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📱💻 Finer Tech Newsletter ⌚️📺 WWDC 2018, find features, edit photos

Hey everyone! After the Memorial Day weekend, I’m back with a new issue. However, I wanted to wait fo
📱💻 Finer Tech Newsletter ⌚️📺
📱💻 Finer Tech Newsletter ⌚️📺 WWDC 2018, find features, edit photos
By David Chartier • Issue #46 • View online
Hey everyone! After the Memorial Day weekend, I’m back with a new issue. However, I wanted to wait for Apple’s WWDC 2018 keynote yesterday to experiment with including some thoughts on it. The rest of the newsletter is good ol’ tips for Apple’s current OSes and some good reads.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this issue or if there’s something you’d like to see covered in the future. If you know people who would enjoy this newsletter, I’ll owe you a beverage if you share this signup link and my Patreon link.

🚀 WWDC 2018
I really liked Apple’s keynote this year, which you can watch online. It showed off a solid, healthy collection of updates coming later this year to the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch. The Apple TV gets some good stuff too, but I am personally much less interested in those this time around. Here are just some highlights:
For iPhone, there is FaceTime for up to 32 (!!!) people, a way to turn yourself into an animated emoji, big performance improvements for older iPhones, and tools to monitor and restrict device usage. For Mac there’s a Dark Mode, much better Quick Look and iOS-like screenshot tools, a new Apple News app, and a much needed Mac App Store redesign. For Watch there are lots of new Activity and Workout options, as well as a Walkie-Talkie feature for instant audio messages to friends. On tvOS we get Dolby Atmos 3D sound support, much more 4K contact, and a new “zero sign-in” option for apps to automatically unlock content from your cable subscription.
Plenty of the keynote caught my attention, but I’ll leave you with a final thought: there was yet another big demo of new AR features coming to iOS, this time involving virtual LEGO toys. While they were impressive on stage, just like in past years, I don’t imagine they’ll be much of a hit. I also can’t shake the feeling that this entire ARKit initiative is just developer training wheels for when Apple is ready (and so are we) to introduce AR on a totally new device. I’m talking Mac -> iPhone level new device, and I’m on board with the current assumption of some sort of ‘smart AR glasses.’
If you have the time, or can do video in the background, I think this year’s keynote is worth checking out. Otherwise, you can see overviews of all the big stuff at Apple.com.
Now, on to your regularly scheduled newsletter.
💡 Tips
📱 Camera+ 2 can swap between your Lightbox and Photos library
One of my favorite features of the brand new Camera+ 2 for iPhone and iPad (and its predecessor) is the Lightbox—an in-app space for storing and editing photos. I find it to be a great way to explore photography without cluttering up my Photos library of friends, family, and personal stuff.
In Camera+ 2, you can now flip a switch to work in your Lightbox or Photos library. You no longer have to import from Photos to Camera+ (though you still can if you want) just to add a filter to that family gathering. It’s a big timer saver.
By the way: I enjoy my iPhoneography and recently revived my Flickr account. It’s seeing a bit of a renaissance now that Verizon/Yahoo sold it to Shutterbug, which plans to revive it and keep it as a separate product.
📱 Add nicknames to contacts for easy Siri commands
You can add nicknames to your contacts to make them easier for Siri to text and call. For example, I can tell my Watch to “text my wife I’ll be home in 30,” and Siri knows exactly who that is.
To do this, just edit a contact on your iPhone in the Phone or Contacts apps. Scroll to the bottom, then tap Add Field > Nickname. There should be a new field at the top of the current contact (you might have to manually scroll back up).
Type something unique but identifiable, then tap Done. Siri should now recognize that for its commands that interact with contacts.
📱 iPad: Hold Command to see available keyboard shortcuts
This one’s a repeat, partly because it’s so darn good (and because this still seems to be news every time I mention it!), but also because I’m including its Mac counterpart next. 😉
If you use a hardware keyboard with your iPad, hold the Command key to see a cheat sheet of all available shortcuts. In my example above, I’m using the fantastic Things 3 for iPad.
Note that this cheat sheet is contextual. For example: in Mail, different features will appear when you manage your inbox versus draft a new message. Also be aware that not all iPad apps support shortcuts, though anecdotally, that seems to be steadily improving.
💻 How to quickly find the features, shortcuts you need
The Mac has a trick similar to the previous iPad tip. In any app, press Command + Shift + ? (⌘⇧?). This will open the Help > Search menu for that app and place the cursor in its Search field.
This is a Spotlight-ish tool provided by macOS that searches the names of all features with menu options in the current app. Type a couple letters, use up/down arrows to navigate results, and press Return to use the feature.
💻 PowerPhotos is a great way to clean up, merge, split Photos libraries (also iPhoto and Aperture!)
PowerPhotos for Mac is a clever, powerful tool for managing one or more Photos libraries. It can find duplicates, split and merge libraries, and even migrate your old iPhoto and Aperture libraries.
I’ve used it a few times to help clients finally make the transition to Photos, and it’s worked wonderfully. I highly recommend it. Of course, I also highly recommend to always make backups of every library involved before doing serious management like deleting and merging. Then, if possible, make backups of those backups. You can never be too careful with precious memories and work.
🔗 Links
Stunning Aerial Photos Showcase the Dazzling Buddhist Temples of Myanmar
When a College Takes on American Poverty - The Atlantic
An ancient memorization strategy might cause lasting changes to the brain
Google Is Saving Its Own Time, Not Yours
🤩 Thanks for reading
How did you like this issue? Was it useful and bite-size-y enough? Are there certain kinds of tips or apps you’d like to see here? Let me know what you think, and please help me spread the word about supporting Finer Things in Tech!
Did you enjoy this issue?
David Chartier

Quick tips and exploring apps to help you work faster, shoot better photos, and do more with your iPad, iPhone, Mac, Apple Watch, apps, and more. Also, some good weekly reads about tech and culture.

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