Viewing Wi-Fi Details in Snow Leopard
In Snow Leopard, hold down the Option key before clicking the AirPort menu. Doing so reveals additional technical details including which standards, speeds, and frequencies you're using to connect, as well as what's in use by other networks. With the Option key held down and with a network already joined, the AirPort menu reveals seven pieces of information: the PHY Mode, the MAC (Media Access Control) address, the channel and band in use, the security method that's in use, the RSSI (Received Signal Strength Indication) measurement, the transmit rate, and the MCS Index. In Leopard, some, but not all, of these details are revealed by Option-clicking the AirPort menu.
This week's big Apple news is... the launch of Microsoft's Zune music player? Although the new device doesn't even work with Macs, the Zune is likely to affect Apple's iPod business. Glenn Fleishman looks at the Zune's features and some early reactions from the press, and then editor-at-large Geoff Duncan discusses how Microsoft abandoned its own PlaysForSure model, as well as the significance of the company's deal to pay Universal Music a percentage of each Zune sale (and why artists probably won't see any of that money). In other news, we note the releases of new MacBooks containing the Core 2 Duo processor, an archive CD from MacTech, Yojimbo 1.3, The Missing Sync for Windows Mobile 3.0, and 1Passwd 2.0. Lastly, Adam notes a change in how we use dates in TidBITS, and points out our borderline insane alter egos at Crazy Apple Rumors Site.
Apple announced a processor upgrade for its MacBook laptops that replaces the Intel Core Duo processor with the faster Core 2 Duo processor. Apple claims that the processor change provides the new MacBooks with up to 25 percent greater performance than their predecessors (see "MacBook Fills Out Laptop Line," 2006-05-22)Show full article
Bare Bones Software last week released Yojimbo 1.3, an update to their information organizer (see "Let Yojimbo Guard Your Information Castle," 2006-01-30)Show full article
A growing number of smartphones (cellular phones with PDA features) on the market these days are powered by Microsoft's Windows Mobile operating system, which doesn't interface with the Mac out of the boxShow full article
Further cementing our status as the industry pundits best positioned to have our names used in fake quotes, Crazy Apple Rumors Site tapped TidBITS staffers not once, not twice, but three times last week - in a row! - while inventing expert commentaryShow full article
Now here's an interesting project. MacTech Magazine has created a $50 CD containing the entire archives of the magazine (over 2,800 articles from 1984 through September 2006), all 29 issues of Apple's programming journal develop, all 21 issues of FrameWorks (the newsletter of the Software FrameWorks Associate, previously the MacApp Developers Association), and more than 100 MB of royalty free source code from all three publicationsShow full article
Last week Agile Web Solutions released 1Passwd 2.0, a major upgrade to the utility that helps manage passwords and uses a single set of data to fill forms in most Mac OS X Web browsersShow full article
Congratulations to Clarence Ching of donobi.net, Percy Carrion of mac.com, and Steven Harris of nas.com, whose entries were chosen randomly in last week's DealBITS drawing and who received a copy of SmileOnMyMac's PDFpen, worth $49.95Show full article
I'm terribly sorry, but this article will neither improve your love life nor provide dried fruit for your morning oatmeal. Instead, I want to talk about the seemingly mundane topic of how we present dates in TidBITS, since it's something we've put a good bit of discussion into over the years, and it might prove useful for those of you who must also write dates in a consistent fashion. Back in 1990, when Tonya and I started TidBITS, we were relatively clueless Americans, probably in all sorts of ways, but certainly with regard to date formattingShow full article
It's easy for me to sit here and write that no sensible person will purchase a Microsoft Zune music player. However, hear me out. I don't make that statement because the iPod is the apotheosis of portable music players, because I think Microsoft can't produce hardware, or because I'm an all-purpose Microsoft basher. Rather, Microsoft has made some particular choices that will irk buyers before they ever pick up a unit, or will drive those who are unaware of the limitations mildly crazy within days of purchase. The Zune will launch on 14-Nov-06, be available in three colors, and bear a 30 GB hard driveShow full article
Microsoft's Zune portable media player goes on sale in the United States tomorrow, marking the company's first entry in a market dominated for five years (and counting) by Apple's now-iconic iPodsShow full article
Take Control Author Joe Kissell on TV -- Joe has written over a dozen of the Take Control ebooks, so it's likely you've seen his face on our Web site or at the back of one of his ebooksShow full article
Filesystem metadata approaches -- Why do some files of the same type open in one application by default and not another? Readers discuss file metadata from the Classic Mac OS to the presentShow full article