Automator is a little used, and misunderstood application available to all Mac users. If you’ve used it before, then you might find this article interesting as it looks at setting up an automatic folder action for your workflow. If the previous sentence didn’t even make sense, then read on to Read more…
[vc_row][vc_column][us_image image=”991″ size=”full” link=”” onclick=”lightbox”][vc_column_text]I’ve long been a fan of Apple’s photograph management tool, Aperture, but it’s only in the last year – along with the purchase of a new iMac – that I’ve really started to use it as my primary tool for managing and processing my photographs.
For many years I was PC based, and was very happy using Adobe’s Lightroom (also now at version 3). Lightroom is very similar to Aperture in terms of functionality, and is a great tool for anyone already familiar with Adobe Photoshop, as the terminology used in the Develop module is identical.
However, I always looked longingly at Aperture’s clean, simple UI and envied it over Lightroom’s boxy, web-like interface. I understand the design choices made my Adobe when they created Lightroom, but for me it’s just ugly and industrial – and not at all the UI I want wrapped around my photographs as I work on them. Aperture was designed by Apple with the usual attention to detail, and as soon as I had the opportunity to switch I did. (more…)
Hi everyone! By far the most popular post on this blog has been my article on setting up iPhone 3.x to use Google Calendars (and in particular, multiple Google Calendars). I still get quite a lot of queries from people who seem to be jumping through all the hoops I outlined in that article. In short, both Apple and Google have added a number of features to both iOS4 and Google Sync that make the setting up of multiple Google calendars a lot easier.
[us_message type=”success”] UPDATE August 2011: I don’t seem to get multiple calendars working via this method any more – maybe it’s just me, but I did manage to get everything working by following the instructions below – but instead of selecting ‘GMail’, I set up a ‘Microsoft Exchange’ account just for my Google calendar (Tip: The server name is ‘m.google.com’). [/us_message]
iOS 4 (iPhone 4 and new iPod Touch)
First of all, if you’re using either an iPhone 4 or have upgraded your device to the new iOS4, setting up the calendars couldn’t be easier.
Simply follow these steps: (more…)
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Picture this: I settle down one evening; set the lights low, open the LoveFilm envelope and drop the DVD into the player. Then I sit back with a notepad and pen, and take careful note of the things I am forbidden to do with this particular title. Then, because this is a Paramount title, I have to select a language … and wouldn’t you know it, “English” is on the very last page. At least my remote control is getting a work out…
OK, pen and paper at the ready again. My careful language selection has confirmed my country of origin, and therefore the laws unto which I am held … so some more legal jargon appears, apparently listing further things I must not do with this title. I’m beginning to feel sorry for those guys on the oil rigs – they always seems to get excluded at this point. There’s so much text on the screen, but they only ever seem to give you enough time to read the first sentence before the next slide appears. Of course, I could press pause – but oh no – they’re overridden every single button on my DVD remote at this point, so trying to press anything simply presents me with a friendly “FORBIDDEN!” message. Nice. I’m feeling all warm and cosy now. Does my movie start now? (more…)
[vc_row][vc_column][us_image image=”895″ align=”center” size=”full” link=””][vc_column_text]So then. Why am I buying an Apple TV? No, it’s not just because I’m an Apple fanboy who must own the very latest Apple gadgets – although I can’t deny there’s a small amount of that involved!
Actually, I already have an Apple TV, and I’ve been happily using it for several years now. The problem is that’s it’s getting a little long in the tooth; the fan and hard drive is noisy, and it’s recently started overheating which has made it unreliable to use as much as I’d like. At that time, Apple hadn’t given any hints they were reworking the Apple TV – in fact I, like many other Apple TV users, have felt a little abandoned by Apple with this particularly product. I started investigating hopeful alternatives such as Boxee and XBMC, both of which were available on a hacked Apple TV, but were better established on PCs and Linux boxes. Personally, I like XBMC for it’s functionality – but not much else. Boxee certainly has character, and has a nice clean look (until you start using the Apps!) – but it seemed like it was trying to do too much. All I really want is a way of using my iTunes content on my TV, with the ability to access additional content (such as rentals, iPlayer, etc).
Nothing really stuck, so I’ve ended up persevering with my Apple TV and it’s quirky problems. (more…)
A few months ago I made a decision: Whatever new ‘iPhone’ Apple reveals at WWDC, I’m not interested. I don’t have any money, and I’m perfectly happy with my iPhone 3G. My intentions were good, but unfortunately I got sucked in by Apple’s Reality Distortion Field along with everyone else. At one point I actually found myself welling up at the promotional video for the new iPhone 4’s Face Time feature; thinking to myself, “I need that.”.
I’ve had an Apple TV for a number of years now, but in the last 12 months I’ve noticed an increasing number of problems with graphical glitches – some pretty minor, such as the odd white pixel in the menu (shown above), up to the horrendous video playback problems like this:
I’ve done quite a bit of experimentation, and the most obvious problem turns out to be the culprit: Heat. I’ve always thought my Apple TV (ATV) ran a little hot, but it seems to be notably hotter when the problems arise. None of this is very scientific, so I’ve set out to see if there’s a fix to this problem. (more…)
There’s been a storm brewing between rivals Google, Adobe and Apple. Each day seems to bring news of some minor sparring between the software giants, but instead of looking on in mild amusement, I’ve started to realise how their actions are affecting the future of smartphone development.
The news that made me sit up and take note came only a day after Apple previewed their new v4.0 OS for the iPhone and iPad. At first glance the change was subtle; an addition to their developer SDK agreement:
In a way, it’s a pretty reasonable request: that all iPhone applications should be developed and written in a C-based language, and link directly to the iPhone APIs. If I were to develop an iPhone application, that’s what I’d expect to do. However, I’m not an Objective-C or C++ developer – I’ve been a long-time .NET developer for the Microsoft platform, and my immediate thought was not about Adobe and Flash, but about a project called MonoTouch. MonoTouch allows .NET C# developers to work within the environment they’re used to, with all the benefits of the .NET framework, but write fully functional iPhone applications. In effect, it provides a bridge between .NET and the iPhone so that seasoned .NET developers can build multi-platform applications with ease (in fact, MonoDroid is in the works to provide the same bridge to Google’s Android platform). This makes sense from a developer point of view: One dev team can push out an app for the iPhone, Android and Windows smartphones relatively easily, and cheaply. Surely that’s a good thing for both developers and users? (more…)
Have you ever wished you could use Apple’s Time Machine service over a network? Since I’ve got almost 2TB of storage on my Linux (Ubuntu 9.10) server, I certainly did – but unfortunately Apple only lets you use physically attached USB or Firewire drives, or their own network-attached “Time Capsule”.
Well, it turns out theres a solution for us Linux folk (more…)
In late 2006 I wrote an article about how I switched from PC to Mac, and through frustration over a few petty things I switched back. The main reason was simply that the Mac didn’t allow me to play my PC games, nor did it (perhaps more importantly!) allow me to continue developing MS-based applications using the .NET Framework (a Windows only set of application libraries).
I switched back, and was happy for a while. Then I starting listing all the things I couldn’t do on the PC that I’d gotten used to doing on the Mac. In particular, I use Final Cut Studio on a daily basis at work – it seemed a shame that I couldn’t use those tools at home. (more…)