Safari - I closed the window!

Oops! I just closed my Safari window instead of sending it to the Dock.

Does this ever happen to you? It occasionally happens to me--and there is a way to re-open the window.

Go to the History menu. Choose "Reopen Last Closed Window".

While the window will reopen, the items under the Back icon have disappeared. Use the lower part of the History menu to find those items.



Safari - Know where you are going

Safari 4.0 made a few changes in the toolbar at the top of each web page. Some of the changes were easy to accept, while others caused more than a few negative comments.

One thing that disappeared was the blue progress bar that showed in the URL or address window at the top of each page. I don't particularly miss it. Perhaps that is because I did not pay too much attention to it. Instead, I use the Status Bar that can be added to the bottom of all Safari windows.

There is a good chance this piece is missing in your Safari window.

Check your View menu. If it says, "Show Status Bar," then you will not see it at the bottom of each window. If it says Hide Status Bar, then it will be present in each window.

This Status Bar can show you the address for links:

And it can show you the progress made in loading a web page:

Sometimes, the page will have stopped loading, but the count of completed items will indicate that the page did not completely load. This is usually called a server error." You can attempt to load the rest of the page by clicking the Reload icon that shows at the end of the address bar. Sometimes that will cause the missing items to appear. If they don't you may want to check the page with a different browser or later in the day.

While the status bar is pretty small, it can be very useful in web surfing.


Safari homepage - Make it yours!

Yesterday I blogged about the Safari toolbar. If you read that post, hopefully your toolbar contains at least a few extra icons.

Another thing that I see as I work with client's computers is the default Apple homepage. While it is not terrible, it is pretty useless. Your homepage should be something that you WANT to read when you open Safari.

For many years, I used a page from Excite. Other similar pages include and iGoogle, These can be personalized to include things that were of interest to the reader.

Recently I have been using Google News. Once again, it can be personalized and its content changes frequently throughout the day.

Some of my clients prefer a large newspaper such as the New York Times, the Washington Post, or the Houston Chronicle. Other favorites include the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle or even the San Jose Mercury News. Still others prefer the Wall Street Journal or the Financial Times.

For the real geek, you might enjoy MacDailyNews, The MacObserver, Macworld, or The Loop. Let's not forget Macsimum News, TUAW, ArsTechnica and CNET. A great page that aggregates these and even more is MacSurfer.

If you have a favorite hobby or special interest, think about a page with daily new content.

First, open the page that you have chosen. Open the Safari > Preferences > General menu to make your choices.

Click the "Set to Current Page" button to change the page.

Some Mac users would prefer to use something other than a homepage. Click the "New Windows open with" button if you would prefer something else:

The nice thing about being a Mac user is that there are lots of different choices available--and you can make new choices easily.

Happy Web Surfing!


Safari Toolbar - Make it yours

I see lots of Macintosh computer users using Safari. And I see lots of them using the Safari toolbar just the way it came.

We all know that Apple is a minimalist company when it comes to esthetics--but minimalism doesn't make Safari easy to use. It is bare! There is no home button, no print button, no resize button.

This is my Safari tool bar. Look at all those strange icons. Those strange icons make it so easy to really use Safari.

So, how did I put them in my toolbar? I used View > Customize Toolbar…

This is window you will see:

At the bottom of the window you will see the default toolbar. Above it, you will see lots of icons that you can add to Safari. Drag the icons up to the Safari toolbar. Click the Done button in the lower right corner when you are finished. While you may not want to add all of them, here are several that you may want to add.

First, add the Home button:

Click it and you will return to the page that first opens when you start Safari. That can be any page you like--and that will be the topic of another blog post!

The Zoom button is very useful:

It allows you to instantly make not only the text, but also the graphics bigger (or smaller) on a web page. Now that my eyes are over 40, I find this to be very useful.

Two more icons that I find to be very useful are the Mail and Print buttons:

Since I do most of my news reading on the web these days, and since I frequently want to send a web page address to someone, this Mail button is very convenient. It opens a new message window in Mail with the subject and the web address already in place. I only need to address the message and write a quick note:

The Print button opens the Print window. While I could just print the page, instead, I usually make a PDF of the page and file it away in the appropriate place on my computer.

If your Print window looks different than mine, you need to click this disclosure triangle to see the really useful Print window shown above:

There are lots more buttons that you can add to the Safari toolbar. Do some more exploring. You can always go back to the View > Customize Toolbar… window to add or remove them.


Close those windows!

After a bit of Twitter reading, my screen often looks like this:

I haven't taken time to count, but a quick view the Window menu in Safari shows lots of open windows:

I am sure thre are lots of other hidden windows since there are a dozen open applications on my computer.

Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard makes it easy to see the windows associated with any application – just click and hold on the application icon in the dock:

But how do you close all those windows without clicking on all those red dots? Use the Option key! To close all the windows associated with an application, hold down the option key and click one of its windows. It's a fast way to get rid of desktop clutter – and you are still protected from closing items that have not been saved:

Want to learn more about your computer? Book a tutorial session with Dr. Mac Consulting! We have special software that allows us to see and even control your computer. The cost is $60 per hour and we have never heard a dumb question!


Editing iCal Events

An update to the Macintosh operating system sometimes leads to complaints. That was certainly the case in iCal in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard. Suddenly it became much more difficult to edit events. There had been a "drawer" at the side of the calendar in Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger that made it easy to quickly edit events.

In Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, the drawer was replaced by a pop-up. This pop-up remains in Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard

While it is useful for adding the event, making changes with it is inconvenient, especially if you are making multiple ones. To make changes with it, you must double-click on the event in the calendar, then click the edit button. If you wan to change another event, you must repeat this action:

Apple must have heard the complaints because they have added a new Edit menu item, Show Inspector, in Snow Leopard:

The iCal Inspector does not have an edit button. You can make changes by simply clicking on an item. If you need to make changes in another event, just click on the event and continue editing.

There are lots of new, hidden features in Snow Leopard. Check back soon for more tips.

-- Pat

Overcome by life

MacMousecalls is my place to write about Apple and Macintosh related issues. Because it is also associated with my work with Bob LeVitus, I determined that it is not a place where I would post a lot of personal items.

However, the past six weeks have caused me to reconsider!

Just as the school year was beginning, my oldest daughter and son-in-law made a trip to California to settle his mother's affairs. She had homes in California and Hawaii and had been diagnosed with pacreatic cancer. Our three older grandchildren moved in for a three-week visit which included home-schooling them, driving them to piano, technical music, choir, ballet, soccer, art lessons and Nutcracker practice. Keeping up with the Dr. Mac consulting business, cooking, laundry, housework and all of their activities kept me very busy.

Upon my daughter's return I began to unwind and get things back in order when I got a call from the hospital. My youngest daughter (who and moved home at the end of summer to prepare for her wedding) had been thrown from a horse. She had broken her pelvis in three places and she broke three ribs.

After a long weekend in the hospital, she came home and has slowly been recovering. Because we have a basement level that was outfitted for my husband's deceased parents who were handicapped, we had all the things she would be needing--an elevator, roll-in shower, wheelchair ramps and even an electric scooter, our daughter came home instead of going to a rehab hospital. After still more equipment, including a wheelchair, walker and electric bed were delivered, I began my duties helping our daughter complete the necessary daily tasks.

It has been three weeks. She can now go about 50 feet in the walker, but still uses the wheelchair or scooter for most movement. She can take care of her personal needs, and can fix a quick snack, but I still need to do many things for her. She will be on crutches for 3-4 months, but can't start using them until her ribs heal, so it has been a slow process.

So now, you know why there have been almost no blog posts. There just hasn't been time! Things are improving and I have many topics to cover, so hopefully I will do a lot more writing in the coming days.

-- Pat