How to get Safari Favicons on Mac and iOS

One complaint I and many others have had with Safari was the lack of Favicons in tabs. Well, with Safari 12 on Mac and iOS complain no more.

To enable Favicons on tabs in macOS:
First off you will need to have updated to Safari 12 and be running either Sierra or High Sierra. Now open Safari and go to Preferences > Tabs > Show website icons and check the box.

To enable Favicons on tabs in iOS:
First off you will need to running iOS 12. Now open Settings and go to Safari > Show icons in tabs and turn it on.

Bear turns off Markdown compatibly mode with today’s update on Mac and iOS

I was ticked off this morning after updating Bear on all my devices. All my notes were looking a little strange. I first noticed it in my todo lists. The checkboxes didn’t look right and bold was no longer bold.

Here’s the solution. Go into Settings > General and turn Markdown compatibly mode back on and everything will be okay. You’ll need to do this on each device that you have Bear installed on.

This is a bad move by the developer. They should know better.

File Quick View with Alfred

If you have been following my blog for a while you know that I’m a big fan of Alfred. I use it all the time for finding and opening files. One thing I didn’t know though is that when searching files you can do a Quick View. In the past, I’ve always opened the file in the appropriate app to view it. With Alfred Quick View I can press ⇧ or ⌘Y to bring up a quick view of the file. This is a nice time saver.

Credit to Lee Garrett: Quick View with Alfred

 

Switching between multiple open windows in the same application

Switching between multiple open windows in the same application has always been a pain point for me. Go to Window in the application Menu Bar and then select the window I want from the list of open windows. Or right click on the application in the Dock and select the window from list of open windows.

I just learned that there’s an easier way. Use the keyboard shortcut ⌘ + Tilde to quickly switch between open windows in the same application. So, for example, there are times when I have several Safari windows open at the same time. I can quickly sort through them with this keyboard shortcut.

Next time you have several windows open in the same application give it a try.

Delete GarageBand hidden folders to save gigabytes of Mac storage

The other day I was checking the available storage on my 2015 13” MacBook Pro which only has 128 GB of flash storage. While doing so, I noticed something strange. In the Storage tab of About This Mac GarageBand was using 2 GB of storage. I found that odd since I don’t have GarageBand installed on this Mac.

With only 128 GB of flash storage, I wanted to reclaim the space. This TekRevue article by Jim Tanous, Delete GarageBand to Save Gigabytes of Mac Storage, helped me find some hidden GarageBand folders. After I removed them, High Sierra doesn’t show anymore GarageBand content in About This Mac.

These are the folders that I deleted.

  • HD/Library/Application Support/GarageBand (995MB)
  • Macintosh HD/Library/Application Support/Logic (880MB)
  • Macintosh HD/Library/Audio/Apple Loops (up to 10GB)

You should read the article and follow the instructions before deleting these folders.

After thoughts on Ulysses subscription

I know I said No Subscription. Even though I said that I caved in and signed up for a 12-month subscription to Ulysses right before my free use period ended.

I’m still not a happy camper though and here’s why.

I think Soleman should have followed the lead of 1Password, Day One, and TextExpander and continued to support and update the purchased version of the app for those users who want to continue using it. They didn’t! They said the paid version would not be supported after High Sierra. So, in essence, they are forcing everyone, previous users, and new users, on to the subscription. To me, that’s just wrong. That’s why I’m not a happy camper.

Then why am I still using Ulysses? Because I haven’t found anything that compares. I’ve tried Byword, MultiMarkdown Composer, the new iA Writer 5 for Mac and iOS, Bear and BBEdit.

Here’s what sets Ulysses apart for me:

  • Identical features across Mac and iOS.
  • The unified library. I don’t like managing individual files.
  • Clean distraction free writing environment.
  • Selecting my font of choice.
  • Publishing to WordPress and Medium.
  • It’s just dead simple to use.

Web Finds for June 11, 2018

Web Finds are from my web surfing travels. You’ll find some unique and informative news, apps and websites that you may have never known existed. Enjoy!

17 Basic macOS Terms Every Mac User Needs to Know and Master
Whether a newbie or veteran, you have a whole lot of Apple-specific glossary to pick up and master. But don’t worry, it’s not all that difficult.
Via Makeuseof

10 Strikes and You’re Out — the iOS Feature You’re Probably Not Using But Should
For many years now, iOS has offered an option in the Passcode section of the Settings all: “Erase all data on this iPhone after 10 failed passcode attempts.
Via Daring Fireball

How to Request a Copy of Your Apple ID Account Data
Apple now allows its customers to download a copy of their personally identifiable data from Apple apps and services. This can include purchase or app usage history, Apple Music and Game Center statistics, marketing history, AppleCare support history, and any data stored on Apple servers, including the likes of calendars, photos, and documents.
Via MacRumors

4 Ways to Generate a List of Apps Installed on Your Mac
I ran across this the other day. It’s not something that I would use often but in the right situation it could be very helpful.
Via Makeuseof

Previous Web Finds are here.

My Mac Menu Bar – June 2018

Visible

1Password: For my passwords
Copied: For syncing clipboards.
Fantastical: For quick access to my calendars.
Screenfloat: For taking or accessing screenshots.
TunnelBear VPN: For private browsing.
Bartender 3: For hiding the menu bar items that I don’t want to see.

Hidden

Alfred: For efficiency and productivity.
Keyboard Maestro: For efficiency and productivity.
PopClip: For managing selected text.
Yoink: For drag and drop.
Oversight: For alerting me when my internal mic or webcam is being accessed.
Time Machine: For backup to an external USB drive.

MWeb markdown editor for Mac and iOS

I came across MWeb from a Medium reader comment suggesting it as a Ulysses replacement. Not being familiar with the app I checked in with the king of markdown text editors macosxguru. I figured he would know about it and sure enough, he did.

He has been kind enough to do a nice review of the Mac app.

macosxguru, writing for Bicycle for Your Mind

Product: MWeb
Price: $14.99

Loren of ldstephens asked for a review of MWeb. So here goes.

MWeb is a surprise. It is a deep product which improves on both Ulysses and Bear in some areas and brings some unique skills to the Markdown editor genre.

It is the usual three-pane Markdown based text editor. Similar to LightPaper, TextNut – A CommonMark editor for Mac, Bear – Notes for iPhone, iPad and Mac or Ulysses to name a few. This category is a competitive category in the macOS marketplace.

Continue reading the review here.

Ulysses crashes when opening a .docx file

Yesterday I tried to open a .docx document in Ulysses on my iMac. I figured it must be okay since Ulysses was listed in the right click Open With Menu. Doing so crashed the app big time. After that every time I tried to open Ulysses it would immediately crash. I uninstalled reinstalled the app and it still crashed.

Next, I tried using Ulysses on my MacBook and the same thing happened. So I’m thinking Oh Shit now what do I do. All my documents are in Ulysses and it is crashing every time I open it.

As a last resort I opened Ulysses on my iPad and coincidentally it opened in the Inbox which contained the .docx document that I originally tried to open.  On a flyer, I deleted the document and emptied the trash.

That fixed it. Now everything is working normally again. For some reason, that document was crashing the app.

I found this about opening .docx files in Ulysses.

When you tap and hold the file, you’ll get prompted with a list of apps available for opening it on your iPhone. Choose Ulysses, and the file will be imported as a Ulysses sheet into your library’s inbox.

According to this blog post opening a .docx file in Ulysses is doable but I won’t be doing it anymore.

The Archive – a new notes app for Mac

There’s a new notes app out called the The Archive. If you have used Brett Terpstra’s nvALT this app will look very familiar to you.

Gabe Weatherhead at MacDrifter

The Archive is designed around what Notational Velocity and later nvALT brought to the Mac: Fast, reliable search with ease of creation. As both of these applications lost their luster as macOS advanced, I left them behind in a favor of less buggy and more versatile tools. The Archive is the first application to come along that is really making me reconsider moving my note collection out of Dropbox.

macosxguru at Bicycle For Your Mind.

The Archive owes a huge debt to nvALT. The developers acknowledge that debt explicitly. The Archive is nvALT improved.

I downloaded and played with The Archive for a few days. I found it to be a very nice and an improvement over nvALT. If I hadn’t moved my notes from nvALT to Bear last year I would definitely consider using The Archive as my notes app. For now, I’m too invested in Bear to change.

Macosxguru wrote a nice review of The Archive. I suggest giving it a read.

Day One app support

I purchased the iOS version of Day One journaling app about a year and a half ago thinking I would use it for journaling in place of the journal I was keeping in a Ulysses. My journaling is pretty hit and miss so I never got into using Day One until now.

A few months ago I decided I wanted start documenting some of the activities in my life so I started doing that in Day One. I call it a Lifelog. I do this with words and photos which is a really nice way to document things. Now I’ve decided I’m going use Day One for all my journaling. With a couple of hours work, I moved all the journal entries that I had in Ulysses into Day One.

There’s only one missing. When I purchased Day One I only purchased the iOS app which I have on my iPhone and iPad. Now I think I would like to have the Mac app. Since my account is a grandfathered Plus account and not a subscription I wasn’t sure how to go about getting the Mac app.

Plus – grandfathered

For users that purchased Day One 2.0 between February 4, 2016 and June 27, 2017:  You will see this user status in the app settings. The status is per platform. If you owned Day One only on iOS, you will have Plus on iOS only.

So I contacted support to see if there was any way to get a trial of the Mac app with Plus status.

I have to say, this was the best support experience I’ve ever had. My support person was Adam. He understood what I wanted to do and offered to set me up for a one week trial. I said that would be wonderful. He said at the end of the trial I could purchase the Mac app with Plus status, or go for the Premium subscription with a discount for being a previous user, or just continue using the iOS app as I have been.

Adam was so nice and accommodating that I feel compelled to upgrade to the Premium subscription for at least one year. He said if I don’t renew the next year my plan reverts back to the iOS Plus plan which in the end would probably be fine.

Search Bear notes from Alfred

If you’re using Alfred and Bear I want to share a workflow with you that I use to search Bear notes or tags and open the result from Alfred.

Here’s how it works.

Searching and opening results

  • bs — Search for a note by title and open it in Bear.
  • bst — Search for a tag (a group of notes) by tag title and open it in Bear.

You can also create a new note from Alfred.

Creating a new note

  • bn — Create a new note with input as title. Tags optional.
    • bn I love notes! — Creates a new note with the title and text “I love notes!”
    • bn I love notes! #love #notes — Creates a new note with the title and text “I love notes!” and the tags “#love” and “#notes”

This saves some keystrokes if I’m not already working in Bear.

Download the workflow.

Things 3 – Updated to version 3.4 with URL linking

Things 3 is my favorite task manager.

With today’s update to version 3.4 Things now has URL linking, app handover, and automation capabilities. I don’t have a need for these new features but more advanced users are going to be very excited.

For a more detailed explanation of the new features go to Culture Code’s blog post.

For new users, Things 3.4 can be downloaded from the Mac App Store for $49.99 and the iOS App Store. The iPad version is priced at $19.99 while the iPhone version (which includes Apple watch support) is priced at $9.99.

Outlining vs Mind-Mapping

The other day, I read two reviews about OmniOutliner 3. As I read them I got to thinking. Maybe outlining could help me better organize my thoughts for what I want to write.

My current method of organizing my thoughts is a bit messy. I have a basic idea of what I want to write and I start writing. This doesn’t always work out so well. It’s frustrating at times. I know what I want to say but I don’t know how to say it in an organized way.

I’ve tried mind-mapping with MindNode but mind-mapping doesn’t click for me. So, I’m going to try using outlines. I’m giving two apps a try. OmniOutliner 5 Essentials and OutlineEdit. OmniOutliner 5 Essentials has a free 14 day trial with an in app purchase of $9.99. OutlineEdit is free on the App Store.

Things 3 productivity course from Shawn Blanc is now available

I’m a Things 3 user. I have the app on both my Macs, iPhone, and iPad. I’ve written about how much I like here.

Today Shawn Blanc, the man who runs The Sweet Setup, has released his new productivity course “All the Things”.

In his own words:

Things 3 is the best task management app out there. It is simple and easy to use, and it has a beautiful design. While being powerful enough for even the most detailed and organized power user, it is also simple enough for the rest of us.

In our new course, All The Things, we will quickly show you how to get up and running with Things 3.

Moreover, you will get additional, in-depth systems for a more calm approach to productivity and easier task management.

— Shawn

How I use Alfred to launch files and folders on my Mac

This is Part 4 of how I use Alfred.

The default way to open files or folders on the Mac is with Finder. Using Alfred I’m able to launch files and folders with fewer mouse clicks. I do this with Alfred’/s Quick File Search. I activate Alfred tap the space bar and start typing the name of the file or folder I’m looking for. I also use Alfred to navigate through my Mac’s file system. To start, I type: / (slash) to go to the root folder on my Mac, or ~ (tilde) to go to my user directory. This is a great way to quickly make my way through folders without using the Finder and my mouse.

For my most often used folders I’ve created a workflow that lets me open them with keyboard shortcuts. For example ⌃⌘ right arrow will open my Dropbox folder.

I find that using Alfred to search and launch files and folders to be much more productive than using the Finder.

Bear app special searches

Bear has several special searches that I find useful.

The other day I imported a large number of files without tags into Bear. Once imported I did a @untagged search to find them and then added the proper tag(s). This saved a lot of time. I also do a @untagged search every week or so to find notes that I’ve added and forgot to tag.

I also use @task, @todo, and @done to manage tasks. You can see the definition of what each one does below.

Here’s a list of all Bears special searches:

  • @tagged : shows the notes which have at least one tag
  • @untagged: shows the notes without tags
  • @today: show the notes modified the current day
  • @yesterday: show the notes modified the day before the current
  • @images: shows the notes which contain images
  • @files: shows the notes which contain files
  • @attachments: shows the notes with files or images
  • @task: shows the notes which include at least one todo element, either complete or not
  • @todo: shows only the notes with not completed todos
  • @done: shows only the notes with all the todos completed
  • @code: shows the notes which includes at least one code

How I use Alfred for text expansion on my Mac

This is Part 3 of how I use Alfred.

There are a number of text expansion apps available for the Mac the most popular being TextExpander. I considered it but the monthly subscription was a deal breaker for me. I also didn’t need anything that powerful. All I needed was basic text expansion and sync across both my Macs. After exploring several alternatives I settled on using the text expansion feature that was already a part of the Alfred app.

Alfred’s text expansion feature allows me to quickly type out frequently used snippets of text, my email addresses, my name, my phone number, my address, markdown syntax, special keyboard symbols (⌘, ⌥, ⇧), the date and time, and more with a short keyword. For example, I can type ,ddate and get the current date or I can type ,rwr and get “Run, walk, run miles @MAF” which is a text snippet I use for logging my runs in Garmin Connect. Text expansion is all about saving time and increasing productivity.

To learn more check out these Alfred articles: