Archive for June, 2009

After 9 years jpeglib v7 is out

Sunday, June 28th, 2009

So after 9 years (jpeglib v6b was released 27-Mar-1998) finally a new jpeglib release sees the light of day. v7 comes with the lossless crop patch merged, as well as artithmetic coding (which I thought was patented by IBM, though maybe that patent finally expired?) as well as more DCT scaling (N/8, 8/N) with all N in [1..16] (formerly since v5 from 24-Sep-94 only N in [1,4,8] where supported).

Rectangular text selection in Mac OS X

Friday, June 19th, 2009

Just yesterday I accidently “discovered” that some Mac OS X applications allow to select text in a rectangular area, as opposed within the regular text flow, with whole lines between the start and end. Simply holding down the Option-key (fork with alt) before selecting trigges it. This appears to work in at least Xcode, Terminal, Console, Textedit and Preview (but not e.g. Safari, nor Mail). Actually it works in most selectable NSTextField instances.

Update: Looks like a new feature of Leopard, 10.5. Poking around some more it’s even possible to extend text selection while holding down the Apple-key, which then adds the inverse selection of the area. That is: unselected parts are selected, and those already selected previous and inside the new area become unselected.

Interesting that they implemented such an “complex” selection theme (that is quite some lines of code to get right).

Exif tag based orientation, finally

Sunday, June 14th, 2009

So finally I squeezed the time of adding Exif-based rotation into my free Sunday schedule and thus to our ExactImage library. In other words: The 13 GB of digital images in mypublic photo gallery are now usually more pleasant to look at.

Some images are still not quite right, though, simply because some cameras had no acceleration sensor, or images are out of sync due to previous manual rotation, … The biggest suprise was to find out that even the quite decent Sony T10 camera does not feature a gravity sensor (the next thing to go away thru eBay, …)!

Via Nano stepping 3 for functional VT

Monday, June 8th, 2009

Interesting: So up to, and including Via Nano CPU stepping 2 the VT (VMX) was not finalized and does not really work (at least not in all details or unreliable, whatever). The Via Nano CPU must be at least stepping 3 for functional VT and should usually be disabled by the BIOS for earlier silicon, like stepping 2 and before (but sometimes isn’t like on Via’s own reference board VB8001 I had my hands on earlier this year).

Computex 2009/2

Monday, June 8th, 2009

Too many NetBooks, NAS solutions and the usual mass-ware: logic (main) boards, cases, power-supplies, keyboard, keyboard mouse, KVM, cables … pictures frames and bags.

Everyone got NetBooks, now. From Gigabyte to J&W, extending their “Minix” branding to a NetBook line:

The Asus Keyboard PC also was shown in action (on the CeBIT they only presented a case mockup behind glass).

You could also see how DMP intends to manually assembles their Education Book:

The German c’t (et al.) publisher Heise also had a booth. However, I strongly doubt the success of it, given that they only displayed the German flavor of their c’t magazine, and the two Taiwanese pupils could speak neither English nor German, nor where they able to comment what the booth is about (notice the “WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON” cap of one of them!), …

The German IFA fair had a somewhat more useful stand: The personal was able to communicate in English, and on top of that they even know what they where presenting. Thumbs up:


It was an exhausting week: Time-shift and jet-lag ^2, plus the additional workload from the intension to blog about the Computex and impression in near real-time for the first time. Which is an tremendous extra load of work, which I underestimated (maybe with some one touch iPhone app it would be more fun, if just the roaming for the data rate would allow for that).

The Computex felt less crowded. No matter what official numbers are being circulated, it’s should definitely been less visitors than the last year. The recession and H1N2 probably contributed most to this trend. Maybe additional the shared time-frame with the US E3 show made it worse. (Something I also did not quite understood when the German CeBIT and Embedded Expo where scheduled for the same week in this year [2009], … At least I had to decide which of the two German fairs to attend and went to the CeBIT, and many other probably had to pick one mutually exclusive [due time or budget], likewise.)

All in all pretty many interesting impressions and contacts. Although it was the third visit to the Computex in a row, this year we had our first trip to the countryside of Taiwan:

… more in the whole gallery.

Computex 2009/1

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

Taking some pictures and making some notes definitely is challenging when you actually also have some other stuff on the agenda. So for day 1 I actually took less pictures than I hoped to do.

It appears we’ll finally see a family of Via Nano based devices on the market quite soon, as there where multiple shown in the Via/S3 showroom. Even an Lenovo Ideapad:

There also appears to be a storm of cheap e-ink e-book readers on the horizon. However, I wonder about the acceptance given the 0 media partnership and the Amazon-like partnership that brings the daily newspaper to their Kindle:

And in the Via showroom I also found a hot candidate for the “ugliest” (or at least outdated) case design award (actually the picture makes it look better than in real, where the simple steal case does not really shine - and is pretty heavy too [metallic prototype?]):

Oh, last but not least (I nearly forgot): Art Studios has a booth showcasting EFIX in action.

… more in the gallery.

PS: I know, I urgently need to fix my blog gallery plugin to auto-rotate based on the EXIF tags, … I guess some prominent frontpage posts are a god reason to finally do so :-)

An exhausting first day, ..

Monday, June 1st, 2009

The first pre-Computex is about to end, … a good time to spend the evening with some good old friends.

Computex, Taiwan, 2009

Monday, June 1st, 2009

So we landed in Taipei, Taiwan for the Computex 2009 to begin tomorrow. I’ll try hard to post some live updates this time. Stay tuned.

… to gallery.