I’m giving Mastodon a test drive, in case Twitter implodes or otherwise disappears. Find me at: @KirkIsmay@mstdn.ca
Learn Programming with Andy Harris
I like Andy’s videos, as he does a good job of teaching you to think like a programmer. I also like the fact that he uses the either the native Python IDLE environment or pythonanywhere.com, instead of spending a lot of time on setting up a custom development environment. This makes it easier to learn whether you’re running Windows, Mac or Linux on your computer.
Here’s how to learn Python:
- Download Python from: https://www.python.org/downloads/
- Use the Python “IDLE” environment edit and run code. The pythonanywhere.com approach is fine, but does require registration.
- Watch the tutorials:
- How to Think Like a Programmer: https://youtu.be/azcrPFhaY9k
- His CS1 Python course: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYwSrMCScKQsWfYV8UvhcFmo_E9zNZwGP&index=12
This starts in the middle of the course, the first half is computer science fundamentals.
Windows 7’s new “Get Windows 10” app
When I logged on to my Windows 7 computer this afternoon, I noticed this little gem down by my clock. It’s the new “Get Windows 10” app that must have come with the last batch of Windows updates. I created a gallery of screenshots of what to expect. All it does is reserve your upgrade, which you can cancel any time. Once Windows 10 is released, it will download it and let you install it at your leisure.
August will be an interesting month for IT people!
Lifehacker has an article on how to make Get Windows 10 icon go away if you’re either not interested or have already reserved your copy.
iPhone 4 GSM (A1332) Screen Replacement
I ordered a new screen iPhone from LaptopScreen.com after my wife’s phone had an unfortunate accident. I placed the order Thursday morning and it arrived Friday afternoon. They ship from Vancouver and Seattle, so it doesn’t take long. There are detailed instructions and video tutorials on their web site, which are invaluable during the repair job. This was actually my second attempt, the first time around I pulled off a connector tab for the digitizer, so had to order a second screen. It was a learning experience.
It’s a fairly delicate procedure requiring the removal of several dozen tiny screws and connectors. To remove the front screen requires gutting logic board, camera, kick motor, and battery to get at the 10 screws that hold the front to the back.
Some tips before you begin:
- Work on a floor with a hard surface. Sweep the floor first. If you drop a screw on the carpet, you will lose it forever.
- When you snake the connectors through the frame, watch that you don’t pinch the ribbon cable between the screen and the frame.
- Use an ice cube tray to keep track of the screws as you go.
- Take your time and be patient!
Here are some photos from the disassembly:
Repairing your iPhone glass is possible for the determined DIY enthusiast, but requires patience and a steady hand.
Good luck with yours!
Proud to be Canadian
Canadian Actor William Shatner has a brief conversation with Canadian Astronaut Chris Hadfield over Twitter. How cool is that?
@williamshatner Yes, Standard Orbit, Captain. And we’re detecting signs of life on the surface.
— Chris Hadfield (@Cmdr_Hadfield) January 3, 2013
Freakonomics on Music and Video Piracy
The main point is that most statistics on jobs or dollars lost to piracy are completely made up:
I still think media companies should instead focus on making it easy and cheap to get the media people want onto the devices people use. Apple’s iTunes comes close, but it’s still hard to use if your music player doesn’t support Apple’s proprietary music format. By hard, I mean that I can do it, but I have to change the default settings and provide instruction on how to make it all work for my wife and kids for each individual player.
Making it Easier & Prevent Piracy Too
I’ve always maintained that the solution to combating Internet Piracy is to make it easy and cheap for consumers to get what they want. Comedian Louis CK did exactly that and put up a site to sell a video of his “Live at Beacon Hill Theatre” for only $5. So far he’s sold 110, 000 copies.
I think the other thing that makes this work is that he’s selling it personally. I think people feel less guilty about ripping off a corporate giant like Sony than someone with a face.
Pin Number Frequency
I frequently pay at the pump at the local gas station. The other day I noticed that the wear pattern on the pump’s PIN pad shows distinct wear on the 0 and Enter keys (see photo). My guess is that people are frequently choosing 0000 as their PIN number. Hopefully, I’m wrong.
I’m Getting Married!
If you’re looking for the wedding page, it’s at:
The wedding will take place on Saturday, October 29th in Nelson, BC.
Losing my Religion
I’ve been following the climategate uproar lately. Actually there’s so much being written and blogged about, I can’t even keep up with reading all the articles at Watt’s Up With That anymore.
When I was watching this interview with Ed Begley, the thought struck me that he was like a man afraid of loosing his religion. This of course started REM’s “Loosing my Religion” playing in the sound track in my head. I also found Ed’s behavior was uncivilized, he talked over Stuart Varney during his entire rant. I’ve embedded them below:
I am not anti-environment, I believe in good stewardship of our natural resources. I even recycle, and would like to own an electric car (to reduce our dependence on imported oil). I do not think that gutting North-American and European industrial capabilities and exporting the problem to China and India are good solutions. If green jobs are important, then green entrepreneurs should invest their own money and hire the best and brightest talent away from traditional industries, just like anyone else.