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Option-Click AirPort Menu for Network Details

If you hold down the Option key while clicking the AirPort menu in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, you'll see not just the names of nearby Wi-Fi networks, but additional details about the selected network. Details include the MAC address of the network, the channel used by the base station, the signal strength (a negative number; the closer to zero it is, the stronger the signal), and the transmit rate in megabits per second showing actual network throughput. If you hover the cursor over the name of a network to which you're not connected, a little yellow pop-up shows the signal strength and type of encryption.

 
 

Waveboard 1.0

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Although we've stopped using Google Wave (see "Why Google Wave Needs a Major Overhaul," 11 March 2010), those who haven't given up on Google's flawed next-generation Internet communication and collaboration service would do well to check out the first official release of Dirk Holtwick's Google Wave client Waveboard for the Mac (there's also an iPhone version). Based on WebKit, Waveboard is essentially an enhanced Web browser that's dedicated to Google Wave. Useful enhancements include various notification methods that alert you to changes in your waves, integration with Google Gears for drag-and-drop file uploads, Mac-like keyboard shortcuts, and more. The base version of Waveboard is free, but the €12 Waveboard Pro adds more-detailed notifications and the capability to save and print waves. For a description of Waveboard's capabilities, see "Catch a Google Wave with Waveboard," 30 October 2009. (Free/€12 new, 4.9 MB)

 

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