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Mac Maintenance

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if you look at the marketing for commercial and freeware “Mac maintenance apps” you see stuff like “Apple should bundle this!” or “it totally saved my bacon!” and finally “best app ever!” dubious marketing at best. the thing is most modern Macs aren’t in a “regularly scheduled program.” people just use them without doing anything special to them to keep them running.

the people of Know Tech are divided on the care and feeding. Chris has a Windows centric attitude causing him to rebuild and reinstall the System and all his apps twice a year. Kenji lived with a broken MacBook Pro keyboard for nearly 2 years before he bothered to get it fixed. Craig has a detailed backup system. Kristin just uses her Macs. and all the Macs that John takes care of just seem to work without any messing about.

so why do people have a need to maintenance their Macs? it’s something that is built into all consumer products. your car needs regular care, you have to put chemicals into the pool, the heater filter gets changed, the coffee maker needs de-liming and the refrigerator needs to be de-iced. maintenance is all around us and were programmed to accept doing it. some people actually like the peace of mind that they’ve “done something” and other people “just like doing” maintenance because it makes them feel good.
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taking apart a floppy for parts

the idea was simple enough, take the obviously corroded floppy disk that came from a Roland HP-1900 and grab all the useful parts from it. the floppy disk drive is a simple device. it uses a stepper motor to position a read/write head that moves across a spinning disc made of mylar powered by a unique motor.

from a personal computer point of view there there only 3 sizes of floppy disk in common use: 8″, 5.25″ and 3.5″. smaller sized floppy disks emerged late in the game which got used for things like music players and cameras. but these formats never found a foot hold in computing.
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the last Macworld Expo

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Remember when Macworld used to get 30k people coming to it? Well we have days were over 1m people visit our stores.
steve jobs

Macworld Expo has been “the tradeshow” for all things Mac for the last 25 years. there was a time when it was mandatory for anyone who had an interest in Mac to attend. companies came here to announce products, users came to learn, buyers came to do deals and the press could see all their contacts. it was all under one roof.

today it’s not the show that it once was.
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3 Shot Pano

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the 3-5 shot panorama is a really cool way to capture a scene. it’s not really a pano but think of it as a S-U-P-E-R W-I-D-E picture as you aren’t doing a full 360. you can take these with any camera. it doesn’t have to be expensive. and you don’t have to have a super wide lens. in fact you may want to shoot you pano using a more zoomed lens instead of the widest setting.
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Continuous

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Continuous is a mode on your camera that takes picture after picture for as long as you hold down the shutter. the frame rate of the shots depends on the camera. the Canon shoots about 4 FPS, Fuji is .3 seconds per frame, Nikon has a mode called 16 (which turns the flash off automatically, there is also has a mode that does 1.5 FPS and the Sony have different rates that depend on the camera. there are several Casio cameras that have super fast frame rates like up to 1000 frames per second!

so what is Continuous mode good for? it turns out there are lots of things that you can shoot. it’s a great way to get perfect candids. group shots are always a problem. don’t forget squirming kids and pets. you get that winning moment for sports photos. in a nut shell Continuous mode is good for anything that moves.
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making holes and adding color

back in August I walked into the studio and noticed that one of my mics was missing. it wasn’t stolen thankfully but it was sprawled out on the floor. and then I discovered why. SNAP! eventually same thing happened to the other three clamps. I’m pretty sure that this clamp was never designed to be used as a permanent installation. why? they all broke in the nearly same place.
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project 365

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if you are looking for a project to start with the new year look no further, this is it. the idea is to take one photo every day. easy you say! sure, we all take more photos now that we have some kind of camera with us. but when this kind of project started it was a little different and certainly not as easy. you took a camera of some kind, loaded a roll of film that you liked and over the next 24 or 36 days you’d take exactly one photo every day. of course you didn’t see what the photos looked like until the end of the roll after you got them back from the developer. this made it more special. you know, that anticipation of “how’s it going to come out!?”
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tech resolutions for 2011

everyone has one of these lists. it’s a easy thing to write because it’s what everyone is thinking about. you know how it goes: join a gym, eat better, spend less, learn French, do more. so because everyone is here’s our list.

and by the way, podcasts are coming. really. there’s stuff in the can.
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hey, we got a new look

the minimalist theme that was here before was okay. it was more of a placeholder. the idea was to get something that looked better. a theme that didn’t look so blogger like. and not so much magazine or news paper. something that would allow an article to work better. and along came the ia3 theme. it’s nice. it’s scales up and down automatically making it look good on that thing and the big thing and a normal old computer screen. it very likely won’t work so well with Internet Exploder 6 but that’s why read article