in commentary, dvorak, Mac apps

Interesting stuff

A few notes of interest.

1. MacUpdate Spring Bundle: Yet another bundle for $49. Standout included applications are TechTool Pro, Parallels, Circus Ponies Notebook, and NetBarrier.

2. Google Wave: What would E-mail look like if it were invented today? Check out this video preview from the Google I/O developer conference. Pretty interesting and ambitious (and it’s open source).

3. Adobe CS4: Dvorak and WebKit. I recently learned two interesting bits about Adobe CS4. First, CS4 drops Opera as a built-in rendering engine and replaces it with WebKit (the open-source browser engine used by Safari and Chrome, among others). That will fix the problem I encountered with Opera. And for Dvorak users out there, I received word from a reader that Adobe CS4 now correctly handles Dvorak and Dvorak-Qwerty. Finally.

4. QIDO: A company called KeyGhost in New Zealand is now offering a hardware device that plugs into a USB keyboard and allows one to convert from Qwerty to Dvorak instantly without relying on spotty operating system support (especially from Windows) and even spottier application support. They’re sending me one to test out and review. More to come.

5. History of the Earth in 60 seconds. I came across this several months ago. Watch 4.6 billion years of history compressed into one minute. Cool.

6. MIT Media Lab Center for Future Story Telling. I also came across this many months ago and have been meaning to post it. Here’s an excerpt:

Research will range from on-set motion capture to accurately and unobtrusively merge human performers and digital character models; to next-generation synthetic performer technologies, such as richly interactive, highly expressive robotic or animated characters; to cameras that will spawn entirely new visual art forms; to morphable movie studios, where one studio can be turned into many through advanced visual imaging techniques; to holographic TV. It will draw on technologies pioneered at the Media Lab, such as digital systems that understand people at an emotional level, or cameras capable of capturing the intent of the storyteller.

The MIT Media Lab does some very interesting work. The new Center is slated to open in 2010, but research is already underway. Sounds intriguing. Can I work there?

  1. I missed that one. I recall that you commented on MoneyWell in the past in comparison to Cha-Ching and thought I’d re-post your key finding here: “the central point that made me switch [from Cha-Ching] is that I don’t need an app that helps me record how I spent the money, but an app that helps me plan how I will spend what I have.” Definitely worth checking out. It’s a $50 app, so it’s worth noting to readers that you can get MoneyWell with the whole MacUpdate bundle for $49.

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