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Mac OS X Services in Snow Leopard

Mac OS X Services let one application supply its powers to another; for example, a Grab service helps TextEdit paste a screenshot into a document. Most users either don't know that Services exist, because they're in an obscure hierarchical menu (ApplicationName > Services), or they mostly don't use them because there are so many of them.

Snow Leopard makes it easier for the uninitiated to utilize this feature; only services appropriate to the current context appear. And in addition to the hierarchical menu, services are discoverable as custom contextual menu items - Control-click in a TextEdit document to access the Grab service, for instance.

In addition, the revamped Keyboard preference pane lets you manage services for the first time ever. You can enable and disable them, and even change their keyboard shortcuts.

Submitted by
Doug McLean

 

 

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App Tamer 1.2.1

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St. Clair Software has released App Tamer 1.2, which gives some props to our own Adam Engst for the change to its menu bar icon. The St. Clair Software blog writes that this update to the CPU-monitoring utility started as a user request for a colored menu bar icon, but it evolved after reading about Adam’s account of an unseen CPU process draining the battery of his MacBook (see “Solving iCloud-Related Slowdowns in Lion,” 16 February 2012). To better get your attention, App Tamer 1.2 now dynamically colorizes its menu bar icon (turn it on in App Tamer’s preferences), with the color getting brighter and more alarming (moving from pale yellow to red) as your CPU usage climbs toward 100 percent. The menu bar icon also displays a speedometer-like needle to reflect processor load, and you can choose to display the percentage next to the icon. Version 1.2 also fixes an issue that prevented viewing of all processes launching and quitting, and it enables you to double-click App Tamer to open its window if the application icon isn’t in the Dock. A quick 1.2.1 update solves a problem when running under very high load and fixes the menu bar icon in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard. ($14.95 new, free update, 3.6 MB, release notes)

 

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