Food for thought‘[...] do not think that good design can make a poor product good, whether the product be a machine, a building, a promotional brochure or a business man. But [...] good design can materially help make a good product reach its full potential. In short, [...] good design is good business.’
Thomas J. Watson Jr., IBM CEO

Quick tips, apple ones

January 9, 2009, 7:39 PM

I switched to Apple last july after working dual, mac at office, pc at home for two years. I wanted portability and the best OS on the market, so an MBP with the new Leopard was the best choice. Unlike many creatives I don’t blog about Apple because I’m not a zealot—or maybe because of my inborn stubborness in doing the opposite of what the majority of my kin is doing :) Besides, my colleague Kit is a lot more well informed than me, not to mention passionate — his MBP review is quite thorough.

But since I’ll always have geek tendencies, I do enjoy shortcuts, tips and especially hidden stuff the Apple guys like to put into their machines. Here’s two of them:

1. Getting fast to the Video panel in System Prefs — especially useful when using a second monitor, there is a strange bug that f*cks up the colour profile usually after the screensaver sets on, making the colours on your MBP screen bluer. Everything returns to normal when you open the Display System Pref panel, but that’s some annoying clicks away unless you press Alt(Option)+F2 (the brightness button — works just as well with F1). The same type of shortcut works for other panels, like the Sound, Expose, Spaces when pressing Alt plus the corresponding F.

2. Zooming in Quick View
— the classic Photoshop zoom, Cmd+/- works only in PDF files, so it’s quite annoying that such a great tool doesn’t let you zoom in while viewing jpg or other formats. Well, it does, all you have to do is to keep Alt pressed and you’ll have a magnifying glass to click your way through the picture. Alt+Shift for zooming out, of course.

I hope you’ll find them useful enough, I know I use them daily. And while I’m at it, don’t forget the fun Ctrl+Alt+Cmd+8, which inverts all the colours on your display (sometimes quite useful), a fun prank to play on less experienced users :D Cheers!



The good, the bad and the Apple design…

May 11, 2007, 2:23 AM

Pray for Apple

Last year I came to Bucharest (largest in Romania) because I wanted more than any other large Romanian cities could offer for my career. The first thing I remember seeing on my first day was the new iMac on my desk. After admiring it’s design, it’s compactness, it’s coolness, it’s look-at-me-I’ve-got-no-towercase, I started mumbling and cursing, since I had never used a Mac before. It took me a week or so to get used to it, but more than one year after that, even though I’ve learnt to love many of its features, I’m still not convinced Apple is “the way”, contrary to what most of my fellow creatives think.

Funny thing is, while reading this article from Design Observer, I’ve started thinking that Apple is becoming more and more like the Big Brother they pretended to defeat in their 1984-ad. Or like some sort of a Microsoft 2.0 (everything nowadays has to be web 2.0, right ?), one greedy corporation trying to take over the world market, this time in the name of great design and user friendliness.

I’m all for great design, but sometimes only one type of “great design” might be bad design. “Or to put it another way, if you round too many corners, you lose your edge.” (Design Observer)

or maybe “one Apple to rule them all” ?

Later edit: another funny article about macs vs pc on the best page in the universe :P (via studioprimer)