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CHRIS'S UNPREDICTABLE and OCCASIONAL Newsletter for MAC USERS #37,
01/24/02, SPECIAL EASING INTO TEN ISSUE
Contents Copyright 2002 by Christopher Plummer
===============================================


THIS ISSUE
----------
If you have NO INTEREST in TEN, just skip down to 'Special Bonus
Keyboard Commands' and we'll see you next time! But before you do,
THINK, you might enjoy this issue's fascinating Mac trivia, insightful
comments, and personal commentary of questionable merit!
:-)


UPDATES - Retrospect 5.0 Preview for Ten, Quicken 2002 Advanced Updater R2 for Carbon (9,10), and more
NEWS - Netscape Sues the Dark Side
UNPREDICTABLE READER FEEDBACK - Bundling and Bungling!
GEEK SPEAK REVIEW - some TEN Terms for Nine Is Finers
GET THE POINT - Mysterious 3rd disk partition explained!
OVERLOOKED AND UNDERUSED (TEN) - Services
Know The Difference - What's the difference?
OCCASIONAL Favorite WEB SITE - Myths Debunked!!
Special Bonus Keyboard Commands - iTunes Spacebar
Good News Press Releases - Bike Helmet iMac, etc.



GEEK SPEAK ALERT: Classic, System Prefs, Dock, Services Menu, UMH, PIM



UPDATES
-------
For 9 & X:
Airport Driver Update 2.0.1 - Available via Software Update.

<http://www.apple.com/airport/>
<http://www.info.apple.com/support/downloads.html>


Adobe InDesign 2.0 - If you're a GRAPHICS TYPE, you probably know
that this is the Adobe counterpart to Quark. Presumably CARBONATED,
because the 'requirements list OS 9 or X'. Unlike Adobe, Quark is
miles away from having their Express work natively under TEN.
<http://www.adobe.com/products/indesign/>


Quicken 2002 Advanced Updater R2 (Carbon) - YES, I had already
applied this update when I was having my LITTLE PROBLEM with Quicken
last issue. But you know me, I think you should GET CURRENT.

<http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/business_finance/quickendeluxe2002updater.
html
>


Just for X:
Retrospect 5.0 - Mac OS X Preview - Although not 'officially'
released, Dantz is offering this free download which allegedly
allows Oh Ess Ten uses to do complete, bootable backups of an OS X
volume - something that has been a major TEN product gap until now.
Prices are not yet set, but the release version(s) of Retrospect
will be priced as an 'upgrade' for existing users.

<http://www.dantz.com/index.php3?SCREEN=osx>



NEWS
----
Netscape sues Microsoft for anti-trust Damage. (Duh. It's about
time.) Why now? When Netscape/AOL/Time-Warner has been so cozy with
Microsoft that an Internet Explorer variant is the default browser
for AOL? Could it be a counter to Microsoft's efforts to undermine
AIM (Instant Messenger) with the MSN messenger that comes with
Windows XP (whether you want it or not)? Same as it ever was.

<http://dailynews.netscape.com/mynsnews/story.tmpl?table=n&cat=50580&id=200
201221621000295543
>



UNPREDICTABLE READER FEEDBACK
-----------------------------
OS X USERS WRITE:
BOB-
"After months of Beta testing of OS X and Office X, and many more
months of switching back and forth between 9 and X, I finally
decided to bite the bullet yesterday. Up until yesterday, I have
been using OS 9 for "real work" and playing around with OS X and
Office X. So, yesterday I decided to switch over to X for real. I
spent several hours cleaning up options, default directories, moving
files and aliasing stuff for easy access in both systems. I then
continued my daily activities using X exclusively. What I was doing
mostly yesterday was developing an Excel application. Entourage was
running in the background periodically collecting mail and news, IE
5.1 was likewise sitting there to be switched to easily when needed,
and iTunes was happily playing Beethoven radio.  All was
superficially good. (I'm using all the latest updates for
everything.)

During the course of the day, Excel "crashed" several times. It
didn't actually crash, just disappeared with no warning or message.
(This is not too unusual, as it has also happened with every version
of Excel I have used on any platform during testing and debugging of
a new application. I therefore can't "blame this specifically on X,
but it seemed more frequent.) However, Excel X had a lot of trouble
keeping its windows and tool bars straight, when switching back and
forth between other applications, worksheets and VBA code ?
particularly when in a debug Stop mode. So much so that it became
very inconvenient. Both IE and iMusic froze a couple of times, but
restarted and ran fine. I am networked to my PC via PC MacLan. OS X
reported that the PC server "went down" several times. It didn't, OS
X just lost the network connection. Whatever caused this was
probably related to the IE and iMusic freezes.

I found switching applications by by moving the mouse pointer to the
bottom of the screen to the hidden dock slow and not always
functional. (I have a mental block against key stroke shortcuts, so
use the mouse for most everything.) I've got a 21" monitor, and it
seems too small for OS X. I just never seemed to have enough room. I
don't feel this way with OS 9 ? the resolution is the same for both.

Although OS X never failed, I spent a lot of time restarting stuff.
The slowness, coupled with my recent SCSI vs. OS X problems that I
mentioned to you, and the current lack of any automated backup
solution for OS X, has brought me back to OS 9 today. I feel a bit
guilty about it, but I just don't think X is ready for prime time.
I'll continue to "watch" developments closely, keep trying new
stuff, and anxiously wait for the time when I can really switch.
Until then, I'm sticking with OS 9."

[Update - Since he first wrote, Bob has downloaded the Retrospect
backup utility, resolved most of his SCSI issues and going to give TEN
yet another shot! I'm telling you, the allure of AQUA is hard to
resist! - Chris]

POWERBOOK TENOR-
"Great issue, I agree OSX is sluggish... But I have
been seduced... I still love it... Maybe someday I can get a new FAST
machine... Thanks for the tip on the pencil... I have been using the
autofill feature but never realized there was a button.... Cool..."

JOHN -
"I still haven't been able to get TEN to work on my G4 Desktop.
It came installed, and I've used nine, but when I try to use TEN it
doesn't startup right. I guess I'll re-install it."

CHRIS-
I tried to construct this issue entirely in TEN. The TEN Mail
app, though a small, fast, Cocoa application with some nice features,
is lame. How lame? It doesn't approach the power and flexibility of the
long orphaned Claris Emailer. It's so lame that I'm considering buying
Microsoft Office X. Not for Word X, nor Powerpoint X, nor even for
Excel X, but so I can get my hands on Entourage X, the full-featured
PIM (Personal Information Manager) and mail client developed in part by
Jud Spencer, UMH (Unsung Mac Hero), who also developed Emailer and
Outlook Express. Entourage is ONLY available as part of Office X, or in
a somewhat disabled version, with Word X. And so, this is how good
development, product bundling, and aggressive marketing by a dominant
software company (and bungling by Apple) promote the monopoly.

The TEN Mail app is supposed to work with the TEN Address Book app. I
more or less successfully imported all my addresses from Emailer,
though it wouldn't take the Groups. With this issue nearly finished, I
attempted to re-create the UNPREDICTABLE mailing list group. But EVERY
TIME I attempted to look up a name, the Address Book crashed. Every
time. One more trip to the Apple OSX suggestion page, and then I did
what we will probably all do for awhile with TEN. I went back to
Classic. Where I know that I can rely on my proven, trusty application,
Emailer to do the job, quickly, efficiently, and PREDICTABLY.

:-)



GEEK SPEAK REVIEW
-----------------
Classic - The 'old' Mac OS. Once you switch to TEN, it's not hip to
call it "OS Nine" anymore, because, see, there is ONLY TEN. Nine
runs under Ten in what is called the 'Classic' environment, hence
'Classic.'

System Pref or System Preferences - This is Oh Ess Ten Geek Speak
for 'Control Panel.' Use the Apple Menu or the Dock to get there.
Why not just call them Control Panels? Well, Windows co-opted that
term so long ago that PC geeks think they invented it! It's time to
move on and Think Different!

Dock - Not 'Doc' though I think I might need a Doctor if I'm going
to work with TEN. (Just kidding!) The Dock is Ten's answer to the
Launcher or any of a number of other button bar utilities that we
used under NINE to launch our favorite applications, folders, files,
websites etc. Same thing. With animation!

PIM - See UNPREDICTABLE READER FEEDBACK, (above)

UMH - See UNPREDICTABLE READER FEEDBACK, (above)

Services - See the O&U article, (below)



GET THE POINT
-------------
The mysterious THIRD disk partition!
It's been several issues since I recommended partitioning your hard
drive for a 'safe' Oh Ess Ten installation. But I never told you why
you might want that THIRD partition. The small one. One for TEN, one
for NINE, and one for what???

Okay. It's for a dedicated swap file. That's easy right??

Ten, being UNIX after all, 'pages' memory off to disk. This is not
that different than the Virtual Memory in OS9. Same concept. But due
to issues TOO GEEKY even for me to explain, it might make sense to
tell TEN to put it's virtual memory 'swapfile' in a separate
partition where it won't get mucked up with all kinds of other
files. The BEST thing would be to have a small, separate, FAST hard
drive that you could assign as the swapfile disk, separate from the
the disk that has all the rest of the OS on it. Next best is to put
the swapfile on a separate partition on the same disk. This is the
theory, anyway.

And I tried it with my first couple of installations of Oh Ess Ten,
and I'm sure I saw a definite improvement in performance. Or maybe,
lack of 'bogging down' is a better way to put it.

BUT since I upgraded to 10.1.2, and told TEN not to bother with my
dedicated swapfile partition, I haven't seen any of that slow, boggy
performance. So maybe OUR FRIENDS AT APPLE have fixed some VM speed
issues. Or maybe it's just a perception thing. But because GETTING
THERE requires pretending you're a UNIX geek, the partition is
UNPREDICTABLY no longer recommended.

If you'd like to read about this (or even try it), go to this link:

<http://www.ResExcellence.com/hack_html_01/06-01-01.shtml>

Warning. Make sure you've installed the Pico editor from the
Developers CD. You will also need to know how to enable root, using
the NetInfo application in the X Utilities Folder. And although the
article says the MacHelp system will tell you how, it won't! If you
understand this paragraph, you'll do fine! ;-)



OVERLOOKED AND UNDERUSED (in TEN)
---------------------------------
Services

There are NO Apple Data Detectors in TEN to overlook!

What a shame!! We ALMOST don't need them because of an Overlooked
and Underused feature called 'Services', which hides in the menu of
the current application (to the right of the APPLE menu). 'Services'
allows you to access services provided by other applications while
you are in the current application. Sounds a little like ADD, right?
For example, select some text in a message you are composing in
MAIL. If you have downloaded and paid for the shareware app 'Text
Soap', you can make all kinds of modifications to that selected
text. Such as re-wrapping the text to a certain line width, or
stripping out extra carriage returns.

The MISSING PIECE to this picture is the connection to a Contextual
Menu. Not that CM's are missing from TEN, though they are OFTEN
LEAN. I can leave the same text selected and [Control] + [click] and
I get a terrific list of choices including formatting options,
having my Mac read the text aloud, and Spell Checking the text with
the system-level spell checker that comes with TEN. Nifty. But to
use SERVICES, I have to MOUSE WAY UP to the current application
menu, SLIDE DOWN to 'Services', SLIDE OVER to 'Text Soap', and SLIDE
OVER again and DOWN to the item I want. IS THAT SUPPOSED TO BE 'EASE
OF USE'?? This should be a Contextual Menu Item consarn it!!

[I excuse myself, bringing a short delay in the delivery of this
issue of UNPREDICTABLE, so I can go to the OS Ten suggestion area at
Apple's site and explain how to bring back to life the Zombie of yet
another feature they have buried. "I try to help Apple where I can."
- Chris]

<http://www.apple.com/macosx/feedback>



Know the Difference
-------------------
For a clear, well-written explanation of the difference between
Classic, Carbon, and Cocoa applications in Oh Ess Ten, check out the
article, "Mac OS X: Breeds of Programs, Part 1" from TidBits #603:

<http://www.tidbits.com/tb-issues/TidBITS-613.html#lnk3>

Maybe we'll include the differences between TEN and NINE? Does
anybody really CARE about Windows? Or how the Mac is different (and
hopefully, better)? Feedback?

And That's The Difference.



OCCASIONAL Favorite WEB SITE
----------------------------
I know I have a lot of Apple web pages, but APPLE has a lot of web
pages!! The next time your Windows friends start ragging on you
because YOU'RE NOT A GOOD SHEEP, don't waste your energy trying to
EXPLAIN. Just send them this URL. Then if they're really interested,
give them a demo of iTunes!

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



Special Bonus Keyboard Commands
-------------------------------
iTunes - You're BLASTING 'Aimee Mann' using the Full Screen mode of
Visuals to enjoy the psychedelic display on your iMac and you
realize your phone is ringing. Is it your Windows-using-friend
calling to ask for a demo? It might be your new girlfriend! What do
you do?? Scramble for the mouse? Hit any key and then figure out how
to turn the sound down?? No! Just hit the SPACEBAR! This will
immediately Pause iTunes. When you finish making your plans for
Friday night, hit the Space bar again!!

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. (Please provide UNPREDICTABLE with a copy.) 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.

SEND requests and feedback to mailto:< chris AT Unpredictablemac dot com>.

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**
SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION
My accountant has advised me to come clean in every issue. Yes, I am a
consultant and am available to HELP YOU on a one-to-one basis. Macintosh
Networking, Internet Connectivity, Desktop Support, Training.
Satisfaction Guaranteed. Oh, and Lotus Notes and Domino Adminstration,
Development, and Support. Interested in help from a long term MAC
Professional? Don't hire some Windows kid who tells you to get rid of
your Mac because HE doesn't GET IT! Send me an email:
< chris AT Unpredictablemac dot com>

TFSB :-)

THE END






 

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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 :-)