A Stack Exchange user asked a question a while back: is it possible to turn off the swipe gesture in Chrome that goes back or forward a page? If you're not familiar with this gesture - which works in most browsers on OS X - you use a two-finger swipe to the right to go back to the previous page you've viewed, and a swipe in the opposite direction to go forward again. But this use found it got in the way.
Fortunately, another user found a Terminal command that turns this feature off. Run this in Terminal, then relaunch Chrome for it to take effect:
Apparently you can issue this command for other apps, replacing the com.google.Chrome.plist with the appropriate file name. I've only tested this with Chrome, but if you feel like testing with other apps, post in the comments to say which ones work and which don't.
Quick Look uses WebKit to render SVG (scalable vector graphics) flies, and Safari has a bug that mis-renders any isolated horizontal or vertical line segment making it useless. Most SVG graphics programs like Inkscape or Illustrator are very slow to launch. Fortunately Firefox works correctly and opens SVG files instantly. So if you need to view SVG files, you can drag them into a Firefox window, or onto the Firefox icon in the Dock, to view them.
[kirkmc adds: I tried opening some SVG files in both Safari and Firefox, but didn't find any that had isolated horizontal or vertical lines, so I haven't seen how this issues displays. YMMV.]
BitTorrent Labs has released BitTorrent Sync, a tool for syncing files across computers, using the BitTorrent peer-to-peer protocol. This app lets you choose a specific folder (or folders) to sync, and have it automatically synced on one or several computers. It runs on OS X, Windows and Linux.
I find this an interesting tool. While I use Dropbox regularly, and depend on it for collaboration, and to sync a number of files between my two Macs, there is a limit in the amount of space available. (With the free version, it's 2 GB; paid subscriptions are available if you want more storage.) But also, Dropbox requires that anything you sync be put in its own folder. You can use symbolic links in a Dropbox folder, but if you want to sync the contents of a specific folder on your Mac to another Mac, this gets a bit complicated.
With BitTorrent Sync, you choose the folders to sync, and store them wherever you want. You could conceivably sync your entire home folder, though I'm not sure I want to try that yet. There are no space limitations, because you're not storing the files in the cloud; they're merely getting moved from one side to the other. And you can sync files in both directions, or only one, using read-only folders.
Dropbox has many advantages. You can access files on an iOS device, and Dropbox stores multiple versions of files. But if you want to simply sync one or more folders across computers, BitTorrent Sync could be the way to go.
If anyone else has tried this out, feel free to post comments on how you've found it.
If you type a lot, you may find that the letters on the keys of your Mac's keyboard will slowly fade away. In my case, not only do they fade away, but one key - the D key, which, since I use a Dvorak layout, is the E key - actually has some of the plastic worn away. And this is on a wireless Apple keyboard that's only about a year old. (Note that since I touch-type, it really doesn't matter whether I see the keys or notÖ)
Topher Kessler, writing at CNet, posted an article with some ways to keep the letters from fading. He suggests possibly using a silicone keyboard cover, but I don't think that would be comfortable. But he also recommends using standard cellophane tape, cut into squares that cover the keys.
You probably wouldn't want to do this to all the keys on your keyboard: the most commonly-used ones are those most in need of protection: E, T, A, I, N, and others. (If you're not an English speaker - or typer - see this Wikipedia article which discusses the most common letters in a number of other languages.)
I wonder if there's not another solution though. While I've not tried it, I would think that clear nail polish might do the trick, and might be better than cellophane tape. The tape is likely to peel up from the corners after a while, but nail polish should stay shiny for a long time. I may try this and see how it works on my already-faded keyboard. Any other suggestions for protecting keys?
Sometimes clicking the "Show or hide panels" (the top-right icon on right pane for Tools or Comments) in Adobe Acrobat Pro XI v.11.0.2 on OS X 10.8.3 does no work. Clicking it does nothing. Here is the fix:
1. Select View > Read Mode.
2. Select View > Full Screen Mode
3. Press the Escape key
[kirkmc adds: I donít have Acrobat Pro, so I canít test this.]
If you've ever been irked by the need to download iTunes Store purchases right away, or by seeing them constantly pop up in your Downloads queue until you download them, you'll be happy to know that Apple has changed this. You can now choose to download iTunes Store purchases later, as long as you're in a country which has iTunes in the Cloud. If you choose to download the content - a movie, TV show, or other large download - at a later date, it will simply be added to your Purchased list and you'll be able to download it later. Or not. Because in some cases, you may want to buy something on, say, an iPhone, but watch it on an Apple TV, and never actually download it locally. This will save a lot of time and bandwidth.
You may be familiar with the fact that, when typing on iOS, you can press and hold the . (period) key, or the .com key, to get a popup with a handful of top-level domains, such as .com, .org, .edu, etc. If your iOS device is set up with a country other than the US, you'll have these, plus others, such as .co.uk if you're in the UK, or .de if you're in Germany.
OS X Daily recently pointed out that you can also quickly type other top-level domains by simply adding international keyboards to your iOS device. To do this, go to Settings > General > International > Keyboards, then tap on Add New Keyboard. Tap the keyboard for the country you want to use. When you next go to type text, you can press and hold the . (period) key in, say, Mail, or the .com key in Safari, and access additional top-level domains.
Interestingly, when I did this, I found a surprising change. I added a UK keyboard to be able to type .co.uk easily, since I've just moved to England. I dictate a lot into my iPhone - much quicker than typing - and found that iOS was no longer recognizing "period" as a . but would type out the word. It would, however, type a . when I said "full stop." This shouldn't happen, because my iPhone is set with Voice Control to English (United States). Removing the UK keyboard fixed the dictation issue.
FaceTime uses 100% CPU when in a call, probably because of video encoding. Yet it's possible to reduce CPU usage to 20% when you only need voice, extending battery life when mobile.
To stop FaceTime from encoding video when in a call, make it fullscreen and it will move into its own space. Then switch back to your main desktop space with a four finger swipe to the right (or by simply switching to an app in that space). Although your camera LED stays on, this actually pauses the video, reducing your CPU from 100% to around 20%. You will also find that voice quality improves with less drop-outs and cracks because now your CPU is prioritized on encoding audio.
Update: As mentioned in the comments, it's seems to be sufficient to just have FaceTime in a space and move to a different space, or to minimize the FaceTime window to the Dock.
[kirkmc adds: I don't use FaceTime often, choosing rather to use Messages video chats or Skype, so I can't confirm whether this CPU usage is universal.]
If you use BBEdit to work with text files, you're certainly aware of its powerful regular expression feature for searching and replacing text. Based on the PCRE (Perl Compatible Regular Expressions) engine, the BBEdit regex language can find and replace pretty much anything.
GitHub user ccstone has published a BBEdit Regular Expression Cheat Sheet, which shows all the standard regex meta-characters, those used for non-visible characters (such as tabs and returns), and classes (such as digits, lower-case letters or alphanumeric characters).
If you use BBEdit to find and replace text, and especially if you're not familiar with using regular expressions, you should bookmark this page.
Over at the Mac Observer, Dave Hamilton told of an iPod touch whose SpringBoard would repeatedly crash. (SpringBoard is the iOS equivalent of the Finder.) After trying a number of troubleshooting procedures, he narrowed it down to an iCloud issue, where corrupt data was causing the crash. Hamilton found info in crash logs indications of what was causing the crash. He eventually deleted a folder on the Mac that was linked to the iPod (com~apple~TextInput) and this resolved the issue.
iCloud has been, for me, a common source of dismay. I've not found it to be reliable enough to entrust any important data to it - though for some data, such as contacts and calendars, you have no choice. I've had to go through complicated procedures to reset different types of iCloud data several times to resolve syncing issues. This crashing problem is just another of the issues that iCloud can be responsible for.