Most popular posts in 'Geekery' category.
Archive for the 'Geekery' Category
I maintain two separate workflows. On the one hand, I do a lot of writing, and I like to work in plain text for the most part. As a result TextWrangler is my favorite Mac text editor for that. I have it configured to be all black background, no margins, light color text, etc. It’s perfect for distraction free writing.
I also do web programming and Text Wrangler is the best free text editor for that too. However, when I do web programming, I want syntax coloring, tab indicators, the open file sidebar, and other settings as well.
Ideally, I want to have two copies of TextWrangler with completely different preference files, different icons, etc. I want to create a custom version of my favorite text editor.
With about 20 minutes of Internet searching and 10 more minutes of tweaking, I was able to get 90% of my holy grail customized!
Here’s how to do it yourself with TextWrangler, and I think the principles should apply for creating customized versions of other apps as well.
- Copy TextWrangler to a new location (I put it on my desktop at first)
- Rename the app file to whatever you want. I chose “DarkRoom” as an homage to WriteRoom.
- Right click on the app icon and choose “show package contents”
- Double-click on the “Contents” folder
- Open up Info.plist using your original TextWrangler App or any other text editor.
- Replace all instances of “com.barebones” with “com.custom.barebones” (this changes where OS X stores the preference files on your computer)
- OPTIONAL: replace instances of “textwrangler” with your customized name. There is one instance in the original file of “com.barebones.textwrangler” that after step 6 will be called “com.custom.barebones.textwrangler” You can freely change that to anything you want. For mine, I changed the word textwrangler to darkroom.
FINAL OPTIONAL TWEAKS: Replace instances of “TextWrangler” with your customized name. There are hundreds of instances of TextWrangler and changing the wrong ones might break your app, however there are a few ones you can change safely without breaking things. To determine which you can change, read the
field. Key string pairs look like this:
<key>CFBundleTypeName</key> <string>TextWrangler text document</string>
You can safely change any string in the following keys:
ADVANCED TWEAKS: You can also change the icons for the app by going into the “Resources” directory and replacing any one of the icons with a different icon so long as you keep the file name of the icon the same.
When you are done, you’ll be able to have two completely different instances of your app running at the same time with different preference settings and you can associate different file types with different apps.
Here’s a screenshot:
For those who want it, here is my entire plist file.
When you open your edited app, it will behave like a completely new installation of TextWrangler and it will use separate preferences files…
HOWEVER: Your customized app and the original TextWrangler app will use the same recent document list. That means if you have one of them set to “reopen last document” it will open the document that is currently open in the other editor. It’s a bit annoying, but I haven’t found a way to solve that problem yet.
Popularity: 1% [?]
I have created a properties file for SciTE that makes it work just like Write Room or Dark Room, but it’s cross platform and fast! Plus, if you start a paragraph with a tab, the entire paragraph is indented even if there is wordwrap turned on!!
Set this as your user.properties or global.properties script and press f11 to go fullscreen: » Click here to read the rest. «
Popularity: unranked [?]
I just got a phone call from a guy in town whose name was so interesting I had to call him back. Anyway, Elvis of http://www.elvisblogs.org is a Drupal developer here in town who is hosting a Drupal Meetup and he wanted to know if I was interested in it.
I used to use drupal way back in the early days of our church planting adventure and you can still see the remnants of it at http://thesouthsidechurch.org/main/ but I moved away from it because of frustrations with the platform.
Anyway, now that I know there are Drupal addicts here in town, I may take a second look at the platform and also make some friends in the process.
Looking forward to meeting you in person Elvis!
Popularity: unranked [?]
My tiny little wavplayer just plays an audio file and then quits. That’s it.
Since my voicemail gets emailed to me automatically, I wanted a quick way to just listen to it and have it be done without needing to open some bloated media player for one tiny WAV file.
If you want to use it, here it is…
Popularity: 34% [?]
In our new church effort in Lafayette, I set as a goal from very early on that we would attempt to do everything we could with excellence, and though we have had some hiccups with our children’s programming and with our music, we have been consistently high quality with our printed materials and with our video presentations thanks to some really great software.
On the printed front, we have been using Apple’s Pages for basic word processing and simple page design and Serif PagePlus 11 which is exponentially greater than anything else in its price range ($50 for features that easily surpass Microsoft Publisher and even rival PageMaker or Quark). However, that’s for another blog entry. On to what we do for video now and what our next steps are.
Video Presentation Hardware
- 15″ MacBook Pro 2.16 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo / 1GB RAM
- Draper Traveller portable projection screen with High Contrast Gray screen material.
- DLP Projector (I don’t remember the specs right now).
- ProPresenter 3.3.8 by RenewedVision.
- Keynote 3
ProPresenter is the best program we have found to display lyrics on the screen. It’s very easy to learn with only a few quirks that take getting used to. Together with the Mac, it is unbeatable in terms of visual quality of the text even with full motion high resolution video images in the background. On top of that, the programmers are very responsive to requests for improvements, and the software was designed from the ground up to meet the needs of touring worship bands like Chris Tomlin and David Crowder.
Keynote is the hands down winner in presentation software that understands the line between attention-getting and cheesy. Transitions, fades, and slide builds are unmatched in PowerPoint because Keynote does what it does with subtlety. It’s also much easier to work with once you learn a couple of its quirks.
Our current setup has us running ProPresenter and Keynote simultaneously on the MacBook Pro. ProPresenter takes over the projector screen and turns it black while waiting for us to begin. Navigation is done on the laptop screen, but lyrics and backgrounds are sent to the secondary display.
Just before my message, we hit F1 in ProPresenter to black out the projection screen, switch to Keynote without closing ProPresenter (the projection screen stays black during and after the switch), and hit “Play” on my sermon Keynote file. Keynote takes over the projection screen with my slides and also displays a “Presenter View” on the laptop screen. We turn the laptop to face me, so I can see my current slide and my next slide without ever needing to look over my shoulder.
Now that we are meeting in the Long Center (a larger venue), we want to make some changes to our setup so we stay on the excellent side of things.
- Replace our screen with a larger rear projection screen. We’re looking at the Draper Cinefold and Draper Ultimate series of screens for this.
- Consider upgrading our projector depending on its performance with the new screen. Most likely, we will just need to buy a new bulb.
- Purchase a new Mac to put in the sound booth. It needs to have dual external monitor capability, and the only Macs to have that now are Mac Pro computers or Psystar Open Computer Macintosh clones.
- Split the monitor signal from each monitor out to drive four displays (1). The monitor in the sound booth, (2). the projector on stage, (3) One monitor in front row pointing to stage duplicating what’s on the projector screen. (4) One monitor in front row pointing to the stage duplicating what’s on the screen in the sound booth. That way, the stage-facing monitors will show what’s on the screen and also show the “Presenter View” that Keynote can display.
- Use VGA cables or a VGA over CAT5e system to get video signal to the stage from the booth.
If anyone is reading this post thinking that technology will save your bad presentations, think again. Websites like http://presentationzen.com are a great resource to help you rethink the how and the why of your presentations. Technology can make your presentations more effective, but it isn’t guaranteed to do so.
Popularity: 36% [?]