All items tagged with "How-To"

3 super-easy ways to convert currency with your Mac

Your Mac's calculator has some tricks up its sleeve. Photo: Rob LeFebvre

Your Mac’s calculator has some tricks up its sleeve. Photo: Rob LeFebvre

As the world gets smaller and smaller thanks to the global marketplace called the internet, you may sometimes need to know exactly how much your dollar will get you in the wider world. Is that £15 widget really worth it? You’ll only know if you convert it to some form of currency that you understand better.

Your Mac has at least three ways to do this sort of calculation: with a Dashboard widget, the built-in Calculator app, and even with Spotlight. Here’s how to convert currencies into something that makes more sense, right from your handy Mac computer.

Read the rest of this post »

How to nuke pesky location data from your iPhone photos

"You were in Vegas without me!?" Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

“You were in Vegas without me!?” Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

These days, any photo you shoot with your iPhone or other smartphone will typically contain location data (unless you have that feature turned off) to allow apps like iPhoto to place your images on a map.

Even photo-sharing services use this data, with some — like Flickr — posting it prominently on your photo pages (along with all the other EXIF data, like shutter speed and f-stop).

If you don’t want the location of your photos to be known, the Yosemite version of OS X’s Preview can take care of it for you. Let’s strip that location data before we post that photo to the Web, OK?

Read the rest of this post »

7 useful ways to resurrect your old iPhone from the junk drawer

Still plenty of life in the old thing. Photo: Rob LeFebvre, Cult of Mac

Still plenty of life in the old thing. Photo: Rob LeFebvre, Cult of Mac

If you’re like me, you’ve got a junk bin full of old technology. It’s just the way we’re made; there’s nothing better than sifting through the detritus of technology that you loved.

I’ve traded in my iPhone for the last five generations, from the iPhone 3G to the iPhone 5, or passed them along to my kids or significant others. The first generation iPhone, however, was something special, so I kept it.

As I was looking for ways to let my daughter listen to music at night without the temptation (or networked connection) of her more modern mobile phone, I chanced upon this lovely little rounded gadget from 2007 in the plastic bin I lovingly refer to as my Dead Technology Museum.

I figured I’d add some music to the thing, and that would be that. But the more time I spent messing around with it, I realized that I could make it into a pretty great little device; even though it pales in comparison with the iPhone 6, there’s still plenty of use in this baby.

Here are seven things, then, that you can do with your own old iPhone to make it just a bit more useful, whether it’s an original iPhone or an even more modern model.

Read the rest of this post »

How to eject a stubborn disc from your Mac

How to eject a stubborn disc from your Mac

There’s a ton of reasons why a disc may get stuck in your Mac. Not only is it frustrating, but it can also bring you into a cold sweat — panicking about how to remove it when there’s no easy access.

But don’t worry: in today’s video we go over a few simple tricks to force eject your favorite album or movie without ripping apart your beautiful Mac.

Make sure to Subscribe to Cult of Mac TV on YouTube to catch all our latest videos.

How to run Windows 10 on your Mac for free

Because you can. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Because you can. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

One of the selling points of a Mac these days is the ability to run Windows software on it, via virtualization or Apple’s own Boot Camp. Running Windows lets you play PC games that haven’t been ported to the Mac, or stay completely compatible with your documents from a PC-centric workplace.

Virtualization software like Parallels or VMWare Fusion (two of the best apps to run Windows software on your Mac without partitioning your hard drive for Boot Camp) isn’t free, though these applications do allow you to try before you buy. Windows 8.1, the current version of Microsoft’s operating system, will run you about $120 for a plain-jane version.

You can run the next-gen OS from Microsoft (Windows 10) on your Mac using virtualization for free, however. We took a quick run at doing just that, as originally sussed out by the fantastic folks over at iMore.

Read the rest of this post »

How to download Apple’s iWork apps on older Macs for free

Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 10.28.16 AM

Here’s how to get the iWork suite for free on older Macs. Photo: Cult of Mac

If you bought a Mac from 2013 on, you can download the iWork suite of apps — Pages, Keynote and Numbers — from the Mac App Store absolutely free.

But what if you bought an older Mac? You have to pay, and they’re expensive, running $19.99 each.

Thankfully, there’s a trick you can use to download them from the App Store for free. Here’s how.

Read the rest of this post »

How to keep those annoying phone calls off your iPad or Mac

Photo: Alex Heath/Cult of Mac

Seriously, I don’t want to have to ignore your call on three devices. Photo: Alex Heath/Cult of Mac

I love the idea of being able to answer a phone call on my Mac, or even on my iPad. The convergence of this communication technology seems like it has great potential.

In reality, though, I end up getting three rings for every call, each slightly time-shifted from the rest, as I sit in my office/living room with my iPhone, iPad and Mac. You’d think that such an intelligent system would know that I had all three devices in one room, and only ring through to one specified device. Until Apple figures that out, maybe in an iOS update or OS X 10.11, there’s only one thing you can do: Disable the heck out of it.

Here’s how.

Read the rest of this post »

Here’s how to get into the Inbox by Gmail beta, no invite required

You don't need an invite to get into Inbox with this nifty trick. Photo: Google

You don’t need an invite to get into Inbox with this nifty trick. Photo: Google

Are you interested in Inbox, Google’s innovative new attempt to “fix” email, but haven’t gotten an invitation into the beta?

Good news: as long as you have a real-world friend who is already part of Inbox’s invite-only beta, you can easily get in, no invite required. Here’s how.

Read the rest of this post »

Regret updating to iOS 8? You can still downgrade

iOS-8-vs-iOS-7-1024x904

Do you hate iOS 8? Maybe you’re an iPhone 4s owner who made the mistake of believing Apple when they said that iOS 8 supported your device, or maybe you’re just a luddite who hates change!

Either way, you’re in luck: If you regret your upgrade, you’ve got a rare opportunity to turn the clock back. You can downgrade your device from iOS 8 to iOS 7.1.2, if you act fast.

Read the rest of this post »

How to switch to iOS 8’s iCloud Photo Library right now

IMG_0781

[UPDATE: Lots of readers report that the new option to activate iCloud Photo Library isn’t showing up on their devices. I’m looking into it. So far I know that the GM version — the one I used to write this guide —  and the final version are identical, build number 12A365. My guess is that Apple turned off the beta already]

iCloud Photo Library is rad. The idea is that all your full-res photos (including RAW photos) reside on Apple’s servers, and you access them from all your devices.

That’s a change from Photo Stream as it is now, which stores only the last 1,000 photos you took, not your whole collection. Apple has also introduced new tiers of iCloud storage pricing to cope with all your photos (and videos). This is now live, and I signed up for the 200GB option ($4 per month) to test it out.

Let’s take a look.

Read the rest of this post »