Category: Mac & OS X

Mac OSX topics

Download YouTube videos with Airy 3.0 (Enjoy 30% off with coupon code)

Airy 3 main screen
Ever want to download the audio or full video from a YouTube video and couldn’t figure out how to do it, or the silly little browser extension you have simply stopped working? I’ve written about Airy in the past, it’s a fantastically simple YouTube downloader for the Mac that just works.

Airy allows you to download as many YouTube videos as you want, including entire channels or playlists—two new features new in Airy 3.0. You simply paste a YouTube video URL into Airy, or use the Airy bookmarklet in your favorite browser to add the current video to the Airy download list, and boom—video(s) downloaded. And if you have to move on to other things and quit Airy before your videos are finished downloading, don’t worry. Airy will remember where it left off and continue the downloads the next time you launch the app.

The cool thing about Airy is that it not only allows you to choose the size/quality of the video (including 4K and 8K Ultra HD videos), but also offers the option of downloading only the audio portion of the YouTube video in MP3 format. Very slick!

Airy YouTube video downloader
Airy’s interface is simple. There are no frivolous features or doodads to complicate things. It does one thing, and does it extremely well. And unlike those pesky, ad-infested browser extensions, the developers seem to keep Airy working even with updates to YouTube’s back-end, browser updates and OS upgrades.

I’ve had to place YouTube videos in numerous PowerPoint/Keynote presentations, and have downloaded countless videos I’ve wanted to save for offline viewing. I’ve tried dozens of apps and browser plugins. Airy is by far the best in my experience.

Airy 3.0 is available for OS X 10.7 and up, including the macOS Sierra beta (and I’m sure the shipping version later this fall), and costs $19.95. You can get Airy for 30% OFF using the following code: THGM-DSC which drops the price to below $14.

FINALLY: macOS Sierra offers Folders On Top to Finder’s list view

macOS Sierra Folders on Top
I can’t say definitively this wasn’t in El Capitan (because I have no machines running it anymore), but I noticed that in macOS Sierra, we finally have a Keep Folders on Top in List View option built-in to the system. You can find the feature in the Finder Preferences (When on the desktop, hit Command + ,)

No more SIMBL app hacks required!

30% OFF CloudMounter

CloudMounterIf you missed my review of CloudMounter, the app that integrates popular cloud-based file storage/syncing services with the Mac’s Finder, take a look at it—it’s an awesome app for the Mac.

If you’re interested in buying it, you can SAVE 30% by heading over to Eltima Software’s CloudMounter purchase page and using the code CLM-3O-GMac (it should already be applied if you use the link). The code is valid for discounts on any Personal, Team or Company license.

Mount cloud storage services as local drive on your Mac

CloudMounterDropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft One Drive, FTP… there are all sorts of file storage and syncing sites out there, and you probably find yourself using more than one, if not several.

When I first tried Eltima’s CloudMounter, an app that gathers all those services and more into one menubar item, I wondered why I would need it; after all, I already have access to them via the respective service apps. After using CloudMounter for a week, I began to notice that it was more useful than I originally thought. (more…)

Is Apple’s design style going down hill?

Mac icon evolution
Ultimately, only you can answer that. Apple has chosen a direction with the Mac’s GUI that is quite a departure from even the recent past. Lots of people love it, and lots of people don’t like it at all. I find myself somewhere in the middle.

When I look at the icons above individually, I like all the new ones. But collectively, when compared to the old ones, they don’t work as well. First off, Apple has chosen to go decidedly whiter with their icons. In a crowded Dock, they all sort of blend together. None of them are easily recognizable at a quick glance. Second, some of them make no sense. Take the new Photos app icon—what in the heck do a bunch of color blobs represent? The old iPhoto icon was clear in what it represented.

But it doesn’t stop with icons. The entire GUI has gotten lighter, more “blended in,” and sometimes confusing. Overall, I still love the Mac’s interface. Lately though, I’m finding more and more “little things” that really bug me.

Nicholas Windsor Howard has a great two-part article about the subject (complete with plenty of screenshots) that’s worth the read. Part one can be found here, and part-two here. Take a look and see if you agree with his opinions.

How to speed-up Time Machine backups

Time Machine
Time Machine, Apple’s built-in file backup and recovery tool, is awesome… eventually. I say that because it’s sloooooowww. You can quickly speed-up Time Machine’s backup process by typing the following in the Terminal:
sudo sysctl debug.lowpri_throttle_enabled=0

Type in your password and hit return and you’re good-to-go.

Unfortunately, this trick won’t hold through a restart. To do that, you can follow Mac Kung Fu‘s advice on how to permanently speed-up Time Machine.

Tutorial: Securely erasing a Mac SSD drive

With an SSD drive, Secure Erase and Erasing Free Space are not available in Disk Utility. These options are not needed for an SSD drive because a standard erase makes it difficult to recover data from an SSD.

Even though Apple states that you really don’t need to perform a Secure Erase on an SSD Drive, Peter Cohen put together a great tutorial on how to do just that over at the BackBlaze Blog. For those who take security seriously, Peter’s “Better safe than sorry” article is worth the read.

Suitcase Fusion 7: It’s kind of a big deal

Suitcase Fusion 7 iconAs a graphic designer, I have a small set of tools that I depend on and trust. Since fonts are the lifeblood of most designers, a great font manager is vital to our workflow. I’ve been using Suitcase for decades because I’ve found it to be the best all-around tool for the job. It’s compatible with all my design apps, it’s fast and stable, and it offers just the right amount of nice new features to keep me upgrading. I fear that my reviews of each new release are beginning to sound like a broken record. (more…)