Modifying the AppleTV

I absolutely adore my AppleTV. About 2 years ago I bought the 140gb version and have never looked back. I love how it seamlessly lets me watch HD TV and movies. What I hate, though, is that everything costs at least $.99. This irritates me because so much of the TV shows available online now through Hulu or CBS are totally free, unless you’re watching them on the AppleTV. Then cha-ching, you pay for them.

So, I went in search of a way to get those great shows on my ATV. I found this nifty little site which talks about how to add the ability to watch Hulu and other networks through the silver box.

It works really easily, although the video is a little pixellated and choppy at times.

Now, as soon as somebody figures out how to turn the AppleTV into a DVR, I’ll never have to leave my couch!!


Fixing iPhone Visual Voicemail after installing tethering hack

When the tethering hack came out for the iPhone, I was very interested to try it. So, like many people, I was afraid of what it would do to my phone and my contract. But, after seeing it in action last month, I decided to give it a try. This little application is truly an amazing program.

This article is not an endorsement of any hack for your iPhone. Please don’t do it. But, if you did do it, this is the solution.

After installing the hack, everything looked to be in perfect working order, until a realtor showed up at my house (which is on the market) and said he had left me a message about showing it. I looked at my phone and there were no messages. That’s when I remembered my friend Zach saying something about how the hack caused problems with visual voicemail. Drat!

There are several discussions floating around the internet about how to fix the problem, ranging from resetting the network settings (which didn’t work for me) to completely resetting the phone, which I didn’t try. I did, however, find the solution and it’s an easy one:

Go to:
Settings -> General -> Network -> Cellular Data Network

On the fourth line, in the “Visual Voicemail” section, there is a setting for APN. This has probably been changed to something like wap.cingular. To have your voicemail return to normal, change this setting to acds.voicemail (it’s as simple as that).  The system took about 10 minutes to start sending voicemail back to my phone, but it worked like a charm.

Two things I noticed about tethering, though. If your computer is connected through USB to the iPhone, the battery will generally stay charged. If connected through bluetooth, you can expect about an hour out of your phone before needing to recharge.


Fixing MobileMe iCal Sync Issues

WARNING: I am not a geek or licensed repair person. Use the information below at your own risk. If you screw something up or this causes all of your sensitive banking information to get leaked to pirates in Somalia, don’t blame me.

Brian Crow is confused.The truth is, that I am a complete Mac junkie and I would call myself, as Guy Kawasaki would call it, an Evangelist. I believe it is the best computer made. I have gotten to the point where I don’t even want to hear about Windoze problems from my family. I love Mac because when you turn it on, it works. No virus scanners. No spyware scanners. No license code issues. No missing dll’s. It just works.

However, for quite some time, like many other users of more than one mac, I have been plagued with  the problem which MobileMe has when synching more than one computer. Here’s my configuration:

  • MacPro Desktop
  • Macbook Pro 17″
  • iPhone

Because of my travel and coffee-shop requirements, I spend about 1/3 of my time working on each of my Apple products and need to have them all synched up. Things worked great until about 6 months ago, when my desktop stopped synching with MobileMe. I tried all of the recommended tricks; deleting and resetting my synch profiles, blah, blah, blah. Nothing worked.

However, today, I discovered something. In my /user/library folder, there is another folder called Calendars. On a whim, I renamed this folder and re-synched my desktop to MobileMe. To my shock, and delight, it worked! All of my calendar data synchs again!

A word of caution, this causes all of the calendar data which was stored locally to be deleted, but that was OK with me, since I use my MobileMe calendar as my master.


If this helped you solve your calendar problem, shoot me an email and let me know. I promise I won’t try to extort any money from you. However, if your computer has been irreparably damaged due to this post, please read the first paragraph and then keep your thoughts to yourself. Thanks.


Firefox web browser | test the latest beta

The latest beta version of Firefox is now available as a preview release. Take it for a test drive and let us know what you think


Important Information

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This is pre-release software: you may encounter compatibility problems with some websites and add-ons.

If you find a problem please let us know or file a bug.

For more details, read the release notes and known issues.

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3.5b4 for Mac OS X 10.4 and above

English US 17.3MB

Release Notes – Other systems and languages listed below.

via Firefox web browser | Help us test the latest beta.


Simply Days until new Mac arrives to my humble home…

May 7 the little gem travelled from Shanghai China to Anchorage Alaska. After quickly passing through customs, it has begun its journey southward whilst I sleep. I am counting on massively accelerated computing not long after it arrives.

ship status

Soon enough it’ll be here in my lovely little hands and making me even more profitable.