The Knightcast Episode 31 : Tips for the mobile Geek.

 

Ep31

 

The Knightcast episode 31 : Tips for the mobile geek.

Direct link to the show : http://www.knightwise.com/podcasts/kc290506.mp3

Summary.

An episode jam packs with tips for the mobile geek. How to carry and organize your tech equiptment as easy, light, convinient and efficient as possible. What to take with you, where and how to store all your geeky goods. Furthermore we talk about the Ubuntu-Granny incident and let you hear ' The Knightcast Signal".

Shownotes.

  • Intro
  • News and events.
  • MUSIC The Knightcast signal as preformed by Noplasticinside .
  • The Knightwise.com website gets 11000 hits over the weekend.
  • The Ubuntu story on Digg .

  • Part 1 : Tips for the mobile geek.
  • Why this podcast.
  • Groundrules.
  • Dividing everything into zones.

  •  Zone 2 : The "Bag"
  • Groundrules.- What to put in your bag.

  • Zone 3 : The car.- Groundrules.
  • What to store inside your car.
  • Signoff.

For more information or to send feedback , please visit our main website www.knightwise.com

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Is AIM Pages a MySpace Killer? No Way!

Sometimes is wierd to say how story's evolve on the internet. One would think, that between thousands and thousands of voices, blogs, websites and podcasts it is hard to seperate the songs from the static. But still. Sometimes a story is written in just the right key that it chimes out and resonates through the internet. Sebastians review on AIM pages is a perfect example. An article that begun on his own website has been picked up by AIM and its hardcopy's are now scattered over the tables of the design team at AOL to guide them in the redesign of AIM pages. Enjoy.

Knightwise.

 AIM Pages by Sebastian Prooth.

As you will find out when you listen to episode 4 of the Global Geek Podcast I tried to sign up to the new AIM Pages service.
I decided to go back today and try and get a profile going over on AIM Pages. I started to create the profile about 20 minutes ago and I have had multiple problems while creating the profile which I will share with you, so you don’t waste your time with this website until you have read the problems you might encounter while registering!

Number one, the site is NOT intuitive, not easy at all. I am glad I have blog creating experience or I would have been struggling to get this profile up and going. Once I selected a profile from the tech group, I applied one I liked, or so I thought, more on this later.

 Then I proceeded to actually fill out the “modules” and build the profile. What a yawn. The about me section malfunctioned every time I opened it up to edit it, and once I had placed the text and said OK I want to keep it, I saw that it did not show up against the background, so I went back into the editor and selected white text, to show up on this brownish clay coloured background.

The photo uploading system is difficult as well, once you figure out that save does not mean upload/keep, and you have to hit upload, you will be greeted with a dialogue box that has an upload interface, good luck getting it to work the first time around! When I selected the images to caption them once I had uploaded them, it took clicking around them, on them, everything, to get the caption box.

I realized after trying to set up the Contact me section, not to bother. Why? Because what you select to show up as methods of contact don’t even show up when you hit apply!

And if all these problems were not enough, I decided to have done and apply the profile. When I did I was greeted with a totally separate theme than the one I had selected, my words did not show up against the background so I had to highlight the text on the page to read it, and most of all when I went to edit the page again, it died in the ass. Totally. I was not able to get back into the edit area where I had been before.

One final problem and the one that just made me leave the entire endeavor. I went to settings, and it brings up a dialogue with one option. Leaving AIM Pages? Click Yes to delete your profile!! Oh yeah, thats a setting alright! You can check out what I eventually got out of the profile here – As you can see, the text is the wrong colour (Invisible)!

Is AIM Pages a MySpace killer? Umm.. Let me think about this one. Absolutely not. There is no way on God’s green earth that this website is a Myspace killer, I could not even configure a profile, with 11 years of Internet using experience. I have been using Myspace to store a profile for over a year, and I have never had the problems like I have had in 20 minutes trying to build a profile on AIM Pages. Web 2.0? More like Web .20. If I were AOL or whoever is behind this, I would be ashamed that some meeting deemed it ready to be released for use… it just isn't – Comments Welcome

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Letting Windows XP do its own maintenance.

I don't know about you .. but i am out of here.

Computer maintenance can be a tedious task, and somehow Windows Pc's can't get enough of it. Wether I open up a computer magazine or listen to a podcast about Windows its always spyware this and scandisk that etc. Now as for spyware and such , I completely understand , there is a lot of crap out there, but standard maintenance tasks on your computer are not something you should worry about. One of the images that shoots to mind is this guy sitting in front of his computer WAITING for the de-fragmentation to complete that he started about an hour ago. Meanwhile he is just sitting there , like its some kind of laundry machine and he has to get his socks back. Not for me No-oh! If I tell my pc to clean up his room ? He better do it all by himself. Here are a few tricks that you can use to have your pc do 'his on thang” on “his own time”.

Step One ! Pick a free spot in your calendar.

Don't do computer maintenance at the peak of your day or while you have five little brothers and sisters waiting in line to play World of Warcraft. Do it at night . And don't stay up for it , let the computer do it. So choose a time when you don't need your computer and dive into the BIOS ( Press delete or F2 when the computer is starting up.) Most BIOS's (is that plural ?) these days have an “automatic power up” option that you can set. This means you can let your computer power up automatically at a certain time without you having to get up and press the button. Set the auto power up to a certain time and day of your choice.

Step Two ! Log in automatically.

tweakuiIts not the best way of doing things securely , but if your computer is just parked in your room you can enable auto-login. One of the programs you can use for this is TWEAK-UI   it will not only give you the option to auto-log-on as a certain user , but also lots of other cool tweaks.Are you afraid somebody is gonna try to access your computer while its unguarded ? No worries , just set the screen-saver to 1 minute and password protect it.

Step three ! Let the games begin.

Once your computer is securely logged in you can let him do its daily chores.Open a text-file and start typing.

at 01:00 /every:M,F defrag c:

The AT command lets you schedule certain tasks at certain times. In the example above it will run the command DEFRAG C: (de-fragment your hard-drive) every monday and friday.

at 02:00 /every:M,F defrag d:

Identical stuff , this time for the D drive, an hour later.

TIP : if you want to save yourself a lot of pain in the but , make a separate partition on your hard-drive where you set your windows swap file. This will greatly increase your de-fragmentation times and speed up your pc.

Next up you might wanna do a little cleaning up of your hard-drive. Its never bad to do a anticipative scandisk before your favorite telletubie pictures get lost on that runt hard-drive cluster.  Now you can't do a scandisk (or check-disk ) on a drive thats currently in use , just like you can't vacuum the rug you are standing on. But again , that is not a problem. When you run the CHKDSK command in Windows and point to a busy drive , Windows will do the operation next time the drive is free ( that is the next time the computer boots up). So once again , take the AT command and type up these little lines of code.

at 01:30 /every:F chkdsk c: /f /r

This means : every friday clean up my drive , repair the data on broken clusters and move on. 

And last but not least , you have to shut the machine down. You don't have to get up to do that , just use the shutdown command as follows.

at 01:45 shutdown -s -f

ShutdownThis means : at a quarter to two , shutdown the computer. (and force close all open programs)A nice tip you might want to remember is that you can enter the shutdown command in the RUN box in your start menu, for example, your computer is burning a cd, its still gonna be an hour before its done. But you wanna go out and grab a burger and don't want your computer running in vain all night. Just type shutdown -t 3600 and hit enter. Here 3600 stands for the number of seconds  the computer waits before shutdown.
And thats it. Just type all the commands in a txt file, save it as maintenance.bat and either drag it to your startup folder so it runs automatically every day , or click on it to run everything manually. You can find more  examples of the AT command  here . Now go outside and play … and let technology work for you !

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Macbook where are thou ?

deliveryThere is nothing as annoying as having to wait. Wait for your girlfriend on the first date, wait for Santa Clause to come at night, wait for the person in front of you on the public restroom when you have to make a mega dump. Or .. Wait for the delivery of your Macbook. Yep, I now curse myself for not being an earlier adopter of the mean machine and waiting until last thursday to order it. Delivery would take from three to seven days the apple store said. With previous orders that mostly meant ' Three to seven days, but in two days you'll have your goodies”. Unfortunately THIS time (of all times) Three to seven days does mean .. to seven days. So as I sit behind the front door like some hungry puppy waiting for the doorbell to ring. But no Macbook yett. A lot of it has to do with this freaking bank holiday we are having. Not only does this means I have four days off (which could have been spent in utter bliss with my new macbook) it also means the transportation and courier industry is a little fucked up and .. guess what , delivery's have been delayed.

But with the use of the tracking number at the apple store and some surfing we can see where our macbook is at this very moment. Lets track the shipping shall we ?

So we take the tracking number of the apple store and hop over to the website of the courier company. There we can see a step-by-step history of where it is.

  • May 18, 2006 om 07:05 PM GMT Order placed.

    Yes indeed , After a little doubt and a lot of research I placed the order , exactly one week before that blasted bank holiday. I could have done it about a week earlier but I decided NOT to be an early adopter.

  • May 22nd 2006 05:22 Suzhou Consignment Received At Transit Point

    So at the early eastern dawn my Macbook arrived FROM the factory at my couriers pickup point. A quick Google lets me see where the town of Suzhou actually is , a tad east of Shanghai.  

  • May 23rd 2006 00:41 Suzhou Shipped From Originating Depot

    Okay, It took my little Macbook a few hours to grab a cappuccino, some croissants and be on its merry way.

  • May 26, 2006 15:50 Arnhem Hub Consignment Passed Through Transit Point

    Probably by boat or by plane (i guess by plane) it arrived at Arnhem in The Netherlands. Pretty late and with no hope of arriving at its destination here that very same day. As I was on the road myself that day I encountered what traffic must have been like for the couriers : Rainy, overcrowded highways and a lot of people on the road that had a day off. Mixing proffesional travelers with leisure travelers and bad weather = Chaos.

  • May 27 th 2006 04:49 Brussels Hub Consignment Received At Transit Point.

    Ah ! Joy to the world, my little Macbook has jumped across the border and has arrived in our nations capital of Belgium. As it is Saturday morning, the 27th of May, 9 AM : The one million dollar question is : Is TNT running errands today ? If so : My Macbook could only be minutes away, If not … its gonna be freaking MONDAY until it arrives.

I'll hope for the former but fear the latter. No matter no matter …..

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Star Trek – On the Brain – MLSWIQST

"Star trek on the brain"  by Sebastian Prooth.

I think this entry needs a bit of an introduction. The following is an excerpt from the book that I am writing, it is a section from the chapter about Star Trek on the Brain, a condition which I have decided to make a real illness and as an illness I had and got over, I can perscribe some treatment methods. Check it out, tell me what you think…its just a little section from what I have written. Those who have been reading my blog for a while know I have been writing a book for a while now, here is your chance to see some of it! -Sebastian Prooth

 (Please note that this is a total work in progress – spelling mistakes and errors are due to it being a draft.)

Continue reading “Star Trek – On the Brain – MLSWIQST”

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Eurosong : We've gone bonkers !

Eurosong CoocooLand ! 

 Just a quick post before I leave today, thanx to Codemonkey Rob for pointing this one out. As you might know the eurovision song contest was held in Greece this weekend. We Belgians got the boot at the semi finals so I was not very interested in watching it. But after Codemonkey Rob went jumping up and down about the hilarious entry from ICELAND I went searching for some video material. (thank you YouTube). Now I'm not saying the Belgian contribution was original by ANY means, but it was entertaining to listen to. And it had a sence of normality to it that apparently is lacking from the Eurovision Song Contest these last years. When you look at the winners ( Finland ) who had just about sent over a whole bunch of hardcore rocking Uru-Khai (Trolls) complete with fireworks and all, ICELAND took the cake with this semi psychidelic, soft-porn, Betty-boop-esque charade of a song. I mysellf like the part where she calls up GOD and calls him ' Yow Dogg !'. From personal experience I KNOW Icelandic people can be a bit coocoo by times but THIS makes Bjork want to think about changing her nationality.  It looks like Eurosong somehow has turned into this parody, this freak-tv that people will watch and where they will vote for their neighbouring countries only. Favoritism mixed with freakishly dressed trolls, bubbling pornstars calling God and the trick where they take off their pants re-used for the 60th time. Yawn !

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The Knightcast Episode 30 : What operating system to choose.

 

Showimage

The Knightcast Episode 30  ' What operating system to choose '

Direct link to the show : http://www.knightwise.com/podcasts/kc200506.mp3

Summary.

Join us for show number thirty where we triple the normal crew of the Knightcast and have a globe spanning discussion with two more experts about what operating system to choose.  Windows ? Linux ?  Apple ? Along with Sebastian Prooth and David Gray of the GlobalGeek podcast we compare the pro's and the con's of the major Os'es on the planet. It starts of seriously but goes slightly downhill from there so be sure to listen in for well founded arguments and totally off-topic hilarious banter as the Knightcast has some friends over to come and play    .!!!! This podcast is not entirely family safe. (but we don't swear at all) !!!! 

 Shownotes.

The Experts.

 For more information go to www.knightwise.com or subscribe to The Knightcast in Itunes.

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Things that make you go Wii !

What game are you going to play tomorrow  ?

There is one question that I always ask younger people. Kids who are into games and stuff. Kids who where born after the great eight to sixteen bit revolution of consoles. Kids that don't know what PONG is if it bit them in the behind. You know them. When I talk to these teenagers-blessed-with-technological progress.. who are immersed in some on line game of super strong first person shoot'm up I ask them : What if the graphics in games become photo-realistic tomorrow …  what will the next step be.

Kids these days.

 As they wipe the perspiration from their forehead they look at me puzzled. Like I just dropped from the sky and have presented them with an electronic aigo version of Santa Clause and if they would please ride this thing across the north pole. " What do you mean .. well .. erm.." they stumble. As I try to clarify myself I mumble " What if the graphics in games are as real as they can be, where we come to the point where there are no more progressions in frame rate, in resolution.. When your gaming environment around you is as realistic as looking in the mirror" .. more blank stares and then a pointblank answer. " We"ll .. we"re done then .. aren"t we".

 Asking the same question to older (when you are over 25 on the edge of real and cyberspace, you're ready for the cyber-old-farts-home) they give you a different answer. As they start to memorize about their first game console (an Atari) and the games they played on it. As they talk about chunky sprites that somehow had to resemble ET, Some brown flying blob that was a desert falcon .. And the anger of their mothers as their kids kept hogging the TV with the old game console. Grandpa Simpson is bleak by comparison to this useless banter so I once again post the same question. But this time the answer comes direct and clear : "We'll then we have to work on the content".

Polygon shaped boobs.

And its true. Most games these days (Certainly the ones on the major game consoles) are either shoot"m ups, race games, toombraider-esque games or on p's Massive on line games and varieties of those mentioned before. Once you know how to play one game . you've just about seen them all. Ok , the characters are more defined , their boobs containing more roundness and less polygons, the shading is better, the lighting is better, more detail etc. But nothing really changes.  So when E3 came along (the annual game festival where  games and console makers show their best) I was not even paying attention. Until I saw this video below.The Nintendo WII was far from the great expectation. It was the underdog.

WII  

And then those funky Japanese inventors came up with a revolutionary controller. It looked like a slimmed down version of a tv-remote. "How the hell am I gonna play with something like THAT" I wondered. But while companies like Sony and Microsoft made their game controllers even more ergonomically , letting them look like a sex toy that has been forgotten on the living room table .. Nintendo did something different.  I do not know what awed me the most. The revolutionary design of the thing OR what happened if you moved it around ! (see video for details) But WHEN I saw it in action I realized that it offered an enormous creative opportunity for game developers. And THEN I saw what they had done with it so far ! Amazing . The console is BACK .. not only in the center of the living room .. but in the center of the family. The Nintendo approach is turning the WII into the heart of Sunday afternoon entertainment for everyone. With the right games that don"t include shooting people or flip flopping a half naked girl over Popsicle stand, the WII offers something for everyone. An innovative approach , a new vision in game entertainment .. and … well.. See for yourself ! 

 

 

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