Chimp CHM PDF Exporting on a Mac

I read a lot of ebooks, especially tech stuff, and, happily, most people are savvy enough to publish their ebooks in PDF format. Occasionally, however, someone finds some obscure reason or obsession to publish in CHM, Microsoft’s Compiled HTML Help file format. This was made back in the day for Windows 98, but continues to desperately cling to life (that or there’s a sole 38 year old programmer living out of his mother’s basement in Peoria who publishes all of these things – maybe i should ship him a case of mountain dew and some Fritos). Each page in the ebook is actually an html file, all of which are organized together and then compressed into a single file (.CHM file extension).  Microsoft abandoned CHM in 2002 for various reasons, but here they are, tons of brand new ebooks in CHM format.

So, if you are fortunate enough to be a Mac user, what do you do with these things? Well, you can use Chmox to read them, but should you prefer to export the ebook to PDF, Chmox will only do it page by page.. yay.  I found references to a program called Chimp from SpheraSoft, but both the company and the software are no longer.   All of the shareware download sites like VersionTracker no longer have it, but after some Googling, I dug it up on a Russian mirror of SoftPedia.

So download Chimp.dmg and print to your heart’s content.

Harry Potter and The Dark Lord Waldemart

On June 21st, the final Harry Potter book, Deathly Hallows, will go on sale and millions of copies will go flying off of store shelves. Unfortunately, the smaller local and regional bookstores will not be seeing much of this initial rush. Why? Wal-Mart will be selling the books at a loss at 50% off the suggested retail price. Wal-Mart will actually be losing money on each sale simply as a loss leader to pull traffic into its stores. This is a sad chapter in what has otherwise been a celebration of reading and books in an increasingly multimedia-driven world.

Wal-Mart Watch has created a parody site specifically against this particular promotion. Below is the parody video trailer from waldemartwatch.com :

Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire Rocks

Just back from the midnight premiere and a bit jacked on too much Coke past my bedtime. Quite a bit darker than the previous movies and much more encouraging of a book adaptation, the fourth Harry Potter movie plain rocked. While some of the teenage acting continues to limp along and the Yule Ball scenes drag the pacing down a bit, the visuals were impressive to say the least and the film captures the 4th years’ angst and awkwardness surprisingly well. Now I just wonder what Harry is gonna sound like in two weeks with a French accent when I see him in Montpellier.

Current read: FDR’s Second Bill of Rights

I return to FDR’s State of the Union Address from 1944 whenever I’m at my political wit’s end. When I start to believe that there is no altruism or hope or foresight to be found in those that lead, his speech reminds me that there have been great men and women of public office. The Second Bill of Rights: FDR’S Unfinished Revolution and Why We Need It More than Ever is a legal and economic study of FDR’s refutement of laissez-faire economics as well as researching why FDR’s constitutional vision was never fully enacted. This continues my FDR and Eleanor obsession that I started with Champion of Freedom.