Public Betas of iOS 14, watchOS 7, Big Sur and More Rolling Out »

John Voorhees:

Apple has opened its public beta program for iOS 14, iPadOS 14, macOS Big Sur, tvOS 14, and watchOS 7 on the Apple Beta Software Program website. One notable difference between this year’s public betas and those of past years is that this is the first time watchOS has been included in the program.

Developers, who can access betas of Apple’s OS releases before the general public, received the first developer betas on June 22nd, the first day of WWDC and a second version earlier this week. If past practice is a guide, the public beta released today should be identical to the second developer beta released on Tuesday.

As always, have a good backup before you dive into beta software, and avoid it on anything you rely on for work.

Apple Clarifies Its Future with Thunderbolt »

In a statement to Rene Ritchie:

Over a decade ago, Apple partnered with Intel to design and develop Thunderbolt, and today our customers enjoy the speed and flexibility it brings to every Mac. We remain committed to the future of Thunderbolt and will support it in Macs with Apple silicon.

Not a shock, but it’s good to see this.

Also, I guess we’re going with “Apple silicon” with the s lowercase…?

The Rise and Fall of Flash »

Richard Moss, writing at Ars Technica:

Whichever side of the love-hate divide you land on, there’s no denying the fact that Flash changed how we consume, create, and interact with content on the Web. For better and worse, it helped shape the Internet of today.

But now, after roughly 25 years, Flash is finally nearing its end. In less than six months—December 2020—Adobe will officially end support and distribution of Flash Player, the browser plugin we all associate most strongly with the technology. And already, months ahead of this end-of-life switch, Flash has been disabled in most Web browsers (often flagged as a security risk should you choose to override the default settings). Even Google Chrome, long the browser of choice for Flash content, will soon remove Flash Player.

Kbase Article of the Week: Mac OS X 10.4.2 or Later: Installing and Removing Dashboard Widgets »

Apple Support:

Downloading, installing, and removing Dashboard widgets has been greatly improved in Mac OS X 10.4.2 and later. For the best widget installation experience, be sure to update to the latest version of Mac OS X 10.4.

In short, when you ran a Dashboard widget for the first time, it was in “test drive” mode, meaning you had to tell Mac OS X you wanted to keep it installed after playing around with it the first time.

To remove a widget, Apple made a Widget Manager for easily uninstalling unwanted widgets:

In 10.4 and 10.4.1, this process was way worse:

  1. In the Finder, choose Home from the Go menu.
  2. Open the Library folder.
  3. Open the Widgets folder.
  4. Look for the widget that you want to remove from the Dashboard Widget Bar, and drag it out of the Widgets folder. If you want to delete it, put it in the Trash and empty the Trash.

Yikes.

Sponsor: SheetPlanner: The Ultimate Tool for Organizing Information, Managing Projects and Getting Things Done »

SheetPlanner helps you organize information, manage your projects, and schedule your tasks and activities with unparalleled power and flexibility.

Get organized…
Organize information using the Outliner to provide structure. Populate the start, finish and progress columns to create a schedule and track progress. Add custom, text, number, date, symbol, list and picture columns to track additional information.

Make a plan…
Visualize tasks with start and finish dates on the Timeline. Change the Timeline scope to get a high level view of your project over multiple years or zoom in to weeks or even days for more precision. See the progress of each task in the Timeline. Customize the color of Timeline bars. Preview and print the Timeline.

Get things done…
Use filters to focus on what’s important, due today, due tomorrow, or whatever criteria you determine. View filtered tasks in the timeline, month and yearly calendar. Check items off as they are completed in the outline, timeline, month or year views. Hide completed items to stay focused.

You can download SheetPlanner from the Mac App Store, where a 21-day trial is available.

Introducing More Power Users »

Today, David Sparks and I are thrilled to introduce More Power Users, a special dedicated feed for MPU members that includes ad-free episodes, as well as regular bonus segments, more focused on news or current happening in the Apple community. This is something we don’t get to do very often on MPU, and we’re excited to have this conversations together.

(For example, this week after our interview with David Smith, we talked for a while about the possibility of touchscreens coming to Macs.)

You can join here:

If you are already a MPU member, just sign in to your Memberful account, select More Power Users from the drop down list and easily subscribe in your podcast app of choice.

The Omni Group »

My thanks to The Omni Group for sponsoring 512 Pixels this week.

Since their founding in 1992, The Omni Group has created powerful tools for productive professionals. Designed for Mac, iPad, and iPhone, the Omni Productivity Suite is software engineered with pros (and their work) in mind.