This is so strange, and very hard to get used to, but… I have two monitors on my MacBook, the laptop screen and an external monitor. The native display runs all my Mac stuff, and the external monitor is handling Windows apps, so I’ve got HomeSite runing in fullscreen on my left side, where a blocky ThinkPad used to live, but there’s only one laptp on my desk. Mousing between the two environments is seamless and easy. About the only thing that I had to alter was disabling my Mac’s default F12 quickkey (which toggles the Dashboard, something I find worthless) so that I could see quick previews in HomeSite. Oh, and remembering Command+( ) combination vs. Ctrl+( ) for basic modifiers like Cut and Paste wil take time, but that’s minor.

Data transfer
Shiny new Macbook Pro!

Next I’ve got to change my workflow around completely so that all my working files are in the same place (I had working files on both my PC and on my Mac, and some of them didn’t ever get synced up, a situation that I’ve had no luck fixing over the last ten years, and something that has caused major heartburn.)

I’ve noticed the MacBook runs pretty hot (the strip directly above the keyboard is very, very hot) so I’ll have to keep an eye on temps and the battery.

This is, without a doubt, a jump far into the future. How did I get by without it for so long?

Date posted: December 18, 2006 | Filed under geek | Comments Off on Life With Parallels, Day Two.

I just got a delivery from FedEx with a new toy inside. It’s a shiny 17″ MacBook Pro, bought refurbished from the Apple Store (saving me $700). On first blush, this thing is beautiful. The keyboard is so much better than my iBook. And the screen? Well, let’s just say I have more than twice the room I had before. Moving all my data over via the Migration Assistant took about an hour, and when it came up on the new computer, everything was smushed over in the upper left corner of the screen. I don’t know how I put up with that tiny thing for so long.

I have another stick of memory to drop in it and then I’m going to install Parallels and a fresh copy of Windows XP, and try to get a decent development environment organized. This is very, VERY nice.

Update: Things are humming smoothly along; I’ve found that my external monitor only does 1280×1024, so I can’t make things any bigger than that, which is a slight bummer. I also just realized (slaps forehead with hand) that I can’t run OS9 on this machine, which means that a little legacy piece of software I’ve got called FontMonger is an orphan. I’m going to have to keep an OS9 machine around here just to convert fonts, I guess. The keyboard is sexy and feels great, but it’s taking me some time to get used to the tactile feel, and the backlighting feature is the bomb. Props to Other World Computing for their clear, easy to follow RAM installation guides. If you are buying gear for a Mac, I strongly recommend this company.

I’m also officially in love with the Apple Remote; I don’t know how I survived without one for so long. For those with more than one Apple Remote in the room, this little Technical Article will come in handy: pairing your remote with your particular computer.

Date posted: December 15, 2006 | Filed under geek | Comments Off on This Laptop Goes To Eleven.

How to choose CD/DVD archival media. DVD+R is supposed to be the best. Then why doesn’t my Mac recognize (or like) the DVD+R media I’ve got?
update: Looks like it might have been the Superdrive in my old iBook that didn’t like the media I bought; I just burned a DVD+R in the new MBP and it worked like butter.

Date posted: December 15, 2006 | Filed under apple, shortlinks | Comments Off on Archival CD/DVD information

Hmm, this is pretty cool. CarMD is a little gadget that plugs into your car’s computer and diagnoses any problems it may have, along with estimates for repairs. Pretty slick.

Date posted: December 15, 2006 | Filed under money, shortlinks | Comments Off on CarMD

This fireplace thing has been burning up all my free time, to the point where I’ve been up until 1AM this entire week trying to get it finished. The problem with carpentry, I’m finding, is that the amount of time needed to finish the project multiplies exponentially as the project gets closer to completion. (This logic, of course, states that the project will never get done, but don’t tell that to my wife.)

One coat of primer to rule them all

Anyway, I was able to get paint on the entire thing last night after the final sanding was completed, and this is what it looks like. There are some small issues to be touched up, but overall I’m happy with the results.

two coats of semi-gloss

It got even better after two coats of super bright white semi-gloss; having the walls and trimwork on either side cleaned up sets it off even better. Today I’m going to put two more coats of paint on it, clean up the sides, and touch up the black on the brick.

Date posted: December 14, 2006 | Filed under house | Comments Off on Now, With More Paint!

How to run Windows and Mac apps side-by-side with Parallels. This may come in handy in a couple of days…

Date posted: December 13, 2006 | Filed under apple, shortlinks | Comments Off on Windows and OS X with parallels

Toy Truck 2

I set up the light tent to shoot some shoes for a comp Jen was working on last night, and remembered this toy truck sitting in the bottom of a box, waiting to be displayed again. I found it on sale at an antique store because the trailer it originally came with was missing, but I loved the rake of the grille in the front.

I had to do some serious color retouching because I still don’t own a proper flash unit and the lighting situation is still less than optimal— these issues affect DSLRs as much as my G3. But I’m excited to do some more experimentation with brighter lights and learn to use my camera better for this kind of thing.

Date posted: December 12, 2006 | Filed under photography | Comments Off on Toy Truck

If you have the time, read (or watch the Tivo) this 60 Minutes article about the whistleblower of Abu Ghraib. The logic of those who brand him a “traitor” is mind-boggling; they claim he “put our troops in harm’s way”. What about Donald Rumsfeld, who publicly identified the whistleblower on live television? Doesn’t that qualify as “putting troops in harm’s way?” People should be celebrating this man (Darby), not castigating him. This country is pretty fucked up.

Date posted: December 11, 2006 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Comments Off on Abu Ghraib Whistleblower

A website to catalog upcoming live music in the area: Tourfilter. Too bad DC is the closest listed city to me, but since most national and international tours skip B’more, it’s worth the drive. Thievery Corporation at the 9:30 club on the 20th!

Date posted: December 11, 2006 | Filed under music, shortlinks | Comments Off on Tourfilter

This is probably very old, but…A Charlie Brown Christmas performed by the cast of Scrubs. (youtube link)

Date posted: December 11, 2006 | Filed under humor, shortlinks | Comments Off on Charlie Brown Scrubs Christmas