Project: Open Software Update

  • one app to find them all, and in the darkness bind them.
    • open to anyone. dependent on no one.
    • like mac os x’s Software Update
    • extensible
  • simple plugin interface
    • format
      <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
      	<name>Delicious Library</name>

    • optional nodes

    • plugins by users or developers (partying together)
  • server side : update.xml
  • single app
    <host name="">
    		<name>Delicious Library</name>

  • multiple apps
    <host name="">
    		<name> NetNewsWire</name>
    		<updateURI> </updateURI>

  • optional nodes

  • download prefs
    • respect server side unless overwritten client side by user
    • update frequency : all items
    • daily
    • weekly
    • monthly
    • manually
  • enable / disable : item specific
  • auto download : item specific
  • auto download : item specific
  • admin password : save in keychain (BOOL)
  • auto open files
    • resolve decompression
    • if zip, gz, tar, et al : decpress internally
    • if sit, sitx : farm out to stuffitexpander
  • replace old version
  • backup older version pref (BOOL)
  • keep originals pref (BOOL)
  • issues to work out
    • inital lastUpdated date for each app
    • from the app’s ‘date modified’ data?
    • sounds like good enough to me
  • xml namespaces
    • are namespaces necessary?
    • beneficial?
  • benefits
    • for users
  • for developers
    • can easily migrate existing check for update systems
    • inexpensive deployment
    • inexpensive maintainence
    • inexpensive bandwidth
    • keeps user base up to date

    Originally published at:

    new software in the mix

    i have an sickness. it’s called LGS or in technical terms: “latest greatest syndrome.” i’ll admit it. because of this ailment of LGS, i’m always on the lookout for little apps that can make my computing life better, more efficient, more productive, prettier, et al.

    i recently did a clean wipe and rebuild of my mac. in doing so i always wipe away all the apps i’ve installed, tried, never used again. and i also try to migrate to the apps that i’ve been meaning to but was trepidacious for some reason or another. so here’s the rundown of what’s changed and what i like about said changes.

    ok, the rundown.

    delicious monster

    delicious monster is sweet. everything i expected it to be. they updated, almost right away, to 1.0.5. just bug fixes. but important ones.
    Delicious Monster Icon

    subethaedit udpated

    subethaedit was awesome to begin with. the collaboration mechanism is awesome. local network. over internet. whatever. solo mode [ non collaborating ] is awesome, too. syntax coloring is generally pretty good. it flakes out on closing
    sometimes. i think its pretty fast. some people complain about its speed in rendering text as compared to, say, bbedit or something. because subetha uses NSTextView. i’ve tried bbedit, smultron, textmate and others. but none of them really do anything for me. and it plays well with others.



    i blogged about this earlier. and then again.

    ecto icon


    candybar is made by panic software, the same folks that make the best ftp client ever. basically, candybar allows you to easily customize icons systemwide. meaning you don’t have to do a Get Info (CMD - I) on every icon you wanna change. plus, it will cascade down to new instances of the same kind, eg, dvds, new folder, textclippings, etc. in early version you HAD to drag in each icon into its spot in candybar. now you can import one file: a candybar iContainer. and the iconfactory has bunch of iContainers already to go.

    candybar icon

    quicksilver in, launcbar out

    i have been using launchbar for quite awhile. i really like it. i rarely used my dock or applications folder or recent items menu to launch apps anymore. it was all CMD - SPACE, launchbar would pop down then i’d hit a couple letter abbreviation and off it went.
    lauchBar 4

    i kept hearing about quicksilver. i knew i’d prolly like it based on what i had heard and from whom i heard it. but still, i had vested a lot of time and energy and emotion in launchbar and didn’t wanna jump ship. and why break what isn’t broken, right? well, i finally gave it the ol’ 1-2 try [i’m not real sure what i mean by that]. immediately, i was blown away by how much faster it was than launchbar. so much more responsive. and honestly, it’s a LOT prettier.

    QS launcher

    i liked the preference options. everything’s really customizable. good stuff. right now it’s primarily a launcher [above], but they seem to have plans to make it much much more than that, noting that they don’t call it a ‘launcher’ on their website. they call it this : “An evolving framework for accessing and manipulating many forms of personal data.” it offers learning training to you.

    QS learning

    it does a little ‘what this new song playing in iTunes is’ kind of stuff.

    QS now playing in iTunes

    but one of the coolest, most exciting and interesting things for me is the commands you can do in it. like this example: grab this file (preview.jpg), perform this action (open with), this app (preview). there’s a lot of power here to be harnessed. this is but a very simple example. more info at the blacktree site.

    QS commands

    process in, omnioutliner out

    omniOutliner was good. and still is. it just hasn’t bee updated in a long time. and process is a lot better. in a lot of ways. just look at the screenshots of each. most notably, its a lot better for serving my podcasting needs. i talk about that a bit in my upcoming podcast so i’m not gonna blog about it here.

    omniOutliner Screenshot

    process Icon

    process Screenshot

    finally, the safari extenstions[?] i’m using

    safariSource colors the source of a page when doing a ‘view source.’ helpful for debugging.
    PithHelmet blocks ads (and other media, if you want it to) which is so fucking sweet.


    sogudi allows for faster and more flexible searching from the address bar. for example: wiki gender identity in the address bar would run a search on the wikipedia site and ultimately land you here. a catch me if you can searches amazon for ‘catch me if you can’. and so on. comes with a bunch of built in defaults but can VERY EASILY add your own.

    jesus, fucking, jesus. this was a long goddamned post. sorry.

    Originally published at:

    ThumbScrew for photo thumbnails

    ThumbScrew: “I’m about to head out the door to watch the election coverage with friends, but Zach was kind enough to send me the latest beta of his first Mac OS X app that normal users can use, ThumbScrew…”

    (Via DrunkenBlog.)

    a rad thumb nailer program called ThumbScrew. it’s nice. i like it a lot. here’s a test with some images i had already posted here. it’s late. and i’m tired. more photo galleries in near future.

    Originally published at:

    oreilly mac os x conference

    kids call it the ten con. or at least, THIS kid does.

    tencon logo

    i went on tuesday. sat in on a few talks.

    how to run your own software business, [which was covered in a good write up here and even an audio version here (44.1mb mp3)]
    xgrid, [presentation files downloadable from oreilly’s site] [it’s fun to think about building superclusters so easily…].

    lunch was good [and good for vegans like me] : burrito fixins. they separated the meat-stuffs from the veg-stuffs. thanks, oreilly. you’re the best!

    did lots of hanging out with / meeting other geeks. met marko from finland, he’s a good guy. brent simmons whose two products (NetNewsWire and MarsEdit) i use everyday and i love them both. aaron whose book i’m reading and really digging. and, yes, he was wearing the cowboy hat. i would love to be able to take his class at the ranch, but, alas, it’s $3500 that i don’t have. so i’ll stick with the book. he was so nice and empathetic. i think he would make for a good teacher. i’m disappointed that i wasn’t able to make it today to see his talk on Best Practices for Cocoa Programmers. also, i missed out on brent’s talk about using webkit : user interface challenges. i’d also liked to see Test Driven Objective-C Development, too.

    but the real star of the show, i think, was Delicious Library made by Delicious Monster, a small company recently formed by Will Shipley (founder of the OmniGroup) and Mike Mata (18 year old designer who worked for OMNI since he was 15 – not bad). there’s enough buzz about this app already. i don’t need to recap it all. but it’s hott. with two T’s. this thing is gonna blow the F up. just you wait and see. i’m not the only who thinks so either.

    delicious library icon

    Originally published at:

    spirited away updated

    i recently blogged here about a clever little app for mac os x called SpiritedAway. well, it’s been updated to version 0.3. it added a few features that are pretty handy. the ability to exclude certain apps being hidden. it also changes the icon in the menu bar if its active or inactive. he changed the icon from the cute full colour green ghostie to a black monochromatic ghost with big eyes open when active, little beady eyes when inactive.

    i can’t sing enough praises for this app. a really great example of keeping it simple. designing for one thing and doing that thing really well. i’m glad the trend has moved back away from the monolithic-do-everything-reallypoorly-including-crap-i-will-never-EVER-use-suite back toward the-small-stayfocused-on-one-taskbut-still-play-nice-with-others series of apps.

    the developer’s blog is in a language i don’t know. so i can’t really tell what is being said about it there, but you can download it from the apple mac os x downloads site.

    icon.jpgSpirited_Away_16.pngprefs.jpgSpirited Away 0.3 Menu

    Originally published at:

    link my squad, skinny

    today i got the girl a surprise present. it might rhyme with “sync. lye clod. penny.”

    it works with a previous gift i gave. she’s slowly becoming one of us.

    oh, and by the way, i used for coming up with the ryhmes.

    UPDATE: she guessed what the gift is. then squealed. but i don’t wanna send it thru canadian custom and have to pay duty on it. stupid duty.

    pink ipod min

    Originally published at: