Archive for the ‘computers’ Category
While going through my instant messenger contact list, I began thinking of new ways that I could use to sort my list. There hasn’t been any innovation in terms of how contacts are shown in a contact list. A list always consists of a list of groups, and then there are contacts under each group. Each contact can only belong to one group.
It would be interesting to see tags applied to contacts. I’d love to see a web-based instant messaging client take an initiative on this, such as meebo, or desktop clients such as Adium or Trillian, because they are more flexible and can apply these types of features without requiring that the actual network support it.
As some people know, I purchased a Nintendo Wii about a week ago (from Pittsburgh, PA because they are extremely hard to find here in Toronto!) I’m having a great time with it so far, and have a few events planned and had a few that have passed where we’ve used it to play some games, such as WarioWare, Zelda, and of course, some Wii Sports. I’ve had it for a week now, and so I began to ponder: what else could I do with it?
There’s that Mac Mini that I have…
JPMorgan has announced the launch of ‘AlgoAlert’, which is ‘an instant messaging service that provides unique charts as well as real-time updates of algorithmic trading performance and trading conditions’. It’s interesting because it uses different IM platforms such as BLOOMBERG PROFESSIONAL® service’s messaging system, AOL’s AIM service, and the Google Talk ™ instant messaging service, which, as Google notes, was not a use that they had imagined for their Google Talk software, but that it’s nice to see it being used for things outside of their scope of imagination.
What’s most interesting to me is that, the head of product development in ECS, the team behind the AlgoAlert, is Carl Carrie, the person who I met while I was in Europe this past summer. Cool stuff!
The release of Crossover Mac couldn’t have been at a more perfect time. I bought my Mac laptop about a week and a half ago, and of course, I’ve wanted to test Windows on it.
I’ve tried both the Parallels method, which runs Windows in an application in Mac OS X, but it uses up RAM which it takes from Mac OS X, because both Windows and Mac OS X run at the same time. Also, Parallels does not have access to my computer’s video card, so I can’t play games in it. But, Parallels is useful for those moments when I quickly need to boot up a Windows-only program.
Then, I tried Boot Camp, which is directly from Apple. It allows me to run Windows on my Mac as well, but in order to do so, I have to restart my computer and then choose to run Windows instead of Mac OS X when my computer starts up. The disadvantage of this is, of course, that I have to restart my computer to run Windows, and that I can’t run both Windows and Mac OS X simultaneously. The advantage is that all of the processor, the RAM, etc. AND the video card is dedicated and is able to be used by Windows. This is most useful when I need to run programs that require higher specs to run, and it is especially good for Windows-only games.
And finally, I’m trying out Crossover Mac, which allows me to run Windows programs on my Mac – without running Windows! One of the biggest advantage of this is that it uses much less RAM because it doesn’t have to run Windows itself, and so I can run, say, Internet Explorer, which is useful for me to test websites to make sure they look good in IE, as a web developer. Now, as it is still beta, and it was released yesterday to the public, I’m sure there are bugs. But so far, I’ve got several Windows programs to work without any problems, such as Internet Explorer 6.0, which I’m sure I’ll be using quite a lot now. The Firefox for Mac OS X is currently using about 80 MB (granted, I have a lot of tabs opened), but Crossover AND Internet Explorer running in it uses less than 20 MB in total. That’s a HUGE plus for me. Now, I can hold off my extra RAM purchase a bit longer! (I’ve only got 512 MB RAM – hey, I’m on a college budget now!)
Unfortunately, us Mac users can’t jump in on the fun and run Windows viruses, just yet!
My BenQ T701 17″ LCD monitor just died this morning. I turned on my computer and my monitor, and the display showed the desktop for one second, and then it went black. I tried it on another computer, and it didn’t work there, either. So now my monitor is being sent to BenQ, courtesy of CompuSmart (which was where I bought the monitor.) It should take about 3 weeks, and hopefully not any longer. I’m forced to work with my Samsung SyncMaster 151s 15″ LCD now, which I took from my Windows XP computer.
I suppose that my monitor dying now is a better time than never, since I’ll be away in Europe for a week and a bit in a few days. Once I return, WWDC will have taken place, and I’ll then be able to make my final decision on which MacBook to buy for university in September.
Browsing my iTunes library to play a specific song used to be a chore on Windows. I had to open up iTunes (which takes a short moment to load on Windows), go to the playlist that I wanted (so that the songs that are looped were the ones that I wanted), type the name of the song in the search box, play the song, then clear the search box so that the other songs in the playlist were also included in the song loop.
Well, I’m no Quicksilver aficionado, but I do know that I can use it to do exactly what the above paragraph describes – all without even leaving the window that I’m working on at the time. Hitting ctrl+space just opens the little window that you see below; I then type in the first few letters of my playlist (my favorite playlist is aptly named ‘good songs’, and so I just type ‘go’ to find it), hit the right arrow key, then start typing the first few letters of the song I want.
When I compare the iTunes method with the Quicksilver method, the iTunes method took 15 seconds while the Quicksilver method took no more than 6 seconds. Just imagine multiplying that over several dozen times a day (yes, I have picky song choices sometimes!). How’s that for great productivity?
I love my Mac. I love the software it runs. But I just ran into a problem that appears to be blatantly obvious, and yet, it happens.I was trying to fix the networking problem between my Windows and my Mac; the problem was that, sometimes, I couldn’t modify files on Windows from my Mac over the network, and sometimes I could. Someone recommended, from an online forum, that I run Keychain First Aid, and so I did. I used the Repair option to repair my keychains. What it did completely baffles me. It deleted my login keychain (or so I thought), which contains all of my passwords that I save on my computer, for applications (such as for my instant messaging client). So, whenever I restarted my computer, each program would always ask me to type in the password once again, and again, and again – on every startup. After poking around a bit, I found that the keychain still existed in ~/Library/Keychains, where I suppose all of the user-created keychains exist. I imported the keychain into Keychain Access, and all is well again.
Just to test the problem, I once again ran Keychain First Aid, and sure enough, the same thing occurred. The program removed all references to my login keychain, so I had to re-import it. Again, I don’t know WHY it does this, but it did. For some reason now, though, after playing around a bit, I have TWO System keychains (I should only have one; they both appear to be duplicates of each other, and I can’t delete either of them) and after running the Repair option again, my login keychain doesn’t disappear.
If someone could explain what is going on, then that’d be nice.