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18 June 2010
eat their words
iPhone 4 is getting slammed by the
media, but it’ll still ﬂy oﬀ the shelves.
Phone 4. What a surprise. Were you disappointed? I was.
Not with the specs. Not with the hardware. Not with the forthcoming
and slightly awkwardly named iOS4, but by the lack of, well,
surprise. But enough of the spoilers. We all might have been able
to write Jobs’ script on his behalf, as his job was really no more than
conﬁrming what we already knew, but that didn’t make the specs any
The case is subtly improved, being smarter and sleeker, and the
addition of a front-facing camera for use with FaceTime, Apple’s name
for video calls, which is about as close to VoIP as the Cupertino giant
is ever going to get, is as logical as it’s overdue. Moreover, while I don’t
buy into the alleged higher-than-retina-resolution screen – hold the
phone close enough and I bet you can make out the pixels – I’m quietly
So why isn’t everyone else?
Most of the coverage – factual pieces aside – has been
resoundingly negative, and this is before 99.9% recurring of the global
population has got their hands on one (factory workers aside). Clicks,
it seems, are becoming more important than reasoned,
considered argument, and 10 reasons why the iPhone is
not for you/is a waste of money/won’t work underwater
seem to be more effective at dragging in the viewers
than a proper hands-on review.
Expect this all to change when review units
There are few companies that can attract the kind of
unwarranted hatred that Apple does right now. Fewer
still could attract such inaccurate reporting. iPhone
4’s case will scratch easily because it’s made
of plastic, said one such report. No it’s not. It
uses Bing rather than Google for search, said
another. Nope. It’s expensive. Really? Bear in
mind that many of these stories were written
before the UK networks announced their
prices and make up your own mind.
iPhone 4 has had an unprecedented
amount of bad publicity, but that will make no
difference. Despite being an evolution of an
evolution of an evolution of what was once a
radical and original product like nothing we had
seen before it will sell and it will sell well.
So let’s see the naysayers put their
money where their collective mouths are. If
you really do think the iPhone 4 is destined
to fail, then pick a number – whichever
number it would need to sell to prove to
you that it’s done pretty well – and take it
to your local bookie with some cash. See
if they’ll take a bet that it won’t reach that
level. If iPhone 4 really is as underwhelming
as you seem to believe, you’ll turn a quick
proﬁt. Quicker, perhaps, than Apple.
Nik Rawlinson is the editor. This
issue he’s been eating too many
croissants and enjoying a break
from the online world.
18 June 2010
MACUSER, 18 JUNE 2010 – VOLUME 26 – NUMBER 13
▼ PAGE 52 P60
We set you up
with your Mac
P74 P86 P30
▼ PAGE 30
▼ PAGE 6 0
▼ PAGE 51
18 June 2010
▼ PAGE 46 TO MINI DISP DVI
PORT CONVE LAY
Steve Jobs shows off slinky iPhone 4 at
WWDC + US Justice Department puts
Apple under scrutiny.
The latest products reviewed and rated
by our team of experts, including:
Half-Life 2 One of the best games ever
ﬁnally makes it to the Mac Everything
iWant A round-up of the latest, most-
desirable gadgets available for the iPad
and iPhone + Plug-ins for InDesign and
QuarkXPress Boost the performance
Specialist Real World Columnists of these DTP applications with our
favourite third-party add-ons.
▼ DESIGN FOR PRINT PAGE 72
Keep your projects on the straight and narrow
K Features 052
Find your perfect Mac iMac, iBook,
Mac Pro or iPad? Find out with our
▼ PHOTOGRAPHY PAGE 74 essential guide to choosing a Mac
Push your gear to the limits, not your budget Must-have iPad apps We’ve raided the
App Store to bring you the best apps
you should download on to your iPad.
▼ VIDEO PAGE 76
Get the best chroma key from green screen work Method/Create 070
Method Using line graphs to best
represent your data Plus Essential
▼ AUDIO PAGE 78 tips in photography, audio, video, print
design, future Macs and iWork Create
Has digitising music actually devalued it? Use Photoshop CS5’s Puppet Warp
tool to manipulate images + Working
smarter with text in InDesign CS5 +
▼ MAC TO THE FUTURE PAGE 80 Enhance your iWeb blog with widgets
There’s a cloud hanging over the iPhone
▼ iWORK PAGE 82 Mac range Check the specs before
Finding the Keynote within the keynote you buy + Hot Kit The deﬁnitive guide
to the best Mac products + Classiﬁed
Find speciﬁc products or services.
Beginners’ Guide to… Switching to the Mac
▼ Dashboard ▼ iChat Help 124
PAGE 102 PAGE 104 Master of all things techie Howard
How to store gi g
Apple’s Instant messaging Oakley answers all your questions, and
and run all of your Widgets tool and its alternatives tackles issues with Macs in business.
18 June 2010
FOR THE LATEST BREAKING NEWS GO TO WWW.MACUSER.CO.UK
Steve Jobs introduces stylish
new iPhone 4 at WWDC keynote
teve Jobs used the opening
keynote presentation for this which is used to monitor background
year’s Worldwide Developers noise and eliminate it so the person
Conference (WWDC) to talk about the which whom you’re speaking can hear
much-anticipated fourth-generation you more clearly.
iPhone. Speculation and supposed The accelerometer is supplemented
leaks turned out to be incredibly by a three-axis gyroscope, which tracks
accurate. The iPhone 4 dispenses with acceleration, angular velocity and
the two-year-old design of the 3G and rotation rate. Apple is pitching this at
3GS models, and introduces a new the gaming market, an area to which it’s
look and feel that’s only 9.3mm thick, increasingly paying attention, thanks to
which Apple says makes it the world’s the explosion in the popularity of games
thinnest smartphone. on the App Store.
The front and back of the phone The iPhone 4 can connect to
are made of a specially engineered 802.11n wiﬁ networks, although only
aluminosilicate glass that Apple those operating in the 2.4GHz band.
claims is very durable and more That differs from the iPad, which can
scratch resistant than previous iPhone also connect to networks that are
models. A stainless steel band runs broadcasting at 5GHz and so support
around the edges and serves as faster transmission rates.
the mounting point for all of the
components and also as the antenna External hardware
for the various wireless transmissions. There are no changes to the iPhone
The iPhone 4’s screen size hasn’t 4’s physical button conﬁguration. The
changed – it’s still 3.5in diagonally switch that silences ringtones and
across – but the resolution has doubled other sounds still serves that function.
to 960 x 640 pixels, making the overall On the iPad, that switch’s function is
▲ The iPhone 4 has a high-resolution 940 x 640-pixel screen with
resolution only slightly less than the a pixel density of 326ppi, which gives it incredible sharpness. to lock the screen orientation so that
1024 x 768 resolution of the iPad. the accelerometer doesn’t trigger the
However, the smaller screen means the pixel camera that allows this feature, which only screen’s contents to rotate. This is expected
density is far higher than in any previous works over wiﬁ networks. The camera on the to be a software-based feature in the new
iPhone, up from 163ppi to 326ppi. Apple says back of iPhone 4 can record HD video (720p) version of the iPhone’s operating system,
that, at 78 micrometres across, the pixels are at up to 30fps, while the front-facing camera accessed by double-tapping Home to call up
so tiny that the human eye can’t distinguish records at 640 x 480 pixels at up to 30fps. the task switcher and swiping right.
one from the next. Developers won’t have to Tap to focus now works with video, too. Apple’s 30-pin Dock Connector is still
re-engineer their apps to make use of this, as There’s also an LED ﬂash on the back present for syncing the iPhone. Nothing was
the operating system will simply render text of the phone, which should help alleviate announced about the possibility of wireless
and graphics more crisply on the new display, previous models’ problems with shooting in syncing. iPhone 4 is compatible with the Dock
giving unprecedented sharpness for a mobile low light, although Apple claims it has made Connector-to-VGA adaptor that was released
phone. The display uses IPS technology, improvements to image quality in those alongside the iPad, which allows for playback
Image Courtesy of Apple
which is also used in the iPad and iMacs, and circumstances anyway. The ﬂash also stays of video up to 1024 x 768 pixels in resolution.
has an 800:1 contrast ratio. on when you’re recording video in order to
light up scenes. Furthermore, there’s now a Under the hood
Video and stills ﬁve-megapixel sensor on board, up from three The heart of the iPhone 4 is Apple’s internally
Another signiﬁcant new feature is FaceTime, megapixels in the 3GS. designed A4 processor, ﬁrst used in the
Apple’s name for video calls. As long- Apple has added a second mic to the iPad. Apple says that this processor’s power
rumoured, the iPhone 4 has a front-facing phone, situated near the headphone jack, efﬁciency means longer battery Page 009
Are you ready for this?
It’s not often that you get a chance to Jerry is looking for supercharged, If you don’t have ambitions to change
take on the world. Entrepreneur and hard-working creatives for our new the world with excellent work, then it’s
Stockbyte founder Jerry Kennelly is London ofﬁce. probably not worth reading any further.
heading up Gustavo, a new, disruptive
business which will operate globally. Advertising Creatives However, if you do have that ﬁre
He’s looking for the level of talent Passionate ad pros who have spent a in your belly, email your CV and
which allowed his creative stock photo few years working at a high level. portfolio (smaller than 6mb) with
company become one of the most your best work to:
successful in the world, before it was Senior Designers firstname.lastname@example.org before
sold to Getty Images in 2006. A great opportunity for a fresh, June 25th. For ﬁle sizes larger than 6mb
creative view. Clean design, please use sendspace.com
He’s brought some of his former team carefully crafted typography and an
along for a second whirl on the merry- eye for amazing images. It might be a good idea to include
go-round, but this time is taking on a a letter to Jerry.Tell him why you’d
much bigger challenge than launching Senior Artworkers like to work for him. He will read
one of the world’s ﬁrst royalty-free High-octane artworkers who live for every one. Soon enough, you might
stock photography companies, like he interpreting and executing creative be joining one of the most exciting
did in 1996. vision. ventures in our industry.
Apple claims that its new-look iPhone 4
18 June 2010
is now the world’s thinnest smartphone
life, giving seven hours of still only two colour options
talk time on a 3G network – black and white – which
and 14 hours on a 2G is consistent between the
network, an increase of two front and back panels, unlike
hours over the iPhone 3GS in previous versions. A new
both instances. Meanwhile, 8GB version of the iPhone
Internet use is quoted at 3GS will be made available
six hours over 3G and nine for $99, the entry-level price
hours over a wiﬁ connection, point previously occupied by
an improvement of one hour an iPhone 3G model of the
over the iPhone 3GS in both same capacity.
instances. Apple’s ﬁgure The iPhone 4 will be
for video playback remains available in the UK along with
10 hours, yet it claims the the US, France and Germany
▲ Apple claims the iPhone 4’s
iPhone 4 will last an extra 10
hours when playing audio,
A4 chip prolongs battery life. from 24 June, and pre-
ordering is now open. At the
taking it to 40 hours, which exceeds the iPod
classic’s quoted playback time by four hours.
time of going to press, O2, Orange, T-Mobile
and Vodafone all indicated that they would
Image Courtesy of Apple
The iPhone 4 uses a Micro Sim card, the carry iPhone 4 at launch.
same as the iPad. O2’s website suggests it O2 announced that existing iPhone
will be sending these to interested customers owners will be able to upgrade to the new
ready for the handset going on sale. In the model even if they’re currently within a oogle has started offering a new,
US, the iPhone 4 will cost $299 for a 32GB contract period, but this offer will be time- secure method for accessing its web
model on a 24-month contract and $199 for a limited. Orange and Vodafone have yet to search, using industry-standard SSL
16 model on a 24-month contract. There are announce their plans. encryption. Entering a search query at https://
www.google.com creates a secure connection
between the web browser and Google,
preventing a third party from snooping on the
New York Times unleashes search terms used and results delivered.
The service does come with some
lawyers on Pulse RSS app reservations – hence the ‘beta’ tag. Results
won’t include Google Images and Maps,
as they don’t currently support SSL, and
he New York Times Company, which from the App Store. ‘The Pulse News Reader the encryption process might mean that
owns the eponymous US newspaper app makes commercial use of the NYTimes. searching could be slightly slower.
and The Boston Globe, has com and Boston.com RSS feeds, in violation Although encryption should protect
the Pulse RSS reader app for the iPad, content is unlicensed. The app also frames data from Google. ‘Google will still maintain
claiming it illegally makes commercial use the NYTimes.com and Boston.com websites search data to improve your search quality
Richard Samson, senior counsel for The he wrote. Roseman, software engineer on the Google
New York Times Company, wrote to Apple A few days later, Apple CEO Steve Jobs Blog. ‘Searching over SSL doesn’t reduce the
last week asking that Pulse be removed featured Pulse during his opening address to data sent to Google – it only hides that data
the audience at Apple’s Worldwide Developers from third parties who seek it.’
Conference at the beginning of this month. Roseman added that clicking on search
However, within hours it had been removed results could break the secure connection
from the App Store. (in fact, that’s likely). ‘Our hope is that more
Apple emailed Pulse developer Akshay sites and services will add support for SSL
Kothari, saying: ‘The New York Times to help create a better and more consistent
Company believes your application named experience for you,’ he explained.
“Pulse News Reader” infringes The New York
Times Company’s rights. Accordingly, we have
pulled your application from the App Store.’
Then, without explanation, Apple had a
change of heart, restoring Pulse to the store. rent
‘Sure, of course it is. It’s a different
Kothari was certainly nonplussed. ‘We’re trying form factor of a PC. It wouldn’t
to ﬁgure that out ourselves,’ he said when surprise me to see competition try
asked why the app was back. to eliminate the role of what they’ve
Robert Christie, a spokesman for The New had that hasn’t been popular, in
York Times Company, was equally bafﬂed. ‘We order to popularise the thing that’s
think it has been reinstated by error, and we new and fashionable. That’s a
have asked Apple for an explanation,’ he said, legitimate approach.’
adding that the company wanted to work with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer when
▲ Pulse, an RSS news reader for the iPad, allegedly
infringes The New York Times Company’s rights. Apple has yet to comment.
18 June 2010
finds MBU part of
turns gaze on Apple Business Division
pple’s music sales operation in In retaliation, it was claimed that Apple began icrosoft’s Mac Business Unit
the US is being investigated by to withdraw marketing support for tracks that has a new home, following the
the Department of Justice (DoJ), were sold early on Amazon. reorganisation of the company
according to reports. The New York Times There are other ongoing investigations into in the wake of the departure of two of its
claims an inquiry has so far led to DoJ staff Apple by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), most high-proﬁle executives.
talking to lawyers or legal departments at which is looking at its rules for developers The Unit, which develops the Mac version
major music labels and other online retailers. after complaints from Adobe, and by the of Ofﬁce, is to become part of Microsoft’s
Apple currently has a 70% online market DoJ, which is examining hiring practices. Business Division, home of Ofﬁce for
share in the US. As a vast amount of music is Although the news is unlikely to be welcomed Windows. The company isn’t saying if the
now bought online rather than in bricks-and- at Apple, some analysts suggest that this move has any implications beyond the
mortar shops, this means it can claim more attention from regulators is a good sign for
than a quarter of all music sales. investors, and indicative of the inﬂuence and
It’s not clear on what the investigation will reach that the company now has. ‘The reorganisation has seen the
focus, but it’s likely that as Apple’s market Apple, Amazon and the DoJ have all
share is growing, it will look at the inﬂuence it remained tight-lipped on the claims, despite
departure of two of the company’s
now has on the market. Rival Amazon is the close scrutiny from the US media. Speaking most high-profile executives’
second largest online music retailer, with 8% to The New York Times, antitrust lawyer
of the US market. Earlier this year, it came Daniel Brown said: ‘Certainly if the Justice
under ﬁre for allegedly asking labels to allow it Department is getting involved, it raises organisational. A new Ofﬁce for Windows
to sell tracks one day before other retailers in the possibility of potential serious problems was released earlier this month, with a Mac
return for promotional help for those artists. down the road for Apple.’ version expected some time next year.
The reorganisation has seen the departure
of two of the company’s most high-proﬁle
executives, J Allard and Robbie Bach. They
were the brains behind the Entertainment
and Devices Division, which is responsible
for the Xbox, Zune and Windows Mobile.
Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer
has assumed direct control of the division as
it prepares for the release later this year of
Windows Mobile 7, its last chance to recover
its slumping share of the smartphone market.
In an email to staff, Ballmer thanked the
departing executives and said the changes
were necessary to ensure that the company
Image Courtesy of Apple
had ‘the right leaders in the right positions’.
‘As we ﬁnalise and ship so many of our
key products, it is a natural time for us to
look ahead and make sure we have the
right talent in the right roles to fuel our next
set of offerings. I am conﬁdent that the
changes above will set us up well for the
▲ Apple currently has a 70% market share of online music in the US and accounts for 25% of all music sold there. months and years ahead,’ he wrote.
Jobs hints at Flash volte-face Steve Jobs discussed the
development of the iPad
at the recent D8 conference.
teve Jobs has insinuated that Apple come back and tell us. We shipped iPhone
could reconsider its decision not to without Flash, too. [It] wasn’t until iPad that
allow Adobe’s Flash technology on Adobe raised a stink.’
the iPhone or iPad. Speaking at the All Things Jobs also discussed the early
Image Asa Mathat/All Things Digital
Digital D8 conference in California, Apple’s development of the iPad. ‘I had this idea
CEO answered questions on the issue. ‘Some about a glass display, a multitouch display
things are good in a product, some things you could type on. I asked our people about
are bad,’ he said. ‘If the market tells us we’re it and six months later they came back with
making bad choices, we’ll make changes. this amazing display,’ Jobs said. ‘And I gave it
We’re just trying to make great products.’ to one of our really brilliant UI guys. He then
Jobs maintained his stance that Apple’s got inertial scrolling working and some other
objection to Flash is a technical one: ‘We just things, and I thought, “my God, we can build
made a technical decision. [We] told Adobe a phone with this,” and we put the tablet
[that] if you ever have this thing running fast, aside, and we went to work on the phone.’
18 June 2010
iPad sales hit 2 million
Apple has announced that it sold two
million iPads in the ﬁrst 60 days of its
availability. At this rate, it will outsell the
Mac in the June to September quarter,
although it’s likely that with the US and
international launches now accounted
for, the rate of sales will slow.
Apple sold the ﬁrst million units in
the 28 days following the US launch
on 3 April and took 31 days to sell the
second million. Debut sales for the iPad
were stronger than that of the original
iPhone, which took two months to sell
one million units, but not as impressive
as the iPhone 3G, which sold three
million units in its ﬁrst month.
Apple doesn’t break down sales
ﬁgures by model or geographic region,
but the Financial Times reported that
anecdotal evidence showed that the
wiﬁ models had proved more popular
in the US, while in the rest of the world
the 3G line seemed to be selling more
Image PA Photos
in the ﬁrst few days after launch. The
3G model didn’t launch in the US until
four weeks after the wiﬁ model, which
may have a bearing on this.
Sales of the iPad have been much stronger than even the most bullish of predictions, with Apple selling more than two million devices since its launch two months ago.
Apple streaks past Microsoft to
become world’s largest tech firm
pple has done what seemed has been devoid of innovation and signiﬁcant the iPhone (see story, above), and hopes to
impossible a decade ago and passed new product launches. shift four times that amount by the end of the
the software giant Microsoft and is However, these ﬁnancial ﬁgures, year. However, as Microsoft’s core business
now the world’s largest technology ﬁrm. interesting as they are, paint only half the still revolves around software, and Apple’s
Last month, for the ﬁrst time ever, the picture. While Apple has grown from niche around hardware, it will be difﬁcult for the
market value of Apple Inc. rose past $220 player to a producer of must-have gadgets, Cupertino company to squeeze the same
billion (about £151.09 billion) and surpassed Microsoft has decades of proven ability to proﬁt from its market value.
Microsoft, which is currently valued at $219 bring in proﬁt under its belt. This market capitalisation is also based
billion (about £150.4 billion). entirely on share price, driven by investor
Just 10 years ago, the scene was conﬁdence in the ﬁrm. This can be a ﬁckle
extremely different, with Microsoft worth ‘This market capitalisation is also metric, and a bad day of trading could easily
more than half a trillion dollars on paper based on share price, driven by see Apple dip back below Microsoft’s value
and Apple just $15.6 billion. It was only 13 – BP’s recent catastrophe shows just how
investor confidence in the firm.
years ago that Microsoft offered a $150 quickly investors can abandon a company.
million investment just to help Apple stay This can be a ﬁckle metric’ Expectations are riding high for Apple
aﬂoat. After returning to Apple that same at the moment, following the introduction
year, 1997, Steve Jobs took just a year to of the iPad, but this excitement could
release the iMac, which was to act as a In the last accounting period, Microsoft wane quickly, and many analysts believe
catalyst for 12 years of innovation and brought in more than $14 billion (about that Microsoft’s value is built on stronger
market share growth. £9.6 billion) for its shareholders, but Apple foundations. Apple was at one time struggling
The ﬁrst iPod, launched in 2001, was also managed less than half of this, at $5.7 for survival, but has enjoyed just over a
to become a worldwide phenomenon and billion (about £3.91 billion). In terms of decade of staggering growth. Within the
open new business opportunities for Apple, revenue, Apple fell $22 billion (about £15.11 company there will be celebrations about
such as the iTunes Store and eventually billion) short of Microsoft’s income of $58.4 the signiﬁcant milestone, but also concerns
the App Store. And now, with the iPad, the billion (about £40.1 billion). that without constant innovation to keep
company looks set for yet another huge Apple recently announced that it had customers and investors happy, the ﬁrm
success. Microsoft, on the other hand, has already sold two million iPads, a full six could ﬁnd the bubble bursting even quicker
seen a long period that many analysts claim months before it hit the same milestone with than it inﬂated.
18 June 2010
Medical app lets
urgeons with an iPhone, iPod touch
or iPad can now use their device
to brush up on procedures on a
bus, in a lift or waiting in a line at a café.
Medical simulation and training software
ﬁrm Simbionix USA Corporation has released
▲ Many of us already buy Fairtrade consumables, so why not a laptop that we can use with a clear conscience? Ethicon PVP, an interactive app that trains
surgeons to carry out an ‘umbilical hernia
repair using a partially absorbable mesh
patch’. The application, which is free to
download, is now available on the App Store.
It uses high-ﬁdelity 3D animations, text
pple is many things to many At ﬁrst it seems like a ludicrous idea, but descriptions and voice-over narration to train
people, but with its slick, constant our society is increasingly worrying about the surgeons how to carry out the procedure.
innovations that drive us fanboys consequences of its actions, and realising It also provides a useful testing feature so
and girls to constant upgrading, to some that perhaps the greatest power is wielded doctors can check to see whether they’ve
it’s the very concept of consumerism made when it chooses where to spend its hard- remembered the relevant information.
solid. And those people have a point. earned money. Many of us are already willing Handily, the application doesn’t need a live
Few of us truly need the performance to pay a little extra for coffee, tea, bananas web connection, so can be used anywhere
of the latest and greatest model, and a lot and a host of other consumables if we can – including hospitals, which often ban the
of new purchases are not so much driven eat or drink them with a clean conscience. use of mobiles. Quite how effective it is as a
by necessity as We buy eco-friendly training tool isn’t yet known, as the application
lust. And, of course, washing powder at currently has no ratings on the App Store.
this isn’t good for ‘Few of us truly need the twice the price of more Paul Jensen, general manager of
the environment. performance of the latest model, harmful products, opt Simbionix’s medical education division,
It would be better for a Prius instead of said: ‘Smartphones are rapidly becoming
all round if everyone
and a lot of purchases are not so a less-economical but an indispensable tool for physicians. The
held on to their ageing much driven by necessity as lust’ cheaper car. Why not a addition of mobile-based training gives
phones and laptops laptop that we can use medical device manufacturers an efﬁcient
until they literally without worrying about way to communicate the safe and effective
crumbled, ﬁnally unusable after years of what chemicals seeped into the soil after use of surgical devices.’
faithful service. Despite the new iPad being its creation, or who leaped off a roof after The company claims that in just two
really rather admirable when compared with worrying about ﬁlling that next shipment? years’ time, smartphones will be the primary
some devices, with its mercury-free display, The truth is that electrical goods are vastly method for professional research for 81%
arsenic-free glass and total absence of BFR complex, include components made all over of doctors. Launching the application is an
and PVC, if you don’t need one (in the true the world and require some truly horrendous attempt to capture that market, and the ﬁrm
sense of the word need), then buying one is, chemicals. But the technology industry seems said it was also working on versions for other
by deﬁnition, waste. to be dragging its heels where others are at mobile platforms.
On top of this, those wonderful websites least ambling, shufﬂing or strolling. Personally, Simbionix also claimed that it would
and applications we use on our fancy new I’m opting for a small compromise: I’ll keep release a library of mobile apps to address
gadgets require city-sized clusters of servers my gadgets, but give up a car for a bike. And a variety of medical topics and procedures,
whirring away, out of sight and almost out the second Apple launches a Fairtrade iPad and sees it as an ‘important step in the
of mind, sucking up power and spewing out for a 20% premium, I’ll take one. company’s evolution’.
emails, API calls and, indirectly, tonnes and
tonnes of carbon dioxide. And now, as if all
that wasn’t enough bad news, we hear from
human rights campaigners that working
conditions in the Chinese plants where
the devices are made are little better than
sweatshops. Eleven people in one factory
alone have committed suicide this year.
Can we, in good conscience, continue
to buy new gadgets at the rate we are?
Perhaps it’s time somebody stepped up to
Matthew Sparkes has a couple of
solve these issues and launched a Fairtrade degrees in computer science, but has yet
laptop or mobile phone. Would there be a to pay even one of them off. He made ▲ The Ethicon PVP app lets surgeons practice hernia
market for such things? the leap from Redmond to Cupertino in 2006. repair, and apps for other procedures are on their way.
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registered in the U.S. and other countries. Other product names are trademarks of their respective owners. Product speciﬁcations are subject to change without notice.
18 June 2010
Apple’s suicide probe
Apple investigates working conditions at Chinese
manufacturing plant after tragic spate of suicides.
pple has launched an investigation and it’s a factory, but, my gosh, they’ve got stopped, and has employed 100 counsellors
into conditions at Foxconn restaurants and movie theatres and hospitals and even taken on Buddhist monks to see to
Technology Group’s manufacturing and swimming pools. For a factory, it’s pretty the spiritual well-being of staff.
plants in China after it was reported that 11 nice,’ he said. Safety nets have also been installed
workers had committed suicide this year. Nevertheless, he also admitted the around buildings, as each of the suicide
Ten of those deaths occurred at the ﬁrm’s situation was ‘troubling’ and added that the victims had jumped off the plant’s roofs.
Shenzhen plant, which is also contracted to company was looking into the issue. ‘We’re The company pledged in May to employ a
manufacture devices for Nintendo and Sony. trying to understand right now, before we go more traditional method of staff motivation
Devices including the iPad, iPhone and in and say we know the solution,’ he said. and gave workers a 30% rise in pay. It then
iPods are all produced in the factory by mostly He added that the number of deaths, given announced a further 70% pay rise from 1
young workers who can be placed under the huge size of the plant, which employs October if certain conditions were met. Entry-
enormous pressure to meet tight deadlines. 400,000 workers, was less than the overall level workers at the plant earn around £90
The latest victim was a 19-year-old man suicide rate in the US. per month, but often work long, 12-hour shifts
Image PA Photos
called Li Hai who had only worked at the The comments were the ﬁrst time that and get only one day off per week.
plant for 42 days. However, speaking at the the Apple boss had commented publicly on Terry Gou, chairman of Foxconn’s parent
All Things Digital D8 conference last month, the tragic situation, which has shown no sign company, Hon Hai, has been reported in the
Apple CEO Steve Jobs denied that the factory of improvement this year. Foxconn has also Taiwanese media as saying that he plans
was a ‘sweatshop’. ‘You go in this place attempted to ensure the spate of suicides to relocate around a ﬁfth of the Shenzhen
Ballmer at WWDC
18 June 2010
icrosoft used Twitter to deny at WWDC would have made a contrast to
Steve Ballmer would be attending Jobs’ stylish and relaxed talk. Making Visual
this month’s WWDC, after several Studio open to Apple developers would be a
websites reported he would be speaking. pragmatic move by the company, as it would
Ballmer is employee number 24 at give it market share in a growing sector. It
Microsoft, and took over as CEO in 2000. would also allow more developers to work
It was rumoured that he would appear at on the platform, even if they don’t own an
WWDC and unveil a slew of tools to allow Apple computer, iPhone or iPad.
developers to create iPad and iPhone
applications in Visual Studio.
However, Microsoft squashed
the rumour ﬂat with an update on
its ofﬁcial Twitter account. ‘Steve
Ballmer not speaking at Apple Dev
Conf. Nor appearing on Dancing
with the Stars. Nor riding in the
Belmont. Just FYI,’ said the tweet.
The claims ﬁrst emerged on a
blog owned by The Wall Street
Journal, which quoted industry
analyst Trip Chowdhry as saying
that Ballmer had a seven-minute
slot at the Apple event. However,
Chowdhry later explained that it
wasn’t true, leaving the blog to
post: ‘Thursday afternoon, the
analyst who ﬂoated this rumor
in the ﬁrst place now says it
isn’t true. Too bad, it would
have been fun if it was. My
deepest apologies for creating
such a ruckus over nothing.’
Ballmer is famous for his
energetic – and often sweaty – Microsoft denied on its ofﬁcial Twitter account that its CEO, Steve
Ballmer, would be making a speech at this month’s WWDC.
presentations, so an appearance
Google releases ‘stable’
Mac version of Chrome
workforce to western China. This is where oogle has rolled out the ﬁrst ‘stable’ Existing Chrome installations will
many young workers are from and it’s Mac version of its Chrome web automatically update to the non-beta release
hoped that this would help to alleviate browser, ﬁve months after the ﬁrst (v. 5.0.375.55); otherwise the browser is a
homesickness. Other ﬁrms that contract out public beta. The browser now has feature free download from google.com/chrome.
their manufacturing to Foxconn, including HP, parity with the Windows and Linux versions,
Google claims that
Nokia, Sony and Dell, also promised they with support for 4500 extensions and its Mac offering has
would investigate conditions at the plant. ‘most-requested’ options such as bookmark the same features
as the Windows
‘We are concerned and take this very and preference syncing between computers and Linux versions.
seriously,’ said a statement released and a full-screen mode.
by Nokia. ‘Given the concerning reports ‘Today, I’m happy to announce that
regarding Foxconn, we are in continuous Google Chrome for Mac is being promoted
contact with Foxconn to ensure any issues out of beta to our stable channel,’ said Mike
are identiﬁed and addressed.’ Smith, product manager of the Google
Foxconn was founded in 1974 and is Chrome Team. ‘We believe that it provides not
headquartered in Tucheng, Taipei County, only the stability, performance and polish that
Taiwan. In 2009, it recorded revenues of every Mac user expects, but also a seamless
$61.8 billion (about £42.5 billion) and native Mac application experience that Mac
proﬁts of $1.74 billion (about £1.2 billion). users will feel instantly at home with.’
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BBC embraces cult of iPad with
18 June 2010
specially written iPlayer service
he BBC has created a version of its
hugely popular television catch-up
service, iPlayer, speciﬁcally to take
advantage of the increased screen real estate
on Apple’s iPad.
The BBC hinted in February that it would
bring the iPlayer to the iPhone in April, but
made no mention of the then-secret iPad. The
site launched last month and uses QuickTime
to stream video unlike the standard version,
which uses Flash, because of Apple’s
continuing refusal to support Adobe’s player
on its iPad and iPhone platforms.
iPlayer for the iPad is free to use and is
capable of streaming high-deﬁnition television
programmes broadcast in the last seven days
to the iPad. While still in beta, the service
provides access to the same programs and
features as its desktop cousin.
The new BBC iPlayer can stream high-deﬁnition programmes from the last seven days to the iPad.
The title bar of the program shows the
name ‘Bigscreen’, which may be an internal
development codename from the BBC. Apple struggles to match supply to massive a surprise that the BBC News application was
Apple said that it had sold two million demand for the device. one of a handful of news apps selected by
iPads in the ﬁrst two months availability, The BBC’s support for the iPad came Steve Jobs and Apple to support the launch
which means the audience for the iPlayer early, as it worked with Apple to have a news of the iPad, or that it continues to be one of
application could already be signiﬁcant in the application ready for the tablet’s launch. In the most popular applications in the iTunes
UK. However, those who haven’t already pre- a speech last month, BBC director general store.’ The BBC News app, however, is
ordered an iPad may face yet more delays as Mark Thompson said: ‘It shouldn’t come as only available outside the UK.
Government rejects repeal
of Digital Economy Act
he new UK government has frontbencher Adam Afriyie described the
decided that it won’t repeal the proposals as a ‘cobbled together mismatch’
Digital Economy Act, despite and a ‘washed-up bill from a washed-up
previous commitments to address its more government’, although he and his party later
contentious provisions. voted in favour.
Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said that, Moreover, during the election campaign,
instead, the government would review the Liberal Democrat leader, now Deputy Prime
legislation to see how it worked in practice Minister, Nick Clegg said the legislation
and make any changes deemed necessary. ‘badly needed to be repealed’.
The decision to stick with it has delighted
Image The Department for Culture, Media and Sport
the law’s supporters, such as John Lovelock,
‘Campaigners had hoped chief executive of the Federation Against Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said the government
would ‘review’ the Digital Economy Act.
Software Theft (Fast).
the new government would He said that: ‘This is great news for the
repeal at least some of the Act’ software industry, long struggling with Internet
piracy, together with other intellectual property
rights holders. ‘Within ﬁve years there will be more
Campaigners led by the Open Rights ‘Our hope is that the graduated response digital content sold than physical
Group had hoped the new government would provisions of this Act will be proportionate content. Three years ago, I said
repeal at least some of the Act, particularly and drive trafﬁc towards legitimate within 10 years, but I realised that
the sections providing for ‘technical downloads. At this time of economic was wrong – it’s within ﬁve.’
measures’ to be taken against alleged pressure, this is great news for the country Steve Haber, head of Sony’s digital
persistent ﬁle sharers. too, since more legitimate sales will mean reading business division on the
During the House of Commons debate more tax revenue and more workers in growth of eBooks.
shortly before the election, Conservative employment – everyone wins.’
18 June 2010
UK iPad launch
▲ Bleary-eyed Apple
fans line Regent
Street to get their
paws on an iPad.
Up at the crack of dawn, Camille Neilson caught up with
some keen consumers in the queue at Apple’s Regent
Street store for the launch of the much-anticipated iPad.
First in line Jake Lee, 17, Essex Jewels Lewis, 32, London Kukpin Tan (special T), 51, Malaysia
Arrived 12pm Thurs Model 64GB wiﬁ Arrived 4.30am Model 64GB wiﬁ Arrived 6pm Thursday Model 32GB wiﬁ
What convinced you to buy the iPad? What convinced you to buy the iPad? What convinced you to buy the iPad?
I love all the applications and the specs: Nothing, really… I just love all the Apple I saw the presentation by Steve Jobs and
there’s so much to do on it and it’s so fast. products. It’s part of your ﬁve a day. I think it’s cool. I use my iPhone a lot for
email, but the keyboard is too small. With the
Will you take your iPad everywhere? What are you going to do with it? iPad, I can really write emails without errors.
Yeah. Hopefully, it will replace my laptop. I’m going to see all the World Cup games
that are available while I’m at work, and then Will you take your iPad everywhere?
What do you plan on using it for? sneak it out to watch them at lunchtime. Yes, I travel a lot, so it will be very useful.
Mainly for the Internet and video.
Do you plan to buy any accessories? Do you think it will replace your laptop?
Which applications are you going to buy? I’m going to have to buy a man bag, so I can No, I love my MacBook at the same time,
I’m deﬁnitely going to buy the iWork apps, so take it everywhere with me. and I want to have it all.
I can do my college work.
Do you own any other Apple products? Which applications do you plan on getting?
Do you plan to buy any accessories? I think I’ve got the whole family now: the The news apps. If I’m at the airport, I can
Grifﬁn has given me loads for being ﬁrst in the Book, the Pro, the Pad… I’ve got everything catch up on what’s going on, as I don’t have
queue, but I still want the ofﬁcial Apple case. that begins with ‘i’. time to read newspapers.
Fay, 32, and Anna, 30, East London Ade Famuboni, 36, Penge Natasha Horne, 23, Hackney
Arrived 10pm Thursday Model 16GB wiﬁ 3G Arrived 5.40am Model 64GB 3G wiﬁ Arrived 4.15am Model 16GB wiﬁ
What are you going to do with it? Are you going to take it everywhere? What are you going to do with it?
I’m getting it for web browsing and the apps. Of course. It’s gonna be with me everywhere, It’s actually for my grandad. He’s not very
even if I’m going to the toilet. well at the moment and he’s bedridden. He
Will you take your iPad everywhere? absolutely loves gadgets and it’s one of his
Yes, I’m looking forward to looking at maps Do you plan to buy any accessories? greatest wishes
on it. Sat nav is Yes, I really right now to
better because want to get have one of
the iPad screen something that these iPads.
Images Camille Neilson
is bigger than keeps it safe. He’s already
the iPhone’s. got an iPod
It will give you What will you and a Mac,
a better view, do with it? and he’s really
so you can Emailing, up to date, but,
see where browsing and, sadly, he’s not
you’re going.’ well, games. very well.
18 June 2010
▲ Mac fan Stephen
Fry was quick to bag ▲ A limit of two iPads per shopper ▲ For those who were in the queue
one of the first UK was in place on the day – and early enough, Apple donated branded
Apple tablets. many took advantage of it. umbrellas in case of rain.
Kenneth Ginell, 22, Hackney Ai Shimohama, 30, Japan/London Mike Lehnert, 35 York
Arrived 9pm Thursday Model 16GB Arrived 6.10am Model 16GB wiﬁ Arrived 6.30pm Thursday Model 64GB wiﬁ
What are you going to do with it? What are you going to do with it? What convinced you to buy the iPad?
I’m a concept artist, so I like the apps you I want to see how it works, as I’m thinking of It was destiny. I was in London on business
can use for drawing. I can then convert those buying it for my mum too, so I have to try it and there were no hotel rooms available
drawings to Photoshop formats, which is out. I’ll probably use it for email and watching because of the Chelsea Flower Show, so
going to be really useful to me. some videos. I used to do photography, so I I thought, why not get an iPad? I bought a
also want to compile my photos. canvas chair to sit on, and then enjoyed an
Which applications are you going to get? evening drinking wine and people-watching.
Basically, just the drawing apps really. Do you already own any Apple products? Everyone was really friendly.
Whenever I get an idea, it’s important that I have an iPod nano and an iPod mini, but I would say that the whole experience
I can record it straightaway. they’re quite old. I’m quite excited, because was, I imagine, a bit like giving birth: 13
I don’t have any touchscreen products, so I hours in labour being hot, uncomfortable
Do you plan to buy any accessories? want to see how they work. and in pain, and then the ecstasy of giving
A pen so I can draw with it, but not a case birth and having the iPad in the end.
at this stage. Do you plan to buy any accessories?
Yes, I deﬁnitely need a case. My mum said What are you going to do with it?
Do you own any other Apple products? she could make some accessories for me, I’ll use it for web browsing, watching movies,
I’ve got an iPod. and she said I should buy an iPad for her. the iBook Store and musical apps.
Andy Parkinson, 51, Stevenage Jason Warner, 20, Stratford
Arrived 6.10am Model 32GB wiﬁ Arrived 5.30am Model 32GB wiﬁ
What are you going to do with it? What made you decide to buy the iPad?
Mainly for the Internet, email and remote- I really love all of Apple’s products and the all my pictures
controlling the computers I have at home, so iPad is similar to the iPod touch. However, on it, and
I won’t have to go upstairs to work on them. the larger screen means that you can do organise and
a lot more with it. Watching videos is a view them.
Which apps? lot easier too, so that’s probably what I’ll
I’ve already mostly use it for. Applications?
downloaded I deﬁnitely
the iBooks Are you going to take it everywhere? want to get
app. And, Yeah, I hope so for the amount of money the Pages app to do my university work,
obviously, some that it costs. and I also want to get a couple of games
of the apps – probably racing ones.
I have on my Do you plan to buy any accessories?
iPhone will port Yes, the ofﬁcial Apple case just to protect it, Do you own any other Apple products?
straight across. and maybe the SD card adaptor so I can put I have an iPhone and a MacBook Pro.
18 June 2010
WATCH OUT FOR REVIEWS OF THESE PRODUCTS IN THE COMING ISSUES
This issue’s round-up of the latest products features a rugged mobile hard
drive from LaCie, an NEC display and a compact camera from Panasonic.
LaCie Rugged Safe
Price £169 (£144 ex VAT)
Contact LaCie + lacie.com/uk
LaCie describes the Rugged Safe as ‘the safest
mobile hard drive on the market’ The reason for
such a bold claim? According to its maker, it features
‘government-grade 128-bit AES hardware encryption,
the safest biometric authentication technology and a
military-grade shock-proof enclosure’ The biometric
authentication takes the form of a fingerprint reader
on the top of the drive, and additional protection for
the drive is provided by the black rubber bumper
that surrounds the drive.
18 June 2010
Price £1667 (£1419 ex VAT)
Contact NEC + nec.com/eu
This NEC 24in display has an IPS panel, a
native resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels and
a maximum brightness of 360cd/m2. The
Reference 241 has one DisplayPort and two
DVI-D interfaces, and a programmable USB hub.
The stand’s height is adjustable, and the display
can be used in portrait mode. According to NEC, the
display’s ‘Digital Uniformity Control (ColorComp) and
Backlight Ageing Control ensure controlled and peak
performance throughout the entire life cycle’.
Iomega 1TB eGo
BlackBelt Mac Edition
Contact Iomega + iomega.com
The 1TB eGo BlackBelt Mac Edition is a portable hard
drive with two FireWire 800 ports and one USB 2
port. It also comes with a FireWire 400-to-800 cable,
so you can connect it to a Mac that only has the older
type of socket. The drive also features Iomega’s Drop
Guard Xtreme, which helps protect the drive from
accidental drops of up to seven feet.
Panasonic’s latest compact camera has an F2.2
24mm ultra-wide-angle Leica DC Vario-Summicron
lens and 5x optical zoom (equivalent to 24mm
to 120mm on a 35mm camera). The FX70 also
records HD movies in AVCHD Lite format. It uses
Panasonic’s intelligent zoom to extend the zoom
range to 6.5x, and there’s the usual AF tracking,
face detection with face recognition, optical image
stabiliser, and intelligent ISO control, scene selector
and exposure features.
18 June 2010
Dennis Publishing Ltd, 30 Cleveland St, London, W1T 4JD
Editor Nik Rawlinson firstname.lastname@example.org
Deputy editor Kenny Hemphill email@example.com
Contributing editor Howard Oakley
Technical editor Keith Martin
Staﬀ writer Alan Stonebridge firstname.lastname@example.org
Senior reporter Matthew Sparkes
HAVE YOUR SAY. EMAIL US AT MAILBOX@MACUSER.CO.UK ART
Art editor Camille Neilson
Freelance designers Heather Reeves, Fanni Kosztolanyi
Images Danny Bird, Jan Cihak
Star letter PRODUCTION
Production editor Jon Lysons
Remote sub-editor Kirsty Fortune
iPad UK pricing Sub-editors Rob Woodcock
From Christian Webb Ad production executive Michael Hills 020 7907 6129
Digital production manager Nicky Baker
‘A magical and revolutionary product at
an unbelievable price.’ What a load of ADVERTISING
Advertising manager Alexandra Skinner
bol****s. They clearly missed out the 020 7907 6623 email@example.com
word ‘high’. Account director Nicky Crawford
Now, not one to have ever written a 020 7907 6624 firstname.lastname@example.org
Online group ad manager Gary Rayneau
letter to Inbox, but the iPad’s UK pricing 020 7907 6812 email@example.com
leaves me incensed. I’m a true Apple Classified sales executive Carol-Anne Cross
aﬁcionado, and I work, rest and play with UK. Prices quoted on the US Apple 020 7907 6617 firstname.lastname@example.org
US advertising manager Matthew Sullivan-Pond
its products, so there has got to be Store don’t include tax, you see, as it ++1 646 717 9555 email@example.com
something seriously amiss for me to feel varies between states, which means List rental inserts executive John Perry
this way. Apple has certainly lost the plot direct comparisons with UK prices are 020 7907 6151 firstname.lastname@example.org
with this one and no amount of fudging often inaccurate. PUBLISHING & MARKETING
the exchange rate or lame excuse can Now, I would like it as much as Publisher Paul Rayner 020 7907 6663
justify the pricing structure for the the next person if there was no £71 Marketing manager Claire Scrase 020 7907 6113
long-suffering UK customer. difference between the US and UK Editorial & marketing assistant
This has certainly distanced me from prices, but there are plenty of reasons Emily Hodges 020 7907 6270
what was going to be a dead-cert purchase. why any US company – not just Apple DENNIS PUBLISHING LTD
Managing director technology and motoring Ian Westwood
I even jumped the gun and already have – would choose to sell something for Production director Robin Ryan
Managing director of advertising Julian Lloyd-Evans
the hand-crafted Vaja case in waiting for the more in the UK than it does at home. Newstrade director Martin Belson
Managing director digital Pete Wootton
iPad’s impending release. The US price of Transportation, for example: the iPad Chief operating oﬃcer Brett Reynolds
$829 for the 64GB wiﬁ + 3G translates at is built in China, which is one Paciﬁc Group ﬁnance director Ian Leggett
Chief executive James Tye
current exchange rates at £562.50, so why crossing away from the US west Chairman Felix Dennis
do we have to suffer a £136.50 penalty? coast. To get the same product to us Printed in England by BGP Print Ltd, Chaucer International Estate, Launton Road, Bicester, Oxon
OX6 7QZ Distribution Seymour Distribution 020 7396 8000
Looks like the Vaja will stay in its box until involves a far longer voyage, which in
MacUser, incorporating Apple User, DTP, MacShopper and MacBuyer, is published fortnightly
Apple realigns its prices. turn will cost more to commission. by Dennis Publishing Ltd, 30 Cleveland Street, London W1T 4JD, a company registered in
England number 1138891. Entire contents © Dennis Publishing Ltd licensed by Felden 2009.
The iPad is a cool technology, yes, but It works both ways. There are MacUser is an independent journal, not afﬁliated with Apple Computer Inc. ‘Apple’ and the
Apple logo, ‘Macintosh’, ‘Mac’, the Mac logo and ‘MacUser’ are the trademarks of Apple Inc.
not at any price. plenty of products that cost less in
PERMISSIONS AND REPRINTS
MacUser replies: But the $829 64GB wiﬁ the UK than they do in the US, either Material in MacUser may not be reproduced in any form without the publisher’s written
permission. MacUser is available for international licensing and syndication. Please call
+ 3G iPad doesn’t actually cost $829, because of tax positions or business Ornella Roccoletti on +44 20 7097 6134 for details.
does it? Buy it in Chicago and you’ll have decisions. The product you’re holding
Member of the Audit Bureau of Circulation
to pay an additional 9.75% in sales tax, right now is a prime example: buy a Jan-Dec 2007 14,502 per issue
which pushes up the price to $909.82. UK magazine here in Britain and it will HOW TO CONTACT US
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In sterling, that’s £627.53, which is £71 almost certainly cost you less than it Online macuser.co.uk
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Let’s play club a penguin COMPETITION WINNERS PRODUCTS AND EDITORIAL SUBMISSIONS
MacUser welcomes all information on new and upgraded hardware and software, but we are
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From Andy Thornley The winner of a Mac1 DataTale Raid outline form only.
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popular (and I assume proﬁtable) kids site, This issue is dedicated to summer holidays.
Club Penguin, which uses Flash almost The winners of an inMotion Max and .Audio
exclusively, won’t be able to run on one of 995 headset (see MacUser, 26 March
the most affordable and desirable web 2010, p41, and 9 April 2010, p72) are:
browsing devices ever? Ryan Coles, Bristol; Ross Allmett, Plymouth
My kids are already drooling over the iPad
as the ultimate new gaming device. As Steve The winners of a Mac refurbishment (see
is the major shareholder of Disney, which MacUser, 9 April 2010, p20) are:
The paper used within this magazine is
owns the Club Penguin site, am I missing Emma Scrivener, Otley; Graham Cutter, produced from sustainable ﬁbre,
manufactured by mills with a valid chain
something here? Fareham; S Y McGreavy, London of custody.
18 June 2010
MAC-USING CREATIVES SHOW OFF THEIR WORK AND REVEAL WHAT MAKES THEM TICK
Jake Blanchard was born in the Peak District. Afer ﬁnishing his degree
in illustration in Brighton, he moved to London and is now a freelance
illustrator. Clients include the BBC, Nike, The Guardian and Habitat
Skateboards. He has exhibited throughout the UK, the US and France.
What was your ﬁrst Mac? 330C A4 printer and scanner, an HP Deskjet
It was one of the anglepoise-style iMacs, with 1220C A3 printer, a LaCie external hard drive
the dome-shaped base and the stem bearing and an Akasa laptop cooling pad.
a ﬂat-screen monitor.
What’s your favourite software program and
What Mac you are using? what was the ﬁrst program you used?
A MacBook Pro. I’ve had it for around three I suppose Photoshop is my favourite, as I use
years now and plan to upgrade soon. it in pretty much all of my work and I’ve been
using it since I ﬁrst employed a computer for
What other equipment do you use? artwork. I suppose the ﬁrst artistic program
Obviously, I use a lot of drawing equipment I used was Flash – I used to make little
CONTACT DETAILS – pens, pencils and so on. In terms of animations when I was a kid.
Name Jake Blanchard electronics, I use a Wacom Intuos 3, which
Current employment Self-employed has become a pretty important part of my Can you offer any tips for success?
Email firstname.lastname@example.org working process. I also have a Brother DCP- I think if you really love what you do, then
URL www.jakeblanchard.co.uk you’ll ﬁnd a way, but it doesn’t hurt to do a
Tel +44 (0)7905 656464 bit of self-promotion – you won’t get any work
unless people know you exist.
Creative workspace As a child, what did you want
to be when you grew up?
Some kind of art was always on the cards,
but for a while I wanted to be a biologist of
some sort. I’m still really interested in the
sciences and I try to keep up to date with
what’s going on.
How did you get your ﬁrst big break?
It doesn’t really feel like I’ve had a ‘big break’.
If there was one, I suppose it was a book cover
I did for Random House – someone there saw
my degree show gave me a commission. I also
did some skateboards for Habitat about two
weeks after my show.
Talk us through these examples:
This was a window Display for Douglas &
Gordon. As with all my work here, it was hand
drawn, and then scanned and coloured in
Photoshop. This piece was then separated
18 June 2010
to make positives and screen printed into
mountboard. The individual elements were
then cut out by hand. Some of the larger
pieces were digitally printed onto plastic and
then Cad cut.
02 Enjoy Nature
This was a T-shirt design for Howies. Again, it
was hand drawn, scanned, coloured and then
laid out in Photoshop.
03 Hell Horse and Heady Stratus
A record sleeve for Moon Unit, under the
Blackest Rainbow Records label. Once
again, this was hand drawn, scanned
and digitally coloured.
18 June 2010
04 Mammoth Hunt drawn and digitally coloured piece, and
This is artwork for a wrapping paper then the image was separated to make
repeat pattern for Frinton Press. To make positives for screen printing.
the repeat pattern, I used a square
image and then cut it into quarters in What or who inspires your work?
Photoshop. Once the corners had been I have a huge number of inﬂuences. I grew
reversed, I simply ﬁlled the gaps with up on Maurice Sendak and Quentin Blake,
more drawings. who initially made me consider doing
illustration. Also Hayao Miyazaki and Isao
05 MV&EE Takahata of Studio Ghibli. More recently,
These works were for UK and European I think Stuart Kolakovic and Pietari Posti
tour posters for MV&EE. The ﬁnished are producing some amazing work.
pieces were separated to make positives I’m also inspired by the ﬁlms of
for screen printing. Wes Anderson, Takeshi Kitano and
06 Bait Ball Music is also a huge inﬂuence, and I
This was personal work for an exhibition. have to thank my brother for introducing
Halftone dots were added to the hand- me to so much of it.
18 June 2010
What mistakes have you learned from?
Learn to play an instrument when you’re
young, because you’ll regret it in later life
if you don’t.
What’s your ideal project?
I always enjoy working with Habitat
Skateboards, but really I love the variety
of working on different things. I think just
working with nice people who respect the
illustrators with whom they work is what’s
most important to me.
Oh, actually, I’d like to do a vinyl sleeve
with a gatefold.
Tell us something good...
Pangolins are good.
What’s your favourite gadget?
My lap steel guitar, if that counts as
a gadget. I just wish I could actually
play the thing.
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18 June 2010
FOR THE LATEST REVIEWS GO TO WWW.MACUSER.CO.UK/REVIEWS
Reviews Reviews policy Awards system
Half-Life 2 31 HOW… Editor’s Choice
Immersive and exciting game that has you MacUser ﬁrmly believes that a proper, This award can be given at the
taking on aliens who have taken over Earth detailed review can be carried out CHOICE editor’s discretion to a product
only by rigorously testing the product. judged as outstanding and a
Leica M9 34
We don’t believe value is derived from must-buy in the issue.
A compelling choice for professionals who
need a full-frame CCD in a compact body describing a product’s features without
any analysis. We’ll never give a positive
Clickfree C2N 250GB 35 Labs Winner
review to a product that we believe isn’t
A neat solution to the problem of backing Given to the products that in
worth our readers buying, which means LABS
up multiple computers over a network the opinion of the reviewer are
that a positive MacUser review is of WINNER the best in their ﬁeld at the
Adobe Lightroom 3 36 enormous value to both the reader and
time of testing.
This top-class photographic workﬂow the manufacturer of the product.
application is bursting with useful features
Products are tested in-house wherever
Monotype Web Fonts 38 possible, using a mix of industry-standard Best Value
The easiest way so far to use custom and bespoke testing software suites. Only the very best products
typefaces in a website. And it’s free make it into our Hot Kit
Top-rated products earn themselves
section. They are the products
NeatImage Pro 6.2 40 a place in our exclusive Hot Kit section to
on which the editorial team
This Photoshop plug-in is perfect for provide you with an issue-by-issue update
would spend their own money.
removing noise from digital images of the best products in any category for use
Samsung NX10 42 on a Mac. This, along with our deﬁnitive
This compact from Samsung is an attractive awards system (below), lets you see at
alternative to Micro Four Thirds cameras a glance which products are worth the
manufacturers’ asking price.
Camera Connection Kit 43
If you’re a photographer, you’ll get more out
of your iPad thanks to this accessory
iBomber 2 44 PRODUCT SELECTION
We give priority to mainstream products,
Take to the skies with this highly addictive
but we also make every effort to cover a A perfect product with great features
game that uses the iPhone’s accelerometer
broad range of items, and regularly feature at a great price.
Canon 5D Mark II: 44 ‘niche’ products.
This app is of interest to novices of both
the Canon Eos 5D Mark II and photography
COMPLAINTS A product with minor ﬂaws but which
Everything iWant 46 We do everything we can to publish fair
A round-up of the latest, most-desirable is nonetheless excellent.
and accurate reviews. If errors do occur we
gadgets available for the iPad and iPhone
correct them in ‘Search and Replace’ in the
Plug-ins for InDesign 48 Mailbox section.
Boost the performance of these programs A good product that does everything
with our favourite third-party add-ons
it’s designed to do.
A product that’s outclassed by
others in its ﬁeld.
A poor product that we can’t
recommend in its current state.
18 June 2010
Price £6.99 for Half-Life 2 alone;
£16.99 as part of The Orange Box
Contact Steam + steampowered.com
Requires Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later +
Nvidia GeForce 8 Series or better + ATI
X1600 or better + Steam application
and account + Internet connection
Illustrations Courtesy of Valve Software
Pros Thrilling storyline + Exciting
gameplay + Superb characterisations
and dialogue + Decent graphics
despite its age
Cons Story continues with two shorter
episodes but has yet to be concluded
Verdict Half-Life 2 is an enduring
masterpiece and, regardless of its age,
it’s the most thrilling game to hit the
Mac in a very long time.
18 June 2010
alf-Life 2 puts you in the boots of
Doctor Gordon Freeman, a survivor
of an incident at the Black Mesa
Research Facility, chronicled in the original
game, in which an experiment opened a
gateway to another world, allowing alien life
forms to spill through. In that game, Freeman
found himself caught in the crossﬁre of the
aliens and the US military’s attempts to clean
up the situation and dispose of all witnesses.
You don’t need to have played the original,
though, as Half-Life 2 picks up long after the
events of the original game.
Freeman ﬁnds himself on a train bound
for City 17, having just been woken from
stasis by G-Man, a character spotted at
several points wandering through Black Mesa
with a mysterious agenda. In his absence, ▲ A shadow is cast over City 17 by The Combine’s
Citadel. Wherever you go, surveillance ofﬁcers and
Freeman’s world has changed dramatically ﬂoating scanners are in hot pursuit.
and it’s clear something is amiss the moment
he steps off the train. Video screens tower
above, playing platitudes from Doctor Breen, in and barely relax their grip during the long aqueducts. The intensity of that segment
the city’s human administrator, but they offer and arduous journey, which takes in a variety mounts over time, like a solid action movie.
little comfort as you guide Freeman through of locations that steadily reveal more of this It’s an exhilarating ride that incorporates
the train station, bearing witness to masked world’s horrors. some stunning battles where you face foot
Civil Protection ofﬁcers that brutalise the It’s vital that you keep watch for lambda soldiers taking aim from bridges overhead all
human population. symbols painted on walls, which indicate a the way up to some of the most frightening
When you step outside of the railway nearby cache left by the human resistance military hardware.
station, you’re greeted by an eastern movement. Reassuring crates of ﬁrst aid kits Half-Life 2 is devoid of traditional
European city with the distinctly unearthly may also conceal cruel surprises as alien cutscenes that wrestle control from your
Citadel towering in the distance. Seconds head crabs (a lot like face huggers from the hands to deliver exposition. You’re always in
later, a robotic camera ﬂoats into view and Alien ﬁlms) leap at
blasts a camera ﬂash in your face. Not long you and try to attach
after that, the weaponless protagonist is on to Freeman’s cephalic ‘Freeman’s torch can only power itself for a short time,
the run in this dystopian nightmare, dashing region. They’re among
through buildings and down alleys in ﬂight the least aggressive
although it will quickly recharge, but that’s enough for
from the city’s police force. An alien force enemies you’ll face, the alien/human hybrids to swarm around you’
known as The Combine is behind this hellish but they can still
vision of the future. Breen refers to them as overpower you when
‘our benefactors’, but you won’t be mistaken reeling from an intense Combine attack. Far control of Freeman and free to move about
for a second that their intentions towards the more nerve wracking are moments spent in a room as a conversation takes place. The
humans are hostile. dark, conﬁned spaces. Freeman’s torch can story’s background is rooted in science
Despite the game’s age, its art direction only power itself for a short time, although it ﬁction, but most of the technobabble in
and soundscape hold up well after six years will quickly recharge, but that’s enough for the the dialogue actually helps ﬁll in the gaps
and portray a convincing environment, enough zombie-like alien/human hybrids that dwell in in Freeman’s understanding of what has
that you’ll ignore any signs of ageing and unwelcoming places to swarm around you. happened to the world.
focus on the storyline. The characters you Not all of the action takes place on foot. Characters turn their heads to look in
meet and the events that take place pull you Early on, there’s a spectacular – and lengthy your direction and, when you stand close,
– water-based sequence in which Freeman their eyes aren’t glassy and cold but warm,
One of the game’s early highlights is Freeman’s attempts to leave the city, ﬂeeing along like real ﬂesh and blood. They also exhibit a
attempt to ﬂee the city via aqueducts and canals.
sense of personality and mental state through
their facial expressions. There are some
wonderfully tender moments in which Freeman
gets to know Alyx, the feisty young woman
who helps him adjust to his surroundings.
Freeman doesn’t utter a word during
the game, which is important, as it lets
you imprint your own personality upon him.
The game is heavily scripted, both in these
moments and in the action, and although
your path is guided and linear, there’s enough
room to manoeuvre in every scene that,
should Freeman be killed, you get a real
sense that you can try a different approach.
A large part of that is down to the arsenal
at your disposal, which includes standard
fare such as shotguns and riﬂes. You also
have a crowbar, but pray you never have to fall
back on it because that’s a sure sign you’re
18 June 2010
▲ Half-Life 2’s cast of characters is brought to life with great dialogue and expressive animation.
outmatched. Half-Life 2 also introduces the
gravity gun, which lets you pick up large objects
such as metal drums and wooden planks, then
toss them away with a forceful blast: pick up an
explosive barrel and wipe out a bunch of your
enemies. You can even pick up some of your
humanoid foes and use their ﬂailing body to
knock down their squad like bowling pins. The
gravity gun is also the basis of many puzzles in
Half-Life 2, balancing out the action with some
more thoughtful moments.
The environment feels like a living,
breathing world, although there are pauses
at speciﬁc points as the next area is loaded.
They’re carefully positioned for the most part,
and not too intrusive to the ﬂow of the story. By
the time you reach the end, you’ll be relieved
and breathless, like you’ve just enjoyed a
great novel. The journey is substantial, but
make no mistake: this is deﬁnitely not one for
young kids to play. Although there are puzzle
elements, there is a considerable amount of
violence, even though Half-Life 2 justiﬁes it
as a battle against subjugation. With an open
mind about that, you’re in for one hell of a ride.
It’s easy to see why Half-Life 2 has garnered a
reputation as one of the best PC games ever
released, and that’s why it’s right at the top of
our list as the best Mac game.
Half-Life 2 is followed by two episodic
installments that depict the aftermath
of the main game’s events. Episode 1
is the weaker of the two, although it
ﬂeshes out more of the background
and shouldn’t be skipped, as it’s
an important bridge into Episode 2.
We’re fast approaching Episode 2’s
third anniversary with little information
available about the next installment. At
least you’ll endure a shorter wait for it
to materialise than PC gamers. In the
meantime, the best-value option is to
snap up Half-Life 2 and its expansions
in The Orange Box (£16.99), which
also includes Portal (see MacUser
4 June, p47) and online multiplayer
Team Fortress 2, which will be
available to download at a later date.
18 June 2010
Digital rangeﬁnder camera CHOICE
Price £4850 (£4128 ex VAT) body
only; £6810 (£5796 ex VAT) with
Leica 35mm f/2.0 Summicron
Contact Leica + en.leica-camera.com
Needs Mac OS X 10.3 or later
Pros Picture quality + Lens choice
+ Discrete operation + Build
Verdict A compelling choice for
professionals who need a full-
frame CCD in a compact body.
he pressures on photographers in Detractors also cited Leica’s use of an news is the new 24 x 36mm 18-megapixel
public spaces these days means that exceptionally thin hot-mirror ﬁlter over the Kodak-sourced, purpose-made CCD. There’s
the need for smaller, lighter and more sensor to prevent infrared pollution, giving rise no anti-aliasing, or moiré, ﬁlter, so images are
discreet cameras is higher now than at any to the occasional magenta tinted skin-tones extremely well detailed and the slightly thicker
time previously. Perhaps that’s one of the and mauve tint to black synthetics under cover-glass is much more efﬁcient at blocking
reasons why ‘mirrorless’ cameras, such as certain incandescent lighting. Noise levels infrared. We couldn’t detect any contamination
the Micro Four Thirds Olympus Pen E-P2 (see weren’t great at high ISOs, for instance, but in in our test shots and fringing was very low, too.
MacUser, 26 February, p38) and Panasonic fairness the M8.2 was capable of the highest As well as the new full-frame sensor,
Lumix GF1 (see MacUser 1 January, p30), are quality stills using most of the ISO range, while the M9 has sensitivity running natively
so popular. With the Samsung NX 10 (see providing access to some remarkable lenses. from ISO160 through to IS02500 with a
p42) and now Sony joining the fray, it’s ironic ‘pull’ setting of ISO80, continuous shooting
that the bulky SLR was a direct adaptation at around 2fps for eight Raw ﬁles and a
from the original mirrorless camera, the ‘The M3 rangefinder has evolved 2.5in 230,000-pixel screen. All somewhat
coupled rangeﬁnder, in the late 1950s. into the digital M9. It’s the conservative, but with top and bottom
Leica’s iconic M3 rangeﬁnder has evolved plates made of brass and a shell made from
into the digital M9. It’s the ﬁrst M-series
first M-series digital body from magnesium alloy, build quality is high.
digital body from Leica to adopt a full-frame Leica to adopt a full-frame CCD’ The body is remarkably similar in design to
CCD, the same size as a 35mm negative. the M8 models, but the small top-plate LCD
With its physically smaller APS-H size CCD, depicting the battery status has gone. This
the M8.2 (see MacUser, 28 August 2009, In many respects the M9 can be viewed has been replaced now with an info panel,
p32) was unable to fully exploit the original as an upgrade. Rangeﬁnder lenses sit very depicting battery life as well the remaining SD
angle of view of Leica’s extensive range of close to the sensor, and so are smaller than card’s capacity using the rear screen. While
highly-regarded lenses. Existing users would DSLR lenses, though corner shading is an not as large or as detailed as the majority of
have been forced to accept the cropped issue. Boasting offset micro-lenses with a low- panels now on offer, it’s size doesn’t affect
image or replace valuable lenses with more refractive index to capture the most oblique the M-series, clean lines. At the rear, the
costly wider alternatives. rays and to reduce fringing, the headline controls look identical, though some of the
NO IR CONTAMINATION
Infrared contamination, an issue for
the M8.2, has been largely eradicated
thanks to a new, thicker, more efﬁcient
hot-mirror cover-glass over the CCD.
HIGH BUILD QUALITY
Both top and bottom plates are made
of brass, while the body is made
high-strength magnesium alloy. Largely
hand-made in Porto, Portugal and
Solms, Germany, build quality of the
Leica M9 is very high.
18 June 2010
the network can run scheduled backups to
Portable backup tool it over the network.
Clickfree As with every backup tool, the ﬁrst backup
isn’t quick. Copying tens of gigabytes of
WIDE LENS CHOICE C2N 250GB data, comprising tens of thousands of ﬁles,
The Leica M9 has the widest range takes several hours, even over USB 2. Once
of high-quality lenses available for a that’s done though, subsequent backups,
camera of this size. Rival mirrorless which only copy ﬁles that have been added
cameras simply don’t offer professional Price £119 (£101 ex VAT) or changed since last time, are relatively
image makers the choice. Contact Clickfree + clickfree.com quick. And the performance hit on your Mac
Needs Mac OS X 10.5 or later + Intel when the backup is running, is minimal.
processor + USB port
Pros Easy to back up data + Portable
+ Can use over a network ‘You can customise the backup
Cons Restoring individual ﬁles and set by clicking on the Options
SMALL BUT POWERFUL folders is difﬁcult
Boasting laterally displaced micro- Verdict If retrieving data was as easy
button, and checking and
lenses to reduce corner-shading, the as backing it up, the C2N would get full unchecking folders as required’
M9 is the smallest camera to feature a marks. As it is, it’s a neat way to back
full-frame 35mm format CCD purpose- up multiple computers over a network.
made for the M-series RF lenses. So far, so good. Things start to go a little
awry though, when you need to restore from
a backup. If you want to restore everything, or
the entire contents of, say, your Documents
functionality has been changed for the better; lickfree has built its business on or Pictures folder, it’s easy. If, on the other
most notably, selection of EV compensation. encouraging us to back up our data hand, you want to restore speciﬁc ﬁles, it’s
You can make adjustments in three different by making the process as simple as very difﬁcult. Folders are listed in the Clickfree
ways now, two of which can be made without possible. The C2N is its latest offering. The software’s window in an apparently random
taking the camera from your eye. basis of the device is a 250GB USB hard order, and there’s no way to change the view
From our test shots, noise levels have drive, but there’s a lot more to it than that. or the way they’re listed. This makes locating
been improved, but even though the sensor The drive can connect directly to your nested folders or individual ﬁles very tricky.
is larger, the pixel density remains the same Mac, or sit in a dock that hooks up to the That aside, the C2N is a neat solution to
as the previous models. All but the maximum computer. The dock cable has a second the problem of backing up multiple computers
sensitivity of ISO2500 is usable, and even USB plug, in case you use it with a laptop over a network. The fact that it works on both
that doesn’t supply enough power over Macs and PCs will be a boon if you have both
a single USB connection to run the drive. on your network and, as the drive is easily
‘Picture quality is excellent, When you ﬁrst connect the C2N to your portable, you can remove it and store it away
with great colour rendition, Mac, it mounts a disk image that contains from the premises when it’s not in use. At
the Clickfree software. Run the application, £119 for 250GB, it’s not a cheap solution, but
smooth out-of-focus highlights and it immediately starts a 60-second it may just be worth it for the convenience.
and superb tonal gradation’ countdown before it starts backing up the Kenny Hemphill
contents of your Home folder. If you don’t
want all the contents of that directory
then with very careful exposure it can still backed up, you can customise the
be selected in emergencies. While there backup set by clicking on the Options
are no electronic contacts between camera button, and checking and unchecking
and lens the latest lenses are ‘coded’, a folders as required.
series of black and white dots are ‘read’ Each time you plug-in the C2N
optically to compensate for vignetting. We thereafter, it will perform an incremental
saw some evidence of it, though with the backup according to the settings that
superbly mounted, manual-focus 35mm f/2 you’ve chosen. Or, if you’d rather, you can
Summicron lens we had during review, but it’s keep the drive plugged in and create a
common with ‘fast’ aperture lenses. Picture schedule for back-up routines.
quality is excellent overall, with terriﬁc colour If that was all there was to the
rendition, smooth out of focus highlights and C2N, it would be useful, but not
superb tonal gradation. Raw ﬁle conversions particularly newsworthy. What takes
are especially striking in Aperture 3 and in- it beyond that is the way it allows you
camera Jpegs are improved over the M8.2. to back up multiple machines. So
While we were impressed with that long as the Macs or PCs you want to
model, the M9 is clearly a step forward. At back up are on the same local network,
this price though, it’s a considered choice. all you need to do is connect the drive
For existing M-series ﬁlm users with a handful to each of them once, and install
of lenses, the M9 is the camera they will the Backup Link software.
have been waiting for. As the smallest, most The ﬁrst backup takes place
discreet camera available with a full-frame locally, but after that, as long
35mm sensor and a range of lenses that as the C2N is connected to
can’t be bettered, professional image-makers a computer on the network,
will ﬁnd the Leica M9 just as compelling. and that device is switched
Kevin Carter on, every other machine on
18 June 2010
Digital darkroom CHOICE
Price £233 (£198 ex VAT); upgrade
£75 (£64 ex VAT)
Contact Abobe + adobe.co.uk
Needs Intel-based Mac + Mac OS X
10.5 or higher + 2GB Ram
Pros Very fast + Easy to use + Useful
Cons Expensive compared to Aperture
Verdict A top-class photographic
workﬂow application, bursting with
features and adding some important
new ones to the old version. The Lightroom environment features many tools that will already be familiar to Photoshop users, such as the
histogram and curves control. The strip running along the bottom of the screen is the library.
Lightroom 3 also includes a new tool for ability to export a slideshow to an Mpeg-4
fter an enormously successful adding ﬁlm-like grain to your shots, which video. However, it still can’t set differing
beta program that saw 600,000 is useful for making low-ISO images more display times for individual slides and still has
pre-launch downloads, Lightroom textured. Life is otherwise as it was in the relatively few templates. It adds some muscle
3 is out. It promises performance Develop module – Lightroom continues to to the series’ watermarking capabilities,
improvements, new features and compatibility offer swift performance, and its powerful though: you can now choose the font (or an
with the image libraries generated by previous brushes and graduated ﬁlter tools are just image), as well its size, location in the frame,
versions of Lightroom, as well as those from as useful this time around. its shadow and its colour.
Photoshop Elements 6 and upwards. Previously, tethering a camera to a Mac All of these features add up to a good,
The bones of the application are the running Lightroom required a complicated if not essential, upgrade. Lightroom’s core
same as in previous versions, but that’s not series of workarounds, and third-party plug-ins editing suite remains as powerful as ever.
to say there haven’t been some important or applications. Now it’s included out of the Performance is exceptional and, although
changes. A major new feature is the Lens box for a decent selection of mid-range and there’s a perceptible difference in how it
Proﬁle tool. Select a lens you own from the above Nikon cameras, and nearly all current handles noise reduction, it’s only really
list and its ﬂaws are smoothed out. You can Canons from the 1000D up. It works well, obvious when viewing images at 100%.
even change exactly which alterations are too. You can’t change shooting settings Upgrading from an earlier version of
made to suit your own preferences. A decent from the software, but you can trigger the Lightroom is good value – it will cost you
number of lenses are supported – if you own shutter, and the delay between taking a £75 to upgrade from an old version. The
a Canon or Nikon consumer DSLR and use 10MB Raw ﬁle and it appearing in Lightroom big question comes if you’re looking to
the kit lens, you’re probably covered. For more is comfortably under ﬁve seconds on a mid- invest in a new software package and
esoteric lenses, you might ﬁnd yourself using range MacBook. It’s entirely usable and an are deciding between Lightroom and the
Adobe’s free Lens Proﬁle Corrector, though. excellent addition for studio photographers. excellent Aperture 3. The full version of
For instance, Lightroom 3 supports just one There’s some good news for slideshow Apple’s program costs £169, while Adobe’s
lens each from Sony and Tamron. aﬁcionados, with Lightroom 3 adding the is more than £60 more expensive, at £233.
Aperture also offers a few consumer-friendly
touches – features such as Faces and Places,
which place your images on a map and pick
out people automatically.
Lightroom is, however, streets ahead in
some important areas. New features such
as lens proﬁles give photographers more
editing ﬂexibility, and it continues to offer
tools missing from Apple’s photo-editing
application, not least the landscape-saving
graduated ﬁlter. It’s also much faster and
more stable than Aperture.
In this latest version, Lightroom 2’s
limitations, such as poor watermarking
and lack of tethered shooting, have been
addressed, while Adobe has wisely avoided
attempting to ﬁx features that didn’t need
it. The result is a fast, stable workﬂow
application that addresses virtually every
need a photographer might have and,
Like Aperture, Lightroom has a slideshow feature, allowing you to show off your best images in the way that crucially, still produces stellar images.
suits them best. Adding a watermark to your images will help protect them from online theft.
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the extraordinary, up-close images he takes with his Nikon D3 camera,
always conﬁdent he’ll get them home in one piece.
Back in the studio, Stefano processes and edits in Adobe Lightroom,
backing up on a G-SAFE drive as he makes ﬁne adjustments to coax out
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Losing his precious images at any stage would be hard to bear. But that’s
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The changing face of
18 June 2010
There are lots of ways to use custom fonts on websites, but they all have
their caveats. Monotype’s Web Fonts service could change all that.
ay ‘web’ and ‘typography’ in All these methods also present custom not all font foundries are exactly happy with
the same breath and you know typeset words to most visitors, but they’re this because it requires allowing fonts to be
you’re facing a tough challenge. not all equal. sIFR (Scalable Inman Flash copied whenever a web page is visited.
Using type effectively, from the design Replacement), for example, replaces text This point meant that Monotype’s
side, in web pages has been problematic elements with Flash graphics; clever but recently announced Web Fonts service,
since the dawn of web browsers. Having reliant on Flash, which isn’t quite as sure currently running as a free beta program,
to stick to typefaces installed on visitors’ a bet as it used to be. Cufón, on the other took us somewhat by surprise. This uses
computers – the so-called web-safe hand, uses VML or HTML5’s canvas element the company’s own take on the @font-face
fonts – is a painful lesson every designer to draw character shapes, but fonts need to process, and it offers a large chunk of
has to learn. be converted to an SVG format ﬁrst. Monotype’s core font library to play with.
The big news is that in recent years The @font-face format is a little more Now, calm down – yes, this is one of
custom fonts have become not just possible, direct: it effectively downloads and ‘soft the key foundries, and, yes, it does make
but easy to implement. The @font-face CSS installs’ the required typeface to the custom font use easier than ever before,
rule, sIFR and Cufón all satisfy the basic browser. This works in the majority of and, yes, it costs nothing... oh okay, go
requirement of having real text in the web browsers, including (don’t faint) Internet ahead and get excited. However, read our
page, keeping things search engine-friendly Explorer 4. It’s effective and it works with review below and digest everything before
and accessible. standard web production techniques, but making any decisions.
Price Beta is free for the moment;
pricing to be conﬁrmed.
Contact Monotype + webfonts.fonts.com
Pros Easy way to get non-web-safe
fonts into web pages + Broad selection
Cons Uncertain future cost + Will
encourage use of unsuitable fonts
Verdict Monotype Web Fonts lets you
use a broad range of typefaces in web
pages. It’s worth exploring, but keep an
eye on the site in case of changes.
Once a selection of fonts has been made, Web Fonts lets you override the web page’s existing type settings.
onotype’s Web Fonts beta scripts, ornaments, technical curiosities to style your text now) and pick the font you
deal considering that you get mature type catalogue. into the body of your HTML page and the job’s
web-use access to a generous selection Using the Web Fonts service is easier than done. You should still set up regular CSS font
of Monotype’s typeface library. Not all of it, the alternatives. First, set up a project – you styles for browsers that don’t work with this
but an impressive 2312 fonts, weights and can have multiple projects. You’ll need to font trick, and for those that can’t or won’t
the alternatives to shame: Google currently example, www.macuser.co.uk. To test pages seemed to be a robust process.
offers just 18 fonts, and even FontSquirrel’s /
locally, add ‘ﬁle://’ as a domain as well. At Changing the fonts that are shown in a
library is less than half the size. this point, you can browse the font library and site is just a matter of logging into fonts.com,
Searching through the library (ﬁltering add likely candidates to your project. This picking a selector and changing the font that’s
fonts alphabetically, by classiﬁcation, builds a font shortlist. Once you have some assigned to it. Your sites will instantly show
designer, foundry and by language support) fonts to try, you set up style sheets. Simply the new selection, using the same one-liner
workhorses, plus quirky headliners, ﬂourishing h1, body, .navigation, or whatever you use The fonts are served from Monotype’s
18 June 2010
‘Monotype’s Web Fonts beta
program is free, which is a great
deal considering you get web-use
access to a generous selection of
Monotype’s typeface library’
Monotype’s claims for the Web Fonts service – font selection, speed, ease of use, and so on – seem justiﬁed.
Fonts.com contains a large number of different
fonts, although many are only suited to headlines.
Just because you can now use almost any
font you like in a website doesn’t mean
you should. For one thing, looking good
in print is no guarantee of looking good
on screen, especially at body text sizes.
The end result of using the Web Fonts service is true custom typefaces in regular web page layouts with One of the reasons why the core web-safe
no impact on standard production methods or search engine visibility.
fonts were made back in the early 1990s
was to create fonts that were exceptionally
fonts.com server network, an array of hundreds library. If you want to use custom fonts, this clear at small sizes on computer screens.
of machines, so accessing the font data is is a very tempting method and commercial Matthew Carter’s Verdana and Georgia
likely to be the fastest part of your overall site. projects should be able to swallow the are amazing at this, whereas Gill Sans at
The bottom line is that this Web Fonts eventual fee without a problem. But if you’re 9pt or 9 pixels just isn’t. By all means use
service does what it promises. But although dabbling and you use this in a public site, you custom Web Fonts, but start with display-
the service is free now, it won’t be when should keep an eye out for when the service level text and tread carefully with smaller
it leaves beta – or at least not fully free. leaves beta and be ready to remove it, switch sizes and longer runs of type.
Pricing hasn’t been ﬁnalised, but current beta to a different font-replacement method, or We’re still not sure how Monotype
accounts will be converted automatically to a squares the inherent insecurity of the
free ‘Trial Tier’ account rather than become @font-face process with its own interests
chargeable. According to Monotype, these ‘The Web Fonts beta program is and basic copyright questions. Extracting
will have access to all the fonts currently the easiest way so far to use an @font-face TrueType font from the
available, although it reserves the right to browser cache is simple, although
serve adverts on Trial Tier account websites.
custom typefaces in a site, and it is admittedly, in Monotype’s case, the ﬁle
Is this fair? Uninvited ads aren’t exactly linked to a world-class font library.’ naming was hashed up impressively.
endearing. This sort of thing can turn people Will the company rely on licences and
off, but it isn’t at all unfair, just perhaps copyright awareness to prevent font
not the friendliest approach. Professional upgrade to the paid-for service if ads appear. pilfering or is it working on more robust
typeface designs do take staggering levels Switching the free beta service to an ad- methods for later beta or ﬁnal versions
of effort to make, and Monotype is in the supported free service transparently is both of the service? We’ll have to wait to be
business of selling typefaces, and what we understandable (from Monotype’s position) certain. For now, this is impressively easy
choose to use on our sites is up to us. and worrying (from the user’s position). and offers a huge range of faces. But be
The Web Fonts beta program is the Turn these things over in your mind; if it still warned: if you pick and use a Comic Sans
easiest way so far to use custom typefaces bothers you, then use a different method. lookalike, we will hunt you down.
in a site, and it’s linked to a world-class font Keith Martin
18 June 2010
Photoshop plug-in CHOICE
Price $49.90 (about £34); Pro version
(supports 16-bit images and Actions)
$79.90 (about £55)
Contact Neat Image + neatimage.com
Needs Mac OS X + Intel or PowerPC
+ 1GB Ram
Pros Fast, effective noise removal +
Fine detail is retained +Slick interface
Verdict The perfect solution for
removing noise from digital photos
▲ Taken without a ﬂash in an art gallery this photo shows a high degree of noise, making it unusable as it stands.
f there’s one thing that frustrates image. By matching the ﬁle with a proﬁle that And the results can be extraordinary: all
photographers more than anything, describes the noise typical of that particular the noise – and only the noise – is ﬁltered
it’s noise. Taking photographs indoors, combination of camera, ﬁle and ISO setting, out, leaving the rest of the image sharp
without a ﬂash, requires either a tripod or NeatImage is then able to apply a standard and clear. The really surprising result is
a high ISO setting – and this necessarily noise reduction that best suits the generic that ﬁne detail is retained, even when the
produces a lot of grainy noise in the image. image in question. detail is so small that it’s apparently ﬁner
While Camera Raw in Photoshop CS5 at The second method is to build an than the noise itself.
last offers some noise-reduction technology, automatic noise-reduction algorithm on the The NeatImage interface is in two
the NeatImage plug-in performs a far better ﬂy, and this is the really ingenious part. panes. The ﬁrst is the Device Noise Proﬁle
job, and offers a high degree of user control First of all, the application examines your pane, where we choose the noise reduction
over the ﬁnished image. photograph, looking for a blank region – method (building a proﬁle from the image,
NeatImage works in two ways: the ﬁrst which may be an area of sky, or a wall, or matching to an existing ﬁle). Here, you
is to use an existing proﬁle for your camera, or a piece of white paper. It needs a region can choose to view a graphical read-out of
freely downloadable from the huge range 128 pixels square in order to produce a the noise levels, together with a view of the
of camera models, ﬁle types and even ISO good result: if it can’t ﬁnd one automatically, blank area sampled by Auto Proﬁling. You
proﬁles available on the NeatImage website. you can select an area yourself. can also switch to an Advanced Mode, which
Once these are placed in the Proﬁles folder, Once a blank area has been identiﬁed, displays a graph showing the RGB component
the plug-in will automatically match the NeatImage examines the noise in that area that you can tweak manually.
image it’s working on with the appropriate and then proceeds to remove exactly that When you switch to the Noise Filter
proﬁle, using the Exif data stored within the type of noise from the rest of the image. Settings pain, you can see the results of the
operation. In Standard Mode, NeatImage
offers two sliders that control the amount
of luminance and colour noise reduction, as
well as a single slider to adjust sharpening.
Initially, the whole image is shown with the
ﬁlter applied, but you can select any region to
see the effect applied just there, allowing you
to see the unﬁltered image behind.
In Advanced Mode, the Filter Settings
pane expands to show sliders for high, mid-
and low-value noise, as well as for each of
the Lab channel components: you can adjust
each of these settings individually to ﬁne-tune
the results, and can also apply sharpening to
speciﬁc noise types and Lab components.
This latest version of NeatImage works in
64-bit mode with Photoshop CS5, is speedy
in operation and produces dramatically
enhanced images even from seemingly
irreparable images. It also has the ability
to prepare the plug-in for bulk Actions.
Speedy, intuitive and remarkably effective,
NeatImage is the single Photoshop plug-in
we couldn’t live without.
▲ Advanced Mode offers a high degree of control, but even its automatic settings produce vastly superior results. Steve Caplin
042 With over a 60% increase in the
surface area of an MFT sensor, the
NX10 is the ﬁrst mirrorless camera to
18 June 2010
adopt an APS-C-size Cmos sensor.
Digital compact camera
Price £499 (£425 ex VAT)
with 18-55mm OIS kit lens
Needs Mac OS X 10.3 or later
Pros Compact size + Excellent
build and ergonomics + Detailed
EVF + Quality AMOLED screen
Cons Lenses + Clear rolling shutter
effects in HD video capture
Verdict An attractive alternative
to Micro Four Thirds cameras, but
Panasonic and Olympus have the edge.
Rather than in-camera anti-shake like
amsung has both trumped former While the outer shell is of a polycarbonate the rival Olympus Pen models, the
collaborator, Pentax, and targeted material, it’s impressively solid. We were sent 18-55mm (28-80 equivalent) kit lens
rival Micro Four Thirds cameras by the 18-55mm (28-80mm equivalent) f/3.5-5.6 has built-in optical image stabilisation,
unveiling a new mirrorless camera system. kit lens, a decent performer complete with but bear in mind that the optional
Dubbed NX, the ﬁrst offering in the optical image stabilisation, but it’s a little pancake lens doesn’t.
range is the NX10, a DSLR-style camera larger than rival Micro Four Thirds offerings.
with interchangeable lenses, an electronic We suspect that future lenses will be big too,
viewﬁnder, built-in ﬂash, a 3in AMOLED a consequence of the sensor size. Both are usable, the electronic viewﬁnder
screen and 720p HD video using an APS-C- We were, however, sent an optionally surprisingly so. While the image is decent, part
size 14.6-megapixel Cmos sensor. Despite available 30mm (45mm equivalent) f/2 prime, of the reason is the clear layout of viewﬁnder
a sensor that’s physically larger than most a fast, incredibly small ‘pancake’ lens. While information and the various menus. Some
rivals, measuring 123 x 87 x 39.8mm, the less versatile than the zoom, the two together of the sub-menus use an innovative circular
NX10 is no larger than the Panasonic Lumix are smaller than the Canon Eos 550 (see display of settings, controlled by the top-plate
G2. Weighing in at around 400g with the MacUser, 23 April, p32) body on its own and command dial. It’s all mirrored in the rear
battery, the body is quite hefty but it’s an easily ﬁtted in a coat pocket, making them AMOLED panel and it’s head and shoulders
indication of the quality of the build. an extremely attractive proposition. above rivals. With super-fast refresh rates and
In the hands, the NX10 is well thought excellent colour and detail, the rear screen is
out and while ergonomics are subjective, a highlight. It’s supposed to be better in bright
AMOLED DISPLAY most who handled the camera thought it light than conventional panels and while that’s
With excellent refresh rates, good well-balanced and comfortable. It’s sprightly true, the screen is still highly reﬂective.
colour and detail, the NX10 has a in operation too, taking a second only to With all the usual features, auto-focus
3in AMOLED display. Unfortunately, power up and focus for the ﬁrst shot. You options are extensive and perform largely to
the surface is highly reﬂective. can choose between either the electronic expectations, though the NX10 adopts the
viewﬁnder or AMOLED screen. usual contrast AF mode of mirrorless cameras
so while it’s faster than the Olympus Pens it’s
still slightly behind that of a DSLR. Moreover,
it’s accurate in low-light at short distances
thanks to a AF assist lamp.
Picture quality is impressive, with very
good colour and detail at low ISOs, but out-of-
camera Jpegs lose more ﬁne detail through
the range to the maximum ISO3200. Both
that and ISO1600 aren’t likely to be used
except for the web or smaller size prints.
We also noticed heavy rolling shutter effects
during HD video capture, and while useful, the
WEIGHT LOSS optical image stabiliser in the kit lens wasn’t
Like the MFT cameras, the NX10 as effective as some rival options.
lacks the bulky mirror box and There’s no doubt that the Samsung NX10
pentaprism of DSLRs, allowing for a is an attractive proposition and a great ﬁrst
substantial reduction in the size and effort from a company with such a short
weight of the bodies and lenses. track record, but its limitations mean there’s
no clear cut advantage over the already
established Micro Four Thirds models.
18 June 2010
tab. Its contents are shown as a long
iPad accessory list of small thumbnails, and you
Camera can import everything or just a
selection of images. Ticks in
Connection Kit circles make it clear what’s
already been imported
(green) and what you’ve
queued (blue). At the
end of the process,
Price £25 (£21.28 ex VAT) a dialog asks if you
Contact Apple want to delete
Pros Attractive for photographers and or keep the
bloggers + Quick preview and import images on the
+ Small and easy to store in a kit bag card, in case you
Cons Poor options for browsing images want to carry a second
before importing them + One of the copy. Images shot in both Jpeg
adaptors may be totally redundant and Raw formats are ﬂagged up
Verdict There’s nothing wrong with the as such in a single thumbnail, ▲ The adaptors are small and light, so you’ll
kit per se, but Apple needs to improve and both are imported so you can easily ﬁnd a place for them in your kit bag.
to the Photos app – especially full-size do more with the Raw version once
previews before importing. synced back to your Mac. you view a card’s contents by date or some
Our issues aren’t with the adaptors, other arrangement.
which do their job well. Thumbnails appear It’s a little objectionable having to pay for
quickly enough when you scroll down then both adaptors, even if it makes sense from
he Camera Connection Kit consists stop, but the inability to see images full-size a marketing point of view that you should
of a pair of white adaptors that plug without importing them is a limitation on only need to buy a single, complete kit to
into the iPad’s Dock port. One is a the software’s side. The organisation of connect a camera. Despite the poor software
straight SD card reader and the other adds a a camera’s contents is also poor. There’s interface, if you’re a blogger or a photographer
USB port, so you can connect cameras that no way to hide previously imported photos you’ll get a lot more out of your iPad thanks to
use other media. You will need to be in PTP altogether, and with today’s huge storage this kit, and the weight reduction over carrying
mode to transfer photos, and you can also you might end up scrolling past hundreds a MacBook is a bonus, so long as you can
import images from an iPhone. of photos to reach your newest shots. cope with the limited photo manipulation
Once the media is recognised, the Photos Momentum scrolling alleviates that a little, tools available for the iPad.
app opens at the hitherto unavailable Camera but Apple has missed a trick by not letting Alan Stonebridge
Finally, a way to connect your
pre-2009 Mac with an Apple
LED 24” Cinema Display
If you bought your Mac before 2009 you may already be aware that you can't directly connect it to one of Apple's new 24" Cinema
Displays. This is because the new LED screens only have a Mini DisplayPort input and your older Mac only has a DVI output.
But now atlast, this barrier can be removed thanks to the AT-DP200 DVI to Mini
DisplayPort converter from Atlona Technologies. Exactly what you've been waiting for.
Buy the DVI to Mini DisplayPort
converter from www.futureshop.co.uk
For sales and expert advice please call 020 8905 1555
18 June 2010
The game’s missions
range from destroying
iPhone app the launch site for
the V-2 rocket to
sinking the enemy’s
Price £1.79 from the App Store
Verdict Take to the skies with this
highly addictive and good-looking
arcade-stlye game that makes full You’re armed with an
use of the iPhone’s accelerometer. unlimited supply of bombs,
although you can pick up a
variety of specialist weaponry
with the help of power-ups.
New for iBomber 2 are depth
charges, torpedoes, artillery
Bomber 2 is the sequel to the successful support, blanket bombs and
iBomber from developer Cobra Mobile. ﬁghter support in the form
Again, you’re in the cockpit of a bomber of two spitﬁres. A nice touch
sent on hazardous missions in a bid to wipe here is that you can now hold
out speciﬁc enemy targets. There are 12 off using these until just the
new missions to choose from, ranging from right moment.
destroying enemy bunkers to sinking a super The graphics are highly
battleship, with each having a different set detailed and it’s easy to lose
of objectives. a considerable amount of time
The game is viewed through the as the gameplay draws you
bombsights as you ﬂy over enemy territory, screen, you control your aircraft by tilting right in. If you liked iBomber, you’ll see this as a
and clicking on the red button releases your and left. To increase your aircraft’s speed, you must-have app. For those who might dither
load. Meanwhile, the enemy will try to shoot tilt forwards while tilting back decreases it. over the purchase, there’s a lite version,
you down with an array of military hardware. The controls are easy to get to grips with and so you can at least try before you buy this
With the bombsight in the centre of the you can set the sensitivity to suit your needs. highly addictive game.
just two choices: Play all or Select Chapter. entire video from the beginning, which makes
iPhone app The chapters are fairly short and are based this app only of real interest to absolute
Canon 5D Mark around topics such as Aperture Value, ISO
and White Balance. The explanations are
novices of not just the Eos 5D Mark II but
also of photography.
II: Basic Controls succinct, but with just the right level of Jon Lysons
information, and it’s handy
to see the camera’s controls
being manipulated so you can
Price £14.99 from the App Store do the same on your own.
URL bit.ly/cO8Vqt Nevertheless, the beneﬁt of
Verdict There’s a lot of video here being able to view the video in
on the Eos 5D Mark II, but the cost the ﬁeld to remind yourself of a
is too high considering that there’s certain control is a real boon.
an app for the camera’s advanced Other apps look at different
controls with the same price tag. camera models, with the
Canon Eos 7D, Nikon D90 and
the D5000 already covered,
as well as apps for those
he ﬁrst thing you notice about Canon manufacturers’ ﬂashguns.
5D Mark II: Basic Controls is the price. Annoyingly, there’s another
At £14.99, it’s not an inexpensive app for the Eos 5D Mark
purchase. The next thing you notice is that, II’s advance controls, which
at 214MB, it’s not a quick download, either. means that if you want detailed
This is due to the amount of video, as this coverage of this camera’s
isn’t just a digitisation of the text manual system, including ﬂash, you
for the Canon Eos 5D Mark II like the Handi would have to spend over £50.
5Dmk2, but an app version of Blue Crane If you’re already an Eos 5D
Digital’s training DVD. Mark II owner, you’re unlikely
As such, it’s a straight translation of to beneﬁt from watching the
the DVD edition, complete with reference
Fortunately, the presenter isn’t on
to having your remote handy so you can screen for much of the video, with the
pause the DVD player, and there’s over 90 real beneﬁt being the ability to see the
controls set on the camera, so you can
minutes of video. On starting, you have do the same on yours.
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18 June 2010
Words Kenny Hemphill
Photography Danny Bird
Price £30 (£25
Price £30 (£25.53 ex VAT)VAT)
Apple’s hard shell iPad
App e’s hard shell iPad
case has rubberised
case has a rubberised
exterior and micro-ﬁbre
exterior micro bre
lining, hich serv
lining, which serves to
protect the iPad from
protect the iPad from
scratches. It can be
used portrai ode,
used in portrait mode in
which case it’s rathe
which case it’s rather like
reading a book, or you
reading book, you
turn around ﬂip
can turn it around, ﬂip
over the cover tuck
over the cover and tuck
underneath to crea
it underneath to create a
stand. There are holeoles
stand. There are holes for
headphone jack, dock
the headphone jack, dock
connector port, and on/o
connector port, and on/off/off
and volume buttons.
18 June 2010
Apple iPad Dock
Price £25 (£21.74
Price £25 (£21.74 ex VAT)
iPad’s Dock Connector is the same
The iPad’s Dock Connector is the same
that on the iPod and iPhone, though
as that on the iPod and iPhone, though
design of the Dock for those
the design of the Dock for those
devices means that it’s suitable for
devices means that it’s not suitable for
iPad. Hence this specially designed
the iPad. Hence this specially designed
Dock, which has a line-out jack on the
Dock, which line-out jack on the
back for connection to ﬁ ampliﬁer.
back for connection t a hiﬁ ampliﬁer.
Plug-ins for InDesign
18 June 2010
Adobe InDesign and QuarkXPress are both great desktop publishing tools,
but you can boost their performance with these third-party add-ons…
Barcoder XT Cropster
Price £68.15 (£58 ex VAT) Price $109 (about £74)
Contact XChange UK + xchangeuk.com Contact Gluon + gluon.com
arCoderXT lets you add high-quality nDesign may offer some detailed settings
EPS barcodes to your XPress layout for registration and crop marks, but they
without the need for an external apply to entire documents. If you want
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symbiologies from EAN, which is used in book purposes, such as creating oversized
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a highly useful and powerful tool for your arsenal. details and any supplemental data. registration marks, guides and fold marks
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Contact Em Software + emsoftware.com in the sense that you’re entering the correct Handily, your registration marks appear in
number of digits – and then lets you save their own, locked InDesign layer, so they can
hile not a full-blown cataloguing the resulting EPS. be hidden from view if needed.
XTension (a role ﬁlled by its sister
product, xCatalog), Xdata for
QuarkXPress 6, 7 and 8 essentially works as
a high-powered and scriptable mail merge
application for short-run tailored printing.
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XPress document and then deﬁne English-
like scripts that tell it what to do with the
imported data. For example, you can store
variables and apply conditional formatting to
a page element based on the contents of any ▲ You don’t need a third-party tool to create ▲ Add crop or registration marks, guides and fold
ﬁeld in the source document. barcodes. This will do all the hard work for you. marks to any object on a page with Cropster.
Page Control 2.2
Price €59 (about £50)
Contact DTP Tools + dtptools.com
uccessfully putting together print publications send, for example, the A4
containing different pages sizes, such as those pages in your document
including cover spines or gatefold spreads, has to one printer and an A3
become something of an art in itself. However, this spread to another.
plug-in simpliﬁes the whole process. The plug-in comes
Page Control, available for InDesign CS to CS4, with scripts, including
lets you create different page sizes within the same one that automates the
documents. For all its power, it’s surprisingly easy to creation of book covers
use: just right-click the page you want to resize in the based on the page count
Pages palette, choose the Resize Pages option and set of the current document, and it’s reassuring to note that ▲ PageControl
simpliﬁes the process
your preferences for that page. You can even assign a documents created using Page Control can be edited of altering page size
different print preset to each page size, so you could elsewhere with a freely downloadable reader plug-in. and adjusting content.
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Not cheap, but a
very powerful way of
integrating a layout with
a background database.
Price $1299 (about £885); Lite version $299 (about £204)
Contact 65bit + 65bit.com
etting information from a database – whether
it’s stored on the network or held locally – is vital
for publishing data-heavy documents such as
directories. EasyCatalog InDesign CS5 takes raw data
from source ﬁles or – through an additional module – SQL
or FileMaker databases, or XML data.
Through its control panel, you can not only quickly
synchronise data from the external source ﬁle into the database data so only information matching criteria
InDesign, but data changed in the document itself can you specify appears on the pages is a powerful extra.
also be copied back to the original database. That’s both That said, EasyCatalog InDesign CS5 isn’t cheap, and
a timesaver and a reassurance when you have to make some of its better functionality, such as ODBC integration
last-minute change to information on page layouts. The and the ability to script the integration through AppleScript
source ﬁle, so you can approve or reject changes. However, if you’re a data-driven publisher, the beneﬁts
As you’d expect, you automatically apply formatting to should recoup the costs quickly, and a much cheaper
imported text and set parameters for imported pictures, Lite version of the software, which has basic linking and
such as how they should be scaled, but the ability to ﬁlter updating features, is also available.
Atomik XML Price £68 (£58 ex VAT)
Contact XChange UK + xchangeuk.com
Price £293 (£249 ex VAT)
Contact XChange UK one are the days when you needed
+ xchangeuk.com third-party plug-ins to add simple
effects such as drop-shadows to your
f there’s value in the ‘write once, page, but the diverse ways that XPress and
publish anywhere’ mantra, then the InDesign are used means that there’s still a
currency is XML. Exporting data in this strong market for plug-ins and XTensions for
format from XPress documents means speciﬁc purposes.
that it’s easy to repurpose elsewhere, not One such purpose is extracting the text
just for web publication, but for integration ▲ Atomik makes it easy to perform ﬁltered export of from your layout to be used elsewhere. It’s
XML data so that it can be repurposed elsewhere.
into any of the increasing number of long been possible to extract text from XPress
environment where XML is used. content that you want – for example, text documents through a helping of AppleScript
Atomik seamlessly manages the export formatted with a particular style. Information allied to a dollop of patience and liberal
and conversion of data in XPress tables can ﬂow both ways, too. Raw XML content use of the Save Text command. TexTractor,
and images can be exported as XML. There can also ﬂow into an XPress layout and be available for XPress 6 to 8, gives better
are also ﬁlters, so you can export only the automatically formatted as it comes in. options. Alongside a standard text export,
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particular part of the page, so running heads
Add a History palette to InDesign and changes of
mind will no longer be a source of frustration. and footers are automatically excluded.
And there’s a great timesaving extra:
to be better than the one you’ve just ﬁnished. you can also automatically extract text from
Wouldn’t it be good to switch between edits multiple XPress documents in a batch, thanks
like you can in Photoshop? to a powerful auto-extraction tool, which can
EasyHistory, a plug-in for InDesign CS2 be set to check particular folders at set times
to CS4, lets you do just that by adding a and automatically process them.
Photoshop-like History palette to the program.
It tracks changes to your document in its own
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It also takes snapshots of a document
EasyHistory automatically whenever it’s saved, or you can
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Price £7 (£5.96 ex VAT) palette. The snapshots appear as clickable
Contact 65bit + 65bit.com preview thumbnails in the palette.
For all that, EasyHistory runs speedily –
reating a page layout is rarely a at least on the smaller documents we tried it
linear process. Ideas arrive and on. It’s inexpensive, too, and is one of those
ﬂounder, and a layout that didn’t make add-ons you would expect Adobe to have ▲ TexTractor’s AutoXTract feature lets you batch-
sense half an hour ago turns out in retrospect added to InDesign’s built-in plug-in list. extract text from multiple documents at set times.
18 June 2010
ENTER OUR COMPETITION FOR FREE AT WWW.MACUSER.CO.UK
How to enter
Simply answer the question below
and enter for FREE online at
Are Macs with DVI output
An Atlona DVI to Mini compatible with Apple’s
24in LED Cinema Display?
DisplayPort converter Yes
MacUser has teamed up with Future Shop The ﬁrst three names out of the
hat will win an AP-DP200 DVI to
to oﬀer you the chance to win one of three Mini DisplayPort converter.
Closing date: 15 July 2010
Atlona AT-DP200 DVI to Mini DisplayPort On completing and submitting this competition, you will automatically be entered into
a draw for one of these prizes. No correspondence will be entered into and the
converters, worth £170.
winners will be notiﬁed by post or email within 28 days of the closing date. The
competition is not open to employees of Dennis Publishing or participating
companies. No cash alternative will be offered. The prize(s) described are available at
the date of publication. Events may occur that render the promotion or the rewarding
of the prize impossible due to reasons beyond MacUser’s control, which may at its
discretion vary or amend the promotion and the reader agrees that no liability shall
be attached to MacUser as a result thereof. Proof of emailing will not be accepted as
acs with DVI or mini-DVI output resolution. This compact converter proof of delivery and no responsibility can be accepted for entries lost, delayed,
can’t connect to monitors that have features an attached DVI cable and USB mislaid or for any technical failure or for any event, which may cause the competition
to be disrupted or corrupted. Where necessary, in order to determine an outright
the Mini DisplayPort connector. This power cable, which means you don’t need an winner or winners to a competition, the editor reserves the right to request entrants
to take part in an eliminating contest (or ‘tie breaker’). Where for any reason there are
means these Mac models aren’t compatible external power supply. more winners than prizes on offer, the editor reserves the right to conduct a simple
draw to determine the winner or winners of the prizes. Unless otherwise stated, entry
with Apple’s new 24in LED Cinema Display or The unit can pass resolutions of up to all competitions is restricted to entrants of 18 years of age or over. Names of
the 27in iMac. to 1920 x 1200 pixels on 24in Cinema winners will be available on receipt of a request, enclosing a stamped self-addressed
envelope, to: Competitions Manager, Dennis Publishing, 30 Cleveland St, London
Fortunately, Atlona Technologies has come Displays and 720p on 27in iMacs, and W1T 4JD. If the winner of a competition is unable to take up a prize for any reason,
the editor reserves the right to award it to an alternative winner, in which case the
up with a neat solution. The AT-DP200 DVI to offers full HDCP compatibility. ﬁrst winner chosen will not be eligible for any share of the prize whatsoever. The
editor’s decision is ﬁnal, and it is a condition of entry to any competition that the
Mini DisplayPort converter enables pre-2009 For more information on the Atlona entrant agrees to be bound by these rules whether they be published or not, and that
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Display or 27in iMac, while maintaining visit futureshop.co.uk or call 020 8905 1555.
18 June 2010
18 June 2010
Words Kenny Hemphill Photography Danny Bird
eciding that you need a new Mac is one thing,
choosing which to buy is quite another. Desktop or
laptop? Mac Pro or iMac? MacBook Air or iPad? The
choices on offer can make even the most avid follower of
Apple’s new Mac releases dizzy with indecision.
The ﬁrst choice you need to make is what you
want the Mac for. Will it be your main work machine or
a secondary computer to carry with you when you’re
away from the ofﬁce? Will you be using it to crunch
high-deﬁnition video or large audio ﬁles? Or will it be
required to do nothing more strenuous than juggle a few
Excel spreadsheets and the odd Keynote presentation?
The answers to these questions will shape your decision,
ruling out some machines and putting others in the frame.
You might think that once you’ve determined which
model to buy the decision-making is over, but that’s not
the case. Each type of Mac, except for the MacBook,
is available in at least different two versions. And once
you’ve chosen the precise model, there’s still the build-to-
order options to wade through. Do you want extra Ram, a
bigger hard drive or perhaps that anti-glare high resolution
display on the MacBook Pro? Over the next few pages,
we’ll help you navigate the decision-making process and
guide you step by step to the perfect Mac for you. So turn
the page and follow our ﬂow chart to begin…
18 June 2010
SO YOU NEED
A NEW MAC?
Start by deciding what you need it to do...
Are you likely to need
to take your Mac to
Is portability more Will you be encoding
important than power video, recording music, no
and performance? or working with large
Do you need
an internal no
DVD drive? MacBook
Do you need Do you need yes
a large, yes an Express
high-resolution Card slot? no
18 June 2010
yes Do you regularly
play games? yes
Do you need
slots for no no
expansion Will you be
cards? using it for
Do you need
to watch MacBook
online video Air
18 June 2010
As you can see from the chart, there are a number of
factors to consider. Some are fairly obvious, others
less so. For example, you may think that if you spend
all day manipulating huge Photoshop ﬁles, your
only option is a Mac Pro. However, the current crop
of iMacs – in particular, the Core i5 model, which
comes with a decent amount of Ram – are more
than capable of handling just about anything you
could throw at them in Photoshop. This is particularly
true at the moment, as the Mac Pro is overdue for
an update. The most compelling reasons for buying
a Mac Pro are if you’ll need to draw on its multiple
cores and its expansion slots. Serious number-
crunching tasks, such as encoding high-deﬁnition
video and rendering large 3D animations, will see the
most beneﬁt from the Mac Pro’s eight cores.
You should also consider a MacBook Pro, even if
you don’t plan on travelling with your Mac. While the
performance difference between the fastest model
and the fastest iMacs or Mac Pros is noticeable, for
most tasks the MacBook Pro is more than adequate.
And when you consider that you can take it with you
wherever you go and that, when you ﬁnish working on
it, you can close it up and lock it away in a drawer,
‘The reasons for buying a Mac Pro are
if you’ll need to draw on its multiple
The graphics processing unit, or GPU,
cores and its expansion slots’ is responsible for rendering 2D and
3D graphics. The design of GPU chips
makes them much more efﬁcient at
there’s a strong case for choosing a laptop over a manipulating graphics than CPUs, and
desktop Mac. If you don’t like the idea of spending allows them to take that load off the
all day hunched over a laptop, you can always buy main processor.
a separate keyboard and mouse, and connect the Apple’s current range of Macs uses
MacBook Pro to a full-size display. That way, you two types of GPU: one that shares
can have the best of both worlds. And, remember, Ram with the CPU, known as integrated
both the iMac and Mac mini are effectively laptop graphics; and one that has its own
computers in desktop cases and aren’t any more Ram. The Nvidia GeForce 9400m found
expansible than a MacBook Pro. in the Mac mini, the low-end iMac
If you want a second Mac to use when you’re and the MacBook Air is an integrated
away from the ofﬁce, but plan to keep a desktop graphics chip, as is the GeForce 320
Mac for doing most of your work, the key issue is in the MacBook. The rest of the iMac
portability. It’s unlikely you’ll need the raw power models use GPUs with dedicated Ram,
in a second machine that you have in your main as does the Mac Pro. The MacBook
Mac, and so there’s every reason to consider the Pro range has an integrated GPU, the
13in MacBook Pro, or even the MacBook. Both of Intel HD, and one with dedicated Ram,
these Macs are more than capable of performing Nvidia’s GeForce 330M.
day-to-day ofﬁce tasks. While integrated graphics chips are
The most portable Mac of all is the MacBook Air. ﬁne for all day-to-day work and even for
It’s svelte shapes and light weight make it very easy working with large 2D images, games,
to slot into a laptop bag and carry with you. It, too, high-deﬁnition video and 3D graphics
is a very capable second machine, but it lacks a all beneﬁt signiﬁcantly from GPUs with
DVD drive and FireWire 800 port. It also has only one dedicated Ram.
USB port and if you need to connect to an Ethernet
network, you’ll need to buy Apple’s USB-to-Ethernet
adaptor, robbing you of that single USB slot.
The only reason for choosing a MacBook Air over
a white MacBook or 13in MacBook Pro, looks aside,
is its size and weight. And if that really is your chief
consideration, you should ask yourself whether an
iPad wouldn’t ﬁt the bill just as well. It is, of course,
smaller, lighter and cheaper than the Air. You won’t
be able to do any serious image editing on it, and
it will involve re-thinking the way you work, but an
iPad will allow you to check your email, surf the
web, work with text documents, spreadsheets and
presentations, and give you access to your contacts
18 June 2010
Ram, or Random Access Memory to give it its full name,
consists of a number of integrated circuit boards that
store data and enable them to be accessed in any
order. It’s used to allow data to be passed to and from
the CPU quickly, though that data is lost soon after the
computer is shut down. The more data that is held in
Ram and the faster that it can be passed to the CPU, the
less chance of a bottleneck occurring, so the computer
will run faster. In general, the more Ram you have and the
faster it runs, the better.
Processor families in its Macs, ranging from Core
The processor, or CPU, is responsible 2 Duo, through Core i5 and i7, to Xeon
for executing instructions passed to 3500 and 5500. The Core 2 Duo is
it by software programs. In the most the oldest and least powerful of these,
general terms, the faster the processor while the Core i5 and i7 are Intel’s latest
can execute instructions, the quicker mid-range CPUs. The Xeon processors
the Mac will run. There are a number are fast workstation CPUs, but are well
of other factors to consider, however. over a year old.
These include the speed of the Complicating matters still further,
system bus, and the size of the cache processors can have multiple cores and
– local storage used by the CPU to store be employed in different conﬁgurations.
the results of common calculations. For example, Apple employs the i5 and
The quantity and speed of Ram, and Xeon 3500 quad-core processors in
the speed of both the graphics chip a single-processor conﬁguration, but
and hard drive are also important. doubles up the Xeon 5500 to give the
Apple uses ﬁve different Intel processor top-end Mac Pro eight cores.
18 June 2010
Ethernet is a wired networking standard
that has been on the Mac for around
15 years. The current incarnation on
the Mac has a data transfer rate of
1Gbits/sec. Known as Gigabit Ethernet,
it provides faster, more secure data Mini DisplayPort SD Card Reader
transfer over a network than wiﬁ, but The Mini DisplayPort allows the MacBook Pros come with an SD card
is less convenient. MacBook Pro to connect to the latest slot for reading media cards from
range of Apple Cinema Displays. digital cameras and video cameras.
FireWire 800 USB 2 Audio
FireWire 800 is a faster version of USB 2 has become the standard Most Macs, with the exception of the
the original FireWire interface ﬁrst for connecting printers, hard drives, MacBook Air, have 3.5mm audio input
introduced on Macs in 1999, and has memory sticks, digital cameras and and output jacks. Both support line-
a theoretical data transfer rate roughly anything else that doesn’t require really level audio and double as analogue
twice that of USB 2. It’s used to fast data transfer. USB 2 can also pass and digital ports. The output jack is
connect hard drives and other storage power to connected devices and is most often used as a headphone
devices that need fast data transfer. used to charge iPods, iPhones, iPads, connector. The MacBook Air only has
It’s much less common than USB 2, and so on. USB 2 has been superseded a headphone jack.
and many peripheral manufacturers by USB 3, which can transfer data at
have chosen to support eSata for 10 times the rate of USB 2, but Apple
external hard drives. hasn’t yet adopted it on any Mac.
and calendars. And if those tasks are all
you’re likely to do, then an iPad may well be
your best bet for a second machine.
Every Mac has at least one USB 2 port, to a FireWire 800 port with a FireWire 400-to-
with most having several ports. Its FireWire 800 cable.
transfer rate means that it’s suitable If you need to use a PCI Express card Tests and benchmarks
for external hard drives, printers, card – for example, to add a second video card Don’t get too hung up on test results and
readers and most other peripherals. or to connect a Sata storage device – you’ll benchmark scores. We publish them to give
Those tasks that need very fast data have to buy a Mac Pro. However, before you you an idea of the comparative performance
transfer, such as video and audio do make that decision, it might be worth of different Macs. However, even the most
editing, will need a hard drive connected considering whether you actually need the carefully designed tests rarely reﬂect the way
to a FireWire 800 port. expansion card. Many of the functions a Mac performs over a period of weeks or
The iMac, Mac Pro and MacBook Pro for which a PCI card was once necessary months. There are so many different variables
all have FireWire 800. If you have an older can now be fulﬁlled by an external device that inﬂuence performance that the best we
FireWire 400 drive, this can be connected connected by FireWire or USB 2. can do is give you a guide, and that’s exactly
how you should treat test results.
18 June 2010
We’ve raided the App Store to bring you the
best apps you should download on to your iPad.
18 June 2010
Words Alan Stonebridge
Photography Danny Bird
ithin days of its launch, there
were already hundreds of
iPad-speciﬁc apps on App Store.
And because this much choice can leave
you feeling bewildered, we’ve chosen the
cream of the crop so you know that you’re
downloading the best ones. We’ve picked
a range of apps that covers reading,
research, media consumption and even
browsing the web, because as good as the
iPad is, the Safari web browser is a little
underwhelming when it comes to features.
All of the apps featured are written
speciﬁcally for the iPad, so they make full
use of its increased screen resolution.
None of them are simply iPhone apps
blown up to ﬁll the screen. Although
that’s possible – and you can install
your favourite iPhone apps on your
new iPad – the apps that have been
properly designed for the larger hardware
feel more comfortable and make for
We’ve also highlighted some
applications that are universal, which
means if you buy it for your iPad, you don’t
need to buy a separate version for your
iPhone or iPod touch. Instead, the same
download can be installed on all of Apple’s
touchscreen devices, but the interface is
optimised for the different screen sizes.
You’ll see why that’s useful when you read
about Instapaper Pro (see p63).
18 June 2010
Air Display turns your iPad into a second
display for your Mac, and it does so without
you having to plug in any cables. All that’s
needed is for both devices to be on the same
wiﬁ network, the iPad app to be installed and
running, and another small application to be
installed on your Mac. That app lets your Mac
see the iPad and make Mac OS X think that
it’s actually a display.
With those pieces in place, the iPad
appears in System Preferences’ Display pane,
so you can position it relative to your Mac’s
main display. Alter the iPad’s orientation and
the app sends that information to your Mac to
reﬂect the change. You’ll need a way to prop Don’t expect Air Display to work as
up your iPad to make the most of Air Display, well as a monitor connected via a cable.
so it’s good to have a dock or a stand like It isn’t great for streaming video and
Apple’s ofﬁcial case to hand. other rapidly changing content to the
The Mac component uses Mac OS X’s iPad’s screen, but it’s useful for windows
screen-sharing technology to talk to the iPad that infrequently update. It makes your
app. If you’re concerned about how much iPad’s display a great place to tuck your
bandwidth will be sapped by the wiﬁ activity, Twitter application, Facebook or palettes
don’t be. We checked Activity Monitor to see for applications such as Photoshop that
what the Mac component was doing, and beneﬁt from as much screen space
it only consumes a signiﬁcant amount of as possible. As such, Air Display is
network bandwidth and processing power especially useful if you’re travelling with
when the picture that’s transmitted to the your iPad and a small MacBook, as it
iPad’s display changes. gives you room to play with.
TweetDeck or down, and if you add additional columns, and to visit web addresses mentioned in the
they can be reached by swiping horizontally. tweet without having to carefully tap them
Price Free Among the most useful columns that you can inline in the message.
URL tweetdeck.com/ipad add are searches, which look for new tweets You can’t connect this version to your
on subjects that interest you. Facebook account to keep track of friends’
You might recognise this Twitter app, as it’s TweetDeck’s interface is incredibly clear, status updates, but don’t let that put you
also available for the Mac and it feels right at much more so than apps on the iPhone, off: it’s still a great app for monitoring Twitter,
home on the iPad. It uses the same column- whose icons and interactions can be esoteric. especially if you spend any length of time
based layout as the Mac version. Each Tap a tweet and you’ll see a straightforward conversing with other people on the service.
column scrolls independently as you swipe up menu that includes options to reply, retweet In fact, TweetDeck feels inherently
suited to the iPad’s way of working. We
experienced a few crashes during testing,
which is frustrating, but the short nature of
tweets means they’re easy to recover from,
and we expect these occasional issues will
be resolved with updates.
What about Facebook?
At the time of writing, Facebook hasn’t
updated its app to make use of the
iPad’s screen resolution, and it’s
probably easier to use Safari to add
the site to the iPad’s Home Screen.
Scroll to the bottom of the page and
choose to view the full site rather
than the mobile version, too. It’s still
worth installing the Facebook app to
post photos transferred to the iPad
using the Camera Connection Kit, as
the Facebook website can’t access
images stored in the Photos app.
18 June 2010
Instapaper is an essential download if you
ﬁnd yourself bookmarking web pages in
Safari with the intention of reading them
later but then forget about them. It’s a great
alternative to subscribing to RSS feeds for
sites you stumble upon by accident, or which
you discover from other people’s tweets and
The app has been available for a long
time on the iPhone, and several other apps
integrate with the service, enabling you to
stack up reading material from a variety
of different sources. Instapaper beneﬁts
hugely from the iPad’s large screen and that
makes this version genuinely indispensable,
as you can work your way through your
repository with greater comfort.
You can install a special bookmark in effect. Once you’ve read an article that you
Safari that uploads a link to the page you’re think is worth sharing, you can direct others
viewing to your Instapaper account, which to the original version on the web via Twitter,
saves you from having to jump back and forth Tumblr and email.
between two apps. Instapaper is a universal app, so you
Instead, a couple of taps adds the can install it on your iPhone as well. That’s a
page to your collection of reading material, sensible approach, as you might not always
so you can keep yourself informed about your have your iPad to hand and an interesting
chosen topics. page could simply be too long to bother
If you’ve taken our advice on replacing reading on your iPhone’s screen. It doesn’t
Safari with iCab Mobile (see p64), you can matter, though. Flag up the story and you
replicate Instapaper’s bookmark in that can look at it later, when you can ﬁnd time
application by hand and use it to the same to settle down with your iPad. Air Video
Bento URL bit.ly/airvideoipad
Price £2.99 Air Video makes video content stored on your
URL bit.ly/bentoipadapp Mac available on your iPad over a network,
converting any ﬁles that are incompatible with
Bento is a great place to store an inventory, and you’ll also have to pay for it even if you the device to a format it can play. It requires
a record of your business expenses as you bought it for your iPhone. a small application to be installed on your
travel, or any other valuable information that Nonetheless, the iPad’s larger screen Mac, which you instruct to keep an eye on
you want to keep at your ﬁngertips, ready to and keyboard make Bento more pleasant to particular folders or iTunes playlists and make
browse at a moment’s notice. use and easier to enter a large amount of their contents available to the iPad app.
Like the Mac version, it’s a great-looking information into your databases. That makes Videos can be converted ahead of time
app with a range of templates and visual it worth every penny if you need a good- or on the ﬂy, provided your Mac is powerful
themes, and you can adjust the form layouts looking database while you’re on the move. enough. You also get to choose the resolution
used to enter information (up to the iPad’s native 1024 x 768-pixel
so they suit your needs. display) and bitrate of your video. This is
You don’t actually need the controlled from the iPad, enabling you to
Mac version of Bento 3 to balance your desired quality against the
use the iPad app. It lets bandwidth needed by other members of
you create new databases, your household in order to browse the web.
or libraries, on the iPad. Don’t bother trying to stream DRM-
We have already protected video such as TV shows and
reviewed the iPhone movies from the iTunes Store, as Air Video
version of Bento and found won’t do anything with them. However, it will
it lacking in some areas, work with movies that you’ve created yourself
especially because it omits in an application such as Final Cut Express or
the Mac version’s Smart iMovie, as well as other unprotected ﬁles.
Collections, which is one You’ll ﬁnd it especially useful if you’ve
of its most useful search settled on a 16GB iPad and want to watch
features. The iPad version a few hours of video without having to wipe
suffers from that too, other content from its memory.
18 June 2010
to reveal the toolbars. Alternatively, you can
drag pages up or down a short way until
GoodReader snaps to the next one.
A slider runs down the left of the screen,
so you can quickly get to any point in a book,
but it doesn’t show a thumbnail preview of
each page to which you scroll. However, PDFs
that are properly formatted with different
heading styles work a treat with GoodReader.
Tap the bookmark icon in the toolbar to pull
up a table of contents. Nested headline
styles appear as submenus in this pop-up,
so as long as your books are well-structured,
you’ll have no trouble getting around them.
Like iBooks, you can add your own bookmarks
to pick up where you left off.
Books can be transferred to it by
connecting to the app’s built-in server
using your Mac’s web browser, which lets
you upload one ﬁle at a time. You can
also drop multiple ﬁles onto the iPad via
GoodReader GoodReader, then, is an excellent choice.
Unlike iBooks, it can cope with unprotected
the File Sharing box, which appears under
your iPad’s Apps tab in iTunes.
Price 59p (introductory price) PDFs – those that don’t include any DRM – Since iBooks doesn’t currently support
URL bit.ly/goodreaderipad including those you’ve created from Mac OS the PDF format, GoodReader is an essential
X’s Print dialog. And by and large, it manages download for reading eBooks and other
Apple’s iBooks app can display books bought to make reading PDFs on the iPad a graceful documents in that format.
from its own store, and it works with ePub experience. However, try the app with a
ﬁles bought elsewhere, as long as they protected PDF and it will simply display blank
aren’t protected with any DRM technology. pages throughout the book.
However, iBooks can’t read PDFs, which is You’ll have to negotiate a slight learning
Broaden your reading
a bit of a problem if you’ve bought anything curve at ﬁrst, as the interface is a little The iBookstore isn’t the only source
in the past that uses this well-established more complex than that of iBooks. Pages of eBooks for your iPad, which is good
format. That might be eBooks purchased ﬂow vertically, rather than being turned over news, as the selection available is
from other online stores, reports that you horizontally like a traditional book. In that fairly small at present. You can also
need to reference while working on the respect, GoodReader is more like using download Amazon’s free Kindle app
move or even just manuals that you want Preview on your Mac, but rather than showing and purchase books from its online
to store in one place. pages continuously, it requires you to tap in store. You can also read those books
You’ll need a more versatile document particular regions of the screen to advance on your iPhone and Mac.
reader to view such documents on your iPad. through books, or in the centre of the screen
iCab is one of several alternative web
browsers now available on the App Store.
Last issue we looked at Atomic Web
Browser (see MacUser, 4 June, p42) and
recommended it as a replacement for Safari
on the iPhone due to additional gestures that
speed up navigation on the smaller screen.
iCab doesn’t do that, but it has many of the
same features, including a traditional tabbed
browser (albeit without site icons on the
tabs), full-screen mode, ad ﬁltering, bookmark
import and the ability to turn off images.
The reason we’ve included iCab in this
round-up is its ability to download ﬁles as
you would on a Mac, and you can open
ﬁles in other applications, too. For instance,
we downloaded a PDF then opened it in
GoodReader, which is a far better tool for
working with that type of ﬁle than a web
browser. Due to this ﬂexibility, iCab has
ousted Safari from our iPad’s dock as our
preferred web browser.
18 June 2010
Price App is free; £1.19 per
issue (there are some free
sample issues available)
If you need a great showcase of the iPad’s
capabilities, you can’t go far wrong with
Marvel’s comic app. It was one of the ﬁrst iPad
apps to really take our breath away, and none
of the MacUser team is especially a fan of
comics. It lets you view pages full-screen, but
if you ﬁnd the text a little too small, you can
double-tap a picture box to zoom into it. That
strips away all of the other nearby content on
the page, so you don’t glance at any spoilers
in forthcoming frames.
While you’re zoomed in, swiping the
screen triggers a transition to the next frame.
When you’re in a large box, sometimes that
means it’ll slide over a little to reveal a bit and you get a different, full-screen transition, The sense of motion is wonderful, helping
more of the drama and dialogue, which which steadily builds up an idea of how much to dispel our preconceptions of what it would
adds extra suspense to the experience of a comic you’ve got through. be like to lose the experience of ﬂipping pages
of reading a comic. This all adds up to a great experience and poring over the ﬁne detail in frames. In
Transitions between picture boxes respect because it preserves the feel that you’re that regard, Marvel has done a great job for
the ﬂow of the page, so the transition feels reading a physical comic, so if you’re a comic its publications. The bold colour illustrations
like your eyes are simply glancing across and fan, you needn’t worry about the artform being look fantastic on the iPad’s screen, and it’s a
down the page. Reach the end of a page destroyed by the transition to digital. superb app to show off the iPad.
IMDb site users, photographs and links to the top
billed cast. Scroll down and you can access
that next time you’re sunk into a sofa trying
to decide what to download on Apple TV, you
Price Free the wealth of other information that’s stored can ﬁnd out more about your options through
URL bit.ly/imdbipad about movies, including quotes, reviews and an interface that’s a joy to use.
parental guidance about the content.
The Internet Movie Database’s app is an With so much movie trivia in your
extremely good example of how information hands, it’s far too easy to get carried away
normally presented in a mundane website exploring connections from ﬁlms and actors,
interface can be spruced up and dispensed in perhaps even more so than on your Mac.
a better fashion through a dedicated app. We Even if you get deep into the ﬁlm industry’s
were expecting something more reminiscent family tree, you can quickly get back to the
of the less-attractive web version, so IMDb root of your exploration by tapping your way
took us by surprise. back up the trail of breadcrumbs stored in
It divides the screen into clear, the back button.
independently scrollable regions. The cast We can’t imagine checking IMDb in a web
appears on the left, while the right-hand side browser anymore because it has done such
shows the movie poster, its rating among a sterling job with the app. Grab it now so
18 June 2010
National Public Radio, or NPR, is a syndication
network of radio stations across the US. The
news coverage available through its iPad app
won’t be of much interest in the UK unless
you take a keen interest in North American
affairs, but it’s also a conduit for some great
cultural programming that covers the arts,
lifestyle and music.
The app’s front page highlights some
of the latest content that might interest
you. Click Topics at the top-right and you’ll
ﬁnd all sorts of content under three major
headings: News, Arts & Life, and Music, with
a whole heap of more speciﬁc categories
inside each one to help you ﬁnd exactly the
content that appeals to you, whether it’s
written ﬁction, pop culture, art and design,
photography or something else.
You can stack up programmes in a playlist.
That’s preserved between sessions, so you need wiﬁ or 3G reception to listen to them. Facebook and email. Although there’s a focus
can get up to date with listening later on. NPR also has its ﬁnger on the pulse when it on American culture, there’s still masses of
Text articles can be downloaded, but audio comes to social networking, with buttons to worthwhile content in the NPR app to appeal
programmes can only be streamed, so you’ll share links to interesting ﬁndings via Twitter, to music and ﬁlm fans – and it’s free.
If your wiﬁ connection is a little
slow, check whether the bandwidth Ignition
setting is set too high. If it is, set it
to the less-demanding option and try When you browse to bbc.co.uk/iplayer Price £17.99
watching a programme again. You’ll in Safari, the toolbar will remain URL bit.ly/logmeinipad
also ﬁnd parental controls in the visible even while you’re watching
settings page, which are worth a look programmes. To get rid of it, go back We were impressed with LogMeIn’s iPhone
if your iPad is left where your kids to the opening page, tap the ‘+’ app, and it works even better on the iPad.
might get their hands on it. button and add iPlayer to your iPad’s With more pixels, it has been updated
Home Screen. When you launch to make full use of the iPad’s screen, so
iPlayer from that shortcut, the toolbar it’s even more comfortable for controlling
BBC iPlayer will be hidden so won’t distract you your Mac remotely, as long as the network
Sadly, there’s no native version from gripping TV programmes. connection at both ends is up to scratch.
of iPlayer on the App Store, but The app has a £17.99 price tag attached,
the web version was ready in which isn’t that bad when you consider the
time for iPad launch day. Of course, you can’t beneﬁts of being able to interact with your
download programmes to your iPad to take Mac at home or in the ofﬁce from your iPad –
on holiday, and regional restrictions mean you useful if you were waiting for a task to ﬁnish
won’t be able to catch up on programmes but didn’t want to set a ﬁxed time for it to go
when you’re abroad. That doesn’t make to sleep in the Energy Saver preferences. This
iPlayer worthless, though. You can use it to way, you can log in from your iPad and check
catch up on missed programmes while you’re how the job is progressing then shut down
on a wiﬁ-equipped train or café, and other the Mac once it’s complete.
places if you’ve got a 3G iPad, although be If you’ve bought the iPhone version
careful about doing that, as you could quickly already, the latest update includes the iPad
exceed your tariff’s data allowance. version, so there isn’t a penny more to pay.
Take MacUser wherever you have
your iPhone or iPod touch!
• Never miss an issue
• Download and read on or offline
• Turn the pages like a print magazine
• Easy navigation and zoom function
*Just 59p for your first issue; further/back issues only £1.79
each, available through the iTunes App Store (search: MacUser)
18 June 2010
ENTER OUR COMPETITION FOR FREE AT WWW.MACUSER.CO.UK
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18 June 2010
OUR GUIDE TO ESSENTIAL CONCEPTS FOR EVERY DESIGNER
Using line graphs to
best represent your data
By making a few small adjustments to your line graph, you can ensure none
of the detail is lost and that it clearly shows all the relevant information.
ine graphs are the simplest type at the bottom-left corner, the variations are
of graph. Each data point is plotted so tiny that it’s hard to discern them clearly.
against the x and y axis, and straight What we’re interested in is not so much the
lines drawn between the points make up the absolute values, but the amount of change.
line that shows the trend of the data. There Modifying the axes so that they show
are many ways of working with line graphs, just the upper and lower bounds of the data
and the format can be customised to show variation produces a much more dramatic
the data to its best advantage. result . Now you can clearly see not
At school, we’re taught to set the bottom- only the overall trend – a worsening of the
left corner of the graph to zero on both the x exchange rate from a British perspective –
and y axes. And this does, certainly, produce but you can also discern smaller peaks and
the most accurate way of displaying the troughs on a day-to-day basis. Of course, you
data. However, it’s not always an appropriate have to read the legend to interpret the graph
system: if there are only small variations in correctly: the variation is spread over the
the extent of the data over the period of the whole height of the graph, and we’ve zoomed
graph, this approach can make it difﬁcult to in on just the area of interest.
discern the changes. You can display multiple data sets on a
Let’s take this graph as an example . It single graph if you wish . Here, you can
shows the variation in exchange rate between see both the dollar/pound exchange rate (the
the dollar and the pound between April and upper line) and the euro/pound exchange rate
May 2010. Although the zero point is correct, (the lower line). In this graph, you can see not
Steve Caplin is a designer and
illustrator working for a range of national
newspapers. His best-selling How to
Cheat in Photoshop, now in its fourth
edition, is published by Focal Press.
18 June 2010
It’s possible to convey multiple sets of
data on a single graph, if enough care is
05 taken. One of the best examples is this
graph by Charles Joseph Minard, drawn up
in 1869 . He was a French civil engineer
who devoted much of his time to developing
the new discipline of information graphics.
The graph shown here is perhaps his ﬁnest
invention, and is often ranked among the
most impressive graphs ever devised.
The graph shows Napoleon’s Russian
campaign 1812 and it’s based on a simpliﬁed
map of the terrain through which his army
progressed. The width of the brown line
shows the size of the army as it marched
towards Moscow, the black line showing
the size of the army on its ignoble retreat.
(When the army reached Moscow, it found
the Russians had evacuated the city and
destroyed all food stocks, leaving the invaders
with no option but to return home.)
As well as vividly depicting the diminishing
only the variation with respect to the pound, we have two sets of data that are easy to size of the army, the graph also shows the
but the variation between the dollar and the read in the same visual space, even though temperature on the return journey – this is
euro as well. By setting both graphs on the they’re based on different value axes. Drawing indicated by the line graph at the bottom.
same scale, we’ve had to adjust the legend the graph in this way shows how the peaks Starting at 0°C in Moscow, the temperature
to a scope that will take in both data sets, and troughs align for the two currencies, dropped to -37.5°C, resulting in many more
which means the peaks and troughs are less demonstrating the different speeds at which deaths (the data shown is in the Réaumur
pronounced. This makes it more difﬁcult to temperature scale: multiply by 1.25 to get
judge the variation in graph, though. the Celsius equivalent).
Another way of approaching the data is ‘As well as vividly depicting the This combination of geographical
to use two sets of axes – one for the dollar, diminishing size of the army, location, army size, direction of travel
and one for the euro . We can make it and temperature should have produced a
clear which is which by setting the colour of
the graph shows the temperature meaningless array of data – and yet the
the axis numbers to match the colour of the on the return journey’ reverse is true: the graph is stunning in its
graph: so, here, blue represents the dollar clarity, and devastating in the story it tells.
and green represents the euro. However, We can clearly see, for instance, how the
there’s clearly a problem with this approach: the two markets respond to events in the already reduced army halved in size when
where the two graphs cross over each other, UK. Note that when you overlay two sets of crossing the Berezina river on its retreat:
one is hidden behind the other. data with different axis values, you can no history tells us that many soldiers fell through
The simple solution is to use an overlay longer run the axis ticks all the way along the the ice on the frozen river (the temperature
style – in this case, setting the colour ﬁll of width of the graph: even if you arranged the was around -20°C) and froze or drowned.
the graphs to Multiply – which allows us to values so that the ticks coincided, this would Minard designed this graph as an anti-war
see one graph through the other . Now produce a confusing and misleading result. poster: it doesn’t mention Napoleon once.
DESIGN FOR PRINT:
18 June 2010
Keep your projects on
the straight and narrow
Designers aren’t known for their project management skills, but they’re
vital if you’re to finish a commission on time and on budget.
raphic design is about creative in general. it’s also precisely the reason
problem solving. That’s a simple why most designers need those project
statement, but it’s what sets managers, account handlers, accountants,
graphic design apart from ﬁne art, and it’s and, yes, sometimes senior management as
what makes it actually more of a craft than well; to deal with the things they – okay, we
‘art’. Ironically, because it’s about solving – don’t want to. But what if you don’t have
problems, the graphic design process itself this kind of setup around you? There’s just
can be prone to problems. one answer: step up and take it on yourself.
I’m about to make a huge generalisation, Which can be pretty daunting.
Keith Martin is MacUser’s technical
but bear with me, as there’s more than a grain The biggest mistake a fresh-faced editor. He has been using Macs
of truth in it. The average creative designer designer will make is over-promising. Until since the beginning, and has a
isn’t likely to be a great organiser, at least not there’s some experience under your belt (and background in everything from graphic
by nature. They’re more likely to be the kind even after that), it’s so easy to get ﬁred up design and print to multimedia.
of person who might take a new route on a and start promising the moon, on a plate,
whim, to try new things to see what they’re by next Tuesday. This is where the Project
like, even if that’s not the best, most efﬁcient Triangle comes in. You’ve probably
or most streamlined approach. That’s how heard this before, but it’s well
many ‘creatives’ (forgive the term, please) worth repeating. The idea is that ‘Until there’s some experience under
keep their thinking fresh, how they keep their your work can be (a) good, (b) fast, your belt (and even after that), it’s so easy
work and thinking new and interesting. (c) cheap... but only two of those
It’s also why designers can frustrate things at once. Sometimes one of
to get fired up and start promising the
project managers, account handlers, those factors is eliminated for you moon, on a plate, by next Tuesday’
accountants and senior management – the deadline is short or, more
The Project Triangle is a handy graphic aid for designers.
It’s used to determine the goal of a particular project.
18 June 2010
likely, the budget may be restricted. (Mind I’m ENTP, also known as Extroverted project, juggling things as they come, then
you, if you’re asked to do something both fast iNtuitive Thinking Perceiving. An odd name, try this: simply map out a set of dates
and cheap, forsaking good, perhaps you need but ignore that. The descriptions of that and dependencies – what things need to
to ﬁnd new clients.) one are, well, interesting – and maybe a be sorted out before something else can
Planning and following through are other little telling. This type enjoys playing devil’s progress, that sort of thing. This will keep you
typical problem areas. We all have things advocate (yes, always), is fond of toys but straighter and more narrow than ever before.
we’re good at, things that we can manage moves on to new ones regularly (okay, I do Here are some things you can do without
to do acceptably but don’t enjoy, and things want an iPad), likes problem solving but can making changes that might rock the boat too
that, frankly, we’re rubbish at and probably outsmart themselves, is likely to be a genial much. First, incorporate your brainstorming
always put off as long as we can. We may optimist, but ‘can be oblivious to the rest of into the whole project process and keep a
not even consciously realise we’re doing this, humanity’. Ouch. Should I apologise now? record to which you can refer at key stages.
but it’s a skill many of us perfect when we’re But the point of this isn’t really to do Do you use piles of Post-It notes to group your
students at college. It seems to be human some Californian-style soul searching or ideas? How about large sheets of paper and
nature, although some people are better ‘personal improvement’, it’s more a way to markers? Take photos of these and ﬁle the
than others at getting over this. help you recognise how you tend to deal pictures away. Just being able to refer back to
Every designer – in fact, almost everyone with things and people. And perhaps how all the ideas that bubbled up at the start can
full stop – could beneﬁt from a little more help you stay on
discipline in how they handle projects. I know top of things.
I’m a great example of this need – I often ﬁnd ‘Get a dry-marker wall chart and draw yourself a simple Next, get a dry-
it hard to keep up momentum when the initial marker wall chart
excitement of a fresh challenge turns into just
project timeline with key stages marked out. Keep this and draw yourself
the same old problems, and something starts where you can see it and keep referring to it’ a simple project
dragging on and on. I need to make regular timeline with key
efforts to keep going. This is a factor of my stages marked
personality type, and although I’m not a fan of to avoid getting stuck chasing problems in out – calendar-style or Gantt-style, whatever
Jungian psychology, the old coot did come up your design and production projects. works for you. Keep this where you can see
with some interesting ways of identifying how The trick with this lies in project it and keep referring to it. It’s amazing how
people think and what makes them tick. management. No, don’t yawn. It isn’t exciting, much difference it can make just having those
Knowing this about yourself can be an it isn’t sexy, but it will generally keep things things in plain view rather than tucked away in
eye-opening insight into how you handle on the rails. In fact, project management is some slightly daunting document.
projects and people, so consider taking the the key to managing almost everything, from Finally, use iCal and set advance alarms
modern(ish) form of the Jung Typology Test, design projects to shopping expeditions. for those stages. This works even better if
introduced in the 1960s as the Myers-Briggs (Okay, yes, it can also be over-used and kill you’re an iPhone user, as you’ll be prompted
‘quantitative personality test’. the moment; project-managing a marriage about impending milestones even when
Don’t put too much into it, but try it proposal is probably a rather bad idea.) you’re not working on your Mac in the studio.
out and see how the results seem to ﬁt. Most of us probably can’t even spell You may not like being auto-reminded of
Some online tests charge for the results, ‘Gannt’ – whoops, ‘Gantt’ – but if done deadlines when you’re at the pub, but that’s
but this can be done free at places such as properly and completely, project management a whole lot better than being reminded after
psitao.com (an academic research-based site) means gantt charts, project owners, goals the fact by an irate phone call or email.
and humanmetrics.com (which charges for and deliverables, the whole nine yards. You know what? It’s high time I practised
other tests). The results will be in the form Fortunately, you don’t need to go to those what I’m preaching. Visible and audible
of four letters, one of 16 different types that jargon-ﬁlled extremes if you don’t want to. If deadlines would help me get this column
deﬁne a set of general traits that you may or you normally just do a bit of brainstorming written on time, for one thing. But maybe
may not recognise. at the start and then launch into the design I need an iPad to keep me reminded…
18 June 2010
Push your gear to the limits
and not your budget
With a little bit of imagination and ingenuity, it’s possible to take
pictures that are truly out of this world, without costing the earth.
’ve always wanted to go into space. photograph from altitude and, like me, wanted
The initial surge of adrenaline of achieving to photograph the Earth without spending
a life-long dream, a period of mystiﬁed well into six ﬁgures. Unlike me, though, they
wonder and amazement at the sheer scale had the time (to say nothing of the mental
of everything, followed by the crushing horsepower) to do something about it.
realisation that you’ll eventually have to return The idea is so simple it’s been done
to a troubled planet populated mostly by dozens of times. Take a camera and a
stupid people. balloon. Attach the camera to the balloon, ﬁll
Various things prevent me from going. I’m the latter with helium, and let her rip. What’s
Dave Stevenson has been a camera
prone to travel sickness and the prospect of interesting about this is the price. They put buff ever since the whirr-click of his
clearing up tiny specks of vomit in zero gravity together a small point-and-shoot camera ﬁrst auto-winding compact in 1993.
sounds disgusting. I didn’t much like my maths (a Canon A470 worth about £50 in today’s His best friends are now his camera,
teacher at school, either, with the result that money), a weather balloon and some helium. a tripod and a copy of Lightroom.
I’m as numerate as the cast of America’s To help them track where their balloon came
Next Top Model. And, although I’m tempted by down, they included a cheap mobile phone
Richard Branson’s latest wheeze of charging with a GPS chip. The total
just over a hundred and thirty grand to ﬂy cost of their project was a
nearly in space, I would need to write literally shade under $150 (about ‘The idea is so simple. Take a camera and a
tens of MacUser columns to afford it. £104), and after checking
But if you can’t reach space, you can that their experiment
balloon. Attach the camera to the balloon,
always look at pictures of it. The trouble is, wasn’t going to clip an fill the latter with helium, and let her rip’
if you want to take pictures of it, you’re going airliner on the way up, they
to need to prepare to spend some serious launched. When the balloon
cash. For instance, when Nasa was reﬁtting reached its elastic limit, it burst, and the
its astronautical photography gear, it opted camera assembly and GPS tracker ﬂoated
for 11 top-of-the-line Nikon D3s’s and seven back to Earth beneath a parachute.
14-24mm f/2.8 lenses. Assuming it bought The results were spectacular. Project
them off the peg, it spent in the region of ﬁfty y Icarus climbed 17-and-a-half miles
grand. And that doesn’t get us around the
problem of ﬁnding a seat on a shuttle.
Late last year, a pair of students
from the Massachusetts Institute of
Technology (MIT) had a similar yearning to
Images courtesy of robertharrison.org/icarus
A pair of MIT students attached The balloon climbed 17-and-a-half miles
this box containing a point-and-shoot vertically and the results, as you can see from
camera to a helium ﬁlled balloon. this image, were truly spectacular.
18 June 2010
Images courtesy of burrard-lucas.com
vertically. That’s 92,000 feet, or roughly
three times higher than you can expect to
be on a transatlantic ﬂight. It was a literally
stratospheric achievement, and the pictures
the students got back, taken at a rate of 12
per minute, were stunning.
This came to mind because the Brits
are getting in on the act as well. In March,
a Yorkshireman named Robert Harrison
launched a similar project from his back
garden, this time for £500. He got more
bang for his buck, though, with one of his Photographers Will and Matt Burrard-Lucas
helium-powered efforts climbing to more built the BeetleCam to get close-up wildlife pictures.
than 100,000 feet. He returned some the latest or meatiest equipment because
amazing images and plenty of cheap gags the such – has always seemed like a rather the amazing things they were photographing
at the expense of the newly minted, single- clinical exercise to me, but throw in the – space or elephants’ toenails – transcended
astronaut UK Space Agency. possibility of space exploration or a remote- relatively petty arguments about ISO
If this doesn’t put you in the mood for control buggy getting pictures from the feet performance or frames per second. That and
a little remote-control photography, our of elephants and I’m in. the fact it’s easier to defend the loss of a
next contenders will. Matt and Will Burrard- Perhaps what I like best about these two half-decade-old PowerShot into the Irish Sea
Lucas, a pair of wildlife photographers, stories is that neither involves top-end gear. than it is a top-end DSLR.
got tired of shooting their subjects with Our intrepid space cowboys used out-of- All of this was going to culminate in me
massive telephoto lenses. Some wide- date compact cameras that no serious nerd urging you not to send your camera into
angle photographs were what they needed, would be seen with, while the 400D used space or trundling it into the path of heavy
but how to get them? The solution was by the Burrard-Lucas brothers is getting on wildlife, and to simply focus on knowing
BeetleCam, a frankly mental remote-control for four years old. Partly this embracing of your camera’s limitations and taking the
contraption consisting of four off-road wheels, older camera technology is because progress best pictures possible with what you’ve got.
a chassis and a battery. A Canon Eos 400D is slowing down somewhat: a four-year-old Instead, I absolutely urge you to push your
and a pair of ﬂash guns were mounted to the camera doesn’t present anything like the gear to the edge of destruction. Take stock
top and the whole lot was promptly dragged restrictions a camera the same age would of how much gear you have and how much
into the bushes and mauled by a lion. have in 2005. Between 2001 and 2005, you can afford to lose, then sacriﬁce the lot in
But the rest of the pair’s images speak we had the jump between essentially no an effort to get the most spectacular picture
for themselves – a series of shots of megapixels – I quite clearly remember a time possible. A Mars bar to the ﬁrst person
elephants and water buffalo taken from when 3.2 megapixels was the bee’s knees who manages to get some decent shots by
angles you simply wouldn’t be able to get – and having eight or more as a sensible attaching a camera to the outside of a deep-
if you were actually behind the camera. minimum. More than the technical aspect, sea robotic submarine. At any rate, that has
Remote photography – infrared traps and though, this issue’s heroes didn’t need to use to be easier than getting into space.
18 June 2010
Getting the best chroma
key from green screen work
Okay, you’ve shot your green-screen footage, but there’s still a lot of work
to do in terms of de-interlacing and chroma keying for the best results.
n the last column (see MacUser, 4 June list, tick the box marked Deinterlace Video
2010, p80), we looked at shooting footage and hit Make Movie.
against a plain green screen, which When the video has ﬁnished transcoding,
can then be replaced on your Mac with a you’ll now have a movie ﬁle you can drop
completely different background. This sort of straight into Final Cut. There are basic chroma
technique used to be reserved for Hollywood key effects bundled with Final Cut that could
blockbuster-size budgets, but you can create work for well-shot footage, but you’ll need a
similar effects yourself with a reasonably custom plug-in for best results. One of the
powerful Mac. The more you can do to ensure best available is Keylight from The Foundry
Will Head is co-founder and director
you’ve got good footage to work with before (thefoundry.co.uk), which has been used in of Fixation Video – an online video
you start the keying process, the better your countless Hollywood productions. Keylight production company that specialises
results. We’ve already covered how to shoot is available as a plug-in for Final Cut, so you in making video content for the web.
material to make it easier once you get the can use it directly in the application. If you’ve
video onto your Mac. got After Effects CS4, then it’s bundled with
If the footage you’ve recorded is interlaced that as standard.
then de-interlacing it ﬁrst before you start The process is similar whether you’re
keying will increase your chances of getting working in Final Cut or After Effects. Once
you’ve imported your green-
screen footage, apply the
‘When chroma keying, you only need to Keylight effect. You won’t see
worry about the pixels that directly surround any difference initially, as
you need to tell Keylight what
your subject – the aim is to get a good edge
colour you want to cut out. By
around your moving subject’ using the eyedropper next to
the Screen Colour control in
the options, choose an area
a good result. This will obviously have of the screen close to the subject. This on
implications later on, depending on where its own does a decent job of removing the
the ﬁnal edit will end up, but if you can background, but you’ll usually need to tweak
de-interlace your footage ﬁrst, then you’ll a couple of settings to get a good result.
get a much cleaner cutout. By default, you’ll see the ﬁnal result of the
There are many ways you can achieve effect, but it’s useful to also look at the matte
this, but the free Mpeg Streamclip utility from view when you’re tweaking the settings, which
Squared 5 (www.squared5.com/svideo/mpeg- lets you see which areas of the image will be
streamclip-mac.html) is particularly handy if transparent. Choose Screen Matte from the ▲ Mpeg Streamclip can also transcode HDV
you’re working with HDV footage. View option in the settings. You’ll now see a to QuickTime format and de-interlace clips.
Mpeg Streamclip will allow you to play white area, which is the subject
back M2T ﬁles directly, which are HDV ﬁles you want to keep, and a black
created by a solid-state capture device area, which is the screen that
such as the Sony HVR-MRC1 CompactFlash will be removed. You’ll also
memory recording unit discussed in previous probably see grey areas, which
video columns. It can also transcode M2T will be semi-transparent and
ﬁles into QuickTime ﬁles, which means you which you need to adjust to
can use them in Final Cut. either pure black or white to
Just open the clip you want to use in get a good key.
Mpeg Streamclip and then select Export to When chroma keying, you
QuickTime from the File menu. It’s best to use only need to worry about the
a codec that’s better quality than the one you pixels that directly surround
started with to save the QuickTime ﬁle – if you your subject – the aim is to
have Final Cut Studio installed, then Apple’s get a good edge around your
ProRes codec is a good choice. Either ProRes moving subject. Areas at
(LT) or even ProRes (Proxy) will work if your the edge of the frame where
source footage is HDV. Once you’ve chosen the green screen isn’t a
your codec from the Compression drop-down consistent colour can easily ▲ Mpeg Streamclip is a useful utility that lets you play back HDV M2T ﬁles.
18 June 2010
from the Output Module Settings screen and
then choose the codec that matches that of
your original ﬁle – in this case, ProRes (Proxy).
Click Render to create the alpha ﬁle. The ﬁnal
result will be a fraction of even the original ﬁle
size – around 30MB for a 30-second ﬁle.
Import your alpha ﬁle into Final Cut and
create a new sequence. Place the alpha ﬁle in
track one and then place your original green
▲ When you ﬁrst apply Keylight, you won’t see any ▲ Selecting the background colour in Keylight does
screen footage ﬁle above it on track two, so
effect, as you need to tell it what colour to cut out. most of the work for you. both clips start at exactly the same point.
Click on your source ﬁle on track two and then
from the Modify menu navigate to Composite
Type and choose Travel Matte – Luma. If
everything is lined up correctly, when you
scrub through the timeline, you should see
only your subject against a black background.
The advantage of adding the two clips to
a single sequence ﬁrst is that you can then
treat that sequence as a normal clip with
transparency without having to worry about
▲ A garbage matte lets you discard elements around ▲ Keylight’s Screen Matte view lets you see if there
the two individual video clips getting out of
your subject that don’t need to be chroma keyed. are any semi-transparent areas in your shot. sync. So you could add it to a sequence
you’re already working in and if you place it
be removed with a garbage matte. In After includes the transparency information – also above a clip that video will now become the
Effects, use the Pen tool to draw a mask called alpha. Apple’s Animation codec allows background to your subject.
roughly around your subject. Keylight will you to include an alpha channel, but it’s fairly Now that you know the basics, the only
then only be applied to the area inside the space intensive. A 30-second clip using the limitation is your imagination.
mask and anything outside will simply be ProRes (Proxy) codec will take up around
transparent. Once you’ve drawn your mask, 130MB of space. The same shot once you’ve
quickly scrub through the timeline and check cut out the green screen and saved it with
that any arm gestures or other movements transparency using Apple’s Animation codec
don’t go outside the mask you just created. will take up nearly 1GB – nearly seven times
The other advantage of using a garbage as much space.
matte is that it allows you to easily eliminate If you’re not pushed for space then the
Animation codec is deﬁnitely the way to
go. However, if that’s not the case, there is
‘The other advantage of using a another option. While only some codecs let ▲ You can export just the alpha channel in any format
garbage matte is that it allows you export the alpha channel along with the you want from After Effects.
video, After Effects will let you export just the
you to easily eliminate objects alpha channel in any codec. You can then
you don’t want in the ﬁnal shot’ combine the alpha channel and the original
video in your editor.
To do this in After Effects, when you’re
objects you don’t want in the ﬁnal shot – such happy with your Keylight settings, choose Add
as lighting rigs or the edge of the screen. to Render Queue from the Composition menu.
Once you’ve isolated the area on which Select Best Settings for the Render Settings
you want to work, the ﬁrst settings to tweak and Alpha Only for the Output module. Click
are Screen Gain and Screen Balance – on the Alpha Only link to manually adjust the ▲ The Travel Matte Composite option lets you apply
although you don’t want to adjust them too settings. Click the Format Options button an alpha channel from one clip to another.
drastically, otherwise you may affect the
subject. After you’ve changed a setting a little,
it’s worth switching from Screen Matte view
to Final Result to double-check that everything
still looks okay.
The next values you need to adjust are
in the Screen Matte section – the Clip Black
and Clip White controls will help remove any
grey areas of the Screen Matte. Again, if you
adjust the values too drastically, this will be
noticeable in the end result, but if you adjust
them slowly until you can only see black and
white areas, then you should have a good
key. Again, it’s worth switching between matte
view and the ﬁnal result to check that your
subject still looks good.
If you then want to then edit your footage
and place it over a separate background,
you’ll need to export it in a format that ▲ Once the Travel Matte is applied, you can place the sequence over another clip to replace the background.
18 June 2010
Has digitising music
actually devalued it?
Apple’s digital music ventures have had their upsides, but there
have also been a few downsides for musicians.
’ve ruminated on Apple’s domination anyone to contravene copyright, of course,
of the pro audio world before, and that’s but it’s a little ironic that a few years later the
something I don’t see changing any time major labels would be forced to admit that
soon. As I’ve also observed before now, Apple had the best system going for selling
Apple has found huge success in broadening music legally online and jump on board. DRM
its customer base beyond professionals to would be dropped from iTunes music several
regular people, generally through iPods and years later in the face of competition primarily
iPhones, but also the MacBook, Apple’s best- from Amazon, although the protection
selling Mac ever, and the iMac. In other ways, remains on movie ﬁles.
Hollin Jones is a full time musician,
it has also changed the way we interact with Apple didn’t invent digital music sales, it music producer and writer. His
and think about music, and this is something just found a way of doing it right, a bit like music has been used in TV and
that’s particularly important for independent it did with the iPhone. iTunes isn’t perfect ﬁlm. In a previous life he was a
producers and musicians. – neither is the iPhone – but that hasn’t Mac support specialist.
music is easy to ‘It’s great being able to get your music onto iTunes, but
access on any Mac. so can everybody else, and so the playing ﬁeld is as
Everyone with a new
Mac gets a copy of
crowded than it was in the days when people used to
GarageBand, while send mountains of cassettes to John Peel’
the more adventurous
can pick up Logic
Express, Logic Studio or one of the other stopped them from being wildly successful.
Digital Audio Workstations on the market. And anything so successful becomes the
However, once the music is made, Apple still ‘place to be’ for hopefuls, so before long
wants to be involved. When the company small labels and independent producers
introduced the iTunes Music Store (as it was wanted in on the act as well. Approaching
then called) back in 2003 off the back of the Apple directly about this was a non-starter
success of the iPod, it managed to do what but, gradually, online services began to spring
other companies, unsure of how to proceed up that could get your music onto iTunes as
in the face of Napster and other then-illegal well as other online stores through having a
ﬁle sharing networks, had failed to do. It got standing arrangement with Apple.
the major record labels to agree to ﬂat-pricing If most people buy their digital music
structures, and also that no album would be from iTunes, you want yours to be on there.
a single entity – customers would be able to There are loads of these websites around – I
pick and choose tracks. use Tunecore. It’s not a great surprise that
This was unpopular among many big Apple doesn’t get directly involved in handling
bands, who tend to feel that their albums are individual submissions from musicians,
a body of work best enjoyed in the track order who aren’t always the most organised or
they’ve decided. When asked about this, coherent bunch. The systems seem to be
one high-up record company guy remarked mostly automated anyway and judging by the
that the issue had gone ‘all the way to Steve distinctly MOR nature of the acts that tend
Jobs’ desk’. The major concession that to close Apple presentations these days and
Apple made to the labels was the inclusion the slideshow music you get with iPhoto, they
in music ﬁles of digital rights management might not ‘get’ a lot of it anyway.
(DRM) technology. An attempt by the labels The iTunes Store has been massively
to maintain some control over the content, successful and, in line with Apple’s master
it was always doomed to fail, since it could plan, continues to drive sales of iPods and
be circumvented by simply burning tracks to phones. However, there’s a school of thought
CD and then re-importing them, as clean as which suggests that its success has had a
a whistle, into iTunes. In fact, Apple had form detrimental effect on music and the way we
on this one – its publicity campaign for early perceive it. Not really from a piracy point of
iMacs back in 2001 encouraged us to ‘rip, view – that would have happened anyway
mix and burn’ our music. Not that it meant and is something nobody seems to be able
18 June 2010
as Tunecore can
submit your music
to multiple online
stores. In an
ideal world, Apple
could even offer a
service for music.
to stop – rather, it’s about overload. It’s great hadn’t done it, someone else would have can order a professionally printed album or
being able to get your music onto iTunes, but and, having seen competing MP3 players, I’m calendar through iPhoto, and they look great.
so can everybody else, and so the playing still glad it was Apple and not someone else. Logistics notwithstanding (you’d probably pay
ﬁeld is as crowded than it was in the days It recently attempted to restore some of this a bit of a premium), couldn’t Apple manage
when people used to send mountains of perceived value with the iTunes LP format, a CD pressing service directly from Logic,
cassettes to John Peel. incorporating bigger artwork, animated lyrics, GarageBand or Waveburner, or maybe even
Trying to get ahead by setting up a liner notes, videos and other bonus material. vinyl pressing? I admit that vinyl probably
MySpace page and linking to iTunes has It’s okay, but it’s still digital, and that doesn’t isn’t very high up on Jobs’ list of priorities,
been compared not altogether inaccurately have the ‘hold in the hand’, tangible quality but you get the idea.
to ‘screaming into the void’. Everybody of a vinyl or even well-produced CD package. With a recent, detailed patent emerging
does it, so in order to make any headway, The fact remains that ﬂogging music is that shows Apple looking seriously into
you need an approach that’s far better as difﬁcult as it ever was, despite the huge a system of selling concert tickets (see
planned. Old-fashioned things such as radio technological changes pioneered mainly by patentlyapple.com), it is clearly keen to
Apple over the past decade. Digital has to exploit the other avenue by which bands
‘The digitisation of music that be one branch of your strategy, but rarely are said to make money – live performance.
will it sufﬁce on its own. Many bands survive For all the hype, they’ll be aware that digital
began with the MP3 ﬁle has by doing limited-edition hardware pressings isn’t the be all and end all of music, and
devalued music’ and selling them to loyal fans. In fact, this is that people like something real that they
something I’d love to see Apple get into. You can see and feel.
pluggers, press campaigns and even a
manager are really a necessity in tandem
with all the online stuff. That, and lots of
hard work. Don’t believe the PR people who
tell you an act went from playing in their
bedroom, got a million fans on the web and
is suddenly touring with U2. It just doesn’t
happen like that.
The other factor that Apple has
contributed, or at least made popular,
involves the capacity of its players. The iPod
classic currently has a capacity of 160GB,
which Apple estimates as 40,000 songs.
But could anyone actually listen to 40,000
songs? Is it not more likely that you would
listen to a maximum of about 500 and
barely even scratch the surface of the rest?
The digitisation of music that began with
the MP3 ﬁle has devalued music, whether
people realise it or not, and made it a more
throwaway commodity. That’s not Apple’s
▲ Anyone with a well-produced album can now get it on iTunes, but in the broader scheme of things, it has to be
fault, but it has helped it along. If Apple part of a more focused, multimedia approach to selling music.
MAC TO THE FUTURE:
18 June 2010
There’s a cloud hanging
over the iPhone
The iPhone has driven mobile web and data use through the ceiling, but the
freedom the online world oﬀers could threaten its dominance.
loud computing is a buzzword My photos are already stored online,
phrase, but it’s far from empty – in backed up using SugarSync and accessible
fact, over the next 18 months, it’s via its iPhone app and website, and there’s
going to start having a big inﬂuence on a fair few on Flickr and Facebook, too. I don’t
the hardware we buy. Consider this. My watch much video on the iPhone, but those
ﬁrst portable music player was a cassette clips that I do watch stream from distant data
Walkman, followed swiftly by a portable CD centers, thanks to YouTube, iPlayer and, at
player, followed at the end of the century the time of writing, the NHL’s app, as it’s play-
by several MiniDisc players, a generic MP3 off time in the US ice hockey season.
Alex Watson is the editor of
player, then, in 2004, a genuine iPod. It was Why is this a problem for Apple, then? Custom PC and bit-tech.net; he
a 20GB hard disk model that, thanks to its Well, for this discussion, you need to bear in can survive both the blue screen
2in, 220 x 176 colour screen, was given mind that Apple makes the vast bulk of its of death and a kernel panic.
the ludicrous name iPod photo. Next was cash from hardware sales – in its most recent
a 60GB 5th generation iPod
video. After that, a 16GB
iPhone. Plot the storage ‘My photos are already stored online, backed
capacity of these on a graph, up using SugarSync and accessible via its
and you’d see a steady rise,
and then a sharp fall.
iPhone app and website, and there’s a fair few
For technology, this is on Flickr and Facebook, too’
strange to the point of being
heretical – if I charted the
amount of memory in my computers, it would earnings call (Q2 2010), 40% of revenue
climb from the 1MB of memory in my 386 came from the iPhone, 28% from the Mac and
to the 8GB in my current gaming PC. It’s the 14% from the iPod, leaving iTunes, software
same with storage (from a 40MB hard disk to and other miscellaneous services on 18%.
1.5TB), screen resolution, Internet connection The iTunes Store isn’t quite a loss leader,
speed, processor speed – indeed, every key but it’s not turning over the
measurement of the power and performance kind of cash the iPhone is.
available to me has risen relentlessly over the So, the cloud holds two
past 15 years. worries for Apple: ﬁrst, if
When I bought my iPhone 3G, 16GB was hardware requirements
the maximum available, as it uses pricier decrease to the point that
ﬂash memory as opposed to the hard disks you just need to be able
in my previous iPods – even now, you can to connect, it’s harder to
only bump a 3GS up to 32GB (although the sell new people kit, and
iPod touch and iPad are available with 64GB). harder to sell the pricier
However, if I get a new iPhone, I won’t be versions of new kit. The
looking at a 32GB or 64GB version; 16GB is step up in price between
ﬁne, and if I can save myself some cash, I 16GB and 64GB iPad
might be tempted to go for the 8GB version. isn’t solely to do with the
I can thank Spotify Premium for this. cost of the memory – the
As you can probably tell from my extensive high-end machine will be
history of music players, being able to carry more proﬁtable. Apple has
around a relatively complete music library worked hard to avoid the
every waking hour so I can choose what to fate of PC manufacturers
play matters to me. The majority of space on such as Dell who engaged
my iPhone – 11.04GB – is taken up by music. in a nearly ruinous race
Two months into using Spotify Premium, to the bottom, trying
which allows me to listen to a huge selection to make machines as
of music for £10 per month, caching songs cheaply as possible.
locally on the phone or streaming over both That said, storing
wiﬁ and 3G, and I’m beginning to think I can media in the cloud mainly ▲ With online storage being cheap and convenient, we’re likely to see
get by with much less storage on my phone. impacts storage; I might not major changes to the cost and conﬁguration of computing hardware.
18 June 2010
▲ The iTunes App Store contains software unique to the iPhone, helping keep customers loyal, but its music distribution business would beneﬁt from going into the cloud.
need a 64GB iPhone 4G, but Apple can still per year, MobileMe is something that could iPhone. It works, too: on my iPhone, I prefer
attract me with faster 802.11n wiﬁ, a better be a much bigger deal. It’s made a start the IMDB app to the IMDB site, for instance.
camera and a higher-resolution screen. with music, purchasing Lala, an American It’s a good strategy, and one unlikely to
Current Internet connection speeds mean streaming music ﬁrm, so an iTunes rival to come under pressure for a while: Google
it’s rare that processing using a remote data Spotify could be on the cards. The issue there might allow apps on Android, but it has
center makes sense. I’m a hardware nut, is that Apple likes selling music – it’s now the fragmented its system by offering hardware
though – plenty of less power-obsessed users US’s biggest music retailer – and Spotify’s manufacturers freedom, so it’s hard for
will opt for a cheaper device if and when they heavily ad-supported model isn’t likely to coders to target all Android phones. Plus,
can, and storage has a big impact on the appeal. More likely is that we’ll get a service really, is its heart in apps?
cost of ﬂash-based devices. The web works for Google, as so much
Much more worryingly web use involves a search on Google, and
for Apple is the fact that ‘You’ll see that I’m a customer who has very therefore more data and more ads. Nope,
online services are much little tie to one hardware device over another, Google’s ploy isn’t likely to be software, or
more hardware-agnostic than just software – it’ll be hardware, too, and it
traditional software. I’ve got as long as they can go online’ will attack on price and choice. Those of you
8223 audio ﬁles in iTunes – who are veterans of the 1980s will recognise
that’s 54GB in all, around 22.5 these as the same tactics Microsoft
days of listening. It’s taken me around six where you can listen to all the music you own employed back in the day. No surprises,
years to build up, and all of these ﬁles have on your iPhone, sent over the air if you don’t then, that at the end of April, Google CEO
album art, genres, ratings and are sorted have the ﬁles on the phone. Eric Schmidt told a conference that Google
into hundreds of playlists. Let’s say a new That said, investing in online services wanted Chrome OS Internet devices to be so
Android phone comes out as my contract to rival Google is a fool’s errand: it’s not cheap that they’re ‘completely disposable’.
runs out and it’s one I like the look of. I’d worth Apple trying to keep up.
have to really like the look of it to shift all Google is bigger than you can
that music and metadata to some Android believe; the lengths it will go
music management software. But if I’m using to in building more, faster data
Spotify, well, I’d just have to get the Spotify centers than anyone else is
app for Android and I’m set: my data moves frankly ludicrous. Nope, Apple’s
across because my data is really managed new religion is apps.
remotely on Spotify’s servers. I’ve probably spent around
Add in the fact that my email is already £50 on apps for my iPhone
run by Google, and my photos are online in over the past year, and I’d
ways the Android phone can easily access, be loath to give all those up,
and you’ll see I’m a customer who has very which I’d have to if I moved
little tie to one hardware device over another, to Android or Windows Phone
as long as they can go online. 7. By not diluting the iPhone
Jon Stokes, a writer for ArsTechnica platform (the iPad and iPod
(arstechnica.com), wrote a piece last month touch both run iPhone OS) and
pronouncing Palm’s Pre dead in the water. insisting iPhone apps aren’t
Perhaps slightly premature, but he blamed made with cross-platform
the Pre’s demise on a variety of factors, runtimes such as Adobe’s
one of which was the fact that its WebOS Flash-to-iPhone compiler, Apple
was so tied into web services – from third is trying to create incentives
parties such as Google and Facebook – that for coders to create unique
switching away from the Pre was so easy. iPhone apps. Not only does
And with a lack of apps and direction, that’s it get to sell these through
precisely what he did. iTunes, collecting money in the
So what’s Apple to do? Well, it needs to process, but it pulls people
provide better online services. Sooner or later, away from the open web and Until I bought my iPhone, every personal audio device I owned had
it’s going to wake up and realise that, at £59 to experiences unique to the more storage than the last.
18 June 2010
Finding the Keynote
within the keynote
Apple’s keynote addresses ofen oﬀer up clues to what’s in store for its
presentation application, but deciphering them isn’t always easy…
uplicating Apple keynote effects
However, rashly working on the assumption
can be tough. As Apple’s star has that somehow the effect could be replicated
moved into the ascendant over the with existing tools, I began a day-long exercise
past few years, the minutiae of its keynotes of trial, error and taking Schiller’s name in
have been analysed at frustrating length by vain to reproduce the effect.
technology pundits worldwide. I expect my initial complacency arose
However, within this group of analysts because creating a chart so that its elements
lies a smaller and more extreme subset: appear one by one is a fairly straightforward
those who study the software behind the process. For example, if you have a slide
Tom Gorham has worked with Macs
presentation rather than the announcements. with a 3D bar chart selected – the process since 1991. Although his background
The Keynote within the keynote, if you will. is slightly different for other chart types – you is in print and web publishing,
Having noted that Apple CEO Steve Jobs click the Build In tab in the Build inspector he’s a devotee of any software
and other Apple presenters occasionally and under the Delivery menu, choose By that makes his life easier.
tease us with effects and transitions not Element in Series, and Grow as the effect.
present in any publicly
available version of Keynote,
spotting these can provide ‘Apple presenters occasionally tease us with
small clues about the future effects not present in any publicly available
of iWork’s presentation
application. A case in point:
version of Keynote, and spotting these can
the announcement of the provide clues about the future of Keynote’
3 billionth App Store download
during Jobs’ iPad presentation
in January was accompanied by a Keynote Set the duration for each build and – Jobs’
dust cloud effect applied to an element your uncle – chart animation.
as it dropped to the bottom of the slide. The critical part of ensuring smooth
‘Unreleased feature!’ cried the Keynote animation is to adjust the Build From menu
junkies excitedly. to ensure that elements that aren’t part of
It was only when a friend asked me the chart – for example, its background grid
whether it was possible to animate a Keynote
chart to show a chart rescaling as new data
was added to it that I temporarily joined this
gang of Keynote watchers. I remembered that
I’d seen such a transition demonstrated by
Phil Schiller during last year’s WWDC 2009
keynote, and when I looked back at the
video of the event in iTunes, the stunning
effect is shown – at around the three-minute
mark if you’re interested. To display the
exponential growth of ‘OS X’ active users,
Schiller displayed a chart showing steady
progress over a number of years, but to
compensate for the explosion in Mac OS
X use, the slide then adjusted its scale
before adding a further animation. Schiller’s
only – and in my subsequent view utterly
unhelpful – explanation of this effect was to
desultorily comment ‘Keynote, Magic Move,’
accompanied by a happy thumbs-up from him
and murmurs of appreciation by the audience.
I could swear there was a discernible – if
understandable – touch of smugness, too.
Many Keynote aﬁcionados have put
this down as another unreleased feature. Phil Schiller demonstrating Keynote chart rescaling at the Worldwide Developers Conference in 2009.
18 June 2010
The ﬁnal slide contained the rescaled
chart. On this I added new chart data through
the Chart Inspector’s ‘Edit data’ button and
added basic build effects to animate the
appearance of this information.
Fitting it together was a question of
adding the necessary transitions. You don’t
need any transition between the ﬁrst and
second slides, so that between the chart
and the image, to borrow words from the
late Eric Morecambe, you can’t see the join.
It’s between the second and the third slides,
which both contain images, that you use
Magic Menu to perform the scaling effect.
With the second slide selected, open the
Slide Inspector and select Magic Menu
from the Effects menu.
The duration of the effect is a personal
choice, but I’ve found that around two
seconds lets users see the scaling effect
most clearly. Make sure the Transition menu
is set to ‘automatically’ so the transition
occurs without user interaction. When the
effect is applied, it should give the effect of
Setting up animation for a basic 3D bar chart is fairly simple affair in Keynote.
As with the ﬁrst and second slides, there’s
– aren’t included in the animation. You need no need for any transition effects between
to know the order of elements here, and you ‘My guess is images were used the third and fourth slide. When I added the
can see these in the Build Inspector’s drawer. to create the effect rather than additional data to this fourth slide, I wanted
In most cases, the background grid is the ﬁrst to ensure I didn’t redraw the same chart
element of the chart, so by selecting ‘2’, you
native charts, as that’s what I had elements that had already appeared in the
can ensure it isn’t included. to use when replicating the effect’ ﬁrst slide. To do this, I adjusted the number in
The default animation requires user the slide’s Build Inspector’s Build From menu
interaction to trigger each element’s so that the chart elements already drawn
animation. To automate this, in the Build tab, select the slide number to export and were ignored and only the one added in this
Order drawer you used to check on the choose a suitable format – PNG or Tiff – to ﬁnal slide was animated.
element order, select Series Elements and export the slide. The effect was achieved after a fashion,
choose ‘Automatically after prior build’ from To create the effect, the ﬁrst slide should although I’m not convinced my labour was
the Start Build menu. Set a short delay contain the original chart. I added the ﬁrst worth it, as the results were nowhere near
between each element. image – a copy of this chart – to the second as polished as the chart in Schiller’s Apple
However, the rescaling effect that Schiller slide and the image of the rescaled chart to a presentation. However, the process resulted
showed in his presentation was a little third slide. I used Keynote’s rulers and guides in a new respect for Keynote watchers, and a
different, and I’m not sure he was being to ensure that the chart origins and axes shared hope that Schiller’s feature makes it
entirely truthful when he put the chart effect were consistent across the slides. into the next version of iWork.
solely down to Magic Move. Magic Move
can automatically apply scaling or moving
transitions across slides, but while it works
with images and shapes, it simply doesn’t
play well with charts.
My guess is that images were used to
create the effect rather than native charts,
as that’s what I had to use when I tried to
replicate the rescaling effect.
I ﬁrst had to create two slides – one
containing the chart before it was rescaled
and one after. On the second slide showing
the rescaled chart, I used the Graphic
Inspector to adjust its opacity so it would
gradually fade during the transition. I added a
second chart behind the rescaled chart with
x and y axes extended to take account of the
additional data I’d add later. The tricky thing
here was to match up the axes of both these
charts so they aligned. It required a bit of
ﬁddling in the Chart Inspector, adjusting the
axes values under the Chart tab.
Furthermore, I also had to create copies of
these two slides as images through Keynote’s
File > Export menu. Under the Images An area chart doesn’t let you animate individual elements, so here we’ve just chosen to animate by series.
18 June 2010
GET MORE FROM YOUR MAC AND APPLICATIONS WITH OUR STEP-BY-STEP GUIDES
Use Photoshop CS5’s Puppet
Warp tool to manipulate images
Photoshop CS5’s new Puppet Warp tool enables you to distort and
manipulate cutout objects with unprecedented ease. Here’s how…
hotoshop has long offered users the by placing pins and dragging them to the
ability to make complex distortions, position you want.
from simple Free Transform to the The distortions we’ll perform here are
sophisticated envelope distortion offered in possible with earlier versions of Photoshop,
Image Warp. In CS5, however, it takes both to some extent. It would, however, involve
power and ease of use a huge step further, separating each object into its constituent
with the introduction of Puppet Warp. parts, transforming and rotating each part,
First seen in Adobe’s animation and then patching and tweaking to make all
application, After Effects, Puppet Warp the elements join up with each other.
Steve Caplin is a designer and
enables you to make sophisticated, Now, with Puppet Warp, all that’s in the illustrator working for a range of national
organic distortions of cutout objects with past. Whether it’s a minor adjustment of a newspapers. His best-selling How to
unprecedented ease. For the ﬁrst time, model’s pose or a radical reshaping of the Cheat in Photoshop, now in its fourth
you can bend, deform and manipulate your form, Puppet Warp lets you work directly on edition, is published by Focal Press.
cutouts of people, animals, body parts and the image, without having to work within a
just about any imaginable object simply separate interface or learn new techniques. Kit required Photoshop CS5
It took less than two minutes to distort the original hand into one that could hold a tiny object, using Puppet Warp.
18 June 2010
1. Mesh your object 2. Pin down its anatomy
Our ﬁrst object is a proﬁle of a dog, which has been cut out and is Begin by clicking in place the ﬁrst pins on the cutout. They don’t have
on its own layer in Photoshop. When you choose Puppet Warp from to be at the intersection of triangles and can be placed anywhere
the Edit menu, a mesh of triangles appears automatically. You can on the cutout. Since we want to deform this dog according to
change the number of triangles using the Density pop-up on the established rules of anatomy, it makes sense to position the pins
Options bar, but for most cases the default density is ﬁne. Once at logical bend points: the shoulder at the front and the rump at the
the mesh has appeared, you can start adding your pins. rear. The points you place will be stationary unless you move them,
allowing the ﬁgure to move around them.
3. Experiment with distortion 4. Fix limbs in place
If we add a third pin at the base of the skull, we can drag it down Placing two further pins, on the legs, will prevent the dog from
to deform the shape – the black dot inside the yellow point circle deforming when we move a pin at the head. At any point, we can
indicates a currently selected pin. When we now drag down on this choose to hide or show the underlying mesh using the button on
pin, the two previously-placed pins remain in position, and the whole the Options bar. Since it performs no useful visual function, we
dog deforms as we drag. This isn’t what we want for this image, so we can hide it in order to see our object more clearly. We’ll leave the
need to Undo that last placed pin and place a couple more that will mesh hidden for the remainder of this tutorial.
make the whole dog more rigid.
5. A more realistic manipulation 6. Pivot around a pin
Now, when we add a pin at the base of the skull and pull You can even bend a ﬁgure so far it overlaps itself. If you hold the Alt
down, the remaining pins stay in place. See how naturally the key and hover over a placed pin, you can rotate the object around that
head bends towards the ground: not only does the neck bend pin. That performed a useful rotation of the neck – adding another pin
convincingly, but the back also bends to follow the spine. to the snout enables us to move the dog’s nose exactly where we want
it. Note how the head sits seamlessly in front of the leg.
18 June 2010
7. Change the order of overlaps
The dog’s head appeared in front of the leg
because the pins in the head were added
after those in the body, so they’re higher
up the stacking order. But what if we want
the head to be positioned behind the leg?
Simple: we just click one of the two Pin
Depth icons on the Options bar, each of
which moves the currently selected pins
either up or down the stack, taking the
underlying ﬁgure with them.
Here’s the result of that operation: the
dog’s head is now tucked in behind the
legs. And we’re not just limited to moving or
changing the stacking order of a single pin,
since holding the Shift key as we click on
pins allows additional points to be added
or removed from the current selection.
8. Add other pins for different poses 9. Removing pins also helps
By placing additional pins within the body, we’re able to transform You can select multiple pins by holding the Shift key to move them all
the dog into a variety of lifelike shapes. We can add multiple together, and you can remove pins altogether by holding the Alt key
pins close to each other, as has been done with the front paws, and clicking on it. This follows the standard Photoshop approach to
in order to make them sit perfectly on the ground. With only the multiple selections: use Shift to add to a selection, and Alt to remove
barest knowledge of canine anatomy, we’re able to pose the dog from it. When making a radical change such as this, it can help to
exactly as we want it. remove pins in order to manipulate the whole object more easily.
10. Let your imagination go wild 11. Choose when to use Distort and Normal modes
As well as distorting objects organically, you can also choose Distort Although the Distort mode of deforming objects is fun to use, you
mode from the pop-up menu on the Options bar. Now, the object can’t apply it to only a couple of pins: it’s an all-or-nothing option.
will deform between pins: as you drag them further apart, the area With the dog, we could, of course, scale body parts individually by
between the pins will enlarge, and will contract when you drag two pins adding multiple pins in Normal mode and dragging the body part to
closer together. This lets you create fantasy creatures, adding and the position we want it.
subtracting pins as you need in order to ﬁne-tune the results.
18 June 2010
12. Another practical application 13. Add a mesh and place the pins
As well as producing wacky distortions, you can use Puppet Warp We begin by calling up Puppet Warp from the Edit menu, and the
to adjust individual body parts. In this second example, we have familiar mesh of triangles appears on the layer’s surface. Since we
a photograph of an open hand. The mission: to try to bend the want the palm to remain largely untouched, we can start the process
thumb and foreﬁnger together, so the hand is able to hold a tiny by placing four pins on the hand at the key anchor points. Whatever
object. Without Puppet Warp, this would be a long and tedious we do to the rest of the hand, the area between those four pins will
exercise – if not one that’s downright impossible. remain stationary.
14. Bend the finger… 15. …then the thumb
Once again, it’s easier to hide the mesh so that we can see the It only takes a single pin, placed at the top of the thumb, to bend
hand more clearly. By placing the ﬁrst pin at the lower knuckle of the it towards the foreﬁnger. But there’s a problem here: although the
foreﬁnger, we’re able to pull it forward as much as we like; a second whole thumb has indeed moved into position, the top is starting to
pin, placed within the top joint of the ﬁnger, allows us to bend that curl back in an unnatural fashion. Fortunately, our stock of pins is
section towards the thumb. unlimited, so we can remedy this situation by adding an additional
pin and rotating the existing one.
16. Deal with unnatural deformations 17. Think about how real objects interact
If we hold the Alt key and move the cursor over the existing pin at When bending the ﬁngers, we must bear in mind that they’re all
the top of the thumb, we enter Rotate mode – and a tiny circle connected: we can’t bend a single ﬁnger without the others being
appears around the pin to indicate this. Now, when we move the affected. So for a more natural appearance, we can place a few
cursor just outside the pin, we can drag to rotate the element additional pins on the remaining group of ﬁngers, dragging them towards
around that point. the bent foreﬁnger. And because these pins were added afterwards, the
ﬁngers appear in front of the foreﬁnger, rather than behind it.
Working smarter with text
18 June 2010
in InDesign CS5
InDesign CS5 introduced new and exciting ways of formatting text,
such as the Span Columns dialog. Here, we explore these features.
n the past, creating text that spanned control the spacing either side? How are the
multiple columns meant drawing a columns of regular text split to accommodate
separate text box. It’s been that way all the headline?
the way through the evolution of InDesign, All these issues are resolved with the
and of QuarkXPress before it, and of new Span Columns dialog, as well as using
PageMaker before that. Drawing new text basic controls on the Options bar. In addition,
boxes for headlines was just one of those you can use the Split Columns section of
things we had to do and never really the dialog to control how text behaves when
questioned the matter. multiple sub-columns appear within a single
Steve Caplin is a designer and
Now InDesign CS5 breaks that rule, with regular column of text. illustrator working for a range of
the ability to create text that spans multiple There are also changes to the way InDesign national newspapers. His best-selling
columns. In order to do this, the team at handles adding extra width to a text box, as How to Cheat in Photoshop, now in
Adobe has had to solve all kinds of issues well as a new method for balancing text in its fourth edition, is published by
that arise: what happens to text before and multi-column boxes. We’ll look at those new
after the multi-span headline? How do you technologies ﬁrst. Kit required InDesign CS5
All this type is created with just a single text box in InDesign CS5, using the new Split and Span options.
18 June 2010
1. Text frames before CS5
We’ve long had the ability to split a text box
into multiple columns, set by a small controller
on the Options bar. When you make the whole
text box wider, the two columns widen to ﬁll the
full width of the space. When you’re designing
to a grid layout, though, you need to maintain
the column width. In the past, this involved
making the text box wider and then changing
the number of columns.
Columns before widening text box
2. Snap frames to ﬁxed column widths
A new item in the Text Frame Options dialog
lets you set a Fixed Column Width. Now, when
you make the text box wider, it snaps to the
next multiple of the column width you’ve
already used. This means you can change
from a two-column box to a three-column box
with a single action by dragging out the width.
Columns after widening text box
3. Balance words across columns
You can also check the new Balance Columns
box in the Text Frame Options dialog to make
InDesign automatically reﬂow the text so it
ﬁnishes ﬂush at the bottom of the words. This
will override the actual text box height: note
how there’s space beneath all the text in this
box, but it isn’t used.
18 June 2010
4. Justiﬁcation on the last column
When you choose Vertical Justiﬁcation as the
text ﬁtting method, the default behaviour is to
ﬁt the ﬁrst two columns of type according to
the leading value you’ve set and then space
Justiﬁed last columns
out the ﬁnal column. With the Balance
Columns option checked, however, all the
type is spaced out evenly, right across all
the columns in the text box.
5. Diﬀerent treatments for headlines
and body copy
A new feature in InDesign is the ability to
spread text across multiple columns using
the simple pop-up menu on the Options bar.
Curiously, this appears for the Character
section of the Options bar, and not for the
Paragraph section. Here, we’ve set the
headline to span the full width of the box, but
because we haven’t yet formatted the type,
the change is barely visible.
6. Words get in the way
When we set the type in our headline font, we
can see that problems start to appear. It
spans the full width, as expected, but the
descenders are interfering with the body copy
below: no self-respecting designer would ever
set a headline so close to the text that follows.
18 June 2010
7. Deal with disruptive descenders
The dialog to control this behaviour is in a
submenu named Span Columns, found in
the pop-up menu at the top of the Paragraph
panel. When the Span Columns option is
chosen, you can set the number of columns
to span, as well as the space before and after
the selected paragraph. Increasing this ﬁgure
produces a much cleaner result.
8. Intermediate spans
As well as setting a paragraph to span the full
width of the text box, you can also choose to
span just a limited number of columns. So
while your headline runs right across the page,
you can set your standﬁrst to occupy just the
width of the ﬁrst two columns.
9. More spacing options
Once again, you can use the Span Columns
dialog to set the behaviour in more detail. If
you don’t have a baseline grid set for your body
text style, you can adjust the spacing within
this dialog to provide a line break between
the standﬁrst and the text that follows.
10. Clean breaks between paragraphs
When you add an additional headline, setting it
to span multiple columns, InDesign ﬂows the
preceding text above it. When you set a new
paragraph to span the full width of the box, the
preceding text is placed above it and the text
that follows the new headline appears below.
18 June 2010
11. Get smart with intermediate
spans and alignment
With the headline set to span just two of the
three columns, InDesign really starts to get
clever. Now, the ﬁrst column of the main text
runs right to the bottom of the text box, while
the next two columns stop above the new
headline, with all the following text appearing
in two columns beneath the new headline.
12. Nest columns inside each other…
You can set text to occupy multiple sub-
columns within a single regular column as
well. In this example, we have a list of eight
countries in alphabetical order, each one typed
on a new line. If we want to split these within
the column, we ﬁrst have to select all the text
we want to split.
13. …to improve presentation of lists
Choosing Split 2 from the pop-up menu on the
Options bar (again, in the Character section)
will divide the selected text into two columns
within the main column grid. There is no
option to control the order of placement,
however: as this example shows, the text
always runs down the left sub-column and
then down the right one.
14. Tweak the surrounding space
and the gutter
When you choose the Span Columns dialog
from the pop-up menu in the Paragraph panel,
you get a whole new set of options. You can
set the number of columns to split, as well as
the space before and after. You can also set
the inside gutter and the outside gutter (the
overall inset value of the new sub-columns).
Enhance your iWeb
18 June 2010
blog with widgets
If you want to add rich content to your blog but don’t know anything
about web programming, don’t worry, iWeb’s widgets have the answer.
ince we showed you how to publish a page template, but they’re rather dull. First,
blog with iWeb (see MacUser, 21 May, we’re going to spice up that page with a list
p98), we’ve populated ours with a of recent blog posts so that visitors can
small collection of gig reviews so that our site jump straight to your latest thoughts and
has some real substance. Now we’re going conversations with other people who come
to enhance our blog with widgets. In iWeb, to your website.
widgets are a way to include rich content on iWeb only has a small selection of widgets,
your site without having to know anything but one of them – the HTML Snippet – is
about programming for the web. incredibly versatile. Some sites provide HTML
Alan Stonebridge spends his working
While the blog is a major section of our code that lets you republish selected bits of life in front of Macs – and they’ve
site, it’s only part of it. We want visitors to information on other sites, such as MySpace taken over his free time, too.
see an opening page that better describes or your own blog, and it’s this widget that
the content of the site. Every theme that’s is key to using that code in a site built with
provided with iWeb includes a Welcome iWeb. We’ll show you how to do that, too. Kit required iWeb, TextWrangler
Widgets can really
bring your website to
life. iWeb comes with
nine widgets including
HTML Snippet, which
lets you pull in content
from other websites.
18 June 2010
1. Before you start… 2. Add a Welcome page
You’ll need to add a few blog entries to your site, ideally a minimum The blog is just part of our website. You can see above that we’ve
of three. We covered how to do this last time, but if you don’t have added other sections to it. With that in mind, we want visitors to arrive
that tutorial to hand, quickly add a blog page to your site (File > New on a Welcome page rather than the blog index. Choose File > New
Page), click its index page in the left pane then add a handful of new Page and pick the Welcome page for your chosen theme. If this new
ones for the time being. They needn’t contain real content, but you’ll page isn’t the top item (beneath your site’s name) in the left pane,
need these dummy entries for testing purposes. drag it up to the top of the list to set it as your site’s ﬁrst page.
3. About widgets
This is just a page template, so you can
adapt it. We want to display recent blog
1 2 entries beneath the picture on the left
by using a widget. iWeb’s widgets are
found in the Media Browser. If that’s not
visible on the right-hand side of iWeb’s
window, choose View > Show Media
Browser, then click the Widgets tab.
The widgets that come with iWeb
1. MobileMe Gallery satellite and hybrid views. However, Apple’s 6. Countdown
If you subscribe to MobileMe, you can widget doesn’t let them switch to Street View, When you’re looking forward to a big event,
publish photo galleries online with just though, but there’s a workaround, which we’ll you can display a timer that counts down
a few clicks. This widget displays these show you in a moment. to a speciﬁc date and time, and you can
galleries within the structure and design choose whether it’s counted down in
you’ve picked for your website. 4. Google AdSense anything from seconds to years.
AdSense looks at content on a web page and
2. YouTube inserts ads that it thinks are relevant. You’ll 7. RSS Feed
You can publish videos direct to YouTube need an AdSense account, but don’t worry if RSS is a summary of a website’s contents
from iMovie and QuickTime. Add this widget you don’t have one as iWeb provides a link that tells readers when something new has
to display your own creations or others that to more detailed information about AdSense been published. Apple Mail has a built-in
you ﬁnd interesting. Remember that some and helps you create an account to use it. RSS reader that works a lot like a mailbox,
YouTube videos can’t be played inside other and alternative applications are available
sites, so don’t forget to test the widget 5. iSight Photo and iSight Movie for the Mac and iPhone OS. We’re going to
once you’ve made it live on your site. These widgets capture still photos and use an RSS feed to show the latest blog
movies from the iSight camera built into most entries on the front page of our site.
3. Google Maps Macs without having to do it with a separate
Enter an address into this widget and it’ll application. Instead, they’re placed directly 8. HTML Snippet
display the location using Google Maps. onto the page. It’s not a substitute for a This is a general-purpose widget that pulls
You can pick whether the zoom control, properly edited video but it’s ﬁne for quick in content from other websites. We’ll cover
search bar and address bubble are visible, pieces to camera, and you can tweak colours a few of the many things it can be used for
and visitors can switch between map, in still photos using the Adjust palette. later on in this tutorial.
18 June 2010
4. Prepare a spot for your widget
The blog is a major section of our website, so we want to prominently
highlight recent entries on the Welcome page. Click the picture to
select it and small handles will appear around its edges. Drag the
middle one on the bottom edge
upwards. Notice that iWeb defaults to
resizing images in proportion, but we
want to change the box’s dimensions.
TIP Your picture
longer ﬁll the frame.
Undo this with Cmd-Z before.
In the ﬂoating palette
Open the Inspector (View > Show
beneath the picture
Inspector) and select the Metrics tab frame, drag the slider
(third from the right). Untick the box to resize the image in a
labelled Constrain proportions and picture box. Click Edit
drag the box’s bottom handle again. Mask and reposition the
Now it distorts. If you’ve already image in the frame by
placed your own image in it, press clicking and dragging it.
Cmd-C to copy it and Cmd-V to paste Click Edit Mask to ﬁnish.
it back in to ﬁx the distortion.
iWeb creates the RSS
ﬁle for you. Removing
the Subscribe button
from a page doesn’t
remove the RSS feed,
and visitors will see it’s
available from a button
in the address bar of
their web browser.
5. Think about what’s behind the widget W k the addr
6. Work out th address of your RSS f d
Our Welcome page’s design includes a scrap of notepaper that Before you can use the widget, you’ll need the address of your blog’s
contains some text (and another piece of text that says ‘keep out’ RSS feed. The easiest way to get it is to visit your live blog (File > Visit
which we’ve removed). Double-click the text on the paper and type Published Site). Click to your blog, then right-click the Subscribe button
‘Latest blog entries’ to explain where the links go. We’ve resized shown on the page and choose Copy Link. Keep this address on the
and repositioned the paper to form a background for the widget. Clipboard or paste it into a text ﬁle for now. It should end with rss.xml.
7. Add the RSS widget 8. Customise the content
Drag the RSS Feed widget from the Media Browser into the space We only want to display entry titles.
beneath the picture on the Welcome page. Click the widget on the
page and paste the RSS feed’s address into the Subscription URL
Click the widget and untick the box
in the ﬂoating palette to turn off
TIP Resize the
widget to ﬁt on
top of the paper, leaving a
ﬁeld in the ﬂoating palette, then click Apply. Right now it looks a mess. dates. Also drag the slider for article comfortable margin around
We’ll ﬁx that, but it’s best to show some real content in the box before length to the left to turn them off. it so that text doesn’t
you adjust its size and position to ensure text isn’t wrapping to the We’ve reduced the number of touch the background’s
point that it becomes hard to read. entries to three. If there are too edge or spill outside of it.
many to ﬁt in the box, iWeb adds
a stylised scroll bar that is ﬁddly
to operate on iPhone OS.
18 June 2010
9. Publish and test your widget
Don’t forget to change the page’s title. Finally, choose File > Publish
Site Changes so you can see the widget in action. Click a link and it
will open in a new window. We’ll change this so that visitors don’t
get annoyed by the extra window. Download and install
TIP iWeb should
modiﬁed ﬁle alone, but
Go to your iDisk and browse to Web/Sites/<your_site_
Copy the RSSFeed.js ﬁle to your Mac and open it in
software updates may
update iWeb’s widgets TextWrangler. Don’t be scared by this code. All you need
and change that to do here is press Cmd-F, then search for _blank and
situation, so test rep
replace every instance in the ﬁle with _self. That tells a
that this behaviour is web browser to open links from the RSS widget in the
retained if you update same
sam window. This will also affect RSS widgets on your
or upgrade iWeb. sit that link to external sites. Save the modiﬁed ﬁle and
cop it back to the server.
10. Use Google’s Street View on your site
iWeb’s HTML Snippet widget is the most versatile as it
allows you to pull all sorts of other content into your
site. Click your blog’s Entries page in the left pane
and create a new one. The example shown here talks
about an upcoming concert, so we want to show the
venue using Street View.
Visit maps.google.co.uk and search for a location
you want to show. Drag the orange ﬁgure onto the
adjacent street to switch to Street View. Find the right
spot and viewing angle on the street, then click the
word Link at the top-right. Copy the contents of the
second box to the Clipboard.
Go back to iWeb, click the HTML Snippet widget
on the page and paste the Clipboard’s contents into
the ﬂoating palette that appears. Press Apply, then
publish the changes to the site to test it. We’ve
cheated a little by changing the height and width
values at the start of the code so that it ﬁts better
in the space at the top of the blog entry.
There’s a range of visual 11. Automatically show
styles to choose from.
Other users might have
your favourite music
created one that ﬁts Try the same widget with last.fm,
your site design. which lets you publish details of
what you’ve been listening to.
You’ll need a free account and
the Scrobbler application
Pick which chart you (look under Do More at
want to display. We’ve the bottom of the site),
chosen My Recent
Tracks and left it at the which tells last.fm
default of 10 tracks. what you’ve played in
iTunes and on your iPod.
Spotify has this feature built in.
Once you’re set up, log into
last.fm and look for Chart
Images under Do More.
CHART IN ACTION
Select the code in this
box, copy it to the
Clipboard, paste it into
another HTML Snippet
widget, then apply and
republish to see the
widget live on your site.
18 June 2010
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its most important
features in detail, so
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buy your first model.
Five is the version at which Safari
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feature and hooks for developers who
want to create their own add-ons for
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mean for you, and is it good enough
to see off increasing competition from
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* Contents subject to change.
18 June 2010
Printing on the Mac
Working with printers is easier in Snow Leopard than in earlier versions
of Mac OS X. Even if you don’t own a printer, you can still print PDFs.
Words Alan Stonebridge
he Mac’s printing capabilities
are far friendlier than computers
from bygone ages. In fact, Snow
Leopard makes the whole business even
easier than in previous versions of Mac OS
X, as the latest version of Software Update
delivers updates to printer software from
many major manufacturers: HP, Canon,
Epson, Brother, Lexmark, Samsung, Xerox,
Fuji Xerox and Ricoh.
This means trawling through support
▲ Snow Leopard downloads new printer
pages on a manufacturer’s website for software for you. Look in Software
the latest drivers is no longer necessary. Update’s preferences to see which version
is installed in case you’ve accidentally
Instead, open Software Update from the told Mac OS X to ignore an update.
Apple menu and look for a manufacturer-
speciﬁc bundle of new drivers, typically for
several printer models. The update is then
delivered and installed on your Mac in exactly
the same way as updates for Apple’s own
TIP Although drivers come from Software
Update, check what else is on the
disc that comes bundled with new printers. There
software – and automatically, if you haven’t may be some useful applications on it.
altered your settings.
Snow Leopard has been around for a while
Just about to upgrade to Snow Leopard? now and many applications have been
updated to run on it. If you’ve brought your
applications up to date and are looking to
upgrade to the latest version of Mac OS X,
you should also check compatibility of your
peripherals. You’ll ﬁnd a list of compatible
printers and scanners at Apple’s website
(support.apple.com/kb/ht3669), but don’t
panic if your printer is absent from the list.
Apple regularly updates it, although it can
be several weeks out of date at times.
In that situation, it’s worth checking
the manufacturer’s site. If nothing else,
it may conﬁrm that there are no plans to
offer updated drivers that work with Snow
Leopard, or it may list a date when new
software is expected to become available.
If that still fails to turn up any concrete
information, there’s another option to try
out before abandoning plans to upgrade
▲ Check the date on Apple’s list of Snow Leopard-compatible printers. It could be several weeks out of date. or buying a new printer.
18 June 2010
Get older printers working with Gutenprint
Gutenprint is an open-source project that
provides software for a wide range of printers,
including many older models that aren’t
directly compatible with Snow Leopard. You’ll
ﬁnd a list of supported models at gutenprint.
php. The Mac version is found at gimp-print.
Unlike drivers provided by printer
manufacturers, new versions of Gutenprint
aren’t delivered through Software Update, so
you’ll have to go to the site if you run into any
difﬁculties. As well as checking what issues
the latest version ﬁxes, visit the Help forum
to see if other users have encountered the
same problem. You can always start your own
topic to ask experienced users to help you
get to the root of the issue. Don’t throw out your old printer just yet. It may still work with Snow Leopard once you’ve installed Gutenprint.
Save money and the environment
One of the most useful features
in Mac OS X is the ability to
print many kinds of documents
and web pages to PDF ﬁles.
This enables you to keep
copies of pages, so you can read them on
your iPhone or iPad in an appropriate app, or
keep them for archival purposes.
Creating a PDF is as simple as pressing
Cmd-P. You don’t need to install any printer
software, as it’s built into the system and
is available right away from the ﬁrst time
you turn on any Mac. It will also help you
reduce the amount of wasted paper and
ink, which is good for both your pocket and
the environment. 01
1 After calling up the print dialog (Cmd-P),
look to its bottom-left corner for a button
labelled PDF. Click it to reveal a list of tasks
that includes saving to a ﬁle, emailing the 03
PDF, and even saving order conﬁrmations
to a folder called Web Receipts in your
Documents folder – great if you make a lot 02
of online purchases, as it staves off the
temptation to save to the Desktop and ﬁle
it by hand at a later date.
2 Some applications, such as Evernote,
may add their own plug-ins to the list.
4 Choose this item to customise the
list. Items can’t be reordered unless
you remove and add them back into the
That allows you to send content right to them list one at a time. You’ll ﬁnd the standard
without having to use more tedious methods. plug-ins that come with Mac OS in /Library/
PDF Services (start browsing from the top of
3 You can create your own plug-ins to
suit your way of working, perhaps to
your hard drive).
ﬁle different types of documents without
having to move them around with the
Finder. That’s done by creating a Print Plug-
5 To share your customised Print Plug-ins
with colleagues, browse to ~/Library/
PDF Services (~ means start at your user
in workﬂow in Automator, which contains folder). They can add them to the PDF pop-up 05
a sequence of actions that tell your Mac menu by clicking Edit Menu at the bottom of
what to do with the ﬁle. The plug-in is then the list, and then clicking the ‘+’ button and
accessible from this list. pointing at the workﬂow ﬁle.
Beginners’ Guide to...
18 June 2010
Mac OS X’s Dashboard is where you store and
run Widgets. Here’s a taste of how it works.
he Dashboard is a hidden layer keyboard. If you have a modern aluminium
of Mac OS X. It sits behind the Apple keyboard – either wireless or wired –
main interface and lets you run tiny you’ll see that your F4 key has a symbol like a
applications, called Widgets, and call on speed gauge. This is your Dashboard button.
them when you need them. But isn’t this the On an older keyboard or a third-party device,
way all applications run – sitting dormant in tap F12 to achieve the same end result.
your Applications folder until you give them Your applications and interface will be
a double-click? Well, not quite. Each Widget knocked back as the Dashboard fades
is like a tiny web page, built using HTML, style in, complete with your active Widgets. To
makes it intelligent. press the Dashboard button again or click
The Dashboard is called up from your anywhere between your Widgets where
keyboard, but precisely what key you need to you can see the Desktop or applications
use depends on the age and make of your showing through.
Click on the Manage Widgets button However, third-party Widgets that
above the Springboard to call up the you’ve installed subsequently can be
dialog through which you can activate and deleted from your system entirely by
deactivate the Widgets that appear there. clicking the red delete button to the
Widgets shown in this interface are split right of each one.
into two types. Those that come as part Click the More Widgets button at
of Mac OS X can’t be uninstalled entirely, the bottom of this interface to visit
and so all you can do is hide them by the Widgets download page on Apple’s
unchecking the box to the left of their website to download a wide choice of
names in the dialog. extra Widgets.
18 June 2010
Each of the small windows on this layer The dimmed area that covers your
is a Widget. They can be rearranged screen is the Dashboard layer. This
however you like by clicking on any helps to separate the Widgets from
inactive area and dragging them. As the rest of your operating system.
you hover over a Widget, you’ll see a
small ‘i’ appear in a bottom corner.
Click it to ﬂip over the Widget and
change its settings.
Each Widget has its own close
button. Click this and the Widget
RIPPLE EFFECT will disappear as though it’s being
sucked down a plug hole. You
This isn’t distortion in our grab: the should close Widgets that you
ripple effect is caused by dropping aren’t using before leaving the
a Widget onto your Dashboard. It’s a Dashboard, as they each take
quirky touch that will only work if you resources from your Mac, even
have a suitably powerful graphics card, when you can’t see them.
and it quickly subsides as the Widget
Your Widgets are organised on the Springboard. Clicking
on one drops it onto the Dashboard area. If you have too
many Widgets to ﬁt on one screen it will ﬂow onto further
Springboards that run off the edge of the screen. Move
to either end and click the arrow to move to the next
or previous run of Widgets.
Switching to the Mac:
18 June 2010
Instant messaging with iChat
Apple’s instant messaging application looks fab and is packed with
features, but you may want to install some alternatives alongside it.
n your old PC, you probably used iChat also lets you share your screen with downloading it, take a look at some of the
Windows Live Messenger (previously other people, so you can work collaboratively great features in iChat. It’s still good for
called MSN Messenger) to chat to on a project or, if your computer is playing up, chatting to friends who use Macs or have
friends and family online. You won’t ﬁnd it hand over control of the pointer and keyboard AOL Instant Messenger (Aim) accounts, and
in your Mac’s Applications folder, though, to a friend who’s more knowledgeable about it’s packed with customisable features.
because Apple provides a different instant the Mac and able to lend you a helping hand. You’re not limited to one chat application,
messaging program called iChat for sending However, iChat presents you with a of course. There’s nothing stopping you from
short text messages. Most Macs have an dilemma: it can’t connect to Microsoft’s installing Microsoft’s application and running
iSight camera and a microphone built into chat network, so it cuts you off from your it alongside iChat, and there are some
them, and they can be used in iChat, too, old friends. MSN Messenger is available other excellent alternatives that are worth
so you can see who you’re talking to. for the Mac, but before you skip straight to downloading, too.
1 When you ﬁrst run iChat, it will prompt
you for some account details. You can
iChat with accounts
accounts If you don’t
use iChat with Aim accounts If you don’t
ave one click this button run hrough
have one click this button to run through
a short (and free) registration process.
TIP If you ﬁnd it hard
to tell two people
apart, right-click one of them
and choose Show Info. In
the window that opens, go
to the Address Card tab.
Here, you can override your
friend’s chosen picture and
ﬁll out their full name.
2 Once you’re online, the Aim
Buddy List window should
appear. Add friends to the list
3 Groups are shown as grey,
horizontal bars. When they’re
collapsed, they show the number
4 While you’re in a
conversation, or with a
contact selected in the buddy
by clicking the ‘+’ button. You of people in that group and how list, these buttons let you start a
can organise them into groups, many of them are online. voice call or video chat, or share
to keep your family, friends and your screen with that person.
work contacts separate.
18 June 2010
1 Turn on the menu bar icon
iChat is packed with preferences (Cmd-,) that tailor it to behave
better and not get in your way. Under the General tab, turn on the
2 Peronalise iChat’s appearance
You can change the appearance of iChat in the Messages tab. If
you dislike a friend’s colour and font choices, you can change them to
status icon in the menu bar, so you can ﬂip between Available and something more to your taste. This tab also stops your Desktop from
Busy in a couple of clicks as you work in another application. becoming cluttered with windows and lets you save chat transcripts.
3 Tweak iChat’s behaviour
The Alerts tab lets you specify how iChat
responds to certain events. You can pick from
a long list of sounds or choose your own to
help identify that it’s iChat alerting you to a
notiﬁcation. If that’s too intrusive, you can set
the application’s icon to bounce in the Dock,
which it will do even if you’ve hidden the Dock
to free up a bit of space. The icon will still
bounce into view until you attend to it.
iChat can also use Mac OS X’s speech
engine to speak out loud, which may be
helpful to family members who aren’t
accustomed to using computers.
Alternatives to iChat
Messenger for Mac Skype Adium
Microsoft recently Skype also supports Adium is a popular choice
released Messenger 8, audio and video chats because it supports so
which is the ﬁrst Mac from one computer to many different messaging
version of the software another. It’s also a good networks. It’s also more
to let you speak to and choice if you want to customisable than any
see any friends who use Windows, although speak to family who are a long distance away. of the other applications
it’s also still a beta version. Still, if all your It’s not limited to talking over computers, here. You can even strip away all the
friends use Microsoft’s chat network, this though. Pay for some call credit and you’ll be window borders and display your friends
is all you need to keep in touch with them. able to phone their landline or mobile from in a minimalist strip down the side of your
Get it from microsoft.com/mac. your Mac. Grab it from skype.com. screen. Download it from adium.im.
THE MAC RANGE
18 June 2010
Apple has a variety of Macs to suit different
needs and pockets. Find out which one’s for you.
pple’s Mac range can be split into but the most power-hungry user; the Mac mini
six families: three desktop and three is a budget option for those who already have
laptop. Of these, two – the Mac Pro a keyboard, mouse and display; the MacBook
and MacBook Pro – are aimed at professional is the budget laptop; and the MacBook Air is
users. Of the others, the iMac will suit anyone for anyone who values portability.
The Mac Pro hasn’t been updated in over The quad-core model costs £1940 and
a year and, with the imminent launch of has 3GB of 1066MHz DDR3 ECC SDRam,
Intel’s six-core ‘Gulftown’ processors, a which can be upgraded to 8GB. The eight-
new model is likely to appear soon. The core Mac Pro costs £2553 and boasts
new chips, which will be marketed as 6GB of the same high-spec memory, which
Xeon 5600, will run at up to 3.33GHz can be upgraded to 32GB.
and have 12MB of Level 3 cache. They’ll Both have 640GB Serial ATA, 7200rpm
almost certainly be used in dual-processor hard drives, although storage can be
conﬁgurations the Mac Pro, giving a total expanded up to 4TB via four 1TB serial
of 12 cores. drives in the Mac’s four drive bays. There’s
The current Mac Pro range comprises also an 18x double-layer SuperDrive for
two models, one with a 2.66GHz quad-core reading and writing DVDs and CDs.
processor and the other with two 2.26GHz The Mac Pro’s Nvidia GeForce GT 120
quad-core processors. Both have 8MB of graphics card with 512MB of GDDR3
shared Level 3 cache and an option to memory provides both Mini DisplayPort
upgrade to 2.93GHz, and an integrated and dual-link DVI video output, providing
memory controller with three channels almost three times the previous
that delivers up to 2.4 times the memory performance. For even more graphics
bandwidth of the previous model, while power, the ATI Radeon HD 4870 card
cutting memory latency by up to 40%. is also available.
The current family of iMacs features 21.5in and 27in
16:9 widescreen displays. The enclosure is aluminium and
the glass screen covers the full width of the computer.
The iMacs have Core 2 Duo processors starting at
3.06GHz, which can be upgraded to 3.33GHz. There’s also
a 27in model with a 2.66GHz Core i5 quad-core processor,
which can be upgraded to Core i7.
All four iMacs come with 4GB of Ram, which can be
upgraded to 8GB on the 21.5in models and 16GB on the
27in iMacs. One of the 3.06GHz, 21.5in models has a
500GB hard drive, while the others all ship with 1TB disks.
Those drives can be upgraded to 2TB, but the 500GB
disk can’t be changed. For graphics, the least expensive
model has an Nvidia GeForce 9400M, the next two have
ATI Radeon HD 4670 chips with 256MB of Ram, while
the Core i5 model has an ATI Radeon HD 4850 with
512MB of Ram. The Core 2 Duo 27in model can have
its graphics upgraded to the Radeon HD 4850.
All iMacs have a built-in iSight video camera, AirPort
Extreme 802.11n wiﬁ networking, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR,
Gigabit Ethernet, a total of four USB 2 ports, one
FireWire 800 port and a built-in SD card slot.
18 June 2010
MACBOOK MACBOOK AIR MACBOOK PRO
There’s only one MacBook currently The two MacBook Air models have Core 2 Duo The 13in MacBook Pro now has
available – a 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo processors running at 1.86GHz and 2.13GHz, the Nvidia GeForce 320M graphics
model in a white polycarbonate and cost £1174 and £1378 respectively. processor, which has 48 processing
unibody enclosure, costing £849. Both have 2GB of 1066MHz DDR3 SDRam cores, three times more than the
It has 2GB of DDR3 SDRam, a 250GB and Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics. The 9400M processor in its predecessor.
hard drive, an Nvidia GeForce 320M 1.86GHz model has a 120GB hard drive, A 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo with a
graphics processor and an 8x double- while the 2.13GHz MacBook Air has a 128GB 250GB hard drive costs £999 and a
layer SuperDrive. There’s a Gigabit solid-state drive. Neither has a SuperDrive 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo and 320GB
Ethernet connection, two USB 2 ports, nor an SD card slot. Both have a single USB hard drive costs £1249. Both models
and digital/analogue audio input socket and audio output jack. Battery life is have 4GB of Ram and a quoted battery
and output. Battery life is quoted quoted at ﬁve hours. The MacBook Air and life of 10 hours.
at 10 hours. all the MacBook Pros have Mini DisplayPort The 15in and 17in models get Intel
connectors to attach external displays. These Core i5 and i7 processors, and a new
can be used to connect to DVI and VGA graphics-switching technology that
displays by using adaptors, which are sold toggles between more powerful Nvidia
separately. All have built-in iSight cameras, GeForce GT 330M and energy-efﬁcient
802.11n wiﬁ and Bluetooth. Intel HD Graphics processors. The
Core i5 and i7 processors include an
integrated memory controller, hyper-
threading, and Turbo Boost.
The 15in MacBook Pro is available
in three conﬁgurations: one with a
2.4GHz Intel Core i5 and 320GB hard
MAC MINI drive priced at £1499; one with a
The Mac mini ships in three 2.53GHz Intel Core i5 and 500GB
conﬁgurations. Two have a hard drive at £1649; and one with a
SuperDrive and Snow Leopard 2.66GHz Intel Core i7 and 500GB hard
installed, while the other drive at £1799. The 17in model has a
one has two hard drives, no 2.53GHz Intel Core i5 and 500GB hard
SuperDrive and ships with drive for £1899. All the above MacBook
Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server Pros have 4GB of Ram.
installed on one drive. All models have LED-backlit wide-
The Server model has a 2.53GHz Core angle displays at up to 1920 x 1200
2 Duo processor, dual 500GB hard drives, pixels on the 17in, while the 15in
4GB of 1066MHz DDR3 SDRam and 2.26GHz model can have its processor model is available with an optional
Nvidia’s GeForce 9400M graphics chip. upgraded to 2.53GHz, its Ram boosted high-resolution 1680 x 1050 display.
The hard drive, memory and graphics card to 4GB, and the hard drive expanded to Apple also offers 128GB, 256GB
can’t be upgraded. 320GB or 500GB. The other model can and 512GB solid-state drives (SSDs) as
Of the other two models, one has a have a processor upgrade to 2.66GHz and an option on all models, together with
2.26GHz Core 2 Duo processor, 2GB of a 500GB hard drive. other build-to-order options that include
Ram and an 160GB hard drive. The other Both of the latter models have the bigger and/or faster 7200rpm hard
has a 2.53GHz Core 2 Duo processor, Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics chip and drives and the option to double the
4GB of Ram and a 320GB hard drive. The an 8x SuperDrive. amount of memory to 8GB of Ram.
Every Mac desktop has Gigabit Ethernet, while the iMac has four. The Mac Pro and Pro also have Gigabit Ethernet, while
Bluetooth and 802.11n wiﬁ as standard, iMac also have FireWire 800 connections: the MacBook Air needs a USB-to-
with the exception of the Mac Pro, on four on the Mac Pro and one on the iMac. Ethernet adaptor. All models have an
which the wiﬁ card is optional. The Mac All laptops have 802.11n wiﬁ and iSight camera, microphone and at least
mini and Mac Pro have ﬁve USB 2 ports, Bluetooth. The MacBook and MacBook one speaker.
18 June 2010
Want one of these small objects of desire? Check
their specs to find the one with your name on it.
iPOD SHUFFLE iPOD NANO iPOD CLASSIC
The iPod shufﬂe comes in two capacities – The nano is available in nine colours, The iPod classic is the most capacious of
2GB (£46) and 4GB (£60) – and a choice of including silver, black and (Product) all Apple’s music players. It comes in either
silver, black, pink, blue and green. The latest Red. There’s an 8GB version, which black or silver. Both have a capacity of 160GB
model has a new feature called VoiceOver, costs £118, and a 16GB model, which and cost £193. The classic plays video, like
which announces the name of the artist and will set you back £138. The nano now its nano and touch siblings, and you can ﬂip
track that’s currently playing. The supplied has a built-in FM radio with a buffer, so through album covers using the click wheel,
earphones have an inline remote control and you can pause live radio. It also has a thanks to Cover Flow.
there’s a clip on the rear of the shufﬂe to built-in video camera.
allow you to attach it to clothing.
The touch is best thought of as an iPhone
without the phone features or a 3G data
connection. It comes in three capacities: 8GB
for £152, 32GB for £234 and 64GB for £306.
It features a 3.5in, 480 x 320-pixel display, and
comes with several built-in apps such as Safari,
Mail and Address Book. The touch supports
any iPhone app that doesn’t require a 3G
connection or GPS, or the iPhone’s camera.
18 June 2010
The iPad, Apple’s new tablet
computer, has a 9.7in
screen with a resolution
of 1024 x 768 pixels. It
comes in 16GB, 32GB and
64GB versions, and you
can choose a model that
uses only wiﬁ to connect
to the Internet or that has
a 3G chip to allow you to
connect from anywhere.
Like the iPhone and iPod
touch, it also has support
for Bluetooth. It uses the
same Dock connection
as the iPod and iPhone
for syncing and charging,
and also has a microphone,
built-in speaker and
As you’ll know if you read our iPhone buyers’
guide (see MacUser, 12 March 2010, p44),
deciding which iPhone to buy is a mineﬁeld.
However, choosing the hardware is less
complicated than selecting a pricing plan.
There are two very different models available.
The iPhone 3G comes with 8GB of storage
and costs approximately £349 on a pay-as-
you-go tariff. It has a slower processor than
the 3GS though, and lacks that model’s built-
in compass and upgraded camera.
There iPhone 3GS is available in two
capacities: 16GB (£449 on pay as you
go) and 32GB (£549 on pay as you go).
Both are available in black or white. The
3GS can record and edit video as well as
still images, has a 3-megapixel sensor,
and has a lens that can auto focus or
allow you to focus manually. The other
differentiating feature between it and
the 3G is Voice Control – a feature that
enables you to control some features of
the iPhone by speaking into the mic.
APPLE PERIPHERALS RANGE
18 June 2010
Whether you want to stream music and video to your
TV or set up a wireless network, Apple’s got it covered.
Apple TV is the company’s Trojan Horse The idea of Apple TV is that you connect
Images Courtesy of Apple
for the living room. Rather than produce it over a wireless network to a Mac or PC
a fully-ﬂedged media centre as many PCs running iTunes, and stream music, photos
manufacturers did a few years ago, Apple and video. You can also download media
came up with a box that connects to a TV directly from the iTunes Store and stream
using HDMI or component video cables and clips from YouTube. Apple describes it as a
has very little inside it, save for a CPU, a hobby, but it may take it more seriously now
160GB hard drive and a wiﬁ chip. that Google has announced Google TV.
18 June 2010
Apple’s wireless router is a Time Capsule
without the hard drive, or more accurately, the
Time Capsule is AirPort Extreme with a hard
drive. Like the Time Capsule, AirPort Extreme
can connect to the 2.4GHz and 5GHz 802.11n
bands at the same time, and it allows you to
set up a guest network with limited access.
AIRPORT EXPRESS It has an NAT ﬁrewall with support for MAC
Airport Express is designed as a way to address ﬁltering and Radius authentication,
stream music from iTunes on your Mac to a and you can limit access from speciﬁc
hiﬁ in another room. You plug it into a power computers to certain times of the day.
socket, connect the hiﬁ to its minijack and
add it to your wireless network. You can then
select it in iTunes and send music to the hiﬁ.
AirPort Express can do more than that,
though. Connect its Gigabit Ethernet port to
your ADSL or cable modem, and you have a
wireless access point. Connect a USB printer When Apple introduced Time Machine
to its USB port, and it becomes a means of with Mac OS X Leopard, it decided that
sharing a printer wirelessly. And if you plug it needed new hardware to make the
it into a power socket on the outer limits of most of it. Time Capsule is a combined
your current wireless network, it’s a bridge, router and network hard drive. It can
extending that network. be used like any other network storage
device, but is designed to function as a
backup destination for Time Machine.
It comes in two versions; one with a
1TB hard drive, the other with double that
storage capacity. Both have four Gigabit
Ethernet ports, one to connect to an ADSL
or cable modem, the other three for local
network devices. There’s also a USB port
to allow you to connect an additional hard
drive or share a USB printer.
18 June 2010
FOR MORE DEALS GO TO WWW.MACUSER.CO.UK/CLASSIFIEDS
114 COOL KIT
119 PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
122 LOCAL DEALER GUIDE
18 June 2010
FOR MORE DETAILS GO TO WWW.MACUSER.CO.UK/REVIEWS
The who’s who of top products
Don’t shell out for a product until you’ve checked out our top-fives, from
video editing and DTP sofware to printers, monitors and digital cameras.
Top 5 displays
The ﬁrst LED-based Cinema
Display is designed for
MacBooks with a Mini
DisplayPort, and it can be
used to charge them, too.
LG Flatron M2294 Wide LCD TV Monitor
Rating 4 Reviewed 07/11/08 URL lge.com/uk
Samsung SyncMaster F2380
Rating 4 Reviewed 26/02/10 URL samsung.com/uk
Rating 4 Reviewed 01/02/08 URL eizo.co.uk
Samsung SyncMaster XL2370
Rating 4 Reviewed 06/11/09 URL samsung.com/uk
Top 5 external hard drives
DESK FOR MAC
An inexpensive 1TB external
hard disk that delivers good
performance. It has one USB 2
and two FireWire 800 ports.
Western Digital My Book Studio II 4TB
Rating 5 Reviewed 03/07/09 URL wdc.com
G-Tech G-Drive 2TB
Rating 4 Reviewed 26/02/10 URL g-technology.com
Freecom Hard Drive Pro 1TB
Rating 4 Reviewed 02/01/09 URL freecom.com/uk
LaCie 5big Network 5TB
Rating 4 Reviewed 21/11/08 URL lacie.com
Top 5 DSLR cameras
18 June 2010
A 12.3-megapixel sensor,
eight frames per second
shooting, HD video and dual
memory card slots all packed
into a sturdy metal body
make the D300S a winner.
Rating 5 Reviewed 03/07/09 URL nikon.co.uk
Rating 5 Reviewed 26/02/10 URL nikon.co.uk
Rating 4 Reviewed 05/06/09 URL olympus.co.uk
Canon Eos 500D
Rating 4 Reviewed 05/06/09 URL canon.co.uk
Top 5 super-zoom cameras
The Coolpix S570 has a
12-megapixel sensor, 5x zoom
lens and slips easily into a
pocket. It also takes great pics
and offer good value for money.
Olympus Pen E-P2
Rating 4 Reviewed 26/02/10 URL olympus.co.uk
Fujiﬁlm FinePix S200EXR
Rating 4 Reviewed 15/01/10 URL fujiﬁlm.co.uk
Ricoh GR Digital III
Rating 4 Reviewed 29/01/10 URL ricoh.co.uk
Canon PowerShot SX1 IS
Rating 4 Reviewed 09/04/09 URL canon.co.uk
Top 5 video applications
FOR MAC 1.1
Camtasia can record video
and audio from your Mac’s
iSight and mic, add transitions,
effects, and share the ﬁnished
video easily on YouTube.
Rating 5 Reviewed 20/11/09 URL telestream.net
Final Cut Studio 2009
Rating 4 Reviewed 28/08/09 URL apple.com/uk
Rating 4 Reviewed 24/10/08 URL dvcreators.net
Afer Effects CS4
Rating 4 Reviewed 10/10/08 URL adobe.com/uk
Top 5 office applications
18 June 2010
Merlin is a top-notch project
management application. It’s
powerful, easy to get to grips
with thanks to its manual and
templates, and works well with
Mail, Address Book and iCal.
Rating 5 Reviewed 06/06/08 URL marketcircle.com
Nisus Writer Pro 1.3
Rating 5 Reviewed 31/07/09 URL nisus.com
Kerio Connect 7
Rating 5 Reviewed 12/03/10 URL kerio.co.uk
Rating 4 Reviewed 22/05/09 URL oranged.net
Top 5 audio products
Its headline grabbing new
features for guitarists, Amp
Designer and Pedalboard
are certainly the highlight,
however, there’s plenty
here for all musicians.
Guitar Rig 3 Kontrol
Rating 5 Reviewed 15/02/08 URL native-instruments.com
Logic Express 9
Rating 5 Reviewed 23/10/09 URL apple.com/uk
Reason 4 Premium
Rating 5 Reviewed 26/09/08 URL propellerheads.se
Rating 4 Reviewed 09/05/08 URL joesoft.com
Top 5 web publishing tools
For years, Dreamweaver has
been the de facto standard for
professional web development.
It’s now fully integrated with
Adobe’s Creative Suite.
URL adobe.com/uk /u
Rating 4 Reviewed 30/01/09 URL barebones.com
Rating 4 Reviewed 29/02/08 URL panic.com
Rating 4 Reviewed 10/10/08 URL adobe.com/uk
Rating 4 Reviewed 26/02/10 URL theescapers.com
Top 5 laser printers
18 June 2010
A good choice for workgroups
that need mono printing.
The high purchase price is
offset by low running costs
and speed output.
Rating 4 Reviewed 20/11/09 URL samsung.com/uk
Kyocera Mita FS-1300D
Rating 4 Reviewed 26/09/08 URL kyoceramita.co.uk
Canon i-Sensys LBP5100
Rating 4 Reviewed 21/11/08 URL canon.co.uk
Rating 4 Reviewed 24/10/08 URL oki.co.uk
Top 5 multi-function devices
The MP990 does duplex
printing, labels discs, captures
35mm slides and negatives,
and it has six ink tanks:
including grey for mono prints.
Rating 5 Reviewed 26/02/10 URL samsung.com/uk
Canon Pixma MP540
Rating 5 Reviewed 28/08/09 URL canon.co.uk
HP Photosmart C6380
Rating 5 Reviewed 30/01/09 URL hp.com/uk
Epson Stylus Photo PX710W
Rating 5 Reviewed 29/01/10 URL epson.co.uk
Top 5 inkjet printers
Photo printer with slots for
common camera media cards.
Includes 120mm touchscreen
LCD and 20-sheet input feed.
URL hp. /u
Epson Stylus Pro 3880
Rating 5 Reviewed 01/01/10 URL epson.co.uk
HP Photosmart Plus
Rating 4 Reviewed 20/11/09 URL hp.com/uk
Epson Stylus Photo R2880
Rating 4 Reviewed 02/01/09 URL epson.co.uk
Canon Pixma Pro9000 MkII
Rating 4 Reviewed 08/05/09 URL canon.co.uk
Top 5 publishing tools
18 June 2010
Adobe’s latest page-layout
environment delivers various
improvements including tighter
integration with Flash, precise
alignment tools and numerous
other important tweaks.
Rating 5 Reviewed 15/08/08 URL quark.com
Rating 5 Reviewed 21/11/08 URL extensis.com
Universal Type Server
Rating 4 Reviewed 18/07/08 URL extensis.com
Acrobat 9 Pro
Rating 4 Reviewed 04/07/08 URL adobe.com/uk
Top 5 photo editing tools
One of the most important
applications on the Mac, the
CS4 edition helps it retain its
crown as the king of all photo
editing and montage tools.
NeatImage Pro 6.2
Rating 5 Reviewed 18/06/10 URL neatimage.com
Rating 5 Reviewed 26/02/10 URL apple.com/uk
Portrait Professional 9
Rating 5 Reviewed 09/10/09 URL portraitprofessional.com
Eye Candy 6
Rating 5 Reviewed 15/01/10 URL alienskin.com
Top 5 illustration/3D tools
The CS4 edition of Illustrator
builds on the rich toolset of
CS3, adding more intelligent
features and some fantastic
Phantasm CS Studio
Rating 4 Reviewed 01/08/08 URL phantasmcs.com
Cheetah 3D 5
Rating 4 Reviewed 15/01/10 URL cheetah3d.com
Cinema 4D Release 11
Rating 4 Reviewed 10/10/08 URL maxon.net
Live Interior 3D Pro
Rating 4 Reviewed 07/11/08 URL belightsoft.com
122 Apple dealers are thriving all over the
UK, ready to answer your Mac queries FINDER
18 June 2010
TO ADVERTISE, CONTACT CRAIG_CHAMBERS@DENNIS.CO.UK OR CALL 020 7907 6652
Albion Computers PowerPlay Services
London, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey East Sussex
Call 020 7212 9090 Email email@example.com Call 08448 157167
URL albion.co.uk URL powerplayservices.co.uk
22 years’ experience with Apple for Business and Education Apple Authorised Service Provider PowerPlay offers a
Apple Premium Reseller Apple Authorised Service provider local drop-in service or a nationwide courier service for
Apple Solutions Expert for Education New iStore in Crawley all Apple repairs and upgrades
Park Place, Lawn Lane, Vauxhall, London Brighton Cambridge Edinburgh Guildford
Call 0800 027 2292 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Kensington High Street
URL supportplan.com Call 0845 6863500 URL cancomuk.com
Supporting Mac and Windows in creative environments Part of a €420 million company Apple Solutions Expert
for 20 years Apple Service Provider Solutions Expert for in Education Authorised Apple Service Provider
Print, Publishing and Web Conﬁgure your Mac on our advanced website
Whellams Computer Services iCentre:
Central London The Meadows Shopping Centre, Chelmsford
Call 020 71831969 Email email@example.com Call 01787 477664 Email lee@icentre-headofﬁce.com
URL wcscomputer.co.uk URL icentre-chelmsford.com
Professional Mac support and solutions company, iCentre is the perfect environment for test-driving the latest
specialising in the print and publishing industries Flexible Apple iPods, Macs and software, while also offering 1-2-1
support contracts Support for Xserve, backup and networks demonstrations, advice and a full range of accessories
MR Systems Robert Harding Computers Ltd
Central London Sussex; South Coast
Call 020 7697 2200 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Call 01273 728827 Email email@example.com
URLwww.mrsystems.co.uk URL rh-computers.com
Experienced Apple Authorised Service Provider Authorised Service Provider since 1979 Privately owned
Remote support and helpdesk company, giving personal & professional service always
Competitive prices Student Discounts also available
Trams Ltd Encompass
Central London and Christchurch, Dorset Home Counties
Call Trams Sales: 020 7820 7111; Rapid Sales: 01202 703040 Call 01462 790773 Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Email email@example.com URLs trams.co.uk and rapidgroup.net URL encompassuk.com
One of the UK’s premier Apple resellers and Authorised Authorised Service Provider Mac OS X server specialist
Service Providers. With 20,000 items available online, we Mac OS X Leopard roll-out Digital colour specialist
provide a comprehensive range of products and services Consultancy (network design) Cross platform
MicroMend Ltd Visual Information Services Ltd
3 Tottenham Street, London, W1 Reading; International Services
(Near Goodge Street Tube station) Call 0118 9886633 Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Call 020 7636 6667 Email email@example.com URL visparts.com
Walk-in computer repair centre Fast turnaround Independent Apple parts supplier. We also repair and upgrade
Apple Authorised technicians Data Recovery Service all Apple computers at our workshop. Our engineers have over
iPod repairs 20 years experience and knowledge of all things Apple.
Square Group Ltd MacKing.co.uk
Central London High Wycombe Derby Harrem House, Ogilvie Road, High Wycombe
URL squaregroup.co.uk Email firstname.lastname@example.org Call 01494 355333
Call 0800 08 27753 URL macking.co.uk
Apple Premium Reseller Video, Print & Publishing & We sell refurbished and used Macs. We also do repairs and
Education Apple Solution Experts Apple Authorised Service with a parts library spanning almost every Mac for the past
Provider Training Centre 10 years, why look anywhere else for the part you need
Core Technical Solutions Apple Tree Graphics LTD
London, Surrey and surrounding areas Bromsgrove, Worcestershire
Call 0800 756 9905 Email email@example.com Call 01527 570535 Fax 01527 570355
URL coretechnicalsolutions.co.uk URL atg-it.co.uk
On-site and workshop repair services Helpdesk and Apple Centre Retail and business showroom
remote support Apple Certiﬁed technicians Sales Training for major software packages Pre-sales
and installations Businesses and Home users and consultancy Network design and installation
18 June 2010
Meet your local dealer…
We catch up with your local dealer to ﬁnd out
what they oﬀer Mac users. This issue, we talk
to Liverpool-based The Bookyard, which
specialises in Mac repairs and recycling.
pple parts and repair specialists The family-run business based in
The Bookyard combines computer Liverpool started up four years ago and
recycling with a comprehensive now supplies Apple service spares to repair
online parts store to deliver expert, viable centres and consumers across the globe.
options for Mac repairs. However, Apple has We ask Gillard what’s been going on lately
a network of authorised repair centres so down at The Bookyard.
what unique service does it offer? ‘We’ve been working hard on making
‘Repair costs through Apple authorised this inherently complex ﬁeld accessible to The Bookyard Ltd
service providers (AASPs) for damaged or consumers and your local computer repair Liverpool, Nationwide Service
out-of-warranty Macs are often uneconomical shops by a combination of online information
or simply not offered for older machines,’ and good old expert support,’ he says.
Call 0151 291 6240
says Nick Gillard, director of The Bookyard. ‘We’ve just launched a radically enhanced Email firstname.lastname@example.org
He adds: ‘We aren’t bound by the online store with many new features based URL thebookyard.com
restrictions Apple imposes on AASPs. We on customer feedback.’
can sell service parts directly rather than Gillard cites one example as The Online store offering new and used Apple
spare parts with next-day delivery Old or faulty
having to charge to ﬁt them, recycle Macs Bookyard’s ‘Serial Decoder’, which he says
Apple hardware purchased and recycled Expert
and offer the used, tested parts as an takes much of the confusion out of buying diagnosis and repairs with nationwide collection
alternative to new parts. We can supply parts the right parts. ‘You can now type your Mac’s
long after Apple has discontinued spares for serial number on our online store and view
that range, and offer the smallest of parts only the parts speciﬁc or compatible with your
individually rather than Apple’s modular exact model. Apple hardware support has
approach: a single keycap rather than a been a highly closed ﬁeld, but we believe that
whole top case, a laptop hinge rather than a freedom of information is a good thing.’
whole display. This is great for the customer The Bookyard offers its Serial Decoder
and great for the environment, as it ensures free of charge for embedding on any Mac-
maximum re-use of materials.’ related website.
SL Electrotech (Instrumentation) Ltd GBM Digital Technologies LTD
Loomer Industrial Estate, Staﬀordshire Manchester
Call 01782 563999 Email email@example.com Call 0161 605 3838 Email firstname.lastname@example.org
URL slelectrotech.co.uk URL gbmdt.co.uk
Apple Authorised Service Provider & Reseller Fast Retail and business sales specialists with a technical
turnaround On-site and workshop repairs Helpdesk and support team to provide maintenance, installation and
remote support Apple Business Solutions and Consultancy support services for business and education
MCC Group Evo Data UK Ltd
Warrington Chester Liverpool Stoke-on-Trent North West
Call 0870 444 4990 Fax 0870 444 1373 Call 01539 898232 Email email@example.com
URL mccdigital.com URL evodata.co.uk
Apple Premium Reseller Apple Solutions Experts Troubleshooting Hardware/software Repairs Full Mac
for Education/Creative Apple Authorised Service Providers Server network installations Re-designs Support contract
Training Installation Maintenance Guaranteed response times Mac products and equipment
The Bookyard Ltd. RGB Solutions Ltd
Liverpool, Nationwide Service Edinburgh, Scotland
Call 0151 291 6240 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Call 0131 554 8888 Email email@example.com
URL thebookyard.com URL rgbsolutions.co.uk
Online store offering new and used Apple spare parts with •Apple Sales •Service & Support •Server & Network
next-day delivery Old or faulty Apple hardware purchased and Installation •Creative Industry Specialists •RGB Solutions
recycled Expert diagnosis & repairs with nationwide collection provides Apple Macintosh Sales, Service and Support
Jennings Computer Services Ltd iPhone Repairs & Spares LTD
Scarborough and York Dedicated Specialists for the Apple iPhone
Call 01723 374196 Call 01904 796580 Call 0871 789 0379 Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Buy Online jcsltd.co.uk URL iphonerepairsltd.co.uk URL pda-spares.co.uk
Authorised Apple Reseller & Service Centre Apple warranty All iPhone models repaired 12-month warranty on all repairs
repair Out-of-warranty repair Mac, iPod, accessories, Parts available for DIY repairs Three-working-day turnaround
upgrades Cross-platform support Online store On-the-spot, ﬁve-minute iPhone 3G/3GS screen repairs
WE CAN HELP YOU THEY CAN HELP YOU
If you need technical advice, There’s a wealth of information
18 June 2010
write to us explaining the and help available online. Here
problem in full. Please include are some useful sites that may
all the details of hardware and be worth turning to along with
software you use. the MacUser site.
Email email@example.com Apple’s pages provide helpful
Post Help, MacUser, information; try the search
30 Cleveland Street, options to ﬁnd speciﬁc help.
London, W1T 4JD URL info.apple.com
Keep abreast of software
releases and ﬁxes, and track
EMAIL YOUR PROBLEM TO HELP@MACUSER.CO.UK down new utilities and tools.
Shaping the future
Apple has decided to constrain iPhone/iPad developers to its own
developer tools, but there’s more to this than a simple Flash snub…
he howls of protest following developers to maintain a single code base
Apple’s decision to constrain iPad that’s readily packaged into iPhone/iPad,
and iPhone OS 4 developers to its Android and other executables.
own development tools were understandable: As Adobe doesn’t own a hardware
telling professionals they must use platform, if it’s to proﬁt from this new
Objective-C or C++ is pretty insulting. wave of consumer devices, it has to own
However, this decision needs to be peeled a software platform such as Flash. Apple
away like an onion, one layer at a time, could be blocking this to be rid of these
starting with the claim that this was a snub to alien mid-platform results. There’s a problem
Adobe’s Flash. Judging from the more extreme here in that many – maybe most – games
reactions from Flash evangelists and others, use engines such as Lua interpreters;
it certainly succeeded in that. Apple needs full-bore support from games
However, Flash isn’t the whole onion. developers, so could try to do deals to avoid
The next layer, spotted by some brighter cutting them off.
bloggers, was that Apple intended to switch Beneath this layer are yet more. Despite
processor architectures in future products many of its features being common
and didn’t want the ugly debacle that ensued knowledge long before the ﬁrst iPad shipped,
when it moved Macs to Intel. Although our Apple has stolen a headlong lead from the
user experience may have been relatively whole of the rest of the industry. Buoyed by
seamless, it would have been a different story the success of early iPad sales, it has the
had Apple not bought in Transitive’s Rosetta. conﬁdence to ﬁght for control of this new
With some major third-party applications market. The last thing that it could then
migrating with the alacrity of a tortoise, what afford was dominating developers (particularly
should have been a quick, clean break is those who own development environments)
even now, four years later, incomplete. Funnily writing applications to the lowest common
enough, you may recall that Adobe’s Creative denominator among Apple and latecoming
Suite was one of the latecomers. iPhone and competitors. That would void Apple’s lead,
iPad futures mustn’t be constrained by the effectively transferring its success to the
speed at which developers can change their likes of Adobe.
in-house tools and source code. As we approach the innermost onion,
Below this comes a logical extension there are layers steeped in Apple’s corporate
of the Flash story, that Apple wants all history, formed by the long, bitter struggle it
iPhone/iPad applications to be consistent, has had to achieve due recognition for Macs.
and compliant with its guidelines in every A few of the most senior staff, including Steve
respect. Popular and important Adobe’s Jobs himself, may still bear the scars and
Mac OS X applications may be, but they’re scores to be settled for the way that PCs and
hardly models of consistency with Mac OS MS-Dos, then Windows supplanted the early
X. Increasingly, their reliance on Flash and runaway success of the Apple II.
related technologies such as Air throws It’s exciting that Apple now aspires to
up idiosyncratic progress bars and other complete control of its own destiny. Perhaps
interface devices. in peeling those layers away, the only tears Howard Oakley has used Macs in science
The clear intent of Flash and other third- we should shed are for the disappointments and medicine for 20 years, and developed
party development environments is to allow of the past. commercial software.
18 June 2010
Aperture 3.0.3 ﬁxes many bugs in for Canon, Leica S2, Olympus, and Sony shares hosted on a server bound to Active
applying adjustments, creating and using Alpha models. It’s available from support. Directory containing Windows Server 2008
Raw Fine Tuning presets, switching target apple.com/kb/DL1035. domain controllers. Apple advises that
printers and paper sizes when printing, enabling crypto algorithms compatible with
duplicating Smart Albums, repairing and Final Cut Server 1.5.2 updates the Java Windows NT 4.0 on the domain controller
rebuilding Aperture libraries, and more. signing certiﬁcate to avoid authentication should ﬁx this, as will binding the clients
It’s at support.apple.com/kb/DL1040. issues, and ﬁxes blockage of the to Active Directory. Details are at support.
use of transcode settings for Matrox apple.com/kb/TS2967.
iMovie 09 may unexpectedly quit when CompressHD H.264 encoding cards.
scrolling through the Media Browser’s Visit support.apple.com/kb/DL1034. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2.7
Titles pane on some 2007 iMac, mini ﬁxes various bugs introduced in previous
and MacBook models running Mac OS X iTunes 9.1.1 ﬁxes unexpected quitting releases, and supports new cameras
10.6.3. Apple advises reverting to 10.6.2, when using VoiceOver in several situations, including Canon Eos 550D, Mamiya
or avoiding revealing the Far Far Away title bugs when converting songs to 128Kbits/ DM40, Leaf Aptus-II 8 and 10R. It’s
when scrolling. A ﬁx is awaited. sec AAC while syncing, and more. It’s available from bit.ly/9s07NV.
Digital Camera Raw Compatibility Adobe Fireworks CS4 10.0.4 ﬁxes
Update 3.2 ﬁxes Raw processing Mac OS X Server 10.4 and later cannot many bugs, including several causing
problems for Canon Eos 30D, Pentax authenticate users connected from clients crashes, and crashing on quitting under
K-x and K-7 models, and adds support not bound to Active Director, to SMB Snow Leopard. Visit bit.ly/9s8Y0i.
made the copy bootable, Disk Utility probably
won’t be able to repair permissions. At least
the previously incessant reports about SUID
services seem to have stopped now.
Time Capsule kaput
From Stanley Salmons
Q I’m afraid to say that I’ve just joined
the burgeoning ranks of those whose
Time Capsule has failed, with its mains
light off and no sign of life. I bought it in
February 2008 from the Apple Store. I hear
rumours that in North America at least,
Apple is replacing some Time Capsules
in some serial number ranges. Does this
apply to the UK as well?
A It’s worth ringing Apple to report such
failures. If you have a Mac that was
Following the update to Mac OS X 10.6.3, the profuse list of incorrect errors reported when repairing purchased before or at the same time as
permission settings has been reduced to one persistent entry, about /usr/share/derby.
you bought your Time Capsule, and your Mac
has an AppleCare extended warranty, you
Permission slip share/derby, containing ﬁles for the Derby may ﬁnd this covers your Time Capsule, too.
From David Ward Java database, needs repairing on almost Furthermore, Apple sometimes rectiﬁes early
Q Running a health check on my hard every occasion, which suggests something hardware failures without publicising a formal
disk, there were hundreds of permissions is later altering its permissions back to extension to their standard free warranty.
that needed repair, all except two or three incorrect ones. So you can safely ignore that Support staff have access to internal
relating to AirPort. The remainder included each time it appears. lists of products and serial number ranges
one, for usr/share/derby, which now recurs Depending on which software you’re that have been recognised as having issues.
every time I repair permissions. Why is this, using to maintain your cloned backup, ﬁles Dig out your AppleCare support details and
and do I need to repair permissions on the and folders whose permissions are changed the original receipts, and give AppleCare
cloned copy to which I back up daily? should be reﬂected in the clone copy, so you a ring to see what they say: you could be
shouldn’t need to run Disk Utility over the pleasantly surprised.
A The pattern of errors reported when you backup disk. In any case, unless you
repair permissions differs from Mac to Mac,
and varies according to which software has Some batches of Time
Capsules may be prone to
been recently installed or updated. Updating early failure. If you bought
iTunes to version 9.1, for example, commonly AppleCare cover for
a Mac, you could
resulted in hundreds of incorrect permissions ﬁnd that it also
settings, which are those you’ve just seen. covers your
Once repaired, they shouldn’t need further
attention. Even if they’re left unrepaired, they
don’t seem to have caused any problems.
In Mac OS X 10.6.3, and possibly some
other releases, the hidden folder at /usr/
18 June 2010
iMovie on a server
From Michael Wilks
Q Users with networked homes on our
Mac OS X Server 10.5.8 ﬁnd that they
can’t import video into iMovie 09, seeing
the error message: ‘Can’t create event.
The import was cancelled. You may not
have permission to write to /iMovie
Events.localized’. However, users with
local homes have no such problem. How
can we ﬁx this issue? iMovie 09 and earlier offer no conﬁguration option to locate their scratch ﬁles at a different path, which
means that they need access to the top-level folder called ‘iMovie Events.localized’.
A iMovie 09 uses this top-level folder for
scratch ﬁles, and each user needs read/ a folder named ‘iMovie Events.localized’ at mkdir "/iMovie Events.localized"
write access to it for this application to the root level of each client Mac’s startup chown root:admin "/iMovie Events.localized"
run. Thankfully, its contents are regularly volume, and then assign it permissions, so chmod 1777 "/iMovie Events.localized"
cleaned out, so it shouldn’t pose a that the user(s) of that Mac can read and
signiﬁcant security risk. You could force a write to that folder. The owner should be You can propagate this across the
purge using a login or logout hook if you root, and group admin. You can accomplish Macs on your network using Apple Remote
prefer. The best solution to this is to create this with the Terminal commands: Desktop’s Send Unix feature.
If you have a pro Adobe or Apple movie editor such of iMovie, but you should be able to get
as Final Cut Pro, Red Giant’s Magic Bullet Instant HD
plug-in is capable of high-quality format conversions. it working in any case if you convert the Did you know…
different clips to a more compatible common
format. If needs be, you might have to Many wireless base stations, such
upconvert the SD video to 1080 resolution as Apple’s AirPort models, can
and encode it to the same settings as you operate in ‘bridging’ mode, between
have Voltaic conﬁgured for exporting. your local network and a modem/
However, you may ﬁnd a simpler router. When bridging, you can enable
combination of formats works as well. If their built-in ﬁrewall to improve network
you have QuickTime Pro on Leopard or security, ideally in combination with
earlier, you may be able to perform this the modem/router’s ﬁrewall.
conversion in Movie Player. Otherwise, take
a look at third-party conversion tools such
as MovieConverter (from movieconverter- A The current version of Retrospect is 8.1,
studio.com/home_en.htm). Ultimately, although the jury is out on whether it would
Red Giant’s Magic Bullet Instant HD be much of an improvement. On the other
Need a magic bullet (from redgiantsoftware.com/products/all/ hand, Time Machine isn’t as attractive an
From David Hardy magic-bullet-instant-hd) is a powerful jack- option in Mac OS X Server as it is for client
Q Just before the problems with volcanic of-all-trades that can perform SD to HD users of Snow Leopard. It’s deﬁnitely not a
dust, I visited Iceland with an old friend upconversion, too. good way to back up a server completely:
and we shot some video. I recorded in several system administrators have mooted
1080p to AVCHD format, he in standard- Time Machine for server? this idea, but there are many problems,
deﬁnition widescreen in Mpeg-4. I’ve From Martin Inchley particularly dealing with running services.
converted my clips using Voltaic, and his Q We’re investigating options for performing It has been claimed to be more useful
clips into QuickTime DV PAL. However, daily backups of networked home folders for for networked homes but, again, it has
trying to edit them together in iMovie HD some 40 users of our Intel Xserve. We run signiﬁcant design and implementation issues.
is a total disaster: it just swallows all the Retrospect 6 to a FireWire Tandberg VXA For making a daily backup after hours, the
free disk space available and takes forever. Storage Loader, but this is prone to crashes default hourly backup setting would be quite
How can I use my friend’s clips with mine? and worrying error messages. Could we unsuitable, and you would need to use a third-
use Time Machine and, if so, how? Is there party tool such as TimeMachineEditor (free
A The old version of iMovie that you’re using anything else that you would suggest? from timesoftware.free.fr/timemachineeditor)
seems to be making to change that to daily.
a meal of transcoding Latest releases of the free TimeMachineEditor are able to run Time Machine at The best use of Time Machine in server-
ﬁxed times each day, but this still doesn’t make it ideal for backing up servers.
and matching the two based networks is to back up local home
disparate types of folders over a fast network to capacious
movie. It may be trying server storage. To back up part of your server,
to convert them into such as its store of home folders, you would
Apple Intermediate be better off using a backup tool such as Tolis
format for editing – BRU (from tolisgroup.com/products). However,
a format known for even this has attracted a controversial
its ability to swallow following, with some users claiming many
incredible amounts serious issues with it. You might be better off
of disk space. This scripting your own backup routine, possibly
may work better in a using the incremental features of Carbon
more recent version Copy Cloner or SuperDuper.
18 June 2010
Sometimes you can work around error messages
resulting from running old iTunes on new Did you know…
QuickTime, but it’s better to keep both in kilter.
Before you start converting or editing
Who is sharing
video, work out a common format and my media files?
encoding, chosen so as to minimise From Richard Ellis McCallum
the number of times that each is Q I use a Thecus ComboNas, running a
converted from one encoding to pair of disks under Raid 0, to store all my
another. Transcoding invariably brings music, video and photos. It’s connected
some loss of quality, particularly when to a Time Capsule using Ethernet and
used with compact, lossy formats. then through my modem/router to the
Internet. I allow all the wireless Macs
in the house to access shared folders
Old iPod, new iTunes A The ﬁrst thing to check is the network on the Nas, and have its built-in iTunes
From Russell Caplan IP address being used by your Mac in its server running. Even with everything
Q I tried to import songs from a newly Network pane. This must be on the same else shut down, the Thecus seems to
purchased CD into iTunes 7, which I run on subnet as the printer, differing only in the show a lot of hard disk activity. Am I
an iMac G4 for compatibility with my old last of its four numbers. The IP address sharing all my media ﬁles with intruders,
iPod. To my surprise, I saw an error alert given in the error message implies that your who are connecting to my Nas?
saying ‘An error occurred while trying to network is running DHCP, in which a server
import the ﬁle “All I Really Want To Do”. on the network hands out IP addresses. This A Networked storage systems like
The current encoder settings for bit rate can cause problems that can be extremely this can busy themselves performing
and sample rate aren’t valid for this ﬁle’. difﬁcult to solve, and you may ﬁnd it easier housekeeping tasks even when there
I haven’t changed my conversion settings, to switch to ﬁxed IP addresses, as detailed in are no users connected. These might
but it works ﬁne on my Intel Mac running previous Help sections. include chugging through the ﬁles stored
iTunes 9. Could this be an incompatibility You also need to check that your Mac
with QuickTime 7.6? has printer drivers to support those models:
the list of supported models is at support.
A iTunes is fairly closely linked to QuickTime, apple.com/kb/HT3669#xerox, and you have
so updating this may break some features, the option of those supplied on the Xerox
particularly conversions such as importing site, or free from Gutenprint, at gimp-print.
audio CDs. However, you’re rightly suspicious sourceforge.net/MacOSX.php.
that using a very old iPod with the current
release of iTunes could be even more of WebKit bug ignores fonts
a disaster, even though Apple claims that From Richard Hallas
version 9.1 is compatible with all models. Q My website (orchestralconcertcds.com)
It might be worth testing this out by suffers from a couple of bugs in Safari and
performing a full sync on your old iMac, and other applications that use the current
then trying it with your Intel model. If anything WebKit. Despite writing it in plain XHTML The ﬁrst and most fundamental line of defence against intrusion
is your network’s ﬁrewall. Closing access on all ports, as shown
does go wrong, you could then initialise and and CSS, when it calls for use of the fonts here, is the safest option with a media server.
restore it from the G4 system. If you decide Adobe Warnock Pro and Hypatia Sans,
that you want to keep iTunes 7 running for Safari under Mac OS X 10.6 fails to use on them to see which have been updated
any reason, you’re probably better freezing them even though they’re available, but and re-indexing them, for instance. You
that Mac at the version of QuickTime that they’re used properly in version 10.5.8. need to check carefully through the layers
was released with iTunes 7. The layering of QuickTime controls is of security that should be protecting your
also incorrect, ﬂoating them over the network and media server.
Fix your IP addresses header bar. Is it just me? Most critical to security are the
From Gordon Deacon ﬁrewall between your network and the
Q I’m struggling to get my Mac to A You’re correct in your observations: these Internet, ideally situated in your modem/
work with my network in the same way are bugs that appear to be in the current router, and your wireless networking
that Windows does. I have networked release of WebKit, the support built into security. Your main ﬁrewall should be
monochrome and Xerox colour printers, but Mac OS X on which Safari is based. Use a conﬁgured to block all incoming trafﬁc on
can’t seem to ﬁnd any way to access them browser that’s independent of these parts of all ports, and you must keep a watchful
from the Mac. Each time I try, I see an error WebKit, such as Firefox, and you won’t see eye on its logs. If someone is breaking
reporting that ‘Network host 10.0.0.19 is these issues. Hopefully, Apple will release into your network, they’ll leave traces
busy; will retry in 15 seconds’. Is there a ﬁxes for these in the next update to Mac OS there, even if the tracks of an expert can
way to get this to work? X 10.6 and Safari. be tricky to decipher.
Your wireless security settings must
Testing network connectivity is easier if you’ve set As of Safari 4.0.5 on Mac OS X 10.6.3, sites be strong too, using WPA2 to computers
devices to use ﬁxed IP addresses. You can then calling for fonts available on that Mac may not
ping each from another to verify their connection. result in them being properly rendered by WebKit. with speciﬁc MAC addresses only, as
detailed in Mac Business in this issue
(see p128). This should effectively block
any other systems from being able to
connect, and again you should inspect
your wireless router’s logs to ensure
no-one is breaking in. The other logs
that are worth watching are those of
your Nas, which should reveal who is
connecting to its shares.
18 June 2010
FACING A BUSINESS DILEMMA? EMAIL HELP@MACUSER.CO.UK TODAY
Throw in a few iPads and unwired laptops into a wireless network and you
could easily end up with unwelcome visitors, so how do you minimise risk?
nly a couple of years ago, most
station, it’s advertising the presence of an The strength of radio waves is that they
commercial and institutional invisible and ill-deﬁned area within which normally disseminate quite widely; without
computer networks could make potential intruders could hack their way this, radio and TV couldn’t have worked.
a good case against supporting any form of into your systems and act as if they were However, it’s also a great weakness if you
wireless connection. With a steady stream physically connected. Not only that, but want only certain individuals to be able to use
of security breaches, and frequent press Google, Skyhook Wireless and others who a radio signal. Military communicators have
reports of wiﬁ hacks and vulnerabilities, the ‘wardrive’ around compiling lists of wireless tried all sorts of ingenious tricks to lock out
simplest answer was no wireless access. networks will sooner or later add your access the enemy, encrypting signal content, dancing
Now, with the popularity of the iPhone, iPad points to their databases – hardly a help to very quickly between different frequencies,
and other devices that make good business their security. and so on, but none has proved invulnerable.
use of wiﬁ, such a Luddite defence has Wiﬁ-enabled devices have also become The bottom line is that any networking
become untenable. If your network is going immensely popular. In addition to many performed using radio transmissions is
to move with the times, it needs to support mobile phones and computers, you can inherently vulnerable to intrusion.
wireless clients. readily purchase cheap devices that can When you need wireless networking, only
Breaking into a wired network without detect, and even probe and analyse wiﬁ use it where necessary and site your base
having physical access to the premises is networks. Would-be intruders no longer stations to minimise signal leakage outside
an old and well-understood crime. There need to be technically knowledgeable or your premises. Don’t ﬂood your whole street
are really only two classes of approach: well equipped to take on your security with a full-strength signal blasted out from
penetrating the ﬁrewall or getting a user to measures. However, the specialist criminal high-gain aerials. Remember that wireless
run malware, either as a downloaded Trojan can now break almost all wireless security, networking relies on low microwave radio
or by connecting to a malicious website. even many conﬁgurations that use the more frequencies, which are essentially line-of-
The moment you turn on your ﬁrst wiﬁ base secure WPA/WPA2 protocols. sight and attenuate rapidly when passing
WEP, WPA/WPA2 and AirPort
WEP is a worthless deterrent, leaving WPA/ port-based network access control. All good
WPA2 as the only serious option. These are modern access points, including AirPort base
available in ‘home’ and ‘enterprise’ variants. stations, should meet this requirement, thus
The former requires a single passphrase that be controlled from your Radius server. Macs
can be used from any connecting computer have enjoyed support since Mac OS X 10.3,
or device, the pre-shared key referred to as and the iPhone/iPod touch since iPhone OS
For secure wireless access for more than a dozen
WPA2-PSK. This offers simplicity, but inevitably 2. However, recent improvements to the computers, the best option is for WPA2 ‘enterprise’,
makes it much easier to penetrate. If you speciﬁcation have been made to address but this needs access to a Radius server.
must use it, you should also impose timed vulnerabilities: look now for compliance with
access control according to the MAC address 802.1X-2010 or its earlier working title of MACSec and DevID. Access points may wrap
of the client. This will limit the periods in 802.1af. The most signiﬁcant changes in all these up in 802.11i compliance.
which your network will be vulnerable to these are the use of MACSec or 802.1AE If this sounds a little over the top,
techniques such as MAC spooﬁng. data encryption, and 802.1AR Secure Device consider the consequences of the theft
WPA/WPA2 Enterprise is much Identity or DevID authenticated devices. of all and any data transmitted over your
more sophisticated than simply limiting If those standards and acronyms aren’t wireless network – personal information that
connections by the client’s MAC address, sufﬁciently confusing, there are many more you are obliged to safeguard under the Data
but requires access to a Radius in the clutch of protocols that come with Protection Act, customer details that could
authentication service, either through a local Enterprise wireless security, such as EAP, the be sold to a competitor or for identity theft,
server or online. Recent systems should be Extensible Authentication Protocol on which access keys that would compromise other
compliant with IEEE 802.1X, the standard for 802.1X depends, and which is the basis for databases and servers, and more.
18 June 2010
through substantial structures such as metal,
brick and stone. Put a base station near an
external window though, and its signals will
Radius and IEEE 802.1X access control
spill out until blocked by the next solid wall. If you already run Mac OS X Server or Windows hosts, and all WPA Enterprise
AirPort Extreme base stations and others have Windows server(s), the simplest way mode access points, including Apple AirPort
now have transmit power controls, so you to implement WPA/WPA2 Enterprise is to Extreme and Express, and models from
can ﬁne-tune their coverage and spillover. enable and conﬁgure the Radius servers major vendors such as Linksys, D-Link,
Using a signal sniffer or a laptop, walk provided as standard in those. However, HP, Cisco and Buffalo. It requires a digital
round the internal areas that need to be there are times when you may prefer to security certiﬁcate hierarchy that can
reached, checking that signal strengths are make your access control server a different either be imported from VeriSign and other
adequate. Then repeat outside, adjusting the computer from your main servers; if your certiﬁcate providers, or created by Elektron.
conﬁguration and position of base stations network relies on wireless to connect A new and innovative option is
to make external reception difﬁcult at best. wired segments, you should operate a the AuthenticateMyWiFi service at
Repeat this when you replace or upgrade separate Radius server within each wired nowiressecurity.com/service.htm. Provided
wireless access points. Potential intruders will network rather than relying on the wireless that your network has a reliable Internet
be most attracted by the biggest signal on connection to a single server. A standalone connection, this will deliver a Radius service
the block: make it harder for those in public Radius server may also be required where with IEEE 802.1X/PEAP authentication on
areas to ﬁnd your signal and you’re much less shared services are distributed peer-to-peer a volume subscription basis. This could be
likely to attract attention. rather than concentrated in a server. ideal for smaller networks that can’t run
There are four aspects of wireless FOSS products include OpenRadius their own local Radius server and networks
networking that you need to control if you’re (xs4all.nl/~evbergen/openradius and distributed across several different sites.
to have a reasonable chance of remaining openradius.darwinports.com) and
unhacked: equipment vulnerabilities, FreeRadius (freeradius.org and freeradius. Limit by MAC, the time periods and days during which
computers and other devices can access your wiﬁ network.
publication of your network’s existence, darwinports.com), requiring administration This locks out intruders attempting MAC spooﬁng.
individual access control and protection of the through the command line and conﬁguration
content of network trafﬁc. ﬁles. The commercial Radiator, costing
All devices that form part of your network €700 (about £598) upwards from open.
– particularly wireless access points or base com.au/radiator/index.html, comes with
stations – and all devices that will connect to source code, but for most Mac networks the
it must be kept fully up to date with ﬁrmware best option is Periodik Labs’ Elektron, priced
and software security patches. Failure to from $750 (about £525). Visit periodiklabs.
do this could allow intrusion through a com/elektron for more details.
well-documented hack. Unlike some server All these third-party servers will install
updates, you can’t afford to leave wireless equally well on Mac OS X client as on the
security patches until you’ve tested them on Server edition. Elektron supports Mac and
a non-production system; once released, they
must be applied as soon as possible. A good
example of this was the bug in Apple’s AirPort If your network is of any size – more
Extreme ﬁrmware that allowed incoming than a dozen systems, for example – or
access over IPv6, a serious vulnerability until handles sensitive information, you need to ! Few networks can operate the only
patched by the 5.1 update. install a Radius server that’s capable of IEEE completely robust security policy of
Although it may seem obvious, you don’t 802.1X-2010 access control. Educational not offering wireless connections.
want a private wireless network to advertise organisations that wish to support the ! Unless properly secured, wireless
its existence and name to all and sundry. eduroam international roaming service have networks are very easy to break into,
Check that SSID Broadcast is disabled, to authenticate guests using the 802.1X allowing intruders access to your most
forcing new joiners to enter the name of standard; the 2010 speciﬁcation addresses sensitive data.
the ‘closed’ network manually before they known vulnerabilities by encrypting data ! Design, situate and conﬁgure access
try to connect. Although this won’t stop the between logical ports using MACSec. points to minimise spillover into areas
determined intruder, it will slow them down, Construct unguessable passwords of that the public has access. If potential
possibly sufﬁciently to encourage them to go at least 10 characters in length, using intruders can’t ﬁnd a signal, they can’t
and trouble someone else. digits and letters of both cases, for access hack into your network.
When you’re choosing access control, to your wireless network and to alter the ! Disable SSID Broadcast so that
ignore WEP completely. Because it’s now conﬁguration of each access point. For a network details aren’t broadcast to
so quick to hack, retailers who charge mere $35 (about £25), anyone can use the the public. This will also keep details
credit cards over wireless networks are WPA Cracker service at wpacracker.com to out of databases compiled by Google,
now forbidden to use WEP. As an absolute crack weak passwords within 20 minutes or Skyhook and others.
minimum, use WPA or WPA2, appropriately less. You’ll still need to check wireless access ! Ignore WEP, using only WPA/WPA2
enhanced by limiting the systems that can logs (don’t even consider buying an access security on all access points.
connect, either using MAC controls or a point that doesn’t support detailed logging), ! If possible, set up a Radius server
full-blown wireless security server. and periodically that users aren’t cheating and use WPA2 Enterprise to control
Not all WPA2 implementations are equal, your security by working illicit point-to-point access rigorously.
though. While WPA2 ‘home’ isn’t generally as connections or private access points, for ! If you can’t run a local Radius
resilient as WPA2 ‘enterprise’, the latter can example. When no-one requires wireless server, consider an online service or
use relatively weak extensions such as LEAP access, out of working hours, cut back the at least limiting access by day, time
and EAP-FAST, so you need an eye for detail transmit power or shut down your wireless and MAC address.
when selecting options. Choosing WPA2 also access points altogether. Unfortunately, ! Ensure all wireless passwords are
assures a high standard for encryption of although Apple’s AirPort Utility is scriptable, 10 characters or longer, with mixed
network trafﬁc, the ﬁnal aspect of wireless it doesn’t appear possible to script power digits and letters of both cases.
networking that you need to control. changes at present.
18 June 2010
Apple’s TV times
With the iPad’s launch out of the way and Google announcing Google TV,
now is the perfect time for Apple to concentrate on its favourite ‘hobby’.
t’s ofﬁcial: the iPad is every bit as The next version, however, will have to And so, while Apple TV may well evolve into
successful as even the most bullish do more than just run YouTube videos and some form of IP TV, it will continue to rely on
commentators had predicted. Two million content from the iTunes Store and locally iTunes and the iTunes Store as the primary
sales in just 60 days for a device that’s not connected computers if it’s to compete with delivery mechanism, and on Apple products,
only a brand-new product, but creates a Google TV. It will need to be able to function such as the Time Capsule to provide storage.
whole new market is, by anybody’s standards, as a means of browsing and searching the It will be criticised for being closed, where
pretty remarkable. web for video content and allowing it to Google TV is open, and for being expensive
To put those ﬁgures in context, the be played back on a television. Google’s and having limited content. But Apple is well
original iPhone took 74 days to sell one vision, based on its experience in web used to dealing with those sort of criticisms
million units. And Apple currently sells just search, is that Google TV will be a means and the iPad shows that they don’t matter a
shy of one million Macs per month. Analyst of navigating video content on the web, a jot when it comes to sales.
predictions of 1.5 million sales by the end kind of on-demand, always-on video player
of June now look very conservative. that can source and play almost any video
According to Apple CEO Steve Jobs, the clip, movie or programme you can think
company has been working on the iPad for of. Imagine Virgin, Sky or BT’s on-demand
several years, so now that it’s shipping, what video services, but with every piece of
next for the Cupertino company? moving footage you’ve ever seen or wanted
Apple occupies a very healthy, if small, to see available immediately. That’s the
share of the desktop and laptop computer kind of scale on which Apple, if it wanted
market, a growing to compete, would
chunk of the need to operate.
smartphone space, ‘Imagine Virgin, Sky or BT’s Even if it
and has created persuades web
a completely new on-demand video services, but developers and
sector with the iPad. with every piece of moving content owners to
Is there anything left switch to HTML5
for it to conquer?
footage you’ve ever seen or wanted for delivering video,
Well, yes, actually, to see available immediately’ and thus overcomes
there is. And to ﬁnd the problem of not
out what, we need supporting Flash,
look no further than the company’s favourite Apple would have other obstacles to navigate
‘hobby’, Apple TV. That little silver box has in order to take on Google. Most signiﬁcant
been shipping in modest numbers for three would be the business model.
years and has had precious little attention Currently, Apple makes a healthy proﬁt
from either customers or its manufacturer. on the hardware, and sells downloads and
That could be about to change, though. rentals through the iTunes Store. In order
Now that Google has thrown down the to grow the platform, however, it would
gauntlet with Google TV – an Android-based need to cut the cost of hardware and broaden
platform that will run on set-top boxes the range of content.
or televisions, and enable you to watch That may mean, for example, striking a
streaming video from the web in your living deal with the BBC to provide a version of the
room – Apple may feel inclined to respond. iPlayer that allows you to view programmes
And with the iPad launch out of the way, it’s online and download them to Apple TV. But if
in a great position to make its move. it really planned on standing toe-to-toe with
All the pieces are already in place: Google, that wouldn’t be enough. It would
the iTunes Store, super-efﬁcient H.264 need to build an interface and a back end
encoding, and the Apple TV hardware and capable of indexing video content all over
branding. While Google TV, like the Android the web and presenting it to viewers in a
smartphones, is an open system that will run coherent, easy-to-navigate fashion. Until
on hardware from multiple manufacturers, now, it has relied on a combination of iTunes
and supports both Flash and HTML5 video, and YouTube, both excellent at organising
Apple TV will follow the same closed model and presenting content, to do that job.
as the rest of the company’s products. Both None of that sounds like the company Kenny Hemphill has been at MacUser since
the hardware and the software are made into which Apple has evolved. That company the week Apple bought NeXT and Steve Jobs
by Apple, and you can bet, barring some is about controlling the user experience. returned to the company, and the Internet was
quantum leap in Flash’s performance, it won’t It’s about creating a walled garden where something that ran on one Mac in a cupboard
run Flash video any time soon. nothing it considers undesirable can enter. in the corner of the MacUser ofﬁce.