Kirk McElhearnSenior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.

Ask the iTunes Guy: iTunes Store questions

The iTunes Guy answers questions about the iTunes Store.

Prevent accidental app closures with CommandQ

CommandQ blocks the Command-Q shortcut, displaying a bezel with a progress bar on screen. You have to keep holding the Command and Q keys until the progress bar reaches the end to quit an application.

Fine-tune volume and brightness in OS X

Normally, when you use the volume and brightness keys on your keyboard to adjust those output levels, your adjustments are made in whole steps on a scale of 1 to 10. But there's a keyboard shortcut that lets you adjust them more finely--and that keyboard shortcut has returned in OS X 10.7.4.

View a program's graphics in Preview

Need a program icon or an image from a template? You can easily access all of an application's graphical elements with this hint.

Ask the iTunes Guy: Questions about video

The iTunes Guy answers questions about video and iTunes.

USB 6-in-1 TableMike great for Mac speech recognition

If you plan to dictate often and want a comfortable, flexible solution, and, especially, don’t want to wear a headset, the SpeechWare USB 6-in-1 TableMike is the best choice out there.

Three quick browser tips

Stop animated GIFs, take advantage of Safari's downloads pop-up, and shrink Google Chrome.

Downloads keeps all downloaded items organized

When you launch Downloads, you'll see all the items in your Mac's Downloads folder, whether they are at the top level, or buried deep inside folders. This handy app keeps all of your downloaded items neat and organized.

Ask the iTunes Guy: Smart playlists

The iTunes Guy answers questions about smart playlists.

Three great folder actions

Wish there was a simpler way to print documents, create archives, or add spotlight comments to project files? Kirk McElhearn shows you how to make automating your Mac as simple as putting a file in a folder with these three great Folder Actions.

Make Mail Dock badge show important messages only

You can tweak Mail so the badge on its Dock icon displays the count of only those messages you really care about.

Automate tasks with Folder Actions

Use OS X's Folder Actions feature to automatically get an alert when files are added to a specific folder, change the Finder labels when you put them in a folder, or unzip archives. Here’s how Folder Actions work, and how you can use them to save time.

TechHive: How noise-canceling headphones work

techhive.com

In this installment of our Three-Minute Tech series, Kirk McElhearn shows how noise-canceling headphones work.

Stop the Lion "rubber-band" bounce

If you scroll to the end of a page or document in many apps in OS X Lion, there's a brief bouncing effect. If you'd like to get rid of that bounce, it's just a Terminal command away.

Ask the iTunes Guy: Metadata, sorting, and sharing

The iTunes Guy answers questions about metadata, sorting, and sharing.