Upgrading the local exchange

This Telstra Wholesale page lists the telephone exchanges to receive upgrades. At Mt Nebo (MNBO) we’re about to get a software upgrade. Apparently it won’t be bringing ADSL2+, but it’s going to remove the default shaping (slowing down) that 8Mbps plan users (like me) have been subject to. The what now?

Even though I have been paying quite a bit extra for an “up to 8Mbit” plan that’s usually around 2.5Mbit, it’s been the crappy shaping setup at the exchange that’s been slowing me down, not my line, proximity to exchange, or anything else.

First reaction? How in hell can they get away with selling (or on-selling) a service they know will be crippled? Advertising up to 8Mbit when this exchange hasn’t been offering any more than 2.5Mbit to anyone is just wrong.

Second reaction? So, my internet could get 3x faster next week? PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE?

CamTwist + Skype = Remote Collaboration

Final Cut Pro has an awesome feature, iChat Theater, which lets you share your Viewer or Canvas (whatever was last selected) to a remote iChat buddy. It’s fantastic for remote editing with a client. But it only works Mac to Mac. Alternatives? Skype has built-in screen sharing, but it doesn’t want to work for me; I think it’s because I’m on a camera-less Mac Pro.

Solution! Grab CamTwist, as described in How To Use Your Canon DSLR As A Webcam. Set up the software with “Desktop+” to output the FCP Canvas as a webcam. Now you don’t even need to use Skype’s screen sharing, because that area of your screen becomes a webcam. It just saved me many rounds of tiny revisions with a remote (Sydney) director on a piece I’m editing.

Isn’t it nice when technology really helps? Now, if only I could get ADSL2+ here…


Looking at a computer-rendered diagram of a family home with a family, Hazel said it was “Andy’s house. From Toy Story.” (Because they looked like the computer-generated people that Pixar make and she loves.)