Apple may be turning its back on the DVD format, but developers are filling the gap with software for copying, converting, and creating discs. Unfortunately, this leads to buggy Mac apps of questionable quality. DVDFab is one such product, comprising 10 different apps, with access only to those you choose to pay for. The bizarre licensing scheme offers one- to four-year subscriptions or a non-expiring “lifetime” license for a few bucks more. (The “all-in-one lifetime” package is $299.)
Despite the shift to a digital display, Ticket to Ride looks exactly as you’d hope, with the distinctive visuals pulled directly from the now-classic board game and perfectly presented in this new Mac release. And the menus are as stylish as they are functional, getting you to where you need to go while staying era-appropriate. Luckily, they get you right into the game itself, which is the real draw here.
Back when the Mac first came out, when screens were only black and white, when graphics had no transparency, no gradients, not even textures, we had pattern fills. They were rudimentary tools for giving 2D, black-and-white graphical objects some flair. Phased out from just about every software product by the mid 1990s, those patterns persisted in FileMaker Pro and became emblematic of the long-neglected interface tools known as the “design surface.” With version 12, FileMaker finally ditches the ’80s patterns and gives users the tools for making good-looking databases in no time at all.
Adobe Systems is having a big week, shipping Creative Suite 6 on Monday and Creative Cloud expected on Friday, but in-between they’ve quietly slipped Photoshop Lightroom 4 into the Mac App Store, marking their fourth title to land on Apple’s virtual store shelves.
Apple issued a third preview of OS X Mountain Lion this week, bringing the operating system formerly known as Mac OS X 10.8 another step closer to landing on our own systems. Eager to install it as soon as it’s released? Here are a few steps you can take to prepare for the next big cat to come down off the mountain later this summer.
Every Mac user worth their salt knows you can press Command-Tab to access the Application Switcher and quickly move between open applications. But what if you want to switch between windows within an application? Exposé lets you flick out with three fingers to get a view of all windows open in every app (or press F3 on Apple keyboards, or set up another keyboard shortcut), but once you have Exposé open, you have to use a mouse or trackpad to click the window you want. I’ve been looking for an all-keyboard solution as easy as Command-Tab.
The Getting Things Done (GTD) method of organizing tasks is a favorite among productivity seekers, and many apps support it. Firetask might be simple, but it still manages to fit in the core elements of GTD.
GTD works by following a simple three-stage approach to managing tasks: collect, organize, and review. Firetask mirrors this approach nicely, with an inbox for collecting items, a Focus section for putting them into projects, and a Review section to scheduling those tasks on a calendar. The interface is simple, making the whole process very quick and painless--after all, spending long chunks of the day tinkering with a GTD app isn’t quite as productive as actually doing your work.
Photographers are always looking for ways to geotag their images, and return7’s PlaceTagger has been one of the best methods on the App Store. The developer has now introduced an all-new version 2.0, rewritten from the ground up with native iPad support, iCloud sync and even a Mac version as well.
There’s plenty to like about the iTunes Store--it’s a one-stop shop for DRM-free music, loads of TV shows and movies, and more apps than we could ever want to use. There’s even tons of free stuff. But the thing that really irks us is the store itself, which you have to search using iTunes, a process that’s cumbersome, sluggish, and often downright infuriating. The idea behind Tunesque is to search the iTunes Store outside of iTunes, making the process far more efficient.
It’s the final Friday in April, and our news recap has a couple of deals, Java news, a Mac App Store milestone and new rumblings of that Apple HDTV that so many of us want to prop up in our living rooms later this year along with the Christmas trimmings. We’ll be back with one last April recap on Monday, so for now read all about the five things making news on this Friday, April 27, 2012.