Month: January 2009

LaCie 4Big RAID running silent

LaCie decided it must be over with noisy RAID systems and they promptly developed an external RAID disk system that is much quieter than the competition. The 4Big was designed by LaCie's house designer, Neil Poulton. It looks great, weighs in at about 7 kilograms and offers a complete RAID solution.

Apple Keynote ‘09

When Apple releases new software, it's almost always perceived as less interesting or compelling than when they announce new hardware. In a sense that is understandable, but it is a pity. The latest iWork '09 productivity suite is a fine example of why that is a pity. All applications in that software suite have been given quite powerful new features and improvements. Keynote '09 is no exception.I’m not going to repeat what the new features in Keynote ‘09 are. You can see them in action on Apple’s iWork pages yourself. What I’ll try to do is give you an idea of how important these features are. The new Theme Chooser, for example, doesn’t look very new until you hover your mouse over the thumbnails—the Theme Chooser is new for all iWork applications, by the way. As you move the mouse across the thumbnail, the Theme Chooser shows you the thumbnail for every template page in a template. That cuts down on time and on guesswork; you’ll know exactly what to expect before opening the template, …

Labels and Addresses 1.1

Belight Software's Labels and Addresses started life as MailFactory, but this new application has a lot more going for it. It has barcodes that can be automatically numbering up by connecting them to a counter, smart shapes, mail merge capabilities that look for Address Book, Entourage, or FileMaker data (and more) and a great set of features to produce the best looking labels possible. Labels and Addresses is now better than SOHO Labels.With MailFactory I had the feeling the application was developed in a sloppy way. For example, Dymo labels would print, but they never would print exactly where I wanted them. MailFactory also was quite limited in its capabilities. When I compared MailFactory to SOHO Labels at the time, I gave MailFactory a rating that was less than SOHO Labels. But SOHO Labels had its own quirks. The HUDs were more of a nuisance than a help, the program would frequently crash and barcode and other capabilities were all a bit constrained—perhaps to have something in reserve for subsequent upgrades? After working with SOHO …

Things 1

Things made it to its first release a couple of days ago. Things is competing with OmniFocus and every other GTD application for the Mac. It has a good chance of conquering a big chunk of the market. The reason: Things looks good, has a very well balanced feature set and never intrudes. It's also totally not complicated.What would people need most in a To-Do manager? Getting Things Done (GTD) compliance? Or just the right features to actually use the software and be able to manage tasks and responsibilities? One category of people will insist on GTD compliance. They believe the hype despite of the fact that we don’t need a crystal ball to know that in a couple of years some study will tell us GTD was useful, but not as useful as the GTD gurus would made us believe today. Another category of people just wants to move on with their lives and be able to create some kind of order in the chaos of yellow stickies at the sides of their computer …