Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Strongbad on the Wii!

I heard the rumor from my cousin this weekend, but a small amount of research found
this well-hidden homestarrunner page referring to Strongbad's upcoming games on the Wii! The best part, in my opinion, is that they won't be game disks (read: $50)...they'll be the launch of the WiiWare part of the Wii Shop channel as it was intended: a source for smaller, non-studio-type games designed just for the Wii and offered at (presumably) lower prices.

According to the original press release, there will be 5 games released, beginning in June, with each following episode released at the rate of one per month.

I love this idea- it's a great marriage of two things I'm a big fan of, but I do hope that Strongbad doesn't get too big, too fast- going truely mainstream would, I'm afraid, degrade what makes it funny in the first place. Going down this path might lead to an animated Saturday morning cartoon series with Strongbad or something, and that just wouldn't work. I laugh at the title of their announcement (Lappy 486 has sold out!), but I hope the brothers don't actually full-on sell out. It's too funny as it is. Though I do wish for more frequent updates of the podcasts and an rss feed for the Strongbad emails...

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Tuesday, April 8, 2008

IEBlog : IE Automatic Component Activation Now Available

Awesome; I've been waiting for this: IE Automatic Component Activation Now Available

Once you install the April update for Internet Explorer, you won't have to click on embedded objects (like Flash or Java objects) to activate them anymore! It's only been annoying, but there are so many sites that will feel like a seamless experience again, finally.

Kudos to Microsoft for doing what it took (licensing of some technology, if I'm not mistaken) to get rid of this annoyance!


Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Web-based time machine!

There's a great piece of web software posted here, even better than Google's new Custom Time feature. Ages pictures into either the past or future- they've got a picture of what a mini-cooper would have looked in the Jurassic age as a demo on their website! Shift the picture's time by 6 months and see the meadow you took a picture of in winter, or see yourself at age 60! Well worth the time to try ☺

(Note the date the software was posted and the date on this blog entry before trying it out- it's important).


Avoid gmail's "on behalf of" problem

The issue: gmail offers a way to send e-mail through their web, pop or imap interface so that it's supposed to appear that it was sent from another account you own and aggregate into gmail for storage. However, in strict keeping to standards, gmail sends out BOTH addresses, so some clients show a from: tag like "From abc@gmail.com ON BEHALF OF abc@xyz.com".

I HAVE FOUND A SOLUTION FOR THIS PROBLEM, however it requires you to use Microsoft Outlook 2007 as your client (or another client I'm not aware of that allows you to redirect where your sent messages are saved).

-Tell gmail to check your other e-mail address via POP (just follow gmail's directions).
-Don't use outlook to check your other e-mail address via POP.
-Enable IMAP access for your gmail account (Settings->Forwarding->Enable IMAP) in the gmail web interface.
-Set up Outlook 2007 as follows:
Incoming Mail Server: imap.gmail.com (just like gmail tells you to)
Outgoing Mail Server: [put here whatever your other e-mail provider tells you to use for POP clients...something like smtp.xyz.com usually]
Logon User Name: [your gmail address] (just like gmail tells you to)
Logon Password: [your gmail password] (just like gmail tells you to)
Outgoing server requires authentication: Log on using: [your POP credentials for your other e-mail provider...usually just your other e-mail address and password]
Incoming server port: 993 (just like gmail tells you to)
Outgoing server port: [whatever your other e-mail provider tells you to use].
-Now, once you're connected to gmail and have synced the folders, go back into Account Settings, and "Change" your gmail account. Click the "More Settings ..." button, and under the "Folders" tab, tell it to save your sent items for this account in [Gmail]\Sent Mail.

What this all does:
You're actually sending the e-mail straight through your 'normal' pop server directly from Outlook. It's not looping through gmail at all, so there's NO way that the recipient of your message could glean your gmail address from that sent message. However, once the message is sent, Outlook posts the sent message to gmail's Sent Mail folder via IMAP. Thus, the message gets synced up to gmail as if you'd sent it straight from gmail.

So then when your recipient replies back to you, it goes back to your other e-mail address, which you're having gmail gather messages from. Outlook will get their reply via IMAP from gmail. If you reply to them again, it's likely that gmail's servers will be shown in the message headers, but I don't believe your actual gmail address is shown in any way (I may be wrong). But still, they'd have to dig through the message headers for it; there are no common user-viewable fields that gmail.com would show up in. In gmail's web interface, you'll still see the 'conversations' linked together, just as if you were sending from gmail.

Note that I didn't tell you to allow gmail to send using your other (POP) account...for this to work, your messages MUST be sent from Outlook (or another imap client that can save sent messages in Gmail's custom folder path). If you send a message from gmail's web interface, you'll be sending from your @gmail.com address. Though you'll still see those sent messages show up in the "[Gmail]\Sent Mail" folder in Outlook, that's probably not exactly what you want. Best case, your recipient's email clients will again show "On behalf of" in the From: field on your message.

Still, this is the best solution I've found...nobody on the web that I can find has posted this method. Now if only Outlook would let me delete the "Junk E-mail" and "Sent Items" folders from imap accounts...these show up in gmail as available labels, and I haven't found any way to get rid of them. It'd sure be nice if gmail just sent messages straight through the pop servers you elect, just like a real e-mai client does...then you wouldn't need Outlook to do this, and you could just JUST the gmail web interface (which is, after all, quite nice).