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Extract Directly from Time Machine

Normally you use Time Machine to restore lost data in a file like this: within the Time Machine interface, you go back to the time the file was not yet messed up, and you restore it to replace the file you have now.

You can also elect to keep both, but the restored file takes the name and place of the current one. So, if you have made changes since the backup took place that you would like to keep, they are lost, or you have to mess around a bit to merge changes, rename files, and trash the unwanted one.

As an alternative, you can browse the Time Machine backup volume directly in the Finder like any normal disk, navigate through the chronological backup hierarchy, and find the file which contains the lost content.

Once you've found it, you can open it and the current version of the file side-by-side, and copy information from Time Machine's version of the file into the current one, without losing any content you put in it since the backup was made.

Submitted by
Eolake Stobblehouse

 

 

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Analyzing the MacSanta Promotion

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Back in December 2007, Rogue Amoeba organized MacSanta, a promotion for companies selling Mac-related downloadable products (see "Mac Developers Launch Two Software Discount Promotions," 2007-12-01). The deal was simple. To be a part of MacSanta, you had to donate at least $50 to the Electronic Frontier Foundation and offer a 20-percent-off discount for your featured day and a 10-percent-off discount for most of the month of December. Each participating company was encouraged to alert their customers to MacSanta as a way of increasing sales for everyone.

After MacSanta was over, participating companies were asked to share the number of units sold in an anonymous survey; of the 124 participants, 62 responded. Dollar sales weren't reported, although I'd guess that most products promoted via MacSanta range from $10 to $50 in price, with a few closer to $100. Here are a few other interesting statistics from the anonymous results:

  • The total number of sales reported was 5,072, with 3,519 20-percent-off sales and 1,553 10-percent-off sales.
  • The average number of sales per participant was 83, with 58 of those sales being at 20 percent off and 25 at 10 percent off.
  • A few companies sold way more than the average, perhaps due to being better known or having a larger number of less-expensive products. If we remove the top 11 respondents, each of the remaining companies sold fewer than 100 units. Recalculating the average number of sales for these companies, the average sales come out at 41, with 30 at 20 percent off and 11 at 10 percent off.
  • Some concern was raised that appearing later in the month was less advantageous, because fewer people would see the 10-percent-off discount offer (which appeared only after each participant's 20-percent-off featured day). However, 10-percent-off sales accounted for an average of only 28 percent of the overall sales, and only 3 companies had more than half of their sales at 10 percent off.
  • Paul Kafasis of Rogue Amoeba noted that MacSanta raised over $10,000 for the EFF (at least some companies, including us, donated more than the minimum $50).

The question is, if you're a Mac developer, is MacSanta worthwhile? Any revenue projections based on these averages would be piling guesswork on supposition, although you can do the simple math with your product prices to come up with a conservative income estimate. But it's safe to say that the answer is yes (unless creating a graphic and offering discounts in your shopping cart is just too hard). For a $50 tax-deductible donation to the EFF, you get free publicity and an almost-guaranteed profit. What's not to like?

More to the point, participating in MacSanta is one of those rising tides that lifts all boats. The more companies that alert their customers to the existence of MacSanta, the better the holiday season will be for both Mac developers and Mac users. Kudos to Rogue Amoeba for making MacSanta a reality for the Mac community.

 

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