So, who is the real Apple fan? I was able to convince the wife to upgrade to Snow Leopard a few days ago (9/25/09). It took her a long time to agree, but she was having a little problem with her three-year-old Macbook (it belongs to the first batch of intel Macbooks) - she's running out of hard disk space! The wife is an astrophysicist and every time she makes an observation, she uses about 5GB of storage. We talked about upgrading her Macbook - I helped her with the specs for the new one and we planned out the financial side of the equation. But she needed a more immediate solution since she will be observing in the next three days! So, I told her we can buy a portable HDD while she's still contemplating about the purchase. Then, I told her something crazy - I told her that, with her permission, I'm going to upgrade her OS to Snow Leopard, and if something breaks, I will revert it back to Leopard. That's how much I trust the Time Machine backup!
Well, the wife kind of agreed. She just wanted to check her most vital astro-observation app before she gives in. She found out that the app was already Snow Leopard compatible so it was a go. But, we updated her LaTeX/TexShop first before we finally did it.
So, we finally went with it. We updated her Macbook. I inserted the DVD, double-clicked it, and the installer went its happy way. (After a few minutes, the Macbook re-started itself. The wife was greatly impressed because of the speed of the "installation". I told her it hasn't started yet - the DVD just checked some compatibility issues.)
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
Today, after a visit to my dentist, I decided to go to a bookstore to peruse some magazines and books. I was supposed to buy a certain photography magazine but I couldn't remember which one so I just went
straight to the photography books section. A book title caught my attention so I decided to look at it - yes, book titles get me; the book cover next. It was a really nice photography book, full of insights and tips, and great photos, but there's one picture that really caught my attention - a picture of the Brooklyn Bridge. The
picture of the bridge was already extraordinary but what really piqued my fancy was how it was composed. You see, the wife and I visited a friend in New York last July 4 and, while walking along Brooklyn Bridge I, of course, took a lot of pictures. One of them was this shot that's eerily similar to what's in the book! I won't say that great minds think alike or that I have the photographic talent enough to get published. I'm just happy that I was not alone in seeing Brooklyn Bridge in the same way.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
A little backgrounder first.
Only a year ago have I rekindled my love for photography by buying a DSLR. It's an entry level Canon Rebel camera, but, as D-SLRs go, the picture I took with this camera is definitely much better than my old point-and-shoot. Both the DSLR and point-and-shoot take 10 megapixel pictures, but I get more leverage from the DSLR because, first, I can take RAW shots from it, second, its sensor is bigger than the point-and-shoot, and third, the DSLR offers the ability to use different lenses and an external flash. All these things factor in to much better pictures and, I'm happy to say, my picture-taking ability has improved over the course of the year.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
[Written some months back... Just thought I'd bring this out to the world...]
There is a commercial by an mp3 player that purports that it'll take you 30,000 US dollars to fill a 120GB iPod. That statement made me think. At 0.99 cents a song, it'll really cost you a lot to fill your iPod.
Now, I've more than 60GB of media in my iTunes folder. This made me think on how much I've already spent on my iPods. The answer is - way below the 30 thousand limit! Why? Let me reiterate...
I've loved music for as long as I can remember. The most memorable gift I've received, aside from my Lego collection, was a radio-cassette player. I was very fortunate to have my own player in my room! I had that when I was six or seven and I've only stopped using it when I was ten. By then, I was upgraded to a "component" system - radio, cassette player, and more powerful speakers. The speakers of that player can be detached so I learned early on about superposition of sound waves. I was playing Tears for Fears, AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, and, yes, I admit, Duran Duran. (There's a lot more in my collection that I am not willing to admit.)
When I went to college, I lived in a dorm where loud music was not allowed (but you know how college boys can get). So, from my allowance, I bought my very first Sony Walkman. That was nirvana for me. I was able to isolate myself from my roommates and I was able to study in peace. I bougth a lot of cassettes. And I always brought a bag to contain my music collection. And there was something else in the air - the cd was born! My taste changed! My prized possession became the cd player and my colored graphing, programmable calculator.
When I started working, that's when my cd collection ballooned. My music taste became eclectic. I didn't only listen to rock music exclusively, I also started listening to classics, new age, jazz, pop, hip hop and a lot more.
I just upgraded to Snow Leopard. I am late to the party because I didn’t pre-order my copy right away. Well, I didn’t know what I was thinking really, waiting that long. But, anyway, I was able to save $5 from Amazon and I was also able to save on the tax, so I still did get something from installing the upgrade later, albeit I was really jealous of those who were already able to enjoy Apple’s new cat.
But this is not what I am writing about. I am writing about the joy of upgrading the Apple operating system. Let me tell you why…
Before I had an Apple computer, I used a laptop that did not come with an operating system. So, I was pushed to look for operating systems from different vendors. Of course, Windows was, and is, the standard, so I had to have that. But, I didn’t want to settle there. I was afraid of viruses so I wanted to check something that wasn’t so vulnerable. (As a side note, the people where I used to work in were even afraid to share diskettes (diskettes!) between computers for fear of the “main” computer getting infected.)
Anyway, I chose another kind of operating system - linux - and I was really happy for making that choice. However, because the internet connection back then was really slow, I had to rely on external agents to help me obtaining a linux distro. I had a friend help me with the download and installation of another operating system and I had to really plan my installation because, in those days, my hard disk drive was only 20 gigabytes big! And those were the times when we were already so proud of owning a 128MB flash drive! So, I had to partition my HDD into three - for Windows, for linux, and for my files.
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