Life in a Gun Shell is a weekly comic written by Andrew Mussey involving the trials and tribulations of living in an 8-bit world. A new strip is run every Friday.

DROID TO ENV2 COMPARISON
June 21, 2010 at 12:28 PM EST (GMT -5)
I was at the local Verizon store checking out the Motorola Droid and HTC Incredible. The Incredible is back-ordered by over a month, so I couldn't place an order, but I snapped a couple of blurry size-comparison shots to my current LG Env2 (VX9100).



IMPORTANT FACEBOOK NOTIFICATION!
June 15, 2010 at 2:20 PM EST (GMT -5)


Thanks for the important update!


HEADPHONES
May 10, 2010 at 6:57 PM EST (GMT -5)
I can possibly be the only one who continues to have this happen to his headphones. Right around here:

the cord has been breaking internally, rendering one hear completely dead. This has happened to, as of today, 4 pairs of headphones.

Anyone else run in to this, or know of a simple solution to either fix or prevent it?


CLEARING CELLS
April 21, 2010 at 4:13 AM EST (GMT -5)
I really need to clear the cells before adding to them so I don't end up with awkward scenes like this:


ADOBE VS. APPLE, TIME TO GO NUCLEAR
April 13, 2010 at 11:42 AM EST (GMT -5)
In the last couple days, an insane Apple vs. Adobe war has broken out after Apple released the new iPhone/iPad SDK. The updated terms of service that accompany the SDK state that:

Applications may only use Documented APIs in the manner prescribed by Apple and must not use or call any private APIs. Applications must be originally written in Objective-C, C, C++, or JavaScript as executed by the iPhone OS WebKit engine, and only code written in C, C++, and Objective-C may compile and directly link against the Documented APIs (e.g., Applications that link to Documented APIs through an intermediary translation or compatibility layer or tool are prohibited).


Basically, anything that converts from one language to an iPhone compatible language is out. This eliminates multiple different translators, including Unity and, more importantly, Adobe's iPhone compiler in the newly released CS5 (a better summary of the battle can be found on TechCrunch at http).

So, what's next? Adobe just taking blow after blow, complaining on Twitter or starting grass roots campaigns Facebook groups in an attempt to show Apple they're wrong, all the while pushing out more and more products for their OS? That seems to have worked in the past! Look at my Google Voice Application on the iPhone... oh, wait...

One of the primary reasons that Apple is popular is because of their flagship market in design. If the Creative Suite wasn't on OSX, a large percentage of users, including myself, would veer in other directions.

Maybe it's time to show Apple that you're serious, Adobe. They've screwed over huge projects that you've created, turned down your software for the iPad, and shot comments across the bow at your entire lineup. Perhaps it's time to take it nuclear: Remove Photoshop from the Mac.

I don't mean directly break the software with some update, or pull it off machines ala 1984 on the Kindle, but let the world know that the next iteration, CS6, won't be available on OSX. If the trend continues, there will be another two years before we see that on shelves; That's plenty of times for things to relationships to be mended.

In the mean time, Apple has just released their new Macbook line. Don't you think some of the sales would fall to other vendors if designers knew CS6 wasn't coming out on that OS?

This could even benefit the users in the long run. Benchmarks on equivalent machines show that the OSX version tends to perform slower than the Windows version (Edit: Ars Technica has a review showing the opposite for certain tests).

Of course, there are a dozen of other factors that make this argument more complex, but Adobe if tired of being bullied by Apple, perhaps it's time to take more action than complaining. Your move, guys.


RELAY FOR LIFE NIGHT PANORAMA
April 12, 2010 at 1:49 AM EST (GMT -5)
Taken near midnight on the Drill Field during the April 9-10 Relay for Life:



WUVT RADIOTHON
March 30, 2010 at 11:55 AM EST (GMT -5)
It's day 2 of Radiothon week for 90.7 WUVT-FM! Help contribute and keep the station on the air! Their home page is www.wuvt.vt.edu.

As a practicing AM DJ, I'll be helping around the station and performing a show. We'll be surfing through different stand up artists from 4AM-7AM tomorrow (Wednesday, March 31). You can join us and listen live here!



GOOGLE VS. MICROSOFT ON THE LOCAL MACHINE
March 23, 2010 at 7:51 PM EST (GMT -5)
I was listening to the most recent episode of "This Week In Google", featuring Leo Laporte, Jeff Jarvis, and Gina Trapani. For those who aren't familiar with the show, the discussion, usually led by Leo, revolves around news for the week in the field of cloud computing. There was a lot of talk this week about the upcoming Internet Explorer 9. They talked about Internet Explorer 6, and Microsoft's need to force people to upgrade. Mention was made to Microsoft's difficulty of having to keep local computers up to date, while Google only had to keep their servers up to date (automatically updating every user). Someone mentioned that Google's Android operating system was subject to the same problem as Internet Explorer, where devices are still being sold containing Android 1.6, with the Nexas One using 2.1.

However, there was a point they didn't discuss: Google's Chrome web browser. I pose a question to all Chrome users: Have you ever seen your browser update? I for one never have, and I started using it as soon as it was announced in December of 2008. My computer is currently running version 4.1.249.1036. Since the first install, I have seen huge features added without any prompt, or without ever running Windows Update. They have, effectively, perfected the silent update.

Could this be a solution for Microsoft? Could operate in the way Chrome does, running a scheduled process occasionally to update the rendering engine or to grab bug fixes?



The pros to a solution like this have already been outlined; You never inconvenience the user when they need the browser the most, they're never faced with an update screen, and they're never.

On the opposite side, you have no choice. Firefox and Internet Explorer both make updates very clear to the user. I have once, recently, run in to a problem with Chrome that caused it to crash on a site I frequent. I'm uncertain if it's was a problem with the browser itself, or with some other conflicting program I had installed, but it effectively stopped me from using the browser for a week.

Could it be time for Microsoft to change their model?


Note for full disclosure: I regularly run Internet Explorer 6/7/8 (XP/7), Firefox 3.6 (XP/7/10.6), Chrome (XP/7/10.6), and Safari (10.6). I have Opera 10.51 installed on OSX 10.6, but don't feel I have enough experience with it to reference it in this article.


 

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