Tagged: Apple

The most annoying thing about Apple’s Safari web browser

SafariAfter years of loving the speed of the Safari web browser but hating the lack of features, I was anxious to see what Apple had in store for us with Safari 5. Unfortunately, I’ve found the most annoying behavior still exists, and it keeps me from using Safari on a regular basis.

For many years I was a fan of Firefox – mostly due to extensions, which I used heavily. While Safari was faster, it just lacked too much for my day-to-day use. When Google released Chrome for the Mac, I switched almost immediately. The developer releases contained extension support long ago, and I was happy to take advantage of the new speed, along with most all the extensions I used.

When Apple recently released Safari 5 with extension support, I decided to give it another try.

Using Safari 5’s Reader feature

SafariApple introduced a new feature when it recently released Safari 5 called Reader. Reader allows you to view the content of a web page in a clean, easily readable interface – perfect for those who articles on sites that are riddled with graphics and ads that have nothing to do with the article itself.

This is fantastic feature for website viewers, but not so welcome to content creators who could be missing out on ad clicks that keep their sites running. But I’ll leave that discussion for another time. With the name Reader, you might think Apple simply updated their RSS feed reader that was already present, but that is not the case. Reader is an all new feature which allows you to focus on reading a single article on any given web page. More on when you can and can’t use Reader after the jump.

Lower iPhone pricing just doesn’t make sense for me or Apple!

I must admit it… I really want an iPhone. I love my iPod Touch, but it lacks the “anywhere access” to the Internet that would make it truly useful for me (beyond being a great music player). The thing that prevents me from buying an iPhone is the price. So you would think that the latest rumor of Apple preparing to release a lower priced iPhone would interest me.

Unfortunately it doesn’t interest me, and it shouldn’t interest you either.

Rumored lower cost iPhone

Rumor has it Apple is prepping a lower cost iPhone

No, the cost of the iPhone is not the issue. It’s the cost of the plan that prevents me, and probably many of you, from owning an iPhone. With a minimum monthly fee of $70, probably hovering around $80 after taxes and other B.S. fees from AT&T, the iPhone is placed just out of reach of millions of potential buyers.

iPad GUI elements in a layered PSD file

Apple iPad GUI Elements

Apple iPad GUI Elements in a layered Photoshop file

Teehan+lax has made available a layered Photoshop file containing all the iPad GUI elements you could possibly need. The file is built using vectors, so it’s all still fully editable. If you need to mock up something quickly for a client, this layered Photoshop file will certainly do the trick.

You can download the 24MB layered Photoshop file here.

And if you have the need for an iPhone version, grab the 9MB layered Photoshop file here.

iPad: The ultimate school supply?

Apple iPadYou saw the iPad event video, or at the very least have read one of the numerous feature reviews currently littering the Mac Web. The Apple iPad has finally been released to the masses, ending months of speculation, rumor and wishful thinking.

While tech journalists focus on what the iPad is and isn’t, the lack of a camera, Apple’s choice in 3G providers, and a host of other topics; I’m having one of those light-bulb moments. The iPad is the ultimate school supply!

When you consider some states are handing out $1,000 Macbooks to students and teachers, it’s not hard to imagine Apple’s true reason for the iPad’s existence is to get more product into more hands at a young age.

Think about it. The purpose of the laptop program is to make the Internet available to kids, and to give them something to produce their homework assignments on (even though we know they use it for much more). But in this economy, schools are certainly rethinking these “laptops for every kid” programs.

Apple’s Magic Mouse: Ouch!!!

Apple’s Magic Mouse garnered a lot of ooohs and ahhhs upon it’s release. It’s stunningly gorgeous to look at, as is most everything Apple releases, but is it really a great computing mouse?

I recently got to use one for a day of design work, web surfing, and general computing, and got my answer. The Magic Mouse is compact, and glides smoothly on your desk. The cursor was very responsive, and not the least bit “jumpy” on any surface I tried it on, including my lap. But that’s pretty much where the love affair ended for me. Apple Magic Mouse

With the exception of Apple’s iMac hockey-puck mouse years ago, I can’t recall ever using a more uncomfortable mouse in my 20-plus years of computing.

The very thing that makes it so stunning to look at also makes it so uncomfortable to use. After about an hour of working in Photoshop and InDesign, my hand was cramped from squeezing it. It’s just too low-profile for long-term use. I felt like I had to work too hard to keep control of it. While the touch clicking and scrolling was easy enough, using the limited gestures available was virtually impossible for me. I simply couldn’t hold the mouse and swipe at the same time without contorting my hand to the point of causing more cramps in my fingers. The amount of time wasted trying to get the gestures to work could be accomplished the old-fashioned way. Of course, nobody says you MUST use the Magic Mouse for your daily computing needs. Due to its compact size and Bluetooth connection, the Magic Mouse makes a great compliment to your MacBook Pro when you’re on the road. It’s also fine for users who may not require a lot of mousing around, such as writers or anyone who makes extensive use of the keyboard vs. the mouse. At $69 though, the Magic Mouse is awfully expensive for a “backup” mouse.

Apple’s new pro Mac

Apple Mac ProHas Apple already released it’s latest Mac for pros? The upper-end iMac can now be configured with an Intel Core i5 or i7 quad-core processor, a 2TB hard drive, and up to 16GB of RAM; and the mammoth 27″ LED screen is nothing short of stunning. With all this power in Apple’s supposed consumer-level desktop, one has to wonder if there’s any need for a MacPro by anyone shy of George Lucas working on the next horrible sequel to StarWars. As a designer, I’ve spent the last 20 years accepting the fact that I had to buy the most expensive model of Mac available in order to get the power I needed to edit large multi-layered Photoshop files and videos. Buying a G3, G4, G5, and even the early MacPros was the only way to get a Mac which would support enough RAM to accomplish my job without adding two days to the work week. (more…)

Malware targets the Mac with rewards

malwareThink affiliate programs are solely the province of SEO firms and experts? Think again. There’s such a thing as a malware affiliate program, and a very recent one targets Mac users specifically. It’s a sign that cyber-crime is beginning to target Apple more aggressively than it has in the past. Darrell Etherington over at TheAppleBlog has an informative article; There’s a Bounty On Your Mac: 43 Cents Per Malware Infection. With the popularity of the Mac operating system growing more and more every year, it’s wise to stay informed about the potential of virus and malware heading our way.

View detailed WiFi settings in Snow Leopard’s Airport menu

I mentioned a new feature of OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard earlier this week, and today I have another one for you that enhances the Airport menu.

Snow Leopard Airport Menu

Snow Leopard Airport Menu

Hold down the Option key while clicking the Airport icon in your menubar to view detailed statistics about the network you’re currently connected to, such as the Channel, Security Settings and more. While this probably holds little value for the average user, it can be quite valuable for network admins and people who just love to know everything about what’s going on with their Mac at every moment.