Posted on Dec 18, 2018
When building a website, you’ll often find yourself needing to remove backgrounds from photos of people. This can be especially difficult when a person’s hair is wispy and its color blends in with the background. Though not perfect, there’s a free, quick and pretty decent online tool to remove backgrounds from photos of people. No login is required. Just go to remove.bg and upload your photo.
Here’s an example of a subject that would be hard to remove the background from manually. As you can see, Remove.bg does a pretty good job but they’re also modifying the subject’s hair somewhat. This is most evident when you replace the background with a solid color of high contrast compared to the subject’s hair color.
Posted on Dec 11, 2018
As of this posting, the global usage of IE 11 stands at 2.5% according to caniuse.com. If that percentage is still too high for you to ignore, then you’ll need to test your website in IE 11.
Many developers use Macs for web development. Though you can test websites in Chrome, Firefox and Safari on a Mac, you can’t install and therefore test IE 11 on a Mac. You can get a separate Windows machine for testing IE 11 but that’s a hassle and overkill. Here are some steps to test and debug websites in IE 11 on a Mac using VirtualBox and Serveo.
On your Mac, open your website on your local web server in any local browser (e.g. Chrome, Firefox, or Safari) and not the URL. It may be localhost or localhost:8080 or localhost:3000, etc.
Posted on Dec 8, 2018
Having to read an ebook, e.g. a Kindle book, in a special app, e.g. the Kindle app, can be annoying, especially when you want to copy and paste lots of text. Also, sharing your book can’t easily be done. To fix this these issues, you can remove the DRM (digital rights management) copyright protection from the ebook and then convert the decrypted file to PDF.
One program I’ve tried that works is Epubor Ultimate. The version I used was 220.127.116.115. This initially didn’t work with the version of the Kindle for PC version I had installed but the customer support people at Epubor gave me a link to install an older version of Kindle for PC (1.24.53) and that worked. I had to delete the Kindle book (azw) folder and then in the Kindle for PC program, redownload the ebook. Then, in Epubor Ultimate, I was able to remove DRM from the file.
In Epubor Ultimate, I was able to easily convert the decrypted azw file to PDF. Now, I can read the ebook anywhere and easily copy and paste text.
Posted on Dec 6, 2018
I occasionally use Upwork (formerly eLance) to hire contract workers in other countries to work on some projects. Considering that I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, which happens to be one of the most expensive places to live, I have to constantly remind myself to price my projects according to the economy and cost-of-living where I hire workers overseas. Here’s an example cost analysis.
Let’s say that, based on the type of work you need done, a fair US wage would be $10 per hour. Let’s also say that you expect the work should be done in no more than 17.5 hours. Therefore, the total project cost in the US would be $175.
Let’s say you hire someone in Egypt to do the work. You’ll need a way to fairly and reasonably convert wages in the US to wages in Egypt. One way to do this is by comparing each countries GPD per capita, which is an estimate of the average salary in a particular country.
GDP Per Capita
According to the World Bank, as of July 6, 2018, the GDP per capitas of the US and Egypt are:
In other words, the average annual salary in the US and Egypt are $60k and $3K, respectively. Read More
Posted on Dec 5, 2018
Do the following before going to sleep at night:
1. Salycilic Acid
Wash and clean your entire face using salycilic acid.
Clearasil Rapid Rescue Deep Treatment Wash 6.78oz – $6.00
2. Skin Moisturizer
Apply skin moisturizer to your entire face. This is necessary because the next step using benzoyl peroxide will make your skin red and very dry. The moisturizer will help prevent redness and dryness and will only slightly limit the effectiveness of the benzoyl peroxide.
Up&up Daily Moisturizing Lotion – $2.00
3. Benzoyl Peroxide (BP) 10%
Apply a thin layer of 10% benzoyl peroxide (BP) to entire face. Don’t go out in the sun with BP without sunscreen as sunlight hitting the BP could darken your skin. Don’t get BP on your eyes and hair. BP has a bleaching side effect and can cause dark fabric, e.g. towels and clothes, to appear bleached. BP is considered the best OTC (over the counter) acne medicine.
Max. Strength 10% Benzoyl Peroxide Gel Acne Medication – 1oz – Up&Up – $3.50
Put a pillow cover, ideally one that is benzoyl peroxide resistant, over your pillow.
Posted on Nov 28, 2018
Here’s what you see in the Chrome console.
The first console.log statement is showing the final value of the object as opposed to the value at the time the console.log statement was called. That’s because console.log is displaying a reference to the object, not the copy of the object at the time the console.log statement was called. To solve this, always stringify (serialize) the object which makes a deep copy (deep clone) of it before consoling it out. To see a prettified display of the object, parse the stringified object. This is what’s done in the 2nd console.log statement which shows the expected value of the object.
Posted on Nov 26, 2018
When you buy new car tires, you’ll either go online and enter your car’s year, make, model, and trim or give that information to someone at a store. Unfortunately, the tire specifications you get in response will not necessarily be correct. For the past 13 years, I’ve been buying car tires for my 2003 Honda Accord DX and the tire specs I’d be given are
This information was taken from tires.costco.com and from the tire specialist’s computer at a Costco Tire Center. It says that my tire size is P215/60R17. The tire specs in the driver side door, however, says this:
It says that my tire size should be P205/65R15. While it may be okay to go with a slightly different size, it’s probably better to go with the manufacturer’s recommendation. Read More
Posted on Nov 26, 2018
If you have nasal congestion, which could also cause coughing, then one of the best medicines to take is Sudafed. However, be careful which one you get.
Sudafed (behind the counter)
This kind of Sudafed has the active ingredient Pseudeophedrine which can be used to illegally make methamphetamine (meth / “speed”). As such, it can only be gotten behind the counter, i.e. by talking to a pharmacist at Walgreens. You can get 4 hour Sudafed and 12 hour Sudafed. If you are impatient and can’t wait 12 hours to take the 12-hour version, then just buy the 4-hour version. Psychologically, taking medicine more often may make you feel better. One doctor told me that this version of Sudafed (Pseudeophedrine) is better than the kind below (Sudafed PE). Also, you can get a cheaper generic brand like Wal-Phed since all that really matters is the active ingredient, not the brand.
Sudafed PE (over the counter)
This kind of Sudafed can be gotten over the counter (on a shelf) because it’s active ingredient is phenylephrine which can’t be used to make illegal drugs. That’s why it has the PE acronym in the name.
Posted on Nov 25, 2018
In the US, car tire tread depth is measured in 32nds of an inch. New tires typically come with 10/32” or 11/32” tread depths, and some truck, SUV and winter tires may have deeper tread depths than other models. A tire is legally worn-out if the tread depth is 2/32nds. Therefore, a typical tire that starts with 10/32″ of original tread depth has only 8/32″ of usable tread depth. A tire that started with 10/32″ of original tread depth and has worn off 4/32″ (down to 6/32″ of remaining tread depth) is 50% worn. Though 2/32nds of tread depth is the legal minimum, you should change your tires when they reach 4/32nds of tread depth. At tread depths less than 4/32nds, you may experience hydroplaning when driving in the rain and lose control of your vehicle.
Tread Depth Gauge
There are manual and digital tread depth gauges. I’d go with a manual one so you don’t have to worry about replacing a battery.
Posted on Nov 24, 2018
When looking to buy a battery charger or power adapter for a device such as a phone or laptop, you may be unsure whether the one you buy will be sufficient or even blow up your device. Here are basic guidelines to keep in mind.