December 20, 2006

5 Things You Didn’t Know

Filed under: General — Cory @ 2:22 am

Eliot listed his “5 things” and then tagged me to do the same. So, here are 5 things that people probably don’t know about me.

  • I play the harmonica in my truck when I drive long distances.
  • I have known how to weld since I was around 12 years old.
  • I love shapes, all shapes. When I walk around my eyes pick out shapes in everything around me. Without even thinking about it, my brain is always calculating angles, I am looking for parallel or perpendicular lines, or even physically adjusting stuff to be properly centered.
  • This might be related to the previous item, but I love even numbers, and dislike odd numbers. 4 is my favorite number, but 8 is good too. Numbers have personalities to me:
    • 3 is red and has a bad temper.
    • 5 is dishonest.
    • 9 might be the only odd number that I actually like.
    • 10 is strong, bold, and protective.
    • 11 is weak.
    • 12 is Roman.
    • 13 is annoying. really annoying.
    • 17 is boring.
    • 19 is sinister.
    • 24 is young, versatile, and lively.
    • 39 is circular and somewhat feminine. (these aren’t reasons to dislike this odd number, though)

    You get the point.

  • I spent the first 2 years of my college career as an economics major, which I really enjoyed.

I don’t typically do this sort of thing, but in continuing with the tradition, I’ll tag Jason, Ken, Chris, Todd and Nathan. I expect 1 in 5 will actually follow through.

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December 14, 2006

Stop Motion Music Video: Amateur

Filed under: General,Music — Cory @ 1:18 pm

Apparently this is all over the Internet, but I am just now seeing it and I think its pretty awesome:

By calling himself an amateur, Mr. Gjertsen also inflates his stature as musician — the star performer can’t play a lick. But in the three-minute video, the Norwegian weaves together a drums-and-piano duet, creating a knee-bouncing tune that substitutes crafty editing for the instrumental skills Mr. Gjertsen lacks. His trick: stop-motion video.

Tony vs. Paul is another fascinating stop-motion video if you have another 5 minutes to spare.

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December 8, 2006

VLC and the Apple Remote

Filed under: Technology — Cory @ 1:03 am

Tonight I was trying to play some videos that my friend gave me and I wanted to watch them using Front Row. Quicktime would not open the videos, and although I did not spend much time trying, I was not able to convert them into a format that Quicktime would open. VLC, however, played the videos just fine. I really didn’t want to spend much time tonight researching how to make this work, so I just thought I would see if there was any way to get the apple remote to work with VLC, and sure enough there is.

I found this thread where a guy points out a tool he wrote that hooks the apple remote to VLC, which can be downloaded here.

In under 2 minutes my problem was solved. I love the Internets!

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December 7, 2006

My New MacBook

Filed under: Technology — Cory @ 1:54 am

On Black Friday a couple of my friends took advantange of the discounts that Apple was offering on their online store and ordered new MacBooks. After thinking about it, I decided to order one too. ;)

After waiting patiently for a week, my new machine arrived last Friday just before I left for San Antonio for the weekend. The specs:

  • 13″ White MacBook
  • Core 2 Duo 2 GHz
  • 2 GB Memory
  • 160 GB Drive
  • Superdrive (DVD-RW,CD-RW)

Since I was already using a MacBook and I just wanted to migrate all my data to the new machine, I decided to try the “copy all my data from another Mac” option that the Mac OS X installer gives you during the first boot. Although this is my fourth Apple laptop, I’ve never tried this before so I didn’t know what to expect. It asked to me to plug a FireWire cable between the old and the new laptops, and then let me choose from a simple list of things that I wanted to copy (users, applications, etc). I selected everything, clicked “continue” and watched as it began copying.

Apparently it took about an hour and a half (I went to sleep in the mean time), but after it was complete I started the new machine and to my surprise everything was identical to the old one. All my desktop icons were scattered in the same places, my browser tabs restored to the pages I was browsing on the old one, my mail filters were still there, etc. I thought it had to be a little too good to be true, so I pulled up a terminal and checked to see if other things on the hard drive were copied, and sure enough they were. Even my DarwinPorts installation in /opt/local was copied over, as well as my daemontools compile in /package, and the services in /service. Amazing! I checked to see about some weird things like the kernel extensions required to run DoubleCommand, and yup, they were there too. The only thing I could find that wasn’t copied over was non-standard Apple applications that I had installed such as Xcode and

My previous MacBook had a core duo 1.83 GHz processor with 1 GB of memory, so its a little hard to pinpoint what is making this new machine so much faster, but one thing is for sure, its much, much faster. Spotlight instantly finds as I type, and most applications launch immediately now. Previously iPhoto could take 5-10 seconds to start, but now it is almost instant. I am very, very happy with this new MacBook.

I also ordered a copy of Parallels Desktop for Mac with my MacBook. I had played around with Parallels back when I got my first MacBook in May, but I never bought a copy of it. Incidentally, a new beta version of Parallels was released on Friday that includes a lot of really amazing new features. I spent some time playing around with it, and getting Windows XP and Kubuntu installed on it, and I must say that I have now found the perfect environment. The machine has enough processing power and RAM to easily handle all three operating systems running at once, which I have been doing. I installed XP and Kubuntu at the same time, and the little MacBook didn’t even stumble, I was quite impressed.

So far, 6 of my friends have switched to the Mac since Apple introduced the MacBook, and 4 of these people are non-technical users. This makes me very happy.

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