Multi Touch Comes to Magic Mouse

Apple’s key to success:

Come up with an amazing technology and use it on everything.

First the iPhone, then iPod touch, soon after macbook trackpads, the newest apple product to adapt multitouch is their new revolutionary “magic mouse”. It’s the first mouse I’ve seen that is without a single button. The entire surface of the mouse is sensitive and can detect your fingers.

Like any apple fan I decided that I needed to go try this out, so I headed to my local apple store to give it a shot. During my short time using it I notice it was surprisingly easy to use and enjoyable. The scrolling was simple and had no learning curve whatsoever, two finger swiping worked near perfectly. I do wish that apple would have kept a way to trigger expose but who says that cant be fixed with a creative software update. All in all the mouse was easy to use and I think I’ll be picking one up sometime soon.


Texting While Driving

We all know that texting and driving is dangerous, but what about going beyond just sending short text messages, and actually composing and sending emails while driving? I’m voting for “stupid” as the proper adjective to use.

Lane Roster, a Huntington Beach, California repo man who has taken driving and emailing to an extreme. Mr. Roster decided that he absolutely had to send emails while driving, so he mounted his iPhone on the dash of his car and loaded the Email n’ Walk app, a program that uses a camera view of what’s directly ahead of you as the backdrop to a standard email screen.

Email ‘n Walk, as the name implies, is designed to be used while walking. Roster, in a phone interview, stated that “If I can’t email and drive or send an occasional text I would get absolutely nothing done.” He also admitted to getting into two minor accidents while emailing and driving.

I’m going to end this post with two quick reminders: Don’t text (or e-mail) and drive, and try to stay out of Huntington Beach, California if you value your life

Mac OS X: Force Quit

If you’re switching from Windows you may be familiar with an old friend, the Task Manager. Apple provides a similar tool, with an easy way to force unruly applications to quit. I’ll get to why you’d want to do this in the moment. To access Force Quit, you can either go to the Apple menu in the top left corner of your screen, and choose Force Quit… Alternately, you can press three keys at once: Command + Option + Esc. It’s sort of the Mac version Ctrl-Alt-Delete.

Why would you want to force an application to quit? Sometimes applications get “struck” for whatever reason and can’t recover. If you notice the “rainbow wheel” spinning when you try to access the application and it just won’t do anything. Check the Force Quit tool and see if the name of the application is red and there’s a parenthetical warning “not responding”. This is your cue to use Force Quit – just be aware that sometimes an application might not be responding, but might still be “alive.” Typically what I do is go grab something to eat, and give the app 2-5 minutes to get itself together. If it is still stuck, I force quit.

How To Use Multi-touch in Firefox

Did you know you can switch tabs in Firefox by making a twisting motion with your fingers on a multi-touch surface? I did. Turns out I’ve been doing this for months – I thought I was late to the party and was too ashamed to mention it to anybody for fear of an epic internet ribbing. But no, apparently it was top secret and highly experimental. That was in the beta; it loks like the official version has reduced it to a hack. Fortunately, mastering this multi-touch-enabling technique will allow you to tweak your gestures, resulting in everlasting glory.

  • Open a new tab in Firefox… (I’ll wait)
  • Put “about:config” in the address bar, no quotes. It’ll ask you if you’re sure. Yes, you are.
  • Ready? Okay, now type “twist” into the search box.
  • Double-click on the twist right, and put “Browser:NextTab” into the box, without quotes.
  • Theeeen, in twist left, put “Browser:PrevTab” without the quotes.
  • You’re done! Now, I found the gesture (it applies immediately, try putting one finger down and rotating another around it) to be a bit slow to respond, so I changed that other setting, the threshold one, from its default (25) to 10. You can mess around and figure out what’s best for you.

See, tweaking is easy! If you’re afraid you’ve ruined something, just right-click on any box you’ve modified and hit reset.

Curiosity piqued? Type “gesture” into the search box and try modifying a few of those settings. I don’t particularly like the twist, so I’m about to set tab switching to three-fingered swipes. Aren’t we just having so much fun?

How to remove quiz notifications from Facebook

I was fed up with all those crappy quizzes and games notification in my Facebook page. Whenever I logged in to my Facebook page, those annoying quizzes notifications were the first ones to appear, so I decided to get rid of it and started my hunt. This is what I found and let me share it with all you guys.

First of all, you need to be a Firefox user to do this. Under Firefox, install an add-on called GreaseMonkey. Once installed a small icon will appear on the status bar on your browser. Next, you need to install the Facebook Purity Script for the GreaseMonkey. Then make sure that both the GreaseMonkey and Facebook Purity Script is enabled by right clicking the icon in the status bar and checking the “manage user scripts” option. Once done, open your Facebook page and see the results. The greasemonkey script “Facebook Purity Script” removes all the third party application’s notifications such as quizzes and games created by external developers leaving behind your original nofications and status, messages, comments and so on. Now the facebook becomes pure as it should be.

Tweetdeck for iPhone

Tweetdeck is now on the iPhone. That’s right – the reversed-palate, desktop-hogging application has now gone mobile, releasing its first iPhone version today. The TweetDeck community ferverently downloaded it and spread the exciting news that they have been waiting for since the idea was mentioned last summer. Some of you might have tried the desktop app in the past and moved on for whatever reason. You might want to take a second look and see what both the desktop and the iPhone applications now have to offer.

As you may know, TweetDeck is known for its multiple-column layout. Previously, the desktop application would only allow 10 columns; the desktop the desktop version released today has no limits.

Wait, it gets better: you can retain your groups through the new account sync. This is, by far, the best feature of the new TweetDeck. Your tweets, settings, and groups are saved – no matter where you are using the application – on your phone, on your desktop at work, or your computer at home.

The second best feature of Tweetdeck is multiple accounts. Since nearly the beginning, users have pleaded for the ability to use the robust application with multiple Twitter accounts (common for marketers, bloggers, and other full-time tweeters). Even though the iPhone app doesn’t include EVERY feature of the desktop application, you have the ability to set up and use multiple accounts just like the desktop. The best part about it is that if you set up your second Twitter account on your iPhone, you’ll sync your settings and be able to use it on your desktop, too.

  • When you are in the initial setup, you may crash if you try to create or sign in to your TweetDeck account. Click on “Skip This” as you can fix it later once you are running. All you need to do is go into Settings and set it up. This will probably be fixed with their first update – it’s a pretty big bug.
  • While the desktop application can have multiple columns, the iPhone app gets sluggish with too many. I encountered a crash loop when trying to use 21 columns. My recommendation is that you keep your phone columns at 10 or less. If you use more, you may wish to purge old or read tweets to prevent crashing.
  • The desktop application has Facebook status integrated, but the iPhone app doesn’t. This is a bit of a downer; hopefully, they will consider adding this for their users in the next update.

All in all, the TweetDeck app – or should we call it a “service” now, with the ability to create TweetDeck sync accounts – is evolving well. It’s far from the clunky original version – and should get better as Adobe’s AIR platform matures. You can view a full list of features for both public beta applications and download them for free from the TweetDeck website.

Required Graphics Cards for Snow Leopard

Apple’s Snow Leopard page has revealed some details about hardware support for the H.264 acceleration and Open CL.

The latest MacBook Pro’s offer hardware acceleration for H.264 video playback. While Apple has included graphics cards that have contained hardware support for H.264 decoding, the company has only recently taken advantage of this hardware acceleration. Snow Leopard specs have support but it seems to be available only to a limited number of graphics cards. It does not appear that this support will extend to older video cards. Hardware decoding of H.264 video improves the performance of video playback while, at the same time, leaving your computer’s CPU free to do other tasks.

Here are the list of GPUs that will be supported for the upcoming hardware acceleration and OpenCL:

-NVIDIA Geforce 8600M GT, GeForce 8800 GT, GeForce 8800 GTS, Geforce 9400M, GeForce 9600M GT, GeForce GT 120, GeForce GT 130.

-ATI Radeon 4850, Radeon 4870

Some companies have found a 5x speed increase in video encoding when using OpenCL-esque technology