Saturday, May 17, 2008

Pandora Widget

While trying to figure out how to embed Pandora Radio (and not having success, by the way), I realized a nice new place to keep Pandora. I usually open Pandora in a browser window and then leave it running in the backround, but then if I want to pause or skip a song I have to go find it among my many open windows. Sure you could put it in a tab blah blah blah. Let's pretend for this usage that you're like me and you don't really use tabs all that often. Safari's webclip feature (that little button between the X and the +) can grab the Pandora web app and store it nicely in the Dashboard, then the player is only an F12 away. The music functions seem to work fine, but some of the non-music buttons don't work. I imagine you could webclip from the normal Pandora page just fine, but I found that going from the actual app link was really easy. I found it by looking at the source code of the Pandora page (Menu>View>View Source). It's highly possible that the webclip could break at some point, which probably just means that the Pandora people updated their goods, so another clipping will need to be made. To keep the sound waves coming in and out of Dashboard, make sure you un-check the option "Only play music in Dashboard" in the menu of your new new Pandora Widget.

Update: Or you could use this ready-made widget. Psh.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Animated Rooms

Letter A from blu on Vimeo.

via Make

Sharing Is Caring

I love it when I think to myself, "Wouldn't it be nice if..." And then I google that idea and someone has implemented it. That's the best. One of those thoughts occurred tonight while conversing on Skype with my girlfriend, Stephanie. I told her I was listening to In Rainbows and then wished aloud that I could let her listen too. Then, courtesy of Google, I discovered SimplifiyMedia, a program designed to share iTunes libraries over the internet. It's a very clean implementation in iTunes. Stephanie's library appears in my iTunes under the shared tab as if she were on my local network. Outside of iTunes, SimplifyMedia runs similiarly to an IM client. Chatting is available and it indicates what music is being shared. The set-up only took a couple of minutes and was straight forward. The icing on the cake is that the program is free. I don't know how they do it, but I haven't gotten any pop-up "buy now" windows yet.

Tuaw liked it.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Can gCal and iCal Really Be Friends?

I had a realization. I use my Google calendar to keep track of some stuff and should use it more. Someone else I know uses iCal to keep her life in order. How nice would it be if I could see what she had going on and vice versa. A quick google and, sure enough, someone else has thought the same. In fact several people have. BusySync and Spanning Sync are two similiar programs that do that very thing, sync calenders. I'm using Spanning Sync right now and it seems to be working well. It's very simple. It operates in a system preference pane and the menu bar and so far has sync quickly and accurately. I'm currently in the fifteen day trial period, so when it runs out, I think I'll try BusySync. It has a thirty day trial. The main difference that I can see is that BusySync has an emphasis on syncing calenders over a local area network in addition to the features of Spanning Sync. I can't speak for the interface of BusySync because I haven't tried it, yet. The only other major difference is price. BusySync is $25 and Spanning Sync is $25 for a year or $65 for forever. They claim that that $65 will be good for all upgrades for forever, I'm not sure if the $25 to BusySync is good for all upgrades.


Spanning Sync

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Web-Based Voicemail

I started using a web-based voicemail service a couple of days ago, just to try it out. It's called YouMail and it's got some good features. The one I like the most the unique messages you can create for your friends that call you. When they go to leave you a voicemail, they'll hear a personalized message just for them. It's genius. The call-in interface is just as easy if not easier to navigate than my Verizon voicemail and all of the messages are available online as well. It's really easy to set up and only takes a couple of minutes. The only downside I can see, is that they text me whenever someone leaves a voicemail and that could put me over my text allotment for the month. If you try it, let me know what you think.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Turn Into An Extra Disk

I already liked, but then I read this blog post. It tells how to turn your Box account into a free iDisk alternative. It's really easy to set up, especially if you already have an account with Then you can drag and drop files to right from the finder! Enjoy. post