November 30th, 2005


What's Wrong With This Picture?

Okay, so I've mentioned the wayward brick on my Dell. And I mentioned that I ended up buying it from Dell directly online. And how the availability was "1-2 weeks." And I probably didn't mention that I only paid for 5-9 business days shipping, but that's all I paid for. This was all two days ago.

Any guess what just arrived at my door? Two guesses, the first one doesn't count.
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    surprised surprised
apple basic


Of course, anyone reading between the lines on my last post might have gathered that while I'm happy my brick came way ahead of schedule, there was actually a strong undertone of disappointment, because what I wanted the delivery person to be carrying was a 12" PowerBook.

Well, I don't need to spell out what's happened since, do I?
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    excited excited
apple spiff

A Day On The Mac

Okay, I've had it most of a day, I've charged it up, drained it down, and am charging it up again as we speak (to calibrate the battery, of course -- for the record, I drained it in a little under four hours, but I turned up all the power settings to speed that up. Not actually sure how long it will take under normal use -- five hours seems quite possible -- but four hours is plenty for me).

Man, but my TCL/TK code looks weird on MacOS X, with all those Mac-y buttons and stuff. And it almost works right (it hangs on exit for some odd reason -- I'm not sure if I actually care). Ruby Tk didn't work, though, I'll have to fool around with that at some point down the road. I imagine I'll have to do some cleanup there to get rails to work, anyway. Overall, though, MacOS X is pretty darned slick. Way slicker than Windows is or will ever be (although I must admit that as file browsers go, Finder is just adequate). And powerful too -- oh, the joy of running TCSH at whim.

But anyway... Now I'm looking for some suggestions -- specifically, what software I should get for it (especially Japanese language software, dictionaries and the like)? Is there anything anyone finds particularly useful? Any "must-have" dashboard widgets? Anything?

I've already got all of the standard UNIX stuff, of course, like Emacs and so forth. I'm probably going to grab the GIMP and OpenOffice to fill those niches (unless someone has any better suggestions -- as long as they work okay, I'm not that picky, I'm more looking for free and basically functional -- well, on the Word Processor/Spreadsheet side, anyway, the GIMP is a little more than just functional). Probably Firefox (although Safari is fine, it doesn't hurt to have something else installed). The Mail program looks fine there (I'm not going to bother downloading Thunderbird or anything). I haven't actually used iChat, but it doesn't look that impressive -- I'd like to find something more "Trillian-like," not in terms of interface or anything, but to get Yahoo, ICQ, MSN and AIM all in one place if at all possible. Does any such beast exist for the Mac (besides GAIM)?

I don't particularly like iTunes (although being forced to use it today, I warmed up slightly to it -- at least the "Party Shuffle" is a cool feature), so alternate music programs would be nice, too.

And, uh, there it is.
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