Firefox 3.6 a1: new CSS features, faster JavaScript

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On Friday, Mozilla announced the availability of the first Firefox 3.6 alpha release. It introduces several new features and brings a number of performance improvements to the popular open source Web browser.

Firefox 3.5 was officially launched in June, roughly one year after the release of Firefox 3.0. Version 3.6, which is codenamed Namoroka, is tentatively expected to arrive in 2010. Performance and customization improvements are a major part of the roadmap for Namoroka. Mozilla is also exploring some new user interface concepts that could be used to augment the tabbed browsing model.

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Minimal Mac Offers Lessons In Minimalism

Here’s a blog after my own heart: Minimal Mac is devoted to keeping your Mac as simple as can be, something I strive to do as far as possible.
A few minutes browsing Minimal Mac shows me I’ve still got a long way to go. I thought my desktop was minimal:
…but it turns out that real […]

Create images of full web pages in Firefox with Paparazzi

I use Paparazzi a lot to take screenshots of full web pages. I was copying the URL from the browser and pasting into Paparazzi then grabbing screenshot, but I discovered today that I could create a Javascript bookmarklet and assign it a keyword in Firefox to quickly grab the current web page. The magic works because Paparazzi injects the paparazzi: URL type into the system. As a result, anything you enter into a web browser like paparazzi: will grab the listed URL.

To take advantage of this behavior, I created a Javascript bookmarklet in Firefox then assigned it the keyword pz. Now every time I want to grab a web page in Paparazzi, I just load that page and then enter pz in the URL address bar. When I press Return, the page open in Paparazzi. Here’s the Javascript; copy and paste it into a new Firefox bookmark and assign it a keyword of your choice:


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Create custom spoken text alerts in iChat 4

In iChat 3, we had the ability to set spoken text alerts for certain actions, i.e. when someone logs in. However, this was removed in iChat 4, though it’s possible with AppleScript. For lack of a clear explanation of how to do this already on, I submit the following code:

using terms from application "iChat"
  on buddy became available bud
    say "whatever you want to say"
  end buddy became available
end using terms from

Save this as an AppleScript in your user’s Library » Scripts » iChat folder. Select a buddy in your list. Hit Command-I to open the Show Info dialog. In the Alerts tab, pick Run AppleScript from the pop-up menu, then select the file you just created. This is just a modification of a script I found here.

[robg adds: I’m not sure why the (anonymous) author claims that spoken text alerts have disappeared in iChat 4; they’re still availa…

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Push any email to the iPhone via third-party app

There have been several hints in the past, including these two of mine, with regards to using push email on the iPhone, or using MobileMe with custom reply-to entries, etc. A new application called PushMail ($5; App Store link) seems to me to be the ideal way of using push email (or any mail) on the iPhone. (I am not affiliated with this app at all; I’ve just been looking for an ideal iPhone push solution for a while, and this seems like it.)

Essentially, PushMail gives you your own new email address, something like Everything that gets sent to that address has a push notification displayed on your phone. The notificati…

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Apple allows matte screens on 15-inch MacBook Pros again

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Hooray for all us big-window dwelling Mac users! If you’re craving something other than Apple’s standard glossy screen, the anti-glare matte finish is an option again on the Apple Store for 15″ MacBook Pros. Except it’ll cost you $50 extra and replaces the black border with a silver one. Small price to pay for reducing eye strain, says I.

[via Engadget]

TUAWApple allows matte screens on 15-inch MacBook Pros again originally appeared on The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW) on Tue, 11 Aug 2009 09:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Apple to open stores in Augusta, Reston, Naperville

Apple is launching three new retail stores in the near future, two of which will debut on Saturday, August 15th. The first is in Reston, Virginia, with a 10AM Eastern opening time but few other details. It is located at 11900 Market Street, near Reston Town Center and the corner of Discovery….

RPGMapMaker 5.4.3 – Draw maps with polygonal grids.

RPGMapMaker is a tool for drawing maps with polygonal grids. In addition to having most of the capabilities of a real painting program (multi-documents, lines, rectangles, …, drawing with color and pattern, text, rubber, etc.), RPGMapMaker has also unique features that greatly simplify the building of RPG maps:

  • hexes or squares or lozenges Grids.
  • Ten layers static map. One layer for the grid, three pre allocated layers (one for color and drawing, one for terrain tiles and one for text and lines) and six extra layers.
  • Interactive maps. Static maps can be linked between each others like in a hyper text document.
  • Various dimension units: cm or m, km, ft, ya or mi.
  • Grid polygon color filling.
  • Predefined terrains tiles.
  • Terrains editor. Allows you modifying the terrain tiles.
  • Terrain Organizer. Allows you quickly reorganizing a terrain library and transferring tiles between libraries.
  • Random terrain generator. Allows you generating random terrains made of up to four different “regions”.
  • Random maze generator. Allows you generating random mazes, caverns and dungeons.
  • Fractal terrain generator. Allows you generating realistic terrains.
  • Line with arrows of various shapes. Also, you can add a distance between the ends of a line.
  • Drawing contexts. You can memorize up to 40 foreground colors, background colors and patterns for further use.
  • Textures. Allows you using textures instead of Drawing Contexts.
  • Selective drag or clear. Allows you specifying which map layer(s) you want to drag or clear.
  • Intelligent copy and paste. Allows you specifying which layer will interact with the clipboard contents.
  • Intelligent external drop. You can choose the portion of an external drop to insert into the chosen layer.
  • Multiple levels of Undo.
  • Models. Using a special script, you can create maps with a predefined appearance for the grid layer. In addition, you can further modify the script to alter the grid layer appearance.
  • Layer Scripts. You can attach a script to a layer. This script contains directives that allow you drawing into the layer as if you were using drawing tools.
  • Text Styles.

Classic Shooter Duke Nukem Kicks Alien Butt on iPhone

Here’s a game that 3D Realms has actually shipped. Duke Nukem 3D, the classic first-person-shooter from the mid ’90s, is available for the iPhone and iPod Touch.
3D Realms is famous of course for not shipping games. It’s follow-up to Duke Nukem — Duke Nukem Forever – has been promised for more than a decade, earning […]

BBC Radio Widget 4.03 – BBC Radio stations and schedule information live on Dashboard.

Listen to all 59 of the BBC’s national, regional and local radio streams, right on your Dashboard. Includes comprehensive live schedule information, Flash streaming option (option-click the “i” button) and even a RealPlayer workaround so you only lose a couple of seconds audio when leaving Dashboard.

This widget is completely free, but donations are gratefully accepted on the author’s website.

TuneBar 3.6 – Control iTunes the way you want to.

Control iTunes – Anywhere, Anytime

TuneBar is a easy to use application that allows you to access iTunes through any application on your computer. It is designed around the idea that it will take up only the minimal amount of screen space by sliding underneath the menu bar when not in use. This controller gives you access to the most fundamental features of iTunes such as Play/Pause, Back Track, Next Track, Volume and more from with in any running application on your computer.

Skip The Interface

Don’t want to stop working on your keyboard to control iTunes? No problem. Simply use one of TuneBar’s many customizable keystrokes to play, pause, switch tracks, set ratings, and even show and hide the TuneBar controller – no mouse required. If controlling iTunes was any more convenient, it would be telepathic.

Stay Up-to-date

TuneBar provides full integration of Sparkle, a popular component to many freeware and shareware applications for finding, downloading and installing updates to applications. With Sparkle now integrated into TuneBar, you can be sure that your copy of TuneBar will always be upto date.

Don’t Waste Space

Designed entirely around the principle that an application should use only a minimal amount of screen space, TuneBar uses a very small window when you want it – and reduces to a convenient menu bar icon when you don’t. Providing instant access to the basic iTunes controls and then some through an easy-to-reach window beneath the menu bar or a menu bar item, you can control iTunes and forget that it’s even open.

Try, Then Buy

TuneBar can be used for free in its entirety for a maximum of 10 days before requiring you to register, giving you ample time to decide whether it is worth the cost. At a mere $12, however, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a reason not to buy it. The registration will last forever, even with later and/or higher-priced versions of TuneBar.

Apple Reintroduces 15-inch MacBook Pro Matte Screen Option

Good news for those of you who were holding out for a matte screen option from Apple on something other than the most expensive, 17-inch MacBook Pro, and bad news for image and video professionals who already bit the bullet and picked up a 15-incher recently. Apple now offers a matte screen option on the 15-inch model.


The new customization option appeared sometime early this morning in Apple’s online store, and allows you to choose an “Antiglare Widescreen Display,” instead of the usual “Glossy” option, for an additional $50. For those unaware, the modification also rids your computer of the pretty black bezel that frames the notebook’s screen, and instead introduces a silver bezel that looks decidedly old school. Aesthetics aside, though, the antiglare option is reportedly a thousand times better for professional usage, and if you find the new glossy optical glass displays distracting.

This is a good sign that despite the a recent rash of anti-Apple sentiment even from normally vocal supporters, myself included, over App Store disappointments, Cupertino is still very much committed to giving its users what they want, at least on the hardware side of things. People clamored for the option, and Apple clearly heard the complaints and delivered. I suspect it’s willing to broaden the availability of that option to the 13-inch MacBook Pro, too, if demand appears strong enough and the introduction of the 15-inch option proves beneficial to its bottom line.

Even though Apple’s willing to grant you the antiglare option, it seems like it would rather you didn’t, as is clear from their wonderful little piece of subtle copywriting: “Choose a standard glossy display that lets you view graphics, photos, and videos with richer colors and deeper blacks, or an optional antiglare display.” Wow, they sure do make that antiglare display sound…optional.

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MLB Schedule 2.11 – Display baseball team schedules in your dashboard.

The MLB Schedule widget is a simple dashboard widget which provides a small glimpse at the course of any Major League Baseball team’s schedule. You can choose your favorite baseball team and the widget will display a five day range of both completed and upcoming games, providing information such as opponent, projected starters, TV channel, start time, game result, game score, winning pitcher and losing pitcher. You can even choose your time zone, to adjust the game start times.

VoiceQ ADR 1.8.5 – Professional cueing system for ADR and dubbing.

VoiceQ ADR is a fully digital ADR and Foley cueing solution. Scrolling text over video offers actors and technicians a frame-accurate cue for every word, every line, every time. VoiceQ works with Pro Tools to provide a truly unique ADR experience that enhances performance levels and reduces recording times. VoiceQ provides an abundance of simple easy-to-use features for all production and studio professionals freeing them to capitalize on their creative energies.

VoiceQ DUB 1.8.5 – Multilingual cueing system for ADR and dubbing.

VoiceQ DUB is a translation and cueing software solution for dubbing film and TV projects for international markets. Synchronized scrolling text over video offers talent and technicians a frame-accurate cue making the dubbing experience efficient, economical and effortless.

Clear on-screen display and cueing of lines facilitates continuous, speedy, and enhanced delivery by the voice talent. Working with ProTools, VoiceQ DUB harnesses the power of Apple Macintosh platforms and OSX providing an abundance of simple easy-to-use features for all dubbing and studio professionals.

VoiceQ DUB handles scripts in multiple languages and exports/prints a wide range of final reports.

Help Us Find a Quality Blogging App

I am a sad panda today. As you may or may not have noticed, three quarters of my big post on Apple vanished when I fixed a typo.
Why? Because I was using Blogpress, an iPhone blogging app that I had been enjoying. Here’s the thing: Blogpress has a show-stopping bug. It doesn’t correctly interpret […]