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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.

 
 

ExtraBITS for 2 April 2013

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iCloud security and Core Data syncing dominated our attention last week, broken up by news that T-Mobile will finally begin selling the iPhone — in an unusual no-contract sales arrangement.

The Verge Examines Apple’s Cloud Security -- Should security practices be kept secret? The Verge’s Tim Carmody suggests that Apple’s legendary secretiveness could result in worse security than if the company were more transparent about how it protects customer data. He closes with, “All the evidence suggests that much like Apple Maps or MobileMe, iCloud simply isn’t at the level of polish and performance we’ve come to expect from Apple. Security is just a symptom.”

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The Reality of iCloud Core Data Syncing -- The Verge’s Ellis Hamburger talked to a bunch of developers in writing this extensive article about frustrations with iCloud’s Core Data syncing features, which are necessary for apps that need to do database-style syncing via iCloud (as opposed to document-style syncing, which works fine). Syncing is hard, but Apple needs to get it right if developers — and users — are to rely on iCloud integration.

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Rich Siegel Explains the Issues with iCloud Core Data Syncing -- Developer frustrations with iCloud Core Data syncing have been much in the news of late, but for those who are wondering — at a technical level — what the fuss is all about, Rich Siegel of Bare Bones Software lays out what is involved with iCloud data syncing, and where developers are experiencing problems.

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T-Mobile to Sell iPhone Starting 12 April 2013 -- Macworld’s Dan Moren tracks down the picky details surrounding T-Mobile’s announcement that it will start selling the iPhone (the 4, 4S, and 5) in the United States on 12 April 2013. Notable facts about T-Mobile’s move include unsubsidized hardware for down payments plus monthly charges, a $50 per month unlimited plan (for talk, text, and data, with a 500 MB cap on 4G data, which includes tethering), and simultaneous voice and data (offered by AT&T currently, but not Verizon or Sprint).

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