Tag - Contacts
This may be a first for us: we're examining a new software release in not one, but two separate reviews. It's not because this is going too long, either. It's because this software is FileMaker Pro 15 and it's less an app, more a whole world. If you are an existing user, then you probably love it -- but you also know that any upgrade has to earn its keep, so you'll be looking for details of what's new. Yet if you've never touched it before, the differences between this and the previous version 14 won't really tell you whether it's worth your time and money. So do this for us, please: if you have never tried FileMaker Pro, carry on reading this; if you're an old hand, read the other review -- that one's for you.
The flood of replacements for Apple's default iOS keyboard died down after developers went crazy offering every conceivable gimmick, and users realized how few of them were any good. We're now at the stage where the only new keyboards that appear are ones that look like they've been built to solve a particular need, and in the case of Microsoft Hub Keyboard 1.0, that need is to speed up typing for Office 365 users.
Usually, a contacts or address book app aims to make it easy and quick for you to add new people or change some details. Invariably, a new contacts app will have something more, because it has to: given that you already have Apple's Contacts app on your Mac, you need a compelling reason to buy a replacement. ContactsMate 3.0.0 wants to be your new daily address book, and it's aiming to get you by way of its tools for cleaning up problems.
In February 2015, we said that the then brand-new BusyContacts 1.0 was so good we were willing to call it the best address book app for the Mac. We knew we were being rash but we meant it –– and one year on, it's gone the distance for us.
This should come with a trailer that begins "From the makers of Drafts 4..." as Interact 1.0 is a Contacts app from Agile Tortoise. It's the fifth app from there and we've previously praised them all and fair enthused about note-taking app Drafts 4. This Contacts one has the power we've come to expect from this developer, it has clever features and we recommend it. However, it is definitely a 1.0 release and there are some unnecessarily confusing elements alongside the powerful ones.
It doesn't work. At first we thought the makers of Veer launcher – Contacts widget for notification center by Veecards 1.6.14 might just be having a bad day. The app does not work, and they told us we had chanced upon a particularly rare bug that actually was fixed in the version working its way through Apple's approval process. It isn't. Veer does not work at all. Not for us, not at all.
You need to shut the world out so that you can get this urgent thing done, and maybe that's really what Airplane Mode was invented for. However, even or especially in your busiest times, you cannot afford to miss an email from your partner or your boss. So now the answer is the VIP feature in iOS 8: quickly nominate people whose emails get through to you, and choose how much they disturb you. Well, that's how much as in whether you get a bleep, a dropdown notification, a banner or a full middle-of-the-screen alert. It's not as in whether they're sending you disturbing news or not.
Perhaps you know a lot of people, perhaps you don't. Yet you can be pretty sure that most of the ones you do know have at least one email address, a cell phone, a work line, maybe even a fax if you remember those, plus a website and a Twitter address. Lots of people times lots of contact details means it can take ages to get to the person you want. The newly updated iAddressX 3.6.0 aims to fix all that by putting every detail into one icon on your OS X menubar.
Gone are the days when you can't make any more friends whose names begin with E. Now there's no page to fill up and no reason not to just keep on adding everyone you come across. So we do. And it's a mess. Last year you added that fella your boss said you should get in touch with. This year the same guy contacted you and you cheerily added him again. Whatever you do and however fastidious you are, your address book is in a state and Cleanup Suite 5.0.3 is here to do something about it.
We have written previously in our Pointers column, about Smart Things in OS X -- by which we mean Smart Folders (usually found in the Finder), Smart Albums (found mostly in iPhoto or Photos, and other photo-oriented programs), and Smart Playlists (commonly seen in iTunes). We forgot to mention another one -- Smart Groups in Contacts (formerly Address Book), but then it's good to understand Groups first, so here we go.