Today’s round-up ranges from late-breaking news of iOS apps that crash on launch to long-standing problems with email.
Outbreak of iOS app crashes
If you find that a number of your recently updated iOS apps are crashing on launch, you are not alone. Such apps include Instapaper, GoodReader, Angry Birds Space Free and dozens more. As first reported by Marco Arment (and covered here at Macworld), the cause appears to be corrupted copies of apps being pushed from Apple’s servers, starting around July 3. The apps, as submitted by the developer to Apple, were not corrupt. The problem was introduced by Apple somewhere between the submission and when the app arrives on your iOS device. It’s probably related to FairPlay, Apple’s DRM software.
Reader Alan Lynch has one keyboard, one mouse, and multiple Macs. And that started him wondering. He writes:
On my desk I have an iMac as well as a MacBook Pro, both of which I use throughout the day. I control the iMac with a wireless keyboard and mouse and would love to use these devices to also control my MacBook Pro. Does there exist some kind of Bluetooth KVM switch that I could use to share my keyboard and mouse with my laptop?
The difficulty with a traditional KVM switch is that these devices have nothing to plug into, as they’re wireless. And there’s no intermediary device I’m aware of that you can pair to your Bluetooth keyboard and mouse that can then be used to switch between computers. But there are other ways.
A colleague who shall go unnamed is in the process or moving and has unearthed what he believes to be tainted treasure. He writes:
I have a really old iBook that’s still running 10.2.8 and iTunes 4. I am trying to deauthorize this computer, but when I try, it says that it can’t connect to the iTunes Store. (Got it plugged into Ethernet, so Internet connectivity isn’t the issue.) Please tell me I don’t have to upgrade iTunes just to turn off this account on this computer.
You don’t have to upgrade iTunes just to turn off this account on this computer.
Reader and frequent Macworld contributor, Glenn Fleishman should know better than to send me a question via Twitter’s direct message, as I’m sure to blab it to the rest of the world. He messaged:
I bought powered, wired, lavalier mics with 1/8th inch jack. How can I use these with my 2011 MacBook Air?
The MacBook Air has a single headphone port, which should be more accurately called the “headset” port. Like the headphone port on iOS devices, this jack supports audio input as well as output—with this caveat: The microphone or headset in question must be of the three-ring variety, just like Apple’s headsets (and their compatible brethren).
Reader Clay Anderson, who pays attention, would like a bit more information about an interface element he thought he was intimately familiar with. He writes:
Recently you mentioned the green button that appears in the top-left corner of windows. I’ve been using a Mac for quite awhile and never thought much about this button, figuring that it always zoomed windows to full-screen. But I played around with it and found that it doesn’t always do that. Can you explain exactly what this button is and how it behaves?
It’s time for another troubleshooting roundup. From alarms that don’t go off when expected to updates that crash your Mac, here’s a collection of reports that recently wound up on my virtual desk.
Calendar alarms. Last week, I set up a calendar appointment on my Mac. I use BusyCal (), but the same thing would have happened in iCal. I entered the appointment as a reminder for my wife (we share the same calendar). I set the alarm to go off later in the day, at a time when my wife wanted to be reminded of the task. The alarm went off exactly as scheduled on my Macs and linked iOS devices. It did not go off on my wife’s iPhone (the critical device in this scenario) or her iMac.
I was surprised because I was fairly certain that I had done this alarm setting on prior occasions, and the alarm had gone off on my wife’s iPhone. I checked on the web. Others confirmed my memory; a set alarm would go off on all devices sharing a calendar. In fact, most comments were to complain about this behavior. Unlike my situation, people wanted to be able to set an alarm for themselves without having it bother those who shared their calendar. They couldn’t. Now the situation appeared to be the reverse!
Wonderful as our gadgets and their interfaces are, there are times when they’re not entirely fathomable—particularly when you’ve clicked in the wrong place or pressed a key one time too many. Today I look at three issues caused by interface confusion.
I’m running Snow Leopard on my iMac and something’s gone wrong with my copy of Mail. When I select a message and click Reply, the reply window appears but doesn’t have a Send button. Instead I have to choose Send from the Message menu. Where did that button go?