Application of the Day: VobEdit

VobEdit screenshot - main screen

VobEdit (download link) allows you to extract the audio and/or video files from DVD VOB files. Typically I will use ffmpeg to extract audio or video streams from DVDs, but sometimes the DVD were not burned properly giving ffmpeg an error that prevents the extraction. Here is where VobEdit comes it. Select the VOB file, click the "demux" button, select the stream, select save location and you’re done! Other features include splitting, joining and remuxing VOB files

VobEdit screenshot - extract all audio streams 

Kudos to Doom 9 for providing great resources for VOB tools and many other DVD/encoding/transcoding information

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Application of the Day: Right Zoom

So I downloaded the new Firefox beta and for some reason I couldn’t find the Downloads window when I used the shortcut or selected it from the Window menu item. It took me a while and then I saw it. Look carefully at the image below and you will see the ‘hidden’ download window

wheres the firefoxs download window

See it yet? No? Well the answer is below:

theres the firefox hidden download window

Now how the heck do I resize something when I can’t even see the buttons nor the bottom right window resizer? I tried clicking/resizing on the window but to no avail. No shortcut is available for OS X to resize or maximize the window (one of my issues with OS X). Thankfully I found Right Zoom that enables me to maximize a window using a keyboard shortcut. Selected the window using Command + ` after Command + Tabbing onto the Firefox icon, pressed Command + Shift + E to maximize and there I found my download window back again! Phew..

Right Zoom was created to change the default behavior of the Zoom button in OS X to make it behave like Window’s and Linux’s Maximize button. It also lets uses assign a customizable keyboard shortcut to maximize the window. As I won’t have my Alt+Space, X as I have in Windows, this is the next best thing. Right Zoom runs in the background and is probably something you want to start automatically when you login (System Preferences > Accounts > Login Items).

App of the Day: OpenWithAdd

Have a problem registering an application with a file type? Selecting the application in the open with dialog box not working? That was my frustration with my Windows 7 install… until I found this cool application: OpenWithAdd

OpenWithAdd screenshot

To register a file type with an application:

  1. Open OpenWithAdd and select the application
  2. Click "Register"
  3. Go to Explorer, right click your file > Open with > Choose default program… (the application you added should now also be listed in the Open with submenu)
    Screenshot: Right click file > Open With > Choose default program...
  4. Select the program, check "Always use the selected program to open this kind of file" and click "OK"
    Screenshot: Select application > check 'Always use the selected program to open this kidn of file' > click 'OK'

Source: Vista: Cannot associate file with program, Default Programs problem

Kudos to the developer for making the application portable, just unzip and run!

BruDirect News RSS Feed

BruDirect dubbed Brunei’s No. 1 News Website also known as, in my books, Brunei’s No. 1 Website in advertisements and general page clutter as shown below (I dare you to click)
Brudirect screenshot

So I got fed up and created an RSS feed that automatically updates daily. After much tweaking finally I have

Brudirect News Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/brudirect

Updates daily, every 30 minutes

(Note: the feed contains only stories hosted on Brudirect, not external stories from Yahoo or ESPN shown on Brudirect)
For those who don’t know what RSS or news feeds are, Common Craft did a fantastic video of RSS in Plain English as show below

For if you just rather have a single webpage to read you can bookmark this page.

Powered by ScribeFire.

Livelink Errors

So I got the following these 2 errors with Livelink on Monday when trying to save a workflow

  • Upload Error: Upload of Workflow changes failed and was aborted due to a communications error. Your workflow is still unsaved. Sorry.
  • Input Stream Read Error: Failed Input Stream read from localhost because of exception access denied (java.util.PropertyPermission http.strictPostRedirect read)

livelinkErrors

Never had these errors before and after some investigation the problem was…. Firefox! Using Internet Explorer was fine. The strangest thing is that when I create a new workflow in Firefox and save it, there’s no issue, but when I open this particular workflow and make any sort of change it throws those errors (I could even open the workflow, make no changes and save it).

P.S. ScribeFire isn’t uploading images, go figure, so Windows Live Writer to the rescue. Live Writer is feature rich and with a sweet WYSIWYG editor but I rather not open another application just to blog. Simplicity FTW!

P.P.S. I found the problem with ScribeFire: use split-screen mode instead of opening in a new tab. I remembering having an issue with new tab opening and image upload not being there. It’s similar to this:

One thing though I had previously mentioned, the new “Upolad Via API”
option for the image uploader that was included in version 1.3.5 is not
available when the editor is opened in a tab.

flv Retriever

Ever had the moment where you have a friend how asks you how to save Youtube videos or any other videos online? For those who know there is Video Downloader which is available as a web service or even Firefox extension / Opera Widget. But sometimes this can be a bit challenging for some people who can’t remember the website / don’t you Firefox or Opera so here I have a little project called flv Retriever. It is available as a Windows GUI application, command line and DLL and was developed in C# with the help of #develop a.k.a. SharpDevelop (an Open Source IDE for .NET./Mono including a GUI editor!!) and Visual Studio .NET 2003 (only for the DLL creation, if anybody knows how to create a DLL with SharpDevelop let me know).

Custom Search Engines: Opera vs Firefox

**Updated with new easy way below**

Opera

Preferences > Search

Firefox

  1. Create .src and icon files and put it on a local server. Example of Google.src:

    <search>
    name = "Google search"
    method = "get"
    action = "http://google.com/search"
    >
    <input name="q" user="">
    </search>
  2. Create HTML page to load Javascript action to add search engine. Example:

    <html>
    <script type="text/Javascript">
    function addEngine()
    {
    if ((typeof window.sidebar == "object") && (typeof window.sidebar.addSearchEngine == "function"))
    {
    window.sidebar.addSearchEngine(
    "http://localhost/google.src",
    "http://localhost/google.png",
    "Google Search",
    "Web" );
    }
    else
    {
    alert("Mozilla M15 or later is required to add a search engine.");
    }
    }
    addEngine();
    </script>
    </html>
  3. Load page and add accordingly

Conclusion

Is it me or is adding a custom search engine for Firefox just way too hard? It took me a good 20 minutes just to get mine to work. I tried not having to use a local server by using relative url’s for the src and icon file but that didn’t work, it just gave me an Install Error: “This search engine isn’t supported by Firefox and can’t be installed”. Yes I know there extra search engines already provided but the issue I had was that the inbuilt Google search was redirected to the Google Brunei search with text in Malay and would not recognize English words to use with the definition feature (where you can click the search word in the top right of the page to find out the definition). So with that I provide Custom Firefox Search Engine page. It’s not much but I may probably add more custom search engines that I use there and begins some what of my Firefox tweaking and stuff.

P.S. Anybody with a better, i.e. easier way of adding a custom search engine to Firefox do let me know thanks.

** Update **
Found a quicker way here: Create Search Shortcuts. Thank you revision3
Basically all you have to do is..

  1. Right click ANY text box with a button next to it, i.e. a search field
  2. Select “Add a Keyword for this Search…” (Firefox) / “Create Search…” (Opera)
  3. Fill in the details name and keyword (Firefox) / just keyword (Opera)
  4. Click Add / Ok and start using it!