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So, I've been dabbling a little with cooking lately and one seemingly easy task I'd failed at most spectacularly was making a decent plate of fries.

I tried the double fry method (fry on low heat, cool, fry on high heat) which seems to be online gospel and the results were nasty, to put it mildly. The fries turned into things I'd never encountered before - the closest I can come to describing them is "Elven shoes", completely hollow on the inside and hard and leathery on the outside.

To the rescue: Chef J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, an MIT grad who has a high regard for McDonalds fries and took it upon himself to understand what makes them so "great", his description but I concur. He gets quite technical about the chemistry involved which I though DC would appreciate. My very first try with this method was a 90% success, a quantum leap from anything I'd made earlier (bad comparison) and better than most restaurant fries I've tried. (the recipe is linked at the end)


I run a Mac Mini connected to two displays. The first is a DVI monitor (connected via a Thunderbolt to DVI adapter) and the second is a TV, directly hooked up to the HDMI out. I mirror the display to the TV to watch movies. The TV conked off a week back and was replaced.

The problem I'm facing after changing TV sets is, when I'm using the TV with the cable box or Playstation, the computer monitor starts blinking every few seconds, a solid black screen, similar to what one sees when changing resolution.

The blinking occurs twice about a second apart, every 15-20 seconds.
Observing the display options menu, I noticed that immediately after the first blink, the menu item for the TV disappears (because the Mac can't see it) there's another blink soon after when the TV gets detected and appears on the menu. It stays that way for 15-20 seconds and then the process repeats.

I've googled around and am at a total loss, I don't even know if the culprit is the Mac or the TV.
I've played around with the power consumption options on the TV, disabled mirroring, selected the "Use as separate display" option on the Mac - none of it made any difference.

When the display is being mirrored, it doesn't blink at all, steady on both ends, so I assume the HDMI cable (10 meters) is ok. Should I opt for a 5 meter high speed cable? Totally out of ideas, the only thing that works for sure right now is to pull out the HDMI cable from the Mac every time I'm not mirroring the display but that's a pain.

Edit: If I'm using the TV for Playstation or cable and power it off (standby), the monitor keeps blinking even when the TV is on standby.

I just purchased the Mac version and got a discount code with the license. It's the best Airplay host I've found on Mac - does audio streaming, video streaming & full device mirroring. They have a PC version and support for non-Apple devices too.

We hope you enjoy AirServer! As a thank you we'd like to give you a $4.0 discount coupon.
Feel free to use it within 14 days on additional licences or give it to your friends or family:

General Software Discussion / Hola VPN sells users' bandwidth
« on: May 28, 2015, 11:58 AM »
When a user installs Hola, he becomes a VPN endpoint, and other users of the Hola network may exit through his internet connection and take on his IP. This is what makes it free: Hola does not pay for the bandwidth that its VPN uses at all, and there is no user opt out for this.

Here's the part I find most disturbing:
rather than having their IP addresses cloaked behind a private server, free Hola users are regularly exposing their IP addresses to the world but associated with other people’s traffic – no matter what that might contain.

I wonder if there's some way for users to prove their IP was used by someone else on Hola and not directly by them. If not, you'd have to be out of your frikking mind to use this service, or... really, really like free shit. Hola claims to have 46m users. ;D

General Software Discussion / uTorrent has gone rogue
« on: March 08, 2015, 06:22 AM »
I was surprised when I installed a recent OS X update and it hi-jacked two browsers without user consent. Some looking around showed that there were others complaining about malware too. I rolled back to an older version, warned whoever I could and vowed never to trust the company again.

And today, there's this little gem on TorrentFreak:

Many users of the popular BitTorrent client uTorrent are complaining about it silently installing a cryptocurrency miner with a recent update. The Epic Scale tool, which slows down host computers, is reportedly being installed without consent and for some is particularly hard to remove.

uTorrent had two things going for it: a no-nonsense, lightweight app and street cred among people like me who have used and loved the app for years. Looks like they traded both in for some $$$. :P

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