Tag Archives: osx

El Capitan Tale of Woe



I have a mid-2010 Mac Mini set up in my living room that I use for occasional browsing and email. It came installed with Snow Leopard.Wallpaper-OS-X-El-Capitan-Mac

I swapped out the hard drive for a 256 gigabyte SSD and bumped the RAM up to 8 gigabytes. The machine is reasonably fast and is in a handy location. Additionally have it set up with a Neat desktop document scanner.

I’ve deliberately kept the machine running Snow Leopard over the years even though several new versions of OS/X have come and gone. Lately a nag screen kept popping up wanting me to update it to OS/X El Capitan. I resisted at first, but from the Apple podcasts I listen to the chatter is that things are slowly improving as Apple rolls out bug fixes.

So, I ended up saying yes to the El Capitan upgrade. The upgrade process itself seemed to go smoothly enough.

It wasn’t until I sat down in front of the machine afterwards that I realized saying yes to the El Capitan upgrade was a mistake.

The first thing I found objectionable is the overall look and feel of the new design. The menu text isn’t big or bold enough to stand out, and the aggressive use of white and wimpy light-colored pastels ruins the usability that extra contrast affords. You have to remember I’m coming directly from Snow Leopard to El Capitan, and the overall look and feel of the Snow Leopard interface is much more appealing and practical. If you can do so, put El Capitan directly next to a machine running Snow Leopard and the Snow Leopard machine is much easier to see and work with. Interface elements in Snow Leopard are much more prominent. Snow Leopard icons are far more recognizable, and menu text is bigger and stands out more boldly.

The next thing I noticed is that the Finder dumped all of my customizations. It has an “All My Files” folder that dumped some 1,200 files into one giant folder even those files reside in many different folders across the hard drive. Folders such as Movies, Photos and Music are completely missing from the Finder’s sidebar. They still exist but it’s necessary to go digging around for them.

Functionally El Capitan caused my Neat desktop scanner software and driver to utterly stop functioning. Neat has a multi-step work-around for El Capitan posted to their website. The work-around sort of fixes things partially but not really. If you have a Neat document scanner, DO NOT upgrade to El Capitan at this time unless you don’t want to use your scanner.

At this point, I was willing to live with El Capitan until Apple fixes all of the infrastructure problems. However, I ran into an infrastructure problem that turned out to be a complete deal-breaker.

I have a 6 terrabyte Western Digital MyCloud network attached storage (NAS) drive plugged in to my Apple router. Though the MyCloud drive functions perfectly under Snow Leopard, iOS, Android and any version of Windows, to my chagrin I discovered that OS/X El Capitan won’t stay connected to the drive. I could reboot the computer and regain access, but within a few minutes the Mac Mini would arbitrarily disconnect from the MyCloud drive. It even disconnected in the middle of copying a large file to the MyCloud drive. If you have a MyCloud NAS drive DO NOT upgrade to the current version of El Capitan.

That was too much. I made sure I had backups of pertinent files, including the all-important Neat Library database file. Then I dug out the DVD’s that came with the Mac Mini and made a fresh install of the version of Snow Leopard that shipped with it. I was able to use the Migration Assistant to restore pertinent files, settings and Applications from a current Time Machine backup.

What is Apple thinking? In my opinion OS/X El Capitan is worse than Windows ME, arguably one of the worst, most bug-ridden versions of Windows ever. I know what Apple is trying to do with the El Capitan interface and color scheme – they are trying to make it seem fresh, new and exciting. Unfortunately, it fails on basic ergonomics. The El Capitan interface is a nightmarish hurricane of weak pastels, hidden features and unreadable system text combined with a truly dysfunctional infrastructure.

Fortunately, I had the option of pulling the plug on El Capitan and going back to Snow Leopard, which is arguably the best-ever version of OS/X. People buying new Macs today do not have that option. Unless they’ve had experience with older versions of OS/X they will never know that they are buying into a computing eco system that left its best days behind it.

 


GNC-2011-10-20 #715 Seven Year Anniversary!



This show is pretty close to the seven year anniversary of the show. It has been a great run, and I want to thank all of you for being loyal fans.. You will get a chuckle at the beginning of the show as I for some reason have no idea what day it is.. Lot’s of tech and thanks for all of the emailed comments.

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Mobile Phone Camera Battle.
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Credits:
Jack Ellis – Executive Producer
Mike Baine – Associate Producer


Is Apple Turning Into Microsoft?



I’ve been a fairly happy Apple/OS/X user for the past three to four years. Before that, I was a Windows user that finally became disgusted enough to finally make the jump.

Most computer users are well aware of the arguments, both pro and con.

Up until now, I’ve been happy. Up until now, everything simply worked. Ahem, up until now…

What is different now? It’s called Lion. Depending on what you use your machine for, Lion can be great. However, there’s a dark side to Apple’s latest feline incarnation. If you use a wide variety of software with your particular Mac, chances are Lion is going to break things – perhaps things that you rely on. Say, a podcasting application called “Ubercaster” that no longer functions 100% for starters, or how about a Verizon USB 3G aircard that worked fine in both Leopard and Snow Leopard, but Lion somehow just cannot recognize?

Being a long-time Windows user, I’m used to the new version of the O/S screwing things up, sometimes royally. However, that bad Microsoft habit of releasing half-baked, buggy operating system updates seems to have migrated from Redmond down to Cupertino.

It wasn’t as if I expected something like this might happen. I’m prepared – I have a backup machine in the form of a 13” white plastic Macbook that I purposely kept on  Snow Leopard. Unfortunately, the most recent Snow Leopard updates Apple has sent out have broken Ubercaster entirely on that machine, rendering the backup machine rather useless at the moment for podcast recording. The Ubercaster application will no longer load, even the latest updated version.

Ubercaster still works on my Macbook Pro running Lion, but the setup is now unreliable.

Also, Lion seems to not even work properly with Apple’s own hardware. When I touch the touchpad on my 3-year-old Macbook Pro 17 it no longer makes the screen wake up after it has turned off – it’s now necessary to hit a key to make the screen come back on.

What was Apple thinking? Probably of money.


GNC #671 On the Road



Geek News Central Podcast It is survey time again and I hope you will take 60 seconds to fill out my listener survey. We have streamlined this so you can click, click, click and be done. Thanks for your support in advance. Quick show and an absolutely funny in the shower story.

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Show Notes:
Endeavor
Bing Facebook Effect.
PSN is Back sort of.
Miramax comes to Netflix.
Wireless Hard-Drive?
Felony to Stream!
Google TV $179.00
Lodsys reveals their extortion.
Nuance in OSX Lion.
UK Super Injunction expands.
Second Monitor do you need it.
Jetbag your Wine Purchases.
New Scareware fakes drive Failure.
No More “You” Tube?
FCC Commissioner on defense.
Firefox 3.5 No More Support.
Hackers can get 3 years.
Android not Secure?
Facebook wins in court.
AT&T Security Service for Consumers.
Google News Grows.
Baby Named Like.
Sun Versus Comet = Sun Wins
Galaxy Windstorms.
FCC Cracks down on Reporting.
Senators not Happy with ICE Response.
Pirate Bay Server Upgrades.
Alt Operating Systems.
AIM AV.
Microsoft to buy Nokia.
New DJ tools.
Gag USB Cable.
Car Tip.
Waterproof bags for your iPad.
WordPress App.
ChromeBook Thoughts.
TAX on SD Cards!
Leica Art.


Ten Years of Mac OS X



Apple OS X
Apple OS X

I love doing my podcast “The Day in Tech History” (http://www.dayintechhistory.com). Sometimes I have to stop and reminisce those events. One of them happened today as on March 24, 2001 Apple released the OS X.

It was Steve Jobs’ company NeXT that technically created the 10th version of the OS. OPENSTEP was the base to OS X. When Apple brought Jobs back on board, they bought the company and integrated OPENSTEP into Apple’s software.

There were many changes with OSX (Cheetah/Puma). It brought in support for IEEE 1394 (Firewire) and included backwards compatibility. New companion software like iLife and iWork bring productivity to the new OS.

The current version of OS X is 10.6.7, released just days ago.

So I ask the question: How has Mac OS X changed your life?


GNC-2011-03-17 #656 The Great Experiment Continues!



Your going to love this one, I get on the Soap Box and stay there for a good bit in the show today. Fools and their wasted money is the theme. Plus I place a wager on a specific companies new initiatives failing. I also want to welcome our newest insider, thank you for supporting the show it is greatly appreciated.

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Listener Links
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Show Notes:
Burglar Blaster.
Firefox 4 Final Release date 3-22.
Firefox 4 Notes.
* Renegade
It’s not the downloads.
This Mom needs to be a Parent.
14 Months, 40 Million NYT Fools.
NYT Paywall Plans?
Open Canadian Letter to NYT!
Business Cards Dead?
RSA SecurID May Be Hacked.
Hacking your Car.
Matt Cutts – Google Luminary.
Japan Telephone/Network Lines a Wreck.
TSA now cannot do Math.
Netflix to do Original Content?
Webm Plugin for IE9.
President says Do Not Track!
BlueTooth Headset Review.
Soyuz back to Kazakhstan.
Women.Nasa.gov
Women in Space.
Lasers Solution to Space Junk?
More Resources for Japan.
Protecting your company Image.
Time Warner iPad App.
Google Largest Torrent Search Engine.
White House thinks Streaming is Fed Crime.
Sick of Sarah 2205.
Visa goes after Paypal.
Rustock Spam Botnet Brought Down?
Hackers having fun with Electronic Sign.
Sony gets Paypal info on PS3 Case.
Best Sprinkler Yet.
Lexar 128GB SDXC Cards.
Solar Stove.
IPTV Moving Upwards.
IE9 Partners with Hulu.
Free Computer Games.
Gnome 3.0 Beta.
Video Alarm.
OSX Media Conveter.
Google Docs on a roll.
Dutch test 110 old X-Ray machine.
U-Socket Review.
Radiation from Planes and Passengers.


GNC-2011-02-24 #650 Chinese Hacker Conspiracy



Bit of Soap Box time tonight folks. Plus as chance to win a Apple TV be sure to listen to win. Entry email you will need is podcast@podcastconnect.com I share a little insight into some announcements we made today. Make sure you are signed up for the newsletter as that is the quickest way to get information on new show releases. We are half way to show 700 amazing how time flies. Big thanks to Trucker Tom for the Audible endorsement. You will want to get your free trial below!

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Listener Links
Mom Jeans Origin
Apple Firestorm.
Apple Factory Workers Sickened

Show Notes:
Private Space Funding.
Discovery Last Flight.
Alien Matter Discovered
NASA Tech
Android Bootloader for Xoom.
South Korea Residents get 1GB to Home.
AirDrop
MobileMe RIP
USB 3.0 Someday?
Thunderbolt Technology.
Cookies and Credit Cards.
Apple Face Time.
Red Communist Chinese Hackers go after Oil.
Have you been to your Library?
CR48 Day 3
Rent Tool
Five Linux Audio Packages.
Google Cloud Connect.
Will Amazon Impact Netflix?
Pay TV Comeback?
LavNav
iPad Paintbrush.
BTDigg
Smart Shirt!
Pitfalls of Mobile.
In Depth Xoom Review.
Google goes after Data Farmers.
Content Farms days Numbered.
Anonymous Shreds Westboro Church Website.
Craigslist goes to Battle.
ATV docks at ISS.
Helium 3 in Short Supply.
Huawei says you can trust us.
Microsoft fixes Antivirus Engine.
ISP Win In Australia
Movie Industry Gets Instructions in Australia.
Map your Internet Offerings.
Box Office Receipts Record Highs!
Universal Service Fund Scam.


ArtRage Painting Programs For Touchscreen Computers & iPad



ArtRage is a series of painting program for touchscreen computers, albeit with a twist. You can paint with actual paintbrushes! ArtRage 2 sells for $20 for Windows and Mac OS/X. ArtRage 3 Studio sells for $40 for Windows and Mac OS/X. ArtRage 3 Studio Pro, which contains additional features, sells for $80 for Windows and Mac OS/X. ArtRage is also available for the iPad.

Interview by Jeffrey Powers of Geekazine.Com.

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Adobe Audition Mac Free Beta Download



Making the switch to Mac OS/X a few years ago as my primary computing platform was not without its sacrifices. Among these was Adobe Audition. Sure, I could use Audition in a Windows virtual machine, but it just wasn’t the same thing and entailed its own sacrifices.

Sacrifice no more. Adobe finally heeded the call for Audition for Mac OS/X, and has released a public beta that can currently be downloaded for free available at

http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/audition/

After a cursory look at this new beta, I’m impressed. They seem to have succeeded in bringing the Adobe Audition user interface I love in Windows to OS/X. I’ll be buying the final product once it is released for sale to the public.


Android Pros and Cons



I’ve been using Android for a while now and feel I’ve been using it long enough to make some meaningful observations.

I like Android. It’s quick. It’s powerful. It has some astounding voice recognition capability built right in that even the iPhone can’t touch. For example, hold down the search button and when the voice search box pops up say “navigate to” and then speak either a street address, the name of a business or a business category, and watch what happens. The results are something right out of science fiction and nothing short of amazing. Try THAT with your iPhone.

In other areas, Android seems to fall rather flat. While it’s possible to create, name and populate folders, the process seems clunky and rather counter-intuitive.

How about allowing me as an end-user to rename application icons to something useful? Many apps have names that don’t bear any relationship or give any hint as to what their functionality is as an app. If I could just rename the text under the app icons it would help me out as an end user quite a bit. Either give me a direct icon name that describes functionality succinctly, or give me the ability to rename an icon myself just like I can in Windows or OS/X.

Another area that falls somewhat flat is how to discover great apps. There are a ton of apps, but it’s often difficult to find the best ones. I’m willing to spend money on apps, however I want the best bang for my buck. How can I be assured if I buy an app I’m buying the best possible one?