Jan 18

The problem:
My wife is in the Broadcast Journalism program at BCIT and often has to make telephone interviews for her assignments. Technically speaking, this has always been a really sloppy process. She has to hold the phone up to the recording device, which introduces lots of ‘noise’ to the recording and often her voice is louder than the interviewee. This causes her to have to import the audio into GarageBand and edit the audio levels.

The Solution :) :
The other day it dawned on me. The iPhone has a line out!

Required Hard and Soft ware:
1) iPhone or any Phone with a line out
2) In our case we use a MacBook or MacBook Pro but any computer with a line in will do.
3) QuickTime Pro or any software with audio recording capabilities will do.

I plugged a line from the iPhone’s headphone jack into the line in on her MacBook (pictures show my MacBook Pro):



Switched the input to ‘Line In’ in ‘System Preferences’ -> ‘Sound’:


Start up QuickTime Pro and selected ‘File’ -> ‘New Audio Recording’:


A QuickTime Audio Recording window will come up. Increase the volume to about half. This will allow you to hear the interviewee over the speakers of the computer ( you can also plug in headphone if you don’t want it broadcast ) and press big red button whenever you want to start recording:


Once you stop you will find a file on your desktop:


Let me know if you have any questions or another method…

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May 22

A friend of mine recommend MacFusion as a good replacement for Samba and all I can say is… ‘Why didn’t I know about this sooner!!’. I don’t know how many hours I spent trouble-shooting why my Linux Samba server will not talk to my Mac OS X ( Tiger ). I can’t tell you how many factors I looked at.. Samba version, little smb.conf tricks, Mac OS X tricks and hacks… after all that work MacFuse just makes it work ( and over SSH ). I love it!

The motivation for doing this is being able to import my PHP project, which has to live on the linux box, over a MacFuse – SSH connection into TextMate on my Mac. What I was doing is SSHing into the linux box and using Eclipse via X11. It is not that using X11 and Eclipse is a bad solution, it is just Eclipse does not offer much help in the way of PHP development. It really is an IDE for Java development. In fact, TextMate ( as light as it feels ) has way more in the way of PHP development and really does not really lack anything that Eclipse has.

There is one draw back that I should mention. When switching between TextMate and other applications there is a 2-3 second ‘beach-ball’ delay. I found I could cut down the time by saving my Texmate project file on my local HD and only importing what I need into my project. Once you are using TextMate it performs like normal.

Mar 16

Thought this was kinda cheeky.
Print Free Graph Paper

Mar 08

I use NewNewsWire Lite for my RSS reader (Mac OS X). I love everything about it except for the fact that I could not turn off the red unread news items that sit on top of NNW icon in my Dock. I found it looked too much like the unread messages and it distracted me. ( I like to have zero unread email messages at all times and my inbox to only have active tasks, otherwise it should be empty).

There is no way to turn off the red notification in NNW Lite. I found that if you download the full version of NetNewsWire, set up the options you like ( ie: turn off the dock notification ) and then quit the program, it will write the full version’s preferences. Next time you launch NNW Lite you get the benefit of the full versions customizability.

I discovered this while I was trying the full version and then migrated to the lite version.

Feb 24

Like so many of us, my junk or spam mail numbers has been rising with no end in sight. I use Mail or on Mac OS X for my mail application. I have found by turning on the Threads option helps me cut down the pages and pages of messages I have to scan. It groups messages on their subject line, so instead of seeing 50 messages with the subject ‘RE: Rolex for sale’ I see only one line! :)