Posts for #Mac

I’ve been fighting this for a while: alpine can open links just fine in Firefox, but when it’s an attachment I want to open (like the HTML part of a message), it fails saying that Firefox is already running and it can’t run another instance. First, I enabled the Prefer Plain Text option. The results are typically nicer than the rendered HTML. It’s easy to see the internally rendered HTML anyway, just use the A key in the message viewer. Now, when an HTML attachment is being opened, the confusing thing is that Firefox.app is automagically associated with the text/html mime type. On a real Unix system, /etc/mailcap will be the config file that sets this up, but this doesn’t exist on the Mac – no idea how this works really. Fortunately, alpine allows me to configure my own mailcap path, which I set to ~/.mailcap. Then I created that file with this line inside:

text/html; /usr/bin/open %s

Here’s a problem that a lot of people are having: iTunes supports gapless playback since version 7.x. Okay, admittedly there are also people who think it’s great – to clarify, my personal negative reaction to it is not strictly about gapless playback as such, but rather about Apple’s implementation approach. Apple seem to assume a number of things:

  • everybody needs it
  • the process of gathering all the required info is short, painless and unintrusive
  • their implementation is perfect and doesn’t have any bugs

As I wrote previously, I’m using a MacBook now for almost all my daily work. On that post I got some comments about the quality and general availability of software on the platform, so I thought I’d take stock after using it for a while and see what applications I use and where I haven’t found good solutions yet.

Writing, authoring, note taking and similar

On the Mac itself, I have remapped the caps lock key (does anybody actually use that thing these days?) to Command (that’s the key with the weird symbol… ah well, one of the keys with weird symbols!). I had always done the same thing on Windows, where it required registry changes, so I was positively surprised to find that on the Mac it’s just a system preferences option… Microsoft, here’s how you do that kind of thing:

Would you believe it, I got a MacBook recently. It’s fantastic, there’s no other way to describe it. OS X is amazing, Windows apps seem to run faster in VMWare Fusion than they do on native Windows, and the applications are just… well, can’t find any more superlatives. Holy cow! I’ll certainly post more about this in the future. I’m not planning on abandoning Windows, or .NET, or anything like that – on the contrary, I want to see what other platforms have to offer these days, be it for competition or compatibility. Mono is supposed to be able to run most Windows Forms apps these days, I hear… now I only need some time 😃 If you haven’t had a look at the Mac since they started building Intel based machines, go do so as soon as you can. You are really missing out.