DRViD.ca » Reviews

By: Drvid  09-12-2011

Replace all your MobileMe services for free, and terminate your billing renewal because Apple shouldn’t be charging money for this…

As my renewal term is coming in the next week I’ve been thinking, researching and testing free alternatives to most of these services. I’ve finally decided to cancel my MobileMe account because, these days Apple doesn’t really need another hundred bucks from me every year. I suppose Apple should just make these services free for people who buy a Mac. That would at least be a worthwhile incentive to new customers.

  1. for your Mail, Calendars and Contacts
    Set them up to sync in your iCal and Address Book preferences, supported since 10.6. Sign in with a Gmail, Google Apps, or any other Google account.
  2. to sync all your Bookmarks
    This has the enormous added benefit of also supporting Firefox, Chrome, Safari and good ol’ MSIE. If you use multiple browsers this is for you.
  3. beats your iDisk
    Just a better solution, hands down. Also has the advantages of working just as well on Windows and Linux. And there are even smartphone versions! Fewer gigabytes than iDisk, but you can pay for more space if you need it. Did I mention it actually works?
  4. Find my iPhone… for free!
    Apple has already opened this up for every iPhone customer so, nuff said?

Other products and services from Drvid


DRViD.ca » Design

Most of the icons were modelled in Maya and vector rendered, but the last few I’ve been faking the 3D look directly in Illustrator. I’ve also had to retrace much of the line art since the Maya Vector Renderer didn’t really give me the cleanest lines. After completing the base theme I went on to make a few other colour-scheme variations of it. I mocked up a basic layout in Fireworks to find a basic look and feel including colours.


DRViD.ca » Code

This will make copies of your resized images next to the originals in that same folder (Windows users may have problems using the * for batch file manipulations however). If you had images in a different format, and/or wanted to convert them to smaller, lossy versions, you could try something like this. This really is the quickest and easiest way to resample a whole bunch of images. This makes commands like convert and mogrify available.


DRViD.ca » Audio

For anyone that doesn’t know, the CNIB runs a huge library of braille, e-text and digital talking books for it’s clients. Simply decodes DAISY books from MP3 to WAV and updates references in SMIL/HTML files accordingly. Copies all markup and moves all audio files into 'withSectionsAddded' subfolders. Runs 'insert notice' XSLT transformations on a folder of valid DAISY 2.02 books. Spawn saxon java transformer process. Print ' ->\t\t' + wave.


DRViD.ca » Animation

It’s a few years old I know, but watching it again and the layers of detail in the plots are still astounding me. Dramatic characters in a grim metropolis and did I mention the amazing designs, voice acting and animation. Full of existentialist themes, information warfare, cyber-crime, robotic empathy, trans-humanism….