Aleksandar • Vacić

iOS bits and pieces

Mighty Mouse

Ever since I decided to ditch the desktop for the laptop, I was looking for the wireless mouse I will use with my future mobile platform. Since my choice of laptops (ultra-portable) has very limited amount of USB ports (Sony SZ has two) I did not want to permanently occupy one of them with USB receiver for the mouse.

This ruled out majority of mouses out there and left me searching Bluetooth options.

In reality, there were two: Microsoft and Logitech. All the others was not really good ones and all belonged to entry level class. However, both MS Intellimouse and Logitech MX900 are designed for the right-hand users and I happen to use the mouse with my left hand. I am right-handed person but I strongly believe that mouse should be used with left hand as that is more comfortable than the usual way. I eventually bought MX900.

For its own, it is an excellent mouse, which works on practically any surface, even mat-black as my working table. However, it soon became obvious that it was very battery consuming and it having a charging cradle naturally leads me to think it’s a BT mouse aimed to be used in desktop situations.

Flash ActiveX bug: object 404

When Markus Mielke wrote that they Improved object fallback I was hoping that they also fixed one very annoying bug related to object element.

Imagine this simple code, used in this example:

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<object data="assets/countdown_greatbritain.swf"
      type="application/x-shockwave-flash"
      width="269" height="34">
    <param name="quality" value="high" />
    <param name="wmode" value="transparent" />
    <param name="pluginurl" value="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" />
    This is where the Flash file would load, but it is intentionally missing.
    </object>

If the file is not found at that URL, browser will receive 404 - file not found error. It should simply continue with page execution.

Internet Explorer, both 6 and 7, will however continue to “download” this file forever and thus never execute any window.onload code.

I long thought that this is bug in IE’s implementation of object, which was known to be buggy. Since this behavior repeated I started writing this post about IE bug, only to realize that all works as expected when instead of Flash I load QuickTime movie. Or image. Or Word document. Or PDF. Anything except Flash.

This is actually bug in Macromedia’s Adobe’s ActiveX plugin. Adobe, please fix this thing, it’s extremely annoying.

BootCamp and Parallels/VMWare to share the same WinXP install?

Is this possible?

I’m thinking of going to Mac OSX in not so distant future and the setup as above would prove to be very useful. For instance, I know that Windows version of VMWare allows you to use actual disk partition as its disk, but I don’t know if it can use existing installation on that partition.

I would mostly use the virtual machine, except when I would want to play a game or two. Seems crazy to maintain separate WinXP install just for that (not to mention 2 licenses).

[update, Dec 2nd ‘06] Oh baby, the wish above is one step closer to fruition.

iTunes love and hate

Ever since I bought iPod Shuffle, I had love and hate relationship with iTunes. One thing that bothers me most is the way it controls the file structure in the music folder. If I let iTunes manage my files, it will create this structure:

Artist \ Album \ xx - Track

While this may seem optimal, it only works for albums made by one artist/band. If I have soundtrack or tribute albums, I want those files to stay together (like in the following example of structure) not spread around 20 or so folders.

[Various ] Album \ xx - Artist - Track

It can have or not have Various at front, I don’t really care. Unfortunatelly, the only way to achieve this is to maintain the stuff manually, which is a pain. I like the fact that, when iTunes have control and I fix the ID tags on some song, iTunes automatically moves the file where it now should be - much better then hand copying.