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Past Episodes

CCATP #452 Dr. Garry Asks “Compared to What?”

Dr garry in office with booksDr. Maryanne Garry, Professor of Psychology at Victoria University of Wellington joins us again, this time to talk about how to interpret studies you hear about in the “news”.

Flossing is bad for you! Hormone Replacement Therapy causes cancer! Mediterranean diet lowers cholesterol!

Dr. Garry explains how to research these claims and what to look for in terms of scientific process vs. drawing correlations from existing data.

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Don’t Let Your Activity Data Be Held Hostage

Activity plusplus pretty circlesI think that Apple has done a terrific job of getting us healthier with the Apple Watch and the iPhone but it’s a miracle that any of us have figured any of it out. Just to start a workout is often six separate steps of tapping and swiping and scrolling. But that’s not the hard part. For me the hardest part has been trying to unravel the mysteries of getting data to show up about my exercise.

I’ve started the writeup for this article four separate times. I keep walking away from it because I realize that I don’t fundamentally understand it. I’m hoping that I’ve finally cracked the code but I fully expect one or more of you to write to me and say, “no dummy, THIS is how it works.” I’m going to take a crack at it anyway.

The iPhone has a motion co-processor in it, the function of which is to collect sensor data from integrated accelerometers, gyroscopes, and the GPS. Armed with only an iPhone you can track your health and fitness. But let’s not do the easy thing, let’s throw the Apple Watch into the mix because it becomes SO much more entertaining to explain.

I’d better start with an end goal here, or some might call it a Problem to be Solved™. My goal is to have an app or apps on my iPhone that will collect metrics of my activity and display them in a graphical way. On the Fitbit app I used to get a nice graph of the week or months step count with a line showing my goal so I could see how often I was beating my goal and how much. So I want that kind of information for the active calories, and my step count as a minimum.
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NC #589 Live Show Sausage Making, Diagramming Live Show, Hangouts Moving, Screensharing, Fit and Healthy NosillaCastaways, Security Bits

In this week’s show we talk quite a bit about the tech behind the live show. I did a new diagram of how I broadcast my audio, Steve’s audio and my video to YouTube Live and to Alpha Geek Media and more. I created it with and you can see it at I made a 1 minute long video for Megan Moronne and Leo Laporte to talk about how the Smartbean from Antec can turn any headphones into Bluetooth, but my cat Ada sorta photo bombed it. I walk through the different methods of screensharing I use, including Skype, Messages and how adding QuickTime into the mix lets you include your iOS screens in the screen share. NosillaCastaways are becoming more fit and healthy because of our recent discussions and i read you a few anecdotes and tell you how even I upped my game because we’ve focussed on the tech. Bart Busschots is back with Security Bits too.

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NosillaCastaways Are Getting More Fit and Healthy

Activity++ move statisticsBack in the middle of June we had Bastian Wölfle come on Chit Chat Across the Pond to talk about how he got fit and healthy. Then a few weeks ago Bart came on Chit Chat to talk about how he used technology, specifically the Apple Watch and My Fitness Pal to finally take off the weight the doctor ordered.

This discussion has caused an awesome effect in the NosillaCastaways. I’ve been getting emails and tweets telling me how people have been inspired. Steven Goetz and I have often talked about fitness (I’m a bore that way), but after Bart was on, Steven said something wonderful. He said:

I like My Fitness Pal because if I don’t have enough calories, I can walk around the block and it gives me more.

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Mac and iOS Screensharing with Skype, Messages and QuickTime

We all have times where we really wish we could see the screen of someone we’re helping on their computer. There are a lot of commercial options like Log Me In, and Team Viewer, but I wanted to tell you about a couple of free and relatively easy ways to do it.

Screensharing with Skype

Skype share screenI’ve been doing a few remote presentations over Skype lately and it’s worked out pretty well. For example, we didn’t make it to Macstock this year, but with Mike Potter’s help, I was able to show my presentation to the crowd and be able to see them at the same time using Skype. I also like to use it when I’m helping someone with a computer problem.

First launch a video Skype call. You don’t have to have a video call going to do screen sharing but I wanted to see the person I’m talking to while I talk. I like a little feedback you know? In the menubar for Skype you’ll see Conversations. From there, pull down to Share Screen…
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CCATP #451 Programming By Stealth – Solving JavaScript Challenges Part 2

In episode #449, Bart Busschots walked us through how he’d solve the first half of the JavaScript challenges from PBS 19. This week we finish the second half of the 5th problem about Complex Numbers. Just like the last episode, we’re giving you the audio in the podcast, but if you’d like to watch the video of Bart building the solutions, you can watch right here.

Using a Screen Reader? click here

If you’d prefer the audio, of course that’s still available in the Podcast feed or directly below.

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Antec Smartbean Adds Bluetooth to Any Headphones

People are losing their ever-loving minds over the possibility that Apple may get rid of the headphone jack on the next iPhone. I’ve talked about the Antec Smartbean before but I decided to make a video for Megan Morrone and Leo Laporte to play on iOS Today. I thought it might be a good device for people who don’t want to buy all new headphones.

I did about 8 takes before finally nailing the video…but Ada decided to help. Being the consummate professional, I kept that part in.

Amazon link to the Smartbean:

Using a Screen Reader? click here

NC #588 Bandwidth Ideas, SSD in a Mac mini, Language Support on Podfeet, AppleTV on Hotel Wifi

George from Tulsa is back with some ideas on what might be causing Denise’s high bandwidth usage. It’s a great list of things to check out. Denise comes back with a great success story on the issue and then a walkthrough of her recent upgrade of her Mac mini to an SSD with some great advice. I get a word in edgewise with these two and talk about how I added language support to and how we FINALLY got our AppleTV working on hotel WiFi so Steve could watch the Olympics.

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Denise on Upgrading to an SSD on a Mac mini

Kit stock photoHello Fellow NosillaCastaways, this is Denise Crown with a review of Other World Computing’s SSD upgrade kit for the Mac mini.

I love my Mac mini. It’s a late 2012 with the i7 chip, a terabyte drive and 16 GB of RAM. Lately the spindle drive is showing signs of potential failure so I thought about buying a new computer, but Apple is due to refresh hardware and I really didn’t want to spend thousands right now.

This led me to pop over to and moments later I had ordered a 1 TB OWC Solid State Drive with a toolkit and an enclosure to turn my old drive into an external. Spoiler Alert: I just want to say right now that was the best purchase I’ve made in a long time. Read More

George Pulls the Pig’s Tail

George from Tulsa is back with another guest post:

In her July 31 review of the Netgear Nighthawk X8 Router, Denise mentioned a couple of problems to be solved, and I’m here to offer some suggestions and experience that might help.

Denise has a problem with “power bricks that block other outlets,” and I say Amen to that.

The solution that usually works for me is a pigtail. As an electronics “consumer” you’re more likely to see it advertised as a “Power Strip Liberator.”

I’ve been using the Coleman Cable’s 8-Inch Power Strip Liberator. They’re colorful, there’s a tiny light in one end that until it burns out tells at a glance if your device is plugged and powered, and they’re only ten bucks for three at the Amazon link in the Shownotes. There’s many similar products in real and virtual stores; I first saw the Colemans at Wallyworld.

Denise also mentioned “runaway bandwidth” that happens unpredictably, several times a year.

Been there, identified some.
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