Apple releases 10.4.7 update for OS X

June 27, 2006

Possibly Definitely the coolest new feature in this update is the ability for 15″ MacBook Pro owners (like myself) to use the 2 finger right click option on the track-pad. What this allows you to do is to be able to right click by clicking the track-pad button while placing 2 fingers on the track-pad. Prior to this update, that feature was only available to 17″ MBP and MacBook laptops. Why they left that out on the 15″ MBPs is beyond me but now we finally have it!

(click images below to see larger versions)

The 10.4.7 Update is recommended for all users and includes general operating system fixes, as well as specific fixes for the following applications and technologies.

Other changes in this update include:
– preventing AFP deadlocks and dropped connections
– saving Adobe and Quark documents to AFP mounted volumes
– Bluetooth file transfers, pairing and connecting to a Bluetooth mouse, and syncing to mobile phones
– audio playback in QuickTime, iTunes, Final Cut Pro, and Soundtrack applications
– ensuring icons are spaced correctly when viewed on desktop
– determining the space required to burn folders
– iChat audio and video connectivity
– importing files into Keynote 3
– PDF workflows when using iCal and iPhoto
– reliable use of Automator actions within workflows
– importing and removing fonts in Font Book
– syncing addresses, bookmarks, calendar events and files to .Mac
– compatibility with third party applications and devices
– previous standalone security updates


Place Dashboard widgets on your Desktop!

June 22, 2006

So I got a tip today that it's possible to place Dashboard widgets on your desktop by enabling development mode for Dashboard in OS X. To do so, all you have to do is enter the following line in a Terminal window.

defaults write devmode YES

After you've done that, log out of OS X. Once you log back in, enter the Dashboard (by pressing F12 or clicking the Dashboard application) then click and hold a widget while leaving Dashboard. It magically appears on your Desktop! To put it back in Dashboard you would just repeat the procedure in the opposite manner.

To turn devmode off for Dashboard, you would simply enter the same string as earlier, only replace the word "YES" with "NO".

I thought this was a pretty cool trick. There is even a Dashboard widget that will turn devmode on and off for you.

Originally posted on:

Installing Microsoft Vista Beta 2 on a MacBook Pro

June 9, 2006

I got ahold of a copy of Microsoft Vista Beta 2 and decided to install it on my MacBook Pro using Boot Camp. I swiped this HowTo from another blog but have made revisions to it to make it easier to read/follow. Included (where applicable) are screenshots of what you will see as you follow the guide. Sorry for the less than stellar quality. They were taken with the camera in my Treo 650.

Part 1 – Installing The OS:

  1. Install Boot Camp from within OS X.
  2. Create a XP partition.
  3. Completely install XP SP2.
  4. Once XP is installed, reboot to the Vista DVD. To do this, insert the Vista Beta 2 DVD and then reboot holding down ‘the option key’. Screenshot 1 | Screenshot 2 | Screenshot 3 | Screenshot 4
  5. When you need to select which partition to install Vista on, erase the Disk 0 Partition 1 (200MB). Then select the Windows XP partition (Disk 0 Partition 2 for me), format it, then install Vista there. Screenshot 1 | Screenshot 2
  6. Reboot. And it should work. If it doesn't, re-run the install but then instead of clicking the ‘Install Vista’ button, click the "System recovery options" link. This will find the error in the boot record and fix it. After that, Vista should boot just fine. Screenshot 1 | Screenshot 2 | Screenshot 3

Part 2 – Installing Drivers:

  • Network drivers:

The wired NIC worked out of the box but Vista did not recognize the wireless card. The resolution? Plug a network cable into the MacBook and run Windows Update. It automatically found and installed drivers for the Atheros wireless card. It worked beautifully after that.

  • Video drivers:

Let me just start by saying that Vista looks great fresh from the install. No other video drivers are really needed but, if you're like me and wanna have the best experience possible, I'd recommend installing the ATI Catalyst drivers specifically designed for Vista Beta 2. Installing these will add some functionality to your system. Such as allowing you to mirror your screen to an external monitor. They are available via ATI's website. They can be found here.

  • Other drivers:

I attached the USB receiver for my wireless mouse and Vista was able to automatically install a driver for that without any problem. I suspect most USB devices would have similar results.

Part 3 – Final Thoughts:

Overall, the install went pretty smoothly. Aside from the one glitch (with the initial boot), I didn't really have any problems installing or configuring Vista. I've yet to give it a thorough test run, but so far it's not too shabby. A lot of the new features remind me of parts of *cough* OS X *cough. Such as the "sidebar" (being the dashboard), and it's "gadgets" (or widgets in OS X). Also, the new search in Vista bears a striking resemblance to spotlight in OS X. Not that I'm complaining at all! It's good to see that Microsoft can recognize greatness when it sees it. *grin*

Taking Ecto for a spin.

June 7, 2006

I came across an OS X app called Ecto that allows you to modify and post to your blog without having to login to your blogs web interface. I’m typing this post from it now to test out how well it works. So far it looks pretty cool.

District B-13

June 6, 2006

If you have not seen District B-13 yet, and are a fan of amazing stunts, lots of action, and martial arts… then I'd highly recommend seeing this movie! It's made by the same people that did Ong~Bak and The Transporter. It features David Belle and Cyril Raffaelli. David Belle is a co-founder of a new phenomenon called Parkour. *1"Parkour is the art of moving through your environment using only your body and the surroundings to propel yourself. It can include running, jumping, climbing, even crawling." If you're still a little confused as to what exactly Parkour is, go see the movie and you'll see exactly how it's done.

*1 Quoted from

I just finished the weirdest conversation of my life.

April 13, 2006

I just hung up from, by far, THE oddest tech support call I’ve ever received. It wasn’t even a tech call. This woman just called and started saying, "Your number just showed up on my ID. Who are you?" I said "We’re a company, Quantum Internet Services. We provide Internet services to our customers."

So far, not so strange. But then she proceeded to tell me how she thought we might be her abusive ex boyfriend who used to beat her. She said he sometimes prank calls her. I told her I assume one of our employees called her by mistake and I apologized for the inconvenience. Oh, but that was not the end of the conversation by a long shot. She says, "Well maybe you were trying to reach my dead son… but he’s dead." Wow. What do you say to that? Yeah, I don’t know either, so I just sat quietly in amazement of how much this total stranger was willing to tell me.

Determined to figure out why we had contacted this poor soul, I asked her name to see if we might have a current customer that is amongst the living whom resides in her home. We did have a customer with the same last name so I suggested that perhaps she knew this person. His name was Christoper (common name, dammit). She said her grandson’s name was Christopher but he didn’t live there.

Then she continued to tell me how she hasn’t talked to him in such a long time and how there are exactly 3, count them… THREE, people in the phone book with the same last name as her in that area. The fact that she knew this information off the top of her head, once again, amazed me. I am in complete awe at this point and think to myself, "This must be a prank call". She told me her name was Sarah, and there are lots of Sarah’s. I concur. Ok, so, it’s time to end this call before I lose what’s left of my sanity. I once more, apologized for the inconvenience and told her we must have mistakenly called her thinking we were calling someone else. She finally agreed to end the call by blessing me and wishing me a happy Easter.

*UPDATE* Come to find out, our sys admin accidentally dialed the wrong number and got this woman’s house. Thanks a lot Willie.

New plugs from OneTribe!

April 9, 2006

I got my new plugs from OneTribe last night and they are amazing! I got a pair of the greenstone and a pair of the obsidian (in 00). They’re located in Richmond, VA and all their jewelry is hand-carved. I got standard shipping (which was free by the way) and received the plugs very quickly… within a few days. I’ve ordered from them before and will definitely order from them again. If you have stretched ears, and are in the market for some new jewelry, I highly recommend purchasing from OneTribe.

How are you?

April 7, 2006

Working in a technical support position, I spend a lot of time on the phone with many different people. One of my biggest pet peeves is when you answer a call and the first thing out of the person’s mouth is, "How are you?". That is the most ridiculous thing they could say/ask. They don’t really want to know how I am, so it’s a waste of time.

If I truthfully answered that question, they would be sorry they asked because I know they didn’t call to find out how my day is going. They called because they have a question and/or trouble with their service. A better way to start the conversation might be to tell me their user name, what trouble they’re having, even what OS they’re running! ANYTHING except to ask me how I am.

You might think I’m overreacting but I assure you, I’m not. The first couple of times I heard this I politely answered with a brief response such as, "Oh, it’s going pretty well. Can’t really complain." But after you’ve been asked this for the 10th time in one day, it starts to get very annoying. We’re trained to keep our calls as short as possible and me going into depth about how my personal life is, certainly will extend the call beyond a reasonable time frame. Lets just hear how you managed to fuck up your computer, I will tell you how to fix it, we can share a laugh at your stupidity and then we’ll end the call.