Category Archives: apple

IBM Notes Traveler and support for iOS8

If you support an IBM Notes Traveler environment this question should be on your mind



Looks like good news if you are reasonably current in your Traveler environment.  We have had a beta device connected to a 9.0.1 IF4 Traveler server and it worked with out any issue, I know I will be watching closely when Apple releases iOS8 to make sure everything keeps working.

See the technote fo the Full Q&A including updates on Traveler Companion and To Do .

Nice job by IBM getting this document published in advance of today’s Apple announcements.

Technote 1683614: Q&A about IBM Notes Traveler support for Apple iOS 8.x

Known issues with using Lotus Notes Traveler on iOS 6 devices

If you are running Traveler and have iOS 6 users you should know about these 2 issues documented in technote 1610736














Item #1 is actually fixed in iOS 6.0.1 as documented by Andy Donaldson

Technote 1610736: Known issues with using Lotus Notes Traveler on iOS 6 devices

Instagram Revisited (OK So I like it)

Back in March when Instagram announced it was coming to Android I asked if I should care.  Of course when Instagram shipped for Android  I tried it.  Almost 100 pictures later I have to admit I like it.  I am still not sure I get it though.

What do I like about Instagram? The camera interface is simple, and takes decent pictures, I almost never use the filters, or effects, though it does do a good job of adjusting the lighting when needed.  I like the ability to easily share with Twitter and Facebook, and the speed at which it uploads.

As for what I don’t get, I don’t get the need to build yet another network.  I see my friends Instagram photos on Twitter and Facebook (yes I realize you can take a picture and only share it in Instagram) but lets be realistic, your great photo that you want your friends to see is getting shared on Twitter and Facebook, not just on Instagram.

For now I use Instagram, my photo stream there is public, and I follow no one not because I don’t care, but because I believe I am already following you elsewhere, where the pics you want me to see will be posted.

Of course there is that small matter of the pending Facebook acquisition, so this could all change again soon.

Instagram is Coming to Android Should I Care?

Last night I came across the story above that Instagram is coming to Android, which now leaves me wondering should I care? should I be excited?  Since I do not currently own an iOS device with a camera I haven’t tried Instagram to date, however I see lots of Instagram photos on Facebook and Twitter.

So I ask all of you Instagram lovers out there, what will I be able to do with Instagram that I am not already able to do?  Post to Facebook and Twitter at the same time? I can already do that, take pictures with different filters? I can already do that.

This leaves me wondering what do I get out of Instagram? Other then yet another social network to build a network on?

Apparently the Android version will be better than the iOS version.

iTunes Home Sharing (it doesn’t just work)

The other day I decided for the first time to turn on iTunes Home Sharing, imagine my surprise to discover I could watch everything in my iTunes library with out syncing it to my iPad (at least when I am at home).  Since I only have a 16GB iPad this saves me a lot of trips to the computer to sync.

Seemed like it should be easy enough, enable home sharing, and sign in to iTunes and the iPad with the same Apple ID.  Of course it wasn’t that easy.

The first problem was when I would start iTunes the iPad would see the shared library for about a minute then it would disappear until iTunes was restarted, when it would show up again for a minute.

I solved this problem by adding two rules to the Windows Firewall (Windows 7 Home Premium)

Allow Incoming on TCP port 3689

Allow Incoming on UDP port 5353

Not really sure I should have had to do this manually, but since I added these rules, the shared library shows up consistently and plays back videos just fine.

Now that I was able to see my shared library, I found a second problem.  The videos was all displaying the wrong names and wrong artwork, so you never knew exactly what video you were selecting.  A quick search revealed that this is apparently a very common problem.  I followed the steps in this thread in the Apple discussion forums, which fixed my movies, but TV shows are still all wrong (both the Show/Season name and the artwork).

I am continuing to search for a fix, any suggestions are welcome.  I am not impressed with iTunes Home Sharing so far, it does not “just work”.


Well known TCP and UDP ports used by Apple Software products

Videos showing wrong thumbnail

Understanding Home Sharing

The Key Innovation Missing from iOS

Last night I used my iPhone for the first time in a while, it is an older 3G model, but still works just fine.  A couple of years ago it was my primary device, over the last couple of years I have moved to Android as my primary device, currently using my Droid X.  I also have an iPad (Original not 2) which I use quite a bit. 

Apple has certainly set the standard in the tablet market, and there is still no credible Android competitor on the market yet (the new Samsungs coming soon at least pricewise might be able to compete a little).  Arguably Apple also kicked off the Smartphone revolution when they introduced the iPhone a few years ago (though RIM might disagree with that).

There are many reasons I like Android over iOS, but on of the biggest is typing.  Surprisingly while Apple is clearly a leader and innovator in the mobile/tablet space, they have not done anything to make typing easier, or faster on their devices.  In fact a whole site exists to highlight typos on iPhones.

Here is a look at a few alternate keyboards that I have been using on Android, which make typing easier, and faster.  No I am not saying I never make typos or errant autocorrects when using Android, if you follow me on Twitter you have probably seen some of them, but it is certainly easier and faster to type.


Swiftkey, similar to the stock Android keyboard predicts what word you want to type next, the difference is it learns from what you have already typed, so if you use a certain phrase repeatedly it learns from that and uses that to generate predictions for you.  For those of you who have ever seen me tweet during a football game this means I type “Touchdown” and Swiftkey knows the next word is “#Giants”.


Swype is different in that it allows you tp swipe your finger over keys with out taking your finger off the keyboard and does a pretry good job of guessing the word you meant.  You can view some videos of Swype in action on their site.  I find Swype very useful for shorter messages like texts and tweets, not as convenient for longer messages like an e-mail.


Google acquired this company last fall, which hints that they are looking to improve the stock Android keyboard, to date I have not seen them ship anything using BlindType, but there is a demo.


I received an Alpha invite to Siine yesterday, definitely a different approach to a virtual keyboard, and I like the idea, it provides a lot of shortcuts, and easy entry for common tasks.  The only downside is it has a steep learning curve getting used to it, and the standard keyboard it bundles in is not a very good one at all.  I would love to see a cross between Siine and Swiftkey.

There are other keyboards for Android, but you get the idea.  So I wonder why there are no add on keyboards for iOS, well probably because Apple would reject them from the App Store.  I find that I make a lot of mistakes on the iPad, and generally it takes more keystrokes on iOS than Android to accomplish the same things.

Am I missing anything? are there any innovations for typing on iOS that I am missing? If not I wonder if this is something that will be addressed in iOS 5.

iOS 4.3 Sometimes it is the little things

Photo Mar 09, 3 26 34 PM

The Saddest Part of Today’s iPad 2 Announcment

Later today Apple will be introducing the iPad 2, what is expected?

  • Camera (probably 2)
  • Thinner lighter design
  • iOS 5 announcements maybe?
  • Facetime upgraded to support teleportation (that one might have to wait until iPad 3)
  • Cloud storage for music & video?
  • One more thing?

We don’t know if Steve Jobs will be there or not, but what is for sure is today’s announcements will solidify Apples lead in the tablet space over the Android competition.

So now for the sad part, I was reading What To Look for at Tomorrow’s iPad 2 Event, and the last line of the article is probably the one thing we know for sure about today’s announcement

“And tune in to the tech blogosphere shortly thereafter, when the rumors for the iPad 3 will begin in earnest.”

Of course there is always the Apple Rumor Publishing Guide Flowchart.

iTunes You Drive me Crazy

I am not a big iTunes fan, but I use it to sync music to my Second Generation iPod Shuffle.  I really like the shuffle, I don’t deal with playlists, a concept I can’t seem to wrap my head around creating and managing. With the Shuffle I just sync the device put it on shuffle and go.  The shuffle also has great battery life, one charge lasts more then a week of heavy usage, while also letting me listen to music with out draining the battery on my phone (you know I worry about these things).

Today I decided it was time to change out some of the music on the shuffle, and in the process learnt something new.  Here is the view of the shuffle in iTunes, you will notice it is sorted by artist A to Z:

itunes a to z

In the process of looking through for items to remove I changed the sort view a few times to look at different views. When I went back to listening to music, I found that the forward button on the shuffle was moving backwards through the alphabet, and the back button was moving forwards.  This was driving me crazy.  Finally a colleague of mine suggested that I check the sort order in iTunes.  So I opened iTunes back up and sure enough it looked like this, sorted Z to A:

itunes z to a

Once I changed the sort order back to A to Z and synced again it was all back to normal forward was forward and back was back.

I never would have thought that the current view in iTunes would sync to the iPod but sure enough it does.  I have had this shuffle for a while and never run in to this before, live and learn.

Searching in Mobile Safari is Not Very Friendly

This has become a major annoyance for me when using Safari on iOS, and I wonder why Apple does not fix this.

When I use a browser on my desktop, if I want to search I simply type the term in to the Address Bar, this works in Chrome, Firefox, or IE, the three browsers I have installed on my machine.

chrome search

On my Android device (Droid X) the experience is the same I can type a URL, or search term in to the Address bar.


Then we get to Mobile Safari on iOS (Screenshots are from an iPhone, but the experience is the same on an iPad).  For some reason Apple had decided to split URL, and Search in to two different fields. 

photo 1

When you are in the URL field (on the left), the keyboard is designed to type URL only does not have a space bar, so you can not even try to enter a search term there. If you are in the search field (on the right) you then get the regular keyboard with the Space bar allowing you to search:

photo 2 photo 3

Is anyone else bothered by this? I frequently find myself trying to search in the URL bar,  realizing after I finished typing (the first word) of my search string, only to have to do it over in the Search field, why doesn’t mobile safari just work like every other browser out there?

I am sure there are other browsers available for iOS, Opera comes to mind, Firefox Mobile does not seem to have iOS support yet, but I really haven’t bothered to look at it or other options, the browser that ships should be good enough for my mobile browsing needs.