Vista on a Mac. As demonstrated by Microsoft.

Vista on a Mac

Okay, so Espen Pettersen of Microsoft Norway is demonstrating Windows Vista for VG-TV. The broadband TV offer from Norway’s biggest newspaper. Nothing special about that, unless you find it pretty ironic that they demonstrate vista on a Mac…

I found the story about the hackers that tried to make an unlikely fronpage on MacWeek funny. Apple and Intel. Unix based operating system. Even the hackers didn’t dream of a situation where a new version of Windows would be demonstrated on a Mac by a Microsoft executive.

Link to video.

(Via TUAW)

Vista on a Mac. As demonstrated by Microsoft.

More on Jeff Han and the touch screen

Quite a bit of talk about touch screens these days. But this is seriously cool technology, so here is a detailed article about Jeff Han and a new video where he demonstrate his amazing multi touch screen:

At summer camp, Jeff hot-wired golf carts for nocturnal joy rides and fixed fellow campers’ busted Walkmen in exchange for soda pop. He studied violin “like any good Asian kid.” He was 12 when he built his first laser.

As mentioned here before I met Jeff Han and was able to test his screen during Siggraph in Boston last year. I can only confirm that the screen is just as amazing as it looks like in this video!

Link to video.

(Via Applied Abstractions.)

More on Jeff Han and the touch screen

The Mac is in da house

Regular readers know that I have considered switching to Mac on some of my computers. Done. Checked. Completed. I pointed my browser to the Norwegian Apple online store and maxed out a 17 inch iMac. 2 GB ram, 2,16 Ghz CPU and 500 GIG disk. With wireless keyboard and wireless mighty mouse.

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It fits well into our living room. The 20 inch was out of the question. It was too high. But I need more screen real estate than the 17 inch screen on the iMac. So I have to add an extra screen. I know that it completely destroy the nice design of the iMac, but right now the solution is to place my old Eizo screen besides it.

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I’ll see if I can find a screen that looks better. Unfortunately, the 20 inch Apple Cinema Display is too large. Actually, I miss a desktop computer from Apple that is something between the Mac Mini and the Mac Pro. Yes, I know. The iMac is supposed to be that missing link. But if I want a reasonably powerful Mac that I can run on a 20 inch Cinema Display… Not much to choose from.

Anyway, I am more than happy with my new computer. It is very silent. Boots from scratch in about 25 seconds (something that I never do because I simply put it to sleep. You know, that strange mode that always simply crashed my windows boxes…) It talks to the Windows box that acts as our home media server. It’s fast. And most important: everything just works! Yes, I know that this Mac can’t do anything completely new that my Windows box was unable to do. Point is that the Mac does everything that I need, and that everything is done slightly faster, easier and more stable than any of the windows boxes I have owned.

After two weeks with this Mac at home I had to order a Mac at work as well. Can’t keep on using that old IBM Laptop when I am getting used to this!

So far the most difficult task I have asked my Mac to solve is to browse and navigate my 32 000 images on the Windows server. I am using Aperture to do that. The two computers is connected through gigabit wired LAN. It works really well. Of all the image archive programs I have tried this is by far the best one.

And for the people that are extremely interested in Aperture and how it will handle large libraries. Here’s this year’s most boring video. Showing a quick browse of my more than 32 000 images large library. As you can see. It works very well. Remember, the images are stored on another computer on the network.

The last two weeks have been very busy, so I still have a lot to learn. All advice on great software, widgets and solutions are welcome. One question: I have two drives that I mount through the network from the windows box to access content from that machine. How do I set up the Mac so that these volumes will mount automatically when I start the Mac? Comments or email from you mac experts are welcome…

The Mac is in da house

The iPhone and the multi touch screen

Oyvind over at Brilliantdays has a very interesting theory about the multi touch screen on the new iPhone and the fantastic multi touch screen that Jeff Han has been demonstrating around the world.

Oyvind thinks that this technology will be incorporated in the next generation of Apple screens and laptops.

Only a theory, but read his article in detail. Why did so many people from Apple visit this particular post after he wrote it? And what about the comment over at Jefferson Han’s web site?

When I saw this video on YouTube and had a glimpse of how Phil Schiller zooms in on an image on the Phone I can’t believe that this has nothing to do with Jeff Han’s technology.

I tried Jeff’s screen at Siggraph in Boston last year. The image zoom works exactly as it is done by Mr. Schiller in the CBS video. I must admit that the technology is some of the most amazing I have ever tested. It worked extremely well and gave an immediate feel of the navigation.

This is a short video I shot in Boston while testing the screen and talking to Jefferson Han.

The iPhone and the multi touch screen

Windows is on its way out

The Swithch to Apple
The computer I use for most of my work at home is about to break down. Basically it’s a windows box that I have built by using leftovers from my various media center projects.

So, it’s time to upgrade.

A little bit of history
My first computer was a Commodore 64. Entering my life back in 1982 or 83. Before that I played around with my father’s portable Kaypro II. The Commodore 64 took me all the way from playing games, programming Basic and eventually hacking around in assembly language.

In 1984 I also started playing around with my father’s new toy, a brand new Macintosh 128K. The C64 was later on replaced with a C128 and the legendary Amiga 500. I ended my Commodore adventure with an Amiga 4000. After that I was entirely on Apple Macintosh. Both at home and at work.

In 1998 I accepted a position as a consultant with Accenture and figured it was time to learn some Windows stuff as well. Doing it the hard way by building a computer from scratch and installing Windows NT. Took me about three months to get everything working. Three months that practically made me a windows expert. After that I have been using different Windows and Mac computers. Mostly Windows. All the way from NT to 2000 and now Windows XP and Media Center Edition.

How important is the operating system?
It used to be pretty important. Hardware was closely tied to the operating system. Most of the work was done in applications installed on top of the particular operating system you had decided to use. Networks, disks and file formats was alone on their different platforms. Once you were locked into an operating system it was hard to switch to another.

During the last couple of years the operating system itself isn’t that important anymore. I do 90% of my work in the browser. A computer running Firefox alone will be able to solve most of my daily work.

Outlook was entirely replaced with Gmail several months ago. Microsoft Word and the simple work i do in Excel have been replaced by Google Docs and Spreadsheets. I do my publishing directly in WordPress. Calculations are done with CalCooLate. I administrate and get my news through Google Reader.

All of this can be done fluently on Windows, MacOS or Linux. The operating system is loosing its importance.

So what’s left?
Why bother? If Firefox is the only thing you need why don’t you simply switch to the free and user friendly Ubuntu? Actually, I have considered it. But I still rely on some applications that are installed on my computer:

1. Image handling
I use Adobe Photoshop Elements to administrate and edit my images.

2. Video and audio editing
I currently use Sony Vegas Video to edit media.

3. Presentation work
This is actually a field where I don’t have a proper tool today. I use PowerPoint, but it is absolutely horrible. And the web based tools like Thumbstacks isn’t there yet.

In addition to this I use huge amounts of small more or less important helper applications to handle various tasks. You find some of my favourites here. And yes, after I wrote that article I have replaced ZoomPlayer with VLC and added Democracy Player to the list of important tools.

What’s important?
Some of the most important stuff that the operating system has to do is to run stable, be clean, uncluttered and fast and take care of some basic safety. I am quite happy with the work that Windows carries out on my boxes, but it is getting increasingly cluttered.

And my experiments with Vista has not been very convincing. They try to add security by restricting the user from doing anything. On one of the Vista boxes I use I am waiting for a security alert that would say something like: “Are you sure you want to type the letter “E”?. It could be dangerous”. I answer “yes”. The next box would say “Are you really really sure? Was it you that just typed the letter E? This is a security question to verify that your computer is safe”. So, when I try to type the rest of my name, “Are you sure you want to type the letter “i”? etc…

This, in addition to the sheer joy of some variation leads me to the temptation of some alternatives. And, it seems like Thomas Hawk has been pretty happy lately.

All of the tasks that I do in addition to what’s in the browser can be solved in Ubuntu, but I am afraid it’s not that user friendly yet, and that I wouldn’t find a video editing suite and image archive that would fill my needs. Please let me know if you have some recommendations. I know that The Gimp would probaly solve my image editing needs, but I also need a system to handle my 32 000 images with tagging and browsing.

So, I am considering to do the switch to Apple. For this house that would be to replace two old windows boxes with two brand new iMacs. And I would also keep my promise and replace my good old Thinkpad X31 with a MacBook Pro when the IBM laptop needs to be upgraded. The Media Center will stay for a while. The only real alternative there would be to install MythTV. Apple have no proper DVR software yet.

My old windows box is still running, but good advice is welcome in the comments! It seems like a 17″ iMac will be the happy and hard working box that will replace the one I am using right now. 17″ because there isn’t room for anything bigger.

Windows is on its way out

iPods – now simply with “memory”

iPod nano ad

Just a quick update on the story about the not-so-important-typo in an ad for the iPod Nano. In their latest ad Lefdal simply state the amount of memory for all iPods. No harddrive or flash memory. Only memory. A good idea. After all, the average customer won’t care about the type of memory. They care about how many songs they’ll be able to store.

Here’s the update on the original story. And, I don’t know if they changed the text because of my insignificant rant…

iPods – now simply with “memory”