Gabe Wollenburg's blog
My employer bought me a MacBook, and I really like it. At first I felt weird using a work laptop as my primary machine. I'm over that now. Now I'm just annoyed that it doesn't make financial sense to invest in it. And that I can't in good conscious put one of them sweet, sweet Web 414 stickers on it.
But, I have to say, not that any of you care, but I have to say, I'm most happy with the MacBook. It's a fine, fine little laptop. I'm not sure why you'd buy anything else. Here's a Heathercoresque list of things I think about it.
1. I Love the chicklet keys. They feel good to type on.
2. I miss the reverse delete key. [Function] + [Delete] is just not the same.
3. I know the MagSafe adapter takes it's share of flack, but with a 2-year-old running around the tables, the magnetic adapter has paid off several times.
4. Get more memory. I did, but I didn't get enough. I should have got more.
5. 10.5 is better than 10.4. By 0.1, and a little bit more.
6. The way 10.5 handles WIFI is both satisfying and disturbing. I like it when I get access to a wifi that has the same password as one I already know. I don't like that my computer hands out passwords it knows to any ol' wifi thinger it comes across. Anybody know more about this?
7. I _hate_ the blue screen PC icon. I'm OSbidexterous.
8. I forgot what eight was for.
9. OSX should just come with Quicksilver. Quicksilver is necessary for OSX to actually work. If you disagree, you haven't tried it. If you still disagree, you haven't tried it -right-.
10. The multi-touch trackpad is more useful than you know. Two-finger tap as right click is addictive as hell, but Two-finger scroll beats the hell out of any other mouse gesture. However, the pinch-zoom is lame.
Microsoft is the Ziggy of the software industry. Think about it. Everybody knows who Ziggy is and most people hate him. And then some people take great pleasure drawing a nipple on his voluptuous nose.
Case in point: Today's ZDnet.com's article breathlessly entitled "XP SP3 performance gains - Nothing to write home about."
The article does little more than draw a giant nipple on Microsoft's voluptuous nose, running a series of benchmark tests on various computers to prove that what was essentially a hot-fix roll-up service pack doesn't magically accomplish something beyond the scope of it's intended design.
May I suggest the following story for next week's headlines at ZDnet: "XP Service Pack 3 does nothing to protect users from tiger attacks." Then we can all point and laugh at Microsoft for being so large and stupid that it can't see the implicit danger of tiger attacks and don't they have any engineers in Redmond they can throw at the tiger attack problem?
This kind of reporting is easy kicking at the cat. It's lazy journalism at best and irresponsible at worse.
I installed SP3 on an old laptop last night. The experience was less than flawless and less than easy, but you know what? I only had to reboot twice. That's roughly six times less than I would have had to reboot in a pre-SP3 world. And that, in my opinion, is a service pack done right.
In honor of International Pixel-stained Techno-peasant Day I'm releasing this new short-story on this here blog.
This is a short story originally written for Matthew Wayne Selznick's sidelined Wordhouse Anthology project. The idea was to pick a song you loved and write a story that captured some of the images and feelings from the song. I wrote "Nightswimming" based on the R.E.M. song.
The story is hosted at Scribd.
It's released under the usual terms.
Thanks be to the good people at Mabusse, developers of Photo Extractor, the free windows application that can extract otherwise lost photo data from a corrupted SD Card.
Enjoy the software author's webpage:
Do You take a digital camera with You to the holiday? Have You ever seen a message on the display about the flash card is unreadable and will be formatted now?
Google is awash with crappy demo versions of similar products that do the same thing, only for money. Photo Extractor is free, functional, and saved the day. If you have a damaged memory card, before you give up and send your photos away into the ether, try Photo Extractor. Some of the photo rescue programs I saw while hunting around wanted as much as $90 for a functinoally identical product. Worse, some of the photo rescue programs show you your unrevoverd photos and stamp "DEMO VERSION" across the top of them, effectively holding your photos hostage for $30 in blood money. Screw you guys.
Photo Extractor just works, works well, and doesn't try to exploit my panic over my lost photos for their financial gain.
I don't have any eGold, but if I did, I'd, as the author of Photo Extractor suggests, "transfer 10 USD to my e-gold account 1324912. "
Had a chance today to do some sleeve's rolled up, no bullshit Photoshoppin' at work today.
Sadly, I have to admit, most of my techniques I learned through the You Suck at PhotoShop tutorials by Donnie Hoyle.
For this particular project, I leaned heavily on Tutorial #2 and Tutorial No. 3 employing the layered samples techniques in order to remove the tent from the background.
I used pretty much the same technique to replace the blond kid in the back's face from another photo.
One of the coolest things about Flickr video: 90 Second limit. This has really helped my think about the people who watch the video (my audience) and keep the whole idea of "being fair" to them when I'm editing video footage.
With the Flip's generous storage (1 GB, about 60 minutes), it would be far to easy to just let the camera roll for minutes and minutes, but keeping the 90-second Flickr Video limit in mind makes me conscious of getting the shot I want and moving on.
I have always been a fan of video, you know, ever since my middle-school days stealing time on the linear editing decks from the school library, and Flip Video plus Flickr video has invigorated my desire to create moving pictures.
This video started with exactly Flickr's description of the "Moving Photograph" concept in my mind. I wanted to shoot something that would be inherently more interesting if it could move. A still photo certainly could have captured the same sense of isolation and indifference the ramen feels toward Pick 'n' Save shoppers, but without the stream of people walking by in the background -- people painfully indifferent to the way the ramen hates them -- would the Ramen's rage have been as potent?
Oh, yeah. And then there's the music.
Maybe Flickr should do some kind of mix tape service?
Got an email from my Uncle Jim on Last.FM, of all places.
Last.FM is great because it just hangs out in your system tray and watches what you listen to in iTunes, then makes a feed of what you've listed to, and makes a radiostation based on what you've been listening to. It's a very passive way of greating a radio station, but makes a fairly accurate list of your iTunes collection. However, mine isn't exactly 100% on with my musical tastes. Mostly becuase my Sansa 280e doesn't scrobble.
A more active way to make a "Radio station," but without having to go full-bore into hosting and running your own files are the Mixtape services.
I have also been playing with a service called "muxtape" (http://heygabe.muxtape.com/) and MixWit (www.mixwit.com).
Both of these services let you make "mix tapes" of songs, the former of songs you upload from your own collection, and the other from stuff already available on the Internet.
Anyway, keep on Rockin' Uncle Jim.
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