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Socoder -> Hardware and Technology -> Jay Gets a Macbook

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Posted : Wednesday, 25 November 2020, 08:43
Jayenkai

Jay Gets a Macbook


Aaaarggghh!!!!





So, the M1 looked impressive enough in the reviews, and the cheapest model is apparently "Good Enough" that I finally took the plunge.
Initial Thoughts

1. No Numpad
This can't be solved without trailing around an additional clump of hardware everywhere, so sod that..

2. Keyboard in general. Useable. The keys are quite stumpy compared to my previous laptop, but they feel good enough for decent amounts of typing. The layout of the keyboard isn't too bad, though I can't seem to find a Home/End/PageUp/PageDown set of keys. I presume they'll be keyboard shortcuts instead. Hmmm..
The enter key is fucking tiny, so I keep hitting \ by mistake.
Backspace is FN and Delete, which is odd.
Oh, and the @ / " switcheroo is still in full force, because god-forbid Apple put those buttons the right way round.



3. Backlit keys! I forgot it had backlit keys! \o/yeay\o/!

4. I just typed in "yeay" and it automagically added the two little dudes either side, because apparently it's nabbed my shortcuts from my iCloud account...

5. Autocorrect. Hmmm.. Autocorrect is now everywhere, so I assume there'll be hundreds of odd typing issues to come!

6. Silence!!! I'm sitting here working away on a laptop and there's no evil fan blasting away! Oh, it's bliss!!!




Things I'll be needing

1. A simple pixelart tool, mostly something that can dump pixelart together into larger sprite sheets, and that sort of thing.
2. An audio tool. I'm assuming I'll be going with Audacity, but.. who knows!! Something simple enough to cut the ends off my ALChoons and save them as mp3s.
3. An ascii text editor. One that doesn't result in all my text being scrambled by horrific unicode issues.
4. Testing out BlitzMax. Wonder how well that works?!

Meanwhile, FreeFileSync has been installed and is currently 34% through syncing my dev folder to the harddrive, so that's good.

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Posted : Wednesday, 25 November 2020, 11:28
Pakz
May I suggest aseprite for spriting?

I tried blitzmax once on one of those colored monitor and computer in ones. It worked but was unusable because it was so slow. This was 15 years ago though.
Posted : Wednesday, 25 November 2020, 11:38
Jayenkai
This is a very grumpy gripe, but the metal shell is fucking freezing when you've not been using it for a short while!!

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Posted : Wednesday, 25 November 2020, 12:09
Pakz
The million dollar question is : does korg gadget ipados work?

Maybe spritesomething?
Posted : Wednesday, 25 November 2020, 12:18
Jayenkai
SpikeDislike2 works!!

I've not tested any audio stuff, since that kinda defeats the point of making the big change. If I'm going to install any audio software, it oughta be new!

SpriteSomething is very much about individual sprites. I can't, for example, easily cut and paste a myriad of sprites over a huge sprite sheet. In fact, that's true for most "sprite" editors.

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Posted : Wednesday, 25 November 2020, 14:23
Jayenkai
Main dev folder has been transferred to the Mac. Took about 2,5 hours in total.
I used the same FreeFileSync utility that I've been using in Windows for the past few months, and it worked a treat, duplicating everything nicely onto the Mac from my NAS.

It's now doing all the updates that it needs to, and then I'll either start farting about with different tools, or.. more than likely.. give up for tonight, and have a little sleep!!

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Posted : Wednesday, 25 November 2020, 15:12
Jayenkai


Still waiting for Xcode to install.. It's been roughly an hour since I started that going. I expect it to be done by approx 4pm, tomorrow.

|update| Ugh.. Unless I want a trail of dongles and convertors, and other connectors, I'm going to need some neater Lightning to USB-C connectors! For now I'm using my Linksys USB-C based USB-A hub. |update|

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 04:54
Jayenkai
Trying to write the newsletter.. Gah!!!

I had to use Windows (Running on the Mac Mini, Remote Desktop'd to from the Macbook) , because the newsletter compiler is in BlitzMax and I currently haven't gotten that to run on here. (Might end up rewriting it in PHP. Hmm.. Is PHP pre-installed on a Mac, or will I have to do that, too?)

I also didn't want errant bits of unicode finding their way into the newsletter, so I used Programmer's Notepad on Windows to type it al in.
Alt+Tab was switching between Win and Mac all the time, so I decided to use Safari on the Mac, instead of in the Windows Remote Desktop, meaning that I could use Ctrl+Left/Right to switch quite smoothly between the Mac and the "Windows" systems. (Though, if I'm honest, the swooshy swoopiness of it all is starting to do my head in!!)
This all went fairly well, but having to juggle Ctrl+C/V on Windows with Alt+C/V on Mac was a fair pain in the arse.

The sooner I find Mac-Alternatives, and rely less on the ever changing ctrl/alt setup, the better.

Oh, and "/@ switcheroo got really confusing when, on the Win Remote Desktop, they were back where they oughta be! Gah!!

Right then.. Time to go find some nice apps that won't drive me crazy!

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 05:51
Jayenkai
Haven't had any luck with BlitzMax (OG/NG)
The compiler gets about halfway through, then craps out.. No rhyme or reason, it just plain sticks.
I tried leaving it for 10 minutes or so, thinking it might just be taking a while, but.. No luck.
Ho-hum.

Might have to rewrite all my epic tools, now.. Aaargh!

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 06:10
Pakz
I watched a video on Godot on the macbook with a m1. It should work but it uses a whole lot of memory. More than 5gb is used so only a few gb is left. For me this means I would not be able to do large voxel world projects as they eat memory. I think I would opt for the 16gb version but this is a jump in price.

Godot is pretty capable once you figure out how it works btw.
Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 06:19
Jayenkai
Nah, I'll be sticking with my same method of Javascript/HTML gamedev, for the foreseeable future, I think. It runs ok on the iPad, and that's the main thing!

Installed both Audacity and GIMP. Both are as awkward and frustrating as always.
Whichever idiot at GIMP-HQ decided that "Save" could only save in the format of GIMP-Files, and you have to Export to save the .png image you loaded, back out to the same .png file, is a FUCKING ARSEHOLE..
.. Just saying..

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 06:24
Pakz
Another video on the macbook with m1 also impressed me. The reviewer mentioned he could play hours of world of warcraft on high settings and edit 4k video's and do all sort of other things and he had enough battery for two days with this.

I remember I could not play a game for an hour before my battery was getting close to emptying.
Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 07:26
Jayenkai
Tried a bunch of other graphical apps and so far Affinity Photo appears to be in the lead.
£34 fucking quid, though. FFS.. Luckily there's a free trial available on their website... I've been playing around for a short while, and .. I think it's functional enough, but only proper usage will know for certain.

Still haven't got BMax going. Grrr..

Also, tried out CrossOver, which is supposed to run Windows apps, but none of my default Windows apps have installers!! Even my oldskool PaintShop Pro 7 was a simple "grab the directory after it got installed" rip! (It was 2001, I didn't know any better!)
I might have a trawl through my old CD collection, and see if the original disk's still working (20 year old CD? What are the chances!?)
. .. Having said that .. There's no CD/DVD on this MacBook... Hmm...!

Audacity seems functional enough for what I need, but once a piece of music is saved to the folder, I tend to run a blitz groggy that scans for new .wav files, generates the .mp3s using lame-mp3, tags them where needed, and also builds the .zip files.
NONE of that is currently working, so I'll likely still be using the Mac-Win system to do all of that.
Hmmm...

This isn't really going very well, is it!?!

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 07:31
Jayenkai
On my previous laptop, the left click has been under the D/F keys, and the right click under the J/K.
This is natural, since your thumbs tend to rest under the positions on your home-key fingers.

On the Macbook, the touchpad is WAY wider, and although I've told it that right-click = "The bottom right of the touchpad", it turns out that the bottom right of the touchpad is "centred" on the keyboard.. This means it's actually under L/; instead of J/K, meaning your right thumb has to go WAAAAY out of the way to hit the bottom right off the touchpad.
It's not very ergonomic..

Just saying..

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 13:17
Jayenkai
Text Editor of choice : TextMate

Seems pretty much like the perfect Programmer's Notepad/Notepad++ replacement on MacOS.
Has themes, syntax highlighting for tons of languages (including BMax), the ability to "lock" to ascii (or other options) and .. quite frankly, it seems absolutely perfect, to me.

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 13:37
Jayenkai
My delete key is usually the key above my backspace key.. I've become accustomed to moving the cursor to the middle of a keyword, then tapping delete and "the button above delete" rapidly, to remove the word..
Now, the button above delete is the power/lock button..
Oh, joy..

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 15:13
Pakz
I had a laptop years ago with the power button at a annoying location. I quite frequently pressed that power button.

Knowing I could have to move home at any time I'm not really eager to spend a big chunk of savings on a macbook. Yesterday though I noticed a home that was in my mail and I was in position 251!! This was for a small 1926 single family workers house. A week ago I was in spot 2 though. Not sure how this system works here.

I spend some time reading more on the macbook air. The m1 cpu is in several benchmarks twice as fast as my previous laptops intel i7 7700hq. Even the i9 9900k is not capable of whipping the m1. In the multicore score compared to my 4800h amd cpu the m1 does not really compete. But single core it does beat it. And at 10watts.
A iphone 12 renders a 4k video faster than a full blown mac pro intel desktop I noticed also.

Maybe apple will be the future leader in performance.
Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 15:23
Jayenkai
"have to move home at any time"

?! Did I miss a memo?
What's happening?

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Posted : Thursday, 26 November 2020, 23:27
Pakz
I mentioned it on the site before. The flat I live in is going to be renovated in 2022. From this month I can look for a new place on a website. I wil get 6200 euro's tax-free when I find something for the troubles. I'm in a priority list also.
Posted : Friday, 27 November 2020, 02:36
Jayenkai
Sorry. I do remember, now. Seems quite a few recent events have become dislodged, of late! Sorry!!

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Posted : Friday, 27 November 2020, 08:22
Jayenkai
Damn..
Thought I was getting somewhere, there, but hit a roadblock.

Using php, I managed to get half of my Daily Pixelart tool working. It can grab the latest daily pixelart from one of the giant spritesheets, scale it up, save it as an individual .png .. All is golden..
Then I tried to add the daily poetry into the mix..
It takes the skeleton (a scroll) .png, cuts out the magenta to make it transparent, and then...

.. MacOS's installed PHP doesn't do .ttf font stuff, so I can't then get the text onto the image.

Bugger...

75% there...
Oh, and I can't seem to get to grips with Affinity Photo, due to it being fucking awkward!!

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Posted : Friday, 27 November 2020, 09:39
rockford
Everything on a Mac is awkward. Nothing is obvious or intuitive. It's the Apple/Mac mindset as far as i can see. There's not one single feature I used on my Mac that made me wish it was on Windows or Linux (the Pandora uses a lovely Linux OS).
Posted : Friday, 27 November 2020, 12:54
Jayenkai
Note to Self : Don't EVER run the "Remove Clutter" thing in the Drive settings..

If it had its way, the first things to go, right at the top of the list are SoCoder's SQL backups!!!
Yeah, OK, They're large, and I never open them.. But still.. Fuxake!!

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Posted : Friday, 27 November 2020, 12:58
Jayenkai
Monkey.. Runs..!
It builds the project folders like you'd expect, but won't then perform a compile. Too many Mac'y things have changed since the last official build.
I'd probably faff about with Ceberus or otherwise, but .. It's been a couple of years since I coded in Monkey. Time to leave it behind, I reckon.

As far as compiling an iOS game goes.. Meh.. It'll build the build folder, then you can open the Xcode project, and hit Build, but.. Yeah, then you're getting a bazillion error messages, and things don't quite go according to plan.
But, I'd honestly say that's a "Apple Moving the Goalposts" issue, as opposed to an M1 Processor one. It's a struggle to keep up with them!

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Posted : Friday, 27 November 2020, 15:18
Jayenkai
Oh yeah, I forgot about Geekbench scores!!

CPU & Compute

Mmmmm!

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Posted : Saturday, 28 November 2020, 00:03
Pakz
Last night I checked my preferable store to see if the macbooks were in stock. They only had the gold colored models available.
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