« Posts under mac

I hate iPhotos

When I got my first Mac, which is the alum MacBook, I got really excited on using iPhotos and imported nearly 10,000 photos from different collections. The default setting is to use a single library file to manage everything. Importing is very simple and that’s why it’s deadly. Now the problems I have with iPhotos: very inconvenient when sharing with PC, exporting does not write EXIF tags so your taken time are not preserved, which is really terrible. Now I cannot search on how to switch existing photos from using an iPhoto database to an external source (photos are stored as their own files). There are some photo workflows to do this but it’s very tedious and not practical for the number of events and photos I have.

From my experience, I find that Mac software have huge hype that attract users, like me, but they’re not the best or perfect by any measures and filled with bugs, defects, and feature requests. I guess I was led into believing that software on Mac somehow just works, like many Mac fanboys would like you to believe. I should know from my own experience as a software developer, no software is perfect, no matter on which platform.

Brother 5440CN Control Center in Mac OSX

If you turned off Control Center from starting up at boot, you can find it again in this folder. It took me a while trying to find it under Spotlight, /Applications without luck.


Aluminum MacBook review from a PC guy

I’ve been using PC for a long time and only played with a Mac occasionally. I had doubts before the switch. But last month was the first time I fully switched to a Mac. It took some time to get used to the new keyboards, but other than that, I love it. The convenience of a Unix-based OS with an excellent GUI combines the best of both worlds. I’d glad to see that Apple’s products are going mainstream. Great products with smart/creative marketing strategies is the best combination. I’m now telling my friends about Apple more than before (just like I did with Google and now they’re the big brother we’re all afraid of).

TextMate – Search in project

Several issues I would suggest to the developer:
1) When searching, there is no status/progress indicator (or the button flashing very lightly that I do not notice, but a turning icon would be much nicer). For a large project with over 1000 files, one would wonder if these are all the result or it’s still searching.
2) There is no total/summary that let you know how many matches found.
3) The Replace All option is very nice, however, it does not save the files yet and the icon will be grayed out (if you open its folder). Otherwise, you would not know. Some files are not saved, even if you close all the file windows. You would need to click Save All to save the changes. Even though it should not save the file automatically and an explicit user action is required, an indicator of the project status would be nice.
4) If the result has a long text line, there is no horizontal scroll bar

It’s a great editor and I quite easy to work with.

First snippet customization in TextMate

After reading the manual and view the bundle, customization is quite powerful in TextMate. This class declaration should be trigger by typing “class”, then press Tab key. It automatically your full name using finger/whoami and set the date. Pretty neat eh!

XAMPP vs. doing it your own

Thinking that I would have more control by setting up the packages by myself, I was wrong. After running into the problem with pre-installed PHP by MacOS X Leopard does not have GD, IMAP and other components, I tried playing with fink, MacPorts and manual compiling. LAMP still rules and not “MAMP” for good reasons. Although Mac is quite dev-friendly, it still takes hours searching and setting up. I find the binaries under Linux/CentOS (eg: yum install/update php-gd) much easier to deal with.

I guess I learned from the process but it would be much simpler to go with XAMPP. The conf files are in one place, easy to find and getting it up and running is really simple. If you plan to have a dev environment, don’t bother with the manual installation that can take hours. Now this Mac is ready for some development.

Convert from PC to MacBook for a developer

With the new nicely looking MacBook and an old PC, plus some decent deals on Amazon, it’s a good time to switch. After a couple days, this will be a productivity improvement. Many packages are available and ready to use, like svn, httpd. Here is maybe a list of things I did for a conversion:

  • Install the LAMP stack: Apache/httpd (already ready, just need to enable on System Preferences, edit the httpd.conf for fine-tuning and remove modules), MySQL (download the package from MySQL.com and setup a plist file for launchd, a better approach to start/stop services), PHP (only need to uncomment a line in httpd.conf)
  • Setup SVN (already as a bundle in TextMate, moving repositories from PC with svnadmin dump, quite simple)
  • Install TextMate (on PC, I use EditPlus, so this is similar, or even better, IDE is not my thing, too bloated, no matter how nice)
  • Setup Spaces (esp. the application assignment): this makes up for the smaller screensize (13.3″)
  • KeePassX: a port from Keepass, an open source project, looking for its iPhone coming up
  • Terminal: customize the preferences to your favorite colors (for many devs, probably a dark background). This is one of the many things that draw me to a Mac, a familiar command-line together w/ a beautiful/elegant GUI.