Apple released the multitouch capable Magic Mouse back in October, but as we wrote at the time, the software that ships with the mouse barely taps its hardware's potential. It was only a matter of time before OS X software developers picked up the slack and released tools to expand on Apple's limited preferences. Here are our first impressions of two such free utilities: MagicPrefs and BetterTouchTool.
Steve Jobs has finally done it with Apple's new Magic Mouse: the product is devoid of buttons. Instead of the usual left and right click with a scroll wheel, the Magic Mouse has a single shell that recognizes multitouch gestures across almost its entire surface, adding a new tactile dimension to the standard keyboard & mouse combo. Actually, the Magic Mouse's biggest problem may be that it's still just a mouse.
With the release of iPhone OS 3.1, Apple has provided app developers with APIs to allow audio recording via connected bluetooth hardware devices, making it possible for developers to take advantage of bluetooth headsets for voice communication. Does this mean Skype's iPhone app will soon support bluetooth?
Having problems setting up your external hard drive with your Mac? A search for answers to "the underlying task reported failure on exit" leads one on a wild Google chase through useless Apple support documents, unnecessary Terminal command lines that return "bad super block: magic number wrong," and complicated Unix forum threads. It's enough to drive one mad, but the solution is surprisingly simple.
Following its recent refresh of its MacBook line of notebooks, Apple is reportedly offering discounts of up to $450 to customers who purchased a previous model notebook within fourteen days of the refresh.
Some customers have reported Apple's phone customer support agents are offering customers the chance to return notebooks recently purchased from the Apple Store online in exchange for new models if they have not yet opened the packaging. Alternately, agents may offer a discount if the customer wishes to keep the previous generation model.
With a few UI tweaks and fixes, the newest version of the Skype application for iPhone and iPod Touch is worth downloading. Users can save more than $50/month by utilizing Skype's unlimited calling plans, but are the application and service reliable enough to substitute for your mobile minutes?
NeoOffice 3.0 beta was released Thursday to users who donate $25 or more to the open source project's coffers. The beta incorporates code from the popular OpenOffice.org office suite (currently in version 3.0.) into NeoOffice's long-established, stable and fast native Mac OS X code. While still in beta, this version offers many user experience improvements for Mac users.
iTunes does an admirable job of simplifying media library management, but like many Apple solutions, it does so by sacrificing advanced features and user control. The open source, Mac-only application Max rips, transcodes and tags audio files in more than 20 formats, and gives users back control of their music library. Max is not a media player. It offers professional-level ripping and encoding tools, but does not catalog or play back media.
No longer are PC and Mac users stuck with only the operating system that shipped with their hardware. Users have several choices of virtualization software that allows them to concurrently run a virtual guest machine with the same or a different operating system from their host machine. A relatively new and popular use for virtualization is to allow Intel Mac users to run a virtual Windows machine without having within OS X, providing users access to Windows only applications.
Watch this video for a couple quick tips for customizing your OS X application and system toolbars. You can add items and move them around easily.