America Online via the Internet is indeed much faster if you have a direct connection to the Internet, and some have reported faster connections even over modems with SLIP and PPP. However, bugs remain, so beware that a dropped connection may result in your account being charged for 20 minutes until it times out. To formally apply for the beta test on America Online, use keyword TCP and fill out the online application. Also, I was wrong about using other Telnet tools (despite the fact that the America Online software lets you select other tools), but Lonnie Abelbeck, author of VersaTerm, distributed a CCL script for using the VersaTerm Telnet tool on comp.sys.mac.comm last week. Finally, Jonathan Hue <email@example.com> discovered that America Online doesn't encrypt the userid and password when it sends them over the Internet, so a packet sniffer can detect them in their plaintext form. Needless to say, this is a bit of a security hole, not so much because it exists (many systems send passwords in plaintext over the Internet) but because users are charged for America Online access, and because dealing with disputed charges with America Online customer support folks can be an exercise in frustration. [ACE]
Extend Mac OS X's Screenshots
Mac OS X has a variety of built in screenshot methods. Here's a look at a few that offer more versatility than the basic full-screen capture (Command-Shift-3):
• Press Command-Shift-4 and you'll get a crosshair cursor with which you can drag to select and capture a certain area of the screen.
• Press Command-Shift-4-Space to select the entire window that the cursor is over, clicking on the window will then capture it. The resulting screenshot will even get a nice drop shadow.
• Hold down the Space bar after dragging out a selection window to move your selection rectangle around on the screen.
• Hold down Shift after dragging out a selection to constrain the selection in either horizontal or vertical orientation, depending on the direction of your drag.
• Hold down Option after dragging out a selection to expand the selection window around a center point.
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