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Mac OS X Yosemite quirks

Last Updated - Saturday, 22 November 2014

Mac OS X Mavericks wasn't a great experience for me. Understandably perhaps, my April 2008 iMac seemed to struggle with the OS. The update to Mac OS X Yosemite does nothing to improve upon the experience, but now the spinning beachball or interface delays seem to be the norm for me.

OK, a 6-year-old iMac with no additional memory added is (possibly) likely to struggle...and I had been contemplating getting a new iMac (which I will be doing with the Retina iMac announced), but I never expected to be sitting at my iMac waiting for what I consider to be basic interface changes to happen.

Fetching new arch nemesis! Sometimes it can take up to 30 seconds for this pop-up menu to populate. Sometimes it never does or it is quicker to try again...but I would have assumed that the Mac would gradually build up these options and store them, but it doesn't seem to. Instead, this menu is re-populated anew every time by the looks of things!?

Here now is a non-exhaustive look at some of the quirks I have noticed with the most recent version of OS X released. Some of these are interface issues, some are interaction issues and others are just frustrating quirks I can't wait to see resolved.

iOS 7 peeves

Last Updated - Thursday, 10 October 2013

iOS 7 is a radical overhaul of the performance, look and feel, and way that you interact with your iOS device. It moves away significantly from previous version of the iOS, bringing with it differing ways to interact with your iOS device. The UI/UX changes are severe in many cases. Apple has moved away from the approach of small incremental changes to iOS with each update, with a significant change that is not to everyone's liking.

I confess I haven't really got used to iOS 7 yet, but I'm sure that I will. I'm not saying whether I like it or not in this article...but instead, focus on some iOS peeves that have me frustrated or just simply surprised by what I consider (in some instances) bugs. Here goes...

Clean My Mac 2

Last Updated - Wednesday, 01 May 2013

After a 2 year hiatus from writing a review of Mac software (due to being under a "non-compete" with the sale of my Mac and iPhone websites) I was keen to get stuck in to try CleanMyMac 2.0 from MacPaw. I'm generally not a fan of commercial applications designed to check the state of my Mac and I am certainly not a fan of some companies that saturate the web with advertising trying to get us to buy these types of applications. But MacPaw isn't the guilty party in this instance and the software looked impressive when I first spotted the announcement.

There are in fact many free alternatives out there to products like this, but they come in varied forms of user-friendliness and functionality. At the same time, many of these applications launch scripts or commands that you could take time to learn and execute yourself...but with CMM2 and in particular it's promise to clean up iPhoto libraries and look for large unused files, I bought a license before even trialling it. That decision was partly due to the half-price launch sale (the software usually sells for $40 USD), but also due to the great exchange rate at the time. I was also intrigued to see that the application had an "Uninstaller" feature (to help you remove other applications cleanly) and the intriguingly named "Extensions Manager", which I was keen to look at and see if it had any similarities to what we used to have within Mac OS 9 and earlier.

Notes on Mountain Lion (OS X 10.8)

Last Updated - Sunday, 19 January 2014

Please note this is not a review and is not intended as a guide in any way shape or's just some random notes on things I discovered whilst getting ready to install Mountain Lion and on starting to use it.

Getting Ready

1. You should look at this page on How to Make a Bootable OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion USB Install Drive or look at this application (Lion Disk Maker) before you install Mountain Lion. I prefer to have a DVD of each OS to keep and so first tried Lion Disk Maker but it failed to function (note, it was a release candidate version of the app and appears to have had one update since I tried) so I ended up taking the more hands-on approach to burn a DVD. You'll need a dual layer (8Gb) DVD and be warned that the DVD is very slow to boot up once you create you might want to consider the USB stick approach instead.

2. Screen Casts Online has created a superb free to view tutorial about Installing OS X Mountain Lion that I urge you to watch before hand

3. As always, Ars Technica has an incredibly detailed review of Mountain Lion. Interestingly, the author has also posted details on other ways you can view the review and support him and the site. The ePub version is a massive 117 pages long and worth every cent!

4. Roaring Apps have also updated their superb Application Compatibility Chart

5. If you really want to keep up-to-date with all your software, I recommend the superb AppFresh for checking if there are updates available to software. It seems to catch more updates than CNET's TechTracker, although both sometimes show inaccurate updates. AppFresh has just turned commercial it would seem and is for sale at $9.99 USD at the moment....I think that's a bit much, but the exchange rate makes it great at the moment.