How To: Force Snow Leopard to start in 64bit mode

•October 9, 2009 • Leave a Comment

This is a trick I’ve been doing for a while.  The boring way to start Leopard in a particular mode is immediately after turning the computer on hold down:

3 and 2 – Boot into 32 bit mode; or

6 and 4 – Boot into 64 but mode.

Because Snow Leopard boots into 32 bit mode by default, if you want to have it boot into 64 bit mode all the time, it gets a little tedious remembering to hold down the 6 and 4 key.  Luckily, you can force Snow Leopard to boot into 64 bit mode all the time by editing a particular file.

  1. Open Terminal and type in the following command:
  2. sudo nano /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/
  3. It will ask for your password; enter it.
  4. There should be something that looks like this:  <key>Kernel</key>
    <key>Kernel Flags</key>
  5. After the “Kernel Flags” change the <string> value to arch=x86_64.  It should look like this:
  6. <key>Kernel</key>
    <key>Kernel Flags</key>
  7. Save by hitting “Control O”  (And then enter)
  8. Exit by hitting “Control x”
  9. That’s it, you’re done!

I must note that not all computers can boot into 64 bit mode, so make sure your computer can.  To check what mode you are in, go back to the terminal and type :  uname -a

If you are in 32 bit mode, you’ll see many “i386.”  If you see “x86_64” then you are running in 64 bit mode.

If you fuck up your Mac, it’s not my fault.


How to: Python on the iPhone/iPod touch

•October 7, 2009 • 12 Comments

So, with my recent adventures with my iPod, I decided I wanted to do something.  I wanted to run Python on my iPod.  Turned out, that is not too difficult.  What’s more, I also found a good way to write Python scripts on my iPod, and then run them too.  My iPod has turned into a beast mobile programming platform.

Okay, so not really.  The screen is still pretty small and Python is only on version 2.5.1.  3.x code runs on 2.x, so all my programs still work.  Also, the mobile python doesn’t have Turtle.  But, if you want to start programming Python on your iPod/iPhone, read on!

  1. Your iDevice must be jailbroken, there is no way around this.
  2. Your Filters in Cydia must have been “Developer,” aka, no filters.  Otherwise this will not work.
  3. Go to Cydia and Search for “Python” without the quotes.  There is a package called “Python”, select it.
  4. Hit Install in the top right corner.  This is a big package, weighing in at 17-ish MB.  So make sure your iPod doesn’t go to sleep and lose internet while downloading and installing it.
  5. After installation, you won’t notice anything different, this is because it’s a console package; you need a console.  Go back to Cydia’s Search and type in “MobileTerminal.”  Select MobileTerminal.
  6. Install MobileTerminal.
  7. Now you almost have all the tools you need; to be truly set though, you need a text editor.  Go back to Cydia’s search and type in “iEdit.”  Select iEdit.
  8. Install iEdit (requires 3.x)
  9. You may now exit Cydia.  You should now have up to 2 new icons on your Screens, iEdit, and Mobile Terminal.
  10. Open iEdit.  I found that putting documents in /private/var/mobile/Documents/ is a good place because you can easily get to it and it’s not cluttering up the file system.  To make a new file, simply tap the “+” in the upper left corner.  If you are making a python script, make sure it ends in “.py“.  To save, hit “minimize” and then “save” (in the bottom left corner.)
  11. After making and saving your file, exit iEdit.
  12. Open MobileTerminal.  (Terminal)
  13. type:  cd Documents
  14. type: ls
  15. You should see the file you made, as long as you saved it in this directory.
  16. To run a python script, type in:  python (Where “” is the name of your file.)

That’s all there is to it!  Many of these instructions are very exact, but you can have a lot of fun.  For example, in iEdit make a file called “” and for a command simply type in:

print(“Hello World!”)

Then in Mobile terminal, move to the directory (cd Documents) and then type python And see the beautiful results!

How to Install Python 3.x on Leopard or Snow Leopard

•October 5, 2009 • Leave a Comment

So, I’m starting to do a lot of College work here at RIT.  For our CS class, we are using Python instead of Java.  It has it’s quirks, and I could go into many details about why Python is dumb, and why Python is really cool.  But that is for another day.  Today, I am going to explain how to get Python running the quickest on Leopard and Snow Leopard.

Why?  Because the Python that comes with Leopard and Snow Leopard is out of date, and it doesn’t get updated with the system.  While you can use Xcode to code in Python, I’ve been using IDLE, because that is what the class is using.  Trust me, I’d like to use something else too, but I’m not.

So, here we go.

  1. Go to the Python Download page and go to the newest version page, (at the time of writing, that was Python 3.1.1)
  2. Download the Mac Installer Image.  (Here it is for 3.1.1).
  3. Mount the DMG file and install “Python.mpkg.”
  4. After installation, go back to the DMG and right click on “Python.mpkg” and hit “Show Package contents.”
  5. Navigate:  Contents -> Packages -> PythonApplications-3.1.pkg
  6. Install “PythonApplications-3.1.pkg” (or whatever version you are using).
  7. You’re done!  Now if you go to your Applications folder you will find a folder named “Python 3.1” or whatever version.  Open it, and you can run “IDLE” that gives you the command prompt for Python.

Google Wave: First Impressions

•October 5, 2009 • 2 Comments

So you may all have heard about the newest technology Google has graced the world wide web with: Google Wave, as it’s called. Wave is the newest online collaboration tool in a battle field littered with failed attempts at the ultimate tool. And of course, being developed by the internet giant Google itself, Wave is certainly something that everyone should be not only aware of, but begging to try!

I, however, don’t need to beg. I was one of the lucky first 100k people to be granted into the grand halls of Google wave to give it a test drive. And let me tell you, I was blown away by the looks of it. I mean, seriously, it looked almost exactly like my gmail account! Now don’t get me wrong, Google gets brownie points for maintaining a simple looking interface for its users, because that’s always a good thing. It’s just that, you know, I was looking for something a little more like a punch to the face, something that made me go “holy mother of pearl, this… is… AWESOME!”. Unfortunately, Wave just didn’t deliver.

As far as use goes, I can see how Google Wave might be useful for collaborating on projects in real time. But as I was using it, I kept thinking to myself how Wave just seemed to be a glorified crossbreed somewhere between GMail and Google Docs. Useful? Maybe. Awe-inspiring. No, not yet.

Basically the way Google Wave works is that you can have separate “waves”, which are basically email conversations with other wave users. Unlike email, however, the conversations are in real time. If they make a typo and go back to delete, you can actually see the entire process taking place, which is kind of need. Another neat feature is the fact that you can embed pictures, videos, e-books and more in your waves that you send to people. You can get these pictures and such straight off of Google and send them without having to download them first, which is a neat idea.

All in all, I thought Google Wave was a little bit overrated, but that’s probably because no one else I know was able to get a Google Wave account yet (even Wayfarer hasn’t received my “nomination” yet). So basically, I have just been having waves with myself, which besides making me look like a crazy psychopath, also are rather boring. Once more people get onto Google and they allow the general public access to it, I am sure that Google Wave will become an actually useful piece of technology. Until then, I will continue to taunt it and call it a glorified email client. And tell it that it’s mother was a hamster.

To check out Google Wave for yourself (which I would suggest if you think you’ll ever use a collaboration tool. Like I said – once everyone can use it it will be a whole lot more useful), check here. Down

•October 3, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Apparently at the time of this writing, October 2nd, 2009, is down.  This means that all you people who are trying to get to the repo, “; are out of luck for the time being.  Keep trying, and look at the webpage to see if the server is back up.

**Edit**  It may be back up now, try it out!

Antigravity Exists in the Cyber World!

•October 3, 2009 • 1 Comment

So there I was, in my computer science class, learning about how to program in Python. And, of course, I was bored as hell. So as I aimlessly listened to my professor ramble on and on about how different things can be imported in Python, I was remembered of something from long ago…

I remembered this web comic from XKCD: So, being bored as I was, I decided to try and be funny and import antigravity in Python 3. And, lo and behold, it actually did something! If you have python, go ahead and try importing antigravity with it. It is well worth it.

For everyone who doesn’t have python, you should install it and play around with it. As far as programming goes it is a relatively easy language to learn. If you don’t want to, however, you’re out of luck. Because I’m not going to tell you exactly what importing antigravity does :P.

Stacks on the iPhone

•October 2, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Stacks, for the iPhone and iPod touch, is potentially the most useful piece of sofware out there.

If your iPhone is jailbroken.

If your iPhone is running firmware 2.x.

The software allows the iPhone to have a “stack” in the dock, much akin to Leopards stacks.  This allows the user to have many items in one place, and adds to the organization and neatness of the iPhone.  Not to mention it looks sexy.  The problem?

Stacks doesn’t work on firmware 3.0.  Most users are reporting that it doesn’t work, or only works halfway.  I tried it myself, and it continuously sent my iPod into safe mode (which was epic, btw).  So it only half worked.  I hate things like this.  The project is closed source (except for version 1, which the author says is buggy), and so no more development can happen on it.  He blames his lack of development on the fact that his other software is being pirated.  I don’t know if this is the case, but I think it’s ridiculous to stop developing for that reason.  If you are sick and tired of working on it, put it up as open source and leave it for someone else to try.  Don’t be bitter and hide something good from the world.  That just makes you a tool.

steventroughtonsmith, I hope you read this, and I hope you change your mind.