As of Safari 6, the version of Apple’s web browser shipping with Mountain Lion, Apple has dropped support for reading RSS feeds within the browser. Instead, Apple asks that you use a dedicated RSS reader when you want to peruse the latest links. But what if you don't want to use such a reader? You can still see RSS articles in Safari with a little help from Apple's automation utility, Automator. It works this way.
Create your workflow
Launch Automator (in the /Applications folder) and in the template chooser that appears, select Service and click Choose. Configure the top of the workflow to read Service Receives No Input in Any Application. In the Actions library select Internet and drag the following actions into the workflow area: Get Specified URLs, Get Link URLs from Articles, and Display Webpages.
The biggest time-saving feature you’ll find in any Web browser is the ability to bookmark sites, providing a quick route back to places you visit frequently. Here are my favorite bookmarking tricks for Apple’s Safari (), Mozilla's Firefox (), and Google’s Chrome ().
Among computer users, there are two types of people: mousers and keyboarders. I’m the latter. I like to use keyboard shortcuts as often as possible to save time and to keep my hands on my keyboard. Here are ten of my favorite keyboard shortcuts for the applications I use most.
1. Select Safari’s address field
Sometimes I copy a URL and want to paste it into Safari’s address field. Instead of using the tab key, or a mouse or trackpad, to select the field, I prefer using the Command-L keyboard shortcut. This highlights the text in the field, and I can then paste my URL and press Return to go to a webpage.
It wasn’t so long ago that Chris Grant would regularly take a whole laboratory’s worth of equipment with him into the wilderness. These days, he just takes an iPad.
“We navigate to some fairly remote locations that require hiking in. A two-mile one-way hike is not unheard of,” says Grant, a laboratory coordinator for Juniata College in central Pennsylvania. During the summer, he leads teams of students into the state’s wilds to catch fish in local creeks and test them for mercury content.
Such hikes used to require a number of different tools: a topography map, a handheld GPS unit, a camera, a rangefinder, even a notebook to write down data. Now? The iPad does all of that for Grant, who utilizes apps like GPS Status, River Reader, and Smart Ruler to find his way around and take measurements in the field.
If you rely on Address Book to keep your contacts straight, you may be the tiniest bit disappointed that Apple’s contact management application provides so few useful ways to filter and export your contact data. Fortunately, Automator can lend a very helpful hand—particularly if you seek a way to filter your contacts and then export that filtered data to an Excel spreadsheet. Here are the steps for doing this.
Make your workflow
With a copy of Microsoft Office 2008 or 2011 on your Mac (these versions of Office install Word, Excel, and PowerPoint Automator actions), launch Automator and from the new workflow sheet that appears, select Service and click Choose.
Dreaming of the day you can leave the heavy laptop behind and give all your presentations from your iPad? Joe Kissell explores what's possible with the third-generation iPad, AirPlay mirroring, and Keynote.Read more »
Not too long ago, the main option for task management on the Mac was iCal’s To Do list. (Note I said option, not solution.) For serious task management, the Mac was a barren wasteland. Not anymore. Looking through the Mac and iOS App Stores, there seem to be more task management tools than fart apps. Those tools range from rudimentary checklists to gargantuan multi-feature, multi-platform systems. I know because I’ve tried a lot of them. For users, this newfound abundance of riches finally makes it possible for everybody to use their Macs (and iPhones and iPads) to manage their tasks and even, perhaps, get a little work done.
But while there are some software categories in which there is one clear best-in-breed solution, task management isn't one of them. Picking just one task manager as the best solution for everyone would assume that everybody has the exact same task management needs—which they don’t. The choice is different for everyone. Here’s how I made mine.