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How to use ActivStats for Data Desk with Minitab

So you are taking a statistics course, and the textbook includes a DVD-ROM with ActiveStats for Data Desk, but the course requires you to purchase ActiveStats for Minitab.

The bad news is that ActiveStats for Minitab will cost you another 60 bucks or more.

The good news is that Minitab is an excellent statistics package and it is way better than Data Desk; and if you're willing to make a tiny effort, you don't need to buy ActiveStats for Minitab.

What we are going to do is let ActiveStats open data sets in Data Desk, and then copy-and-paste them into Minitab.

There are two circumstances you will need to do this.

  1. An instructional exercise asks you to plot or analyze something.
  2. A homework assignment asks you to plot or analyze something.

They both work the same way. Let's look at an example.

For every exercise in ActiveStats for Data Desk, there is an equivalent one in ActiveStats for Minitab. They are not always named the same thing, but they are otherwise identical.

In chapter 7-4, there is an exercise called Examine Mortality and Education Using Data Desk. We'll do it in Minitab.

If we click the icon, the exercise is opened in Data Desk.

One of the little windows contains the data set. Select the each of the data columns by holding down shift while clicking each one. Ignore the once called Reference.

Now copy these by pressing Ctrl-C or Edit|Copy Variables. You will be asked if you want the variable names in the first row. Click Yes.

Now fire up Minitab with an empty project. Position the cursor by clicking in the grey cell that is one over and one down. Press Ctrl-V or Edit|Paste Cells. Poof! There is your data set.

Now all you need to do is complete the exercise in Minitab. You may need to use your brain to find the equivalent function in Minitab for each in Data Desk, but they are both statistics software and the terminology is similar or identical.

For this exercise we need to calculate the Pearson Product-Moment correlation, and plot a Scatterplot. Hmmm... I bet Scatterplot is under the Graphs menu... yup. And correlation?

Found it!

Enjoy learning about statistics and sticking it to the man. If this article saved you $60, please consider donating $10 or more to the Guelph Humane Society. The pups and kitties will be grateful.

Candy Crush Saga Cheats

I gave in and I tried this Candy Crush game that everyone was talking about. I'm hooked.

Let me be clear. Five lives per day is a perfectly healthy number. It gives you some time for leisure, and then you are forced to assimilate back into society as a contributing member.

That said, I get just as much fun from taking toys apart as from playing with them, so I started tearing it apart to see what I could do about these limited lives.

These are notes, not instructions. A developer should have no problems here, but if you need step-by-step instructions you'll need to look elsewhere. Better yet, just buy some more lives/items.

The Save File

Your belongings in the gave are saved in a save file, called save_XXXXX.dat, where XXXXX is some sort of timestamp. This file is present in the app's sandbox once you have played the game. It is a binary file. If they used a serializer, I'm not sure which one.

For an iOS device you can read and write to the filesystem using DiskAid.

The process for reverse-engineering save files is no mystery. Copy the save file. Make a change. Copy the save file. Compare.

I used VBinDiff for the binary diffs and Fhred as my hex editor.

Here are my findings so far. Values are big-endian.

Item Byte Offset Bits Tested Bits Predicted
Disco ball 0x0050 32 32
Coconut ring 0x0068 16 32
Jelly Fish 0x005c 8 32
Wrapped & Striped 0x00a4 16 32
Lives 0x0290 16 32
Lollipop hammer  0x0074  8 32
Lucky Candy 0x0098  32

A visual explanation of analog dial-up modem handshaking

No xbox partition table found

While attempting to soft mod an old XBox using the cable swap method, XboxHDMaker kept giving me the error:

No xbox partition table found on /dev/hda drive is not locked but locking is enabled dont reboot untill you have build a working xbox hdd since reboot will lock the drive press ant key to abort operation.

The hard drive in question had a valid partition table, but several attempts left me with the same message.

I believe the issue is that I was not restarting the PC. The PC was already booted into the Linux live CD. I shut down the PC and rebooted it to the BIOS setup screen. At this point I swapped cables. It worked!

How to load Google Play onto the Hipstreet Equinox 2

Since my review of the Hipstreet Equinox 2, I've had a lot of questions about how I was able to install Google Play onto the device (which then makes loading tons of other first-tier apps, like Netflix, Google Maps, etc. onto the device quite easy).

Like many of the cheapest Android devices, the Equinox 2 did not go through Google's validation process and therefore is not allowed to be preinstalled on the device. Presumably this accounts for part of why these devices are cheap. Instead it ships with GetJar, which although it gives you access to thousands of apps, does not let you get the most popular ones.

Some apps can be downloaded directly from the publisher, others can be found by searching for torrents, and many are available on Usenet. These can then be sideloaded onto the device using one of many different methods. The problem is that you may be downloading a virus, or accidentally be pirating a commercial app.

The device is already rooted when you get it so you would think you might be able to sideload Play onto the device. Indeed, there are many places you can download all the various versions of Play (or Android Store or whatever it was called) and you can sideload them onto the device. The bad news is that it always crashes. If you are lucky it will get as far as showing its splash screen.

The process I used to sideload the app involves a few steps. If you are not technically inclined, this method isn't for you.

  1. Install the Android SDK on your computer.
  2. Download the Google apps bundle.
  3. Copy files to the filesystem.

Install the Android SDK on your computer

The Android SDK (also known as the Android Developer Tools or ADT bundle) includes everything needed to develop apps for Android devices, and deploy them onto a device. It's the latter part that is important. It is available here for PC, Linux, and Mac

When you plug in your device into your PC, hopefully it will install two drivers. The first is the mass storage driver, which lets your computer use the device like a USB memory stick. The second driver is called Android Device Bridge (ADB). For us, this is the important one.

On a Mac a driver is not required. On a PC it is. Unfortunately Hipstreet/Kobian does not publish an ADB driver for the device, so your Windows Device Manager will probably indicate an unrecognized device. I modified the Google driver to work with this device and you can download from this article.

Once the SDK is installed and the driver is working, you'll need to find the directory where the SDK was installed to find the platform-tools directory.

On my PC this is located not in Program Files, but your user directory, e.g. C:UsersYvanAppDataLocalAndroidandroid-sdkplatform-tools.

On the Mac it depends where you unpack it.

Now familiarize yourself with the adb tool.

Download the Google apps bundle

Although it is free software, I'm not what the rules are about redistribution so you're on your own to find this. The one I used is called gapps-ics-20120429-signed (Google Apps for Ice Cream Sandwich). It includes pretty much all the Google stuff that would normally preload on a device, about 25 programs.

Copy files to the filesystem

Use the adb tool to copy files to the appropriate directories on the device. You need to use this tool, because these system directories are not accessible from the GUI, even on a rooted device. If you find an app that lets you copy files to the system directories, you can skip step 1 and use that tool.


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