iOS 14 Camera setting not restored on launch

In iOS 13 (and prior, probably) there was a Camera setting that would “remember” how you had the app configured last time you took a photo. This was very handy if there are particular filters, aspect ratios, and other tweaks you typically use when shooting a photo. (These days, for example, I mostly shoot iPhone photos in Square ratio.)

After installing iOS 14, this totally changed. Camera would no longer launch to my previous settings. I found a preference that seemed to be the same as the one in iOS 13, but it didn’t work the same. Bottom line: To mimic the old behavior you need to turn on all three options in Settings > Camera > Preserve Settings. Seems like feature creep to me, but there you are, go forth and be happy.

iphone camera settings

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Levelator is not dead!

Oh! Thank you to MacSparky for blogging that a new version of The Levelator is available in the Mac App Store. This utility is a must-have for anyone producing spoken word audio. I'm glad to see it's back from the dead.

I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer

Join the IndieWeb

Another nice summary of why you should be posting at your own domain and not a parasite like Medium: Autonomy Online: A Case For The IndieWeb — Smashing Magazine

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Thank you, Pinboard

Congratulations to Pinboard, a bookmarking service that has reached the age of 11 years. That's an eternity in the Internet world, but I'm not surprised, because it is a service that I not only love, but consider essential. I've only been a member for 10 years, and during that time I've stashed thousands of links, which are searchable, cached, and virtually at my fingertips. Additionally, I have an archive of every tweet I've made since joining Pinboard, which might come in handy in court one day. (I kid, I kid.) It's also remarkable that Pinboard remains a one-man, lovingly crafted artisanal software operation. If you're the type who bookmarks pages so you can refer to them later, you should definitely sign up.

I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer

Tablet Stands I’ve Known

I love the AmazonBasics Adjustable Tablet Holder Stand so much that I’ve purchased four of them. Not because of breakage or loss, but because they work so damn well. In addition to being suited for a variety of digital devices — I use mine with iPhone, Kindle, and iPad Pro — they work great for displaying collectables such as plates, awards, or books. They’re inexpensive, and pack light enough (and small enough) that I carried one across Europe for five months. (And I hate hauling stuff around that I don’t need, I needed this!) What makes it so versatile is the degree of adjustability. (Amazon’s photos really don’t do it justice in this regard.)

Now, having said all that, I’ve also tried the AmazonBasics Multi-Angle Portable Stand. It’s nominally smaller, but not nearly as adjustable. But if I were looking for a stand that would mostly remain in one place, adjusted to a single angle, I’d choose it. (For example, an iPad kept on the kitchen counter.)

Finally, I should mention the Twelve South Compass. It’s beautiful. It is a lovely piece of art and craftsmanship. If an intruder broke into your home, you could use it to knock him out and then plunge one of its arms deep into his chest. As much as it aesthetically pleases me, I don’t travel with it, and rarely use it.


I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer

The Silver Ingot: A Las Vegas Text Adventure Game

I've written a short text adventure game you can play in your web browser. It's called "The Silver Ingot: A Las Vegas Adventure" and it's based on actual events.

To play, just click this link: Play Now

It has been decades since I last wrote a "choose your own adventure" game, and I used this opportunity to learn a more modern authoring and coding approach. (It's written using Twine2.) I hope you like it. If you've ever played ZORK or Colossal Cave, you'll feel right at home.IngotLogo

I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer

Automatically open the printer status window

If you're a Mac OS X (macOS) power user, you should certainly have a copy of Keyboard Maestro. (If you don't stop reading now and go there. You're welcome.) This tiny little trick requires that you have it...

My HP LaserJet printer is not on the same floor as my home office. Therefore, whenever I print something, I like to keep tabs on the print job so I know when it's finished or has encountered problems. Normally, to do this, you have to click the printer's icon in the Dock.

I hate clicking things when I don't have to.

So I wrote what might be the world's simplest macro. It's triggered by the print job starting, then it clicks the monitor apps which causes the status window to open. Brilliant? Not really, but it is very handy. Here's what it looks like:

Screen Shot 2020 05 25 at 1 59 32 PM

I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer

Dr Fauci and Time Travel

Forbes is a questionable source of news (particularly tech news) and while this article is interesting, they are missing the obvious conclusion that Dr Fauci is a time traveller. Here are photos of the "two" men side-by-side. Fauci Time Traveller

I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer

Clever garage door sensor hack

Just filing this away here... a nice homemade bracket that adapts a door sensor to a garage door in a very clever way.

Garage Door Bracket for Wyze Sense - YouTube: ""

I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer

Creating a yearly macOS Mail archive

I’m sort of a packrat when it comes to email messages, so by the end of the year my IMAP account is cluttered messages I’ve read. I like to keep them around for reference, but I also want to clear out that space on my mail server. Here’s my process to accomplish both. (I generally wait until mid-year to do this, to help ensure I no longer need instant access to old messages.)

In the macOS Mail app, create a Smart Mailbox that gathers all messages for the year. Be sure to include Sent messages so you have a complete record.


creating a new mailbox

When the Smart Mailbox has finished finding all the messages in the date range, create a new regular mailbox (not another smart one). Select all the messages in the Smart Mailbox and drag them to the new non-smart mailbox. (It feels like you shouldn’t need to do this, but trust me, you do.)

Wait patiently while the Mail app moves all those messages over to the new mailbox. This will take a while, and if you squint, you can monitor the progress at the bottom of the Mailboxes pane.

mail progress indicator

When Mail has finished moving the messages to the mailbox, Command-click the mailbox and choose Export Mailbox from the pop-up menu. Choose a destination (I always make a new enclosed folder) and let ‘er rip. This will take a long time to finish. Once again, watch the progress indicator to see if it’s done.

When it is finished, you’ll have an “mbox” folder saved at the destination. At this point, your messages are safely archived on disk and you can go back to Mail and delete both the mailboxes you created during this procedure. Again, keep an eye on the progress indicator. Removing all those message from the server will take time. But you’ll be left with a nice uncluttered IMAP account.

Now, how do you look at or search the archived messages? I mean, that’s why you kept them, so you can refer to them, right? The files on disk are just text, so something like HoudahSpot, or even the Finder (gasp), can search them. But you’ll be happier if you use an app that understands the mbox format and presents them more or less like how you expect email messages to appear. EagleFiler would be a good choice, I hear, but I don’t use it myself. I am already a heavy DEVONthink user, so that’s my app of choice. I import each mbox into a database that’s dedicated to my old email.


devonthink progress indicator

If you do this, notice that DEVONthink has (unfortunately) taken a cue from Mail and shows its own barely noticeable progress indicator. You’ll want to make sure importing is finished before quitting DEVONthink and throwing about the mbox files.


I do not accept advertising, but the Amazon want you to know that some links may contain affiliate codes that dangle the promise of earning me a few pennies towards running this site should you happen to purchase a qualifying product. Humbly, Gordon Meyer