View Mac files quickly with Quick Look

Need to quickly view the contents of a file without opening Word or Photoshop (or any other program)? Just select the file in your Finder and hit the space bar. This will open a preview or “quick look” of your file. Use the up/down arrow keys to cycle through other files in the same directory.

If you want to view multiple files at the same time, select the files and hit the space bar. At the top of the pop-up window you can click back/next to rotate through the files, or click on the index sheet button (four little squares) to view thumbnails of all your selected files at once.

To view images full screen, click on the two arrows in the right corner of the pop-up window. In full screen mode, you can navigate through your files with the arrow keys or click the play button to watch a slideshow.

*This is a feature in OS 10.5 and later. To see which OS you are running, go to the Apple menu and click About This Mac.

Removing dock icons in Mountain Lion

To remove an icon from the Apple dock, just click and hold the icon, drag it off, release your mouse, and poof it disappears. If you’ve upgraded to Mountain Lion (10.8.2) you may notice that this doesn’t seem to work. Apple didn’t disable this feature, they just changed it so you have to hold the icon a few seconds longer before it disappears. Just click, drag and hold the icon off of the dock for at least 10 seconds till the poof cloud appears and then release.

More info on the Dock here.

Keep your Mac awake!

Caffeine is a tiny free program that I find essential. Normally your computer is set to go to screensaver or sleep after a specified period of time. But what if you want your computer to stay awake while you read an article, watch a movie, or give a presentation? Caffeine lives in your menubar and with one-click it disables the screensaver and sleep-mode.

Try it out!

Sign a document electronically in Apple Preview (Lion)

There are two ways that I used to sign electronic documents:

  1. Print the document, sign, and send through the mail.
  2. Print the document, sign, scan back into the computer, and email.

Both are pretty tedious. Did you know that you can place a signature in your PDF document directly in Apple Preview? All you need is OS X Lion (10.7) and a FaceTime Camera (that is built into most Macs).

Open the document and click on the Marker button (looks like a highlighter). Click on the “S” icon and Preview will ask you to hold up a written signature to your camera to scan. Once scanned, you can then place it anywhere in your document. Preview will save your signature for future use.

Need more help? Check out this walk-through tutorial on CNET.

Restoring windows in Apple Lion

The latest Mac operating system (Lion) has a new feature that will either help or annoy you. Every time you open an application it automatically opens any window or document you had open the last time. This also happens when you restart your Mac, any application you had open will automatically start up again.

If you find this obnoxious (like I do), there is an easy global fix:

  1. Open System Preferences
  2. Click on General
  3. At the bottom of the “Number of recent items” list, uncheck the “restore windows when quitting and re-opening apps”

If you hold down the option key while quitting an application, the system makes a note to do the opposite of whatever your general settings say when you start that application again.

Extract pages from a PDF in Apple Preview

Open your PDF document in Apple Preview. If the sidebar isn’t showing, choose View > Sidebar > Show Sidebar or press CMD-SHIFT-D. Make sure it’s showing thumbnails (choose View > Sidebar > Thumbnails).

If you want to create a separate PDF from one of the pages, drag the thumbnail to your desktop. To create a separate PDF of multiple pages, hold down command and select the pages, then drag them to your desktop.

Start iChat/Adium without logging in

If you use iChat or Adium and have multiple accounts (AOL, Yahoo, Gtalk), you probably have the program set to automatically log into all accounts when it starts up. But there might be times when you want to log into just one account or none at all.

All you need to do is hold down the shift key while opening your chat program. Once the application launches you can choose which accounts you want to log into.

Via Macworld

Sharing YouTube videos

Did you know that you can share a YouTube link that will take people directly to a specific point in a video? Go to the video and place the marker at the point you’d like the video to start. Click on the Share button beneath the video. Under the link, click on Options. Check the “Start at” option. Now copy and paste the generated URL and your friend will be taken right to the exact spot you chose.

Remove, reorder, or combine pages of a PDF in Apple Preview

Open your PDF document in Apple Preview. If the sidebar isn’t showing, choose View > Sidebar > Show Sidebar or press CMD-SHIFT-D. Make sure it’s showing thumbnails (choose View > Sidebar > Thumbnails). To delete a page, just select the thumbnail and hit delete. To reorder pages, drag them up or down in the sidebar. To add pages from another PDF, open that PDF and drag the page’s thumbnail to the sidebar of the other PDF.