Sirius Players for Mac…

Been messing around with both STARPLAYR, and SIRIUSMAC for a while now…

The basic issue is that I am in an office that faces East South East, about the worst place to be to pick up any satellite broadcast set for the continental United States. I think if I wanted to work for it and go back to XM (Not going to happen) I could probably get a marginal signal. My old office pretty much faced West, no problem for either XM or Sirius receiver, I know I had both while there. The solution to the dilemma was an online player, and being an Mac guy meant doing some funky tricks to make it work, or go virtual win and use a native player there.

My initial salvation was SiriusMac, Great player made to look like the stiletto, but the issue I had/have with it is the lack of feedback when a button is pressed, and with the latency to get the stream going, it was kind of a pain in the butt. Continued freakyness left me not real happy…

One day while looking for something completely unrelated on apple’s download site, I came across StarPlayr, while the interface is not quite as polished, it has three nice big buttons, Play, Stop and Record… and when you press them, there is an immediate visual feedback, that says hey I’m a button and I was pressed, and a spinning I’m working on your request spinner appears. The other thing that is cool, is the ability pause like the Sportsters and Starmates, and Stilettos, so you don’t miss any Howard when the phone rings, this is not a 100% proposition, but it works most of the time. I have also been playing with Starcasting aka recording, and the ability to schedule recordings and automatically import them to iTunes so that you can listen later on you schedule ala Sitletto. I have not had a 100% success with the conversion part, but the scheduling via iCal works great, so I at a minimum have an ASF file that can be played with VLC Media player, so all is not lost.

So being the function over form guy that I am, I’ll be sticking with StarPlayr for a while


Internet Access for only $300.00 per month…

Man what a racket, $300.00 a month for internet access, or at least that’s what you’d pay if you stayed at some of the nicer hotels around, and relied on their Internet access.
Even though I don’t travel all that much anymore, I make a couple of trips a month and stay in hotels of various star count, and it seems that the higher the star count, or the better the neighborhood, the more you pay for various amenities, like Internet access.

I have stayed at several hotels in the Philadelphia area over the past couple of months, and I never really noticed the charges that hotels put on their Internet service. I usually just fire up the v740 broadband modem, and bypass all the silly sign on crap that hotels require even when the access is free.

This last trip I was messing around with the iPod Touch and wanted to go WiFi when I got to the login screen for the wireless, and noticed that the access charge was $9.95 per day, and I really have never done the math before, but that comes to $300 per month, and I was kind of shocked. T1’s don’t even cost that much anymore. I guess the real pisser is that when you stay at the hotel down by the stadium, that same Internet access is free.

Whats my point, none really, but I guess $300 a month for Internet is nothing, when you’re looking at paying over $1000 per month to park

Football Stuff

Norv, I was wrong

So the AFC Championship game is just around the corner, and at mid season, I thought I’d be watching the Patriots and the Steelers, Colts, or the Jags. I didn’t think the Chargers lead by Norv had the ability to make it to the post season. Well Norv led the team to their first post season win since 95, against the Titans. Then it was off to Indy, to once more kicking their butts at home, and picking Manning 2 more times making it 8 INT’s on the season for the Chargers D against Manning. Pretty impressive considering he was only picked 14 times all year.
So the Chargers are not expected to win on Sunday,nor were they last week, but thats why they play the game. The Chargers have no expectations put upon them, no perfect season, just going out to play some ball, while the Patriots are playing for everything they are supposed to win, they have the pressure of needing to go undefeated.
All I have to say is 17 and 1 is a completely respectable record.

Go Chargers…


iPod Touch January Software Upgrade First Impression

I wasn’t going to do it, but the geekier side of me broke down and ponied up the $20 for the iPod Touch January Software Upgrade, and I don’t really think it’s worth the money, $10 maybe, but not $20. I can sort of understand the reason to charge for it, because there is no real revenue generation to apple from adding these features to the Touch, but I am also willing to bet that there weren’t a lot of development costs associated with modifying a few existing iPhone apps. The biggest drawback is the inability to use these when there is no WiFi, and yes I know if I wanted true wireless, I should have got an iPhone. I have a blackberry that is under contract, and at&t coverage sucks here in Southeast Virginia, but when the next Generation iPhone comes out I’ll probably dump the blackberry.

The visible new features added are Customizable Home Screen, Mail, Maps, Weather, Notes, Stocks, and Web Clips.

  • The Customizable Home Screen is a nice addition, with the ability to put the things I use where my thumb is more likely to land, instead of where some engineer thinks they should go…
  • Mail, the ability to carry around my last 50 or so messages for reference is nice, as well as the ability to generate a message when the need arises is also nice, and when you get to a known WiFi network everything does its stuff.
  • Maps, great, but the one big change here, since were not always connected would be the ability the cache or save a certain number of maps for reference while on the road. Really impressed with the find my locations feature, pretty accurate for the most part, but I was messing with it at work, and it would either put me where I was, or about 5 miles away, but it was real consistent when it was wrong…
  • Weather, is fairly lame, it will give weather for the cities you add, but it is just a quick summary from Yahoo! without a lot of the details I like. Radar would be nice, more details would be nice, as well as airline delays etc…
  • Notes, this is probably my biggest disappointment, the interface is what you’d expect, the ability to type in notes, but my issue come after you create the note. There is no ability to sync the notes with anything, except mailing it to yourself or someone. I have mail, and the ability to create a message, then why do I need notes. What is missing the ability to sync Notes with your computer.
  • Stocks, pretty much the same feeling here as with the weather…
  • Web Clips, The ability to go to a specific page of a specific site is a ice addition, in the past, to many click to get where you want to go, even with bookmarks….

The not so in your face features rent movies, probably not going to happen on my touch, I’ll just do like always and just buy it… Navigate movies via chapters, great addition, trying to find a specific scene was a pain in the butt. Viewing lyrics isn’t all its cracked up to be, you can see them if you’ve added them to the son via iTunes, my library isn’t that big and I’m not going to bother, it’s data that should already be attached to the song.

Yes I was probably iScrewed, but I’m hoping that Steve comes through again and offers early adopter amnesty… 🙂