Feb 26

One of the most popular posts on macintoshhowto is this 6 year old article on how to clean an Apple mighty mouse. It’s had over 200 comments!

Here’s a video so you can see what it looks like.

Apple recommend rubbing a piece of paper over the top of the scroll wheel, but I find turning the mouse upside down and running it round in circles is much more effective. The paper must be new and clean. An old piece of paper doesn’t work.

I’ve been using this method 2-3 times a year for 6 years and my Apple Mighty Mouse with scrollwheel is still going strong.


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Feb 21

I have lots of ‘subscription’ emails arriving in my inbox. Some I have subscribed to, some I am not sure how I ended up being subscribed. I just found a great tool for unsubscribing from them all in one go. It’s called unroll.me and here are the results, I unsubscribed from 54 email lists!

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Feb 15

An article at theatlantic.com

I just read a fascinating interview with Tristan Harris, former Google employee who worked on  Google Inbox.

His thesis is simple. Google, Apple and Facebook all want their products to be one that we use.   Therefore they have a system of rewards built into their apps that train us to come back again and again. The average smartphone user looks at their device 150 times a day. Each App want’s to grab our attention every time we pick up the phone. Tristan argues that a better product would be one that does what we want it to, not one that manipulates us into using it more.

This video makes the point well.

Is this article he talks about the ethics of the companies who are behind most of the technology we use and how they deliberately manipulate to be addicted to their product.  “Never before in history have the decisions of a handful of designers (mostly men, white, living in SF, aged 25–35) working at 3 companies”—Google, Apple, and Facebook—“had so much impact on how millions of people around the world spend their attention … We should feel an enormous responsibility to get this right.”

Best of all he has some good ideas as to how we can take control over our iPhones.  Stop unnecessary notifications. Get rid of distractions from your phone’s home screen.  “Checking that Facebook friend request will take only a few seconds, we reason, though research shows that when interrupted, people take an average of 25 minutes to return to their original task.”

That itch to glance at our phone is a natural reaction to apps and websites engineered to get us scrolling as frequently as possible.

Read the interview here.

Or catch his TED talk here.

He has started a group called Time Well Spent who are encouraging developers to design apps with the user in mind.





Feb 02

Tab Launcher is a great little app that sits on the side or top of your screen. It’s like a manilla folder where you can put commonly used files. It makes accessing them much quicker.  The great thing is you don’t have to actually move the files into tab launcher.  Your files stay exactly where they are but this is an easy way to access them.

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Jan 30

Apple AirPods can only be turned off by putting them back in their carry case.

In this recent review of the Apple AirPods I discovered that when you put your iPhone into flight mode the Apple Airpods continue to transmit high levels of EMF. So next time you board a flight or enter an area in a hospital that requires you to turn your phone off, be sure to put your AirPods back in their case, not in your pocket.

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Jan 19

Lots of people have commented on the possible increase in EMF exposure from Apple AirPods, but how bad are they? I’ve done some measurements with a field strength meter.  Here is a graph to give you an idea.

When you use the new Apple Airpods on a mobile phone call a you are getting approximately 10 times the EMF than if you were just holding the iPhone up to your ear and talking.   We already see these levels on wifi devices.  The difference is that the Apple AirPods are in your ear, not on the table, and they remain there for long periods of time. They are constantly transmitting at this level – they never turn off.

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Jan 19

My new Apple Airpods arrived a week ago.  I must say they are a bold piece of hardware and they have evoked very strong emotions of love and hate within me. In many ways they are a beautiful piece of engineering and design and on the other hand they are a complete failure in some important ways. I love them and I hate them and here’s why.

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Jan 19

How quickly can you remove 2 Airpods from their case using only one hand?

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