New to Mac? Don't worry, MacFixIt is taking it back to basics, starting with System Preferences and moving throughout Apple's Mac OS X and the iLife and iWork application suites. This edition of Mac Basics sorts out the preferences you can change regarding your Mac's appearance.… Read more
Our Weekly Utilities Update report is a list of all the updates for many Mac utilities that have been released in the past week. Though utilities can be any tool that helps you perform a routine task (including image manipulation and synchronization), our focus in this column is to bring you those tools that help in troubleshooting Mac hardware and software problems. This week we have updates for graphics and display management utilities, disk and file management and recovery utilities, as well as a few small updates to maintenance utilities.… Read more
Despite a lack of signs pointing to an Apple MacBook Air refresh, there are some indications of an impending update to the more pedestrian MacBook.
The same Vietnamese Web site that purportedly did a teardown of an iPhone 4G now seemingly has a new MacBook in its hands, according to a video posted on YouTube (below). Specifications for the MacBook that appear in the video include an Intel 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo processor (updated from the current 2.26GHz chip) and Nvidia GeForce 320M graphics (updated from the aging Nvidia 9400M graphics silicon).
Note that those are the same … Read more
After rumors of a MacBook Air update this week proved to be false, the question remains: is the Air an endangered species that will ultimately yield its spot in Apple's ecosystem to the iPad?
Although I cannot divine Apple's plans, I know this much: after the iPad came out, salespeople at Apple stores were consistently pointing out (maybe too consistently to be just a coincidence) that the iPad would serve as an adequate replacement for the Air.
To state the obvious (or maybe not the obvious for Apple store employees), the iPad really doesn't come close to … Read more
The game Portal is regarded by many to be one of the best of all time. GameSpot awarded it a 9.0 and an Editors' Choice. IGN called it "quirky, clever, polished, and presented with a spark of a subtly evil humor."
Originally part of Valve's The Orange Box bundle, then later a $20 standalone game, Portal is now available absolutely free. And not just for PCs, but also for Macs. (Speaking of which, be sure to check out Rich Brown's recent hands-on testing of Portal on four different Mac systems.)
The one and only string … Read more
One new wrinkle, though, is that Microsoft went with a third-party firm to develop that software. Mark/Space, which is known for its software for syncing mobile devices and the desktop, created Kin Media Sync for Microsoft.
The free software download lets users transfer music, photos, videos, and podcasts from a Mac to the Kin, though it won't work with copy-protected songs or videos purchased from iTunes.
My colleague Donald Bell wonders why Microsoft hasn'… Read more
Thumbplay Music joins an ever-expanding lineup of music services aimed to make listening on your computer or handheld device simple and effortless. It largely succeeds at this mission thanks to an uncluttered interface and an ample catalog of more than 8 million songs. The fee of $9.99 per month for unlimited music is directly in line with the median for subscription services, but a relative unknown like Thumbplay is going to have its work cut out for it convincing potential users that it's more compelling than free offerings such as Pandora.
The service is off to a good … Read more
Would you ask your entire Facebook friend base this question:
"Do these jeans make me look fat?"
I wouldn't. At seven months pregnant, everything makes me look fat. But I digress.
Diesel stores in Spain are using something called the Diesel Cam to let people take photos of themselves in potential purchases and upload them over Facebook Connect to crowdsource whether they are worthy of Diesel's hefty price tag.
I can see this going all kinds of wrong.
First off, if you ask me what I think of those jeans, I'll tell you. Publicly. On … Read more
Update: Steam for Mac is now live. You can download the client directly here. (Link fixed.)
The client download doesn't seem to have materialized just yet, but according to reports, today's the day for Valve Software to introduce an OS X-compatible version of its Steam game download service. Assuming the client file goes live at some point today, Mac owners will finally be able to enjoy the streamlined Valve service that has dominated digital gaming distribution on Windows systems since its debut in 2003.