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iPhone on Willem's Blog

Syncing files seamlessly between smartphone and tablet

Using unison to automatically sync between GNU/Linux and the iPhone

Sep. 16, 2020
In order to optimise my workflow, I was looking for a way to seamlessly access the same files on both my computer and smartphone. Read along to find out how I did it.

In order to optimise my workflow, I was looking for a way to seamlessly access the same files on both my computer and smartphone. This is useful to when you want to quickly send files from your computer using your smartphone through various messaging apps and vice versa. Read along to find out how I did it.

Free from the iCloud: Escaping Apple Photos

Using offline photo library management software

Aug. 31, 2020
Recently I freed myself from Apple Photos, using free software to manage my photo library. Read along to find out what software I use and how to make it play nice with your devices.

After encountering the umpteenth ‘magic’ bug while managing my iPhone’s photos, I was done with it. Apple came a long way since it launched iPhoto (the predecessor of iCloud Photos). But for something as valuable as my personal memories, I want to be in full control. Read along to learn how I migrated my photo library away from the iCloud, using free, open source software.

Your own addressbook and calendar cloud

Share contacts, agendas and tasks with CardDAV/CalDAV

Feb. 28, 2020
You can setup a CardDAV/CalDAV server to manage your own contacts, addressbook, agenda and task data and share it between your devices.

If you use different devices and computers to get things done, you might want to synchronise contacts, agendas and tasks. You can use any of the 'big cloud' services for this, like Apple iCloud, Microsoft Office 365 and Google Gmail. But, if you prefer not to share your addressbook and calendar with big American companies, you can do it yourself.

Business in a bag

Using a waterproof backpack to fit my gear

Dec. 22, 2018
After much testing I have selected a bag and set of cases to fit my entire business, wherever I go.

Over the past few months I have been testing different bags and cases to fit everything I need to run my business. As I commute by bike, the bag needs to be waterproof. The problem with waterproof gear is that it is usually very bulky. I need my gear to be both portable and representative, a challenge worth a blog post!

Is the Apple Watch the modern tool watch?

Testing the Apple Watch's usefulness in real life

Nov. 2, 2018
I tested the Apple Watch during my work in Frankfurt this week where I had to go inside an internet data centre.

This week I went to Frankfurt for business. I had to perform maintenance to servers in a data centre. This seemed like a great opportunity to test the Apple Watch's usefulness in real life (other than health and fitness). I wondered, is the Apple Watch the modern tool watch?

Using a budget Android as main smartphone

Comparing a Nokia (€99) with an iPhone (€1329)

Oct. 9, 2018
I switched to Android to find out how good a budget smartphone performs compared to an expensive iPhone.

Every now and then, I switch phones to keep track of mobile developments. As professional app and web developer, I need to know how different devices work in real life. This time I used a budget Android smartphone, making me curious how it would compare to an expensive iPhone.

Swimming and cycling with Apple Watch

Different activities in the workout app in watchOS

Sep. 27, 2018
This month I tested the newest watchOS while swimming and cycling.

This month Apple launched a new Apple Watch series and released an update to watchOS. The focus of the smartwatch is more and more gearing towards health and fitness. This made me curious, how well does Apple Watch work for different activities?

Creating a minimal iPhone stand

Routing oak wood for a custom fit

June 2, 2018
Today I created a minimal iPhone stand from oak wood. I used a single piece of wood to get it done.

Today I created a minimal iPhone stand from oak wood. While it's much faster to buy one online, I wanted one to fit my phone horizontally, with its case on. I like minimal design, so I opted to machine a single piece of wood to get it done.

Updating Snake '97

About the challenges of developing a wildly popular game

Feb. 21, 2018
This month I bit the bullet big time: I redesigned the game engine of the wildly popular Snake '97 game. Read about the design challenges in this blog post.

Few years ago my brother threw a beer on my iPhone in an Amsterdam bar. The poor thing didn't like the Dutch brew as much as I do: it died. While waiting for a new phone to arrive, I used an old one that couldn't do anything but texting, calling and... Snake! The idea for Snake '97 was born and this month it was time to update the wildly popular game.

Programming on Apple Watch

Serious about crazy experiments

Feb. 16, 2017
Programming with VIM over SSH on Apple Watch using a bluetooth keyboard

Over the past years I have been no stranger to crazy experiments, but this time I really wanted to push it into the extreme: programming on an Apple Watch. Would it be possible to actually write code on such a tiny device? Why even bother? This post is about the case for crazy experiments, and why you should try too!

Cash is king, or is it?

The wallet- and cash-less experiment

July 15, 2016
Is the time right to ditch the wallet?

Very often I see men carry a wallet filled with plastic: multiple debit and credit cards plus a bunch of loyalty programs and membership cards. Then, some even top it off with stinky paper money and sticky metal coins! It made me wonder if I can free up one pocket by ditching the wallet?

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Limited storage is taken up by... Google.
Limited storage is taken up by... Google.
Time and date can be checked easily using Apple Watch
Time and date can be checked easily using Apple Watch
Packing it together, Hardgraft and Ortlieb
Packing it together, Hardgraft and Ortlieb
Server hardware inside a rack in the data centre
Server hardware inside a rack in the data centre
iPhone 4 - ahhh sweet developer memories when one (small) size did fit all...
iPhone 4 - ahhh sweet developer memories when one (small) size did fit all...
German warning signs inside the data centre (somehow they feel slightly more serious...)
German warning signs inside the data centre (somehow they feel slightly more serious...)
My entire photo library on a single SD card - unbelievable!
My entire photo library on a single SD card - unbelievable!
Ortlieb Urban daypack 15L
Ortlieb Urban daypack 15L
Same 3310? Look closely and spot the differences between iPhone SE and iPhone X
Same 3310? Look closely and spot the differences between iPhone SE and iPhone X
Me wearing the hardcore Ortlieb Velocity bag through bad weather, fantastic but a little bit bulky...
Me wearing the hardcore Ortlieb Velocity bag through bad weather, fantastic but a little bit bulky...
Digital technology and social change (by Martin Hilbert, University of California)
Digital technology and social change (by Martin Hilbert, University of California)
The world on your wrist - using Apple Maps in downtown Frankfurt
The world on your wrist - using Apple Maps in downtown Frankfurt
Ahhh, the sweet taste of freedom: managing my photos using Shotwell on my tablet
Ahhh, the sweet taste of freedom: managing my photos using Shotwell on my tablet
Battery life is measured in days - fantastic!
Battery life is measured in days - fantastic!
Snake '97 rocking the carts with Angry Birds and WhatsApp
Snake '97 rocking the carts with Angry Birds and WhatsApp
I used sequential filenames with a manually set prefix
I used sequential filenames with a manually set prefix
The Nokia 2 feels nice - even compared to an expensive iPhone
The Nokia 2 feels nice - even compared to an expensive iPhone
Apple Watch and Rolex Milgauss 116400GV
Apple Watch and Rolex Milgauss 116400GV

More iPhone on Willem's Blog

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