Information Security

Auto-reply to SMS Messages while "Do not disturb" is on.

Tasker: Total Automation for Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 19:27

Hi guys! I'm new to this whole tasker thing but I've already got a profile setup: Do not disturb while the orientation is face down.

Following on from that, I want to have another profile that, when someone in my contacts sends an SMS message to me, Tasker will automatically send a message back saying that I'm busy, whatever.

As I'm new, how would you do this (lol please be specific is you do know how to)? I've seen a few examples with GPS Locations or connected to Car/ Bluetooth, but not with do not disturb.


submitted by /u/ea_3
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Why doesn't Google Assistant have the "Where's My Phone" functionality built-in?

Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 19:00

When Google owned Motorola they added functionality into the Moto X that allowed you to say "Okay Google, where's my phone" and if your phone is close enough, Google Now would respond with a loud alarm.

This was perfect for people like me that lose their phone in plain sight on a semi-regular basis. Instead I have to say "Okay Google" and hope that it makes the quick little prompt sound loud enough for me to spot it.

What gives? Why haven't they reintroduced this feature to their phones. I feel like it's the most obvious thing missing from the assistant.

submitted by /u/Zzzq0_epzzz
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Generative Design Algorithms Prepare For Space

Hack a Day - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 19:00

NASA is famously risk-averse, taking cautious approaches because billions of taxpayer dollars are at stake and each failure receives far more political attention than their many successes. So while moving the final frontier outward requires adopting new ideas, those ideas must first prove themselves through a lengthy process of risk-reduction. Autodesk’s research into generative design algorithms has just taken a significant step on this long journey with a planetary lander concept.

It was built jointly with a research division of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the birthplace of many successful interplanetary space probes. This project got a foot in the door by promising 30% weight savings over conventional design techniques. Large reduction in launch mass is always a good way to get a space engineer’s attention! Mimicking mother nature’s evolutionary process, these algorithms output very organic looking shapes. This is a relatively new approach to design optimization under exploration by multiple engineering software vendors. Not just Autodesk’s “Generative Design” but also “Topology Optimization” in SolidWorks, plus others. Though these shapes appear ideally suited to 3D printing, Autodesk also had to prove their algorithm could work with more traditional fabrication techniques like 5-axis CNC mills.

This is leading-edge research technology though some less specialized, customer-ready versions are starting to trickle out of research labs. Starting with an exclusive circle: People with right tiers of SolidWorks license, the paid (not free) tier of Autodesk Fusion 360, etc. We’ve looked at another recent project with nontraditional organic shapes, and we’ve looked at generative designs used for their form as well as their function. This category of CAD tools hold a lot of promise, and we’re optimistic they’ll soon become widely accessible so we can all put them to good use in our earthbound projects.

Possibly even before they fly to another planet.

[via Engadget]

How to improve smoothness of scrolling on some devices, less it zero micro stutters

Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 16:43

Hi all, Just got an Android phone with Snapdragon 835 and I felt like it was stuttering more than expected when scrolling - micro stutters on content already cached, so it should have been smooth as "Butter". I kept wondering if maybe some background process is doing this, and in my case I was right - it was "Ok Google". As soon as I disabled it, I noticed a big improvement

Here's how to disable (a.k.a. let me Google that for you and paste here for your confort)... Actually no, Google it and maybe Google will notice and do something about it.

TLDR: If you notice micro stutters while scrolling, disabling "Ok Google" might help

submitted by /u/georgepauna
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Meat-Seeking Raspberry Pi Leads you to Flavortown

Hack a Day - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 16:00

[Patrick McDavid] and his wife had a legitimate work-related reason for writing some Python code that would pull the exact latitude and longitude of the individual locations within a national retain chain from Google’s Geocoding API. But don’t worry about that part of the story. What’s important now is that this simple concept was then expanded into a pocket-sized device that will lead the holder to the nearest White Castle or Five Guys location.

The device, which [Patrick] lovingly referrers to as the “Cheeseburger Compass”, uses a Raspberry Pi 3, an Adafruit 16×2 LCD with keypad, a GPS module, and the requisite battery and charger circuit to make it mobile. With the coordinates for the various places one can obtain glorious artery clogging meat circles loaded up, the device will give the user the cardinal direction and current distance from the nearest location of the currently selected chain.

[Patrick] has published the source code for this meat-seeking gadget on GitHub, but notes that most of it is just piecing together existing libraries and tools. As with many Python projects, it turns out there’s already a popular library to do whatever it is you were trying to do manually, so his early attempts at calculating distances and bearings were ultimately replaced with turn-key solutions. Though he did come up with a quick piece of code that would convert a compass heading in degrees to a cardinal direction that he couldn’t find a better solution for. Maybe he should make it a library…

Sadly the original Cheeseburger Compass got destroyed from being carried around so much, but at least it died doing what it loved. [Patrick] says a second version of the device would likely switch over to a microcontroller rather than the full Raspberry Pi experience, as it would make the device much smaller and greatly improve on the roughly two hour battery life.

This project reminds us of the various geocache devices we’ve covered in the past, but with the notable addition of hot sizzling meat. Talk about approving on a good thing.

Trying to parse Bureau of Metorology Wesbite with Autotools

Tasker: Total Automation for Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 15:46

Hi all,

I'm trying to parse the HTML from this website using autotools HTML Read:

My aim is to strip it down to just the info I need, write it out as JSON which I then import into KLWP.

The structure of the webpage is simple enough, and autotools makes it easy to strip out the info I need. The problem I am having is that the entries in the page are not 100% consistent. For example, the amount of rainfall expected on a particular day is only present if rain is predicted, otherwise there is no rainfall information shown for that day. That causes the JSON output to get messed up.

For example, say I am trying to read the weather info for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and there is rain forecast for Monday and Wednesday only. When the JSON is file is written, then the rainfall information will be against Monday and Tuesday instead of Monday and Wednesday: ie the fact that it is missing from Tuesday is not recognised.

So is what I am trying to do actually do-able with Autotools?

Thanks in advance for any advise

submitted by /u/jrobbom5
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Using Tasker for setting a specific governor?

Tasker: Total Automation for Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 13:50

Hello, I have made a profile where Tasker changes my processor frequency using Kernel Adiutor but I am unable to change the governor! Which method (instead of Tasker's built-in one which proves not to work for me) would you suggest (third party or not)?

submitted by /u/dedadadada
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Why? -- Android forcing removing of colors from the notification bar

Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 13:34

I use Textra for messaging. The developer notified the users that Android is forcing developers to remove colors from the notification bar for icons.


I use different colors to note who each text is from so I know whether I *need* to reply or not. This seems silly to force the removal.

Is there a valid reason for this?

submitted by /u/crosley123
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Pandora won't close or stop anymore

Tasker: Total Automation for Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 13:13

Very recently, Tasker seems unable to kill the Pandora app, nor pause or stop Pandora music using Tasker's Media controls. I can launch Pandora fine with Tasker, just can't pause, stop or close it when I'm done. I'm on Android Pie with Oneplus 6t, non rooted. Is this a known issue, by chance? I searched but couldn't find any posts about it.

submitted by /u/friendlyhermit
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Vintage Rotary Phone Turned Virtual Assistant

Hack a Day - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 13:00

Like many of us, [Zoltan Toth-Czifra] has completely embraced 21st century living. His home is awash in smart gadgets and dodads, from color changing light bulbs to Internet-connected cameras. But he’s also got a soft spot for the look and feel of vintage hardware, like the rotary phone he keeps kicking around to remind him of the old days. He recently decided to bridge these two worlds by turning the rotary phone into a modern voice controlled assistant.

The first piece of the puzzle was getting the old school phone connected to something a bit more modern, namely a Raspberry Pi. He didn’t want to hack the vintage phone apart, so he picked up a Grandstream HT801, an adapter that’s used to convert analog telephones to VoIP. [Zoltan] says this model specifically fit the bill as it had a function that allows you to configure a number to dial as soon the phone is lifted off the hook. This allows the user to just pick up the phone and start talking without having to dial anything manually. If you’re looking to pull off a similar setup, you should check to make sure the adapter has this function before pulling the trigger.

With the rotary phone now talking a more modern protocol, [Zoltan] just needed to get the Raspberry Pi side sorted out. He installed a SIP server so it could communicate with the HT801 adapter, and then got to work putting together his virtual assistant. Rather than plug into an existing system, he rolled his own by combining open source packages for controlling his various smart devices with the aptly named SpeechRecognition library for Python.

Right now he’s only programmed a few commands that his system can respond to for controlling his lights and music, but mentions that the system is modular enough that he can add new functions easily. He’s put the source for his virtual assistant framework up on GitHub, which he notes was written in less than 200 lines of original code by virtue of utilizing existing libraries for a lot of the heavy lifting. Open source is a beautiful thing.

In the past we’ve seen rotary phones go mobile thanks to GSM upgrades and dragged kicking and screaming onto the modern phone network with a built-in Raspberry Pi. But we think there’s something especially appealing about the approach [Zoltan] took which preserves the phone’s original hardware.

When is google fixing the volume buttons reaction when opening an app?

Android - Sat, 11/17/2018 - 12:49

When you open an app, in the splash screen you can't change the volume until it finishes loading, why hasn't google fixed this yet? It happens since 4.4 and maybe older.

submitted by /u/M1810
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