Tag Archives: apple

Cool Tools: Menda 35622 Spudger

Menda 35622 Spudger

The Menda 35622 spudger (datasheet), an official Apple repair tool made famous by ifixit’s iPhone repair guides, is handy for all sorts of spudging(?) applications, including bending, prying, pushing, shoving, tweaking, twisting, scraping, and soldering.

These are now readily available from most electronics and phone repair shops, but I usually buy them in bulk on eBay.

You can also find them on amazon.com:
Menda Soldering Probe, Nylon, 6″ OAL, Spudger

Another option: These orangewood sticks from Techni-Tool are also great for pushing and prying. Since they’re disposable they can also be used for things like mixing epoxy!

Printed Circuit Board Photo Collage Screensaver for OS X

OS X Flickr PCB Pool Screensaver
PCB Photo Pool Screensaver

One of my favorite ways to keep tabs on the Printed Circuit Boards Group on Flickr is with OS X’s built-in ability to turn an RSS feed into a screen saver, as shown above.

To create this cool and constantly changing screen saver, open the “Desktop & Screen Saver” pane of the OS X System Preferences, as shown below.

Desktop & Screen Saver Preferences

Click the + button and select “Add RSS Feed…”  OS X will prompt you for an RSS feed URL to use for the screen saver.  Enter

http://api.flickr.com/services/feeds/groups_pool.gne?id=812901@N20&lang=en-us

and click OK.

Make sure that the Display Style is set to “Collage” mode (the center option) as shown above.  Click Test and you should see photos from the pool appear on your screen.  Now the next time your screen saver activates, you should see a collage of cool photos from the PCB photo pool.

That’s it!

PS. If anyone knows of an equivalent screen saver for Windows or Linux, please let me know in the comments.  I don’t want OS X users to have all the fun!

Tools!

Peter Edwards of Casper Electronics shared a picture of his workbench today via Make.

With the exception of the audio recorder and circuit bending tools, pretty much every piece of equipment on that bench can be found on mine as well.  I even have the same yellow bins!

There’s a great writeup on his site describing each numbered tool in the photo.  If you started from scratch and bought all of the items on his list, you would have a great instant electronics workshop.

Teleport allows keyboard/mouse sharing between Macs

teleport

Teleport is a program for OS X that lets you share one keyboard and mouse between multiple computers – very handy for when you want to turn a macbook into a makeshift second display for your Mac desktop.  Before I discovered teleport, I was using synergy, which achieves almost the same result but requires an open Terminal window to launch and use it (synergy’s daemon functionality is broken in Leopard).  Teleport has some other advantages over synergy, including drag and drop file support (really cool!) and working mouse-wheel scrolling.

I initially had some problems with a short delay when moving the mouse from my desktop to the remote display, but I quickly resolved this by making a couple changes to the teleport configuration:

  1. Uncheck “Show bezel when controlling shared Mac” in the teleport control panel options, as shown below.  This actually makes a noticeable difference.
  2. teleport_config

  3. Disable the switch animation by executing this command in a Terminal window:
    defaults write com.abyssoft.teleport showSwitchAnimation NO

Now my pointer moves almost instantaneously from one display to the next, even with one machine on Wi-Fi.  Curiously, I only had to make the changes on the server side, I left the client machine preferences alone.

Hopefully this will help other folks who are having the same issue.

abyssoft – teleport.