The MacBook Pros are shipping according to [AppleInsider]. More importantly Apple did a free processor bump as well and the base model will come with a 1.83 GHz Intel Core Duo instead of the original 1.67 GHz announced. 2GHz and 2.16GHz models are also available. I don’t know if this is good marketing strategy on Apple’s part or just Intel manufacturing power at work, but I like the end result and I’m really looking forward to my new laptop. I wonder how long manufacturing and delivery will take for those of us who ordered a month or so after they were announced?
I needed to fax some documents recently, so I began looking into various web based fax alternatives. There are actually quite a few web based fax sites out there and most of them are fairly inexpensive. They’re especially valuable if you want to be able to receive faxes and don’t have a dedicated line or fax machine. That was definitely overkill for my situation though so I kept looking around until I had a sudden lightbulb moment.
The built in modem in Apple laptops (which I had never used because I use WiFI or Ethernet 100% or the time) supports printing documents as faxes. In MacOS X Tiger (and possibly earlier versions) it’s also fully integrated with the Address Book application and the Printer Setup Utility in a very elegant fashion. I plugged our Canon usb scanner into the iBook I’m using right now and suddenly faxing signed documents became a very simple task.
At this point faxing still has the advantage of being (somewhat) more secure than email since it goes through the phone system rather than the internet, but it seems fairly archaic by today’s standards and really isn’t the most efficient way to send documents back and forth. It’s really too bad that we haven’t figured out how to make public/private key email encryption and communication simple and ubiquitous yet. The technology has been around for a long time, but it’s still not mainstream and I kind of doubt it ever will be.
I’m a big fan of Booq laptop sleeves. I’ve used a 12″ laptop sleeve for my PowerBook the last couple years and it has served me very well. I definitely prefer using a larger more flexible messenger style bag in conjunction with a sleeve for my computer, but Booq offers a wide variety of very nice laptop bags as well. Most importantly for me, they just realized a really nice sleeve for the MacBook Pro that I’ve got my eye on now. It sounds like the new sleeve won’t be out until April or late March, but I’m going to see if I can get one ordered before then.
Last week I had the misfortune of losing my trusty PowerBook’s hard drive to s.m.a.r.t. error oblivion. I’ve tried a couple different recovery applications, but haven’t succeeded in salvaging anything yet. I have some backups, but I definitely lost more information than I would prefer.
The good news is that the failure of my PowerBook has provided the impetus for me to get one of Apple’s new MacBook Pros. I ran the request by my supervisor and she agreed to let me go ahead with the purchase. In the meantime I’m getting by with a 14″ iBook and it should be more than sufficient to carry me through the next several weeks until the new machine arrives. I’m already really appreciating its larger screen and faster G4 processor.
I stumbled across an open source book cataloging application for MacOS X called Books and it seems really cool for being in beta stage. Lots of built in importing and exporting options, data gathering using Amazon and and ISBN and a nice clean interface. My only real complaint is that it let me quit the application without saving my database first. Luckily I had only entered two books so it wasn’t a big deal.
I definitely want to go through my book library when I get home and start entering some more titles.