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Pointers: Fix OS X Keyboard Layout Problems

10/23, 8:57am

When you press $ and get £ instead

The contest for shortest and most obscure Pointers tutorial topic continues – and may be over. No more calls, we have a winner: this one is about changing your keyboard language. It's so obscure that you may not even understand what that means: if you're in America, for instance, you can tell your Mac that you prefer a British keyboard. Amongst other things, it saves you having to contort your fingers to press the right combination of shift and Command keys to get your local currency symbol.


Pointers: Tethering to your iPhone

07/20, 7:18am

When you simply have to get online

This is the most dangerous Pointers tutorial we have ever done. It's not like it will risk your life and limb, it's more that it will risk ours if you do this and it goes wrong. For this is how to connect your MacBook or your Wi-Fi-only iPad to your iPhone in order to use the latter"s cell signal -- and your service provider may not like you for that. Worse, they may like you for it a lot, and be rubbing their hands as you pile on the devices and add to your bill and their hopes of a yacht this month at your expense.


Pointers: Timers, Siri and soft-boiled eggs

04/24, 8:00am

One tip for more precise timers on your iPhone

This is not going to be the longest tutorial you've ever read. Here it is: you can tell Siri to set a timer that includes seconds, not just the whole minutes you're forced to with the dials. Its a bit finicky, but here's the way to do it. That's it. It's short, and we're not going to pretend that it's a power-users hidden zen-ninja tip but, oh, is it useful. Also, there is just a fraction more to it than it sounds. A fraction. Barely a pixel, but handy to know.


Apple Watch tutorial video set now complete, offers 10 'guided tours'

04/23, 10:00am

Short videos illustrate functionality and look in actual-size screen demos

After releasing the videos in drips, Apple now has completed its set of 10 "guided tour" videos covering the main functions of the Apple Watch. The last three, dealing with Apple Pay, the Activity tracker, and the Workout app were posted on Wednesday, joining videos covering the core user interface of the device and specific functions ranging from phone calls, to customizing the watch face, to sending "digital touch" messages.


Pointers: Better Links in Mail (OS X)

03/30, 8:37am

Hide ugly URL addresses when emailing

URLs are ugly – and they are also very daunting if you're new to the web. So long as they're up there in the browser and you just got to the site by clicking a heading in Google, nobody cares. Yet when you send them to someone, that's when you can put them off or you can make their life easier. It's also where you can demonstrate that you know your stuff. There is one important caveat to this but otherwise this Pointers will show you how to make emails with links that simply look better than sending someone a five-foot-long string of dots and slashes. The specific steps in this tutorial are all for Mail in OS X Yosemite.


Briefly: Adobe extends photo program, VPN tutorial fix for Mavericks

11/20, 4:21pm

Adobe's Photoshop Photography Program available to all until December 2

Initially launched in September, Adobe's Photoshop Photography Program -- aimed to support the workflow needs of photographers who use Creative Suite 3 or later and helping them transition to the Creative Cloud system - has been extended. Adobe has announced a limited-time extension of its program to the general public, and a longer extension to previous-version Adobe owners. Offering access to Photoshop CC and Lightroom 5, 20 GB of cloud storage and Behance ProSite, users can access the software content through Adobe Creative Cloud for $10 per month, based on an annual subscription. This extended offer began today, and is running until December 2, 2013 at 11:59 PST, with non-Adobe customers and users alike qualifying for the deal. Upon expiration of the public offer, the Photoshop Photography Program will continue to be available to those who own a previous version of Photoshop, Photoshop Extended, or Creative Suite 3 or later until December 31.


Briefly: iFixit holds Liberation Week, Amazon updates video app

06/24, 11:50am

iFixit holding giveaway in the spirit of Independence Day

Today, iFixit, the self-repair advocate and tutorial site, announced its upcoming event, Liberation Week, running from July 1-5, 2013. iFixit seeks to combat planned obsolescence by giving users access to the information needed to repair and upgrade products. Citing Independence Day, iFixit will be giving away free iPhone Liberation kits - tools to open one's iPhone for self-repair access - to the first 1776 claimants. Stating that the consumer should have the right to open their phone, the kits includes a pentalobe screwdriver, so that users can replace the original screws with ones with standard Phillips head screws provided. Pentalobe screws are intended to be tamper-resistant, as there are no readily available screwdrivers with a compatible head. Also in the kit is a #00 Phillips screwdriver, to use in future openings of one's iPhone.


Briefly: MainStage 2 tutorial videos, PlayHaven for devs

10/30, 6:30pm

Infinity Data Systems supports MailForge customers

In Brief: has released a new tutorial video that provides lessons for working with Apple's MainStage 2 software. PlayHaven has announced a new platform that allows iPhone developers to create community sites for their games. Meanwhile, Infinity Data Systems has extended free phone support to customers using MailForge.


Briefly: Contour Balance Roller review

07/16, 5:35pm

MacForensicsLab cert

In brief: We've posted a review of The Contour Balance Roller, MacForensicsLab certification training, Jumsoft offers iWeb templates, "Simple" Photoshop tutorial debuts, and FMCode Shares FileMaker Code ... We have posted a review of The Contour Balance Roller, which uses a nylon-like microfiber material that seems durable and water-resistant, yet soft. The lining lends itself to doubling as a diaper bag, although I wouldn't recommend storing your computer with dirty diapers. The lighter weight (5.3 lbs) makes wrangling your 15" laptop easier, especially if it isn't your only piece of luggage. Plenty of pockets for spare batteries, mice, or other peripherals grace the inside larger pockets. I've used the bag for weekend getaways and it fits spare clothing, equipment, and a laptop well.


Briefly: Edge case reivew, iPhone directory

06/20, 5:05pm

Screen sharing tutorials

In brief: We have posted a review of The Edge, a new MacBook case, a directory of iPhone and iPod Touch Web pages debuts, two screen sharing tutorial books have been released, and the Los Angeles Final Cut Pro User Group is celebrating 8 years ... We have posted a review of The Edge, a versatile MacBook case. Unlike a briefcase, you can throw it in your backpack, or, you can carry it under your arm for short trips. Much like the MacBook it is designed to protect, the Edge is clean, simple, and easy to use. Its about as basic as laptop protection gets because you just open the triangular Velcro flap and slide in your laptop.


First Look: ScreenFlow, screen capturing

02/29, 7:20pm

First Look: ScreenFlow

Every Mac comes with the Grab program, which can capture images of the screen that are helpful for showing others how a certain program should look or what users should see after choosing specific commands. Unfortunately still images cannot always show the complete story, just as viewing a photograph is less enthralling than watching a movie. To fill the void Vara Software offers ScreenFlow, which captures screen activity and stores it as a Quicktime movie file that users can copy and distribute to others. Such Quicktime movies, called screencasts, are useful for creating video tutorials for training or teaching.


KnowLeopard teaches OS features

02/07, 10:50am

KnowLeopard teaches Macs

KnowMac has released KnowLeopard, a tutorial program that guides users new to Leopard or Macs in general. The software is divided into 14 chapters, covering topics such as Mail, Spaces, QuickLook and Time Machine; each contains screenshots and videos of various tasks, which zoom in for an unobstructed view when clicked. For extra help, users can turn on an audio track with explicit instructions.


Apple unveils Apple TV guided tour

02/01, 6:05pm

Apple TV guided tour

Apple has posted a guided tour of iTunes movie rentals on Apple TV, introducing visitors to the set top box media device. The tour covers Apple TV's new user interface that eases the process of renting movies, delving into the various options for viewing trailers as well as previously rented movies and sorting titles. Viewers will get first-hand looks at selecting top movies, TV shows, and more.


Apple launches basic Mac tutorials

01/30, 6:20pm

Apple launches tutorials

Apple today launched a series of tutorials geared toward PC owners who are entertaining the prospect of owning a Mac. The three current guides already available include 'Anatomy of a Mac,' 'Move to Mac,' and 'Windows on a Mac.' Anatomy of a Mac explains the process of using a Mac right away, including the internet setup assistant and the desktop. The tutorial covers the Finder, Dashboard, Mail, the Safari Web browser, iChat, Address Book, iCal, Preview, iTunes, iPhoto, iMovie, Spaces, Time Machine, and System Preferences. The video also introduces Stacks and the Menu Bar.


Pogue unveils Missing Manual for Leopard

12/06, 5:35pm

The Leopard Missing Manual

David Pogue recently unveiled Mac OS X Leopard: The Missing Manual, the latest book in his lineup of humor-injected technical manuals. Pogue says that the book is designed for advanced-beginners and intermediate users, but miniature sidebars called "Up to Speed" will provide background information to first time users. There are also shaded sidebar tips called "Power Users Clinic" seeded throughout the book, designed to give Mac veterans tips and tricks that even they perhaps did not know about. O'Reilly Press is currently shipping Mac OS X Leopard: The Missing Manual, and it sells for $35.



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