Vita Rara: A Life Uncommon


New iMac: Great Pairing Station?

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Looking at the new iMacs the 27" quad-core looks like it would make a superb pairing station for programming. I've been waiting to see what the update looked like before looking at end of year purchases. Here's how I see it:

Solution for Very Slow Time Machine Backup

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Tonight I added an additional external disk to my Time Machine managed backups. This leaves me with the following configuration:

  • Drobo with 2 * 500GB HD acting as the Time Machine Disk
  • 250 GB Internal being backed up by Time Machine
  • 2 * 250 GB FW External Drives being backed up by Time Machine

After adding the second external drive to the Time Machine Backup I kicked off a backup manually. I proceeded to ignore it and do some coding. After a few hours it hadn't completed backing 40G of data. I did a rough calculation and it was averaging aproximately 300-400 kBs. Needless to say that's is quite disappointing. At first I suspected the Drobo. (I'll admit I'm not a USB fan.) After some searching I realized it probably wasn't the Drobo.

OS X Leopard: First Impressions and Installation Solutions

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I picked up my copy of Leopard on Friday evening and dove into an upgrade on my Mac Pro on Saturday. Things didn't go as smoothly as I would have hoped. I fell prey to two issues that long time users of OS X are most susceptible to.

  1. My current account started out on OS X 10.1, and has been migrated from a G4, to a G5, to my Mac Pro. Accounts that are this old need to have their authentication credentials reset, or they don't work. [Solution]
  2. For some reason I had Application Enhancer installed on my machine, which caused the Leopard Blue Screen of Death/Love.[Solution]

Where's the Tilde ~


So, I'm sitting here learning some DHTML and Javascript using my Mac and personal web sharing. I want to look at the page. My URL has a tilde in it. That's the way to access personal sites using Apache, and it's the way OS X comes configured stock. So, I hit the number key to get to the ~ and IT'S NOT THERE! Huh? It's a legal character, and it's the method used by Apple themselves.

Apple where's my tilde?

iPhone: Day Four


It's amazing. I don't know that there is much more to say. In true Apple fashion, it works.


My activation went totally smoothly. Sylva's took a bit longer than mine did. Overall it is a much better experience than I have ever had getting a cell phone.


I've been cruising the web looking for apps. There are some out there but they are a bit thin on the ground so to speak.


It is good and I'm getting better at it. The main thing is I'm better with my right hand than I am with my left. Also the closeness of some commonly used letters such as the i & o, a & s, and some others has me wondering if a Dvorak layout might be better.

iPhone: Day Three Thoughts


I've had an iPhone for three days now. I'm absolutely thoroughly impressed. Apple has done an amazing job with the iPhone.

My wife, Sylva, and I went to the Apple Store on Friday evening. We stayed away from the lines early in the day. My brother went to the store right around 6PM and the place was a mad house. There was a long line. He called us later around 8PM and said the line was gone.

So, we headed out. I wasn't intending to buy it right there and then. Problem was it worked as advertised. The touch interface works, the browser works (more about that later), the email program works... in usual Apple fashion it works. Are there some issues. Yes, there are, more on those in a later post.

Apple's ProCare is BS for Professionals


I make no secret of the fact that I'm a Mac user, and in general an Apple fan, but I have one serious bone to pick with Apple.

I own a lot of professional Apple equipment, some Mac Pros, a G5 Quad, a Mac Book Pro, Apple screens, and scads of other iBooks, and PowerMacs. (At the moment I think I have about 12 macs total.) In general I purchase professional level machines for professional work. Problem is when something goes wrong with one of them Apple makes no differentiation between a consumer level machine or iPod; and a professional machine, in their treatment of your needs. You pay a professional price, but get treated the same as someone who bought an iPod Shuffle or a Mac Mini.

MacBook Pro Core 2 Duo

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I picked up a new MacBook Pro (MBP) Core 2 Duo on Friday. This is a replacement for my iBook G4 1.3GHz I purchased in the fall of '04. This is my third Apple laptop, and my first professional model. My other one was an iBook G3 700MHz model.

I spent most of Saturday moving into and getting comfortable with the MBP. This is my fourth OS X migration since switching to a Mac. All in all they have gone impressively well, and this one was just more of the same. Boot the Mac for the first time, hook the firewire cable to the old machine and wait. When it's done it's your machine, with all of your files, settings, applications, etc. Apple has really made the process of moving from machine to machine a painless exercise.

Mac OS X RSS Readers

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I've decided that I need to make my web browsing and information collection more efficient in order to raise my level of productivity. I've been spending far too much time tracking websites of both professional and personal interest that I like. So, I decided it was time to check out RSS readers.

Additionally I've decided that there are a number of Blogs that I'd like to track that don't produce a lot of new content. Just a few articles per week at the most. It doesn't make sense to visit these sites every day, and I don't want to use something like Technorati. I really want to stay off sites that will get me browsing ad-hoc, and stay focused on the information I need to know about while ignoring the rest.

Apple Mac Pro

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Today I went to the Apple Store to see if they had a new Mac Pro. Low and behold they did. In the past our local Apple Store has not had the new machines this quickly. It was nice to see that Apple said it was shipping, and they had them in the stores. According to the sales lady they received them on Tuesday, just one day after the announcement. Good going Apple.

First impressions... It's hard to tell it apart from a G5 PowerMac. The give away is the FireWire 800 port on the front. There was little software on the machine with which to test it. I tried MS Office, which needs to use the Rosetta translation, and it was utterly imperceptible. I might even venture to say that it felt crisper in performance than Office does on my G5 Quad running native code. It doesn't make much sense to me, but there you have it.

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