When
· Naughties
· · 2004
· · · July
· · · · 19 (2 entries)

Stupid Broken Wintel · Lau­ren is go­ing on a trip in a few days, and we thought that free video­phon­ing would be nice to have while she’s on the road. She’s got a de­cent IBM Thinkpad X31 which has FireWire, and AIM is sup­posed to work with iChat A/V, so this should be pos­si­ble. You can’t plug an iSight in­to Win­dows, so she got an “iBot” FireWire cam from Orange Mi­cro. The Thinkpad has a FireWire port, but it’s a pas­sive four-wire that doesn’t pro­vide pow­er, so she had to get a pow­ered hub (this is al­ready too much work). Then she fired up AIM and... no luck, it didn’t rec­og­nize the iBot; it did, how­ev­er, let us au­dio chat back and forth. Win­dows XP saw the cam­era just fine and you could see the video. We checked the iBot with the Mac, it worked per­fect­ly with iChat. First, she spent some time on the Web Site; no help, but there was a phone num­ber. She called it, pressed the num­ber for tech sup­port and a record­ing said “for tech sup­port send email to support@.” So she sent the email and got back an auto-responder say­ing “for tech sup­port go to the Website.” Then she tried it with Ya­hoo Mes­sen­ger, and it worked in we­b­cam mod­e, in­cred­i­bly slow, but then there was no au­dio chat. Fi­nal­ly we plugged in our big hand-held video­cam and it al­so didn’t get rec­og­nized by AIM. So I’m not sure whether IBM sucks or XP sucks or AIM sucks or the iBot suck­s. But it’s the iBot that’s go­ing back to the store to­mor­row. (Lau­ren would hap­pi­ly get a Pow­erBook ex­cept for she finds a touch­pad mas­sive­ly un­pleas­an­t. Since it is well-known that wom­en have gen­er­al­ly more sen­si­tive fin­ger­tips than men, I wouldn’t be sur­prised if she’s not the on­ly one. Earth to Ap­ple...) Some­times I hate com­put­er­s.
 
Eich & de Icaza on Longhorn · Jon Udell hosts an aw­ful­ly good dis­cus­sion on XAML, Longhorn, and the Web over at In­foworld. It fea­tures Bren­dan Eich and Miguel de Icaza, who are the right peo­ple to ask.
 
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