Mac OS X Services in Snow Leopard
Mac OS X Services let one application supply its powers to another; for example, a Grab service helps TextEdit paste a screenshot into a document. Most users either don't know that Services exist, because they're in an obscure hierarchical menu (ApplicationName > Services), or they mostly don't use them because there are so many of them.
Snow Leopard makes it easier for the uninitiated to utilize this feature; only services appropriate to the current context appear. And in addition to the hierarchical menu, services are discoverable as custom contextual menu items - Control-click in a TextEdit document to access the Grab service, for instance.
In addition, the revamped Keyboard preference pane lets you manage services for the first time ever. You can enable and disable them, and even change their keyboard shortcuts.
Happy New Year! We’re back, hopefully refreshed and rejuvenated, with coverage of pre-break news. Glenn Fleishman leads off with a look at what Apple changed in the recently released AirPort and Time Capsule firmware updates; later on, he also explains what GadgetTrak for iOS has over Find My iPhone. Also in the iOS world, Michael Cohen examines the notable changes in iBooks 1.2. Back on the Mac, Adam both opens the covers on Dropbox 1.0.10 (which may not update itself automatically and can cause duplicate conflict files) and reports on the acquisition of the struggling Xmarks bookmark-synchronization service by LastPass, a password-management and form-filling service. Finally, note that we’re planning a major mailing list transition for this coming week! Notable software releases over the past couple of weeks include Mailsmith 2.3, VirtualBox 4.0, SpellCatcher X 10.3.7, GraphicConverter 7.0.3, iPhoto ’11 9.1.1, Digital Camera Raw Compatibility Update 3.5, Opera 11, Raskin 1.2, Airfoil 4.0, Evernote 2.0, iTunes 10.1.1, LED Cinema Display Firmware Update 1.0, “Canon (2.4.1), FujiXerox (2.1), and Lexmark (2.3.1) Printer Drivers,” Rumpus 7, Sound Studio 4.0.1, BBEdit 9.6.2, Disc Cover 3.0.1, Printopia 1.0.4, and Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 14.0.2 Update.
New firmware for the AirPort Extreme Base Station and Time Capsule is coupled with a minor update to the AirPort Utility.Show full article
This major update to the popular collaboration software lets you choose which folders to copy to a particular computer, improves performance, and enhances the overall user experience.Show full article
The latest version of iBooks adds automatic hyphenation, more richly illustrated layouts, and user-specified collections among other improvements.Show full article
The popular Xmarks bookmark synchronization service has been rescued from the abyss by LastPass, a password-management and form-filling service that uses a similar combination of online service and Web browser extension. Both are worth checking out.Show full article
The 99-cent GadgetTrak app now can provide regular updates of a device’s coordinates while the program isn’t frontmost. For theft recovery, and for finding an iPhone under a couch cushion, GadgetTrak is worth a look.Show full article
Heads up! We’re moving the TidBITS mailing lists from an aging Xserve running Web Crossing to our new virtual server with homegrown mailing list software. Your subscriptions will transfer automatically, but how you manage them in the future will change.Show full article
Notable software releases over the past couple of weeks include Mailsmith 2.3, VirtualBox 4.0, SpellCatcher X 10.3.7, GraphicConverter 7.0.3, iPhoto ’11 9.1.1, Digital Camera Raw Compatibility Update 3.5, Opera 11, Raskin 1.2, Airfoil 4.0, Evernote 2.0, iTunes 10.1.1, LED Cinema Display Firmware Update 1.0, “Canon (2.4.1), FujiXerox (2.1), and Lexmark (2.3.1) Printer Drivers,” Rumpus 7, Sound Studio 4.0.1, BBEdit 9.6.2, Disc Cover 3.0.1, Printopia 1.0.4, and Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 14.0.2 Update.Show full article
It was a largely offline holiday break for many of us, but here are a few newsworthy items from before we started dreaming of sugar plums: a podcast discussion on the Tech Night Owl Live that ended up speculating about how Apple could improve Mac OS X and iOS via the cloud, benchmarks for Parallels Desktop 6 and VMware Fusion 3.1, and a reminder that the Mac App Store will be opening in a few days.Show full article