Category Archives: Mac

OverDrive Media Console Incompatible with New Apple iOS 5

Overall my experience with the new Apple iOS 5 on my iPod Touch has been a positive one. All of the main applications on the device are compatible and the device is still quite responsive and snappy. There is one problem that I have however…

OverDrive Media will not transfer my audio books to the device.

I love getting audio books from our local library. For a very small yearly fee I have almost unlimited access to downloaded audio books and ebooks. Up until now the copy protection on the audiobooks has not been a problem. Unfortunately Apple’s update to their iOS has changed that.

The OverDrive Media Console software on my computer can not transfer audio books to my iOS device.

After updating my iOS device to version 5.0 of the software I have lost the ability to transfer audiobooks from my PC to my iOS device. It’s a real pain and has yet to be fixed. I have also updated iTunes to the latest version, also without success.

In it’s forums OverDrive has acknowledged the problem, but has yet to remedy it. They claim to be working on a new version of the application that will once again allow the transfer of copy protected audio books to Apple iOS devices, but so far I’m still waiting. The software version listed on their web-site is still the same version I have on my laptop.

Hopefully in the coming weeks they will come up with a fix, preferably before my current rental of “Crush It” by Gary Vaynerchuck expires and I go back in the queue waiting for it to become available again…

Adding the Date to the Menubar in Mac OS X 10.4

Would you like to see the date on your menubar along with the time?

Well this is how to do it…

Go to…
System Preferences
Date & Time
Open International (towards the bottom)
Choose Formats (middle option)
Go to Customise Dates
Choose how you want the date to look – like July 29 or Jul 29
Select all (CMD+A) and then copy (CMD+C), hit Ok
Choose Customise next to Times
Choose Medium format (this is the one OS X uses to display the clock in the menubar)
Paste (CMD+V) the date in next to the Time and click OK

You may have an additional Day of the week in the menubar – so it may read Mon, Mon – this is another setting… to change this go
System Preferences
Date & Time
untick “Show the day of the week”

Smultron vs Coda

Web Workflow

All web developers seem to have a slightly different workflow. Last week I set out on a journey to increase my web development productivity. I’m currently using OS X Leopard 10.5.4 on a iMac 2.1GHz G5.


Coda ScreenshotCoda‘, made by panic, is a ftp+text editor all in one. At first glance it appeared to be everything that I needed. It includes a built ftp client, css editor, subversion, Subetha Engine (which allows multiple people to edit a file collaboratively), and of course the editor. So I downloaded the 2 week trial and much to my surprise I was very impressed. The user interface is very nice and intuitive. New windows are opened up in tabs along the top (which I like but know others who hate that). Like most of these programs your remote/local file structure appears on the left side and the editor on the right. I got used to it very quickly. In fact my trial ran out 2 days ago and I have been struggling without it. The only downside is the $79 price tag, which is not a whole lot if this is what you do all day. I am a huge fan of open source, so I ventured off to find a free alternative. This is when I stumbled across the Smultron + Cyberduck marriage.

Note: If you’ve been trying to use coda with a mediatemple server and having problems with files not saving, make sure you’re using sftp. I’m not sure why this makes a difference but it it did for me. Files should upload quickly once you switch it over.

Coda Pros:

  • Well designed interface
  • Very intuitive
  • ftp built in
  • Collaborative editing of files

Coda Cons:

  • High price tag
  • Not as feature rich as something like ‘Textmate‘ for in depth web development

Smultron + Cyberduck

Smultron ScreenshotSmultron, made by Peter Borg, is a very simple but well designed text editor. It doesn’t have built in ftp so you will still need to use Cyberduck. I’m assuming most of you reading this will be well aware of Cyberduck, the free open source ftp client. Smultron fully integrates with Cyberduck allowing one click editing of any of your remote files from Cyberduck. Just use Cmd+s to save and your files are uploaded straight to your server. These two programs behave similar to Coda in this sense. The only downside being that you will have to use two programs to accomplish the same task. Smultron is a fairly basic editor and definitely doesn’t have some of the bells and whistles Coda has, but for the average coder it will do just fine. Remember this is the free solution so if your willing to  put up with this you can pocket that $79 and take your wife/girlfriend out for dinner.

Smultron Cyberduck Pros:

  • Free
  • Open Source
  • Easy to use
  • Does what its supposed to best, edit text

Sumltron Cyberduck Cons:

  • File structure does not appear within Smultron
  • Cyberduck is prone to crashing (at least on my computer)


Well I’ve been fairly even with both sides at the moment. I’d have to say that if money wasn’t an issue I would definitely go with Coda. It’s ease of use and the fact that it’s an all in one package is very attractive. I like seeing my file structure along the left hand side, something that Smultron lacks (you have to go to Cyberduck to see this). Having said that I will continue to use my Smultron Cyberduck combo until I can convince my wife to skip a date night and put the money towards Coda.

What does your workflow look like? Let me know if you have better solutions. I would love to hear from people who have used Textmate, CSSedit, TextWrangler, or any other OS X friendly text editors or ftp clients.

Nick Verwymeren+

Installing OS X without a functioning optical drive

I recently gave my old powerbook to my sister in law. I had a lot of information on it and so I planned to transfer all my files and do a clean install. One problem the dvd drive on my old powerbook is broken. It would continually spit the installation disk out. Fortunately I have another mac which was able to help with this.

So how do I install OS X when the dvd drive is broken?

1. Connect the two Macs by firewire cable. One will be the host for the DVD drive and one will be the target which you will install OS X onto.

2. Start up the target computer you plan to install OS X on in target mode by holding down T when you restart the computer. This will mount the target computer as a hard drive on the host computer.

3. Put the OS X installation disk into the Mac that is your host computer.

4. You can now either open the installer on the DVD which will prompt you to restart the host computer. Or you can simply restart and hold down C which will force the Mac to startup from the DVD.

5. Once you have started up from the installer DVD follow through the normal steps. You will then arrive at the option to choose the destination. Select the hard drive of the target computer. You will probably have to change the options if you are not doing an upgrade.

6. Once you have finished the installation shut down the host computer and disconnect the firewire cable. You can now restart the target computer which will startup with a newly installed OS X.

*Note: If you are installing OS X 10.3 (panther) or earlier you can not use an intel based mac to use as the host computer. Both the target and host computers will need to be powerpc based and vice versa if you are installing on an intel based mac.

iMac start up issue

Intel iMacThis morning we had a problem starting our Intel iMac. It was turning on but all that was happening was the white power light on the front was lit up. I tried the usual things like
unplugging all the peripherals – nope
unplugging everything and waiting 15 minutes and plugging the power, keyboard and mouse back in and trying – again nothing.

After a bit of searching around I found a possible solution which I found worked. Basically it was to unplug everything, remove the ram wait a few seconds. Put back together and hey presto it was up and running again.