April 17 updates

Both Android and Ubuntu received official updates today 🙂

Made a clean install of Ubuntu 17.04, everything works well out of the box.
Then there’s the compulsory: 17 Things To Do After Installing Ubuntu 17.04

Was surprised at the size of the Android security patch at over 300 MB to version 7.1.2!
All was well until a week later my phone bricked; I pulled it out of my pocket and it wouldn’t respond to my thumb print.

Thought nothing more of it, charged it overnight thinking the battery was drained, but it wouldn’t start the morning after 🙁

Tried booting into bootloader with zero success. So returned it to the store I picked it up from, stoked there’s a 2 year warranty… hope to get it back in the next few days.

In the mean time I’ve been using a fresh unboxed iPhone 6 we had sat around the house (don’t ask) and I’m shocled to say that I’m warming to it… or not as opposed as I thought I would be.

pros

  • all the google apps I use are installed; mainly Gmail, Google Drive & Play Music
  • podcasts easy to subscibe, although the default player isn’t as intuitive as I’d like
  • think the sound and quality is better from Play Music
  • quicker to take photos, great quality… although not sure how the quality compares to Nexus 5x
  • photos upload to Google Drive
  • battery lasts longer than 5X, charges fast, but not close to the speed of USB-C

cons

  • no NFC – can’t use Yubi Key
  • can’t set Firefox as default browser, but do get Firefox Focus

My biggest gripe though is the fingerprint unlock button.
I’m used to the 5X opening first time, with fingers and thumbs able to open up the screen.

The iPhone unlock seemed to work first time for the first week but now only works periodically, frustrating.


Also been playing with OpenSUSE in VirtualBox.

It does everything I need and looks great.
I miss apt-get, but maybe not enough to be a barrier to try it as my main distro for a while… then again I have my graphics card working perfectly in Ubuntu so not keen on rocking the boat.

Electronic Frontier Foundation chic

I received my EFF member tshirt, together with membership card and bumper sticker 🙂

I’ve got back into GTAV, just before the announcement of Red Dead Redemption 2!

Been playing a little of one of the free games for October on PSN network Transformers: Devastation, although was very tempted to pick up the original Resident Evil HD remake.

I’ve been working on Machine Learning models in R and Python, playing with the new Google Studio 2.2, and Kali on the Rasp Pi 3

Street Fighter iv Android version

SF4-Android
While reading the wiki on Street Fighter iv, fact checking for my last post, I foiund this hidden gem unknown to me: Street Fighter iv Android version

On January 5, 2012, a version of the game called Street Fighter IV HD was released for LG’s Android-powered Nitro HD and Optimus LTE phones.[46][14]

On December 30, 2012, the exclusivity was dropped and the game was re-released on Google Play, this time titled Street Fighter IV, with a region restriction in place that makes it available only in Japan.[47]

4 years this has been available and I have yet to play it, all that travel time wasted 🙂

I have found a copy of he Street Fighter IV HD apk, and am downloading the resource file currently… you’ve gotta love 4G mobile networks eh? 🙂

Unlock Root Flash Nexus 5X

Nexus 5X

The Nexus 5X has been my primary handset now for a couple of months, I am loving the speed of the device and 4G, but there’s something I’ve been missing, and that’s super user access.

My history of rooting Nexus devices is documented on this blog back to the Nexus 1, and touch wood I haven’t had any issues in the past… except losing data once in a while.

Rule #1 Backup everything

1. $ sudo apt-get install android-tools-adb
2. Enable USB Debugging in Developer Options
3. $ adb devices to ensure your device is connected properly
4. $ adb backup -all
Then your phone will prompt you to backup all your data.

Before I could do this I needed a way to link the N5X to my PC, as the USB cables that come with the device are USB type C connectors.

Banggood has many options, and for less than $10 US I received a couple of cables to try out, with free delivery.

wugfresh
After this prep I upgraded the living room laptop to Win10, was surfing around a N5x rooting guides and came across an old friend wugfresh 🙂

VERSION 2.1.4 – This program will automatically bring together all the files you need to unlock and root your device in a few clicks, or flash it back to stock and re-lock it. You can also use this program to backup/restore all your important data, flash zips, set file permissions, push and pull files, install apps, generate logcats/bugreports, and much more! With the included file association options, you can perform tasks like flashing zips, installing apps, restoring android backup files, and flashing/booting img files with just a double click! The program includes a full featured interface for automating tasks in TWRP, enhanced restore features, an in-built auto-updater/notification system, ‘any build’ mode, advanced restore features,’NRT- Live Log’ for viewing the adb/fastboot cmds that are run in the background, quick tools utilities, and tools for taking screenshots/screen-recordings. All the latest official Android builds and Nexus devices are supported. The program intelligently and selectively downloads the files it needs for your device and makes sure you are using the latest files available. The program can even auto-detect your device and build. This release brings full Marshmallow root support plus all automated features by utilizing a new system that no longer requires modified boot.imgs. Check out the updated changelog for a more comprehensive breakdown of the feature set and changes in this release.

I meticulously backed up everything I could, and went through the easy to follow wugfresh stages of routing an Android device; all complete in around 2 hours, my only delay was setting up the ADB drivers in Windows, although the SSD on the Lenovo laptop nulls some of the pain of repetitive rebooting 🙂

As the Nexus 5x is wiped when unlocking the bootloader I cheated a little with the restore by copying over the profiles & apps from my Nexus 9 via bluetooth, awesome eh?

So ad blocker now installed, Firefox is secure as can be, I just have to set up the VPN and Firewall.

If you choose the wugfresh method be sure to donate for all of his hard work!

Facebook Is Adding Tor Support To The Android App


Android Police: Facebook Is Adding Tor Support To The Android App.

Engadget: Facebook on Android gives you privacy through Tor.

The Guardian: Facebook adds Android app support for anonymity service Tor.

So from what I understand all this will allow is FaceBook to be accessed via an onion domain.

Is this a good / bad thing?

Pro

Given the FB user base size, this may encourage more individuals to use tor, thus increasing the anonymity of the average tor user.

Cons

Tor offers anonymity, if I was to try and hack, brute force, guess login credentials to a FaceBook account, I’d be doing it via a tor connection.

Google Keep to Ubuntu

I’ve not been posting as often as I’d like due to the Android WordPress app not connecting… that’s another post.

What I have been doing over the last couple of days is dropping any stories that I like to Google Keep. This has to be the one mobile app that I find the most useful; from shopping, book, movie, games, and to-do lists, to inspirations, notes, and shit I must blog otherwise I’ll never think of the topic again 🙂

Trials of a 21st century digital life eh?

Google Keep is choice, but how do I access it from Ubuntu, I don’t even use Chrome?

Here’s a well explained guide from the Ubuntu Handbook: Install Google Keep in Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty

It does mean installing Google Chrome, not sure of any security risks, except the usual exposure to Google?

sudo dpkg -i google-chrome-stable_current_*.deb && sudo apt-get -f install

and voilà!

The Edward Snowden guide to practical privacy

Thanks to The Register; here’s The Edward Snowden guide to practical privacy

Edward Snowdon

If you’re just an average user concerned about your privacy

  • Use Tor when browsing. You don’t have to use Tor all the time (it does slow things down considerably and some sites will also block Tor traffic). But if you are looking at or for something that you feel is sensitive, then either set up your browser to work with Tor or use the Tor browser.
  • Use an ad-blocker. Says Snowden: “As long as service providers are serving ads with active content that require the use of Javascript to display, that have some kind of active content like Flash embedded in it, anything that can be a vector for attack in your web browser – you should be actively trying to block these.”
  • Use a password manager. It doesn’t matter how many surveys and reports come out that tell people to use different passwords and complex passwords, a huge percentage of us maintain borderline idiotic approaches. The simple answer is: get a password manager. It will protect you.
  • Use two-factor authentication. Many services such as Gmail, Twitter, Dropbox, Hotmail, and Facebook offer this now for no charge. So even if your password does get exposed, you still have a backup such as a text message to your phone to secure your information.
  • Use apps that protect your information. Snowden suggests the smartphone app Signal, which encrypts both your phone calls and texts. It’s free and easy to use. Although of course, following a high-profile argument with the FBI, it would appear that Apple’s messaging service is also pretty secure (although Snowden would probably have doubts).
  • Use the HTTPS Everywhere browser plug-in. This comes from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and will try to force all browser communication to be encrypted.
  • Encrypt your hard drive. This is comparatively easy these days but you have to be careful to do two things: one, have a longish phrase to make it worthwhile; and two, make damn sure you remember that phrase. There will be a slowdown in performance but nothing too bad if you have a modern machine.
  • Be smart with your security questions. Stop using your mother’s maiden name for everything. Likewise your first school. The key is to mix things up as much as possible so if someone does get into one of your accounts, they can’t use the same information to get in everywhere else.

After reading this I installed Whisper Systems Signal on my Android devices, and encouraged my friends and family to do the same.

Signal allows you to send encrypted texts and phone calls, all free of charge, combining the original apps TextSecure and RedPhone.

At Open Whisper Systems, we want everyone to have access to advanced secure communication tools that are as easy and reliable to use as making a normal phone call or sending a normal text message.

Over the past year, we’ve been working to bring the privacy software we’ve developed for Android to the iPhone, and today we’re releasing Signal – free, worldwide, encrypted voice calls for iPhone, and fully compatible with RedPhone for Android.

This free app is a no brainer for anyone who values their privacy, available on Android and iOS.

afk busy end 2015

Status

Time scarce, had time to spend quality time with boy, choice new job, learning guitar, as for games…

  • GTAV festive snow and costumes were fun
  • Dark Souls 2; still can’t find help for the same boss
  • Bloodborne; waiting for help with Amygdala, my techniques are failing me
  • Begun Battlefront Star Wars, Fallout 4 & Dishonoured Definitive edition
  • Picked up Nexus 5x and Chromecast

New Years resolution 2016:

  • update blog more often
  • rebuild twitter feeds
  • finish more games, Arkham Knight was the last!
  • consider updating site and banners, time allowing

Happy New Year people 🙂

yubikey-neo + KeyPassX + KeyPassDroid + OwnCloud

KeyPassDroid

yubikey-neo + KeyPassX + KeyPassDroid + OwnCloud portable secure password vault

Searching through F-Droid for yubico I came across a link to KeyPassDroid; I’d come across a password safe solution on the yubico site using KeyPass, but was shied away as it mentioned the premium version… I don’t mind paying for shit, although if I can solve the issue with free open source alternatives I’ll spend hours trying 🙂

So the solution that I’ve pulled together:

  1. created a KeyPassX database on my Ubuntu machine with all login email details
  2. set password up in 2 steps
    1. self entered password
    2. password stored on yubikey-neo
  3. setup key
  4. saved key and KeyPassX database to OwnCloud
  5. from Android download key and database opened with KeyPassDroid
  6. password acquired on demand via NFC from yubikey-neo

Sorted, a free solution… excluding purchasing of yubikey-neo and host fee of website that allows for OwnCloud space.

Guess free alternatives could be Google Drive or MEGA for online file storage, and a more simple one step password 🙂

Quite happy with how it works, lets’s hope I don’t lose the yubikey-neo in the near future 🙂

Cyanogenmod 12 arrives for Nexus 4

CM 12

I was so stoked Friday to find Cyanogenmod 12 arrives for Nexus 4!

The boards said it was stable, or that snapshot is the new stable, so I thought why not.
I’ve been doing this since the Nexus 1, so I dropped into the usual update process; I backed up everything and took advantage of being able to install direct from my copy of CM 11.

Everything went well, apps and info were restored from Titanium, at first CM 12 was buttery smooth… but then the day progressed, and smooth turned to chunky.

I was receiving a black screen every time I unlocked, the phone rang to the same black screen; only the power button did anything, thank goodness it actually answered the call!

So then this afternoon, after having had enough with the sluggish feel and no real benefits I decide to revert back to CM 11.
Running through the process Cyanogenmod ran into an eternal boot loop, after installing the ~120 apps… oh noes!

But I’m a veteran at this, I have backups, no need for a cold sweat just yet!

9 hours later I finally have my phone back to how it looked this time yesterday 🙂

CM 12 removed TWRP for Clockworkmod… those backups I had couldn’t be loaded!

I get lazy when it comes to playing with ADB, and I like my hand to be held, blessed that these 2 sources were available:
Universal Naked Driver Solves Your ADB Driver Problems on Windows
15 seconds ADB Installer v1.4.2

I’m not proud that I used Windows, and I will try and get au fe with ADB in Linux to ensure it never happens again, but Wugfresh’s Nexus Root Toolkit has me spoiled, it means I don’t usually need to think and stress too much to resolve my Android boot loader crisis.

Anyway normal service has been resumed 🙂

The Truth About “Game of War – Fire Age”

This is the top rated comment on the Amazon Appstore, its a real life example of the South Park Terrance and Philip game!

The Truth About “Game of War – Fire Age”

…Expressly Designed To Addict People And Get Their Money

February 11, 2015 by trapeze “Woo Hoo! Check Out My Website!”

You want the truth about this game? You got it. Here is the full, unvarnished truth about “Game of War – Fire Age”

Game of War (GOW) is a “building game” that has “in-app purchases.” This isn’t new or unique, there are many such games out there. You download the game at no charge to your smartphone or tablet (Mac or Android) and you start with a level 1 “empire” in a randomly assigned “kingdom.” There are many kingdoms, some which are “old” and have been around since the game was created and new kingdoms start up every so often as new players join the game.

The alleged object of the game is to grow your empire to the point where you are the dominant player in your kingdom…or become the biggest and baddest player in the entire game and become the ruler or emperor of all of the kingdoms. Now…can this happen? Sure it can. If you have buttloads of money and a lot of time on your hands. I mean a LOT of money and a LOT of time because, taken to its desired conclusion (that being the desire of the game creators), you will turn over all of your money and all of your time to playing this game.

Here is a warning and I present this with all sincerity: Do NOT download this game if you are the type of person with little self control. The type of person I am talking about is the one who will ALWAYS buy a lottery ticket every single time they are presented with the opportunity because, “Hey, it’s only a dollar and I might just win it all!” You need to understand that it is IMPOSSIBLE to play this game with any success or satisfaction whatsoever unless you are prepared to spend money with little to no regard for its actual value. So…only download and play this game if you have lots and lots of money that is in serious danger of spontaneously combusting in your pocket and thereby presenting you with the likelihood of ending up in the burn ward of the local hospital. Only download and play this game if you do NOT have meaningful relationships with other humans because it will dominate your time.

Why do I present you with these warnings? Because the creators of this game, Machine Zone, have given untold numbers of suitcases chock full of money to psychology consultants with the express intent of designing a game that is highly addictive. They even brag about how addictive it is in their advertising. This should be a huge warning to those among us who have addiction tendencies. There are those who can try tobacco a time or two and say, “Eh,” and never touch it again. I’m not talking to those people. Those people will see this game for what it is right away and quickly remove it from their phone or tablet. I’m talking to the people who can’t walk away from the craps table at Vegas because, “My luck is going to turn around any second and I’m going to walk outta here a millionaire!” You people…don’t play this game. You have been warned.

Upon downloading this game you are immediately presented with the opportunity to purchase a “deal” or a “pack.” And it’s quite a deal. $5 Yep, five bucks. That’s harmless enough, right? And it’s easy, too. You just click on the button and your iTunes or Google account is debited the amount. You don’t need to open your wallet or write a check. Then you are immediately presented with one or two more opportunities to spend $5 again. And these are great deals. These deals allow you to advance very quickly from level 1 up to level 10 or 12 or so. You do this, you buy the cheap deals because, hey, they are cheap. It’s only $5 after all. But after those one or two or even three opportunities you will NEVER ever see a $5 deal again for as long as you live. The next time that you need to get a deal or a pack it will cost you $20. You will be able to buy exactly one $20 deal and then you will never see one again for as long as you live. After that you will see an offer for a $50 deal. One time. After that you might see one again…maybe…more about that in a minute. After that the deals get much more expensive…$100 a shot. At first a $100 deal seems like a tremendous bargain…you can advance in the game and it lasts for many days…maybe a week or two. Maybe even a month depending on how much of your time is sucked up with game play. But now the only deals you are offered are $100. No more cheap deals unless you stop spending for a while. Then you might be offered a $50 deal to get back into your pocket. But for the most part you will only be offered $100 deals. (Note: I am guessing here but I suspect that the really big players in the game are offered deals/packs that are priced even higher) And without a deal you just can’t keep playing.

Why?

Because this game is all about convincing you to part with more and more of your money, more and more frequently. That’s where the psychology consultants come in…they design the game so that you are pressured by yourself and your fellow game players to advance, to be a “team player” and help out the group you are in. When you start playing the very first thing that you are counseled to do is join an “alliance.” An alliance is composed of up to 100 players. When you are in an alliance you receive assistance that helps you to advance in the game. It is impossible to play the game if you are not in an alliance. So, immediately you are under pressure to help the other members of your alliance and that pressure never ends. You might switch alliances but you will always be in one. If you aren’t in an alliance you will be destroyed rather quickly. An alliance is measured by the level of power of all of its members. So, if you aren’t growing in power yourself you are hurting the alliance. The only way to grow in power quickly enough is to spend money. Lots of money. Period.

The game creators are constantly coming up with game “improvements” that are supposed to make the game better. Pro Tip: The improvements are all about new and more devious ways to get you to spend money. Period. The play does not get better. It only gets more expensive. Just when you think that you might have gotten to some sort of acceptable level of achievement the game creators raise the bar which pressures you to spend more money. I could go into the actual game play but that’s not the point of this review. If you want to know how to play well and advance as quickly as possible and spend the least amount of money doing it (although that will still be a ridiculous amount) there are several websites that can help you in that regard.

How do I know these things? Well, I know these things because I downloaded the game, spent a relatively small amount of money (full disclosure here…about $500. This is not a lot of money to me. I knew going in that I would spend about this much to find out what I needed to know) and then interviewed many, many high ranking players in the various alliances that I joined. Game communication is key to pressuring you to be a team player so there is a modestly adequate “chat” feature built in to the game. Through chat I spoke with players who had been playing for six to nine months. Think about that for a minute or two…less than a year these people had been playing. Some of them had spent $3500 and some had spent well over $5000 in that time period. And they had no intention of slowing down. These people were fully addicted to the game and were spending huge amounts of their time and money. And they were good with that. Others were totally disgusted with themselves for taking money which they would normally be spending on their families and pissing it down this rathole. And they were still in the game. They literally could not bring themselves to quit. You hear this over and over…”I can’t quit now, I have too much invested to walk away,” or, “I spend more than this a month on gasoline (or whatever)…this is just entertainment, like going to the movies a few times a month.” Yeah. Sure it is. If this sounds like the words of a problem gambler it’s because it is…the lies people tell themselves…

Doing some research outside of the game I found a news story (which may seem incredible but seems to me to be all too possible and even likely) where a teenage boy used his parents’ credit to spend $42,000 on the game. In less than a month. His parents were not amused and were reported to be attempting to get some or all of this money back, claiming fraud. Best of luck to them. I read not a few forum entries (like most things, there are several websites devoted to this thing where people discuss it) of people who had spent several thousand bucks before getting out. Or not. Spending in the tens of thousands by the top players is common knowledge. This game makes some people (emphasis on “some”) do irrational things, like spend money they do not have to spend on what amounts to “vapor.” Because when it is all said and done you have nothing to show for your time and money but a huge hole in your life. Playing this game does not make you a better person. It does not grant you any wisdom unless you are able to learn the age old proverb about a fool and his money becoming rapidly separated from each other. What it does do is enrich the game creators. For them it is both a virtual and literal gold mine.

I am fortunate. I do not have a personality that is prone to addictive behavior situations. I took this game up for a limited amount of time to experience it so that I could empathize with certain other people with whom I associate. I wanted to know what they were going through. I was able to set a budget for myself…a very unique budget that had a maximum limit (rather than, say, a monthly limit)…and I stuck to it. I have left the game and I will not return…I will not spend another dime on it. I have closed my account and removed it from my device. But I leave behind many, many people who I have conversed with over the last few weeks and months who may never be able to leave the game. Not until they go bankrupt and/or destroyed their personal lives.

There are certain types of people who do not view their fellow human beings as, well, human. They view them as more akin to prey or cattle…not people but things to be exploited, used and then discarded. These are con men, drug dealers and dictators of third world banana republics. The creators of GOW are most definitely in this group of sociopaths. They may comfort themselves by believing that they are bringing people a “fun” experience but that is a lie. They are absolutely no different than con men and drug dealers. They are selling a product (or service) that is expressly designed to prey upon weak minded people and they actually brag about their product as being “addictive” as if that was a positive selling point…a good thing.

If you are one of the precious few in this world who does, in fact, have more money and available time than you know what to do with and you want to play this “game” and you enjoy playing this “game” then more power to you. Enjoy yourself. Personally, I think that your money and time could be better spent on other pursuits but, hey, I’m not here to cast judgement on your choices in life. Go for it. Hunker down over that smartphone or tablet while the world passes you by. If you are, like most of us, a person with limited financial resources and actually have a personal life that you care about…I highly recommend that you stay away from this game. And that is especially recommended if you are prone to addictive behavior situations. If you are currently stuck in this game, like so many people I conversed with in the last few weeks and months, I hope that you can overcome it and move on. I sincerely wish you well.

EDITED TO ADD: If you want verification of what I say above you need only browse through the other reviews…both positive and negative…and you will see a pattern emerge. Those who give it a positive review will frequently use the words “addictive” and complain about how much money they have to spend. Those who give it a negative review will often use the same words in their complaints. Coincidence? What do you think?

Shattered Pixel Dungeon

Select your Hero
I don’t really play games on my phone, guess not having Google Play limits those titles that are available. However earlier in the week I came across Shattered Pixel Dungeon on F-Droid

It’s described as: Traditional rogue like game with pixel-art graphics and simple interface.

Hard to believe that in all my years of gaming I’ve never played a ‘rogue like game’… but I’m very impressed with this perma-death Android title

The game begins by choosing an hero, from the traditional classes of Warrior, Mage, Rogue, and the unlocked bonus of Huntress… apparently awarded after defeating the third boss, I haven’t found the first one yet!

The dungeons are randomly generated on each load, each level containing monsters (rats and crabs early on), chests, and generic RPG goodies e.g. coins (can I use them?), a variety of potions, scrolls, seeds, weapons, and armour… and did I mention that the scrolls and potions are randomised, where blue once healed who knows now WTF it will do 😀

Your Hero takes damage from encounters, that can be healed in a variety of ways, gains experience points to level up, and becomes hungry over time; starving if not fed.

The source code is also published to GitHub. I’d be telling fibs if I said I wasn’t tempted to modify the difficulty a little, but I guess that it’s all part of the fun, and “one more try” compulsion.

I’ve found a the Pixel Dungeon wiki, this may help prolong my time exploring 🙂

Ah reading the wiki it seems like I’m playing the modded version of the game, the vanilla being simply Shattered Pixel

Description
Shattered Pixel Dungeon is a game based upon Pixel Dungeon’s Open Source. it is posted with the permission of Watabou, the original dev of Pixel Dungeon. Its aim is to make Pixel Dungeon the best game it can be, with reworks to existing content and tonnes of new stuff as well!
Both Pixel Dungeon and Shattered Pixel Dungeon belong to the roguelike genre. The dungeon and items are randomly generated, so no two play sessions are the same. Roguelike games are difficult and feature permanent death (no loading a save to try again!). While you may try and fail many times, this makes winning all the more satisfying.
Here are the current differences from Pixel Dungeon:
– Texts and boss/quest encounters in the sewers completely reworked!
– Rings completely overhauled, 6 totally new rings!
– New item class: ARTIFACTS! unique utility items that do not need scrolls of upgrade!
– New food item/plant added, you’ll have to find it!
– Many potions/seeds/scrolls tweaked to be more useful, a few nerfed as well.
– Rogue starting ring has been replaced with an artifact.
– Dew vial no longer autorevives, but can now bless an ankh.
– Nerfed health potion farming from fly swarms.
– many balance tweaks and bugfixes
Shattered Pixel Dungeon is constantly being updated, so expect this list to grow!
It is of the utmost importance that Shattered Pixel Dungeon still feels and plays like Pixel Dungeon, if you encounter any bugs or issues please contact me and I will try to sort them out. If something seems out of place or overpowered/underpowered, let me know and I’ll look into it.
Shattered Pixel Dungeon is open source under the GPLv3 Licence. It is currently using v1.7.1c of Pixel Dungeon’s source, and will be updated when new source is available. You can find the current Shattered Pixel Dungeon source here: https://github.com/00-Evan/shattered-pixel-dungeon
If you would like to do any work with this source code, please contact me first as a courtesy.

The wiki has some cool tables too, this takes me back to the old days; remember pencil and paper RPG’s 😉

Read that there’s also a ‘night mode’: that the difficulty is increased between the hours of 00:00 to 07:00… as it wasn’t enough of a challenge to stay alive already!

Saying that my biggest challenge seems to be hunger, off to read the wiki for survival clues.

I’m finding it a great way to pass a short game session, and you can quite out at any time and save your current game. I can see this been on my phone for a while.

Tips

starting guide
– sleeping heals HP’s – great on early levels
Strategies
Little-Known Tactics and Tips
11 tips from a veteran
Rating: ★★★★☆

New portable vice


Again late to the party, but I’m off to a desert island for a week, and I needed to pick up enough digital luggage to get me through.

I don’t know if it is good or bad news, but I installed Minecraft Pocket Edition on my Nexus 7, and it has become my new portable vice. 🙂

Before now I have only really breifly experimented with Minecraft, taking the odd dab here and there. The Skyrm mod for the 360 version kept me occupied for a brief period, but there was always another title that took my focus away.

This time it could be serious!

My wife chastises me, that it is a kids game!

I tell her children do play Minecraft, but its audience is wide and varied, covering many demographics.

I did try a release version over a year ago, and found it limited, and meh!
This time I have a copy of the lastest v0.91, and I’m a happy miner 🙂

Today I experienced the thrill of finding my first iron ore vein! Woohoo, weapons better than stone!
But then I messed up by making Iron bars out of all my load… WTF was I thinking!
Iron ore
So better weapons and tools are currently beyond my capability, but I know there will be another iron seam out there… somewhere.

Who needs better weapons anyway, I’m armed with a bow and arrow, although a more durable pick would be nice.

Off in the search of iron ore 🙂

Edit: And I’ve just discovered seeds!

CyanogenMod Nexus 4

Cyanogenmod Nexus 4

For the first time on the Nexus 4, I’ve installed a Custom ROM, and to date this was my largest fail yet.

I didn’t brick the device, although the password for the encryption I’d set up was continually rejected 🙁

I had to wipe the device completely, to remove drive encryption, and start Cyanogen 10.2.1, the last stable build based on Android 4.3.1, which is apparently more secure than later builds.

I made a complete backup of the device, then used Titanium Backup for apps and system data. For the first time I had the foresight to backup my contacts, I usually go dark after a ROM upgrade, plus the Bitcoin wallet I use on my phone.

All of the requested apps were restored with ease; except for PayPal? I left out everything Google, setup and added XPrivacy, AFWall+, Orbit, and OpenVpn, with no issues.

Email goes through K9, including GMail accounts that I need to keep.

What’s missing?

  • Swype text entry, although there’s a trail when I drag my finger, it doesn’t seem to record the words? Sure I can find another app to help
  • Volume for ringtones and alerts, but who uses their phone for calls 😉
  • WiFi and Bluetooth; I read this is a known issue for people loading this ROM from KitKat. Solution is to install OFW 4.3, and then back to this Cyanogenmod build.
  • Hangouts for PM’s
  • Office for docs
  • Keep for notes

I see an Android weekend ahead, and I could still end up on stock 4.4.4 😉 Posted from working WordPress app!

Another Android update another exercise in rooting

Status

4.4.3 arrived earlier this month for my Nexus 4, I’ve missed root access, but only just got around to implementing it today.
This time I didn’t want to go the windows way, so I used 3 great resources:

I’m linking this as a reference, as I’m going to have to repeat this exercise in the near future due to the imminent roll out of 4.4.4:
Android 4.4.4 is rolling out to devices; contains OpenSSL fix

PirateBox 1.0 is here!

Piratebox 1.0

The PirateBox has come of age!
A testimony of the hard work David and Matthias for making this project happen.

What it offers:

  • easy to install, simple instructions, only a couple of files
  • even a version for Android available on Google Play
  • cheap, components can be purchased for ~$35 US
  • full, 4chan like, message board
  • acts as a streaming media centre!

I’m currently upgrading from the last version I had installed… forgotten which version, as it was working, so why mess, and I was holding out for 1.0 🙂

email from David Dart:
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I’ve got my ownCloud

After traumatic news yesterday of Ubuntu One closing I’ve been playing and researching alternate options.

My favourite to date is owncloud.org, an application you can install on a server, with clients available for Android and Linux… plus the other popular OS’s
ownCloud
Key Features

  • Connect to your ownCloud server (HTTP or HTTPS)
  • Browse files and folders in the native Finder or Explorer
  • Automatically sync your latest files and folders across PCs
  • Share and sync your latest files and folders with other users
  • Selectively sync additional folders from anywhere on your PC
  • Pause and resume uploads and downloads automatically
  • Configure proxies for secure enterprise environments

I’m finding the experience much like Ubuntu One, except it’s on my own server with no back door access to anyone inquisitive.
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