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January 25, 2014

Apple ID's - The Nightmare Continues

Although I was finally able to get my iPhone working with a single Apple ID for both the iCloud and Apple's App Store, I subsequently realized that all of my contacts were gone. (Or certainly most of my contacts were gone.)

Eventually, it dawned on me that my iPhone had automatically synced my contacts with the iCloud using the new Apple ID.

So, slowly, it dawns on my how the silly little iPhone works. Basically, it periodically checks your contact data against what it has in the iCloud. And, it destructively syncs the contacts from the iCloud down to your phone, if you can believe it. That's right, buddy. You've got 942 contacts in your phone, but then...hmm....iCloud only has 11? Goodbye 942 contacts! iPhone just unceremoniously blows them away. Doesn't ask for permission. No warning. Nothing. Goodbye contacts. Voila. They're gone.

However you can export all your contact information as a .vcf file

OK. Now, to get them back. Go to www.icloud.com and sign in with your old Apple ID and password.
Click on Contacts. They should all be listed there still.
In the lower left corner is a little gear symbol.
Click on the little gear symbol and then choose "Select All".
Click on the little gear symbol again and then select 'Export vCard'.

This will export all your contact information as a .vcf file. Try to pay attention to where it is saved.

Click up on your name in the top right corner and select "Sign Out" to sign out of iCloud.

Now sign back into iCloud under your new Apple ID.

Click on Contacts.
Click on the little gear symbol in the lower left corner and then choose "Import vCard".
Select the .vcf file that you exported from above.

Only, mine says "Unable to import vCard. This vCard cannot be imported because it contains invalid contact data."

Brilliant. Thanks for that Apple.

This guy explains how to solve the Unable to import vCard error.

Basically, he says that " iCloud requires the minimum of vCard(.vcf) version 3.0". So, I'm hoping this is my issue.

But, I checked, and my vcf file appears to be at version 3.0. So, that's not the problem, I don't think...

Finally, I sort of guessed that I needed to delete my contacts in the new Apple ID. I only had 22 in there. So, I clicked on the little gear symbol, "select all", and then "delete".

Then, click on the little gear symbol, select "Import vCard", selected my .VCF file and imported it successfully. Wooohooo!!!!!

Now....when will it sync with my iphone? I have no clue.

OK. I just checked my iphone...it's been about 13 seconds...the new contacts are already in there. :)

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 25, 2014 at 7:49 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 23, 2014

How to make star trails


Posted by Rob Kiser on January 23, 2014 at 8:28 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Generic Shoot EZa-C3_Digital Camera Timer Remote (China)


Posted by Rob Kiser on January 23, 2014 at 7:59 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Canon EOS 50D Software


Posted by Rob Kiser on January 23, 2014 at 7:24 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 20, 2014

What is my Apple ID?

So, Apple is a nightmare of oversimplification. They try to make you think that "it just works", when, in fact, it seldom works, in my experience.

Tonight, I tried to do a simple "Find My iPhone" test. And, needless to say, it didn't work.

Even though I have my iPhone right in front of me, and it's turned on, I can't find it using Apple's software.

This YouTube video looks like all would be simple enough. But it didn't work for me.

Basically, you're supposed to go to www.icloud.com and put in your Apple ID (whatever that is).

The problem seems to be that I have multiple Apple ID's (whatever those are). Then, you also have your iCould accounts/id's. It's maddeningly confusing to me, quite honestly.

So, then I began to wonder...what is the Apple ID on my phone? Now, this is not a simple question. Initially, I was using Jennifer's Apple ID on my phone. But, I began having problems when I was trying to play a game with a girl at work, so I had to break down and create my own Apple ID and put my own Apple ID into the phone, and stop using Jen's. At this point, it meant that some of my Apps were installed under Jen's Apple ID, and some of my apps were installed under My Apple ID. Confusing as shit. I know. But this is what happened.

So now, I'm running this bastardized iPhone with software installed under multiple Apple ID's. A fucking nightmare.

There is a way on the iPhone, as it turns out, to identify what the Apple ID is.

In iOS 5, go to Settings - Store.
In iOS 6, it's Settings - iTunes and App Stores.

Mine says "rob@wispertel.net"

But, if I go into Settings - iCloud, it says "robkiser12@gmail.com".

So, that's kind of confusing.

Now, as I research this...I learn that I have, in fact, created at least two Apple ID's.

Every iCloud account is, by definition, also an Apple ID. So, if you're using different Apple ID's/(email accounts) for iTunes and for iCloud then you are, in fact, using two different Apple ID's at once. But wait...it gets better...

You can't merge the two Apple ID's into one because, well, because Apple says so. They don't provide that functionality.

Also, it used to be that, initially, your Apple ID could be something other than an email address. It could just be a username. But now, they've changed that also so that you have to use an email address for your Apple ID.

OK. So, on my iPhone, I'm using at least two different email addresses/Apple ID's. Possibly more. But at least two. And they can't be merged. Nice.

This guy seems to explain my nightmare better than anyone else I've found so far.

So, I look at Jen's phone...she has the same email address for both the iCloud and the Apple Store. And they're both her wispertel.net account. So, I decide that I'll do the same thing. And I don't care if I have to berate everyone in the Apple store to do it.

The problem is that, if I go from Settings - iCloud - Account, I can't change my "Apple ID" to my wispertel account. Hmmmm.

This video seems shows how to change your iCloud Applid/email account.

That seems to have worked. I deleted my iCloud account. Then, I added a new iCloud account under my existing Apple ID of rob@wispertel.net.

Now, it appears that both the Apple Store and iCloud are using the same Apple ID. WTF, Apple? Why did you make that so fucking confusing? If Steve Jobs were alive today he'd be spinning in his grave.

Finally, I was able to do the first successful test of "Find My iPhone". Basically, you go to www.icloud.com and sign it with your Apple ID and password. (Now, I have only one for my iPhone and I know what it is). Then, your iPhone shows up on a map. But, it didn't seem like it would be able to help me find it within the house. Basically, the map shows it as two green circles laying on the ground outside. But, at least it gets me pretty close.

I think there's a way to make it start beeping/ringing, if it's not dead. Of course, I guess I could call it.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 20, 2014 at 4:51 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink

January 16, 2014

OpenDNS Virus Hijacked my Router

I noticed something odd about the behavior of one of my PC's upstairs...the browser was acting funny and saying something about OpenDNS, which wasn't really expected. Don't know how long this has been going on, but today it bothered me enough that I stopped it.

OpenDNS is a virus. The people that own it say it isn't. Everyone with brain knows otherwise. I think that these people should be found and ceremoniously drowned in a fountain. We could flog them on Pay-Per-VIew from a third-world country. Let people pay $100 a head to watch their backs slowly turn into hamburger meat in the heat of the day.

But I digress...

First, I tried to follow the directions on this website

Start - Settings - Control Panel - Network Connections.
Doubleclick my internet connection icon.
Select Internet Connection Protocol TCP/IP
My TCP/IP DNS Servers both said "Obtain DNS server address automatically".

So, I was thinking this would be my problem, but on my upstairs PC, this was not the issue.

The problem would be if it said "Use the following DNS Server Addresses:" and had these two listed:

Preferred DNS Server:
Alternate DNS Server:

But I didn't have that. I had "Obtain DNS server address automatically".

So, really, this looked correct to me. I decided to look at the TCP/IP configuration in DOS.

Start - Run - CMD

Microsoft Windows XP [Version 5.1.2600]
(C) Copyright 1985-2001 Microsoft Corp.

C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator>ipconfig /all

Windows IP Configuration

Host Name . . . . . . . . . . . . : master
Primary Dns Suffix . . . . . . . :
Node Type . . . . . . . . . . . . : Unknown
IP Routing Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
WINS Proxy Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
DNS Suffix Search List. . . . . . : My Essentials

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix . : My Essentials
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Broadcom NetXtreme 57xx Gigabit Controller
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-11-43-B5-52-E2
Dhcp Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . :
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . :
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . :
DHCP Server . . . . . . . . . . . :
DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . :
Lease Obtained. . . . . . . . . . : Wednesday, January 15, 2014 3:18:33 AM
Lease Expires . . . . . . . . . . : Monday, January 18, 2038 8:14:07 PM

So, what's interesting here is that these two DNS servers that I'm somehow configured to use ( & are definitely the servers of OpenDNS, so we don't want to use them. Ever. But where did they come from?

Continue reading "OpenDNS Virus Hijacked my Router"

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 16, 2014 at 11:14 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 11, 2014

Photo Stream/iCloud Control Panel 3.1 with Windows XP

So, I recently realized that iCloud Control Panel 3.1, Apple's solution for running Photo Stream in a Windows O/S, is not supported under the Windows XP O/S. And, although Robert R. is threatening to murder me if I don't upgrade my computers off of XP, I'm going to try to get Photo Stream running under XP just to see if I can.

So, I go to here http://support.apple.com/kb/dl1455 and download the iCloud Control Panel 3.1.

I get a file called iCloudSetup.exe.

But, before I did anything with it, I decided to search for an XP install solution. I found this web page which seems to indicate that it's possible.

But, after reading through the thread, it looks like this was only with the iCloud Control Panel 1.0. I'm not clear that I can get it to work with iCloud Control Panel 3.1 and XP.

Also, although I see some hacks for the earlier versions of iCloud Control Panel (version 1.0), nothing seems to get PhotoStream to work properly, and that's really all I wanted anyway, so I'm giving up on this project.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 11, 2014 at 5:50 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 10, 2014

Map of Mississippi Circa 1822

Here's the text of the map as an MS Word document.

Here's the text of the map as a PDF document, viewable in any PDF viewer, such as Adobe's Acrobat Reader (free).

Note that, in both of these documents, I have attempted to reproduce the text of the original image as accurately as practicable, down to and including spelling mistakes, formatting, indenting, italics, etc.

To view the full-sized high-resolution version of the map, click on the map above, or click here to see the Full-Sized Image below (in extended entry).

View more Historical Maps of Mississippi.

Full-Sized Image below (in extended entry).

Continue reading "Map of Mississippi Circa 1822"

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 10, 2014 at 7:45 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 9, 2014

Christmas 2013

Above: Lighting Chinese Lanterns on New Year's Eve

Jennifer and I were together in Madison, MS for a while over Christmas break. Then, she flew to New Mexico, and I hung around for a bit before flying back to Colorado. These photos were all captured over Christmas break of 2013/2014 in or around Madison, Mississippi. The photos were shot on a Canon EOS 50D with one of the following lenses:

EF-S 17-85mm f/4.5-5.6 IS USM image-stabilized, ultra-sonic telescopic zoom
EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM image-stabilized, ultra-sonic telescopic zoom

The soundtrack for the slideshow is Dirty Paws by Of Monsters and Men. I chose this song because I heard it somewhere and Shazam'ed it and it sorta got stuck in my head.

The images are compiled into an 8 Meg (4:24) Adobe Flash slideshow (2013_Christmas.swf) that will not work on an iPhone. However, everyone else on the planet should be able to open and view with any browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, etc.). To view the slideshow, just click on the photo above. If you're on a PC and want to view the slideshow as a Windows executable, you can play this version (2013_Christmas.exe), and it allows you to play, pause, skip forward, backwards, etc.

Image post-processing was done in Adobe Photoshop CS5 Extended. The slideshow was created using Imagematics Stillmotion Pro.

Click here to view the other slideshows.

Lyrics in the extended entry.

Continue reading "Christmas 2013"

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 9, 2014 at 5:36 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink