
    cd $Mount_Point_For_Backups
  4. Look for the .sparsebundle file that is being used for backing up the workstation:
    ls -l
  5. Resize the sparsebundle file:
    hdiutil resize -size 200g $hostname.sparsebundle

The sparse image is then resized, and Time Machine will report that there is only around 200 gigabytes total available space rather than around a terabyte (which is the original size of the drive). :-)

Office Compatibility

OpenOffice or Microsoft Office. Use either. It’s like OS X vs. Linux… whatever tool that is best for the job right?

Here’s how you can make the two play a little nicer…


Users with older versions of Microsoft Office Products, including Word 2000/2002/2003, Excel 2000/2002/2003, PowerPoint 2000/2002/2003)

Users of Microsoft Office 2007


I really like GIMP, and use it quite frequently, even with Creative Suite 4 Design Premium (licensed legally I might add) installed on my Mac, and with other applications like Paint.NET easily available for Windows. With that said, I thought I would post a few links about it, since I have been using it for… oh I don’t know, since 2002 or 2003 I’m guessing.

Read about it:

Download it:

Songbird Equalizer

Awhile back (years) I tried out Songbird (a media player based on the same technology as Firefox and Exch), but was disappointed that it did not have an equalizer built in. More recently however, after downloading the 1.3.x nightly build I was pleasantly surprised by its progress. Much lighter weight than the likes of iTunes, and supporting awesome features like Amarok, it is turning out to be quite the app.

I suppose after a few more revisions and hopeful changes, it will be all that I had hoped it would. Things I would like to see added in the near term are, easier streaming media and playlist manipulation, as well as being able to save equalizer settings.

Check out some of the screenshots I took:

Songbird Nightly 1.3.x Songbird Nightly 1.3.x Equalizer

iPhone 3G Repair

So on a different broken iPhone that I have come across (where the LCD is not also broken… only the glass is cracked) we have decided to go with a repair service. While there are a lot of parts sites ( (need a zoom lens?),,, among others), the fix operation will probably be best done by people that do it all the time.

I tried calling two places: (Milliamp LTD) didn’t answer their phone… I emailed. We’ll see if they return information… says, $115.00 for the glass and digitizer repair. Turn around was explained that “they ship it back within 24 hours of receiving it.” Next day shipping from them is $9.00. Not bad!