Life, Technology, and Meteorology

Month: June 2004

WWDC Keynote

Well, one of the few things here at WWDC I can talk about here on my blog is the Keynote address. Most people have probably already heard the news. New hardware was kind of scarce except for the new LCD displays that were announced. I must say that after seeing the new 30″ monitor up close, I was awestruck. This display is incredible and would be a welcome addition to my desktop if it was a tad more affordable. 😉

On the flip side, good software announcements have been plentiful. Tiger looks like it will be a nice OS upgrade with the Core Image and Core Video libraries. I’m sure the Konfabulator developers aren’t too happy about the new Dashboard functionality in Tiger, though it looks like Dashboard will be a welcome addition to the OS. Hopefully the Konfabulator developers will find features that add a lot of value to their software over what Apple offers.

Overall, it’s been a great conference so far and I’m looking forward to the rest of the week.

WWDC Next Week!

Well, tomorrow morning, I’m taking off to San Francisco for WWDC next week. For some reason, when I ordered the airline tickets, a 7am flight didn’t sound so bad…but having to wake up at 4:30am tomorrow morning isn’t something I’m looking forward to. 🙂

Something I am looking forward to is the conference. I registered for the Cocoa tutorial on Sunday, which sounds like it will be good. Even though I’ve been programming in Cocoa for a couple of years, it will be interesting to see different methods of doing things. The hope is that my next app will have more polish than XRG does, which is my first serious Cocoa application.

I’m also looking forward to the WWDC Weblogger Meetup on Monday evening. I posted about the Meetup a month or two ago when it was first being organized. It will definitely be cool to meet some of the other Mac Developer bloggers out there and have a good dinner to boot.

If anyone out there is going and want to meet up, send me an email!

Sun Ultra 10

I’m a big fan of classic computers. Even though I’m not too nostalgic of a person, there’s something about older computers that really gets to me. My first Mac was a Mac 512Ke, which my dad still has packed away at home because we couldn’t bring ourselves to part with it. There’s also a Mac II somewhere at my parents’ house along with the current family computer, a G4 Cube. A few years ago, I purchased a Mac SE/30 for $5, and that’s probably the best $5 I ever spent.

Well, when leaving Ephibian yesterday, I asked if they wanted part with any of their old Sun boxes. They had an Enterprise 450 and an Ultra 10 that haven’t been turned on for over a year (Ephibian is mostly a Linux shop now). Well, they ended up offering me the Ultra 10 at a very low price, and I didn’t hesitate on taking it.

It’s not an entirely impractical purchase like the SE/30 probably was. I need to get a new server for Gaucho Software, and I think this Ultra 10 will be enough of a box to do it. It has a 300Mhz UltraSPARC IIi chip in it, 384Mb of RAM, and two hard drives (4Gb and 3Gb), which I plan to replace soon. I spent most of last night doing a fresh installation of Solaris 7 on it. It’s interesting to see just how bare-bones of an OS Solaris is; even gcc and top don’t come standard, and bash which seems to have taken over as the shell of choice had to be installed separately as well. Personally, I’m a tcsh guy, so I’ll be installing that when setting up my user environment, after I finish installing all the primary packages that I want on there.

One thing I still need to think about is what desktop environment I’ll be using on it. My current favorite is KDE, but that seems like it will be too resource intensive and though I’m sure it will run, it isn’t really practical for this machine. In the past I’ve used GNOME, Enlightenment, WindowMaker, and even TWM (which is no longer maintained) on a SPARC 5 back in the day. At this point, I’ll take anything over CDE, which comes standard. I’ve never understood why Sun and HP both decided on bundling CDE as their primary desktop environment.

Finally, does anyone remember XEarth? I was browsing SunFreeware and came across it. Where are the apps for like this for Mac OS X today? Granted, there are some very nice shareware offerings, but I have yet to find one that is freeware like XEarth.

Recent Happenings…

Well, it’s been awhile since I’ve had a chance to write here, mostly because I have been really busy lately. As some of you may know, Katrina and I will be moving cross-country in July. Katrina has just completed her Ph. D. in Mathematics at the University of Arizona, and accepted a job opening as a professor at Central Michigan University. Come July, we’ll be moving to the small town of Mt. Pleasant. A couple of weeks ago we flew out there and purchased a house, and we are both pretty excited about the move.

What will I be doing in Michigan? Well, I’m taking this opportunity to start my own software company called Gaucho Software. I’ve had a lot of success with XRG, and believe that I will be able to create more useful software applications for Mac OS X. Look for a new application to be released sometime later this year.

So now I’m in a transitional period. Yesterday was my last day at Ephibian, where I have worked for almost 4 years now. I plan to take advantage of having some time off before WWDC at the end of this month and the big move after that.

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