Tag Archives: OS X

macOS New App Release – Keep It 1.3


Product AnnouncementReinvented Software of Swansea, United Kingdom has released Keep It 1.3, which adds iCloud folder sharing, PDF annotation, focus on folders, and the ability to edit saved searches, plus improvements to notes, the info view, and more. Keep It is the successor to Together, a brand new app that preserves the very best of its predecessor, but recast for today and the future.

Keep It is a notebook, scrapbook and organizer, ideal for writing notes, saving web links, organizing documents, and finding them again. Available on Mac, iPad and iPhone, Keep It is the destination for all those things you want to put somewhere, confident you will find them again later.

Keep It 1.3 adds iCloud folder sharing, where any top-level folder can now be shared with other Keep It users via iCloud. This version can also focus the sidebar on any folder that contains other folders, bundles or saved searches, hiding all other folders not in the hierarchy, making it ideal for focusing on particular projects.

Keep It 1.3 now allows saved searches to be edited. Complex searches can either be created by combining suggestions in the search field, or both created and edited using a rule-based editor that allows for more options, such as finding all items with dates in a particular period (e.g. the last 7 days), untagged or unlabelled items. In addition, saved searches can now be nested in the folders they target. Saved searches can be created and edited on both Mac and iOS.

It’s now possible to add highlights in a variety of colors to PDF documents, and notes to those highlights. There is a new “Where” line that can be shown in the Info view to see the path of the folder in which an item is stored, along with any bundles that contain the item. When highlighting text in notes, there is now the same choice of highlight colors as in PDFs, and it’s now possible to drag other items to a note to insert a clickable link to the item.

About Keep It:
Pretty much anything can be added to Keep It, including notes, web links, rich and plain text documents, PDFs, images, or any other kind of file, using drag and drop, its share extension, the Services menu, or a browser bookmarklet. Keep It can also create new files of any type from stationery, and uses iCloud to make everything available across your devices and to share folders and items with others.

Keep It has all the organization tools you could need, including folders, tags, colored labels, and bundles. Keep It stores everything you add as files in folders that you can access in the Finder on Mac or the Files app on iOS 11, and open in other apps for editing. Saving files to these folders will automatically add them.

Building on Together, just about everything in Keep It has been improved or streamlined to work consistently across Mac and iOS, while taking advantage of each platform’s unique strengths. Keep It’s innovative tag filter that can drill down through combinations of related tags, and works in conjunction with search, which offers suggestions and makes it easy to combine terms. Keep It for Mac’s Compact Mode reduces the app to a single column, ideal for using as a floating window, or alongside another full screen app in split view, as you would on iPad.

Keep It for Mac 1.3 requires macOS 10.12 Sierra or later, and is available as a 15-day trial. A license for Keep It for Mac costs $49.99 (USD), and will include all Keep It Version 1.x updates. Together 3 users can purchase a $24.99 upgrade, or get a free copy if Together 3 was purchased during its final 6 months on sale. Keep It is also available on the Mac App Store, also with a free trial, and a choice of one-time purchases to buy Keep It, upgrade from Together, along with monthly or yearly subscriptions. Keep It for iPad and iPhone is available separately with either monthly ($1.49) or yearly ($9.99) subscriptions.


macOS New App Release – Time Out 2.4


Product AnnouncementDejal Systems of Portland, Oregon, LLC has released Time Out 2.4, an important update to their popular break reminder app for macOS. This free app sits in the background tracking the last time the user took a break. At regular intervals, it reminds users to take a short respite from their current tasks. Users can take the time to stand, stretch, and move around a bit, in order to refresh themselves. They can also schedule both long and short breaks, offering flexibility for the user’s own personal preferences.

Time Out offers two types of breaks by default. A “Normal” break by default will occur every hour, lasting for 10 minutes each time. This allows users to get up, move about, stretch, and even take a quick restroom break. “Micro” breaks occur every 15 minutes, lasting for a short 15 second period. This gives users the opportunity to adjust their posture, look away from the screen, and relax their focus. Both types of breaks are adjustable, and can be delayed, disabled, or deleted by the user at any time. Users can also add their own custom breaks, of any delay and length, and at any specific time. This feature is handy for reminders about fixed breaks such as lunch, or mid-morning and mid-afternoon breaks.

When a break is due, Time Out slowly dims the screen, and displays a customizable break theme. During the break, the app’s progress bar displays the remaining break time, and also offers optional buttons to allow a break to be postponed or skipped, if needed. Once the break is over, the break screen then fades, allowing the user to return to work. Time Out then begins marking off the time until the next scheduled break.

“It’s very easy for users to fall into bad habits when using a computer for hours on end. People strive to complete their tasks on time, pushing themselves to the limit,” says Time Out developer David Sinclair. “The human body just isn’t built to sit in one spot for hours at a time, staring at a monitor and typing at a keyboard. That’s why I created Time Out. It offers a gentle and customizable way to remind users to take much needed breaks, reducing stress and increasing their productivity.”

Time Out has an option to show the time until the next break in the menu bar. By clicking the timer, users can access the app’s preferences, allowing them to make quick adjustments to the app’s settings if needed.

Version 2.4 further extends the enhancements to the postpone and skip options introduced in version 2.3, including a new option to disable those buttons for a few seconds at the start of each break. You may find this helpful if you are habitually clicking the Postpone or Skip buttons, without taking a moment to decide if you really need to defer the break. It’s common to see the start of the break as an unwelcome interruption… but you installed the app in the first place because you recognized that you need to take regular breaks for your health and wellbeing. You can activate this option to give you a few seconds to make a more mindful decision.

Another much-requested change in this release is the ability to customize the time to detect natural breaks, i.e. how long the computer is idle.

Something that might help in deciding how you’re doing in taking breaks is a new Statistics feature. This is within the Activity section, and includes the number of times you’ve postponed, skipped, or done breaks, and the total time spent in breaks. These amounts will start being calculated in version 2.4, so take a look after a few days. It also includes a fascinating line chart, for a graphical representation (see below).

Plus a number of other enhancements and fixes.

The app offers several break themes, which use web standards such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, so users can customize the themes as they like. Themes can also make use of local web pages, or even pages from sites on the internet, so the amount of customization available is almost unlimited.

Customization doesn’t end with appearance; Time Out can also be set to perform various actions before, during, or after a break. The app can display a notification, speak text, play a sound, or even run an Automator or AppleScript action. All actions can be chained, allowing users to set as many, or as few actions as they prefer. What’s more, these actions can be set to execute at any time, be it just before a break, after a break starts, just before a break ends, or after it’s over. A number of useful scripts are included with the app, and custom scripts created by Time Out users are also available for download from the Time Out website.

The Preferences window allows users to view the breaks and their options, and it includes buttons along the top to quickly add a break, pause all breaks, postpone or skip the upcoming break, or get help. Users can also post about the app on Facebook and Twitter, as well as visit the Dejal social media pages.

Color-coded labels can be applied to any break to visually indicate which type of break is due next. Users can also view when the break is next due, how long ago the last break was, and also use hover buttons to start, postpone, disable, skip, or delete a break. Users can also apply and edit a global keyboard shortcut to immediately start a specific break. Other options include scheduling features that set the length of a break, how often it occurs, what time of day it occurs, and even the next date and time it is due to occur.

One customization option that will be especially useful for corporate users is the ability to add any app to an Exclusions list that tells Time Out to not allow break reminders when any app included in the list is open, or is the frontmost app. This option is particularly handy when users are performing such tasks as FaceTime calls, viewing videos, or making presentations.

Time Out keeps users at their best. It reminds them to make better use of their time by taking regular breaks in order to remain mentally sharp, productive, and healthy. Version 2.4’s new features make creating, scheduling, and controlling regular breaks an easy-to-include part of any workday.

System Requirements:

  • macOS Yosemite (10.10) or later; ready for High Sierra (10.13)
  • 64-bit Processor
  • 13.8 MB

Time Out 2.4 is free, and is available worldwide through the Mac App Store in the Health and Fitness category, as well as the Dejal website. Advanced features are available via easy in-app donations.

Keyboard Shortcuts – Shutdown System


A keyboard shortcut that I use all the time with my MacBook is the shutdown command. The keyboard sequence in the case is:
CTL + OPT + CMD + eject.

I use this to quickly shut down my MacBook when I have finished working on it. This doesn’t save a huge amount of time, but again it is one of those quick keyboard sequences that will save you a few seconds each time you use it. Every little bit helps when you are trying to make your day more productive.

See my other Mac and Keyboard Shortcut articles


macOS New App Release – Mellel 4.1


Product AnnouncementMellel of Tel Aviv, Israel , a developer of word processing technology for professional and long-form writers, is announcing the release of Mellel 4.1. Now available to Mac and iPad users. It offers several new features and a long list of enhancements that give writers, editors, academics, and authors a better avenue to write and manage long and oftentimes complex content such as books and academic research.

Mellel 4.1 is now able to smoothly import native MS Word DOCX, addressing one of the main requests of the company’s more than 100,000 customers who rely on Mellel with a cultish fervor.

“We’ve been getting this request for quite some time, especially after the release of 4.0 last August,” says Ori Redler, one of the two-person creators of the software in 2002. He is also an editor and published author. “What makes Mellel better than others is that so much of it’s features are developed by people who work with words for a living. Of course, I have a solid idea of what professionals in the word industry need, but honestly, so much of our innovation is guided by the needs and requests of our customers.”

The newest version of Mellel has features that give writers and editors enhanced control and flexibility of their document:

  • DOCX Import: Mellel can now smoothly import MS Word DOCX documents.
  • Character tracking: Users can now set letter-spacing easily.
  • Minimum Word Spacing: This new feature gives an easy way to squeeze and maximize spacing, thus improving significantly text layout.
  • Outline: Users can now change the color of items in the outline, can truncate outline items so they do not wrap, and a host of other improvements.
  • Auto-indent: You can now set the indent for continuing paragraphs within the Auto-title setup, allowing you to set auto-indent much faster and with much less clutter.
  • Story Feature: Writers can now create or draw story points on a line of their own. This makes the points more apparent when displayed, and unobtrusive when hidden.
  • Auto-title palette: The palette now shows the flow level of selected auto-titles in the text or in the outline with a checkmark. This helps writers keep a birds-eye view of their structure as they create.

With its latest release, Mellel continues to give writers a full-suite of options unseen in other word processors.

It is the first and only word processor to support headings as an object, allowing limitation-free design of titles and headings. Mellel is also the only word processor to offer multiple streams of footnotes and endnotes, professional level index support, the best and most advanced outline, live bibliography, live-upda cross references, an innovative Story pane, and much more.

You can learn more about Mellel through its new demo and tutorial center, Mellel U. It features over 70 videos on an array of topics that allow users to master the software. You can also check out Mellel’s videos on their YouTube channel. Mellel is currently available to Mac and iPad, and its latest version can be found on their website.

Keyboard Shortcuts – Quit App


This is probably the keyboard shortcut that most users know about, but I wanted to include it in my list. I use this keyboard shortcut multiple times each day. This is the Quit App shortcut:
CMD + q.

When I finish using an App, even if I am coming back to it later in the day, I typically quit it to free up resources. I could use the Quit in the Menu Bar, but using the keyboard sequence is a little more efficient.

This will not save you a huge amount of time, but again it is one of those quick keyboard sequences that will save you a few seconds each time you use it. Every little bit helps when you are trying to make your day more productive.

See my other Mac and Keyboard Shortcut articles


macOS New App Release – Wakefy 0.2.0


Product Announcement – Independent developer, Javier Ramirez of Madrid, Spain has released Wakefy 0.2.0 for macOS. Wakefy is a simple, beautiful free app that turns your Mac into a Spotify alarm clock. It forces you to actually get up and walk to turn off the alarm, and allows you to wake up to your favorite Spotify tunes. It works even if your Mac is not awake.

“I have a sleep disorder called DSPS that makes me a really heavy sleeper in the morning,” explained Javi Ramirez, indie developer. “And you know, sleeping next to my phone, as we all do, did not help at all. I subconsciously mastered the ability to turn off that awful alarm without even opening an eye. I became desperate to wake up on time most days. That’s why I decided to put an end to my problem and created Wakefy. I just want people to solve their waking up problems or just enjoy better mornings.”

Some other benefits of using Wakefy are:

  • Useful for those nights when you fall asleep watching Netflix and forget to set the alarm on your phone
  • It’s a tiny, unobtrusive tool that lives in your menu bar and only pops up when you need it – Set it once, forget about it
  • Nice for travelling: it can save you from situations where you ran out of battery on your phone or even left it at home

The fact that you can set a Spotify playlist as the alarm sound implies you can wake up each day with a different song, preventing you from getting used (and ignoring) a single alarm ringtone. It prevents you from hating a single alarm sound, too!

Wakefy 0.2.0 is freely available, and can be downloaded directly from its official website. macOS 10.12 or later required.

macOS – Spring Mac Software Promotion


Product Announcement – The Wine Reviews Spring Mac software promotion has been announced, offering two software bundles and applications from three software developers. Save up to 92% off on 65 essential macOS applications and games. The Bundle Hunt New Year Mac Bundle expires on 03/16/18:

  • Unlock the bundle for $5 to access a top list of best-selling apps
  • Price/App start at $1 only
  • Build Your Dream Bundle: Create your own bundle, select and add up to 30 apps per bundle
  • Multiple licenses per app: Add multiple license keys (max of 3 keys) for any app you like

Save 40% off CodeWeavers CrossOver Mac or CrossOver Linux when you use the exclusive coupon code “MarchMadness” in CodeWeavers online store. This offer expires 03/25/18

Check out Uneeq’s Awesome Mac Bundle #9! Eleven epic apps for less than $25 USD (normally valued at $323.70). This bundle is a mix of a hard-to-find wi-fi management solution, tools for recovering lost product keys and iPhone data, an award winning contact manager and just about everything in-between. Order your copy today and take advantage of a whopping 92% savings.

Yummy FTP Pro is an advanced Mac file transfer app which provides a full-featured professional toolkit combined with blazing speeds and impeccable reliability, so whether you want to transfer a few files or a few thousand, schedule backups, edit and maintain websites, even automate transfers, you need this time-tested and truly dependable app. This offer expires on 03/31/18

Purchase PuTTY for Mac and have ssh, ftp, stfp, Telnet made easy and simple on your Mac today.

Product Review – Grammarly Extension for Safari

Product Review – I read about Grammarly in a recent “Working Smarter for Mac Users” newsletter. This is written and distributed by Bob “Dr Mac” Levitus from The Mac Observer. As you might expect from the product name, Grammarly is an extension for Safari on your Mac. As described on the extension website:

Grammarly – Will help you communicate more effectively. As you type, Grammarly flags mistakes and helps you make sure your messages, documents, and social media posts are clear, mistake-free, and impactful.

The free version does a nice job. Below are three examples of what it will catch. Text that it has a recommendation for is underlined in red. Move your cursor over the underlined word or phrase and the pop-up will appear. You can then click on the ‘green’ recommendation (if you agree with it) in the pop-up box and it will be implemented in the text you are writing:

  • misspelling
    Screen Shot 2018-03-14 at 1.05.28 PM
  • unnecessary comma
    Screen Shot 2018-03-14 at 1.05.39 PM
  • wrong word
    Screen Shot 2018-03-14 at 1.05.47 PM


While I have not tried the Premium paid version, the level of writing I do just doesn’t, in my mind, justify the cost of the paid service. I will continue to use the Safari extension as I do like how it reports recommended changes.


My recommendation: Install the free version and pass on the paid Premium version



  • Easy to use
  • Easy to install
  • Base service is free
  • Works with any writing you do within a Safari window



  • You do have to create an account
  • You must be connected to the internet for Grammarly to work
  • Paid (Premium) version is expensive ($29.95/month, $59.95 for 3 months, or $139.95 for a year)

See my other macOS articles


macOS App Sale – Graphic Node Apps

Product AnnouncementsGraphic Node of Sakiai, Lithuania, the developers behind some of the App Store’s popular creativity assistant apps have launched a flash sale on 42 of their applications. All of these products are available for a limited time for just $1.99 for everyone! These applications offer creative items for many of the popular productivity and image-editing suites, so it is a great time to jump in as a new user, or for existing users to expand their collections!

The complete list of apps discounted to $1.99 for the flash sale:

  • Bundle for Pages by GN
  • Bundle for Wedding
  • Business Bundle for Word by GN
  • DesiGN Brochures Templates
  • DesiGN Certificates Templates
  • Design Elements – GN Templates
  • DesiGN Flyers Templates
  • Design for Keynote
  • Design for Numbers
  • DesiGN Greeting Cards Templates
  • DesiGN Invitation Templates
  • DesiGN Invoices Templates
  • DesiGN Labels Templates
  • DesiGN Letters Templates
  • DesiGN Menus Templates
  • DesiGN Newsletters Templates
  • DesiGN Posters Templates
  • GN Business Books for iBooks Author
  • GN Business Cards Templates
  • GN Catalogs for Pages – Templates Bundle
  • GN Fax for Pages -Templates Bundle
  • GN Food Books for iBooks Author – Templates Bundle
  • GN Infographics for Adobe Illustrator
  • GN Infographics for Adobe Photoshop
  • GN Letters Templates for Pages
  • GN Memos for Pages – Templates Bundle
  • GN Templates Bundle for iWork
  • Graphics
  • iArt for MS Excel
  • iArt for MS Word
  • iArt for Numbers
  • iArt Layout Design
  • iArt Theme Design
  • Inspiration Templates
  • Print Templates for Word by GN
  • Resume Templates
  • Stock Icons – Cliparts by GN
  • Templates for MS Excel by GN
  • Templates for MS Powerpoint by GN
  • Templates for MS Word by GN
  • Templates for Photoshop by GN
  • Templates for Pixelmator by GN
  • Vector Icons – Cliparts by GN

“Users love our creativity products and we are proud to be able to offer one of the most extensive creative items collections on the market. We are launching a one-day flash sale so new users could get their hands on productivity templates and graphics, and discover the amazing opportunities they open up for creativity at home or work” – said Zivile Unguvaityte, CEO of Graphic Node. “Our products are designed to be flexible and adaptable, so users of any skill level can work with them and achieve amazing results in no time! With 42 diverse products on sale for just $1.99, we’re sure that everyone can find something useful for personal and business needs!”

All Graphic Node applications can be found on the Mac App Store.

macOS New App Release – LinkOptimizer


Product AnnouncementsZevrix Solutions of Toronto (ON), Canada has released LinkOptimizer for Adobe InDesign which is now available on the new and improved Adobe Exchange. Awarded 4 out of 5 stars by Computer Arts magazine, LinkOptimizer automates complex image manipulation tasks and helps users reduce the size of InDesign links, save prepress costs, and easily repurpose InDesign documents for web and mobile devices.

Adobe Exchange provides a new way to search, discover, and install plug-ins, extensions, and other content for Creative Cloud products.. As a unified destination that brings third-party integrations with Creative Cloud, Document Cloud & Experience Cloud under a single umbrella, Adobe Exchange will make it easier for customers to discover and install integrations that expand and enhance what they can achieve on Adobe’s Clouds.

“We are delighted to have products like LinkOptimizer from Zevrix Solutions available on Adobe Exchange”, says Jonathan Ferman, Adobe Exchange Product Manager. “This provides users with an easy way to install products and see updates as and when they become available.”

LinkOptimizer works automatically with Photoshop to eliminate the excess image data of InDesign links, perform essential image adjustments and convert image formats. For example, with just a click of a button users can:

  • Optimize dozens of InDesign files
  • Scale and crop images to match their dimensions in InDesign
  • Change their resolution to 300 dpi
  • Convert RGB images to CMYK
  • Resave JPEGs as TIFF
  • Run a Photoshop action on each image

As a result users can save gigabytes of disk space and countless hours of optimizing images manually, accelerate document output, reduce job turnaround and cut costs through faster processing.

LinkOptimizer can be purchased from Adobe Exchange for $259.95 USD (Lite version: $179.95) as well as from Zevrix website and authorized resellers. Trial is also available for download. LinkOptimizer requires macOS 10.7-10.13 and Adobe InDesign / Photoshop CS5-CC 2018.