Don’t minimise windows when you’re working on a Mac

There’s one key thing you need to learn when shifting from Windows to Mac — ignore the minimise window button

It’s been 18 months since I switched from Windows to Mac as my day-to-day operating system and some habits die hard.

As difficult as anyone who’s seen the state of my office will find it to believe, I like a tidy desktop. I don’t like having windows strewn all over the place, stacked behind one another like you see in the screenshot above. …


Stream Deck console
Stream Deck console
The Stream Deck just received a massive update

The Stream Deck 5.0 update brings several massive improvements to the control panel

I wrote earlier this year about how the Elgato Stream Deck was everything Apple’s (seemingly doomed) Touch Bar could have been. A new software update for the Stream Deck that has just landed on my Mac makes the Stream Deck even better. Much, much better in fact.

To recap, the Stream Deck is a device ostensibly aimed at streamers, allowing them to donk a button and play sounds, special effects or social media promos while they are streaming.

I’m not a streamer — I have a face…


Mail won’t reveal what you’ve read anymore (Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash)

Find out how much data your email software reveals about you and what Apple’s doing to boost email privacy

I sent you an email last week. I know when you opened it, how many times you read it, and what links you clicked on in the email. I know where you read it from.

In fact, I’ve been watching you for months. I know when you do and don’t open my messages. And when I see you haven’t even bothered to open my email, I send you another one. Y’know. Just to make sure that you don’t forget me.

Bit…


Find out what’s chugging power on your Mac (Photo by Nikola Johnny Mirkovic on Unsplash)

Find out how much energy your Mac consumes when working, gaming, sitting idle and more

In the overall scheme of things, your Mac is unlikely to be doing a ferocious amount of damage to your energy bills or the environment. Macs, especially MacBooks, are pretty lean when it comes to energy consumption.

Nevertheless, it can be interesting to see how the power demand fluctuates on your Mac and what’s causing spikes in consumption.

My MacBook Pro 16in, for example, has a punchy 100W power supply, although the system rarely — if ever — drains the full 100W. How do I…


Firefox has lost its gawkiness

The newly revamped Firefox 89 finally looks comfortable within macOS

At the risk of sounding like a pathetic snob, Firefox has finally blossomed into an attractive browser — one that doesn’t look awkwardly out of place on a Mac.

I’ve always had a soft spot for Mozilla and Firefox, but you never got the sense the company was that bothered about the way its browser looked. It’s always been strong for functionality, but form largely eluded it.

That’s not the case with Firefox 89, which has been released this week with the refreshed Proton interface. I like it a lot.


Free music is part of the Amazon Prime offering (Photo by Andres Urena on Unsplash)

Amazon Prime membership offers heaps more than free delivery — here’s what you might be missing out on

Amazon Prime membership is near ubiquitous amongst my circle of friends. Equally widespread is their failure to understand quite how much stuff gets bundled into that subscription. Most of my pals don’t seem to realise Prime membership offers anything more than ‘free’ delivery of your parcels.

Here, then, are some of the other benefits of Amazon Prime Membership that you might not realise you have.

Loads of great shows on Amazon Prime Video


Don’t skimp on your storage (Photo by Maxim Hopman on Unsplash)

Apple, Microsoft and other laptop makers are selling people short when it comes to storage

About a decade or so ago, we thought storage angst was a thing of the past. Hard disk capacities had grown so large that even a cheapo laptop came with enough storage to comfortably see you through.

Then some smart arse invented SSDs. They are faster, more reliable, less likely to wake up one morning making a noise like a rat scratching a dustbin, signalling that your data has packed its bags and left. But capacities were limited. Far too limited.

The first MacBook Air…


Fortnite is back on the Mac!

There are several ways to play PC games on a Mac. Let’s go through the pros and cons — and the services to keep an eye on.

Let’s face it, gaming isn’t the Mac’s trump card. There’s a decent selection of games that are coded natively for the Mac, but nothing like the breadth of titles that are available for Windows.

And, of course, Apple has had a serious falling out with Epic Games, which means Mac players are stuck with a yonks-old version of Fortnite and can’t play the brilliant Epic-owned Rocket League (although that’s nothing to do with their legal skirmish).

The good news is there are several ways you can play PC games on a Mac. …


AirTags are effectively invisible on Android

There’s no reason why Apple can’t support AirTags on Android, except sheer spite

I bought an Apple AirTag out of pure curiosity. At £29, it’s cheap enough for an impulse buy, just to see what it can do.

One of the things it definitely cannot do is provide any meaningful tracking data to an Android phone — or a Windows device for that matter. If you want to find out where your AirTag is, you’ll need an Apple device to hand.

I knew this would be the case before I bought one, so this isn’t me griping because I’ve wasted…


How To Tell When Things Are Going Badly Wrong

Even Macs have black days (Photo by Yu Kato on Unsplash)

How to diagnose serious problems with your MacBook laptop using simple tools

Macs are great, but they’re not invincible. They go wrong. Badly, fist-gnawingly, pour-me-a-stiff-one wrong on occasions.

The guide below won’t help you diagnose every problem on a Mac. Apple has an entire support website that’s incapable of doing that, and they’re slightly better resourced than I am.

However, here’s a guide to some of the major problems that can befall a MacBook and how to tell if you’ve got a serious drama on your hands.

The MacBook battery dies in no time

If there’s one component that’s likely — certain, even — to go wrong…

Barry Collins

Freelance writer, editor and photographer. More at: www.mediabc.co.uk

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