Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Groovy, Dudez.

Turn your iPod into an mPod and then consult this handy thermotropic color guide to track your mood:

Dark blue: Happy as a pig in slop.
Blue: Peaceful, easy feelin’.
Blue-green: Deserves a raise and a trip to a major league ball park.
Green: Depressed by the onset of summer network reruns.
Amber: In desperate need of pizza.
Gray: Needs a beer. Help this man immediately.
Black: Stay clear of this person or you might pull back a nub.


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Ripping episodic DVDs

So you've got an Apple TV and some TV shows on DVD and you want to rip multiple episodes off the DVD so you can watch them with your Apple TV. How to go about it.... Well, it's not as easy as it could be (and likely will be eventually), but read on for the step-by-step.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Sheldon celebrates Helvetica's 50th

Graphic designer geek humor....


The Magic of Photoshop In Action

Well, this you just gotta see.


Tuesday, May 15, 2007

He should have seen this coming

Skeptics rock and abusers of the DMCA suck. The video alone is worth watching, but the context of DMCA-abuse magnifies the significance.

James Randi exposes Uri Geller and Peter Popoff


The Bionic Woman Is Back! Yeah!

First Battlestar Galactica and now this? Awesome.

See clips from the pilot episode.


Friday, May 11, 2007

LEDs emerge to fight fluorescents

This cannot happen too soon. Think of all the cool new lighting possibilities afforded by using a small, low power light source that lasts 500 times longer than a standard light bulb.


Automatically rate your iTunes tracks with AutoRate

Have you ever wanted to rate songs in your iTunes library, but that overwhelming fear of commitment was just too much. Is this song a 5 or is that one a 4? This track was a 3 last week, but now it might be a 4 1/2 this week. How many more songs do I have to rate? Wait a minute, this is my iTunes library! Shouldn't every song be a 5?... If you're having a similar internal battle and want to stop the voices, look no further than the freeware application AutoRate.

This little app helps you rate your entire iTunes library based on "listens". That way, you get out of having to make the big decision and AutoRate uses your iTunes metadata to give you a non-bias, data driven rating system. Ah, peace at last. Here's how it works:
rating = (100 * ( (play frequency - lower) / (upper - lower) ) - skips per month * 5
Where upper is the main play frequency + 2 standard deviations, and lower is the mean play frequency - 2 standard deviations.

What does all of this high school algebra mean? Tracks that are skipped or not played often are given lower ratings, while tracks played with greater frequency are given a higher rating. Here's an example. In my library I had a song that I had played 10 times... 3 months ago. I also had a song with 3 plays, 2 days ago. Which one had the higher rating? The latter, which I think is great. That means the songs your jamming to at the moment will always get higher ratings in your library, as they should. The nice part is that the download comes with a bit of AppleScript you can utilize to keep updating your ratings as you listen.

Finally, the author mentions a tip that you can use to skip a song without penalizing it. I think it's a clever addition, but I believe it's self-defeating. If you really want to skip a song, then it deserves to be penalized. Otherwise, your skewing your own data.



Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Comcast CEO shows off super quick modem

Comcast Corp. Chief Executive Brian Roberts dazzled a cable industry audience Tuesday, showing off for the first time in public new technology that enabled a data download speed of 150 megabits per second, or roughly 25 times faster than today's standard cable modems.... It could be available "within less than a couple years," he said.

Sign me up.


Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Microsoft and Yahoo, Sitting in a Tree

Gruber posted some interesting commentary on the supposed Microsoft-Yahoo acquisition. Here's the bit I found most interesting:

Google writes a ton of their own code and tools, but they do it using open source languages, databases, and operating systems.

That’s what Yahoo does, too. In fact, that’s what most web companies do. Web companies built on Microsoft technology are few and far between. When was the last time you saw a new hit web site developed using Microsoft’s web stack? This is what Paul Graham was talking about when he wrote that “Microsoft is dead” – there’s an entire generation of developers who are growing up without ever even considering Microsoft developer technologies.

Hello, Mercado? Anyone paying attention?


Monday, May 7, 2007

Converting movies for Apple TV using Roxio Crunch (an in-depth review)

Daniel Eran Dilger over at AppleInsider offers a very telling review of Roxio's forthcoming video conversion tool targeted at Apple TV owners. Sounds like "crapware" would be a more appropriate description. Save your money for something useful.

Unable to match the features of the free HandBrake, with an interface only slightly simpler than QuickTime Pro but offering with less consistent results, Crunch doesn't seem to be worth its $50 price.