You’ve undoubtably noticed that one of the subtle changes in iOS 9 is the new lowercase keyboard. When you’re typing in lowercase (i.e., most of the time), the lowercase keyboard is displayed. However, I’m not a big fan of this update; the keys don’t look exactly vertically centred to the eye, and I’ve grown used to the familiarity of the uppercase keys not only on iOS but pretty much every hardware keyboard ever.
The convenience of wireless networking is fantastic, but it doesn’t compare to the solidity and dependability of a wired network connection.
Where can you find out if your Ethernet connection is running at 10, 100, or 1000 Mbit/s? It is not in the most obvious place, as it turns out.
Want to leave your Mac on for a while for some process to finish? The default behavior in OS X is to put the computer into a low power sleep mode after a couple of minutes of inactivity. While this is great for saving energy, you may find it interfering with your computer usage.
Generally, most people prefer to buy gadgets early in the product’s life cycle, so it remains “new” for longer. Others prefer to buy a bit later, waiting for any early issues to be worked out. And everyone will agree, that buying right before a major improvement will make you feel at least slightly bitter, because Apple is not known for signalling a product update with a sale. Regardless of your preference, as an informed consumer you can make better purchase decisions.
Do you want to show what you’re doing on your Mac to someone? Or many people? Sometimes video is the best medium to explain what you are doing. You can record your instructions once, and share it on YouTube or social networks. Here is a tip on how to do it for free with Quicktime Player 10, it’s built-in to Macs beginning with OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard) and later.
Paintbrush is an awesome simple image editor for Mac that mimics the functionality of Paint on Windows. It’s a quick and dirty bitmap based image editor that’s fast and easy to use. There are numerous powerful image editors available for professional level work, but there is something beautifully simple and nostalgic about Paintbrush that makes it fun.
Continue reading Paintbrush, the MS Paint alternative for Mac
Most new Android phones support Wi-Fi tethering, creating a wireless hotspot for sharing the phone’s Internet connection with other devices. Android phones also support USB tethering (unless removed by carrier/manufacturer), which is a nice feature to have when wireless tethering isn’t ideal. In the past the problem has been the lack of USB drivers to connect the phone’s connection to Macs.
The Hosts file is used to map human-friendly domain names to numerical IP addresses. When a web browser is directed to a domain name, the system will check the Hosts file for matching records first, and if nothing is found, it will use the DNS servers to resolve the IP. Editing the Hosts file is a way for overriding DNS settings, and can be very useful for web development, or blocking a harmful domain. On Mac OS X, the Hosts file is used in much the same way as other operating systems. The difference is file location, and method of editing.
In some cases it is necessary to change which application is used for a specific file extension. If you found a found a better movie player, text editor, or image viewer you may want to use that application for all files with the same file extension.
For example, QuickTime Player is the default application for viewing MP4 movie files on OS X, but VLC could be your media player of choice.
“Can I use your computer to check something for a minute?” asks a colleague / stranger. You could politely refuse, but if you’re feeling generous you could log your mac into the guest user account in about five seconds without affecting your own open applications.
Assuming that you have the Guest account enabled, it’s as easy as clicking on your user name in the menu bar (top right) and clicking once more on the Guest User icon. About five seconds later, the computer loads the guest account which is completely independent of your own user account.