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February 21st, 2008
When it comes to business applications, nothing is more banal and boring than database software. My gastrointestinal tract contorts into many painful geometric shapes when I recall the times I was forced (usually at gunpoint) to use Microsoft Access at work. Sitting in front of my PC with eyes glazed over, staring at a sea of grey dialog boxes and blank fields. Much Pepto-Bismol was consumed during working hours, I can tell you.
Needless to say it’s no fun. And outside of a niche market for data crunching geeks and masochists, the average home user has little interest in spending their Sunday afternoon learning the fundamentals of fields, forms, and recorded lists. Wouldn’t it be great if some daring company were to forge a rich database application so easy to use and visually intuitive that even common peasants could learn?
Well someone did, and the shocking part is it wasn’t Apple! Well, not directly anyway (FileMaker is a subsidiary of Apple). (more…)
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February 16th, 2008
As a follow up post to my earlier Leopard lament, the lovely and luscious Christina Warren of TUAW fame refered me to a thread in the Apple Support forums regarding a similar problem stemming from a corrupted input plugin found in App4Mac’s RapidoWrite. As it so happens, I did have RapidoWrite installed once upon a time, but later banished it from my system (thank you AppZapper), never to be seen or heard from again… or so I thought.
It seems RapidoWrite left me with an unwanted parting gift that was the cause of my despair. Heeding the advice in that aforementioned Apple forum thread, I reinstalled RapidoWrite – rebooted my Mac – then relaunched all previously afflicted applications, such as Journler and Address Book, and voila! No more gibberish text. Thank you, Apple Support forum, and thank you Christina.
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February 14th, 2008
For the past two weeks I have been struggling with a problem in Leopard that has slowly become a cancer eating away at my nerves, as well as my operating system. It all started, oddly enough, when I installed an update to Journler, a popular life management tool for entering personal information and daily tasks.
Soon after installing this update, I noticed a bizarre text input error occur in various applications throughout my system; as I type, previously entered characters and words are repeated wherever I’m currently typing (see screenshot). So, for example, if I am attempting to enter the word “Hello” in a blank field, what I get is “HeHeHeHeHeHeHelHelHelHelHelHellHellHellHellHelloHelloHelloHello”. Even hitting the backspace key (Delete) produces text rather than backspacing as it should.
The problem occurs mostly in Address Book, rendering it useless. So much to the point that I can no longer use it for managing my contacts and must rely instead on web-based entry in .Mac or entering them manually on my iPhone. It turns out I’m not alone. I came across this thread in Apple’s support forum outlining the same problem, and under the same mitigating circumstances.
I’ve communicated with Journler’s developer, Phil Dow, who assures me that in no way is it technically possible for his product to have been a catalyst to this problem, which leaves only one other possible culprit; Leopard. I’ve searched high and low but have yet to find some semblance of a solution.
If anyone knows of a possible fix or workaround, I would love to hear it.
[UPDATE] Problem solved.
27 Comments »
January 25th, 2008
Few applications are more daunting and difficult to the average user than image editing software. Often referred to as “paint programs” by non-professionals, these apps largely fall into two distinct categories: a) the dumb blonde app that looks pretty but can only perform a few simple tasks, and none of them particularly well. Or b) the Pro app, cable of removing acne from Prom photos and former spouses from wedding albums, but requiring a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science to learn. (more…)
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June 5th, 2007
SixApart today unveiled its next generation blogging platform, MovableType 4, and is open sourcing the software. The new release, now in beta, sports more than 50 new features the company hopes will put it on a competitive edge with other corporate blog platforms.
MovableType, which this very blog you’re reading is published on, is the granddaddy of blogging platforms and once reigned supreme in its time. That is until an upstart open source platform called WordPress came along and took the online world by storm. SixApart hopes it can make up for lost ground by reaching out to developers and making its software free. They’re moving in the right direction, but WordPress is now a major contender they will have to confront.
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June 5th, 2007
A strange surprise awaited me when I booted up my Vista PC this morning; something had apparently tripped Microsoft’s infamous Windows Genuine Advantage either during the previous shutdown or startup. An alert window appeared on my login display demanding that unless I activate (actually re activate) my copy of Vista immediately, WGA would henceforth hold my PC hostage. In Lehman’s terms Vista would operate in “reduced function mode” until reactivation would allow me back into full user-rights mode. Great way to start off a morning, especially since this workstation contains much of my work for paying clients!
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April 9th, 2007
If you are a YouTube junky like me, this free application is an invaluable tool for copying video content to your hard drive for playback on portable devices. GetTube works with any Flash-based video sites, and additionally converts Flash video to MP4 or MP3 (audio only).
Please, download responsibly.