29 Dec 2008

how to install python2.5 on a hacked appletv (in order to use iplayer)

i've hacked my appletv using the ATV PatchStick so that i can use xbmc (xbox media center) and boxee (kinda like last.fm for video). one of the things i wanted to do was to watch bbc iplayer on the appletv that someone wrote. however, it isn't able to run on the appletv because python is not installed.

there is already a guide on how to install python on appletv, but it is quite manual, so i tried my own way which worked just as well:

  1. download the latest python (link) and open up the dmg.

  2. download and install pacifist. this allows you to inspect installer pacakges.

  3. open "Disk Utility", click on "New Image" and create an image of around 100M and name it "PythonInstall":


  4. use pacifist to open up the MacPython.mpkg in the dmg above.

  5. right click on the "Contents of MacPython.mpkg" and choose "Install to Other Disk" and then choose the disk image you just created:


  6. unmount the "PythonInstall" partition.

  7. now copy this image to your appletv via scp. the command will probably be:

    scp ~/Downloads/PythonInstall.dmg frontrow@appletv.local:

  8. then ssh into the appletv box:
    $ ssh frontrow@appletv.local
    Welcome to the AppleTV (via atv-usbcreator)
    frontrow@appletv.local's password:

  9. then mount the image:

    sudo hdiutil mount PythonInstall.dmg  

  10. then copy the contents of the image on to your AppleTV:

    tar cvf - -C/Volumes/PythonInstall/* | tar xvf - -C/

  11. then to test, type "python" and you should get:

    Python 2.5 (r25:51918, Sep 19 2006, 08:49:13)
    [GCC 4.0.1 (Apple Computer, Inc. build 5341)] on darwin
    Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.

once that is done, you can follow the instructions for installing bbc iplayer plugin for boxee/xbmc and get all the awesomeness of iplayer on your appletv.

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03 Aug 2008

moving opensource code to google code

most of my open source code had been hosted on my personal svn repository and trac instance. the problem with this set up was that i could not invite others to join and contribute to projects without creating accounts for them on my web server. moreover, i was wasting resources on my webserver hosting a wiki and source browser.

so instead, i've decided to move all my opensource code to code.google.com and retire my trac and svn instances. this way it will be much easier to invite contributions from others and also relieve me of spamcop responsibilities on trac instances.

all the projects are now available here:


and they are all linked to from the liquidx projects page.

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03 Aug 2008

eyetunes framework and itunes 7.7.1

itunes 7.7.1 has changed in the way it returns a track when queried for a persistent id. this change happened in the latest 7.7.1 release and is briefly described in dougs applescript site.

Simon Haertel sent me a fix for this problem in the current EyeTunes framework trunk. this patch is now committed.

another important eyetunes.framework related news is the project is moving from my personal server to its own googlecode repository. so if you have an svn checkout of eyetunes, please change it to point to:


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29 Jul 2008

inspirational life

david chang is a chef/owner of a 'chain' of restaurants in nyc called momofuku (noodle bar, ssäm bar, ko). his approach is eclectic, unconventional and inspirational. charlie rose interviews him for an hour.

he is shy about his success -- but his philosophy is great about how to approach life.

  • "be daring in your decision making."
  • "if you really want to do something, then go for broke."
  • "you have to make mistakes ... but just make sure you don't make them the second and third time around."

37signals has some better quotes.

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26 Jul 2008

what i did

it's been nearly two weeks since, but for those who didn't know this is what i've been doing.


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09 Jun 2008

my first wwdc

i'm attending my first ever WWDC this year. so many sessions, so little time.

just for this once, i'll be using twitter again after 2 months of hiatus. that corresponds to the same amount of time i've fallen off the face of this earth.


*update* after 30 min, no announcements of note

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09 Mar 2008

amazing hong kong map

i've seen edushi (stands for e-city in chinese) before with their awesomely detailed 3d pixel art maps of shanghai. now they've done a little part of hong kong and it is truly amazing!

you can scroll around, zoom in and zoom out. mouse over a building and it'll tooltips will tell you what building it is. the most amazing thing is they've even painted in reflections to over buildings


i don't know how they are doing it, but i suppose they have a bunch of aerial photography and getting some cheap labour in china to draw this out pixel by pixel. shows you what you can do when labour is cheap and skilled.

here is a shot where the camera angle is from the north looking at wanchai and the hong kong convention and exhibition centre:


compare this to google maps satellite view from overhead:


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20 Jan 2008

macbook air price difference

there is a massive price difference between buying a macbook air in the united states versus buying it in the united kingdom. in short, for the cheapest price you can get the macbook air for in the uk, you can afford to buy a round trip ticket to new york and buy it there instead.

the price of the macbook air in the uk is £1199.


macbook air in the US is $1799 (£916)


and a cheapest flight from london heathrow to new york jfk on british airways is £271.70.


therefore, if you fly to new york and buy a macbook air, it will cost you (£916 + £271 = £1187). if you get the macbook air in the uk, it will cost you £1199. you would still have £12 left over.

of course, it would only just break even as you would have to pay for a ride from the airport to the apple store on the 5th avenue. but it is open 24 hours, so you could forgo a hotel room and just sleep there overnight.

and that is with the cheapest version too, if you wanted to get the solid state hard drive option, you could probably even fly business class there.

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19 Dec 2007

underground art @ stockholm

underground art @ stockholm
Originally uploaded by pineapplebun

i went to stockholm for a break with pp and one of the cool things there is that every underground station was themed and decorated in really amazing ways. here's one of them (from pp's photo)

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19 Dec 2007

i don't live in cambridge anymore

today, someone pointed out to me that my other webpage had me listed as living in cambridge. well, i don't live there any more, i live in london and i love it.

how many cities have FIVE international airports under their name? heathrow, gatwick, stansted, luton and the city airport. before i moved down to london, i didn't even know there was a london city airport, even less so that commercial airlines actually flew out of it. one day, when i'm rich enough to afford their investment-bankers-priced flights, i will try it out. for now, i'm satisfied with living only 20 minutes from there.

one thing about london is that there are always tourists everywhere, just like on this bus:

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