iPhone 4s Takes Pictures Upside Down

I’ve been very annoyed that sometimes I receive photos in my email from iPhone 4s users that are upside down.  Even more annoying I noticed many of the photos I sent out were upside down as well.  What causes this is taking a photo with the volume buttons on the top.  Now that iOS 5 allows you to snap photos with the volume up button holding the camera in this orientation is very natural.  It turns out there is an very good explanation and many people argue it is Apple’s fault while others argue it is the photo viewing applications fault.

Until the iPhone 4s Apple automatically rotated the photo after it was taken.  However to speed up the photo capture Apple now just marks the photo is upside down in the photos EXIF data.  This allows for quicker capturing of photos but requires any photo viewing app (iphoto, windows, web browsers, etc) to read the EXIF of the file and display it properly.

Until applications catch up and fix the viewing software I’m going to return back to taking photos with the on-screen button and making sure the volume buttons are on the bottom.  I do think Apple should provide a setting that allows the user to choose to rotate the photo when it’s captured, even if it does slow down the photo taking process.  At least we should have the option.

FYI, most all high end cameras do not rotate the photo and instead mark the EXIF when a photo is taken upside.

Here’s an Apple Support thread with more info if you’re interested.

Airbnb – Book your next vacation!

I was watching Reid Hoffman speak during one of the Web 2.0 Expo keynotes today and he mentioned Airbnb.  Reid Hoffman is one of the Co-Founder’s of LinkedIn.  He also is a partner at the venture capitalist firm Greylock.  One of his investments is Airbnb and since I hadn’t heard of the company before I looked it up.  I love to travel so I thought I’d share with others.  For my next vacation I might just try it out.  Not so sure about sharing a house with others but renting out an entire house sounds great.  Watch this Airbnb promo video to learn a little more.

Java Denial Of Service Attack

Just read a post in the Portland Java User Group mailing list about a Denial Of Service (DOS) attack that is pretty scary.  You don’t need a swarm of computers to bring down a server.  Just pass in a certain value and the system will enter an infinite loop and come to a grinding halt.  It appears update 24 has a fix.  If you haven’t run update 24 try executing the following code on your system and watch your CPU spike.

class InfiniteLoop {
public static void main(String[] args){
 double d=Double.parseDouble("2.2250738585072012e-308");

It always makes me wonder how someone found this bug.  Thank goodness for open source.  For more details see the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures website.

Think Quarterly – Google Quartely Publication Launched

Google has quietly launched a new quarterly publication online called Think Quarterly.  Be sure to look at the PDF version and how the Table Of Contents is designed.  It uses tags and lines to link articles with related topics.  As Google states it allows you to not only read but explore the magazine.

Here’s Google’s statement about the publication:

“Like most companies, Google regularly communicates with our business customers via email newsletters, updates on our official blogs, and printed materials.

On this occasion, we’ve sent a short book about data, called Think Quarterly, to a small number of our UK partners and advertisers. You’re now on the companion website, thinkquarterly.co.uk (also available at m.thinkquarterly.co.uk, if you’re on the move).

We’re flattered by the positive reaction but have no plans to start selling copies! Although Think Quarterly remains firmly aimed at Google’s partners and advertisers, if you’re interested in the subject of data then please feel free to read on…”

The Git Parable – Thanks Tom Preston-Werner

The Git Parable a great article to read if you’re trying to understand Git.  I am working on a Social Mashup/Aggregator project that is going to use a framework called Newd by the CP+B Group.  The project was stored in github.  I needed a quick intro to Git so I could checkout the code and get started.  I found many articles on the basic Git commands but they all left me wondering how Git is different from SVN and how it really works.  I found The Git Parable to be the most helpful in explaining how Git works underneath.  It also helped me understand how GIT differs from subversion and how powerful it is.  If your new to Git or just want a greater understanding of how Git works The Git Parable is a must read.

Typical Agile Process

The below is a list of what a typical Agile process entails.  It was taken from an article about Kanban development at AgileProductDesign.com.  It’s a good reference and summary for anyone who just wants a basic outline of the Agile Software Development Methodology process.

  1. Project needs or requirements are expressed in user stories placed in a backlog, and ideally written by Product owners (in Scrum), or customers (in XP) in collaboration with the development team. (Sometimes they magically appear.)
  2. Developers give high-level estimates saying how long user stories will take to complete.
  3. Product owners arrange user stories into incremental releases that take typically 6 weeks to 6 months.
  4. Product owners choose the next stories, highest value first, for each development time-box. The stories chosen need to “fit” into the time-box based on how quickly the team can produce software.
  5. At the end of each development time-box the team should have incrementally built some of the product. The team (proudly) demonstrates the finished product to product owners and other stakeholders.
  6. The team adds up the development estimates for the user stories completed during the time-box. This is the velocity (from XP) that’ll be used to estimate the amount that can be completed in the next time-box.
  7. The team holds a retrospective to evaluate how well they’ve done and what changes could be made to the process to allow things to go better, then the next time-boxed development cycle is planned.
  8. Time-boxed development continues through to release — which is a short way of saying “rinse and repeat.”

Finger Painting on the Apple iPad with Brushes

This is a pretty amazing video of finger painting on the Apple iPad using the Brushes App.  Enjoy!

SHODAN – Search Engine for Hackers

SHODAN is a project that continuously scans the internet for open ports and index’s their HTTP header.  It then allows anyone to search these HTTP headers for possible exploits.   Hackers are going to love this.  Read more here and learn how to secure your network:



Buy a Safety Razer and Save

I just read a great article in Money magazine about buying a safety razor.  Yes, the kind you see in old movies.  The safety razor costs about five times more than a typical multiblade cartridge razor, but they last much longer.  According to Money it’s about $30 a year for a safety razor vs. $50 and up for the cartridge refills.  I’m going to give it a try.  Two brands are mentioned in the article, the classic Merkur and the Edwin Jagger 89L.

Who would have known there is an actual Blog site for shaving.  Check out: http://mantic59.blogspot.com/ There are a few videos with safety razor shaving tips.

The site http://www.leesrazors.com has a great selection of razors and you can order just about anything from there.  However, I did find the best deal to be the Merkur razor direct from http://www.Amazon.com.  Free shipping from Amazon.com as well.

Before You Connect a New Computer to the Internet

Here’s some great guidelines and tips to secure your computer before you connect it to the internet.  It is intended for the majority of Internet users who don’t have an IT Department to lock down their computer from possible attacks.

A must read for anyone who has a computer connected to the internet.