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CHRIS'S UNPREDICTABLE and OCCASIONAL Newsletter for MAC USERS #33,
11/30/01
Contents Copyright 2001 by Christopher Plummer
===============================================


THIS ISSUE
----------
Things have been moving SLOWLY at UNPREDICTABLE, because things have
been moving FAST in ChrisWorld. This is a BIG issue. Usually I'll
advise you to skip stuff if you want, but this is a GOOD ONE. YOU'D
BETTER READ THE WHOLE THING. It is the HOLIDAY SEASON after all. And we
acknowledge that with a few MAC GIFT suggestions and more of the usual
stuff, spiced with fascinating Mac trivia, insightful comments, and
personal commentary of questionable merit.
:-)

UPDATES - Tis the Season!
UNPREDICTABLE READER FEEDBACK - Apple Store in Short Hills, New Jersey!
PATRIOTIC ECONOMY BOOSTING SUGGESTIONS
Get the Point - OS Ten - will be back, stay tuned!
OVERLOOKED AND UNDERUSED - At Last Apple Data Detectors (Part 1)
Tips - iTunes CMM
Know The Difference - Settle This
OCCASIONAL Favorite WEB SITE - Maps and Middle Earth
Special Bonus Keyboard Commands - iTunes
Good News Press Release - Quicktime downloads



GEEK SPEAK ALERT: submenu, CMM, ADD, Apple Data Detectors, Geographic
Detectors, OTOH



UPDATES
-------
Lotus Notes/Domino Client 5.09 - I know, you don't care what Notes is,
you don't know what Notes is, and you don't even KNOW anyone who does! At
least, that's what you thought. I'm a Notes Developer and Administrator,
and this is a new Mac release - a good thing, because it helps keep Macs
in BIG DUMB CORPORATIONS.

<http://VersionTracker.com/moreinfo.fcgi?id=2488>


iView Media Pro 1.3 - This is a GREAT application for cataloging digital
photos and other media. They don't seem to make a big deal of this, but
iView Media Pro is a CARBON app (meaning it will work in both 9.x and
TEN!)

<http://VersionTracker.com/moreinfo.fcgi?id=9659>


JUST FOR TEN:

Installer Update 1.0 - Update your Oh Ess Ten Software Update using the
Installer Update. Much easier to do than to say. The page at the link
below contains info on the Software Update mechanism in TEN as well as
links to the Installer Update, and to the Security Update which you
should read about before installing.

<http://www.apple.com/macosx/upgrade/softwareupdates.html>


10.1.1 - After you GET CURRENT with Software Update, run it again and get
the TRULY FREE TEN POINT ONE POINT ONE update of TEN. This is
supposed to fix or improve a bunch of stuff, but adds no new features.

<http://maccentral.macworld.com/news/0111/13.osx.php>


IBM ViaVoice - That's right! Just in time for Holiday Economy Boosting,
voice recognition is available in AQUA! US $171.00 with a USB microphone.
And it DOES A LOT MORE than the previous version, including Applescript
and the ability to write to ANY application. The folks at MacSpeech
better watch out for this one.

<http://www-3.ibm.com/software/speech/mac/osx/>


Microsoft Office v.X - The MS marketing geeks, diverted briefly from
promoting EX PEE, were directed by Bill, "If Apple wants Roman
Numerals, give'em Roman Numerals!" And so they named these Office
products just like OH ESS EX...er, TEN. First, you've got the TEN
version of Office. Is it 'VEE EX??' Is it 'VEE DOT EX??' Is it 'VEE DOT
TEN??' Is Vee Got to CALL IT ANYTHING BUT 'OFFICE???' The individual
pieces are called Word X (Word TEN?) EXCEL X. (EX EL TEN??) Oh, forget
it. This is probably a great product and will help sell Macs into BIG
DUMB CORPORATIONS. For the rest of us, there's AppleWorks. :-) If you
have v.x, write me about it.

<http://maccentral.macworld.com/news/0111/19.handson.php>



UNPREDICTABLE READER FEEDBACK
-----------------------------
DAVE wrote to let me know that Apple is hiring for the Short Hills, NJ
Apple Store! (I don't know when it's opening.) Can you imagine YOUR
boss coming to you and saying, 'Hey, here's the new iPod. Know it
inside and out, and make sure you know how to update the Playlists from
a Titanium G4'?

<http://www.apple.com/jobs>

Get an Apple Id if you don't already have one. (YOU SHOULD.) Then search
for jobs. Use this tool to figure out where all the new Apple stores will
be. HINT: 'retail'. Click around and see what kind of Benefits a REAL
COMPANY offers.



PATRIOTIC ECONOMY BOOSTING SUGGESTIONS
--------------------------------------
MICE - MY iMac came with the NOTORIOUS 'hockey puck' mouse. Round,
unwieldy, with moving parts. (Gasp!) Since then Apple has come out with
the transparent optical 'Pro Mouse'. No moving parts, the whole mouse is
a single button. This comes with all new non-laptop Macs. It's great,
it's a work of art. I bought one for my iMac. $59.00 (or so).

If you're serious about mousing, shop around. You MUST go OPTICAL.
These mice cost a bit more, but getting rid of the dust collecting
mouse ball and unnecessary mouse pads is worth it! Mice can have
multiple buttons (handy for people arriving from the OTHER WORLD), and
these can be PROGRAMMABLE - meaning that you can assign menu commands,
Applescripts, or launch specific applications with one of the buttons.
I like my MacAlly mouse, because the Control Panel lets me program the
buttons BY CONTEXT. That is, when I am in the Finder, they can do one
thing, when I'm in my browser, they do another, and so on. I've just
started to use this great feature. Mice can also have a SCROLL WHEEL.
This is rapidly becoming a standard feature in mice, and some laptops
from the OTHER WORLD even have them built in. Once you try a Scroll
Wheel, you'll want it ALL THE TIME. It's just a little wheel that lets
you scroll a window or menu up or down FAST. And we don't want to waste
any NANOSECONDS moving our hand or wrist a few extra inches if we don't
have to, DO WE? Scroll Wheels can also have a button built in. Roll the
wheel, it scrolls; press the wheel, it clicks. (My Scroll Wheel speed
is adjustable by context also). And, you could go CORDLESS. I didn't,
because these mice EAT BATTERIES. But I've seen some CORDLESS MICE
advertised that claim to give you very good battery life. Who wants to
change the batteries in their mouse every month
anyway??

TABLETS - Finally, you Graphics Types especially should think about a
'tablet'. These come with a CORDLESS pen or 'stylus' that can function
as a pointing and clicking device, and a 'tablet' to write on. You
write on the tablet, and it all goes into Illustrator, Canvas,
Photoshop - whatever program you're using. They are pressure sensitive
too. If you're using a 'paint' type program you can apply color or
effects as if you were using a brush! More pressure, more color!
Tablets jump in price as the pressure sensitivity of the pen and/or
size of the tablet increases, until you get to the VERY high end models
that are actually a FLAT PANEL DISPLAY tablet. You actually write on
and see the effects of your actions ON THE TABLET!! Tablets work so
different that they take a little transition time, but everyone I've
talked to who uses one says it's THE ONLY WAY TO GO. Wacom makes a
tablet/cordless mouse combination that Apple has online for US
$99.00.

I'm not a tablet guy yet. I bought the MacAlly iOptinet USB mouse, it
has a LIFETIME warranty (one more criterion to consider) and it is
UNPREDICTABLY recommended. About US $35.00.

<http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/93/wo/TsZu0liI7KsxdIw6c/1.3.0.3.30.14.1.1.2.1.3.1.1.0?58,61>

<http://www.macally.com/spec/usb/input_device/ioptinet.html>

More Patriotic suggestions next time! :-)



** OVERLOOKED AND UNDERUSED ***
-- Terrible tales of misunderstood and unknown features. --
------------------------------------------------------------
AT LAST ADD - CM's and Apple Data Detectors (Part 1) [FOR 9.x]

Let's suppose you're reading your favorite newsletter and the author
mentions 'Short Hills, NJ'. Most Americans anyway, will recognize that
this refers to somewhere in the state of New Jersey. Is 'Short Hills' in
Beautiful Western Central New Jersey? [NO.] If not, where is it? How
could you find out? You could copy 'Short Hills, NJ' and paste it into
Sherlock, and see what happens. Or, this being an iWorld anyway, you
could go to your browser and do a search, or, if you're already hip to
this, you could go to Mapquest.com, and pull up a map!

<http://www.mapquest.com/>

That's cool, but REALLY it's not very MAC is it? You could do the EXACT
SAME THING on a Windows PC, couldn't you? But we're using MACS, aren't
we? If they're not BETTER, then are we just using them because they're
COOL?? Why should there ever be a piece of information that's hard to
find when you have a Mac? And, (as if you didn't know already) WHAT am
I talking about? 'Apple Data Detectors' obviously, OCCASIONALLY
referred to as ADD. Here's how they work:

Drag across 'Short Hills, NJ', or even the whole paragraph that contains
it, so the text is selected. Then, [Control] + Click on the selected text
and hold the mouse button down. When the Contextual Menu popup appears
(and you know what I'm talking about because you read about CM's in U&O
issues #24,27-29), slide down past all the other options until you select
'Short Hills, NJ' on the menu. When you do that, you should see a
'submenu' with a couple choices: 'Get Map for US City' and 'Lookup Zip
Code for US City'.

Select 'Get Map..' When you do, your default browser pops to the top of
your screen, chugs along for a little while (or a long while, depending
on your Internet connection), and IN YOUR BROWSER, a MAP with Short
Hills, New Jersey appears!! [Obviously, if you select 'Get Zip Code..'
the same thing happens and you get the Zip Code of Short Hills!!] Now, if
you're a GOOD READER, you probably actually tried this as you were
reading. And it didn't work, DID IT? Why not?

It didn't work, because YOU NEED TO INSTALL Apple Data Detectors. I'm not
kidding. When Apple has SUCH AN AWESOME CAPABILITY, why do they keep it a
SECRET?? Why isn't it a STANDARD part of every install?? As you've heard
me and the Eagles say when it comes to APPLE MARKETING MYSTERIES, 'I
can't tell you why'. My guess? Well, ADD is very much an AppleScript
technology, and there's probably some screwball rivalry between OS development
groups, just as we've seen with the HAUGHTY QuickTime group.

ADD is TRULY FREE, and once you install it, it will really work, JUST
LIKE THAT!! (You'll also have to install the 'Geographic Detectors' to
get the functionality I describe.) YOU CAN HANDLE THIS. Go to the Apple
website, and download the detectors. The documentation is good;
there're lots of screenshots. Read all about ADD. I'm not going to
rewrite someone else's work. I'll just say, when you 'configure' the
Actions, try to use all the 'With Internet Config' options instead of
telling them to use your specific browser, mail program, etc. As usual,
if you have everything set right in your Internet Control Panel, this
will work great, and won't break when you decide to go back to
Netscape. IT'S ALL THERE. Get the Data Detectors!!

Get Apple Data Detectors 1.02 Installer here first. This should also include the Internet Address Detectors:

<http://www.apple.com/applescript/data_detectors/updates.00.html>

Then get the Geographic Detectors here:

<http://www.apple.com/applescript/data_detectors/detectors.03.html>

[You may think the Currency Detectors sound interesting. Unfortunately, they have been 'Coming Soon' for as long as ADD has been available.]

Now, you muse, this ADD stuff sort of sounds like some AT&T Internet commercial
doesn't it? Or like those deservedly much maligned 'smart tags' that can
pop up everywhere in Windows Ex Pee? Did Apple copy this from somebody
else? GET REAL!! The scary thing is not just that these Data Detectors
ought to be an automatic part of every installation, but that they have
been around for AT LEAST SIX YEARS!! It would really make sense if ADD
worked in ALL GOOD MAC PROGRAMS. But unfortunately, they don't. ADD
almost certainly works in your email client, and it works in Internet
Explorer and URL Manager Pro. ADD worked in the defunct WordPerfect. It
used to work in AppleWorks, but doesn't in version 6.x. Darn it, this
technology is LANGUISHING!! My gosh, have you ever heard of anything so
OVERLOOKED AND UNDERUSED??

This is yet another APPLE MARKETING MYSTERY!! I was so appalled that the
APPLE MARKETING GENIUSES never had Jeff Goldblum mumble about ADD, never
put it in a commercial, not even in a magazine ad, that I described my
own imaginary commercial, which was published in the PMUG DIALOG
Newsletter!! This feature is something that has made the Mac SPECIAL and USEFUL and UNIQUE for all this time, and to most Mac users, ADD is not O&U but U&N (UNKNOWN and
NEVER USED)!! And Data Detectors and 'Actions' do a lot more too, which
we will discuss UNPREDICTABLY, in a future issue. :-)


Tips
----
iTunes - Contextual Menus - Show Song File
Trying to figure out WHERE THE HECK the MP3 file for Phish's song 'Fee'
is on your hard drive? You didn't put it there. You can see it listed in
iTunes. You know it came as part of the 'sampler' with iTunes. So do you
have to open Sherlock and search under 'Fee' to see it in the Finder? You
could. But TRY THIS, RIGHT NOW:

In iTunes hold down the [Control] key while you CLICK on the song. You'll
get (TA DAAA!) a Contextual Menu. I LOVE contextual menus!

(You can let the [Control] key up after the menu appears.)

Among other choices, your menu will have: 'iTunes Help', 'Get Info',
'Convert ID3 Tags', and the one we are looking for, 'Show Song File'.
Slide down the menu to this choice, let the mouse button up, and iTunes
will open the folder containing that song file right ON YOUR DESKTOP! Now
you can delete it, copy it, or mail it to a friend!

:-)



Know The Difference
-------------------
AFAIK there is no email address set up by the Justice Department
specifically for input about how the American Community at large feels
about the way Apple Computer does business.

OTOH (On The Other Hand), if you'd like to comment on the antitrust
settlement between the DOJ and Microsoft [that would be the agreement
where Microsoft doesn't admit doing anything wrong, where they are not
split up, where they continue to bundle their browser which now does not
work with non-Microsoft plug-ins, their instant messaging, their
multimedia player, and NO JAVA, and they make NO REDRESS to consumers or
competitors - if any are left - other than 'allowing' computer sellers to
include non-MS software on the Windows 'desktop', and where they are
'monitored' by having a few non-Microsoft employees stationed somewhere
in the depths of Mordor to keep an eye on things], for comments, the DOJ
has provided a special address FOR JUST THAT PURPOSE.

<microsoft.atr@usdoj.gov>

Having the word 'microsoft' in the address, email messages will be routed
to a black hole on the other side of the universe.

If you'd REALLY like to comment on this case, or Microsoft's proposed
antitrust settlement with PRIVATE litigants [that would be the one where
Microsoft proposes stuffing refurbished Intel PCs and Microsoft donated
software into schools that might otherwise be purchasing computers and
software from Apple Computer], then mail or fax letters directly to Judge
J. Frederick Motz, who is presiding over the case:

The Honorable J. Frederick Motz
United States District Court for the
District of Maryland
101 W. Lombard Street
Baltimore, MD 21201
FAX: 410 962-2698

<http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/technology/tech-tech-microsoft.html>


And That's The Difference.



OCCASIONAL Favorite WEB SITE
----------------------------
MAPQUEST - I thought EVERYONE knew about this by now. Go to MapQuest,
find out how easily ANY LUNATIC could locate a map and exact directions
to your house. And then, you can use the link to the online map of
MIDDLE EARTH. If you see Gollum, give him a little STING for me!

<http://www.mapquest.com>
<http://www.lordoftherings.net/index_map.html>



Special Bonus Keyboard Commands
-------------------------------
iTunes
[Command] - R Show song file. In the Finder. Just like this issue's
Tip. Think of it as 'Reveal' song file.

[Command] - L Show current song. Not the same as 'Show song file'. Use
this if you're cruising around in iTunes while you're listening to music,
and you want to get back to a screen that shows the song that is playing NOW.

TFSB :-)




=========================================================================
** CHRIS'S UNPREDICTABLE and OCCASIONAL Newsletter for Mac Users **
Oriented towards, but not exclusively for, Mac Users in Beautiful Western
Central New Jersey. Published Whenever - About Whatever!
=========================================================================

Non-profit, non-commercial publications may reprint articles if full
credit is given. Others please contact the editor. Accuracy of articles
is UNPREDICTABLE and not guaranteed. Caveat lector. Publication,
product, and company names may be registered trademarks of their
companies.

Sample Issue - email with "Sample Unpredictable" in the Subject.
Subscribe - email with "Start Unpredictable" in the Subject.
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Back Issues available to subscribers upon request.
**


 

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All contents copyright 2000-2008 by Christopher Plummer, ZebraTale LLC, except where noted. Accuracy of articles is UNPREDICTABLE and not guaranteed. Unpredictable was published from 2001 to 2008. Although updated occasionally, this is a historical archive - expect dead links. Caveat lector.
Publication, product, and company names may be registered trademarks of their companies. TFSB :-)