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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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iTunes 11.0.1

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With the release of iTunes 11.0.1, Apple rectifies one of the glaring omissions of its initial release — displaying duplicates (just one of the excised features noted in “iTunes 11: The Features Apple Removed, and Alternatives,” 4 December 2012). Previously found in the File menu, the new Show Duplicate Items command has now been shifted to the View menu. Another complaint about iTunes 11, especially for those with large music libraries, was its frustratingly slow search. (In a library of over 41,000 songs, just typing the first character of a query in the search field would bring up Mac OS X’s spinning beach ball for 5 to 6 seconds.) Apple promises that iTunes 11.0.1 will be more responsive when searching through larger libraries, and this does seem to be the case in our initial tests. The update also fixes a couple of bugs: one where new purchases in iCloud wouldn’t show up in libraries with iTunes Match turned on and another where the AirPlay button didn’t appear as expected. We’ve also noticed that the column browser can be displayed in certain situations when the sidebar is showing, something that wasn’t always possible in 11.0. You can get the new release via the Mac App Store (Mountain Lion), Software Update (Lion and Snow Leopard), or direct download. (Free, 198 MB)

Check out the Take Control ebooks that expand on the topic in this article:

In this FAQ-style ebook, iTunes expert Kirk McElhearn explains importing, tagging, organizing, playing, sharing, streaming, and more so you can get the most out of audio and video in iTunes 11, including podcasts and iTunes Radio. You'll also learn techniques for transferring media to an iPad, iPhone, or iPod.

 

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Comments about iTunes 11.0.1

Pam Niedermayer  2012-12-19 17:08
I'm fed up with music software that can't seem to play a simple playlist in the order implied by the list itself. The new itunes jumps all over the place willy nilly, regardless of what the producer or I may want the order to be. Let's hear it for "Up Next, while I move on to something more adult."
Jeff Porten  2012-12-20 17:24
Another bug fix: it's now possible to set the Media Type of an arbitrary MP3 to Podcast. In 11.0, you could do this in Get Info, but the change wouldn't be applied.