apple . com

well. it has been quite some time since my last post, but oh well (once again that is)

well, the macworld expo is over and was a very big success. among the items announced were iwork, ipod shuffle, and of course the mac mini. there were many others, but these were the top 3 on my list, and these are how they hold up in my book.

iwork - this is an excellent surprise that the apple/mac community have been begging for for quite some time. this too is a blow to microsoft, but unfortunately not as big a blow as i had hoped. yes, this is the revamp that appleworks has needed for quite some time, but it is missing one huge app…a spreadsheet application. being in the business world, i would be unable to do my job without a spreadsheet application such as excel. hopefully this is in the works and may be announced at the apple developer conference?? but pages? wow, now that is how you do a word processor, and as everyone knows, keynote is superb. keynote 2 is much welcomed as the successor. both are absolutely beautiful in every way possible. we now have exchange compatibility (not perfect, but its there), a microsoft word killer, and a powerpoint destroyer. now for the spreadsheets apple. let’s move on.

ipod shuffle - now this is the way to gain what is left of the mp3 market. apple, very impressive pricing as well. you have taken what was a horrible way to do mp3 players and once again blown it out of the water. the shuffle idea is a very smart move as is the autofill feature in itunes. i believe the ipod shuffle will take over the remaining portion of the flash market for 3 main reason: the current reputation of the ipod, the compatibility and use through itunes, and the amount of space compared to others at the same price point. the fact that it doubles as a usb flash key is simply a bonus. the surprising aspect is that the pricing is even competitive to usb keys. nice touch.

mac mini - now for the item that i have been waiting to see apple release. although a little bit hesitant on the desire to see a “cheap” mac available, i believe that apple has pulled it of with a little more pizzaz than even i could have thought. the computer is one tiny machine, but more importantly, it is priced for anyone to buy. now, there have already been discussions as to what geeks can do with the machine. there have already been mention of beowulf clusters for little geek projects to a replacement machine for pc people to switch (the reason that steve noted for its existence). but the one that really has me desiring one is the media center concept. i have wanted to use my mac for this for years, but now the mac mini opens the door and screams, “sit me next to the dvd player, stereo, tv, and vcr.” with an item like griffin technology’s firewave we will be able to enjoy 5.1 surround sound. add an express remote to the mix and you are on your way. then of course you may want a mac “tivo” right? well, your choices there would be an elgato eyetv 200 or mythtv. you see where i am going with this. a movie and music jukebox the size of a few slices of bread. this little mac will be sold out for months to come, but like all apple’s current products, you will see a steady stream of updates to current lines, and plenty of third party accessories. the sky is yet again the limit.

all images copyright apple computer, inc.

its time to sit down and write about a little app i have been meaning to suggest for os x for quite some time now. if you have ever used any application that allows you to launch programs and urls from your keyboard without the use of a mouse, you may have a general idea of what this little app is capable of (but that is only a small feature considering the whole of the app). similar programs include launchbar for os x and slick run for pc’s, but i have found this app to be the ultimate command line launcher.

in a very brief overview (more detailed later, if i have time), this app builds a catalog of various parts of your system and applications to allow it to bring up these apps and application functions on the fly with just a few keystrokes. first off, there are several ways for quicksilver to display its information (i.e. bezel, flashlight, mini window, menu, etc), but all images you will see below are the menu display as it has become easily my favorite.

using a key combo (default being apple + space, and most likely the best in my not so meaningful opinion), your choice of display appears. at this point, you can type in the name of an application, safari bookmark, address book contact, among many other options and sources. you are also given a list of the closest matches of what you typed if you have chosen to do so within the preferences of the app (turned on by default). upon bringing up your application, contact, etc; you are given various actions that can be performed for that particular command (“open…” being the most common). of course the actions presented all depend on what you are trying to do. for example, address contacts and other forms of data other than applications allow you to invoke commands specifically for that source, such as opening and composing a message to the contact you inputted. there are too many variations to name them all, but to say the very least, this app is expansive.

other features include typing a ” . ” or ” ’ ” to bring up a text box. this will allow you to type in a url, terminal command, or any other command you wish. a lot of these commands can call plug-ins that can also be installed to do anything from querying to define a word, to doing calculations with the calculator plug-in. once more, there are too many plug-ins to mention and way too many features of these plug-ins to discuss, so that too will be reserved for another time.

unfortunately, that is all i have time for, a quick overview. I will possibly do a little more thorough look at different features of this app if i can find the time. until then, check out the below shots.



icey::phoenix linkshell

well, i am starting another blog even though this one has not gotten a lot of attention. the other blog has a focus whereas this one has not up to this point. i.c.e.d::t.r.i.p will of course still be around and updated, but i wanted to put together a site for a linkshell group for final fantasy xi.

now this linkshell has not been formed yet, and whether or not it will go on to see the light of day is yet to be seen, but i wanted to put some of my design skills (or lack thereof) to use elsewhere. if nothing else, at least it offered a little practice.

i used the basic design of this site as the basis of the icey::phoenix, with a revamped logo and banner. let me know what you think. now all i need are some members, a little more work on the site and some time to play the actual game.



decided it was time for a little desktop change and ran across a couple of great desktop pictures over at Click on the image to show the true desktop size.

the theme is section-9 by nori (go here). i have adium x running as my chat client. a terminal session is open ready to be used. geektool is using ‘tail’ to display my ‘httpd.log’ and ‘mail.log.’ it is also displaying a stock graph of the company i work for and ‘cal.’ oh, and it is also showing ‘uptime.’ the menu contains romeo for my bluetooth phone, konfabulator (displaying only the clock in the top right), quicksilver, and menumeters, among several apple menus.

hope you like!! the bed is now calling!


another week

well, well, another week is upon us. that means one main thing, i have made it through yet another week alive in this world, and for that, i thank god. not too sure what this week may bring, as i am trying hard not to think too much on what it is that work will bring my way. the weekend was nice, helped build a habitat for humanity home, the villages comes highly recommended, i now know how to put together a 7’ by 7’ rubbermaid shed, and not too much else.

happy anniversary mom and dad, one more year to 30 years!!

to another week, to another day. i’m out.


tired but ssh

one of these days i plan on catching up on some much needed sleep. have not gotten in bed before 2 for the past few nights. while this was quite acceptable in college, i am struggling. not enough coffee to handle it, but oh well.

in my regular plunge into the net today i discovered a nice little series of macdevcenter guides for ssh. thought they may be nice and useful for someone else, so here is the 3 part series.

inside ssh, pt 1

inside ssh, pt 2

inside ssh, pt 3

enjoy. quite useful and informative.

this is the start of a form of entry that i will simply label as iceyguides. that said, don’t expect heaps of knowledge that will make you one of the intellects of the world, but it is an offering of a little bit of my knowledge (very little, but when you don’t have much, you can’t offer much). so enjoy ‘fink link pt 1 - intro.’


what is it?

this will be the first entry in a series concerning fink, the project that brings the world of open software into the mac os x world. yes, it has been around for awhile, and yes you do have other options (self compiling and darwinports, among others), but i have been using fink for the past couple of years and have come to have a fond love/hate relationship with it. this is just an intro into what fink is and later i will get into what uses i have found with it.

before going much further, fink is not something that everyone will see as useful. for those that have no need for open source, such as the gimp, openoffice, gnome (yes i know it is a desktop environment, not an app in and of itself, but it is cool to see on top an os x install), or any other open source replacement piece of software, then go ahead and pass up this suggestion.

one thing that i love about fink vs. any other form of unix software distribution is how everything is contained in one folder, /sw. now this folder can technically be named anything and placed anywhere, but the fact that removing fink involves simply deleting this folder (and maybe xdarwin stuff if you decided not to use makes it easy to at least try. there are no worries about cramming software packages into standard *nix directories, that may ultimately not make things play well together.

how does it work?

fink is an extremely large topic to write about in a single entry, so this will be a brief overview of how things work within fink, then we will revisit the topic later to get more in depth.

first, there are a couple ways to use fink as far as installing fink and software is concerned, compiling and binaries. the fink install can be either compiled on your system or installed through the use of a binary, and yes compiling can take some time. likewise, software is installed in one of the two manners. if you choose to use a directory other than /sw, then you have no option than to compile everything, but if you use /sw, then you will simply need to use apt-get to install your software.

software installed by fink can be executed out of the /sw/bin folder either through a term (once the path is set for fink) or through x11/xdarwin (if it is an x window app). in an x environment, you can specify different window managers and even desktop environments (gnome and kde) that have been installed by fink.

that should give a very short overview at what fink is. in depth topics i plan on writing include, but are not limited to:

  • compiling vs. binaries
  • /sw location
  • stable vs. unstable
  • troubleshooting & problems


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