Why Smart Cops do Dumb Things

From Wired

Since 9/11, we've spent hundreds of billions of dollars defending ourselves from terrorist attacks. Stories about the ineffectiveness of many of these security measures are common, but less so are discussions of why they are so ineffective. In short: Much of our country's counterterrorism security spending is not designed to protect us from the terrorists, but instead to protect our public officials from criticism when another attack occurs.

This is Cover Your Ass security, and unfortunately it's very common.

Click here to read more "Why Smart Cops do Dumb Things"

The Top 5 Mac Hard Drive, Diagnostic, and Repair Utilities

From Informit

Macs are notoriously reliable computers, but even the best computers sometimes have problems: be it a hard drive crash, Mac OS X problem, or a more extensive hardware failure. Having the right diagnostic, repair, and data recovery tools can make all the difference for recovering your data and for diagnosing or resolving issues. In this article, Ryan Faas identifies and compares the five best tools for working with the hard drive, keeping your Mac running, and diagnosing problems.

Click here to read more "The Top 5 Mac Hard Drive, Diagnostic, and Repair Utilities"

iPod shuffle Wins Design Week Award

From Macworld UK

Apple's iPod shuffle this week won the Design Week Award for Best Consumer Product Design.

The judges said, “It feels a bit unfair to all the other entries, which were mainly very good indeed, that Apple — with its relentless commitment to innovative and evolutionary design, and its attention to detail — should again win pole position”.

Judge Sebastian Conran of Conran & Partners said, "The quality of Apple’s products, packaging and enticing presentation really sets the benchmark and creates a compelling ‘itchy wallet’ syndrome that makes them so successful."

Click here to read more "iPod shuffle Wins Design Week Award"

Apple TV: Why It Matters

From PC Magazine

Apple is extending its digital lifestyle concept to the TV, with Apple TV. I find this move by Apple very interesting and potentially important to the market because of the impact it may have on consumer trends. Of course, Apple is not the first to try to extend Mac/PC content to the living room; in fact, it's five years late. Microsoft's Windows Media Center has been doing this since 2002 with mixed results, and various other media adapters have come to market since then and gotten only minimal consumer acceptance.

On the other hand, you could say the same for Apple's late entry into the MP3 space.

Click here to read more "Apple TV: Why It Matters"

Prevent Accidental Wakeups

From Macworld

I decided that it would be better if my Macs, as they do with sleep, would only wake on my command. There’s no built-in GUI solution to this problem, but it turns out that Apple has hidden a number of power management options in a Unix program called pmset. We covered one use of pmset, to set newer Macs’ sleep mode, in this tip. But pmset can do much more than that.

To see what options your Mac is presently configured with, launch Terminal (in /Applications -> Utilities), and type pmset -g.

Click here to read more "Prevent Accidental Wakeups"

Study: Consumers Balking at iPhone's Price

From Macworld

Consumers aren’t willing to pay what Apple may ask for the iPhone, but if the price drops they’ll switch their mobile service to AT&T in order to get it, according to results of a survey.

Among the 26% of respondents who said they’re likely to buy an iPhone, only 1% said they'd pay $500 for it. When Apple introduced the iPhone in January, it said it would cost $500 on the low end. 42% of those who said they’re likely to buy the phone said they’d pay $200 to $299.

(Shawn's Comment: I think a lot of folks, right now, if asked in a survey, would say they wouldn't pay the price. But when it becomes available, a lot of those same people will have a strong enough "gadget lust" to open their wallets a *lot* wider than they would like to)

Click here to read more "Study: Consumers Balking at iPhone's Price"

Macweek Ressurrected!?

How many of you remember the paper edition of MacWeek magazine? If you do, you're getting old. :)

I saw this site referenced somewhere and got excited, thinking MacPublishing was bringing the old venerated (and hated) MacWeek name back. But, when i go to the site, I saw that they were using WordPress and it didn't look anything like the other MacPublishing products.

After investigating further (actually, spending about 60 more seconds on the site), I figured the site was run by a couple of kids and will be taken down......oh.....let's say before the weekend is out. :)

But it brings up a couple of points. One is that there is an entire "generation" of Mac users who have no clue about the "Good Old Days" and two, if you're going to use a particular obvious name, at least do a Google search to make sure someone else doesn't own it. :)

When to Buy a New Mac?

One of the most frequently asked questions, either to me or on web sites, mailing lists and forums is, "When are the new (insert name of product here) coming out?"

Everyone is so (justifiably) afraid of buying a brand spanking new machine, only to have Apple release a spankier one the next day or week. The problem is, the only *honest* answer to the question anyone can give you is, "I don't know." No one at Apple is going to tell you and, if you're not at Apple, you have no clue when new machines are coming out because Apple rarely pre-announces new hardware (the iPhone and Apple TV being notable exceptions).

The only advice I can ever give is, if you *need* a new machine, buy a new machine. If you don't absolutely need it, wait until the next revision of the product.

Chris H on the Your Mac Life Mailing List points us to this web site - The Macrumors Buyer's Guide. As much as I hate rumor sites, this page is interesting because it shows when the last time a particular product was revised and gives you some small indication as to when it *may* be revised again. But keep in mind their own disclaimer:
"Disclaimer: This page is based on rumors and speculation and we provide no guarantee to its accuracy. We take no responsibility for purchase decisions made based on this information.

Things You didn't Know

From ABC News

Snow White's seven dwarfs could do it. So could Andy Griffith. Lauren Bacall told Humphrey Bogart, "You just put your lips together and blow."

They could all whistle, but astronauts on spacewalks will never, ever be able to whistle while they work.

Former astronaut Dan Barry has seven hours of spacewalking time to his credit. He tried whistling during his spacewalk on STS-96 in May 1999.

"It wasn't something I hadn't planned — I thought of it on the fly. It turned out that it didn't work.," he said.

Barry called down to Mission Control and said, "Houston, EV2. The science types might like to know that it is not possible to whistle during an EVA."

So why can't people whistle while spacewalking? Barry said there is a simple explanation.

"You can't whistle because the air pressure in the suit is only 4.3 [pounds per square inch], and normal atmospheric pressure is 14.7 psi, so there are not enough air molecules blowing by your lips to make a sound," he said.

Click here to read more "Whistle While You Work? Not in Space"

300 Brings History to Bloody Life

From Wired

(Shawn's Comment: I'm looking forward to this movie more than I reasonably should. Which means, it's gonna suck :( )


Is director Zack Snyder the next Bryan Singer? Will he become the new go-to guy for megabudget comic book adaptations?

Snyder, a commercial director whose debut feature Dawn of the Dead was a surprise hit in 2004, filmed the ultraviolent 300 on a Montreal sound stage. After recording real actors doing fake battle, he added heavily manipulated digital backdrops. Like Robert Rodriguez with Sin City, Snyder went to enormous lengths to precisely match Miller's eerie landscapes.

Snyder talked to Wired News on the eve of his departure for the Berlin Film Festival, where 300 celebrated its world premiere Feb. 14.

Wired News: This is one crazy-looking movie.

Zack Snyder: No one should ever take drugs, ever. I want to go on the record on that. But if someone was to slip you a mickey, I would immediately get into a taxi and go to an Imax screening of 300.

Click here to read more "300 Brings History to Bloody Life"

SmileOnMyMac Releases DiscLabel 4.1.2

From MacMinute

SmileOnMyMac today released DiscLabel 4.1.2, the latest version of its award-winning CD/DVD label design software for the Mac. Changes in this release include: rotate via grab handle; contextual menu on design element list in Edit; preference to rasterize printing output; and minor fixes and improvements. DiscLabel 4.1.2 requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later, and is priced at US$32.95.

Click here to read more "SmileOnMyMac Releases DiscLabel 4.1.2"

I've become One of the Pod People!

My wife has turned me into one of "those people".

I used to walk into Starbucks and order quickly, easily, simply.

"I'll have a Venti (strongest Coffee of the Day)".


The cashier would take my money, quickly pour a cup, hand it to me and send me on my way. A shot of Half and Half and I was out the door. The whole thing took maybe a minute to transact.

I always hated those people who would walk up to the counter and order like this:

"I'll have a Grande, no whip, half caff, extra hot, double shot, skim Americano with sprinkles...."

The cashier would holler the order to a Barrista. The Barrista would repeat the order back, like we're on a nuclear powered submarine, filming a sequel to The Hunt for Red October.

I just wanted to grab the person and yell, "Just get a cup of hot brown water and get out of here!"

OK...I'll admit....in the summer time, I would occasionally try a cool, refreshing Frappuccino.


But it was only every now and then and I could quit any time I wanted.

Then my wife made me try her latte.

She's smart, my wife. She knows, like any good crack dealer, you give 'em the first hit free.

That first one was good....not as good as a straight up Sumatra but not bad. And then I started to experiment. And that's when things started to go horribly wrong.

Now, here's what I order when I go to Starbucks:

"I'll have a Grande, extra hot, triple shot non fat latte".


Kill me now....

Camera Musings

"Nothing i would trade my new Canon 400D for just yet...."

Thomas posted the above in our comments and it got me thinking (always dangerous).....

What *would* you trade you present camera in for? Regardless of whether you're a point-and-shooter or a pro, what features, real or imagined, already existing or not, would you trade your present camera in for?

As a brand new SLR'er (that's an awkward word), I can't imagine ever needed anything more (well, maybe faster). So what is it about the Nikon D70 or D80 (both supposedly better than what I'm using now) or a pro Canon camera that makes them "better" cameras? Is it just more megapixels? Bigger sensors?

Stem Email Overload

From Macworld

For most of us, e-mail has become a primary means of communication—which means that we have an ever-expanding list of messages to read and process. To keep from being overwhelmed, first figure out how to keep your inbox under control, and then decide on other details of e-mail organization. As with organizing your files, choosing strategies to implement will depend on whether you prefer to find a place for each message or to rely primarily on searches to sift through your mail.

Click here to read more "Stem Email Overload"

Camera Makers vie for SLR Buyers' Attention

From Macworld

Camera manufacturers including Canon, Pentax, and Fujifilm will show new digital SLRs for professional photographers at the Photo Marketing Association show in Las Vegas next month. The new models balance traditional and advanced features to retain existing customers and tempt new ones.

Canon will show the EOS-1D Mark III Digital SLR, an upgrade of its classic 1D model that shoots 10.1 megapixel images at up to 10 frames per second. Fujifilm will show the FinePix S5 Pro which begins shipping this month and Pentax will once again show a prototype medium-format SLR, the 645 Digital, which the company first began talking about in March 2005.

PMA07 takes place at the Las Vegas Convention Center from March 8 to March 11.

(Shawn's Comment: Your Mac Life will be attending the PMA show!)

Click here to read more "Camera Makers vie for SLR Buyers' Attention"

Photoshop Lightroom 1.0

From Macworld

Pros: Excellent photo-management and -importing capabilities; strong editing functionality, including innovative Targeted Adjustment tool and intuitive Spot Removal brush; good printing and Web creation features; performs well across wide range of Macs.

Cons: Interface has a few minor inconsistencies; skimpy Slideshow module; needs more-comprehensive documentation; no secure FTP; image backup options are only during import.

Click here to read more "Photoshop Lightroom 1.0"

Canon Intros New Flagship Digital Camera

From Macworld

Canon has introduced its newest EOS digital single lens reflex (SLR) camera aimed at digital photography professionals — the EOS-1D Mark III. It’s scheduled to be released this spring, and while Canon did not specify an exact price, the company said the new camera would be priced similarly to the EOS-1D Mark II N Digital SLR, which debuted for about $4,000.

Billed as the “world’s fastest digital SLR camera,” the EOS-1D Mark III can record bursts of 110 large JPEGs or 30 raw files. It sports a 10.1 megapixel CMOS sensor, and features an ISO range of 100 to 3200.

A new “Live View” shooting mode lets users use the 3.0-inch LCD screen as a viewfinder.

Click here to read more "Canon Intros New Flagship Digital Camera"

Canon Rolls Out New Cameras, Printer

From Macworld

Canon has taken the wraps off new consumer digital cameras, include two new Digital ELPH models, the PowerShot TX1 and two new PowerShot models. It's also introduced a new portable photo printer.

The PowerShot A560 and A570 IS both feature 4x optical zoom, 7.1 megapixel resolution and 2.5-inch LCDs.

The PowerShot TX1 is a combination digital still camera and camcorder. It features a 7.1 megapixel sensor and 10x optical zoom lens.

The newest 7.1 megapixel Digital Elph models in Canon’s lineup include the SD750 and SD1000. The SD750 features a “Touch Control” dial that lets you access operations like mode selection, ISO speed and more. It comes with a three-inch screen.

Canon also introduced the Pixma iP90v, a new portable photo printer that costs $249.99. The new printer is designed for mobile professionals and home users looking for a photo printer that’s easy to take on the road.

Click here to read more "Canon Rolls Out New Cameras, Printer"

Lesa @ Disney World

While we are all busily listening to the show, Lesa was in Florida - Orlando to be exact.

Click here to see what she was up to.

Sly got a Valentine!

Archives for February 21st, 2007

Streamed Audio Only Archive - http://www.yourmaclifeshow.com/QT/YML070221s.mov (Open QuickTime, type Command-U and type in the address)
Streamed Video Archive - THERE WAS NO VIDEO OF THIS WEEK'S SHOW

Our guests on Wednesday's show were:

- Aaron Adams

- Chris Breen of PlayListMag

- J Curtis of Griffin Technology

- Matt Deatherage of MacJournals

- Peter Cohen with The Big Story

Cisco, Apple Agree to End iPhone Suit, Share Name

From MarketWatch

Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO) and Apple Inc. (AAPL) said Wednesday they reached a settlement to their six-week-old legal dispute over Cisco's iPhone trademark and had agreed to share the name. No financial terms were released.

According to a brief statement from the Silicon Valley tech giants, both companies are free to use the iPhone brand name on their products. Cisco said it would end litigation it filed in California and the U.K. to protect the brand.

The companies also said they would explore "opportunities for interoperability in the areas of security, and consumer and enterprise communications." A Cisco spokesperson declined to elaborate on the focus of the interoperability efforts.

The agreement ends the legal wrangling between the two firms that began shortly after Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs announced the company's new iPhone in early January. The pact comes on the day Apple was expected to file its first legal brief in the case.

Click here to read more "Cisco, Apple Agree to End iPhone Suit, Share Name"

Adobe Ships Photoshop Lightroom 1.0

From Macworld

Adobe Systems announced that it has shipped Photoshop Lightroom 1.0, its workflow management software for pro photographers. It’s available through April for $199, then rises to $299.

Photoshop Lightroom lets you manage, adjust and present digital photographs. Like Apple’s Aperture software, Photoshop Lightroom features non-destructive editing capabilities. It’s designed to support the most common formats used by digital cameras, including JPEG, TIFF and raw formats. Photoshop Lightroom supports more than 150 raw formats from a variety of camera makers.

Features include tools for adjusting white balance, exposure, tone curves, lens distortion and color casts. Photoshop Lightroom’s workflow is set up in a modular format.

Click here to read more "Adobe Ships Photoshop Lightroom 1.0"

Jon Stewart on Technology


Jon Stewart riffs on technology in general and Macs specifically. WARNING: Language not suitable for kids or work.

Macrovision CEO Asks Apple to Hand Over FairPlay

From PlayList

Fred Amoroso, CEO and President of Macrovision, has responded to Steve Jobs’ recent comments about Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology. Like Jobs, Amoroso has published his comments on his company’s Web site, as an open letter. In it, Amoroso suggests, among other things, that Macrovision take over stewardship of Apple’s own DRM technology.

Amoroso’s company develops DRM technology widely used in commercial DVDs. It also develops DRM for commercial software publishers and other content creators.

Last week Jobs posted a letter to Apple’s Web site suggesting that Apple would drop DRM from its iTunes Store offerings if record labels were to agree. Warner Music CEO Edgar Bronfman Jr. immediately responded, calling Jobs’ anti-DRM stance a fight “without logic” and suggested to investors that any “manifestos in advance” of discussions between the companies “is counter-productive.”

Amoroso’s letter addresses what he considers to be four key points: That DRM has a broad impact across many types of content, not just music; that DRM “increases not decreases consumer value;” that it will increase electronic distribution; and that DRM needs to be interoperable and open.

Amoroso calls DRM “an important enabler across all content, including movies, games and software, as well as music.”

Click here to read more "Macrovision CEO Asks Apple to Hand Over FairPlay"

Music Execs Criticise DRM

From BBC News

Almost two-thirds of music industry executives think removing digital locks from downloadable music would make more people buy the tracks, finds a survey.

Many of those responding said current DRM systems were "not fit for purpose" and got in the way of what consumers wanted to do.

Despite this few respondents said DRM would disappear in the near future.

Analyst Mark Mulligan, one of the authors of the report, said the survey was carried out between December and January, before Apple boss Steve Jobs published his thoughts on music DRM and galvanised the debate about these protection systems. Mr Mulligan said he was "surprised" at the strength of the responses which came from large and small record labels, rights bodies, digital stores and technology providers.

The study revealed that about 54% of those executives questioned thought that current DRM systems were too restrictive.

Click here to read more "Music Execs Criticise DRM"

Gates vs. Jobs

Apple Update Addresses Security, DST

From Macworld

Apple released nine software updates that make adjustments for new Daylight Saving Time, address issues during two security researchers’ self-proclaimed “Month of Apple Bugs,” and fix bugs in Final Cut Pro. The fixes are available now via Mac OS X’s built-in Software Update utility.

Five of the updates released Thursday cover new Daylight Saving Time rules put into place for 2007. Beginning in 2007, North American Daylight Saving Time will begin on the second Sunday in March and conclude on the first Sunday in November. Previously, Daylight Saving Time began on the first Sunday in April and concluded on the last Sunday in October.

The current version of Mac OS X was updated to follow those time-change rules as a part of the OS X 10.4.5 update. However, that update did not cover changes in Daylight Saving Time in other regions, including Alberta (Canada), Australia, and Brazil. The new Daylight Saving Time Update (Tiger) adds compatibility with those regions.

Apple also released two Java updates to add compatibility with new Daylight Saving Time rules, one for Mac OS X 10.3 and one for Mac OS X 10.4. Finally, a WebObjects 5.3.3 Update updates Apple’s WebObjects web-application software to be compatible with the new time guidelines.

Click here to read more "Apple Update Addresses Security, DST"

Jobs Attacks Teacher Unions

From Houston Chronicle

Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs lambasted teacher unions, claiming no amount of technology in the classroom would improve public schools until principals could fire bad teachers. Jobs compared schools to businesses with principals serving as CEOs.

"What kind of person could you get to run a small business if you told them that when they came in they couldn't get rid of people that they thought weren't any good?" he asked to loud applause during an education reform conference. "Not really great ones because if you're really smart you go, 'I can't win.'"

In a rare joint appearance, Jobs shared the stage with competitor Michael Dell, founder and CEO of Dell Inc. Both spoke to the gathering about the potential for bringing technological advances to classrooms.

"I believe that what is wrong with our schools in this nation is that they have become unionized in the worst possible way," Jobs said.

"This unionization and lifetime employment of K-12 teachers is off-the-charts crazy."

Click here to read more "Jobs Attacks Teacher Unions"

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

From Ars Technica

Lightroom is a really great program that is just short of a nine or ten. I don't doubt that this is going to be a very popular program and for Windows users, it's a no-brainer for professional photographers. Mac users on older hardware will also appreciate its low system requirements. Lightroom is off to a very promising start and it's definitely one of the better ways to spend 43 megabytes.

Click here to read more "Adobe Photoshop Lightroom"