Month: January 2008 (page 1 of 3)

It’s Been a While

Not posted much recently. A horrible man flu bug has got in the way of things recently but feeling better now. It got in the way so much that my new amp has been here a week now and it’s still not out the box. I picked up an Onkyo 705 to take advantage of the new audio formats now on offer. Looking forward to setting it up this weekend.

Thats assuming I’ve not been blown away – the wind has been pretty bad over the last few days. Just some snow to look forward to now. Joy!

Two weeks left before I start my new job. Can’t wait. Starting to pick up new work already and it’s looking sufficiently different, exciting, new and that’s before I start. Will be coding again when I move jobs and I’ve started to mess around with APEX in my own time – pretty powerful package and you can get a lot done with very little effort, or so it seems.

Weight loss continuing at an OK pace. Lost the Christmas gains and creeping towards 2.5 stones lost since last September. Back on to the badminton also although the calf is tightening every time I play. Not good.

Trying MarsEdit, loving CSSEdit, wondering why I didn’t use 1Passwd sooner, resisting the iPhone with it’s new tariff’s although now that I’m contract free I’m finding it more difficult than ever to resist.

Loving seeing Tory Derek Conway getting caught with his nose in the trough. I can’t understand why we can’t sack MP’s who are obviously abusing the system.

Anyway, another gale’s whipping up. Time for bed (not sleep – got the whistling wind to listen to).

Fixing Mac Batteries

My Macbook Pro is still going strong in it’s second year. Something I have noticed though is that while the battery life is still very good and hasn’t really deteriorated, the reporting of battery capacity has become a bit erratic. On start-up it will say there’s an hour left but after half an hour it will then say there is 2.5 hours remaining. There’s also been a couple of times when there’s been at least an hour left for it to conk out within five minutes. This wasn’t down to capacity but misreporting what charge was remaining. Help is at hand though.

I found a document on Apple’s site that explained how to calibrate your Mac’s battery. It turns out that each battery has a microprocessor that works out how much juice is remaining. However this needs calibrating from time to time to keep your on-screen battery indicator accurate. I ran through the steps a few days ago and I now have a happy battery icon again. Joy. Might be worth running through the steps if your having similar hiccups on your Mac.

New Look

New year, new blog skin. I made some small changes to the wonderful Grid Focus over the weekend, enough to actually roll it out to the blog tonight. There’s still a few changes to make and there’s some rough edges here and there but I’m pleased with how it looks and works at the moment.

One thing I can’t take to is widgets. I’m just never happy with how they work. Some do work well, others enforce there own styling which is difficult to undo. That’s what I love about Grid Focus. You need to edit a few php files to get what you want and it gives me a lot more control over what I want and where it is positioned.

I keep saying it but I’m hoping to spend some time crafting my own blog template for the next update but that’s months away. Anyway, if you spot anything a bit funky then please let me know.

Four Years

It’s been four years since we moved in to our current house. The time has flown by and it still seems very new, at least to me. In that time we’ve made a fair few changes to make it our own but there’s still a lot I want to do. Some are easy, others not so and will cost a fair bit of money but eventually we’ll get there. I think. Looking at some of the guys I work with there always seems to be jobs to do in your house. Most of this years improvements will be mostly decor rather than anything major. Will take time though. We also must do something about the front garden. I think it’s at the top of my ‘niggles me most’ list.

Macworld Thoughts

Leopard sales look to be very impressive but it’s a shame that the new update wasn’t announced or released. Hope that will be out soon.

The iPhone firmware update looks great and wets the appetite for the up coming SDK in Feb and the slew of app’s that will no doubt be released afterwards. While the update to Google Maps looks good the web clipping looked to be the best new feature. Favourite web clips from a custom home page – nice. Not so nice is charging existing iPod Touch users $20 to get 5 app’s that came with the iPhone but not the iPod Touch. New users will get these app’s built in with the Touch from now on but charging for this is just mean.

iTunes movie rentals look to be everything I would want except that it’s not in the UK (yet) and a 24 hour window for watching a movie once started is pretty tight. At least 48 hours would make more sense but I’ve no problem with the 30 day window to start watching a film. It’s great that HD films will be available for rental. Not so great is that they are only available on Apple TV (not syncable to other Macs) and that not all will have Dolby Digital 5.1. It also looks like the price drop for Apple TV is USA only which is poor. $229 for the base model in the USA, £199 for the same box in the UK. At today’s rates the UK price in dollars is $389.76. Robbery.

Finally, the Macbook Air. This looks to be an amazing piece of engineering. Incredibly thin it looks to curve at the edges probably giving the same effect as the latest iPod Nano’s which feel great in the hand. Might worry some but I think losing the optical drive is a good thing. Software delivery, backup’s, file management etc is moving increasingly to wireless and t’internet only. The device won’t suit everyone but the Remote Disk feature allowing you to use a PC or Mac drive in a local PC as a drive on the Air is a great work around and fall back should you need to restore your Mac. Couple of caveats. Can’t replace the battery (similar to iPod) and it is a tad pricey but this is really cutting edge. The SSD upgrade s also ridiculously expensive but again this is new tech and the price over the years will fall. Can’t wait to get my hands on one…but I won’t be buying. Happy with my current Macbook Pro. Just want to see just how light it feels.

I am tempted with an Apple TV though. With all cd’s ripped and so much media on the iMac and external drives, streaming to the TV via Apple TV is making more sense. I’ll hang off for the moment but the new Apple TV software looks pretty sweet and could be tempting once I get the new amp in place. Especially as Connect 360 works well but the 360 is noisy…and the PS3 is quiet but MediaLink is a bit…funky at the moment.

One more thing…who drugged Randy Newman?

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