Sunday, September 29, 2013

On the Way to VoIP - Part 3

One of the things you need to consider when moving to VoIP is what are you going to do about E911.

Obihai has a partnership with Anveo to offer E911 serivces to Obihai customers for $12 per year. The instructions are here.

Alternatively you can use the copper pair of the POTS line you just disconnected! POTS carriers (and cellular carriers) are required by law to handle 911 calls even if there is no subscribed service.

There are 2 ways to do this. The first is to keep a phone plugged into your old house wiring and use that for calling 911. That's my plan.

The second is to use a OBi110 with a line port. Plug your old house wiring into this port and you're done. Here's a review from Amazon where someone has done exactly this.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

On the Way to VoIP - Part 2

As I was testing VoIP with the OBi100 I wanted to test using my smartphones as clients.

Obihai has apps for iOS and Android. These apps traverse the Internet back to your house and use the OBi100 to originate the call.

I installed the iOS app on my iPad and it worked perfectly the first time. Then I installed the Android app. I noticed that it was last updated in October 2011. Unfortunately it didn't work as smoothly. If you want to see the blow by blow read this. As noted it works sometimes but not very often.

There is discussion in that thread about using other SIP clients and I tried that briefly but that was really non-trivial to setup.

Since my goal was not really to network back to my house and use the OBi100 I went looking for just Google Voice clients.

I found GrooVe IP Lite. It did exactly what I wanted and worked the first time. It makes and receives Google Voice calls from your Android device. You have to enable Google Chat in your Google Voice account but that should be done already for the OBi100. The Lite version only works over Wi-Fi but that is fine for now. There's a good guide for installation and use here.

Why didn't Google just do this with their Google Voice app?

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Jelly Bean Easter Egg

Jelly Bean is so cool. I'm probably the last person to discover this but Jelly Bean has an Easter egg.

If you go to "Settings" / "About phone" and tap "Android verion" several times a jelly bean will pop up. Long press it and it confirms that you're running "Jelly Bean" and then gives you a screen with floating jelly beans. The only objective is to flick the jelly beans off the screen. I guess it's a good time killer.

Similarly if you're running CyanogenMod tapping on "CyanogenMod version" will get you their Easter egg.

Engadget had a post on the Easter egg with a video of it in action.

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Jelly Bean Notifications

I'm still finding new stuff in Android's Jelly Bean. I recently moved to Pocket Casts and noticed that Pocket Casts takes advantage of a new Notification feature in Jelly Bean.

Applications can put additional information and even action buttons in the Notification area.

Here's the normal notification from Pocket Casts.

To expand the Pocket Casts notification, drag it down with 2 fingers.

You can resume playing the podcast directly from the Notification screen.


Sunday, September 01, 2013

2013 Pathfinder Setup

Remember my recent post about my Honda Accord's iMID system? Now my wife has gotten a new car, a 2013 Nissan Pathfinder. It has an in-dash screen but it is not as comprehensive as the Accord's. Subsequently some of the setup is a bit more obtuse.

Procedure for storing the outside mirror positions for best visibility when backing up

An outside mirror position for backing up can be stored for each memory switch (1 and 2):
  1. Set the parking brake.
  2. Place the ignition in the ON position. (Do not start the engine.)
  3. Push the memory switch 1 or 2 fully for at least one second to operate the automatic drive positioner.
  4. Turn the outside mirror control switch to L (Left).
  5. Depress the brake pedal.
  6. Move the shift selector to R (Reverse).
  7. Adjust the mirror to the desired viewing position for backing up by operating the outside mirror control switch.
  8. Push the SET switch and, within five seconds, push the memory switch 1 or 2 selected in step 3.
    • The indicator light for the pushed memory switch will come on and stay on for approximately five seconds after pushing the switch. After the indicator light goes off, the selected mirror position is stored in the selected memory (1 or 2).
  9. Turn the outside mirror control switch to R (Right). Repeat the above procedure to adjust the right mirror position and store in the selected memory.
    • When the driver’s seat and outside mirrors are not in the memorized position, the outside mirror will move with the initial tilt-down angle.
I love the "repeat" in step 9.