6 July 2005

Why haven’t I seen anyone complain about iTunes eating the whole bandwidth, to the point of making a simple chat session lag, as it tries to download all podcasts simultaneously (even causing some downloads to fail, in which case they’re just abandoned) every night at the same (and not configurable) time? Am I the only user in the world who’s sitting in front of his computer at two in the morning, with iTunes playing?

Oh, I know it’s a first version for the podcasting functionality, but come on, it doesn’t take a degree in nukular physics to figure you shouldn’t download all the mp3s you can eat at the same time.

Bye bye to podcasts, then. Anyway, it’s not that convenient when you don’t have a daily commute.

9 July

I don’t remember whether I had had trouble with the previous version (which I tested on the G3 clamshell, so it doesn’t mean much) or I just hadn’t realized there was a free mode, but iCalViewer [via] has just been updated for Tiger and it’s a must-have for anyone using iCal.

iCalViewer displays all upcoming iCal events on a configurable time period, and displays them in a window, on the desktop, or on a layer above your screensaver — and it seems to consume much less CPU cycles than the iCal Events widget. And it does all this for free; the registered version only adds a peudo-Exposé mode (that’s unneeded because the desktop layer appears when you press F11) and to-do list display (which I don’t need, and it’s so simple anyway that there are tons of widgets and utilities doing it).

Strongly recommended.

10 July

OS X: FTP Upload Folder Action. Click, drag, the image is uploaded on my blog.

11 July

How is one supposed to reach Shift-Cmd-Alt-S with one hand in Photoshop? Shift-Ctrl-Alt-S works fine on PC!

12 July

13 July

OS X 10.4.2 is upon us, and the new widget management interface (which isn’t even advertised in the release notes) is stupid. Pretty, and true to the screenshots that had been leaked, but stupid. So you have to click the “+” button down there, and then click the “Manage Widgets” button or the nondescript, poorly labeled manager icon.

I can understand that the Dashboard’s developers wouldn’t want to delete the code that makes the widget well appear and the widgets above move around, but when you’re developing an OS (and for Apple, moreover) that’s not a sufficient excuse to add an extra layer of complexity to the interface, instead of simply replacing it with a simple manager. What fundamental reason is there to prevent users from drag-and-dropping widgets straight from the manager to the Dashboard?

P.S. Oh, wait, it’s even worse, because you can actually double-click on a widget icon in the manager to make it appear. Who wants to bet that they did intend to replace the well, but couldn’t find a solution in time for drag-and-drop to work from within a widget?

P.S. The way the update manages adding and upgrading widgets, however, is pretty cool, however.

14 July

Every key of the Optimus keyboard is a stand-alone display showing exactly what it is controlling at this very moment.” Dreamy (and only that, a dream). The rest of their portfolio isn’t too bad either.

15 July

Why does Mail.app ignore “Play Sound” actions in my rules?

I don’t know why, but the issue was solved by uninstalling Xounds (even though it was already disabled).

16 July

An interview of the Optimus Keyboard’s creator [via]:

We’re in the process of negotiations with several technology providers and manufacturers. As of now we are going to produce it under our own brand, Art. Lebedev. […]

I can hardly imagine it to be less than $200 to $300 (USD). Sounds like a lot for a keyboard, but most modern mobile phones cost about that.

I don’t really see what mobile phones have to do with it, but I’m sure they’ll manage to sell some, even at this price.

17 July

18 July

The Optimus keyboard, now with FAQ [via].

22 July

24 July

On Being and Deliciousness, with Wil Shipley:

Mac users love their machines; Windows users put up with their machines because they don’t believe there’s anything really better.

It’s depressing, really, because it’s like dealing with victims of abuse: “Seriously, there’s a better world out there, and you deserve it! You don’t have to put up with this! You can leave! Mac will treat you right!” And their response is right out of the textbooks: “Why would I trust Mac? I don’t think anything can be good after this.”

I had trouble quoting this analogy, because it makes me uncomfortable, but on a very clinical level it’s perfectly accurate.

25 July

For some reason I was dead sure iCal could wake the Mac from sleep for alarms. That sucks.

Yahoo buys Konfabulator, releases it for free [via]. In other words, they’re copying Google’s actions, without a shred of coherent strategy behind it, right?

P.S. I had forgotten how lame the available widgets are.

Yahoo! Widgets. Well, okay, maybe they do have a strategy after all.

27 July

28 July

Windows Vista Beta 1 Review. I do like translucent windows, at least (I fantasized about OS X’s titlebars only to be disappointed they had lost translucency before I got my own Mac).

29 July

Is it me, or is Quicksilver β42 totally unstable? I spend all my time relaunching it.

When it comes to the Mac, there’s absurd speculation and absurd speculation. But this one is so stupid I just can’t believe people are linking to it: if Intel designed a Mac-specific CPU, Apple could license OS X to third-party computer makers.


  • The main advantage of switching for Apple is to piggyback on the Windows-propelled development of the x86 chip line so that each new PowerMac revision will be able to use the most powerful CPU available when it’s launched.

  • The main advantage of switching for users is to be able to boot to Windows and use those few applications that require it (most commonly, games).

  • For years now Apple as been refusing to consider licensing MacOS to clone makers again; what sick mind can find it logical that the condition for them to reconsider would be switching to another chip maker yet still having a CPU designed specially for them?

30 July

Yesterday was Sysadmin Day. Hence today will be final server reformat day. Buh-bye.

Is the iMac G5 reliable?

Paul Thurrott’s quote cuts off this bit: « Though I’ve seen many first-generation iMac G5’s break down on numerous fronts, I haven’t witnessed nearly as many second-generation iMac G5’s break down on the same scale. »

31 July

Grr, how can one get Safari to display ★ Unicode stars with a normal size? Even MSIE displays them right.

P.S. One answers one’s own question by opening the Character Palette and choosing the font to add to the CSS, such as AppleGothic. (Which only works because, in my case, I always use stars within a specific <span>.) Does everyone have AppleGothic alright?

P.S. On the other hand, the minilog’s &diams; don’t work on Camino. Ah, those lovely web quirks.

Why has my Applications folder lost the icon I gave it, and even as an administrator I can’t set it again?

IE developers talk about standards compliance bugfixes in IE7. But then, it’s Microsoft, and they invented false hopes.


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