Monthly Archives: November 2011

Hide unwanted System Preferences

If you want to hide unused system preferences or re-arrange them alphabetically and not by categories, Lion will let you do that. Open “System Preferences” and click on “View” in the menu bar – there you go. Finally you can hide “MobileMe” and other Icons you don’t need. And don’t worry, you can always bring them back!

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Good-Looking AirPlay Speakers By Libratone

Pretty and pricey! The Libratone Lounge speaker (picture) and the smaller Libratone Live combine design, Apple’s AirPlay technology and punch. Both speakers come with a 150 Watt total. Which translates to 1x50W bass, 2x25W tweeter and 2x25W midrange. You can stream your music from iTunes, your iPhone or iPad sans cables to up to six speakers (depending on your WiFi). All this luxury doesn’t come cheap though. The Libratone Live sells for $699.95 and its bigger Lounge brother for $1,299.95.

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Get Automatic Duck Pro Import & Pro Export Free

The guys over at Automatic Duck are giving away their Import- and Export-Tools for Avid, Final Cut and Adobe After Effects for free! Pro Import AE imports timelines from Avid, FCP 7 into After Effects. Pro Export FCP exports AFF files from Final Cut Pro 7 and FCP X to Avid. Pro Import FCP on the other hand imports OMF and AFFcompositions from Avid to Final Cut Pro 7. Well, check it out the details for yourself… Automatic Duck will stop supporting the tools, that’s why you can download them for free now.

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Transmission Is THE BitTorrent Client For Macs

Dude, whatever you download is your own business, but the best software to get the job done on a Mac is probably Transmission. It’s a neat tool using little resources (CPU & memory), offering remote (web) access and full encryption. This BitTorrent client is an open source project and comes with most features you might need.

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Choose Your Favourite Firefox

Did you know Mozilla offers 3 different Firefox versions? Release candidates, beta versions and a developer builds, called Aurora. If you’re not the adventurous type and frequent updates are a nuisance to you, download the release candidate. If you have the urge to try the latest, go with the beta channel. Aurora is for people who want to join the rocky developer front. You can check your Firefox version via “About Firefox” from the menu bar.

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Free National Geographic Desktop Wallpapers

National Geographic is offering free downloads of photographs of their Photo Contest 2011 (which ends November 30th if you still want to join). Feel like re-decorating your Mac’s desktop with some amazing images? Go ahead! Many impressive pictures to chose from in three categories (Nature, Places and People). The resolution is 1600 by 1200 pixels.

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Thunderbolt Port: Apple Cinema Display Flickers

Owners of the Apple LED Cinema Display 24-inch (introduced in 2008) may experience problems when connecting the display to a Thunderbolt port: An “intermittent flicker.” The 24 Inch LED Cinema Display randomly goes black for a second. Don’t worry Apple has a fix for this – quietly hiding in the support section. (It does not show up via your regular software update). So just download the Firmware update yourself, follow instructions and you’re good to go.

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Crazy Fan Noise And Lack Of Responsiveness…

…may be symptoms after upgrading to a new Mac OS. It is usually related to Spotlight indexing your Mac and may take several hours (the older your Mac, the longer it takes). If you’re getting nervous, open Activity Monitor (in the Utilities folder) and check the CPU load (select all processes). If “mds” and “mdworker” are the ones causing the work load everything is fine. Let them be! If not, follow this hint.

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Check Your iPhone Storage

With thousands dozens of apps installed on your iPhone it is easy to lose track of which app is using how much of your precious iPhone space and secretly accumulating tons of data. You can keep track of (growing) apps by navigating to Settings/General/Usage. You’ll find a neat list of all your installed games and tools and their respective size in Gigabytes or Megabytes. With two taps you can remove (greedy) apps or the classic installed-long-ago-but-never-used apps.

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Winamp Plays Nice With Mac OS X & Android

Not every Mac user loves the iPhone. If you happen to be the Adroid-kind-of-guy check out Winamp for Mac OS X. It imports all your iTunes contents and syncs them with many Android phones. It supports wireless syncing, SHOUTcast Radio and other things. There’s a paid version available without ads, FLAC support and other goodies.

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Improve Your Dictation With Siri

It is fun to find out all the things you can say to Siri. And if you activate Siri and tap on the small “i” a list pops up with useful commands to make appointments, send a text messge or search the Internet. Now Siri is a pretty good listener and if you tell her the right things, she will even get the details right. For example when you dictate an e-mail  and want to start a new line say: “New line,” for a new paragraph tell her: “new paragraph.” Or “caps on/caps off,” and things like “open parenthesis/closed parenthesis.” You get the drill. Find out about more commands over here.


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Quickly Send Files And Folders To Multiple Macs

Apple introduced simplified file sharing with Mac OS X Lion, calling the feature AirDrop. However, if you’re not into Lion or your Mac isn’t supported and you don’t want to fiddle around to activate it anyway, get DropCopy! It does more or less the same thing as AirDrop offering even more transfer options and settings. There’s a free version for up to 3 Macs on a local network and a paid version ($25) if you want to connect more machines.

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Create Your Own iPhone Vibration Patterns

iOS 5 offers quite a few ways to customise notifications, alerts and ringtones. Not only can you set a different ringtone for each contact in your address book (if you must), but assign an individual vibration pattern as well. How, you ask? Go to iPhone Settings, General, Accessibility and activate “Custom Vibrations.” Now head back to Settings, Sounds, Vibration. iOS 5 lets you “record” your own patterns by tapping the display in whatever rhythm you desire and save and assign your artsy work to a contact via the Address Book (Contact/Edit). Happy tap_ .. _ .. _!

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Download Apple’s Software Updates Manually

Sometimes iTunes doesn’t get iPhone or iPad software downloads right and you are stuck trying to update to the latest iOS. In this case you can turn to Apple’s manual download page and get things going again. Also useful if for some reason you want to downgrade your iOS.

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