3 comments Wednesday, September 16, 2009

For a long time, I've been looking for a clean way to keep all my contacts in sync between the multiple platforms I use. Currently, I have a Macbook at home, a Windows PC with Outlook at work, the iPhone and my main email, a Gmail account.

I have tried almost all available solutions to keep them in sync. Plaxo, multiple applications to sync Outlook to Gmail, Mac to Gmail but no success on having a clean way to do it and without hassle.
About two months ago, I found a promising one. Soocial. Their objective is to have a central platform and from it sync to multiple points via web APIs or local applications.
For the last months, I installed it and substituted all sync options I had by Soocial. In the beginning, many bugs were found. Sync between Soocial and Outlook had problems with multiple emails, Soocial-Gmail had problems with work phones (phone did not appear on Gmail) and some minor ones.
About a month ago, Soocial rewrote their Gmail communication using the newest API and that sync problems went away.
This week, Soocial released a new Outlook client that finished the problems I found out. Having this, made Soocial the best platform to keep contacts in sync on multiple platforms.
Currently the support Mac Address Book, Outlook, Gmail, Windows Live, Yahoo and other phones(Nokia/Sony Ericsson) via SyncML protocol.
The topology I choose to have all my devices in sync was:
- Soocial - Gmail connection (it's bi-directional)
- Soocial - Outlook connection via it's application
- Soocial - Mac connection via it's application
- iPhone sync directly to Gmail using Exchange Protocol described here
It's been working perfectly and practically online where any update in any point triggers the sync making all devices updated.

Have you experienced any contact sync solution? Leave your feedback on comments.

Disclaimer: This post is not endorsed by Soocial or any other cited companies in any way. All content posted represents my own opinion.

1 comments Friday, September 11, 2009

From time to time we hear complains about web browsers. Recently, major sites like Youtube added a notice to it main page warning Internet Explorer 6 users that the browser will be discontinued shortly.

Apple provides via software update its new browsers automatically. Microsoft does the same with Windows Update. Today, it is very easy to update. Probably a big slice of these users have pirated copies and can not update by official ways. For companies, it is a bit more complicated since it involves hundreds of machines.

The main point is that there are many options for all tastes when browsers came into play. It's just a matter of trying each one since there are no costs involved and just time is needed.

The most natural option you see around is people migrating from Internet Explorer to Firefox since it is more exposed to media, you see more users going this way.

Lately I found Firefox very slow and bloated with extensions I almost don't use (I know, I should uninstall) and consuming lots of memory. Instead of cleaning it up and start using a fresh install, I went another way. Switched to Safari at home (Mac) and Chrome at work (WindowsXP).

I only did the switch because a mandatory feature for me, bookmark synchronization, using the fantastic Xmarks extension is now available on Chrome via beta channel. It became available for Safari earlier this year.

Of course, I miss some features given by other extensions. The ones I miss more are AdBlock, rocker gestures, Gmail notifier and Twitterfox.

Latest Chrome dev builds can use extensions when loaded with the --enable-extensions parameter. On Chrome dev page, there is a sample Gmail checker extension that does the basic job. That parameter is also needed to use Xmarks extension.

Replacing Twitterfox was a harder job because I wanted a small and featured client. I ended up on DestroyTwitter, an Adobe Air client that is better than other options I tested. I will leave this Twitter client choice for another post.

I've been "switched" for some weeks now and don't miss Firefox nor its extensions. Tell me if you did something similar and if it worked.

0 comments Friday, September 4, 2009

When I started planning to upgrade to Snow Leopard, I had two options on my head. Update from what it is now or do a full reinstall. Since I think my Macbook 3,1 became slower from the time I bought it (around 1 1/2 years ago), maybe a full cleanup and reinstall could get it snappier.

With this in mind, I started updating all installed software with AppFresh and ran a maintenance job using Onyx. Then, backup everything using Time Machine and pop the Snow Leopard DVD choosing a full install.

When the installation finished, I will restored my data and applications (previously cleaned up) with Migration Assistant from TM backup. The restore brought back all data from my previous profile including terminal exports, Macports data and system settings.

In case anything went wrong, I would restore Leopard and then do the "update" from Snow Leopard DVD.

After all, I feel my applications much faster to load and the system is more responsive. Really worth the upgrade.

1 comments Thursday, September 3, 2009

Steve Guttenberg wrote a nice post about the recent revival of Vinyl records and the differences from CD. A short post that lights up the curiosity music lovers.
Vinyl is back, big time, but the fact is most folks, probably close to 99 percent of the under 40-set, haven't heard records.


The amazing Guitar Rig 4 from Native Instruments has been released. It's a great combination of software and a foot controller. Starting at $99 up to $499 (with the foot controller).

Guitar Rig 4 Pro will include two new amp models, the “Hot Plex” and the “Jump.” The new version will also come with two new delay units and two new flavors of reverb, bringing the overall number of included effects to 48.

From The Loop.

0 comments Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The article posted yesterday by John Siracusa to Ars Technica can almost be considered part of the documentation for the OS not only a review. Worth every second.