Keeping Settings under lock and key

In today’s episode of “I can build a shortcut for that,” I built three shortcuts to establish a LOCK and KEY/PASS system to make Settings (or any app) frustrating to access. The system requires the Actions app and its recently added global variables, which I’ve been looking for an excuse to use . LOCK runs as an automation when Settings is opened and opens Calculator if KEY/PASS is not run first. For convenience, LOCK is set to not run when it’s on your home Wi-Fi. KEY requires the Authenticate action to set global variable, AuthenticationLock, to off. This does mean it can be opened with your passcode, but it’s a separate shortcut from LOCK, and these are intended as placeholder names. If you don’t know to look for it, it’ll be real hard to find. Once launched, it unlocks LOCK for 10 seconds, allowing Settings to be reached. PASS requires setting a global number variable, AuthPass, that you then need to enter to turn off AuthenticationLock. Or you can change it to text and use any 2

Farewell to my faithful car audio adapter

As we act to send our 2005 Toyota Prius to its next life, I have to admit, I’m not particularly tied to the car. It was my wife’s car until we traded in my Corolla for our Prius wagon. What hits me harder is the loss of the car audio adapter and dock I put together and refined over the years. Yeah, I still have the gear and pulled it out of the Prius, but it’s too dated now to use in another car. The old Prius has a CD changer and a cassette player, no auxiliary or USB input. That meant the only way to connect audio was through a cassette adapter, which even a 10-year old car wouldn’t have. Wanting to connect my iPhone 3G using a single plug, I used a 30-pin dock connector with separate audio output to support power and audio. I later added an audio splitter and Bluetooth adapter, so I could skip plugging in my iPhone on short drives. I wound up not using this much because direct audio was so much better, especially back then. Still, I never eliminated it from the setup. The big step f

Catalytic crime wave

Our 2005 Toyota Prius is in the shop in an attempt by my wife to deter my attempt at disposing of it. Actually, we would get rid of it either way, but she wants to get in running so it can be sold. Our difference in opinion stems from her not being stranded numerous times by that car over the past few years. Most recently, we’ve replaced the battery (regular, not hybrid) twice, and I haven’t bothered to do it a third time while I was working from home. Well, I’m back to the office this week, which means… nothing directly related this story because we’re carpooling. Anyway, enough back story, let’s get to the crime. We had the Prius towed to the shop for a full diagnostic. They let us know early on, yeah, it’s the battery. They will order a new one and replace it. No surprise there. The surprise came after they raised it and found the catalytic converter was cut out like a kidney from a guy who wakes up in a bathtub of ice. At some point while our car was sitting in our courtyard parkin

So I guess I’m blogging now…

After learning my friend Warner has returned to blogging at Life on the Wicked Stage: Act 3 , I decided to… write up my thoughts about Willow the series on Disney+ to share on Mastodon. I drafted it up in Notes, pasted it into Mastodon, and exceeded the character limit by 140 something. Ordinarily, I would have spent way too much time revising and editing down to fit. However, this is a new year, so I’m adopting new habits. Now I’m going to lay down the words, and if they don’t fit Mastodon or whatever microblog I use, I will put them here and link it. Yeah, I know I could split my words across multiple Mastodon posts, but I don’t particularly care for threaded posts. Perhaps in the future, I might draft something intended as a blog post (which this post is, but it’s about the blog, so I’m not counting this as part of the blog description). We shall see.

Watched Willow today after watching Willow last week

We just watched the first episode of Willow the series with mixed results. I enjoyed it; my wife is on the fence. In a reversal, it’s bc she’s the fan, and I just watched the movie last week. What can I say? I’m not a big medieval magic fan, so I never got around to seeing it. Anyway, I went into the series without expectations, while my wife could not get past hers. We will push forward now that the quest and crew has been established, but I’m a lot more eager to see how it turns out. No spoilers: that joke from that ‘80s movie made me so happy. It feels like they’re trying to bring Gen X fun to the young folk, and I am here for it.


How do you know it's really me, a random dude who goes by Sumocat on ( )? This post is supposed to verify it.

This is the way… to Sumocat’s Mastodon

If you're looking for @SumocatS from Twitter, you'll find him at ( )