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Michael Tsai - Blog - How Kernel Prelinking Works on macOS Catalina (or Not)
(On updating kernel extensions being broken (as of 10.15.0))

“‘When you reboot or shut down your machine, launchd stops all processes. Then it remounts the system volume in read/write mode. This is possible because launchd has the entitlement com.apple.private.apfs.mount-root-writeable-at-shutdown. Then it runs /var/install/shove_kernels to copy the new kernel.’

“But apparently this doesn’t actually work. So to update a kernel extension you need to disable System Integrity Protection or manually trigger a kernel update after booting into macOS Recovery.”
mjtsai  2019  catalina  mac  macos  osx  10.15  kernelextensions  kernel 
13 hours ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - iTunes XML and Music in Catalina
(On iTunes breaking access through its XML file:)

“According to Apple, the new Music app, which replaces iTunes, removes support for automatically syncing playlists with third-party apps using XML. XML file support is a popular organizational feature for DJs who use it to sort tracks into playlists and utilize the “Share iTunes Library XML with other applications” option to seamlessly transmit data between apps.”

[…]

“A statement from Apple initially said XML would not be supported within the app. This story has also been updated to clarify that Music supports a new method for automatically syncing playlists that third-party apps can be updated to support.”

--

“In the macOS Catalina Music app, you can no longer have this file created automatically, but you can create it manually.

[…]

“To do this, choose File > Library > Export Library, name the file, and save it.”
itunes  catalina  mac  macos  osx  2019  xml  music  10.15  mjtsai 
13 hours ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Yahoo Groups Shutting Down
(On alternatives to Yahoo Groups:)

“Groups.io seems like the best successor and is free for unlimited members, funded by
premium features. It’s already being used by apple-dev and has instructions for transferring from Yahoo and Google. Another alternative is Gaggle, which is only free up to 20 members.”
yahoogroups  2019  alternatives  mjtsai 
6 days ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - SuperDuper 3.2.5
(Hmm—it looks like Clean My Mac might be a bit bogus?)

“Previously, in order to work around problems with Clean My Mac (which, for some reason, incorrectly disables our scheduling when a cleanup pass is run, much to my frustration), we changed SuperDuper to reload our LaunchAgents when it starts, in order to self-repair.”
cleanmymac  mjtsai  2019  superduper  mac  macos  osx  software 
4 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - How to Flip an App for Profit
“Background used to be a good app. You can tell from its early reviews that its users genuinely enjoyed browsing and making use of its hand-curated selection of iPhone wallpapers. In fact, its reviews are generally positive up until late June, when an update began causing some issues. From that point on it becomes clear that Background is no longer owned or updated by its original developer. It’s been flipped.

“[…]

“The gold standard seems to be a 3-day trial that moves into a $9.99/week subscription, but there’s flexibility here, depending on precisely how evil you want to be. Make sure to hide these new payment options from your pre-acquisition users. After all, you don’t want them updating their glowing past reviews. Oh, and for those new users you’re about to acquire? Make sure it’s darn near impossible for them to find the ‘x’ to close your subscription view (or, for fun, make it completely nonfunctional!).”
mjtsai  2019  ios  software  apps  scams 
5 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Per-Build Release Notes
“Most Mac websites only report that Apple released a new Beta, but don’t mention any of the actual changes. This article is meant to save you time going through the notes to find what is new and what is still leftover from the last beta. I went through both Beta 6 and the new 10.15 Beta 7 (19A546d) release notes to find all the changes. Like usual, I also have included the entire patch notes list as an archive.”
mac  osx  mjtsai  2019  releasenotes  changelog 
7 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Mojave Finder’s Preview Column Shouldn’t Prioritize Thumbnail Size
“Mojave puts a lot of information at your fingertips in Finder windows. However, the priority given to different components isn’t currently right. In particular, too much vertical space is reserved for QuickLook thumbnails (icons).

“Even in a very deep Finder window in Column mode, a shallow QuickLook thumbnail is given so much space that you have to scroll in order to be able to see that file’s metadata and the Quick Actions bar below it. This is in a Finder window on a 5K display at ‘looks like 2880 x 1620’ mode: it gets much worse on a laptop.”

And then one of the commenters replied with this tip:

“Try selecting a file type in the Finder and choosing ‘Show Preview Options’ from the View menu. It has checkboxes to show/hide filetype-specific metadata as well as the Quick Actions.”
catalina  macos  osx  mac  2019  mjtsai  10.15 
7 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Music.app on macOS 10.15
On Catalina’s new Music app to replace iTunes:
“As I dig deeper, I find that a lot has been simplified. There are tasks I had described in my book that had multiple steps that are simpler, and there were often several ways to do something, whereas, now, there is generally just one. I find myself cutting large sections of my book’s content because of this simplification.

“I will miss the column browser; I used this tool constantly to navigate my library by Genre, then Artist, then Album. With Artist, Album, and Genres view, it’s hard to get the big picture. If you have, say, 135 Grateful Dead albums, you need to scroll through the Grateful Dead entry to find the one you want, whereas in the column browser, I could quickly scan a concise list. Or when I wanted to listen to Kind of Blue, it took a few clicks, a quick scan, and I found the album.

“The other feature I’ll miss is that in Songs view – that’s the one where you see items in a list – you can no longer display album artwork. I used that extensively, together with the column browser, as you can see above, because it’s a quick way to scan content to find what I want.”
mac  macos  osx  2019  mjtsai  catalina  itunes  music 
8 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Sidecar
“The core experience of using Sidecar is fantastic. Part of the reason is that running an iPad as a second display for a Mac with Sidecar is immediately familiar to anyone who has ever used multiple displays. The added screen real estate, portability, and functionality are part of the appeal too. Of course, there are differences that I’ll get into, but Sidecar is so close to a traditional dual-display setup that I expect it will become a natural extension of the way many people work on the Mac.”
mac  macos  catalina  2019  mjtsai 
8 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Amazon Has Ceded Control of Its Site
“In practice, Amazon has increasingly evolved like a flea market. It exercises limited oversight over items listed by millions of third-party sellers, many of them anonymous, many in China, some offering scant information.

“A Wall Street Journal investigation found 4,152 items for sale on Amazon.com Inc.’s site that have been declared unsafe by federal agencies, are deceptively labeled or are banned by federal regulators—items that big-box retailers’ policies would bar from their shelves. Among those items, at least 2,000 listings for toys and medications lacked warnings about health risks to children.”
amazon  2019  mjtsai 
8 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - The Fate of the iTunes Store in macOS Catalina
“In early betas of macOS Catalina, the iTunes Store was visible, but in recent betas it did not show up in the sidebar of the Music app if the user was signed into Apple Music. That seems to be the default now: if a user has an Apple Music account, they won’t see the iTunes Store. You can display it, if you wish, in the Music app’s Preferences, on the General pane, but if you’re a streamer, you won’t see it by default.

“You’ll note that in the screenshots on Apple’s macOS Catalina preview pages, the iTunes Store is not visible.”
itunes  itunesstore  catalina  macos  osx  mjtsai  2019 
8 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Excluding From iCloud Drive
“Today I learned that if you put a folder named “Dropbox” in your iCloud Drive, iCloud refuses to upload it. It only says “Ineligible’”
dropbox  icloud  iclouddrive  2019  mjtsai 
10 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Apple Card Exporting and Arbitration
“Basically, if you don’t reject the provision, you forfeit any public claim against Goldman Sachs. Arbitration involves an arbiter (not a judge) overseeing the case, and both parties have input into who the arbiter may be. Goldman Sachs will pay the arbitration fees and other costs.
Apple Card lets you use Business Chat to quickly contact customer support, so you can probably send them the above information to opt out.”
arbitration  applecard  creditcards  2019  apple  mjtsai 
10 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Lowercase Passwords
“Your master password should be at least 12 lowercase characters or five words. Why use lowercase characters or words when you’ve probably been told (and coerced) to use uppercase characters and symbols in the past? If you have to enter the password on a device with on on-screen keyboard (like your phone’s), each uppercase letter or symbol may require extra key presses. You can get the same security, and save yourself a great deal of frustration, by making your all-lowercase password just 30% longer than if it were mixed case. In other words, a randomly-generated 13-character lowercase password, which can be entered with 13 keystrokes, is as secure as a 10-character mixed password, which may require many more.”
mjtsai  2019  passwords  security 
12 weeks ago by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - MacUpdater 1.4.15
(Well, this looks pretty neat.)
“I have only really tried MacUpdater, and it’s become one of my essential tools to have on the Mac. I have only had a quick look Latest, and it only covers app that use the Sparkle framework plus apps that are from the Mac App Store. Sure, those are already a lot of apps covered, and it’s free, but with the license for MacUpdater you get support for apps distributed via Sparkle, MAS, Homebrew Cask, individual developer appcasts, releases via GitHub etc., and CoreCode also maintain their own database of apps, which includes apps that users have installed/updated manually… even some of my own Platypus apps have found their way into the CoreCode database. And last, but not least, you can ask CoreCode to add apps to their database, if they’ve missed some special/obscure software.”
mjtsai  2019  mac  macos  osx  software  updates 
july 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Mozilla Looking for IRC Replacement
(On Mozilla looking for an IRC replacement—)
“I really hope it will be open source and not Slack. I’m a member of the Drupal community and we are using a Rocketchat instance for our communication and it is really great. There is also a slack for Drupal but we are not paying and all the historical data gets lost after the 10k message limit.”
mozilla  irc  chat  slack  mjtsai  2019 
may 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Transparency in macOS 10.14
(On preventing Mojave from mixing in one’s desktop colors with the Finder et al.—)
“When you set the Mojave Accent Color to ‘Graphite’ (the gray dot) all the dark mode ‘blacks’ stop mixing the desktop color into everything and making muddy weird colors. In Graphite-Dark-Mode blacks are just black. When combined with Reduce Transparency things are almost tolerable.”
mojave  transparency  mjtsai  2019 
april 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Ejector 1.0
“I’m pleased to announce Ejector, an app that gives new purpose to your ⏏️ key. Without a CD drive, this key does nothing; now it shows all your mounted drives and volumes and helps you eject them.”
mjtsai  2019  mac  macos  osx  eject 
february 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - T2 Macs Have a Serious Audio Glitching Bug
“Note: switching off ‘Set… automatically’ doesn’t eliminate the issue because timed appears to still sync on occasion, even when off. There are likely other issues at play too. Unloading timed entirely fixed it for me, but not everybody.”
mac  macos  usb  audio  mjtsai  2019 
february 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Flickr Moving Away From Yahoo Logins
“In preparation for launching our new login system, we’re beginning the rollout today of the new Flickr login page. This will take some time, so hang tight if you don’t see it immediately – it’s coming!

“For now, the login page will still forward you over to Yahoo, where you’ll continue to use the same credentials as always to sign into your Flickr account. The next step in the process will take a few weeks – we’ll let each member know when it’s time to choose the email address and password you’ll use to log in to Flickr.”
flickr  mjtsai  yahoo  2019 
february 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - iMazing Leaves Setapp
(Oh, this sounds very promising!)
“Yeah, iMazing lives up to its name, has that menuItem subApp that runs in the menubar all the time, giving me battery stats, backing up all my iDevices at 1am.

“It also does ‘device bridge upgrades’ – plug old device in. Plug new from Apple Store device in. iM sees both devices and transfers all data from old device to new device. I’ve done this 5 times already, it’s GREAT.

“HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.”
iphone  mjtsai  2018  backup  migration 
january 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Continued Mac Bluetooth Problems
“Thanks to @Keith & @Sinisa also can confirm the Android File Transfer app was giving me this same issue with Bluetooth / Logitech MX Master Mouse. Not connecting after sleep. All seems fine now. Thanks!”
mac  bluetooth  macos  2019  mjtsai 
january 2019 by handcoding
IINA - The modern media player for macOS
(This looks like kind of a neat VNC-alike app for macOS.)
“Powered by the open source media player mpv, IINA can play almost every media file you have. With the support of youtube-dl and our browser extensions, you can also play a variety of online streams in IINA via one click.”
(via: https://mjtsai.com/blog/2019/01/01/iina-1-0/)

(IINA was also recommended in this thread about underrated Mac software:)
“IINA plays all video formats, and does it cleaner and simpler than VLC.”
(https://www.reddit.com/r/MacOS/comments/c1vr3c/what_applications_for_macos_are_pretty_useful_but/)
mac  macos  vlc  video  software  2019  mjtsai 
january 2019 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - OWC Dual Drive Dock USB 3.1
“I’ve had mostly good experiences with Other World Computing’s Dual Drive Dock USB 3.1 (Amazon). It’s the only USB 3 drive dock I’ve used that did not spontaneously unmount my drives. Previously, the only reliable dock I’d found was the Thunderbolt-based Highpoint RocketStor 5212. At $69, the OWC is less than half the (now reduced) price of the RocketStor and only $20 more than the adapter needed to connect the RocketStore to a modern Mac with USB-C.”
docks  backup  storage  2018  mjtsai  recommendations 
january 2019 by handcoding
Eric Schwarz on Twitter: "A good tip if you go to a gas station where they show video ads while pumping: https://t.co/ra9DKCYKkq (Althernatively, you could get your gas elsewhere next time…)"
(On muting ads at gas stations—)
“Whether your pump advertises it or not, however, there’s a handy way to shut the dang thing up. There’s an array of buttons along the side of the screen. One of these buttons (usually) mutes the ads. Which one is anyone’s guess, as different companies choose a different mute button. To figure out which one, just start at the top and start pressing each button until you find the one that gives you the blissful silence you’re looking for.”
gas  ads  cars  driving  2018  mjtsai 
december 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - ScanSnap 64-bit Software Update
From one of the comments is this tidbit about VueScan, that alternative scanning software for older ScanSnap scanners:

“Try taking a look at VueScan. They do have drivers for Fujitsu drivers, including the ScanSnap S500 https://www.hamrick.com/vuescan/fujitsu_scansnap_s500.html#technical-information

“I used VueScan with my PlusTekOpticFilm Film scanner to scan several hundred of my Dad’s old slides (plus a couple of my own color negatives) and was very satisfied with the results. I felt it was better than the software that was packaged with the scanner.

“I wrote about it a couple of times on my blog; the first entry is here: https://tedohara.net/2013/09/30/scanning-slides-with-the-plustek-opticfilm-8200/”

(And there’s also this comment:)
“Ditto that. The first time I used VueScan years ago (when someone passive-aggressively gifted me a scanner that only had Windows drivers – and VueScan worked), I stopped worrying about how good a scanner’s Mac drivers were. If VueScan supports it, you’re in business. It’s almost worth the price to save you the time trying to learn how to get first-party drivers to work.”

(And this comment too:)
“I agree with @Ted and @Ruffin. I only buy scanners supported by Vuescan. You sometimes still need a basic driver from the manufacturer so it’s not full proof, but the crap software bundled is no longer a concern.”

(And then there’s this comment that vouches for ExactScan:)
“I use ExactScan, which still supports these older scanners, as well as Fujitsu scanners which have never been supported on the Mac (I have an fi- 6140) as well as hundreds of scanners from other manufacturers. https://exactscan.com

“It supports all of the high-end features of these scanners, like duplexing, media detection, blank page detection, automatic OCR, and imprinting. You can also build out custom workflows and configurations (email, copy, PDF, etc.) It’s very well supported and one of the best pieces of software I’ve ever purchased. It breathed new life into this 9-year old, $1400 scanner.”
scansnap  2018  mjtsai  vuescan  reviews  software  mac  scanning  osx  macos  exactscan 
december 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - iOS and the Hassle of Dropping Your Wi-Fi As You Move Away From Your House
“This happens to me all the time. I’m in an app that’s attached to my home WiFi and I walk (or drive, as a passenger) away from my house. As I move further from my house, the signal gets progressively weaker and whatever app I’m in just hangs, stuck waiting for a reply from my home WiFi that’s never coming.”
ios  wifi  mjtsai  2018 
december 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Books and Calendars in Photos for Mac
“Apple started in leaning into extensions last year, but with its official announcement that it’s getting out of this category, a few other companies have finally jumped in. The result is that there are two apps—available for free from the Mac App Store—that are worth checking out if you’re interested in printing photo books or calendars from within Photos for Mac. They are Mimeo Photos and Motif. (Unsurprisingly, the companies behind both apps seem to have been past suppliers for Apple’s book-printing services… so this is their way of staying in the game.)”
apple  photos  photobooks  2018  mjtsai 
november 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Popular NPM Package Compromised
“wow, apparently the popular ‘event-stream’ npm module has been backdoored for months because the maintainer transferred the ownership rights to some unknown person”
npm  mjtsai  2018  bitcoin 
november 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Constraints on QuickLook Plug-ins
“On macOS 10.14, the QuickLook daemon applies 3 kinds of restrictions on the plugins:

“• maximum execution duration
“• maximum memory usage
“• maximum number of open file descriptors.”
mac  macos  osx  quicklook  mjtsai  2018 
november 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Arq Cloud Backup 1.0
“I like and use regular Arq, but it’s too hard for less technical users to set up. Arq Cloud Backup is a completely separate app that uses its own cloud service, like CrashPlan or Backblaze. And, like those services, you can restore files from a Web interface, which is not possible with regular Arq.

“The price is $5.99/month per computer or 1 TB.”
backup  arq  2018  mjtsai  mac  macos  osx 
october 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Spaces, Apple’s Mostly Ignored macOS Productivity Feature
(From one of the comments:)
“Settings – General – Don’t close windows when quitting an app
“actually does wonders for state restoration of windows with spaces and for spaces-based workflows in general”
spaces  mjtsai  osx  mac  macos  2018 
october 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Parallels 14
(From one of the quoted reviews:)
“As I mentioned, I’ve been using VMware Fusion since the early days (version 2), so I have become accustomed to all of its strengths and weaknesses. The first thing I noticed was how fast everything felt inside of Parallels.”

(And from one of the other quoted reviews:)
“Perhaps the most noticeable feature is that Parallels Desktop 14 is 35% faster than previous versions; and it was immediately noticeable, too. This means that existing VM’s really move. Based on my limited experience running both a Windows 7 and Windows 10 VM, I can attest to the increased speed.”
parallels  vmware  mjtsai  comparison  2018 
september 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Apple Event Sandboxing in macOS Mojave Lacks Essential APIs
“I ran into another usability challenge that Felix didn’t itemize: the problem of denying authorization to an application and then living to regret it. I guess at some point I must have hastily denied permission for Xcode (Apple’s software development app) to control the Finder. This resulted in a seemingly permanent impairment to Xcode’s ‘Show in Finder’ feature. I’m often using this feature to quickly navigate from Xcode’s interface to the Finder’s view on the same files. After denying access once, the feature has the unfortunate behavior of succeeding in activating the Finder (I guess that one is whitelisted), but failing silently when it comes to revealing the file.

“OK, that’s fine. I messed up. But how do I undo it? Unfortunately, the list of applications in the Security and Privacy preference pane is only of those that I have clicked ‘OK’ for. There’s no list of the ones that I’ve denied, and no apparent option to drag in or add applications explicitly. For this high level problem, I filed Radar #42081464: ‘TCC needs user-facing mechanism for allowing previously denied privileges.’”
mojave  mac  macos  events  eventsandboxing  mjtsai  2018 
august 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai’s collection of comments about Twitter’s #BreakingMyTwitter email
“Michael Tsai collected a variety of comments and links about the #BreakingMyTwitter changes Twitter just made that broke 3rd party Twitter clients. There’s just a ton of great reading here.”
mjtsai  loopinsight  2018  twitter 
august 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Continued Mac Bluetooth Problems
“I continue to have problems with spontaneous Bluetooth disconnections and with mouse lag that forces me to reboot. It does seem to help to either turn off Bluetooth on other Macs in the same room or to disable Handoff, but neither of those workarounds should be necessary. Everything worked fine for me until one of the early macOS 10.12.x updates.”

And from one of the comments:
“I have a bluetooth speaker, and sometimes the Mac stops being able to connect to it when it’s turned on. One thing I found that helps is to take my iPhone and try to share something (I usually use a web page) via AirDrop with the Mac. It sometimes takes two or three tries, but once AirDrop properly shows the Mac as an option, suddenly the computer will connect to the speaker.”
mac  macos  osx  bluetooth  2018  mjtsai 
august 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Page Lifecycle API
“As I was doing my research for the article, I found a lot of things that really surprised me. And I feel pretty confident in saying that most web developers aren’t aware of these things either.

“Here are my top four:

“- We shouldn’t use the unload event. Ever.
“- The unload event often doesn’t fire when closing tabs/app on mobile
“- The pagehide/pageshow events even exist (virtually no one I’ve talked to knows what they do; most people think they’re about page visibility).
“- In browsers that implement a page navigation cache, you can click a link to navigate away and then navigate back with the back button, and all your JS code is exactly as it was before you navigated.”
lifecycle  mjtsai  2018  javascript 
july 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Speeding Up WWDC Videos
“Wanna watch a lot of WWDC videos in a short time? If you’re in a web browser, on a page like this one, you can run some JavaScript to speed up videos:

“document.querySelector(‘video’).playbackRate = 1.4;
wwdc  video  mjtsai  2018 
june 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - You Are Probably Using the Wrong HDMI Cord
“There may be 13 different HDMI standards (see also https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HDMI#Version_comparison), but there are only four HDMI cable types: standard (4.95 Gbit/s), high-speed (10.2 Gbit/s), premium (18 Gbit/s) and ultra (48 Gbit/s). The differences are entirely a matter of how much bandwidth they can reliably deliver and have nothing at all to do with HDMI version numbers.

“This is because every HDMI version defines a large collection of features. Some features require more bandwidth than others. If you have a new "HDMI 2.1" device but it is only using those features that require 10.2 Gbit/s or less, then you don't need an "ultra" cable. The only people who will require that are those using high-end HDMI 2.1 features (like 8K video) that are not supported by any consumer devices at this time.”
hdmi  mjtsai  2018 
june 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Faster Swiping Between Pages
“One of the irritations is that, if you’re using a trackpad, it reloads the page each time you two-finger swipe to go back. This can be slow but also infuriating if you’re scrolling through an auto-updating webpage list, for example, because the page will reload and you’ll be thrown back to the top of the list.

“The solution is to activate three-finger back gesture—and then train yourself to make use of it. Here’s why: For reasons only known to Apple software engineers, using this gesture instead of the standard two-finger swipe means the page isn’t reloaded. It’s looks just as it did when you clicked away from it and it instantly appears without any redrawing or rendering.”
mac  safari  gestures  mjtsai  2018 
june 2018 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Copying All Your Music to Your iPhone
"There are lots of ways to copy your songs over, but in my experience there’s only one way that works reliably. (At least it does now. This would not have been true in earlier versions of iTunes.) For me, all the auto-syncing methods are unreliable. I tried again this year, resulting in multiple issues. What works best for me, thanks to that most recent iTunes update, is good old-fashioned drag and drop."
itunes  sync  2017  music  mjtsai 
november 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - iPhone X Exclusive Ringtone
"One small nicety included with the iPhone X is a new ringtone called ‘Reflection’. Until now, every iPhone has defaulted to the ‘Opening’ ringtone since iOS 7.

"‘Reflection’ is not only exclusive, but the default for fresh iPhone X setups."
itunes  ringtones  mjtsai  2017  iphone  iphonex 
november 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Movies Anywhere
"All of the movies from both services are available in the Movies Anywhere iOS app (which seems somewhat better than Apple’s TV app), as well as in the Amazon Prime Video app (which I prefer). In addition, my iTunes purchases now show up in my Amazon account on the Web and in the Amazon Instant Video app on my Blu-ray player. Presumably they would also work on a Kindle Fire or other Android tablet, if I had one. I almost can’t believe that this is possible."
movies  moviesanywhere  mjtsai  2017  mac  ios  software 
october 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - You Can’t Turn Off Spotlight on Your Time Machine Backup
"Try adding your Time Machine backup folder to the files excluded from Spotlight indexing, though, and you will be told that you cannot. If you add the whole volume to the Privacy list, then Spotlight will ignore your wish, as regards the backup folder. Not that it will admit to that, of course."
spotlight  timemachine  backups  mjtsai  2017 
october 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Bug in Skylake and Kaby Lake Hyper-threading
"This advisory is about a processor/microcode defect recently identified on Intel Skylake and Intel Kaby Lake processors with hyper-threading enabled. This defect can, when triggered, cause unpredictable system behavior: it could cause spurious errors, such as application and system misbehavior, data corruption, and data loss."
mjtsai  skylake  intel  kabylake  processors  bugs  2017 
october 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - External MacBook Pro Displays
(Hmm—this thing is actually kinda tempting.)
"I wanted a larger, portable external display for my MacBook Pro, so a few months ago I got an AOC e1759Fwu. It’s a 17-inch display with a fold-out stand that easily fits in my laptop backpack. It connects via a USB cable (no separate power connector) and, once you install the kernel extension, the Mac sees it as a regular external display (though Night Shift is not supported). It supports both portrait and landscape modes. I prefer the portrait, which at 900 × 1,600 pixels (it’s not Retina) is the same height as a 30-inch display.”

But…
"The AOC’s USB 3 connection is a big improvement over the square-SCSI SuperMac adapter that I once used to connect a color display to my monochrome PowerBook, but it does feel laggy compared with a regular display connector. The picture quality isn’t great, either: a bit fuzzy, uneven brightness, and so-so color."
macbookpro  monitors  displays  travel  mjtsai  2017 
august 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Modern Login Items
(About apps that automagically add themselves to the login sequence:)
"This code uses the ServiceManagement framework’s function called SMLoginItemSetEnabled. The first parameter in this method is a CFString containing the bundle identifier of your Helper application. The second parameter is a BOOL indicating whether the Helper should launch at login or not."
mac  osx  2015  login  startup  mjtsai 
july 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Resetting the volinfo.database
"From time to time, my SuperDuper backups fail with the error “Could not enable permissions for volume __ : please restart your Macintosh”. Unfortunately, restarting doesn’t usually help. The fix is to delete the volume information database:

sudo rm /var/db/volinfo.database

"The next time SuperDuper tries to enable ownership on the volume, the setting will stick, and SuperDuper will be able to complete the backup."
volinfo  superduper  backups  mjtsai  2017  mac  osx 
june 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - Hiya: Filter Spam Calls
"Out of desperation, I’ve tried a few of these Apps claiming to screen or block suspected spam callers as they’ve popped up in the App store. Thus far the only one I’ve found that has worked somewhat reliably is Hiya. (Glenn Fleishman writing for Macworld has a more extensive review)

[…]

"One concern of note, Hiya requires users to provide access to their contacts, a request that always makes me leery. Hiya told Macworld the data is required to add contacts to its whitelist and the information is kept private. Still, be aware. After a few months of use I’ve found Hiya overall accurate with a few bugs that have been fixed by uninstalling and reinstalling the app."
hiya  spam  calls  junk  mjtsai  2017 
january 2017 by handcoding
Michael Tsai - Blog - iCloud Calendar Spam
"One solution is to go to the settings on the iCloud Web site and change from In-app to Email notifications."
icloud  calendar  spam  2016  mjtsai 
november 2016 by handcoding

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