Boxee Beta on the Apple TV

An update on how to hack Boxee onto your Apple TV.

Boxee Blog ยป Get a bite of this โ€“ Boxee Beta on AppleTV

Yep. You can now, once more, pwn your AppleTV following these super simple instructions, and get the Boxee Beta on that shiny Apple box. In fact, if you already have Boxee Alpha installed, you should be able to just update Launcher and then update Boxee to achieve the same result ๐Ÿ™‚

Published in: on February 26, 2010 at 8:34 pm  Leave a Comment  

Trouble shooting Mac OS X Leopard Address Book iSync with Google Contacts

Its been a while since the last update to the saga of how to keep all your contacts in sync on the cheap.   If you have upgraded to Snow Leopard, then Address book and iSync already work to keep your GMail contacts (and your Yahoo contacts) all synced up.   

But back in the original Leopard, however, you had to have an iPod or iPhone to get the sync started.  As it turned out – you could get around that restriction by syncing with Yahoo in lieu of an iPod, and GMail contacts would sync up as well.   That was the jist of the last post.  You want to be very familiar with it, with Google contacts, Address Book and iSync before proceeding.

After awhile, this free sync up mechanism stopped working.  Yahoo was still in sync but GMail had stopped updating.  I tried backing up the contacts, deleting them, restoring them (on both the Mac and Google ends) but nothing worked.  GMail would not sync up.   Something must have changed in the Google Contacts API, or in Leopard (10.5.8), or both.  My Mac OS X addresses were fine, but changes I had made there were not getting to GMail.

If you find yourself in this position, consider this.  P.S.  I will not be held responsible for lost data, accounts, or anything else. 

1) Back up your Address Book and your GMail contacts before you begin. 

2) Really.  Back them up.  Use several different formats for each one.   Move copies of the backups to a thumb drive.
You will need to restore from these files if this technique fails for you.

3) Now delete all your GMail contacts (you should feel confident that they are backed up before doing this step – create a new GMail
account and import the contacts from your backup as a test if there is any doubt).

4) Enter Address Book preferences and uncheck all the sync options (be sure you know the account names and login passwords of each sync option you uncheck – you will have to re-enter them later)

5) Still in Address Book preferences, check only the Google sync option.  Enter the GMail account and password for the account that has stopped syncing (and now has no contacts in it).

6) Now here comes the interesting part: there is a command line sync which I found in an old Google Groups forum.  It can be issued with four different sync mode parameter options: fast, slow, refresh, and pullthetruth.  The one that seems to work is “pullthetruth”.  It appears clear the GMail contacts database completely and then rebuild it using whatever is in your Leopard Address book.  The command syntax is:

/System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/GoogleContactSync.framework/Versions/A/Resources/gconsync –sync –report 1 –httplog 1 –syncmode pullthetruth

A summary of command line parameters (but not what they mean) is given here.  Lots of messages should appear on the screen.  If you are good with Unix, you should be able to route them to a file for later inspection. 

7) Go back into Address Book preferences and re-check the Yahoo box.   Enter name and password.

8) The sync should now be re-enabled to run as before.  Add a new address to Address Book. Go to iSync on your menu bar, click it and select “sync now”.  The new address should show up in Google contacts.

Published in: on February 23, 2010 at 8:36 pm  Comments (2)  

Open Source ITIL v3 service management software

Don’t have millions to implement ITIL?   This could be your cost-free alternative.

The Open Source IT Service Management Solution OTRS::ITSM 2.0 Brings Affordable ITIL-Compatible Change Management to Companies Worldwide

The OTRS::ITSM 2.0 release provides the first Change Management module to track change management processes and roles as defined by ITIL V3 for IT Services and IT infrastructure components (Configuration Items = CIs). It supports ITIL processes, specially: Incident Management, Problem Management, Service Asset and Configuration Management (CMDB / CMS), Request Fulfillment Management, Knowledge Management and Change Management. Additional ITIL processes that are also supported: Event Management, Service Catalogue Management, Release and Deployment Management as well as Service Portfolio Management.

Published in: on February 22, 2010 at 5:02 pm  Comments (3)  

More on Oracle and Sun’s open source portflio.

OpenSolaris may be in for tough times.

OpenSolaris devs ‘ignored’ by Oracle โ€ข The Register

OpenSolaris’ peers OpenOffice and GlassFish, meanwhile, have received the blessing of Oracle’s chief executive Larry Ellison and were listed in Oracle’s roadmap plans. Sun’s other pet open-source projects have fared less well, with Sun’s massive gaming environment Darkstar killed. Oracle, though, has dithered on Sun’s code-hosting site Project Kenai saying it would keep the project alive as part of, following an outcry.

With these pieces in play, Rockwood said he sought “guarantees with regard to the well-being and sustained viability of OpenSolaris as an Open Source community

Published in: on February 19, 2010 at 10:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

Lost Nazi Uranium Unearthed

A bit off topic, but interesting nonetheless.  Uranium discovered in a Dutch scrapyard was originally from Heisenberg’s Nazi-era lab.  Read on to learn a little more about the Nazi nuclear experiments, as well as Heisenberg’s role.

Lost Nazi nuke-project uranium found in Dutch scrapyard โ€ข The Register

The cube, according to specialists at the JRC’s Institute for Transuranium Elements (ITU), was produced in 1943 for the Nazi nuclear programme and was used in the lab of famous boffin Werner Heisenberg (of uncertainty principle fame). The plate was apparently part of experiments by Heisenberg’s collaborator Karl Wirtz.

Published in: on February 19, 2010 at 8:43 pm  Leave a Comment  

WordPress goes dark

So last night we had a little hiccup here (110 minutes).   This is the official explanation; which promises to be updated with details as they become known. Downtime Summary โ€” Blog โ€”

Today was down for approximately 110 minutes, our worst downtime in four years. The outage affected 10.2 million blogs, including our VIPs, and appears to have deprived those blogs of about 5.5 million pageviews.

Published in: on February 19, 2010 at 4:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

Google goes Enron?

Maybe using more efficient processors is a better strategy for taming energy-gobbling data centers than getting into the
energy trading business to score some cheap kilowatts.  Could it be that Google wants to trade power for some other reason?  Maybe.  There is the Google Power Meter which offers consumers a way to follow their home power consumption.  Hook that up to a computer control device (powered by Chrome?) and it might be able to shave hundred off your energy bill.  Maybe only if you buy it from Google, though.  It just sounds all too similar to Google’s cell phone gambit.  Provide a consumer device, and go after the infrastructure to use it.  It’s a cunning strategy proven to work in the area of music

Google gets US approval to buy and sell energy | ITworld

Google has received federal approval to buy and sell energy on the open market, giving it more options for the way it powers its data centers and opening the door to a potential move into the energy-trading business.

Published in: on February 19, 2010 at 3:20 pm  Leave a Comment  

Easy-to-Use Chromium OS Test Distro: Flow

Looks like a breeze, they even have easy-to-follow instructions for your Mac.

Chromium OS builds by Hexxeh


Flow is the latest in the line of Hexxeh’s hugely popular ChromiumOS builds. Flow is the most exciting version yet, bringing even more hardware support, an auto-updater, webcam support and an improved application menu & directory. All this, requires only a 2GB USB drive (download size is 327MB)

Via LifeHacker

Published in: on February 17, 2010 at 4:45 pm  Leave a Comment  

A List of Alternative Open Source Database Engines

Here is a good list of database alternatives.  For example, Firebird, HBase and Casandra are in the list.   Its a useful list now that MySQL is in the Oracle camp and with the growing NoSQL movement.

25+ Alternative & Open Source Database Engines

But there are also many other databases which are getting popular day-by-day & may have advantages over what you’re already using.

Here are 25+ open source alternative databases that you may consider using in your next project:

Published in: on February 17, 2010 at 2:34 pm  Leave a Comment  

Google Chrome Extensions for Web Developers

Here is a review article listing a clutch of Chrome extensions that should ease its adoptions among web developers.  Have not tried these on Mac OS X, of course, but would be interested in any comments from those who have.

17 Google Chrome Extensions for Web Designers and Developers โ€“

Firefox is the browser of choice for most designers and developers in part because of the vast selection of add ons that are available. While Chrome does not offer anywhere close to as many extensions (yet), there are still a number that can be very handy for designers and developers.

Published in: on February 17, 2010 at 2:29 pm  Comments (1)