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

 

 

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Option-Click AirPort Menu for Network Details

If you hold down the Option key while clicking the AirPort menu in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, you'll see not just the names of nearby Wi-Fi networks, but additional details about the selected network. Details include the MAC address of the network, the channel used by the base station, the signal strength (a negative number; the closer to zero it is, the stronger the signal), and the transmit rate in megabits per second showing actual network throughput. If you hover the cursor over the name of a network to which you're not connected, a little yellow pop-up shows the signal strength and type of encryption.

 

 

Published in TidBITS 9.
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The Art of the Interface

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We've stuck to software reviews so far in TidBITS, but a new book has recently come to our attention that may merit a review once we've found and read it. "The Art of Human-Computer Interface Design," a book edited by Brenda Laurel (a name known to us from her work in interactive fiction as a scholarly subject) will be published by Addison-Wesley. The manager of Apple's Human Interface group, S. Joy Mountford, conceived of the book and supported it technically throughout its development.

The $29.95 book features original pieces by some of the most famous names in the field of human-computer interaction. Luminaries such as Donald Norman, Nicholas Negroponte, Ted Nelson, Alan Kay, Jean-Louis Gasse, Timothy Leary, and Ben Shneiderman talk about a number of subject including cyberspace, animation, multimedia, and speech recognition as well as explore the philosophical and psychological background to creating effective interfaces. So if you've thought that the Mac interface was not the end-all to graphical interfaces (unlike Apple Legal), or if you feel that graphical interfaces are not the end-all to interface design (along with many of us whose computers cannot keep up with our thoughts), we recommend that you check out this book. We certainly will be doing so.

Addison-Wesley -- 617/944-3700

Information from:
News Notebook 1.07

 

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