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Category: iOS (page 1 of 15)

I Put Han Solo on Trial (video)

I’ve mentioned this already on Twitter, but realized I’ve never discussed it here – back in October, I put Han Solo on trial, and I have the video to prove it. I acted as the prosecutor and Edward Paskey, Esquire acted as defense counsel in a mock trial before the Honorable Joseph C. Adams, President Judge of the York County Court of Common Pleas. The name of the case was The Galactic Empire v. Han Solo, and it was presented before approximately 60 “jurors” who were on hand to get a CLE credit.

The point of the “trial” was to demonstrate the use of the iPad and other technology in the courtroom. After making our closing arguments, Attorney Paskey and I deconstructed how we used technology in our respective cases, including the use of timelines, medical exhibits and models, exhibit annotations, maps, transcript call outs, and more. The main tools we used were TrialPad and Keynote.

Judge Adams recorded the trial, and edited it into a final product that is quite slick:

I don’t practice criminal law, which is probably obvious from the video. In preparation, I also worked backwards – I started with the technology and videos I wanted to demonstrate, and tried to craft a somewhat coherent argument around them. While this isn’t how you would want to handle a real case, I think the “trial” went off well for its intended purpose.

I’ve uploaded a digital version of the information we gave to attendees at the trial/seminar.

I want to give a special thank you to Mark Metzger, from whom we stole the idea. He did something similar at the MacTrack Legal Conference (then called MILOfest) in Orlando in 2015.1 Mark was also kind enough to send me many of the Star Wars assets we used in the trial.


  1. If you use a Mac, this conference is a must-attend. 

Airmail to TaskPaper

I’m currently trying out TaskPaper as my task manager of choice, after almost five years with OmniFocus. More on that in the future, but for now don’t read too much into this – OmniFocus is a great app, and if it works for you, I don’t recommend switching.

TaskPaper has many strengths (again, more on that in the future), but one weakness is its lack of integration with third party apps when it comes to capturing tasks. On iOS, for example, native TaskPaper integration isn’t built into any email apps. There is a thread in the TaskPaper forums that points to a workflow, using the iOS Workflow app, to get Airmail email links into TaskPaper. I couldn’t get that working, though.

Instead, I stumbled upon a thread with instructions on how to get items from the Reminders app into TaskPaper (scroll down in the thread for the script). I set the JavaScript in that thread up on my Mac, and have Keyboard Maestro run the script every 10 minutes. That script slurps anything that appears in a designated list in Reminders into TaskPaper. Of course, for this to work, you’ll need to make sure you have Reminders syncing between your Mac and your iOS device.

Suddenly, TaskPaper is WAY more functional for me. I can use any iOS or Mac app that supports Reminders to get tasks into TaskPaper. One of those is Airmail, and the task contains a link back to the mail message.

More to come on how I’m using this Reminders integration to open up all sorts of possibilities with TaskPaper.

Use Your Wemo with HomeKit

wemo-and-homekit

In my last post I discussed how I was able to get my Liftmaster garage door opener working with HomeKit, even though it wasn’t officially HomeKit compatible. I used a HomeKit bridge called Homebridge, running on my Mac, to accomplish this (Linux would work, too). Setting up Homebridge and the first plugin (Liftmaster) was the hard part. From there, getting the Wemo plugin set up and installed was easy.

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Use HomeKit With Your Chamberlain Liftmaster MyQ Garage Door

If you have a MyQ-enabled garage door opener, and you want to hook your door into HomeKit, take a look at Homebridge. Homebridge is a NodeJS server that runs on your Mac, or on a Linux machine such as a Raspberry Pi. Homebridge acts as a HomeKit bridge and allows you to use certain non-HomeKit devices with HomeKit. That might sound like a mouthful, and it certainly isn’t trivial to set up, but it isn’t as difficult as it might seem.

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Save iOS Email Messages in Other Apps as Emails, Not PDFs

Mail apps on iOS have come a long way over the past couple of years. I still don’t have a single mail app on iOS that serves my needs, though. One reason is the lack of support in most apps for saving email messages in eml format. If you save a message in eml format to an app like DEVONthink, the link back to the original message is preserved.

One such app in my arsenal is AltaMail, which I use solely for its ability to save messages in eml format. While falling short in the looks department, AltaMail is very powerful, offering filters, templates, email rules, and other features. I don’t really use any of that, though. I use AltaMail solely for its ability to save mail messages in eml format.

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Scrivener for iOS Submitted to App Store for Review

Update: In the forum post mentioned below, the developer has announced that Apple has approved Scrivener for iOS and the release date is Wednesday, July 20. 

I’ve been writing quite a bit about the upcoming release of Scrivener for iOS. Soon, I should be able to write about the actual app, as the developer just submitted it for review to the App Store.

Scrivener for iOS

The developer announced this in a forum post. Scroll toward the bottom of the post to see the news. Even if it is quickly approved, the developer announced the app won’t go on sale until the end of next week, as the company needs to get some other loose ends tied up.

Scrivener for iOS Teaser Video

Literature and Latte, the developer behind Scrivener, has announced that the iOS version of the popular writing app will be released next month. In the blog post, the company has also teased a short video. It looks like we’re almost there, at last. Pricing has also been announced.

Scrivener will work on any device running iOS 9.0 or above. You could tap out a whole novel on your iPhone, or spread out on an iPad Pro. It will cost $19.99, and will be coming to an iPad or iPhone near you in late July (App Store review times depending).

Follow the link to see the video.

Scrivener for iOS: It’s Time to Talk – The Cellar Door

Scrivener Beta Expands

Scrivener is a fantastic writing tool. If you’re a lawyer, it’s even great for writing briefs. Scrievener currently lacks an iOS app, but that should change soon. In April, Scrivener for iOS entered closed beta. Now, it sounds like the release is getting even closer.

Scrivener for iOS has been in closed beta with around 75 people for the past month. We’re now looking to expand the beta group, so are throwing open the doors to volunteers. If you’re interested in helping test Scrivener for iOS, read on!
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We only have a limited number of beta testing spots available, and right now we’re looking to add between 200 and 250 new people to the pool.
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The beta so far has been going great, with beta testers using Scrivener for iOS every day without any real problems.

I can’t wait to see this, but I’m not going to apply for the beta test – they need people to truly contribute to find bugs, etc., and I’d worry I’d just want an early peek at the app.

Guinea Pigs Wanted! – The Cellar Door

DEVONthink to Go 2 Update

The developers of DEVONthink have just issued an update on the status of the DEVONthink to Go 2 beta. The second sync mode reminds me slightly of Dropbox Project Infinite, with its on demand sync. Great for space-constrained devices.

The next betas are going to see the addition of a second sync mode. It downloads only the metadata at first and the actual documents on demand or automatically when needed. This will make it possible to take out even larger databases and leave the lion’s share of the data up to Dropbox or your WebDAV service.

Devonian Times » Making progress

Calculating Dates When Automating OmniFocus

A few days ago, I wrote about my first attempt at using the new and improved automation features in OmniFocus for iOS. In that attempt, I used Editorial to create a Taskpaper-formatted template that prompted me for dates. Those dates would carry over as due dates in an OmniFocus project. I’ve since tweaked that template, so that it flags the tasks, and automatically calculates defer dates based on the due dates.

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