Mobi2Kindle – MobiPocket books on Kindle

Another year, another blog post! If you’re not interested in reading backstory and just interested in getting MobiPocket DRM-protected books onto your Kindle, check out the Mobi2Kindle page at Google Code.

Not too long ago, I won an Amazon Kindle while attending the CS4HS workshop at CMU (Yay Google and other sponsors!). Perhaps not surprisingly, I fell in love with reading on it. I quickly looked for all the free e-books I could, discovering sites like MobileRead and FeedBooks, with their ultra-sweet Kindle-based book browsers (Click and download right on the Kindle? Awesome!). However, their selections of recent works are certainly… lacking. Only a few authors have really embraced free e-book distribution, and while I do love Cory Doctorow, my brain really craved more.

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Subversion on OS X with SCPlugin and SSH+SVN

I use Subversion with my own, personal projects, and about a year ago I started using it to track changes on clients’ existing sites (No, I didn’t want THAT!). On my Windows dev machine, I used TortoiseSVN over an svn+ssh connection. While I don’t dislike the command line/terminal, I liked the filesystem integration of TortoiseSVN and the ability to see at a glance the status of various files.

For the Mac, there’s SCPlugin, which seems to offer similar functionality and Finder integration. Of course, there are a couple additional (and, in my opinion, poorly-documented) steps required to use SCPlugin with an svn+ssh connection. (Note: these steps worked for me on OS X 10.5, Leopard. YMMV)

  1. Get SCPlugin from and install it. There is no need for a separate installation for SVN – SVN 1.4.4 appears to come pre-installed on Leopard.
  2. Restart the Finder. I just opened up Force Quit (Command-Option-Escape) and chose to Relaunch, but you can also just log out and log back in if Force Quit scares you.
  3. Here’s the tricky part – you need to set up ssh to use key pair authentication as opposed to password authentication when you connect to your SSH server. Detailed instructions can be found here.
  4. Now check something out using SCPlugin. In Leopard, this is done by right-clicking in the target directory in a Finder window, choosing “More,” “Subversion,” “Checkout,” and entering the repository URL and other information as necessary.

On Migrations (part 1)

A variety of factors combined to cause my wife and I to decide to purchase a new computer about a month ago. After much deliberation, we decided to get a Mac. After about two seconds in our local Apple Store, I was convinced of getting a 24-inch iMac.As a web developer/freelance programmer/dabbler, the iMac seems amazingly ideal. We decided to wait until Leopard’s release date was announced, and ordered it earlier this week, so we should be receiving the new computer around Friday or so.
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