Mac os x hints and tricks

For instance, the name of a volume or file in Finder or a label for a button or some other control. You can tell when you have interacted too far because you simply cannot move in any direction and when you stop interacting, you then can move around as expected.

Also, keep in mind that by way of Numpad Commander or Keyboard Commander, you can simplify the key combination used for starting the interaction process or stopping it. By default, with Numpad Commander enabled, the 7 key starts and the 9 key stops interacting. Of course, you can also assign keyboard commands to Keyboard Commander if you also wish to decrease the number of keys required to start and stop interacting. Additionally, with Quick Nav enabled, holding down the right and down arrow keys will enable you to start interacting, while holding down the left and down arrow keys will stop interacting with an item.

Thus, there you have another way of handling the interaction process. The concept of interacting and being aware of when one needs to do so on the Mac is one that is certainly new and different to many people. Hopefully, though, the information I have provided will help the user have a better idea of how interaction works and when one has to do so. I am surely aware that this subject is often confusing and even mysterious, but it honestly is not as challenging as one might think.

Remember that the control-option-j combination, the jump command, will sometimes allow you to easily jump between items that would normally require one or even two levels of interaction. For instance, this command can be used to get between the Finder Sidebar, which is a table, and the browser window without the need to stop interacting with one and start interacting with the other.

This handy command can also be employed in iTunes to make navigation easier, and in the Contacts app between your list of contacts and the Contacts Information Group for a specific contact. As earlier stated, remember that experience and exposure is the key to conquering interaction.


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Things will become second nature to you and you will not find yourself having to stop and think about whether or not interaction is required in a given situation. When all else fails, though, keep in mind that if you have VoiceOver hints turned on, you will also be prompted to interact with an item if it is necessary.

Re-making Apple Mail to fit your needs

There has been a lot of discussion about this new feature in Lion. This is default behavior and, thus, can be a bit disconcerting for someone new to Lion. For example, if you close down Safari with several webpages open and do not close those windows before quitting the application, those same windows will be open when you start Safari again.

Similarly, if you shut down your system with Mail, Safari and iTunes open, for instance, those same applications will open when you restart the system. Fear not, though. If this is a type of behavior that you would prefer not having occur in Lion, Apple has provided ways to change this either on the application level or for the overall system. I am going to talk about some tips of dealing with Resume, but you can also hear a demonstration I did that can be found on the demonstrations page.

In other words, holding down the option and command keys and the letter q to quit the application. This will cause the application not to have its previously open windows present when you restart it. If you want this to be an across the board thing for all applications permanently, you can apply this in System Preferences by doing the following;. Once you do this, any time you quit and reopen an application, its previously opened windows will not be present. This is done in the restart or shut down dialog easily gotten to by hitting the power button on your system for a moment or through the respective dialogs that appear from the Finder menu when selecting these options.

Just uncheck this box, and you will not have any applications left open when you restart or shut down your system reopening automatically. Note that if you do this, this does not effect individual applications and their windows. Lastly, there are a few other ways of dealing with the Resume feature for application windows if you are comfortable dealing with folders and files by way of your user library in Finder.

Manipulation of this folder or the subfolders for specific applications can be done to effect how the Resume feature works for applications. For details on these methods there is a very informative article here that explains this subject in more detail. Again, though, unless you are familiar and comfortable with working with your Mac on a more technical level, I would advise utilizing the approaches I have talked about above.

Calibrate the battery in your MacBook or MacBook Pro every month or two to keep your battery functioning at its fullest capacity. To calibrate the battery:.


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  • Repeat the calibration process every two months or so to keep the battery fully functioning. If you purchased additional batteries, repeat the calibration process with those batteries as well. It is possible to arrange the items on your dock in whatever order you desire using VoiceOver. This is not a commonly known command, but once you are on the dock, pressing the option and command keys with either the left or right arrow will move the item you are currently on. VoiceOver will tell you that you have moved the item to the left or right of the next item in the appropriate direction.

    You would rather have Mail ahead of both Safari and iChat. So, in the dock, you do the following;. The following was written by John W. Hess and is courtesy of Keith Reedy. For me, the best way to spell check with Leopard, for example, in Mail, is to use Command-Shift-Semicolon to activate the spell checker.

    Top 10 Mac OS X Tips

    Press VO keys up arrow to bring focus to the spell checker and then VO keys down arrow until you hear the first misspelled word. Release the VO keys and just press down arrow to review the suggestions and when you hear one you like, just press enter and the next misspelled word will be heard. Press down arrow to move through the suggestions and hit enter on the one you like. This also works in text edit. I use it for everything. You can also check spelling on the web. For example if you are using web mail and you want to spell check your message this method will work.

    13. Answer and make phone calls on your Mac

    The following was written by Dr. Lewis Alexander and was originally posted on the Mac Visionaries email list. It is presented here with his kind permission. Apple quicktime is of course a standard media interface which works in tandem with iTunes and handles most standard media formats based on web enriched content, etc. These include: Perian. A freeware opensource quicktime extension which is constantly updated to support non standard formats. See here to download Perian. VLC Media Player.


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    • The above listed applications are standard tools to support web enriched media and work with quicktime and iTunes with exception as stated to VLC as a standalone system. As many will have noticed, especially users of OS X This does not support importing, saving or converting media types. This is where a little trick and solution is available. I hope this guide helps to rectify some users issues with media content support either on the host system or through web authored content.

      More than a few times on the various blind Mac users email lists, the question has come up how to put a shortcut to a website on the desktop.

      19 tips, tricks and shortcuts to help you conquer Mac OS Yosemite | Technology | The Guardian

      Esther posted a very simple and effective means of doing this on the Mac Visionaries email list by way of creating a plain text file with Text Edit. I am presenting the relevant parts of her message here;. Now you have a file on your Desktop that will open Safari to the bard web site whenever you open it.

      If you want to create a similar file for another web site, just change the URL address that you put into this file. On most web sites, using the. Your mail box can be named any thing you like, like funny stuff, or, family and the list is endless. One of the nice things about the MAC and voiceover, is that it gives you more than one way to do things, like creating a new mail box. When you receive a message that you want to move to one of your new mail boxes, you do not need to be in the body of the message in order to move the message, you can just have the Voiceover cursor on the row of the message that you want to move.

      As always, I am grateful for the use of his material. Ray offers a quick and easy step by step process for adding contacts to an existing group in Apple Mail.