Category Archives: aha

Solved: Mac option key not working on Nixeus MODA Pro keyboard

There are plenty of articles and Youtube videos showing how to switch the Option and Command keys when you adapt a PC keyboard for use on the Mac.  (System Prefs – Keyboard – Modifier Keys – Choose the correct keyboard, then switch Command and Option).

But even after doing that, the Options key wouldn’t work.  I finally noticed the “Win Lk” light at the top right.  Gaming keyboards let you turn off the Windows key in case you accidentally hit it during a game, and that’s the key that is now mapped to Option for my Mac.

Turning if off just requires holding Fn and pressing F8, which also has a “no Windows” symbol.

Media Center 7 “problem” solved

I’m still on the Windows 7 Media Center journey that I started describing earlier.  With the addition of an IR Blaster I can now get through the channel setup and record from cable.  I don’t see the listings again for my antenna, but that will have to wait.

The latest issue is that it appeared that my Recorded TV was gone.  I could see the files through Windows Explorer and even double-click on them to play them, but when I would choose “Recorded TV” in Media Center, it would look like there wasn’t anything there.  The error message said “Windows Media Center could not find any shared libraries on your network or there is no content in those libraries …”

I finally realized that the “Sort by” tool at the top had gotten moved to “Shared”.  Of course, I don’t have any recorded TV shared from other machines, so the list is blank:

MC Error

All we had to do was change that indicator at the top to any other sort method, and the programs appeared.  Duh!

MC Sorting

Late for the Party

Listening to This Week in Google (TWIG episode 3, I’m a little behind) created an “ah-ha” moment for me today. I used to always feel like I have to read every Facebook status update or Tweet that my friends post. Of course I can’t keep up, but I keep wanting to try.

They made the analogy on TWIG that Facebook status updates and Tweets are like a constantly running party. When you show up late for a party, you don’t say, “Tell me about all the conversations that I missed”. You just jump in for as much time as you have.

That takes a load off.

Taxes

Nobody seems to know who wrote this originally, and there are many versions out there.? Regardless, it makes you think…

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that’s what they decided to do. The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve. “Since you are all such good customers,” he said, “I’m going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20.” Drinks for the ten now cost just $80.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free. But what about the other six men – the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his “fair share?” They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody’s share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer. So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man’s bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.

And so:
The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).
The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings).
The seventh now paid $5 instead of $7 (28%savings).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% savings).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).

Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.

“I only got a dollar out of the $20”, declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man, “but he got $10!”
“Yeah, that’s right”, exclaimed the fifth man. “I only saved a dollar, too. It’s unfair that he got ten times more than I!”? “That’s true!!” shouted the seventh man. “Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!”

“Wait a minute,” yelled the first four men in unison. “We didn’t get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!”

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.

The next night the tenth man didn’t show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn’t have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!

And that, boys and girls, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

How a Sewing Machine Works

This graphic, which I found on John Dvorak’s blog but originally came from here, finally makes it (mostly) clear to me.

bobbin at work