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October 13, 2023

Ricoh Theta Z1

Download Media from Ricoh Theta Z1

In this week's blog, I'm diving into the world of 360-degree photography with the Ricoh Theta Z1. Capturing stunning images and videos is one thing, but seamlessly transferring them to your Mac is a game-changer. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to do it right.

Choose the Right Cable

First things first, ensure you have the correct data transfer cable. The right cable (usually USB-micro to USB-A) will establish a stable connection between your Ricoh Theta Z1 and your Mac.

You'll need a USB-Micro data cable. One was supplied with the Ricoh Theta Z1.

Utilize Image Capture App

When it comes to downloading files from your Ricoh Theta Z1, the Image Capture app is your best friend. It's pre-installed on your Mac and offers a straightforward interface. Connect your Ricoh Theta Z1 to your Mac using the cable and open Image Capture. Your device should appear on the left sidebar. Select it, choose where you want to save your files and click 'Import All' for a quick transfer. You can also selectively import specific photos and videos.

If you don't see the Ricoh Theta Z1, you are likely not using a data USB-micro cable

Stitch Spherical Images with RICOH THETA

Once your media files are safely on your Mac, enhance your creative process by stitching your spherical images together. RICOH THETA provides intuitive software that seamlessly blends your 360-degree images, giving them a professional touch.

And there you have it! With the right cable, Image Capture app, and RICOH THETA software, you can effortlessly transfer and enhance your Ricoh Theta Z1 media on your Mac. Stay tuned for more Mac tips and tricks next week!

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October 6, 2023

Filling Forms using Apple Preview

Don't Print Documents to Fill Them

Forms are an integral part of our digital lives, whether it's filling out a job application, completing a survey, or submitting essential documents. Thankfully, with Apple's Preview application, the process of filling out forms on your Macintosh computer becomes seamless and hassle-free. In this guide, we'll walk you through the steps of filling forms using Apple Preview, making your paperwork woes a thing of the past.

Prerequisites

Before we begin, ensure you have the latest version of macOS installed on your Macintosh computer. Preview is a pre-installed application, so there's no need to download or install anything separately.

Markup Toolbar

Step 1: Open Your Form

  • Locate the form you need to fill out on your Macintosh computer.
  • Double-click the form file to open it in the Preview application.

Step 2: Click on the Text Tool

  • In Preview, click on the toolbox icon in the toolbar, or press Shift + Command + A to activate the Markup Toolbar.
  • Select the Text tool from the Markup Toolbar. It looks like a small 'T'.

Step 3: Place Text Boxes

  • Hover your mouse over the area of the form where you want to enter text.
  • Click to place a text box. Resize and reposition it as needed to fit the form fields perfectly.

Step 4: Enter Your Information

  • Double-click inside the text box you just created.
  • Enter your information. You can adjust the font style, size, and color using the formatting options in the Markup Toolbar.

Step 5: Checkboxes and Radio Buttons

  • For checkboxes and radio buttons, use the Shapes tool in the Markup Toolbar.
  • Click on the Shapes icon, select the appropriate shape, and place it over the checkbox or radio button. You can adjust the size to match the form's design.

Step 6: Save Your Form

  • Once you've filled out the form, click File > Save to save your changes. Your form is now ready to be shared or printed.

Form Filling Toolbar

For most forms, simply clicking on the Form Filling Toolbar icon will enable the form to be editable.

Filling Forms in Preview App

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September 29, 2023

Stage Manager and Desktop

Fix the Disappearing Apps

Earlier this week I installed macOS 14 (Sonoma). One of the first things I noticed was that every time I clicked the Desktop, all my open windows would move away. I didn't like this behavior. Turns out this is a default feature of Sonoma.

Easy Fix

Apparently Apple wants people to use Stage Manager to manage their desktop. Stage Manager came out in last year's release.

While this might be "cool" I don't like it, and I wanted to revert to the "old way."

To disable the feature:

  • Click on the Apple Menu and select "System Settings..."
  • Select "Desktop & Dock" on the left menu.
  • Then in the "Desktop & Stage Manager" section, make sure the "Check wallpaper to reveal desktop" is set to "Only in Stage Manager"

See the image:

Stage Manager Fix2023

Review of macOS 14 (Soon!)

I am still playing around with macOS 14 (Sonoma) and I'll blog about it next week. I did let other people know that this isn't really a much-have update.

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September 22, 2023

Backup Voice Memos

Easy Way to Backup You Audio Files

Voice Memos Delete

This past week I was trying to update my iPad to iPadOS 17 but ran into an issue with disk space. Turns out the resource that was using the most amount of space was my Voice Memos.

I wanted to back up my Voice Memos before deleting the files. The best way that I found to do that was on my Macintosh computer.

If you have Voice Memos saved to the Apple Cloud, you can find the files in the Application Support folder.

Here's the file path:

~/Library/Application Support/com.apple.voicememos

Open up the Recording folder and you should see the VoiceMemo files. If you don't chances are you are not storing voice memos in the iCloud.

To back up the files, simply drag and drop the Recording folder to an external device. Obviously, check to make sure that the files have moved over before taking any actions.

Once completed, I then went on my iPad and started deleting Voice Memos that I didn't absolutely need to have on the iPad.

I am providing this tip here because I googled "How to backup Voice Memo" and couldn't find any practical tips - many of them were 5+ years old and weren't very helpful.

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September 15, 2023

Create Video DVD from Disk Images

macOS Ventura

D V D Header

Due to the limited space on DVDs these days, I rarely burn them anymore. Instead, I backup my files using external hard drives and flash drives. This gives me more storage space and allows me to access my files from any device. Plus, it's much more convenient than burning DVDs.

Every once in a while, I am asked to create a DVD from a video.

Currently, I'm working on a video project, and I wanted to burn the video to a DVD. To accomplish that, I created a Disk Image, which I'll explain more about next week.

The creation of a Video DVD under macOS Ventura is a little tricky. Toast 19 Pro does not allow you to create a Video DVD from a disk image.

Burn Disk Graphic2023

The following steps will guide you through the process of creating a playable DVD in macOS 13.5.2:

Step 1: Create a video Disk Image using Final Cut Pro or another video editor. (More Details about how to do this next week in Final Cut Pro. )

Step 3: Double Click on the Disk Image to open and mount it.

Step 4: Select the disk image in the Finder side bar.

Step 5: With the window selected, go under the Finder File menu and select "Burn to Disk." (Note: If you don't see "Burn Disk" that means you don't have a DVD burner connected.)

Step 6: You will be asked in insert a disk. (Your content must fit in on the disk or the dialog box won't go away.)

Step 7: You will then be asked to confirm that you want to burn the content to the disk. Use the Maximum Possible settings as it will take a long time if you had a different setting.

That's it! The DVD will start to burn. Once completed the new disk will mount and the video will play.

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September 8, 2023

YouTube Shorts in Final Cut Pro

Simple Settings

Create a blog using markdown about the proper Project settings in Final Cut Pro for YouTube Shorts. Make sure to use the Vertical video format and 1080x1920 Resolution.

When creating YouTube Shorts using Final Cut Pro, it is important to configure the project settings correctly to ensure optimal results. To meet the requirements of YouTube Shorts, you should use the vertical video format and set the resolution to 1080x1920. This blog post will guide you through the necessary steps to achieve the proper project settings in Final Cut Pro.

Final Cut Pro You Tube

Step 1: Creating a New Project

  1. Launch Final Cut Pro and click on "File" in the menu bar.

  2. Select "New" and then "Project" from the dropdown menu.

  3. In the Video Properties section, set the format to "Vertical."

  4. Enter the resolution as 1080x1920.

  5. Adjust the frame rate according to your preference, but for YouTube Shorts, it is recommended to use 29.97 frames per second (fps).

Step 2: Saving and Importing Media

  1. Save your project by clicking on "File" in the menu bar and selecting "Save" or pressing Command+S.

  2. Import your media files by clicking on "File" and selecting "Import Media," or by using the shortcut Command+I.

  3. Drag and drop your media files into the timeline to start editing your YouTube Shorts.

Step 5: Exporting the Final Video

  1. Once you have finished editing your YouTube Shorts, click on "File" in the menu bar and select "Share."

  2. Select the "YouTUbe & Facebook"

  3. Click "Next" and choose the destination folder for your exported video.

  4. Finally, click on "Save" to export your YouTube Shorts video with the proper project settings.

By following these steps, you can ensure that your YouTube Shorts videos are created with the proper project settings in Final Cut Pro. Remember to always preview your videos before uploading them to YouTube to ensure they meet the desired quality and format requirements.

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September 1, 2023

Back to Macintosh Basics

Time to Evaluate Your Computer Use

As the summer sun begins to wane and children across the country prepare to head back to the classroom, it's not just the students who can benefit from a fresh start. For Macintosh users, this is the perfect time to embrace a "Back to School" mentality and give your digital life a much-needed makeover. Just as students clean out their backpacks, sharpen their pencils, and set new goals for the school year, Mac users can do the same for their computers and digital tasks. Today, we'll explore how you can adopt a back-to-school mindset for your Mac and make the most of your digital experience.

Don't forget to take screenshots before you make changes so you can see progress.

Backto School Macintosh

Declutter Your Desktop

Start by cleaning up your digital workspace. Just like you wouldn't want a messy desk in the classroom, a cluttered desktop can make it difficult to find what you need on your Mac. Create folders, organize files, and delete unnecessary items. Consider setting a beautiful, inspiring desktop wallpaper to give yourself a fresh visual start.

I like to keep my desktop clean. Usually, the files/folders on the desktop are things that I am currently working on. As soon as I am done with it, I file it away off the desktop.

Update Your Software

Ensure that your Mac and all your applications are up to date. Regular updates not only bring new features but also enhance security and performance. Don't forget to check for updates in the Mac App Store as well as for third-party apps.

Apple lets you know when your apps have updates but it's the third party apps you should check.

If your app hasn't been updated in the past year, maybe it's time to step up to something better?

Backup Your Data:

Backing up your important files and data is like having a safety net. Use Time Machine or a reliable cloud backup service to safeguard your digital life. This ensures that even if something goes wrong, you won't lose precious information.

Streamline Your Apps:

Take a look at the apps you have installed. Do you use them all regularly? If not, consider uninstalling or archiving those that are just taking up space. This will not only free up storage but also make your Mac run more smoothly.

This morning I looked at the of Apps that I have in my Application folder. I was surprised to see that I had 172 apps. I think many apps can safely be removed from the main computer.

Set Digital Goals:

Just as students set academic goals for the school year, you can establish digital goals for yourself. Whether it's improving your productivity, learning a new skill, or becoming more organized, having clear objectives can help you make the most of your Mac.

Embrace Automation:

Macs come with powerful automation tools like Siri Shortcuts and Automator. Explore these features to automate repetitive tasks, save time, and increase efficiency. This is a great way to supercharge your digital productivity.

Don't forget LaunchBar and Keyboard Maestro!

Stay Secure

Digital security is paramount. Ensure your Mac is protected with strong passwords, enable two-factor authentication, and use reliable antivirus software. Being proactive about security will give you peace of mind.

Digital Detox

Just as students need breaks from studying, you need breaks from your screen. Consider scheduling regular digital detox periods where you disconnect from your Mac and enjoy some screen-free time. It's essential for maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

Learn Something New

Take advantage of the resources available on your Mac to expand your knowledge. Whether it's through online courses, tutorials, or ebooks, make learning a part of your back-to-school routine.

Reflect and Adapt

Periodically review your digital habits and make adjustments as needed. Just like students adapt their study strategies, you should adapt your digital routines to suit your evolving needs.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the back-to-school season isn't just for students. It's an opportunity for Macintosh users to adopt a fresh start mentality and optimize their digital experience. By decluttering your desktop, updating software, setting goals, and staying secure, you can make the most of your Mac and have a productive and enjoyable year ahead. So, get ready to hit the digital books and embrace a new beginning on your trusty Macintosh!

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August 25, 2023

Stuffit Expander

Unable to Uncompress Old SIT formats

Stuffit Expander, a popular file compression and decompression application, has been widely used for many years. However, it is important to note that the application no longer supports uncompressing old SIT archives. This change has implications for users who still have a large number of files stored in this outdated format.

Stuffit Alert2023
An alert when I tried to open up an old version of Stuffit Expander

SIT archives were commonly used in the past to compress files and save disk space. Stuffit Expander was the go-to tool for decompressing these archives, making it easy for users to access their files. However, as technology evolves and file formats change, certain formats become obsolete.

Unfortunately, SIT archives fall into this category. The SIT format was developed by Aladdin Systems, the creators of Stuffit Expander, but it has since been phased out due to its limited compatibility and the emergence of more efficient compression formats. As a result, Stuffit Expander has stopped supporting the uncompression of SIT archives.

Unable to Open Old Archives

This shift in support has left users who still rely on SIT archives in a predicament. They can no longer use Stuffit Expander to extract the contents of these archives, potentially rendering their files inaccessible. Therefore, it is crucial for users to be aware of this change and take appropriate actions to migrate their files to a more modern and supported file format.

Fortunately, there are alternative solutions available for users who need to access their old SIT archives. Various third-party applications and online services offer support for decompressing SIT archives, allowing users to retrieve their valuable files. These alternatives may not provide the exact same user experience as Stuffit Expander, but they do serve the purpose of accessing the contents of SIT archives.

Stuffit Failed Expansion
I got this error when trying to expand a split SIT archives

Split Archives

My quick solution was to unzip this using version Stuffit Expander 16.06. That version asked me for each segment of the file.

Plan for Future Changes

In addition to exploring alternative solutions, it is also recommended that users consider converting their SIT archives to a more widely supported format. By converting the archives to formats such as ZIP or RAR, users can ensure long-term accessibility and prevent any future compatibility issues. (Especially true with a split .SIT file.)

In conclusion, Stuffit Expander, a once indispensable tool for uncompressing SIT archives, no longer supports this outdated file format. Users who still have files stored in SIT archives should be aware of this change and take appropriate actions to access their files. Exploring alternative solutions and converting the archives to a more widely supported format are key steps to ensure long-term accessibility and prevent any potential loss of data.

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August 18, 2023

OcenAudio Vs Fission

Which one is better?

Ocenaudio vs Fission Header

When it comes to audio editing software, there are numerous options available in the market. Ocenaudio and Rogue Amoeba Fission are two popular choices that offer a range of features for audio enthusiasts. In this blog post, we will delve into the key differences between these two software applications, allowing you to make an informed decision based on your specific needs.

Ocen Audio Display
OcenAudio Editing Window

User Interface

One of the primary differences between Ocenaudio and Rogue Amoeba Fission lies in their user interfaces. Ocenaudio boasts a clean and intuitive interface that is easy to navigate, making it suitable for both beginners and experienced users. On the other hand, Rogue Amoeba Fission offers a more visually appealing interface with a modern design, which may appeal to those seeking a sleeker look.

Audio Editing Capabilities

When it comes to audio editing capabilities, both Ocenaudio and Rogue Amoeba Fission offer a wide range of features. However, there are some notable differences between the two.

Ocenaudio allows for multi-selection editing, making it easier to make changes to multiple parts of an audio file simultaneously. It also provides real-time previews of effects, allowing users to hear the changes before applying them.

Rogue Amoeba Fission, on the other hand, specializes in lossless audio editing, making it ideal for those who prioritize audio quality. It offers a range of effects and filters, allowing users to enhance their audio files with precision and control. Additionally, Fission supports batch processing, enabling users to apply changes to multiple audio files in one go.

Rogue Amoeba Fission Interface
Rogue Amoeba Fission Editing Window

Compatibility

Another area where Ocenaudio and Rogue Amoeba Fission differ is compatibility. Ocenaudio is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux, making it a versatile choice for users across different operating systems. On the contrary, Rogue Amoeba Fission is exclusively available for macOS, limiting its accessibility to users on other platforms.

Price and Licensing

Considering the price and licensing options, Ocenaudio takes the lead in terms of affordability. It is available as a free software, offering a comprehensive set of features without any cost. On the other hand, Rogue Amoeba Fission is a paid software, although it does offer a trial version for users to explore its capabilities before purchasing.

Five Things I Learned

Ocenaudio has many effects including Silence, Reverse, Invert, Smooth, Remove DC, Normalize, Amplitude, Filter, Equalization, Delay, Dynamics Processing, Time and Pitch, Noise Reduction and more. Oceanaudio also supports VST plugins. Fission has Normalize

It's much easier to split audio in Fission than in Ocenaudio. In Ocenaudio, you have to set up the markers and then split at the markers. In Fission, it seems easier to split at the head.

Ocenaudio has left and right tracks visible in the Waveform view, but you cannot edit a particular track. For instance, you cannot edit so a portion of the audio only plays on the right track.

Ocenaudio allows you to record audio, while Fission only allows you to edit audio.

Ocenaudio claims to be fast. I took it to the test . I wanted to see how fast it could open a 183.8 MB MP3 file. I compaired this to other popular audio editors. The test was: How long would it take from double clicking on the sound file in the Finder to when I could actually edit the file.

  • Audacity took 17.29 Seconds
  • OcenAudio took 14.06 Seconds
  • Microwave Express took 14.36 Seconds
  • Fission took 8.25 Seconds

Conclusion

In summary, both Ocenaudio and Rogue Amoeba Fission are powerful audio editing software options. The choice between the two ultimately depends on your specific requirements. While Ocenaudio offers a user-friendly interface, multi-selection editing, and cross-platform compatibility, Rogue Amoeba Fission excels in lossless audio editing and provides a visually appealing interface. Additionally, the pricing models differ, with Ocenaudio being free and Rogue Amoeba Fission requiring a purchase. Consider your editing needs, operating system, and budget to determine which software aligns best with your goals.

If you already have Rogue Amoeba Fission, you might as well download OcenAudio and have it just in case you need the filters.

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August 11, 2023

Navigating Macos Excel Spreadsheet

How to quickly jump to different cells

Excel for Mac offers a variety of ways to navigate around your spreadsheets. In this blog post, we will discuss two of the most popular methods: using the Name Box and the Go To dialog.

Macintosh Excel Navigation2023

Using the Name Box

The Name Box is located at the top left corner of the Excel window. It displays the address of the active cell. You can use the Name Box to quickly navigate to any cell in your spreadsheet by typing its address. For example, to navigate to cell A1, you would type "A1" in the Name Box and press Enter.

You can also use the Name Box to create named ranges. Named ranges are a way to give a descriptive name to a group of cells. This can be helpful for making your spreadsheets easier to read and understand. To create a named range, type the name of the range in the Name Box, followed by an equal sign (=) and the address of the range. For example, to create a named range called "Sales" for the cells A1:B10, you would type "Sales=A1:B10" in the Name Box and press Enter.

Once you have created a named range, you can use it to navigate to the range by typing its name in the Name Box and pressing Enter. For example, to navigate to the Sales range, you would type "Sales" in the Name Box and press Enter.

Using the Go To Dialog

The Go To dialog is a more powerful way to navigate around your spreadsheets. It allows you to navigate to specific cells, ranges, and worksheets by name. To open the Go To dialog, press Control+G.

Type the desired cell address, range name, or worksheet name in the Go to box and press Enter.

The Go To dialog is a powerful tool that can help you quickly and easily navigate around your Excel spreadsheets. By learning how to use it, you can save time and improve your productivity.

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About

A Mac veteran since 1989, I'm here to share my experience with tips and tricks every Friday. Witnessing the evolution of Mac software and hardware firsthand, I've gained a deep understanding of how these machines work and can help you troubleshoot any issues that may come up.

Check out all the blog posts.

Schedule

SaturdayInternet Tools
SundayOpen Topic
MondayMedia Monday
TuesdayQA
WednesdayNew England
ThursdayGluten Free
FridayMacintosh