How to Use Shortcuts to Automate macOS Monterey

Apple has had a long history of automation tools on the Mac. From AppleScript, first added to the System 7 in 1993, through Automator, released with Mac OS X 10.4 in 2007, tools for automating repeated actions have saved Mac users a great deal of time. AppleScript requires that users learn a scripting language while Automator uses a drag-and-drop interface.

Apple brought automation to iOS in 2018 with Shortcuts, and now, with macOS Monterey, Shortcuts is coming to the Mac.

In this article I’ll explain how Shortcuts work, and show you how you can leverage this app to save time on your Mac.

Read the rest of the article on The Mac Security Blog.

The iPod at 20 – How the Portable Music Player Laid the Foundation for Today’s Apple

n 2001, Apple was just getting out of the rut it had been in for many years. Steve Jobs’ return in 1997 led to the iMac, released the following year, that changed the way people looked at personal computers. When the 1999 iMac came in “5 flavors,” computers could be fun.

Financially, the company was starting to come back from a fallow period. Microsoft’s $150 million investment in Apple, in 1997, partly a settlement of patent infringements, bolstered the company for a while, but Apple’s ambitions were big. Apple started selling products through the company’s own online store in November of that year, a decision that would prove profitable, leading to the juggernaut that is Apple’s current direct-to-customer retail machine.

2001 saw the introduction of iTunes (January), the creation of Apple retail stores (the first one opened in May), the introduction of Mac OS X, the biggest change to the Mac’s operating system in a decade (Mac OS X 10.0 was released in March, but the first truly viable version of OS X was 10.1, which came in September), and then, on October 23, 2001, Apple introduced the iPod.

This portable digital music player revolutionized personal computing, and helped Apple build the company as we know it today.

Read the rest of the article on The Mac Security Blog.

Intego Mac Podcast, Episode #210: Apple’s New MacBook Pros, Really for Pros

Google removes FTP from Chrome; a journalist looks at a state website’s source code and the governor brands him a “hacker”; Facebook is in trouble, and plans to change its name, sort of; and we look at Apple’s new MacBook Pros, that really are for pros.

Follow the The Intego Mac Podcast, which I co-host with Josh Long. We talk about Macs and iOS devices, and how to keep them secure.

Write Now with Scrivener, Episode no. 6: Elizabeth Haynes, Thriller Author

Having worked as a police intelligence analyst in the UK, Elizabeth Haynes knows a lot about crime. She has written a half dozen novels, all of which she started during NaNoWriMo.

Read more on the Scrivener Blog.

Learn more about Scrivener, and check out the ebook Take Control of Scrivener.

If you like the podcast, please follow it in Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcast app. Leave a rating or review, and tell your friends. And check out past episodes of Write Now with Scrivener.

Apple Goes Pro in Second Homegrown Silicon Salvo

Apple has announced the second wave of Macs running Apple silicon, and has introduced two MacBook Pro models running faster chips than the M1 that Apple introduced last year. The company also announced third-generation AirPods, which offer spatial audio, and new colors for the HomePod mini. Apple announced that macOS Monterey will ship next week. And the company gave some clues about where it’s going in the coming years.

Read the rest of the article on The Mac Security Blog.

Apple Watch Series 7 Review: A Larger Display, but No Essential Changes

If you put the latest Apple Watch and last year’s model side by side, you’d be hard pressed to spot the difference. With the new case a mere one millimeter taller – 41 and 45 mm. vs. 40 and 44 mm. – it takes an eagle eye to tell them apart. (The new one is on the right in the photo below.)

Aside from the new size, some new color options, and what Apple claims is a more robust device, there are few differences between the Series 6 and this year’s version, and this incremental upgrade isn’t for everyone.

Read the rest of the article on The Mac Security Blog.

PhotoActive Podcast, Episode 103: Posing People with Lindsay Adler

Does the thought of posing subjects for portraits make you nervous? Our guest this week is fashion and portrait photographer Lindsay Adler, whose book The Photographer’s Guide to Posing will calm your nerves and give you the tools to make beautiful photos of people. Lindsay talks about how she prepares for a portrait shoot, techniques to encourage great poses, working with everyday people compared to working with models, and much more.

Find out more, and subscribe to the podcast, at the PhotoActive website. You can follow The PhotoActive on Twitter at @PhotoActiveCast to keep up to date with new episodes, and join our Facebook group to chat with other listeners and participate in photo challenges and more.

Intego Mac Podcast, Episode #209: What the heck is Apple doing??

Apple has released a security update for an actively exploited vulnerability, but only for iOS 15, not iOS 14? What are they doing? We also discuss how Apple sometimes offers security updates for older versions of macOS, but not always.

Follow the The Intego Mac Podcast, which I co-host with Josh Long. We talk about Macs and iOS devices, and how to keep them secure.

Kirk’s Picks No. 21 – The Oxford Lieder Festival [music]

The Oxford Lieder Festival is streaming more than 100 concerts, and you can watch live or on demand.

Theme music: Honest Labor, composed and performed by Timo Andres.

If you enjoyed the podcast, follow it on Apple Podcasts or in your favorite podcast app. For show notes and links to my pick, go to kirkville.com/picks. You can support this podcast by purchasing items via my affiliate links, or you can sign up for my Patreon and donate a few bucks a month.