February 28, 2010


Mac Roundtable 2010.02.28 Episode #79

Filed under: Podcast — take2 @ 5:57 pm

Allison Sheridan NosillaCast @podfeet
Katie Floyd Mac Power Users, katiefloyd.me @katiefloyd
John F. Braun Mac Geek Gab, @johnfbraun
Bart Busschots bartb.ie, International Mac Podcast, @bbusschots
Steve Stanger The Mac Attack, @tmasteve

Thank you to Chuck for the great coverage at Mac World of the Mac Roundtable. See it at the Mac Roundtable Episode #78 or at Mac Voices #1013

Surge Protectors and UPS

  • Stay away from the $5 – $10 dollar power strips. They only offer basic protection.
  • You can get better protection for $15 to $25 (or more).  These strip will have better ratings and some special features, jacks for your phone line, cable line, even Ethernet.
  • Surge Station – These large surge protectors fit under your computer or on the floor. They offer superior voltage protection and advanced line conditioning. You can get one of these units for as little $30 US, or you can spend upward of $100 for more advanced models.
    • Example: Digicom power station 2520 joule surge protector 8 outlet Black $26 at Amazon
  • Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) – Is a big battery back up –  If the power goes out, your computer will continue to run, feeding off the stored battery power. This will give you a few minutes to save your work and shut down your computer.  These units tend to cost from $30 US if you can find a deal to a few $100 dollars or more depending on the type of equipment you want to protect.
    • People think UPS’s will keep them going throughout the power outtage!
    • On consumer level UPS on average you get 7 – 8 minutes, more on larger units. Most connect to computer equip via USB and can shut down computer at a specific interval .
  • A UPS generally protects a computer against these different power problems:
    • Voltage surges and spikes – Times when the voltage on the line is greater than it should be
    • Voltage sags – Times when the voltage on the line is less than it should be
    • Total power failure – Times when a line goes down or a fuse blows somewhere on the grid or in the building
  • UPS come in all different sizes, one of the best ways to find what UPS is right for you is to use a website that offers a UPS selector.
  • One of the companies that makes UPS’s is APC (APC.com)  UPS Selector – where you input computer type, monitor, processor type, internal hd and stuff like that.  The selections you can choose from do include current mac models.  The results will give you a pretty good idea on what kind of UPS you need for your system
  • Better surge protectors and UPS may come with some sort of guarantee of their performance. If you’re shopping for more expensive units, look for a product that comes with a guarantee on your computer. If the unit fails to protect your computer from a power surge, the company will actually replace your computer. This isn’t total insurance, you can still loose your data, but it is a good indication of the manufacturer’s confidence in their product.
  • Remember no No surge protector is 100 percent effective.  
  • iPhone chargers
    A plethora of options have sprung up – perhaps there’s a big problem to be solved here? If you’re at a show or an all day event, you can’t actually USE your iPhone all day without one of these devices.  Tweeting is probably the root cause…or searching for wifi…or searching for 3G if you’re in San Francisco!

    Wi-Fire hfield.com extends wireless range if you have a localized outage and need to “borrow” someone else’s wifi.  Up to 1000 feet range.

    Drop in Apple quality on software

    • John’s issues with iWeb
    • Not Apple, but Flash Plugin in Safari (Unexpectedly Quit…I now expect it regularly)
    • Aperture 3 abomination
    • Allison’s issues with iTunes (spinning pizza wheel on starting videos, stuttering on videos, doesn’t remember external monitor is gone)
    • Look at all the errors and calls to debugger in the Console, I’m surprised the system doesn’t crash immediately


    • Bart – iPhone Game Optia at iTunes – puzzle game where you have mirrors and other optical devices to try get a laser to blow up targets. LOADS of levels and builds up very slowly so you pick up a lot skill without noticing.
    • John – Google Analytics Automator Action – echoone.com
    • Steve – Dropbox dropbox.com
    • Katie – Cnet Tech Tracker   cnet.com/techtracker/
    • Allison – Logitech Portable Lapdesk N315 with a mousepad pullout tray target.com (don’t pay over $30 for it!)

    February 17, 2010


    Mac Roundtable 2010.02.16 Episode #78

    Filed under: Podcast — macroundtable @ 2:45 pm

    The Mac Roundtable crew took the Main Stage at Macworld 2010 to talk about the success of the show, Apple’s absence, provide some show picks, and answer audience questions. Participants included (in order of appearance):

    Chuck JoinerThe MacVoices Group
    Don McAllister
    Ken Ray
    Mac OS Ken
    Victor Cajiao
    Typical Mac User Podcast, Typical Shutterbug Podcast
    John F. Braun
    Mac Geek Gab Podcast
    Katie Floyd
    Mac Power Users
    Allison Sheridan
    Tim Verpoorten
    The Mac ReviewCast
    Adam Christianson
    David Sparks
    Mac Power Users, MacSparky
    Dave Hamilton –
    Mac Geek Gab Podcast