I don’t really know PHP, but I like to tinker. When I came across a PHP library for utilising the Synology APIs by Nicolas Cerveaux (zzarbi) on GitHub I thought it would be a challenge to see if I could get it working as an Alfred workflow (the add-on Powerpack is required to run PHP scripts). I began by attempting to get my DiskStation to tell me its model designation, installed RAM, serial number, temperature, uptime and DSM version: a step-by-step follows. Continue reading
Like many users of Skype I don’t want to link to FaceBook contacts (having long since deleted my presence there) and I don’t want see ads. Opening Skype should default to the Contacts list, and while I’ve no solution for that, I have worked out how to stop Skype on a Mac from loading the Skype Home window contents. The solution involves Little Snitch.
Having used Google Reader daily (via Reeder and Flipboard), I was disappointed at the decision to close it, and so was looking for an alternative that would be less prone to implosion. Fever is a web-based feed reader with knobs on written by Shawn Inmann of Mint fame and includes an API, meaning it can work with client software other than web browsers. It offers ‘as expected’ features like feed management, but also ‘valued added’ features—notably the automated detection of how ‘hot’ links/stories are based on frequency of occurrence across all the feeds to which you subscribe. Fever is built around a PHP script that you host on your own server space, in conjunction with a MySQL database. All done in 6 simple steps :-) Continue reading
I use Alfred every day under OSX, admittedly primarily as an application launcher. Alfred’s developer touts the ability of the software to ‘create immensely powerful workflows by connecting keywords, hotkeys and actions together to extend Alfred to do amazing things without writing a single line of code’. Of course, if you do write some code, that becomes powerful with a capital ‘P’. I noted Alfred lets you execute PHP scripts, and since I had hacked my way to using a few of these in GeekTool I thought I try repurposing one for use in Alfred. Turns out creating an Alfred workflow it pretty easy, and I was happy with the result of the 5 minute time investment it took to figure this all out. Here is my workflow for reporting the upstream and downstream connection speed of my broadband modem (a SpeedTouch 585v7). Continue reading
LogMeIn is a useful remote control service: shame it doesn’t work when my home Mac has gone into power-saving sleep. I use an ADSL modem in bridge mode which provides a fixed public IP address to my Apple Time Capsule, which performs NAT and DCHP on my LAN. A Synology NAS and iMac are both connected to this /24 (in my case 192.168.1.* range) LAN via Ethernet. Both devices support wake-on-LAN (WoL), although the Synology server is always-on. So could I make use of the NAS to ‘wake up’ my sleeping iMac from a remote location, given that WoL does not work over the Internet? Continue reading