Tip of the Day

Get iTunes track notifications in your Dock

Get iTunes track notifications in your Dock

In OS X there is a cool hidden setting to enable “Now playing” notifications that appear from the iTunes icon in the Dock. Every time a new song starts, a small popup containing the artist and the song name appears and then slowly fades out after a few seconds. To enable this, start by opening Terminal(…)

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Display system stats

In older versions of Mac OS X, simply clicking on your computer name in the login window would cycle through displaying lots of useful system information. Unfortunately this feature has been removed in Lion, but you can bring it back to a certain extent. Open up Terminal (located in Applications/Utilities), paste in the following line(…)

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Display a short message

Display a short message

Displaying a message on the login screen was a complicated process that involved entering commands into the Terminal. Luckily, Apple have now added an easy way to set a message using System Preferences. To do this, go to the Security & Privacy preference pane, and under the General tab, tick the checkbox Show a message(…)

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Changing the background

In Lion, the background used for the login screen is located at /System/Library/Frameworks/AppKit.framework/Versions/C/Resources/ The easiest way to get to this folder is to choose Go to Folder in the Go menu while in the Finder. Then just copy and paste in the above line and click Go. The image that is used for the background(…)

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ColorSync Utilities !

ColorSync Utilities !

Mac OS X contains a number of useful utilities that can enhance creative workflows. In the root-level folder /Library/Scripts/ColorSync are editable AppleScript utilities that perform various common design tasks. Say, for example, you have a collection of images in a directory that you would like to prepare for the web by embedding the sRGB color(…)

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The Immaculate Desktop

The Immaculate Desktop

Are you the sort of neat-freak who abhors Desktop clutter? Who keeps all apps and docs in carefully organized folders? Consider diving deeper into onscreen clean by making your mounted drives and discs disappear from the Desktop and accessing them instead via Finder windows. Here’s how to try it: From the Finder, pull down the(…)

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Create Your Own Icons

Create Your Own Icons

You don’t have to live with the icons your Mac displays by default. Instead, personalize your folders, files, and drives with custom icons using just about any graphic file you desire, whether it’s a jpeg, gif, png, Photoshop or Illustrator file, or even a PDF. First, choose an image you want to use and open(…)

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Mouse-Free Folder Moves

Mouse-Free Folder Moves

One of the best tricks for speeding up your computer work is to keep your hands on the keyboard, not the mouse. It’s not a macho, anti-mouse thing, but a simple matter of efficient motion. Using the mouse or trackpad means moving your hands off the keyboard, locating the cursor, making your move, and then(…)

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Saving Documents and Web Pages as PDF

Saving Documents and Web Pages as PDF

Adobe’s PDF format offers a great way to save and send electronic documents, from formatted business letters to product brochures. PDF documents appear identically on all computers, so you don’t have to worry about things like whether the recipient has access to the same fonts as you or if your company logo and other graphics(…)

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Summarize Your Stories

Summarize Your Stories

When laying out a long story in a newsletter or magazine, it’s often helpful to summarize a story, or a section of a story in a pull-quote or abstract. But how to find the best quote when you’re on a deadline and need it fast? Fortunately, Mac OS X offers a great tool that almost(…)

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Set Search Priorities in Spotlight

Set Search Priorities in Spotlight

With Spotlight, the powerful search function built into Mac OS X Leopard, you can quickly find anything on your computer: files, folders, emails, applications, even calendar events. And to help speed your searches even more, you can specify which types of data Spotlight should list first when you type in a search term. This is(…)

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Super-Clean Screenshots

Super-Clean Screenshots

In Mac OS X, you can capture an image of your entire screen by typing Command-Shift-3. Typing Command-Shift-4 lets you choose a specific part of your screen to save as a screenshot: Click and hold to place the small cross-hair cursor at one edge of the area you want to capture, then drag horizontally and/or(…)

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Sharing Contacts with vCards

Sharing Contacts with vCards

Electronic versions of old-fashioned Rolodex cards, vCards provide the fastest way to import contacts into your own Address Book or to share your Address Book contacts with friends, family, or colleagues. Much like their physical predecessors, vCards contain basic contact information (such as name, address, phone, and email). But you can easily add information to(…)

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Lock Your Data with Disk Images !

Lock Your Data with Disk Images !

Chances are you’ve encountered disk image files (indicated by the extension .dmg) when installing software on your Mac. When you double-click on this type of file, your computer mounts it as though it were a DVD or hard drive. In fact, you can think of mounted disk images as virtual drives. The Disk Utility program(…)

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Really Empty the Trash !

Really Empty the Trash !

It’s simple to delete unwanted files using Mac OS X Leopard: Just drag the files onto the Trash icon in the Dock (or select them and type Command-Delete), then choose Empty Trash in the Finder menu (or type Command-Shift-Delete). Alternately, you can double-click on the Trash icon to open it, then click on the Empty(…)

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Make Symbols on a Mac

Make Symbols on a Mac

Method One Hold down the Option key On a Macintosh, “Option” is the same as “Alt” on a Windows computer. The list on the left shows symbols you can type by holding down Option plus another key. The list at right requires you to press Option, Shift and a third key.   Symbols With the(…)

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