tony spencer » Switching to Mac It's Just Links Sat, 19 Oct 2013 14:31:31 +0000 hourly 1 Open Finder in Current Folder from Terminal Tue, 12 Aug 2008 01:37:57 +0000 tony Here is a super handy little trick that I know I’ll be using a lot from now on as I must have thought about it so many times in the past. You find yourself messing with some files in Terminal and the find the need to jump to the current location in Finder:

open .

So easy breezy.

open finder from bash

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Right-click on a Mac Sun, 27 May 2007 12:50:14 +0000 tony If you don’t have a 2 button mouse connected to your Mac laptop there are only 2 other ways to perform a right click:

1. Hold down the Control key while you click
2. Click and hold down your click for a second or two

BUT today I discovered a much nicer version for when I’m on the road and not hooked up to a real mouse. You can tap the trackpad with two fingers for right-click. To enable it on your Mac go to System Preferences, click “Keyboard & Mouse”, and select “Tap trackpad using two fingers for secondary click”. Voila!
Right Click on a Mac

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Getting a tan in the office with the Apple 30″ Cinema Display Thu, 22 Feb 2007 15:47:16 +0000 tony Its the little… err… humongous things in life that make us happy. If you witness this thing in real life you won’t be able to resist it. Consider yourself warned. :)

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Parallels… Another reason to love my Mac Mon, 09 Oct 2006 03:12:02 +0000 Tony I went to the Raleigh ruby on rails group hack night last week with David Black and had a good time chatting with local programmers. I spotted someone with a MacBook Pro and headed over to ask for some advice on how to get lighttpd running properly. Not only did Jared of No Fluff, Just Stuff help me with a better choice of RoR web server (he suggested Mongrel and after spending a weekend with it I whole heartedly agree) but he also sold me on the whole Parallels thing.


Once I switched to Mac I really never had any desire to waste any of my precious disk space on Windows. I use Remote Desktop to take care of my few Windows needs. However RDP often fails to work properly and is slow. So when Jared showed me how freaking fast and reliable and how little disk space a Windows XP install took on Parallels I was convinced. Its crazy. Boot XP in 30 seconds, in FULL SCREEN mode and it feels like you are on the fastest PC available. Not only that but you can boot just about any OS such as SusE or Fedora in Parallels.

Important one: It functions way better if you follow this tip from Jared (reply to my question about two mouse pointers and slow response):

Regarding the double cursor..

Load the Windows VM, then make it a partial window (via [alt]+[Return]).

Then, from the menu bar, go to VM/Install Parallels tools. I think that takes care of it. They enhance various OS level integrations.

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More Macbook Pro Battery Recall Info Fri, 02 Jun 2006 16:27:37 +0000 Tony A couple of nights ago I came home from work and broke out my Macbook Pro and ran on battery power. The battery was fully charged from being plugged in all day. Five minutes later the machine died with no warning. I pressed the power switch, the machine began to boot up but crashed again after just four seconds. I checked the physical battery indicator and it was telling me that I had zero charge.

I googled for any other people in the same boat and found that many people are experiencing this with the early revs of the machine and that Apple is silently recalling these batteries that stop holding charge. So I called Apple, explained the situation but didn’t mention that I had read about the silent recall. The support agent asked for my battery serial number and is now shipping me a replacement. My serial number doesn’t match the factory of the previous story so I guess its more widespread than previously thought.

Here is my MacBook Pro 15 inch battery serial number: 6N6085

macbook pro battery

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Tab Skips Select Form Fields in Mac Browsers Tue, 02 May 2006 18:44:47 +0000 Tony This has been one of those super annoying things about switching to the Mac OS X. When filling in a form on a web page I like to use the tab key to advance to the next form field. This allows me to avoid picking up the mouse and making my carpal tunnel any worse than it currently is. Unfortunately when tabbing in a form, it always skips over select lists such as a drop down list of states therefore I have to pickup the mouse. Ugg. This is the case in both the Safari and Firefox (Deer Park) browser.

keyboard tab form fields

Here is the solution: Open up System Preferences, click ‘Keyboard and Mouse’, and select the option “All Controls” at the bottom of the window next to “In Windows and Dialogs press Tab to move the keyboard focus between”.

It even works for dialog boxes such as javascript popup confirmations.

Oh happy day! I’m starting to truly feel like this Mac really can do everything that I could do on my PC. Its just a matter of learning all the tricks.

Pssst– Hey Apple. Make this one default.

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Firefox Universal Binary Deer Park is Blazing Fast Tue, 04 Apr 2006 04:18:56 +0000 Tony deerpark
I’ve been kind of bummed lately because I felt like Firefox was pretty sluggish on my Macbook Pro. I was certain I had installed the univeral binary build but tonight I really began to suspect I had not selected the native code. Firefox seemed really slow and it was using a large chunk of memory (250MB). So I killed Firefox, dragged it to the Trash Can (gotta love that :) ), and downloaded the latest build of the native Firefox universal binary codenamed Deerpark. Immediately I realized that indeed I did not previously select the UB because the icon was different.

I fired it up and tried a few sites. Amazing! This thing is screaming fast even with my extensions installed. I swear its faster than Safari and certainly faster than Firefox on my phatest PC. Also memory usage dropped to 50MB. Deerpark only takes about 1 second to start versus about 7 seconds on the non-native build. The best part is that all my extensions and bookmarks remained entact. I love you Steve Jobs.

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Boy Meets Macbook Pro! Fri, 03 Mar 2006 04:32:35 +0000 Tony It happened. After 5 days of calls to the Apple store in NY I discovered that they received a shipment of Macbook Pro’s this afternoon. I got the fix I needed. I hopped on the R line and prayed the stock would last long enough for me to reach SOHO. When I arrived, a very friendly sales rep named Jeremy told me they received a few hundred just an hour ago and their were only 10 left. I was lucky enough to snag a 2.0 Ghz model. Here I am sealing the deal 10 minutes after walking in:

I was very anti-social and immediately left my friends that came with me to SOHO and took this sucker home for NotSleepy configuration.

Here is a photo of the machine booted in my hotel on the last night of the SES conference:

I need a name for her. Any suggestions?

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My Name is Tony and I’m a MacBook Pro Addict Thu, 23 Feb 2006 18:00:20 +0000 Tony macbook pro
Ok, to be absolutely clear I don’t actually have a MacBook Pro. I have ordered one (we’ll actually three) but I am in an agonizing queue that I cannot see the length of. Yes three. This is how bad my addiction to this beautiful machine has become. After pouring over the first reports of folks who had received shipment confirmation early, I made the assessment that some configurations were shipping sooner due to their higher cost and lower demand so in addition to my 1.83GHz order I also placed an order for a 2.0GHz and the highly overpriced 2.16GHz model hoping to increase my odds of getting one sooner. Perhaps even more shocking behavior is that I’ve actually gone so far as to install the bloody Yahoo messenger in the event that I might receive an update email from Apple.

I scour the forums for more info on the MacBook Pro. The Apple store at Southpoint is getting sick of my phone calls. I’m hiding my frequent order status checks from my wife. I’ve even begun checking my American Express card for authorization of funds. How did I get like this? I’m even a Windows person!

I’m a Macbook Pro addict and I need help.

Off to call the shops in NY. Screw SES panels. I need my Mac.

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