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Adam Engst

Adam Engst

Adam C. Engst is the publisher of TidBITS. He has written numerous books, including the best-selling Internet Starter Kit series, and many magazine articles thanks to Contributing Editor positions at MacUser, MacWEEK, and now Macworld. His innovations include the creation of the first advertising program to support an Internet publication in 1992, the first flat-rate accounts for graphical Internet access in 1993, and the Take Control electronic book series now owned and operated by alt concepts. His awards include the MDJ Power 25 ranking as the most influential person in the Macintosh industry outside of Apple every year since 2000, inclusion on the MacTech 25 list of influential people in the Macintosh technical community, and being named one of MacDirectory's top ten visionaries. And yes, he has been turned into an action figure.

Adam Engst 86 comments

Is It Safe to Upgrade to macOS 11 Big Sur?

Should you upgrade to macOS 11 Big Sur from a previous version of macOS? Only you can answer that question for sure, but Adam Engst has upgraded his primary Mac with no significant problems. Our recommendation is that it should now be safe to upgrade, though you might want to wait for macOS 11.3, due soon.

Adam Engst 10 comments

Are Cheap MagSafe-Like Adapters for USB-C Worthwhile?

Adam Engst loves his M1-based MacBook Air but is missing the stellar user experience of the old MagSafe charging technology from his old 2012 MacBook Air. He found a cheap magnetic charging solution from various Chinese manufacturers. 

Adam Engst 12 comments

Can’t Scroll a Message in Mail? Here’s One Reason Why

A report from a reader of the Dutch translation of TidBITS led us to discover both a message viewing bug in Mail and a problem with how we were building those translated issues. Read on to learn what not to do in email and how to work around Mail’s bug.

Adam Engst 48 comments

macOS 11.2.2 Protects MacBook Pro and MacBook Air from Non-Compliant USB-C Hubs and Docks

Some third-party, non-compliant, powered USB-C hubs and docks are bricking recent MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models. Apple has updated Big Sur to prevent the problem; the question is if Macs running Catalina or Mojave might still be at risk.

Adam Engst 87 comments

The Role of Bootable Duplicates in a Modern Backup Strategy

macOS 11 Big Sur has thrown a cryptographically signed monkey wrench into the inner workings of backup apps that make bootable duplicates. There are now workarounds, and Apple promises to fix the necessary underlying tool, but Adam Engst suggests that we need to rethink the role bootable duplicates play in a modern backup strategy.

Adam Engst 1 comment

First Look: Insta360 ONE X2 Steady Cam

Wouldn’t it be nice to make videos with a camera that records both you and everything around you and allows you to edit all the footage together after the fact? That’s what the Insta360 ONE X2 steady cam enables, thanks to 360º filming and a powerful editing app.

Adam Engst 28 comments

Ensure Sufficient Free Space before Upgrading to Big Sur

If you initiate an upgrade to Big Sur from a previous version of macOS but don’t have sufficient free space—at least 35.5 GB—you could end up in a Boot Recovery Assistant loop that can be exceedingly difficult to escape. Never update macOS without enough space or a current backup!

Adam Engst 3 comments

macOS 11.2.1 Big Sur Fixes MacBook Pro Charging Bug and sudo Vulnerability

Apple has updated macOS 11 Big Sur to fix a single bug and block three security vulnerabilities. It’s not an urgent install for most people.

Adam Engst No comments

Class-Action Lawsuit Alleges Amazon Colluded with Publishers to Fix Ebook Prices

A class-action lawsuit filed by the same law firm that kicked off the eventual antitrust lawsuit against Apple and major publishers alleges something that was long suspected back then—that Amazon also engaged in collusion with publishers to restrain price competition.

Adam Engst No comments

Jeff Bezos to Move from Amazon CEO to Executive Chair

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has announced that he’ll be transitioning away from the CEO role to that of Executive Chair of the Amazon Board, with Amazon Web Services head Andy Jassy taking over as CEO.

Adam Engst No comments

Keep the iPhone 12 and Other Magnet-Bearing Consumer Electronics Away from Implanted Medical Devices

Since the iPhone 12 or any other consumer electronics device with strong magnets can interfere with implanted medical devices like pacemakers and defibrillators, Apple has issued more specific safety guidance.

Adam Engst 28 comments

NOVID Provides COVID-19 Early Warning System

We’re drowning in data about COVID-19—infection rates, hospitalizations, and fatalities. But none of that data can answer the question of what your personal risk of infection is. With the NOVID app—and sufficient uptake in your community—you can know just how close infections are to you.

Adam Engst 15 comments

HomeKit for the Holidays (And Home Troubleshooting Tips)

In which Adam Engst finally hops on the HomeKit bandwagon for real and gets totally sucked in, installing smart outlets, controlling motorized shades, and adding some Flic buttons. 

Adam Engst 36 comments

Cybersecurity Ramifications of the 2021 Storming of the United States Capitol

Over at Wired, Lily Hay Newman focuses on the potentially massive harm done to US cybersecurity by the mob of rioters who stormed and then occupied the US Capitol.

Adam Engst 6 comments

When2Meet: An Easier Way to Settle on a Meeting Time

Do you find yourself having to go back and forth when trying to identify a compatible meeting time with a group of people? Doodle has long been a good solution for this problem, but the When2Meet service is faster, easier, and free.