Archive | May 2013

How to sync an Android phone to your Mac

Thanks to iCloud, syncing an iPhone with a Mac is a piece of cake. But Mac users who don’t buy into the whole “one vendor to rule them all” thing will find that syncing an Android phone with OS X isn’t quite as easy. That said, it isn’t terribly difficult, either, thanks to Google’s own cloud services.


First, you must set up your phone to sync with your Google account. To make sure that this syncing is enabled, go to Settings > Accounts > Google, and tap your email address (it will be at the top of the screen, under the Accounts heading). Then confirm that the Sync Contacts box is checked.

Next, open the Address Book app on your Mac, go to Address Book > Preferences > Accounts, and choose On My Mac. You’ll see two boxes: one that says ‘Synchronize to Yahoo’ and another that says ‘Synchronize to Google’. Check the Synchronize to Google box, press Accept in the pop-up box, and enter your Gmail address and password when prompted. You should now see a small sync symbol in your Mac’s menubar. Click this symbol, and choose Sync Now from the dropdown menu.


To sync your Android/Google calendar with iCal, …read more

Tips and tricks for iPhoto for iOS

Although iPhoto for iOS isn’t quite as robust as its OS X counterpart, it’s a very capable image editor—and it can do a few cool tricks you simply can’t do on your Mac.

Straighten your photos

iPhoto for iOS allows you to straighten your photos in a few smart ways. The first is by auto-detecting a strong horizon line. Open iPhoto, choose a photo and then tap Edit. Now tap the Crop & Straighten icon in the bottom left. If the photo displays a white line across it with icons at either end, then that means a horizon line has been detected. To proceed with straightening, simply tap the arrow icon at the right.

Unfortunately, iPhoto can’t always detect a horizon line and that means you’ll have to make the adjustment yourself. The Crop & Straighten mode places a dial under your photo, and you can straighten your photo simply by dragging the dial left or right. A grid overlaid on your photo as you turn the dial, lets you straighten with visual cues in your photo.

What happens when your photo has no visual cues, but still feels off-kilter? iPhoto for iOS has one more strategy to assist you, and it’s a …read more

iPad colors gone wrong? Whack it!

Reader Patricia Whitney has done the Bad Thing to her iPad and wonders if there’s a way to make it Good. She writes:

I dropped my first-generation iPad and now the screen’s colors are all wrong. Blacks are green and there’s a lot of “static” in all the images the iPad displays. Is there anything I can do to fix it?

In the days of classic sitcoms there was an old wheeze where Main Character A would suffer a bump on the head, causing said A to lose his or her memory. After the ensuing hijinx, the arrived-at solution was invariably to bean them again, thus restoring their memory. Those penning today’s sitcoms avoid such advice, understanding the litigious society we now live in.

I offer this stroll down the hoary path of television history to suggest that while our ancestors may have lived in a black-and-white world, they knew a thing or two about fixing misfiring systems. Take your iPad, for instance.

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