#dearknightwise : Your questions, our answers.

This week we launched our brand new hashtag on twitter : #dearknightwise, that people can use to ask cross platform question. Every week I try to sit down and answer your questions.

@moonenmoonen asked  @”knightwise : Where did you get the pogo sketch.”

I got the pogo sketch at the Easy M  store in Sint Truiden, Belgium (Not that far from where you live). I had looked for the model in some of the s&s stores (Hasselt / Genk) but they did not have them in stock. I think I payed about 16 euro’s.

@casizemore asks : ” I accidently deleted my top toolbar on the desktop (ubuntu), how do i get it back.

Accidentally removing taksbars and buttons in Ubuntu is something that happens. You can restore them to their original status using THIS howto or use the PANELRESTORE script here.

@Jaymartinez wrote : “What are your must have apps for the Ipad”

Well, i’ll try to sum up the apps that i use the most.

Video Applications.

VLC : Without VLC player (no longer available in the App store thanks to the whining of the Electronic Freedom Foundation) I would not love my Ipad as much. I drag and drop the video’s I want to play (in ANY format) in the application menu in Itunes and get to watch all kinds of things on my Ipad WITHOUT having to convert stuff into Itunes. I’ve watched many many sci fi tv shows on my Ipad with VLC and think its an awesome app.

Youtube : I just love the tooooobs.

Boxee : I’m kidding ! I only wish the app they promised would come out soon so I can stream the content from my boxee box to my Ipad. This will be my killer app.

Books

Ibooks : The default Ibooks app is one of the best for reading Epubs. I am surprised to say that allthough i own the Sony PRS-505 i’ve finished 3 books on the Ipad with Ibooks.

Goodreader : Whatever is not in Epub format I read using Goodreader. Pdf, Txt .. It “breaks the ipad free” of the cable by integrating with dropbox and google docs.

Cloudreader : Great application for reading comics ! I am currently getting through the old Transformers comics (from Marvel)

Instapaper : Awesome app : With a bookmarklet I shoot articles to Instapaper and they get presented off line so I can read them in peace. A must have app !

Flipboard : Pump all of my RSS feeds into a digital Magazine and consume my media .. my way.

Utilities

Teamviewer : Remote control any computer from your Ipad. Clients for android, osx, ios, ubuntu and windows. Cross platform Awesome !

Wikipanion : I do not like to lose an argument. Wikipanion helps me with that.

Spideroak : Cross platform cloud backup and sync service I use for the podcast.

Dropbox : I use dropbox to ferry files to the Ipad without having to sync the Ipad to the mac.

Google earth : When there is nothing on tv .. Browse the planet.

Noteshellf : Fantastic little app that lets me WRITE on the Ipad (Reviewed in KWTV 0024).

Cleanwriter : Also a cool little thing that lets me write in a distraction free enviroment en helps me write up those long articles for ‘storytime’.

And there are of course some others, but like I said in the last “storytime” episode. I’m not an application geek but try to use applications that tie in with cross platform standards so my whole digital lifestyle can “travel” from device to device.

Do you also have a question ? Post your tweet to twitter with the hashtag #dearknightwise and have your question answered on the blog. 

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TGIF : Never mess with a somebody who knows Photoshop.

Knightwise.com fans who have been around a loooong looong time (or have been avid listeners of the Aussie Geek Podcast) might remember the famous ‘mega mindy incident’. Although its several years in the past its memory still lives on and has achieved cult status in some parts of the interwebs. Thanx to @the_rooster (Agp) and @theherne (Fan of the Agp, the Knightcast and my very own Nemesis) this memory is kept alive. While @herne and me were having some friendly back and forth banter on twitter about the Apple app store, I poked some friendly jabs at this canadian man of mistery. Too late i remembered one of the most important rules in Cyberspace : Never mess with somebody who knows how to Photoshop .. This was the result !  Have a good weekend everyone ! 

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KWTV224 : "Alternative input methods for the Ipad".

This week we review the Zaggmate Keyboard, the Pogo Sketch Stylus and 2 ipad apps that turn your ipad into a more productive device.

The ipad is designed as a touch-interface device. But what if the pinches and the swipes are no longer enough. What if you need more then the touch type keyboard can offer you. Then check out the products we’ve tested for ‘alternative input’ on your Ipad.

Shownotes.

Watch.

Kwtv 0024 Alternative input methods for your Ipad. from knight wise on Vimeo.

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Maybe you can ask #dearknightwise

In a never ending quest to find new and exiting ways to interact with my cross-platform community, i’ve launched (or “thought up”) the hashtag “#dearknightwise” on twitter. If you have a cross-platform question about Windows, Linux, Osx, Android, Ois or steam powered energiser bunnies .. i’ll do my best to find your answer. The hashtag #dearknightwise is alse piped to our official FACEBOOK PAGE where others can see if they can find the response to your query as well. So if you have a cross-platform question… and nobody can help you .. Maybe you can hire … #DEARKNIGHTWISE.

#DEARKNIGHTWISE

Links :

The official KNIGHTWISE.COM page on Facebook.

The #dearknightwise rss feed on twitter for your RSS Reader.

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Track your tweets with Cree.py (or track others !)

Geo-tagging your pictures, tweets and foursquare checkins is cool. It lets your friends know where you are, shows others just “where” you took that awesome picture and nobody dears to doubt the fact that you have just become the mayor of your aunts bathroom in Foursquare. But these locations are DATA. Random, useless data that only has value at a certain time for a certain picture. Random data .. right ? WRONG ! The issue with “privacy” or the loss of it, is that people seldom are aware that random privacy information can be “glued together” into a very useful piece of information that could form a very correct (or very WRONG) profile of a certain user. Lets take these geo-tweets and foursquare checkins as an example and use a creepy application like … creepy ( Seriously, that is what its called ) that lets you ‘track’ a certain person around the globe. (or around his neighbourhood). Its a Linux app, that makes it EXTRA geeky and its amazing to see just how much “random bits of information” people put out there and just how much of this information you can piece together. Now this is quite a ‘harmless’ application ( I can just see the ‘NCIS Wisconsin’ team using this in their next episode ) but think of it. How much information are we really putting out there, and what data algorithms does it take to shape that data into a complete “image” of our digital or private lifestyle. Now we can all yawn and say : “Privacy is dead !” but what does that actually MEAN ? Sure, data mining company’s can “shape” that information into a “profile” of your shopping habits and try to sell you stuff you like ? But that is the most benign kind. What if a governement, or an employer uses this ? He might form a correct ‘image’ of just what you are up to. You’ve got nothing to hide ? Good for you .. but what if they get it WRONG ? What if the information they gather is put together in a complete fracked up way that gives an impression of your action in a way thats just not correct ? Think about it ?

 

So lets just all put on our tin foil hats (make sure you don’t crease them, the grey aliens HATE creases in tin foil) and download cree.py for Ubuntu.

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Tech uses for a small dog.

Being the owner of 2 small dogs, I can say some things are missing from this list.

– Cellphone holster.

– Walking keychain for your usb stick

– Wifi repeater (You need some ethernet cable, an Airport express and some rubber bands for that one)

….

Source

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Hey Knightwise, Show us your feeds.

After releasing the last Docu Cast episode in the feed about how I have setup my own cross-platform, cross location podcatching setup, I got a request from listener @moonenmoonen on Twitter. Via the hashtag #dearknightwise he asked if I could post my podcatching list ( My “opml” file ) to the interwebs so others could take a peek at just WHAT i listen to on my phone / Ipod.

Who am I to pass up on such an opportunity opportunity opportunity opportunity opportunity I must say I was a little nervous at first. One’s “subscription list” is a very personal selection of tastes an interest. Content that is consumed mostly with headphones on or in the privacy of a driving car. Some subscriptions might appear very strange or bizar and might conflict with the general perception people have of you. ( I’m very surprised he listens to “this or that”) . Thats because some of the items on the list , might just be odd or seem out of context. So i’ll try to add some comments to every podcast as to why I find it so interesting.

 

 

The Knightcast.

Yes .. I subscribe to my own feed, to check if all the downloads are ok and I also listen back to my own shows to pick out errors that I make in grammar or pronunciation. I think its important to be a strong critic of my own work so I can improve my skills.

The Nosillacast podcast.

Delightful podcast by good friend Allison about all things technology with a slight macintosh bias. Great insightful content, great “chit chat” interviews and of course the adds for a car-repair man that have reached epic proportions.

The Mac Round Table.

Take some of the best Mac-related podcasters, throw them together in a virtual room and increase oxygen and caffeine levels. And you have the Mac Round Table. A great show with a variety of A-list hosts. I cringe at the ‘fanboyism’ sometimes, but the content and quality of the show makes up for that.

Mac Power-users Podcast.

Again I select a mac podcast from the ‘Circle of mac podcasters’ mentioned above. Katie Floyd has a great voice and brings calm, insightful and “powerful” mac tips to the apple users who subscribe.

The Linux Action show.

Whoever said Linux Podcasts are boring has not listened to the Linux Action Show. With news about Linux, the open source community and some hilarious banter, this is a geeks equivalent of a hilarious morning radio show.

Ubuntu Uk Podcast.

British humor, community news and the world of Linux through developers and community members eyes makes for a very interesting podcast with a non-us twist.

Going Linux.

Without a shadow of a doubt, this is one of the best Linux podcasts for new (and even experienced) Linux users. Larry and Tom bring the world of Linux down to an accesible, practical level where every user can get on board.

Lotta Linux Links podcast.

podcasting at 75 miles an hour is one of the last great ‘grass roots’ podcasts from the “age of curry” Unscripted, slightly chaotic unpredictable and extremely well informed. Dave Yates has … a lot of linux links.

Hacker Public Radio

This podcast is a “collective rss feed” for a variety of shows that cover a variety of topics related to the technological side of life. From urban camping to Python programming to tin-foil hat related issues, this podcast borders on the fringes but is excellent to listen to.

Tin Foil Hat show.

All the talk about cloud computing and the evaporation of our personal privacy is the center of CafeNinja’s podcast. With tips an tricks on how to avoid the big brother scenario of doom he teaches us to setup home servers and .. trust no-one.

Techie Geek podcast.

Another grass roots podcast I stay subscribe to because It clings to the principle of content over quality. Sometimes unscripted otherwise covering a variety of topics, Russ tells us about his geeky life and if you listen closely you’ll hear puppies in the background.

Fiction podcasts

It does not always have to be tech, sometimes I like to kick back, relax and enjoy a good story. Both Escape pod and Podcastle bring me just that. Great writers, great readers, great stories and a chance to lean back and let your mind wander free.

Escape Pod 

Podcastle

 

General information

Tedtalks Audio

I’m also a bit of a “common interest” geek and the ted talks are just fantastic for that. Its hard to describe the general topics in these recorded talks but there is always something there that is interesting. Makes you sound really smart when you talk about some of these topics around the water cooler.

Paranormal podcast with Jim Harold

You might think : Crackpot ! , but you are wrong. Jim Harold is in fact an excellent unbiased journalist who interviews authors and guest of his show about a variety of paranormal topics, From UFO’s to Harp, from Poltergeists to the moon landing. No matter how far off the rocker the guest is, Jim keeps our feet on the ground.

Aussie geek podcast

Friendly banter, geek news, an Aussie, A Canadian and me . Sunday mornings at 5.30 am I’m mostly there to record and boy is it fun. I will not say more except : Subscribe to this one !

Podcasters emporium

This is the only belly button podcast I subscribe to (a podcast about podcasting) but its one of the best. James Williams and Dave Gray are podcasting veterans and know the ropes line no-one else does. An exquisite podcast that not podcaster should be without.

 

Video Podcasts

I don’t have a lot of time to watch video podcasts but try to subscribe none the less. Most content that is NOT in this list is caught via my boxee box and I stream them in on demand. These shows below travel with me on my player.

Geek beat Tv.

Cali is just Dog-darn sweet and no matter WHAT your morning mood is, her cheery voice will perk you up.

Techzilla Weekly.

Veronica Belmont is the bad-ass cute girl that pounds you to a fine white pulp in online gaming and also knows her geek. I subscribe to the weekly episodes because the daily ones are a little too short for my taste.

Hack 5.

Darren and Snubs make an excellent duo. My great inspiration for “outstretched arm video blogging” is this coast-to-coast one man-woman show about all things hacking. Accessible to everyone and very very good !

Daily app show android apps ed.

A great place to pick up tips for my android phone applications.

 

Music Podcasts.

Since podcasting came along we seldom buy any new music anymore, nor do we listen to the radio in the car. The following music podcasts are both for me and @niejana who also loves to move to the grove. Our collective taste spans a very broad selection of music, or music podcast fix lies in chill , ambient and progressive trance. I’ll top on a few of the many.

Lifestyle Chill podcast.

Great chill tunes from down under.

Spacemusic.

An absolute MUST to subscribe to is TC’s Spacemusic podcast. Chill and Ambient sounds from “Rotterdam the Netherlands” and fantastic commentary with a heavy Dutch accent. I’ve been subscribed since 2005 and have ALL the episodes on my harddrive. I cannot recommend TC enough.

Chillcast with Anji Bee.

Nice loungy sounds and a fantastically sounding host.

Gareth emery podcast.

Weekly podcast from Australia’s number one Progressive DJ.

Best in trance.

A collection of Trance Podcasts from various streams. Great sampler to get to know new DJ’s.

Above and beyond trance around the world.

High quality trance from the guys from Above and Beyond. @niejana swears by this podcast and bobs her head up and down as she rides her Ford Fiesta through downtown traffic, raving away.

Air up there with tritonal.

My personal favorite trance and progressive podcast. Always filled with top tracks and one of the podcasts that is personally responsible for getting me a speeding ticket.

 

And some others …

The vocal trance sessions.

Tiesto’s club life.

A state of trance (armin van Buuren).

The Sound of Trance.

Club sunset.

 

Errata.

There are of course other “occasional” podcasts I subscribe to ( Audiobooks from podiobooks.com etc) but the list that you see above is the one I try to get through on a weekly basis. Quite beefy, but if you consider I spend about 3 hours in the car every day, I have some time to spare. I’ve been listening to podcasts since 2005 and the information and content that i’ve accumulated over the years has not only entertained me, it has also shaped my knowledge of the industry.  I’m a fan of the grass-roots non-corporate podcasts, and for that reason there are no “Leo Laporte – T.W.I.T. network shows in this list. I feel the highly “add-driven” content of these shows (although the adds are disguised as product placement chats that last up to five minutes). I feel abused as a listener having to sit through these “semi adds” and feel cheated when they say there are not supposed to be “adds” in podcasts. I don’t mind an add, but make it an add. 30 seconds / one minute long. Don’t do what Leo and his fellow twits do and turn it into a topic. I’m a grass roots podcast fan and love the geeky, nerdy, crazy world of podcasting by real people.

 

Instead of linking you to every podcast i’ve setup my own OPML FEED for you to download. Just download the file and import it into your podcatcher : OPML FEED KNIGHTWISE

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Bad Apple : 30% of everything !

(*written up the day before the launch of the Ipad 2)

For those of you who are expecting a long drawn rant or fan-boyish propaganda about the new Ipad 2 thats coming out tomorrow : you can go and click on a some porn site right now. This is not going to be yet another piece of writing on the blogosphere (hate that word) that tauts to know all about Apple’s “successor” to its first succesfull tablet. I admit, i am an avid Ipad user, and with the addition of the Zaggmate keyboard to the mix, I’ve written quite a few posts on the little sucker. As a matter of fact, i’m writing up this post right now on … the Ipad.

So, am I at the very edge of my seat awaiting the “word of god” from Cupertino tomorrow ? Am i hopping up and down forum threads chatting and predicting how “great the new Ipad is going to be ?” Did I blank out the time slot of the announcement in my calendar with the words “IPAD 2” encircled with more hearts and sparkles then a teenage vampire ? .. Sorry .. no.

Quite frankly, I don’t really care that much. If the “prophecy’s” we see on the internet are true ( Apple is having a harder and harder time keeping these things a secret) then we are looking at a thinner, double-camera equipped and PERHAPS retina display enabled Ipad that is going to be more expensive then their current model. Looking at specs and build : an XL version of my Ipod Touch ( At 300 euro’s one of the most versatile devices you can buy). But even if the new Ipad came with dancing playboy bunnies that would chant my name every time I press the home button… It would still be an Apple product produced by an Apple company.

And the one thing Apple is increasingly standing for is a monolithic, greedy and proprietary company with only its own interest at heart. Now i KNOW what you are saying : “Bohoo Knightwise, EVERY company thinks of money.” That is true, but the way Apple is doing it lately is really starting to … annoy me. I say “annoy” because I’m not yet at the point where I am actually embarrassed to pull out an Apple device in public. This being said,  the point where I was PROUD to do so and would PRAISE Apple for its superior products, has long gone.

I like Apple because of their hardware quality and the fact that their operating system is conveniently built to help me get things done. Without my first Ibook there would have never been a Knightcast podcast, no KWTV, no blog. But I am NOT one of these fan boys who proclaim their “Ownership of an Apple product ” as  a surrogate for the loss of their virginity or their ticket to “being hip”. That train has come and gone my friends. Apple is too omni-apparent to be special anymore, It has become the Myspace of computer hardware Omnipresent. I USE Apple products, but I am perfectly capable to hold my own in real AND cyberspace without them.

What DID always bug me was the “locked down padded cell” that is called IOS. The fact you need Itunes for everything AND including scratching your behind. The fact you need a fracking cable to sync up content to a device that is directly connected to your network via Wifi … (I need not go down that rabbit hole, do I)

But then there is also the economical “strategy” that Apple is starting to roll out. Sure they want a cut for every song that is sold via the Itunes store. Sure they want a kickback for every app sold in their App store. Sure they want 30 percent of every piece of content that is sold THROUGH that app afterward…          Whoah , wait , WHAT  ? So as a developer I have to MAKE a “magazine app”, pray to the Big Steve in the Sky (He’s not there yet, but its a matter of time unfortunately) that my app gets in, give 30 percent to Apple for every copy of the app thats sold, but also need to give them 30 percent of EVERY COPY OF MY MAGAZINE sold via my App ?

Whats next ? Do I need to give Apple 30 percent of the income of my children ? Do i need to send them 30 percent of my doggies poop too ? Let me get out my checkbook then !

The thing that pisses me off ( yes, bad words ANOTHER thing Apple forbids in their walled garden ) is that Apple is rising to these insane, megalomaniac-like tactics. Only the underdog of the industry ten years ago, poo-poo-ing Microsoft for their “big evil corporate policies”, Apple is now rapidly becoming the “Louis 14th of their ever expanding technological archipelago” At what point did “fame and power” take an elevator ride to some corporate CEO’s head and set in motion this ridiculous strategy ? Sure, Apple is the cutest girl at the prom, Everybody wants to dance with her even though she is a stuck up bitch. But that doesn’t mean she gets to pick your pocket while dancing with her and get away with it ?

So I put my ear to the ground of the technological inter-sphere and wait for the thundering sound of protest. The ominous sounds of hundreds of developers, Apple consumers and content creators rattling out a million lines of protest on their keyboard.. But it remains horribly quiet. “Meh , whatever, its not like we have a choice” a stray developer shrugs at me.  I try my best to forget EVERYTHING i EVER learned in history class to prevent myself balking: ‘Don’t you see whats happening ?”

For slowly but surely history is repeating itself. In the real world, freedom is seldom taken, it is GIVEN away to the authorities. Power is seldom established, it is accumulated. Monopolistic closed source money hungry software companies seldom arise overnight… they grow incrementally because their consumers are “ok with it”.

For me personally, Apple has crossed the line. I’m not a hardliner who is going to denounce all Cupertino based products from now on, but I DO however speak out that I disagree with their policies and tactics. My personal protest against their  megalomaniac “30 percent of everything” will be to speak out AND to keep from walking into the proprietary trap. I’ll keep my Android phone close by, Will run Ubuntu on my Macbook and forgo the purchase of a DRM’d book for iBooks. But what is most important is that “I am aware and concerned” whats going on with Apple. I’ll be watching that stuck up pretty girl at the prom and frown if she treats people like crap. If they are ok with it, that is their prerogative. But as for me ? Sure, Ill buy her a drink, Sure, we’ll dance a bit.. But when she asks if she can have 30 percent of my good memories when I’m 45  ?? I’ll say .. screw you girlfriend !

And as an added bonus @podfeet just shot me the link to this PERFECTLY matching video 🙂


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Would you like to upgrade ?

We start of the day with a little Youtube video that oozes nostalgia. How about trying to upgrade through every version of Windows ever made, and see if you (and your operating system) survives. A pointless exercise  at best, and surely 10 minutes of your life you’ll never get back, yet it DOES have an air of nostalgia. I completely blew over the windows 3.1 era but did feel warm and fuzzy inside when looking at the windows 95 installation routine. Looking at the entire video its amazing how much still “works” after all those upgrades (over a period of more then 15 years of computing) and although we like to rib Microsoft a lot, it IS quite a feat to pull this off. It would be cool if somebody tried this with a version of OSX, or Linux someday. Enjoy ! 

 

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Kc249 "Storytime"

This week its time to sit back, relax and enjoy the ride as we turn to 1500+ word blogposts into 2 stories for you to enjoy. We frequently feature tech related blogposts on the site, but since we are notoriously bad at writing short posts and our readers have the attention span of a goldfish, its time to fix that problem. So this week we talk about “My Digital Day” an article that walks you through an ‘average day on the edge of real and cyberspace’ and “Its not a computer” : An article that makes you wonder just what the differences are between laptops, desktops, tablets, phones and mp3 players. So pull up your favorite java cup and enjoy this weeks … Storytime.

Shownotes.

Listen.

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