Posts tagged with "mac"

Apple’s Notes App for Mac to Add Support for Evernote File Imports

Mikey Campbell, writing for AppleInsider, reports on the upcoming update to Notes on OS X 10.11.4, which is set to bring support for native Evernote imports:

The new Evernote compatibility comes as part of Apple's Notes buildout, a project that most recently resulted in substantial feature upgrades on iOS 9 and OS X last year. Adding to a rich in-app note-taking toolset, .enex file support means enhanced flexibility for those invested in Evernote's platform. […]

Apple marketing VP Brian Croll mentioned the forthcoming Mac feature in an interview with Japanese publication PC User, saying Evernote "capture" support would arrive for OS X Notes "soon." The report was spotted Mac Otakara on Monday.

I just tried it on my MacBook Air running the latest beta seed of 10.11.4 released earlier today, and it worked like a charm. I exported a handful of notes from Evernote, each containing rich text formatting (links, lists, fonts with different sizes and colors, inline images, etc.) and, despite it being a beta, the results were very good. The app displays an alert warning the user that notes may not look the same once imported – some formatting will always be lost in the transition from one proprietary platform to another – but, as a start, this should be more than enough to move everything out of Evernote without having to use scripts or other workarounds (you can import multiple .enex files at once, of course).

This is going to be an important addition for those who are thinking about moving from Evernote to Notes. I did last summer, and I continue to be impressed by the simplicity and functionality of Notes on iOS 9.

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MailButler Adds New Tools to Apple Mail

Like many of Apple's stock Mac apps, Mail gets the job done without many bells and whistles. That leaves gaps for third-party developers to fill with their own apps and plugins. MailButler does just that – it's a plugin for Apple Mail from Berlin-based Feingeist Software that adds six tools to Mail that are especially useful if you send a lot of email.

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Daylite 6 for Mac and iOS

Daylite 6 was released today for both Mac and iOS, and it's a major upgrade for the business productivity app. Already boasting a complete set of tools for managing projects, clients, and tasks for an individual or workgroup, the new version adds a slew of new features that take the app even further.

One of the major highlights of this release is the announcement of "Daylite Cloud." Previously, centralizing a group's Daylite data required running a copy of Daylite Server. With Daylite Cloud, it's all handled seamlessly, allows offline access, is cheaper, and has no barrier to incorporating it into your company workflow.

The task management features of Daylite have also expanded. The constraints of the previous Pipeline/Activity Set features have been augmented by a "Task Lists" feature, allowing free-form creation of task lists that might not be assigned to a linear timeline, with complete control over ordering, a new entry interface, and additional fields for time, location, estimated time, and other details. There's also a new "Smart Filtering Bar" for viewing tasks by details such as assigned team member, category, or keyword.

The iOS version has new goodies as well, with features including Today Widgets, full filtering capabilities, and improved editing of Daylite entries. It also adds file linking tools which allow you to snap a photo and link it to one or more items in Daylite.

If you're a Mail.app user, also check out the Daylite Mail Assistant. It's not a new feature, but it's impressive. It allows you to link emails to Daylite items, schedule meetings, and share data without a chain of cc's and forwards, all from within Mail.

For a complete rundown of all the new features, check out the announcement post on the Daylite blog. You can learn more about Daylite on the Marketcircle website.


New Tricks for Old Dogs

Jason Snell, who's been a using a Mac for 26 years, has been trying to do as much as possible on an iPad Pro for the past few days. His takeaway is spot on:

That’s sort of how I view the iPad and the Mac today: One is not fundamentally better than the other, but the Mac is the one I know by heart. The Mac is the one on which I’ve built numerous scripts and workflows and shortcuts to make my work manageable. Leaving it isn’t something I can do lightly, and would need to provide large, tangible benefits.

As I argued in today's Connected, instead of continuing to spend time on discussing what is a "computer" and what's "better" for other users, perhaps we'd be better served by understanding what works for us.

This "Mac vs. iPad" debate is taking us nowhere. Today – right now – millions of people are using phones, laptops, and tablets as their computers. They couldn't care less about the traditional idea of a computer. Most of them don't even call them "computers" anymore. That's powerful and empowering. It gets rid of the weight of any preconceived notion of how technology should be used. For some, this change is uncomfortable. For others, it's liberating. And somewhere along this spectrum, there's the "computer" for each one of us.

As far as Apple devices go, I believe it'd be more interesting (and intellectually motivating) to talk about how OS X and iOS can improve in their individual areas and as part of the iCloud ecosystem. Exploring the present and imagining where we could go next, rather than telling others how they're supposed to get work done.

Jason's probably not going to stop using a Mac, and I'm going to keep using an iPad. No one's right or wrong here.

Use whatever works for you.

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Twitter Teases New Twitter for Mac Coming Soon

At its Flight developer conference earlier today, Twitter showed a brand new version of Twitter for Mac – the company's neglected desktop client – coming soon with a refreshed design and modern Twitter features. In addition to a revamped look (see screenshot above), the new app will include inprovements to Direct Messages in line with the mobile versions, such as group DMs and the ability to share photos and large emoji in private conversations. Also, the next Twitter for Mac seems to offer a dark mode.

Twitter for Mac has been ignored for a long time. Even if I'm not using my Mac as my primary computer anymore, I'm curious to see what Twitter – now under Jack Dorsey's guidance (who was in an apologetic mood today) – does with it.

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Bartender 2 Arrives with New Features and Full El Capitan Compatibility

Version 2 of Bartender is now available. If you have been running the El Capitan betas, you know that version 1 required you to temporarily disable System Integrity Protection (SIP) in order to install its system file. Version 2 does not need you to perform those steps. It is fully El Capitan-compatible right “out of the box.”

Other version 2 changes include:

  • With Bartender 2 you can now keyboard navigate all menu items both in the menu bar and the Bartender Bar, simply arrow through them and press return to select.
  • You can now search the Bartender Bar for menu items, allowing you quick access to a menu item without looking for it. Simply display the Bartender Bar and start typing, then press enter to select the menu item.
  • A key part of Bartender 2 has been rewriting the internals to enable new features and to allow Bartender to work with System Integrity Protection in OS X El Capitan. As always we continue to improve Bartender’s performance and reduce energy usage.
  • If you want a really clean look and privacy, Bartender’s own icon can also be hidden.

I'm not sure if that last one is new, but it’s new to me. With Bartender’s menu bar item hidden, you can still access the app using a keyboard shortcut. Then, just keep typing the name of the menu bar item you are looking for, or navigate with the arrows. That’s pretty cool.

This is a great update which brings some great new features. Dealing with SIP was a big hurdle, but I’m glad to have a fully armed and operational Bartender back on my Mac.

There's a free, four week trial available from the Bartender website. After that it’s $15 for new customers, or $7.50 to upgrade.

My advice? Just buy it now.


Zen Timer: Elegant Pomodoro on Mac

Zen Timer has improved my daily work life. I have ADHD, and I recently went through a snafu where my disorder was untreated for a couple of months. In order to get any work done, I needed more structured work time, so I gave the Pomodoro technique another go. It turned out to be a huge help for me, and if it can help someone with a level of concentration as hopeless as mine, I have to believe it's a great tool for more "normal" people, too.

At its core, Pomodoro is a simple method of working and resting in timed intervals. There are a variety of timers available on Mac and iOS for this, and just as I was making the effort to start implementing the technique again, I found Zen Timer. It's a beautiful and creative app for interval timing that immediately became part of my daily workflow.

Zen Timer generates an animated tree which grows during a work interval, and when the timer is up, the leaves of the tree fall to the ground and rest there while it counts down to your next work period. When the next work interval starts, the tree begins growing anew. Zen Timer generates a unique tree each time, and you can customize the colors, line thicknesses, transparency and more things that people with ADHD (or OCD...) probably shouldn't be allowed to spend too much time tweaking.

It's visually customizable, but I've found there's a specific way I like to run it: I set the size of the window as large as it will go, make the window background transparent, and set it at the bottom of the viewport at Desktop level on one of my auxiliary displays. You can hide the timer and controls during work periods, so I'm left with an elegant tree growing on my desktop while I work. I customized my wallpaper and the tree colors, of course. Because I could.

While Zen Timer comes with intervals set to the Pomodoro defaults, its timer settings are easily modified to work with any lengths of time in each interval.

If you're looking for a new Pomodoro timer on your Mac, or are like me and just need a better way to work, check out Zen Timer ($4.99 US) on the Mac App Store. If you're curious, check out the developer's website for an excellent video of Zen Timer in action.


Beamer 3 Public Beta Available Today: Features Chromecast Support and a New User Interface

Beamer, a favorite Mac app of the MacStories team, is today launching a public beta of their third major release. For those unfamiliar with the app, Beamer is a Mac app that enables you to easily stream video (in almost any format) to your Apple TV via AirPlay.

The tentpole new feature of Beamer 3 is that it can now stream videos to Google Chromecast. Beamer 3 also has a redesigned interface that looks better on OS X Yosemite and has improved functionality, making it easier to access key options such as audio tracks and subtitles. You can also skip to the next video in your Beamer queue by double clicking the play button the Apple Remote. Beamer's developer also plans to implement further improvements during the beta period.

Beamer 3 is a free upgrade for existing Beamer 2 customers. During the beta period, new customers can purchase Beamer 3 for $15, discounted from the standard price of $19.99.