Apple apps

Discover hidden apps on your Mac’s disk drive

Apple iMac

Most of the apps on the Mac’s disk drive are in the Applications folder. Most people are aware that there is a Utilities subfolder with some additional apps, but few people know of a third folder with even more apps. Do you know where it is?

Upgrade OS X and the new Photos app will cost you money

iPhoto is officially dead now that OS X 10.10.3 has been released. The operating system update deleted the old iPhoto app on the system, installs Photos and prompts you to pay. Here is a step-by-step guide showing how the update proceeded.

Master album playing in iTunes with these top tips

Playing songs using iTunes on the Apple Mac is straightforward and you can select one and click the play button. Playlists are also easy, but how do you play a complete album with all of its tracks? What if you want to play the tracks in a different order?

Create location-based reminders

The Mac's Reminders app is useful for creating lists of things to do, such as tasks, jobs, projects, even shopping lists. You can easily enter one or more items with tick boxes and then tick them off when they are done. You can go further though, and use Reminders to remind you to do something at a specific location.

Add special effects to Contacts photos in OS X on the Mac

Contacts, friends, family and more

If you use the Contacts app on the Apple Mac, you will probably have taken the photos assigned to each contact for granted. They are what they are and that’s it. Well actually, no. You can apply interesting and entertaining special effects to them.

Use advanced print features in TextEdit

In some ways TextEdit is a nice little word processor that can be used to create documents on your Apple Mac, but in other ways it can be very frustrating and basic features are missing. In this article I will look at one useful feature that you may not have spotted and then look at a feature that is missing and see how to get around the problem.

Resizing vs resampling images in Preview

PreviewPreview is a useful tool on the Mac and is perhaps one of the most used. It is a viewer for a wide range of files and it even has some editing capabilities too. For example, if you load a photo or other image, there is an option to resize it on the Tools menu. It looks straightforward, but should you tick the Resample Image box? What does it do to the image? Is it important?

Calculate appointment travel times with Calendar

Calendar on the Apple Mac is a useful tool for organising meetings, appointments, and so on. Just double click a day in Calendar to create a new event and then fill in the name and time. The location is optional and you might not think that you need it, but if you do enter an address, Calendar can tell you how long it will take you to get there either by car or by walking. It’s a useful feature.

View and filter your Twitter feed in Safari

If you like to keep an eye on the activity in your Twitter feed and you are running Safari on OS X Yosemite, you can open a sidebar to show the latest tweets. You don’t need to go to the Twitter website, you don’t need to leave the current web page and you can easily filter and search for information.

Annotated images with an Actions extension in OS X Yosemite

OS X Yosemite has made it easy to extend the functions of apps by including a system of extensions. They add extra features to built in and third party apps that are not normally available. They can boost the features and make tasks much easier than they otherwise would be without them. Let’s take a look at an Actions extension.

Stop OS X leaking your personal information

Privacy on computers and the internet is a hot topic and there seems to be no end to the ways in which your personal information can be accessed by third parties. The Apple Mac is not immunue to privacy issues and you may be surprised to learn that by default, it passes on personal information. It must be configured not to if you prefer to maintain your privacy.

Use the powerful bulk file rename in OS X

Renaming files on the disk drive in OS X has always been easy and you could just select a file, press Enter and type in a new name. There didn’t used to be a simple way of renaming a group of files and renaming them one by one is exceedingly tedious where there were a lot of them. However, OS X Yosemite has a bulk file renaming facility.

Never miss another web site update with Safari RSS feeds

Many websites are frequently updated and some are updated several times a day. News based websites are among the most updated and as news stories break, they appear on the site. If you want to keep up with all the changes on your favourite websites, you should subscribe to their RSS feeds in Safari.

Who can see your Apple Mac’s Safari tabs?

It is hard to imagine using a web browser that does not have tabs and they are an essential feature necessary for using the internet. As you open tabs in Safari on your Apple Mac, do you realise that other people might be able to see them? Yes, it is true and it is an important issue that you need to be aware of.

Master the language features of Pages on the Mac

Pages is Apple’s word processor and is part of the iWork suite of office applications. It is a useful tool with some good features, but at times it can be irritating in the way that it handles spelling and languages. You need to know where the settings are to remove these irritations and make your work more productive.

Customise Spotlight and solve indexing problems in OS X

Spotlight is a useful tool for finding apps, documents and other files on your Apple Mac’s disk drive and it is even better in OS X Yosemite, but sometimes problems occur. One is where Spotlight only gives web results and Spotlight does not index the disk drive. These indexing problems can be fixed and Spotlight restored to full health.

Sign your name with the trackpad in OS X

PreviewPreview has had the ability to capture your signature and insert it into documents for some time. You could sign your name on paper, then hold it up to the camera and it would scan it in. Now in the OS X Yosemite version of Preview, you can sign your name on the trackpad. It is an interesting alternative and one that is worth experimenting with. Let's see how to add a signature.

Increase Safari security and privacy in macOS

Web browsers are the biggest risk to your privacy and security. These tips and tweaks make Safari on the Apple Mac safer and more secure

There is still a belief that Apple Macs do not get malware, but this simply is not true. OK, viruses are rare, but adware is common. Improve Safari security and privacy with these tips.

Send and receive SMS text messages on your Mac

If you are still undecided about upgrading OS X your Apple Mac to the new Yosemite, one feature that might change your mind is the ability to send and receive text messages from the desktop without touching your phone. This is a great new feature that makes texting a lot easier. There is just one caveat, you must have an iPhone with iOS 8 and the new iPhone 6 is perfect for the job.

Essential tasks after installing OS X Yosemite

After installing a new version of OS X, there are always lots of essential tasks to perform to get it running exactly the way you prefer. OS X Yosemite for the Apple Mac comes with predefined settings that are mostly OK, but everyone has their own preferences and it takes a few tweaks here and there to get the Mac just the way you like it. Here are some of the changes I made to Yosemite after installing it.

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