Sunday, January 27, 2008

How to check your monitor for dead pixels easily

If you are a regular reader of this blog you probably remember that I have gotten a new monitor a few weeks ago. The biggest worry when getting a monitor probably are dead pixels. In my case it certainly was - so I searched the internet a bit to find the best way to check for dead pixels and found a free software called Pixel Check (Link). It's a very simple little app that allows you to color the whole display in various solid colors so that you can check your monitor for faulty pixels easily. If you are about to buy a new monitor or are planning on purchasing one I can truly recommend this little app to check for any defective pixels. By the way, it seems I have been lucky and I couldn't find any dead pixels.


Just ordered myself 2 gigs of Crucial RAM for my Macbook

Today, I finally got around to order myself 2 gigs of RAM by Crucial. Just having 1GB in my Macbook C2D (Nov. 2006), my Macbook would get laggy from time to time so I hope this will fix the performance problems. Even though I seriously considered putting in 3GB of RAM I finally decided to go with a paired kit of 1GB*2. I guess this should be more than enough considering I do not use any heavy memory draining apps like VMware or Parallels. Anyways, I can't wait for them to arrive and see the performance boost. I surely will post about it (maybe some benchmarks) when they arrive.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008


Official homepage fabrix

Deutscher Testbericht
English review


fabrixはシンガポールの会社で、マックブックや、デジカメ、iPodという様々な製品のためのケースを販売しています。fabrixのケース/バッグの特徴はすべて手製ということです。Tucano Second SkinとRaedanのケースにつづき今回はもう一度バッグのレビューを記入したいとおもいます。






このバッグのフィットは完璧です。マックブックがピッタリ入ります。傷もつかないと思います。マックブック全体がバッグの中に入るからです。対衝撃もかなりなものです。これは、このバッグの素材がよいからだとおもいます。TuconoのSecond Skinと比べると、対衝撃機能は二倍ほどといっても過言ではないと思います。



Monday, January 21, 2008

Lenovo's Macbook Air killer?


There is a new ultra portable Lenovo notebook to be released soon according to gizmodo.
Now this notebook doesn't look as sexy as the Macbook Air I must admit but the specs are pretty interesting.
13.3-inch LED 1440X900
2.5 pounds
Intel Merom Santa Rosa Dual Core CPU (2.0 Ghz / 880 Mhz )
up to 4GB RAM
4 hours of battery
and an optical drive (DVD DL burner)


Sunday, January 20, 2008

Review: MacCase's MacPack (backpack for MB and MBP)

Official homepage MacCase


After posting the MacCase Sleeve review, here comes the review of the backpack manufactured by MacCase. The sleeve and the backpack can be purchased in a combo deal and I do recommend doing so, if you are considering buying the MacCase backpack...
Anyways, let's start the review.

Material and manufacturing

The material of the backpack is of high quality just like the sleeve was. The MacPack is made of very tough nylon. I have used the backpack over a period of about one and a half months, so far, and tried to "abuse it" on occasion and nothing ripped or got damaged. So, once again best grades for the choice of material. Regarding the manufacturing I have to admit that I was a little disappointed. I am not saying that it was poorly manufactured but compared to the sleeve the manufacturing was a little more poor. The embroidery of the logo in the front for example wasn't as good as on the sleeve. However, in whole, the manufacturing is very solid.


The design of the backpack I really liked. It doesn't stand out too much and is kept really simple. The MacPack has two big compartments. The one in the back is where you store your Macbook or Macbook Pro (with the sleeve). This compartment is big enough to fit all Macbooks (up to 17 inches) and a couple of books if needed. The back compartment has some velcro strips where you can attach your MacSleeve if needed and there is also a strap which can be used to fixate your Macbook. The front compartment is where you keep all those little things like iPod, mouse, power adapter, usb hubs, etc. It has 9 small compartments as you can see in the picture and offers more than enough space to store all those gadgets that a modern road warrior might need. There is also a pass through for the headphones, should you decide to keep your iPod in one of the compartments. On the sides there are two mesh pockets where you can carry drinks. You can fit a bottle of Coke (size up to 0.5 l) or in my case I stored my Starbucks coffee mug in there. The grip handle of the MacPack is made of a soft foam that feels really nice when you have to carry your backpack in a crowded place for example. The neon green color might be a bit too much for some people but actually I kind of liked it and thought that it looked pretty good.


I'd like to write some sentences here regarding the comfort of this backpack. Let me say this is one of the most comfortable backpacks I have had so far. The reason for this is firstly, the slightly curved shoulder straps of the MacPack. These straps and its shape guarantee a very ergonomic carrying experience. At first I thought they might feel weird but they really work well. Secondly, the materials used for the back of the MacPack and the shoulder straps guarantee a very comfortable carrying. The material used is a breathable mesh foam and feels very good when carrying the backpack. I have yet to find a backpack that is as comfortable to carry.

Final thoughts

Now, how does the first backpack review on Days of our Macbooks score you might wonder. If I had to give it a score on a 10 points scale I'd give it a 8,5. There is a one point deduction for the sometimes not so perfect manufacturing of the bag (ex. embroidery, pass through for headphones). This is nothing major but still something to mention. Half a point deduction because for my taste there is too much velcro used (the velcro straps in the back compartment to fixate the sleeve, the other strap to fixate the Macbook).
So who is this backpack for? I'd say this is a perfect combo for recent switchers who do not own a sleeve yet. You get a backpack and a sleeve for just 69,95$ which is a good price. Let's not forget that it is big enough to carry a Macbook, accessories and a couple of books; is very comfortable to carry and in my experience very tough.


Saturday, January 19, 2008

Fake Steve strikes again...

Fake Steve Jobs Crunchies Acceptance Speech

New MacBook Air Ad (Parody)

The Macbook Air surely got some good bashing since Macworld. I must admit that for myself the Macbook Air is no option but one can surely see some good points and for some this might be just the notebook they have been looking for.
Anyways, this youtube video kind of amused me that I thought I share it here...

the Macbook Air - why the hell not? :)

MacBook Air - めざましテレビ お宝映像

Now the newly released Macbook Air...I guess it is a hate it or love it product. Today I have found a cool vid on youtube. Now this is the world's first Macbook Air on public tv and where was this? Of course in Japan, the land of technology.


Friday, January 18, 2008

How long does it take Microsoft customer service to call back?

I found a really interesting article concerning Microsoft's customer service that made me chuckle - so I thought I'd share it here today. In short, how long do you think does it take for Microsoft's customer service to call back a customer? An hour? A day? A week?

Well, guess again. It took (in one case) a whopping 1o year period!
So the next time you are pissed that Apple Care takes a few days to call back just remember how long it takes for MS customers;)

Here's a link to the English article

Here's one in German


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Macworld 2008 just in a couple of hours - best places to follow!

So Macworld 2008 is about to start in a couple of hours. There have been many rumors the most discussed being the Macbook Air lately. I personally don't really like the name (it kind of reminds me of Nike Air and Air Jordans, but oh well).
For all those who won't be at Macworld (that's the most of us I guess) here are some of the best places to follow Macworld 2008 live.

- engadget
- MacRumors

To all the Mac and Apple fans have fun:)


Thursday, January 10, 2008

Appzapper 2 is coming soon!

Appzapper 2 is coming out soon!
Now that should be good news for many Mac users - Appzapper probably being the most popular uninstaller app that exists. I have come across these pictures while surfing the web. I hope you enjoy them.


Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Cool, slim computer table (ikeahacker)

Today I have found a very cool, slim computer table at ikehacker that I wanted to present. In my opinion this solution is truly useful for people that want a computer table that does not take too much space. Now imagine this table with a cool iMac on it-wouldn't that be something?


David Watanabe responds after Inquisitor bashing...

D. Watanabe has responded to all the buzz concerning his little safari plugin Inquisitor.

You can read it all here on his blog.

Frankly, I still won't reinstall Inquisitor on my Macbook...


Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Inquisitor getting bashed!

Inquisitor a very popular plugin for Safari by developer David Watanabe is getting bashed for manipulating the search results with hidden affiliate links (you can read more here on Tuaw). Now, I really did like Inquisitor since it was "freeware" and added a very nice user interface to the google search box that is integrated in Safari. However, can you call a software like Inquisitor that makes money with hidden tactics a real freeware? It really would have been no problem if David Watanabe had mentioned the affiliate links somewhere in the license or if you are able to just turn it off but the current way is just plain wrong. Let's see what will happen with Inquisitor in the future but for now that plugin is uninstalled on my Macbook and if I will ever trust David Watanabe is another issue.

Original article that discovered the questionable placement of affiliate links.

By the way here is a link to MacRumors' forums where you can find uninstall instructions.

Update: Here are some more detailed uninstall instructions for Inquisitor.
The files you need to trash to get rid of Inquisitor completely are the following:

Inquisitor.bundle (in Library/InputManagers/Inquisitor/)
Inquisitor folder (in "user=you"/Library/Application Support/)
inquisitor.pkg (in Library/Receipts/)
inquisitorPreflight.pkg (also in Library/Receipts/)
inquisitor folder (in Library/InputManagers/)


Monday, January 7, 2008

The Macbook and Gaming = Mission Impossible?

Now while the Macbook truly isn't a gamers' machine (I own the Nov. 2006 revision model with 64MB of integrated graphics memory), to my big surprise it does have more graphics power than I have ever imagined. Some of my regular readers might know that I have recently purchased the Samsung 2032bw monitor, which is a 20inch widescreen monitor with a resolution of 1680*1050 pixels (it rocks by the way:)

Two of my most favorite games ever are Unreal Tournament 2004 and Warcraft Frozen Throne and I had my doubts whether it would be possible to play both games on the new monitor in decent quality. To my huge surprise they both run very smoothly with medium video settings. What surprised me the most however was how smoothly I am able to play UT 2004. So before you reject the Macbook I'd say try one out. If you are like me and play older games and don't really like the new ones the Macbook just might be enough for the occasional round of death match or a Warcraft battle with your friends.


Review: MacCase Sleeve for the Macbook


Official homepage of MacCase

Deutscher Testbericht

Here is yet another review about a Macbook sleeve after the Tucano Second Skin, Raedan case and the fabrixcase case reviews. I hope that by providing as many reviews as possible about Macbook cases and sleeves, people (switchers) will be able to choose the one that suits their needs the best.


The material of the MacCase sleeve is very good. The outside is made of a polyester, nylon type of material and seems very tough. It's basically the same material that is used for many backpacks. The inside is very soft and there should be no reason why a new Macbook should get scratched up. I have to give the highest grades concerning the materials used.


The manufacturing is very good. I really think that this is one of the best manufactured sleeves that I have seen so far. I also like how the MacCase logo is embroidered on the sleeve. It really looks cool.


As far as the padding is concerned you can safely say that this sleeve is meant for scratch protection only. The sleeve itself is so thin that you shouldn't expect a whole lot of shock protection of this case. If you look at the pictures you can see the cutout for the Apple logo which is only protected by a transparent foil. On the back there is another cutout that is only covered by a mesh material that does offer only minimal shock protection.


The design of the case is pretty unique. As mentioned above already it has a little cutout part to show off the Apple logo of your Macbook and another little cutout on the back which is covered by mesh. Supposedly, this cutout is for the Macbook to cool down while in the case. I thought the idea was really neat since one usually puts the Macbook in a sleeve after usage and then the Macbook gets pretty hot. Another neat aspect I want to point out is the following: unlike most of the other sleeves and cases this one you use vertically. This allows the case to be in the backpack and you can easily put your Macbook in the sleeve. Overall, I really like the design of this sleeve. Since it is kept very thin (padding-wise) it doesn't add bulk to your Macbook and is perfect for people who do not have large backpacks or bags.

My personal thoughts

I really like this case for its thinness and choice of material. It looks good, can take a beating and is very sleek. However, what I personally do not like too much is the cutout for the Apple logo. I am not a fanboy who needs to show off the Apple logo every time I take my Macbook on the road. I realize that this is personal preference and for some people this might be a plus point for the sleeve. I just thought I'd point it out though. The fit of this sleeve is perfect and other than the logo cutout I didn't have any complains about this sleeve. As a last note please keep in mind that this sleeve offers only minimal to almost no shock protection because of its thinness.

Last note

The people at MacCase were kind enough to send me the backpack also so please look out for the backpack review that I will publish soon.


Saturday, January 5, 2008

My new Samsung 2032bw monitor

So today I bought myself a new monitor: the Samsung 2032bw. It is a 20 inch wide screen TFT monitor and I really like the design and the quality of the display. I haven't played around too much since I just finished hooking it up to my Macbook.
You can expect a more detailed review by me in a couple of weeks after I have played around and set up everything the way I want.


Friday, January 4, 2008

Things - public preview available

I am not so sure if you remember my post about Things a while back but today Things is available to the public. It is still a preview version but I have been using this app for a while now and had no problems up till now. I really like the simplicity of this app and if you are on the search for a simple good GTD app this might be it.

Official homepage of Things


Thursday, January 3, 2008

avast! mac edition updated

Today, the avast! antivirus mac edition got updated.
I haven't even known that the avast! mac edition demo was out already so it really kind of surprised me when I found out today. I haven't tested it out yet but it is available as a demo version here at macupdate if anyone is interested.
I wonder if anyone has tried out the mac edition yet. I have used avast for a while when I was still a PC user and quite liked it so I probably will try it out soon. Anyone who has tried it: some comments about the software are more than welcome.


Apple's new sub notebook...real or fake?

Today I have found a supposedly leaked photograph of the much rumored new sub notebook that Apple is about to release at Macworld (Link to story). I myself am not so sure if this is real but if it is and the large trackpad has some multi touch feature à la iPhone or iPod touch it'd be kinda cool. What do you think? Real or fake? Comments are very welcome.


Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Shiira gets an update

Shiira, an alternative browser for Mac users has been updated. Shiira is a webkit based browser and I personally really like the browser. Unfortunately, it hasn't been updated in a long while and I almost got scared that the project was dead. However, there is good news: there has been a minor update yesterday.
Hopefully, the browser will get more stable so that I can use it as my primary browser.