Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Time-Machine related info

"A little-known fact about Time Machine is that it depends on the MAC address of a computer to tell one system from another. This means that if you have your Mac repaired with a new logic board, or replace your system with a new one, you can't resume backups where you left off. If you know of the problem, though, it's not very hard to fix. You need to re-pair the backup to the new logic board's MAC address. Further complicating matters is the ACL which prevents you from changing the system ID information."

Read the rest of the story here.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Apple Portables: Resetting the SMC

The battery of my MacBook Pro behaves a little strangely lately (according to iStat Pro -- look at the Health percentage).

After reading some posts (this and that) I found out that resetting the SMC may help.
I then followed the instructions found at Apple's site.

How is the battery of your MacBook Pro?

Saturday, December 13, 2008

My article for the Jan.2009 MacTech issue

Title: An introduction to GraphViz

Subtitle: What is Graphviz and how to use it?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Learn Objective-C on the Mac

Publisher: Apress | End of 2008 | more info

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Learn Cocoa on the Mac

Publisher: Apress | March 2009 | more info

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


Today I heard about Lazarus for the first time.
Do you know anything about it?
What is your opinion about Lazarus?

Monday, December 1, 2008

Core Data. Apple's API for Persisting Data under Mac OS X

Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf | March 2009 | more information

Cocoa Programming. A Quick-Start Guide for Developers

Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf | March 2009 | more information

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

MacPorts LaTeX and the marvosym package

After installing the MacPorts version of LaTeX, I have a problem with it: the marvosym LaTeX package does not work as expected.

Today, that I have a little free time, I will search the problem a little bit more in order to find a solution.

Do you have a solution?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Safari 3.2.1 released

Hopefully, it won't crash as often as its previous version!
It is available in both Tiger and Leopard editions.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Michael Jordan video!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Mac OS X 10.5.6 Update is on its way!

According to those two posts (link and link), Mac OS X 10.5.6 is on its way.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Format a U3 USB stick

A couple of months ago, I wanted to buy a USB stick. I would like to have a Sandisk one but I did not like the U3 functionality they offered.
Back then, I did not know that I could remove it so I bought a USB stick from a different brand. Nevertheless, I found that you can remove the U3 functionality from a U3 USB stick using the following instructions:

Friday, November 7, 2008

Software that I want to learn

There are some software packages that I always wanted to learn. My list includes the following:

  • Adobe Flash CS4 Professional: I always liked Flash and admired its capabilities. Someday I want to become a master of Adobe Flash.
  • The R statistics package: I really like the R statistics package. I know some basic things about it but I would really like to become an advanced R user!
What software packages do you want to learn?

Monday, November 3, 2008

My article for the Dec.2008 issue of Mactech

Subtitle: How to drag-and-drop files and directories between Dashboard Widgets and/or Finder

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". You can learn many things from the eBook. You can buy it here.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

6GB of RAM on a MacBook Pro!

According to this article from TibBITS, recent Macbook and MacBook Pro models (including my MacBook Pro!) can support up to 6Gb of RAM!

Please note that this is an unsupported configuration!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My new mouse :)

The last few weeks, my old trusty Logitech V100 mouse was not working properly. Specifically, its left button was not so reliable and I have to press it harder than the right button.

So I thought that I should buy a new mouse. I do not particularly like big mice so I thought I should look at Logitech again. I found a new mouse, called Logitech LS1 and I bought it. It is a laser mouse, not too big but bigger than the V100.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

What are you doing?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Benefits from reading the "Programming Dashboard Widgets" book

  • Learn how to create Dashboard Widgets
  • Demystify Dashboard Widgets
  • Debug Dashboard Widgets
  • Learn useful tools
You will also learn:
  • the basics of MySQL
  • the basics of Shell programming
  • some UNIX topics
Every chapter has a rich Bibliography based on the presented topic.

My opinion is that by reading the eBook you will become a better Mac OS X user and programmer.

The eBook describes how you can create Apple Dashboard Widgets using many programming languages including JavaScript, Perl, Objective-C, and PHP. You can buy it here.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Firewire devices that I use

This is the list of the Firewire devices that I regularly use:
  • Lacie brick USB2/FireWire 400 hard disk (80 Gb)
  • Lacie Rugged USB2/FireWire 400/800 hard disk (320 Gb)
  • FireDisk 800-s Unibrain external hard disk (300Gb)
  • SanDisk FireWire 400/800 CF card reader
Will the single FireWire 800 port of the new MacBook Pro will be enough for me?
What do you think? What is your opinion?

Note: I do not have a video camera but if I buy one I will possibly buy a MiniDV one.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

In case you do not know it:

Great resource!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

New MacBook and MacBook Pro!

MacBook Pro
+ Impressive Graphics Card
+ Big Hard Disk
+ Improved battery life
+ newly designed trackpad

- No screen type selection (Matte or Glossy)
- Where is the FireWire 400 port?
- I prefer the old MacBook Pro keyboard

+ LED backlit display
+ fast graphics
+ aluminum case
+ illuminated keyboard
+ Improved battery life
+ A $999 White MacBook with a slot-loading 8X SuperDrive!!

- No FireWire port

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I am not alone!

I have just seen another blog post that says what I have said in my previous post.

"More amazing was how easy it was to do those things. The total amount of code for that project is 150 lines of code that do the work."
I am not alone :)

Monday, October 13, 2008

Cocoa Programming: an opinion

The first thing that I noticed about Cocoa programming is that most of the applications found in Hillegass' book require minimal code writing.

Although this also has to do with the application itself and its logic, it is a sign of how well Cocoa was designed and implemented. It also tells something about Xcode and Interface Builder.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

My first Cocoa Application!

Following my previous post, this is the output of my first Cocoa application!
I have to tell you that after a long time I am enjoying GUI programming. In the past, I tried to learn Windows programming but I did not really find it delightful. Now, I am having a great time!

Cocoa Challenge

As you may already read, I am trying to learn Cocoa programming.

I am now facing my first challenge :) It is on page 90 of the Hillegass' book and I am trying to solve it. I will let you know about my progress.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Core Animation for OS X

Book Publisher: Pragmatic Bookself | End of October 2008 | more information

Monday, October 6, 2008

RubyCocoa book

Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf November 2008 Link

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Becoming a Cocoa Programmer

Recently, I bought the 3rd edition of Hillegass' book "Cocoa Programming For Mac OS X". As I was having a quick look at its contents, I decided to fully read and study it in order to become a Cocoa ProgrammerI will inform you about my progress. (Please feel free to write me the tips and advices you may have.)

A small exempt from the book (p. 417)
  • "The only way to solidify what you have learned is to write applications. The sooner you start, the easier it will be."
PS. I am also waiting for the 2nd edition of Kochan's book "Programming in Objective-C 2.0".

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I am reading the book "Python for UNIX and Linux Administration" and I thought that I should also install IPython that is mentioned inside the book.
Installing IPython on Mac OS X is actually quite easy with the following command:
  • sudo easy_install ipython
You should also execute the command to load the right Readline library:
  • sudo easy_install -f readline

Definitions :)

  • Project Manager is a Person who thinks nine women can deliver a baby in One month.
  • Developer is a Person who thinks it will take 18 months to deliver a Baby.
  • On-site Coordinator is one who thinks single woman can deliver nine babies in one month.
  • Client is the one who doesn’t know why he wants a baby.
  • Marketing Manager is a person who thinks he can deliver a baby even if no married man and woman are available.
  • Resource Optimization Team thinks they don’t need a married couple; they’ll produce a child with zero resources.
  • Documentation Team thinks they don’t care whether the child is delivered, they’ll just document 9 months.
  • Quality Auditor is the person who is never happy with the PROCESS to produce a baby.
  • Tester is a person who always tells his wife that this is not the Right baby
Have a nice month :)

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


"DashboardStarter is a small application that brings up Dashboard and closes it right away. Drag the app to your login items and have Dashboard load the widgets in the background."
This loads your Widgets and you do not have to wait them to load the first time your run Dashboard. Very handy.

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". The eBook describes how you can create Apple Dashboard Widgets using many programming languages including JavaScript, Perl, Objective-C, and PHP. You can buy it here.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Problems with printing

After installing the latest Mac OS X update (10.5.5) as well as the latest HP printer drivers (1.1.1) from Apple, I cannot print reliably any more!

Rarely, I can print some small print jobs but most of the time I cannot print!
Please, do not forget to read this.

Do you have a solution? Can you help me?

Read the comments. I think I found a solution...

Friday, September 26, 2008


As you may already know, Leopard (a.k.a. Mac OS X 10.5) supports DTrace. DTrace was made by Sun and it is "a comprehensive dynamic tracing framework for the Solaris Operating Environment. DTrace provides a powerful infrastructure to permit administrators, developers, and service personnel to concisely answer arbitrary questions about the behavior of the operating system and user programs."
You can find many information about DTrace here.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

AppleYukon2 - en0 link down

Today, I found out a strange problem that I have. I had the feeling that my Internet connection was a little slow so I checked my logs. I found the following message appearing all the time: 

Sep 23 14:39:09 Monastery kernel[0]: AppleYukon2 - en0 link down
Sep 23 14:39:10 Monastery kernel[0]: AppleYukon2 - en0 link active, 100-Mbit, full duplex, symmetric flow control enabled port 0
Sep 23 14:39:11 Monastery kernel[0]: AppleYukon2 - en0 link down
Sep 23 14:39:12 Monastery kernel[0]: AppleYukon2 - en0 link active, 100-Mbit, full duplex, symmetric flow control enabled port 0

This has to do with my Ethernet port (en0).
Any ideas? Please? Do you have similar problems?

Note: my Wireless card works just fine.

Read the comments to see the solution that I found.

Monday, September 22, 2008

MacPorts and LaTeX

A side effect of using MacPorts (see this post for more information) is that I recalled that I was also using a PowerPC version of LaTeX.

Using the information found here, after deleting my current LaTeX installation, I managed to install the MacPorts Universal Binary (UB) version of LaTeX. Everything is working just fine, including Greek typetting!

I like LaTeX so much that I typeset my "Programming Dashboard WidgetseBook using it.

Fink and MacPorts

When I was first start using Macs, I wanted the GNU command line tools. I first started using Fink and I was very happy with it.

Lately, after getting my Intel MacBook Pro, I decided to update Fink in order to have the Intel binaries. Unfortunately, after trying a little bit, I could not update or re-install Fink to get Intel binaries.
It was then that I thought that I should try MacPorts. I am now happily using MacPorts and I should say that I am totally satisfied.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Using TextMate for LaTeX documents

One of the things that I really wanted to learn is using TextMate for writing and compiling LaTeX documents.
The first place that I looked up for help was Haris Skiadas' blog. Haris is doing a great job in supporting the use of the TextMate editor for writing LaTeX documents. I was not wrong as I found three relevant screencasts there. After googling for a while, I also found a great blog entry titled "Setting up LaTeX on Mac OS X" and I followed its instructions. After installing pdfsync and Skim, I was able to re-compile, view and change a previously created LaTeX project (including BibTeX entries!) that included both Greek and Latin characters.

I am copying the following extremely useful information from the aforementioned blog post:

For enabling the integration of TextMate and Skim you need to use the pdfsync package by including \usepackage{pdfsync} in the preamble of your document. With pdfsync enabled you can press ⌃⌥⌘O (or use the bundle’s “Show in PDFViewer (pdfsync) command”) to jump to the matching place in the PDF file. Vice versa, when pressing Shift-Command-clicking on a location inside Skim, TextMate is showing the matching paragraph in the LaTeX source.

So, as far as writing and compiling LaTeX (and HTML) documents using TextMate, the case is closed!

Note: I have installed LaTeX using the i-installer LaTeX package. The place that I put the pdfsync.sty file is: /usr/local/teTeX/share/texmf.tetex/tex/latex/pdfsync/pdfsync.sty.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Lacie rugged hard disks

After selling my PowerMac G5 and getting a Macbook Pro, I decided that I should also get USB and Firewire powered hard disks (for lowering the noise as well as having more portability).
I now have two Lacie Rugged portable hard disks. A USB-only (250Gb) and a USB/Firewire 400/800 one (320 Gb).

I also have a FireDisk 800-s Unibrain external hard disk (300Gb) that is not bus-powered.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Software that I use

- Mail:
- Web Browser: Safari and sometimes Firefox
- TextEditor: TextMate
- DxO Optics Pro for processing RAW files
- VLC - especially after finding out that Apple's DVD Player cannot play extracted DVDs (from VIDEO_TS directories)
SuperDuper!: this backup software worths every cent of its price. I bought the full version because I wanted to take incremental bootable copies of Mac OS X as they save a lot of time.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Adobe Creative Suite 4

Adobe is going to officially announce Creative Suite 4 on September 23!

Big news!
Sign up for the launch webcast.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The October 2008 issue of MacTech has an article of mine!

Title: A Dashboard Widget that Reads and Saves its Preferences
Subtitle: Create a Dashboard Widget that can save and read data after restarting it

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". The eBook describes how you can create Apple Dashboard Widgets using many programming languages including JavaScript, Perl, Objective-C, and PHP. You can buy it here.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Mac OS X Advanced System Administration v10.5 (Apple Training)

Edward Marczak, the editor of MacTech magazine, is the author of the book Apple Training Series: Mac OS X Advanced System Administration v10.5 (Apple Training).

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

My new MacBook Pro

After 3+ years with my PowerMac G5 DP @ 2GHz, I now have a 15'' MacBook Pro 2.4GHz!

My reliable and trusty PowerMac G5 DP is in the hands of another Mac user as I could not afford to have two machines.
My new machine is quieter and more powerful so I should not complain. I only hope that it will be as reliable as my PowerMac G5!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Creating a Dashboard Widget that uses a Plugin

The "Creating A Dashboard Widget that uses a Plugin" article that I wrote for MacTech is online.

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". The eBook describes how you can create Apple Dashboard Widgets using many programming languages including JavaScript, Perl, Objective-C, and PHP. You can buy it here.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Things I learnt during, and about, my PhD

A small part of the post (From Jamie's Weblog):

Supervisors: a curious species,

rarely sighted in their expected habitat

"Supervisors are strange creatures. Some are like ghosts, appearing occasionally for a fleeting moment, and you’re more likely to meet them at a conference than at the University. Others are always around but they’re too busy running around like demented hamsters on a wheel – all motion and no progress. They’re disorganised. All of them will, at some point, forget what your project is about – and some will even forget who you are.
I made an interesting discovery half way through my PhD: the number of good/useful/interesting/brilliant things that your supervisor will say to you isnot proportional to the amount of contact you have with them – it’s constant. Yep, that right. You can have weekly meetings with your supervisor but you’ll only get three good suggestions a year out of them. Oh, and on the subject of meetings, there are only about five types of meeting that you’ll ever have during your PhD: The Big Picture, The Progress Update, The Paper Writing Enslaving (a.k.a. My Research Review Is Approaching So I Need To Get You To Write Something), The Thesis Word Count and The Pub (usually accompanied by beer). Do not make the mistake of going into a meeting and expecting it to be any different to last week’s. And try not to get them confused: even if you supervisor is plying you with beer, watch out for the sudden switch to Paper Writing Enslaving.
Supervisors also participate in a little-known game which can catch out the naïve student: Hunt the Supervisor. This involves the PhD student attempting to locate their supervisor during the agreed meeting slot. And, no, they are definitely not going to be in their office. You’ll be lucky if they’re in the right country."
You can find the original post here. From Jamie's Weblog.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Stephen Kochan and Apple Discussions

Today, I saw that Stephen Kochan, the author of "Programming in Objective-C" (which will have a 2nd edition soon) can also be found at Apple Discussions site.
You can find his first post here.
You can also find useful things about the 1st edition of his book here.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Thinking Like a Cocoa Programmer

There is a great article at The CocoaHeads web site called "Thinking Like a Cocoa Programmer".

Highly recommended!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Talk About Your Salary

Another great post from Ken Rockwell is at his web site.
It is called "Talk About Your Salary".

" will discover that someone stupider, less experienced or subordinate to you makes more. When you find this out, these facts used properly will get you the raise you deserve."

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The August 2008 issue of MacTech has an article of mine!

The August 2008 issue of MacTech magazine includes an article that I wrote.
Title: Creating Widgets with Dashcode
subtitle: When to use Dashcode, and other important widget information


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Books for the summer

Every summer I make a small list of books that I would like to read. Usually the list is big so I do not manage to read all the book that I would like.

This summer, I made a smaller list and I hope that I will succeed in reading them all.

  • Programming in Objective-C
  • Cocoa Programming for Mac OS X, 2nd Ed.
  • Statistics Hacks
  • TextMate Power Editing for the Mac
What will you read during summer?

Monday, July 7, 2008

Start thinking about cores

According to this blog entry from Intel:
"... the advice I’ll offer is that these developers should start thinking about tens, hundreds, and thousands of cores now in their algorithmic development and deployment pipeline. This starts at a pretty early stage of development; usually, the basic logic of the application should be influenced because it drives the asymptotic parallelism behaviors."

Thursday, July 3, 2008

The July 2008 of MacTech magazine has an article of mine

The July 2008 issue of MacTech magazine includes an article that I wrote.

Title: Creating a Dashboard Widget that Processes an RSS Feed.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Scott Stevenson interviews Aaron Hillegass

Scott Stevenson (from CocoaHeads) interviews Aaron Hillegass. Aaron talks about the latest edition of his "Cocoa Programming for Mac OS X" book.

Also, visit Cocoa Dev Central if you want to learn Cocoa.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Rumors about the next version of Mac OS X

Ars Technica as well as have some unofficial information about the next version of Mac OS X.

Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard) may be an Intel-only release that will be presented (beta version) at WWDC 2008 and released at MacWorld 2009...

By the way, Ars Technica is a great site!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Two-Hour Rule

I read "The Two-Hour Rule" article from Ken Rockwell and I found it very interesting.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


You can find the excellent UNIX-related book "PRACTICAL REUSABLE UNIX SOFTWARE" from AT&T for free.

You can download the book in PDF format here.

Programming in Objective-C 2.0 (2nd Edition) is coming

The 2nd edition of Kochan's book will be published by the end of the year.

Friday, May 23, 2008

The CocoaHeads site

I recently found out the CocoaHeads web site and I have to say that I really like it.

They also have a very nice tutorial: Introduction to Cocoa.
Highly recommended!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Cocoa Programming for Mac OS X, 3rd Edition

The 3rd edition of the famous Cocoa Programming for Mac OS X, by Aaron Hillegass, is out.

You can find more information about the book here.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Dashcode 2.0 beta (136)

The iPhone SDK includes new versions of Dashcode and Xcode!

Please have in mind that Dashcode upgrades the existing projects making them incompatible with previous versions.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Mac OS X Architecture

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". You can buy it here.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Use a Dashboard Widget outside Dashboard

Although it seems strange, it is true: you can use a Dashboard Widget outside the Dashboard environment! The way to accomplish it includes the following steps:

- First you open Dashboard.
- After opening Dashboard, you should press the little circle with the cross on the bottom left corner of Dashboard.
- Then you select the Widget you want to bring outside Dashboard and click on it.
- You start dragging the Widget.
- You should now keep your mouse button pressed and close Dashboard (by pressing the F12 key for example).
- You now release the pressed mouse button.
- Your Widget is still there but Dashboard is gone! You are in Finder now.
Note: Before doing the above steps, you should give the following command at your terminal:
defaults write devmode YES
This command activates the Dashboard Development mode and keeps it active until you type the same command, having a NO instead of YES at the end. You should now login/logout or restart your Mac for the setting to take effect.

If you want to insert a Widget that is located outside Dashboard, inside Dashboard you should follow the reverse procedure!

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". You can buy it here.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Widgets and the defaults command

You can use the defaults command (from to learn more about the options of a Widget.

Example: defaults read
    "41a9b19e2d5c5543-fromLanguage" = 3;
    "41a9b19e2d5c5543-toLanguage" = 5;
    fromLanguage = 3;
    toLanguage = 5;

Found it in Dashboard-dev mailing list.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Monday, April 7, 2008

Do not use a directory called "resources" inside a Widget

If you have a folder called "resources" inside your Widget, this will create troubles with the Widget's concept of "Resources". Do not use that name.

(from the dashboard-dev mailing list)

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Use @loader_path instead of @executable_path

If the Widget plugin is not at @executable_path, it will not be able to find a framework via @executable_path/../Frameworks/... So how can you load a framework in a Widget plugin.

The solution is to use @loader_path instead of @executable_path.

(from the dashboard-dev mailing list)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Mac OS X 10.5: Dashboard widgets issues with Parental Controls and Fast User Switching enabled

According to this Apple's Knowledge Base article, Fast User Switch and Parental Controls may cause malfunctions to Dashboard.

Monday, March 10, 2008

The "Open With" menu

Sometimes the "Open With" menu contains double (or even more) entries.

What you have to do to correct it is to run the following command from the terminal:
/System/Library/Frameworks/CoreServices.framework/Versions/A/Frameworks/LaunchServices.framework/Versions/A/Support/lsregister -kill -r -domain local -domain system -domain user
The following images show the "before and after" of the "Open With" menu :-)

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Reading Existing Widgets

I am a frequent and proud member of Apple Discussions.

I often read questions about certain Widget programming techniques. What I usually answer is to check existing Widgets that implement that particular technique.

So, if you want to implement a given technique, first, search for existing Widgets that contain that technique. It can save you a great amount of time!

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". You can buy it here.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Do not call widget.system() synchronously in production Widgets

Do not call widget.system() synchronously in production Widgets. The synchronous mode is there for testing purposes.

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". The eBook describes how you can create Apple Dashboard Widgets using many programming languages including JavaScript, Perl, Objective-C, and PHP. You can buy it here.

Microsoft redesigns iPod packaging

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Adobe Illustrator 88!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

SuperDuper! finally adds Leopard support!

I think that SuperDuper! is the last application that is now Leopard compatible.

Version 2.5(84), February 5, 2008

Enhancements & Bug Fixes

• Complete OS X 10.5 (Leopard) compatibility including bootable Leopard backups

• You can now store a bootable backup side-by-side with a Time Machine backup on a single volume

• The ability to copy Time Machine backup volumes to other drives when you need more space (or want to back up your archived data)

• A "Run Now" button runs Scheduled Copies on demand

• Automatic preservation of any custom icon on the destination volume

• Improved post-registration text to inform users how to use Smart Update

• Exposé, Time Machine, Spaces and Front Row are now copied on Leopard Sandboxes

• Updated Backup copy scripts to ignore Google Desktop Index Files and iTunes temporary files

• More robust handling of delayed re-mounts after a volume has been erased

• Added a new copy script "Restore - all files" that will restore everything except a Time Machine archive if it exists on the source.

• The WGTH text now describes the effect of the selected options upon Time Machine backups

• SuperDuper! will repair volinfo databases that contain blanks lines erroneously inserted by the Apple Setup Assistant

• Improved Growl error reporting for scheduled copies

• Significant improvements to ACL and permissions cloning

• Improved handling of Spotlight indexing on the target volume

• Custom volume icons and file system events are preserved on the target volume

• Resolved a bug that caused a crash during auto upgrade on some Intel Macs

• The dock icon will bounce if the copy fails

• Improved the etched text rendering under Leopard

• Smart Update will copy files with name case changes

• Locked symlinks are properly copied during Smart Update

• Immutable symlinks are properly copied during Smart Update

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Lies, Lies and Adobe Spies

This has nothing to do with Dashboard Widgets but have to do with Adobe and Omniture.

«It all began with a post at UNEASYsilence titled "Lies, Lies and Adobe Spies" which caught on to the fact that Adobe CS3 apps were calling out to a suspiciously-crafted IP address. As it turns out, the IP in question— (note the capital O instead of a zero)—is not an IP at all, but rather a domain owned by statistics-tracking firm Omniture.»

I first read it here and here.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Books that teach you UNIX

  • Jon Bentley. Programming Pearls, Second Edition. Boston, MA: Addison Wesley, 1999. This book contains very useful programming techniques. You may not know it but memory (both RAM and hard disk space) was very precious a few year ago, so programmers were really thinking hard to overcome some challenging difficulties.
  • Brian W. Kernighan, and Rob Pike. The Practice of Programming. Boston, MA: Addison Wesley, 1999. Get this book as it will surely make you a better programmer.
  • Steve McConnell. Code Complete, Second Edition. Redmond, WA: Microsoft Press, 2004. This book is a must read for every programmer. I should not say anything more: if you do ANY type of programming, buy it and read it! NOW!
  • Brian W. Kernighan and Rob Pike. The Unix Programming Environment. New Jersey, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1984. This is the best introductory book on programming in the UNIX programming environment.
  • Shelley Powers, Jerry Peek, Tim O’Reilly and Mike Loukides. UNIX Power Tools, Third Edition. Sebastopol, CA: OReilly, 2002. This book is a must have for everyone who wants to master the UNIX environment and its tools.
  • Trent H. Hein, Evi Nemeth, Scott Seebass, and Garth Snyder. UNIX System Administration Handbook, 3rd Edition. New Jersey, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2000. A very nice and complete book for learing the tasks of a UNIX systems administrator.
  • Maurice J. Bach. The design of the UNIX operating system. New Jersey, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1986. If you want to learn the nuts and bolts of the UNIX operating system, then you should without doubt read this book. It is an advanced book but it is highly recommended.
  • Thomas A. Limoncelli, and Christine Hogan. The Practice of System and Network Administration. Boston, MA: Addison Wesley, 2001. This book will help you get more organized when administering either computer systems or computer networks. A really nice book.
  • Jeffrey Friedl. Mastering Regular Expressions, Second Edition. Sebastopol, CA: OReilly, 2002. One of the best books about Regular Expressions. Regular Expressions are a central part of almost all UNIX tools.
Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". The eBook describes how you can create Apple Dashboard Widgets using many programming languages including JavaScript, Perl, Objective-C, and PHP. You can buy it here.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Debugging Dashboard Widgets

The best source for debugging information comes by Apple itself! Apple released a technical note full of Widget debugging information and techniques. It is Technical Note TN2139. You can find it here.

The best technique for debugging Widgets is to use the alert() function. alert() statements are written to the Console. Please remember to remove your alert() function calls when you finish debugging or otherwise your Console logs may become too crowded. The TN2139 Technical Note explains in more detail the printing of the debug information in both the Dashboard environment and Safari.

One last advice when your newly developed Widget is not working properly: check that you have all the compulsory files included in the Widget bundle. I found that this is the most usual case when I was having difficulties with my Widgets. . . The next more frequent reason was misspelled filenames.

Did you find the above information helpful? You will find a lot more information in my eBook "Programming Dashboard Widgets". The eBook describes how you can create Apple Dashboard Widgets using many programming languages including JavaScript, Perl, Objective-C, and PHP. You can buy it here.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Color Gamut Comparison: Eizo CG211 vs Apple Cinema 23 LCD

RAID 5 failure at

Friday 18th January, 12:45 PM GMT

"This morning at about 6 AM GMT we had a catastrophic failure in the RAID array of our forums database server. Our RAID-5 array would have been able to withstand losing one disk but apparently two died at the same time. Either way the entire array was unusable. Our hosting provider has now replaced all disks and rebuilt the server and we have begun the process of reinstalling and restoring. Further updates as we have them."

So even a RAID-5 array can fail.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Your Camera doesn't matter

I just read another great article from Ken Rockwell and I would like to share it with you. It is here and is called "Your Camera doesn't matter".

He talks about creativity and the fact that "A camera catches your imagination".
The same is true for computer programming: it does not matter which keyboard or computer or computer language you are using; what matters is how you use it.

Please read the rest of the article to learn more.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008


I was reading Apple Pro profiles and I made the following thoughts:

I currently have more CPU power than Walter Murch when editing the Cold Mountain movie. He had dual-processor Power Mac G4s and I have a dual-processor Power Mac G5!

Sooner or later I will have more CPU power than Bill Frakes currently has.

And I probably have more CPU power than Apple when building Mac OS 10.3 (a.k.a. Panther)...

What does this mean? It means that we should stop thinking about having more CPU power and learn how to use the machines we have in a more creative way. We should try to write more efficient code, create more efficient workflows and think more before doing something.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

New MacPros!

  • 8-core: Two 2.8GHz, 3.0GHz, or 3.2GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 5400 series processors
  • Quad-core: One 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 5400 series processor
  • Enhanced Intel Core microarchitecture
    • 12MB of L2 cache per processor (each pair of cores shares 6MB)
    • 128-bit SSE4 SIMD engine
    • 64-bit data paths and registers
    • Energy efficiency optimization
  • 1600MHz, 64-bit dual independent frontside buses
Graphics and Displays
Double-wide, 16-lane PCI Express 2.0 graphics slot with one of the following graphics cards installed:
  • ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT with 256MB of GDDR3 memory and two dual-link DVI ports
  • NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT with 512MB of GDDR3 memory and two dual-link DVI ports
  • NVIDIA Quadro FX 5600 with 1.5GB of GDDR3 memory, two dual-link DVI ports, and one stereo 3D port

I wonder what they will announce at MacWorld 2008...

Saturday, January 5, 2008

How to Afford Anything

Happy New Year!

I just read a great article from Ken Rockwell and I want to share it with you.
The article is here and is called "How to Afford Anything".