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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

 
 

ExtraBITS for 26 November 2012

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A pair of articles from Macworld seek to remove the confusion from Apple’s Fusion Drive.

Macworld Investigates the Fusion Drive -- Apple’s new Fusion Drive — a combination of a standard solid-state drive and a normal hard drive — is an interesting beast, promising most of the performance improvements of an SSD along with the capacious size of a hard drive at a reasonable price. James Galbraith of Macworld extracts the Fusion Drive from a new Mac mini to discover exactly what Apple has done. Be sure to read the comments (from the bottom up), where readers are sharing useful information.

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Make Your Own Fusion Drive -- Macworld has posted an article by Albert Filice explaining how to create your own Fusion Drive from a normal hard drive and an SSD. It’s not difficult if you’re comfortable working in Terminal, but be sure you have full backups before you start, because the process will erase both drives.

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New for iOS 8: TextExpander 3 with custom keyboard.
Set up short abbreviations which expand to larger bits of text,
such as “Tx” for “TextExpander”. With the new custom keyboard,
you can expand abbreviations in any app, including Safari and
Mail. <http://smle.us/tetouch3-tb>