Monthly Archives: January, 2005

Patent Pending

This is a great blog for anyone interested in inventions or patents or both. Thanks to David Orange for the link.

Gaining my religion: seeing the light of Mac – The Unofficial Apple Weblog –

From an article by Barb Dybwad: Gaining my religion: seeing the light of Mac:

Evans lists the primary strengths of the Macintosh computer as being usability and good looks. Both are absolutely true and yet, both are also so often used as arguments *against* the Mac, which is portrayed as losing a war in which the only salient metric is functionality. Usability and ‘style’ are seen as secondary considerations when in the market for a personal computer – as if packing more and more difficult to use features into a dull, utilitarian box is the only way to the top of the heap.
This is absolute hogwash, as the success of the iPod clearly demonstrates.

Mac Mini

So, the Mac Mini is out. The line is that Apple can make it smaller and better than most PCs because they make the whole thing:

Mac Mini picture

From $499. (Costs about a third more if you buy it in the UK.) Very cool. This and a few other tasty new things at Apple’s site.

Nature’s structures…

…and man’s.

Cranes and trees


In Seattle again – snow has been forecast for the last two days but hasn’t arrived.

Meanwhile, at the Happels’, dinner time is very cosy.


My friend Seb has done a nice little WAP service which UK readers may find useful.
Type in an ISBN number on your phone while browsing in Borders and it tells you how much the book costs at Amazon. Seb has some reservations about the ethics of this, but it’s quite cute anyway! He decided it was up to you to decide whether or not to use it..!

More info at Amawap.

Would you like Francs with that?

I hadn’t come across the Economist’s Big Mac Index before. Interesting. And here’s Lattenomics.

The exchange rates are rather different now from when these were published, though.

Great Photential

John’s been posting some wonderful photos over on Memex recently. He claims the trick is to use a good-old 50mm fixed-focus lens with his (rather nice) Nikon D100. I think he may be right, but a large part of the trick is also to be a good photographer.

Dan Gillmor moves on

Dan has departed from the San Jose Mercury News after 10 years. I’ve enjoyed his writing there and will follow the news of his new venture in his blog.


Despite being one of the founders, I’ve been very bad at posting stuff to Living Without Microsoft in the last few weeks. But some of the other guys have been doing a much better job, and there has been some interesting news there recently. If you’re interested in alternatives to the Monopoly, check it out…

Oh, and please send in your contributions!

Gmail ATOM feeds

Interesting – if you have a GMail account, you can subscribe to it as an ATOM feed. (ATOM is very similar to RSS and accepted by most things that accept RSS). More info in the Gmail Help Center

IT Conversations

IT Conversations looks as if it has more than enough interesting stuff to keep my iPod topped up for a while!

And there are plenty of RSS feeds available. One thing that’s good is the option to download AAC files instead of MP3s. These provide better quality for a given file size, but the main advantage on iTunes/iPods, when playing long talks, interviews, audiobooks, is that the system stores a bookmark which remembers how much you’ve listened to. If you go and listen to something else and then come back, you carry on where you left off.

© Copyright Quentin Stafford-Fraser