DVD + TV + 10.1 = …

Success, if you follow the directions in this thread on the Apple Discussions board. I don’t know whether the URL works for sure, but if it doesn’t, try discussions.info.apple.com and go to the board Mac OS X –> DVD Player and look for the thread “Powerbook DVD Playback WORKS!!!!”

Or try this: Shut your Powerbook down. Connect the TV to the video out port (preferably S-Video). Restart and before the screen comes on, close the lid of the Powerbook. The Powerbook should start up and only use the TV as the monitor. After it displays the boot panel, you should be able to open the laptop and use the keyboard and trackpad again. You should be able to play back the DVD now on the TV.

As for why the PowerBook won’t play back the DVD normally with a TV connected, I don’t know and Apple isn’t telling. But my money’s on the MPAA. I don’t know of any other organization that goes so far to make sure that you can’t enjoy its products. Oh yeah, there’s the RIAA too…

Scripting Manila and iTunes

New scripts today. First, a version of the iTunes script I wrote a few days ago that posts the currently playing item directly to a Manila website as a news item. Second, some modules that contain functions for making SOAP calls and calling Manila RPC interfaces.

As a programmer, I was big into reuse of code through object orientation. It bugged me for a long time that I couldn’t figure out how to make that work in AppleScript. Today I’ve got one version working. It’s not very clean, because it requires a lot of drag and drop installation, but it’s getting there. The other good thing is that it will cut down on the amount of pain in writing and deploying these scripts because it separates a lot of the Manila “glue” code from the parts of the scripts that actually do things.

All the scripts can be downloaded from my scripts page.

One note about iTunes2Manila–if your site is hosted on editthispage.com like mine is, you may get some timeout messages. I’m still playing with avoiding these, but (as you can tell from my home page), just because you get a timeout doesn’t mean that the news item didn’t get posted.

‘Tis (Almost) the Season

I was feeling grumpy yesterday about all the Christmas decorations in the mall as I walked around with Lisa and our friend Kelley, who was visiting from Maine. But this morning I saw something that changed that feeling in a second.

Every morning I walk through Government Center Plaza on my way to catch the train. For the past month or two there has been a crew building a big tent shelter — one of the kind that have steel frames and their own climate control. Something that looks like it’s intended to stand up all winter.

This morning I went by to see that the tent had changed. Formerly plain white, it was surrounded by wooden boxes painted like they were wrapped presents, and the spire of a pine tree stood on the far side. Curious, I walked past the door and saw the interior decorated with pine rope and lights.

And I started crying. Because I thought about all the kids who would be having Christmas without one of their parents this year. And all the parents who wouldn’t be hearing from their grown children.

I hope the city intends that tent for the children.

Wah wah wah

So I’m feeling pretty sorry for myself this morning…we have no classes but I’ll still be working my butt off. So I’ll probably update the page in dribs and drabs over the day as I start to feel better.