Thoughtful, detailed coverage of the Mac, iPhone, and iPad, plus the best-selling Take Control ebooks.

 

 

Pick an apple! 
 
Open a Finder Window with the App Switcher

If you don't have any Finder windows open and want to switch to the Finder and open a window in one fell swoop, bring up the app switcher with Command-Tab and tab over to the Finder icon. While still holding down Command, press the Option key, and then release the Command key. You're switched to the Finder, with a new default window open for you.

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trailgirl

 
 

GarageBand 10.0.2

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With the release of GarageBand 10.0.2 for the Mac, Apple has finally brought back the capability to export in MP3 format, a feature missing since last October’s Mavericks-only update (see “New Free iLife and iWork Apps Share across Devices and Platforms,” 22 October 2013). It was a bedeviling change that exasperated a great many users (who voiced their frustrations on Apple’s Support Communities; here’s one discussion thread example), and caused this writer to continue using the previous version of GarageBand (6.0.5). The update also offers multiple enhancements to Accessibility; adds three new Drummers and drum kits from the rock, songwriter, and R&B genres; and improves overall stability. (Free from the Mac App Store, 986 MB)

 

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>