Daily Tip: Option-click menu bar items for additional information

The menu bar items Apple puts in OS X are pretty useful, but you can make them even more so by holding down the Option key when clicking on them. Note that this trick doesn’t work with all menu bar items, just Apple’s (as far as I’ve found. I haven’t tested every app, of course!). Here’s a look at the result of several items with and without an Option-click (note that I’m using Snow Leopard in these screenshots).

batteryplain
Battery, right-click
Battery, Option-click
Battery, Option-click
WiFi, right-click
WiFi, right-click
WiFi, Option-click
WiFi, Option-click
Volume, right-click
Right
Volume, Option-click
Volume, Option-click
Bluetooth, right-click
Bluetooth, right-click
Bluetooth, Option-click
Bluetooth, Option-click

The odd thing is there’s a difference in the Time Machine menu, too, but OS X won’t let me take a screenshot of the Option-click version. When you Option-click, Back Up Now turns into Verify Backups, and Enter Time Machine becomes Browse Other Time Machine Discs.

This post is part is one of 31 tech tips I published in March, 2013You’ll find the rest here.

Apple giving Snow Leopard to MobileMe customers for free

Apple has sent an email to MobileMe customers [1. So I’m told. My Apple email hasn’t worked for almost two days.] explaining how they can request a free Snow Leopard installer DVD, according to Macgasm. Installing Snow Leopard will let stragglers upgrade to Lion and then install iCloud.

It’s unclear if Snow Leopard will be made available for free for everyone or just select MobileMe customers.

[Via Macgasm]

Jesus Diaz’s Mountain Lion review (Update)

Update: Yes, the first sentence reads “Lion” not “Mountain Lion.” I’d swear it said “Mountain Lion” when I first read it. Anyway, post adjusted. Apologies to Diaz.

Jesus Diaz has published his thoughts on Mountain Lion to Gizmodo. It starts:

“Mac OS X Lion seems unpolished and, worse, not innovative.”

Complaining that an early pre-release meant for developers is unfinished. I stopped reading right there.

Still, the theme of Diaz’s post is unchanged:

“For all of Mountain Lion’s good new features—and there are a few—the new OS raises a terrifying brace of thoughts: that Apple has run out of ideas…It just feels like Apple isn’t trying to make things better.”

Again I say, it’s way, way too early to pass judgement on OS X Mountain Lion.