Open, edit and save Microsoft Open XML formats (docx, xlsx, pptx) in Office 2003 or Mac Office 2004

December 14, 2008

4289ae77-4cba-4a75-86f3-9ff96f68e491So you have Office 2003 installed in a zillion computers and you need to open those new .docx/.xlsx/.pptx  files? No need to buy Office 2007…

Microsoft has given you an “upgrade” path, for free:

Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007 File Formats

For Mac Office 2004:

git merge problems

November 30, 2008

When merging, ever get the error message: Error: Entry ‘foo’ is notuptodate. Cannot merge. Two possibilities:

  1. You may have local changes that are not committed (so commit them!) or undo those changes.
  2. You may have a file that has been modified, but the contents have not been changed. ie somehow the file was ‘touch’ed. Thus git thinks that the file has been modified because its modification date has changed, but then its hash is still the same because the content hasn’t changed, so I guess it gets confused. Doing this command below updates the file stats for your repo index to flush out this second possibility:
git update-index --refresh

Adobe AIR 1.5 released, what changed?

November 16, 2008

Adobe AIR 1.5 has been released today for Mac OS X and Windows. Linux is still at version 1.1.

So what’s changed that I can see so far? I couldn’t find any release notes (yet). For one thing, Flash Player 10 is now included. For the Mac, its at version 10,0,12,36. For Windows (XP), it’s at version 10,0,12,37. It does not however, update the Flash plugins for your other browsers.

I also did some Javascript benchmarks using the SunSpider Javascript benchmark, to see if perhaps AIR 1.5 includes the new Squirrelfish rendering engine for WebKit.

All tests were done on Mac OS X 10.5.5 (the smaller number the better, of course):

Safari 3.2 (5525.26.12) — 6530.0 ms, result

FireFox 3.033211.6 ms, result

Adobe AIR 1.5 WebKit2523.6 ms, result

According to my results, Adobe AIR 1.5 WebKit’s Javascript is approximately 2.59x faster than Safari 3.2, and approximately 1.27x faster than Firefox 3.03. So is it Squirrelfish? Likely. Extreme? Maybe.

According to the Surfin Safari Blog (for WebKit), Squirrelfish Extreme in the nightly builds is about 3.38x faster than Safari 3.1. But since I have Safari 3.2, I guess that’s close enough? It can’t be Squirrelfish (plain) because Squirrelfish non-extreme is only 1.59x as fast as WebKit 3.1. But then it can be just general Javascript improvements as detailed in a blog post by John Gruber on Daring Fireball, so who knows?!

Here’s the user-agent for Adobe AIR 1.5 WebKit (Mac):

Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; U; PPC Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/420+ (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.2 Safari/525.21

All the version numbers in the AIR 1.5 user-agent are older than Safari 3.2 (Mac) though, which is:

Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; U; Intel Mac OS X 10_5_5; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.26.2 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.2 Safari/525.26.12

So the evidence is inconclusive for Squirrelfish. Still no SVG support in Adobe AIR 1.5 WebKit though, no surprise there :P


According to this new Adobe blog post, Adobe AIR 1.5 includes Squirrelfish, but does not mention the Extreme variant.