August 2011

08/31/2011 21:33:05

Students vs. Prisoners Infographic

[by Buckfire & Buckfire]; via Cool Infographics

08/31/2011 12:45:10

Mix Super Mario Brothers + Portal and you get Portal Mario



08/30/2011 15:36:54


This is genuinely Microsoft’s idea of a “streamlined”, “optimized” UI for Windows Explorer. They were so proud of it they wrote a blog post about it.

The post is a sort of masterpiece of crazy rationalization, but I think my favourite part may be this screenshot:

Here, they proudly overlay the UI with data from their research into how often various commands are used. They use this to show that “the commands that make up 84% of what users do in Explorer are now in one tab”. But the more important thing is that the remaining 50% of the bar is taken up by buttons that nobody will ever use, ever, even according to Microsoft’s own research. And yet somehow they remain smack bang in the middle of the interface. The insanity is further enriched by this graph:

Again, this is Microsoft’s own research, cited in the same post: nobody — almost literally 0% of users — uses the menu bar, and only 10% of users use the command bar. Nearly everybody is using the context menu or hotkeys. So the solution, obviously, is to make both the menu bar and the command bar bigger and more prominent. Right?

Microsoft UI has officially entered the realm of self-parody.

08/30/2011 14:24:44

BusyCal 40% off its normal price

BusyCal is featured in today’s MUPromo and is 40% off its normal price ($49.99). I’ve reviewed this excellent app a while ago.
Now with Lion, BusyCal became even better, because Apple decided to remove the “always visible calendar list”. With this thing removed you can’t easily see anymore which activity belongs to which calendar, and you don’t see anymore whether a calendar is currently syncing.

Buy it, it’s good for you!

08/29/2011 21:32:05

Portal - No Escape



08/29/2011 21:24:26

Best Smart Folders Tips

I’m currently thinking of ways to make use of OS X features like Smart Folders. The problem I have: I have absolutely no idea how this feature can help me. I never ever thought “Oh, yeah, that’s something I need a lot. Let’s make it a Smart Folder!” I never do that. And all the examples I see online “search for files you have opened in the last 1 week”. How is that helpful? At all? A long list of files I had opened in the last week … for 3 or 10 clients. How?

So I started to look around the Interwebs and found three (in numbers: 3) interesting articles on this topic.

How do you use Smart Folders? I try to come up with a concept of “show me all projects that are currently pending” by utilizing Labels. (Also “projects I need to backup”, with Labels)

08/29/2011 11:10:48

More Minecraft Videos

Notch demonstrating Minecraft 1.8


08/26/2011 17:42:25

IRC in iChat 6

A dear friend wrote one of the first (the first?) Plugin for iChat. This plugin lets you talk with your buddies on drumroll IRC.
I really, really, really didn’t see that coming.

Download the plugin directly from Juicy Cocktail

Juicy Cocktail also make apps:

08/25/2011 21:32:05

Linux Screencasting Tools

I just spotted an interesting, and long, list of Linux screencasting tools on a fellow German screencaster’s website.

In a poll he asks: Which screencasting tools are you using?

So if you want to record a screencast or tutorial on Linux here are some suggestions for you.

08/24/2011 21:32:05

Amadeus Pro/Lite 2

I bought Amadeus Pro 2 recently, because I’m a long-time user (2005) and regularly use this app for mainly two things:

Version 2 just came out recently and added a couple of interesting features:

Edit Preview is the reason why I decided to use Amadeus as my main tool to record and edit my voice. Whenever I make mistakes or say stupid things like “errr” or “oh” I select, press E and get a precise impression how the edit’s going to turn out. I’m not talking about the previewing part, it’s the edit itself that is so precise. Compared to any other editor (I mean that literally.1) none I have, are able to do this.
In Logic or Soundtrack you have audio in a “clip”. You cut where you need to make an edit and get two clips. Now you need to tinker around with positions, edit lengths, overlap, etc. In Amadeus you create a selection, press E and hear the result.

Plus: The developer is from the UK. What do you want more?

Get it now

  1. Logic is not able to preview edits this precise, Soundtrack Pro can’t, Live can’t, GarageBand haha, and every other editor that could be used to edit audio including Final Cut. 

08/23/2011 21:31:05

iPad vs. Newspaper



08/15/2011 13:19:01

TechSmith’s The Forge Episode 10 starring yours truly.1 Starts at about 21:00.

"…the German screencasting scene is not very big."

Indeed. I know three German screencasters. Anton is one of them. The next screencaster I know lives in Liverpool.

  1. The intro is 30 seconds by the way. ;) 


08/14/2011 21:32:05

Pause/Resume Apps for Better Performance

Loren Brichter:

I’ve taken to pausing PS:

killall -SIGSTOP "Adobe Photoshop CS5.1"

…otherwise it just idles at 10% CPU in the bg. (SIGCONT to unfreeze).

With Keyboard Maestro 5 you can set up two macros. Note how AppContinue re-uses AppPause’s pauseApp variable as default value:



08/12/2011 19:15:05

Rename/Delete Client Groups in Billings

I have a group in Billings named “Previous Clients” where I keep all, well, previous clients. Unfortunately I mistyped “Previous” and wrote “Prevoius”.
Renaming directly from the sidebar wasn’t possible. Not by double clicking, nor click-and-holding, nor right clicking, nor by staring at the thing angrily. I tried not to bother about it for a couple of months but eventually contacted their support.

This was their answer (paraphrased):

Open Preferences, go toLabels and there you’ll see a list of Client Groups with editable items. Rename with a double click, delete a group pressing the minus button on the bottom.

That’s too obvious, isn’t it? I’d like to share this post with every suffering Billings user who has the same problems.
Flattr this post or add it to your Readability list. Thank you.

08/11/2011 21:30:05

Keep Folders Synchronized With DropSync

As mentioned earlier in a previous post I’m trying to make Mac OS X Screencasts better by re-encoding all old screencasts so they are playing on an iPad. This is such a lot of work that I’m thankful for everything that helps me to achieve this goal quicker.
Re-encoding is one thing, but getting everything onto the server and have it in the correct spot is another. The server-lag drives you crazy after the first 100 files. I’ve also decided to go with another directory structure, which makes it even harder to get everything right.

DropSync solves this problem by mirroring the server structure to a (local) external disc. It’s called sync, but really, underneath its surface, rsync does all the work. The app is basically a GUI for rsync. A really good one.
There are others available for the Mac, but DropSync does much more than its competitors. Like:

Of course you can also you can also sync two external local hard drives with DropSync.

Not the easiest usable tool for end users, but still easy enough to get folders synced. Intermediate and power user are the ones who are really going to have a lot of fun with it.
The developer also told me that version 3 is going to be the version with a much better interface.

08/10/2011 21:30:06

Minimus is a GUI frontend for Yahoo’s YUI Compressor. Instead of using inconvenient and slow websites to compress your JavaScript and CSS, you can do it right on your Mac.

#osx #web #yui

08/09/2011 21:48:06

Remove/hide Apps From Launchpad

Lion’s Launchpad can be a real pain especially when you have more than 50 apps installed and some of the .app’s in /Applications are really just uninstallers or some additional .app a (non Mac App Store) app installs alongside with its own application.

Currently there seem to be a couple of solutions for our problems:

08/06/2011 21:31:05

Houdini to replace Spirited Away?

Spirited Away is one of those apps that hides unused apps after a while. Did I say “is one of those”? If you keep searching you won’t find many, so Spirited Away pretty much became the standard for uncluttering and get concentrated apps.
With [Houdini] we have one promising new candidate for this kind of functionality. The app looks good and has a couple of nice settings.

Despite the author claiming the app is ugly, it’s quite useful. Check it out.

08/04/2011 17:00:00

Lion: Open in Terminal

Lion added a new feature that allows you to open a new Terminal tab or window using a shortcut or clicking the Services menu.

To enable go to: System PreferencesKeyboard Shortcuts and click on Services. Under Files and Folders are two entries labeled New Terminal at Folder and New Terminal Tab at Folder.
Assign an, optional, shortcut by double-clicking the right column. (How about ⌥⌘T and ⇧⌥⌘T?)

08/02/2011 21:31:05

Win a free flickery license!

We have one free license left from our flickery raffle. We negotiated with the developers and they decided that they still want to give away the remaining licenses.

Here’s how to win:

Eighth comment will win the license.

Good luck.

08/01/2011 23:03:19

How to solve a General Error in Final Cut Pro 7 - or not

As some of my Twitter followers might know. I had a “General Error” constantly showing up in Final Cut last week. The program just stopped playing and was showing this message. Next to it was a neat looking OK button, but nothing else. Just a stupid OK button. All logs didn’t give any hint on what might cause this problem, the logs weren’t even constant. Sometimes there were log entries, sometimes there weren’t, sometimes they were referring to some sort of Motion.framework bug, but most of the time they weren’t. Really weird.
A “General Error” usually occurs when there is a problem with corrupted media files. A friend told me: visibly corrupted. My media was fine though. Heck there wasn’t even much of a change at that location in the timeline. General Error.
4 days, including my weekend, wasted, trying to find a solution. Here’s what I did, before I decided to re-record that damned 30-minute screencast, grudgingly. Remember I’m getting this error on a clip that hasn’t been altered.

I re-recorded and edited the clip in question now, but started getting General Error after importing title sequences and lower thirds. I decided, now that it’s too late already, to do what I wanted to do for so long: Redesign all animations in Motion. Mac OS X Screencasts never looked that good.
I hope to have this screencast ready soon.

To everyone else who’s trying to solve General Error: Good luck!
Here’s a funny Twitter conversation for you.