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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

 
 

Apple Adds Chat Support to AppleCare Web Site

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Apple has streamlined its AppleCare Web site, (finally) adding a chat support option for when you just have a quick question and don’t want to pick up the phone or make a trip to the nearest Apple Store.

Here’s how to access the new chat option. First, visit the Apple Support Contact page and click the Get Started button.


Next, you’ll be asked which product you need help with: Mac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTunes, Apps & Software, or something else. Click the appropriate subcategory, if prompted, to continue. However, if you click iPhone or iPad, you go straight to the next screen.



You’ll then be asked to select what you’re having an issue with. Click the issue category, then choose the appropriate issue from the menu. You’ll have to supply the serial number for your device so that Apple knows that it’s still covered by AppleCare. In the case of the iPhone, you can either enter it manually, or have Apple send a link to your phone by SMS or email — click the link to automatically identify your device.



Once you’ve jumped that hurdle, you’ll be presented with a list of contact options, including chat, with an estimated wait time before someone responds and hopefully solves your problem quickly.


 

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