The main difference… geofencing. This has always been a complaint of mine with the Nest. I’ve recently solved the problem with the help of the iPhone app Skylark. If you have a Nest and iPhone, it’s worth checking out.
The Iro, an interesting new product that reminds me of the Nest.
None of my friends don’t have Facebook accounts. Op-eds and studies can highlight our decreased “enthusiasm” for Facebook ‘til the cows come home, but it doesn’t change the fact that we are chained to the beast. Voluntarily, of course.
Interesting look into enterprise licensing, maintenance, and support model. We’re starting to see a shift in the industry.
Build Your Own Fusion Drive on Mac
Apple unveiled Fusion Drive recently, with the ability to order it with the New iMac and Mac Mini offerings. So, what exactly is Fusion Drive?
Presented as a single volume on your Mac, Fusion Drive automatically and dynamically moves frequently used files to Flash storage for quicker access, while infrequently used items move to the hard disk. As a result you’ll enjoy shorter startup times, and as the system learns how you work you’ll see faster application launches and quicker file access. Fusion Drive manages all this automatically in the background.
Sounds pretty sweet! But I’ve got a MacBook Pro. Can I use a Fusion Drive? The answer is Yes, but it takes some work. I’ll walk you through what I did.
I’ve got a Mac Mini at home, and an Early 2011 MacBook Pro I use for work and development. One of the requirements of Fusion Drive is 1 SSD and 1 larger HD. You can put 2 HDs into both of these, using a Data Doubler from OWC. Check their model list to make sure your model is compatible. One cool thing to consider with the Data Doubler, if you remove your SuperDrive, you can still use it with an OWC SuperSlim external SuperDrive enclosure. I went with a 128GB 2.5” SSD, 500GB 2.5” HD, and the external optical drive enclosure. They were easy to install, and have worked out great.
Once you’ve got a SSD and HD installed on your computer, you should make sure you are backing up your computer to restore it. Since converting to a Fusion Drive will require wiping the data on your disks, make sure you’ve got a recent backup. I’m using a Seagate Backup Plus 1 TB USB 3.0 Portable External Hard Drive for Time Machine backups.
Once you’ve confirmed your time machine backup is good, you’ll need to boot your Mac to a Mountain Lion Installer USB Key. If you don’t have one, you can make your own using Lion Disk Maker, and a cheap 8GB USB Flash Drive.
Tip: Don’t try to boot your Mac using online recovery. It creates a temporary partition on your existing disk to download the installation media to. This Fusion drive conversion process requires formatting both drives, using the Terminal app from the installation media, so it will fail if you try to use online recovery. Trust me, I wasted a lot of time doing it, don’t even try.
The easiest way to boot your Mac to the USB key is to insert it in your Mac, go to System Preferences > Startup Disk, and select the Mountain Lion Installer USB Key. Once you restart, you will be running off the USB key, and free to format the SSD and HD drives.
Once you’ve booted to OSX Utilities option window, you will have a menu bar at the top with additional utilities. Select Utilities > Terminal, to open a new terminal window where we’ll be formatting your drives using Apple DiskUtil and CoreStorage commands. Typing
'diskutil list' will show you a list of drives available, and their sizes. Likely, these disks will be labeled disk0 and disk1. Once you’ve confirmed your disks, type
'diskutil cs create FusionDrives disk0 disk1'. This will create a CoreStorage Volume Group with your two Physical Drives. Next, you’ll need the ID of the new Volume Group to create the FusionDrive Logical Volume. Type
'diskutil cs list' to see a list of VG and PV IDs. Next, create the FusionDrive LV with the following command
'diskutil cs createVolume <ID of your VG> jhfs+ FusionDrive 100%'.
You should now be able to exit terminal, and go back to the main window, and restore your Mac to the last Time Machine backup. After you’ve restored your Mac, it should just work!
I used the following useful posts for reference during my conversion. Let me know in the comments how it works out for you!
- If your password was leaked/cracked by the LinkedIn breach
- If you are using the same password as someone else whose was leaked/cracked by the LinkedIn breach
In either case, you should be concerned. Hackers will use this list for a database of known passwords, and increase the probability of your password being hacked on other sites if you use it multiple places. You also want to have a unique password. If someone else has your same password, it’s probably not good enough, and should be changed.
Hopefully you weren’t hacked, I was lucky enough not to be. If you were, good luck changing your password on a bunch of sites. You may want to look into LastPass.
After trying unsuccessfully to repair my Onkyo TX-SR606 HDMI board, I decided rather than replace it, I would just route my HDMI directly to my TV and keep my audio (which was still working just fine) routed through my receiver. This however meant that I would have to do all kinds of input switching, several remotes, and in general more frustration. So, I decided to get a single remote that would handle it all for me.
I settled on the Logitech Harmony 700 Rechargeable Remote, which is very cool. It took a little bit of setting up, but I added my Plasma, Receiver, Apple TV and Cable Box to it without much hassle at all. My favorite thing is one button, and it powers everything up, switches to the right inputs, and knows what controls the volume, what controls the channels, etc. Add in favorite channels at a few button presses, and it became Mallory’s best friend as well.
One thing I noticed while browsing related items to the remote was a Lutron Maestro Infrared Light Dimmer, which just happened to be compatible with the remote. With a bit of programming into the Logitech Harmony, and installation into the wall switch, I was setup. This thing makes you feel like you are in a theater, or have a whole home automation system. If you have a media room, or a light switch dedicated to the room where your TV/Movie watching happens, you should check it out. Very cool.
I’m a sucker for electronics, and handy stuff like this that is both geeky and functional. I haven’t posted here in a while, but I hope you enjoyed it. (Mallory is probably cringing at my grammar right now, sorry babe!)
MG Siegler in his latest TechCrunch article posits that although Apple’s new iBooks strategy is admirable in its effort to fix problems in public high schools, that it’s not realistic and that their market strategy should revolve around colleges and college textbooks.
Apple, by going high school first, is applying the heat to university textbook publishers and bookstores. They are saying “Fine. If you won’t work with us, then we’ll empower a generation to change your industry for you.”
And they will.
Yes, we were a bit disappointed that Kansas City companies did not win more of the awards,” Sih said. “The reality is that the judging panel picked the companies that they did, and other than creating the competition and convening the judges, we had no role whatsoever in the results. I think this means that Kansas City must continue to build out and support more local startups and entrepreneurs, and perhaps next time we will have more local companies participate with a better chance of winning.
This product looks amazing, if it works as advertised. They don’t seem to be willing to stand behind their product though.
Due to the nature of our business we are unable to offer any refunds on our Liquipel treatments. We do however cover situations in which a manufacturer defect was found in the device. Should you need to return your device for any type of manufacturer defect Liquipel will treat your new device at no cost for 30 days.