Monthly Archives: September 2013


Favd IconFavd is a new iPhone app by the fine folks at YourHead Software. I’ve been beta testing the app since WWDC, and it’s great. 1

In a lot of ways, Favd is very similar to Instagram. Its prominent function is to capture photos and share them with your friends. It allows quick and easy application of filters, including live previews, and can broadcast to Twitter, Facebook, and of course (ADN). Favd includes a beautiful timeline view for browsing your friends’ photos with gorgeous previews.

Where Favd draws one major distinction is the backend network that powers the app: ADN. The app blazes a trail that developer Isaiah Carew has been advocating, as have many others. The real power of ADN is that we are able to build applications like Twitter, Instagram, and even Facebook, on a set of APIs that keep the user in control of their data. The service continues to build out new features, and has shown a commitment to working with the community to make building great apps possible.

Be sure to check out Favd. It’s a free app, with some great premium filters that support its developer.

  1. I’ve been without the app since I got my iPhone 5s, so I’m really glad to have it back, and to be able to support Isaiah.

Can FBI Get iPhone 5S Fingerprint Data?

Now that the iPhone 5s is in our hands, the public FUD about its new finger print scanner (branded Touch ID) has begun. This piece from Ars raises the following questions:

(1) Is it possible to convert locally stored fingerprint data into a digital or visual format that can be used by third parties?

(2) Is it possible to extract and obtain fingerprint data from an iPhone? If so, can this be done remotely, or with physical access to the device?…

Likely answers: yes and yes. To the first question – the fingerprints are stored in a digital format on the device, since it is, a digital device. That data could be harvested from the device, if it was convinced to reveal the data it is storing. Assuming it’s a one-way encryption,1 it wouldn’t be trivial to break the encryption,2 but you could also intercept the data coming off the reader if the hardware has been compromised to that point.

Here’s my question: who cares? Is getting my fingerprint data from my phone easier than just grabbing something I throw away at the mall? Why not snag my credit card from the waitress when I pay for a meal? There are lots of other ways to get this data, and they don’t involve invoking the Patriot Act.

  1. The data is stored encrypted, and when swiped, incoming data is encrypted. The two encryptions are matched for validation.
  2. Obligatory encryption-breaking joke about our government here

Was Touch ID Steve’s Last Project?

There has been lots of speculation that the iPhone 5 was Steve Jobs’ last major project at Apple. That has always felt pretty shallow. The iPhone 5 was a significant redesign, but certainly not the groundbreaking kind of release that would consume a visionary’s thoughts.

This answer on Quora has me wondering if it was actually Touch ID. He certainly had to be aware of the project if it was in-progress while he was at Apple. The vision necessary to see something like that as far back as 2008 is very much in the realm of Steve.

Apple has taken a very slow and methodical approach with the release of Touch ID.  We can see that there was a tremendous amount of amazing work that has gone into this project.  All of this convergence took over seven years of very hard work. It includes many patent applications, the acquisition of AuthenTec, the selection of the A7 processor and the integration of the TrustZone suite all baked together into what we now know as Touch ID.

Sounds about like Steve to me.

Via Daring Fireball

HTTP Codes In Alfred

Florian Friedrich built a really nice Alfred workflow for It takes my original idea and makes it even easier to use. I love it.

Download the workflow from Florian’s post, or directly.

ffried Well, here’s the Alfred 2 workflow for @thaddeus
It’s very simple to use. Just type ‘http’ followed by the http status code you want some info about.