Wireless Mighty Mouse

Wireless Mighty Mouse

Yesterday brought renewed rumors of Apple releasing a wireless version of its Might Mouse, and today its a reality. Thats one of the quickest rumor-to-fact cycles I’ve seen.

I just have one thing to say… its about damn time. The original Might Mouse was released a year ago. I actually expected the wireless version within 3 months.

I haven’t played with one in person yet, but from the picture it look identical to its wired counterpart. If that ends up being the case, I may pass on this. The original Might Mouse had some issues that I didn’t like. I’m also not too sure about its $69 price tag. That’s just a bit more than I normally like to spend on a mouse.

No more Monopoly money? :(


One of my favorite childhood games was Monopoly. I’m not too happy about this, but the game maker, Parker Brothers, is phasing out the multi-colored cash version for a ‘new and improved’ debit card version.

Parker Spokesman, Chris Weatherhead said: “The new electronic Monopoly reflects the changing nature of society and the advancement of technology.”

I just hate to see things I loved as a kid get screwed with. I may just have to run out and grab a copy of the cash version while stores still have them.

Found via Engadget

A Scanner Darkly

A Scanner Darkly

2 Stars

On Friday we saw A Scanner Darkly. I was a little disappointed, but I went in with fairly high hopes.

At times, the film moves along at a pretty slow pace. There were some long conversation scenes that became tedious very quickly.

At first I thought the cast looked great (Winona Ryder, Woody Harrelson, Robert Downy Jr., Keanu Reeves, Rory Cochrane), but in the end, they all played exactly the character you would expect them to play. They were the kinds of roles that these actors could have done in their sleep.

If you are unfamiliar with the movie, it’s rotoscoped. The film is processed in a way that makes it look like animation. I was really excited about seeing this, but about midway through the film I started looking at this as more of a gimmick. It’s almost as if they used this to distract you from an otherwise mediocre movie.

I wouldn’t discourage someone from seeing this film, but I wouldn’t really recommend it either.

Is Zune the iPod Killer?


You may have heard that Microsoft has officially confirmed they are working on a new “iPod Killer”, called Zune. The devise is expected to roll out by Christmas.

Personal media players will come and go, and someday the iPod will probably be dethroned as the top player. Let’s face it, nothing stays on top forever. What has me worried in this instance, is not the device itself, but Microsoft’s rumored plan of using it’s significant financial might to temp people over to the Zune. It’s been rumored that when you buy a Zune, it will scan your music library, and determine everything you’ve bought from iTunes, and then give that music to you for free in Microsoft’s format. Microsoft is willing (and able) to eat millions of dollars in licensing fees to entice you to switch… and it may work in many cases.

Engadget has full coverage of Zune rumors to date.

Productivity App: GammaToggleX

One of the most overlooked aspects of web development is gamma correction. I’m no expert on this, but if you’ve never heard the word, gamma, it’s basically a term used to describe your monitors brightness, contrast, luminance, color, etc…

Many people don’t know this, but Macs and PCs use very different gamma settings. By default, a Mac uses a setting of 1.8, and a PC uses a setting of 2.2. As a result, Macs tend to run lighter, with less contrast than PCs. Color can also differ greatly between the two gamma settings. For instance, a color that is very yellow on a Mac, may look much more orange on a PC.

When developing any content for the web, you should always look at your design / colors in both gamma settings, especially if you design on a Mac. That design you just finished on your Mac, may look way to dark when you display it on a PC. Alternately, if you work on a PC, your design may look washed out on a Mac.

If you work on a Mac, you should have a look at GammaToggleX. It’s an awesome little utility for toggling between monitor gamma settings with the stroke of a few keys. If you’ve been using a Mac since the days of OS 9, you may remember this utility as GammaToggle Fkey.

GammaToggleX is shareware, and costs $15, but you can use it for free, for personal and non-profit use.

You could go into your ‘Displays’ system pref, and set up a new 2.2 display profile, but using GammaToggle is much quicker. You can just jump back and forth without opening up your system prefs. I personally set GammaToggle as one of my startup items, so it’s always running.

The goal is to make things look good on both platforms. But, as Mac developers, we unfortunately have to remember that most of the world is using a PC. We don’t want the things we do to only look good to a small percentage of the internet.

As a side note to this, if you do any video work that will end up being displayed on a TV, you definitely want to look at it in PC gamma (2.2) while you work. Televisions also use 2.2 gamma, so video that looks good on your Mac may look too dark on your TV. I’m actually surprised, and a little annoyed that Apple chose to use 1.8 gamma, as 2.2 is a little more standard. Sometimes it seems like they intentionally make things a little more difficult for cross-platform developers.

Template for Pixelpost

Highly Subjective

A while back I mentioned that I started a new photoblog, called Highly Subjective. I’m using Pixelpost as my photoblogging software, and I finally finished tweaking my template, at least for now. I’m releasing it for anyone to use. I’ve created a quickie (temporary) download page (I’ll pretty-it-up later). Enjoy!

[ Download Template ]

UPDATE (12/18/2008): I’ve switched from Pixelpost to WordPress for my photoblog. You’re still free to download this template, but it doesn’t look like my site at Highly Subjective.

Million Dollar Homepage Building?

Building ad space

Remember the million dollar homepage? The Sandberg Institute, in Amsterdam, has taken the same concept and applied it to a physical space. They are selling tiles on the exterior of a building. The tiles are sold to artists, for 10 euros per, or advertisers for 20 euros per. So far they have some pretty big names who have bought tiles, including 3 of my favorite companies… Apple, Adobe, and Google.

Found via Productdose

Free ‘Psych’ Pilot

Psych on iTunes

Apple is currently offering the pilot episode of the USA network’s new show, Psych, for free through iTunes. I thought the commercials looked like this could be kind of funny, but I missed the pilot, so this is good news for me. Apple has been doing this with a lot of new shows lately. I hope this trend continues. No word on how long this will last, so grab it while it’s free.

Link: Psych on iTunes