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jslondon

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About jslondon

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    New Mac Geek

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    Hong Kong
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    Tennis, Golf, Travel, Macs
  1. jslondon

    Free Advertising for I-Phone 3G

    Wow--talk about great free advertising for the I-Phone. On this morning's front page of the South China Morning Post there is a 3 column article in top right entitled: " 'Free' iPhone comes with a few strings attached" and then goes on to discuss and to detail the various plans offered by Hutchinson Telecom's Three network. There is also a jump to the editorial page which shows an editorial cartoon of a woman carrying a protest sign which says, " if you won't march for democracy, march for a cheaper i-phone". July 1 is a public holiday celebrating the returh of Hong Kong from Great Britain to China 11 years ago, and there are normally a number of celebration and other marches scheduled (including protest marches).
  2. jslondon

    International iPhone prices

    Three.com.hk, the official carrier in Hong Kong has posted its prices (http://iphone.three.com.hk/website/en/iplan.html) 4 sets of airtime prices, so I will sample the 2nd lowest, and let you look at the link directly. Prices are translated to USD: 8gb unit USD 223 initial payment and subscription plan of USD 35.00 per month; 24 month contract. 16 gb unit at USD 325 initial payment. In both cases you need to make an up front deposit equal to several months subscription pre payment. Provides 800 min per month talk time, and 900 mins "heart to heart" (like friends and family on same network). 500 mb per month of data usage, and unlimited SMS on same network. USD 0.09 per message out of network after 25 messages. can't wait till July 11.
  3. jslondon

    OS X internal DNS

    Back in Jaguar someone told me that the Unix underpinnings of OS X (BIND) have a built-in DNS server which can make your browsing speed go materially faster (most DNS lookups occur internally in your machine rather than externally to your ISP or other source.) BUT it required a lot of terminal mumbo jumbo that I am not comfortable with. Has anyone successfully implemented the internal DNS server in Leopard (to provide comments on speed boost) AND does anyone have a set of scripts or a GUI to do this, that would be suitable for amateurs like me, who are baffled by terminal commands? thanks.
  4. I came across the following link: http://www.mini-itx.com/ and I quote below the text of the Jan 07 entry about AOpen. If you know about the mini-itx form factor, you know it fits into the Apple mini case. Look at the on-board specs for the motherboard, and it has everything that Apple would be proud to advertise. Have we seen the future? "AOpen show Mini-ITX boards at CES January 07, 2006 The MoDT i945GTt-VFA is the first board we've seen to support the Intel Core Duo processor (aka Yonah), courtesy of Intel's 945GT chipset. It has two DDR2 SODIMM slots, dual Gigabit LAN, DVI, VGA, S-Video, and Composite outputs, one Mini-PCI slot, 2 SATA connectors, a 40 pin IDE connector and the same 4 pin Molex power connector as the i915GMt-FA. Beyond that details are scarce - we'll let you know when more information becomes available."
  5. jslondon

    DVD Regions

    buy the external drive (that's what I did). Find a friend with a Windows PC and flash the firmware of the external drive to make it RPC (region protection code) 0 which allows you to play all regions. (There are far more Windows patches written to flash DVD firmware than there are Mac ones.) DVD region protection varies by film studio, and some function with both hardware checks and software checks. VLC will allow you to play a DVD whose encryption system does not require the RPC as part of the decryption. (I.e. if you have your drive set for region 1 (US) it will check for this.) If you use Mactheripper, it can strip out the region coding on most DVD's (not all) and make them RPC 0. Assuming you legitimately own the DVD (and paid the appropriate copyright) you can then make a region free DVD (archive copy) using Popcorn or another DVD compression and burning program to play on any machine. Please note you would be violating the copyright if you were to play (simultaneously)your newly made region free DVD and the original DVD. visit http://forum.rpc1.org/portal.php to find many more links on this problem, and you might get some other work-around ideas.
  6. jslondon

    Reliability of I-books and Powerbooks

    Back after a bit, and glad to see the discussion developing. To answer the earlier enquiries, yes, I came from the Windows world about 2 years ago; I own 5 Mac laptops (G3 I-books and G4 Powerbooks); I find it to be a massively superior operating system. As to the quality survey of 10,000 machines over the past few years: I find it appalling that even 20% of machines would fail, much less the 40% cited in the survey. Why would (should) consumers of any expensive product (TV's, DVD players, Automobiles, etc.) accept such a failure / repair rate? Do I blame Apple? Yes, they put their name on the box. They enjoy the good side of their reputation (fabulous design, slick operating system, etc.) so they must also accept the responsibility for poor production and service processes. (And if MS were to put their names on the computer box, I would blame them, too!) here is the link to the survey: read for yourself. http://www.macintouch.com/reliability/laptops.html
  7. Please check out the following link http://www.macintouch.com/reliability/laptops.html. It shows results of a user survey of reliability of Mac laptops over the past few years (there is also a related link at the bottom which includes windows laptops; Apple laptops compare well.) I AM ASTOUNDED. Mac owners (and Apple Corp, presumably) are very happy with their machines even though they have failure rates of 25--40%!! (Indeed, I love my Powerbook). Think about it differently: if Ford, or Mercedes, or Toyota produced cars (particularly those priced for 'high-end' buyers like Macs are priced) which had a return-for-repair or recall rate as high as for Apple laptops, they would be out of business!! Their reputations would be ruined. Apple particularly is vulnerable to this comparison, in that they control the customer experience from end to end (design, production, operating system, etc.) just as the car companies do. Very few people who purchase cars are certified mechanics or engineers, yet all of us demand very high quality from a car purchase. If we are unlucky enough to be among the small pct subject to a recall, we then expect perfect service from the dealer to make it right. Why do the 'non-techies' among us (myself inclusive) tolerate such mediocrity in computer production? How can we convince Apple to do better?
  8. jslondon

    ideal intel Mac

    Why have boot capability in Windows? This puts Apple squarely in the "no more excuses" area for all businesses that have lots of proprietary software developed for the Windows box (because they had to!) They could justify the change to Macs with savings in overall I/T support costs, while preserving their investment in existing software and services. Apple should pick the pricing point that maximises the area under their price/volume curve. My guess is the changes to the Cinema Display to add a docking station or harness are relatively trivial.
  9. jslondon

    ideal intel Mac

    Rather than guessing what Apple will announce, and when, let's hope they pay attention to fora like this to get ideas of what should be offered in the new intel macs. Here is what I would want to see in a notebook, and would buy instantly: 12" ultra fast, ultra light (<=1.5kg), long battery life (>4 hours), dual core, able to dual-boot windows xp inside of mac os x. I.e. Mac OS X can act as a 'dmz' for all communication to the world, and make the windows less susceptible to bad stuff. Fast boot thru flash drive (thanks Adam), large HDD (>150gb) for user data separate from boot system. Now, here's the fun part (and why I chose 12"): It should fit into an integrated docking station or harness behind the 20" Cinema display, such that it's form factor mimics that of the current Imacs. When docked, you can power it on directly from the screen switch, and use the integrated multiple firewire and usb ports on the screen stand. This combo will be as beautiful as an Imac, but also be perfect for a 'road warrior', all for <= $2500. Your thoughts and comments please.
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