I hate having to break in a new plow guy up on Prickly Mountain. It seems that it takes a couple years for the plow guy to get up to speed on doing the plowing in our mountain community. And usually about when they have it down pat, they decide that plowing is too much of a headache. We’ve got another new guy this year and after the first storm, he was sideways stuck in my driveway and didn’t come to plow until late afternoon. Now the driveway is ‘glare ice’ so it is an adventure driving down in the morning. It’s not a job I would want; nobody is ever satisfied and when you are not getting stuck, you are probably just cold. Ah, winter in Vermont.
Have a great weekend and thanks for reading this issue of Kibbles & Bytes!
Your Kibbles & Bytes Team,
_Don, Kali & Ed_

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Once again, Small Dog Electronics has teamed up with our friends at Mac|Life to offer a discounted subscription rate to their magazine. Packed with tips, tricks and the latest tech gadgets, it’s a favorite among Small Dog employees and our retail customers who enjoy browsing copies in our stores.
Every issue of Mac|Life Magazine also features projects that the Mac lover is sure to enjoy. I think they’re incredibly useful, with high-quality photos, easy instructions and an overall nice layout.
“Check it out on their website, Maclife.com”:http://www.maclife.com
Buy it for yourself or give to a friend at 65% off:
“Subscribe now!”:https://w1.buysub.com/servlet/OrdersGateway?cds_mag_code=MCD&cds_page_id=48936&cds_response_key=IL48BVV4N

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What is RSS, you ask? RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. And, according to Wikipedia, “an RSS document (which is called a ‘feed’) includes full or summarized text” that is updated immediately.
What’s great about an RSS feed is that one can subscribe to it and receive instant updates about a chosen topic. Safari has built-in RSS support, and you can subscribe using the web-based reader of your choice (I like NetVibes and Google).
We currently feature twelve RSS feeds, including:
* “New Products”:http://feeds.feedburner.com/SmallDog-NewProducts
* “All Specials”:http://feeds.feedburner.com/SmallDog-AllSpecials
* “Refurbished”:http://feeds.feedburner.com/SmallDog-Refurbished and “Clearance”:http://feeds.feedburner.com/SmallDog-Clearance
* “Rebates”:http://feeds.feedburner.com/SmallDog-Rebates
* “Barkings blog”:feed://blog.smalldog.com/rss/?limit=10
* “Twitter”:feed://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/16420518.rss
“Click here”:http://www.smalldog.com/rss to find out more. Subscribe now for instantaneous updates and news on our sales, specials, new products, news, contests and more!

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It’s back! We have gathered our troops and tested some of the hottest gifts of the year to share with you in this gift-giving season. We’ll feature a handful of products in each issue of Kibbles & Bytes. Enjoy!
We have the Top 10 lists for gifts this year on our Holiday page as well:
“www.smalldog.com/holiday”:http://www.smalldog.com/holiday
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Vroom, Vroom, said the Logitech Racer Mouse
By katie@smalldog.com
Well, normally I wouldn’t purchase a wired mouse that is stickered up to look like a Race Car, but in this case, I couldn’t resist. The mouse is pretty small and portable which is key for a laptop or for someone with smaller hands, but the main thing that attracted me to this mouse is the fact that it’s only $9.99!
If you use your machine for everyday things like e-mail, surfing the web, iTunes maybe some iPhoto business, then well, a mouse is a mouse is a mouse–you don’t need to spend a lot of dough. Why not only spend $9.99 and have a little fun white your mouse while your at it? Just don’t get pulled over for having too much fun…
“See it here!”:http://www.smalldog.com/product/71814
********************************************************************Philips 150W Auto Power Inverter
By jeremiah@smalldog.com
This product is amazing! I hate having to buy car chargers for my electronics, so the Philips 150W Auto Power Inverter eliminates the need to buy a second charger when you’re on the road.
I use it for charging my cell phone, iPod and even my MacBook. You could even use it with a oven toaster or TV, but I wouldn’t recommend it. It’s a great buy, and a perfect stocking stuffer!
“See it here!”:http://www.smalldog.com/product/71604

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In playing the game of “What’s your favorite Leopard feature?”, Time Machine is always listed in the top five. The worst thing that I have to say to a client is, “I’m sorry, you’ve lost all of your data.” Unless that client happens have several hundreds of dollars to spend on data recovery, or a hidden backup drive under their bed, this is not good news. For many of us, our lives are kept in those little 0’s and 1’s and losing a hard drive could mean losing the pictures of your wedding, videos of your child’s first steps, that musical masterpiece you’ve been recording and tweaking for the past five years; it’s a BIG deal. Time Machine offers a seamless, intelligent backup solution built right in to the Mac OS. Now, if only my wish would come true and computers would start coming with external hard drives!
Now, with all backup solutions, Time Machine is not perfect. One of its features is that after the initial full backup, which could take a few hours, it creates incremental backups every hour of the information that was changed. As a consultant I especially love this feature because I’m often called to a client’s house when they’ve managed to delete a file that they really need. If Time Machine was on and working properly that file is usually just a few clicks away. I can literally “fly back in time” to before the customer deleted the file, and “restore” the file back on the computer. Pretty cool!
So, what’s the downside? Well, certain applications use databases for their files, so even if just part of that database is altered the entire thing is backed up every hour by Time Machine. One popular program that does just this is Entourage, Microsoft’s Mac version of Outlook. Entourage is a vital program for some businesses, especially those who run off an Exchange server. It houses mail, addresses, calendar items and to-do’s in one program. However, all of the data that Entourage uses is stored in a single database called an “identity.” These databases change slightly with each message sent or received, each new calendar appointment, each new address, etc. In other words, they change a lot! Time Machine sees this identity as a single file, so it continues to back it up every hour.
This week, I was called to a local business that runs it’s system off of an exchange server, so Entourage is the email client of choice for their design department. The problem was that many of the designers recently began receiving errors from Time Machine alerting them that their backup disk was full. The first designer that I helped had an Entourage identity that was 3.25GBs. This means that 3.25GBs were being backed up every hour. Yeah, that could fill up an external drive pretty fast. Luckily, there is a solution!
Time Machine allows one to choose to exclude certain files from its backup. To do this simply open up the Time Machine Preferences, found in System Preferences, select “Options” and hit the “+” button to add a new file to the exclusion list. If you’d like to exclude the Entourage database, it can be found in /Users/yourusername/Documents/Microsoft User Data/Office 2008 (or 2004, or X) Identities/Main Identity/database.
Unless you’re on an exchange server, which automatically keeps a copy of all of the Entourage information on it’s server, the obvious flaw with not having Time Machine back up your Entourage database is that you will now have to remember to do it yourself! To do that manually, you can easily drag the file from Finder to your backup volume periodically. Alternatively, you can use a third party backup program to incrementally back up that file for you to the external drive at an interval that you decide on. Personally, I’m a big fan of Carbon Copy Cloner, a free application that you can easily download from Versiontracker.com or Macupdate.com, which can perform schedule tasks like backing up the Entourage database for you.
If you find your Time Machine backup disk is filling up quicker than you think it should, check to see if your programs use a database feature like this and hopefully excluding that file will be a solution for you. If it isn’t, remember there are always more backup solutions out there! The most important thing is that you back up regularly, however you choose to do it. Speaking of which, when was your last backup?

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Here’s a tip for using your Mac’s ability to cut and paste text much more efficiently.
First, a little appreciative history. Back in 1984, the ability to “cut and paste” (or “copy and paste”) text was one of the Macintosh’s original killer applications. Apple actually introduced this ability on the earlier, unsuccessful Lisa, after Steve Jobs had seen it used experimentally at the Xerox Corporation Palo Alto Research Center (PARC). However, it was the original Mac that popularized this now-essential computer function (and yes, I find it ironic that there isn’t yet a cut and paste feature on the iPhone/iPod touch.)
Typically when you copy text from one document or application and paste it into a new document or application, the original font, font size, and font color is preserved, possibly clashing with the formating of the new document. This means you have to go back and reformat the pasted text to match the surrounding text’s font.
However, for many Mac applications (Pages, Mail, TextEdit) there is a simple way to force the copied text to match the font of document it’s being pasted into. After copying text, navigate to the Menu bar at the top of the screen, click on Edit, and choose “Paste and Match Style” from the drop down menu.
If you prefer to use a keyboard shortcut to paste your text , hold down the following keys at the same time: Command-Option-Shift-V. Normally to paste text, you simply hold down Command-V at the same time. Note that the Command key is stamped with an Apple on many Apple keyboards, and is located next to the Spacebar.

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Our free shipping promotion on Thanksgiving weekend was so popular that we decided to bring it back. From now through the end of 2008, Small Dog Electronics is offering FREE ground shipping to the contiguous 48 States on every order over $99!
In addition to free shipping on orders over $99, we have posted hundreds of special offers on Smalldog.com. These include discounts, savings on pre-configured Mac and iPod bundles, and both mail-in and instant rebates.
As always, Small Dog does not charge sales tax on any orders that ship out of Vermont! We ship 99% of orders on the same business day as the order is placed, and our warehouse team takes exceptional care when packaging orders.
“View our special holiday page here.”:http://www.smalldog.com/holiday
“View all of our specials here.”:http://www.smalldog.com/specials
Happy Holidays from Small Dog Electronics!

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_Dear Friends,_
Black Friday and Cyber Monday were a huge success here at Small Dog Electronics, with thoughts of the troubled economy temporarily pushed aside as our stores and website were crowded with shoppers. The free shipping promotion on our website was so successful that the website broke for a couple of hours, but Mark quickly re-wrote the code to get us back quickly. You, our customers, gave us such positive feedback on the shipping promotion that in addition to the other special values, we have decided to offer free ground shipping in the 48 contiguous states through the end of the year for all orders over $99!
I’m finally making the transition back to a single Mac. I have been using a MacBook Pro at the office and carrying around my MacBook Air. With MobileMe syncing and IMAP mail servers, this is an acceptable and manageable set-up, but it is also extravagant. I now have one of the latest generation MacBook Airs with the 128GB solid state drive and have enough storage capacity to make the switch. I’m waiting for one of Apple’s new 24″ displays, and I’ll be back to a one Mac guy.
This new MacBook Air seems to be much faster than the older version, even though the processor is not that much of an improvement. I think that this speed is due to the new NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics chip. It provides a 4X boost over the original MacBook Air, and in terms of speed-perception it makes transitions and window draws seem to just ‘pop.’ The new 1066MHz frontside bus with more cache and faster RAM also contributes to the speed enhancements.
I dropped in at the new Apple Store in Montreal when I was there to see Neil Young on Monday (the show was fantastic, by the way!). The new store on St. Catherine St. was looking good with lots of customers and the same great look and feel that has marked Apple Retail in the US.
I talk frequently about how Apple “invents” markets and even more evidence came out this week that underlines the strength that Apple has developed. While the US automakers are on the verge of collapse due to lack of innovation and swollen overhead, Apple continues to innovate and create new business. Forrseter Research claimed this week that digital music accounts for 18% of the total of all music sales in the USA (and project that growing to 40% within 5 years), and since Apple owns about a 70% market-share of digital music, we can conclude Apple has a 12.6% share of all music sold in the USA.
That is an amazing number and a paradigm change that is a direct result of Apple’s innovation. Apparently, people are still buying a lot of iPods since we have seen some spot shortages of specific models and our sales this past weekend were significantly above last year’s numbers. Apple is not recession-proof, but they seem to be doing a lot better than many other businesses!

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