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Macheads in love August 31, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in iMacs, Wala lang.

Nothing really. Just wanted to say I got a tricked-out 20-inch 2.4GHz aluminum iMac this morning, and I am in love.

I can’t get over how nice this thing is. I’ve had troops of our graphic artists and editorial folk coming in and out of my office oohing and aahing at everything from the thin keyboard to the silver casing to the black logo and glorious screen. Man.

Full review coming soon.

Ok, now back to regular programming.

The Cross of St. John August 31, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Apple Inc., Oddities, Trivia.
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I’ve always wondered where Apple got that symbol for the Command key. Now I know. It’s called, variously, the Cross of St. John, or St. Hans’ Cross. It’s an ancient sign used for a lot of things, from Cabbalistic mysticism to traffic signs. And of course, computer keys.

Check out symbols.com for more.

i…Car? August 31, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Apple Inc., Hardware, New Stuff, Steve Jobs.
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Talk about moving up. The net is rife with talk about Apple and Volkswagen conspiring to make an automobile, tentatively named the iCar.


The whole ball started rolling with a report from the German magazine Capital, which claims that Steve Jobs met with a Volkswagen representative in California several days ago for preliminary talks to majorly incorporate Apple products in Volks compacts. (Read the Google-translated page from Capital here.) Already, Apple has partnered with car manufacturers like Audi and BMW to incorporate iPods and iPhones into their cars.

I’m not holding my breath.

Sept. 5 rumor: (Product)Red shuffle? August 31, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Events, iPods, Rumors.
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It’s happened before, so why not?

A special iPod nano was released as a part of the (Product)Red initiative, where red-colored and -themed products of all sorts where introduced and sold, with a portion of all sales going to a charity. US$10 from the sale of each red nano went to the Global Fund to fight AIDS in Africa.

Now rumors are circulating that a red 2G shuffle will be released at the confirmed Apple event on Sept. 5. Cool, but the thunder of this might be diminished a bit by Apple’s earlier release of colored 2g shuffles (of which the orange became a minor cult favorite). Still and all, I’d get a red shuffle if I could. Would be nice.

A red iPhone would be even nicer though.

Firmware update for Base Station Extreme August 30, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Updates & Patches, Wireless.
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Apple‘s released Apple Base Station Extreme firmware update Version 7.2.1, which certifies the base station for the IEEE 802.11n Draft 2 specification. In their usual considerate and detailed explanation of what they’ve done, Apple says:

This update also includes bug fixes and security updates.

It requires that you have Airport Utility 5.1 or later, and, of course, a Base Station Extreme with 802.11n. Get the firmware update here.

MacStorms August 30, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Toys, Updates & Patches.
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I’m a big Lego fan, always have been. Add to that, a big robot fan as well (Michael Bay’s Transformers is a milestone in my life). And then, as we all well know, a Mac fan too. Put them all together, and what have you got? The Doodler’s dream toy: Lego Mindstorms NXT!

I own an older set, gifted to me by my wife several years ago, which I’ve buttressed with upgrade kits and accessories like more sensors and remotes and motors and blocks from Technics sets through the years. I’ve yet to upgrade to the NXT version (I’m time- and resource-challenged at the moment), but I now have more reason to expedite the process.

National Instruments and the Lego Group announced yesterday a much-awaited software update for the Lego Mindstorms NXT Robotics Invention System, which, among other important things, adds support for Intel-based Macs (alright, for Windows Vista too, but who’s keeping score?) as well as improving memory management on the NXT Intelligent Brick.

If you’ve never played with this kit, it’s advanced Lego for older folk, improved with all kinds of high-tech sensors and motors, and controlled by a programmable and powered “brick” which acts as the brain of the whole thing. Using special software, you program what the robots do, based on your design, and what you’ve built into them.

The software used here has now been updated to Version 1.1, which with the optimized memory usage allows for more complex programming and instruction, and better system performance. The software runs on the National Instruments LABView graphical programming environment, is compatible with the National Instruments Toolkit that comes with the set, and was made in close collaboration with the Lego Group.

You Lego blockheads can get the update and more info here.

(I’m such a geek. I find this so cool, it disturbs me.)

iPhoto 7.0.2 Update August 29, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Apps, iLife, Updates & Patches.
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There must be something seriously wonky with the dotMac Web Gallery, because the new iPhoto 7 that’s part of the iLife ’08 suite is also being updated to address issues with it. If you remember just recently, iMovie from the same suite was also updated for the same reason. Either that, or the new apps really need more work.

So heads up, iPhoto 7.0.2 is available as a 10.2MB download via Software Update, or a direct 8.8MB download on the Apple site. Aside from fixing that thing with the Web Gallery, it also addresses issues with editing books and rebuilding thumbnails, plus a lot of other minor problems and issues.

You can run, but you can’t hide… August 28, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Funnies, News.
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The Herald Sun of Australia (“Australia’s biggest-selling daily newspaper”) recently made a major error on a news item about “Microsoft’s new iPhone”, and was outed by Digg. The Herald Sun promptly pulled the item so that when you clicked on the link all you got was a Page Not Found error.

Well, they should be more thorough about boo-boos like these. People always have ways of finding you out. Being cached by search engines is one big loophole, but being cached on your own site’s search engine really takes the cake:


NeoOffice update August 28, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in FOSS, Share/Freeware, Updates & Patches.
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Just a heads-up.

A new version of NeoOffice, the FOSS office suite based on OpenOffice has just been released that incorporates most of the improvements already in OpenOffice.org 2.2.1.

NeoOffice is distinctive in that it is more compliant with the Mac look-and-feel, and doesn’t require X11 to run. NeoOffice 2.2.1 also allows users to print documents in resolutions higher than the previously capped 300dpi, manipulate most Microsoft Office 2007 documents, supports Address Book and takes advantage of the built-in spell checker in Mac OS X.

You can download it here.

Welcome to Leopard August 27, 2007

Posted by reverseengineer in Operating System, Video.
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It looks like the “Willkommen” intro video for Leopard, the one that greets you after a fresh OS install, has been leaked. Nothing really earthshaking, but cool nonetheless. Just swirling text on a moving spacescape. Watch it while you can; otherwise you’ll have to wait until the actual release of the new OS update.