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Avoid Long Hierarchical Menus

If you right-click (or Control-click) on some item, such as a file in the Finder, and one of the sub-menus has many options (Open With is a frequent culprit), it may take several seconds to open, even on a fast machine, which is annoying if you did not actually want that sub-menu.

The trick is to not pull the cursor through the menu, but in a curve around it, so the cursor does not touch any menu items until lower on the list where you wanted to go.

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ExtraBITS for 26 August 2013

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After over three decades with Microsoft, CEO Steve Ballmer has announced that he will retire within the next year. After retirement, maybe Ballmer will invest in the new social network PRSM, which helps you gather and share all of your personal information — whether you want to or not! If you need a break from NSA paranoia (and parody), the iTunes Festival returns in September, with a plethora of big-name musical acts you can watch live. Or, if popular music isn’t your thing, maybe you’d rather sit down and read “Butterick’s Practical Typography,” a new, freely available ebook by typographer Matthew Butterick — an excellent resource for anyone who works with text.

Steve Ballmer to Step Down as Microsoft CEO -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has announced that he will retire within the next year, contingent upon selection of his successor. In the meantime, Ballmer will continue leading Microsoft’s effort to become a device and services company. Ballmer has been with Microsoft since 1980, when Bill Gates hired him as the company’s first business manager. Ballmer took the reins in 2000 when Gates retired and has overseen numerous major products (of varying success), including multiple versions of Windows and Office, Xbox, Zune, Windows Phone, and Surface. Despite many criticisms of his leadership, he doubled Microsoft’s profits during his tenure as CEO.

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Share All Your Personal Information with PRSM -- PRSM is a brand-new way to share everything: credit card purchases, Internet searches, email messages, photos, phone calls, and more! PRSM has partnered with Google, Apple, Facebook, Skype, AT&T, and many other companies to secure your information in the world’s largest datacenters. You probably even already have an account, whether or not you signed up! The site is actually a parody of the NSA’s PRISM spying program. Designed by Datacoup — a company that aims to help you convert your personal data into a form of currency so you control how it’s used — the PRSM parody site links to the Electronic Freedom Foundation when you click Sign Up Now and then Contact Technical Support.

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iTunes Festival Returns in September -- Apple’s annual iTunes Festival returns in September 2013 with some big-name musical acts, including Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake, Katy Perry, Elton John, and Robin Thicke. The festival is free to all users of iTunes, iOS, and Apple TV, and the shows can be streamed live or watched later. Other notable acts include The Lumineers, Paramore, Kings of Leon, Vampire Weekend, and two favorites: the Pixies and Queens of the Stone Age. Apple goes all-out for the iTunes Festival, and there’s sure to be a performance for everyone.

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Butterick’s Practical Typography -- Typographer Matthew Butterick, who helped design fonts for Apple, Microsoft, and others, has released an exceptional online book, called “Butterick’s Practical Typography,” that is a must-read for anyone who works with text. The book revolves around a few simple rules that will dramatically improve your understanding and implementation of typography. While the book can be read for free, you can pay him back by purchasing his fonts or his “Typography for Lawyers” book, making a donation, or just telling people about the site.

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