Adam Williams
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  • Computer Skills
    Setting Up an Awesome Beater Mac for Less Than $300Articleicon
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    This post is part of a series that revisits some of our readers’ favorite articles from the past that still contain awesome and relevant information that you might find useful. This post was originally published on July 8th, 2011. Let’s face it, Macs are expensive. They are more than worth it of course, but there’s no getting around the fact that any recently released Mac, regardless of model, costs a significant amount of money and is a gleaming thief-magnet, liable to being dropped or lost. I love my iPad and iPhone, but as a freelance writer I need a 'real' computer for significant work when I travel. I need a Mac that I can lug around, collecting accidental knocks without worry, a Mac that can act as temporary backup if my MacBook Pro ever needs repair. In short, I need an older, expendable Mac that I don't have to worry about. If you need one too, here's some advice on what to look for!Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Staying Safe Amid the Increasing Threat of Mac MalwareJava icon 200x2001
    Of late, the tech world has been abuzz with alarming news of Mac malware threats, the reports given weight by the emergence of a newer and more sophisticated version of that annoying thorn in Apple’s side, Flashback. Known as Flashback.K, the latest iteration of the trojan horse which has been grabbing headlines since mid-2011 makes use of a known Java security vulnerability to launch malicious code and potentially record users personal data. As OS X market share continues to rise, security is becoming an area of concern for more users and there's a perception building that Macs have lost their previous status as secure computers, with some analysts even going so far as to say that we're about to enter an era of cat-and-mouse games between Apple and malware makers. So, is the sky falling or is this all a lot of hot air?Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    GarageBand Part 3: Basics Of Recording Electric GuitarGarageband
    So far in our series of making music with GarageBand, we've taken a look at getting started with GarageBand, and have then moved on to creating a simple song in GarageBand using virtual instruments. We’re going to continue to step up the complexity to make more unique, nuanced songs but I felt that before getting more advanced with virtual instruments and editing MIDI, it’s high time that we took a moment's pause to look at the basics of recording electric guitar. Though this article is catered toward beginners looking to use their computer to record electric guitar. Electric bass works just the same and it will mostly be applicable to other instruments, like keyboards and drum machines.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    GarageBand Part 2: Creating A Simple Song With Virtual InstrumentsGaragebandguitar 1
    In our previous look at using GarageBand, we discussed the basic principles behind creating music with a Mac and GarageBand, talked about what terms like MIDI and DAW mean and dipped a toe into making music with virtual instruments. Hopefully by now you've had a chance to get familiar with the basic sounds that come with GarageBand by default, because now we're going to record a simple song using virtual instruments!Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Going Vintage: How and Why to Start Using Mac OS 9 SoftwareTenfourfox1
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    Instrumental in Apple's well-documented comeback from the brink of disaster was the launch of OS X, an operating system which seemed to herald a new age for Apple and since then, the Cupertino alumni have never looked back, increasing sales each year and ultimately dominating the home computer market. But what about OS 9? Well, despite the public funeral Jobs gave the venerable Mac OS 9 on a 2002 Keynote, it is still being used and even developed for, with users attracted to its speed, unique UI and, most importantly, the untold wealth of applications which have never made the leap over to OS X. If you've only become familiar with Apple computers since OS X like myself, you may be forgiven for having no idea about this rich software history which is just waiting to be explored, read on below to see how you can get started!Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    GarageBand Part 1: Getting Started With Virtual Instruments Garagebandguitar 1
    GarageBand is an awesome beginner-friendly music application which can be used for capturing and manipulating audio, making music with virtual instruments and recording your own professional sounding podcasts, plus more. All that’s required is the desire and patience to learn! To get started with GarageBand, we shall begin by first discussing the basics behind computer music software and virtual instruments, in addition to looking at recommended hardware to help you on your way. All this will provide a foundation for future guides, in which we will record a whole song and more.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Use Carbon Copy Cloner To Make An Exact Copy Of Your Hard-DiskFirefox4
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    Though Time Machine is a very useful and simple to use backup utility, it is sound practice to not put all your digital eggs into one basket. Further, when you upgrade your hard drive, cloning the old drive makes for a completely seamless transition to the new one. All of your passwords, apps, files, etc. will be right where you expect them to be. I’d like to show you how to use the Shareware (uncrippled, unlimited demo) program Carbon Copy Cloner to back up your files. Using Carbon Copy Cloner is a little more involved than Time Machine but the benefit of making an exact, bootable duplicate is well worth the extra effort.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Make a Ringtone with GarageBand10 icon
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    It's very easy to make your own iPhone ringtones with GarageBand. Those who already know their way around Apple's beginner-friendly Digital Audio Workstation will be able to breeze through this guide with a few quick glances, but for Mac users new to GarageBand, the seven steps below will guide you along the way.Read More…