Archive for March 20, 2020

Friday, March 20, 2020

Verifying Photo Locations


Here’s an unexpected side effect of the pandemic - the water’s flowing through the canals of Venice is clear for the first time in forever. The fish are visible, the swans returned.

Eliot Higgins:

Because I’m a massive verification nerd who hates fun, here’s a little thread on geolocating these photos that people are claiming aren’t from Venice.


Now, let’s see if we can find another image, this one will be a little tougher as we’ve no bridge to help narrow down possible locations, so let’s see who can beat me to it.


So we’re looking for 3 building, painted orange, red, and pink in that order. Satellite imager isn’t much use, but Google Earth has 3D buildings, that allows you to look at a larger area than Street View allows all at once.


A quick Google of “ponte dei ferali venezia” brings up plenty of images that seem similar, but how do I know this isn’t just another very similar bridge? Well, I need to find close up photographs of the brickwork and other features and match it perfectly with the original image.

See also: Bellingcat’s Online Investigation Toolkit.


Writing Command Line Interfaces for iOS Apps

Guilherme Rambo:

There are countless ways to go about creating a better environment for debugging and iteration while working in iOS apps, such as using launch arguments, environment variables, or having an internal settings or debug menu inside the app itself where you can tweak things. I believe every shipping app should include those, since they improve the development process significantly.

But even with all of those options available, I still think there’s room for one more: a command line interface. Yes, you read it correctly: I wrote a command line interface for my iOS app.


Thus, there needs to be a way to send data back and forth between a Mac and iOS devices (or the Simulator). There’s probably some way to do it using the wired lightning connection, we could also spin up a socket or HTTP server on the device, but I decided to use the MultipeerConnectivity framework.


What Does the “Move To” Command Do in iWork?

Howard Oakley:

First, it surprises you by not adopting the standard human interface. Instead of the normal Save File dialog, as used by countless apps for a great many years, it drops down a small sheet offering in a popup menu to move the document to where it already is. In the spirit of novelty, as if intended to exemplify bad interface design, that popup lists a strange assortment of locations, of which only a few seem remotely appropriate. If you want a properly-designed purposeful dialog, you have to click on Other… right at the bottom to see a familiar Save File dialog.


What arrives at the destination is disappointingly exactly what you’d get from a regular Finder move: all saved versions are stripped from it. So unless you like this idiosyncratic interface, there seems no advantage in using it over a standard Finder move, and if you want a copy instead, then you’ll want to use the Finder anyway, once again accepting that you’ll lose access to all versions in the process.