Monthly Archives: February, 2005


Jim Heid’s iPoodle – I think this is great!

iPod Camera Connector

Apple is to allow you to download your photos straight from your digital camera to your iPod Photo, using the the iPod Camera Connector, due out in late March. CNET:

The camera connector, Joswiak said, is a small white plastic device, similar in appearance to a small docking station, that has a cable for connecting to the iPod and a USB port for connecting to a camera. It will work with both the new iPod Photos and with earlier photo player models, Joswiak said.

Pictures loaded onto an iPod directly will be able to display immediately on the iPod.

Oh, and the iPod Photos are now cheaper.


At Exbiblio, until we can find a good Mac version control system that’s easy for normal users to understand, we have a convention of keeping all old versions of most of our files, naming them according to the date.

I wrote a little utility which, if you drop a file or folder onto it, creates a copy based on today’s date and opens that copy. I find it a very hand thing to have in my Dock. Just in case anybody else does, you can get it here.

The Name Game

I was at a party today with lots of old friends from Xerox EuroPARC and some exchanging of current contact details was going on. It did occur to me that I didn’t really need to give anyone a business card because one of the advantages of an unusual name is that I’m very easy to find on Google even if the only thing you can remember is my first name. And that’s true of a lot of people now – even with a more common name, if you know one other thing about them, like a company they’ve worked for or the place they live, it can often be fairly easy to find someone.

This does assume, of course, that you know how to spell their name. So this is a post for anybody trying to find Quintin Stafford-Fraser, Quinton Stafford-Frasier or Quentin Stafford-Frazer – it should help point you in the right direction! [Update, a few days later – it works, too!]

I’ve been playing with the quite interesting software from Devon Technologies recently, in particular DevonTHINK and DevonAGENT. The latter is a tool that goes and queries lots of websites on your behalf for information on a given topic, and, ironically, it’s quite hard to find me using that, because it interprets the hyphen in my surname as an instruction not to include pages with ‘Fraser’ in them, something that really should be indicated by a hyphen after a space. Not much I can do for DevonAGENT users…

It reminds me of the lovely message I used to get in the early days of Hotmail when I tried to create an account:
Last Name contains reserved or ineligible word. Please select another.

Coffee in Ambridge (CAmbridge)

You know that something has become a true part of British life when it gets mentioned on The Archers. The Archers, for anyone outside the UK, is a BBC Radio soap opera, set in rural England, that has been running for 55 years and has aired about 15,000 episodes. It started when Britain was still subject to rationing after the war, and part of its purpose then was to embed hints in the story to farmers about how they could raise agricultural productivity.

Anyway, yesterday, the subject of webcams came up and they mentioned the Trojan Room Coffee Pot which Paul, Dan & I set up in the early nineties when we were still subject to coffee rationing. The full programme is on the BBC web site but I’m not sure how long it will stay there, so I hope they won’t mind me posting this two-minute MP3 clip.

I’ll make no claims about whether or not this particular plot-line will increase British productivity…

Enhancing the Shuffle


I’ve always been impressed with the sound quality from my iPod Shuffle, but today I plugged it into my Sennheiser HD590 headphones instead of the little earbuds, and I was blown away. Amazingly good sound. It depends on the quality of your MP3 files, of course, but if you’ve got some good headphones, give it a try.

The band that goes across the top of my head is substantially larger than the thing storing and generating the music!


Mmm. Address-o-sync looks cool…

He who waits…

Two and a half years ago, I really wanted podcasting, though of course it didn’t have a name then. Now I’ve got it, but not enough time to listen to the feeds. Such is life…

Making the most of your pixels

I’m working on a substantial document at present, which involves lots of cross-referencing between sections. It really helps to be able to refer to more than one section of the document at once. Here’s the setup I like best:

This is Word 2004, showing three windows onto the same document. The top one, where I do most of the work, also has the document map switched on, for quicker navigation. I’ve used two separate windows on the lower display, rather than showing two pages side-by-side in one wide window, so that I can scroll them independently.

The other good thing about this arrangement is that it covers up everything else, which helps to reduce distraction!

Pixels are addictive. The more you have of them, the more you want. I’m just waiting for my pals at Newnham Research to produce something for the Mac…


This looks cool – the ice>Link allows you to connect your iPod to your car stereo as if it were a CD changer. A limited range of head units supported at the moment, and it’s a bit pricey, but it’s a great idea.


A signature seen on a posting today…

There are 10 kinds of people in the world, those who understand binary and those who don’t…

wget for Mac OS X

Update: I’ve posted a new, updated version of wget for OS X which you may want to try instead.

If you want to grab files from the web using the command line, the wget utility is great.

Recent versions of Mac OS X don’t include it. They come with curl instead, which has some good features, but is also missing a great deal.

Here’s, which contains wget built for Mac OS X 10.3.
Hope someone finds it useful!

Update: If you like this, you might also like my mtr for Mac OS X, or be interested in lots of other Apple-related stuff here.

© Copyright Quentin Stafford-Fraser