New MacBook Pro (Retina Display)

I decided to buy a new MacBook Pro last night and ended up with the Retina Display model. I really did not care too much about the display – I was more interested in the flash storage. In the end – I found myself really surprised and impressed with the Retina screen. Going from that to my first ten iPad was like taking my contacts out – the picture much less crisp.

With each computer I buy (since the mid nineties) I name it after it’s Apple given codename. Between the speed of this computer and Time Machine – it took me longer to find the codename than to get it completely set up. So far, so good…and no water in sight.

Overall – I am glad I went for the Retina display and look forward to having it on all my devices.

How to Transfer Purchases in iTunes

Ever need to transfer your purchases from your iPad or iPhone from one computer to another? After getting the alert multiple times I figured it was time to learn. To transfer your purchases – you need to control click on your device (after connecting it to the computer you want to transfer the items to) in the iTunes “Device” list and then select “Transfer Purchases…”

More information: http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1848

Migrated From MobileMe to iCloud

I made the jump yesterday to update my 4 Macs and my iPad to use iCloud/iOS5 instead of MobileMe. While I have liked MobileMe and found it very useful – I look forward to what iCloud will offer. I often delay in updating my blog and/or my kids’ blogs because the photo is on a different computer or on one of my iPhones/iPads instead of on the computer I am using for the post. With iCloud – I will have access to everything from all my devices. I have seen some slight hiccups along the way – mostly with Mail, but overall – I am looking forward to using this and keeping everything up to date…effortlessly. Finally. Nice work Apple!

iTunes Screensaver in Mac OS X

I generally use the Cosmos screensaver but I recently decided to check out some of the other options. I really thought the iTunes screensaver looked cool – as it shows all your cover art. I then accidentally hovered over one of the album covers and noticed I could actually click on it and switch the current iTunes song. Super cool and a nice touch Apple. I just wish I would have stumbled onto this earlier.

PS – how did I take a screenshot of a screensaver? I opened my System Preferences, clicked on “Desktop and Screensaver”, held down command and shift, clicked in “Test” under screensaver and hit the number 3 to take a full screenshot.

New Mac Mini

Say hello to the latest Mac in my family: the 2011 Mac Mini.

And now for the interview with myself:

Why the Mac Mini and not the Mac Pro?
The Mac Pro is overkill for what I do. I spend half my day working with web browsers and the other half working with a simple text editor. Not to mention – the Mac Mini – for the price can be replaced just about every year for 1-2 years vs. buying a new Mac Pro every 3-4 years. I also love the size of the Mac Mini.

Why not an iMac?
I have two great working displays – that I do not just want to then sit around.

Codename is?
I name all my computers after their initial code name while being developed. This new one is “Brick”. “Brick” will be replacing “Kaleidoscope”.

Anything of interest to note?
This is the first “standard issue” Mac I have purchased in 10 years. I simply had enough of the slowness of my current Mac Mini and decided to just go to the Apple Store and buy something that minute. This is also the first Mac I have owned that does not have an optical drive (big step that I am happy to see!). Eight minutes left for the data transfer (thanks Time Machine). There is a dialog box in the photo above – yeah…I am on a computer without Photoshop and also feeling like I would rather spend time with the new computer than adjusting.

Sample Video Files

There usually comes a time when working on a project where I need to show the client how a particular video plugin works. I sometimes will do a quick Google search to find a sample video file to put in – but today when searching for a “sample MP4 video” – I found something extremely helpful: QuickTime: Sample files. There are sample files in the following format to use:

  • H.264 (for iPod models with video capability)
  • Animation
  • MPEG-4
  • 3GPP
  • 3GPP2
  • MPEG 2
  • Sorenson

Thanks Apple for making these available. My search for sample video content just got a lot easier!

Looking For Inspiration for Over 12 Years: Apple.com

Over the past 12 years (I remember starting to look to Apple for great web design back in 1999) – I have often looked to Apple’s web site for best practices in navigation (top/tabbed), general layout, and usage of imagery when thinking about designing web sites for myself or my clients. I have to admit – in the last year or so I have not gone to Apple’s web site to really spend time looking at what they have done new, until this morning. Look for some proof of this time spent in my next WordPress premium theme.

It did not take long to realize Apple still does web design right. Everything is extremely clean, easy to navigate, the imagery is beautiful, and even the text looks amazing. Apple does a great job of spacing everything, adding in just enough cool javascript (sliders/slideshows, etc) to make everything extremely clean and perfectly executed.

Next time you are thinking about creating a design – take a few minutes and zip around the Apple web site. You cannot help but to be inspired. They have put in an amazing amount of time to piece together something that is truly amazing and I am sure will continue to do so in the years to come.

My iPad

My iPad…do I love it? Yes.
Is it everything I imagined? Yes.
Is it better than expected? Yes.
Is the keyboard easy to use? Yes.
Do I love it? Oh my yes.
Am I using it now for this post? Yes!

Beautiful work Apple. I best describe this as “the future”.

Ahh, the iPad

Well – I have been holding my breath since the death of the Newton (10+ years ago) for something like the iPad and the day is finally here.

Will I get one? For sure!

Even the first version? Yes!
(Even though Ben usually gets screwed with version 1 of Apple products – my favorite all time Apple products have been version 1 (my beloved Blue & White, iPhone, Mac Mini, and the Bondi blue iMac)

Will I stand in line for it? Possibly – depends on the weather.

What do I love about it?

  1. I have been thinking about getting a new laptop for the kitchen or the livingroom – just something to have around to check email and look things up on the web. Now I can get something cool and cheap!
  2. I travel a lot…and with a 3 year old. My iPhone has been great for him (photos, games, videos) – this will be better.
  3. I can easily watch my favorite episodes of Modern Family now anywhere, any time – very easily – on a great display.
  4. The price. How amazing was that – to be completely shocked with the low price (usually Apple shocks you the other way)
  5. Ken will have some crappy complaint(s) about it and I will laugh and laugh as I enjoy mine and watch him get one a few years later 😉

I think Apple did a great job with the initial release and look forward to buying one soon! I really think this is exactly what my grandparents need as well (and my parents if they had high speed or wifi).