Archive for the ‘Apple’ Category

Win a Free Copy of VMware Workstation 9?! (and/or Fusion) Contests! (Ends Jan31)

January 10th, 2013

Well hey everybody! WTF IS THIS? A CONTEST?! WHERE WERE YOU DURING XMAS!  Yea, yea I know.. well, The gift giving season has extended into 2013!

The other day after a re-install of my MacBook due to a memory failure which resulted in a drive corruption (Don’t even get me started!) I had to find my  handy dandy License Key card for VMware Fusion… Well, let’s just say that took a bit of time and hours before I was able to find my key, I came across this little gem!

IMG_2735 IMG_2736

Whoa, whoa, whoa… Wait a minute, WHERE DID YOU GET THAT!? Yea, I know, right?! But here’s the thing. I don’t like to hoard stuff when those of you in the community can benefit from it and rock out your life in an epic way, I mean … It’s certainly not THIS…. But it’ll do donkey, it’ll do…


But seriously… I said something about CONTEST didn’t I? Okay, well here in pretty large and bold lettering….


So you want to win yourself a copy of VMware Workstation 9 and you’re all like “WTF DO i HAS TO DO?!?”  It’s actually pretty simple. I provide you two paths to contestdom!

Path #1

In the comments, write an example/story/whatever of something you are unable to virtualize and the reasons why.   Seems pretty straight forward.  

This is actually two-fold.  On the one hand, us in the community get a sense of what other challenges our peers are suffering through of things unable to virtualize and all of the pains associated.  But on the other hand, if we as the community have SOLUTIONS to your unvirtualizable scenario, then we ALL win.  Sounds excellent, right?   I particularly love finding solutions where there are apparently none, so I’m hoping you’ll all participate in this!

Path #2

In this path, I want you to tell me how you might go about actually using this license you will win.   Maybe it’ll change your life, maybe it will transform your career, maybe you’ve been too lazy to upgrade your previous version and this fills that niche, you know… Whatever.


Optionally, it’d be pretty awesome if you followed us on Twitter so as to stay up to date on whatever ridiculous banter we share, I suggest following a few twitter handles, which everyone prospers by this effort anyway, you can gain an extra ‘entry’ by doing it, but only do it if you really want to :)

  • @cxi (me) – Christopher Kusek on Twitter!
  • @nerdblurt – Luigi Danakos who you’ll find out a bit more about in a moment! Blogger at
  • @sixfootdad – Damian Karlson, dear friend and virtualization rockstar, and #vBrownbagger
  • @vDestination – Rockstar of a friend and blogger Greg Stuart, the movement behind
  • @davemhenry – Dave Henry – He’s the kind of guy in the virtualization community you should just know, and madman behind
  • @that1guynick – Nick Howell, rockstar, Datacenter Dude, NetAppian, all that jazz!
  • @h0bbel – Christian Mohn, Another rockstar who shows off his mad skills at 
    • THIS JUST IN! The rockstar Christian Mohn just mentioned seconds ago… is tossing ANOTHER Workstation license into the pile! +1



I know what you’re saying, “I don’t have a PC and don’t need Workstation! I have a MAC because I’m a MAC USER OMG MAC MAC MAC MAC MAC!. Yea I hear you, I’m writing this on LiveWriter (best blog writing tool in the world!) in my Win7 VM under Fusion… Hell, if I weren’t using the key for THIS instance, I’d be giving this away too.   But no. My dear friend Luigi, Nerdblurt mentioned above actually had his OWN CONTEST running, and when he saw I was going to give away a copy of Workstation, well, it was like a match made in heaven.  You know. But not in a creepy way. :)

So introducing the Blog post by Luigi:

VMware Fusion 5 Contest!

You need to check out his blog post for details on this, which I definitely encourage you to my fellow friendly fusionistas out there!  This is an amazing opportunity for a freeeeee license to kickstart your… well, whatever you’ll be kickstarting! I know my life changed when I got my first copy of VMware back in 97 or so, and what better way to take things to the next level today!

So good luck to all, I hope to see some awesome submissions, but most importantly… I wish you all good luck as I want all of you to walk away from this experience better for it.   Good Luck and stay virtual! (or some other lame tagline ;))

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Posted in Apple, Cloud, Community, Contest, Free, Geek, NetApp, Virtualization, vmware, VMware Fusion | Comments (20)

VMworld Tips, Tricks and Prize winning #vmworld

July 31st, 2011

Whether this is your first VMworld or you are a hardcore veteran with scars on your ankles to prove it.   The following series of tips should prove useful so you can have not only the most enjoyable and educational time, you also won’t need to get shin splints halfway through the journey!


      1. It goes without saying, but seriously I’m going to say it AGAIN and AGAIN. [I have 1000 cards on order just so I have some…]  Bring business cards! You’re going to meet and network with a lot of people.  Oh yea, and there are some contests which for some reason will want your business card instead of using a scanner… so bring business cards, you’ll seem semi-professional and you can ‘exchange’ cards that way! oh yea and BRING BUSINESS CARDS!!!
  • Leave your laptop in your room
      1. Exceptions: If you are going to be live blogging an event, bring your laptop.   If you are going to be live video streaming an event, bring your laptop.   If you unfortunately have to WORK during the show and need to VPN or Webex into something, bring your laptop.  If you are going to a session where you know for a FACT you’re going to / need to take notes which require you to use your laptop, then bring your laptop.   Otherwise.  Leave your damn laptop in your room!  It’s cumbersome, it’ll be heavy, and it’s one more thing to have to watch out for / get lost (which none of us want that!)
  • Wear Comfortable Shoes
      • I know you want to look sexy in your sexxxxxxxy shoes! We all do!    But if you know you’re going to be walking on Concrete that day or do a LOT of walking and standing… maybe there is a better time and place to sexxify yourself! [Yes… on some days *I* will be wearing these… which are my sexy+business shoes, but other days, I’ll be wearing my marathon running shoes because it IS a marathon out there.

OMG MY SHOES, oh what was awkward? @lusciouspear came over later in the week EXACT SAME SHOES including the same size!

  • Always Carry Water with you! [As suggested by @Texiwill]
      • Albeit we WILL be in Vegas but this applies anywhere, even when you’re NOT in the middle of the desert!   So do bring water, your body will appreciate it when trying to hydrate and stay fluid in your ability to remember, retain information and… keep going!   I would often carry a number of un-opened bottles with me incase someone else was thirsty, cmon spread the love around!
  • Don’t worry about what you wear
      • You might say ‘Oh no, should I wear that one wacky t-shirt or the other wacky t-shirt.   Unless you’re interviewing at the show or looking to be on the market [Some T-shirts will promote that ;)]  Just wear something comfortable.  I personally half the show will be wearing a suit. …. with cat ears.    So seriously. Just get out there and enjoy ;) [Except for the shoes, wear good shoes!]
  • Try to take swag you want, your kids want, your coworkers want
      • Swag is a rare commodity, did you know that? It can build or destroy relationships [bringing home 2 balls when you have 3 kids… yea destroy ;)]   There is also a FINITE amount of SWAG between T-shirts, random balls and squishy things, [there are infinite pens so don’t worry about that] or iPads.   Just because they’re offering up something think about who will want it at the end of the day.  I personally will end up NOT taking home a lot of swag because I can’t fit this crap in my luggage! So I choose wisely.
      • The T-Shirt rule doesn’t apply to you guys who intentionally pack NO shirts so you can wear swag shirts every day. Good for you!
  • Car Pool in Cabs to and from the airport or to Hotels or Parties
      • Seriously, don’t be the guy who takes a cab solo.    For one thing you’ll pay the full bill, for another thing there are a finite number of cabs even if it seems infinite.    Make some new friends, car pool if you’re all going to the same place [TIP: IF PEOPLE ARE WEARING A BADGE… THEY’RE ALSO THERE FOR VMWORLD ;)]  So Car pool away! It’s good for the environment and the economy!
      • Car pool in cabs from the airport, I need to call out specifically.  The cab line at the airport to get to the hotels is FRICKING LONG OMG.   So do yourself a favor and lump yourself together with a bunch of other geek looking guys, it’ll save you a lot of heartache and you’re bound to make a friend along the way!


  • Bring a Portable Charger with you [Also acceptable, bring a plug-in charger for your mobile device]
      • That device I speak of is called a ‘friend maker’.  If you have an iPhone charger and someone has a dead or dying iPhone [Let’s be serious, everyone’s iPhone is immediately starting to lose charge the instant you take it off the outlet ;)]   This will let YOU survive to find what’s going on where, as well as help someone ELSE survive as well!  The same could apply for various Android and their ‘standardized’ connections across vendors.    My portable kit would support every type of connection!
  • Enter contests to WIN!
      • Obviously you’re entering the contest to win, right?  No.  You’re not.   Contests at Tradeshows are a very unique science and if you’re looking to win you need to enter to WIN it!    A few tips for the wonderful sponsors, vendors and exhibitors on the show floor.    These guys out there have three ways to draw your attention.    Having good technology which really draws you in to want to talk about it.   Something shiny or pretty which lures you over long enough to enter into a conversation about it.  Or a prize which brings you over which you’d otherwise ignore their booth entirely!
      • I *only* accept shirts I will actually wear or happen to look really cool [see prior statement] but I’ll enter to win an iPad from ANY booth, I mean I deserve it right? [and so should you :)]    With that said, do not hesitate to enter into ALL of the drawings to try to win!   I mean after all we’re all winners right?  But what I’ve also learned over the years, if you want to increase your chance of winning take heed of the following few tricks.
        • When they have ‘must be present to win’ and it’s done by a random raffle number or drawing which has no distinction of WHO entered other than an arbitrary number, your chances of winning are in the clear!
        • If a smaller exhibitor has one of these must be present to win contests. BE PRESENT AND WIN.  I was in one of those last year with –4- people who showed up. Yea I didn’t typo that, and no WTF I didn’t win?! 1-4 and I didn’t win?!?! but seriously consider that, your odds can be AMAZING as opposed to just being another name in an excel spreadsheet :)
        • Bose headphones are crap!  Okay, seriously. I’ve won –17- of these Bose headphones over the years, WTF is that! And I just give them to someone to sell because I really like my $5 headphones which rock it out [though I may be replacing them soon, and/or having a contest at #CXIParty for these badboys!
        • There is no shame in simply telling them that you have no interest in their product and just want to win their prize, but do give them the benefit of the doubt they may have some new technology they’re going to introduce you to!   They’re real people too! Oh and sidebar. I love Intel and all, but their games of ‘talk to 5 people and you could win a pen’ sorry guys, that is annoying to no end, do not play their games ;)
      • I look forward to each of you winning an iPad or whatever happens to be the ‘toy’ of the show this year.  Maybe some kind of Android tablet [yea, as if! ;)]
  • Visit the EMC Booths to WIN
      • Disclaimer: This not a shill to get you to visit EMC booths
        • *I* Cannot win prizes from EMC it’s sad but I cannot, *shakes fist in the air* but YOU can.   There’s one thing I’ve noticed from attending conferences like VMworld or EMCworld where EMC has a large presence, and that is OMG EMC GIVES AWAY A LOT OF SWAG.   If they have 10 booths giving away iPads, that’s –10- different chances to win an iPad, OMG SERIOUSLY!?!  Yea you can imagine my dismay that I am unable to win one of those.  But you… you still can.   Which is why I encourage you to visit the hell out of these booths “Run a lab, enter to win an iPad” “Listen to us talk jibber jabber, enter to win an iPad” “blah blah blah, win an iPad” I mean seriously!   GET IN THERE!  I clearly won’t be doing that because *I* cannot win one being that I work here, but you have that opportunity like no other!   I would call out OTHERs who do this, but no other vendor has this vested interest in Apple Products as much as we do, so take advantage of it :)
  • Don’t be afraid to ask if you can attend the Party
      • You ever go to ~10 Parties in one night? It can be exhausting.   My Party going started a looooong time ago while attending Microsoft TechEd conferences.  You know how I found out about the parties originally? I asked.   Just ask, and don’t hesitate to ask OTHERS if they know of any good parties going on.   I personally will see someone standing at a trade show looking like a lost lamb ready to be consume by wolves and will say to them, “You look like you don’t know there are any parties going on!” Typically they won’t, and I’ll hook them up with various parties.  Why?  Because you deserve to go to a damn party!
      • You know how the parties work [In spite of how this is operated by the Marketing People of these orgs which is a total fail]   Typically they will invite CUSTOMERS to their parties as an appreciation for them being a customer.  But you, you’re not a customer yet are you.  No, you’re not.  You may not know enough about the product, hell you may know everything and are signing off on it next week, but they don’t know that… No… they’re planning to invite customers because they don’t know the prospects.   Well, every single one of you can ALWAYS be a customer, and damn straight you should attend a rocking party as a result!
        • Caveats: Community Parties like VMUG parties or #CXIParty don’t care if you’re a customer, partner, competitor or ninja.   So ask, or if you’re afraid to ask, find me and I’ll ask for you.   Many of them will have ‘full venues’ but that has never stopped me before, grin.
      • You guys know that the sessions are available after the fact in video+PDF format, right? Seriously? You know that right?!?!  Don’t kill yourself to attend a session which is full or 2 1/2 miles from where you are that you forgo eating just to get there on time….
  • What sessions to attend EVERY time!
      • I know my friends who are presenting the sessions are going to hate me for this… but hey, that’s why this is a ‘trick’ and not a tip ;)
        • If you KNOW or are fairly certain to believe there will be ‘interaction’ during the session. SHOW UP.  You cannot get interaction from a recorded version
        • If the session has something EXTREMELY applicable to something you’re doing right now, and also YOU have specific questions you want to ask about it, Definitely show up.  Hitting up a speaker after a session can make the difference between success and OMG WTF WHERE IS THE NUMBER FOR SUPPORT!!!
        • If the session has something you can win?! [yea that happens sometimes] … I encourage you to show up ;)
        • If the session has total a ROCK STAR presenting like Scott Lowe, Duncan Epping, Chad Sakac, or Dave McCrory – Run do not WALK to get to those sessions and make sure you’re signed up early for them!
  • Sit with people you don’t know during lunch, and talk
      • WTF is this blasphemy!  Okay fine, sit with maybe ONE friend and a whole new table at lunch.   How often do you get to meet ‘likeminded people’ who clearly share a mutual interest.  No this isn’t some cruel and sick speed dating thing, this is VMworld where people are clearly there for a lot of the same reasons.  Take advantage of that and talk to them about what THEY’RE doing. It may be the same, they may be doing something OMG so cool you’ll wonder why you’re not doing that!   You know… fun stuff like that!    So talk, talk, talk!   These might be the only opportunities you get to meet these folks, in this informal setting because talking during sessions is impolite!
  • Make 5 new friends
      • A charter I have for #CXIParty is you must make 5 new friends.   You’re at a conference with LOTS of people who share your same interest, the least you can do is MAKE A FRIEND.   It’s not that hard, it’s a true bonding experience and a great opportunity to build lasting relationships!   And if you cannot forge a solid friendship out of it, the least you can do is meet some new folks, maybe have a new ‘acquaintance’ that’s cool right? Don’t want to infringe upon your strict ‘no friends’ policy! I know how GRC works! ;)
  • …What do you mean people there are HIRING?!?!
      • If you’ve read anything I’ve written in the past, surprisingly for as popular and fun as Virtualization may be… there are still LOTS of opportunity for people with those skill-sets.  Oh, and did you know that many of them will be HERE at the show looking to HIRE or network with those folks to hire later? yea, crazy, right?   Also if you’re in that market looking to BE hired, let me know and I can hook you up.  I personally know MANY of the folks looking to hire people so I can make sure those doors are swung open, maybe you can even interview there at the show! [Please refer back to dress-code as it applies to interviewing then ;)]
  • Only carry what you need
      • This is a general ‘pick-pocket’ city rule.     If you have a wallet with ‘x’ number of credit cards, pick the ones you need MOST and leave the rest somewhere safe [At home, or in the hotel/safe]  To re-enforce that, let me give you an example of things you NEED and things you DONT need
        • NEED: Credit Card, Cash, ID [Passport, State ID or License, not ALL three with you though] Insurance Card, BUSINESS CARDS, Players club card from the Casino! – Just give them your ID and they’ll make one for you…  If you’re going to be playing at ALL get one ;)
        • DON’T NEED:  Library Card, Membership card to some arbitrarily local thing which doesn’t apply here, blah blah blah
      • Now I want you to seriously think about it.  If you lost your wallet how many of these items would it HURT to lose and how many would be ANNOYING to lose.  Losing ID sucks as does losing credit cards and cash, but losing the wallet normally makes that happen.  The other misc don’t need items is just insult to injury in annoyance.   Ride thin and keep only what you need on you.
  • Write your name in something you own
      • Once upon a time [okay a few months ago] I got a phone call from the Las Vegas airport asking if I had lost my Notebook there.  Having not been to Vegas in some time, I did not.   They had found a notebook which had MY business card in it!   I knew there was an internal VMware meeting going on that week and I knew who I had given my card to, so I took down the information and tracked down who the notebook belonged to.    If his name was WRITTEN in the notebook or similarly on whatever item it was, they could have contacted him directly.   The point is… take ownership of what belongs to you and you have a vested interest in :)
  • Enjoy yourself!
      • This conference is about you.  Not the Partners/Vendors/Sponsors [As much as they may want to think it is] nor even the speakers because if they had no one to speak to, they’d just be people on a podium!   Get out there, ASK the questions you want to ask because people do want to hear from you.   LEARN what you want to learn, WIN what you can win :)   And Enjoy yourself!

See you at #CXIParty and throughout the entire show! Be sure to come say hi of course! :)

#CXIParty at VMworld hosted by @CXI and @NexusMN – After Welcome Reception

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Posted in Apple, Big Data, Cloud, emc, Event, Virtualization, vmware, VMworld | Comments (8)

Mac OSX LION the Vista release of Apple?!

July 22nd, 2011

Vista is an absolutely beautiful word. If you look at the first definition you get this precious definition to behold!

A pleasing view, esp. one seen through a long, narrow opening:

Isn’t that stunning… beautiful. If a word could describe something so sincere, so true, so… Elegant.   Unfortunately, THAT was not the definition that Mac OSX LION resembles.  Instead it describes the recently more appropriate and updated definition of Vista.

A software release leaving you to WTF how Performance and Operational considerations from your audience are thrown in the gutter.  One clearly defined and described by how much better performance you will get on the SAME hardware with a future bulkier version, restoring functionality you stripped from our cold dead hands.

Whoa! Why all the hatred?! THIS IS THE BEST RELEASE AND VERSION OF OSX EVER, YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT, IT MAKES MY MACBOOK JUST LIKE MY IPHONE. Yea. Thanks. Really wanted THAT functionality.    Do you know why I have an iPhone? It’s portable and I use it on the GO.  Do you know why I use my MacBook in Pre-LION terms? Because it lets me do things like THIS:

Spaces how I miss thee!

I had just come back from a reboot so I clearly didn’t have ALL 16 of my windows activated.  Oh and for you Forum Douches who say “WHY DO YOU NEED 16 WINDOWS”. It’s not my fault you can barely find a use for a single window.   I did find the adoption of 16 separate isolated instances a lot more efficient to having DEDICATED machines to do my work [What I would have to do previously]  So Apple first of all I want to thank you for taking this Primitive concept of 3D-ish worlds aligned to matrices and replacing it with this clearly ‘evolutionary’ serial mode.

"Mission Control" Houston, we HAVE a problem!

I’m not even getting into how various members of us have.  Performance problems like cited in the fine Louis Gray’s article Lion’s Big Bite Took the Air Out of My Sails. Nor how when you scroll from side to side you get this weird visual redraw rendering problem which for some of us has been causing severe headaches.   Yea, really.  Thanks for that.   I do miss my FAN turning off when I’m doing a lot of things, vs right now where it’s on with LITTLE application running time… thanks for that too!   You know what’s great about Mission Control though? the clear ability to disseminate between what is going on in ONE window vs ANOTHER window.  Yea I’m glad we got rid of Spaces because the clarity it brought to my productivity made me work too well and get too much done.

I know there are a lot of Great Write-ups about how LION is Amazing and how Mission Control is great. Usually written up by people who clearly use ONE window at a time and at best will run 3 applications simultaneously.   For those of us with on average 12 of our 16 windows busy, and find that we’ll hit the memory wall WAY before the CPU wall, LION is a serious piece of crap.

Here’s to hoping we get numerous Patch Tuesdays to resolve this Vista-like experience. Thanks. WTF. SERIOUSLY. WTF.

Oh and feel free to hate. Or even encourage suggestive ways how I can resolve issues and experiences I have had here.  I’m game to resolve these things.  However I know I’m not alone. :(

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Posted in Apple | Comments (42)

Music Recognition Redefined – Introducing SoundHound! #ShazamFail #SoundHoundFTW

August 17th, 2010

Yea… I cannot start off telling you all about recognition redefined without.. first giving you a story about how I came to learn of this amazing tool to battle all tools!

“Ooh! What’s that playing on the radio! Wow, let me see… (Pulls out iPhone4, loads up search and types in shaz – Select Shazam and select “Tag”) [listening… listening… listening…]

You are limited to 5 tags per month!

?!?!?WTF?!?!? I’m limited to 5 per tags per month?!? Okay fine.. sure that was a complete surprise, but I’ll download the pay version and finish tagging my song there. 

Just say no!

HI IM SHAZAM AND EVEN IF YOU PAY YOU STILL GET ADS – JUST LIKE CLASSMATES.COM  Seriously?!   Yea, #fail multiplied by #fail equals me going to look for another solution.   And it was then (that I complained about this on Twitter) that @jeffcoffee suggested I check out SoundHound!  

 SoundHound on the go!SoundHound Mobile

Okay, let me first off set the disclaimer:

There is a ‘5 per month’ limit on the Free version of SoundHound as well, but I was already in the market for a new product which clearly was NOT Shazam.

So, I load up the app and I get splashed with this screen

SoundHound Splash Screen SoundHound and bad singing of Yellow Submarine SoundHound finding Yellow Submarine SoundHound Share Song SoundHound Twitter Integration 

First of all, let me just say.   Whoa!  I decide to click “Tap Here” and I proceed to sing the Beatles “The Yellow Submarine” (I did consider filming me doing that… for your sake, I didn’t ;))

Lo and behold shortly into the song, BAM! It recognized it from my very own (at this point out of tune voice)  Wow! I should share this feat with someone shouldn’t I!? Ooh! Twitter and FB integration!  Yea, that’s the cost of doing business though.    But what if I don’t know the name of the song… all I can really remember is an artist…

Speak the name of your artist

With the ease of knowing ‘words’ I simply say a song name or an artist name by clicking on the “Title or Artist” section and bam! I’m presented with Michael Jackson!

SoundHound Settings

And while it is very nice that they have the settings easy enough to configure inside of the Settings section… the following is something I tested (both from my iPhone and my iPad) Something I had wished Shazam could do.. but never did, and frankly I don’t care if they ever support it at this point!

Suppose the following situation exists:   You’re listening to a song out of iTunes/iPod on your device, or even listening to something on Pandora! And you’re saying “Man, I wish I had the lyrics to that song, or knew what album it was off of, or other details” etc etc..  So you go and launch Shazam and immediately all sound CEASES to operate.  WTF?!? That’s kind of dismissing!

SoundHound Now Playing!

I welcome you to this feature in SoundHound called “Now Playing!”   Yes, this screen shot is from my iPad because it looks soooooo much cooler in that sense ;) But it works JUST as well on the iPhone (I guarantee :))

What's Hot with SoundHound (iPad edition) What's Hot with SoundHound (iPhone Edition)

And the last thing I’d like to share from my playing with this, is the “What’s Hot” “UnderPlayed” and “Just found by Users” options.  As you can see the iPad version looks a lot sweeter than the iPhone version… :)

And last but not least, I’d like to share some of the ‘highlights’ mentioned from their actual website which incase I missed any of this, you have it here! :)

Soundhound on Android Free Version of SoundHound
Now Available for iOS and Android


Blazing fast music identification
Sing & Hum recognition
Voice-directed music search
In-app lyrics

Special on iPad:

Big, beautiful lyrics and music videos
The SoundHound Ticker

Version 3.3.1 for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad
Version 2.0.1 for Android

– SoundHound (free): 5 IDs per month
Available on the App Store

– SoundHound ?: unlimited
Available on the App Store

Soundhound on iOS

Oh, and let’s not ignore the one feature (which seemed to be overlooked in too many ways in the features…)

Instantly Launch a Pandora Station (SoundHound)

Instantly launch a Pandora Station!!!

Okay..  I think that is enough… I’ll let you tell me your favorite functions, features and otherwise.   If you found this useful at all, and if you kick the ‘”Shazam” habit, let me know.  If you’re from Shazam I’d love to hear your feedback as well. :) 

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Posted in Apple, Free, Geek, Google, iPhone, Technology, WTF | Comments (2)

Browser Comparison or browser fail?

November 22nd, 2009

I am constantly torn back and forth by the infinite question of “Which browser should I use?!” Yea I know you’re saying “Well, duh, ofcourse you should use browser ‘x’” because you lack any bias ofcourse.. ;)  Though seriously, I give each browser my 100% commitment and see how long it lasts, but most importantly how well it scales.     Scalability is huge for me, because while I may only use 7-30 tabs at any given point, at the drop of a hat that number may scale into hundreds, over the course of days and not just minutes.

Here is the fundamental breakdown of what I was able to determine based upon currently released browsers and my utilization habits.  Feel free to call me out on any of this, but I’ll reference and cite as much as I possibly can – if you want to reproduce it, go ahead!

Using the following browsers: Firefox v3.5.5 Internet Explorer 8 v8.0.7600.16385 Google Chrome v4.0.223.16 Safari v4.0.4 (531.21.10)

I opened up tabs to the following locations:

And in short order the results I obtained from a memory, and cputime perspective were:

Browser Memory Usage CPUtime CPUtime Growth Memory/CPUtime Value
Google Chrome 157,380K 26 seconds semi-stable 6053
Firefox 141,468K 51 seconds semi-stable 2773
Internet Explorer 459,938K 107 seconds Stable 4298
Apple Safari 232,832K 369 seconds Constantly growing 630

So, looking at this by face value alone, you might rate these by various chunking orders such as memory usage, CPUtime usage, or even a combination of the two – Though face value does not determine scalability over the long term usage of the application in question.   Given the figures above, the order I’d place them in would be Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari.

I’ve been using Safari full-time since the release of Safari 4.0, and it’s been a great trip, it works very nicely, has an ‘alright’ rendering quality, and has a great UI experience for a number of activities.  It’s short-comings are pretty obvious above, it uses a fair amount of memory but it’s CPUtime utilization is through the roof and this app alone can bring a machine to its knees from inactive browsing activities, let alone regular active time spent on the browser.  Today will by my last day of using Safari full-time.

The recent tests like this one alone here has been encouraged by the preview of IE9 in it’s ultra alpha/beta state, and I would absolutely love to use IE8 as my active browser today (even took steps to do that recently!) As you can see it’s ability to leverage CPUtime and level it off is rather stable albeit higher than some of the others.  IE8 does allow one to scale though not without suffering a memory window to account for, and not to mention when tabs crash they only crash within the crash and not the entire browser as the other 3 browsers suffer from.   Unfortunately the memory consumption is too high for my average use, and I’ll have to put myself in the place of a beta instead of a stable release as this is.   Though don’t get me wrong, When IE9 hits a beta I can get my hands on, it’s rendering engine alone will shatter that of the other browsers and likely will be what I switch to then :)

I used Google Chrome pretty actively for 2 full years, and it looks like it is the champion in a number of ways – almost lowest memory, definitely lowest CPUtime, though one of the things people don’t know about Google Chrome is the fact that it doesn’t scale, the more you use it.  Infact, the longer you use Chrome the more often it just ‘forgets’ your credentials forcing you to retype them, or when you click from tab to tab and wait and wait and wait for it to render the current tab, like it decided to forget the ‘state’ of it and have to reference it entirely.   Not to mention one other little thing whereby I’m no longer able to login to ONE of my gmail accounts using Chrome because it’s trying to “protect me from myself”.  So, the longevity and scalability challenges of Chrome which I know so well will be yet another set of reasons I’ll be unable to use it.

Leaving me with falling back on Firefox.  Yes, I know you FF Zealots who will say “We told you so!@!@!” I already get a flood of those on my facebook ;)   For what it’s worth, I’d much rather use one of the other browsers, because while Firefox is nice and does scale extremely well, not to mention taking advantage of the memory and somewhat decently in the CPUtime space, there are just some fundamental challenges with Firefox which leave me wanting for more.   (A number of IE, Chrome and even Safari features would make Firefox a greater champion) but unfortunately the Firefox stable is to ‘go get yourself a million plugins, kthxbye’ instead of building a far better browser out the gate (Perhaps that is an excuse for scalability issues in the others, though that’s not the cause for Chrome’s problems :))


So, there is no doubt about just how fickle I am when it comes to browsers and my ability to do my work, personal and interactive activities in a constant motion – Feel free to call me out on any of this, and your thoughts on any and all of this, not to mention your preferred plug-ins across the board.   I’m game, and I’m not entirely biased which is why I explain just how I feel about these bits and pieces intimately here :)   See you at the next browser launch :)

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Posted in Apple, FireFox, Google, Microsoft | Comments (0)

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