(You're reading all posts by Rob LeFebvre)

About Rob LeFebvre

Rob LeFebvreRob LeFebvre is an Anchorage, Alaska-based writer and editor who has contributed to various tech, gaming and iOS sites, including 148Apps, Creative Screenwriting, Shelf-Awareness, VentureBeat, and Paste Magazine. Feel free to find Rob on Twitter @roblef, and send him a cookie once in a while; he'll really appreciate it.

(sorry, you need Javascript to see this e-mail address)

Take better selfies with your iPhone’s timer mode

Gather all your friends for a groupie with the timer on your iPhone. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Gather all your friends for a groupie with the timer on your iPhone. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

It can be tricky to get the best shot when taking a selfie or group shot with your iPhone. If you want a better angle than the length of your arm can provide (or your ridiculous selfie stick will telescope to), you might consider setting your iPhone on a ledge or tripod and using the built-in timer mode to get yourself and everyone else into position before the shutter goes off.

It’s not super-tricky, but you do need to know where to look. Here’s our recipe to enable timer mode on your iPhone.

Read the rest of this post »

10 essential Finder tricks every Mac user should know

Photo: Yeray Hdez Guerra/FlickrCC

Master your Mac with these 10 Finder tips. Photo: Yeray Hdez Guerra/Flickr CC

In Mac OS X, you’ll spend much of your time in the Finder, the part of your operating system that manages files and such. While you might think you know all there is to know about it, the Finder is a complex and wonderful app — with its own special tricks to master.

Here are 10 essential Finder tips that will help you get the most out of your time working or playing on your Mac.

Read the rest of this post »

New stoner ad from Ben & Jerry’s parodies an Apple classic

This one's coming out on 4.20. Yes, that's intentional. Photo: Ben & Jerry's

This one’s coming out on 4.20. Yes, that’s intentional. Photo: Ben & Jerry’s

Is this a new era of marketing directly to stoners?

In Ben & Jerry’s new ad for its in-shop confection, the Brrr-ito, a young woman wearing an ice cream server’s uniform runs into a room of slack-jawed young men staring at a screen showing a boring old ice cream bar.

What happens next should be no surprise to those of you who remember Ridley Scott’s famous ad for Apple in 1984 introducing the Mac.

Read the rest of this post »

ICYMI: Hands-on with the Apple Watch

Get your hands on our impressions of the Apple Watch in this week's Cult of Mac Magazine. Photo: Stephen Smith/Cult of Mac

Get your hands on our impressions of the Apple Watch in this week’s Cult of Mac Magazine. Photo: Stephen Smith/Cult of Mac

This week, Leander takes some time to try on the Apple Watch in-store, finding out whether the hottest smartwatch out there is worth your time or money, David heads into an Apple Store on Magnificent Mile in Chicago for a fitting and to get some customer reactions, plus a ton of news about this latest wearable tech that you’ll want to read from cover to cover. We’ve also got Stephen with some travel tips for you and your trusty MacBook, as well as Luke’s take on why you want to upgrade your iOS to 8.3 right away (hint, it’s not emojis). Rob also walks you through a couple of how-tos, including one way to make sure your iOS gaming sessions aren’t interrupted with a simple tweak to Do Not Disturb.

Make sure to head on out and download Cult of Mac Magazine to get your own “hands” on the great content we dose you with every week.

Read the rest of this post »

How to create entirely separate photo libraries in Photos

Maybe you just want to have a library full of food pictures, you know? Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Maybe you just want to have a library full of food pictures, you know? Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

One of the cooler hidden features of Photos (and iPhoto before it) is the ability to create more than one photo library. You can make one for your home photos, work photos, photos from a different camera, or those racy photos you don’t want the kids tripping over.

It’s pretty simple, but not totally intuitive – there’s no menu item to select to create a new library.

Follow our recipe to create as many different libraries as you like for separate but equal Photos access.

Read the rest of this post »

New Star Wars: The Force Awakens teaser brings fans back ‘home’

This is how a Star Wars flick should look. Photo: Lucasfilm

This is how a Star Wars flick should look. Photo: Lucasfilm

“The Force is strong in my family,” says Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker voices over this second teaser trailer for the hotly anticipated Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie that will hit the big screen this coming December. “My father has it, I have it, my sister has it. You have that power, too.”

That’s how the nerdgasmic second trailer begins, and then slams into some seriously amazing scenes from the upcoming film, including a massive, crashed Star Destroyer, close ups of new stars Oscar Isaac, John Boyega, and Daisy Ridley, and a brilliant moment of fan service with everyone’s favorite smuggler and his humongous furry sidekick.

“Chewie,” says Han Solo, “We’re home.”

Read the rest of this post »

Tim Cook named one of Time’s 100 most influential people

Tim Cook tops Time's list of influential people. Photo: Apple

Tim Cook tops Time’s list of influential people. Photo: Apple

Apple CEO Tim Cook is the fourth person on Time‘s list of “The 100 Most Influential People,” a self-referential grouping of important figures from technology, music, politics, and our global culture.

Cook’s short essay focuses on his business acumen as well as his socially responsible world-view.

“It could not have been easy for Tim Cook to step into the immense shadow cast by the late Apple co-founder, Steve Jobs,” writes Congressman John Lewis for Time. “But with grace and courage and an unabashed willingness to be his own man, Tim has pushed Apple to unimaginable profitability—and greater social responsibility.”

Read the rest of this post »

Shield your iPhone fitness data from other apps’ prying eyes

Keep your activity data private. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Keep your activity data private. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

With the advent of Apple’s motion coprocessor chip (the M8 in recent iOS devices), any apps that you download and grant permission to can use this data to enhance their offerings.

This lets apps like RunKeeper, Carrot Fitness and others both gather fitness data from your iPhone as well as send it to the Health app.

This could raise privacy concerns for some, so being able to decide which apps we allow to access our fitness-tracking data — or whether the iPhone tracks these activities at all — can be a helpful.

Here’s our recipe for getting finer-grained control over your fitness-tracking data.

Read the rest of this post »

Make iOS Calendar look the way you want

Press the button. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Press the button. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Oh, that pesky list view in your iOS Calendar app. It sure likes to go missing in various iOS updates, doesn’t it, like in iOS 7 when it just, sort of, disappeared.

It’s not totally gone now in iOS 8.3, but there is a new way to access it along with a new layout. There are also some funky ways to move around your Calendar app that may not be as intuitive as they should. These aren’t necessarily new to iOS 8.3, but it’s handy to know them, as well.

Here’s the recipe you’ll need to view your iOS Calendar the way you want on your iPhone and iPad.

Read the rest of this post »

Blizzard’s addictive card game Hearthstone is now on your iPhone

I can play this anywhere? Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

I can play this anywhere? Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Hearthstone addicts players rejoice! Blizzard’s incredibly compelling digital card game is now optimized for your iPhone or iPod touch.

We’ve heard rumors that some folks even use their iPhone while in the bathroom. Gross! If you’re one of those people, though, get ready to never stop playing Hearthstone again.

Sure, the video game company behind mega-hits World of Warcraft, Starcraft II, and Diablo III has had a version of this easy-to-learn, hard-to-master two-player collectible card game on the Mac and iPad since 2013, but this is the first time you’re able to play it on the small screen without any jailbreaking or hacking needed.

Hearthstone is now officially supported on iPhone and iPod touch,” says the App Store description. “…Featuring an all-new intuitive interface hand-crafted for the mobile experience, it’s never been easier to take Hearthstone with you anywhere you want to play.”

Read the rest of this post »