drivesmart s.m.a.r.t. utiltiy for OS X

August 31st, 2007

Tried DriveSmart today. Bad software. TumbleWeedWare for lack of a better term. Install is fancy. Application crashes. Uninstall shows empty dialog box. Clicking yes tries to reboot the machine. So, not a good idea.

iPhone data roam shock

August 31st, 2007

The iPhone worked in Germany. Which is good. I was worried about roaming charges, so I left it off most of the time. But during four days I was out of reach of any wifi network, and Vodafone’s data network did work. It was painfully slow, hardly hardly usable. I checked my email during those four days. Maybe 8 times in total. Now I returned and got the bill: 358.18 US$ in data transfer charges. The roaming cost for data transfers comes down to almost twenty dollars per Megabyte! Imagine the connection would be faster. I certainly wanted always to pay a hundred dollars to watch a youTube movie. Can be done easily.

I am not very pleased how big corporation error on side of blatant rip off. Almost 400 US$ for checking my email a couple of times. Finding out what those roaming charges would be on the website of AT&T? Good luck. That’s impossible. I should have called them. Would only take ten to fifteen minutes of voice mail hell to find out I would guess.

So if you are abroad: DO NOT use the iPhones data mode. Twenty dollars a Megabyte is steep.

Till tomorrow.

August 27th, 2007

The day that the most people lived on this planet: Today.

twenty thousand files

August 23rd, 2007

As anybody can see on the public file odometer on Interdubs’ clients page the 20,000 file mark has been crossed. It really is nice if a system scales smoothly: Thanks MySQL, Linux and all the other decent ingredients that went into building Interdubs. Since there was no difference between 2, 20, 200, 2,000 or 20,000 files, I look forward to hit the 200,000 and 2 Million mark. All current Interdubs clients hardly can be busier as they are right now (a good thing in itself) I will need to find some more customers to get to those numbers quickly.

keys for brightness don’t work on OS X laptop anymore

August 18th, 2007

Somehow it always seems to happen after using a laptop for a while: the screen brightness control via function keys stops working. No idea why, no any of those modifiers like ‘alt’, option, fn command don’t help either. It’s probably a pretty strange hack, but Amit’s code to control the screen brightness works like a charm.

vilodex: ‘Get off my lawn’ - actually not

August 16th, 2007

A couple of years ago, during those preYouTube days - in case your memory goes that far back - I thought it would be neat if there would be a site where people could store videos and share them. I wrote a quick little thing, called it vilodex and shared with a couple of people. It’s by invitation only. Some people watched, it has an RSS feed with media enclosures. So you can subsrcibe to it via iTunes for instance. All this was, as said earlier, a very long time ago. I still use it to keep copies of interesting things that I find. It did annoy me that I could not find a link, or that content simply had vanished, when I wanted to reference it.

Something else had happened as well. I noticed, but did not care. Nor do I know. A couple of Skate Board Enthousiasts started to use it. There are more than 200 logins in Vilodex, created by people posting videos like this. Why they would not use one of the gzillion video sharing sites that bloated with VC millions all want to become the next youTube (good Luck)? I have no idea.

It would have been nice if I could have let this continue to grow. The problem is that links to those skate boarder clips appeared in their forums. That I can totally understand as well: You want to share what you did. But it also means that there could be significant bandwidth uses. In the end something I would need to pay for. Digg hits one cool clip and overnight I have amused some hundred thousand US teens. Nothing wrong with that part, but paying for it? No, thanks. Ask Murdoch or Google to do that. Please.

So I started to move the clips around. They are still all there. When you login to vilodex then they work as usual. It’s only 16GB. I couldn’t care less about that part. But all those links to those clips do no work anymore. Updating them would be short sighted: I could tell the computer to move them automatically to random positions. So, kids, sorry:
Stay on my lawn, but no more free Pizza deliveries on my account.

high tech urinal

August 14th, 2007

Over here everything is high tech. Pointless or not. Of course there are ads on the paper towels. Not real time printed blog content (yet). Missing urinal feature: real time analysis of blood alcohol. Bonus for womens restrooms: instant pregnancy test. Imagine the possibilities: Google could place ads for abortion options and/or pregnancy products on the paper towels. Right now health insurance companies could track your lifestyle a little bit via your credit card trace. Technically they could. Not sure if that is legal, and if they are smart enough to do so. But with personalised mini lab in every toilet you would get an interesting trace of activities. Of course lab technology does not follow the trend of hard drives of other micro electronics and computer related stuff. So this brave new world option will remain scifi for quiet some time. Possibly forever, since we just might run out of cheap energy -that is the basis for all of your lifestyle after all- before high tech might become that sophisticated.

Update:
Like with any sci-fi story there is a google angle popping up minutes after I ramble about it. Coincidency? Of course. Almost everything is. Actually. Get used to it.

ambulance chasers

August 14th, 2007

Funny how names become somewhat Harry-Potterish at a certain level:

Seven Sisters
White Shoe
Magic Circle

Also interesting that they all seem to run asp website. Nothing is easier to hack. Maybe even the tough kids in Russia know whom to mess with and who has future peer potential. Better erase that, would be no fun to get in trouble with those twenty companies all at once.

so boring

August 9th, 2007

boingboing can’t help themselves over the virgin computer stuff. Even though it is a joke. Some preloaded crap. 3 long years ago I had full freaking internet on flights between LAX and Frankfurt. 10 hours of decent internet speed and real connections. I worked in ssh on my servers while being over iceland. In 2004. And BoingBoing jumps up and down about preloaded content. Ignorance being bliss.

Interdubs iPhone mode

August 8th, 2007

Interdubs will detect iPhones now and serve a specific navigation mode that looks, feels and works very much like the phone itself. It was actually kind of fun to code content for one specific device. It’s nice to know that things will look excatly the same for everybody. There are upsides to closed platforms. The number of hits on interdubs from iPhones made the work that went into this worthwhile. The nice thing is that this feature becomes available and automatically for every Interdubs customer. All that has changed in Interdubs on the surface is a button to turn iPhone detection off. Not sure why, but easier to allow that option then to worry about it.

NetApp and it’s disapointing financial results

August 7th, 2007

Doing technology for a while in the entertainment industry it is almost comical to have a peak into the world of more IT oriented IT once in a while.

I love how fancy quotes like:


"We're getting much more aggressive about reclaiming allocated but unused capacity,"

probably translate into somebody finding the ‘-r’ option of the rm command.
About the only command you should not try in the OS terminal though. Please.

visulisations (ways to)

August 2nd, 2007

A nice list of visualsation approaches. Starts boring with known contenders but then had some nice and interesting and new to me links.

rare clear view on matters

August 2nd, 2007

Naomi Wolf writes about Porn and the influence it has on people’s view of sexuality. While I think that some of her conclusions are a bit simplifying her essays is truly an exception. Compared to the booming multi billion dollar porn industry there is virtually no public discurse about the matter. Many views and discussions get stuck and some moral questions that originate in a world that seized to exist a very long time ago. Arguments that first were heard in the 70s, and that made sense then, can still be heard when the matter gets attention. Which is similar misplaced as if Pfizer would try to use 500 year old alchemists notes to create medication. The world, specificially the world of media consumption, and precisly the ubiquitousness of porn have changed. Changed in matters that are breath taking. Much of the problems in the middle east for instance originate from the clash of the availability of the entire internet with the moral framework from a couple of hundred years ago. Porn, like it or not, is a reality of the media landscape. It grew radically while nobody was looking. It’s high time that we pay attention and figure out how society can exist with it.

quarter billion

August 1st, 2007

and a headline nobody would have expected fifteen years ago.

But that’s there Osama is!

August 1st, 2007

Obama wants to go to Pakistan to fight Terrorists! Is he crazy? That’s where they actually are. Doesn’t he understand that the right strategy is to concquer a country a couple of thousand miles east, because. Well, because. Ah, yes, because it’s a family tradition or something. Next thing this crazy man might do is to prevent the since 2002 booming heroin industry in Afghanistan from growing any further. Doesn’t he understand that the solution is to sell more weapon systems to the dictatorship in Saudi Arabia. That very strategy that gave the Iran those lovely F14s. We certainly need more than that. And does he understand that that “Roadmap to Peace” by Mr B. was the hugest success. I mean, Israel is more peaceful than ever, right?

It feels somewhat orwellian to revisit phrases like “Coalition of the Willing” “last throes” or “roadmap to peace”, it all started with “compassionate conservatism” I believe.

apple laptop displays

August 1st, 2007

A brief history of Laptop displays leading up to a close look at the current LED backlit Laptop displays. Interesting how the real story with Apple technology will be happily revealed once there is a happy ending to it. With AAPL @ 131 -and that might be a bargain- it does not seem that the people in Cupertino need allot of help in spinning news the right way. But old habbits die hard. I don’t think that the good people at Rob Galbraith are specifically behaving like this. I think it is a general pattern. One that I am certainly part of. Selfishly I really wanted to continue to have pretty laptops that run unix and applications. And I will continue to buy them. Just that I run out of relatives to give the hand me downs to.