Apple launches iTunes U in Australia

According to The Australian’s IT section, Apple Australia have announced the availability of iTunes U in Australia. Content will be provided by some of Australia’s leading universities including

Conveniently these universities are already running automated lecture capture or recording systems.

Java Update 1 kills QuickTime for Java

Apple has released (via Software Update) “Java for Mac OS X 10.5 Update 1”, which installs Java 1.6.0_05 (although it does not make it the default version of Java for the machine.

bash-3.2$ /System/Library/Frameworks/JavaVM.framework/Versions/1.6.0/Commands/java -version
java version "1.6.0_05"
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.6.0_05-b13-120)
Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM (build 1.6.0_05-b13-52, mixed mode)

The software update is installed only on 64-bit capable Macs. To switch it to the default Java install you need to use the /Applications/Utilities/Java Preferences application (which states when you select it that “Java SE 6 is only available for Java applets in 64-bit capable browsers. J2SE 5.0 will be used in 32-bit-only browsers, including Safari”)

Discussions indicate that compiled JNI libraries don’t look like they currently work, and neither do QuickTime for Java applications:
/System/Library/Frameworks/JavaVM.framework/Versions/1.6/Commands/java quicktime.QTSession
at java.awt.EventQueue.invokeAndWait(
at quicktime.QTSession.(
Caused by: java.lang.UnsatisfiedLinkError: /System/Library/Java/Extensions/libQTJNative.jnilib:
at java.lang.ClassLoader$NativeLibrary.load(Native Method)
at java.lang.ClassLoader.loadLibrary0(
at java.lang.ClassLoader.loadLibrary(
at java.lang.Runtime.loadLibrary0(
at java.lang.System.loadLibrary(
at quicktime.QTSession$
at java.awt.event.InvocationEvent.dispatch(
at java.awt.EventQueue.dispatchEvent(
at java.awt.EventDispatchThread.pumpOneEventForFilters(
at java.awt.EventDispatchThread.pumpEventsForFilter(
at java.awt.EventDispatchThread.pumpEventsForHierarchy(
at java.awt.EventDispatchThread.pumpEvents(
at java.awt.EventDispatchThread.pumpEvents(
Exception in thread "main" java.lang.NoSuchMethodError: main

This is not surprising given that QuickTime for Java is based on 32-bit Carbon libraries, and has been effectively in “maintenance mode” for a while. Unfortunately someone manages to get the JNI (or JNA?) code working it’s going to be difficult to work around the problem using QTKit.

In the meantime, QuickTime for Java still muddles along in Java 5. Eclipse Ganymede also seems to launch ok, but I haven’t done anything extensive with it.

AUC announces innovation seeding grants

The Apple University Consortium has announced innovation Seeding Grants, primarily aimed at students. Participants are provided with a mentor, equipment and resources to complete the project and must share progress via a blog with the ultimate outcome being licensed via open source, creative commons or similar licensing.

Using FireWire to hack your PC, Mac

A recent article on Slashdot about using FireWire’s direct memory access (DMA) capabilities to rewrite memory on a Windows box reminded me a lot of the 1st place winning 2002 MacHack hack “FireStarter” perpetrated by Quinn, which wrote a QuickTime movie of burning flames on the screen of any Mac you plug in via FireWire. As mentioned on TidBITS at the time.

Some of Quinn’s hacks are here.

Live Macworld 2008 keynote coverage

If you’re up early looking for the keynote coverage (especially if you’re in GMT+9), then you can check out The Unofficial Apple Liveblog (they’ve also got a Twitter feed).Alternatively there’s a feed from Engadget, including a translation in Spanish.Newly on the scene there’s also SteveNoteLive which promises to include pictures.Also, #macrumors on if you remember what IRC is :)Also don’t forget JoyOfTech’s handy Unofficial MacWorld Expo Survival Kit. 

XMeeting for Mac video conferencing

The open source XMeeting seems to do a pretty reasonable job for those requiring videoconferencing. Doesn’t seem to support Polycom’s data streams for screen sharing though (and I can’t seem to convince Polycom’s free Windows client to recognise the iSight from within Parallels). XMeeting supports H.323 and SIP, along with some display modes similar to iChat with the images reflecting off the virtual ‘table’ surface, if you’ve got grunty enough graphics hardware.