Tips and How To
Email Basiscs & Spam Tips
iCloud Double Check, Where's Your Data Going
Using iOS VS Mac OS
Using Apple's Photos Sharing Option
iPhoto versus Photos
iCloud, a summary of what you need to know
Difficulties with apps, or the “version game"
Sharing documents between your iPad and computer
Camera Tips for iPhone and iPad
My iPhone Tips
Flash causing slow computer
Controlling video on individual webpages
Printer Setup Primer
Low Disk Space Warning
SSDs, what you should know
MAGIC -Mac Appreciation Group of Island County
Apple Manuals-download page
Tidbits- Apple news for the rest of us
Small Dog Electronics-mac reseller with newsletter
iBook: Check Engine Light
There are a few things I find that many people don’t understand about email, so I’d like to explain them. Your email is accessed through an email hosting service via an internet company such as WhidbeyTel, Yahoo, Google, Comcast, Frontier, etc. When email is sent to you it goes to these servers. To get your email you have to log in to the email server. There are, however, predominately two different ways of doing this. One way is to open the browser application on your computer, Safari or Firefox or Chrome, and going to the email servers address. You log into your account, and your browser opens the web page where you read your email that is on the servers computers.
The other way to get your mail is by using an email application such as Apple’s Mail app. When your Mail app gets your mail, or when you click “Get Mail” then the it logs into the mail server for you using your password and downloads the mail to your computer. (see the diagram below)
So you see the difference, you are either reading the mail off the web hosts server or you are downloading it and reading it on your computer, and using different applications to do it. With Apple’s Mail app you have all the tools and flexibility of that application. When using a browser to access your mail you are using the tools that the server provides via the browser.
If you loose internet service for some reason, you can’t get new mail either way, but with the Mail app you can read and manage all the email that’s already been downloaded. You can access all your mail folders and can create new messages. The new messages will be saved in the Outbox and be sent the next time you have internet service.
Even if you use Apple’s Mail app you can also log in to your mail hosting service via a browser. And you have to log in via a browser to access some settings such as spam filters. Most email hosting services have adjustable spam filters that you can set higher or lower to filter more or less suspected spam. They are not infallible but they work well. You can usually also create filters to block specific senders. You should also set a rule on how long to keep email or how often to delete trash and junk folders so you don’t have thousands of email in your account. Nobody wants to have to sort through thousands of email! (One exception for spam filters, last time I checked, Frontier did not offer any spam filter.)
There are additional tools with the Mail app that allows you to create “rules” for whatever purpose you may have. The Rules feature is in the Mail Preferences. You can set it to change the background color or text color of messages from particular senders. Or you can set it to send mail from a particular sender right to the trash or to a folder of your choice.
iCloud Double Check, Where's Your Data Going?by Ron Sharp
I’ve recently come across a few people who have their Desktop and Documents Folders on iCloud and don’t realize what that means and don’t know how it got set that way. It means all your Desktop and Document items are in Apple’s iCloud. It’s a great way to access your Desktop files and Documents folder files between all your computers. But if you don’t have more than one computer, or you’re not concerned with being able to access those same files on your iPhone or iPad, then it’s unnecessary. And it may slow down your speed a bit by having to upload files and then recall them from the internet.
So I looked at my own iCloud options in System Preferences and surprisingly I too had files and apps on iCloud Drive that I didn’t intend to. It seems that options have been added to the iCloud Drive feature over the last couple updates and the operating system must turn on some of those options by default. Or possibly clicking on certain options within an app may turn on the iCloud option.
The iCloud Drive feature is really useful to me for some things. When it’s enabled, you get a folder on your computer that you can put anything into that you want to access on any of your other devices. For instance I find recipes when browsing on my computer but want to use them on my iPad when cooking. So I just put them in the iCloud Drive folder and they are available from my iPad too. (iCloud Drive has to be enabled on the iPad as well.)
However, with Mac OS Sierra and similar with El Capitan, there are many options for iCloud Drive that were not previously available. Besides the option for Desktop and Document files on iCloud Drive, you also have these choices: Automator app, Preview app, Quicktime app, TextEdit app, iBooks app, Keynote app, Numbers app, Pages app, Mail app, Weather app, and System preferences app. All in iCloud Drive. That’s a bunch of stuff you may not even use.
With all those choices, I don’t know what you couldn’t share between your devices. But if you don’t care to, or don’t use some of those apps, then you may as well turn them off. And it’s a good idea to backup your device beforehand to ensure you don’t lose files.
Also note that all those options I listed are in the iCloud Drive feature and iCloud Drive is only one of the eleven iCloud main options.
On the plus side for anyone with a Widows computer in your house, your files in iCloud Drive can be accessed on it also. You just have to get the iCloud app for Windows and install it. It could be described as Apple’s version of Drop Box.
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Using iOS is very similar on the iPhone as the iPad, with only minor differences. Here I’m hoping to explain the difference in using iOS compared to using Mac OSX. The differences are that on Mac OSX you have a lot of control where you store files, creating new folders, moving files around and using different apps to edit files.
On iOS that’s not the case, or at least no so obvious. Each application on iOS controls the documents created with it and saves them according to each specific app. But you do have some control and can share and export documents.
Document creating apps on mobile devices are generally designed to store their documents in the cloud, and Apple apps store documents specifically in iCloud. With Apple’s Pages app, for example, your documents are in iCloud but you can choose to sort the documents by Date or alphabetically by Name. You can also group documents into a folder by dragging one document onto another, and you can give the folder a name.
In particular, Pages, Numbers, and Keynote will save their respective documents in their own folders with iCloud. But another option, if you use iCloud Drive, is that you can send many types and formats of documents right to the iCloud Drive folder. Your Pages, Numbers and Keynote folders will also show up in iCloud Drive.
With the iOS Photos app, it will save photos to your device unless you have iCloud Photo Library turned on. Then they are saved to iCloud. I know many people are concerned about their stuff in the cloud for whatever reason. However, it’s important to realize that using iCloud with apps is similar to having those stored documents right on your device. You click on a document and it opens, whether its from the cloud or on your device. Many times you never know the difference unless you don’t have internet or cell service available. But really, internet access is nearly ubiquitous. You can also create new Albums in the iOS Photos app and adjust images very similar to Mac OSX, as well as view your photos via a Slide Show with or without music.
Other options for documents besides exporting are to copy and paste text to other apps. You can also take a photo of the screen, “Screenshot,” and it’ll be saved to your Camera Roll Album in Photos. Press the Home button and Power button simultaneously for a Screenshot. When printing, if you don’t have an “Air Print” compatible printer, you can print the Screenshot image of your document from your Mac when you import your photos to the Mac. If you use iCloud Photo Library or Photo Streaming then your image will automatically go to the Mac Photos app.
For most all your iOS your documents, they will be accessible from your Mac with iCloud options enabled. There are also recent adaptors available to connect flash drives to an iPad. But if your concern is for backing up your iOS data, you can backup to the iTunes app on your Mac or backup to iCloud.
What can’t you do on your iPad? Can you stream your music to your stereo via an Apple router? Yes, same as iTunes on your Mac. Can you edit photos and create new photo albums? Yes, editing is similar to OSX. If you want to edit video, there are apps for that too, but I suggest using a Mac rather than an iPhone or iPad for video editing.
Can you change the folders on the iOS Home screen? Yes, you tap and hold on an icon until they jiggle, then drag one icon onto another to create a folder of icons. You can drag many icons to one folder and you can move icons around to arrange them as you wish. You can also rename the folders.
Can you delete apps? Yes, go to Settings> General> Storage & iCloud Usage> Manage Storage. Select the app you want to remove and click “Delete App.”
Can you move documents to other devices? Yes, you can use iCloud to access documents on other devices and you can “Air Drop” documents and photos to other local devices. You don’t even need wi-fi. To Air Drop items from an iOS Device to a Mac, you need an iPhone 5 or newer and a Mac that is 2012 or newer.
Some of the options and procedures are a bit different with iOS than what you may be used to with OSX, but you still can conveniently manage your files. The only real issue is the small screen size on the more mobile devices.
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Using Apple's Photos Sharing option
by Ron Sharp
I love taking photos of Penn Cove and Puget Sound and the beautiful snow capped Olympics and Cascades and sharing them with family and friends. I think it was nearly two years ago that I started a shared album and invited my Mac using relatives to join. However, a brother and a sister that aren’t Mac users have been left out until recently. I set the shared album to “Public” setting and that enables them to go to an (iCloud ) webpage to view all the shared photos. I don’t know if that option was available when I started our shared album, or if I just didn’t realize it was there. Anyway, it’s simple and works great.
In fact, the public webpage option works better than the Photos app itself for viewing photos and videos because of it’s wonderful dark background. And in full screen mode it’s really nice. The white background in the Photos app thoroughly annoys me and I don’t understand why Apple hasn’t changed that. Even the iOS iPhone and iPad Photos app have the black background option by tapping on an image.
You can sort of get a black background in the Photos app by choosing the Editing mode but it still doesn’t really do full screen. Since the public webpage works so nice I’ll have to make sure my family members see this article so they all are aware of the option to view the album with the weblink.
The only drawback of setting your shared album to be public is it’s not so private. Anyone can share the webpage link to anyone else and then who knows who’s viewing your photos. But then again, it’s a shared album, don’t share things you shouldn’t. Or create more than one album to share and set only one to Public. There, I’ve solved all your problems.
The shared album is, in case you’re wondering, easy to create and to use. You can leave comments on anyone's photos too. And the shared photos do not count towards your free iCloud storage space. Give your photos a couple minutes to upload and show up in the shared folder, invite any Mac user you want to share using the sharing window options, and enjoy.
iPhotos versus Photos
by Ron Sharp
Nothing stays the same. The best software is probably the ones that are easiest to transition to. Apple created photos to replace iPhoto to enable you to more easily work with your photos across all their devices. The first version of Photos was not up to par with iPhoto so it seems some people were reluctant to learn it. Here are some comparisons and tips how to use Photos.
Sorted your pictures from downloads into Events.
Let you short event photos by Title or Date and oldest first or newest first.
Let you change the grayscale background of the viewer window light to dark.
Tools were fairly intuitive
Sorts your pictures in Years, Collections, and Moments. The collections is nearly the same as Events was.
Photos only sorts by date. However, all the photos you import from iPhoto will still show as Events and will still sort by Title and Date.
Grayscale background window brightness is not adjustable. ( My biggest complaint.)
Some of the image editing tools are hidden and not viewable until you click on a button that is only visible when you scroll over it.
Syncs with your iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Can stream images between devices and can share images with others with the same tools that your iOS devices use.
Shows albums for Shared images, People, Places, and sorts Videos, Panoramas, and Screenshots in separate albums too.
So if you don’t own an iPhone or an iPad and don’t care much about sharing then I’d say there is no reason not to use iPhoto. That is until a new operating system or computer model won’t work with it any longer since it is not a supported app. Then what?
If you’re on the fence here, or have tried Photos but not particularly impressed, then read on. What you have to do is use Photos a little, and set it up the way you’d like. It’s viewing and sorting options are variable. So first, familiarize yourself with the View menu. The big one is to Hide or Show the Sidebar. With the sidebar you’ll see all your albums and project choices. If you choose to hide the Sidebar, then you can choose between, Photos, Memories, Albums, Projects, and Shared photos, and you’ll see these choices as tabs at the top of the window. With the Photos Tab selected you see your photos as Years, Collections, or Moments, and use the arrows in the upper left corner of the window to move between them. Much like iOS.
For sorting and finding photos, the automatic albums for People, Places, Videos, Panoramas, Screenshots, and Shared is an instant help. Next, you can of course create Albums of your own to sort further. You can use the search box to find photos by Title, Keyword, or Description. I feel the keyword option is under-utilized but a big help in finding images. Creating Smart Albums is another option in Photos and iPhoto. I can get more detailed about Smart Albums and Folders another time.
Here is my recommended method for using a photo app, which often is overstating the obvious. It’s so easy to snap photos, -camera always with us and no film to worry about wasting. So as soon as you take a photo, or sit down to look at them, delete them. I mean save only the best ones and toss all the marginal ones. Then give them a title or keyword. Under the View menu, >Metadata you can choose to have Titles and Keywords show. Once you have used a keyword, the next instant you use it to label a photo, just type the first letter and it’ll come up. I have a lot of pictures of Penn Cove, so that’s one of my keywords. I type the P and it’s there. After opening a picture just click on the info icon in the upper right corner to add a title or keyword.
For editing photos, it’s basically the same as iPhoto but a couple of the buttons are not so obvious. Once you click on the Edit Photo button, the menus will expand by clicking the little up or down arrow, but it’s only visible when you scroll over it. Also, don’t miss the Add button to see more adjustments.
Use iCloud for syncing and sharing and backing up. With iCloud Photo Library turned on, your photos will be backed up to iCloud. If you have iOS devices, iPhone etc, you can choose to turn iCloud Photo Library on for each device that you want to sync your photos to. If you don’t want your whole library backed up or syncing, you can use Photo Stream instead. For sharing, turn on iCloud Photo Sharing. You can create albums to invite friends and family to share. For more information about iCloud see iCloud, a summary of what you need to know. One of the advantages of iCloud is that you can see all your photos on any of your devices even though they don’t have the storage space on their own.
Photos, as with iPhoto, gives you projects for Slideshows, Books, Cards, and Calendars. But another feature of Photos is Memories. It’ll group a few pictures of the last three months for you. And the slideshow feature is easy and convenient in Photos. For instance, in the Years view if you click on a photo it takes you to that section, Collections. But if you click on the little arrow next to the year, you’ll get a page of Memories. And on that page, simply click the arrow Play button in the top menu and your slideshow for that year will start. It’s kind of amazing to see how much you did in one year.
So that will get you started with Photos. As usual, it’s more difficult to visualize the functions when reading than when doing.
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Snap it into shape with these instructions
by Ron Sharp
Is your Mac running slow? Do you get the spinning beach ball frequently? Here are a few things to put your machine back into shape. First of all, restart it. Many people leave their computers on all the time. We use them so frequently that it’s an easy thing to do. That’s okay, but you should at least restart it once or twice a week. “Rebooting” the computer restores the operating system that can get a little whacked out at times.
Then see what extra apps are set to start up automatically. Go to System Preferences> Users & Groups, then click the “Login Items” tab. See what is in that list. iTunes Helper application is the only thing that OSX puts there automatically. If other software is listed there, particularly if it’s something you don’t use or didn’t intentionally install, then remove it by selecting it and then clicking the minus sign at the bottom of the list. If you do remove any item here, you should restart the computer again.
Now looking at your normal desktop see what items are on the top right side of the menu bar and in your Dock. If there are apps that are not part of Apple’s OSX system and you don’t use or didn’t intentionally install, then quit them. You might also find those apps in your Applications Folder. You can move them to the trash to get rid of them. There will be a lot of related files that should also be removed, but at least that app won’t be starting up on it’s own anymore. Some of the apps that you might find that you didn’t intentionally install are MacKeeper, antivirus apps, and cloud storage apps.
MacKeeper is an application I don't recommend. It is very aggressive and persistent in it’s ways. It is good to have an antivirus app. What you need to watch out for more than viruses is “malware.” Watch out for clicking on the wrong thing on a website and unintentionally downloading mischievous apps and adware. Scrutinize any email that says you have a virus. They are usually scams.
If you don’t have any anti virus app, you may want to get one and run it at this time. It may be a virus causing the spinning beachball and your computer to run slow.
Other things that can really slow you down are peripherals that you have connected to your computer. Using an external drive for Time Machine backups is worthwhile, but your Mac will be a bit slower when it’s backing up files. If you are a diligent person, you can just plug your backup drive in.. say once a week for it to backup. Otherwise leave a Time Machine backup drive connected.
If you use Drop Box, or Carbonite or other online backup, I’ve found that they can really slow computers down. If it’s not a constant necessity for you, my recommendation is to turn Drop Box off when you’re not using it. As for online backups, if they are working okay for you then great. It’s good to have some backup but if you use an online backup and a local backup then your speed will suffer.
If you still seem to have speed issues, you can open the application “Activity Monitor” and see what apps are consuming the most CPU time. If you don’t see any culprits there, it’s possible that your hard drive is having problems. You can use “Disk Utility” in your Utilities folder to test a hard drive.(Applications > Utilities > Disk utility) If it reports a problem, you definitely need to back it up to another drive ASAP.
The next step for a speedier machine is to improve the hardware. You can add RAM memory and replace your Hard Drive with a Solid State Drive. There are a few of us on the island that offer these services and any of the others I’ve mentioned, if they are beyond your comfort zone.
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Sharp, March, 2016 SharpHelp.net
The advantage of iCloud Photo Library on an iOS device is that your photos size will be optimized for your device if you are low on storage space on that device. When you open an optimized photo it automatically downloads a full resolution version before doing anything with it, it's all automatic. Deleting or editing any photo will automatically sync to iCloud and any device you have iCloud Photo Library turned on.
Photos Library on your Mac
Library stores photos and video from
only one library on your Mac, (Photos
Library.photoslibrary) You can have
multiple photo libraries, but you can
have only one System
Photo Library working with iCloud at a
My Photo Stream with and without
iCloud Photo Library
Photo Stream: Photo Stream stores the last 30 days of photos automatically, up to 1000 photos, and pushes them to all your Apple devices. The minute you take a photo with your iPhone or iPad it will be stored in iCloud and it will put them on your computer the next time your computer is online.
Photo Sharing: With iCloud Photo Sharing, you can share photos and videos with just the people you choose, and you can let them add their own photos, videos, and comments. Friends and family can subscribe to your shared albums to view them on all of their devices, leave comments, and get notified automatically when you add new photos and videos. Photo Sharing does not count aginst your free 5 GB storage.
Deleting PhotosWhen you delete a photo from My Photo Stream on an iOS device, Mac, or PC, that photo will be deleted from the My Photo Stream view on all your devices after you connect each device to Wi-Fi
The following photos won't be deleted when you delete photos from My Photo Stream:
Photos that you copied to the Photos tab or Camera Roll on your iOS device
Photos that you imported into your iPhoto or Aperture library
Photos that you copied into a folder on your PC that aren't part of My Photo Stream
Turning Off iCloud Photos Libraries: If you have Optimize Storage turned on, you might not have all of your original photos and videos on your device. To download the original photos and videos on your iOS device, go to Settings > iCloud > Photos and select Download and Keep Originals. On your Mac, open Photos, choose Photos > Preferences, then select Download Originals to this Mac. After the photos have downloaded completely, which might take a long time, then you can turn iCloud Photo Library off. You can also select the photos and videos that you want to download from iCloud.com.
iCloud MailTo use Mail syncing with iCloud you have to have an Apple mail account which will have the “name”@icloud.com- address. This account will not sync with your existing mail accounts. Once it is set up it will sync with all your Apple devices. It will keep all your contacts and calendars synced.
iCloud Drive lets the app on your device access any stored document that can use iCloud Drive, from any device you have iCloud drive turned on. It syncs documents for all devices. You can store any type of file in iCloud Drive, as long as it's less than 15 GB in size and you don't exceed your iCloud storage limit. There's no restriction on file type.
Pages, Numbers, and Keynote upload files to iCloud regularly to make sure you don’t lose any changes. Other apps upload your files to iCloud only after you save them to the iCloud Drive folder. The app folders in iCloud Drive are created automatically for apps that support iCloud Drive on any of your devices. You can create new folders to use.
Removing a document from iCloud deletes it from iCloud Drive and from your other devices set up for iCloud Drive.
Before turning off iCloud Drive, you can copy documents from iCloud Drive to your Mac.
iCloud Keychain keeps your Safari website usernames and passwords, credit card information, and Wi-Fi network information up to date and Mail, Contacts, Calendar, and Messages passwords up to date across all of your Mac computers.
SecurityiCloud uses a minimum of 128-bit AES encryption—the same level of security employed by major financial institutions—and never provides encryption keys to any third parties.
Accessing Your iCloud Data From WindowsThere are two ways to access synced iCloud data on Windows: via the iCloud Control Panel desktop application and via the iCloud website.
iCloud Control Panel for Windows, or
go to icloud.com.
Family Sharing: To share between people with different Apple ID accounts
Family Sharing makes it easy for up to six people in your family to share each other’s iTunes, iBooks, and App Store purchases without sharing accounts. After you set up Family Sharing, all the eligible songs, albums, movies, TV shows, books, and apps ever purchased by family members are immediately available to everyone else in the family. The content appears automatically in the Purchased tab in iTunes, iBooks, or the App Store for each family member. Just select the family member whose collection you’d like to browse, then download and play the content you choose. Other family members can access your collection in the same way. If you want to keep some purchases private, you can choose to hide individual items.
by Ron Sharp
One of the fun things about family and holiday gatherings is tech tips that you learn from everyone, and sharing photos of course. Because our photos are on digital devices, they are easily accessed and shared now. For instance, someone will show a recent photo they took with their iPhone, but it's a little too small if everyone wants to see it so they air drop it to an iPad or MacBook. But better still, connect with Apple TV and show it on your 42 inch TV monitor. Now you can easily share it with everyone in the group.
With iOS devices, iPhone and iPad, you can use the share button. The share button gives the options for sharing a photo (or document) via AirDrop: to another iOS device or computer (2012 or newer), send the photo in an email or text message, share via Facebook or Twitter, send the image to a printer, and more.
Here are some tips for emailing photos. It's good to start with some text in your email or at least a few blank lines. Hit the return key a couple times before pasting your or dragging your images to the email window. Otherwise your image may be pasted right at the top of the message and it's a bit difficult to see the cursor and try to get it to the top of the window once the image has been added.
Create a couple blank lines between the images you add so it kind of gives the photos a border. Otherwise the they run together right against each other and may be more difficult to see.
Be aware that sending too many photos or videos in one email can create a message too large to send due to server email size restrictions.
Also a word about printing from your iOS
device. Not all printers are Air Print
compatible. You can check the list from Apple of
printers that are compatible: Apple
AirPrint printer list. If your printer is
not Air Print compatible it doesn't mean you're
completely out of luck. You can search the App
store for an app that might work for you. For
instance, if you have a non compatible Epson
printer there is an app from Epson available to
send photos and documents to the printer. The
limitation is that you must use that app to
print and not the Share button options.
Difficulties with apps, or the “version game"
by Ron Sharp
Since I wrote the previous article about sharing documents, it occurred to me to elucidate on the difficulties of applications. I’ll start by repeating some of the points I made in that article about Pages.
For me it started way back with Clarisworks, if anybody remembers that word processing application. Then Apple created Pages in 2005, later updating it to Pages 08 and all your documents had to be converted to Pages. Then came Pages 09 (which is version 4), now Pages 5 (version 5.2.2).
All these versions would open one previous version, but if you skipped a version you had problems converting. I’m sure there were logical reasons for the limitations but it seems like any new version should be able to not only convert documents from all previous versions but should have a feature to batch convert a whole group of documents.
And to complicate things, if you had more than one version of Pages on your computer, when you clicked a document to open, you wouldn’t know which version opened it.
At any rate much of the updating came about because of the move towards mobile. The applications had to be rewritten to work on the mobile devices and therefore the desktop versions had to change to be compatible with the mobile versions. A similar scenario occurred for many other applications, particularly iPhoto and Photos. Many of the features we learned in the full applications of our desktop computers, which could manipulate documents in more ways than we could imagine, were left out of the new apps. The mobile devices; iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, had to have compact applications that didn’t hog digital space or processor energy. So as those apps developed and mobile devices improved, the apps for our desktop and laptop computers had to change in order to make sharing documents between devices possible.
But now that mobile devices have been around a while don’t expect the rate of updates to slow. Improvements and changes in hardware and software will continue. The rate of change in technology is not linear but exponential. In fact the popular author Raymond Kurzweil says that in the next 100 years we’ll experience 20,000 years of progress at the current rate. Yikes! But I’d like to think that means that our apps will update and convert whatever needs to be converted so seamlessly that we are hardly aware of it. Everything just works.
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Sharing documents between your iPad and computer
by Ron Sharp Sept. 15, 2015
We finally have an iPad in the house and find it very convenient for certain things, particularly for use in the kitchen. So it seemed like a good idea to move the recipes from the computer, to the iPad. There are, as usual, several ways to go about this. And also as usual, the way you choose to do it turns out the most complicated.
Apple says you can share documents with Pages app. So I started by putting Pages on the iPad from the App store. However, I found that Pages 08 & 09 on the computer will not work for sharing documents with the iPad Pages. I used the newer Pages 5 (version 5.2.2) on the computer, thinking I’d convert my TextEdit recipes with the newer version so they can be shared. What?…wait,… this Pages app won’t open TextEdit documents! (.rtf suffix for Rich Text Format) So here’s what I had to do; convert all my TextEdit (.rtf) recipes to plain text (.txt). Then open each one with Pages 5.2.2, then save them as a Pages document. (And I have a lot of recipes)
I used the Terminal application to batch convert the .rtf recipes to .txt all at once. There is no Terminal command to convert text directly to Pages app that I know of. (If your recipes are in Pages 09, then you can eliminate that step.) I tried to use the Automator app for converting the .txt recipes to Pages format but gave up when my first three attempts failed and so I converted them one by one.
Now you could use iCloud, saving your Pages recipes to the cloud and then you could use your documents on all your devices. Or if you don’t want to use iCloud, you connect your iPad to your computer, (usb port) open iTunes, select the iPad, select Apps, scroll down and select Pages app, then add your documents to the sharing window. But wait, you’re still not done. While connected still, open Pages on the iPad and then you have to add each document one at a time to the iPad. What?.. you can sync all your music and photos, why can’t you just sync all your documents too? But no, that obvious feature has not been implemented yet.
You may be able to achieve this goal with an app from the App store, but searching for the app is time consuming and there is no guarantee you’ll find what you’re looking for. Then be prepared to pay for the app if you do find one because the free ones subject you to more advertising and limitations than anyone can handle.
You may also have recipes that are images rather than text. So you could copy them to your Photos app and then create a folder in Photos for recipes. Then sync that folder to the iPad using iTunes. This may work well because they would all sync when connecting your iPad to the computer and any new recipe can just be added to the recipe folder in Photos. The only drawback with using images for recipes is that you can’t easily change them or make notes on them.
I have to say though, using the iPad for recipes works well, and once it’s set up it’s pretty easy.
Now I realize a lot of readers won’t even make it to the end of this article. Way too much complicated BS to deal with. So hopefully you have a techy nerd best friend that can do all this for you. But if you’ve just started collecting recipes in digital format, an easy way is to just photograph them with the iPad.
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Camera Tips for iPhone and iPad (iOS)
by Ron Sharp
Here are some camera tips for iPhone / iPad users. Even if you’ve been using an iOS device for a while there are options you still may not be aware of. I find that people are surprised to learn about these tips.
Go to Camera from Lock Screen
When you push the home button to turn the device on, you get to the lock screen where you have to swipe to the right to go to the home screen. But from the lock screen you can see a small camera icon in the lower right corner. Swiping that icon upwards takes you right to the camera. I tried tapping on the camera icon at first and was confused when nothing happened. Then I realized you have to swipe up on it.
HDR button on top menu of camera screen
HDR is High Dynamic Range. If you haven’t take the time to read about it, here’s what that’s about. In high contrast shots HDR takes multiple photos in rapid succession at different exposures and blends them together. Tapping the HDR button, you can set HDR to on, off, or auto. I think it’s good to keep it on auto unless you’re trying for a special effect. There are also HDR options in Settings > Camera.
The rectangle for exposure adjustments
The rectangle that briefly shows in the camera screen sets the focus and exposure. You can change the exposure by tapping the screen at a lighter or darker area to have the exposure change to that area. Also, when you tap the screen and see a little icon next to the rectangle, then you can swipe up or down the screen to lighten or darken the exposure. The more swipes up, the lighter the picture. After using either of these exposure methods to make adjustments, if you tap and hold the rectangle for a second, it jumps a bit larger to indicate it’s locked on to those settings and you’ll see the “AE/AF locked” text. Then take as many picture as you want. When you tap the screen again, it returns to the auto settings.
Quick view your photo
After taking a photo, you can view it by tapping the image in the lower left corner. This opens the picture you just took. If it’s ok, just tap “Done” in the upper right corner and the camera app comes back up ready for your next photo.
The Photo, Video, Time Lapse, and Slo Mo settings are self explanatory, as are the Flash and Timer options. The top right icon is for front or rear facing camera in case you feel the need for a selfie.
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My iPhone Tips
by Ron Sharp
I find some of the iPhone tips that I read very useful, but interestingly I might not have discovered them without having read about them or someone pointing them out. For instance, when typing an email address in contacts, holding the dot gives you choices of adding .com or .net etc.
Here are a few of my tips, things I have found useful to me. When searching for virtually anything click on the microphone icon, if it's available for the app you're using, to do a voice search. This works in searching your contacts as well as adding new contacts. But where it's most helpful is creating a text message. With the dictation feature you just have to remember to say "period" at the end of your sentences. For making a list, say "new line" after each entry.
Another tip is to create and add images for contact groups. For instance we all use doctors and most people use some type of financial institution and other professionals. So get an image for doctors to add to all doctor contacts and another image to add to all banking contacts, etc. It just makes it easy for quicker recognition when getting a call. Use a dollar sign image for finance profesionals, and maybe a red cross or caduceus for doctors. For MAGIC members in my contacts I use an Apple icon if I don't have their portrait.
A trick that many of you may already use is to assign a different ringtone for a specific contact. For instance, a separate ring for your wife, husband or special friend. You know the instant you hear the ring who is calling.
For a long time I wanted to get a navigation device for my car. But my iPhone does the job very well. Just open the Maps app and enter an address. Then tap the right turn arrow in the upper left to get directions. (Location services has to be allowed for the Maps app in Privacy Settings) When the directions are displayed press the start button on the bottom of the screen to get specific, dictated driving directions, and set your phone on the dash or console while driving.
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Flash causing a slow computerby Ron Sharp
Recently my Firefox browser was running very slow. I decided to find out what the problem was by opening the Activity Monitor utility. And there it was, near the very top of the list for CPU usage, Adobe Flash. So I did a little research and located a Firefox Add-on that is sweet and simple. It’s called Flash OnOff. It puts a small dot of a button on the top Firefox toolbar. One click and the button turns gray and Flash is turned off. Click again and Flash is activated and the button turns red. It works great, and now when I go web pages with automatic flash content it doesn't start playing video unless I turn Flash on and reload the page.
There is a similar Add-On or Extension for Safari browser called "Click to Flash." It prevents Flash content from loading automatically.
RantGizmo and Dose websites.
1. If you are at the end of your sentence, you can double tap the spacebar and it will add a period and a space for you.
2. If you place your phone in Airplane Mode, it will charge much faster.
3. Want to undo what you just did? Don't take the time to undo it all by hand, shake your phone! A warning will ask you if you want to undo the typing.
4. When your camera is on, you can use the volume buttons to conveniently snap some photos.
5. Just say, “Read my email” to Siri, and she will read all your messages aloud to you. You can tell her to read only your most recent email by saying, “Read my latest email,” or just those from a specific contact by saying, “Do I have email from Mark?”
6. In your Contacts app, you can enable different vibration patterns for different contacts. You can now tell the difference between a email from your boss and a text from a friend!
7. In the Compass app, swipe left and your iPhone will become a perfect level.
8. Use the quick “Do Not Disturb” setting from the slide up menu for going to events like a movie theater. Use the “Do Not Disturb” settings in the general settings for scheduling regular Do Not Disturb times like 11pm to 7am.
9. If you hold down the period, "." on your keyboard, a menu will pop up with a list of web suffices to choose from.
by Ron Sharp