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November, 2007:

RadRails – Unable to detect ruby install on OS X Leopard

I installed the RadRails plugin for Eclipse and Aptana today.
On first start, it complains that it is “Unable to detect ruby install” on my Leopard macbook.

Now, I know ruby is installed and working so had to try and figure out the path to the ruby installation.

Took me a while to work it out, I thought it would be under /usr/.. but it’s actually here:


After adding a new RubyVM with this path everything was good again.

Incidentally, although Aptana is available on it’s own as an IDE (built with the Eclipse framework), I decided to use it as a plugin for a native Eclipse IDE. That way I just have one IDE for Java, C++ as well as RoR. Made sense to me.

I’ve only had a quick play with it but it already beats the bejesus out of my Notepad and command line setup on XP. 🙂

[tags]OS X, Mac, Eclipse, RadRails, Aptana, Ruby on Rails[/tags]


Taking screenshots on XP was always a bit of a pain in the ass. ALT+PrtSc, paste into MS Paint (I don’t get Photoshop at work and I never really got to grips with GiMP), crop, resize, save as jpg (unless XP had gone up the spout in which case it was a bmp), email to QA/Dev or add to the defect tracking system… <yawn>

A good few months ago, I read about a startup called Skitch. At the time I was a 99% XP user and they haven’t got a Windows version just yet.

I installed this to my Macbook a couple of days ago, it’s fricken ace. Not only is it quick and easy to grab screens, you can overlay text or other simple graphics (arrows, boxs etc..), export to pretty much any filetype and even upload to your own space hosted on their site. It’s brilliantly productive, infinitely better than anything i’ve used before.

Here’s a video that explains it all in less than 3 mins. I don’t know if the beta is public yet but my account says I have some invites if anyone wants to give it a test drive.

[tags]Skitch, OS X, Productivity, Switch To Mac[/tags]

Ruby on Rails, mySQL, Mongrel and OS X Leopard

For the majority of my RoR development, i’ve used a Windows machine running Instant Rails. Apparently, the Mac is the so-called “favoured platform” for Ruby on Rails development so i’ve been looking forward to getting rolling with this on my shiny Macbook. However, i’ve spent a couple of days scouring Google and Groups trying to find the optimum way to get everything set up and running. There isn’t much information where Leopard is concerned, most of the posts and articles are geared toward Tiger and involve building and compiling Ruby from source with XCode.

Well, i’ve got mine environment up and running so hopefully this will save someone else a bit of time. Of course, that does assume that i’ve done this all in the correct manner! Any corrections or updates welcome! 🙂 (more…)

Switching to Mac

After months of contemplation i’ve finally taken the plunge and picked up one of the new Santa Rosa based 13″ Macbook (2.2GHz C2D). I was tempted to go for the black one but TBH, it seemed a little excessive to spunk an extra £120 for just an extra 40GB and the blackness.
I was also a bit surprised at the cost of upgrading the RAM, they want £539.99 to increase from 1GB to 4GB! I’ve just ordered 2x2GB sticks from Crucial for <£90 delivered. Mental!

I’ve not really stumbled across any major problems TBH, except that it took me a while to work out the keyboard shortcuts for Copy (Apple+c) and Paste (Apple+v). I’m still stuck in the world of Ctrl+..!

Although my work laptop is going to have to stay, i’m going to start trying to use the MB at work more and just rely on XP for email (I prefer Outlook to Entourage).
Does anyone have any recommendations regarding iWork vs MS Office Mac? What about Open Office?

Any tips for a switcher greatfully received. 🙂

A more objective look at iPhone (part 3: A few more words)

I think i’ve covered and detailed most of my gripes with the iPhone in parts one and two and as mentioned, Apple could potentially bring this device inline with other ‘latest gen’ phones (such as the Nokia N95) –  at least from a usability and feature standpoint, very quickly with a software update.  (more…)

A more objective look at iPhone (part 2: Things the iPhone does well)

This is part two in the series, part one can be found here.

As I mentioned in the last post, I don’t want this to sound like a complete Apple bash of the iPhone. So here are some thoughts about the good side of the iPhone, going through by component.


A more objective look at iPhone (part 1: Things the iPhone can't do)

Having had my iPhone for nearly two weeks, now I was planning on writing up a bit more about my experience with the iPhone a little later in the week but have been spurred on by a post at BittubeBlog.

Let’s break it down into; Things the iPhone can’t do, Things the iPhone does badly, Things the iPhone does well.
I’m not sure i’ll get the time to write the whole article today so i’ll split it into three posts.

Things the iPhone can’t do (more…)

What sucks about the iPhone

1. No SMS delivery reports.
2. Predictive text input is US English not UK English.
3. Predictive text seems to slow me down more than speed up entry, because if it ‘offers’ a word you have to touch the ‘offered word’ to cancel it. Pressing space accepts the new word.
4. Can’t recieve MMS messages – WTF?! You are instead sent an SMS message containing a code to enter at http://www.o2.co.uk/m.
5. Cannot get images onto the iPhone without using iTunes. i.e. Cannot save images from webpages, cannot recieve MMS pictures.
6. Even with the crappy notion of paying for ringtones, this doesn’t appear to exist on UK iTMS yet.
7. The camera blows.
8. Even without 3g, the battery life doesn’t appear to be great.
9. Can’t send or receive anything over Bluetooth…..

iPhone (continued)

Whilst the iPhone is sync’ing up (gonna take a while to sync mp3s and photos), i’ve been perusing the myriad leaflets stuffed in the bag by O2.
This one is hidden away in the t’s & c’s under the information about credit checks, which is a bit of a strange place to put it:

Making unauthorised modifications to the software on you iPhone violates the iPhone software license agreement, and the inability to use your iPhone due to unauthorised software modifications is not covered under your iPhone’s warranty.

At the moment i’m not sure if i’ll bother with any forthcoming Jailbreaks, when they manage to exploit 1.1.2. I’m looking forward to the SDK next year though.

iPhone launched in UK (in case you didn't know)

I arrived at the local O2 store at about 17.45, having figured that the nearest Apple store to me would be rammed. Being a pretty small town I assumed that demand for an iPhone wouldn’t be massive. I was correct.
There were 5 people there waiting when I arrived, by the time the store opened at 18:02 (see what they did there pt. 1?) there were about 10 people inline.

The staff were friendly enough, giving out apples (see what they did there pt.2?), water and sweets whilst chatting away about the iPhone.
I wasn’t interested in the demos, I just wanted to pay and get home but they made each person watch a quick demo of the iPhone… yawn.

I managed to pick up a Contour HardSkin case for it as well. To the dismay of people behind me in the queue, the store only had 3 of them and only about 6 other cases (which were crappy leather type ones) so I lucked in there.

When released in the US, there were tales of activiation issues and delays so I wanted to get back before the initial rush of new owners swamping the O2/Apple servers.
It’s taken me literally 8 minutes, from the time I connected the iPhone to my Mac, to the time I got the activation email with my new cell number.

I’ve just sync’d my iCal and contacts and am about to have a play around.

So far, so good as far as initial experience is concerned. Gonna play around now before the g/f comes round 😀