Matthew Barram

Awesome Tools for Mac and iPhone

Read this first

cloudHQ making sure that things are safe and sound

cloudHQ is something new for me, and it is exactly the platform I would make for myself if I had unlimited time!

It can move files from one platform to another automatically so that you don’t have to worry about stuff being stuck in one place. While even this is an awesome proposition - it goes a step further… It converts files from one format into another, so the files in their destination are useful.

I have the following setup:

  1. Backup Evernote to Dropbox
  2. Backup Google Photos (Google Drive) to AWS S3
  3. Backup Google Photos (Google Drive) to Dropbox
  4. Backup Gmail to AWS S3

Some of the items can be done manually (such as backed up manually using Google Takeout others I don’t think there is any other way to do, such as Evernote backup (and conversion to PDF).

My eventual move from Evernote

I feel like it is inevitable that I will move away from Evernote at some point, and until now...

Continue reading →

Don’t be afraid to try something new

When I started out in business and was processing large amounts of documents in Australia I had a team of people sitting with me in the office doing data entry, they took paper records and entered them into a website. This was extremely costly and returned low quality results more often then not.

I realised that outsourcing could reduce my costs significantly as the rates for labour was much cheaper in other countries. So I removed most of the Australian team and had a single person who had the job of scanning the documents and sending them off shore for data entry. This was much more cost effective but still not fantastic.

The third step here was to develop and iPad application so that there was no longer any double entry required.

This process taught me that there is always a better, easier and more efficient way of doing something and I need to be open to finding what that thing...

Continue reading →

[FIXED] Transporter Desktop crashing Finder on Mac 10.10 Yosemite

I installed Mac OS 10.10 Yosemite on a MacBook today. The installation went fine until I booted the computer for the first time. Then Finder starting constantly crashing - the long and short of the problem was something to do with Transporter Desktop.

The fix is:

  1. Download and run the uninstaller app or by following the instructions making sure that you uninstall Fuse during the process.
  2. Reinstall the transporter app (you can find the download link on the bottom left of this page.
  3. It will reboot the machine.
  4. Everything should run smoothly.

View →

Podcasts I am currently subscribed to

I really like podcasts. I listen to lots of them and at one point I was listening to between 60-80 hours of podcasts a week.

After a chat with my meditation teach Li-Yea I decided that I was spending too much time listening to podcasts and not enough time being present and in the moment.

At this time I decided to cut down on the number of podcasts I was going to listen to substantially.

The below list of podcasts are the podcasts that I am still subscribed to, after the massive podcast cull in late 2014.

I listen to all my podcasts on Overcast which in my opinion is by far the best podcast app on the iPhone.

Tech Podcasts

Accidental Tech Podcast

Security Now


IRL Talk

Developing Perspective

Mac Power Users

The Talk Show

The Critical Path

Just Great Podcasts

Hello Internet

Correspondents Report

Your Daily Lex


Health Report

Just The Tip

99% Invisible


Continue reading →

Issue Installing Ruby 2.1.5 with rbenv

Yesterday I had an issue installing Ruby 2.1.5 with rbenv.

The error I had was:

➜  rbenv install 2.1.5
Downloading ruby-2.1.5.tar.gz...
Installing ruby-2.1.5...

BUILD FAILED (OS X 10.10.1 using ruby-build 20141128)

Inspect or clean up the working tree at /var/folders/8r/x4z035050698qlhzyttbmhh00000gn/T/ruby-build.20141207083055.62100
Results logged to /var/folders/8r/x4z035050698qlhzyttbmhh00000gn/T/ruby-build.20141207083055.62100.log

Last 10 log lines:
checking for stdint.h... yes
checking for unistd.h... yes
checking minix/config.h usability... no
checking minix/config.h presence... no
checking for minix/config.h... no
checking whether it is safe to define __EXTENSIONS__... yes
checking for cd using physical directory... cd -P
checking whether CFLAGS is valid... no

Continue reading →

My first real open source contribution

This weekend, I was working on a project relating to email and I came across a road block I wasn’t sure how I could resolve. After spending a bit of time looking through the gems that handled that bit of the code I came across the problem. I was able to write a few lines of code and get things working.

I was very nervous writing the pull request because I know people with much more experience will be looking at my code. I am glad I took the leap to put my code out there and I look forward to the feedback - whatever it may be.

My lesson from this is… Making contributions is rewarding and they push me a little beyond my comfort zone which I enjoy.

I will be looking forward to making more contributions soon!

P.S. If you want to see the PR you can see it here -

Continue reading →

Setting up a network via iOS Tethering

This week I moved house, and for me this wasn’t exactly fun. The whole situation was made worse by the fact that Telstra (the company responsible for all the cabling of internet connections in Australia) failed to complete any of the cabling required to allow my house to get any sort of cabled internet connection (normally ADSL+2).

As soon as I found out this was the case I knew I needed to find a solution - and quickly - because I don’t function very well without internet. I run an internet-based business, so …

After a little bit of looking around I found a nice mobile broadband plan provided by iiNet, and decided to go with that; it is month-to-month with no contract, I get 20GB of data per month and it’s 4G on the Optus network. The price is $74.95 per month, which is about the same as a standard ADSL+2 connection.

As far as how I set the network up, I put the iiNet SIM into my...

Continue reading →

The best way to watch movies (illegally!) - Popcorn Time Review

In a time when illegal downloading of movies is becoming more and more common it is only expected that applications will appear to fill the needs of those users who want to watch pirated movies. But until now there has not been any particularly good applications that allowed users to watch movies (via torrents) easily and quickly.

A new open source project called PopcornTime has just launched and it allows users to access a huge selection of (English only) movies which are available with just the click of a button.

As far as torrent clients go, this is definitely the nicest one to watch movies in (not that I would ever watch anything pirated!). If you are interested in using PopcornTime to watch movies the remember to use a virtual private network (VPN) to protect your identity online.

Here is a quick video review:

Continue reading →

How to take great window screenshots on a Mac

This is a really quick tip. When you are taking screen shots on a mac and want to capture everything in an open application window, simply tap the space bar while using the Shift + Command + 4 keyboard combination. This will allow you to easily select a full window to screenshot. The screenshots taken using this technique will look clean and also (normally) have a drop shadow behind the window.

Comparing 2 Screenshots

As you can see below there is a big difference between the two screenshots taken of the same application window.

I hope you found this tip useful!

View →

How to clean up your menu bar items

Bartender cleans up your mac’s menu bar by allowing you to hide and show menu bar items easily and quickly.

Most macs I have seen have an enormous amount of menubar items for different applications running at any one time. This adds a lot of clutter to the top of the screen and generally looks messy. In my menubar, most of the items aren’t needed all that much, but I can’t delete them, because when they are needed, having them easily accessible is important.

Take for example my normal menu bar:
Before Bartender

Having many items in the menubar also creates the problem of not being able to access menu bar items; this happens if the list of items extends past the drop down menus of the open application. You can see this in my example screenshot below:

Overlapping menu bar items

The solution to this problem is a nifty application and it does one thing and one thing only - it cleans up the menu bar. It’s called Bartender...

Continue reading →