Feb 15

templates

I was in a rush to do some graphic design last week and I went searching for pre-made design templates for Pages. The last time I did this it was a waste of time – the ‘professional’ templates were, well, my kids could do a better job. This time though I found some stunning templates. Continue reading »

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Feb 06

TRIM

Some SSD drives are crashing in Yosemite do to an issue with something called ‘TRIM’.  Thankfully if you followed the method in my article entitled “How to speed up your mac with a Solid State SSD Drive” you will not have this problem. But if you have used an SSD that needs TRIM, read on to find out about the problem and how to fix it.

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Jan 29

timer

When your computer first turns on it needs to load the system software (OS-X) and some settings from the hard drive. This is called ‘booting’.  Boot time can slow down over time as you accumulate more software and hardware connected to your computer. Here are some tips to make your Mac boot faster.

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Jan 15

From using a drop of water on your iPhone for a macro lens to filming under-water with a drinking glass, this video has some great ideas!

 

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Jan 04

gamma

I noticed when watching movies on my 27 inch iMac that they are too dark especially in dark scenes. What I mean is that there are a lot of details in the blacks missing compared to watching on a normal DVD player.  I’ve also noticed the same thing when watching a movie on a projector  hooked up to my macbook air. Turning the contrast or brightness up doesn’t work as it just washes out the blacks. Here’s the cause of this frustrating problem and how to fix it!

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Nov 30

Here’s how to use Pages to quickly add a drop-shadow to an image.  This is what it looks like:

Apple with Drop Shadow Continue reading »

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Oct 27

Celestron Digital Microscope Imager

We recently moved to a small farm and we have been looking at our soil biology under a microscope. It was hard to see clearly so we bought a ‘Celestron’ Microscope camera (model #44421)  from Amazon for about $40. The packet doesn’t specify that it works with Apple computers, but it does and is very simple to use. It plugs into the usb port on your computer, and the camera replaces the eyepiece on the microscope. It doesn’t need any drivers or extra software. Read on to find out how we set it up.

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Oct 07

 time machine

If you’re like me after a year or two you may have outgrown your Time Machine backup and with Hard Drive prices dropping it’s time to get a bigger hard disk to host your Time Machine  backup. But starting a new time machine backup on a new hard disk means you lose the continuity with your old backups. Thankfully you can move an existing Time Machine backup from one hard drive to another. Here’s how.

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Sep 10

moogoo

Some people have difficulty controlling the touchscreen on an iPad or iPhone with their fingers, especially older people.  The iPhone touch sensitive screen works on capacitance and it does not respond well to dry fingers.

Read on for some experiments I did and how to fix the problem!

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Aug 26

Quicksilver is the first app I install on any Macintosh.

With Quicksilver you press the Apple key once and a window appears on top of everything else. From this window you can pretty much do anything:  launch an app, find a file, find a contact, email someone, you name it.  Here’s how to get it going…

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May 07

tethering

If you are travelling with your laptop (or iPhone) and your data is limited, here are  a few simple ways to make sure you don’t use too much data. Continue reading »

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Feb 09

pages

Here’s how to share a pages document with a PC user. Continue reading »

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Oct 01

publisher

I have  recently discovered a couple of free websites that convert Microsoft publisher files to PDFs. You can then open, read and print the pdf file on your Mac.

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Sep 22

Screen Shot 2013-09-18 at 7.50.16 PM

If your main Hard disk is full, here’s a great little free app to help you see what’s using up the space. It’s called OmniDiskSweeper. If you are a beginner this article might be better for you, but for advanced users, OmniDiskSweeper is better – it shows hidden files.

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Sep 11

keynote

There have been many times that I have been given a keynote file from someone, and I want to get the movie out of it and save just the movie  (or a picture) as a separate file.  You used to be able to right click and select “view package contents” but  that doesn’t work anymore. Here’s how to do it now.

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Aug 23

Crucial SSD
I just upgraded  the boot drive on my Mac Mini to an SSD drive. WOW!  It is by far the biggest speed enhancement I’ve experienced on any computer! The speed increase is incredible – almost hard to believe. Boot time went from 60 seconds to under 30 seconds, and applications launch instantly – no bouncing dock icon.

This is not for the beginner –  it’s quite technical – but here’s how to do it.

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Sep 28

3.5mm to RCA

To connect your iPhone, iPad or iPod to your home stereo you just need a dock and a 3.5mm to RCA cable like this cable above. The RCA cable plugs into the rear of your stereo and the 3.5mm plugs into your iPhone dock jack. Continue reading »

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Sep 06

itunes

Importing songs into iTunes is easy – you just INSERT the CD, SELECT it in iTunes, and press the ‘Import’ button!

But… the default setting on iTunes is not the best setting to use when importing songs. It’s far better to use the ‘Apple Lossless’ setting which will keep your music at CD quality. If you must compress the music (e.g. you want to fit it on your iPod or a laptop) then use the  bitrate of 320kbps rather than the default 128kbps of iTunes.

This article describes how to import songs into iTunes with the better quality bitrate.
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May 01

TV

Did you know you can get a tuner for your Macintosh computer, plug a TV antenna into it, and watch TV on your macintosh computer. Once you’ve got it connected, you can set it up to record any shows you want, and watch them anytime. Here’s how to get it going. Continue reading »

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Apr 15

This is an Apple display adapter. They come in various shapes and sizes. The left hand end plugs into you laptop. There are 5 different possible left hand ends you can choose from: MiniVGA, DVI, Mini-DVI, MicroDVI and MiniDisplayPort! You’ll need to match it to your macbook. The right side plugs into a data-projector or monitor – there are 3 different right hand ends to choose from, VGA, DVI or HDMI. You’ll need to match this to your projector. If you always carry around the adapter to connect your mac to a VGA projector, that should get you out of trouble 99% of the time. If you want to be 100% sure, carry an adapter to connect to DVI as well.

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Mar 13

I love the scroll wheel on top of the Apple mighty mouse, but after use the sweat and oil on your finger combined with grit and dust clogs the whole thing up. This manifests itself in the scroll wheel not scrolling down, or up, or in worst cases, not scrolling all. Here’s how to fix the problem. Continue reading »

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Feb 19

older than 2 years

Here’s how to bulk delete emails from your Gmail account to speed up the Apple mail app. Continue reading »

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Feb 19

count all mail

I’ve had gmail account for over 5 years and as the number of emails stored at google mail has increased Apple mail has slowed down.  Recently it got to the point where Apple mail almost came to a grinding halt.  When I checked my mail sometimes it would take up to 5 minutes to finish checking the mail.  Well I have just deleted 70,000 emails from my ‘All Mail’ folder and now Apple mail is back to the lightning speed I was used to – it takes about 5 seconds to check my emails.

Here’s how to check how many email messages you have in your gmail account.

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Dec 04

A few things to be aware of before you upgrade to Yosemite.

Dragon Naturally Speaking There were some issues but this has been resolved.

Fuji Xerox printers  Here is a workaround.

non Apple SSD as startup disk with TRIM enabled – there could be issues. See here for a more detailed explanation and here for a discussion.

Yosemite will now default to encrypt your entire Hard Drive. Make sure to turn this off unless you understand the consequences.

 

 

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