Date Archives October 2015

Apple TV Orders Start Monday

Apple CEO Tim Cook announced that the company’s new Apple TV would begin shipping next week, hitting the promised October deadline. Orders will start on Monday and the first of them will begin to ship later in the week.

No details on when orders start, but it’s getting close.

Mossberg: The Steve Jobs I Knew Isn't In This Movie

Walt Mossberg over at The Verge:

In 2015, the brilliant writer Aaron Sorkin made a movie loosely based on a famous, powerful, contemporary American business figure — the technology innovator Steve Jobs — that showed him in a bad light. He, too, took artistic liberties with the character, and with events. But, his entertaining work of fiction isn’t labeled for what it is. It’s called Steve Jobs and is based in part on Walter Isaacson’s authorized biography of the man.

As a result, for the multitudes of people who didn’t know the real Steve Jobs, Mr. Sorkin’s film, which opens nationally Friday, will seem like a factual, holistic portrait of a great man, despite the screenwriter’s continuing protests that it’s no such thing and wasn’t meant to be a “biopic.”

Unlike Mr. Sorkin, I did know the real Steve Jobs, for about 14 years — the most productive and successful 14 years of his career. I spent scores of hours in private conversations with him over those years, and interviewed him numerous times onstageat a tech conference I co-produced. And the Steve Jobs portrayed in Sorkin’s film isn’t the man I knew.

Well said.

iStat Menus for Mac Review

Long before I was a Mac user, I loved to tinker with PCs. I built them myself, continuously bought new parts to upgrade its performance and loved seeing how well it could run the latest software.

Years later I fell in love with the fluidity of the Mac and how it just works. The rest they say, is history.

One thing I had always missed from my tinkering days is monitoring the performance of my machine. Things like, active CPU processes, available memory, operating temperature and much more. It may not seem important to most people, but I loved being able to see it.

Despite being less upgradeable hardware-wise, OS X still offers the ability to see this data, however viewing it in the Activity Monitor is less than ideal.

This is where iStat Menus for Mac comes in. It’s a brilliant utility that runs in the menu bar of your Mac and shows you all the data you could ever desire to know about your machine. The best part is it’s completely customizable. You can configure iStat Menus to show precisely the information you want to know. 

Not only does iStat Menus show you the strain being put on your hardware, it shows you exactly what software is causing it. I love being able to see what programs are using my battery most – or which ones are transferring the most data through my network connection. 

The amount of data available through iStat Menus is astounding – and hard to live without once you’ve had a try. Due to the amount of Mac apps that live in the menu bar, the real estate has become quite valuable, but iStat Menus earns it’s spot.

There’s a trial available for iStat Menus here, or you can just buy it right away for $18.

If you’re anything like me, you won’t be caught without it.

Paste for Mac Review

Cut – Copy – Paste.

It’s been part of the computer experience for as long as I can remember, but even so, it’s not one of the things that immediately comes to mind when you think about the most important features of OS X.

Despite being as important as it is – the process of copying, then pasting text, pictures or links has been unchanged over the years. In the computer industry, this means one of two things: it can’t be improved or no one can think of how to improve it.

After using Paste for Mac these past few weeks, I can confidently say there is a better solution – and it’s available on the Mac App Store.

Paste for Mac is a fantastic utility that runs in the background of your Mac and stores a history of everything you cut or copy, regardless of whether it’s text or an image. Nothing changes about the way you Cut or Copy, it’s still the same keyboard short of Command + X/C.

However, where Paste for Mac show it’s brilliance is when you activate the (customizable) keyboard shortcut of Command, Shift and V.

Doing so will bring an Expose-style interface that shows you a running sideways list of everything you’ve cut or copied. The best part is that above your clipboard history, Paste shows your active application right above. This means if you’re writing an email, for example, you can easy click and drag previously copied text to your email draft.

The brilliance of Paste is in the implementation. It feels right at home on OS X, almost as if it was designed by Apple. Every time I use Paste for Mac, I wonder why this hasn’t been a core feature of OS X since the beginning.

Paste for Mac is one of those apps you’ll have a hard time living without. Once you have it on your Mac you’ll wonder how you managed without it. I can’t recommend it enough.

Paste for Mac is available on the Mac App Store for $6.99.

Tweetbot 4

I can’t believe I forgot to mention this a week ago, but Tapbots released a great new version of their Twitter client, Tweetbot.

Believe me, if you use Twitter, you should own this app.

Why The Steve Jobs In Aaron Sorkin's Move Could Have Never Saved Apple

The movie is full of fictions. Many are minor details. One character accuses Jobs of having “multiple billions of dollars”—but the movie ends in 1998, and Jobs didn’t actually get that kind of money until 2006, when Disney bought Pixar (a company that isn’t even mentioned in the movie). Other fictions are major, including several invented confrontations between Jobs and Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak, Mac genius Andy Hertzfeld, and ex-CEO John Sculley. And then there’s the grand fiction of omission in the final act, which hinges on an imagined reconciliation between Jobs and Lisa—the daughter whose paternity he once denied—before his 1998 introduction of the iMac. Moviegoers have no way of knowing that by 1998 the real Steve Jobs had been married for seven years, was raising three children with his wife, had brought Lisa under their roof, and had been profoundly changed by his family life in the slow-yet-sudden way that is so common to so many people.

I want to see the movie, but I’m not sure I can enjoy it with all these major inaccuracies.