Tag Archives: transmission

Azureus replacement?

Nevermind. I found on my own that Transmission plus Clutch should do exactly what I need.

question blockI’ve been using Azureus as my bit­tor­rent client of choice for years. It’s true that in the past year or so was bun­dled with some crazy, crappy, bloat-ware inter­face full of adver­tis­ing and stuff. BUT! There was always an alter­nate down­load ver­sion that gave the orig­i­nal core func­tion­al­ity, leav­ing out the bloated front-end. It seems that the alter­nate ver­sion is no more. Azureus down­loaded a core update last night and now the bloated “Vuze” inter­face is what you get. I guess there’s a UI-switcher plu­gin, but how long until that dis­ap­pears?

So I’m look­ing for an alter­na­tive OS X bit­tor­rent client. Transmission seems to be the pop­u­lar one, but when I used it long ago, it was too sim­ple for my needs. The web­site doesn’t say much about advanced fea­tures in the cur­rent ver­sion, either. Basically, the main fea­tures of Azureus I’m using and that I’d like to get in an alter­na­tive client are these:

* Web inter­face. There’s an Azureus plu­gin that offers up a sim­ple web inter­face for start­ing, stop­ping, and chang­ing the band­width cap. I use this from the iPhone. I’m not always at a real com­puter or a com­puter with access to my home net­work. The iPhone can always tun­nel in over the EDGE net­work, so I can do this from work, out-and-about, in bed, etc.

* The abil­ity to NOT down­load cer­tain files in a group. If a *.tor­rent file con­tains a dozen indi­vid­ual files, for exam­ple episodes of a TV sea­son, I may only want to down­load the first episode or two to get a taste with­out wast­ing band­width on the rest of the sea­son. Extra points if I can dynam­i­cally change this on the fly with­out restart­ing the down­load. Lack of this fea­ture is pretty much a deal-breaker.

* Automatically launch­ing *.tor­rent files dropped in a folder. If I have Azureus run­ning, I can drop files in a network-shared drive called “auto” and have it auto­mat­i­cally grab the file and start down­load­ing. If nec­es­sary, I can prob­a­bly do this with AppleScript, if I took the time to learn how–but I’d rather have it an inte­grated fea­ture instead of a duct-tape script.

* Bandwidth caps. I assume all bit­tor­rent clients have this. If I only want to trickle in a file at 40K/s because I’m doing other stuff on the net­work, it should let me.

* Simultaneous down­load lim­its and reorder­ing. I assume all bit­tor­rent clients have this, too. I can tell it that I only want to down­load one *.tor­rent at a time (to get max­i­mum band­width for the one file), but have three or four *.tor­rents in the win­dow. When the first is done, the next starts. I should be able to rearrange the order of the inac­tive ones (e.g. pro­mote the one in the third posi­tion up to the sec­ond posi­tion.)

So is any­one using an OS X bit­tor­rent client that fits the bill?

Posted in: Dear Diary Questions

All walk and no car make Brian something-something

Please note that all blog posts before 8 April 2007 were auto­mat­i­cally imported from LiveJournal.  To see the com­ments and any LiveJournal-specific extras such as polls and user icons, please find the source post­ing at http://brianenigma.livejournal.com/2002/12/

I have a feel­ing that a con­spir­acy is going on. I am sure this has noth­ing to do with the fact that I have been watch­ing the tele­vi­sion series “24” almost non­stop for the past two days (allow­ing time to pause for work, sleep, and other friv­o­li­ties). Fixing the trans­mis­sion on my car should have taken about 3 days, or so I was told. It has now been two weeks. The two weeks, though, has been a con­stant “it will be ready tomor­row.” Had I known this up front, I would have rented a car. I would not have been “hey, [insert friend's name], can I have a ride to work tomor­row? Can you take me to the store? Can we go grab some lunch? It's just for today.” I feel like I am tak­ing advan­tage of friends for rides because I am always telling them “It's just for today and tomor­row morn­ing. I'll get my car tomor­row after­noon.” I can­not say HOW MANY time I have repeated that last quote.

Anyway, I keep get­ting more and more crazy excuses. “The other parts were in L.A., but there was one part in Atlanta that needs to be shipped.” “The ship­ping was delayed because of the rain.” “We took it apart and were going to put it together, but one of the replace­ment parts was changed this year, so we need to order a spe­cial new tool to work on it.” I get the feel­ing that a trash truck acci­den­tally dropped a dump­ster on my car and that they are scram­bling around, work­ing day and night, try­ing to cob­ble together a replace­ment car using enough of the parts from the orig­i­nal, so as not to make me too sus­pi­cious. I know it sounds crazy, but I can men­tally see them remov­ing the seats (with the leather worn an irre­pro­ducible way from my phone hol­ster belt, and knife) from the old car, and insert­ing them into the new. This is the ONE CAR that I have not almost com­pletely rewired for my own sub­ver­sive needs, so I am not inti­mately famil­iar with what it looks like behind the dash­board and under the hood.

It is about now that I wish I had that '02 Harley Sportster 883C that I was look­ing at ear­lier this year.

To add insult to injury, I was sup­posed to start Christmas shop­ping 2 weeks ago. It was all sup­posed to be done by now. Because of trans­porta­tion issues, very lit­tle of it has been com­pleted.

I am cur­rently lis­ten­ing to “The Physics of Christmas,” down­loaded from audible.com. If you got the geeky email that was passed around a few years ago about the ther­mo­dy­nam­ics of Santa and the rein­deer run­ning around try­ing to hit every house in an evening at super­sonic speeds, this book is basi­cally that., only very detailed, greatly researched, and (when read aloud) 8 hours long. The cur­rent chap­ter is about Brussels sprouts, English chil­dren, and the fact that they typ­i­cally only get the proper amount of veg­gies once a year (at Christmas). In fact, a num­ber of peo­ple over there have can­cer that could have eas­ily been pre­vented by eat­ing vegetables–not eat­ing MORE veg­eta­bles, but sim­ple eat­ing ANY veg­eta­bles! Anyway, they are talk­ing about how chil­dren are more sen­si­tive to the tastes of things like broc­coli and Brussels sprouts because they are more sen­si­tive to the “tox­ins” that cause the fla­vor (which are toxic to bugs, but sup­pos­edly have a lit­tle bit of ben­e­fit to humans.) It would seem that 25% of peo­ple, mostly women, are super­tasters (much more sen­si­tive to taste), 25% are non­tasters, and the remain­ing 50% are normal-tasters. This reminds me of the They Might Be Giants song, “John Lee, Supertaster.” I thought they just made that up. There really *IS* such a thing as a super­taster!

Posted in: Books Dear Diary Television

Bibbidy Bobbity Poo

Please note that all blog posts before 8 April 2007 were auto­mat­i­cally imported from LiveJournal.  To see the com­ments and any LiveJournal-specific extras such as polls and user icons, please find the source post­ing at http://brianenigma.livejournal.com/2002/12/

Meta_kate and I went to see Lord of the Rings last night. Summary: it was good, but not as good as the first. That was prob­a­bly to be expected, con­sid­er­ing it is “Act 2″ of a show in 3 acts. The char­ac­ter intro­duc­tions and com­pli­ca­tions are com­plete. The denoue­ment has not yet arrived. It's the mid­dle. Nothing super-exciting hap­pens in the mid­dle except for a lot of epic CGI bat­tle scenes and Orcs rid­ing wolves that looked more like non-green He-Man Battlecats.

Kate got slammed in the face with a beach ball before the show. It made part of her face swell up a lit­tle and came close to break­ing her new glasses. I remem­ber when beach balls in the­aters were fun, but I guess it depends on the crowd and the time. At a mid­night show­ing of “Spike and Mike's Sick and Twisted Animation Festival” or Rocky, the the­ater is pop­u­lated by some pretty geeky people–people who are not so great at sports and were prob­a­bly slammed in the face by a volley-ball at some point in time. At the 8pm show­ing of LOTR on open­ing night in Newport Beach, there seemed to be a much higher turnout of bro's and jocks than I would have expected. This caused a lot of beach balls to be jump-set-SPIKEd directly into the faces of other audi­ence mem­bers. It kind of sucked.

A New Yawkah in the row behind us said that the mean-spirited beach ball action, and I quote, “shows a lack of dis­re­spect.” In other annoy­ing quote news, I was in a meet­ing with the big tech­ni­cal guy behind RosettaNet (the buzz­word in business-to-business trans­ac­tions and such today). He's the main guy behind some pretty intense and prof­itable tech­nol­ogy. Every other sen­tence seemed to con­tain the word “alls.” “Alls we need to do is this....”

My car was sup­posed to be ready yes­ter­day after­noon because the rain inter­fered with ship­ping a part of Atlanta?! It was sup­posed to be ready tonight because they were run­ning a lit­tle late. It is sup­posed to be ready tomor­row morn­ing because its tak­ing longer than they expected.

I dropped my emu­sic sub­scrip­tion because my special-They-Might-Be-Giants-year-long con­tract thingey expired much ear­lier in the year. After some demos, I decided to sign up for audible.com. Instead of music, Audible basi­cally has the entire cat­a­log of Random House (and other) audio­books online. It also has a bunch of peri­od­i­cals. The down­side is that it encodes files in a pro­pri­etary Digital Rights Management for­mat. (Why is it that when they use terms like that they always mean the exact oppo­site? I mean, really, it is Digital Restriction Management.) The plus side is that you can take this pro­pri­etary for­mat and dump it onto a plain-Jane audio CD. Converting this CD back into a stan­dard MP3 is an exer­cise left for the reader. Sure, there is a lit­tle extra work to do and I go through a few more CD's than usual, but I get an online audio­book of my choos­ing each month for free (book of the month club, any­one?), an audio peri­od­i­cal for free, and online audio­books at a dis­count. In case you have not already fig­ured out, I really enjoy audio­books. I have found that I also really like audio peri­od­i­cals. I used to be sub­scribed to a large num­ber of mag­a­zines (Science Weekly, MIT Technology Review, etc.) but dis­cov­ered after the first month or so that I no longer had the time to read them. With the audio, I can lis­ten at work (which I can­not really do with a mag­a­zine with­out get­ting in trou­ble). The whole thing inte­grates pretty darn well with iTunes and the iPod, too. On the PC you sup­pos­edly need a spe­cial funky player thingey to get the whole thing to work.

Kate and I started watch­ing the TV series “24” on DVD. It is kind of nifty to see they are using Macs and Handsprings. In fact, they are using actual Handspring soft­ware (SplashPhoto to view satel­lite maps out in the field). I am just won­der­ing if any money changed hands for that prod­uct place­ment, since you could only see the SplashPhoto logo for a split sec­ond. The multi window/screen 70's style tran­si­tion effects are a lit­tle annoy­ing, but the real-time film­ing and modern-day-spy-like con­cepts are wicked-cool. I mean, that whole explod­ing jet para­chute thing was wicked-cool. Hiding secure doc­u­ments in the unused por­tion of dig­i­tal key­cards, the very same key­cards that get you in and out of secure zones, is wicked-cool. (Of course, you would have to fig­ure out how to get the card writer into the secure area to begin with, but that's beside the point.) Spy shit is cool!

Posted in: Books Dear Diary Movies Music Television

Gold Box

Please note that all blog posts before 8 April 2007 were auto­mat­i­cally imported from LiveJournal.  To see the com­ments and any LiveJournal-specific extras such as polls and user icons, please find the source post­ing at http://brianenigma.livejournal.com/2002/12/

I am always amazed and con­fused by Amazon and their “Gold Box.” For those not famil­iar with the ubiq­ui­tous golden chest in the upper-right cor­ner of the Amazon page, here is the deal. You get to click on it once every 24 hours. Once open, you are pre­sented with an item at some super-duper dis­count sale price. You have 60 min­utes to either pur­chase it or go on to next item, never to get the pre­vi­ous item again (more on this). It is sort of a Let's Make A Deal sys­tem. “No, Bob, I think I'll pass up the bacon-stretcher for what's behind door num­ber 2.”

I can see the the­ory behind how the Gold Box works. The time lim­its give it a sort of urgency, like an auction–and peo­ple can get a lit­tle car­ried away with their spend­ing when it comes to auc­tions. Unfortunately, auc­tions tap people's com­pet­i­tive spirit (“I can't let that guy get this. *I* need it! *I* need to WIN!”), whereas the Gold Box is just a race against the clock, which does not quite catch the same mood. Also, and this is the BIG thing, just about every­thing in the Gold Box is absolutely use­less!

Let me reit­er­ate. Everything in the Gold Box is gen­er­ally use­less and/or super-specialized. It is as if they want you to impulse-buy things that no sane per­son would impulse-buy. Recently, my items included things like:

  • a $110 wine opener, dis­counted to $70. WTF?! And I felt a lit­tle exces­sive when I passed up the $5 plastic+metal wine opener that always ends up bro­ken to get the $15 all-brushed-aluminum shiny one.
  • sparkle in-line skates. Well, I guess if I wanted to skate around like a sparkle-jockey at the beach in glit­tery pink in-line skates, sure, but I would have thought Amazon had col­lected enough demo­graph­ics on me by now to real­ize I'm not gay, not a kid, have no kids, and have never pur­chased a kid item from Amazon.
  • nice lit­tle $80-apiece satel­lite speak­ers. These are the lit­tle speak­ers that sit behind you when you have a surround-sound sys­tem. You see, most peo­ple with home the­ater sys­tems pur­chased the amp and sur­round sound speak­ers at the same time because that's the POINT of home the­ater audio. Without the satel­lite speak­ers, it is just a stereo or boom box.
  • a gift bas­ket from a golf-club com­pany con­tain­ing cozies in which to place your golf club, hunks of processed cheese, processed sausage, and crack­ers. While I am a fan of the Hickory Farm, which is often over-priced in and of itself, the price and con­tents of this gift bas­ket was just double-plus-ridiculous. I mean, really, golf club cozies?!
  • a $100 juicer. While I have often thought of get­ting a juicer there are two key fac­tors at play here. (1) I have a per­fectly accept­able cheezy lit­tle plas­tic juicer from the super­mar­ket, the one that every­one has, for oranges and lemons (2) I'm lazy and won't ever clean a “pro­fes­sional” type juicer. Plus, $100 for squeez­ing cit­rus?!

    I could go on and on, but I think that is enough to get the point across. The Gold Box is full of use­less crap. It seems that they can­not even get rid of the stuff, as I often get the same item on mul­ti­ple days. I am not sure why I con­tinue to bother with click­ing on The Box, other than mor­bid (or at least, crazy economic/sociological) curios­ity. As I write this, I just heard a prod­uct men­tioned on the radio: a wire­less, elec­tronic, speak­ing meat ther­mome­ter. Ummm.....yeah....

    I am sick this week­end and feel like poo. I learned the actual burn rate of the com­pany for which I work dur­ing some after-work drinks on Friday. (At this point, only iner­tia, spelled l-a-z-i-n-e-s-s, is keep­ing me there.) My car has been in the shop for a week — pro: I do not have to pay for a new trans­mis­sion, con: my car has been in the shop for a week. I am start­ing to feel that my ride-leeching priv­i­leges with cowork­ers are start­ing to wear thin. Is there any­thing par­tic­u­larly pas­sion­ate about the bitter-sweet fla­vor of pas­sion fruit? I am try­ing to learn the SoulSeek pro­to­col to help out the guy writ­ing the Mac OS X client, but I am sick, feel like poo, and am hav­ing dif­fi­culty con­cen­trat­ing while my head is about to explode.

    Posted in: Dear Diary Work

  • Late Morning Adventures

    Please note that all blog posts before 8 April 2007 were auto­mat­i­cally imported from LiveJournal.  To see the com­ments and any LiveJournal-specific extras such as polls and user icons, please find the source post­ing at http://brianenigma.livejournal.com/2002/12/

    So, I dropped my car off at the dealer this morn­ing for some repairs. The trans­mis­sion is fUx0r3d. Both third and fourth gear will not engage. They make lots of neat sounds, as if I have never touched a stick shift, but they never engage. I thought I would have to pay for repairs, but I was wrong about the war­ranty. The trans­mis­sion is cov­ered under a 5yr/60k plan. Niftiness. That would have been at least a grand that would have had to go on the plastic–and I have very nearly paid off all the plas­tic.

    While get­ting a ride to work from BC, I came across sev­eral dis­cov­er­ies. First is the Smoker's Post. Phalic jokes aside, this seems pretty cool. It was out in front of the gas sta­tion, is made in an old-fashioned style I really like, and would sure beat the big ash­tray with a moun­tain of cig­a­rette butts that cur­rently sits out on the front porch.

    The next dis­cov­ery was a crazy spoiler on a lit­tle boxy hatch­back Honda (I think it was a Honda, at least). The pic­ture will be forth­com­ing, but it was basi­cally the St. Louis Arch above the square hatch­back of this lit­tle car. I have seen spoil­ers on all sorts of sporty and pseudo-sporty cars, but not on a car like this. I hope the dri­ver has a sense of humor because I would be a lit­tle scared by the guy who would seri­ously put this on his car.

    The final obser­va­tion was again from the gas sta­tion. It looked like there were two broth­ers that kept going in, get­ting scratch-off lot­tery tick­ets, then return­ing out­side to scratch them off. Blather, wince, repeat. During the 10 or 15 min­utes we were there for BC to pur­chase and add oil to the bus, these guys ended up repeat­ing the cycle 8 to 10 tines. I have seen peo­ple do this before, but it is typ­i­cally late at night and the peo­ple doing it look one step away from home­less. These guys looked well-to-do–nice clothes and shoes, cell­phones clipped to their belts, well-groomed hair, etc. I hope that if/when I become job­less, I do not hang around the gas sta­tion try­ing to make it big with the Lotto.

    Posted in: Dear Diary