BitTorrent Sync Introduces Unlimited & Secure Two-Way P2P File Syncing [Review]

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IF you've ever wondered how file syncing can take place in the absence of a server and the need to create an account with it, BitTorrent has the answer for you in form of their latest app - BitTorrent Sync. It’s a peer-to-peer file syncing client by BitTorrent that relies on ‘Secrets’, which are 32-character long passcodes that you can set up to connect two computers and sync files between them - no link sharing or account sign up with any web service needed. The biggest benefit such a setup has over traditional Dropbox-style web service-based syncing is that there are no limits on file size or total space - you are only limited by the total space on the connected devices themselves. Though one drawback is that you don't get to have your files saved on the cloud for access from any computer or smartphone. The app is in public Alpha and undergoing active development, so there might be some quirks yet to be ironed out. The apps are available for Mac, Windows, and Linux, and as per our tests, they all work perfectly for syncing files. Read More

Shotcut Is A Nifty Multi-Platform Video Clip Editor With Custom Filters

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Video editors like Adobe Premiere and Sony Vegas Pro are exceptionally powerful when it comes to professional-grade video production, but these programs don’t come cheap. If you’re looking for a powerful video editing application that won’t cost you an arm and a leg, try Shotcut. It’s an open-source, cross-platform app that provides an expanded workspace with a whole variety of features to let you quickly edit your homemade videos and recordings. In fact, it’s so powerful that you might soon find yourself carving out commercial-grade videos, after going through the initial learning curve, of course. It can encode videos at up to 1080p and packs a ton of options, while keeping the interface simple. Read More

Share Photos & Videos Between Mac & iOS Over WiFi With Transfr

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iOS devices and Macs work very well with each other and it’s rare to hear complains about users having trouble connecting an iPhone or iPad with a Mac. Transferring photos and videos from them to a Mac via USB is also quite easy. If you don’t have one, you can still transfer pictures over Wi-Fi, provided you have the right apps installed on your phone and Mac. There is a large number of apps available for the purpose but Transfr provides possibly the most fluid experience of the lot, as long as you don’t mind the $1.99 price tag for its iOS app. Transfr is free for Mac and with its iOS companion app, it lets you receive photos and videos from your iDevice and save them to a predefined folder over Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. Read More

How To Add Facebook Chat To The Mac OS X Messages App

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Both the Facebook app itself as well as the dedicated Facebook Messenger app allow you to chat with your Facebook friends on your smartphone, giving you two very easy ways to keep in touch with them. When it comes to OS X though, despite Facebook’s integration in Mountain Lion, no native chat feature exists in the OS itself that would allow you to connect with your Facebook friends. If you would like to integrate Facebook chat with OS X itself without having to resort to a third-party app, you need look no further than the Messages app in OS X that is more than capable of acting as a chat client for Facebook. Here’s how you can set the app up to send and receive chat messages from Facebook, Read More

Add Chrome & Firefox Bookmarks To Mac Spotlight Search Index With Brow

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Spotlight in OS X indexes a lot of things but when it comes to browser bookmarks, it does index the ones saved in Safari, but not the ones saved by other browsers. If you use more than one browser and often struggle with different bookmarks libraries for each one, you might like Brow. It’s a small free utility that adds your Chrome and Firefox bookmarks to Spotlight’s index. While it runs in the background or the Menu Bar, it continually monitors the profile folders that each browser creates, and keeps the bookmarks up-to-date in Spotlight’s index. This makes your bookmarks saved across three different browser searchable from one central location i.e. Spotlight. Read More

Time & Manage Multiple Speakers In Meetings With presenterCue Server

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A few years ago, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences introduced a method to let starts giving their acceptance speech at the Oscars know when they were taking too much time without announcing it in an obvious way; they simply played a specific music tune to indicate that their time was up. Of course, things aren't as simple in the real world and trying to get someone to stop talking during a speech or meeting can be a formidable task in itself. Sadly we don’t have n app that’s going to get people to stop talking, but presenterCue Server is an excellent solution available in the Mac App Store for managing speech or presentation times for multiple speakers. It is free and can be used to rehearse timed speeches, group presentations, and manage meetings. Read More

Auto-Change Mac Screen Resolution When Switching Power Sources

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OS X changes the screen brightness when your MacBook is running on battery power but sadly, there isn’t much else you can trigger when the system detects it is no longer plugged into a power outlet. While the aforementioned feature is useful, an ordinary user can’t do anything with it. Now imagine you’re using a Retina MacBook and would like to reduce your screen’s resolution when it’s running on battery power. One way to do it is manually changing it. Though if you would prefer to automate the process, you will need to make a little effort and be prepared for a little setup procedure. We’re going to show you how to change your screen’s resolution using an AppleScript and ControlPlane - a free Mac App that allows you to create contexts for running apps or scripts. This method works in Mountain Lion but may or may not work on older OS X versions. Read More

Save Selected Text To OS X Notes App From Right-Click Context Menu

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Browser extensions and add-ons that allow you to save selected text as notes are one of the easiest ways to save useful text snippets for easily retrieving them later. However, these notes are mostly confined to your browser. Outside the browser, there are apps that can run in the background and collect text from your clipboard. In OS X, you will notice that there is a system wide-option to select and search for text in Safari from any app. With the help of Automator, you can create a similar service that can be used to select text in any app and create a note in the default Notes app with it. Read More

How To Create A Split Zipped Archive From Mac OS X Terminal

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OS X comes with the aptly named Archive Utility that can be used to extract contents of compressed zip files, or create zipped archives of your own from your files and folders via the options provided in the right-click context menu. With no UI to speak of, the app works in the background and is fairly basic. What the default utility can’t do is create an archive of a folder that’s split into smaller zip files that can later be extracted as a whole into a single folder. There are several third-party apps available that allow you to do this but if you just want to quickly do it without using a third-party app, and don't mind typing in a command for the purpose, you can easily do so from Terminal. In what follows, we are going to show you how to use a Terminal command to easily create split zip archives of the contents of any folder. Read More

Track Debts & Borrowed Items Across PC, Mac, Android & iOS With I Owe You

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If you forget your phone at home or can't remember where you put the car keys, chances are you're the only one inconvenienced by your forgetfulness. Now imagine you promised to pay someone back some money you borrowed; not only does it make for an awkward situation when you are reminded of the pending debt, but it might also leave a bad impression of you on the other person. I Owe You is a web service with apps available for Mac, Windows, Android, iOS, and Windows Phone that lets you keep track of money or items that you've borrowed from someone, along with things or money that others have borrowed from you. The debts you enter can be one-time or recurring. A debt can easily be divided between several people (like a restaurant tab paid for all by one). I Owe You will send you notifications for overdue debts as well as for debts that are soon due. You can easily choose the type of notifications you receive. Read More

Filedrop Allows AirDrop-Like File Sharing Between Windows & Mac

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AirDrop lets you share files from one Mac to another on the same Wi-Fi network. Unlike network sharing, Airdrop automatically discovers other nearby computers and lets you very easily share files between them using drag & drop. Filedrop is a free app available for Mac and Windows (and coming soon to iOS and Android) that makes the same drag & drop file sharing cross-platform. It searches the network for other Mac and Windows PCs running Filedrop, and these other computers then show up on your side in the app, allowing you to drag & drop files to any one of them for quick sharing. Likewise, your own computer also becomes visible to all other systems on the same network that are running the Filedrop app, and they can send you files in a similar manner. Transfer of files is subject to the receiving system’s acceptance. Being incredibly easy to use, the app greatly simplifies file sharing on the same network. Read More

Screenink Is A Screenshot App With Powerful Layered Annotation & Freehand Selection

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Screenink is an app for Mac and Windows that lets you capture screenshots of your full screen or any defined area of it. Unlike conventional screenshot apps that limit a custom area to fit in a rectangle or square shape, Screenink lets you draw out a custom shape on your screen and capture all content within it. It also gives you an on-screen protractor and ruler that allows you to measure both the length, width, and angle of anything on your screen. You can draw shapes, enter text, and use the app’s very own color picker to select a color from the screen. The app adds an always-on-top toolbar to the screen and a pencil-like icon to the Menu Bar that allow you use its many tools. It supports keyboard shortcuts as well for quickly performing its functions. Screenink's Mac app is available for $0.99 in the Mac App Store, while the Windows version costs $2.00. Read More

Auto-Open Files, Apps Or Scripts On Mac When A Calendar Event Is Due

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One of the things I love about well-built reminder apps - like the stock Reminder app in iOS - is that alerts can be triggered not just by time but by location as well. While the Reminder app in iOS has only limited choices as to what can trigger an alert, there are other apps available that give you a richer choice. As far as triggers are concerned, you will find apps supporting quite a variety of them, but alerts are a different story, and are often limited in type; you’ll get an audio alert, or a notification on your screen but there seemingly isn't much else that can be done. The stock Calendar app in OS X is pretty smart when it comes to alerts; not only does it give you audio alerts and on-screen notifications, but it will also allow you to open a particular file when an event is due. Read on to see how it works. Read More

How To Force Google Chrome For Mac To Open In Incognito Mode

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Most Chrome users use the Incognito browsing mode every now and then, while others use it quite often. If you prefer incognito browsing over normal browsing sessions (we’re not judging) but are vexed with the fact that there is no one-click method to launch Chrome in Incognito by default, you can do so with a little script. This particular method is meant to work in OS X only, as Windows users can always directly launch Chrome in Incognito mode from its Jumplist (just as Mac users can do so from the Dock icon’s options). The script is meant to launch Chrome in Incognito mode with one click using a dedicated shortcut created in form of an AppleScript app. Read More

How To Easily Access & Use Screen Sharing In Mac OS X

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Mac, like Windows, has a built in remote desktop tool. It’s also got a screen sharing tool that is super easy to use, but not as easy to access unless you enjoy going to the System Preferences each time you need to share your screen. If you often share your screen or remotely access another Mac (or PC), then perhaps you might be interested in a more convenient way of doing it. Screen sharing in Mac is commonly accessed from the System Preferences under the Sharing head, and it's entirely possible that some users aren't even aware of what it can do, due to there being no prominent shortcut for it like many other system apps have. In truth, screen sharing exists as just another app that - for some reason - hasn't been added to Launchpad or the Applications folder. This post details how you can access and use Screen Sharing as easily as any other OS X app. Read More

Screenstagram Is A Screensaver Made Out Of An Instagram Photo Grid

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Checking out Instagram’s latest hits is, according to many, an idle task. So what better time to do that than when you’re just that – idle? Screenstagram allows you to quickly view the most popular uploads together, as many little photos on a single screen. The tiles slowly fade or slide in and out as the screensaver progresses. You can also set it to display pictures from your own Instagram feed, those with certain hashtags or all of the pictures you’ve ever liked, by signing in with your Instagram account. Read More

Super Memory Cleaner Periodically Frees Up Memory On Your Mac

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You've probably heard of cleaning your Mac cache to free up space, as well as RAM optimizers that claim to speed up your system. Cleaning your Mac cache will definitely free up space on your hard drive, and perhaps some rare RAM optimizer will help you get the most out of your RAM as well, if it's actually doing what it says on its labels. Super Memory Cleaner is a similar app that frees up memory used by apps running in the background. It actively monitors how much free memory you have on your system and regularly purges it when there is memory to free up. You can force the app to clean up the memory as well and though it takes a while to do so, it works well enough, as evident in Activity Monitor. Read More

[Giveaway] Mention: Google Alerts Alternative With Desktop, Mobile Apps & Analytics

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A few days ago we covered Talkwalker Alerts - a free web alerts service that does pretty much what Google Alerts does, by letting you add as many web-based alerts as you like and monitor them via an RSS feed. It’s a good service and a reliable one should Google decide to axe its offering. Mention is a similar service that's more suited for users who use alerts extensively to monitor specific topics being discussed online. The service has both free and premium accounts available, with the free accounts limited to a total of three alerts and 50,000 mentions per month. Mention has apps for Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android that allow you to monitor these alerts as they come. The service does not send email alerts, and your inbox therefore remains clean from the clutter. Mention has its own ‘inbox’ that you can read the alerts in. Alerts can be narrowed down to include or exclude a certain phrase/word, originate from specific source(s), and be in a language of your choice. Mention allows you to view stats for your alerts and download them in report form as a PDF file. Read More

Quickly Add Entries To Reminders App From Mac Menu Bar With Remind Me

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Reminder apps are very common for just about all platforms, and Mac as well as iOS come with one that syncs over iCloud. This app, called Reminder, is rather basic; it allows you to group reminders by list and lets you set the priority level for each of them. There are various more as well as less sophisticated reminder apps available for Mac but if you just want a quick way to add reminders to the stock Reminders app, try out Remind Me. It is a free app available in the Mac App Store that’s built to make the process of adding reminders to the stock Reminders app easier. If you’ve used Reminders, you know that you can click an empty line in the app’s interface and start typing. The text you enter is immediately added as a reminder, no questions asked. And that is, perhaps, where the problem lies. Once the reminder has been added, you have to click on its information button to view/edit is due date. Where Reminders is extremely simple, it’s also slightly confusing and liable to make you forget adding a due date to your reminder. Remind Me aims to be the extended 'Add reminder' dialog box that Reminder never had. Read More

Shred Unwanted Files On Mac To Prevent Recovery Using Incinerator

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If you have a hard copy of a document or form that you never want anyone to see, you can shred it, burn the bits, and scatter them to the four corners of the Earth in hopes that the CSI team never finds them. It’s effective enough for physical documents but when it comes to files on your computer, deleting a file from your hard disk and your trash sounds as if it should be enough to get rid of them. However, these files can still be recovered either by using file recovery apps, or employing people from CSI. We've covered a tip on permanently erasing files from OS X using the Terminal, and where it is sufficient if you seldom need to securely delete files, the method isn't all that convenient for frequent use or if a lot of files are involved. Incinerator is a free app available in the Mac App Store that provides a more effective way to delete your files. It’s a file shredder that gives you free rein to choose how many times a file is shredded. You can choose to keep a dummy copy of the shredded file, or have the app delete it automatically once it’s been shredded. Read More