Category Archives: Tools

LG Nortel – Phone Auto Answering Calls

Had a random issue, an LG Nortel phone was auto answering calls on speakerphone. It apparently is a ‘feature’.

On the screeen next to the phones name it had (H) instead of (T).
So it said ‘Andrew (H)’

How to fix.

  • Press. Trans/Pgm
  • Option 1 (Ring)
  • Option 2 (Answer Mode)
  • Select T(2)
  • Press Hold/Save to save it.

Thanks to this pdf: LG Quick Reference Guide 8000 Series.pdf

For pointing me in the right direction.

Set Intercom Answer Mode
This determines how your Station will ring when receiving an intercom call

  • Press TRANS/PGM button
  • Dial 1 3 and select
  • 1. for Hands free (Auto answer after a BEEP tone)
  • 2. for Tone ring
  • 3. for Privacy announce (Auto Answer but you must pick-up the handset to talk)
  • Press HOLD/SAVE button or the OK button


Apple TV vs Chromecast for Netflix / YouTube access on your TV

The great debate in the wonderful land of mobile devices, Apple vs Google. But what happens when you start to mix ecosystems between the two.

I’m an iPhone 4s (stop laughing, I realise it’s 2025) and iPad mini 2 guy, but when it comes to putting content on my TV, I’ve tested both the Apple TV & the humble Chromecast & funnily I prefer the…..Chromecast.

The Apple TV allows sharing of your screen (which is nice to have), along with the ability to stream apps & games, but the downside, no multitasking. Say you flick a Netflix movie up from your iPad to your Apple TV, then head over safari which then sends you to YouTube, bam! Netflix stops showing your movie. However with the Chromecast you can multitask, you can watch your Netflix Movie on your TV & your YouTube clip on your iPad. 

The way Netflix & the YouTube apps hand off to the Chromecast allow you to continue using the app & search for more content to watch, the YouTube app even allows for “queuing” up content.

Unfortunately the Chromecast doesn’t support mirroring from the iPad. But you can mirror from the Google Chrome web browser with the aid of an extension which I haven’t used an awful lot, but it is handy.

So if you want a cheap way to show Netflix or YouTube from your iPad to your TV, the humble $50 Chromecast is a winner.

Excel, a better vlookup (index, match).

A great video on getting around some of the annoyances of a vlookup:

Update: After looking at this in a couple of projects here are some additional hints: has a great written resource on the subject and has simplified it down into a nice little formula:

=INDEX ( Column I want a return value from , MATCH ( My Lookup Value , Column I want to Lookup against , Enter “0” ))

Although I find if working with zero’s or null objects sometimes you get thrown an NA error,
So in this case I use:

=IFERROR( INDEX ( Column I want a return value from , MATCH ( My Lookup Value , Column I want to Lookup against , Enter “0” )), Default Error Value, usually 0 )

If you really want to dive in and see exactly how this works and why, check out this article: How to Use INDEX+MATCH With Multiple Criteria in 5 Steps

Building CSS sprites using Python Glue

css-sprite was giving me some issues so I went looking for a different way to tackle the problem.

While a pain in the rear end to install, I found Glue. Given I already had all the python stuff installed it was pretty easy for me to get it working for this project.

  1. Install Glue
  2. Run Glue, here is the command that I like:
    glue src glue –scss –sprite-namespace= –namespace= –cachebuster

(The above command, looks for all the images in the src folder, and then outputs into the glue folder).

While the scss support is woeful, the retina side of things seems to be working better. (Although I’m not using the retina switch in the command above).

Koala App All in one Less Sass Compass and CoffeeScript Companion

Recently I started using more and more sass in my workflow, but when I jumped on another workstation I had to go through the pain of setting up Ruby and Sass, etc. That is until I found Koala App.

Its a click and drag GUI to all your favourite command line tools in one simple install-able package. Awesome!

So far I haven’t had any issues.


Get the new Tony Robbins book Money Master the Game with bonus for under $20

I’ve been meaning to preorder this book for weeks from Amazon, but today I stumbled upon this offer. You get the book, plus some fun digital bonuses (including the first chapter as a digital download while you wait for the hard copy to arrive) for $15 USD (I’m guessing around $20 AUD once you add all the exchange rate conversions in).

Grab it now:

Not sure why you should get it?
Check out Tim Ferriss’ interview with Tony on his podcast:

Generate CSS sprites from cmd with css-sprite and node.js

Update: I’ve also found a different method, this time instead using a Python script called “Glue“.

I did this about 12 months, but recently had to setup a new development environment.
Here are some notes on setting up css-sprite.

  1. Install node.js
  2. Install css-sprite
    npm install css-sprite -g
  3. Have fun.


  1. Create two folders src (add png files here) and images
  2. run the command from cmd:
    css-sprite images/ src/*.png -p scss -s sprite.scss 
  3. (Here I'm using scss, you can choose from LESS, SCSS or CSS, depending on the project).

Compiling PHP into an EXE along with additional command line arguments

Recently I was building a simple PHP script that took the input of a CSV and extracted the data from it and feed it into a JSON-RPC based API.

Originally I had planned to automate the FTP of the CSV to the server, but then I thought if I could take the PHP file to the CSV it might be easier. The other issue I had was that I didn’t want to setup a complete server just to run a single PHP file.

Enter PHC-WIN:

phc-win appears to be one of the simplest options for converting a simple script into a simple exe file (although a handful of DLL files are required to make the exe file run).

After testing and experimenting with the compiler, I thought “wouldn’t it be great to be able to pass some additional command line arguments to the complied file (think the filename of the CSV file).”

Well it turns out that you can. The variable that sorts the additional arguments is the “$_SERVER[‘argv’] array.

A simple print_r($_SERVER[‘argv’]); command allows you to see all the arguments and the order that they are passed to the program. It appears that the first one (position 0) is always the name of the application.

Quick, simple and easy :).




How to download all the images in a web directory, using WGET

Sometimes you are faced with the issue of downloading an entire folder of images from a website and all you have is the apache directory listing.

You can download one of two ways.

1) Right click on each file individually and select download. But if you have more than about 10 images, this is annoying slow and painful.

2) Use some software to make it happen. I choose to use wget for this task, here’s how.


1) Install Cygwin in Windows, then when asked what packages to install, search for wget and tick that. Then press next and you’ll be asked to download and install some dependencies, click next and wait for it’s magic to happen.

2) When installed open up Cygwin terminal and issue the following command:

wget -rnp -N

What that will do is download all the files that it can find under that directory and further down though the folders (the -r part). But it stops it from going backwards (the -np part) and finally, should you need to rerun the job later, the -N checks the timestamps so that you don’t have to download the entire directory again just for a couple of updated files.


Also, still no movement on the Google Nexus 4, but Kogan have released a new smartphone.