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Showing posts from February, 2012

Fixing and old iBook Keyboard and more

Repairing and upgrading an older 12-inch Apple iBook G4 laptop.
A great friend of mine had a 12-inch iBook laptop from 2005 - with a broken keyboard.  She asked me to help her shop for a new Mac to replace her old tried-but-true laptop.

Whenever anyone asks me for computer advice, I ask them what they want to do with a new computer.

She told me that she used her computer for basic email and surfing the web - she said the old iBook was great for many years, but that now, with a broken (and dirty and gross) keyboard, it was time to move on.

After thinking about it for 15 minutes with her, we concluded that the best approach was to fix her old laptop.  A little upgrade is a LOT easier than going out and buying a new machine, and then migrating 6 years of data and apps.  Also, the price is a lot less than a new machine.

We went on-line and bought two things:

A replacement iBook keyboard, for around $40, andA 1 GB memory stick, for under $20.
The replacement iBook keyboard (bottom) and 1 GB …

Connecting your MIDI keyboard to your Mac

MIDI and the Mac.  It's easy, fun, and shockingly inexpensive!

I enjoy fooling around with musical instruments, and so when Garageband originally came out several years ago, I was very excited to start using it with my cheap little Casio keyboard.

Initially it seemed expensive and complicated to get the right parts together to connect the Mac to my keyboard via MIDI. I didn't want to spend a ton of money in professional-class electronics. I wanted to fool around.

Happily, I discovered that it's inexpensive and easy.  If you know where to look, a Mac-compliant MIDI adapter can be purchased for under $10! That's right, for less than $10 I connected my Mac to my MIDI keyboard and by MIDI drum kit.

I bought an MIDI-to-USB interface, in particular, one like this really inexpensive USB MIDI Cable available through Amazon. The adapter is a simple device that has a MIDI "in"/"out" connectors on one end, and a USB connector on the other.  The adapter doesn…