Aleksandar • Vacić

iOS bits and pieces

AllOfMP3 - how NOT to do online business

I was looking to find some MP3 files, and while searching came up on AllOfMP3.com - russian online music store. They had what I was looking for, I wanted to buy it and went to register.

idiotic implementation of CAPTCHA system

Now, what the fuck is wrong in my answers? I tried several times, always getting the same message. What a great way of doing online business - by not letting people register at all.

I wanted to complain about this and inform them that it is not working properly. Yeah, right.

Idiots.

Synergy

I noticed an interesting post over at geekchix blog - about particular open source app that lets you use two comps with one keyboard and mouse. This was exactly what I needed since my monitor has two inputs.

I bought KVM switch, but was not suitable for what I needed. I had no use for its VGA switcher, and I had USB mouse which had to be connected over USB-PS/2 converter. This caused the mouse to move the cursor on its own and second computer reported strange messages about power surging on USB port (?!).

Thus obviously this brought my attention. Synergy is small, easily configurable and works like a charm. You need to install it on both comps, setup properly and, for the easiest using set:

  • set to start automatically with Windows or when particular user login

  • set your client computers to always go to stand-by (no turn off)

  • do not require password when computer wakes up from stand-by

  • turn off mouse/keyboard check in BIOS, if you have one

And that’s about that. Simple and powerful. There are many issues in various situation but in general works very well. Now I have one KVM switch to sell…

San Marino GP

What a fantastic race end. In total contrast to last few seasons when there are excitements at the beginning and becomes dull afterwards, this race took off in its final stages. Undoubtedly thanks to great Ferrari/Bridgestone package. I’m not mentioning Schumacher who drove the car because no driver can’t do 2s/lap gap on its own.

It seems that Bridgstone’s were consistent throughout the race and got better with time, while Michelin runners had too to put up with less than stellar behavior of their tyre. It was obvious that all Michelin runners kept the same time gap in the last 20 or so laps, while only Schumacher gained 2s per lap, passed Button - in a really spectacular way, kudos for him for that - and then got behind Alonso for the last 12 laps.

No F1-live, this race will not be remembered for amazing drive put in by Michael Schumacher, but because of amazing drive put in by Fernando Alonso. It’s nothing spectacular to drive objectively faster package (saying car only will not do justice here) and gain places.

Bloody amazing! Nothing else can be said for fantastic driving performance Alonso gave today. Keeping obviously faster Ferrari, driven by extremely motivated M. Schumacher, at bay for twelve final laps… That was the deed that reminds of the late Senna and his fight with Mansell more than a decade ago when Mansell drove the technologically best car ever made.

Schumacher’s move to remember is taking over Jenson Button - almost full speed through two connected corners and through the small gap left unguarded by Button. Experience yes, but also great driver instinct.

The saddest part is Kimi’s early retirement. He was, without the doubt, giving best performance whole weekend and too see him out so early took away a good deal of excitement. Bad luck still seems to like the company of my fav team. :(

Using Shuffle without iTunes

This is a quick summary post; I want to emphasize two free, open-source apps with which you can fully use iPod Shuffle, without iTunes.

Apple StoreiPod shuffle database builder is great little app, mere 8kB in size, that makes the Shuffle as easy to use as any other MP3 player. Copy this program to Shuffle, copy your songs to Shuffle in any way and any structure you want, start rebuild_db.exe and…done. The songs are ready to use. There’s no ownership-transfer nonsense, no troubles, nothing. All software should be as this one.

There’s also a source code included - a small Perl script for your coding pleasure.

It sure made Sean Shrum happy, as he quickly followed with Shuffler - free random auto filler, effectively replacing iTunes’s Autofill option. It requires few minutes of setup, but it’s straight-forward to use after that. This application is also very small (236kB) and can be conviently kept on the Shuffle.

There’s no more excuse to use Wind…err, iTunes. iPod Shuffle is now really the best Flash disk/player in the market.