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Soulver 3 review: Mac app simplifies readable calculations and conversions

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Calculations are for computers, but Soulver makes them human again. The app, overhauled for version 3, lets you type in readable and formatted arithmetic calculations, functions, dates, and unit conversions, and get results you can use.It’s particularly useful if you’re constantly working among combinations of units, such as throughput over time … [Read more...]

How to fix a Spotify playlist’s original order after sorting by category

Spotify has a handsome macOS app for accessing and making playlists, searching its library of music and other audio, and playing it back. But there’s a mystery in its lists: If you click a column heading for a playlist, album, or other view to sort by ascending or descending order, how do you restore the original sequence?This is particularly … [Read more...]

How to use Keynote to add text overlays in your iMovie projects

iMovie lets you create movies from photos and videos, and while its interface is a little hard to understand in parts, you can overcome those limitations and master it to produce great results. But it has a few missing pieces that typically require you upgrade to something like Adobe Premiere Elements or even Final Cut Pro X or Adobe Premiere Pro … [Read more...]

Can’t download an app update? It might be time to update your Mac

There’s got to be the name for the paradox that occurs when you’re told by the Mac App Store that you both have an update for a free or purchased app and you can’t install it. Maybe it’s the Apprisoner’s Dilemma? You might experience this no-win situation when you see a message that says “[app name] can’t be installed on [device] because [OS … [Read more...]

How to simulate master page text guides in Pages for macOS

I first started using page-layout software in 1985 with Aldus PageMaker 1.0. If I recall correctly, it took a few years before you could create a master template that had items that appeared on every page, including guides that helped with placement of text and items.With that historical perspective in mind, it's odd that while Pages 8 for macOS … [Read more...]

Moving to a new country? What you need to know about your Apple ID and app purchases

If you find yourself moving from one country to another, you will certainly bring some belongings with you (unless you’re an ascetic). But what of your digital goods? Items you’ve downloaded are typically transportable, but those that you’ve purchased and aren’t currently installed on a device you own could lag behind.Apple relies on a billing … [Read more...]

How to find your Documents and Desktop folder contents after disabling iCloud sync

Apple added an option in late 2016 to give you the equivalent of cloud-based bottomless Desktop and Documents folders in macOS to pair with iCloud Music Library and what’s now called iCloud Photos. In the iCloud preference pane, you can click iCloud Drive and then check the Desktop & Document Folders box to enable a sort of provisional sync.If … [Read more...]

How to delete unneeded Time Machine backups on Apple’s Time Capsule

Apple’s Time Capsule combined a Wi-Fi base station and a hard drive for networked data access and Time Machine backups. The company discontinued the device and other related network gear, but there are plenty still in operation.A problem with Time Capsule is that its drive can get filled with outdated backups if you migrate computers and don’t … [Read more...]

How to change your music files’ metadata information using iTunes for Mac

With all the features Apple has crammed into iTunes for macOS, it's a Swiss Army knife of an app (or maybe more like a 20 pounds of potatoes in a five-pound bag). But despite all of its the non-audio parts, iTunes can help you with music files. Notably, you can correct or modify metadata—information about the files—in bulk.But beware! These changes … [Read more...]

How to export your Photo Booth photos and videos

The Photo Booth app lets you take selfies and record videos through a Mac’s built-in camera or a third-party camera. But the app’s simple interface can make it a little tricky to figure out how to extract images.There are three ways:• Select an image or video in the row below the main window, and then Control-click (or right click on your mouse) … [Read more...]

How to delete a file that macOS says is in use

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Sometimes macOS tries to help you by not letting you carry out actions that would break the system or software you’re using. There are extra levels of warnings available that you might choose to turn off or bypass.When you have files in the Trash, select Finder > Empty Trash prompts you as to whether you really meant to empty the trash. You … [Read more...]

If you can’t get macOS Mail to work after upgrading to two-factor authentication, here’s a way to fix it

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I highly recommend Apple’s two-factor authentication (2FA) for your Apple ID and associated iCloud services as a way to reduce the threat of a remote hijack of your account. (Although note that you can’t turn 2FA off once you enable it.) However, depending on how you’ve used iCloud in the past, you might run up against a quirk: You can’t get Mail … [Read more...]

Can’t figure out how to type a character on a Mac? It’s time for the virtual keyboard

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As a long-time Mac user, I once had to rely on Key Caps, an early Mac helper that would show you where special characters hid on a keyboard. Holding down Option and Shift-Option would reveal the secrets of π and ‰ and accent marks.That feature never disappeared, though it did recede from view, and was renamed Keyboard Viewer. You may rarely need … [Read more...]

If you have an older Mac, don’t forget about the SD Card slot

What if need more storage space on your Mac, but upgrades are impossible or too expensive, or an externally connected drive won’t do? The SD Card slot found in many older and some newer Macs is worth looking at as an option.In recent years, Apple has shifted from Macs that can have internal storage upgraded to higher capacities or from a hard disk … [Read more...]

The old guard of Mac indy apps has thrived for more than 25 years

It seems like it was only yesterday that I first used BareBones Software’s BBEdit, but in actuality, yesterday is so far away—25 years, in fact. With all the twists and turns across more than two decades of Apple as a company, Mac hardware, and the underlying operating system, you might think that BBEdit stands alone as a continuously-developed app … [Read more...]

How to submit corrections for Apple Maps labels

Apple synthesizes a lot of geographic data to produce the streets, features, and labels on its maps. The Maps app in iOS and macOS is exhaustive, but not always correct.(This is contrary to the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, which maintains, “where it is inaccurate it is at least definitively inaccurate. In cases of major discrepancy it’s always … [Read more...]

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