Removing ‘Video Call’ default in Google Calendar

This 'feature' has been annoying me for a while and after this has caused some confusion with some of my clients I decided to go and look where to disable this. Why this has been made a system wide default is beyond me. Rather than in the users Calendar Settings this is actually in the Google Apps Admin Console (https://admin.google.com/) Console --> Google Apps --> Settings for Calendar --> Sharing Settings Disable the "Automatically add video calls to events created by a user" setting. Direct Link: https://admin.google.com/AdminHome?fral=1#AppDetails:service=Calendar&flyout=sharing

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Galaxy Nexus Firmware Upgrade on Ubuntu (manual)

As a Galaxy Nexus Owner I have been waiting for months for an OTA (over the air) upgrade to the factory installed Firmware (4.0.2). I am finally sick of waiting and complaining to Google (an absolute lost cause). After some research it turns out that (contrary to popular opinion) not every unlocked Google Nexus actually has the 'official' Google Firmware. Some of them have a Samsung variant (WTF !?) of the firmware. Now I really don't want to get off the technical topic, but I personally think that this means Google is misleading their most loyal customer base. The reason I chose a Nexus device over the (from a hardware perspective) superior HTC One X was the fact that they were supposed to have the official Google Firmware and I did not have to wait forever for bugfixes from the manufacturers. There are a reportedly several different versions out there. Google's 'official' build for the GSM version of the Galaxy Nexus is named 'yakju'. Samsung builds 'yakjusc', 'yakjuxw' and 'yakjuux'. While they appear mostly the same, only Google’s yakju build is likely to get updates as they happen. Go figure why there was a need for others ... :( To find out which version your Nexus uses you can use this key combination (in the phone app) *#*#4636#*#* or for a more permanent option grab "Android System Info" from the Google Market. Disclaimer: this procedure obiously has the potential to 'brick' your mobile. Only attempt this if you are absolutely…

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Using Google Goggles in mobile learning projects

One of the lesser known free Google services in our experience is Google Goggles. Specially in it's lastest release (Version 1.7) it has received a few enhancements that make it very useful for some mobile learning applications Scanning of barcodes Google Googles will scan most standard barcodes and provide information on the product scanned. Here is an example from the Google Mobile Blog: Let’s say you’re reading a magazine article you really like and want to share it with your friends. Just point Goggles at a part of the page, and instantly find a link to an online version to share immediately or read again later. You won’t even need the entire article in the frame. Goggles will also pull up more information from pages around the web where that text is mentioned, so its easier to learn about what you’re seeing. Text recognition You can use Google Googles to take images of printed text and have the result converted to text using OCR (Optical Character Recognition). Whil the results may vary our own test have shown good results on newspaper and magazines. To download Google Goggles you can scan the QR code below Google Goggles are currently available for both Android and iOS phones (just install via Android Market or Apple App Store. See http://www.google.com/mobile/goggles/ for further details.

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Google Adsense – or when is big TOO big ?

I am not generally one for writing blog entries about customer support failures. Thanks to my technical work I have had my fair share of dealing with call queues and help-desk systems over the last 20 years. But compared with my experience with Google AdSense over the last weeks all of these just pale into funny memories. I have never experienced the outright refusal to acknowledge an issue and blanket denial of communications.   by  Alicakes*    The whole disaster began with an email we received in early August that our (Business) AdSense Account has been disabled. This message was sent from a notification-only email address that does not accept incoming email. Please do not reply to this message. Hello, After reviewing our records, we've determined that your AdSense account poses a risk of generating invalid activity. Because we have a responsibility to protect our AdWords advertisers from inflated costs due to invalid activity, we've found it necessary to disable your AdSense account. Your outstanding balance and Google's share of the revenue will both be fully refunded to the affected advertisers. Please understand that we need to take such steps to maintain the effectiveness of Google's advertising system, particularly the advertiser-publisher relationship. We understand the inconvenience that this may cause you, and we thank you in advance for your understanding and cooperation. If you have any questions or concerns about the actions we've taken, how you can appeal this decision or invalid activity in general, you can find more information by visiting…

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Alternatives to Google Adsense

Due to a recent absolute Customer Service failure with Google Adsense I have done some research on the alternative to Google Adsense as a content-sensitive mobile and web advertisements. We are currently reviewing the following services: http://www.adbrite.com/ http://chitika.com http://www.admob.com/ https://pubcenter.microsoft.com/Login http://advertisingcentral.yahoo.com/publisher/index http://www.clicksor.com/ http://www.infolinks.com/ http://adhitz.com/en http://buysellads.com/ Once we have some results I will update this post. Please add your comments should you have any (good or bad) experiences with similar services. Hat tip goes to the following listing pages to get started: http://generoustroopers.com/websites/the-biggest-list-of-google-adsense-alternatives/ http://www.tech-faq.com/alternatives-to-google-adsense.html

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Back up Google Apps Mail using getmail4 + IMAP

Just a quick note on how to configure backups of Google Apps email to a local machine. Install getmail apt-get install getmail4 create config directory Create a subdirectory in users home folder (and change permissions) mkdir .getmail touch .getmail create config file Create a file such as .getmail/username.gmail [retriever] type = SimpleIMAPSSLRetriever server = imap.gmail.com username = username@domain.tld password = password mailboxes = ("[Gmail]/All Mail",) [destination] type = Maildir path = /path/to/storage/directory/ [options] # print messages about each action (verbose = 2) # Other options: # 0 prints only warnings and errors # 1 prints messages about retrieving and deleting messages only verbose = 1 message_log = ~/.getmail/gmail.log create data directories for storage Create 3 sub-directories in your designated data directory mkdir cur new tmp run getmail getmail -r username.gmail Whilst this is more a 'note to self' rather than actual documentation - maybe it's of use to somebody. Thanks go to Matt Cutts: http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/backup-gmail-in-linux-with-getmail/ for the start.

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Nokia Bluetooth Keyboard on Android

One of my oldest pieces of hardware is a trusty Nokia SU-8W Bluetooth Keyboard. I have tried to revive it on an Android 1.6 & 2.0 device with not much luck. However I got it working successfully on a Gingerbread (2.3.4) Google Nexus S. Pre-requisites SU-8W Manual (http://nds1.nokia.com/phones/files/guides/Nokia_SU-8W_Wireless_Keyboard_UG_en.pdf) BlueKeyboard JP (https://market.android.com/details?id=elbrain.bluekeyboard.ime) Steps Install the BlueKeyboard JP from the Android Market Go to Settings > Wireless & Networks > Bluetooth Settings Scan for devices and click to pair the Nokia SU-8W Enter a passcode (I used the highly inventive 0000 combinaton) on the phone and click 'OK' Enter the same on the SU-8W (need to use green 'fn' keys for numbers) and hit enter The phone should show the Nokia SU-8W as paired but not connected Go to Settings > Language & keyboard > BlueKeyboard JP Settings Select the Nokia SU-8W as the keyboard and make any other changes you might need Click the 'Back' symbol and tick the option box to enable the 'BlueKeyboard JP' keyboard In any data entry field (i.e. GMail) hold the finger on the input box and click 'Input method' and select BlueKeyboard JP Wait for the keyboard to connect.   Enjoy !  

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