Report November 2014: Cheetah3D and Yosemite

The November SEAL meeting was held on Friday the 14th of November 2014.

Cheetah3D

DaveK gave a great demonstration of Cheetah3D, a 3D graphics application made specifically for the Mac. Dave started by covering the basic controls and concepts to give beginners a starting point when following the many tutorials available on-line. He them demonstrated modelling and rendering a mug.

Dave has kindly made his notes for the Cheetah3D demo available.

He’s also made a Cheetah3D keyboard shortcut cheat sheet.

Yosemite

Robert gave a quick overview of some of the new features in MacOS 10.10 Yosemite which was released during October. Some of the more interesting things he pointed out where:

  • You can move the dock to the sides or bottom of the screen by holding down Shift on the keyboard while you drag the dividing line.
  • The newly updated Notification Centre allows 3rd party applications to add Widgets with their custom information. Robert showed the free to-do application Wunderlist as an example.
  • Spotlight has a new look and can be used to do calculations and conversions. For example typing “$30” will automatically show you the current value in Pounds Sterling. “$30 in euro” will correctly change the currency to Euro.
  • Spotlight preferences allows you to disable certain types of search result and change the order in which they appear.
  • Finder now has a simple batch rename function (select multiple files, click the cog icon and select Rename n items). If you need more powerful options a member suggested A Better Finder Rename.
  • Also in Finder a preview pane is now available in all views, not just column view as before, simply select Show Preview from the View menu.
  • When sending pictures or PDFs via Mail, each now has an Actions menu (small button at the top right) that allows you to Mark Up the picture or PDF with annotations including your signature. The signature can be input using a track pad or by holding a written signature up to an iSight camera.
  • 3rd Party applications can add options to the Actions menu. Robert showed how the graphics editor Pixelmator adds a Repair Tool to remove blemishes.

News

In our News section we discussed Apple’s announcements from their October media event:

  • iPad Air 2
  • iPad mini 3
  • iMac Retina 5K
  • Updated Mac mini
    A couple of new security concerns were mentioned which highlight the need not to install software from unknown sources:

  • Wire Lurker - Mac malware that can install applications on a connected iOS device even if it’s not Jail broken.

  • Masque Attack - A method by which iOS applications downloaded from outside the App Store can masquerade as another trusted third party app (which may itself have come from the App Store).