Apple has released a much-needed firmware update for the 27-inch iMac that aims to address that model's widespread display problems. The update is for the ATI Radeon HD 4670 and 4850 graphics cards, and corrects issues causing "image corruption or display flickering." Those issues have been widely discussed in Apple's Support Discussion forums (see "New iMac Screens Cracking and Flickering," 10 December 2009) in conjunction with instances of shipped iMacs arriving with cracked screens - still no word on that latter problem. Finally, take heed of this important warning in Apple's release notes, "Do not disturb or shut off the power on your iMac during this update. Loss of power could result in your iMac failing to start up." The update is available via Software Update and the Apple Support Downloads page. (Free, 683 KB)
Avoid Simple Typos
If, like me, you find yourself typing 2911 in place of 2011 entirely too often, you can have Mac OS X (either Lion or Snow Leopard) fix such typos for you automatically. Just open the Language & Text pane of System Preferences, click the Text button at the top, and then add a text substitution by clicking the + button underneath the list. It won't work everywhere (for that you'll want a utility like Smile's TextExpander), but it should work in applications like Pages and TextEdit, and in Save dialog boxes.
27-inch iMac Graphics Firmware Update 1.0
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