Welcome to SEAL

South Essex Apple Link is an Apple user group run by enthusiasts with a collective deep understanding of the Apple technologies and it’s user community. We meet monthly in Wickford, Essex. SEAL welcomes Mac, iPod, iPhone, iPad and Apple TV users across the whole of Essex and surrounding areas.

Next meeting: Friday 8th June 2018.

May 2013 Meeting Report

The May meeting took place in the new venue which along with the interesting topics and discussions during the evening was well received by all attendees.

The evening started off with some club announcements:

  • The club had some flyers printed which are now available for members to help promote and advertise the club in their local areas. This is also downloadable from SEAL Flyer A6
  • Club member Denesh explained that SEAL had set up affiliate links with various suppliers - a way for people to help the club raise funds through purchases they make via links associated with SEAL. The purchases would not cost extra, just that SEAL makes a commission. The SEAL website will soon be updated to include a section with Affiliate links to Apple’s iTunes, Mac App Store, iOS App Store, iBook Store and various other suppliers.
  • The June meeting would contain a section called ‘Show & Tell’ where club members would be invited to quickly showcase a product or software they really like. Members could either do this impromptu or think about it over the coming month prior to the June meeting.

Next up was Apple related news and discussion. News items consisted of:

  • WWDC 10-14th June, sells out in 2 minutes
  • Countdown to 50 Billion downloads from the App Store
  • Apple celebrates a decade of the iTunes Store
  • Rumours: iOS 7 “deforstallization” and OS X 10.9 features
  • Apple Q2 Results, increased income but reduced profit over last year
  • Jonathan Ive Named as one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential people
  • Safari 6.0.4 allows Java security changes
  • Anonymised Siri voice clips stored by Apple for up to two years
  • Replacement programme for 3rd generation Apple TVs with Wi-Fi connectivity issues
  • Working Apple 1 may fetch $240K-$400K
  • Adobe drops Creative Suite development in favour of Creative Cloud
  • Phishing e-mail targets Apple IDs and credit card info

Next up was a feature presentation by club member Ben, on DJing on a Mac. He demonstrated the application called djay by algoriddim for this.

The in-depth demonstration included Ben mixing through some 80s and 90s music to show the powerful features of the application and how to achieve required results.

The application is available on Mac OS X, iOS for iPhone and iOS for iPad (a snip at the prices) and can be downloaded via the following Mac App Store and iOS App Store links:

 

djay for MacOSX by algoriddim - £13.99

 

djay for iPhone by algoriddim - £0.69

 

djay for iPad by algoriddim - £2.99


The second presentation of the night was given by club member David. He gave an explanation about Newsreaders and then gave a walkthrough and demonstration of Feedly which one may use in any browser, in Feedly for Safari via an extension, Feedly for iPhone or Feedly for iPad

Not only does Feedly display the information in an attractive yet intuitive format, it also keeps the necessary data synchronised across all the devices you use to access the news feeds.


The night closed with the interactive Q&A section - attendees helping each other by answering questions posed by other attendees.


The next SEAL meeting will be on Friday 14 May at the current new venue:

The Wick Community Centre
Silva Island Way
Salcott Crescent
Wickford
Essex
SS12 9NR.

Click here for the map.


Some of the links in this article redirect you to the Mac App Store and iOS App Store via affiliate links. Please note that SEAL is a promotional partner with the affiliate network TradeDoubler and any sales via these links benefit SEAL at no extra cost to the purchaser, and provide a way for readers and members to support the club.

 

Q&A May 2013

At this month’s busy SEAL meeting we only had time for one question:

Q. When I attempt to start Open Office after downloading it from the Internet, I get the message “Open Office can’t be opened because it is from an unidentified developer” and it will not start.

A. This message comes from Gatekeeper, the anti-malware feature that Apple introduced in Mac OS 10.8 Mountain Lion. By default, Gatekeeper only allows apps that have been downloaded from the Mac App Store and those that come from identified developers to open. Apps that come from developers who have not registered with Apple and signed their app with a developer ID (i.e. the developer is unidentified) display the message above when double clicked and will not open.

In this case, Open Office is not signed with an Apple developer ID so it is prevented from opening by Gatekeeper. If you are confident that you have downloaded a genuine copy of Open Office from the official web site then you can override Gatekeeper and let Open Office start. To do this:

1, Control-click or right click on the Open Office icon.
2. Select Open from the top of the context menu that appears.
3. Click Open in the dialog box that warns you that Open Office is unidentified.
4. If prompted, enter your administrator user name and password.

OS X will record that you trust the app and from then on you can start it normally without warnings.

Apple’s About Gatekeeper support article explains the system in more detail and includes information about the options available for it in System Preferences.

April 2013 Meeting Report

The April meeting was another successful one and another meeting where we welcomed new members.

The evening started off with some club announcements and details:

  • Change of venue from the next meeting (10 May 2013) to the Wick Community Centre (also in Wickford), mentioning the benefits for the club and it’s members
  • Monthly meetings will continue on the 2nd Friday of each month
  • New Q&A format for the meetings, making them more involved for every attendee
  • Plan for a club trip to the Silicon Dreams & Vintage Computer Festival 2013 in Coalville, Leicestershire, in July. Anyone interested in going to contact the club so that the club may consider transport options.

Next up was Apple related news and discussion. News items consisted of:

  • iOS Podcasts app updated with custom stations and iCloud support
  • Apple’s data centres now running on 100% renewable energy
  • Apple changes iPhone warranty policies in China after government media pressure
  • Google Forks WebKit for Chrome
  • Firefox updated to version 20 with new download manager and private browsing improvements
  • Apple faces Siri patent law suit in China
  • Apple blocks yontoo trojan
  • iMessage is highly secure
  • Mac OS X 10.8.3 update available
  • iOS 6.1.3 update available
  • Final Cut Pro, Motion & Compressor updated
  • Funny or Die iSteve biopic with Justin Long as Steve Jobs (80 minute movie released at the time of writing)
  • JOBS film starring Ashton Kutcher delayed

Next up was a Tips & Tricks presentation by club Chairman Robert, on Recording Audio on a Mac - audio that is being played on the computer in any application, be it a browser (running YouTube), or a VoIP program such as Skype, DVD player, microphone or even a game.

Robert explained and demonstrated doing this using an application called Audio Hijack Pro by Rogue Amoeba. The in-depth demonstration and tutorial showed the powerful features of the application and how to achieve required results.

One of our members produces music and she quickly showed a piece of music where she had grabbed some sound with extreme clarity using Audio Hijack Pro to integrate into it.

Robert mentioned another application, WireTap Studio by Ambrosia Software, however this is has big limitations on OS X 10.7 and above and he mentioned that AudioHijack Pro was easier to use.

The application is a free download and the unlicensed version allows up to 10 minutes of recordings. The licensed version with unlimited length recordings costs just US$32 (approx £21)


The second presentation of the night was given by club member David. He gave a walkthrough and demonstration of the recently introduced Apple ID two factor authentication (also called two-step verification)

It was explained that this two factor authentication was only for your Apple ID (when needing to change any details such as email address, or credit card details) and not for when using your Apple ID to sign in to iCloud or make App Store or iTunes purchases. It is there to protect unauthorised changes to your Apple ID (which could affect everything you use your Apple ID for - purchases, etc).

As this is an option (at no charge) on your Apple ID security, you need to switch it on manually within your Apple ID account if you wish to use it.

David demonstrated the process of setting it up and showed the different options available, needing to select two of the three to set up two factor authentication: email, SMS and Recovery Key.

An important point made was that the Recovery Key should be kept separate from other passwords. A number of club members use the 1Password password manager and David explained that if one uses 1Password for all login details then the Recovery Key should not be stored in that application - storing both ‘factors’ of the authentication in the same place would in effect render it useless as anyone who could gain access to one’s 1Password details would then have the ability to change the details in the Apple ID, in this instance. It was advice well-given.

Apple themselves have a support page for two-step verification at http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5570


The night closed with the interactive Q&A section - attendees helping each other by answering questions posed by other attendees.


The next SEAL meeting will be on Friday 10 May at the new venue:

The Wick Community Centre
Silva Island Way
Salcott Crescent
Wickford
Essex
SS12 9NR.

Click here for the map.

 

Q&A April 2013

A couple of questions were answered at the SEAL meeting this month:

  • How do I deal with the Pages message “Import warning: An unsupported field wasn’t imported.” when opening a form in Microsoft Word (.doc) format?
  • How can I type symbols and accented characters which aren’t shown on the keyboard?
    Q. How do I deal with the Pages message “Import warning: An unsupported field wasn’t imported.” when opening a form in Microsoft Word (.doc) format?

A. Fields in a Microsoft Word are elements that can be inserted into a pre-written document that contain information that will change. One class of fields are form fields, they allow a user to fill in information without changing the pre-written document. There are different types of form field such as text, tick boxes and drop-down selections.

Apple’s Pages word processor doesn’t support form fields. When you import a Word document which has them into Pages it warns you that these fields could not be imported with the message: “Import warning: An unsupported field wasn’t imported.”

In most cases you can still go ahead and fill in the form using Pages, the design of the form will make it clear where you should enter your answers. If there’s a place where you need to enter a tick, see the question below for how to do so.

If it’s not clear how to fill in the form or you think there might be options you are missing a free alternative is to use Open Office to open the form. Open Office is an open source suite of office applications which is available for the Mac. Open Office Writer, its word processor, does support form fields in Word documents.

Q. How can I type symbols and accented characters which aren’t shown on the keyboard?

A. A variety of key combinations can be used to type many common symbols and accented characters on the Mac. The easiest way to see what options are available is to enable to Keyboard Viewer. To do this:

  1. Open System Preferences and choose Language & Text.
  2. Select the Input Sources tab.
  3. In the Select input sources to use list, make sure Keyboard & Character Viewer (at the top) is ticked.
  4. Make sure Show Input menu in menu bar is ticked.
  5. Close System Preferences.
    You should now have a new icon on the menu bar with options to show the Character and Keyboard viewers.

Open the keyboard viewer window and try holding down the different modifier keys (Shift, Control and Option) on your keyboard to see the symbols you can type. Remember that you can use combinations of modifier keys such as Shift and Option together.

As an example, if you want to type a tick symbol you’ll see that if you hold down the Option key, a tick appears in the v position on the keyboard. So to type a tick, simple press Option+v. Try holding down Shift and Option and look at the k position, you’ll see an Apple logo. To type that at any time you need it just press Shift+Option+k.

You may notice that when you hold down the Option key some of the symbols are highlighted in orange. This indicates that those combinations initiate typing an accent. For example Option+U shows an orange highlighted umlaut symbol (two dots above the letter). To type an accented character press the key combination for the accent you want, release the keys and then type the letter you want the accent applied to. For example, to type ö, press Option+u and then type o.

On Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) and later, there is an alternative method of typing accented characters by holding down the letter you want to add the accent to. This opens a pop-up showing the available accents which can be selected by typing the associated number.

These keyboard shortcuts work in almost every Mac application.

Tips & Tricks: Aperture 3

Following an excellent demonstration by club member Ben R, David B has produced two Aperture 3 Tips & Tricks videos based on Ben’s presentation.

Subjects covered in SEAL Aperture 3 Part 1 are:

1) Creating a Project

2) Viewing Project Images

3) Adding Adjustments

4) Using Adjustments

Subjects covered in SEAL Aperture 3 Part 2 are:

1) Retouch and Clone Tool

2) Using The Loupe

3) Brush in Colour

4) Using Vignette

5) Adding GPS Data

Q&A March 2013

There were four questions from the SEAL club meeting earlier this month.

 

  • How can I save my web site created in RapidWeaver on my Mac to preview in a web browser?
  • How can I stop my web site on the Internet being indexed by Google?
  • How can I rename an existing OS X username and the Home Directory?
  • How would I access my 1Password details from another computer, for example from a friend’s computer or if I am abroad in a hotel or something?
     

 
Q. How can I save my web site created in RapidWeaver on my Mac to preview in a web browser?

A. Here are step by step instructions:

  1. With your site loaded in RapidWeaver, select Export Site from the File menu.
  2. In the Export sheet that appears, enter the name of the folder you want to save the site into in the Save As box.
  3. Select the location where you want the site exported (for example your Desktop). You may need to reveal the detailed location options by clicking the triangle button.
  4. If you want RapidWeaver to remember the export location for this site next time, click the “Make this the default export folder” tick box.
  5. Click Export. All the files which make up your site are saved into the folder you selected.
  6. To open the site in a browser, go to the exported folder in the Finder and open it. Double click on one of the .html files to open it in your browser (index.html is usually the home page). If you have multiple browsers installed, Right (or Option) click on the file and select the browser you want to use from the Open With menu.
    Exporting your RapidWeaver Site includes details of how you can set the Preferences to automatically open your exported site in a browser.

 

 
Q. How can I stop my web site on the Internet being indexed by Google?

A. If you have a web site on the Internet, Google and other search engines will automatically add it to their indexes so people can find the site in search results. If you’re not ready to promote your site, you might want to stop search engines from listing it.

To do this you need to create a file called robots.txt and upload it to your web site. Search engines check this file before indexing your site to see what, if any, pages they should index.

These instructions will stop all search engines (which respect the robots.txt file) from indexing all the pages on your site:

  1. Open TextEdit (or another text editor of your choice). For TextEdit, select Make Plain Text from the Format menu.
  2. Enter the following in the first line of the document: User-agent: *
  3. Enter the following in the second line of the document: Disallow: /
  4. Save the file somewhere accessible (such as the Desktop or your Documents folder) and name it robots.txt
  5. Upload the robots.txt file to the root directory of your web site (it should be alongside the home page, usually index.html).
    Note that robots.txt only stops well behaved search engines (this includes the main ones, Google, Yahoo, Bing etc.) from indexing your site, anyone can still access it if they know the address or follow a link.

If your site is already appearing in search results before you upload the robots.txt file it will take a while before the listings start to disappear.

For full details on robots.txt and other ways you can configure it (for example to block indexing of only certain pages) are available on The Web Robots Pages. http://www.robotstxt.org/robotstxt.html

Once your robots.txt file is installed you can make sure it’s working with the Robots.txt Checker. http://www.frobee.com/robots-txt-check

Q. How can I rename an existing OS X username and the Home Directory?

A. Apple themselves provide instructions for this at http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1428 - please ensure you make a backup of your computer and especially the user account on the computer before tackling this.

 

 
Q. How would I access my 1Password details from someone else’s computer, for example from a friend’s computer or if I am abroad in a hotel or something?

A. Agilebits, the makers of 1Password have provided an excellent solution for this called 1PasswordAnywhere. You just need a browser, an Internet connection and for your 1Password datafile to be stored in your Dropbox account. Alternatively you could store a copy of your 1Password datafile on USB storage. Full details are at: http://help.agilebits.com/1Password3/1passwordanywhere.html

March 2013 Meeting Report

The March meeting was well attended with some new visitors in the audience chatting with our enthusiastic club members. New visitors and new skills are always welcome at our club.

Apple related news and discussion. News items consisted of:

  • Retina MacBook Pro line updated with new processors
  • Prices reduced on 13” Retina MacBook Pro and high-end Air
  • Apple patents microslot antenna technology
  • “Every Steve Jobs Video” Channel on YouTube
  • iOS 6.1 bug enables passcode lock bypass (6.1.3 in beta to fix)
  • Officially licensed Lightning to USB cables now available
  • Documentary partially shot on iPhone wins an Oscar
  • Jonathan Ive receives Gold Blue Peter badge
  • Evernote force an extensive password reset after systems are hacked
    —–

Feature presentation given by club member Ben, provided us with a deep look into Aperture, far deeper than some had ever dared go before.

We were shown how to lighten and enhance colours in an image, how to repair and lose blemishes in a photo - for example, a spec of dust on your lens by using the retouch tool the image was transformed from spoilt photograph into a stunning panoramic view of a coastline. The use of ‘Presets’ was also very interesting.

We were shown many great features of Aperture. ‘Lift & Stamp’, where you lift ‘Metadata’ from one photo and apply it to another. How to enhance the colour of the sky or the trees and grass, ‘Crop’, ‘Straighten’ and ‘Sharpen’ tools, the use of ‘Keywords’ in Aperture, all were of great interest.

We all thank Ben for the demonstration of an impressive application that clearly has so much to offer for under £60 and hope that Ben will provide us with another demonstration of the many features within Aperture.

—–

The night closed with the interactive Q&A section.

—–

The next SEAL meeting will be on Friday, April 12

Tips & Tricks: Hidden Wallpapers

OS X Mountain Lion has a hidden folder full of beautiful wallpapers. If you would like to use any of them, first open Finder press Cmd + Shift + G to bring up the “Go to folder” dialog box.

GoFolder

Copy the next line below then paste it into the Go to the folder dialog box as above.

/System/Library/Frameworks/ScreenSaver.Framework/Versions/A/Resources/Default Collections/

Press Enter or ‘Click’ Go. There are over 40 beautiful wallpapers in these folders for you to use.

Tips & Tricks: Default Save Location

When you save a document for the very first time, Mountain Lion insists the default save location is iCloud. If you would like to have it as was pre Mountain Lion then copy the command from the next line…

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSDocumentSaveNewDocumentsToCloud -bool false

Then open the Terminal application, paste the copied text in at the Terminal Command prompt and press Enter.

Should you want to put it back to the default save location of iCloud, do the same with the command below.

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSDocumentSaveNewDocumentsToCloud -bool true

Quit the application and then reopen for the changes to take effect.

Q&A February 2013

We run a Q&A section in our monthly meetings where anyone can ask a question and there is always someone around to answer it. As of this month we will be repeating those questions and answers to those questions, on this website.

Four questions this month:

  • How do you create templates in Microsoft Word for Mac?
  • How do you add names to people in photos in iPhoto?
  • Are iPads unlocked for use with any SIM?
  • I’m running Microsoft Office for Mac 2008 under Snow Leopard. if I upgrade to Mountain Lion will it still work?
     

Q. How do you create templates in Microsoft Word for Mac?

A. Here are some step by step instructions for versions 2004, 2008 and 2011

  1. Create a new document or open the document you want to use as a template. Format it as required.
  2. Click File -> Save As then enter a name for your template and choose Document/Word Template from the Format drop-down menu.
  3. The file is saved with a .dot/.dotx extension and will appear in the Project Gallery under the My Templates section.
     

 

Q. How do you add names to people in photos in iPhoto?

A. Tested on iPhoto 11 Version 9.4.2 (710.42):

  1. Open the photo
  2. At bottom right of the window click Info, then Top Right click Faces and then Click Add a Face
  3. Click the centre of the grid
  4. Drag the Grid and resize over the face, then give it a name.
  5. As you add ‘Faces’ you will build a ‘Faces’ Library in the Left Panel. To see these faces click Faces under ‘Library’ and all your Faces will be displayed on the cork board.
     

 

Q. Are iPads unlocked for use with any SIM?

A. Apple sells the iPad unlocked. However there have been cases where people have bought the iPad through a carrier and these have turned out to be locked - in some cases the customer has paid full price for the iPad whereas in other cases the customer has bought the iPad at a reduced price and signed up to a contract for data with the carrier.

The best thing to do is to buy directly from Apple.

 

 

Q. I’m running Microsoft Office for Mac 2008 under Snow Leopard. if I upgrade to Mountain Lion will it still work?

A. In short, the answer is a resounding “Yes”. However we recommend you read the information in the following link in case you run into any problems: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2732651