Given a Choice

There’s a new thick glossy coffee table book about the making of the movie, 2001. It looks fantastic. I did the math and it would cost about $83 from Amazon.
Do I want this? Yes, no, yes, no.
I used my famous watch dial test; if I look at my watch right now and the seconds hand is in the top half I’ll get it and if it’s in the bottom half I won’t.
It was in the top half, but here’s the trick: My immediate reaction wasn’t “Yay,” it was “Oh,” so I won’t get it. Simple as that.
The way I see it, rather than making a choice, this way I’m reacting to an order from the dial. My immediate reaction to that order, my gut, will tell me what to do.
Besides, if I got the book I’m sure I’d pore over it for thirty minutes and then stash it away somewhere (I’m done!).
Red or Blue
Takapuna or Devonport
Takeout or cook at home
I do the watch dial test every time; of course I could flip a coin, but who has coins these days?

A Budgeting Tip

Get yourself a budgeting app and as well as setting up your real accounts, set up some virtual ones to cover recurring expenses. As an example, figure out how much you spend over a year on Internet and phone bills. Divide that by how often you are paid and then automatically “transfer” that amount from your real account to your virtual Internet and Phone account on pay day.
After using this system for a while you will find that you’re ignoring the total amount that’s actually in your account and instead making spending decisions based on what you have to spare.
This way when the time comes to pay your bills there should be no scary surprises.

Thank You, Carbon Copy Cloner

I got all excited when I saw the specs for Safari 5 and immediately downloaded it. Then I paused and remembered how Safari burrows into the OS and can be all but impossible to uninstall and revert so I did a fresh incremental backup of the hard drive using Carbon Copy Cloner.

Sure enough, being a point zero version, there were a few features that I wasn’t wild about — the worst being the fact that it broke my copy of Pith Helmet — so I gulped hard and decided to overwrite my drive with the clone.

I needn’t have worried. Twenty minutes later everything was as it was one minute before installing the new Safari.


Tweaking the Dock

After a week or so with Leopard I’m becoming brave and adventurous. I’ve replaced the standard dock with one that looks more like a shelf than a glass table. I’ve also changed the icons for some of the folders that I regularly access.

Both of those jobs have gone off without a hitch. I’ll post information about the tools I used once I’m a hundred percent sure there are no resultant bugs.

Lastly, I’m also starting another experiment. Macs are supposed to just work so I’m going to see if that applies to memory management. I’ll be letting apps run hidden instead of quitting them after use. Let’s see if memory is freed up as required.

The Cloud Done Well

I just spent a delightful hour using the online dashboard for WordPress.

I changed the theme of my blog and tossed out a few widgets from the sidebar that were no longer relevant. It was so easy and responsive, even on my dialup connection.

I guess one of the reasons that I liked the experience so much was that I was working with such an attractive interface.

Google could learn a thing or two from WordPress in this respect; I know that Google like to keep things simple, but there’s simple, and then there’s just plain drab.

Files Updated

The “Files” app for iPhone was recently updated. One of the new features that I really appreciate is a Safari-like built in browser. With it I can visit a site and tap and hold on a downloadable file and download that file to the iPhone.

I do this at the library with its fast and free connection. When I get home I connect to Files with my Mac’s Finder and pull the file across.

Saves hours of the home phone being held up by my slow dialup connection.