Monolingual, an open source program, does this as well, and has for quite some time—for free. However, it doesn’t offer the backup option or have a programs blacklist, so I only use it for removing unnecessary languages and input managers.
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Thank you for your informative review on Xslimmer. I saved closed to 5 GB of space when I was done. However, watch out for Adobe programs: I did strip the extra languages out from Adobe Acrobat Pro 7. It disabled the application! The most unpleasant part of it was not the CD re-install, but to get Adobe tech support to simply confirm the correct upgrading sequence to 7.x available from their Web site afterwards. Xslimmer is a great application indeed. And absolutely designate an external hard drive for the “back-up.” I learned the hard way and had to delete dozens of back-ups by hand!
—Catherine von Dennefeld
Good article, thanks. I upgraded to FileMaker 9.0 for one reason alone, and one reason you don’t list here—a new function called “List.”
My use of this new function lets me create a list of strings based on related records. I had trouble doing this before, perhaps out of ignorance, but it is now very easy. This function is new to 9.0.
I didn’t mention the List function because it’s not new to FileMaker 9. It first appeared in version 8.5, and I covered it briefly in my column on that version.
You are, however, correct that the List function is useful for getting a list of related contents. Before its introduction, the only way to accomplish this was either with a script or with the use of a plug-in.
For this purpose, I acquired some time ago SecretBook, and I’m very satisfied with it.
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I’ve been using LicenseKeeper for eight months and have not suffered the difficulties that Eric has. As I recall, perhaps two or three times the serial number was not grabbed correctly from an Entourage e-mail import, but that was about it. I am grateful for the program’s ability to import e-mails and the information therein. What a great feature in my opinion.
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Since I have an IMAP e-mail account, I just throw all my license e-mails into a folder that I created for that purpose. No special software required, and with Spotlight, it’s a piece of cake to find the e-mail I need if I have to reinstall an application. If it’s something I can’t live without, I’ll create a secure note in my keychain for the license info.
I must admit that I’m kind of puzzled at the proliferation of password, license, and other secure snippet keepers, given that Keychain Access is free, included with every Mac, and seems to provide decent security.
Since you usually don’t have to lug remote controls around, I prefer the big Panasonic to the too-tiny Apple. First, the Panasonic’s buttons are labeled. Second, they are big. Third, the controls are positioned logically. Fourth, the power and mode change buttons are color coded. Apple’s white-on-white, unlabeled design would be great for dealing with a clock radio or clock stereo at night: when working by feel, having just one tactile control area makes the remote easy to use. But, for controlling a complicated TV, surround sound, and video input set-up, a more powerful remote is needed.
It all depends on the interface the Apple controller is using. Elgato’s EyeTV is a classic case of a good interface, or, as is more usual, the Apple controller is using the interface built into the application running on the Mac.
In the case of the Panasonic, the controls are far from logical. Why, for example is the information button at the bottom of the number pad, when the control of the now/next menus is at the top of the controller?
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The problem with the Apple Remote is that it is too simple. It is fine for use with a Mac, but when packaged with my Apple TV, I need it to do a bit more. There is no volume control, so I need two remotes. I cannot change the TV input source from the cable to Apple TV. I cannot turn on the TV.
I would love to see a more advanced Harmony-style remote that is set up via USB.
It really does depend on the application running. QuickTime Player and EyeTV, the main reasons I use the Apple Remote controller, have volume control, fast forward/back, change channel, and so on.
I wouldn’t expect the Apple Remote to control the more sophisticated functions of the TV, but then, once set they don’t usually need tweaking again. It is a disappointment that Apple TV hasn’t got more for the little Apple Remote to control. There are some excellent USB programmable remotes which might work.
I’ve not played with Apple TV because I find that an Elgato tuner with EyeTV 3 (or an earlier version with CyTV) is both cheaper and far more flexible than Apple’s device and will stream live TV or recordings wirelessly without the need to prepare them especially for Apple TV.
Good to see you back, Ted. Your comments, as usual, are astute and provocative.
On the one hand, I’ve moved to the Linux, open source world. On the other hand, in part because I’m no longer just starting out in the world, I regularly contribute financially to my Linux distribution of choice (PCLinuxOS) and bought a lifetime license to the most interesting Linux outliner I have found (Notecase Pro). I am willing to pay people to provide tools I like and use—and do not have the ability to produce myself.
Yet PCLOS is more a hobby (for texstar, the lead developer) than a business concern. And despite the remarkably swift progress of the Notecase Pro developer (mark and gather, hoisting, synchronizing of files, printing, etc.), I don’t think the author is making a living on licenses, either.
So the question of business models is not trivial. Open source may mean that I’m a little less likely to be stranded with good but unsupported software. But things do move on quickly, as we all pursue maximum gadgetude. That makes it tough for innovators to stay in the game long term.
I look forward to your next piece.