Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Mac Cloudapp Overview

My conglomerate feed at isn't working very well with blogspot (it stopped updating for a while) so for now I'm going to add everything into this blog, specifically youtube. So just now I uploaded a youtube video talking about cloudapp, a similar application that is similar to dropbox in the way that they both upload files into the cloud and give you a link to download the file. However, cloudapp is a very simple app, and streamlines that process while dropbox does other functions as well (mainly synching).

The app can be found at and best of all it's free.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Tweetie 1.2.7

A new version of tweetie is upon us! According to version tracker they updated it just yesterday and when I opened tweetie it told me to download the update which I did. I was curious to see what the changelog was so I went to the developer's website to see, however I didn't find it. However, I did find it in version tracker and I'm just going to paste it here

Twitter will make API changes on August 16th that break old versions of Tweetie for Mac. This update keeps the tweets flowing. Other updates:

* Increased security around your account.
* Disable posting to image hosts using the deprecated authentication method.
* Registration no longer needed. Section removed.
* In accordance with the Twitter Terms of Service, on July 1st Fusion Ads will no longer be displayed.
* Tweets no longer say they're from "Twitter for iPhone," but instead "Tweetie for Mac."
* An option in "advanced" to update your iChat status when you tweet.
* Improved Magic Mouse support.

So in short, tweetie for mac has followed the trend on the iPhone and is now free since it's supported by twitter. Some minor fixes such as updating the API and security, but I'm pretty happy that it's free now. Note that I've never paid for the registered version. Tweetie is now ad free. Though I'm still looking for a tweetie 2.0, and apparently the developer is working on it.

Monday, June 21, 2010

All About iPhoto

Now I'm not really knowledgeable about iPhoto, but over the years I have learned some tips and tricks that can can speed up iPhoto or just make it work to your liking.

Vaccuming the database
I was pretty skeptical about this trick, which is detailed here but after vacuuming the database iPhoto started up a lot faster for some reason. Here's a short quote of what you have to do.

To vacuum your iPhoto library, start by making sure iPhoto isn't open, and then open up Terminal (located in Applications/Utilities). Firstly, you have to point the Terminal to where your iPhoto Library is using the cd (change directory) command. By default, this should be:

cd "~/Pictures/iPhoto Library"

Paste the above line into the Terminal, then hit return. If your iPhoto Library isn’t in your Pictures folder you will have to adjust the command to your specific needs. Next, to perform the vacuum, use the following command:

for dbase in *.db; do sqlite3 $dbase "vacuum;"; done

iPhoto Effects

Another way to speed up iPhoto is to turn off the main effects in iPhoto such as shadows and outlines. Another important option to turn off is the item counts, for smart album. If item count is turned on iPhoto checks the item counts in the smart albums frequently, slowing iPhoto down.

Checking for photo duplicates

A while ago I was looking for free software that was capable of checking for duplicates within iPhoto, and doing that for free. While there are far more elegant paid solutions, I prefered image comparitor found here. Again, it is not the most elegant solution to finding duplicates within iPhoto but it gets the job done.

For a quick walkthrough on how to use it all you do is open the app, and then in a new finder window navigate to your iPhoto library, and right click and click show package contents. Then what I did was go to "Originals" and in image comparitor press choose folder and I would drag a year in (Ex: 2010) and press choose and it'll be running and checking for duplicates. Do not use it to delete your photos, as you should always delete them in iPhoto yourself (deleteing them via the library could corrupt the overall structure). For me I searched the two names of the photos that are supposedly duplicates (Ex: IMG_xxx) and if they were I deleted them. Now you might ask why I couldn't just navigate to the iPhoto library myself in the application, and my answer is that the app can not open the iPhoto package, so you have to open the package in finder and drag it into the app.

Rebuild iPhoto Library
When iPhoto is not open hold command option and open up iPhoto (in the dock or in the applications folder) and you should see this following window

If you are having problems with iPhoto you can try to use it to rebuild your library, and it gives a variety of options as well. Now note that I personally haven't had a corrupted iPhoto library (plus I keep time machine backups) but this is one option that you could try if your iPhoto library is acting up.

Another application that you could try is fat cat's iPhoto Library manager, which preforms various useful functions such as splitting up your iPhoto library, merging multiple libraries, and rebuilding/extracting photos from corrupted libraries. Best of all it's free pretty much, though for more advanced features (which I'm not sure of) it's a $20 purchase. I just keep the link around in case I have to use it, but again I haven't really experienced problems with my iPhoto library.

So, in the end, just some applications and tips from me to you about iPhoto. I usually look for tips about speeding up iPhoto, but once in a while I come across one that talks about recovering corrupt libraries. Enjoy!

Applecare History 3

Well, I just got back from the apple store. Aside from looking at the iPad and the like (it was my second time using the iPad, by the way) I had a genius bar appointment. Again I was having a problem with the battery. For some reason, after 43 charge cycles the battery only held 81.6% of the full charge, quite near the 80% that apple claims should be the charge after 300 charge cycles. The person at the genius bar was pretty nice and ran the battery tests.

The battery test was quite interesting, and it offered a graph with three quadrants. Taking up the top half of the screen was the status "ok" and was green and taking bottom right 1/4 of the screen was "consumed" which was yellow, and lastly on the bottom left 1/4 of the screen was "need to be replaced" which was red. The test offered a point on the graph that showed the state of the battery, and mine was still in the green zone. However, it was nearing the "need to be replaced" quadrant, and the genius asked me whether I wanted it replaced and I said "yes." I agree that the service trip was a pleasant one, though these Sony batteries are just horrid. I only had them replaced just last june, so all in all they only lasted one year.

The genius also said that for my model of the macbook pro (early 2008) the theoretical max charge of the battery is 5500 mAh, when I previously thought that it would hold 5600 mAh. I also tracked my battery capacity for the past year using coconut battery, and I'm going to include the screenshot below.

Also, interestingly enough when the genius gave me back the receipt stating the date of repair as well as other various information, it gave the price of repair which was atypical as it usually shows 0.00 since it was covered under applecare. However, if I didn't have applecare I would have to pay $133.34 CAD for the battery replacement.

Dec 29 2008 Both fans replaced for clicking noises
Jun 09 2009 Battery replaced (couldn't charge up properly)
Oct 07 2009 Right fan looked at (made clicking noises again)
Feb 28 2010 Power adapter 85W replaced
Apr 11 2010 Logic Board Replaced
Jun 21 2010 Battery replaced (81.6% charge left)

Friday, June 4, 2010


Just now I read an interesting lifehacker post that talks about IOGraph, an application that tracks your mouse movements (not in a bad way) and displays a picture of where you frequently click your mouse. It doesn't show what websites/documents you clicked your mouse in, just the position of the mouse click. Here's a demonstration of the application. It spent 32 minutes tracking my mouse movements. My dock is on the bottom, and I find it interesting that I don't use it that often (autohide is on).

The application is free and the lifehacker post can be found here. The black circles mean that your mouse stopped there.

Here's another one after roughly 2 hours of usage

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Photo Mosaic

I was trying to clean out my bookmarks in firefox (another long topic entirely) and I stumbled onto this site. The download is windows only (so sadly I haven't had the chance to test it out). But what the app supposedly does is takes multiple photos and it takes all those photos and makes a mosaic of a bigger photo. Kind of like the feature in one of the main mac os x screensavers where it takes photos from iphoto and makes a mosaic of a larger picture.

Unlike that screensaver you can actually save the image and again it's windows only. The app is free (which was partially why posted this). If you try this app feel free to leave a comment! When I have time perhaps I'll try it out too.

It works in windows xp, vista, and 7.