Tag Archives: Apple

Podcasts: “Apple Context Machine”


Podcasts – As you may have read on previous posts, I like to listen to podcasts. One that I subscribe to is “Apple Context Machine” hosted by Jeff Gamet and Bryan Chaffin from The Mac Observer. As they say on their website:

The Apple Context Machine is Mac, iPhone, and iPod news and analysis that puts the facts in perspective brought to you with a sense of humor.

This isn’t the program to learn the latest technical details of Apple products, but it does give an interesting perspective on the company and their products. It is one of the programs that I regularly listen to.

If you are interested in the world of Apple, this is a Podcast that you should try.

More Info on iCloud – Are You Using It?

I came across the PDF file “iCloud Mastered” produced by MacLife Magazine. If you are not using iCloud with your Mac and iOS devices, I recommend reading through this to see what you are missing. Even if you are using iCloud, taking a few minutes to read the four page document may be worth your time.

I use iCloud to sync and share files between my Mac Mini, MacBook Pro, iPad and iPhone. I find it extremely useful, particularly when I am traveling away from home.

macOS New App Release – Menu Calendar 1.3

Product AnnouncementsTension Software of Milano, Italy has released Menu Calendar 1.3 for macOS. Menu Calendar 1.3 the utility to make date calculation directly in the menu bar. Menu Calendar makes available under the menu bar, in any application you are running, a small calendar usable also for date calculation.

Clicking it’s icon under the menu bar not only shows a small standard calendar that you can use to navigate inside any month, it also makes available a small area under the calendar for date calculation.
You can add (or subtract) days, months, years and Menu Calendar will instantly show the resulting day.
You can also optionally select from the menu to have Menu Calendar launched any time you login inside your Mac.

If you often need to make date calculations inside other applications or simply need a menu calendar that can pop up from the menu bar at any time and instantly, Menu Calendar is for you.

Simplicity and effectiveness are the primary features of Menu Calendar.

  • You can have it always on your menu bar. Simply and effective
  • It’s fast, it pops up in a fraction of a second
  • Runs and is available with any application you run
  • You can make date calculation in a single click (no typing required)
  • Doesn’t take precious screen space
  • Sandboxed and Gatekeeper signed respecting all the Apple rules for first class macOS apps
  • Optimized for macOS 10.13 High Sierra

New in this release:

  • New improved layout
  • New buttons to add days in a click
  • Bug fixes
  • Various optimizations

System Requirements:

  • Requires macOS 10.10 or Higher
  • Optimized for macOS 10.13 High Sierra

Pricing and Availability:
Menu Calendar is just $1.99 USD (or an equivalent amount in other currencies) and is available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the Utilities category.

The Macintosh Story on Tech Stuff


As I have mentioned before I regularly listen to several podcasts. One of those I follow is Tech Stuff and I recently listened to their three-part episode on the Macintosh. These three aired on June 2, 7 and 9 of 2017 (Yeah, I am way behind on my listening). These comprise about 3 hours and 40 minutes of information on how the Apple Macintosh was conceived, how it developed and where it is today.

If you are interested in the Mac, you may want to download and listen to these three episodes.

The Secret History of the iPhone


Podcasts – I listened to episode #145 of the Internet History Podcast (I mentioned in an earlier article that this was one of the podcasts that I regularly listen to) just yesterday.  In this episode, Brian Merchant, Author of the book “The One Device: The Secret History of the iPhone” is interviewed. While the episode could not touch on all of the topics covered in the book, the podcast did reveal some interesting things about the iPhone.

If you are interested in Apple and the iPhone the podcast is something that you may want to listen to. If it peaks your interest, you will want to read the book.

macOS New app Release – PopChar X 8.2


Product Announcements – Ergonis Software of Perg, Austria has released PopChar X 8.2, an improved version of the company’s award-winning tool for finding and inserting special characters and exploring fonts. With this new release, Ergonis made a great job in enhancing and refining the recently released version 8 of PopChar X.

One of the outstanding new features of PopChar 8 is doubtlessly the possibility to create custom layouts and link fonts to preferred layouts. This allows you to design tailored layouts for particular workflow situations, which leads to even quicker access of frequently needed special characters.

PopChar 8.2 extends the notation options for custom layouts. It is now possible to add a bunch of characters with just one smart directive in the layout description. You can, for example, add all characters from a named Unicode block, or all characters that match a certain search string.

In addition to that, PopChar X 8.2 offers some fixes and workarounds for user-reported issues. Visit Ergonis Software’s website to learn more about the changes in this release and to download the new version.

For topical reasons, Ergonis Software is pleased to announce that PopChar X 8.2 is fully compatible with macOS High Sierra, which has been released by Apple just a few days ago.

PopChar solves a problem faced by every technologist and multi-lingual worker. Inserting special characters into application documents can be frustrating and results in a steady loss of productivity. With PopChar, thousands of special characters are only a few clicks away. Just pop up the PopChar window, click the desired character, and the character appears in your current document right away.

System Requirements: PopChar X 8.2 requires Mac OS X 10.6 or newer and is compatible with macOS High Sierra (10.13).

PopChar X can be purchased securely on the Ergonis Software website. The upgrade to PopChar X 8.2 is free for anyone who purchased a license for PopChar X 8 or for PopChar X 7 on or after September 1st 2016. Upgrade paths are available for owners of older licenses. For information about purchases, including enterprise licenses, volume discounts, and upgrade pricing offers, see the company’s web site. Instead of purchasing PopChar separately, customers can save money by ordering the Ergonis Productivity Bundle, which also includes the text expander Typinator and the keyboard shortcut helper KeyCue.

Thinking About Upgrading to High Sierra?

The latest version of macOS, High Sierra, is now out and we can rush to install it. Personally, I am waiting a few days to make sure there are no surprises.

Something that you might want to check before you take the plunge is the compatibility with your frequently used macOS Apps and High Sierra. Fortunately Apple World Today has compiled just such a list.

While I am sure most if not all of the issues will be eventually resolved, if you rely on one of these Apps you may want to delay your upgrade.

See my other macOS articles


Apple Publishes User Guides

Apple has released iOS 11, Watch OS 4, tvOS and macOS High Sierra. Many have already updated their devices. I have already updated my iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch.

But what are the new features? You can learn them all directly from Apple. Official User Guides are available either on the web or in iBook format. Download yours and find out the latest features.

If you downloaded an iBook User Guide for an earlier version of the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch  or Apple TV, it should update with the latest version when you open it.


Device Web link iBook link
 iPhone  Page  iBook
 iPad  Page  iBook
 Mac  Page  iBook (MacPro with Touch Bar)
 Apple TV  Page  iBook
 Apple Watch  Page  iBook


Manuals for other Apple products are available from their website.

See my other macOS and iOS articles


Will Your iPad Take iOS 11?

Tech Tips – iOS will be generally available on September 19, but not all iPads are compatible. Officially Apple declares these models compatible: all models of iPad Pro, the iPad Air 2, iPad Air, iPad 5th generation and iPad mini models 2-4 [1].


if you don’t know what model of iPad you have, you can look at the back of the iPad. At the bottom beneath iPad, in very tiny print, is your model number. I found it difficult to read, so I used the camera on my iPhone to zoom in on the text, take a photo and then read the model number through the resulting photo. Apple lists the model numbers for each iPad [2] and I identified mine as an “iPad Air 2” which is eligible for the upgrade.

What’s important in iOS 11 [2,3]?

  1. New Dock
  2. New App Switcher and Control Center
  3. Being able to open a second task (for multi-tasking) directly from the Dock
  4. The New Files App – almost a filesystem
  5. Drag and drop text, photos and files between applications
  6. A native screen recorder
  7. Improved password management
  8. iPad Pros will get document markup using the Apple Pencil
  9. Inline drawings for Notes and Mail
  10. Document scanning
  11. Indoor maps



  1. iOS 11 – A giant step for iPhone. A monumental leap for iPad.
  2. Identify you iPad Model
  3. 11 Ways iOS 11 Makes Your iPad Even Better

See my other iOS articles