Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich): How to Block Calls

This tip will work for Android 4.x phones running Ice Cream Sandwich of all flavors. It works on numbers which you know, don’t know and existing contacts. Between Android 2.x and Android 4.x google changed the procedure. The old way was to long press on a contact and select “add to blocked list”, which also gave you another icon (a blocked list) in the contact list. Google has gotten rid of this.

Unknown Callers: Press on the number and create a contact called “Blocked Callers”. I like to set their picture to an “Do Not Enter” sign but whatever you want. If you have this contact already you can simply press on the call in the call log and choose “add to contact” and then select “Blocked Callers”. Eventually you’ll end up with “mobile 1” “mobile 2” “mobile 3” … and so on but who cares. Now proceed to reading the next part….

Known Callers: Don’t feel like hearing from someone? Open their contact and press the properties button (or menu on some phones). The menu will open. Google added a check box called “All Calls to Voicemail”. You guessed it, it sends all calls from this caller to voicemail until you uncheck it. For unknown callers, I add them to the list and they go into voicemail. For known callers, this is an easy, temporary fix. What if you want all calls to go to voicemail for a particular period?

Turn your phone off.

Camry Timing Belt

The camry was having problems. At almost 200k miles most people would retire a car but it just seemed too easy. Plus money is tight as hell right now with my wife only working one day a week so once again it was time to put on the man pants and fix stuff.

Except that stuff was a timing belt and a water pump which had long since puked out the gasket and bearings. The timing belt itself was driven by a pair of idlers, the new ones sound terrible but the old ones had wobble and had to go. I enlisted the help of my brother to be the second set of hands because there’s some things on the car you simply can’t do on your own.

Note that this is the first car I’ve truly wanted to stab. My knuckles are completely raw. I have no hair left on my hands. I managed to crush a fingertip and it’s still bleeding from under the nail. All in all things went pretty well.

The biggest lesson learned: Adjust the tension before putting it all back together. We had to retime the engine three times because I would go to close it up and the timing would wander enough to get the timing wrong. Once we figured out we were being stupid it was pretty trivial to find TDC and bolt it up.

Gasket juice: Always important.

5SFE timing belt