Thursday, July 31, 2008

Apple Finally Fixes Fatal Flaw For Free. Finally.

The DNS flaw that you've been hearing so much about lately? (What do you mean you haven't heard of it. It's the DNS flaw...thingy. You know, the wicked, nasty thing that allows hackers to enter your system and zombies to eat your brains. 

Anyway. Apple has finally patched it. So you can go back to downloading strange and malicious files from online again. Have fun. 

So Long, Scott

Scott McNulty is leaving TUAW, one of my favouritist sources for Mac news, opinions, and wildly speculative rumour mongering.

In other news, TUAW *still* hasn't got back to me regarding that application I sent them a couple months ago.... Gruber (who is one of the few Mac pundits who you can refer to by one name and people know who you mean) calls McNulty "Far and Away" their best writer, which I wouldn't say exactly (especially if they ever get back to me about that job....), but he has been one of their most reliable, interesting writers. It was he (I've discovered) who talked about that neat Safari Tab Trick that I completely ignored until discovering it quite by accident a couple days ago (like, two. On tip tuesday.)

So so long Scott, and we'll...probably not miss you. As you say, it is pretty easy to keep tabs of you if we want to....

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Having said that...

The solution, silly as it may seem, is to open Pages, and have the index file in that. I would like to use Pages for everything, but there are a couple things Word does better in organizing long documents, so I'm stuck with it...for now.

When standard isn't standard

I haven't gone through the UI Guidelines for the Mac, but one thing that has been pretty common across most programs is that you can scroll when your cursor is overtop a window, even if that window isn't in the front. This has caused a few issues in my life, but none that have been terrible. 

However, Microsoft Word does not scroll unless the window is in Focus. Which is really starting to irritate me.  My day job involves doing a lot of research and writing, and I have an index file that I need to scroll through fairly regularly. Instead of being able to hover over the open window and scroll, though, I have to click on the window to bring it to focus, scroll, then go back to my main document, click on that (losing where I was in the process), and start typing. 

This is irritating. And I don't know why they did it that way. Excel allows you to hover scroll. 

Sigh. Just a pet peeve. 

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Tip Tuesday: Tear away tabs

Okay, so there hasn't been one of these for a while. Sorry. Busy. Might not be more for a while, too (I am now officially past deadline on a pair of projects....)

But I did something quite by accident, and I thought it was really cool. I was going to close a window, and wasn't really looking, and instead of clicking on the X, I missed, and clicked next to it. And because I was sorta rushing, My mouse was still moving while I clicked, and so I wound up clicking and dragging down on the tab. 

And it was the coolest thing. The tab tore away and became its own window. 

It's cool. Try it. You have to drag down (up does nothing, left and right reorganize the order of the tabs. But drag down and the tab becomes a new window with this cool wooshy effect. Heh. I just did it to this window. It's cool. 

I'm sure I've seen this tip show up recently in the official Apple feed or something like that, and ignored it completely. But now I think it is the coolest thing. 

Back to work now. 

Monday, July 28, 2008

Well, that answers that...

From Photoshop Cafe:

Oh yeah, I know what your about to ask, and yet, it updates all your Lightroom 1 Catalogs so you can get up and running without having to recreate your library. Now that's out of the way...


Lightroom 2.0 is officially out. I kinda saw it coming, since Scott Kelby Announced his Lightroom 2.0 book yesterday, but I'm stoked.

There's a bunch of questions from the beta that I don't have the answer to, like will 2.0 open 1.4 libraries? (I know, if I had been following along more closely, I'd know that answer, but...)  I really liked playing with 2.0, and just a couple days ago dumped my entire library into 2.0 Beta, just for fun. 

I don't buy much software, but this one is on the list....

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Daily Reading: Steve Job's health

Man, I've been avoiding the whole Steve is sick/no he's not debate, because I don't really think it is relevant, and it is all speculative. 

Everything except this article, which proves that maybe I shouldn't have been silent. That maybe if I would have been saying that he looked like he was on death's door, he would have called and insulted me, too....

Thursday, July 24, 2008

I'm back. I think

I've tried posting a couple times over the last week, but I haven't been able to make the connection to blogger. I suspect it's been that I've been uploading a few GBs worth of images, and that has eaten all my bandwidth. In this pause, I'll take a second to post. 

Over at ehMac, Eric pointed out that if you search for California Mac stores, you get Laval and Toronto results, too. Probably a mix up with the CA ending, but still amusing, no? As someone tries to Google Earth the Laval, California store. It is right most of the places, but he stumbled across a page showing macbook air availability at stores.

I just downloaded the Wordpress app for my iPod Touch, and was super excited to try it, but the wife left yesterday and took the Airport with her, so I'm without wireless for the next month unless I go wardriving...

Lots of stuff happening, but deadlines in the real world mean that I don't have a lot of time to write about it. Sorry. I should be done by now, but things never go the way you want them to....

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


If you were to look really closely at the Mac News Cycle, you'd notice that it was dominated by the iPhone. Okay, if you were blind, deaf and dumb, you probably would still notice. 

As we near the end of the first week of iPhone, the emphasis has turned to the apps store, and one app that is getting a lot of buzz is Pandora for the iPhone. "The Killer app" some people are calling it. 

Which is all fine and dandy, but hey, look! It's not available in the Canadian iTunes store. Because the service is not available in Canada. This has been the case for a while, but it is always annoying when everyone is talking about something that you can have. Like having everyone tell you how good those cookies are when you're allergic to gluten...

Here's the info from Pandora's FAQ.

Delivery of Pandora is based on proper licensing from the content rights holders - we have always believed strongly in honoring the guidelines as determined by the artists, labels and publishers. In the U.S. there is a federal statute called the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) that provides this license for all the music you hear on Pandora. Unfortunately, there is no equivalent license outside the U.S.

We will be posting updates on our blog ( regarding our ongoing effort to launch in other countries, so please stay in touch. In all honesty, we don't have the resources to pursue licensing arrangements in many countries in the immediate term, but we do have the ultimate goal of being able to offer our service globally. As always, we welcome your feedback and would love to hear your thoughts and suggestions. We greatly appreciate your understanding and support.

Note: Due to international licensing constraints, we are deeply sorry to say that it is necessary to restrict streaming audio from Pandora for most countries outside of the U.S.

Our vision remains to eventually make Pandora a truly global service, but as a small company, the best chance we have of realizing our dream of Pandora all around the world is to grow as the licensing landscape allows.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Dr. Horrible's sing along blog

The latest show from Joss Whedon, he who made Firefly, the greatest TV show ever. After Babylon 5. And Greatest American Hero. And West Wing. 

It's a web short, featuring...oh, and when Next Generation was at the top of it's game, it was hard to beat. 

Anyway. It's a web short featuring Doogy Howser and Mal from Firefox and Vi.

You can watch it here, or download from iTunes. The latter is the best Mac connection I can make. And Nathan Fillion is Canadian....

UPDATE: Forget what I said about iTunes. Well, you can still download it (for $1.99), but I've finally managed to watch most of it (the stre...m...g qua ty is not gre...t).

Apparently there's an app for the iPhone that doesn't just control iTunes, you can remotely control vans, too....

It's about time...

Well, Apple has finally filed suit against Psystar, putting an end to the conspiracy rumours. Now the question is, what took them so long?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Daily Reading: Well that's dumb...

Johua has a nice post about the difference between dumb and simple over at Macgasm

Sunday, July 13, 2008

I got a new iPod Touch!

I didn't download the mail and maps update a few months ago, but when the iPod 2.0 software became available (and was needed to download apps), I downloaded it, and wow. 

I know you've known this for nearly a year, 

2.0 rocks. 

The apps are cool, too. 

The only thing that I've noticed is that because a lot of the apps tie into web services, the scrolling is not as smooth as with native apps. I'd have to go somewhere with faster internet to see if it is endemic, or just my internet connection. 

Friday, July 11, 2008

Fear and Misinformation

The ehmac boards are alight with stories of Rogers employees telling them that "They can expect a $5000 phone bill" without getting a data plan, and that Rogers is charging data on Wifi. These seems a classic case of FUDing with the clients to try and force them into a data plan. If the latter turns out to be the case, though, you can expect a full scale iPhone revolt. 

In other news, the Spectrum auction is at round 251, and should be over soon. I haven't been following every twist and turn, but there should be at least one competitor to Rogers spawned by this in the GSM space, though that might take a couple years....

Daily Reading: iPhone 2.0 rocks...even without 3G

Gizmodo has a look at the 2.0 software, and pronounces it good. 

Evernote for the iPhone

TUAW has a first look at Evernote for the iPhone, and by extension, the iPod Touch...

Tales from the front

CTV says the iPhone is sold out across the country. 

Mr Mayor over at ehMac gets Rogered.

iTunes is down because everyone is trying to activate their iPhones. Even the activation servers are borked...

And a couple other iPhone related threads, over at ehmac.

There are also rumours that iPod Touch 2.0 software is available, but Apple is so crushed and they aren't even being dugg....

iPhone Daze are here at last

Okay, raise your hands. How many of you knuckled under and picked up an iPhone today, despite this report from CBC that the Canadian iPhone was the second most expensive in the world?

Me? Nope. For one thing the closest Rogers store is too far away to bother, and I don't have the cash, and I don't have 3G, or even GSM, so what'd be the point?

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Yes, while we can't get, oh, Bab 5, Greatest American Hero, or any of a thousand other TV shows up here in Canada, we can now get the Military Channel, featuring such shows as Weaponology, FutureWeapons and TOP Army Boxer.


App is up

The app store is now officially up...

Just, you know, so you know. 

Books as apps?

Bowsing the App Store for iPod Touch application, I'm noticing "Air Hockey" and "Alarm Free" right next to "Anna Karenina" and "A Tale of Two Cities."

Now, stop me if I'm wrong, but books aren't actually apps, right? They're just...books. Looks like they built a bit of a reader into each book to qualify. Perhaps to get around the need for people to go elsewhere to download books. However, it seems to me that a better use of time and effort would be to build a book reader, then sell the books separately....Oh, wait, here we have eReader. Which will work with books from the eReader website I assume....

Anyway. Some apps that I'm interested in: Drummer (as that's what I do....) Evernote for iPod touch (how is that going to work with no cut and copy and paste?), and...hmm, well, that may be it, actually, until I start seeing some feedback about these other apps. I'm noticing that a lot of the iPod Touch apps are pay (according to a recent announcement, 25% of iPhone apps were free, but looking at the page it doesn't seem like that translates to the Touch). 

Viewing the apps store

To clarify how to see apps in the app store. 

There is no button for apps, but searching for a known app (Like Super Monkey Ball or Twitter) in the search field brings up a result for applications. Click on one the resulting all. Now, in the breadcrumb trail at the top of the window, you'll see the path "Home: App Store...."

Click on App Store, and voila All the goodness of 500 iPhone and iPod touch apps. 

I love how they have "what's hot" and "top apps", even though the store isn't really available. Perhaps it's all those kiwis downloading apps. That could be it. 

You wake up and the world has changed...

If only just a little bit. is up and running and iTunes 7.7 is awaiting you. The apps store is up to, sort of, according to TUAW. IF you click on applications, there's nothing there, but if you search for an application, you can find it. 

And there's a new system software update. And Apple TV 2.1 is up. And iPhone config tools are out. And iPhone 2.0 can be downloaded, though it hasn't been released to the wild. And the iPhone 3G is on sale now!

Okay, the last one is only appropriate if you live in New Zealand, and probably Australia by now. To find the iPhone 2.0 software, just follow the link at this TUAW article

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

.mac is down...

...never to rise again....


Mobile Me goes live tonight....

Sometime in the next six hours, .mac will cease to be, replaced by mobile me. .mac is supposed to be offline by now, but appears to still be up.

 I don't have .mac, and I'm a little iffy on Mobile Me. Great concept, but not sure it's what I need. Because I'm not really mobile. I spend most of my time trapped in my basement office. I like the idea of being able to store documents in the cloud, but I'm looking at a terrabyte or two, not the paltry 20 GB that they offer....

Daily Reading: Real Dan to Replace Fake Steve

Fake Steve is sailing off into the sunset, to be replaced by his alter ego, real Dan. Or so says the post on the website. 

So long fake Steve. We'll miss you. 

This one goes to 6...

Not quite unlimited, but Rogers is offering a limited time 6 GB package for the iPhone. The offer is over by August 31, and costs another $30/month, but it appears that deafening roar of protest has dulled to a disgruntled rumble....

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Just when you were pissed at Rogers for screwing you...

Bell and Telus decide to join in the fun. Yes, they'll charge $0.15 for incoming text messages. 

Nick24 over at ehmac provides this cost analysis. I was listening to the same MBW, but since he had done the math already, I'll give him props:

I was listening to a Mac Break Weekly and this type of topic (albeit with US carriers) was discussed. Here's some maths - feel free to correct any mistakes....
So, a message costs 15c to send or receive. Each message is 160 bytes.
There are 1048576 bytes in a megabyte. 
You get 1048576/160 messages per megabyte = 6554
Therefore, a megabyte of text messaging data costs 6554*0.15 = $983.

$983/MB. You're looking for something to protest? Baby, here's something for the rest of you to protest.

This is probably just a strong-arm tactic to get you to to subscribe to a text plan, but I mean, really. Bandwidth for text messaging is nearly as expensive as inkjet printer ink....


A month ago or so, I picked up a Drobo. The only...the ONLY issue that this device has is that it is USB 2.0 only.

Or at least it was, up until today. Now it comes with Firewire 800. 

However, they are not allowing you to upgrade, it seems, so if you want a Firewire 800 Drobo (and believe me, you do), you're going to have to drop another $500. 

Worth it? Yes? For me, what with my no money? Give it a few months.

Apple not selling iPhone in Canada

Today's news: Apple won't be selling the iPhone in Canada. More after the paragraph break.

Yes, Apple announced that they won't be selling the iPhone in their Canadian stores. 

Of course, Rogers still will be selling the iPhone, but Apple won't. There's no official word, but the scuttlebutt is that Apple isn't impressed with Rogers plans, nor with the protest around it, and are stepping back just a little so as not to get hit by flying poo. Of course, it could also be that by withdrawing support just a little, they too are applying pressure to Rogers to change their plans....

Monday, July 7, 2008

Google rings the Bell

I've been studiously ignoring the rumour that Apple and Roger's are on the outs, because much as I'm not a fan of the Roger's iPhone plans, I'd rather have an iPhone in Canada than not, even if it is only something I can dream about.

But, here's a story that is a story and not just a rumour. Google is asking the CRTC to go after Bell for throttling

Go get em, Googley woogly. 

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Roger's has competition

No, not another carrier in Canada. Competition for worst iPhone carrier in the world....

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Tip Tuesday: Forth and Back

I use Command Tab to navigate my open applications. And I've known for a while that if I tossed in the shift key, I could navigate backwards as well as forwards. But here's one I just noticed by accident. Once you've command tabbed to open up the list of applications, you can then hit command tilde (~) to go backwards. 

You can't let go of the command key. Generally, command tilde allows you to flick through open applications but when the list of open apps is open, it goes backwards, too. Which is cool, cuz sometimes adding in that shift key can be a pain.

And a merry Canada day to all you Canucks. And for the rest of the world, only ten more days....