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Topics - pendragon

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Tech / Steve Jobs Facebook Scam
« on: October 07, 2011, 05:36:37 AM »
FWIW: PandaLabs is reporting-

"Some cybercriminals created a Facebook page called "R.I.P. Steve Jobs", and innocent people have been joining by the thousands. In just a few hours it had more than 90,000 fans. Criminals published a link using the popular shortener service, where they said that Apple will be giving away 50 iPads.
  Of course all the stuff is a scam, and once you click to that URL (which ended with "restinpeace-steve-jobs") you were redirected to a place where you are offered a number of gifts, such as iPads, Sony Bravia TVs. For that they ask for your information, such as Full Name, Address, Phone Number, e-mail address, etc.
  Facebook has closed the page and has done the same with their link. There are some really interesting statistics that I'd like to show you. Out of those > 90,000 fans, 25,669 clicked in the link provided by the criminals!"

Perhaps others know additional detail re this report. I am not a FaceBook subscriber and generally question the veracity every blog, ergo the FWIW caveat. However, I do believe there are some clever & devious cretins running loose. Thus a bit of caution when surfing is most prudent. (IMNHO).

Tech / 10.6.8 Combo Overwrites Safari v5.1 with v5.0.5
« on: August 20, 2011, 09:01:59 AM »
I have seen almost no publicity about this, so...

If you've used the Snow Leopard Combo, you may need/want to download and (re)install the Safari v5.1 standalone.

(Thanks to Artie 505 at Fine Tuned Mac for bringing this to my attention.)

Tech / FireFox 6.0
« on: August 13, 2011, 07:24:04 PM »
This site has the link, second paragraph.

If it's faster than Safari, I dunno. But it is fast, much faster that 5.x (IMNHO). I get a score of 97 on the Acid3 Test. If it matters, Safari gets 100.

Tech / Lion Application Compatibility Chart
« on: February 26, 2011, 09:01:02 AM »

Tech / Wanna launch an app in a different language?
« on: October 15, 2010, 08:39:31 AM »
TinkerTool System will do that!

And a bunch more (shareware, $14.00 US).


Tech / 10.6.4 Combo Updater
« on: June 15, 2010, 03:58:16 PM »
Here ya go-
10.6.4 Combo (about 785MB)

The incremental update available via Software Update is about 315.5 MB.

In addition to general operating system fixes that enhance the stability, compatibility and security of Mac systems, Apple said it includes fixes that:

• resolve an issue that causes the keyboard or trackpad to become unresponsive
• resolve an issue that may prevent some Adobe Creative Suite 3 applications from opening
• address issues copying, renaming, or deleting files on SMB file servers
• improve reliability of VPN connections
• resolve a playback issue in DVD Player when using Good Quality deinterlacing
• resolve an issue editing photos with iPhoto or Aperture in full screen view
• improve compatibility with some braille displays

The latest update for Mac OS X also includes Safari 5, released last week with extensions, expanded HTML5 support, and the new Reader functionality.

Additional details here, ya hear? toothgrin.gif

Tech / How to remove Classic from an old PB
« on: June 09, 2010, 02:46:18 PM »
I have an old Lombard PB 10.3.9 that I am going to give to a granddaughter.

The PB also has Classic on it that I want to purge as she will need the HD space.

If I recall correctly, I can do this by:
1. Deleting Applications (OS 9)
2. Deleting the System Folder, NOT the "System" (that has the X on it).

Is that  correct?  Thinking.gif

Tech / Japanese Plugins
« on: April 05, 2010, 06:43:23 AM »
Included with the are three plugins (size varies) that you probably don’t need, well, unless you know Japanese:
1. Shogakukan Daijisen.dictionary (44.8MB)
2. Shogakukan Progressive English-Japanese Japanese-English Dictionary.dictionary (66.9MB)
3. Shogakukan Ruigo Reikai Jiten.dictionary (5MB)

Even if one uses a foreign language package remover, these plugins may remain.

It is safe to delete them, but if you are wary, they may moved to a new location in case you need to return them whence they came. Of course, there'll be no savings that way, but you may feel more secure while verifying the safety of my counsel.

Not a big savings, but every 116MB helps…

The location of these plugins is: Computer/Library/Dictionaries

Tech / iPad now on the Nav Bar
« on: March 20, 2010, 04:55:08 AM »
Not exactly a major event, but for those that follow this sort of thing...


Tech / Sound & Brightness Tip
« on: March 04, 2010, 10:46:40 AM »
Did you ever notice that when adjusting the sound (or brightness) that the “steps” are too great and what you really want is something in between?

Well, then this tip is for you-

Hold down the Option and Shift key when pressing the sound or brightness buttons. Then, rather than whole steps increments, the increase or decrease will be in quarter steps.

Tech / Meteorologist
« on: February 23, 2010, 10:32:52 AM »
Here ya go:
Meteorologist 1.4.9

Community / Snow Leopard Features
« on: July 24, 2009, 05:42:40 AM »
In jest, I created the following “Unreleased Features Of Snow Leopard”. Some of the features may have merit, but many (most?) others are merely the result of too much cooking sherry.

Still, I was (pleasantly) surprised when some of those I sent it to believed I had violated my NDA.

Perhaps you too can have a bit of fun with it.

Snow Leopard Features (Unreleased)

In addition to those features already leaked (new Finder, Put Away, more crash tolerant, faster, runs cooler, stronger security, Safari 4.2, integrated SPAM protection, dynamic 64 bit integration, etc.), Snow Leopard (SL) is almost certain to include the following heretofore unpublished features:

1. Finder has been significantly changed:

a. The Secure Erase in Finder now has the option to erase the file path. Also, you can now securely erase all free space on the HD.

b. Scroll bars can now be placed on the left, right, or both sides of a window. Also, each scroll bar can be the color of your choice.

c. The size/names/titles in the Menu Bar can be changed & colored to your choice for every application.

d. The old app/Haxie by Unsanity, “Magic Menu”, is back. Not exactly, but the functionality of it has returned. Merely navigate to the menu you want changed/modified, and then click on your modifier/short cut keys. Should you later wish to revert to the original settings, there is a “Revert to default settings”. Should there be an Apple conflict, you’ll be advised with an Alert, and won’t be able to do it. There are a few remaining bugs with “foreign” keyboards, but this should be resolved by SN release. Of course, the preferred language must match the keyboard.

e. All windows can now be Window Shaded (just like Stickies) and Labels can be colored much as they were in the Labels X. Haxie. Not surprisingly, Unsanity has notified Apple of a copyright infringement. Apple claims their code is original & much different; and plans to proceed. Watch for a (nuisance) lawsuit.

f. Finder will have 3 clipboards.

g. Finder will have, at least, 3 (possible) Docks; maybe more.

h. If you have enough HD space and ~ 8GB RAM (details unclear) you can reformat, and partition the startup drive on the fly and without losing the data/contents of the drive.

2. On start up, after the blue screen, the camera comes on so you can watch yourself watching the rest of the start up (this option can be disabled). While this does not presently meet high security standards, facial recognition can be used to enable (or preclude) full system start up. It is probable (but not certain) that NSA fully compliant optical-bio-metric security will arrive with 10.6.1 (Spring 2010). The hang-up here seems to be with NSAs testing & certification.

3. As part of the security enhancements, should some unauthorized person try to log on to your computer and fails the optical/facial recognition or PW after 3 attempts, the computer can call your iPhone (or any iPhone you designate) and send either a text message, email, or voice mail of your creation. As expected, this only works with iPhones (until it’s hacked of course).

4. You can send the print command to multiple printers simultaneously and create print groups for future use. Also, each printer can have its own/unique print configuration.

5. Mail, iCal, Address Book, and iCom (a new app, see below) have been combined in to the iCom application.

6. The computer can function as a telephone, or fax, similar to Skype (no separate phone line required). Merely select iCom from the Applications folder, select your carrier (settings can be saved) and then dial the desired number (including an iPhone) from your keypad (or auto select from Address Book). There is unlimited potential for an iPhone, or other smart phone, accessing and controlling your Mac. Be sure to manage your passwords and  firewall settings. You can receive calls & faxes as well (the computer senses whether the incoming call is voice or fax-data) On-going sounds, from iTunes, movies, etc. will be automatically paused & muted for incoming or outgoing calls and restarted at termination. The ring tones can be changed/customized to distinguish them from your other phones & faxes. Most major carriers (AT&T, T-Mobile, Quest, Verizon, Sprint, Bell South, and others) support this feature. Apple is aggressively adding new carriers, but this feature is not yet available outside the US. Note: your carrier may have a surcharge for using this feature (about $10.00 per month) Details, costs, etc. are still being resolved. The FCC, Dept. Of Homeland Security, CIA, NSA, and FBI all have concerns with this, so capabilities/features may change. Microsoft and Dell are also muddying the waters. No word yet if Google will enter the fray. Unofficially, the White House has supported this technology initiative (thanks to A. Gore?). Apple claims this will be a great help to the medical community in converting their records from paper to digital. Stay tuned.

7. In Mail/iCom when you delete an account, all old mail (even POP accounts) remains in a folder called “Previous Mail--(with name of old account)”. You can then import your old email in to your new account or drag & drop the various folders in to the respective new account folders.

8. Documents cut & pasted in to Mail/iCom will no longer lose their original formatting (provided the font is in iCom). All major text applications are supported.

9. Envelopes, of varying sizes, can now be printed directly from iCom. US, Canadian, and most European address bar codes are supported.

10. The Home folder can no longer be moved or name-changed/modified without Root access.

11. A self-diagnosis feature (new app called iDoctor) is included, it’s like an FSCK & Safe Boot, but more robust. No word yet on whether it will obviate the need for Disk Warrior). This feature can also be scheduled. Permission Repair and Verify Disk have been moved to iDoctor. Many application (or its alias) specific “repairs/verifies” such as those found in Keychain, Mail, iChat etc. will also be in or accessible via iDoctor. iDoctor will be in the System Preferences

12. iPhones (v3.2 or higher) will now be able to backup, their entire system a-la CCC or SuperDuper. Of course, these backups can be scheduled. Restores will be just as easy as they are with CCC or SuperDuper. There will be a new setting in System Preferences/Sharing to allow iPhone syncing over any internet connection. Sharing will be similar to the present Internet Sharing, but will only allow your designated iPhone(s) to sync with your host/home/office computer. PC users will also have this capability and will require XP or greater (specific details/requirements are unclear). This new capability is called “iGotYourBack”. Backing up via WiFi is not (presently) included, ostensibly due to security concerns, but no doubt some third party will produce the interface/capability

13. For those with a .Mac account, there is an additional subscriber service (about $100.00 annually) that keeps your Mac in top operating condition. Via Remote Access, various tests/analyses are run weekly (or more often if directed by iDoctor) and fixes, as necessary, are made by trusted & bonded Geniuses. Note: you will need to open your firewall (and PithHelmet) to permit this service.  If you’re still covered by Apple Care or have this service, and are having problems, you can call Apple and the genius will fix your problem while you watch. Hardware failures are not covered unless otherwise covered by Apple Care. Note: As of now, only available in the US.

14. Blu-ray playback and burning is now included. Also, when a CD or DVD is inserted, you will not only have the option to begin playing, repeat, etc,, but when the CD or DVD is finished playing, it can be ejected.

15. SL will support a new Quicken (now called “MonetaryMac”; not included) that contains nearly all the same features as the PC version. The new Quicken will be cross-platform compatible with most PCs, much as Word, Power Point, & Excel are cross platform compatible (finally). Additionally, it will support multiple currencies. This will be most helpful to “overseas” users and those who trade/conduct business in international markets. No word yet re which languages & currencies will be supported, but, for example, it is likely that if the German language is supported, the Mark will be an available currency.

The significance of this is that SL will (finally) contain the “hooks” that make it easier for developers to make their apps cross-platform. Gamers should be thrilled.

FWIW: Intuit will (finally) introduce Med Life, a new application that tracks, charts, etc., medical/dental data: prescriptions, bills, payments, insurance, Medicare, claims, etc. Product is similar/based on the PC counterpart.

16. The tabs in Safari can be colored and named as you desire, e.g., red=read, blue=not read, green=open/active, etc.

17. SL will include an Uninstall, similar to AppZapper, Amnesia, etc.

18. Sleep issues have (finally) been solved. Enhanced sleep scheduling is included). Similar to iBeeZz.

19. Outgoing communications can be blocked a-la Little Snitch.

20. Contents from Alert boxes can be saved.

21. SL will contain its own “Print Center Repair”.

22. The spell checker in Mail/iCom will contain an Unlearn (finally).

23. Sharing of calendars will be much easier. .Mac membership is no longer required.

24. Typing can be done vertically (top to bottom) or from right to left to support Asian or Middle Eastern languages. Appropriate language and keyboard required.

25. In Garage Band v5.x, you sing it/play it, and GB will “listen” and score it for you in real time and include the lyrics (only in English at this time). Better (external) microphones (for stereo) are suggested, but not required.

26. The windows in iChat/Video can be enlarged to full screen view without them becoming pixilated. Not supported on all machines. Details TBD, but most likely an advanced graphics card is required (NVIDIA GeForce GT 130 512MB or better).

27. During the install of SL, there is a Custom Install option to select which localizations you desire (similar to languages & printers). Henceforth all future app installs will only install those localizations you selected. Thus, no need for Monolingual, TinkerTool System, and the like.

28. SL contains AutoWrite (a new app replacing Text Edit). Much like the Text Edit of old, but with Auto Correct, Auto Fill, Auto Text, and Auto Format (similar to Word, but much easier to use and customize). These capabilities will be available throughout SL (should be a big help in Mail/iCom).

29. For the bilingual, Mail/iCom will contain a drop down menu that allows one to select which language they wish to use (of course, those languages and keyboards must be included at the time of SL install). Also (as an example) if you have English and Spanish as options, your dictionary & thesaurus will be an English-Spanish dictionary. As of now, one of the languages must be English. Multilingual (more than 2 languages) support is expected in SL 10.6.1 (Spring 2010).

30. SL will feature a slightly more capable Archive Utility that can handle more formats and password-protected archives. Not as capable as StuffIt Deluxe, but more capable than StuffIt Expander. Appears to be very similar to the freeware Unarchiver.

31. After the initial SL install, a Help dialog appears that helps (especially the nubees) one to setup some of the System Preferences, Security/Network/LAN, Firewall, creating new Users, and establishing parental controls.

32. Spotlight archiving time is much faster (about 25%) and the fetch time is also faster (about 20%).

33. iChat will handle as many on-going chats as your machine and ISP will allow (no longer limited to three). Quad core processors, 8GB RAM, Fibre Channel card, and a graphics 3x NVIDA GeForce GT 120 512MB card are the minimum required. More is better. Lesser machines may still work, but will not be supported. Get out your plastic (and second mortgage).

34. Time Machine backups are now bootable.

35. The built-in camera can sense differing/ambient light conditions and adjust your display accordingly. A preference allows one to set the bright-dim extreme/parameters. Initial feedback is very positive, especially from those with glossy displays.

36. If you have administrative privileges, when you run Software Update, it will check all volumes on your LAN, even if they are running different OSs & applications. You can then allow it to update all machines simultaneously. No definitive word yet on the ultimate limit to LAN size, but 5 machines or 25 volumes is the maximum for now. Note: Third party developers are already working on uncapping the size limit.

37. Safari will (finally) have a preference to sort bookmarks alphabetically, chronologically, or manually.

38. Many other changes, fixes, and enhancements are under the hood.

Nearly all of the above features are still being tweaked, so expect changes. Also, it is likely that not all features will work on all machines. Note: The development of Snow Leopard is done on "clean" Macs, so what third party apps will conflict is still TBD.
Enjoy! rolleyes.gif

2009 / Mail Users, Rich Text or Plain Text?
« on: May 08, 2009, 08:16:33 AM »
Mail offers the default option/preference to use Plain Text or Rich Text.

I am of a mixed mind on this issue and wonder what Mail users (and others who have a choice) recommend and why they made the decision they did.

Your thoughts, musings, and suggestions are most welcome.

2009 / Adobe/JavaScript Vulnerability (again)
« on: May 03, 2009, 08:28:52 AM »
Adobe Reader JavaScript Handling Remote Code Execution.

Affected: Adobe Acrobat Reader versions 9.1 and prior.

Description: Adobe Acrobat Reader is Adobe's viewer for the Portable Document Format (PDF). It contains a flaw in its handling of JavaScript scripts embedded in PDF documents. A specially crafted document containing a malicious script could exploit this vulnerability, and leverage it to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the current user. PDF documents are often opened upon receipt without first prompting the user. A proof-of-concept for this vulnerability is publicly available and it is believed that this vulnerability is being exploited in the wild.

Status: Vendor confirmed, no updates available. Users are advised to disable JavaScript processing in PDF documents, if possible.

Following is a thumbnail that may help some in changing their Reader preferences.

2009 / Sounds of a failing hard drive
« on: January 25, 2009, 09:10:26 AM »
The folks at Data Cent have posted a collection (by mfgr.) of the sounds various hard drives make when they are failing. Of course, should you be so unfortunate as to hear such, waste no time in making a backup (or two).

Details and additional data are here.

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