Thursday, May 29, 2008

iPhone Snaps

Here are some pictures I've taken with my iPhone over the last two weeks ...



This is a beautiful brown and white moth that was injured when I saw him the other day.




The secret is not only out ... but it's on the internet. Did any of you know that movie theaters warehouse popcorn? I'll never buy it again - not that I've bought any in over 10 years any way.



Who can resist "Wacky Macs"? And at THIS price?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Watch the beauty ... the mac (not the guy)

Here's a man who recently won a "new never opened" 20th Anniversary Mac on eBay - showing the unboxing on YouTube. I bid in this auction - but I own one - so I wasn't too upset I lost. The guy paid a HUGE premium for it - going for $8000.00.

I have modded mine with an internal wireless bridge, a G3 400 processor, and DVD/CDRW combo drive. One day I might film how to do those mods.

For now enjoy this ...

eBay's definition of a word isn't the same as yours (or anybody else's)



Just a few days ago .... eBay started integrating the new changes to feedback that were promised by mid-year. Most of the changes are good ones - that will help decrease retaliation.

But ... when I logged into eBay to see how my auctions were doing; I noticed that my feedback percentage had gone from 99.5% to 99.3%!! I couldn't figure out why.

This change wasn't mentioned in ANY forum about the NEW feedback system, nor is it mentioned in the USER AGREEMENT or description about how feedback is calculated. That change?


* Actual eBay page indicating neutrals don't affect feedback


A neutral feedback comment now counts as a negative on your record. In my opinion ... a neutral is a "0" ... not a "-1".

If eBay wanted to make neutrals count against a record, it should be for every 3 neutrals received a "-1" is deducted from your percentage. This would make sense mathematically; as it would take 3 positives to bring a "-1" back to a positive number.

I can find no definition of the word neutral that means "negative".

neutral (as in "person") n. : one who does not side w/ any party in a war or dispute

neutral (as in "neutral") adj. : neither moral nor immoral; neither good nor evil, right nor wrong

neutral (as in "impersonal") adj. : having no personal preference; "a neutral observer"

neutral (as in "inert") adj. : (chemistry) having only a limited ability to react chemically

neutral (as in "neutral") adj. : not supporting or favoring either side in a war, dispute, or contest

neutral (as in "neutral") adj. : (physics) having no net electric charge; not electrified

neutral (as in "neutral") adj. : lacking hue; "neutral colors like back or white"

neutral (as in "neutral") adj. : of no distinctive quality or characteristics or type

neutral (as in "neutral") adj. : lacking distinguishing quality or characteristics


My opinion on neutrals is that you are a coward and a jerk if you leave them. There is only a limited scope of appropraite times when a neutral merits being left on a profile.

The two neutrals that counted against me are:




You be the judge on whether or not I should have gotten these - the "freebie neutral" was retaliation for a negative left on the seller's feedback.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Apple Sued For Mighty Mouse Name, But Could've Actually Gotten Away With Danger Mouse!


* Pic courtesy of engadget


As reported by Engadget:

Apple & CBS Sued For Mighty Mouse Name


When you were shopping for waterproof and chemical-resistant mice for your lab computers, you were confused when you wound up with Apple's Mighty Mouse, right? That's what Man & Machine, maker of the other Mighty Mouse, believes is happening, and they're suing Apple and CBS over use of the product name, since their hospital and lab-friendly mouse came out a year before Cupertino's model. Turns out that CBS -- who have owned the cartoon of the same name since 1955 -- sold the name rights to Apple, but Man & Machine are contending that the name in the context of computer peripherals belongs to them. Man & Machine want money damages and a court order blocking Apple's use of the name. They should have just called it Danger Mouse. Oh, wait.

-------- FIX YOUR THINKING COMMENTARY --------


It's not clear whether Man & Machine actually secured the rights from CBS for the naming of their Mighty Mouse - or whether they should be suing period. Their mouse is NOT sold at retail and therefore couldn't be considered a competitor under trademark law. I also think Apple could argue that their mouse is a totally different implementation.

I got a laugh out of the "oh wait" link Engadget provided - linking to Jack Campbell's Danger Mouse. I'm pretty sure Jack wouldn't bother suing Apple if Apple had chosen Danger Mouse. That is unless he wished for a countersuit for a bazillion of his offenses. For the record ... I thought the name Mighty Mouse was VERY silly from the beginning.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Story Of The Irresponsible Shepherd



You've heard of the story ... The Boy Shepherd Who Cried Wolf ... well this is the tale of The Wolfy Looking Dog Who Cried Out For A Responsible Shepherd

I read this on a forum this morning and thought it has a good lesson ... and besides that; the dog's name is Max:

I'm sure some of you "dog people" will understand this. Every morning we walk Max (the German Shepherd) and Lady (smaller mixed shepherd). Well you all know my problems I've had getting Max not to pull on leash. They still are not solved, and the only thing that enabled me to walk him decently without him yanking me around (though he still tries) is the Halti collar (goes over the nose like a muzzle and turns his head toward me if he tries to take off.).

So every morning - it doesn't matter WHAT time we walk - there is this older man that drives by with this yappy little dog - that looks like a mini pinscher. The man ON PURPOSE rolls down his window to let the dog hang out and yap viciously at our dogs. I guess he thinks it's cute. Well Max has a freakin' FIT because he despises these little dogs since he has been attacked by two in our neighborhood. He's not a fan of ANY dog really - he'll chase the big ones, but not viciously. He just chases them if they are in our yard and once they're out of the yard, he comes back. We have a little pom across the street who stands out there like big stuff and yaps at him, but he has chased her a few times and she goes under the owner's truck so he can't get her. He finally gave up on her and she doesn't bother him anymore - she'll still bark, but he knows he can't catch her and that she's scared of him and will run. But this other dog hanging out of the truck, he doesn't know that, so he tries to go after the truck when the man comes by.

So here I am - my little 5'2" frame trying to control this 100 pound shepherd who is going beserk. Not only has he jerked by shoulder/arm/neck so hard I've had issues, as well as pulled me almost completely to the ground once where I twisted my foot really bad, but he has broken several collars as a result ($21 each and I cannot walk him without one...at least not easily), and NOW he is trying to chase ALL trucks that go by while we are walking. I about had enough of it yesterday, but cooled down on the way to work, asking God to help me deal with this anger I was feeling.

So this morning, here we go again, and he comes this man, this time letting the dog hang even MORE out the window and he go very close to us. I stopped dead in my tracks and put all my weight against Max to control him, as I knew if I were moving, there's more of a chance of me losing my footing. Well, the head collar SNAPPED. I had to quickly grab his main collar and switch the leash to it since up ahead, there was another walker with another dog Max hates (also a small yappy dog that tries to attack him)...so I didn't want Max to chase the OTHER dog. It was a fight to even get home because Max was all wound up and hauled my ass all the way to the house.

I put Max in the house, grabbed my keys and the broken collar and told my husband I was going to find the man. It's obvious he was going somewhere close by as he had the dog, as he comes by every morning and he must have something he goes to do at that time.

Well I found him in the shopping center parking lot. Apparently he goes there to clean up trash in the parking lot each morning before they open. So I pulled up in my car - right up to him and his dog - and I said are you the one going by me and my shepherd every morning letting your dog hang out the window at us? He said "oh he barks at everything". And I said "I get that, but you roll down your window on purpose and let the dog hang out. Now you might think it's cute, but it's not." I then held up the collar, explained this is the third collar in 3 weeks that has snapped because of this, and that these collars are $21 each and I don't have the money for a new one. I also said that I've been physically hurt because of the shepherd yanking me to the ground trying to chase his barking dog, AND that my dog is now trying to chase cars. I said I've invested too much in this dog to allow him to get hurt from chasing cars, and this was NOT a behavior he had ever done until now.

The man apologized and said he wouldn't do it anymore, and I pulled out of there and came home. Problem is, now I can't walk Max at all until I can buy another collar. Not unless I want to get hauled down the street (which I don't). This collar is the only thing that enables me to walk him halfway decent, and he still pulls, but it's not as hard on me as when his leash is on the regular collar.

Okay, vent over. I'm sweating like a pig...it's really humid this morning and this whole thing probably caused me to lose about 2 pounds - which is the only good thing that has come out of it!


-------- FIX YOUR THINKING COMMENTARY --------


I am a "dog person" and I want to start off by saying that dog is beautiful! BUT ... I hate to agree with this abrupt comment (posted in the forum where this was found) ... but I do.

Comment:

"u have a dog that is not able to socialze and be in public. control your dog and u wont have any problems no matter what. ur dog is the problem. stop being one of those mothers who say my kid is perfect. ur dog isnt perfect and is the problem."


I can't stand dog owners who have aggressive breeds and can't train them - you need to get a stronger collar and leash or a better one than you are using. If you are too weak to handle your dog - you should have taken him to a PetSmart obedience class (you can get scholarships). Collars and leashes can be had at yard sales and flea markets for way less - be creative! And oh yeah ... responsible!

---------- FOLLOW UP ----------


The Irresponsible German Shepherd Owner says:

To further respond to this comment "I can't stand dog owners who have aggressive breeds and can't train them - you also need to get a stronger collar and leash."

Max is as far from "aggressive" as he can be. He only responds to what others do. He doesn't ever go after any dog aggressively unless he is provoked by the dog. He has never growled or showed teeth to another dog. He has just lunged and barked back at them. As far as humans - he's never growled or showed teeth to a human. Never chased after a human. But if a human comes after me, he will do what he is supposed to do.

He will run up to other dogs if they are in our yard. Every time this happens the other dog starts running - only natural I guess because the other dog knows he's not supposed to be here. At that point he chases them - if it's running in our yard, he thinks he's supposed to chase it. But not viciously...he just wants to play with them. Same with cats. We have cats that will run and he will chase them. If the cat doesn't run, he just goes up to it and they sniff noses. He would do the same with a dog if it didn't run.


Apparently the dog is not trained to heal - no matter what ... an agressive breed should be trained to NOT go after something unless you tell them or have a special word like "attack!!!" Your allowing him to chase things is your irresponsibility at its peak. Your comment here makes it appear as if you get a rise watching your dog bully other animals because it gives you a sense of security that he might do that to someone who harasses you.

I don't fault you for finding the man and telling him - sounds like you might have been pushy but I would have done the same thing.

German Shepherds are right behind pit bulls as an aggressive breed - they are also jumpy - your picture indicates he's always got his hauches cocked and ready to leap ... my older brother was mauled by a German Shepherd when he was 6 and had to get 40 stitches ON THE TOP OF HIS HEAD ... they are aggressive ... trust me ... there's also a reason police stopped using them and a reason the Nazi army DID use them!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Why Won't The MacBook Air Ethernet Adapter Work On Other Macs + A Bonus Lesson On AppleCare

As many of you know, I advertise a USB To Ethernet adapter often here on this website - I've been selling it on eBay for 5 years. I sell roughly 10 a week. Over the years I've disassembled various USB-Ethernet adapters to discover what chips they use and how they work. When Apple introduced the first generation MacBook Air, they introduced a wired USB to Ethernet adapter as a separate $29.99 purchase - because the Air has only one USB port to conserve space on the "port pull down".

MacBook Air --->
Port View - Audio, MicroDVI, USB 2.0







At first, I was worried that Apple might possibly eliminate a good source of income for me by introducing their own USB to Ethernet adapter. People would be more inclined to buy Apple's solution rather than mine - no matter what price I offered my adapter at. After finally winning an adapter for an Apple MacBook Air Ethernet adapter on eBay two weeks ago for the low low price of $15.00 - I am finally able to analyze the adapter and report about it.

I realize this take apart isn't as exciting as a MacBook Air or iPhone take apart - but this should serve as a reference for why Apple's MacBook Air Ethernet Adapter won't work on any other Macs that may have a bad/surged port or anyone hoping to add an ethernet port to their Macs externally.

My solution is a cheap and affordable way to connect to your cable, DSL, or wired network - I just wanted a chance to set the record straight in a straightforward, but technical way.



Here's what Apple's page has to say about this adapter ...

Overview

The Apple USB Ethernet Adapter is a simple, one-piece external adapter that plugs into the USB 2.0 port of your MacBook Air to provide 10/100BASE-T performance. Simply plug your Ethernet cable into the RJ-45 connector — no external power is required. It’s small, light, easy to install, and even easier to use.

What’s in the Box:

• Apple USB Ethernet Adapter with built-in 4.6-inch USB cable
• User’s Guide

System Requirements:

MacBook Air computer with available USB 2.0 port

Technical Details:

• USB 2.0 with bus power
• 10/100BASE-T (RJ-45 connector)

Several reviews such as this appear on the page:

I have read a couple of reviews on this product where some have not been able to use this product. The adapter was originally intended to be used with the Macbook Air but with the recent update in Leopard 10.5.2, this will work as long as the computer you are using is updated to 10.5.2. I have tested this as well on a G5 and G4 desktop machine as well as the laptops.


The above review is a complete fabrication. The MacBook Air Ethernet Adapter has a ROM chip located on the top of the adapter that specifically looks for the MacBook Air. The adapter will not work with ANY G3, G4, or G5 Mac. That being said ... the adapter will currently work with most Intel based Macs with the 10.5.2 update. I can assure you that Apple is in the process of closing this loophole. Why? Apple doesn't want you fixing what would normally be a complete logic board replacement - which means either $700+ or a new Mac - if not covered by AppleCare.

Why would Apple want you to get a logic board replacement if just your ethernet is blown out, if the unit is under warranty? Because, while it may cost $700.00 or more to fix outside of an AppleCare warranty - Apple has built the cost of repairs into every single computer they sell. They will take a full tax write off for the cost of the labor and parts if they fix your computer under warranty. Look at it from an "accounting perspective".

Apple sells you a computer ... $50.00* of the cost of an example $1000.00 Mac goes towards an insurance fund that will (if necessary) buy a complete replacement or any part necessary + the labor to fix if the unit needs repair under warranty. If Apple spends, let's say, $1000.00 on your repair - they simply get a check from the insurance company and most likely a tax write off on their books. What is Apple's motivation to sell you a $30.00 fix vs getting paid what, on books, appears to be a triple revenue stream from one computer.

Example:

• You buy a MacBook for $1099.99 + tax with no AppleCare
• MacBook Ethernet port goes bad on month 6 of ownership
• Apple repairs MacBook / Total cost of parts+labor=$1000
• Apple receives escrow insurance check to pay for repair
• Apple takes a tax write off / book deduction for the repair

This equals Apple getting paid once at retail, once by insurance, and once by taking a tax write off. A write off could be much greater than just the repair. A savvy company also writes off the phone operator that assisted you, the storage and warehousing of the parts, and any shipping of parts or the computer to the repair center, etc etc.

So, I say again ... what is Apple's motivation to make probably $20.00 off of you at retail when they can make $2000.00 (or at least how it will appear on the books)?

This is nothing illegal and there's no malfeasance here - it's just an example to show you why Apple wouldn't give you a $30 out - at least easily.

I have good word that Apple may start limiting the sale of its ethernet adapter ONLY to MacBook Air owners soon.

Now ... let's examine Apple's USB to Ethernet Adapter from a technical perspective:


* Apple's MacBook USB Ethernet Adapter (Internal View)


The adapter has 4 "chips" with several capacitors ...

Those chips are:

LFE8423

KELT40751W

Asix
6188772ALF
0192-UT2
PWL20-010

Atmec736
93C66A
8U27

APL1087
AJC7633

The fourth chip listed here is an "Apple ROM chip" - this is the chip that is meant to specifically look for the MacBook Air and that is temporarily disabled in 10.5.2 - allowing the Apple USB To Ethernet Adapter to work with MacBooks and other Intel Macs.

I had the chips on Apple's ethernet adapter analyzed ... there's no ethernet/usb bridge controller - Apple's adapter is a software "interpolation and abstraction" - using a AX88772 chip - the second chip you see in the list above. The chips used on the adapter that I sell are specifically for the purpose of bridging an ethernet connection and doing the bridge on the chip rather than inside your computer. "Abstraction chips" sometimes don't process a DHCP lease and give PPOE internet connections a lot of trouble.

From Sustainable Softworks:

We've seen some reports of AX88772 based adaptors being recognized on Leopard without needing to install any drivers. The system.log reports the device is being matched by AppleUSBEthernet. We've also had some problem reports of not getting a DHCP Lease. If you're experiencing difficulty, please check the system.log to see which driver is actually being used. With the announcement of the MacBook Air, Apple began shipping their own USB-to-Ethernet adaptor which AppleUSBEthernet is designed to support. I understand Apple's USB-to-Ethernet adaptor should work on other Macs running Leopard 10.5.2 or later (Daniel Sumorok has verified this). Apple's driver is not designed to support 3rd party USB-to-Ethernet adaptors or prevoius OS versions.


Apple has complete control over their adapter and whether or not they want it to function with other Apple computers than the MacBook Air because of the "ROM chip" that they place on the board. While Sustainable Softworks driver may work for it at the moment - I would still look towards a more universal solution*.

I hope this helps.

* I made up the figure of $50.00 for AppleCare warranty insurance. It could be lower and most likely is because of Apple's high quality standards

* I tried very hard not to make this into a giant advertisement for my adapter.


[UPDATE] Clarifications (from comments)

I didn't say Apple has a desire to make money off of logic board replacements... they just don't have any motivation to fix the number one problem with Apple logic boards (Ethernet port being surged) - cheaply or they would have made this adapter LONG ago. Apple can claim (if they choose) that this is an act of nature - even under warranty. Your options are: my adapter (or compatible), a $700+ repair (that may or may not be covered under AppleCare), or a new Mac.

I have been intimately involved with this process and I'm aware that Apple DOES write off AppleCare in this manner. Most companies write off various aspects of warranty work.

I want to make it clear that I specifically state that Apple is doing nothing wrong.

I haven't been able to find a single machine outside an Intel Mac that works (none working, but the Air prior to 10.5.2) - but I haven't done a lot of testing ... only a 550Mhz G4 Titanium (which will not accept Leopard) and an iBook G4 1.2Ghz WITH Leopard (10.5.2). I also tested it on a G5 1.8Ghz (10.5.2) - no dice. I have been able to get my MacBook (black) running with it.

You must go with my adapter (or someone who sells an adapter like mine) with any Apple computer under 867 Mhz - because these machines are not Leopard compatible. Furthermore, only 35% of Macs capable of BEING upgraded to Leopard HAVE been upgraded and (read below)

There is an Apple ROM on the Apple USB ethernet adapter - and Apple HAS written a low level driver that has temporarily disabled the USB Ethernet Adapter's "call" for a system check.

I have VERY good word that the loophole in Apple's adapter may be closed with the next point release or possibly by 10.5.4.

- Spoke to a close source I have inside Apple that works on point updates.

- Spoke to a VERY close retail source that they may limit the sales of the adapter to MacBook Air users only

- Actually seen the adapter closed in a 10.5.3 build

- Apple has a ROM on the adapter they sell that they can plug anything into.

This doesn't necessarily mean that someone cannot create a work around driver - it does mean that Apple may at any time disable the current "universal" driver that is in Mac OS X 10.5.2.

Proof of disabling features for security, support, or conformity is a common practice at Apple - I therefore offer this Google search: "Apple disables" & "Apple disabled" - sort through the hundreds of pages where Apple didn't just break compatibility by accident but PURPOSELY disabled features and drivers for "hacked devices".

Friday, May 16, 2008

How to find the names of songs in iPod commercials



This Wikipedia page will usually be updated within an hour of a debut of a new iPod commercial with information about the song. I have found more new music through these ads than by any other source in recent memory. For me, the iPod commercials have turned into the new MTV for discovering cool new music.

Apple Sues Atico International

As reported by Bloomberg News:
Apple sues Atico over patents for iPod accessories

Apple, the maker of the iPod media player, sued Atico International USA claiming it infringed five patents for accessories used with the device. Apple seeks a jury trial and an order to stop Atico from selling infringing products in the United States, according to papers filed yesterday in federal court in Wilmington, Del. Apple also alleges trademark infringement and unfair competition. "The iPod's success has spawned an enormous demand for iPod-compatible accessories" including docking stations, speakers and cables, Apple said in the complaint. Atico is selling unlicensed versions of the products, costing Apple money and harming its reputation, the company said. The patents cover accessory designs and a system for transferring information.


-------- FIX YOUR THINKING COMMENTARY --------


One thing I've learned about Apple - they only sue nowadays if the person or company they are suing can pay - otherwise they would have made more "legal threats" public.

AND Wow! Whatta you know - Atico International makes the EXACT SAME MP3/iPod knockoff I took a picture of 2 days ago:

Review: The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian


I was kinda indifferent about the first Chronicles Of Narnia because the purposeful C.S. Lewis Christian themed allegory was altered with the introduction of Santa Claus into the movie - for no apparent reason.

The sequel is a darker film than the first. It’s also a much better film than the first.

Not going through the warddrobe and entering Narnia through the subway made the story lose a little nostalgia for me.

Midway through ... things really pick up and the story gets back to the original material from C.S. Lewis.

I don't know why it is ... but I love Eddie Izzard's voice. I liked it in Across The Universe and the Ocean's series. Izzard voices Reepicheep, a butt kicking, soldier-killing mouse. This character adds a lot to the film in my opinion.

There are a few pretty terrifying scenes - the PG-13 rating is really pushed at some points due to the visuals towards the 2/3 point ... but the scene in the first movie where Aslan was shaved and killed is also pretty brutal.

There certainly is more of a feel of an anti-Atheism sentiment in this movie than there was in the first.

If you liked the first film, then you’ll like this one. If you didn’t, you might find more to like this go around.

I still can't understand why Disney hasn't latched onto this like Universal has with the Harry Potter films and aren't building a theme ride/experience at Disney MGM studios in Florida.

Tip to save money with your iPhone by not using your wallet

As reported by LifeHacker:

Slim Down Your Wallet w/ Your iPhone

... after reading over some of our wallet-slimming tips, he realized he had a powerful wallet-slimming tool in his pocket all the time: his iPhone. His idea? Rather than reducing his membership cards to just one club card, he scanned his membership cards to his computer, then synced them to his iPhone as an album called WalletCards. According to the post, his phone-friendly cards even scan successfully. You're still going to be at the mercy of whether or not the workers are willing to accept your scanned cards, but if they are, you can carry around all the membership cards you want without adding any bulk to your wallet.


-------- FIX YOUR THINKING COMMENTARY --------


I haven't tried to scan a card but I'm going to do this today and try it at my local grocery store. I have almost 25 loyalty/membership cards!

This got me thinking, how could this leverage the technology further and make the process more efficient?

Geolocation? My iPhone knows where I am within a few hundred feet most of the time. So why not have the iPhone compare my location to Google Maps and then present the most likely card I will need? If there's a grocery store right next door to a Sam's Club you might wind up with two cards to chose from, but that's better than sorting thru dozens - and you could just have a button on the iPhone home screen that would automate the process rather than having to sort through the photos on iPhoto.

I can see a slight problem with this though - stores willing accept a scan ... how do they know you are using YOUR loyalty card. The rub there is that I use a grocery store card (Bilo BONUScard) that I found five years ago.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

iPhone Snaps



Do these panties make me look fat?



A shameless iPod Nano 3G rip off - even copies the Apple logo - was being sold at my local flea market on Wednesday of this week.



I'm not sure if you can see the same shape I did when I looked at this Methodist Church that's right near my condo complex. ( I see the shape of a rubber duckie in the bell tower.)

Time Capsule as a $125 BONUS device


Not many inexpensive HP (or other manufacturer) wirless print servers work well with HP ALL IN ONE printers ... so I found this hack/tip very useful. I tried it out and it worked like a charm:

How to use Time Capsule as an HP AIO Print Server

WWDC Sells Out for the First Time in History


Apple confirmed that the 2008 Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) has sold out for the first time in the event's history. "Response to this year's WWDC has been off the charts and we are delighted with the show of enthusiasm and support from the developer community for the new iPhone SDK," said an Apple spokesperson. I'm sure the doubling of Mac market share hasn't hurt interest either. At $1500 or more paid per attendant - that's a lot of revenue as well!

read more | digg story

USB To Ethernet Adapter For Macs That Have Lost Ethernet Port Functionality / Save A Costly Motherboard Repair



** NOW W/ FREE SHIPPING IN USA **

THIS IS THE ONLY WAY TO GET WIRED ETHERNET ON THE NEW MACBOOK AIR! (That will also work on any other Mac!)

EXCLUSIVE USB To Ethernet Adapter


Save a costly motherboard repair for your Apple All In One iMac or eMac Mac Mini or your iBook & Powerbook, MacBook or MacBook Pro

I personally use this adapter on my MacBook so I don't have to plug in my ethernet cable ... I just use a USB hub with two of these adapters so one can be hooked to the internet and one cable can be hooked to a network printer. I don't have to worry about IP addresses or the constant plugging and unplugging ruining my laptop's broadband connection. The USB also stands an intermediary for surges from the network as well.

EXCLUSIVE - I also offer this adapter for OS 9 (Classic) * PLEASE email me for details

This is for your surged ethernet/broadband port on your Apple computer

USB 2.0 ... backwards compatible with USB 1.1

Another great use is for network printers and NAS storage - have this plugged into a free USB port while accessing your network or broadband connection on your Ethernet port.

Your ethernet port does not have to be bad to use this adapter.

Get this in case of an emergency!

Comes complete with drivers in pack with manual/instructions

PLEASE EMAIL ME with any questions or for OS 9 compatibility ...

This adapter ONLY works with all updates applied on Mac OS 10.3 (Panther) or Mac OS 10.4 (Tiger) Mac OS 10.5 (Leopard) and All versions of Windows that support USB

Note: this adapter does not work with OS 8.6 - 9.2.2 or 10 , or 10.1 , or 10.2

Best compatibility and guaranteed to work with Panther, Tiger, Leopard, and Windows 2000, Windows Millenium, and Windows XP ... all other operating systems are not guaranteed ... but please email me for details.

I am the EXCLUSIVE eBay seller of this item! Look at my feedback (I have each item labelled). I have sold nearly 1500 of these over the last year!

* Item may vary slightly in appearance, but warranted for functionality

I now also warrant this to work with the Playstation 2 and Tivo! (you MUST mention that you need this function when ordering)

These adapters are BRAND NEW!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Thirteen Rule-Breaking Films

Every once in a while, a film comes along that takes an assumption about how American movies are supposed to be made and changes it, sometimes resulting in something truly memorable. The reward for taking the chance is recognition for being a really interesting experiment, or, in some cases, taking your place among the greatest films ever made. * Excellent list of movies to see

read more | digg story

Innovative Bluetooth Headset Etymotic EtyBlu Reviewed / Perfect For The iPhone


CoolTechZone reviews a new bluetooth headset from Etymotic with a removable noise canceling boom mic. I've had issues with Apple, Samsung and Jabra bluetooth headsets that just gel into your ear - falling out. This headset looks a lot better for "that type" of headset. I really like the removable mic.

Review Of The Etymotic EtyBlu Bluetooth Headset

iPhone knockoff called the CECTP168 on Amazon




These things usually appear and disappear quickly ... I managed to find an interesting iPhone knockoff while populating my Amazon affiliate links on the side. This GSM cellphone/iPhone knockoff is called the CECTP168.

Link to Amazon page

* Link may not work soon - gander whilst you can

Are Floppy Drives Still Useful? Yes ... so ... long live the floppy drive!

Yesterday's Are ADB Controllers Still Being Made article prompted me to resurrect this pertinent article from 2005:

Back in 1998, when the first iMacs appeared, my father bought one and desperately needed a way to get his data off of floppy disks. He also had several programs that were on floppy that he needed to install ... I came up with this hack, submitted it to MacAddict Magazine and they later published it as part of a "Pirate Issue".



While Apple has not included floppy drives in Macs for almost 11 years now ... floppy drives are still very useful in many ways:

1) Small files are easily rewritten and backed up (including Quicken & Word documents)

2) No complicated drivers are needed (as they are for zip, superdisk, and some CDRWs)

3) Transfer is quick - CDs are a waste to copy files smaller than 2MB

4) There were several media readers made for the floppy drive - you could actually place a memory card from your camera into an adapter and read and write to the card quickly. Here's a pic:



5) Zip drives are expensive and tend to be "break prone"

6) If you're thinking thumb drives and USB connected devices you may not be thinking about Macs that don't have available USB or any USB at all.

7) Security: because of the lack of floppy drives - you get some security through obscurity


___________________________________________________


When I used to sell Apple floppy drives on eBay I got this question:

Will you be done listing these worthless things soon? I am tired of having them turn up in my other searches because of your 13,000-word essay. Apple quit installing floppy drives seven years ago for a reason ...


To what is he referring?

I had been selling floppy drives on eBay for almost 8 years after Apple introduced the iMac ...

Here is the 13,000 word essay to which the comment refers:



Place an INTERNAL drive inside* your 233 Rev A or Rev B iMac! + dozens of PowerMacs and the Performa series of Macs + many others including clones

If you want to use this drive for this hack remember it is **ONLY** for the Revision A or Revision B iMac Bondi!

Step by step color picture instructions (see below)

Bet you didn't know that Apple kept a floppy connector on the motherboard did you? This is the best drive to use for this rather simple project.

THIS IS FOR A COMPLETE DRIVE & CABLE and link to instructions on how to do the iMac floppy hack (if needed).

Now that your Apple Care warranty is out this is great project to enhance the value of your investment - your iPro raid Card your Voodoo video card - your iForce or iMaxpower or Sonnet HarmonI G3 G4 upgrade - - KEEP that iMac it will certainly be as collectible as the first macs and you still have infrared! This enhancement, if done right, can easily get an extra $200 for your iMac!

If grounded right, it is VERY hard to mess up your unit when performing this simple hack!

One other thing the instructions can help you do is learn how to use the floppy cable as power for a light to light up your iMac, tres cool!

Case must be modded for complete internal installation - otherwise drive is cabled to outside of iMac enclosure - see picture!

The information below is the original use for this floppy drive - making this auction a VERY valuable part to have in stock!

1.44 meg floppy replacement = Sony or Mitsubishi 2MB Model w/ black bay cover

Will work in all of the following desktop Mac models :

Quadra 650 660 Centis 610 PowerMac / Performa6100 6115 1116 6110 6300 6360 6400 6500 and any workgroup server based on this chassis

7100 7200 7300 7500 7600

Quadra 840 840 AV 8100 8500 8515 or any server model based on this chassis

Quadra 900 Power Macintosh 9100 9500 9600 or any server model based on this design

Beige G3 233 266 300 333 G3 All In One

Also fits the Apple Network Server 500 or 700 model

Great to have as a spare, if you use your floppy more than twice a day, you may fail and be stuck!!

20 pin connection


I say floppy disk drives are still useful - long live the floppy.

Monday, May 12, 2008

The real reason the competition doesn't get it ...


* PIcture of the Gateway One All In One Computer


John Gruber at Daring Fireball linked to what he called an insightful piece by Charlie Wood on his Moonwatcher blog:

He quoted two sources - one being Gruber:

Clayton Christensen's seminal work The Innovator's Dilemma describes how incumbent vendors typically compete by continually adding performance (typically in the form of new features) eventually overshooting the requirements of their target market and providing an opportunity for upstart competitors to provide a lower-cost "good enough" solution.

But John Gruber at Daring Fireball writes:

No one’s going to beat Apple by being "good enough". The only way to beat the iPhone is by creating something better.

Apple doesn't sell products based on laundry lists of features. In fact, their products often lack features considered standard by competitors. For instance, the iPhone has a substandard 2 megapixel camera with no flash, no video recording capabilities, no voice dial, etc. Many of the features of the iPhone are in fact only "good enough".

Instead, Apple differentiates itself on design. Their products feel right. And to their customers, "good enough" design will never be compelling, regardless of how high Apple sets the bar.


-------- FIX YOUR THINKING COMMENTARY --------


I think that there's no one answer ... teens buy iPods because their peers have them. People buy iPhones because it's the latest gadget. People buy Macs for three reasons though: Brand loyalty, bandwagoning, preference over Windows and Linux operating systems.

The REAL reason the competition can't seem to beat Apple out is based on several factors as listed above and I'm sure a few other reasons. Design is but a small piece of the pie. The competition though thinks it's one answer like analysts John Gruber and Charlie Wood try to point out to them.

If design were the only or even the main factor - Sony would have won out long ago and would have been the number one PC manufacturer by now. Sony also has a quality and brand loyalty following much as Apple's. Again if it were just one or two factors - Sony would most likely be the Apple of today. Gateway's One all in one is a beautiful computer that, to me, is way sexier than the current iMac, has a great integration of media functions and has a lot of useful features that are easy to understand. This disqualifies Gruber's comment:

No one’s going to beat Apple by being "good enough". The only way to beat the iPhone is by creating something better.


Apple is also an intellectual property firm - many fail to understand this fully. They receive a LOT of money off of licensing and affiliate income. The iPhone has leveraged affiliate income for Google searches to incredible levels for Apple. Add this to Quicktime, Safari for Windows, and iTunes. Hewlett Packard never secured a deal with one of the wireless phone carriers for a revenue sharing deal with its cell phones. Apple did! Apple understands leveraging it's intellectual property better than any company I know.

Finally, I think the analysts discount heavily (by just calling it Apple fanaticism) free advertising. Apple gets a lot of free advertising and word of mouth. This blog affectively gives Apple $500 in free advertising every month - Apple makes the Slashdot and DIGG front page almost every day.

Apple doesn't win because of one thing - they win because they fire on all cylinders at full speed all the time - they stay ahead of the competition because they've already started and finished the race before the competition steps up to the line.*

* That's a lot of cliche

Are Apple ADB Controllers still being made?

This past weekend I bought a knockoff Nintendo emulator video game at the flea market for $5 and it came with this controller:



Here's a close up of the controller connection:



As soon as I saw this ... I hooked it up to my Griffin iMate ADB adapter because the controller looked exactly like Apple's keyboard and mouse connector (called Apple Desktop Bus).

It worked!

After thinking for a bit ... I wondered if Apple still was able to license such an adapter. I realize that the unit was a knockoff and none of the 40 or so original Nintendo games were licensed and that in turn the ADB connection wouldn't be licensed from Apple - I just thought it was interesting. If Apple DID still own rights to the design of this connection - it would be interesting to see Nintendo and Apple team up to sue this company for infringment.

The controller is designed to be identical to the standard Sony Playstation controller - pictured to the right.


I also wonder if this controller would work for the failed Apple Gaming system - The Pippin*. If anyone with a Pippin wants to try it out - I'll send it to you to test it.


* The Pippin also had ADB controllers.

A Little Movie Talk: Expelled, Speed Racer, Iron Man, Cloverfield

It's been a while since I really gave a movie review ...

Iron Man

I went to see this movie opening night and I have to say that it's the best super hero comic adaptation to come out since the first Spiderman - which was the best since the first Tim Burton Batman. Maybe these kind of things only come every ten or so years. You really can see that a role such as this was made for Robert Downey Jr. and it's sad to see that he never latched on to such a role sooner.

I had never read any of the Iron Man comics and didn't know much about him before seeing the movie. Seeing the "beginnings" was certainly helpful to understanding who Iron Man is and entertaining - but do all of these "make the suit" and get hurt ten times trying out your powers" stories all have to be the same? Again, the Iron Man suit is very cool and it's fun to watch Downey's expressions and acting in the fumbling of learning his powers ... it just seemed a little "formulaic".

If you like comic book/super hero movies, you'll love this movie - if you don't go see it - it will definitely be worth an iTunes Movie Store buy or rental.

I had prepared some cheeky bad reviews to write for Iron Man:

"Downey puts the heroine in this hero movie!"

"What a downer!"

And briefly ...

Speed Racer

I did't go see it and obviously everyone felt the same this past weekend for the opener as it only earned $20 million (compared to Iron Man's 2nd week of $50 million). It looks like it would be a good television mini series ... but nothing made me want to go see this movie. The Wachowski Brothers who directed Speed Racer have disappointed me too many times and just proven that The Matrix was just a fluke.

Next ...

I wanted to give a short review and quick commentary about the movie EXPELLED:

The official title for this documentary is Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed and is hosted by actor Ben Stein. The documentary covers the topic of "Intelligent Design" - the theory that the final/ultimate answer could be a "founder or designer of the universe". Notice that this definition does NOT contain the word "creationism" or "creator" or "God". Many negative reviews for this movie are saying that it's about creationism - when in fact; it's not. One point the movie tries to make is that if teaching or studying "Intelligent Design" is creationism or leads to creationism, then evolution certainly is atheism or leads to being atheist. They specifically ask top evolutionary biologists and each one of them say they are atheist and each one of them are strong against religion as a whole.

The premise the movie bases much of its debate on - evolution theory has a lot of holes in it. To explain the origins of life through evolution would be like winning the million dollar jackpot in the lottery every day for thousands of years!

It's easy to see why atheists and your typical "creationism sucks" crowd wants to give this movie a bad review - they don't want you to see it! The infamous Richard Dawkins (who caused a controversy at the premiere) is interviewed in the movie and makes a fool of himself. He's given quite a bit of screen time and a lot of chance to clarify and be satisfied with his position for his theory - yet he comes off looking like a complete idiot. If he would have been in a debate - he'd have easily lost even though it might seem he'd have won because of his incredible intelligence, vocabulary, and education.

One thing I was surprised that the movie didn't include was theory of Occam's Razor - that the simplest answer is usually the correct one. Many scientists often use this theory to help explain things.

The movie makes the point that Hitler used "evolution" (and specifically the studies of Charles Darwin) to justify the extermination of the Jews. It also illustrates how absurd some of the top evolutionary biologists are when explaining the beginnings of the universe and of life as we know it. One professor said that we evolved from a crystal that hit the earth a long time ago - because isn't it interesting how life mimics a crystal pattern. That still doesn't exclude an "Intelligent Design" and still doesn't explain what (or who) made that crystal. Richard Dawkins, towards the end makes an insane circular logic argument that aliens brought life to this planet - basically saying everything BUT saying "Intelligent Design".

If you have ever wanted a clear dialogue about atheism and its affects on society or wanted to see some solid information in support of "Intelligent Design" - this movie is a good, well thought out, and entertaining and compelling resource.

As with the Creation Museum ... I doubt I would have even heard of this movie without an atheist pointing out that it was a bad movie ( or getting a laugh out of someone giving it a bad review) ...


* John Gruber from Daring Fireball



I also want to remind readers that the movie Cloverfield is out on DVD. It's one of my favorite movies of all time. Click here for the FIXYOURTHINKING review. The DVD has an interesting alternate ending that I think I like better. I suppose at this point ... I was wrong that this movie might have a LOST tie in. I talked about that here and here. Not to keep harping on this ... but maybe they will re-release Cloverfield and my theory will be correct after all.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Leopard Is So Secure That You Can Even Recover Your Laptop From A Thief?

A New York woman found Apple's Back To My Mac feature (part of .Mac) to be useful to help to capture would be thieves.

Police say the woman got a call from a friend asking if she was online.

The victim said no and was told by the friend that her computer showed her as being on the Internet.

At that point the victim signed onto another computer and used the "Back to My Mac" program to determine that her stolen MacIntosh laptop was on the Web.


She then used the stolen computer's camera to photograph [one of the suspects].

Police have made two arrests and have recovered most of the $5,000 worth of electronics stolen from the woman's apartment in late April.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Apple To Refund For iBook G4 & PowerBook G4 AC Adapters


MacRumors reports:

In a class action suit settlement, Apple has reportedly agreed to give refunds of $25-$79 to as many as 2.3 million PowerBook & iBook owners who purchased faulty power adapters that were prone to spark.

Customers who bought certain replacement adapters for PowerBook and iBook computers are eligible for the settlement, according to documents filed in federal court in San Jose. U.S. District Court Judge James Ware granted preliminary approval of the agreement March 24.


The settlement has not yet been finalized with an approval hearing scheduled for September 8th.


---------- FIX YOUR THINKING COMMENTARY ----------


I'm not a big fan of the PowerBook and iBook adapter - while it was cool to have the green and orange glowing ring on the adapter to indicate whether the adapter was charging - the thin cable shielding the adapter would often crack and then the cord would fray and break (or spark).

I'm a big fan of the magsafe adapter - I just wish it was sold in more locations so it would be easy to find a spare or quick replacement without driving to the nearest Apple Store (and avoiding Best Buy).

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

No More Hollywood 20 For Me... Regal Cinemas Buys Consolidated Cinemas - Cherrydale 16 in Greeenville SC

In case anyone locally to me is wondering or can't find the information ... Cherrydale Cinemas (also called Cherrydale Stadium 16) which used to be a movie theater owned by Consolidated Theaters has been bought out by Regal Cinemas.

The deal was made in January 2008 and took effect on March 25th 2008.

Cherrydale Cinemas will convert your "Movie Rewards" punch card into Regal Crown Club Rewards points - just see the management at Cherrydale Cinemas for more details.



The Pros

The disturbance remotes will soon be at another theater
• Combined rewards
• Consolidated Theaters are in more convenient locations
• Regal Cinemas have Entertainment Book Coupons that yield $7 tickets

The Cons:

• Higher ticket prices
• No competition in many markets (creating a monopoly)

iPhone Snaps

Here are some pictures I've taken with my iPhone over the last two weeks:



First ... this is a sign at a Toyota dealership in Greenville SC ... I really think it's quite stupid .... it seems as if they are referring to their own trucks! I have a hard time finding any truck "good looking" - but at the moment it seems to be a status symbol for the embarrassingly idiotic who think they are parading around in a gas guzzler. Hummer and truck sales are actually up with higher gas prices as people seem to think it shows they have money. It's irony that a lot of people are stuck with driving a truck because they thought it was cool to drive one back when gas was low.



Next we have a picture of the stone walkway that leads to my girlfriend's house ... I wrote this on there and fixed her dinner on Cinco De Mayo (May The 5th) on Monday. In case you don't get it ... "Stevie Nick's Tex Mex Round Up" is one of my favorite Saturday Night Live skits with Lucy Lawless (aka Xena: Warrior Princess) as Stevie Nicks. You can watch it here <--- requires RealPlayer.



I found this visor hat at the jockey lot and thought it was interesting because it blatantly copies the Apple "Think Different" campaign.



Last ... I have a picture of what is called "The Georgia Guidestones". It's also called "The American Stonehenge". It is located in Elberton, Georgia USA - just over the Georgia / South Carolina border and about 45 miles away from my hometown in Greenville, South Carolina. I'm going to be doing an interesting news story on this "monument" soon. I'm going to try to be the first ever to get the real story behind the monument as their seems to be a lot of mystery surrounding it and who put it up.

Grand Theft Auto IV: New Video Game Disses Apple Users




What do the authors of Grand Theft Auto IV think about Apple users? Tossers. They've embedded an Apple parody into one of the Internet cafe computers in the game.

Among other points, they take down Apple (called "Fruit") for being overpriced minimalism. A white shiny unit, superficially similar to the "i" sits next to a near-cinema display and readers are encouraged to "Think Fruit" and live in the "Fruit Cocoon".

The fake site also advertises a new banana-shaped iFruit phone. Its sales points made me laugh out loud: No buttons, no reception, no storage capacity, all Ego!


via The Unofficial Apple Weblog

LOLITA LEMPICKA Perfume by Lolita Lempicka



My girlfriend recently ordered a new perfume called LOLITA LEMPICKA ...

It comes in a really attractive apple shaped bottle.

I'm really picky about what kind of perfumes and colognes I like. I always use either a Bath & Body Works Apple Body Spray or Be Delicious by Donna Karen. I do like this perfume though. Here is the description from Perfume Station:

Fresh, Sweet Oriental, Vanilla. Created in 1997, Lolita Lempicka is a refreshing, oriental, woody fragrance. A fragrance of contrasts; baroque and contemporary, curvaceous and strong, enclosed in an apple shaped bottle. With a liquorice accord comprising of aniseed, violet, vanilla and praline with a floral oriental harmony of ivy, iris, amarena (a wild cherry), tonka bean, vetiver, and musk. Lolita Lempicka is elegant and voluptuous.