March 23, 2007

Adobe CS3 Live Webcast

I call this: computers,mac,pc — Posted by KP @ 3:06 pm

OK, I can’t even believe I’ve put this in my calendar (with an alarm, no less), but Adobe is doing a live webcast of the launch of Creative Suite 3 on Tuesday, March 27, at 3:30PM EST. It will be hosted at this link.

I for one will be purchasing some version of CS3, as I’m still using Photoshop 7. I’m curious to see what the upgrade pricing will be for that.

Mac OS 10.4.9 and USB webcams

I call this: computers,mac — Posted by KP @ 12:32 pm

One of the more interesting things to happen in the Mac world in the last week or two is the release of OS X v10.4.9, which among other things, enabled the use of USB webcams natively with iChat and Quicktime and whatever else you might use them for, without the need to buy shareware drivers as was necessary before.

If, like me, you never bought the now-discontinued iSight because it was too expensive, and you think, as I did, that this means you can now go out and buy the cheapest webcam you can find — you’re wrong. Not all webcams are compatible, only those which are UVC compliant, which seem to be only the ones that are almost, or as expensive as the iSight was. Bummer.

Nevertheless, I needed a webcam, and this finally got me to go out and buy one. After perusing a number of Mac-oriented forums, and finding very little concrete evidence of which webcams actually work, I found this thread at MacNN, which seems to contain the most information. So with a list of theoretically compatible models, I went to CompUSA. The cheapest I found was the $79 Quickcam Pro 5000, but it’s kind of huge, and I wanted something that would work well for my Powerbook, but also sit nicely on a regular monitor, as I intend to give it to my parents once I buy a Macbook Pro. I found the best value for my needs was the Logitech Quickcam Fusion, for $99.

I was very happy to discover that all I had to do was plug it in, open iChat, and there it was. It also works nicely for recording video with Quicktime Pro. It’s still an awful lot of money just to get a camera working, though. It would be cool if someone could come up with a hack to make the button at the top do something in OS X.