Posts Tagged "osx"

Unicode via Alfred

Something I miss a lot on macOS is a fast way to enter Unicode characters. macOS does a pretty good job of handling combining keys so that you can type é and ö, and it's got a fancy emoji picker, but if you want to enter ∫ or ⚠, you're stuck using the terrible character picker window1:

screenshot of the character picker

Well, no longer. If you, like me, use Alfred 4 on your Mac, you can download the following Alfred Workflow to get a new "unicode" Alfred command. This uses a fast index2 to look up unicode characters by name. The first time you …

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Dark Mode

Small update: this website now supports "Dark Mode" on macOS 10.14+ iOS 13+, and the forthcoming Android Q, all using the prefers-color-scheme CSS media selector. Let me know if you see anything that looks janky!

TeX is Huge

I was installing MacTeX on my MacBook Pro today and had an amusing realization. First, some background: for those of you who don't know, TeX is a phenomenal family of typesetting programs originally written in 1978 by two of the giants of 20th Century computer science, Don Knuth and Guy Steele. Most people now use it in conjunction with a slightly more modern set of extensions called LaTeX released in 1981 or so. I used TeX/LaTeX to typeset several thousand pages of homework and other assignments in college.

Now, in early 2014, the download for the OS X distribution …

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Alfred + dc

I use Alfred 2 a lot on OS X in order to get things done. It doesn't completely change how I use the operating system, but it comes close. However, one of my pet peeves about it has always been that the built-in calculator is pretty terrible (even with the "advanced" equals-sign calculator). I realized this morning that I could fix this, and, lo, the dc alfred workflow was born.

It just takes its input and runs it through the dc command-line utility, giving you a fully-programmable RPN calculator. It's not quite as great as PCalc, but it's just a …

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Interesting SSL Issue

Shortly after I upgraded to OS X 10.9.2, I was connecting to, and I got an SSL error. At the time, I didn't think anything of it (after all, sites have bad SSL certificates all the time). However, I noticed it again today when looking at the page for Reaper of Souls, and decided to look into it again. When I did, I found something very unusual: my system has a second copy of the DigiCert root CA certificate in the "login" keychain. For those of you who aren't familiar, OS X uses a hierarchy of …

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Rawr, Lion

Mac OS X Lion If you've read any kind of tech news in the last few days, you might've noticed that Mac OS X 10.7 Lion is out. I wasn't going to upgrade for a while, but then it launched and I did. So I've been using Lion for a few days now, and I thought I'd join the endless ranks of people on the Internet talking about Apple's latest big cat. I'm not really going to be much competition for the real tech writers, so if you want to learn nearly everything about Lion, I recommend making a pot of tea and sitting down to John Siracusa's latest tome. Otherwise, read on to see what I think of the new features.

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