23 September 2012

Dear Apple: It’s not me, it’s you

Apple is asking for another $707m in damages from Samsung, in addition to the $1b they were already awarded in the ludicrous patent trial. They also asked for a permanent ban on 29 different Samsung phones — i.e. all the phones that are successfully competing with the iPhone. Meanwhile, Apple’s new iOS 6 purges YouTube and Google Maps. The former is now available as a separate app, but the latter has been replaced with Apple’s own mapping app — which is apparently disastrously awful. ... Read more

4 September 2012

More Apple data loss

Today I discovered that a number of documents I hadn’t looked at in years were no longer readable. They were written using Circus Ponies Notebook. Trying to open them resulted in a fairly useless error saying each page was corrupt. I opened the package and discovered that the actual storage format was Apple’s plist. Unfortunately, it’s Apple’s binary plist format, introduced in OS X 10.4. The same problem has occurred with a bunch of files, so it looks as if at some point, a non-back-compatible change was made in the plist format. ... Read more

29 August 2012

How to start an open source project

Here’s a bitter little thing I wrote a couple of years ago, found on my hard disk during a tidy up and updated for the current zeitgeist. How to start an open source project Set up a project on GitHub, Sourceforge, RubyForge, or wherever. Try to pick a name that’s very similar to an existing project or a commercial product. If you can’t think of one, use an unfunny recursive abbreviation. ... Read more

28 August 2012

Costa Rica: San Jose and saying goodbye

On Saturday, we decided that we ought to check out San Jose, Costa Rica’s capital. However, after a week of good weather, the Green Season climate finally caught up with us. It began to rain, heavily and steadily, in a way which suggested it could keep it up indefinitely, and had every intention of doing so. In the city, attractive young Costa Ricans, all wearing red T-shirts, were wandering through the congested traffic collecting money for what turned out to be a local equivalent of Habitat for Humanity. ... Read more

26 August 2012

Costa Rica: Carara

Rather than returning straight to Alajuela, we decided to take a detour to Carara National Park. Located on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, it’s one of the best places to see scarlet macaws in the wild. Unfortunately, best times to see them are morning and evening; we were too late. We heard some macaws heading off into the distance, but we didn’t see any. Carara is the northernmost area of rainforest in Costa Rica. ... Read more

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