#495 Mac Mini Decisions, Command-C, Puffin Browser, GamerGate with Guy and Chris

I give a rundown of how much fun we’re having in the Google Plus community for the NosillaCastaways these days – join us at podfeet.com/googleplus. Kevin in Connecticut tells us how he came back to the fold choosing a new Mac Mini for his re-entry from Windows. In a nice segue I explain why we bought a new Mac Mini as well and the thought process you might go through picking one out for yourself. I finally published my full tutorial (made in Clarify of course) on how to move your LastPass vault over to 1Password. A cool tool called Command-C lets you copy and paste between iOS and OS X from danilo.to. Need Flash on your iOS (or Android) device? Check out the Puffin Browser from http://puffinbrowser.com. In Chit Chat Across the Pond I’m joined by Guy Serle of the MyMac.com Podcast and Chris Ashley of the SMR Podcast to talk about the #GamerGate controversy.

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Hi this is Allison Sheridan of the NosillaCast Mac Podcast, hosted at Podfeet.com, a technology geek podcast with an EVER so slight Macintosh bias. Today is Sunday November 2, 2014 and this is show number 495. Hey, we’re getting close to 500 shows! We should throw a party or something…

NosillaCast Google Plus Community

I mention the Google Plus community for the NosillaCastaways pretty often but I thought it might make you think about joining in the fun if you heard a rundown of what’s been happening in there this week. Besides me posting links to the blog posts when they’re done,

  • Steve Sheridan posted about the new Broadwell Core M Processors which are likely to be in new Macbook Airs (spoiler, he wants one for Christmas)
  • George from Tulsa posted a mini-rant about tech journalism
  • Jan Koopsman posted a question about how to work with the new iPhoto Library Beta
  • I posted a question about how to figure out if your iPhone is unlocked
  • Bob Correa, George and Steve all posted demos of the new iPhone camera features from slo-mo to time-lapse photography
  • Wayde Gutman posted about how cool and strange it is that all of his devices are talking to each other
  • Kate Thomas asked and then later answered her own question about a problem she had installing Yosemite from a flash drive
  • None other than Honda Bob joined Google Plus and asked about a problem he’s having on his iPhone adding contacts from emails (he’s still waiting for a solution by the way)
  • Allister Jenks asked for clarification on the user experience between running as administrator vs. a normal user
  • Bart posted a link to the User Interface he’s working on for XKPasswd and invited feedback
  • Jonathan Redding made his first post this week, asking some questions about whether he needed a Drobo or not (we talked him out of it). He was delighted with the community support he found from the NosillaCastaways.
  • Steven Goetz showed us pictures of his yard before and after he raked the leaves. I know, sometimes we’re silly in there but it adds to the flavor of the NosillaCast!

Whew – that wasn’t all that happened but just a taste of what you’ve been missing if you’re not in there. Head on over to podfeet.com/googleplus and join in the fun!
Let’s get into some more fun with a listener contribution.

Kevin in Connecticut

Greetings Allison, Kevin from Connecticut here. Let’s get to my….

Problem to be solved: Can I go back to primarily being a Mac user after 9 months? If so, which Mac should I choose?

I wrote to you about two weeks ago on my journey back into the world of Mac.  I changed the horse I was riding, but I am still here.  When I contacted you I had purchased the low end mid-2014 iMac, at a cost of $1099.  I had a feeling something good was going to be released at the Oct 17 event and I decided to make a return and wait a few days.

My closest Apple store — was one of the first in this country.  It opened in 2001. They are incredibly busy. This is one of the stores where the Chinese camp out all day for new iPhones and iPads.  A front of store employee told me “You will have to make an appointment to return this iMac, you can come back tomorrow.”  Ugh!  Totally pissed me off.  Fortunately we have a relatively new Apple Store at an outdoor mall about 30 minutes away.   Not busy at all!  The rep was also very friendly to me. Her kindness actually “saved me” in making me want to come back to Mac.    I watched the entire event on Oct 17.  Mac Mini?   Yes!    The $499 system is great for a kid, but for anyone who wants robust system (as good as the $1299 iMac at least), the $699 Mac Mini is the baseline.  I ordered it and and it arrived on Oct 23.     The nearly $500 I freed up by going with the Mini will allow me to get the iPad Air 2 in the near future and use it as my primary portable.   

One of  the major reasons I wanted to get back to the Mac was to provide better support to my small but loyal group of clients. In addition to being a Grad student and teacher in training, I have run a small tech support business here for many years. I earn only 10 to 20 grand per year from this, but for me its the difference between survival and being broke. My most loyal, repeat customers are Mac users. I know the Apple Store offers support and they offer a One on One program where they provide some training, but these options are not for everyone. My clients like to have a “computer concierge” and that is what I strive for in being their consultant.

The past four days have helped me rekindle some of my great days a Mac user from 2004 to January of this year when I just had to give up because OS 10.9 did not support multiple monitors properly until 10.9.2 came out in late February.   My spring semester was starting and I needed a (working) computer — darn it.  I don’t regret spending nearly 9 months as a full time Windows user.  It was not hell.   Relying on Windows 7 and later 8.1 (with modifications to make it look like 7) was a conservative and stable experience.  It was predictable.  

One of the features I grew to love in Windows was the built in Windows Speech Recognition. The built in dictation in Mountain Lion, later “Enhanced” with offline dictation in Mavericks, was no match for the parallel feature in Windows. I was all set to go out and buy a copy of Dragon Dictate for Mac, which I will do anyway at some point because I have a client that needs a lot of help with it, but OS 10.10’s Dictation meets all of my needs for now. I can finally give commands like “Select” followed by the word and I can have a chance to correct it. I can also go to the end of the line by saying “go to end.” I read that there are 40 commands that can be given. I can’t wait to get the full list. For right now the commands in OS X’s Dictation only work in Text Edit and Pages. This bugs me because I use often use Word. However, Microsoft Office for Mac has not had a new version since late 2010. I hope that Microsoft builds in full support for Yosemite’s dictation commands in their next version.

For those of you keeping score at home — I am using this mid-tier 2014 Mac Mini with a 21.5 AOC monitor from Best Buy purchased last year, and the Microsoft Sculpt ergonomic desktop (wireless keyboard and mouse) — input devices that online reviews have called “the most Mac like product that Microsoft ever released”. Allison, it is good to be back. I will let you and the Castaways decide how many lashes I should get for being a heretic.

Kevin From Connecticut
Well Kevin, I think we’ll forgive you, much like the prodigal son. We’re just glad you’re back. I love two things that you said about using Windows, you said, “it was not hell” and “It was predictable.” I think that in those two sentences is the real essence of the difference between Windows and the Mac. You’ll often hear people say, “I love my Mac” or “I was playing on my Mac” but you don’t hear that from Windows people as often. They say it’s predictable and they can get their stuff done, but you don’t hear the joy and delight very often. Sometimes, but not often.

In any case, Kevin, welcome back.

Your choice of the mid-range Mac Mini will dovetail perfectly into my next segment.

Blog Posts

Command-C Lets You Copy and Paste Between iOS and OSX

Play Flash on the iPad Using the Puffin Browser


So remember way back early in the show when I talked about that tutorial about how to move from LastPass to 1Password? Everybody sing it now, how did I create that tutorial? With Clarify of course. I love how you can store your tutorials inside Evernote now. It’s like my own little database of tutorials, with tags and search to find the one I want to edit. Today I opened up Evernote, double clicked on the Clarify document embedded in the note, edited it, tapped on the WordPress logo to push it up to podfeet.com as a tutorial page, and boom, we’re in business. So much ease of use to be able to make the tools that help people out. This week Melissa Mannozzi wrote on the blog that she found the NosillaCast because of one the tutorials I created so it really brings everyone together.

If you’d like to create tutorials for yourself and others, check out Clarify from clarify-it.com. And tell them who sent you!

Chit Chat Across the Pond

In this week’s episode of Chit Chat Across the Pond I’m joined by Guy Serle of the MyMac.com Podcast and Chris Ashley of the SMR Podcast to talk about the #GamerGate controversy. We discussed the genesis of what happened which was really about ethics in journalism, how it turned into a witch hunt and how people tangled up the topic of women characters in gaming. Guy emphasized the point that if you want to effect change in society, you must use your real name, which is not happening here.

Many people feel that there does need to be more female representation in gaming, representation that is not scantily clad and presents strong role models. We suggest that if this is where you think gaming should go, then it’s up to you to either start writing compelling games like this, or if you’re not a developer to support Jean MacDonald’s AppCamp4Girls at appcamp4girls.com/. AppCamp4Girls is dedicated to getting girls interested in programming by introducing them to game development.

If you want to join in the conversation on the topic of GamerGate and women in gaming in general, please go over to our GooglePlus community at podfeet.com/googleplus.

That’s going to wind this up for this week, many thanks to our sponsor for helping to pay the bills, Blue Mango Learning at bluemangolearning.com makers of Clarify. Don’t forget to send in your Dumb Questions, comments and suggestions by emailing me at [email protected], follow me on twitter and app.net @podfeet. Check out the NosillaCast Google Plus Community too – lots of fun over there! If you want to join in the fun of the live show, head on over to podfeet.com/live on Sunday nights at 5pm Pacific Time and join the friendly and enthusiastic NosillaCastaways. Thanks for listening, and stay subscribed.

1 thought on “#495 Mac Mini Decisions, Command-C, Puffin Browser, GamerGate with Guy and Chris

  1. Bob DeGrande - November 3, 2014

    Loved the Gamergate conversation. When Guy posted about the topic, I suggested that he follow Brianna Wu (@spacekatgal), who tweets pretty much nonstop about it and is a great source for anyone looking to get caught up on the issue. I would personally pay to see these Gamergate chumps say the same sorts of things they are willing to say to 90 pound women to Guy or Chris.

    I’m not much of a gamer, but I have done three podcasts with a total of seven female hosts so far. From the beginning, I have never given out any personal information about them – not last name, location, marital status, whatever. What they choose to reveal is up to them. In my case I was concerned about stalkers and such, which is actually pretty tame in comparison to what has been done to the women that have spoken out against Gamergate (who have generally had NO possible ethics issues and are still made targets).

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