Black Bezel for Macbook Air

Hello everyone I’m going to talk about a project I just finished.

Last year, I bought the 13″ Macbook Air (MBA), and though I love it, I was really waiting for the 13″ retina Macbook Pro (rMBP) to be released this year. However once it finally came out, I was a bit disappointed.  Yes, it had a retina display, however even that does not run at native resolution, instead scaling to 1280×800, 1440×900, or 1680×1050.   The MBA runs at native 1440×900, and the 2012 model features similar graphics/processor performance to the new rMBP.

So, I decided that rather then buy the new rMBP, I’d upgrade my MBA to this years model which gives me improved graphics performance, the 720p HD front camera (from VGA, .3 vs 1.3mp), and nearly double SSD speed.  However, one aesthetic feature that I really liked about the MBP line was the black bezel around the screen.

So the DIY’er in me searched the net for a way to make it happen.  I checked a few sites and found  a guy who was selling black bezel stickers.  I sent him a few emails and soon a kit was on its way 😉  Below are the steps I took to apply the sticker 🙂

Continue reading “Black Bezel for Macbook Air”

Quick Tip: Trim memory usage on your Mac

Ok, I’ve been using Lion since it came out and unlike previous OSX versions, this one has occasionally been freezing up and showing me the beach ball often enough that I decided to investigate.

Immediately I realized this problem was tied to running out of memory.  But wait, I have 4GB of memory… how am I running out?

Well with more memory comes more usage… now that lion has so much memory, it tries to run everything as 64-bit processes, rather then the 32bit of yesteryear (or 16bit before that).  To be honest, for my Macbook Air and its’ limited space, 32bit’s of address space was fine.  64 bits is no faster, only allows other systems with more memory/disk space to utilize the extra resources.  Unfortunately this one size fits all design hurts hardware on the lower end of the scale.

Luckily I’m able to explicitly run my two most common apps in 32-bit mode.  Simply show the process in finder, “Get Info”, and check the “Open in 32-bit mode” checkbox. Continue reading “Quick Tip: Trim memory usage on your Mac”

Fix for virtual hosts in OS X 10.7, Lion Apache Web Server

(*skip down to ‘Now the problem with Lion’ for the quick problem/solution*)

Yesterday I decided to leave Nginx server and go back to Apache for my primary webserver.  Having upgraded to Lion a few weeks ago, I began a fresh setup of apache.  When setting up other parts of Lion, I remember reading about some Apache server problem, but at the time I wasn’t interested in Apache so I didn’t pay them attention.  Well that certainly changed yesterday when I spent half the day reading numerous posts about Lion and its’ inherent problems with Apache.  Because it was such a common problem, I spent most of my time on complex solutions, however it turned out to be quite simple, albiet a little non-intuitive. Continue reading “Fix for virtual hosts in OS X 10.7, Lion Apache Web Server”

A Reminder That We’re Only as Old as we Think

I had the pleasure of spending my weekend at my brothers house surrounded by great friends and two days of intense sport. We spent sunday playing basketball and afterwards we all chatted about how old we were getting : ) I realized that how I felt wasn’t so much the age, but how long it had been since we played last, yet saying it was “age” was something everyone could agree with and easily understand. Later we talked about success and the importance of “commitment” to goals.

Both of those subjects reminded me of a story in a book I recently read called, “Luck is no Accident.” Since I still have it, I’ll copy the story here in the hopes that it might inspire others. Continue reading “A Reminder That We’re Only as Old as we Think”

Mix It Up, Yet Another Reason to Resist Routine ;)

Earlier today, at the gym, I noticed something that I’d like to share.  Typically my visits to the gym are pretty routine and partly just a diversion from my normal chaotic day.  Usually I hit the recline bike, where I can sit down and pass the time with my iphone and always interesting Civilization app (I’ve beaten this game more times that I can count, but always enjoy it).  I stop after nearly to an hour of pedaling, go shower, then spend 10-15mins in the pool taking laps.

Today, things were a bit different. Continue reading “Mix It Up, Yet Another Reason to Resist Routine ;)”

Compensation vs Contentment

Yesterday I was practicing basketball, partly because I love the sport, and partly because I haven’t played in months but will be playing with a bunch of friends today :).  While shooting, I remembered something I realized long ago, that I do not have much in the way of “natural” basketball traits, in-fact I’m typically the smallest player on the court, and due to an injury as a kid, the cornea of my right eye was scratched, therefore my depth perception is quite poor. The previous effects rebounding, and the later shooting. Both of which are important in a sport like basketball. But, among those I usually play with, i’m typically… in the top 30%. Why is that? Even compared to my brother, who is well suited for basketball, he’s 6′, 210lbs with perfect vision, we match up fairly evenly. The answer is because of a human trait we all have called compensation. Continue reading “Compensation vs Contentment”

iPhone Setup Guide

I’m here in Bangkok Thailand, and brought an extra iPhone with me. Rather then just give the phone, I wanted to prepare a guide so they would understand the steps I’ve taken to setup it up. Since others might also be interested in understanding Jailbreaking and unlocking as well as a initial dashboard setup, I’ve decided to write and publish the guide here 🙂

Enjoy, -Paul