iPhone Life magazine

Werner Ruotsalainen is an iOS and Java programming lecturer who is well-versed in programming, hacking, operating systems, and programming languages. Werner tries to generate unique articles on subjects not widely discussed. Some of his articles are highly technical and are intended for other programmers and coders.

Werner also is interested in photography and videography. He is a frequent contributor to not only mobile and computing publications, but also photo and video forums. He loves swimming, skiing, going to the gym, and using his iPads. English is one of several languages he speaks.

V1.3 of the iPhone 3G S Video camera enhancer app released with cleaned-up iOS 4.3.x support (with full sources)

I've just posted the new (1.3) version of my iPhone 3G S Video camera enhancer to my Cydia repository. (Please see my previous, dedicated articles [e.g., THIS] on accessing it.)

Unfortunately, when it runs under iOS 4.3.x, it has two main disadvantages compared to the pre-4.3 version:

- no on-device playback of anything over 1 Mbps. That is, you can't set for example 2Mbps as your video data rate if you want to watch the video on your iPhone.

- no Full sensor mode, also meaning less real resolution and worse low-light performance (but much better framerate and no „clicking” bug)

New, 1.1 version of iPhone 3G S Video Enhancer out with source code!


New version (1.1) of iPhone 3G S Video Enhancer uploaded to Cydia, with the following changes:

- CameraRollValidator.plist and MediaValidator.plist are now granted a+w in the app delegate, which means you may not end up having to use iFile to set permissions manually, which means you will be able to play back the high-resolution videos right on your phone, and not only on a desktop computer. (This was missing from v1.0; see the related discussion HERE)

- I've reworked the previously iPhone 4-specific help text (third tab) and the label (first tab)

Enhancing the video recording quality of the iPhone 3GS - Part I


The video recorder of the iPhone 3G S can heavily be enhanced. As opposed to the iPhone 4, where the main enhancements are “only” making the field-of-view much wider, the data rate selectable and, with pixel binning, the low-light performance much better (by sacrificing some resolution and speed), the enhancements of the 3G S camera, in addition to the better low-light performance through pixel-binning, are waaaay superior: you can greatly increase the resolution, almost to the level of the iPhone 4 or traditional cameras.

The first real(!) iPhone 3GS video camera enhancer released!

The first real iPhone 3GS video camera hack released!

I've just released the 3G S version of my previous iPhone 4-only camera hack (see http://www.iphonelife.com/blog/87/how-you-can-make-your-iphone-4-much-more-versatile-video-camera ; please check out the iPhone 4 manual for more info on how the GUI works. The 3G S version is only a bit different from the iPhone4 one, so, your learning curve won't be so steep as when starting from scratch.).

The tool allows for greatly increasing resolution and fine-tuning data rate (in Simple view) and fine-tune all parameters (in Advanced view).

A quick tip: terminal emulators and programmatic password changing for iOS


Back in 2008 and 2009, I've already introduced (see THIS and THIS) MobileTerminal (by Allen Porter), a local, Cydia-based (sorry, jailbreak is required!) terminal emulator you can use for a lot of things; among other things, changing the root password from the default „alpine” to something (if you do install OpenSSH) less dangerous.

This is how you can make your iPhone 4 into a much more versatile video camera


(Note that this article, as with most of my stuff, shows you not only how the camera can be reconfigured, but also shows you - how you can play back a YouTube video frame-by-frame; - how you can create and upload packages to your Cydia [an alternative to Apple's AppStore] repository and, last but definitely not least, gives you a full source-level explanation of the entire app that I've written to quickly switch between the different iPhone4 camera configurations. No one has released anything similar for the iPhone 4 or the iPhone 3GS [for which I'll also release a very similar utility in a few days] before!)

Coding tips: creating PNG (JPG) and QuickTime files – a benchmark video generator for iOS + OS X

UPDATE (09/12/2012): I've created two truly 1080p versions of the counter video. They're HERE (non-streaming-optimized) and HERE (optimized for streaming with Subler). The former has a H.264 level of 4.2 (the latter is 4.1) and, consequently,  can't be played in their Web browser. (Neither 4.1 nor 4.2 1080p60 can be synched to iOS devices directly. Playback from third-party apps using hardware decoding works, of course.) HERE's a 4.1-level version of the same file.

Another fine fix by me: I've managed to update iMkvExtract!

UPDATE (08/19/2012): version 1.2 of iMkvExtract has been released in the meantime. It, unlike the previous (by me, updated) version, works just fine under Mountain Lion and doesn't need to be manually updated any more. That is, you no longer need to do what is explained in my 14-month-old article below.

Original version follows:

Game Center Source Code: multiplayer Pong client

As some of you may know, I, among other things, also lecture on iOS programming. Due to the request of my students, I've spent some days on discovering the secrets of Game Center, which has been added to iOS in version 4.1 and is, consequently, pretty new and, apart from Apple's own documentation, very scarcely documented, let alone stand-alone, full demo application sources, of which I only know of GCPing, which is, for some reason, pretty much buried in the Apple developer forums. (I don't provide a link to GCPing because I don't know whether the developer wants to keep it pretty much private. Now that there's no NDA over Game Center any more, he may want to publish it to the public.)


iOS Programming: I've found the solution for the fundamental bug in mirroring the Retina display to the VGA output

If you've read the VGA output-specific remarks in my Web Browsing and PDF Reader bibles (more specifically: the dedicated row in the charts), you may remember I've complained about all(!) of the VGA output-enabled titles not producing high-resolution output on Retina display-equipped 4th generation iPhone and iPod Touch models.

As I've been updating my official iOS Programming course with everything dedicated to programming the VGA output, I've decided to find out what the problem is caused by.

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