Erik’s Brain

The reward of a thing well done...


If you know me at all, you know that these days Adobe leaves a bad taste in my mouth. See Exhibit A and Exhibit B. And those don’t even mention Adobe’s accusations that I was a liar and a cheat and the overall nightmare I experienced when I had to “crossgrade” from Windows to Mac in 2007.

It wasn’t always that way. Back in the fall of 1996 (or was it winter 1997?) I was a freshman in college and got myself a copy of The Photoshop 3.0 WOW! Book and downloaded a working demo of Photoshop 3. It was a revelation. I had so much fun playing with that software and learning what it could do. I knew Photoshop 4 was on the way so I waited and pounced as soon as it was released. I think that with my student discount I was able to pick it up for around $270. Best money I’d ever spent. If you’ll recall, PS 4 was the first one to have layers. Yes, there were three versions of Photoshop that didn’t have layers. The excitement I felt about computers and creating things with computers was palpable. I still remember it clearly.

TextMate 2 Projects

A little bit of info about how projects work in TextMate 2 was posted to the official Macromates blog. There are some nice things about the way things work now, but I don’t see how I’ll be able to replicate how I’m using TextMate project files (.tmproj) with the project I do the most work on these days. I should point out when I say “project” I’m talking about a work project that involves a lot of TextMate project files.

Adobe Photoshop CS5.1 Gripes, Part 1

Here are just two three big beefs with Photoshop CS5.1 vs CS4 under OS 10.7:

  • You can’t change the document window size from all edges and corners anymore
  • Every time the cursor transforms into a spinner it disrupts my train of thought because it’s just wrong to do that. No other app does that. Stop reinventing the wheel just because you think you can make the wheel look cooler, Adobe.
  • Collapsing palettes requires a double click when it used to be a single click

If I Only Had a Brain

“You don’t know that if they looked inside of your brain or mine right now what they would find.”

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman explaining that the evidence showing dead hockey players suffered brain damage, specifically chronic traumatic encephalopathy, from fighting, is inconclusive.

via The New York Times

I think what he meant to say is “You don’t know if they looked inside my head right now if they’d find a brain.”

New Career Goal

Back in my mid 20s, my career goal was to have a job that allowed me to wear whatever footwear I chose.


Today I have a new career goal: Get to a point where I no longer have to use software written by Adobe. Trying to get CS 5.5 to work like CS 4, finding areas where CS 5.5 is, beyond any doubt, worse than CS 4, and having spent nearly $500 (and this was with a 30% deal) for the privilege has raised my hatred of Adobe to eleven.

Git Compression

My local copy of the Git repo I use for a project was starting to feel a little bit slow. Now, keep in mind, this is a big, old repo that around twenty different people make dozens of commits to each day. I hadn’t done any maintenance on it since I first cloned it to my computer back in August.

Before and After

Take a look at the difference in “size on disk” and the number of items. git gc --aggressive is no joke!

Related: Compressing Git Repository

iCal Has Some Brains


Try this with iCal for Lion (the leather-clad version that everyone loves to hate because they think it makes them appear classy and discriminating).

  • Make a new event
  • Include the word “breakfast,” “lunch,” or “dinner” in the event name

Did you see it? iCal automatically assigns the time to a typical breakfast, lunch or dinner time.

I have no idea what other words iCal detects in this manner. If you do, I’ve love to hear them. And I have no idea if this is new to Lion or has been around for years. But I thought it was a nice little detail.

iTunes Movie Rental Disappeared

Sorry, I don’t have a fix for this (besides emailing iTunes support and having them re-queue the rental for you so you can re-download it). I’m just trying to get a sense of what other people are experiencing.

The other night I rented a movie on iTunes. It was downloading quickly enough, so I started watching it while it was still downloading.

About 11 minutes into watching, it froze and iTunes hung. After force quitting and relaunching, the rental was gone. Checking for available downloads didn’t fix it. Signing out of and back into iTunes didn’t fix it.

Steps to reproduce might look something like this:

  • Run iTunes 10.5 in OS X Lion 10.7.2
  • Run iTunes in full screen
  • Start downloading rental
  • Watch it in full screen while it downloads
  • Wait for download to complete in the background, which will cause iTunes to freeze
  • Relaunch iTunes and see that the rental is gone and you can’t re-download it

Is this what happened for everyone else who had an iTunes movie rental vanish on them?

Related: Getting a refund from iTunes for a rental gone bad