| Cult of Mac

Pro Tip: Hot corners make it easy to mouse around your Mac


Who needs multitouch?
If you don’t have a trackpad or Magic Mouse, you can set up Hot Corners to get some of the features back.
Image: D. Griffin Jones/Cult of Mac

Pro tip bug Hot corners are shortcuts for your mouse. Just throw your mouse cursor to the corner of the screen (the easiest place to hit) and you can instantly lock the screen, start a screensaver, show the desktop, show all windows and more.

If you use your Mac with a standard two-button PC mouse instead of Apple’s Magic Trackpad or Magic Mouse, hot corners can replace the multitouch gestures that you miss out on.

Hot corners area really quick and easy way to help navigate your Mac, and I recommend you turn them on and use them.

How to stop unwanted app launches on Mac startup


If starting up your Mac launches a plethora of windows you don't need or want, you may want to try our tips.
If starting up your Mac launches a plethora of windows you don't need or want, you may want to try our tips.
Photo: David Snow/Cult of Mac

Years ago I was a regular Mac user who switched to PC for a long time. When I fully re-immersed myself in the Apple ecosystem, an old annoyance came right back — all those unwanted apps launching for no apparent reason on startup, slowing things down.

Like many folks, I don’t restart my Mac very often these days because Sleep mode has its benefits. So having to close a bunch of apps is not a massive annoyance. But for anyone who wants a fix, there are easy ways to disable startup items.

And if those don’t work, you can try a couple of tricks to get rid of hidden launch agents.

How to force Safari to open tabs the way it should


paper notebook with tabs
Tabs, just like those that Safari now messes up.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

At some point, fairly recently, Safari started opening new tabs to the right of the currently open tab, instead of opening them at the end of the tab bar, as nature intended. This means that you have to search for the newly opened tab, instead of just knowing exactly where it is. I can see the point of opening tabs next to the current one, but I don’t like it.

Happily, there’s a way to revert Safari’s behavior to the good old way — the way my grandmother, and her grandmother before her, dealt with their tabs. It’s a simple option inside Safari’s debug menu. Wait? Debug menu?

You should check your Apple Watch trends now [Cult of Mac Magazine 335]


Check your Apple Watch Activity Trends: Find out how to decipher the data hiding behind the Activity app's new tab.
Find out how to decipher the data hiding behind the Activity app's new tab.
Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

A new feature in the Activity app offers deep insights into progress you’re making on your personal fitness goals. Find out how to check your Activity Trends and decipher all that delicious workout data your Apple Watch is squirreling away.

You’ll find that how-to, along with new tips for Mac power users, in this week’s free issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. It also packs the week’s top Apple news, as well as a review of a new streaming service that basically turns your Mac into a powerful gaming PC. Download it now for a satisfying iPad read, or get the links to the week’s top stories below.

This Command key shortcut will change how you use your Mac


command key
Take command.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

There are two kinds of Mac users. The sad, harried folks who don’t know how to use this easy, essential, life-changing Command key trick. And the happy, efficient, relaxed people who learned it years ago. If you’ve seen the movie Back to the Future, it’s like the difference between the two 2015 versions of George McFly, before and after Marty screws around with the 1950s. This trick will change your life.

Are you ready?

Hold down the Option key to unlock Mac’s hidden menu bar actions


menu widgets
Not that kind of menu item.
Photo: Croissant/Unsplash

The Option key (sometimes marked ⌥ on your Mac’s keyboard) offers you extra options, whether you’re using the keyboard or the mouse. Hold it down while dragging a file, for example, and it will create a duplicate of that file, instead of just moving it1. The Option key works everywhere — in menus, too. Today, we’re going to see what happens when you Option-click on the status menu icons up on the right side of your Mac’s menu bar. The Bluetooth, volume, Wi-Fi, Time Machine and Notification Center widgets, to be precise.

Option-clicking on these icons gives you far greater control of some of your Mac’s core functionality. You might be surprised at what you can do up there.

6 power-user tricks for Mac Spotlight


Spotlight is good for much more than just finding files.
Spotlight is good for much more than just finding files.
Photo: Pixabay/Pexels CC

Spotlight for Mac. Isn’t it that little magnifying glass icon in the menubar, the one that you click when you’ve given up trying to find that document you swear is somewhere on your Mac? Well yes, it is. But if you know these Mac Spotlight tips, it can be so much more than that.

You can use it to find a document, even if you can only remember a snippet of text from inside that document. But you can also use it to do math, launch apps, open folders, and even check the weather. These Mac Spotlight tricks will let you get the most out of this underutilized feature.

These Mac Mail rules clean up your inbox so you won’t have to


mac mail rules

Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Apple’s Mail app — the Mac one, not the iOS one — has a secret weapon for automatically cleaning up your inbox. It’s called Rules, and you can use it to process all arriving emails, so you don’t have to.

Mail rules can be used to get custom alerts, to automatically file invoices, to save newsletters out of the inbox, to block senders, and lots more. Today we’re going to check out a few of the most interesting Mac Mail rules so you can get started cleaning up your inbox.

Check out these secret (and super-useful) settings for your Mac


JPG screenshot location
Dust off your Terminal to use these great hacks.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

By using commands in your Mac’s built-in Terminal app, you can quickly change settings you probably didn’t even know existed.

Some of these Mac settings are just shortcuts — you can enable them in the usual way, using the mouse. But Terminal makes things simple. Instead of opening the System Preferences app, then finding (or remembering) a setting you want to change, and then searching further until you actually find the right checkbox, you can just type (or paste) a command, then  hit return.

Most of these are secret settings, though. They are impossible to change without Terminal. Let’s check them out.

5 super-useful Terminal tricks for total noobs


terminal tricks
Where the hell are you supposed to begin?
Photo: Cult of Mac

The Mac’s Terminal is at once scary and powerful. It’s like a whole other computer living underneath the pretty interface of macOS. Sometimes, it’s convoluted. Other times, it seems laser-focused, offering a much quicker way to get things done. Instead of clicking and dragging your way through multiple screens, you just type a line of text.

However, the Mac Terminal is pretty intimidating if you’re not used to it. Today we will learn five super-useful Terminal tricks that make getting around much easier.