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January 28, 2008

Mini Cooper Coming Soon...

Saturday we went and paid for this little guy, picking it up on Wednesday.

Posted by mike at 12:39 PM

January 18, 2008

Macworld 2008 Comes to a Close

It has been a good week here in San Francisco at Macworld 2008. The Moscone West was once bustling with folks but is now very quiet with only a few folks lingering. Looking down to the street there are still a lot of folks walking between the two expo halls on the ground floor of Moscone South and West.

I haven't blogged much this week. I attended some great sessions, but was also working which meant there was not a lot of time for leisure.

I'm interested to see how my thoughts about attending Macworld settle over the next few months. Was definitely worth it, but wonder if it's a one-time experience or if I'll feel compelled to come back again. The most obvious highlight was getting to see Steve Jobs deliver one of his famous Macworld keynotes in person. Another was meeting some people who I've known on email and phone but never met in person. Finally, there were a bunch of good things I learned in sessions and wandering around the showroom floor (which was quite packed with good hardware, software, and more). I guess seeing the MacBook Air in person just a few minutes after it was released was pretty cool too. If I traveled a lot I would totally sign up for one of those.

A little sad that it is coming to an end. But it is good to be headed home and back to the regular routine for a little while.

p.s. - I rented two movies from iTunes for the flight home, synced to my iPhone this afternoon

Posted by mike at 6:42 PM

January 16, 2008

The Designers Role in Sustainable Practice

Listening to Nathan Shedroff at Macworld 2008 talking about sustainability as it pertains to designers. Some designers have direct impact on sustainability due to product manufacturing, packaging etc. But designers also have an impact on sustainability in how they deliver a message. There are lots of social issues to consider in design, and how the design impacts behavior.

Sustainability is defined as "use and development that meets today's needs without preventing those needs from being met by future generations."

Very interesting presentation about tradeoffs between different issues. Compares Prius to Hummer, paper bag to plastic bag, and paper cup to ceramic mug. Uses some different methodologies for comparing how sustainable different products are.

Posted by mike at 4:21 PM

Fantastic News for MySQL and Sun

A lot is being said about Sun's acquisition of MySQL. I think it is great news. Congratulations to the MySQL folks.

I have a lot of respect for Sun from using their systems for many years. In recent years they have moved in a good direction with respect to open source. Having MySQL under their umbrella is excellent news for them. For MySQL, being tied to Sun seems like a great place to move.

Will be very interesting to see where this goes over the next few years and how MySQL benefits from being part of Sun.

Posted by mike at 10:22 AM

January 15, 2008

At Macworld 2008 Keynote

I will not be providing ongoing updates like macrumors and many other sites, but I am sitting in my seat waiting for the Macworld 2008 keynote to start. Got to Moscone West this morning about 7:30 and got in almost immediately. Then waited outside the keynote room in the hall for ~45 minutes before they let us into the room.

Should be starting any minute now.

And there he is...

Posted by mike at 11:26 AM

January 14, 2008

Professional Photoshop (Macworld 2008)

First day of MacWorld 2008 is sitting in a Photoshop tutorial with Michael Ninness (Adobe Systems). Back in the days of Photoshop 3 and 4 I knew everything there was to know about Photoshop. As I transitioned from graphics and design into software engineering I've tried to keep up, but definitely not like I used to. I have used Photoshop over the years for work when the expertise was needed and for all kinds of personal/family things. Looking forward to getting a crash course to get more up to speed. I'm doing more with Photoshop at work these days as the lead of a UI upgrade project.

Michael is using Photoshop CS3 (me too!).

First section of the two-day tutorial is an hour and a half of power shortcuts, including Photoshop configuration, settings, keys.

Someone asks about Lightroom/Aperture vs Photoshop. Michael only uses Photoshop when specific pixels need to be touched, for photo management Photoshop isn't necessary.

Michael starts by giving a nice overview of the CS3 UI changes and ways to organize the workspace. Very helpful. I waste a lot of time because I don't have panels I use most exposed and the stuff I never use hidden.

Goes through all of the keyboard shortcut to change the tools (move, clone, text, brush), and some used for control:

I know a handful of these that I use all the time and I can't imagine having to use the GUI for, I really need to know more shortcuts.

Also, CS3 has a new brush cursor option, lets you see the entire area affected by the brush and the cursor shows the gradient/fade at the edge of the brush. Definitely switching to that.

Michael talks about some practical jokes to play with Photoshop. Since each menu command is scriptable you can do things like when a file is opened run a script to rotate it 180 degrees, or whenever a user creates a new file close the application.

Two new features in CS3 that are awesome for merging/tiling photos. Auto align layers lets you get multiple photos lined up exactly. Useful for taking multiple photos of the same thing and then getting them aligned correctly. Auto blend magically removes seams on photos that are tiled on top of each other.

Another awesome command is the lens correction filter, lets you adjust the image in all kinds of ways. Michael shows an example of fixing a problem with camera angle.

The tutorial included a DVD with 90% of what Michael went over.

Posted by mike at 4:17 PM

Made it to San Francisco for MacWorld

Late afternoon flight from Boston puts me in San Francisco tonight to get ready for MacWorld starting tomorrow. I am staying somewhere near Nob Hill for the week, will be getting plenty of exercise walking to and from the convention center.

iPhone is my camera for the week, so there won't be anything fancy.

Posted by mike at 1:51 AM