WEEK 19 2015
Tue- Wed- Thur-
Picture of the Week
This Week, 2003
this week, 2004
Years Ago, this week, 2005
Years Ago, This Week, 2006
Years Ago, This Week, 2007
Years Ago, This Week, 2008
Years Ago, This Week, 2009
Years Ago, This Week, 2010
Saturday - A nice day. I did some chores, this
and that, and fiddled with the app a bit. I tried a few different options,
trying to get the switch controller to work the way we want, without any
Friday - More nice weather.
Cool and a bit windy, but not like Thursday.
In the morning I wrestled with UIAccessibility containers some more. Bah.
Everything works as it should (except the transformations, which is a
separate issue) until I get more than about 5 elements in the container,
then it defaults back to the standard row-by-row selection, rather than
individual element selection that I
specifically implemented the container to do, as per Apple's
documentation! Sigh. I'm glad I made a little testcase before
modifying the actual production code...
I told S that it's the programming
equivalent of walking into a glass door - things are fine, your hard work is
paying off, you're happy and pleased and suddenly: WHAM!
Lab in the afternoon. I didn't do well, my brain was obviously thinking of
other things. Ah well. On the bright side, I've met my 24H requirement - by
Book #23 was Prospero
Regained (Prospero's Daughter #3), by L. Jagi Lamplighter. It was OK -
in fact, it was pretty good. You can tell the author is gaining experience
and confidence as you read through these books.
7 May 2015
Windier than all get out. I finally texted G and said we'd put the digging
off until next week...
Other than that, just working on the switch stuff. I have it working (90%)
for a small testcase, now I need to get it incorporated with the real code,
Essentially what iOS does is look for an accessibility
tag on a screen element (button,slider,text input), and send the
'focus' to that element. That's the default, and it kind of works for simple
control elements. Image accessibility tags are off by default, but can be
easily turned on. You also can attach labels and hints to be shown or read
by the system speech synthesizer too - Apple got that part right.
If it's something even mildly complicated like a cell in a table or the
header controls in a view it probably breaks and you have to code it up
yourself. And if it's not a standard control you have to do it yourself. And
the order it parses the elements is fixed - upper left to lower right, which
often makes no sense.
You can fix this by turning off the default tags. Then you create a series
of virtual frames over the top of the things you want to access (the frames
are called 'accessibility elements'), then put those
elements in the order you
want them to be accessed in an 'accessibility container'. The
elements can have useful information attached, just like the standard UIKit
elements. You then include some standard methods - it's an 'informal
protocol' - and Bob's your uncle.
Because unlike pretty much everything else in iOS the
accessibility element frames are in physical coordinates, not view
coordinates. So your frame around, say, a horizontal button in a
subview at the right side of the screen shows up as a vertical frame in the
lower left of the screen! WTF Apple?
Which is the 10% that isn't working for me. I'm using a transformation ('convertRect:')
from the subview to the device coordinates, but it isn't working - the final
position is clearly just the local view coordinates in the screen hardware
coordinates. It's easy enough to hand code the transformation, I've done it
a zillion times, but I shouldn't have to.
We had a nice thunderstorm blow in, early evening, with rain, thunder and
(somewhere) lightning. Nice.
Wednesday 6 May
Wednesday - It's gotten windy again,
reminds me of Lancaster in the 80's and 90's.
Mostly I fiddled around with switch and accessibility stuff for iOS. Part
works, part doesn't, this stuff takes time. The documentation and examples
are mostly awful.
I've the iPad connected to test things (the Simulator is almost useless for
this stuff - Apple's happy to eff up Xcode and the rest with regular
pointless changes, but doesn't give a damn about fixing that 2nd rate piece
An annoyance: Every time I connect it OSX asks if I want to install iOS 8 on
it, and download the pictures via iTunes. Every single time. No
and no. iOS 7 still has 20% of the
market share, we need it to test against.
In the early evening I went over to the college lab, to get a few hours for
lab. Last time the annoying talkers were kids watching boxing, this time it
was a kid in front of a turned off
computer, playing a handheld game, and talking loudly about it to
The Blue Griffon editor is stupid - every time I insert a horizontal line I
have to apply the settings, 25%, 2D, black, etc, it doesn't remember them
(unlike the much older kompoZer. And, for some reason, it won't let me
copy/paste and existing separator.
Tuesday - [Update:
6may2015] G stopped by just before lunch, and I had him do a bunch
It was a solid 3.5 hours of work, but he did a good job, and I paid him for
his time (and made us both burgers for lunch!).
- take the 25 remaining tiles out of the Explorer, and stack them by the
- stack the other 15 tiles I'd already removed two weeks ago with them
- stack the 25 landscape blocks out of the way
- move the 30 cinder blocks out of the way
- clean up the side yard preparatory to putting some pavers down
I broke down and paid for a file transfer program for OSX. I feel kind of
like a chump, but it's worth $10 not to worry about things, and to get back
on track with updating the web pages...
Started updating things. Several lost weeks.
And I realized I never got Gimp working properly on OSX. Hmmm. Well,
everything in time...
Monday - [Update:
6may2015] Fiddling about, reading documentation on switches,
VoiceOver and UIAcessibilityContainers, and CoreBluetooth foundation stuff.
My head hurts...
Class in the afternoon.
I downloaded Blue Griffon to edit web pages on the Mac. It's a descendant of
KompoZer supposedly. No one's updated Kompozer in years, and it has issues
with later versions of OSX. Even Blue Griffon hasn't be updated in a couple
of years, but it's free, so...
Then I tried to get a file transfer program. FileZilla was my first choice,
but it's hosted by SourceForge, which means all sorts of advertising malware
would be downloaded, so that was out. Everything on the OSX App Store was
pricey - even the 'lite' versions are $10, which is ridiculous for programs
that have functionally been around for decades.
I guess I could update things from the command line...
Sunday - [Update:
6may2015] Very nice weather. I spent the day doing more minor
Thursday some friends came by and turned over the vegetable planters, so
yesterday and today I spent time putting in the tomatoes, and also putting
in some marigolds I bought Friday into the flower pots in the new east wall
My friend's teenaged boy has agreed to come by and help with some yard
chores that my hands just aren't up too, next week, so maybe I can make
better progress on things than I've been making.
Book #22, was a Honorverse prequel:
Call to Duty (Manticore Ascendant Book #1), by David Weber and Timothy
Zahn. Not bad. Zahn's a good writer, but spends a lot of time writing
novels set in other people's creative universes, which is too bad. It
probably pays though.
Anyway, it was a library book, and I picked it up on a whim, read the blurb
and didn't feel like reading it. It's a prequel to the Honor Harrington
books, which I've gotten a bit tired of.
Then, bored, when it was near return time I picked it up and started reading
midway through...and it was OK. Not great, but OK. So I read the whole