Solve Apple ID Problems for Just $7.99!

Learn all the ins and outs of your Apple ID and what to do when something
goes wrong with Take Control of Your Apple ID by Glenn Fleishman.

Disable Password Requests for Free iBooks Store Downloads

It makes sense that Apple requires a password when you purchase a book from the iBooks Store using iBooks on your Mac, because it is, after all, your credit card’s balance that is at stake. But it doesn’t make as much sense if you want to download one of the store’s many free books. To skip the “Enter your Apple ID password” prompt on your Mac when you get a free book, a post by Christian Zibreg at iDownloadBlog tells you how.

Among the many free books Apple’s iBooks Store offers, you can find such titles as Apple’s official iPad User Guide for iOS 9.2, the issue of Detective Comics that features Batman’s first appearance, and some story about a guy named Scrooge and his personal issues with the holiday season.

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

Notable Interview with Jason Snell is Notable

Following the release of Jason’s update to his Crash Course book, he sat down with Chuck Joiner of MacVoices to discuss what’s new in the update. Such interviews are no new thing for Jason: he has conversed with Chuck many times in the past as, among other things, a guest on Chuck’s long-lived MacNotables podcast. MacNotables is now ten years old (an eon in podcast time), so it should come as no surprise that their conversation veered into a discussion of the venerable podcast’s decade-long run. So kick back, relax, and get the picture of what’s new in Photos and then enjoy a stroll down memory lane with Jason and Chuck.

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

About Wi-Fi Assist in iOS 9

In iOS 9, Apple introduced a new feature called Wi-Fi Assist, which is available on any cellular-capable device and is enabled by default. The idea behind it is that if the device’s Wi-Fi signal is unreliable, then it automatically switches to a cellular data connection, instead of trying to work with the wonky Wi-Fi connection. There are some limits on Wi-Fi Assist in order to prevent it from using too much data: audio and video won’t stream, background downloads are paused, and email attachments will not download.

Despite those limits, many users have experienced high cellular data usage with Wi-Fi Assist enabled. If you have a problem with chewing through too much cellular data—or worry that you might—unless you have a specific need for Wi-Fi Assist, I highly recommend disabling it in Settings > Cellular. You’ll find the Wi-Fi Assist switch way at the bottom of the Cellular screen.

Posted by Josh Centers (Permalink)

Jeff Provides a Closeup of the 2nd Edition on MacVoices

Jeff talks about the new edition of his book with Chuck Joiner of MacVoices, framing the discussion with a portrait of how the digital photo landscape has changed following the replacement of Apple’s Aperture and iPhoto apps with its new Photos app. He then focuses on issues of mobile access to photos, competing online services, data privacy, and long-term storage solutions for digital photographers.

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

Track Changes Support Changed in Pages for iCloud

In the previous versions of Pages for iCloud, if you attempted to edit a Pages document that had tracked changes, Pages offered you two options: either accept all the tracked changes, or create a duplicate of the document with all tracked changes accepted. Now that Pages for iCloud is no longer in beta, you no longer have those options. Instead, you can open a document with tracked changes and view the change tracking — however, you cannot edit the document; neither can you accept the changes, nor create a duplicate with the changes accepted. So, if your workflow relies upon the ability to open and edit a change-tracked document in your browser (after accepting changes), be warned: change-tracked documents in Pages for iCloud are now view-only on that platform (though, of course, you can still edit them in Pages on iOS and Mac).

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

Pages Updates for Mac, iOS, and iCloud

As Agen Schmitz noted in his TidBITS Watchlist article, “Pages 5.6, Numbers 3.6, and Keynote 6.6 for Mac,” 16 October 2015, Pages has been updated on all three platforms: Mac, iOS, and iCloud. Among the many enhancements are support for Split View in El Capitan, support for Force Touch on Macs and 3D Touch on iOS, the ability to revert to previous versions on both iOS and iCloud, and the ability to open documents created with Pages ’08 and Pages ’06. Also of interest is the removal of the “Beta” status for the iCloud version of Pages. Apple supplies a list of enhancements on its “What’s new in Pages, Numbers, and Keynote” page.

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

Scholle Talks about El Capitan with Chuck Joiner

El Capitan has marched into town, and with it Scholle’s Crash Course about it. Naturally, Chuck Joiner wants to know what both Apple and Scholle have wrought. Watch and listen as Chuck and Scholle discuss the new features in the OS, the nature of Crash Course books, and how El Capitan and iOS 9 have become better partners than ever.

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

EPUB Templates Now Provide Pop-Over Support, Improved Import

iBooks Author 2.4 has been released by Apple, and it includes enhancements to its recently introduced EPUB (or, as Apple consistently insists on misspelling it, “ePub”) templates. The notable enhancement is that EPUBs produced by iBooks Author can now employ Pop-Over widgets. In addition, the release note says that EPUB templates in 2.4 also include unspecified “minor usability improvements.”

Apple followed up the release notes provided in Software Update with an email to users of iTunes Connect that describes import improvements in iBooks Author:

With the latest version of iBooks Author, we have improved the import function for Pages and Microsoft Word documents. For best results, you should use section breaks between chapters when you write your book in Pages or Microsoft Word.

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

OS X Server 5 Is Alive!

If you’ve been running Yosemite Server (OS X Server version 4), you may have received an App Store notice about a free upgrade to OS X Server 5. According to Apple, OS X Server 5 is “operating system independent,” meaning that it can run on both 10.10.5 Yosemite (and later) and 10.11 El Capitan. Charles, nonetheless, says that while OS X Server 5 does run on Yosemite, he doesn’t really recommend doing so. He also notes that OS X Server 4 won’t run on El Capitan.

So, bottom line, if you plan to upgrade your server Mac to El Capitan, get the OS X Server upgrade at that time—not before. Also, we recommend that you wait until people like Charles test Server 5 and report back.

Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)