Automatically sync your documents to iDisk with rsync

One of the coolest things about owning a Mac is using the powerful underlying Linux tools available in a termal. If you’re new to Mac and/or Linux, I strongly recommend if you want to get the most out of your operating system you spend some time learning what is under the hood.

Recently I’ve done some searching around for some ideas on utilizing my iDisk storage a little more and unearthed the usage of rsync to automatically synchronize between my Documents folder and my iDisk/Documents folder.

Disclaimer: You can do this by automatically syncing using the GUI tools, however this gives little control over exactly what is synchronized, so I have written this tutorial.

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What is lacking in today’s web browsers

With everything happening in today’s browser market one can’t wonder why all players seem to be missing one major hitpoint with all their attempts to gain market share. In my opinion there is one large component that is being missed by browsers today and it should be reasonable easy to develop. What I’m talking about is cross-platform, cloud-based integration. I’ll explain as I go.

Firstly let me make my point by explaining my current browser setup. At home I run a Mac and at work I use a PC. On both I have Firefox as my browser of choice, but due to the necessity of my work CRM I also use Internet Explorer 6/7 on both. I use several plugins to try and sync as best I can between the computers, but inevitably it’s all just a fix. Okay, so now I will try and make my point.

Google released Chrome today which has some interesting features. Tighter integration to applications is great, but is it enough to win the browser war? Better security is always a good thing, but in a market where most computer users don’t even know which anti-virus they’re running, does it really matter? In fact, most of the features are aimed at techies and not the people who actually need enhanced functionality from an out-of-the-box browser.

Imagine a browser that worked like this… You launch the application and you’re greeted with a login screen. You enter a username and password and the browser works it’s magic; it downloads your bookmarks, it loads your plugins, it downloads your saved passwords, it downloads your form information, and it also loads your history.

Now imagine the same thing can happen on any computer you’re using, with the same features and plugins, even if you’ve never used that computer before. Simple huh? How easy would your life be, honestly?

So many plugins have tried to make this happen, but it’s never truly been seamless and it’s never been 100%, especially when it turns to cross-platform. This would be, as Tolkien would say, “One Browser to rule them all, One Browser to bind them!” Think about it.

Shift Happens

Yesterday at work I had the pleasure of sitting with the managing director and various interested parties at work to discuss the future of technology. One of the really interesting parts of this discussion was the fact that I was constantly able to speak of the technical aspects and our MD would always bring that back to business realities.

During the meeting we watched an amazing video called Shift Happens and also Shift Happens 2.0 which raised a lot of interesting points about globalisation. The video is very US-centric, but realising the implications on Australia is honestly quite eye opening.

If you haven’t seen these videos already, I strongly suggest watching them. If you’re in a business that is potentially effected by the statements, I even more strongly recommend considering what this means to you and how this will effect your life. Because it will effect your life.

In a world of outsourcing, our lives change daily and the effects of growing economies such as India and China are effecting our lives all the time.

Ask yourself…

  • Can I be replaced by someone overseas?
  • Am I costing my company money, or making my company money?
  • Are there necessarily advantages of having me sit in my seat in Sydney?

Time to get beyond LinkedIn

TalentBar wrote an interesting article today on the value, and declining value, of information provided by social networks such as LinkedIn. My own company, Xpand, are expert at using social networks to find information, however it can become easy for anyone (ourselves included) to get caught up in the vastness of this information. Excerpt from Time to get beyond LinkedIn:

Twenty years ago, you had to build contact information databases the old fashioned way: a ton of cold-calling. But this aspect of our business is going the way of $2 gasoline.

We have to move beyond this initial shock of so much contact data. Master the tools, but then move on – because the value of that simple data is declining every day. Remember, executive recruiters and their clients often know the five obvious potential candidates. So why do they use a recruiter?

Whether you’re in recruitment or any other industry that may require you to gather corporate information, there is a lot of evidence to suggest these tools are highly valuable, but are also losing their value. Clients now have access to our networks and are motivated to use them as cost-cutting methods to outsourcing recruitment.

Value the data you have at your fingertips, but don’t allow the vastness to confuse the fact that the data you have is useless if you do not utilise it as urgently as you would any other lead available in your network.