Friday, 28 March 2008

Why oh why (the dot mac lament)

I have tried so many online backup/file sync systems that I am beginning to go mad (Amazon S3, Memeo, Mozy, FolderSync, .mac locally sync'd, .mac updated via Transmit) and NONE of them do the simple task of sweeping an update sync of my desktop and other crucial work folders onto the internet at regular intervals.

The bit that is really frustrating is that I pay for .Mac (including with increased storage) and it should be the simple solution - integrated with my Mac and fully automator-friendly etc. But it is soooooooooo slow. The local cache of .mac is totally useless as it simply fails to update after the first day or so. The Transmit sync is great in principle but it takes about 25 minutes to simply interrogate the two folders for changes before even getting to the upload.

And I know that this really bothers others (the venerable Merlin Mann, for instance) and it seems to be such a massive, crushing oversight on Apple's part.

Are we to see .mac rescued from this crapulatory state like Aperture and Apple TV were with their 2.0 versions?

Please Mr Steve. Oh, and in the meantime I have high, high, high hopes for DropBox.

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Shall I admit defeat and put the Westminster car pound telephone number into my address book?

Towed again for having the wrong permit showing. Ugh.

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Apple TV - issues with the real experience

I have been an owner of the Apple TV when it was a 1.0 twinkle in Steve's eye - and I enjoyed it although it was over-priced and under capacity. But, with 2.0 (Take 2 - sweet!) I was really excited.

Being one her Majesty's subjects based in the UK (not, as they quaintly say in some UK territories, 'residing at her Majesty's pleasure' i.e. in prison) I could not get onto the US iTunes store for movie rentals.

Until I discovered the neat workaround of buying US denominated gift vouchers ($200 available for immediate redemption at internet sites) which will allow anyone, anywhere to create a US iTunes account and get watching.

All so very groovy. EXCEPT...

Problem 1) my hitherto heroically excellent ISP in the UK, Zen Internet, starts coughing blood when my monthly downloads reach 20GB (back when I started with them there wasn't a limit, of course) and so my few episodes of Mad Men & Damages soon busted my limits. The last thing I expected to be a problem was this paltry download limit - and I'm not even using the pernicious, sneaky and downright underhand SLA's of the budget, mass-market ISP's like Sky, BT or Orange.

So - problem 1 in brief is that ordinary, high quality broadband packages from award winning UK ISP's are not ready for legal on-demand download TV services.

Problem 2) stemming fairly heavily from the above - I upgrade my broadband package to a pro (semi-business) offering from Zen in order to boost my download limit to 50Gb per month and find that I still can't get through a whole Live Fast Die Hard in HD as the download stalls out at 59% - even though I am still fully online now and able to write this post my Apple TV has been given an early bath for reasons I cannot fathom. Have Zen's servers shut that stream down? Is the Apple TV on the fritz? What has happened?

All I know is that I work in this world - I sell these products - an ordinary user would be very disappointed.

Apple TV 2.0 in the UK - our deliverer has been taken out at the last fence. "The quarterback is toast".

Monday, 10 March 2008

I.E. it's over

Interesting take on why Microsoft has u-turned on its IE8 standards compatibility - and I so hope it's true so banking websites, cinema booking sites and even pizza delivery companies start coding things that work rather than things that don't work just to fit in with Redmond's way of doing things.

Friday, 7 March 2008

Can anyone tell me how a company like Viatel gets to charge £270 per month ex VAT for 2MB SDSL with 10:1 contention?

Is that really the going rate?
Lock you mac screen with ease by keeping (from the Applications>Utilities folder) in the menubar (under Keychain>Preferences>General). Then click on the little padlock icon and voila!

Simple yet effective

Sunday, 2 March 2008

Google blog widget - excellent little device! Probably very late in the game on this but there we are.

One less good thing is that I changed my Google account the other day and I can find no way of making the Blog (or Analytics) accounts change with it. Any hints?