Archive for March 30, 2016

Wednesday, March 30, 2016 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Fantastical 2.2 for Mac

Flexibits (comments):

The headlining new feature in version 2.2 is native Exchange support. Previously, Fantastical’s Exchange implementation was dependent upon Apple’s built-in calendar support. While this allowed Exchange accounts to work with Fantastical, there were a number of features it couldn’t support. With our own Exchange implementation, these limitations are no more.

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Believe it or not, our next feature is actually one of our most requested: printing. Fantastical now offers the ability to print your calendars and reminder lists in a variety of different views and with multiple, detailed configuration options. We know a lot of you have been asking for this for quite a while now, but we wanted to make sure we got this right.

This is great news, considering that the current version of Apple’s Calendar app is incapable of printing a year’s worth of events. It just gobbled gigabytes of RAM, at a decreasing rate, until an hour later when I finally force quit it. Printing the same time period with Fantastical took seconds and about 30 MB of RAM. Unfortunately, Fantastical does not print the notes, URLs, or locations, so it’s not suitable for the PDF event archive that I was trying to create.

Update (2016-07-12): David Pogue:

For each feature, BusyCal 3 is almost always more flexible and more powerful than Fantastical, but everything is relative. Both programs blow the basic Apple calendar app off the map in these departments.

What to Do When the Mac App Store App Just Spins and Spins

TJ Luoma:

Recently I found myself in a bind: the Mac App Store app on my Retina MacBook would launch, but would not show me anything except a little spinning circle near the top-left corner. I left it like that overnight and when I came back the next morning it was still spinning. Fixing it was tricky, even for an experienced Mac user like myself, so I thought I’d share what worked for me in case you ever find yourself in that situation.

His fix was to show the debug menu, use it to open the hidden downloads folder, delete that folder, and then (required) reboot the Mac.

This is also yet another problem with Mac software that will never show up in crash logs, because the app never crashed, but that didn’t mean it wasn’t broken. I hope Apple is more aware of this type of problem than they sometimes appear to be.

The Big iPad Pro

Katie Floyd:

After spending time with the iPad Pro, there’s no doubt that it is a remarkable piece of engineering, and it is unquestionably the right device for some. Perhaps as a laptop replacement, perhaps as a better iPad, perhaps just as a supplemental device or even a second iPad. But for me, it’s none of those things. I’m glad I tried it, and I learned several things along the way. Here’s my tale of two weeks with an iPad Pro.

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Probably the biggest problem with the iPad Pro was it was just too darn big. I found the iPad wasn’t comfortable to use in places where I typically like to use an iPad. The iPad Pro is a device that’s really meant to be used at a table or another flat service. […] Because of its size, anywhere I took my iPad Pro, it would have been just as easy to take my MacBook Air. If I was going to go the trouble, I personally would have preferred to have my Mac.

The size of the iPad Pro as also a problem in using it in client meetings. I didn’t care for the feel of the keyboard cover, and I found typing directly on the glass to be a clunky experience.

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I personally found using the Apple Pencil more fatiguing compared to pen and paper and the handwriting was generally less clear on the iPad than on paper. I think this was due to having less friction and having to apply more pressure to control the pencil than compared with pen and paper.