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Living Room / Re: location triggers for android
« on: November 04, 2014, 03:28 AM »
+1 from me for Tasker in combination with AutoLocation (a Tasker Plugin).

AutoLocation uses the Google Geofences technology. You can define any region of any size (even overlapping or one within another - e.g. a fence with 1km diameter informing you by popping up a dialog that you are nearby the shopping mall and that you you can go shopping now and a smaller circle inside this region just round the shopping mall that opens automatically your shopping list textfile when you are just in front of the mall. :)

There are some more useful Plugins from the same developer available like AutoVoice, AutoShortcut etc. that can be used in combination with each other and Tasker to do all kind of stuff on all kind of events/triggers you can imagine. All not free, but really well done and mighty, so worth every penny IMHO.

Well, as this needs a bit of insight into Android (Events blah blah) and a bit of logical thinking (call it a bit of programming thinking) this is maybe not for the newbie user. It takes a bit of effort to put a working system together that do what you need, but if you have it, the options are endless.


Living Room / DC MicroGathering USA<->Germany :)
« on: October 15, 2014, 08:07 AM »
Hi DoCo's,

I became good friend with also long time DonationCoder member Ken many years ago. Since then in both of us grew the wish to meet sometimes in real life. But for many reasons it never takes place since now. You can imagine how happy I was when Ken sent me an email announcing that he plans to visit me in Germany this year together with his sister Terry.

I went immediately to my teammate at work Ute. She also knows Ken from chatting. I told her about the good news. She got excited too and instantly agreed to take off some days from work, as me, while Ken's and Terry's visit. As my flat is too small for three people and hers is much bigger, she offered to give Ken and Terry shelter, bed and breakfast. Thank you Ute for your offer and help, without them the visit would’nt been possible.

There was a lot of planning to do in advance. Ken, who was never outside the USA before, need to get a passport first. Also the activities have to be planned. Where to go? What needs to be visited? And so on.

Then the day was coming! On Saturday 28th of June 2014, Ken and Terry started their trip to Germany with the first hop from Jacksonville to Charlotte international Airport. From there their next flight crosses the Atlantic Ocean directly to Frankfurt/Main, the most biggest airport in Germany. At this time Ute and I met in Stuttgart to prepare the arrival of our guests with some shopping and whatnot. In the evening we decided to have a nice pizza together to celebrate the upcoming arrival of Ken and his sister in a few hours. The funny part about this was, that I installed a flight tracker app on my smartphone (it is named FlightAware if you are interested in and its completely free). So we were able to follow Ken's and Terry's plane in nearly real time with all technical details like flight height, course, airspeed, delay and also the exact position of the plane, even in a graphical manner showing a small plane icon on a world map. But as there were still some more hours to wait, Ute and I parted and went to bed.

At the next morning (Sunday 29th July 2014) my first look goes to my smartphones display to see where the plane had gone over night. And it was already over the european shore. If my geographic knowledge was right they were over Belgium. So just a few minutes to go until touchdown in Frankfurt. When Ken and Terry had landed in Frankfurt and got their baggage, they have to switch to the train that will bring them to their final destination Stuttgart (about 200 km away from Frankfurt in the southwest of Germany). Ken was eager to ride the German high-tech train ICE, that will go up to 280 km/h on the high-speed tracks between Frankfurt and Stuttgart. The ICE passes this about 220 km in about 1h 20 min.

Ute and I met on Sunday morning to go together to the railway station. At about noon the ICE with Ken and Terry arrived just in schedule. We waited on the platform and looked around for the people we only know from chat and Skype. And then, there they are! What a hello on the platform. What a hugging and even some tears. Friends for years that never met before. It was just awesome. Then we grabbed the suitcases and walked down the platform towards the cabs.

When we arrived at my home, we raided at first my father's apartment to say hello and have a nice “welcome snack” with Swabian pretzels (with and without butter), Salami sticks and Prosecco (an italian speciality - something between wine and champagne). The funny thing here was, that my dad don't speak a single word english (only Italian and German) while Ken and Terry neither speak Italian nor German. So at first I started to be the simultan translator. But after a few minutes I was jobless, because Ken and my Dad started to communicate with gestures using their hands and feets. They learned each other some english and italian words. :D And I was astonished how good it worked. I just have to jump in rarely when the topic gets too complicated. After that Ken and Terry went with Ute to her home to unpack. Two hours later they came back. In the meantime one of my best friends Ralf joined us and we all went out to have dinner in a restaurant with Swabian specialities (Rostbraten with Spätzle – Kind of roasted beef with swabian homoemade noodles). Of course Ken and Terry suffer from jet lag and so we quit the evening early to go to bed.

The following two weeks were filled with the planned activities. Sad thing about this was, that the weather was not very good at that time. So some of the planned activities had to be canceled. :( For example I have planned to hire my friend who own a nice oldtimer. An old Mercedes-Benz convertible, brown with white leather interior. I thought it would be fun for Ken and Terry to drive like some VIP to the raptor flight show. But there was sadly no day with weather good enough and warm enough to drive in an open car. And with the bad and rainy weather, the birds in the show won't fly anyway.

It was the wish of Ken and Terry to visit the "Zugspitze", the highest mountain in Germany (belongs to the Alps and sits directly on the border Germany/Austria). Because it is a bit away from Stuttgart, it was a whole day trip to go back and forth. The way up was done by a big and long ropeway. What a pity it was very foggy this day, so you can’t see a long-range from the mountaintop.

But other activities went well. So we had an italian eve in my aunt, my cousin and uncles flat. My stepfather and my uncle are native italians and so we had a lot of genuine italian food (cheese, salami, lasagna) and beverages (wine, grappa) this evening. Another teammate, namely Jota, that knows Ken also from chat, is from Greece and invited us to an genuine Greek evening with "Pastizio" (a greek pasta bake). Thank you Jota for the great evening. Some other evening's were spent together with my dad with Swabian specialities like "Maultaschen" (mouth bags) and grilling with a lot of fun. Some visits in restaurants completed the evening activities.

On some other days we went to some points with lookout over the city. On another day I hired my regular cabdriver, which is a licensed city guide, to do a guided city tour with us, explaining to us some historical details about the buildings, castles and the history of Stuttgart which was long time the residence of the King of Württemberg. We also touched the prominent Mercedes-Benz Museum with it’s award winning architecture (but had no time to go in) and the original garage of Mr. Daimler, where he invented and built the world's very first automobile. The birthplace of the modern cars and anchestor of all the automobiles we use nowadays.

An extraordinary day was also the 5th of July, when we all went at first to an exhibition of my blind self helping organization. There Ken and Terry could examine and try some of the modern helping gadgets for visually impaired and blind people. Ken also tried to walk around using a white long stick that is used by blind people to fumble the ground when they are walking. In the afternoon we went to the clubhouse of my maritime club. On that day we had a day of open houses together with all the other watersports clubs at the lake. All people were invited to meet us and try the things our and all the other clubs has to offer. That includes sailing, ruddering, learning knots, rope throwing, kajaking  and much more. So Ken and Terry had the chance to get a ride on our two mast sailing boat, the biggest ship at the lake. At the evening we had a nice grilling together with the club members.

There were also a few days we did nothing or just less, to rest and recover. On that days we just sat together, had nice conversations (I think we solved all the problems and diseases from all over the world, but I forgot the solution we came about - what a pity – maybe it was 42. But i can’t remember. :D ) or just played a nice boardgame.

Then this sad but expected Saturday 12th of July came around. The day of departure. We met in the morning to escort Ken and Terry to the railway station. We were there long time before the train parts to be sure to not miss it. So we had enough time to sit down at the platform and have some last conversations. When the time of departure came, there was still no train on the track. Huh? But also no announcement. Ute noticed, that there was an ICE train standing and waiting on the next platform though. But that could not be ours. Ute went over there anyway and asked the conductor. Then she ran back and yelled that it IS indeed our train. WTF??? They changed the track and platform without announcement to the passengers. Are they nuts? So we had to run to the train and had no more time to say a nice goodbye. Just a small handshake and a hug must be enough, because the conductor already forced us to hurry up because the train has to leave.

Then Ute and I were alone again. Ken and Terry had left. We went home, cleaned up a bit and tried to remember again the last wonderful days. While Ken and Terry where on their way to Frankfurt by train to catch their plane back to Charlotte and then to Jacksonville. Of course I traced their flight again with my smart phone app.

It was a wonderful experience and a wonderful time. I loved to have Ken with me in real life and enjoyed the days. Ken took hundreds of photos and send me some of them that he selected as the “best of”. From that selection I took a few to post it here to let you see how great this meeting of two DonationCoder members was.

I hope you enjoyed my report about the DCRLCT (DonationCoder RealLife ComeTogether) and i hope that there will be many more of these events, so that we all can learn us to know in real life.


Me (JoTo) at the maritime club while the day of open houses

Ken and Hans-Jürgen (a maritime club member) at the maritime club while the day of open houses, preparing a radio controlled model boat, getting ready to let have Ken drive a round with it

Ken and Ute

Terry and Ken

Post New Requests Here / Re: Inverse filter for white windows
« on: April 08, 2014, 08:28 AM »
Hi cool-RR, (a.k.a. bro in mind),

i'm visually impaired and MUST HAVE light on dark theme. dark on white theme renders unreadable for me because i got blended.

I am doing an everlasting fight with pc and android developers to convince them to offer color customization and/or a dark theme. Cant count the endless amount of emails i wrote already.

I have not found a solution yet. Well, i use Magnifying Glass Pro that can have a screen magnification of 1x for a full screen and applying an inverse (beside some other) filters. It also offers an hotkey or even automatic activation/deactivation of the filter (e.g. when your mouse enters the window or leaves it). But that wont help you much, because you just want a filter that only lasts for some seconds and not all the time.

So i am out of help, but its good to know that i'm not need to feel like an alien because i just like (or in my case need) a dark background with bright font color.


Hi Peter,

thank you for you lengthy but very interesting post. There are some very good points in it.

I agree with you, that with a scripting tools like AHK you are prepared for everything, but you need programming capabilities, which is not for everyone. And i must put a grain of salt into your hymn for AHK. I agree it's a mighty and helpful thingy, but the language itself (the syntax and synopsis, which is originally based on AutoIT 2 syntax) is a desaster, a hell and a pain in the *ss. :) That made me follow AutoIt when V3 was released with a REAL programming language syntax and not followed the AHK path. I hated AutoIt 2 Syntax from the beginning, but at that times there was no alternative. So yes, AHK is mighty but not for everyone, and not for me. At least not for my premier Scripting tool which is AutoIt 3 in which i can do 99% of the things i can do in AHK too, but with a real programming approach and not a bunch of cryptic characters in a line (AHK script often remind me on some geeky perl scripts in which you can also do wonderful things in a few characters, but nobody would recognize what you are doing - often not even yourself when looking in it after a year for maintenance reasons). :)

But the macro recorder i have chosen now (but not yet showed to the hotline staff) is based on AHK anyway. Pullovers Macro recorder offers both. A click together or record your activities in realtime approach on one side and an export to an AHK script and use it as a starting point for tweaking in programming manner.

But i, for sure, will also have a look at tiny task. Now you made me curious. :)

For the topic "text expander" i must agree too. PE (which i use myself - i own a pro V10 license) is a great app. But i also must agree that the support of Bartels Media is often very rude and impolite. The customer care is not at it's best. More like "pay, go away, shut up and don't ask us dumb questions". That is shown also int that they claim to monitor every comment on BDJ before releasing it to the public because of some bad experiences in the past. What do they fear or hide? Negative posts? So what? Can't you find a negative point in every app? A wise guy said in the past: A finished, perfect and bug free application is always out of date! :)

Also the license policy of PE is a very bad thing. I was asking in the past for a discount for existing PE customers when i want to purchase another license for portable version. There was NONE at first, and after i complained i got one. But only a few bucks less than the original price. The discount was not worth to mention at all. Result was, that i rejected to purchase a second protable license. I wonder if the company of PE is able to calculate in a mercantile manner. Lets see: 1 License + 10 or 20 bucks for a second portable one is definitely more than only 1 License + nothing. But *shrug* if they want it this way, every kid should get his balloon in the color it wants. :)

It's true that PE can do more than just text replacing. But from all the macro/hotkey stuff, i must admit, i just use some forms and mail creation. For other things i use other applications. PE macros are very complicated to create (just my opinion). But the question is, if i need to pay for features i don't want and use? I.e. i recently got angry about my Amazon prime membership, when they started to include the instant video feature to it. Of course together with a price raise of 20 Euro!!!!! 20 Euro for something i'm NOT interested in, i haven't asked for and that have nothing to do with the former intent to get your orders that you place at amazon faster and without handling and shipping costs (which i really like and find the service superior). But i'm not a video streamer, i cannot use the service on my android device. What the heck is the idea behind to include a video streaming feature to an order-delivery-premium service subscription (beside to get more money from the customers). I really think about to quit my membership...but would miss the permier delivery service. And there is no subscription available with only the old features for a lowere price. :( Same with PE, do i really need a hotkey/macro feature in a text utility like it is implemented in PE? I wonder when PE will start having a musicplayer or a cook-coffee function being implemented. :(

Again, thank you for pointing me to Phrase Expander. I'd have a look at this too and maybe my next purchase, if my PE V10 license ends, is NOT at Bartels Media online shop. Who knows. Calculating for Bartels media: 1 License + rude support + alternative program = 0 Euro for Bartels Media.

OH, i know Bartels media is a member of DC and reads the forum  (at least from time to time). But thanks god i know mouser very well and therefore my post here wont be monitored first before releasing it to the public. So no chance for Bartels Media to stop it...Na na na na naaaa naaaaa! :)


LOL, of course mouser must have to go over the top again, eh?

Instead of recommend a single tool he points me to a whole review and ranking of 10 of them. :)

Thank you mousieeeeee, will read that.


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