Here's something I found out when playing my new Spiderman game under OS X. The game, like many others, requires you to have the CD in the tray to play the game. This is a pain, and it's a tad slower.
So, to override this, I opened up Disk Copy. Disk Copy allows you to copy a disk and make it into an image file. First select Image -> New Image from Device within Disk Copy. Next, and this is the tricky part, find the CD-ROM drive in the list of "disk..." entries in the dialog box. You're looking for something like "CD_ROM_mode_1" under one of the disclosure triangles. Click the name once you find it, and then click the "Image" button. Choose a destination drive for the image and then wait.
Once the image creation is complete, you can just mount the disk and open the game! Spiderman (and other games) think that it is the actual CD. This is handy if you have another CD in the tray and have enough disk space.
[Editor's note: It's also handy if you travel with a PowerBook and don't wish to carry around a number of CDs during your travels!]
Lets get this straight first, whether or not you like Explorer...you gotta hate the spinning "e".
There are some great throbbers at resExcellence and instructions on how make them and to put them into OS 9 but I didn't know how to do it in OS X. My thanks to the forum here (in this thread) and "ChaChi" for pointing me in the right direction.
You will need a copy of ResEdit (from ResExcellence) and ResConv (free from Black Diamond). Once you have these, read the rest of the article for the instructions.
You can print images from lots of apps, but many will want to print images based on how large they think they should be and are usually not optimal. Browsers and Preview are among those applications. However opening an image in Quicktime and printing from it will scale images to fill the printed page.
[Editor's note: I have not verified this myself, as my printer is currently awaiting a new ink cartridge!]
For those that don't know about it, Console.app is an application that allows you to monitor activities written to the system log (and other logs). It has a subtle feature which is very handy...
After you start Console.app, just do "Hide Console.app" from app menu. When an event occurs, Console.app appears automatically and stays for two seconds to allow you to read what happened, then re-hides automatically.
You can change how long the windows remain on-screen in the Console.app preferences screen.
[Editor's note: I just noticed that Quake3 writes the game logs to the console.log file ... I'm not sure if that's a bug or a feature! ;-)]
This past weekend, I was looking to show my wife the new iMac at The Computer Store, my favorite local dealer. We had no luck with the iMac (later this week, they hoped), but they did have the [drool] dual 1ghz machine - very nice!. On the way out, I noticed that Aspyr's Spiderman game had been released. This game is based on the Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 engine, and has some interesting visual effects. Showing my background has a gamer and OS X supporter, the "Supports OS X" sticker on the box was enough to sway my purchase decision :-).
When I tried to install it, though, I thought I had made a Bad Decision. When you run the installer, it will look like it's hung up - all you see is the spinning beach ball. I would have force-quit it and become a little angry with Aspyr, except I happened to have a Finder window open to the target Games directory, and I noticed a "Spiderman" folder there while the installer was still spinning the beach ball. Opening it revealed that files were continually being added, so it was obvious the installer was doing something. A few minutes later, it finished normally. There should obviously be some sort of progress indicator in the installer!
This same glitch affects the game itself at times - when Spiderman goes to load a new level or new video, you won't see anything other than a black screen for up to 30 seconds or so. Eventually, though, the video will change and things will continue normally.
Outside of the installation and in-game lack of progress bars, I've had no problems with the game and it's quite fun (the semi-transparency when you're crawling along a roof is very interesting). There's even a kids-mode that makes it easier for young players to control the character and progress through the levels.
After reading the previously published tip about hiding iMovie while rendering, I decided to see if there were any changes with iDVD. I started 'top' running after iDVD began encoding, and noticed two processes using most of the CPU time: EncoderSer and iDVD. Both were using around 50% CPU on a DP500. After hiding iDVD, it's usage dropped to 2% and the EncoderSer jumped to 163%.
I found Little Dutch Moose (a shareware utility) on Versiontracker, downloaded it and installed it. If you're running apache on OS X, it adds a system preference pane that automatically adds IPs to the built-in firewall if the IP asks for certain files or directories (system32, WINNT,etc) which are characteristic of Windows worm viruses - things like "Nimda" and "Code Red", for example. By blocking IPs from these infected hosts, your bandwidth is saved for actually serving your pages.
Nice interface and logs. In addition to shutting out some bandwidth hogs, it makes my referrer log and error log cleaner.
If you want to replace the standard Microsoft search sites, in the search bar, with one of your preferred, such as Google, it is possible. What you need to do is edit the Localized.rsrc file in the "Internet Explorer.app -> Contents -> Resources -> English.lprog" folder (control-click on the app and pick "Show package contents"); if you are not using English, then you should open up the appropriate directory for your language. Don't forget to make a backup copy of the file!
Now with a copy of QuickConvert, flip the resource and the data forks. Next, open the file in ResEdit, open STR# resource 1000 (it has the name "Shared Strings" ). Now edit entry 470 and change it to http://www.google.com/ie.
While you are at it you can edit entry 344 to take the value http://www.google.com/search?q=%s . This will enable you to use Google for your address bar keyword searches.
Save the file, run QuickConvert on the file, to reflip the forks and the start up Internet Explorer. Now your search bar should be showing the Google search page.
[Editor's note: I have not tried this one, and I'm not likely to as I don't use IE. If you get this modification working, let us know...]
Anybody have a mouse they want to work better? I have a MS Trackball Explorer, and I love it......now. Microsoft has been slow to deliver an OSX driver for it, but now, thanks to Alessandro Levi Montalcini there is an anwser. It's a universal USB mouse driver (and soon to work on game pads also). This program works awesome, even though it's still in beta. A little pricey at $20, but head on over to usboverdrive.com and give it a try. Really really awesome work.
[Editor's note: If you have an unsupported multi-button mouse, USB Overdrive can give those third, fourth, and fifth mouse buttons customized functions in OS X!]