December 15, 2015
Audi Mac Fusion
Hacking into nav / multifunction screens is the new hotness. So many cars now come with some sort of LCD / TFT display that it's just begging to get worked over. Sadly, manufacturers don't care about us hackers and make the wiring harness more difficult to understand than Rumsfeld on how we're going to define victory in Iraq. The brave few that do open up the harness and manage not to destroy their expensive part seem to be having some luck.
This Mac Audi interpretation of the Carputer form is a fine example of hackery and finesse.
December 14, 2015
Mac Mini In Dash Mount
Ask and ye shal get some. Or something like that. Autoblog beat me to the punch on this one! What can I say that they didn't, it's all good. One less reason to drag your feet on the carputer project.
December 08, 2015
Mac Mini Car Mount
Mounting brackets are the kinds of things that can make or break a good install. There are a few mounts for the Mac Mini but not nearly as many as I would have thought. Considering the 1000+ accessories you can get for an iPod, the dearth of widgets for the Mini is a bit noticeable. Hubbell has a new clear plastic (nach) hanger mount which would be helpful for a number of car installs with the exception of in-dash placement. Hubbell also makes a wall pocket type of mount which could be used for the car as well and doesn't even seem to need to be vertical.
December 03, 2015
Mac Mini Built Ford Tough
I've been sad recently. MacVroom has been noticeably quiet, I've not seen any new interesting Mac car installs, it was keeping me up at night. Well, net really, but I want to convey the shpilkas (Yiddish) I've been having regarding the dearth of such installs. Much to my delight, someone came through in a quite unexpected way. Almost as shocking as that whole "you got your chocolate in my peanut butter" incident. A Mac Mini in a Ford F150. Now if it were a human in the same circumstances, the chances of rejection would be quite high. Fortunately for us cars don't do that foreign tissue rejection thing.
What I like about this is the flip-down 10.2" touch-screen VGA monitor. The interface if Mac's Front Row which seems to be their first generation try at a media-center system.
October 20, 2015
MacMini - Front Row Car UI?
I love the MacMini. It's just so darn cute. The sad part (make a sad face now) is that MacMinis in cars have been bereft of a decent UI. Please correct me if I'm wrong about that. BUT, now it seems that the Apple Front Row "media center"-ish UI seems to fit the mobile bill pretty well, if only for its media capabilities. I don't think it has any sort of NAV functionality (which would be a weird thing for an entertainment center to have) but all of those Mac developers are surely whittling raw rawhide into sculpted NAV code as we speak. Or I speak. Or write. You get it.
October 05, 2015
Chevy Got Mac'd
The Silverado is a kissing cousin to my Yukon so I know what lies beneath the surface of the dash. It's not good stuff in there so kudos (I HATE that word) to this guy for getting that monitor in there and making it look normal. Had I done the same thing I'd be in a world of false insurance claims... Moving right along... Hey, how about that Mac OS?
Of all of the things I could say about this install, I have to pick the keyboard out. Is that inset? How cool is that? The custom center console is no slouch either but I do think it's a tad squarish. Hey, I'm a critic, thats what I DO, I critique!
Im curious about how exactly to USE a MacMini with a touch screen without some sort of UI.
And don't think that I missed the Louis Vuitton liner in the compartment. I'm not sure how to react, its like looking at Gwen Stefani but then she turns her head around and there's a hairy mole. It kinda ruins it.
September 14, 2015
Mac Dock - Prepare For Big Shipping Charges
Akihabara News gives us the dirt on a very elegant way to get your Mac Mini in your car. It's also a great way to get it out. How about that?
Sure, docks are not exactly rocket science but this one makes it very simple to use your system outside of the confines of your car. What a concept, out-of-car-computing. I'll need a personal moment here.
August 10, 2015
MacVroom has a very nice spread on a 350Z with a Mac Mini in it. I like everything about the install except for the actual MacMini exposed install. It's wedged in a hole. It just doesn't look like it's in there all the way. Yeah, I know, it's cute and all that stuff. That's no reason to leave it out there as a conspicuous conversation starter that's pretty much saying "HI, I LOVE MACS SO MUCH THAT I WANT TO TALK ABOUT THEM AT EVERY POSSIBLE OPPORTUNITY AND MAKE SURE YOU KNOW I AM A MAC PERSON". It's as subtle chaps in the Castro.
Keepin' it real.
August 02, 2015
Mac Mini Mod Contest
Looking for a venue for your wild Mac Mini car install? MacMod is holding a contest where you can win.... Another Mac Mini! I won't delve into the logic of that prize but i will say that more is always better.
July 12, 2015
More Mac Mini Madness
Combining the Mac Mini and the Mini Cooper makes me wince a little bit. Both are "cute" in their own right but once combined it seems a bit saccharine for my subdued and subtle taste. I may also have a little bit of an issue with the non-install of the system. I can put my desktop in the back seat of my Yukon, hook it up to an inverter and voila, mobile PC. Don't get me wrong here, bub, I support all flavors of in-car computer, I just don't know if an install is newsworthy when the main component is secured using the wedge-between-two-smaller-points technique.
July 11, 2015
Thank The Land of the Rising Sun
I've become quite sad recently. There has been a marked absence of MacMini mobile instalation news as of late. I was begining to think that it was all a dream and I would wake up and find OS2 was all the rage and everyone forgot about Steve Jobs. All I had to do was check out the action in Japan. Lo and behold, I found what I was looking for, a MacMini car mount / dock.
As is the case with everything cool, it's developed and released in Asia and we get to lust after it for a few years before it makes it's way to the states. I don't know if you can get one here yet but I would venture a guess that a quick Berlitz course and a long distance calling card filched from your boss's wallet will have you in hog heaven in no time. (no time plus the time it takes things to ship from japan)
Another hackable mount is, yet again, available in Japan. If you're Kanji is up to snuff, you'll be able to figure out how to order one.
April 29, 2015
MacMini Power Hack
When people tear stuff apart to make other stuff work, I have to smile. I spent my misspent youth tearing thing apart. Most of those things went back together with a neat little pile of "extra" parts.
April 21, 2015
GTi Mac Mini InstallDont get me wrong we didnt become MacMiniHacks.org all of a sudden. I just wanted to find a few good examples and we will go back to our regularly scheduled programming.
Mac Mini Dock Redux
I know this is old news but we just HAVE to include it in our archives and if you've not seen it, its new to you so settle down.
This guy needs to sell that jobbie. He'll make sick bank. Ok why am I talking like that. Done. Sorry.
Vauxhall and I
As the first entry into the MacMini section of the site, I wanted to point out a new project starting in the UK where a Vauxhall will be the proud recipient of a smiling little Mac. I am excited not only because does wife hails from the UK but I find that peeps in other countries often put a different twist on things. I just want to see more pictures of cars with the steering wheel on the wrong side. Wow thats weird to drive like that.
April 15, 2015
Mac Mini Install - On the road again
The Install is pretty cool but once again I am being called upon by the fabrication gods to design a mac-mini single din mount only to have it copied by a Taiwanese firm who will make its cheaper and have Crutchfield sell it. I am crying for the future. Ok, fine, I'm getting the welder out. Hey Damien, I need a sheet metal break and shear. I only need... about 6K. I'll wait by the mailbox.
How the Mac Mini may rule the auto world
In a very short amount of time, the Mac Mini has proven to be a nearly perfect platform for in-car computing. I know I've been going on and on about it but as each day goes by, more and more home DIYers are slamming those little boxes right into their dash. Since it fits almost perfectly into your single din opening, its only a matter of time before someone comes out with a proper single din mounting bracket made just for it.
Installer.com covers a wide range of brackets. One of them should make the install easier. I have a good mind to design one if I can get out from under all this moving in stuff.
What ever way you want to go, weather its a Mac Mini or a PC based solution, the prices are falling and parts are simpler to come by. Gone are the days where you need to be a computer expert, car stereo installer and custom fabricator in order to have a computer in your car. Still, it would help.
Tom's Hardware Article on in-car computing and a great interview with Damien Stolarz of CarbotPC.
April 02, 2015
Mac Mobile Gooey
Mac users LOVE macs for a simple reason, the UI is simple, well designed and its darn cute. The folks at Apple Ivory Tower know just how to make people *heart* their stuff with simple things like neato color progress bars and rainbow pinwheel wait icons. Who can get frustrated while staring onto a pinwheel? Certainly not me. All of that UI fuss has made development of a mobile-mac UI more than some cobbled-together hash of buttons. People are taking it VERY seriously, as well they should. Sloppy UI makes a whole product, well, suck. Ok, I said it. (See MS BOB)
i3 Team took some time to put together a nifty UI and even threw us some sinkz for that custom feel. I suspect that if you dont have a Z car, you might have to whip out that LEGAL copy of Photoshop. Mac fans might have a leg up on PC in-car systems with the simple fact that they are spending their cycles tweaking the interface.
March 25, 2015
Mac Mediacenter - UI for Mobile Macs?
The Mac Mini is only short a DIN mounting cage and wiring harness as an in-dash ready to go computer. FOrtunately that minor oversight will be corrected with an iSomethingorother from one of the many white/blue/clear plastic Mac fetishists. Bless them and their ability to fill in the blanks Apple leaves behind. The missing link for Macs to be viable in an an automotive or home theater setting is the 10' UI. What can you use from across the room. Center Stage Project is looking to fix that and not wasting any time doing it. The UI is already very usable with that OSX feel and soothing Mac icons. I would love to see a retail box product come out of this in the next few months. As with anything that is as fluid as mobile computing, it will need to be upgraded on the fly as new plugins and patches come to market. In the meantime we all anxiously await a final beta. I wonder how commited they are to the platform, I didnt see an "i" in front of any of their markenting language. I'll write them a note telling the people wont know its a Mac project unless they call it the iCenter iStage iProject.