I received an email (and a tip submission; thanks ppmax!) with a press release from Maya about a new free version of Maya, a $7,500 animation system. Here's a snippet from the release:
San Francisco - January 7, 2002 - Alias|Wavefront today announced that it is developing the Maya Personal Learning Edition which will provide users of Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows with unlimited, free access to Maya. Maya Personal Learning Edition will give 3D graphics and animation students, current industry professionals, and those interested in breaking into the world of computer graphics (CG) an opportunity to explore the award-winning Maya Complete software, in a non-commercial capacity. Maya Personal Learning Edition will be available in February of 2002.
If you've never seen Maya in action, it's simply amazing. I spent quite a bit of time near their booth at MacWorld, just watching what this software can do. It's certainly not something you'll pick up in five minutes' usage time, but it is a very powerful package that can create some very powerful visuals. This new Personal Learning Edition is a great way to get your feet wet without first writing a very large check!
If you're interested, Alias|Wavefront has an information page on their site where you can sign up for an email reminder when the Personal Edition is available for download. I can't wait to try this package out for myself...
touch, a terminal command, is a useful utility for changing the create dates on files before importing to iPhoto. By changing the create/modified date, you can change the date information that will display in iPhoto and where it will put the photo once imported. Open a terminal and type:
touch -t [[CC]YY]MMDDhhmm[.SS]] FILENAME
Used in conjunction with wildcards such as * or *.jpg for example this can make it easy to get photos imported with the proper dates.
This can be quite useful for changing the file dates on files that were burned to CD at a date much different than when they were shot. Fine tweaking of the time will impact the way the photos sort if you sort by date.
From my experience you can't simply move photos within iPhoto's structure. If you get them in with the wrong date you'll have to copy them out to another folder and then re-import them.
iPhoto has a default that can be used to change the location of the photo library in a fashion similar to the way iTunes can change the location of the music library.
For iPhoto, this is of critical importance in that any image added to iPhoto is copied into the library (unlike iTunes, which simply stores a pointer to the original file). Considering what can be done with an image in the library, this makes a lot of sense -- it will make more sense once Apple supports multiple libraries in a more traditional multi-document application approach.
To change the default file store location, go to terminal and type:
Unsanity has done it again. Xounds is a system prefs pane that brings back much (but not all, as of yet) of the functionality of Appearance Sound Sets from OS 9.
This $7 shareware package installs easily as a preference panel, and brings back the various clicks, wooshes, buzzes and beeps when you open, close, move, click, drag, or otherwise take some action. In looking at some "top" output while doing some outrageous stuff like dragging across the menu and back, I never saw Xounds anywhere above about 2% of the CPU usage, and most of the time it was well under 1% (this was on a G4/733).
The program even contains a link to soundsetcentral.com, where you can download additional soundsets for use with Xounds.
Unsanity has released a number of fun and/or useful utilities recently, including FruitMenu, DockDetox, and WindowShade. They do what they claim to do, they're easy to install and remove, and they are priced very reasonably - nice work!
One of the things broken by 10.1 (and for me, at least, has yet to be fixed) was the ability to mount your iDisk directly from the Finder's Go menu.
Not so in SNAX. My iDisk mounts quickly and painlessly from the Snax Go menu. It even harvested the login information from my Internet preferences.
[Editor's note: My iDisk seems to mount fine via both WebDAV (ie the Finder toolbar method) and using command-K (ie via AFP). But if you're having troubles, try SNAX and see if it gets the job done for you.]
Loek Jehee has released a free AppleScript Studio project which enables the easy combining (or splitting) of files. Typically, you'll run into multiple-part files if you've downloaded a large binary file from a newsgroup. Using Split&Concat, you can easily recombine the parts into one complete file.
Loek's looking for beta testers to help him find any possible bugs and improve the product; if you're interested in helping, there's an email address on his web page.
Unsanity has released a 'haxie' (their term for an OS X hack) to take care of the #1 help request here at macosxhints.com -- disabling bouncing dock alert icons!
If you're tired of the Mail.app icon bouncing onto your screen when it can't connect, or the Explorer icon bouncing to let you know a page has changed, you need Dock Detox. It quickly and easily disables the bouncing dock icons (except for Classic applications), and best of all, it's free!
If you decide you don't want it any more, simply log out and log in again and it's gone (I imagine you could also kill its process ID, but I haven't tried this).