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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

 
 

Stormin' Norman

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Stormin' Norman -- Apple recently tapped Apple Fellow Don Norman to serve as vice president of Apple's Advanced Technology Group, which is responsible for researching and managing future Apple technologies and product designs. Dr. Norman was previously working as Apple's "User Experience Architect," and is a widely-recognized expert on human interface design. He'd previously led UCSD's Psychology and Cognitive Science departments, and has published several books, including the classic The Design of Everyday Things, Turn Signals Are the Facial Expressions of Automobiles and Things That Make Us Smart, all of which we recommend highly if you want to get a sense of where Don's thoughts and interests lie, and thus what he might be talking about within Apple. [GD]

 

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