Posts tagged ‘resources’

2009-03-23

Bloat Warning

On my system, iTunes and QuickTime take up a combined space of over 180 MiB. That. Is. Crazy.

For a piece of software that I use for nothing else than transferring my songs from one place to another, 180 MiB is an astronomical length. iTunes takes up 106 MiB. The rest is accredited to QuickTime. I don’t even use QuickTime! But iTunes refuses to start without it! I use other free and open-source software to play media than iTunes:

On Ubuntu/Linux:

  • Rhythmbox
  • MPlayer
  • Totem

On Windows XP:

  • Winamp
  • VLC
  • XBMC

That covers all of my media-playing needs. Combined, these players, on each system respectively, play just about every format in existence. And MPlayer, VLC and XBMC are available for multiple platforms, it’s just that they run smoother/more gracefully in my experience on the respective platforms mentioned above that I use.

Back to the matter at hand: As I mentioned, I use iTunes for one reason and only one reason — to transfer songs to my iPod. That task does include fetching album cover art, but I count those two as one task. I don’t play any media in iTunes; no music, no podcasts, no videos or movies, nothing! If I have that kind of setup and needs, why shouldn’t I be able to uninstall the unnecessary modules of the software and save some space? I mean I can understand iTunes. It has quite a lot of features, and I assume that all drivers for every single product that iTunes supports comes with the installation of iTunes, but it doesn’t have to be that way!

Alternative #1

Imagine that you just bought a device from Apple. Let’s say it’s a new iPhone.

As soon as you plug in the iPhone for the first time after installing iTunes, iTunes recognizes that you have a new device and suggests to download the necessary drivers, or whatever it needs, to be able to work with your iPhone. Perhaps installing them as plugins, or integrating it with the software in some other way. BRILLIANT. Now, for any other features I like to use in iTunes, enabling them as I go.

Alternative #2

You just bought a new iPod Nano 16 GB (like I have), for example, and you go to the download page for iTunes to download and install the necessary software.

Upon installing iTunes, you are given — oh, I don’t know — OPTIONS REGARDING WHAT YOU WANT TO ACTUALLY INSTALL, as so many other installers do for other software. Then in those options it might say something like “I would like to be able to play music and video”, perhaps separating music and video into two options, and selecting those options would install QuickTime as well (although it’s ~75 MiB is inexplicable to me).

Alternative #3

Release the module that transfers content between hard disk drive and device as a stand-alone application! I understand that you need some type of technology to recognize which types of media can be transferred and played on the actual device, but that doesn’t imply that you also need the technology to play the media before you transfer it to where you actually want to play it.

That was a little messy, so let’s illustrate with a helpful and suitable analogy: You don’t need to take a bite out of the apple to realize it’s an apple! Otherwise I assume people would look at you strangely whenever you go to the grocery store for example. Sampling all the apples before you pick them up.

At the very least, iTunes should include some install-time options. I’m not really sure, but as far as I can remember, I couldn’t even select where I wanted to install it.

2009-01-8

Zeitgeist – Critical Knowledge for the Masses

I thought I would set up an account on WordPress.com. I feel like it’s much nicer here than at blogger.com. Feels less like “hey let’s keep it extremely simple” and more like “let’s use standards and throw tons of features at our users but order them neatly so it’s not cluttered too much – the users will have to explore them by themselves.” Kind of. Also WordPress is OpenSource I believe (wordpress.org).

Anyway as my first post, I’d like to just copy over my latest post from blogger because I feel like it’s an extremely important post. Here it is:

I recently watched Zeitgeist: Addendum. It is a film that is as astonishing as it is enlightening, frustrating, and appalling – a film that makes you believe there is hope for the future of humanity, but at the same time makes you feel there is just something inherent about the human race and the leaders of the world such that we will never reach world peace.

From the official “statement” page of the Zeitgeist movies’ homepage (link on the bottom).

‘Zeitgeist, The Movie’ and ‘Zeitgeist: Addendum’ were created as Not-for-Profit expressions to communicate what the author felt were highly important social understandings which most humans are generally not aware of. The first film focuses on suppressed historical & modern information about currently dominant social institutions, while also exploring what could be in store for humanity if the power structures at large continue their patterns of self-interest, corruption, and consolidation.

The second film, Zeitgeist: Addendum, attempts to locate the root causes of this pervasive social corruption, while offering a solution. This solution is not based on politics, morality, laws, or any other “establishment” notions of human affairs, but rather on a modern, non-superstitious based understanding of what we are and how we align with nature, to which we are a part. The work advocates a new social system which is updated to present day knowledge, highly influenced by the life long work of Jacque Fresco and The Venus Project.

These two films, or at least the second film, are probably the most significant pieces of expression in history, because they have the potential to introduce radical, and positive(!), changes to the societies of the world and thus the state of the world today.

In short (extremely short), Zeitgeist: Addendum talks about how money is the root of all evil. This may sound like the biggest cliché you’ve ever heard, but you most likely have no idea of how much there is to know about the evil that money brings. You will be blown away.

The knowledge you will gain from these movies are part of essential and important, common knowledge about the state of the world! And even if you don’t have about 4 hours to watch them both, try to take at least 2 hours to watch Zeitgeist: Addendum. If you don’t have 2 hours, try to take 1 hour, 30 minutes or 15 minutes of your day, and finish the movie(s) in parts. It is important. For all of us.

The Zeitgeist movies can be viewed directly via Google Video or downloaded using BitTorrent technology. You can download the BitTorrent files from the link provided below. The files point to high-quality “DVDRips” (almost DVD quality) so that might be the way you want to go.

Links:

Nice BitTorrent clients: