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

 

 

Pick an apple! 
 
Option-click to Hide Apps Quickly

This trick has been available in the Mac OS for years, but many people still don't know it. If you have too many windows cluttering up your screen, you can hide specific ones easily as you work. When you're in any application, hold down the Option key and click on another app's window, on the Dock, or in the Finder to switch to that other app and simultaneously hide all the windows in the previously current app.

 
 

Opera 9 Released

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Opera 9 Released -- Opera Software has released Opera 9, the latest version of its traditionally quirky Web browser. In a world where browsers are included with the operating system (Internet Explorer under Windows, and Safari on Mac OS X) or available for free (the open-source Firefox), you might think it's crazy for a third-party company to develop a competing Web browser. However, Opera has managed to make inroads on all platforms, from Windows to Mac OS X to cellular phones. The release of Opera 9 also shows that you need to innovate to survive.

<http://www.opera.com/products/desktop/>

For example, this version adds built-in support for file sharing using BitTorrent (a peer-to-peer technology for more efficiently sending very large files over the Internet); a content blocker that enables you to choose which types of items are blocked from viewing (such as ads); the capability to add search engines to the search field; and a new widgets feature that can run small Dashboard-like programs within Opera (although not as exciting under Mac OS X 10.4, this feature is seen more as a preemptive strike under Windows against the similar widget functionality of the upcoming Windows Vista operating system). Lastly, taking a cue from OmniWeb, Opera 9 can display a thumbnail preview of an open Web page by hovering the mouse pointer over the page's tab. Opera 9 is free, with the option of paying $30 for a one-year Premium Support service. It's a 13.1 MB download. [JLC]

<http://www.opera.com/buy/>

 

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