Google Earth Mac Beta

Google Earth Beta After an evening of trying out the non-public beta of Google Earth for Mac OS X I must say… YES! Finally. 🙂
I, and a lot of Mac owners, have been eager to run this piece of software on a Mac. And now we can. Not officially, because the download page at earth.google.com still mentions Apple Macintosh computers are not supported at this time (but we are working on it).

And they definitely are working on it. See the screenshot below.

Google Earth on Mac OS X

All I can say right now, is:

  1. It works. On my iBook 12″ (Tiger inSideTM) I can spin and zoom the Globe quite happily without resorting to *hacks*, Virtual Desktop, Remote Desktops, etc.
  2. It’s buggy. It froze on me a couple o’ times. With all the options turned up, it hampers. A DirectX option on OS X???? Polygons are garbled. The app icons look like s… Images in popups don’t seem to work. And there’s probably more.
  3. It’s NOT finished. So it is not expected to work YET! DO NOT COMPLAIN it is a non-public beta that happened to leak. Otherwise Google would’ve made publicly available.
  4. It’s great. If you get motion-sickness too easily, don’t mess with the scroll-pad. 😉
  5. This apps Useragent is ‘GoogleEarthMac/LT3.1.0371.0’. So the ‘network link’ people know now.
  6. It’s a first for Google! As in: A first major software ‘leak’. A first major application on OS X (GMail Notifier was an excercise).
  7. Compatibility? You’ll probably need a current (hefty) Apple product with the latest OS (X) and patches. But we’ll know for sure once they release it.

So how do YOU obtain a working version?

You’ll have to wait a little longer! Google is working on it. How long? Maybe a few days or months.

Update: It’s here. Go get it from Google!

Sidenote: If you manage to install GE on a Mac. You may want to look at some spectacular impact craters on Earth’s surface. Download the kmz’s and open them in GE. Enjoy! 🙂

Update: Stefan from go.ogleearth.com has been asked nicely by the Google people to take down the download links. He also has a more in-depth review of GE on Mac OS X. I haven’t gotten any comment from Google, yet.

Google Earth for Mac OS X around the corner…

Or is it??? I’ve blogged about it before. Well, it was more a kind of ‘wishing out loud‘. But just yet the Google Earth fairy brought me a package. It looks, smells and tastes like a Mac app. Unfortunately I’m at work and my Mac is at home. So I cannot be sure.

A quick look around the package which bears the version number 3.1.0371.0 looks genuine enough. Whether somebody is pulling a prank, tries to make my Mac a bot or gave me an early Christmas gift I cannot tell at this point. Still have to finish off half a days work, rush home, eat and then, only then, start her up. 🙁
Think I’ll fake an upcoming flu. *cough* 😉

AppleInsider has the scoop (and the screenshot) to back this up. All I can say: “I’ll get back on this…” Can’t wait to get home.

Note: No official word from Google yet.

Update (23:00 GMT+1): Well, it works! 🙂

Firefox 1.5 released

YES!!! The long awaited sequel is here. Get the official update of Firefox. It’s available on Windows, OS X, Linux and some 20 odd language versions. 20 times 3 makes 60, not? See all versions.

This release comes with a revamped preference panel, tabbed browsing enhancements, loads of bugfixes, faster back- and forward, … in short it just got better. How much, you’ll have to find out yourself.

BUT If you plan to upgrade, please make sure none of your critical extensions break. If they do, persuade the original extension creator to fix his/her extension ASAP. Or take a look at the Mozilla Quality post: “Some help testing Extensions for Firefox 1.5“.
Personally, the only extension that hasn’t been updated for me, are the Furl Tools.

And as of this release the new mozilla.com site is live as well. (As opposed to the former .org one)

On a sidenote: I expect the Portable Firefox version to be released very soon.

Go Get It!

Update: This final release seems to have the same timestamp of FF RC3. Which some of us have been running since November 11th. I must admit, I have not run into issues since. Some extensions reserved.
And it seems mozilla.com is favoured over mozilla.org. I see former links pointing to .org redirected to the .com.

Google Analytics… *Big Yawn*

So 48 hours after launch the site is at least reachable. But still no data to analyse. Thus no comparison. A vague memory begins to boil up, I have never, ever, seen any Urchin report before. Although previously encountered hostingproviders offered them…
(I’m starting to see a trend here…)

It’s beginning to look like, as we say in The Netherlands: “Doodgemaakt met een blije mus.” I won’t translate, because the finesse will be lost. And to the Dutch: Yes it’s spelled wrong.

I’ll leave the smart comments to Steve Rubel and Technorati. *signing off*

Update (16-11 11:00 GMT+1): The data is up! Finally 🙂 Let’s see how it fares…

Update 2 (16-11 17:15 GMT+1): It’s only ‘old’ data from 1.5 day of measurements. No new data has been added this afternoon. So much for the hourly update. 🙁
BTW: The launch of Google Base today does not seem to be a problem. 🙄

Update 3 (17-11 13:15 GMT+1): And it gets even better, I ‘Can not sign in‘.

Update 4 (18-11 13:00 GMT+1): Finally some confirmation: I have installed Google Analytics, but all or some of my data is missing from my reports.

Currently, report updating for Google Analytics is experiencing delays. As a result, you may not be seeing any data in your reports even after implementing the Analytics tracking code.

Update 5 (24-11 14:00 GMT+1): Registered users received an official e-mail from Google confirming all the trouble. I must say, things are working a little better these days.

Firefox: “The choice of criminals”

If I may quote the ‘Alternative browsers pose challenge for cybersleuths‘ article by C|Net:

Internet Explorer hides nothing from police and other investigators who examine PCs to discover which sites the user has visited, according to a class held Wednesday at the annual training meeting of the High Tech Crime Investigation Association. Investigators know the location of the IE browser cache, cookie files and history, and they know how to read those files. Also, popular forensics tools can help out.

But that story changes when it comes to alternative Web browsers such as Firefox and Opera, instructor Glenn Lewis said at the well-attended session. These programs use different structures, files and naming conventions for the data that investigators are after. And files are in a different location on the hard drive, which can cause trouble for examiners. Furthermore, forensics software may not support the Web browsers, he said.

Where’s a :smilie_hitting_brick_wall: icon when you need one? 🙄

Happy Birthday Firefox

A year ago, to the day, Firefox 1.0 was launched. So I guess a ‘happy birthday’ is in order. 😎

Logo Firefox 1.0In the past year this little app shook up the browser world. Among some of the things accomplished are, in no particular order:

  • Grab a larger than 10% marketshare. Exceeding the ‘promise’ made at launch.
  • Wake up that other browser development team, in Redmond.
  • Change the way I work on, code and debug my websites/applications.
  • Make companies big or small aware they have to support web-standards a.k.a. not only support IE.
  • Inspire Opera to also deliver a fine browser for free.
  • Setting a few download records. The current score is more than 106 million downloaded copies (spread over 7 iterations).
  • Prove that Feature Creep is bad and Open Source Software doesn’t have to come with a ‘Nerd Alert’.

You also may want to take a look at:

All that is left is the wait for Firefox 1.5

Update: Next part is adult only!!! So if you are not of legal age in your corner of the world, try Disney. For Tarantino afficionados: Kill Bill’s Browser LOL 😀 And for some Firefox Ooh Lala. Firefox, definitely the cutest and sexiest browser in the world! 😉

Extend Firefox Contest

The Mozilla foundation kicked off a competition for Firefox extension developers (to be). So if you have an idea for an new extension or upgrade your existing one, take a look at the extend firefox contest.

Do so before January 6, 2006. And it’s not for eternal fame only. There are some nice prices to be had.

PS: I’d like to have a GMail notifier that checks multiple accounts, maybe throw in a POP3 checker for generic mail accounts… It’s just an idea. 🙂

Update: Asa is pointing to the “New features for extension developers in Firefox 1.5” by Jesse Ruderman. Which should provide enough idea’s for 1.5 extensions.

Google Personalised Homepage getting more personal

What live.com didn’t deliver is what Google is taking a step further already. A Google Personalised Homepage in your native language with ‘local’ information sources.

‘Aboot’ the announcement:

While Seattle’s pretty close, I’d prefer to have the actual weather for Victoria — and have it in Celsius. Now I can, because today we expanded the personalized homepage to 16 new regions: Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Netherlands, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, UK, and ahem, Canada.

BTW: wasn’t this formerly called Google Fusion?